Has it been 9 weeks already!? That puts me at the half-way mark of this challenge. Exciting!!! I did a scan of the book and realized I’m going to have to focus more on the Smoothies, Juice and Tea and the Staples chapters in order to maintain balance from week to week. Because I don’t really want to close off this challenge with a final week that consists of four different drink or condiment recipes 😛
I think it’s very fitting that as I cross into the final half of this challenge, I am also completing an entire chapter of the book for the first time. I have now officially made every recipe from the Sides section. It’s a good feeling! I think it’s a good opportunity to comment on this group of recipes as a whole. Now, I started this challenge of making every recipe in the Oh She Glows cookbook, having already cooked quite a few recipes from it. So I haven’t blogged about every single recipe in the book. Those that I made before the blog include one of my favorites of the Sides, the Roasted Rainbow Carrots with Cumin-Coriander Tahini Sauce. Yummy!!! Also great was the Fall Harvest Butternut Squash with Almond-Pecan Parmesan. Luckily, that one you can read about in my post, here. While those two were standouts, all the other Sides recipes were also very good, with the one exception of the Tempeh which I just didn’t care for. But hey, if you are curious to try Tempeh, I’d say give it a shot. My tastes are not yours, so you may like it far more than I did!
Here are the four recipes I made this week, including the final side dish, which was…
Marinated Italian Mushrooms
I kept this side dish for last, because it was so unfamiliar to me. I had never eaten a cold, marinated mushroom before, and I didn’t know what to expect. Well, expect greatness, because these things are delicious! I would tweak one thing though: add the garlic to the pan when the mushrooms are almost done cooking. The recipe calls for adding the garlic to the pan before adding the mushrooms, and it just gets burned by being on the heat for so long. That, by the way, is a good tip for all recipes in general. Most cookbooks and magazines say to cook onion and garlic together, which is a mistake. Garlic burns quickly, and if it’s in the pan for as long as it takes to cook an onion, it’s been in for too long. Always add it to the pan at the end, as it only needs a minute or so on the heat. But anyway, thumbs up to these mushrooms! I’d definitely serve them as an easy to prep-ahead appetizer one day.
Another winner! This is filling, hearty, and totally appropriate for a Sunday night dinner to be shared with family. It is slightly on the time-consuming side, so I’d recommend prepping a few things in advance if you can. Namely, I cooked the lentils and toasted the walnuts the day before making this recipe, and it saved me a lot of time when it came to putting the whole thing together. However, if you can’t prep-ahead, it really wouldn’t be the end of the world. The lentils need 25 minutes to boil, so you could totally use that time to get most of the other parts done. I had no ketchup to make the glaze, so I used a combo of tomato pate and sriracha sauce. I wasn’t sure if it would work with the balsamic vinegar, but it did and I’d do it again with or without ketchup on-hand!
Glowing Mojo-ito Green Monster
Wow, wow, wow! Long after finishing this gem of a smoothie, I could taste it in my memory and I craved it all day long. I love variety and there are few things that I consume repeatedly, but this is going to be one of those rare exceptions because I want this smoothie every day for the rest of my life. Seriously. And if you’ve read my post on what baked good I’d choose to eat for eternity, you’ll know how much it means for me to make such an affirmation. This smoothie is refreshing, vibrant, the perfect level of sweet, and leaves nothing wanting. I think I’m going to take a break from writing and go make another right now.
Raw Buckwheat Breakfast Porridge
Ummmmmm so here’s the thing. I love Angela Liddon, the author of Oh She Glows. When she liked a tweet of mine about this blog I just about died. It was better than an autograph from any celebrity actor. So it pains me to dislike anything of hers as much as I did this porridge. I’m kind of confused actually. Maybe I did something wrong, because the texture was like wet sand. The photos of this recipe in the book depict a bowl of creamy white porridge, whereas mine came out dark brown. I added tons of almond milk but still, brown. Now, Angela writes in the book that this is a personal as well as fan favorite, so help me out here guys. Am I missing something? Luckily it did take a pretty picture!
Other than the porridge, which has actually been a source of a few laughs between Dhiren and I this week, everything else was outstanding! Definitely one of the best weeks so far in terms of providing recipes that I am certain will become tried-and-true favorites in the future. It’s given me a renewed sense of motivation to continue on with the second half of this challenge. Although I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to look at buckwheat the same way again…