I can’t believe another month is almost over. They seem to be flying lately. I can remember when I was a kid, it seemed like it took forever for Christmas to come, or for the school year to end, but as I get older, I find myself asking the question of where time goes more and more often.
And finishing one month and starting another means that it is time to say goodbye to the cookbook of the month and time to welcome in a new one. And earlier this week, I just noticed that there are 5 Fridays this month, so I had to squeeze in one more recipe from this month’s cookbook – Barefoot Contessa Parties!
Like I said when I first chose this book as the cookbook of the month – I never imagined that I would fall in love with a party book. And although now I have dreams of throwing great dinner parties, (and I know that probably won’t happen), I have discovered that this book also works for regular dinners, desserts, appetizers and drinks. I have found some great recipes already and can’t wait to try even more.
The book is divided by seasons – which I really love. I’m not the best at cooking seasonally, but this book helps me out with that. I also love reading about Ina’s party experiences, both good and bad. Oh, and how I would love to attend one of her perfectly orchestrated parties!! She just seems so down to earth, and not pretentious. In fact, she says that a good party should be more about the company you are keeping, and to keep the food simple and fun. That sounds like the equation for a good party to me!!
I loved all of the recipes I tried, and there are many more that I want to try, such as the rugelach, the spinach gratin, and of course her lemon bars! I can tell that this cookbook is going to be a used on on my shelf.
For the cookbook of the month for June, I went to my bookshelf and chose a book that I haven’t made anything from yet. I’m actually quite embarrassed to say that I haven’t made anything from it yet, because it looks like a great book! I actually got this book on accident – awhile back I belonged to one of those book clubs that send you an offer every month, and if you don’t send the card back in, they will send you the book. (And usually charge you an arm and a leg for it!) Well, this book showed up one day because I am quite forgetful, and I just never got around to sending it back. I have since quit that club, but looking through this book now, I’m actually quite happy that I ended up with it. This month’s choice is:
Vegetables from the Culinary Institute of America
And although there are many recipes in this book that would be best in the late summer when the fresh vegetables are plenty here in my neck of the woods, there are still plenty in the book that can be made year round. I’m going through the book today to bookmark the ones I will make, so I’m excited to see what’s in there!
And now for the bonus recipe – Tropical Smoothies. Yes, I know that a recipe is not really necessary to have a recipe for a smoothie, but I just couldn’t resist making these for breakfast this week. And I’ll admit that I’m not a big smoothie fan. I like them fine, but I don’t go out of my way to hit Jamba Juice. But I’ve been trying to get more fruits and veggies in my diet lately, and this was a great way to get a ton of fruit for breakfast. I adapted the recipe to what I had on hand, and it was delicious and healthy! Feel free to substitute whatever fruit you have on hand – you probably won’t go wrong!
adapted from Barefoot Contessa Parties!
1-2 cups hulled strawberries
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 cup water
2 cups ice
Combine all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.