Roasted Fennel ♥

Don't we just love it when vegetables seem to cook themselves?! This is nothing more than sliced bulbs of fennel, olive oil, salt and pepper -- and time, an hour in a 400F, tossed and redistributed every 15 minutes. And then at the end, lemon juice, a great brightener. They were so good! HOT? ROOM TEMPERATURE? I served these hot but now note that the inspiring recipe from the ever-reliable Vegetable Love by Barbara Kafka, suggests serving it as a side salad, too. NUTRITION NOTES It takes lots of fat to get vegetables to caramelize while roasting and of course, the more oil and the more caramelization, the more flavor. With less oil, vegetables can dry out before they're fully roasted. It helps to toss the vegetables REALLY well, so they coat with oil -- I use a bowl so I can really toss them, easier than doing it on a flat baking tray. Thought: I could toss the vegetables in a quarter cup of chicken broth, say, before adding the oil but hmm, then the oil wouldn't adhere to

Finnish Carrot Casserole ♥ Porkkanalaatikko

Today's old-fashioned Finnish recipe: A simple carrot and rice casserole from Finland, just grated carrots and rice in a light custard, a favorite on Christmas Eve. Simple to Make. A Great Way to Use Up Leftover Rice. A Traditional Christmas Food in Finland. Naturally Gluten Free.

Kitchen Parade Extra: Mocha Morsels ♥ & Thanksgiving Vegetable Recipes

Chocolate chip cookies for grown-ups? You know, with the taste of a hot cup of coffee? I call them Mocha Morsels , a favorite cookie recipe from a 2005 Kitchen Parade column, republished today. SO MAYBE YOU'VE NOTICED? Yes, there have been fewer vegetable recipes for the last couple of weeks and yes, they've been decidedly 'easy' vegetable recipes. But the kitchen is decidedly busy! You see, I'm gearing up for Thanksgiving -- yes, it's time to start planning our Thanksgiving menus and when it comes to vegetable recipes for Thanksgiving, I hope A Veggie Venture will be your favorite source. Beginning November 1, watch for new vegetable recipes perfect for Thanksgiving tables, traditional recipes made fresh, ones that can be made in advance, and feed a crowd, and travel easily, and ... and ... yes, perfect for Thanksgiving. And of course, I'll be counting calories and carbs and Weight Watchers points, just because I do, but there will be plenty of bu

Reader Recipe: Microwave Acorn Squash ♥

My mistake. I blasted a commercial winter squash "product" (how can a 'vegetable' be a product? and hmmm ... would vegetables get more attention if more, were?) and failed to share an alternative way to easily, quickly and tastily cook a winter squash in the microwave. Readers to the rescue! From Bob came this note: "We prepare many different types of squash in a microwave by cutting the squash in half lengthwise, from stem to tip. Scoop out the seeds and stuff (not the meat). Place them in an oval microwave dish, with each half of the squash facing inside down, then adding 1/2" – 1” water to the dish. For some reason, adding the water after the squash is in helps keep water from soaking the underside of the squash as it cooks. We usually microwave on high for roughly 7 minutes. How about a try our way?" Thanks, Bob, that's exactly how I cooked a couple of small acorn squashes. They turned out great -- not as sweet and flavorful as squash roasted

Recipe for Spicy Thai Noodle Salad ♥

Today's recipe: A traditional pasta salad but lightened with more vegetables and less dressing. Vegan. Look familiar? It should. It's that noodle salad (well, one of all those noodle and macaroni salads) which makes its way onto every potluck table. And it's a favorite in my Canadian family (hi to Ingrid!), probably every family. But then again, it shouldn't. Because I 'vegged it up', turning an all-noodle 'salad' into something of substance, still keeping the noodles front and center but using vegetables to bulk it up for flavor and crunch. I made it recently for friends whose daughter was being married and whose home was thronged with hungry bridesmaids and starving groomsmen. It happens to be a vegan salad - though I don't think the most ardent carnivore would notice - so 'safe' for groups where people's eating choices aren't known. GARLIC REMINDER If you're in the middle of the northern hemisphere, mid-October -- now!! -- is

Kitchen Parade Extra: Cauliflower Risotto ♥

When you travel, are you prepared to cook in your destination's kitchen? I am - and for some months now, the specialty has been cauliflower risotto, the recipe in this week's Kitchen Parade column . Get out your wooden spoons! It's creamy leeky delicious! (And it's cooked and served in a way that makes it 'every-day' for Weight Watchers. SO WHAT IS KITCHEN PARADE, EXACTLY? Kitchen Parade is the food column that my Mom started writing for our family newspaper when I was a baby. Today it's published in my hometown newspapers in suburban St. Louis and features ' fresh seasonal recipes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences '. Where A Veggie Venture is 'pure food blog', full of experimentation and exploration, Kitchen Parade features recipes a modern cook can count on. All are thoroughly tested by a home cook in a home kitchen and many are family and reader favorites. All recipes feature easy-to-find ingredients, clear ins

Microwave Baked Potato ♥

This quick recipe is for my friend Ann who has -- undeservedly, to my mind -- the reputation as a bad cook. Actually, she's a decent cook. It's just that food isn't high on her priority list and so 'good' is 'good enough'. This I respect, admire even -- not every bite we eat must be 'delicious'. Good is good. Good is plenty. Good is, yes, good enough. So when I raved about how I'd just learned how to make the best baked potatoes , she looked momentarily embarrassed (but not really) to admit she just throws baked potatoes in the microwave. "They're good," she assured. And so they are -- good! -- and frankly, way better than expected. The flesh is actually quite good (a tiny tad gummy but if you haven't tasted the slooow-baked potatoes, you wouldn't notice) but in the microwave, the skin just won't get crisp. So I checked the ever-so-thorough Vegetable Love by Barbara Kafka who sure enough, has the solution: finishi