Friday, June 10, 2011

Simple Sides

Rachel here.

As my mom mentioned on Monday, illness has descended upon our household. And despite our best efforts, over a week later we're still kicking this uninvited visitor around. John was all ready to sit down and write a post for today (it is his Friday after all), but then I made puppy eyes and asked him to make dinner instead. So, I'm sitting in bed with a heap of tissues and he is off scrounging together leftovers from a most excellent visit we just had with family.

Oh man--mentioning a heap of tissues on a food blog is probably something you're not supposed to do unless they accumulated from patting something fried down. Oh well. My nose, throat and brain are proverbially fried

One of the things that I've really been enjoying about generating concoctions for M in the kitchen is that so many of these dishes are simple and make excellent sides for those of us with bigger appetites and more teeth than an almost one year old. It's been a cool minute since I spent any time rethinking side dishes, usually whipping up something from a rotation of standards that are yummy but, you know, maybe appearing a little too often on our dinner plates. Anyway, in the past few weeks I've come up with two meals for M that are absolutely fabulous. They're simple, interesting and healthy, too. Give 'em a try and let us know what you think!

Apple-Ginger Carrots
ingredients (for 4)
1 large carrot
a knob of ginger
6-8 T. applesauce (homemade, right? right)
olive oil+salt

Halve carrot lengthwise and then slice. Put into pan over medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil (to prevent sticking) and a dash of salt (to help the carrot cook and to open up flavors). Thinly slice ginger and then mince (do this to taste...we can eat a lot of ginger in this family, but I know not everyone can so start with about a tablespoon and build from there) before adding to skillet. Once carrots have begun to soften (around 10 minutes), add applesauce by the heaping tablespoon, stirring well. If using store-bought applesauce, I'd suggest adding cinnamon to taste, too. Saute until carrots are cooked and serve.

Garlic-Parmesan Zucchini
ingredients (for 4)
1 medium zucchini
2 large coves of garlic
freshly shaved aged parmesan
olive oil+salt
fresh cracked pepper

Peel zucchini. Halve lengthwise and then slice. Place in pan over medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil and a dash of salt (wait--this sounds really familiar, right? See--I told you these were simple sides). Mince your garlic and add, sauteing until zucchini is cooked. Remove from pan and toss with fresh cracked pepper and parmesan to taste. Serve and watch everyone smile.

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