Kale, mushroom, peanut, and garlic salad

Kale, mushroom, peanut, and garlic salad

Over the weekend I found myself at home, hungry, with a bag of kale and not much else. I wanted something delicious to eat. Usually I reach for the spinach – it is a my go-to green food – but as I said, I had kale and the desire to do something with it. After a little rummaging I ended up with mushroom, peanuts, and garlic. I could see the beginning of a warm salad forming and couldn’t wait to start cooking.

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Learning to cook - Avocado and Lemon Zest Spaghetti

Learning to cook – Avocado and Lemon Zest Spaghetti

At the age of 20 I hosted my first dinner party. I invited my university friends over and channeling my mother I made too much food for the two people who would be coming. I had spent the day sweating, cursing, and wrapping my finger in a plaster after I cut it on a can. Until then I didn’t know how hard it was to cook with only nine digits.

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Roasted asparagus coated in garlic and sesame seeds

Roasted asparagus coated in garlic and sesame seeds

Asparagus (asparagii?) are a delicacy. I grew up having them rarely because they were so expensive. Even as an adult I see the price for the smallest amount and walk away. This is actually what I almost always do with avocados too, except with them I remember how cheap they were when I was a child and how inflated the price now it.

Anyway, back to the asparagus and the recipe of my dreams.

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In 1997 a scandal broke out, unlike any other. River Café Cook Book by Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers was newly published. In it there was a recipe for a cake I’ve never made or eaten or been served: dark, flour-less and baked until set in a bain marie. In fact I didn’t know what a bain marie was until writing this post (it’s a type of heated water bath).  It turns out that for most people this recipe didn’t work. Amateur chefs and professional chefs tried and all of them ended up with a fresh brown liquid.

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I wanted to call this post ‘I Used a Recipe Book!’ because I can’t remember the last time I used one. I think I own them all and I look through them quite regularly but use one to actually cook with? Don’t talk crazy! Then I opened up Livia’s Kitchen and saw a very simple, and very easy recipe for carrot and oat energy balls and decided to make them.

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