I’ve never really been a resolution making kinda girl—but this year I’m feeling a little different. So, here it goes! I only have 2 but they are really important to me. They say to create a new habit you must do it for roughly 6 weeks to have it feel more natural.
I’m going to really try to stick with it intensely the first month and a half and hopefully it will get easier with time. The first resolution is a mandatory family dinner night.
I admired the Soprano Family for having those Sunday night dinners. Carmela and Tony meant business when it came to family—and so do I. When you live with adults (4) and teenagers(2), everyone is always going in different directions. Between work, school, hanging out with friends and other activities there is at least one open seat at my dinner table every night. The only excuse I’ll except will be work. If you live here guess what—dinner is at 6 sharp. Since this resolution will affect more than just myself—I’ve let my kids know their friends are welcome to dinner as well—the more the merrier. So to keep myself in check I will be posting my menu and photos of my family having dinner TOGETHER!
My second resolution is to work smarter. I know that sounds sooooo vague, but sometimes I feel I’m doing things the hard way. So, I will try to work smarter not harder—organization is the key here—that way I will have time to make slightly more elaborate Sunday night dinners. Everybody wins!
Tomorrow night will be the first Sunday night dinner. To kick it off I’m choosing from Tyler Florence’s Ultimate Cookbook. I love Tyler’s recipes—and he’s not too hard on the eyes either.
Sunday Night Dinner # 1
Roasted Cauliflower Soup serves 6
1 quart of milk
1 head of cauliflower, cored and broken into florets
1/2 onion, sliced
8 sprigs of fresh thyme
1/2 (1 cube of butter) unsalted butter
1 bay leaf
extra virgin olive oil
fresh ground black pepper
4 slices brioche, toasted
1/4 pine nuts
4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
Pour the milk in a large saucepan, add a little salt and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Set aside about a half a cup of the florets for garnish. Put the rest of the cauliflower in the pan with the milk. Add onion, 4 sprigs of thyme, butter and the bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until cauliflower is tender. Discard the thyme and the bay leaf. Puree the soup in a blender ( I used an immersion blender—seemed easier than all that transferring). Put soup back in pan and season with a splash of olive oil, salt and a little pepper. Tyler says white pepper is “very cool” here but black works just fine. I used black pepper.
For the brioche croutons I took a few liberties—I used a food processor to chop the brioche adding the leaves from the remaining thyme sprigs and pine nuts. Slice the remaining cauliflower and to the crumb mixture. Drizzle with the melted butter, spread onto a cookie sheet and toast in the oven for 5 minutes or so until they are golden and slightly crunchy. Remove from oven and ad the chopped parsley.
Put soup into serving bowls and top with the brioche crumbs. Yum!
Caesar Salad with Grilled Chicken serves 6
(Added chicken because some of my family HAS to have some type of meat)
We eat a lot of Caesar Salad. So this is how I make this for my family.
2 heads of Romaine Lettuce
1 grilled chicken breast, cut into 1/2″ dice
garlic olive oil
4 slices of french bread, cut into 1/4″ dice
good quality Caesar dressing
Tear, rip or chop the lettuce into bite size pieces. Add chicken. Put about 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a warm skillet, add french bread and toast until golden and crunchy—about 5 minutes. Toss all the ingredients, adding dressing carefully—nobody likes a soggy salad.