Thursday, November 19, 2009

CEiMB Catch Up - Peach French Toast Bake AND Carrot, Green Apple and Mint Salad

Where has the month gone???

I had the horrifying realization yesterday that Thanksgiving is next week. Next week! I thought I still had two weeks left. When I was at Trader Joe's this weekend, I noticed the interest around the turkey case, and wondered what the rush was. Now I understand.

For Craving Ellie in My Belly this week, Liz of The Not So Skinny Kitchen chose Ellie's Peach French Toast Bake. I read the discussion about this recipe and noted that the egg mixture needed some doctoring since it was bland. Did I remember to do that? No. I read the recipe, which said to use cooking spray on your baking dish. Did I do that? No. It said to serve it with maple syrup and non-fat yogurt. Did I remember that? No. So what I ended up with was a bland, glued-to-the-dish breakfast that left a lot to be desired. But I could tell this one could be really great IF I followed the recipe, spiced up the eggs, and maybe grated in some orange zest. And the clean up would be easier if I sprayed the pan.

I had never made baked french toast before, and Ellie's recipe was so ridiculously easy that I'll definitely make it again with the changes noted. Thanks, Liz, for picking a recipe I never would have thought of trying!


Last week, Jessica of A Singleton in the Kitchen chose Ellie's Carrot, Green Apple and Mint Salad. Now, if you aren't already a follower of Jessica's blog, you really need to be. She is funny and real, and has a creative way with the recipes she makes. She participates in a number of cooking groups while pursuing her masters degree and working as a teaching assistant.

When I saw Jessica had chosen this recipe, I tried to wrap my head around it and couldn't. I wasn't sure how it would taste, but I trust Jessica and her palate, so I went for it. I used the food processor to shred the carrots and apple, mixed the dressing (mayo, non-fat Greek yogurt, cider vinegar, lemon juice and honey) in a bowl, did a quick chiffonade of fresh mint, and threw it all together. It took 5 minutes. OK, maybe 8. And it was DELISH. I tossed on some roasted salted peanuts, and it added a nice salty note. We had this with adobo chicken and brown rice, and it made a nice flavor profile. I will definitely make it again, but as Jessica suggested, I would increase the apple and decrease the carrot...I wasn't getting enough of the apple flavor, and I would use the julienne blade to get larger pieces of apple and carrot. In my opinion, the two elements that make this dish are the mint and the cider vinegar. Don't even think of using white vinegar in this one.

Thanks, Jessica, for picking a recipe that might have never been picked. We loved it! It lasted for several days, and was just as good on day 3 as it was the night I made it.

If you'd like the recipe, you can find it here.


Liz said...

Oh, no! I'm sorry you had a few stumbles with the ingredients. Mine was pretty bland also, but I can see how it would be better with some more spices. Thanks so much for trying it with me!

Megan said...

Yeah - the year is just flying by, especially now. I feel like I'm on full speed from now until New Years.

Interesting looking salad - and I'll believe you when you say it was good. After all, if you like the ingredients separately (which I do), it makes sense that you would like them combined!

Steph said...

time always passes by way too quickly... unfortunately,

awww.. too bad it didn't turn out right.

Pamela said...

I never made the salad, but I did enjoy the french toast recipe. Your post was pretty funny about it, though!! Keep smiling!

Kayte said...

Need to post the apple carrot mint salad as I made it, but who knows if that will get posted or not. Yours looks great! I am afraid of that French Toast recipe as my guys like French Toast, but NOT if it is soggy and I thought the picture in the book looked soggy...I can't tell from your photo if it was or not, so am nervous about trying this one. May just skip, or may not soak it for a long time, just a little bit and pop it in the oven. Not sure. Yours looks pretty with all those fruity bits on top! Very nice.