Roasted Cauliflower with Olives and Raisins

If you're looking for that easy, go to recipe for the numerous potluck and holiday events you'll be attending over the next month, this dish is a great option.  My friend Grace and I spent an afternoon cooking and styling this delicious meal that takes advantage of the cool seasons bounty of the cruciferous veggies that are plentiful this time of year. 

Ingredients

1 lg. head of cauliflower (around 8 cups of  florets, chopped) 

1/2 lg. red onion coarsely chopped 

1/4. cup slivered almonds 

1/4 cup sliced (quartered) olives (garlic-stuffed, if possible)

1/4 cup raisins 

Salt and pepper

Olive oil 

2 Tbsp. parsley 

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Heat oven to 425F. Place parchment paper or aluminum foil on a large rimmed baking sheet and lightly coat with olive oil. 

Cut cauliflower into bite-sized florets. Spread cauliflower and chopped onion across the baking sheet. Drizzle and toss with olive oil, until lightly coated. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to season.

Roast 25-30 minutes, stirring halfway, until the edges are browned and the cauliflower is fork-tender.

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While the cauliflower and onions are roasting, toss the almonds into a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring regularly, until almonds are golden brown and give off a rich, toasty fragrance. 

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When the roasted cauliflower and onion are done cooking, place in a large bowl.  Mix in the olives, raisins and parsley. Sprinkle with the toasted almonds. Serves 4-5 as a side dish.

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Photographs courtesy of GraceD Photos

For more delicious, seasonally inspired dishes, check out my friend Grace's blog Food, Fitness, Fresh Air

Summer Herbed Mascarpone with Tomatoes

Ah, late summer days when the tomatoes you have been nurturing since the spring are bursting with fruit, their limbs toppling over in exhaustion, despite your best efforts to cage and support them.  We've had quite the harvest of tomatoes this season and have been savoring them in so many different ways: soups, pizzas, classic mozzarella and basil drizzled with olive oil and balsamic, and of course, eaten right off the vine.   One of our favorite ways of enjoying them as of late is paired with a bit of toast and an herby mascarpone that we've been whipping up on the spot, with a handful of whatever herbs we happen to have going in the garden.  While we're no recipe developers, this snack/meal/appetizer is so versatile, simple, fresh, and tasty, we thought we'd share it here.

Ingredients: 

A small handful of herbs, whatever you, your neighbor, or the market has that looks good to you. 

1-8 oz. container mascarpone

Fresh, summer tomatoes

Slices of your favorite bread, crackers or pita would be great too! 

A pinch of salt

I pulled some sage, lemon oregano, and a few tiny basil leaves from the garden.

Gather the rest of your ingredients. 

Chop the herbs finely and then mix in with mascarpone, add salt to taste and if you're feeling adventurous, any other seasonings you prefer, I ended up adding a little garlic to mine. 

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. 

Slice your tomato, give your bread a quick toast on your lowest toaster setting, and cut bread into small pieces, slather a generous helping of herby mascarpone on your chopping board if you're not into getting out a plate and doing too many dishes like I am, our serving boards  are great for effortlessly going from kitchen to table.

Schmear your bread with herby mascarpone, top with a tomato slice, and enjoy! 

xo, Nicole