Happy Birth-Day, Date Night In

Roasted Green Pozole // Not Without Salt

Today is the day that makes the book officially a full-fledged book; it’s publication day.

I’m not quite sure what I expected this day to feel like but so far it feels very normal. I’m still in my pajamas sitting on the couch with three little ones surrounding me being entertained by various means (mostly technology related) and the house is completely cluttered with the remains of the holidays.

And in other ways it is completely abnormal. Today I’m a published author. I wrote a book that is sitting on shelves all over the country so anyone could potentially walk over to the book, read some of my most personal thoughts and glance over the recipes that fed my relationship over the last couple of years, then hopefully they’d buy it (or multiple copies) and tell all their friends about it. Or they could go to Amazon and write a scathing review. Somehow either option makes me terrified.

What helps with all that terror are the amazing comments, texts, emails, and photos I see of the book on Instagram. It is such an incredible feeling to see something I’ve spent over three years on finally out in the world, being used, read and loved. So thank you. There are so many words but I’m having a hard time finding them in the midst of the fear, pride, anticipation, exhaustion, and downright giddiness that apparently accompanies one’s pub date.

So rather than a lot of words I thought we’d celebrate the day with a recipe from the book. It’s a favorite of ours (honestly, they all are) that is not only perfect for a date night but really for any night and as an added bonus, it’s pretty healthy too. If you’re like me, after all those cookies, cocktails and cream-filled dishes a broth-based, vegetal, stew-like soup is just what is needed. The bonus of this soup is that you can practically build a salad of cilantro, radish, avocado, and onion right on top.

Roasted Green Pozole // Not Without Salt Roasted Green Pozole // Not Without Salt

But before that, a few housekeeping items. I’ll just go ahead and put these here:

Amazon 

Indie Bound

Book Larder (order here for a signed copy!)

Powell’s (the cover here is not the most recent edition)

Running Press

UK

Waterstones

Amazon

Canada

Amazon

 

Also, if you are in Seattle I believe there still are a few tickets to our Date Night In at Delancey dinner. Check out BookLarder.com for more informations and tickets.

PORTLAND – don’t make any Valentine’s plans, I’ve got you covered. More soon!

And this is for those of you in LA and NYC: I’ve had to postpone my trip to see you all as we’ve come across a bit of a book shortage (thanks for all the orders!!) but I can’t wait to see you in March! Details coming soon.

Okay. Enough. Go make some Pozole and let’s all raise a glass to a beautiful start to 2015. Thanks, as always, for being here. 

Roasted Green Pozole // Not Without Salt

Roasted Green Pozole with Chicken

By the time our date rolls around, the sun is nearly set and there’s a slight chill in the air that makes this roasted, fragrant stew a perfect late-summer (or anytime, really) evening meal. It’s vibrant and fresh yet pleasantly hearty from roasted and ground pepitas.The original recipe comes from Gourmet magazine, but I’ve since made many changes throughout its life in our home.The biggest change being the pan-roasting of the tomatillos and garlic, which gives the soup a soft smokiness and a bit more complexity.

SERVES 4

1⁄2 cup / 60 g roasted, salted pepitas, plus more for garnish

1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted (technique in the book)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

10 ounces / 280 g tomatillos (about 4 to 5 medium size), peeled and quartered

3 garlic cloves

1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped, plus more for serving

1 jalapeño pepper, halved and seeded

1⁄2 cup / 10 g chopped fresh cilantro, divided

1 to 11⁄2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon dried oregano

21⁄2 to 3 cups / 590 to 710 ml chicken stock, homemade (recipe in the book) or store-bought

4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, thinly sliced

1 (15-ounce / 430 g) can hominy, drained and rinsed

To serve: any combination of thinly sliced radishes, sliced avocado, chopped cilantro, pepitas, lime wedges, diced onion, crumbled Cotija, and sour cream or crema.

Grind the pepitas and cumin seeds in a spice grinder or blender until finely ground.

Add 1 tablespoon oil to a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.

When the oil is hot, add the tomatillos, garlic, onion, and jalapeño to the pot, along with a pinch of salt. Roast in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are charred, caramelized in parts, and tender.

Carefully transfer the roasted vegetables to a food processor or blender and process along with 1⁄4 cup / 5 g chopped cilantro and 1 teaspoon salt.

Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot over medium heat. Return the purée to the pot and cook, stirring frequently until thickened, for 5 to 7 minutes. Scrape up the deeply flavored browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Stir in the ground pepitas and cumin seeds, along with the oregano and 1 cup / 240 ml stock. Bring to a simmer and then add the remaining 11⁄2 cups / 360 ml stock, chicken, and hominy.

Let this simmer, mostly covered, for 20 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1⁄4 cup / 5 g chopped cilantro. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more salt if you feel it needs it. I prefer the pozole to be thick, like a stew, but if you want it thinner, add more stock. Pozole can be made 1 to 3 days in advance, and in fact the flavor improves after a rest in the fridge. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.

Serve with the accompaniments.

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Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens Salad

Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens // Not Without Salt

I need to update you all on a few things and although it may be a bit more gentle to start by talking about this stunning and healthful salad from Amy Chaplin’s new book, At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen, I just can’t think straight until I get a few of these things out of my brain and into yours.

Okay, so we need to talk book and cookies. Let’s go with book first since this is a very big week for Date Night In.

– If you are in the Seattle area I would love it if you’d come say hello at the University Book Store this Wednesday, December 17 at 7 pm. We are launching this book baby into the world that night with a bit of champagne and cookies! I’ll be signing books and fumbling through the words as I try to convey how I’m feeling about all of this right now. Gabe will be there to swoop in when the inevitable tears come. Let’s party!

– I’ve updated the book page on my site, so if you are interested in meeting me in other parts of the country check out those dates as they grow and evolve. I’ll post what I have so far here too for convenience.

Date Night In Events:
December 29 Appetizers & Signing Chuckanut Manor, Bellingham WA 4 – 7
January 15 Signing at Book Larder, Seattle, WA
February 4 Signing at Omnivore Books, San Francisco, CA
February 6 Party & Signing, Private Residence, Palm Springs, CA (email book@notwithoutsalt.com for ticket information)
February 7 Signing Palm Desert, CA (more information to come soon)
February 8 – 10 Los Angeles, CA
March - Sunday Supper Dinner, NYC

– Let me draw your attention to the dinner on the 19th because I’m so freaking excited about that one. Brandon will be preparing multiple courses inspired by the book. The party is at Delancey & Essex, my favorite places in Seattle, and I know the food and company will both be memorable. Tickets are going quickly, so hurry and grab yours. Tickets to this fine evening would make for a mighty fine Christmas present or very early Valentine’s present, I’d say. You can purchase your tickets from the Book Larder. 

– If you’ve pre-ordered your book most of you should expect to see it this week! If you haven’t pre-ordered your book I still really think you’re great and will prove it to you by keeping the Holi-date PDF  available until December 30th. Just fill out the form on this page and download five brand new recipes that make for a perfect, festive holiday date.  Also, when you do get the book and start to cook with it I’d love to see some photos! If you’re on instagram please use the hashtag #datenightinbook so I can see them all! Thanks.

– My friends at Eat Boutique did a really sweet interview with me about date nights and cookies. Two of my favorite things to talk about. Read the interview on their site. 

I think that covers the book stuff, for now. Except I want to say, this is it. I mean, this is the very moment that I’ve been dreaming about for over three years now. I just need to say that to mark it, you know. It feels big. It IS big. Thank you for joining me on this crazy ride. Four years ago this month I posted my first Dating My Husband post. And now look where we are. Dream big and do, people. Okay, okay. Where’s Gabe to swoop in now?!

Cookies. Let’s talk cookies.

– First of all if you are wanting to give the mix as a Christmas present you still have time! Our last day of holiday shipping is this Friday (12/19). So get your orders in!

– If you were hoping to get our holiday flavor (White Chocolate Peppermint with Vanilla Salt) our shop is out but there are still a few on the Sur La Table site. They are also selling the Salted Chocolate Chip.

– Did you see us on Vogue?! And Joy the Baker? And Real Simple? And Cup of Jo?  Crazy!

 

Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens // Not Without Salt Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens // Not Without Salt

I’m pretty sure that’s everything. Now, let’s talk salad.

How very unlike me to be posting a salad in December. Usually I’m all truffles, cookies, pies, and candy. But a salad in between all of that is always a good idea and this one is special. This one comes from the pages of a beautiful book by Amy Chaplin, who is sweet, kind, and has created one of the most beautiful books I’ve seen in a long time. At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen is filled with practical advice for filling your kitchen with whole foods. And even though I’m not normally one to sprout beans or blend up some nut milk there are over 150 recipes that are simple, inspiring and, have I already said this? – Beautiful.

Once I flipped to this salad I immediately tucked the book under my arm and brought it with me into the kitchen. I love when a recipe has the power to kick me off the couch and get me cooking. This one did and I’m so glad for that because December needs a good salad every now and again. Now excuse me while I go soften butter for more cookies.

Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens // Not Without Salt Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens // Not Without Salt

Roasted Squash and Bitter Greens Salad

from At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen

serves 4 to 6

Roasted Squash:

1 medium acorn squash, seeded, quartered lengthwise and cut in 1/3-inch slices

1 medium delicata squash, halved lengthwise, seeded and cut in 1/3-inch slices

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Dressing:

4 teaspoons unpasteurized apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup cooked wheat berries, drained and cooled

Salad:

2 ounces small mustard leaves (about 4 cups)

2 ounces arugula leaves (about 4 cups)

1/4 cup thinly sliced red pearl onions or shallots

4 ounces aged goat cheese (I used Parmesan), shaved

1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds

 

Roast the squash:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Place acorn squash slices on one tray and sliced delicata on the other. Drizzle each tray with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, and a pinch of black pepper; toss to combine. Place in oven and roast for 30 minutes; turn each slice of squash over, rotate the trays, and roast for another 10 to 15 minutes or until browning. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Make the dressing:

Whisk dressing ingredients together in a bowl and stir in cooked wheat berries.

Assemble the salad:

Spread half the greens over a serving platter or bottom of a wide bow, then add half of each of the following; acorn and delicata squash; pearl onions (or shallots), cheese, and pumpkin seeds. Drizzle with half the dressing and repeat with remaining ingredients. Toss lightly, and serve immediately.

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