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Archive for October, 2009

Hi, my name is Jessica, and I’m addicted to goat cheese.

When Jared and I went to Paris this year for our three-year anniversary, I fell in love with the creamy goodness all over again! We had goat cheese salad every day (and sometimes twice a day). It just melts in your mouth and is the perfect, tangy consistency.

I posted earlier this summer about Smitten Kitchen‘s amazing Asparagus, Goat Cheese, and Lemon Pasta, and I’m always looking for new recipes to try with my favorite ingredient. So when I saw that goat cheese was the featured food in the “Five Ideas for…” section in the September 2009 issue of Good Housekeeping, I was definitely on board. I’ve already tried the Lemony Goat-Cheese Salad (blog post to come soon). Delish!

  1. Fresh-Tomato Pasta:  In a large saucepot of salted boiling water, cook 1 lb. bowtie pasta as label directs. Drain well; return to pot. Meanwhile, in large bowl, toss 2 lbs. chopped ripe tomatoes, 3 sliced green onions, 1/4 cup chopped Kalamata olives, 1 tbs. olive brine, 3/4 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper. Toss with pasta; let stand 10 minutes, tossing twice. Stir in crumble cheese. Serves 4.
  2. Artichoke Spread:  In food processor, coarsely chop 1 jar (6 oz.) artichokes, rinsed and drained. Add crumbled cheese, 3 tbs. snipped chives, 1/2 tsp. freshly grated lemon peel, and 1/8 tsp. each salt and freshly ground black pepper. Pulse until combined. Makes 1 cup.
  3. Lemony Goat-Cheese Salad:  Preheat oven to 425 degrees. From 1 lemon, grate 1/2 tsp. peel and squeeze 4 tsp. juice. On plate, combine lemon peel, 3 tbs. panko bread crumbs, and 1/2 tsp. olive oil. Cut cheese log into 4 slices. Dip slices in crumbs, pressing to adhere to all sides; place on baking sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until golden. In large bowl, whisk lemon juice, 2 tbs. olive oil, 1/8 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper. Add 1 package (5 oz.) baby greens; toss. Divide among 4 plates; top with cheese. Serves 4.
  4. Goat-Cheese Frittata:  Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In large bowl, whisk 8 large eggs, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper until blended. Heat 2 tsp. olive oil in 10-inch ovenproof skillet on medium. Add 4 cups chopped Swiss chard leaves (from 4 stalks) and 3 sliced green onions; cook 5 minutes or until softened, stirring. Add egg mixture; stir to combine. Sprinkle with coarsely crumbled cheese; cook 4 minutes or until beginning to set. Bake in oven 10-12 minutes or until egg is set in center. Serves 4.
  5. Honeyed Peach Pillows:  Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In large glass bowl, microwave 1/4 cup honey on high 1 minute. Stir in 3 cups peach wedges (1 lb.). On plate, microwave 1/2 cup pecans on high 2 minutes or until toasted. Cut plain cheese log into 6 slices. Cut 1 sheet puff pastry into 6 rectangles. Bake on cookie sheet 13-15 minutes or until puffed and golden. Top each with cheese slice, peaches with honey, and pecans. Serves 6.

Each recipe uses a 4-0z. log.

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Observing the Sabbath

We started a new sermon series this week at NCC, called “Ritual.” Each week the sermon will focus on something that is considered a ritual in Christianity – this week was the Sabbath (you can listen to the podcast or watch the video here). Pastor Heather had a great message about resting in the Lord and what it means to observe the sabbath – it doesn’t necessarily have to be on Sunday and it doesn’t necessarily have to mean you sleep all day. It really inspired me to be more intentional about my time and how I spend it.

Why am I writing about this on a food blog, you ask? Because Heather encouraged us to think about what fills us with joy, what we look forward to doing, what pleases God. And one quote Heather said really stuck with me:

Maybe [the Sabbath] means cooking a meal and sharing it with your friends and family.

I love cooking – for my husband, for our friends, for our family. It brings me joy. And I love writing about cooking, too. So I’m thinking that I’m going to start spending more time cooking, blogging, learning more about food, and sharing it with others. This will never replace my time with God, but it can be a new outlet for my creativity – and believe it or not, it relaxes me. (Well, except for the dishes part :)) I’m not sure where this will lead, but I’m willing to take steps to start the journey.

Beach

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