So it's a new year...and my blogging in 2015 left something to be desired for sure. I was pretty sparse, but for good reason! Life took over! And I am not complaining - it's been fun.
My focus for the year is three-fold -
- Really and truly learn how to meditate. I started playing with this last year, but have yet to fully commit to the process that it takes to be able to meditate. Lulu Lemon is offering meditation podcasts (check it out here ) on SoundCloud which should be relatively easy to dedicate time to. I already downloaded the app and am primed to go. The research just keeps getting stronger about the health benefits of meditation. Check out the most recent segment from CBS Sunday Morning about the power of meditation - here - kids are doing it in schools, people are escaping plane crashes by using calming techniques.
- Volunteer! Period. Find one organization that I can be passionate about. I love the town I live in and would be interested in making it better. I ran into a fellow Watertownian while walking with the dogs in the woods the other day and she was telling me about a group that is all about improving the town and increasing awareness about issues that pop up. Soo... I think that might be my first foray into the world of volunteering. My friend Marissa also inspired me - she is always trying to improve herself (not that she needs to, she is pretty great) and volunteering is something she takes seriously! Thanks Mar. I hope I can make a difference too.
- Blog More. Shoot more with Will. Starting tomorrow we will have our first shoot of the year. I am excited to start fresh! We didn't do much last year because life got in the way, but we have made a promise to each other to make it a priority. It's good for both of our creative juices. So stay tuned for some fab shots!
So usually I post about a tried and true recipe, but this was so good I had to share!! It's been saved in my "New Recipes" folder forever and after the food heaviness of the holidays it was time to eat something light. and this Yotam Ottolenghi Cauliflower Cake is seriously to die for. He is an amazing chef and is known for identifying the correct method of how to cook vegetables in a way that effectively brings out the maximum flavor each one has to offer.
I love me a good crustless quiche and posted my favorite rendition last March (HERE), but I swear by the way I gravitate toward anything that is Israeli or Middle Eastern Mediterranean leads me to believe that I was of that decent in another life! Yotam has many amazing recipes and cook books so don't forget to check him out on Amazon.
Cauliflower Cake (adapted from the Kitchn blog - I served with a simple shirazi salad)
Serves approx 6-8
1 small cauliflower, outer leaves removed, broken into 1 1/4-inch florets (about 4 cups)
1 medium red onion, peeled (6 ounces)
5 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
7 large eggs
1/2 cup basil leaves, chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated Parmesan or another aged cheese
Melted unsalted butter, for brushing
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
1 teaspoon nigella seeds (also known as black caraway) - can be hard to find, but the ones I got on amazon were awesome and came fast - order here)
1 tsp Salt and a nice amount of black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Place the cauliflower florets in a saucepan and add 1 teaspoon salt. Cover with water and simmer for 15 minutes, until the florets are quite soft. They should break when pressed with a spoon. Drain and set aside in a colander to dry.
Cut 4 round slices, each 1/4-inch/5-mm thick, off one end of the onion and set aside. Coarsely chop the rest of the onion and place in a small pan with the oil and rosemary. Cook for 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring from time to time, until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Transfer the onion to a large bowl, add the eggs and basil, whisk well, and then add the flour, baking powder, turmeric, Parmesan, 1 teaspoon salt, and plenty of pepper. Whisk until smooth before adding the cauliflower and stirring gently, trying not to break up the florets.
Line the base and sides of a 9 1/2-inch/24-cm springform cake pan with parchment paper. Brush the sides with melted butter, then mix together the sesame and nigella seeds and toss them around the inside of the pan so that they stick to the sides and create a "crust". Pour the cauliflower mixture into the pan, spreading it evenly, and arrange the reserved onion rings on top. Place in the center of the oven and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown and set; a knife inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean. Remove from the oven and leave for at least 20 minutes before serving. It needs to be served just warm, rather than hot, or at room temperature.
Serve with a quick Shirazi salad - tomatoes, cucumbers, yellow onions, parsley, any other herbs/spices you want to throw in, salt/pepper, a dash of olive oil, some of your favorite vinegar and mix.
And that's it! Simple and delish. I had leftovers for a whole week's worth of lunches and even Bryce said that we need to put it into the dinner rotation! Win overall! A couple adjustments I would make to this recipe.... even though the onion rings look so pretty on top of the cake I would prefer an even distribution across the top in separate rings. Additionally, I didn't have full amount of fresh basil required so I added parsley. And the results were tasty!
Happy New Year and share what you are focusing on for 2016! Hopefully it's always happniess, health, and love!