The title says it all.
Christmas break has been lovely so far. I have seen Black Swan (so0o intense!), baked fruity cobbler muffins, co-hosted a dinner party (which featured the recipes in this post), gone to a party and seen people from high school and beyond (always entertaining), and danced my booty off at a concert.
Being back in Austin is very comforting. It is such a beautiful city and the food is damn good. Because I cook 3 meals a day-every day back at school, I am trying not to feel guilty about dining out er’ry day over break. Being out of schedule is a bit weird, but that is just one of those things you have to get over.
I have been staying at my friend Courtney’s house for most of break and on Monday night she decided to host a dinner party for the two of us plus 4 more friends. She is a vegetarian and I am just now beginning to appreciate cheese, so we decided to make a salad and sweet potato based meal.
Goat cheese, spinach & caramelized onion stuffed sweet potato skins
Recipe: Serves 6
3 sweet potatoes
2 sweet onions
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 11 oz package goat cheese
2 cups baby spinach
Roast the sweet potatoes at 375 for about 20-30 minutes, or until just soft enough to slice.
Meanwhile, slice the onions and cook on the stove top with 1 tbsp olive oil. Continue to cook, occasionally stirring, until they are dark brown and sweet.
Remove the sweet potatoes and slice them long ways into planks that are about 1/2-1 inch thick. Cut the planks in half. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil. Broil until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and top first with spinach, then goat cheese, then caramelized onion. Put back in the oven and broil until the goat cheese just begins to brown. Sprinkle with a bit of salt and serve hot.
Kale salad with creamy, citrus vinaigrette
Recipe: Serves 6
2 large bunches kale, washed
2 avocados, chopped
For the dressing –
3 tbsp exra virgin olive oil
5 tbsp apple cider vinegar
the juice and some pulp from 1 tangerine
1 tbsp finely chopped onion
Β½ tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp goat cheese
1 tbsp avocado
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a tall glass or shaker. Mix well. Use a little of the dressing to massage the kale stalks. Shred the kale into a large salad bowl and add chopped avocados. Toss salad with additional dressing.
Kale * Extremely high levels of vitamins K, A, and C! Also has manganese, calcium, fiber, and antioxidants.
Avocado * contains vitamins A, B, C, and E. Also contain phosphorous, magnesium, potassium, folic acid, zinc, and iron. Their greatest asset is their monounsaturated fat content, which is linked to lower cholesterol levels, reduced risk of heart disease, weight loss, and even alleviating depression.
Onions * contain anti-aging antioxidants phenolics and flavonoids. A study by Dr. Liu showed that pungent and Western yellow onions protected the most against colon cancer, while pungent yellow, Western yellow, and shallots protected the most against liver cancer.
Sweet potato * high in fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, copper, and B6! The antioxidants in sweet potatoes work to eliminate free radicals (which damage the body) and are anti-inflammatory, so they can help alleviate symptoms of many conditions.