Top 10 in 2011
December 30, 2011 § Leave a comment
In case you hadn’t noticed the plethora of “top ___ of 2011” articles and blog posts right now, it is time for the second round-up of top recipes in my tiny kitchen. This time we have a full year to cover. Since 2010, I have learned a lot. The photographs have improved (but I still have a lot to learn on that front) and I think it is fair to say that the posts generally have improved as well the output; I stopped blogging about dishes I merely liked and chose to blog those that I had trialed and loved. Some of the posts that made the cut may have been made months ago, but the flavors stood out in my mind. Here are those dishes from 2011 that I won’t be forgetting about any time soon!
1 year ago, today: Pistachio Sandies
Top 10 in 2011:
#10 Chicken Korma with Garbanzo Beans and Almonds
I ended up making this several times in a row after blogging about it and even used the basic premise as the inspiration for my black box final in culinary school (my black box item was chicken thighs). I really couldn’t get this recipe out of my head.
These are the most frequently requested cookies in my tiny kitchen and have become the go-to cookie for edible presents.
While rabbit isn’t necessarily my favorite ingredient (I rank it with chicken as my least favorite flesh-derived protein), its one virtue (along with chicken) is its ability to work with any number of flavors. That being said, the elegant cheese sauce is what puts this dish on my list. The sharp cheddar with the tangy goat cheese makes the rigatoni bold yet sophisticated. And the anise-meets-mustard flavor of the rabbit and sauce made this one of the more interesting, while still simple, dishes here.
#7 Baked Yams with Spicy Tomato Sauced Pinto Beans and Carmelized Red Onions
Simple ingredients but perfectly wholesome and delicious.
#6 Roasted Beet and Carrot Panzanella with Shallots and Balsamic Vinaigrette
The need for a simple side salad led me to creating a fantastic locally-inspired winter panzanella.
#5 Leek and Pinto Bean Soup
This is the kind of soup I know I will be making more in the new year. It is pretty healthful, but tastes rich and comforting. And Matt scrapes his bowl clean. Does it sound like Matt’s a little boy when I say things like that? For clarification, he is a 26 year old man, three years my senior.
#4 Wilted Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Spicy-Sweet Vinaigrette
Earnest spinach and guilt-inducing bacon meet to create the perfect combination of flavors and textures.
#3 Spiced French Green Lentil, Parsnip and Carrot Soup with Bacon
I originally made this in January and that version would have probably made this list. I revisited it in November and went crazy over my minor changes. I have been making this soup in big batches ever since without any more changes. I believe I have found the perfect lentil soup.
#2 Steamed Mussels with White Wine and Fennel
Mussels. Simply steamed. Bright aromatics and white wine. What could be better? Well, the pictures could be better, but that is irrelevant.
This is nothing new and nothing extraordinary but it is the perfect combination of ingredients for an easy pasta dish.