- Chop or shred the carrots with your device of choice (food processor, Vitamix blender, grater, etc)
- Heat oil in a small pan and sauté garlic, onions, and carrots until onions are clear and carrots are tender. Add a little broth as needed to keep everything moist.
- Place all ingredients into the Vitamix container and secure lid. Start at the lowest speed, then slowly increase to the highest. Add more broth as needed until the consistency is to preference.
- Blend for 3-4 minutes or until heavy steam escapes from the vented lid.
This was a surprise hit! I recently read about substituting cream with silky tofu as a dairy-free, healthier alternative, and it worked beautifully. The result was a satisfyingly thick, robust soup that didn't feel overly heavy with a lovely spiced carrot flavor. I've never been a huge fan of carrots but I'd be willing to eat this every day!
This was everything it promised to be and my entire family was blown away. I stumbled across this recipe looking for pistachio-related things to make, and it turned out absolutely beautifully. The dijon mustard gave it a lovely tangy depth (and as an otherwise avowed mustard-hater, I would NOT leave this off or substitute it with anything else) and everything else crusted up just as promised.
I don't even remember how I stumbled across this recipe - I usually have 20+ tabs open in my browser, and in one of my infrequent fits of cleaning, I realized I had this particular tab open somewhere in the middle (which probably meant it was a couple weeks old) and it just so happened to use bay leaves ... which I was desperately trying to use the remainder of before they wilted. So I gave it a try, along with the tangzhong method for the first time, and while I think I made some missteps along the way, nevertheless it was a very usable bread that indeed stayed soft for several days and was enjoyed down to the last bite!
Don't want to use bread flour? The bread may not hold its shape quite as well, but feel free to substitute all-purpose flour 1:1 for the bread flour in the recipe. Reduce the water to 1/4 cup.
Want to make a softer loaf with extended shelf life? Try the tangzhong technique, a Japanese method for increasing the softness and shelf life of yeast rolls. Begin by measuring out the flour and milk you’ll be using in the recipe. Now take 3 tablespoons of the measured flour and the 1/2 cup milk; put them in a saucepan set over medium-high heat. Cook the mixture, whisking constantly, until it forms a thick slurry; this will take about 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Transfer the cooked mixture to a bowl, let it cool to lukewarm, then combine it with the remaining flour and the other dough ingredients, increasing the amount of water to 3 1/2 ounces (1/2 cup less 1 tablespoon). Proceed with the recipe as directed. Well-wrapped and stored at room temperature, your loaf should stay soft and fresh for several days.
I've always loved the idea of making bread but only ventured into that realm twice. Due to proofing times and my chaotic schedule, it was difficult to figure out when I was available to perform which step, and to be honest, it was difficult to make myself wait. I liked to just spend an hour doing everything and popping it into the oven - it was surprisingly difficult to perform a step, be patient for a few hours, then perform another step, then wait again, etc.
But I had just made pizza the other night and had half of a jar of olives still left over when this recipe landed in my inbox. The instructions seemed insanely easy for a bread recipe, so I gave it a try - and true to the article's claim, it really was as easy as it claimed! What came out was a beautifully aromatic, salty, crusty bread that I would be happy to pair up with all sorts of dips, spreads, you-name-it.
I had never heard of popovers, but I adore yorkshire pudding, so I just had to give these a try when it landed in my inbox from Epicurious. I actually debated long and hard with myself on whether I should buy a popover pan, but after a bit of research, decided that I better try it first without before getting yet another pan - especially one that would take up quite a bit of shelf space.
Thankfully, I saved quite a bit of investment in both money and space, as these turned out beautifully even without the dedicated popover pans. (Though they did make quite a bit of a mess of my muffin tins!) In fact, these barely lasted the hour, much less the day ... it was one of the rare hits that every single person in the household craved, and they're so light and airy that no one felt too guilty about scarfing down multiples in one sitting.
Popovers can be baked 4 hours ahead. Remove from pans and reheat on a baking sheet in a 350°F oven until hot and crisp.
Hummus, I'm beginning to think in my vast inexperience, seems to be rather like stone soup - you pretty much put whatever you want into a chickpea paste base "to taste" (there's probably hordes waiting in the wings to burn me for that comment). But after visiting half a dozen pages on the merits of texture vs silkiness, Greek tahini vs Arabic tahini, whether olive oil belongs in the hummus before or after, etc I'm pretty much just tossing whatever is nearby in until I'm willing to lick the spoon (or my finger) clean.
Much like the Post-Thanksgiving Scraps Turkey Shepherd's Pie, pretty much this is just to give some general guidelines and you can just go nuts with what you actually throw in. I know, I know, baking and bakers are all about precision, but this once, let your inner child loose and put as much of your favorite stuff in as you want. This is just to give you an idea of the possibilities.
This is the Frankenstein of all frankenstein mash-ups, and was born literally out of the seemingly incompatible states of being both restless and lazy at the same time. This took up the last of the Thanksgiving scraps, and though it initially was supposed to include marinara sauce and some crescent roll sheets on top, when I discovered the marinara sauce had gone bad, it was an abrupt appeal to some garlic herb butter and an egg to make it a sort of reverse shepherd's pie instead of the original pizza pot pie I had imagined. And it turned out AMAZING.
Yes, I did not include a whole lot of concrete portions, but that's the beauty of using leftovers. Everything's already been cooked and don't really need extra fussing with, and you're totally free to put more or less of anything according to taste (or what you want to get rid of).
I first got the serving idea on one of the food sites (I forget which one, maybe Epicurious), but cobbled together the dip recipe from research spread over half a dozen other sites. In fact, I was so casual with throwing in a bit of this, a dash of that, and adjusting things to taste that I honestly don't know if the ingredient amounts below are anywhere close to accurate. But I think that pretty much exemplifies dip recipes - pretty much anything goes, and you can experiment and never make it the same way twice, but it will all be delicious; just in different ways.
My family has traditionally not had much turkey during Thanksgiving, because the one or two times that we attempted to make our own bird had ended in hilariously disastrous results through various shenanigans that had nothing to do with the recipe or the ability to follow it. However, I was throwing a pre-Thanksgiving Friendsgiving potluck for which I vaguely didn't want to make solely dessert dishes for, and in the eleventh hour, this landed in my inbox from MyRecipes.com. So I thought I'd give it a try, because in theory, the slow cooker should trap most of the moisture in with far less danger of over-cooking. And lo and behold, it passed even my father's notoriously high bar for turkey!
Part of the reason I started baking was because I like my goodies to be less obviously sweet - I want to taste the flavor, not just the sugar. So most of these recipes will have the sugar dialed down.