Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Eating our vegetables

I read at Slashfood that June is National Fruit and Vegetable Month. I think I'm more inspired to eat fresh fruit and veggies around now every year just because 'tis the season. And of course there's all kinds of inspiration on the internet. These days I'm also trying to interest our daughter in fruits and veggies. Current favourites are steamed spinach, peas and most every fruit she's offered (especially peaches, plums, kiwi fruit and mango).

As suggested I had a go at the Chocolate and Beetroot Cake seen at the Great Big Vegetable Challenge. There weren't pictures from the blog, or the site with the recipe so I thought I'd take some to share. You can get an idea of how pretty the batter is! And you can see the slivers of beetroot in the slice of cake too. The recipe says that the beetroot makes the cake moist so I was surprised at how dry it looked when I cut a slice. I wonder if I should have grated the beetroot more finely (I did it in the food processor for speed and in the interest of keeping my hands closer to their original colour!). Actually it doesn't taste dry, although mine's quite crumbly. It's very chocolaty, I don't particularly notice the beetroot but maybe it's what's enhancing the chocolate so well.

I noticed that I also have a chocolate and beetroot layer cake in my chocolate cookbook. It uses canned beets though and I'm not sure how one would substitute canned for home cooked in terms of liquid. Perhaps I'll have a go some other time. *** edited to add -- I just came across another chocolate-beetroot cake while looking for recipes for my daughter. This definitely looks like something I want to try -- Beet Chocolate Cake with Banana-Peanut Butter Sauce**

Here are my purchases from the mid-week farmers market last week.

I've bought both rosemary and mint at the farmers market recently which naturally got me to thinking about lamb. So, I went to the coop and got lamb chops, new potatoes and heirloom tomatoes (I already had the mushrooms and peas).

For dinner I made a dressing of balsamic vinegar, oil, scallions, garlic, mint and rosemary, a little of that went on the lamb and mushrooms in the frying pan, and the tomatoes in the oven. I boiled the potatoes with some mint 'til soft then added the peas (the were frozen so just needed warming through). Once the meat and mushrooms were done I served them onto the plates and put the potatoes and peas in the frying pan and tossed them in the lamb juices and the rest of the dressing. So good, the mint is so refreshing with the rich taste of the lamb and I just love the brief opportunity for boiled new potatoes (which seem much harder to come by in the US).

Some of the strawberries from the farmers market cut up went very nicely with a slice of the chocolate/beetroot cake for dessert too.

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