Today is a very full moon. I have been feeling its strong and draining pull since last week. At first I brushed my laziness off as my body forcing me to take a break after a busy last 2 months, and I'm sure that had a lot to do with it, but I have seen many are being affected by la luna as well. If you haven't gone out to take a look yet, do it now! It may be a little late for my Meatless Monday post, but it's definitely not too late to look at that moon!
I did not have a recipe planned or prepared for today, otherwise I would've posted yesterday. However, Paul requested one of his favorite sides I make- Sweet Curry Glazed Carrots -and carrots were something I just happened to have in the fridge (thanks to Paul, who apparently had planned out tonight's meal, at least somewhat). I also had a lonely russet potato waiting to be eaten, so that got used tonight too, along with a mix of frozen peas and corn which I simply steamed. Have a gander at my veggie-based Meatless Monday dinner!
Sweet Curry Glazed Carrots
3-4 carrots, peeled and sliced into quarters (as shown)
2 tbsp butter or buttery spread
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp curry powder
Dash of pepper *
Dash of nutmeg*
*approx. 1/4 tsp
There are two ways you can successfully make these carrots, and I will provide you with both: the first is to blanch the carrots in about an inch of boiling water in a large sauce pan for about 5 minutes. Drain water from the pan, then add the butter, syrup and curry and mix it in well with the carrots until they're coated. Cook, stirring, over low heat for about 5 minutes, then add the pepper and nutmeg and cover the pan. Allow to cook for another 10-15 minutes, or until tender and glazed. They will be hot, so allow to cool before serving.
The second way you can do this is to steam the carrots seprately in a steamer basket for about 5 minutes. Once ready, set aside then mix the butter, syrup, curry, pepper and nutmeg in a saucepan over low heat until a thin paste is formed, then add the carrots and coat. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, then cover as directed in the afore mentioned mode of preparing.
I wouldn't say either way is easier or better, I have just had success doing it both of these ways.
Cheesey Baked Potato Slices
1-2 russet potatoes, sliced width-wise
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried chives (or fresh)
Salt and pepper
About a handful of shredded cheddar cheese or anything else good for topping potatoes with
Preheat oven to 400. Once potatoes are sliced, line up on baking sheet(s) greased with a little of the olive oil. Spread the rest of the olive oil on the potato slices faced up with a basting brush. Sprinkle the parsley, salt and pepper on the slices, then pop in the oven for 10 minutes. Take them out after 10 minutes and top them with the cheddar cheese, then put them back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Once lightly browned to your liking, take them out and sprinkle the chives on top before serving. We like these taters a little crispy in my house.
The cheese is totally optional too, btw. You can keep it vegan by subtracting the cheese, or using soy-based cheese, although having tried that type of cheese myself, I would not recommend using it unless you really are a strict vegan! I think it tastes like glue! Well, what I would imagine glue tastes like anyway...
Steam some of the carrot sticks until very soft, then mash some butter or milk into them for flavor, depending on your babe's age. If they're over 6 months, a little butter is fine for them. You got peas and corn to toss in too!
Lily and Paul gobbled this all up :) Kids will like the added sweetness to the carrots, and you can rest assured knowing that maple syrup- despite its high sugar content -has plenty of healthy benefits to it! You may not know it, but maple syrup (in its pure form) contains strong immunity boosting minerals zinc and maganese. The zinc is also good for your heart and can strengthen reproductive organs in men. Maybe that's why Paul likes it these carrots so much...not to mention waffles with lots of syrup!
So, don't worry if you have a child (or other family member) who likes to load up their pancakes with extra syrup. Although it is very sugary, it at least has enough benefits to balance the sweetness out. This does not include maple syrup made by brands like Aunt Jemima and Mrs. Butterworth's (how sad is it that both of those brands negatively exemplify black women?). Make sure the syrup you buy is PURE maple syrup, grade A or B, such as the one I usually pick up, Maple Grove Farms Pure Maple Syrup. I use this one because it is less costly than most pure syrups; also Stop & Shop carries a good Nature's Promise pure maple syrup that isn't too expensive. Of course, if you're a real maple syrup aficionado, you probably go directly to a farm to get the freshest you can find.
For added bonus, here's a site that explains the detoxifying benefits of maple syrup. I learned about the master cleanse formula a long time ago, but never actually tried it, mainly because I had to go to work everyday and could not just be at home relaxing while the formula did its magic, seeing as how I was supposed to drink virtually nothing but a light concoction of water, lemon, maple syrup and cayenne pepper for 10 days (!). If you are looking for what I have been told is an incredible and simple way to lose weight quickly and detoxify your body, take a look. If the formula alone doesn't intrigue you, maybe this will.