Indian Cauliflower Sheet-Pan Supper

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Lining a baking sheet with parchment paper makes clean-up a cinch for this one-pan meal.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (15-ounce) drained and rinsed can chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 1/2 cup plain non-dairy yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons mango chutney
  • Pita Bread
  • Fresh cilantro
  1. Cut the cauliflower head into florets. On a parchment lined baking sheet, toss together the cauliflower, 2 tablespoons olive oil, the curry powder, chili powder, and salt. Roast at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, combine the chickpeas, cashews, raisins, remaining tablespoon olive oil, and shallots in a bowl. Add to the baking sheet and roast for an additional 15 minutes.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt and mango chutney.
  4. To serve, warm up store-bought pita bread and cut into halves. Serve the cauliflower dinner alongside the pita bread, topped with the yogurt sauce, and sprinkled with cilantro for garnish if desired.

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Rainy Day Art Picnic

Rainy Picnic (7)Our thoughts have been with those in parts of the world and the country ravaged by hurricanes this month. We’re incredibly thankful that Tropical Storm Jose was only a mild disturbance in our neck of the woods, and highly cognizant of others who were far less fortunate…

The only real inconvenience from our rainy windy day was that we needed to find amusement indoors, and this beautiful “picnic” spread helped make a drizzly afternoon magical.

Rainy Picnic (1)While Travis was napping, I prepared the picnic – a blanket on our living room floor, along with art supplies and index cards on which to produce preschool-sized masterpieces.

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Don’t forget the picnic fare! We had chips, peanut butter crackers and olives. Little tea sandwiches would be adorable, too.

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When Travis woke up and saw the picnic, he ran right to it. Watercolors were a big hit.

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He told me this one was a painting of our cat, with a body, tail, and whiskers – definitely the closest I’ve seen him come to realism.

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Don’t forget to snack in between producing your works of art, of course.

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We left all our artwork to dry, after which we could stand back and enjoy our neat little art gallery. A vivid display on this gray day!

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Edible Geode

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There are kids’ projects that are ho-hum for the adults, and there are kids’ projects where even the grown ups in the room say “Wow!” This project definitely falls into the latter category, a homemade geode rock – that just so happens to be edible too. You’ll need to be patient for this one; t takes about 4 days, start to finish… But nowhere near the hundreds of thousands of years required for a real geode!

To make our own geode, we first needed to form crystals: Make a supersaturated sugar solution by dissolving 3 cups sugar in 1 cup boiling water. Wait until you can’t see any sugar crystals on your spoon, to ensure that the solution is ready.

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Fill a bowl half way with flour, then press aluminum foil in to the flour and pour in your sugar solution. Cover with additional foil and let sit for 2 to 3 days – yes 2 to 3 days!

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On the third day, I thought we hadn’t been successful, seeing just a few sugar crystals floating on top of the sugar solution. But when we lifted out our foil and poured off the excess sugar solution, we were left with a beautiful geode! We turned this upside down on a paper towel and left it to dry out for another full day.

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The “geode” broke into a few smaller pieces as it dried, but even the adults in the room were dazzled by the resulting rock candy. I haven’t eaten this stuff since I was a child at the science museum, and it was very neat to have made it right at home.

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Travis happily crunched on the smallest piece, before I stopped him because we weren’t quite done making our rocks look like rocks.

In order to do that, we melted vegan chocolate chips in the microwave at 20 second intervals until melted, about 1 minute total. Brush the melted chocolate over the outside of the rock (leave the jagged “geode” side uncovered.

LP Natural (26)As the finishing touch, we crushed two Newman O cookies and sprinkled on the resulting “dirt.”

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That is one beautiful geode!

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