Cooking the Book – March Edition

Last month’s challenge recipes were completed in reasonably good time so its high time that I got to writing about them, rather than leaving it to the end of the month and risking running out of time!

Instant Karma smoothie was my next adventure into my cookbook challenge. It’s quite tempting to breeze through the smoothies in the book, trying them all but I’m conscious that they make perfect ‘ooops I didn’t cook anything out of the book this month’ recipes. While I’ve been quite organised with this challenge so far, I’m aware that I may not always be! Anyway, Instant Karma is a nice refreshing smoothie featuring kiwi and tart cherry juice. (Unsweetened cherry juice is really hard to find – and health food shops round here only do giant bottles or really tiny bottles, nothing in between.) It’s really very tasty, unfortunately my blender isn’t very good at kiwi fruit so I ended up with little lumps of kiwi core and the seeds remained entirely whole. Which would have been less of a problem if I hadn’t been loaded with the cold – hence making and drinking lots of smoothies in an attempt to force enough nutrients into my system to fight it off – and the seeds kept catching in my throat and making me cough! I made it again after I’d recovered from the cold and this wasn’t an issue, but I did stick a banana in it the second time to off set the tartness of the kiwis and cherry.

The other thing my blender is rubbish at blending are dates. Though as I’m not a big eater of dates this doesn’t normally matter. However, this recipe book is obsessed with dates – Medjool dates in particular – and using them as a natural sugar/sweetener so they’re in pretty much everything remotely sweet in the book. Dates being expensive and something of which I’m not a massive fan, I tend to avoid them and seek an alternative, which is a nuisance. It’s my main bugbear about this recipe book but as complaints go is pretty mild!

Next up I made the Stovetop lasagne. Except that it’s a bit of an impractical thing to make for one person so I actually decanted it into an oven dish and baked it so that I could keep it to eat over several days. Perhaps it’s the difference between cooking it longer on the stove rather than in the stove that does it, but I found that the carrots didn’t cook enough, so if I make it again, I might pre-cook the carrots. Otherwise it was a tasty enough lasagne, but honestly I prefer the butternut squash and sweet potato version in one of her other books. And while I like green lentils I think I’ll stick to using her veggie cottage pie recipe (higher ratio of lentils to veg, I think) as a lasagne filling.

So definitely tasty, but there are other versions of this recipe that I prefer!
Mini lasagne!
I ended up with too much sauce so I made a mini one too, as I forgot to photograph the big one have the mini one instead!

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Categories: being veggie, challenges, cooking the book | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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