Warm Food for the Cold Weather, Oct 30, 2011
Yesterday, after a week of waking up in the morning with chilly feet, we retrieved our cozy down comforter from the closet, where it has been hibernating for the past seven months, and restored it to its rightful place on our bed. What joy! After a long, hot summer, I’m taking great pleasure snuggling into the crisp mornings and the cool evenings (while in between, it still feels like summer).
As the seasons slowly change, our meals are changing too. Suddenly, a cold salad doesn’t seem so satisfying – I want hot, wholesome food to keep me fuelled for winter. I want to be full and warm inside, without being weighed down. Keeping my good intentions firmly in sight, this week I found a few simple recipes that helped me transform a pile of fruit and vegetables into some delicious, filling and seasonal dishes. These are recipes you can whip up and enjoy pretty quickly, so let me know how it goes!
1. Moroccan Roasted Vegetables – an easy and delicious twist on classic roasted vegetables. Serve as a main course on a bed of brown rice or couscous, with plain yogurt drizzled on top (optional).
Quick Recipe: Chop sweet potato, butternut squash, red onion, red peppers, zucchini, carrots and a few tomatoes into large chunks (you could also add pumpkin and eggplant if you like) and throw into a large roasting pan. Drain a can of hummus beans, rinse well and add. Drizzle with olive oil (liberally) and sprinkle 2-3 tbsp of Moroccan Spice Mix over the vegetables. Toss with your hands, until the vegetable are well coated. Roast for about 40 minutes, or until the butternut squash chunks are tender.
Moroccan Spice Mix (from Cook Sister)
2 tsp ground cumin, 1 tsp ground coriander, ½ tsp sweet paprika, ½ tsp ground cinnamon, ¼ tsp ground allspice, ¼ tsp ground ginger, 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper , a pinch ground cloves, ½ tsp sugar
2. Cumin-Roasted Cauliflower with Yogurt and Pomegranate seeds – sounds and looks fancy but is super easy and surprisingly more-ish. This recipe is from my favorite source of inspiration, food blog Smitten Kitchen. Make it while there are still good pomegranates around!
Quick Recipe: All you have to do is cut a large cauliflower into bite-size florets, toss the florets with 1 tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp, salt, ½ tsp pepper and 2 tsp ground cumin. Line a baking sheet with baking paper, brush with 1 tbsp olive oil and transfer the cauliflower to the tray. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes on 200˚, until cauliflower is tender and its edges are crispy. Whisk a pinch of salt into some natural yogurt and drop a few spoonfuls on the cauliflower, then sprinkle with chopped fresh mint and pomegranate seeds. Eat immediately.
3. Stewed Apples, Pears and Plums – stewed fruit is a staple food in my parent’s house, where there is always a pot of sweet-smelling something bubbling away on the stove. It works as breakfast or dessert, babies and kids love it, it’s healthy, sugar-free and it’s good both hot and cold.
Quick Recipe: Simply choose the quantity of fruit you want to use – 6 apples, 6 plums and 4 pears will make a medium-large size pot (I always make a large batch and freeze half). Use tart green apples and sweet, ripe plums and pears. Peel and core the fruit (leave the skin on the plums) and cut roughly into medium-sized chunks. Toss in the pan with 2 tsp lemon juice, some generous shakes of ground cinnamon (to taste) and a small pinch of ground cloves. Add enough water to cover the bottom 5-6cm of the pan, cover, and bring to the boil. Simmer on a medium heat until the fruit is completely soft (around 30 minutes) stirring occasionally. If the fruit seems full of liquid, let it simmer without the lid for a while - the consistency should be somewhere between that of a thick soup and applesauce. Mash the fruit, stir and serve. Can keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Jo Cohen is a full-time working mum learning to juggle life, love and good food while avoiding major disasters. She moved to Israel six years ago from London, and now lives in Modi'in with her husband and son. Jo loves traveling, cooking, and photography – and writes a blog Eat Love Jump (eatlovejump.wordpress.com), where you can find more great recipes and general musings on life.
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