New year, new recipes

Happy new year! After 3.5 weeks of Hawaii and California, sunshine and family…I’m back in Boston. Honestly, it hadn’t been too bad, but today is just gross: dreary, rainy, cold. It makes me miss CA that much more, but I’ll admit that I’m glad to be back and have my own kitchen.

Somewhat of a New Year’s resolution: I’ve decided to expand my recipe arsenal and to now aim for at least one new recipe every week. I think it’s doable! I’m off to a running start with two recipes this week, both of which were simple and delicious. Here we go:

Sweet potato chili
adapted from Cookie+Kate

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1/2 in. pieces
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 rounded teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon cinammon
salt and pepper to taste
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups vegetable broth
plain greek yogurt, sliced radishes, sliced scallions (all optional, for garnish)

In a large pot, saute onions in olive oil for ~5 minutes on medium heat. Add peppers, garlic, and sweet potato. Turn the heat down to medium-low, and stir in all the spices and canned ingredients. Cover and let cook for 1.5-2 hours, stirring occasionally. When done, the sweet potatoes will be soft and the liquid will have reduced to reach that “hearty chili consistency.”

Garnish your bowl of chili with a dollop of greek yogurt, sliced radishes, and/or sliced scallions.

Parsnip leek soup
adapted from Sassy Radish

5 tablespoons olive oil
3 leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 pound parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 cups vegetable broth or water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (dairy option: grated parmesan)
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus more to taste
zest of 1 lemon

In a large pot, saute leeks in 2 tablespoons of olive oil for 5-8 minutes, until they are translucent. Don’t let leeks brown. Add garlic. Add remaining olive oil and parsnips. Add vegetable broth, stir in salt and pepper, and bring soup to a boil. Let simmer for 30 minutes, until parsnips are fork-tender. Stir in nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and zest. Adjust seasonings as necessary. Blend soup to desired consistency.

You can garnish your bowl of soup with some parsley and a drizzle of olive oil. I enjoyed my unadorned bowl with some homemade pita (freezer FTW) and sheep’s milk gouda.

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