Sometimes We Can Succeed Without a Mealplan, But it Will be Painful

Coming home from Florida threw us off a little bit.  We haven’t gone grocery shopping, we are not sure if we want to give ourselves points for the week, or just loosely follow the challenge, or what.  No meal plan, only fresh winter produce, no desire to dig in the freezers and no cheese.  We have done well for all of the past three days, last night’s dinner being a surprise success.  After rooting around our abundance with little inspiration, we decided that “using up what is going bad” was a good strategy.

So, what did we have that needed used?  Kale from the last CSA distribution and delicata squash that was starting to soften.  We have nuts, grains, sauces and spices.  It all came together in about an hour, though that was mostly baking and simmering while we perused our new cookbooks (more on that this weekend).

The results?

Dinner Last Night: Rye Berry-Walnut-Apple Pilaf, Roasted Delicta Squash, and Kale Chips.

The kale chips were a little different, inspired by one of the new cookbooks (again, we will talk about those later).  They were sprinkled with both salt and sugar before cooking, which was a really pleasant addition, and might make the chips more palatable to non-kale lovers.  It really mellow them out, and cut any bitterness that might remain.  Try it!  Sprinkle just a little sugar on with your salt and cook as normal.

The Rye-Berry Pilaf was delish! Very simple combination of rye berries, dried apples, chopped walnuts, a little bouillon, cinamon, coriander, and sage (interesting combo that was spot on!).

Delicata squash is so pretty! So sad to see the last of it go!

The squash was a little plain, so we dug around and came up with Appalachian Naturals Cape Cod Caviar, which fit the bill perfectly, and complimented the apple-walnut pilaf perfectly.

Cranberry Sauce of the utmost superior quality. Appalician Naturals also makes what I call "Cranberry Crack" which is a combination of cranberry and lime. It is so good! If I ever open a bottle, I finish it in one day tops, maybe even one sitting. I can't wait to pick up Appalacian Naturals products at Wayland Winter Market this year (I hope she comes this year!) which happens to start next weekend. Avid anticipation!

Dessert was fast and simple, inspired by all of the Buckeyes (peanut butter balls) we ate while in Florida.

Dessert was a mixture of peanut butter, maple syrup, oats, and a few pieces of Taza Chocolate. Nom!

Any exciting New Years Eve plans?  I’m ate work today helping install an exhibition, and will be exhausted this evening, so we are going to Henrietta’s Table for dinner and then home for the rest of the night.  Such exciting people we are.  Tomorrow though, we will have to see!

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