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Recipe Sun Feb 24 2008
I'm an avowed menu planner, which until now has meant curling up on the couch with some of my favorite cookbooks and the latest issues of Cooking Light, Gourmet and Everyday Food to select what's for dinner for the next two weeks.
I'm not abandoning my cookbooks and magazines entirely, but I've expanded my menu search to include Chicago's many excellent food blogs. Here's the first in what will be a weekly roundup of recipes recommended by, and in some cases created by, Chicago food bloggers. A general observation: it's February in Chicago, which means lots of the recipes I found featured pasta, bread, cheese or some combination thereof. I say, embrace it; spring is right around the corner.
The Knife Sharpener offers a great recipe for Soba Noodles with Peanut Sauce, which I plan to try with a side of miso soup.
Looking for something a bit more creative to beat the winter blues? Try one of these innovative entrees, both of which feature frozen peas (a very versatile vegetable to have on hand): Savory Waffles with Pea and Chive Soup from the Pro Bono Baker; and an intriguing pasta dish from My Vegetable Blog - celebrating it's one-year anniversary, by the by - with a sauce made from avocados, basil and, yes, peas.
For a quick, nutritious meal, Have a Bite offers a healthy twist on crunchy-coated white fish.
These Sauteed Mushrooms with Garlic Butter from The Blue Kitchen would pair nicely with something meaty, like a juicy burger with blue cheese.
Another easy side is Jamie Oliver's Onion Gratin, featured this week on Vital Information - a great recipe to keep on hand for those days when the veggie drawers are barren.
I've saved the desserts for last because man, oh, man! Little Spatula features (appropriately) a Bread Pudding with Almond Streusel; while Hungry Mag offers up a chef's favorite take on Chocolate Mousse and (Find of the Week Alert!) a bodacious brittle made of Marcona almonds, maple syrup and bacon.