Today, we were supposed to go boating. The sailboat and the pontoon boat and our little family and my brother and his fiancée, out poking around on the lake. Except I was awoken this morning by rolling thunder and pouring rain and winds that rivalled my experience at Ardnamurchan. So boating was out, and bike riding was out and gardening was out, and as everyone sort of settled into doing their own thing around the house, I figured I'd try to catch up on the abundance of produce on my counter and this 100-recipes thing. Let's see how many I can do today, shall we?
1. Recipe 53: No-Bake Energy Bites from Gimme Some Oven!
I actually made these last week one day, and Jack gobbled them up immediately. Jack never wants to eat ANYTHING these days, and his school lunches are especially difficult to pack, so I was pretty happy - until I realized that the peanut butter holding everything together meant they were banned from school. The batch I made today was made with Wow-Butter (seriously!) a soy peanut-butter substitute I discovered in the grocery store while looking for clover honey. 100% peanut free, these are for Jack's lunches now. They are super easy and surprisingly delicious!
1 cup dry oatmeal
⅔ cup of toasted coconut
½ cup of peanut butter (or WowButter, if you're being peanut-free)
½ cup of flaxseed
½ cup of dark chocolate chips
⅓ cup of honey
1 teaspoon of vanilla
Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Let chill in the refrigerator for half an hour. Once chilled, roll into balls of whatever size you would like. (Mine were about 1″ in diameter.) Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.
Makes about 20-25 balls.
2. Recipe 54: Roasted Tomato and Garlic Salad
Not really a recipe from anywhere other than my sheer desperation to use up all the tomatoes in the garden.
6 small-to-medium tomatoes
6 gloves of garlic
feta cheese, crumbled
fresh parsley, chopped
Preheat your oven to 350F. Wash your tomatoes well and cut the tops off. Remove the seeds and any blemishes. Pack your hollowed-out tomatoes into a deep casserole dish and place a clove of garlic in each tomato. Drizzle olive oil over top and sprinkle with finely chopped oregano. Bake uncovered for approximately 90 minutes, or until tomatoes look wilted and soft, but not burnt. Allow tomatoes to cool.
Once cooled, cut tomatoes in halves or quarters and place on a bed of arugula. Sprinkle with feta and parsley, enjoy. (Remove caterpillars from parsley before serving.)
3. Recipe 55: Blackberry and Coconut Squares from BBC Good Food
I picked blackberries at my parents' farm last week because Anik had requested some to eat. This week I noticed there were still 4 half-pints sitting in the fridge, not really looking their best anymore. This was literally the first recipe I found when I googled 'blackberry recipes' and it looked easy, so I made it. They're lovely!
250g self-raising flour
280g soft brown sugar (I used golden, I think it was the right choice)
200g cold butter , cut into pieces
75g desiccated coconut
2 medium eggs , beaten
350g frozen or fresh blackberries
Heat oven to 350F. Combine the flour, oats and sugar in a large bowl. Rub the butter into the flour mixture using your fingertips until only small pea-size pieces remain. Stir through the coconut, then fill a teacup (I used a one-cup prep bowl - seemed like the right amount) with the mixture and set this aside.
Stir the eggs into the bowl of mixture, then spread over the bottom of a lined baking tin (31 x 17cm), or a 21cm square tin. Smooth the surface with the back of a spoon, then scatter over the blackberries. Scatter over the reserved teacup mixture and bake for 1 hr-1 hr 15 mins until golden and cooked through (if you poke a skewer in, it should come out with moist crumbs but no wet mixture). Leave to cool, then remove from the tin and cut into squares. Serve with some extra berries, if you like. Great for teatime or to pop into a lunchbox.
4. Recipe 56: Tomato Basil Soup from Everyday Occasions
Still madly trying to use up tomatoes. I have a small chest freezer in the basement that is close to being literally full of frozen tomatoes. I'm going to have to make a lot of tomato risotto this winter. This recipe was lovely and simple, but I ended up sprinking some chili flakes over when serving to offset the sweetness of the fresh tomatoes. I do want to try this again, but serve it like French Onion soup - just drop a giant crouton in, sprinkle with cheese and brûlé. In fact, I might go do that now. Excuse me.
Oh yeah. That's the stuff.
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of olive oil
28 ounces of peeled crushed tomatoes
14 ounces of peeled whole tomatoes
2 cups of vegetable stock
1 tsp of sea salt
1 tsp of sugar
1/2 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup of heavy cream (ok, I used yogurt - I forgot I had no cream in the house)
3 tablespoons of fresh basil, julienned
In a saucepan, saute garlic in olive oil on medium heat for 1 minute - being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the crushed tomatoes. Add the whole tomatoes one at a time, squeezing them into the pan to break them up. Add the juice from the whole tomatoes, as well. Add the stock, salt, pepper and sugar. Cook the soup on medium at a simmer for 10 minutes.
To finish, reduce the heat to low and stir in heavy cream (or yogurt) and basil. Serve topped with parmesan cheese. Or, as pictured, drop a circle of well-toasted white bread in, sprinkle with well-aged white cheddar and brûlé away.