Thursday, November 28, 2013

Fast winter weeknight dinners, and an easy-to-make, popular cake

Here are some recipes I tried recently that will warm up your winter nights.

Panang Curry Beef with Basil: The word “curry” may scare those who don’t like spicy food, but don’t worry – this dish is mild, and could even be served to children. Make sure to make some rice to go with it – we made jasmine rice.

Shiitake and Roasted Red Pepper Pastry Tart: This sounds a little hoity-toity and time consuming, but it’s definitely not. It is simple, hearty fare that uses jarred roasted red peppers and puff pastry from the supermarket. With the red peppers and green tarragon, this supper-time tart has a festive look and feel to it.

Crispy Flounder with Pears, Endive and Meyer Lemon: This is a bit of a grown-up dish that probably won’t go over well with children, but that doesn’t mean it’s challenging or strange. Make sure to eat each bite as a parcel of fish, pears, endive and lemon – that is when it will taste its wonderful best. Be sure to serve it with rice. We used the sole substitute when we couldn’t find flounder.

Eggs Poached in Tomato Sauce: I’m all for trying what might be considered a slightly exotic dish to my North American taste buds, especially if it looks easy to do. That’s why I picked this recipe, and it came through with flying colours. I halved the recipe, so the simmering time in step 2 was cut back drastically  -  barely eight minutes instead of the 20 minutes listed in the recipe. My advice is to keep a very close eye on the dish during the simmering part – when it has thickened slightly, it is ready. I served this with warmed naan bread – delicious.

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Honey Frosting: This would more accurately named Pumpkin Spice Cake with Honey-Cream Cheese frosting, as cream cheese is a vital component of the frosting and what makes it so delicious. This easy-to-make cake was a big hit at my workplace and my husband’s – people gobbled it up and some even admitted to thinking about it in the days following!

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