Miso Roasted Veggie Flatbreads with Green Tahini Yogurt

I cannot remember exactly when I first starting cooking with miso, but I think it was around the time when my dad was struggling with cancer and my mom had been experimenting with the macrobiotic diet to promote healing.  Those two years were pivotal in my learning about the role of food in our overall well being and I became much more conscious of health and wellness.  Back then we used miso mostly in soups and Asian cooking, but more recently it has become a favorite way to add that umami taste to a myriad of foods.  Miso is rich in nutrients and because it is fermented it also contains probiotics.  With its growing familiarity there are several varieties widely available in stores ranging from white miso (the most mild) to red miso (much more assertive).  I usually use white miso as I find it adds plenty of flavor without being overwhelming.

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Cannellini Vegetable Soup with Parmesan Toasts

Happy 2016!  Feels so good to be back here after a couple weeks off.  We stayed home for the break and were able to spend lots of time catching up with family and old friends.  Our own family time was filled was lots of cooking, baking, playing, and laughing, but also we experienced our fair share of sibling squabbles and arguments and I lost my patience too many times to count.  It was another realization that I am not yet what I ought to be and there is so much growing to do.  So here’s to fresh starts, new beginnings, and moving ahead with humility and grace.

This soup is the perfect one to reset as we all try to refocus ourselves on healthy eating.  It’s full of plump creamy cannellini beans and enough vegetables to make you feel virtuous.  Sage, rosemary, and thyme is infused throughout and my favorite little parmesan toasts add the finishing touch.  It’s simple, but right now I can’t think of anything more inviting than a quietly simmering pot on the stove.  Wishing you all the best to what’s ahead in this new year.

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Almond Biscotti Christmas Tree

My idea of a perfect winter evening would be to simply stay at home with Ryan, quietly sit, talk, and read together by a crackly fire, with hot mugs of cocoa, and a heaping plate of biscotti.  Make it a biscotti tree and it would be even better.  Then of course this biscotti tree seems much too large for just two, so perhaps it would make a better holiday centerpiece or party dessert.  Whatever the occasion, biscotti trees are so much fun to make and eat and I hope you will find some excuse to give this a try.  Although I would love to take all of the credit, the idea comes from this site that I came across a few years ago.  I’ve modified the dimensions a bit and changed the recipe, but the concept is the same.

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