Sunday, July 3, 2011

A Surprisingly Efficient Cook or Just Crazy?

Oatmeal Cookies
I recently took on a large project completely unrelated to cooking and strangely enough, instead of limiting my cooking experiments in the kitchen, it has inspired me to try about 20 new recipes over the last three weeks. I have been a cooking machine in the short time I’ve allowed myself to prepare food for the family. One tool that I find quite helpful in keeping me organized is a website called Cookbooker where I am able to keep track of every single recipe I try from my cookbooks, magazines, blogs or elsewhere. I’m always trying to get more people to use the site because the more individual ratings and reviews that are entered for each book, the more useful the site becomes. Even if I don’t blog for lack of time or a failing to take a decent photo, I can still keep notes about every single recipe I try. So there ends my plug for Cookbooker! Check it out.

I thought I’d mention some of the highlights from the recipes I’ve tried lately. I only have a photo of one because the other two were not very photogenic dishes. Coleen Patrick-Goudreau’s newest book Color Me Vegan is home with me from the library and I have so far cooked 6 recipes. Tonight we ate the Carrot and Avocado Salad and it was a surprise hit. I wasn’t expecting such a delicious contrast of flavours and textures from a relatively short ingredient list. The creamy avocado and crisp carrots combined beautifully with an acidic dressing and the roasted sesame seeds added a surprisingly awesome burst of yum with each bite. I love when my low expectations for a recipe are exceeded!

Last night I was starving and had a baguette home from the market but no ripe tomatoes to make the planned for bruschetta. My friend Lisa helpfully suggested I try a bean and garlic spread so I looked for and discovered a recipe for White Bean Aioli in Veganomicon. Honestly, it was outstanding. I was amazed at how a few simple ingredients were transformed in a matter of minutes with the help of my food processor into a creamy, lemony-garlic delight. Move over hummus! I slathered the Aioli on some toasted baguette and gobbled it down. I even snuck downstairs later (much later) when everyone else was asleep to eat some more. Talk about comfort food!

And last but not least something sweet. I’m just going to mention one dessert for now, Oatmeal Cookies from The Peaceful Palate. These babies are dark, chewy, and extremely addictive. I’ve actually made them twice in the last couple of weeks. I justify the second batch as an experiment to make them more kid friendly because my daughter was not impressed with the strong molasses flavor. Even cutting the molasses in half, she still didn’t completely go for them the second time around so my husband and I had to suffer through eating the whole batch. Life is tough eh?

My buddy Kathryn is also cooking from Color Me Vegan this week and she made the Orange-Glazed Tempeh. Take a look at her dish here along with her comments about the book.


  1. Wow! Great blog entry, although I'm not thrilled by that gorgeous bowl and mouthwatering looking oatmeal cookies. Please fax some cookies my way.

  2. Oh, and I'm glad my white bean spread idea was a hit, and glad that you found a tasty recipe for it.

  3. I love the white bean aioli from Veganomicon. I also can't stop myself from eating a lot of it!

  4. Wow! Yum! Thanks, as ever, for the great posts. I'm finally getting settled back in after our trip and hope to post myself this weekend and will write soon :-)

  5. The white bean dip is so good I made another version of it yesterday.