With a very motivating and honest introduction, Andie Mitchell’s Eating in the Middle is loaded with “recipes that are healthy, wholesome with a focus on big, boisterous flavors“. She admits that depravation is not the key to a healthy lifestyle and so to keep a fair balance, the book also has its share of recipes that are richer and more decadent, which is what I love about the cookbook. Struggling with weight loss and going on the all or nothing diets is what makes lifestyle changes difficult. Andie dismisses these extreme changes and tells us through her recipes and storytelling to embrace a path that does not deny us the decadent treats and teaches us to enjoy food in a balanced way.
While on one hand you have nourishing dishes like butternut squash salad with kale and pomegranate and arugula with orange segments, spiced walnuts and goat cheese; on the other hand, to keep things realistic, you have gooey chocolate chip cookie pie and peanut butter mousse pie with marshmallow whipped cream (yum!).
And then there are more balanced meals like the chicken and mushrooms in mustard marsala cream sauce and spicy chipotle chicken enchiladas.
Each recipe has a corresponding picture of the finished product which photographer Aran Goyoaga and prop stylist Jenn Elliot Blake have beautifully captured. A per serving information chart is given along with every recipe, and even though I am not a calorie counting person it is definitely helpful to know.
The book has so many recipes that I would like to try and have already stocked up my refrigerator to make the spicy tofu stir-fry next.
Today though, I am sharing this quick and easy recipe for smashed roasted garlic potatoes from the book, which makes a perfect side dish. In Andie’s words “they are crisp and crusty with soft, mashy middles.”
Let’s be honest. I only got Sweeter off the Vine for Yossy Arefi’s photographs. I follow her on instagram and love all her pictures. So I kind of already knew I would like this book.
I love baking with fruits and if you do too, this book is a gem. The book is categorized into different seasons and baking with fruits available during these seasons. Of course the fruit available will depend on the place you stay and these days some fruits are available throughout the year but the book focuses on seasonal fruits and baking with them, which I love.
The Spring section has herbs, rhubarb, strawberries and cherries based recipes. Summer uses apricots, mixed berries, melons, stone fruits, raspberries and figs. Grapes, permissons, pomegranates, apples, pears, quince, squash and pumpkins feature in fall recipes. And winter has recipes using cranberries, citrus and dates.
I love brioche. Its a buttery, rich, croissant-like bread. What’s not to love? There’s no doubt the classic version tastes great but if you add chocolate, well, things just get out of control good.
My dad makes a pretty good brioche loaf, even though he uses his bread machine to do most of the work. While I love the convenience of a bread machine, I feel by using it, one missed out on all the fun that is involved in bread making. And that’s why I never invested in one and probably won’t. That said, I do like the brioche my dad makes.
On the other hand, the first time I made a brioche loaf it was disastrous. I don’t know what I did wrong but the brioche did not rise. It was not feathery light, but dense. After that I put brioche making on hold for a while. Then I got the Bouchon Bakery cookbook. I had a go at brioche again using Thomas Keller’s recipe and this time I was successful.
I have made a mention about the three issue old Bake From Scratch magazine before on the blog when I tried and shared their recipe for homemade rye bread. Their new issue is out and its all about French bakes.
The cover photo (which is absolutely gorgeous) is of this chocolate brioche, and one look at it and I knew I had to bake the brioche au chocolat. Equipped with the success from my previous brioche trials, and seeing how a chocolate brioche would be a perfect brunch/breakfast addition, I decided to bake the loaf before mom leaves for Canada.
I adapted the recipe slightly by subbing a little of the all purpose flour for whole wheat. I didn’t have too much whole wheat flour on hand to substitute though. Next time I will experiment with a higher ratio of whole wheat flour and will update this space with the results.