Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Gifts made of food

When your boss is a mom and is celebrating a very special holiday over the weekend, while also graduating with a master's...well what should you get the lady?

First, invite her over for dinner for a special meal:
This creamy tomato sauce hit the spot and could fool anyone with its rich flavor and texture!

Creamy Tomato Pasta
adapted from Oh She Glows

1 box whole wheat spaghetti noodles
3 cups baby spinach, rinsed
1 cup grape tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup raw cashews
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 cup loosely packed fresh parsley
2 cloves garlic

In food processor, process grape tomatoes until mushy.  Add in 1 cup raw cashews and continue to process, adding in tomato paste, olive oil, vinegar, sugar and parsley.  Slowly add in water until it reaches your desired consistency.

Meanwhile heat pot of water to boiling and cook spaghetti according to package instructions.

In large skillet pan, heat another tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.  Crush or mince garlic and add to pan.  Cook until fragrant.  Add in tomato mixture from food processor and cook over low-medium heat.

When pasta is done cooking, drain into colander filled with spinach.  When you pour hot water over the spinach it will wilt.  Move spinach and pasta back to large pot and stir in Tomato Cream sauce. Serve with a side of broccoli.

So we've got the celebratory meal covered.  Now back to the gifts.  I know how much Susan loves good food...and I know how much I love to make good food.  So the obvious gift...

Whole Grain Seed Bread
adapted from All Recipes

1 cup bread flour
2 cups ww flour
1 ½ tsp instant yeast
1 1/4 cup warm water
2 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp vital wheat gluten
2 tbsp flax seed meal
2 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp quinoa
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
2 tbsp rolled oats
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil

Pour warm water into bread maker.  Add in sugar and sprinkle yeast on top.  Wait 10 minutes until a foamy froth forms on the top.

Add in all other ingredients.  Set bread maker for 1 1/2 pound loaf, and medium crust.

Wait until finished while thanking your lucky stars you own a bread maker!


adapted from Bitter Sweet Blog

1 ½ cup chickpeas
½ cup cocoa powder
¼ cup granulated organic sugar
¼ cup powder sugar
3 tbsp oil
1 tbsp pb
1 teaspoon vanilla
dash salt
2-4 tbsp water

In food processor combine all ingredients.  Add water until reaches desired consistency.  And then enjoy this healthy yet decadent spread, and top everything in sight with it!
I think she was well pleased with her gift (which also included a bottle of wine from Daveste) yet true to form I forgot to snap a photo of an actual human being.  

Ah-well...maybe this photo will make up for it:
Breakfast for the husband.  Just like the little store-bought ones that come in the cellophane packages complete with high fructose corn syrup and other crazy ingredients.  These were made from the same dough recipe as yesterday's doughnuts, only I shook them in a paper bag of powdered sugar before serving.  I think he liked them because they didn't stick around for too long on that plate!

And on one final note this evening, I owe you a photo of my completed chairs.
Aren't they wonderful?  Just as I estimated, the cushions were about $25 per chair which brings this whole project to just under $60.  I love them!
Good night!

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