Taking the full measure of life

First 3R Success! Plus Reports on Other Recent Meals

January 4th, 2008 · 9 Comments

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I just ate risotto leftovers for lunch–delicious. Here is the recipe for the pumpkin/spinach/cheese risotto my husband made for us, except he made these changes:

He used leftover, homemade chicken broth instead of veggie broth;
He used 2 small acorn squash, 1 small butternut squash, and 1/2 can of pumpkin instead of pumpkin;
Rather than roasting the squash, he cooked the squash separately in the microwave, with holes poked in each one, for between 5 and 10 minutes each. I think he also split the squash partway through cooking to check them for doneness and then left them face-down on the plate to cook the rest of the way.
He used sheep blue cheese instead of feta, since that’s what we had.

Why all the substitutions? Read the previous post to understand.

Dan also noted that he hadn’t realized how long he’d have to stand and stir and stir and stir when he was making the risotto–25-30 minutes.  I love risottos, though, because although you do have to stir a lot, they’re easy otherwise, and they have a very rich flavor.  They taste like a much higher-calorie food than are (or than they are if you don’t overload on the cheese, anyway).


In our original meal, the risotto was accompanied by mashed turnips.  The turnips were a bit too runny, but Dan used a small amount of cardamom in spicing them, and it made the turnips slightly sweet.  Really tasty.  Dan said, “That’s an ugly meal” when he was photographing it, but it tasted good and used up vegetables from our fridge!  (If we made it again, I would include a bit less cheese than my cheesophile husband did–to let the more subtle flavors shine.)

My last post, about food and money, apparently rang a chord with a long of people.  For those of you who are also trying to eat healthfully and pay attention to your expenditures, I think this article on how to use your ice cube tray to save money and prevent waste is great.  Another ice cube idea: in the summer, Dan and I like to buy basil when it’s really cheap at the farmer’s market and make a big batch of pesto in the food processor.  Then we freeze the pesto in an ice cube tray, pop the cubes out when they’re solid, and store them in a plastic bag in the freezer.  When we want want 1-2 servings of pesto during the fall and winter, we just take out a cube or two and defrost them on low heat in the microwave.

I had posted that we would have LifeChef’s greens in a sundried tomato broth with black-eyed peas for dinner on New Year’s Day.  However, Dan thought we had picked up a can of black-eyed peas, and I thought we had picked up a batch of fresh ones . . . so we ended up with no black-eyed peas at all.  I used some black beans instead, but it wasn’t the same.  I felt the greens needed a bit of salt, but other than that, I really enjoyed the recipe that LifeChef provided.  We served our greens with the gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free corn muffins from Sophie-Safe Cooking; I’ve made them before, and they are really tasty, but this time I learned that if you decided to cut way down on the sugar, you better boost flavor some other way!  A little honey fixed that problem, anyway.


According to our meal plan for this week, we were supposed to have Alanna’s tasty warm sweet potato salad on greens for dinner last night.  However, we are in a terrible cold snap in Georgia, and I was really exhausted yesterday.  Put those together, and I wanted something quicker and hotter than the salad.  So I flipped around our menu a bit, and last night for dinner we had organic BLsundriedTs on gluten-free, egg-free millet buns with avocado/dijon egg-free mayonnaise replacer for a condiment.  The fake mayo recipe–which, loving avocado, I really enjoy–I like to alter different ways each time I make it.  For a BLT, next time I would increase the dijon in the mayo replacer and maybe add a touch of honey.

The basic mayo substitute recipe comes from The Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook.  The Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook and Sophie-Safe Cooking–linked in the last post–are the only two normal-people-style cookbooks I found that are actually free of all eight top allergens. (Many cookbooks claim to be, but each recipe is only free of one or two.  In those books, all recipes are free of all eight.  TWFAC does use gluten (but not wheat) in some recipes, though it offers alternatives.)


I served a boxed dairy-free tomato soup, doctored with a bit of ghee and some fresh basil from our plant, alongside the BLT.  The meal was easy, enjoyable, and warm!

Tags: 2/3 veggies · allergen-free recipes · meal planning · quick meals · vegetarian · winter

9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Fatinah // Jan 4, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    mmmm, that risotto sounds and looks so freaking good! Good thing I just had a snack, or I would be doing some mindless noshing!! 🙂

  • 2 carmen // Jan 4, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    That risotto sounds yummy! food allergies can be so hard to cook around.

  • 3 Jenn // Jan 4, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    As usual, everything looks and sounds delicious. You are so creative with your food. I do not have the brain for that kind of thing, so I definitely admire your talents!

  • 4 seamaiden // Jan 4, 2008 at 11:17 pm

    Ooh, pretty pictures. I love the vibrant blue in the dish and background. And of course, the food looks and sounds totally delicious! MMm. Can I have some? lol And I’m very intrigued by this mayo thing…


  • 5 amarinthia // Jan 5, 2008 at 8:50 am

    My mom always used to freeze leftover tomato sauce or other sauces in ice cube trays and then put them in freezer bags. I used to think she was so crazy! Now I do the same! She has been my original model for frugality…before I even knew the word.

    The food looks yummy by the way. The soup and sandwich esp. I have found that planning my meals based on the weekly ads really helps. So I am mostly buying things that are on sale. Takes a little more prep, but I saved about $25 on my last Kroger trip this way.

  • 6 HappyBlogChick // Jan 5, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Your resolutions sound smart, and your food sounds SUPER yummy. You have some fantastic food and recipes. I’ll be reading regularly to see what else you guys cook.

    Do you have a mashed turnip recipe? I’ve never made that, and I’m intrigued.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, BTW. 🙂

    I must go eat now. Your post made me hungry.

  • 7 Lea // Jan 5, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    Ohhh. The risotto looks so good. That is one of me favorite dishes. I will have to put this in my list of things to make.

    It must be wonderful that will have a husband that will cook. Well actually mine will I just wouldn’t want to eat anything after he’s made it.

    My big resolution this year is saving money and your tips will definately help.



  • 8 PastaQueen // Jan 5, 2008 at 5:41 pm

    Those are good food pics. I need to learn to take better pictures of food. Mine always look like they were taken by the paparazzi in bad lighting from a mile away.

  • 9 Emily // Jan 5, 2008 at 5:48 pm

    Sally, thank you for using and mentioning my cookbook! I am impressed by your level of commitment to eating local and organic foods, as well as your healthy lifestyle.
    I have also made a number of health-related changes to my lifestyle over the last 5 1/2 years, some due to Sophie’s allergies and some resulting from my brain tumor diagnosis 4 years ago. It was not cancer, thankfully, but still caused me to confront my mortality.
    Good luck with your running as well as your eating–I started running 2 years ago and am now averaging about 10 miles weekly.

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