Recipe

Carrot-Coconut Soup with Chile and Lime

Adapted from Bon Appetit and the Clayburn Village Store & Tea Shop in Abbotsford, BC

½ stick (57 grams) unsalted butter
2 lb. (910 grams) carrots, peeled and chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
Kosher salt
4 cups (950 ml) chicken broth
1 ½ to 2 (13.5-ounce) cans unsweetened coconut milk
About 2 Tbsp. sriracha, or to taste
Lime wedges, for serving
Fresh cilantro leaves, chopped, for serving, if you feel like it

Melt the butter in a large (5-quart) pot over medium-high heat. Add the carrots and onion, season with a couple good pinches of salt, and cook, stirring often, until the carrots are softened, 15-20 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1 ½ cans of the coconut milk, and 1 tablespoon of the sriracha. Bring to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are very soft and the liquid is slightly reduced, about 45 minutes. Puree in small batches (remember: hot liquids expand!) in a blender. (Or, my preference: puree right in the pot, with an immersion blender.) Check for seasoning, and add more salt and/or sriracha, if you like. (I usually add 1 more tablespoon sriracha.) If you’d like more richness, stir in the rest of the coconut milk, and then reheat as needed.

Serve with a generous squeeze of lime in each bowl, and top with cilantro, if you have it.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Recipe

Parmesan-Roasted Cauliflower

Adapted from Bon Appétit and Allie Lewis Clapp

One word of caution: don’t slice the onions too thinly here, or they’ll be more likely to burn.  I’d aim for ½-inch-thick slices, if I were you.

1 head cauliflower, trimmed
1 medium onion, sliced
4 thyme sprigs
4 unpeeled garlic cloves
3 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Parmesan or Grana Padano, for grating

Preheat the oven to 425°F, and line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment.

Place the cauliflower on a cutting board, and slice it top-down into roughly 1/3-inch slices. Some of the slices will crumble, and that’s fine. Scoop all of the cauliflower into a large bowl, and add the onion, thyme, garlic, and olive oil. Toss well. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Arrange the mixture in a single layer on the prepared sheet pan. Roast, tossing occasionally, until the cauliflower is mostly tender, golden brown, and caramelized at the edges, 25-30 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven, and grate a generous amount of Parmesan over the vegetables. (The original recipe calls for ½ cup, but I didn’t measure mine; I just eyeballed it.) Return the pan to the oven, and continue to roast for another 5 or 10 minutes. You’re basically cooking it to eye: you want the cauliflower to be nicely caramelized, but you don’t want the onions to burn.

Serve hot or at room temperature.

Yield: 2 to 4 servings

Recipe

Oat Scones

Adapted from Standard Baking Company (Portland, ME)

If you use frozen berries, do not thaw them before using.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup packed golden brown sugar
1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. kosher salt
11 Tbsp. (5 ½ ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 ¾ cups cold half-and-half
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries or blackberries

For garnish:

3 Tbsp. old-fashioned rolled oats
5 tsp. Turbinado sugar

Set racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven, and preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade attachment, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Pulse to mix well. Add the butter and pulse again briefly, until the mixture looks coarse and the largest lumps of butter are no bigger than a pea.

In a large bowl, stir together the half-and-half and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and the rolled oats, and stir until just combined. The dough will be thick and sticky. Add the berries, and stir briefly to mix. [When I use blackberries in particular, I find that it’s difficult to stir them into the dough without crushing them, overworking the dough, and turning the whole mixture purple. My solution is to only stir a little, and then move on to the next step. As you scoop the dough onto the baking sheets, you can use your fingers to press any errant berries into the mounds of dough.]

Using a 1/3-cup measuring cup, scoop the dough into mounds, arranging them 3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Garnish the tops with rolled oats and Turbinado sugar.

Bake for 24 to 27 minutes, or until the center of the scones feels firm to the touch.

Note: Wrapped in plastic wrap or stored in an airtight container, these keep beautifully at room temperature for 4 or 5 days. Warm in a toaster oven before eating.

Yield: 12 scones