Birthdays, Thanksgiving & Noodles with Zucchini.

There are certain dates and anniversaries that seem to split the year into different and distinct parts. Everyone has their own. It might be the first day of school, new years eve, a wedding anniversary, a religious holiday or a season. For me, it’s fall. Not only is it the season of my birthday, a (scary) time of reflection, but it is followed shortly after by the Thanksgiving weekend, a time of thanks.

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A muppet inspired jicama slaw.

There is an old Muppet sketch that goes something like this …. (for full effect read it with a Groucho Marx/Fozzy bear kind of voice while using a carrot as a cigar)

“Do you know how hard is it for vegetables to break into show business?”
“Yeah, when we first started out, the audience used to throw people at us!”
(wocka wocka wocka!)

Imagine how hard it must be if you are a unique looking character actor vegetable? Surrounded by all the brightly coloured “pretty” vegetables it must be easy to be ignored. You work hard, you do your job, but no love. For the average cook, the good thing about many of these vegetables is you can get them for cheap.  A lot of value for a little money.
(insert commentary on film industry here….)

I seem to have taken a bit of a shine to odd vegetables lately.  Sunchokes, kale and most recently, jicama.  Jicama is a funny vegetable.  Sometimes called yam bean root, it’s one of those vegetables that I know I’ve had before, and have certainly read recipes that incorporate it, but it has only been lately that I’ve introduced it to my kitchen on a regular basis.

Power couple - Jicama and Cabbage.

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Sunday sunchoke dip.

Remember the story about the ugly duckling?  You know, the poor little thing who was a bit unfortunate looking but when given a chance and a bit of time was a real beauty?  Well today our little ducks name is Sunchoke.  Or more formally, Jerusalem artichoke.  You’ve never heard of the poor little thing have you?  It’s okay.  Don’t feel badly.  We’ve only become acquainted, and I admit, it was a confusing and a rocky start.

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Chicken Soup and CPR.

As a personal trainer every year I have to redo my CPR.  When I showed up for the class a few weeks ago my instructor said “I was sick last week and my husband made me your chicken soup recipe – thanks for that”.   As we sat there doing chest compressions all I could think of was “what chicken soup recipe”.  Then, a couple of weeks later I got an email from a client asking if I could please send her my recipe for turkey soup.  Hmmm. Taking it as a sign I went through some of my old newsletters to see what they were referring to.  Ah ha!  This soup has been floating around my kitchen for so long I don’t even think of it as a recipe anymore.  Originally from the cookbook The Best of Cooking Light (2000), it is super easy, healthy and satisfying.  Exactly what you want in a chicken soup.  Now you will probably get around to making soup before you take CPR.  Personally I strongly suggest doing both.  However unlike this recipe, I hope the CPR never comes in handy. Continue reading