Broccoli Fritters

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I feel like I am always looking for new ideas to get our 2 toddlers to eat vegetables. It's so hard! Max (who is 1)  simply throws everything and Ezra (who is 3) often removes anything green from his plate immediately upon arrival. This past Monday at 5pm I had just gotten home with both kids and had no idea what to make for dinner. I needed an idea quick and I remembered seeing this Broccoli Fritter recipe in my Smitten Kitchen newsletter. In the post, Deb talked about how fritters were the answer to this toddler problem so I decided to try it out on my 2 little veggie skeptics. 

The recipe is quite simple. You chop a head of broccoli into very small pieces, steam it in a skillet, then stir it in a bowl with flour, an egg and some grated cheese. Fry and eat!

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To my surprise, THE KIDS ACTUALLY ATE THEM!!! And I thought they were delicious, too, topped with yogurt, lemon and Maldon salt. I enjoyed a few of them with a glass of rosé. 

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This one will be making a recurring appearance. Recommended! Thanks, Deb. Now I am brainstorming what else I can turn into a fritter...

Broccoli Fritters

Adapted from this recipe by Smitten Kitchen. Makes about 8 fritters.

1 small head of broccoli

1/2 c flour

1 egg

1 clove garlic, minced

1/3 c grated cheese (I used a mix of parmesan and cheddar)

salt and pepper to taste, oil for frying

Chop the broccoli into very small pieces (florets and the upper parts of the stems). Throw them in a big skillet with a splash of water and cover to steam (about 5 min). Drain the broccoli and move it to a mixing bowl. Add the other ingredients and stir to combine. Use a potato masher or the bottom of a glass to mash the broccoli mixture just a bit. It's ok if there are still some chunks. Fry heaping spoonfuls (to make patties) in olive oil until both sides are browned. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and serve alongside yogurt and a lemon wedge. My kids also liked dipping them in ketchup (whatever gets the greens down!). Enjoy!

 

Sweet Potato + Lentil Tacos

I made this for dinner last night and it only took about 20 minutes. I thought it was such a tasty, healthy, easy weeknight idea that I needed to recreate it here. Happy cooking!

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SWEET POTATO + LENTIL TACOS

makes enough filling for about 6 corn tortilla tacos

1/2 red onion (diced)

1 small sweet potato (diced with peel on)

1 (15 oz) can cooked lentils (drained and rinsed in a colander)

a handful of arugula (or any greens! cilantro, lettuce, spinach, chopped kale...)

1 avocado

hot sauce

corn tortillas (or flour if you prefer)

Sauté the diced onion and sweet potato with some olive oil, salt and pepper for about 10 minutes over med/low heat, until the potatoes are soft when poked with a fork. For the last minute, add the lentils, just to warm them. Spoon the mixture into warm tortillas (I use tongs and heat mine over an open stovetop flame). Top each taco with a pinch of arugula, a slice of avocado, a bit of hot sauce and a pinch of flaky salt

 

 I sautéed the sweet potatoes and onion  in my favorite skillet  for 10 min, then added lentils to warm them.

I sautéed the sweet potatoes and onion in my favorite skillet for 10 min, then added lentils to warm them.

 Top the tacos with arugula, avocado and hot sauce

Top the tacos with arugula, avocado and hot sauce

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Color-Coded Bookshelf and My Favorite Spring Dress!

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For years I've seen photos online of bookshelves arranged by color and thought I'd love to do that someday if I ever have time. WELL! Last night, after the kids went to bed, I felt inspired. I could watch a show, check email, or JUST DO IT! I had on my favorite spring dress, I poured a glass of wine, put on some Joni Mitchell and it only took about 90 minutes! Now whenever I walk by I smile and our living room feels somehow more "together".

I didn't try to make it too perfect. I wanted it to be a fun project, and not stressful, so I just dug in. I pulled books out and made several stacks according to color. Yellow, Orange, Pink/Red, Blue/Purple, Green, Black, White, Beige and "Multi".  Warm colors are always my jam, so I put those in the middle and worked outwards. I grouped black and white ones toward the bottom and left an overflow row at the top for books with a multicolored binding. On each shelf, I tried to put dark books side by side and light books side by side, so as to create a somewhat ombre effect. My Forest Feast cookbook(s) are in 10 languages now (!) so it was fun to have a shelf with a bunch of them together.

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Such a fun little project. If you've ever thought about doing this too, I say go for it! It won't take as long as you think.

Happy weekend!

PS: I love this yellow floral dress I got on Amazon and wear it all the time. I have it in a few different colors and it's great for a myriad of occasions since you can easily dress it up with jewelry and wedges or down with sandals and a denim jacket. It's also super comfortable and works for all stages of pregnancy and breastfeeding. Full disclosure: The Forest Feast participates in the Amazon Affiliates program so I get a small kickback of sales via this link. Opinions are completely my own.

Roasted Beet Salad + a New York Minute

 Roasted Beet Salad with Tomatoes, Scallions and Feta (recipe at the bottom)

Roasted Beet Salad with Tomatoes, Scallions and Feta (recipe at the bottom)

Ezra and I just returned from a fun weekend in New York City, and it was so good to be back.  It was one of those great spring weekends where the weather was warm, everything was in bloom, and everyone was out. 

I moved to New York right after college with no job and very little money because I wanted to become a photographer (and eventually, I did!). I thought I'd stay for a year and ended up staying 8. I interned at a magazine, was a nanny, worked at a restaurant, went to grad school, taught at a college and met Jonathan at a party!  I lived on the Upper West Side for the first 5 years, then Park Slope after that. I spent almost all of my 20s in New York - such a magical time.  (Hard, too, but in hindsight...mostly magical.) Even though I love living in the woods now, I sure do miss New York.

 With Ezra on the Upper West Side

With Ezra on the Upper West Side

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Thank goodness Jonathan's family lives there so we get to go back often. Experiencing the city now so many years later with a 3-year-old in tow is different but so fun. We stayed with relatives on the Upper West Side and it was fun to roam around my old stomping grounds. I went for my sister-in-law-to-be's bridal shower at the prettiest tea house in an old antique-filled carriage house on the Upper East Side, Kings Carriage House

 Afternoon Tea at Kings Carriage House

Afternoon Tea at Kings Carriage House

 Afternoon Tea at Kings Carriage House

Afternoon Tea at Kings Carriage House

While in town, we had 2 great meals. One was at a Mediterranean spot on the Upper West Side called Bustan. It was my first time there and I loved their garlicky feta dip, eggplant carpaccio, freshly baked bread, and dreamy backyard. The second was at Barboncino, an Italian brick-oven pizzeria in Brooklyn (Crown Hts/Prospect Hts).  Anytime I am meeting my best girlfriends in Brooklyn, without question, we meet at Barboncino. It's our spot. And we always order the same thing: the Bibb salad, the Burrata, a couple Margherita pizzas and a bottle of their delicious red Aglianico wine. Every time I eat at Barboncino I have a OH WOW THIS IS SO CRAZY DELICIOUS moment and I declare it the tastiest food I've had in a while.  I also love the exposed-brick and candlelit vibe. If you're in Brooklyn, go! You might have to wait for a table but it's worth it.

 Bustan on the Upper West Side

Bustan on the Upper West Side

 Barboncino in Brooklyn

Barboncino in Brooklyn

Even though we had great meals, after traveling I always feel like I need to eat lots of vegetables when I get home. Good thing we returned to an abundant farm bag this week! Some beautiful beets came and I made this simple, colorful salad today. I sliced and roasted the beets, then topped them with yellow cherry tomatoes, scallions and feta. 

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 Sliced beets are ready to go in the oven.

Sliced beets are ready to go in the oven.

Roasted Beet Salad with Tomatoes, Scallions and Feta

serves 4

4 beets, sliced in 1/4-inch rounds (peel on)

1 c yellow cherry tomatoes, halved

3 scallions, chopped

2 oz crumbled feta

Lay the beets out on an oiled baking sheet then drizzle generously with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast them at 425F for 25 minutes, flipping the beets once.

Allow the beets to cool then lay them out on a platter. Spread the tomatoes over the beets then sprinkle the platter with the chopped scallions and crumbled feta. Drizzle the platter with a bit of olive oil and red wine vinegar, plus salt and pepper. Enjoy!