All of the deciduous trees that have set their foundation into the lines of our property many moons ago, have once again lost all their leaves in preparation for another winter. The seasonal ritual of changing color, drying up, and falling has finally come to an end, and it makes me a little sad that I am no longer needed outside. My garden is slowly going into hibernation, and I have to force myself to leave the house once and a while, so I will not also fall into the same fate. Last month I purchased a leaf blower to keep up with the autumnal demands. It's another purchase that solidifies my responsibility as a homeowner.
I've been trying to come to terms lately with the responsibilities that come along with owning a house. Dealing with my fears of being an adult, and all the things associated with that. Entering this new stage in my life, I feel overjoyed that we have a place to call home, somewhere to make memories, space, a yard etc, but I worry that we will fall into the house 'trap' where all free time and money go directly into it, leaving less time for the things that we enjoy most - travel. Brent and I have talked a lot lately about refocusing our energy and time. Spending less time working on the house, and more time getting out there and doing things. This weekend, instead of spending it renovating the bathroom, we are taking a much-needed trip to a spa in the Columbia Valley - Skamania. I have been busy planning a few small trips this winter, and just the process in itself seems to be working at lifting my spirits. I'm trying to do as much as possible to rid myself of this funky feeling I have been experiencing for awhile, and all the small steps are really helping.
Last week, I realized that it had been way too long since I had stepped into the kitchen, and after careful analysis, I have come to the conclusion that the amount of time I spend in the kitchen seems to be a direct correlation with how I am feeling. Yesterday, I went to the store and stocked up on nuts, legumes, veggies, and fruit, came home and made the salted chocolate rye cookies from Tartine Booke No 3, roasted winter vegetables + chickpeas, and crazy good vegan caesar salad that I need to blog about soon. Some times we just need to distract our minds from those negative thoughts and pour all that energy into something wholesome and good for the soul, which may or may not included a lot of chocolate. It's all about perspective.
Roasting vegetables is something we do a lot around here. Lately, I've been dabbling in roasted chickpeas, which make a killer addition to Caesar salad, pasta, or for snacking. I love the idea of warm roasted vegetables piled high on top of pasta, drizzled with olive oil, and topped with seasonal herbs. This sparked the idea to roast some sage, garlic, chickpeas, and cauliflower until warm and caramelly, and then toss them with fresh pasta, loads of good olive oil, and fresh grated Parmesan cheese. Seriously, I will roast vegetables and pile them on almost any grain, but this time, pasta just seemed right. I might even consider just roasting the chickpeas and cauliflower for a nutritiously flavorful side dish, and with Thanksgiving around the corner..... Happy eating!
SAGE ROASTED CAULIFLOWER AND CHICKPEA PASTA
1 head of cauliflower, chopped into small pieces
1 15 oz can (1 1/2 cups) of chickpeas
10 sage leaves, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbsp olive oil
4 servings of pasta (2 cups dry)
salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
Place the cauliflower and chickpeas on a baking sheet.
In a small bowl, combine the sage, garlic and oil. Drizzle over the cauliflower and chickpeas and then toss. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes, until the chickpeas are slightly crunchy, and cauliflower is soft and golden.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the pasta until al dente.
In a large bowl, toss the pasta with the vegetables. Add more olive oil if the pasta seems too dry. You want a nice oil sheen. Season with salt and pepper, and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.