What surprised me about Peppers of the Americas is the number of pepper varieties that I did not even know existed. Not only do they exist, but they are all pretty distinct in there flavors. If you want a visually rich explanation of one of the most influential ingredients in the Americas, this is your book. From the Bolivian Rainbow pepper ornamental to the Peruvian Chinchi Uchu, Peppers goes through the characteristics of each pepper variety in great detail.
Although a bit complex, this all-inclusive ingredient book gives a pretty extensive and useful run down of all things peppers. The equipment used in the recipes and several of the ingredients can be a bit tricky to find. Don’t worry, I’ve made this chimichurri recipe a bit more “basic” by offering Italian parsley as a substitute for the pepper leaves if you’re unable to find them at your local market.
There was a time when I used to be obsessed with pasta. I don’t think my obsession really ever went away, but for a good reason. Pasta dishes can range from being really simple and quick to intricate and complex, but both can be equally delicious. That’s what I love. This pasta dish is pretty easy and on the healthier side (at least that’s what I told myself), as there aren’t too many ingredients and the recipe is adjustable. It can be vegetarian, and even gluten-free if the pasta is substituted.
I’m pretty sure everyone I know is just about sick of my diet changes. One minute I’m pescatarian, the next I’m posting snaps of the lamb chop I just ordered at STK. I know. It’s annoying. This time I really am sticking to a pre-holiday cleanse. I am sticking to a vegan diet for the two weeks leading up to Thanksgiving and a low-animal product diet leading up to Christmas. I’ve increased my water intake and vowed to avoid coffee and alcohol until Christmas. For law student preparing for exams, this is definitely a challenge. With that being said, I scoured my internet and my mom’s recipe books looking for vegan recipes that looked somewhat exciting. I’m the person that rolls their eyes whenever something is labeled gluten-free, dairy-free, or basically food-free. The last thing I want is to spend the entire holiday season eating flavorless meals. I also don’t want to spend a month feeding my body junk simply because it doesn’t have animal product. Because, trust me, if I could I’d live off of bread and pasta for a month and be happier than ever. Over the past week I’ve forced myself to incorporate various ingredients and flavors into my diet and I LOVE it.
This soup is accidentally and naturally vegan meaning I take any additional steps or substitute any ingredients. That’s the best kind of vegan recipe if you ask me. To be honest, I’ve always found lentil soups to be quite boring. But, this is at least one lentil soup I can get behind. It is one soup that my dad, who doesn’t believe in meatless-meals, could not get enough of. It’s a crockpot recipe that basically requires you to just dump everything in a let it cook. Even the lentils. I used red lentils which are cook pretty quick and require no pre-soaking. This soup gives off an aroma that is just as irresistible as the flavors. Its colors and comfort makes it perfect for the season.
I’m starting to think that I should just keep peanut sauce in my house at all times. Anytime there is a dinner crisis, it’s the first thing that pops into my head. Peanut sautés are quick, easy, and there are so many variations that it’s impossible that there isn’t one out there that you’d love.
There is nothing more perfect than an extra chocolatey brownie made from scratch. The holiday season is a perfect time to get caught up in breaking out your most impressive recipe for your coveted chocolate truffle cake or immaculate lemon bars. And, I don’t blame you. Foodies cant help but to take pleasure in occasions that allow us to show off our culinary skills. But, let us not forget the simple creations that made us fall in love with all things food. These extra chocolate brownies will make you feel like your inner 8-year old who just wants to rush downstairs on Christmas morning and get your hands on your any treat you can lay your eyes on.