Since yesterday was my blogiversary, I decided to do a little giveaway. Now, I don't know if anyone out there loves cookbooks as much as I do. Maybe you do or maybe you don't. Whatever the case may be, I am going to give 1 lucky winner a copy of Everyday Food:Great Food Fast. This cookbook is really a great asset. It is similar to the magazine Everyday Food, which comes from the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living. What I particularly enjoy about this cookbook, is that it is arranged by the seasons of the years, featuring ingredients that are fresh and available during that particular season.
Here is an editorial review that was featured on Amazon.com- "If you are a fan of Everyday Food magazine (and you should be), you will be wowed by Great Food Fast, a gorgeous full-color cookbook filled to bursting with recipes for fresh, flavorful food that is easy to prepare. Organized by season, Great Food Fast features simple recipes for year-round cooking, including no-cook pasta sauces, main-course soups, one-dish meals, and more." --Daphne Durham
I decided to showcase a couple of the winter recipes (since it is still snowing and cold around here) from this book. I made the Creamy Parsnip Soup, Curried Carrot Soup, and Glazed Lemon Cakes. I added the super cute Grilled-Cheese Croutons that I saw in Family Fun Magazine to the Carrot soup, just for a fun topper.
Both of the soups were very good and easy.
The Parsnip soup was a little bit sweet, due to the apples and parsnips, but nice and thick also. I think I used too much of the leeks, which led to a green color soup, instead of the nice white color pictured in the book, but it still tasted great.
The Curried Carrot Soup was the definite favorite. Carrots and curry make a great combination. We loved the grilled cheese croutons on top. I didn't follow the recipe- I just used the same idea. I make grilled cheese sandwiches in my Foreman Grill, which eliminates the need for any butter. The next day we had the carrot soup for leftovers and stirred in some leftover, cooked brown rice.
The Glazed Lemon Cakes were amazing. I used buttermilk in them and that led to a very light, moist cake. I made them smaller than the recipe suggested, but that just meant there were more of us that were able to enjoy them.
So, now that you have a sample of the recipes, in order to win this cookbook, please leave me a comment telling me what your favorite season of the year is and why. I will randomly chose a winner on Tuesday @ midnight and contact you in order to get shipping information. If you don't have a blog, leave a comment with your email address, so if you are the winner I will be able to contact you. The winner will be announced in my post on Wednesday Feb. 25.
My favorite season is Summer. I love hot weather, fresh fruit and vegetables from the garden and lots of sun!
Good Luck Everybody!
Prep: 20 minutes Total: 50 minutes
To prepare leeks: Trim and discard root ends and dark-green parts. Halve lengthwise; thinly slice crosswise. Wash in several changes of cold water until all grit is removed.
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound prepared leeks, sliced (2 cups)
1 pound parsnips, trimmed, peeled, and cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces
2 apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium baking potato (about 1/2 pound), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 can (14.5 ounces) reduced sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper
Leek garnish (see below) (I omitted this step)
Heat butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add leeks (reserving 1/2 cup for garnish). Cook, stirring, 5 minutes.
Add parsnips, apples, potato, broth, and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until vegetables are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
Working in batches, puree soup in a blender until smooth. Return it to pot; stir in cream. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with Leek Garnish.
To make leek garnish, in a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high. Add reserved 1/2 cup leeks; cook, stirring, until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Prep: 20 minutes Total: 40 minutes
1 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon curry powder
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth (about 3 1/2 cups)
2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)
Heat oil in a Dutch oven or large (4- to 5-quart) saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, curry powder, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
Add broth, carrots, and 3 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover, and simmer until carrots are tender, about 20 minutes.
In a blender, puree soup in batches until smooth; transfer to a clean saucepan. Add more water to thin to desired consistency. Reheat, if necessary. Stir in lemon juice. Serve garnished with cilantro, if desired.
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon thyme
6 thin slices of bread
3 ounces Cheddar, thinly sliced
Prep: 15 minutes Total: 50 minutes
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for muffin tin
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for muffin tin
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk, or plain low-fat yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated, plus juice, plus 2 tablespoons more lemon juice for the glaze
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
With an electric mixer, cream butter and granulated sugar until light. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk mixture.
Divide evenly among muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in tin, then cool completely on a rack.
Set rack over wax or parchment paper. In a small bowl, stir confectioners’ sugar with remaining lemon juice until smooth. Pour over cakes, spreading to edges with a knife.