Eat mushrooms for a fat-free flavor boost
Mushrooms—most of us have strong feelings about this simple form of fungi found in almost every corner of the world.
In New England, early settlers boiled seafood shells for soup and used less appealing bits of chicken and beef for broth that became a staple of their diet. To the soup, they added vegetables from their root cellars. Root vegetables fed families throughout the long Northern winters.
Getting two people to agree on the best way to roast a chicken is almost impossible, but there is no doubt that it is just about everyone’s favorite “go-to” meal during the winter months. Here Jim and I offer two of our best chicken dishes to take the chill off our New England winter weather. We probably have consumed hundreds of chickens on the way to finding out what the perfect roaster is; it is one of our all-time favorite meals. It does not matter if it is just the two of us on a cold winter night or if we have “important” guests. Somehow the combination of oven-roasted chicken and vegetables, along with mashed garlic potatoes always works. The second recipe for a warm and hearty chicken stew is the dish for a snowy Sunday.
Banana Brioche, Chocolate Caramel, Coconut Praline, Brandy Apple, Butterscotch Raisin—the list of tempting bread pudding recipes trending today is endless. Yes, this usually humble American dish has taken on new life in recent years. Bread pudding probably originated in Europe in the eleventh century when folks left no waste and used leftover bread crusts to make a custardy treat. Still thought of as a family dessert dish made with leftovers (nothing wrong with that!), it has become the quintessential comfort food, now proudly listed on menus both as a dessert and in savory fashion as a main dish. We have to say it has been and remains one of our favorites!
Brussels sprouts, once voted the most hated vegetable in England, have come into their own as nutritious and versatile side dishes. They also make delicious garnishes, appetizers, and healthy additions to soups and stews. We’ve eaten them locally as an appetizer served warm from a roasting pan with a maple-based sauce and Gorgonzola cheese; at home, we roast them with salt, pepper, and other root veggies including sweet potatoes: both preparations are delicious!