It’s the day after Christmas and the house is quiet. Sleepyheads are still in bed while others have left the building in pursuit of fresh air. I’m on my second cup of coffee and the kitchen is remarkably clean thanks to the many elves who helped put it back together after our festive gathering here yesterday. The planning of the meal is in my rear view mirror and I announced to my family that I would not be cooking today! I hope that is interpreted as “take me out anywhere for anything, please and thank you”! We shall see.
I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and am grateful to you for reading The Kitchen Scout and hanging with me as I took a rather long hiatus this year. It was a bit of self care that I wasn’t aware was needed. It’s a good lesson to look at some of our habits or practices and question whether or not they continue to fit with our lives or not.
Thankfully, the blog continues to bring me great joy particularly when a post or a picture reaches someone. I ran into a reader at a party a few nights ago who mentioned she purchased a slow cooker just to be able to cook Chicken Tikka Masala! Another friend told me the same thing! So fun.
Anyway, despite my hiatus for the next 24 hours from cooking, I am never too far from the kitchen or from researching what I want to cook next. Recently, I tried this delicious Mushroom Barley Soup recipe from Pamela Salzman (I used hulled wheat and spinach) that we loved. It was a vegetarian reset button in a bowl during the hectic holiday feasting season. I also tried Nigella Lawson’s positively reviewed Easy Sticky Toffee Pudding recipe after our taste of it in the Cotswolds. It may not have been quite as delicious as what we ate in England, but it was easy and scrumptious. My cousin shared this recipe with me that I may try for New Year’s.
Or, I may make these Brunsli Chocolate Cookies from Ottolenghi that my friend, Pam brought to a cookie swap. They were my favorite cookie of the season. Think a light chocolate cookie with a hint of spice. Wonderful.
Three more recipes I want to share before year end. Molly Yeh’s Spinach and Artichoke Chicken Casserole (made in one pan) is a no brainer pot luck wonder. My friend, Sally introduced me to Ina Garten’s Easy Parmesan “Risotto” that is cooked in the oven. My husband and daughters loved this easy dish that goes with just about everything.
Lastly, for several New Year’s Eve dinners I have made this easy recipe for Cioppino. After all the heavy food of the season, it was a light dish that satisfied without giving you a holiday hangover. Maybe give it a whirl?
Here is a recap of this year’s post and links to all the “wrap up’s” of years past that are an easy way to see all The Kitchen Scout posts from each year. I look forward to seeing all of you here on the blog as we start a new decade in under one week – yikes! Wishing you health and happiness in the new year from my family to yours…
Turkey Meatball Casserole (fan favorite!)
One last photo to share. On a terribly dreary day in early December, but the sun decided to appear in the late afternoon. I was struck by how beautiful and hopeful the new rays of light made this scene appear. I was in my car so I pulled over and took a photo. I hope it’s a beacon for everyone’s 2020. Cheers!