Scarborough Fair Chicken and Cauliflower Mash

2 lbs chicken (I did 4 skinless, bone-in breasts, but I bet thighs would be good, too.)
leaves from 4-5 sprigs each of parsley, sage, rosemary, and time (I used those singles packs)
juice from 2 lemons
2 cloves garlic
around 1/4 c olive oil
salt, pepper, and Cayenne

1 head cauliflower
2 cloves garlic
1 c chicken stock
1 c plain Greek yogurt
salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese (optional)

Blend up the herbs, lemon juice*, garlic, and oil in a blender until smooth. Dip the mixture in the chicken until coated, and place the pieces in a 9×9 baking dish. Spoon the rest of the sauce over the chicken. Bake at 350 degrees for around 40 minutes or until the chicken reaches 155 degrees. Let it rest for 10 minutes before serving so it soaks up all those delicious herby juices. Feel free to reduce the pan drippings into a demi glace or just spoon them over everything as-is.

Bring the chicken stock to a boil. Chop up the cauliflower, discarding the greens and any thick stems. Chop up the garlic, too. Steam/boil the cauliflower and garlic until tender. Drain off some of the stock and blend the cauliflower, garlic, yogurt, and Parmesan, if you’re using it, until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste.


Carrot and Squash “Pasta” and Meatballs

1 lb ground meat (I used a mix of beef, pork, and turkey)
1 egg
1/2 c breadcrumbs
spices and herbs (I used basil, thyme, oregano, garlic salt, Cayenne, and paprika, but use whatever you like or whatever goes with your sauce.)

1/2 lb carrots (thicker is better)
1/2 lb squash, zucchini, courgettes, etc.
1 cup Marinara sauce (or any kind of pasta sauce you like. Alfredo might be good with chicken meatballs.)

Mix the meat, egg, bread crumbs, and herbs with your hands (or in a food processor if you want to wash something extra and don’t like getting your hands covered in meat). Roll into bite-size or two-bite balls and let rest for 10 minutes or so. They hold together when frying that way. Heat half an inch of vegetable oil over medium-high heat, then cook the meatballs in batches. Don’t overcrowd or let the meatballs touch, or they’ll steam instead of fry. Cook for around 5 minutes, moving them around every so often so that all sides get browned. Let them cool on a rack covered with a paper towel.

Peel the veggies, then using a vegetable peeler, slice the veggies into thin strips. For the squash, stop when you get to the seeds, and for the carrots, keep going until it gets too thin to handle. Blanche/steam in a little bit of water until the carrots are soft and bendy like noodles. Add the pasta sauce, mix in the meatballs, and serve. Alternatively, just put the meatballs on top.
This is definitely a concept dish. I want to play around with what veggies I use. Squash kind of falls apart after too long. Carrots are a good choice, though. Onions sliced on a mandoline would probably be good, too. Either way, it’s got more substance and probably fewer carbs than pasta, so it’s a good way to sneak in healthy food.

Sautéed spinach and carrots with poached eggs

3-4 oz fresh spinach
1/2 c sliced carrots
balsamic vinegar and olive oil
2 fresh eggs*
salt, Cayenne to taste

Saute the carrots on medium heat with the oil and vinegar until they soften. Reduce heat to low, then add the spinach. Cover and let the veggies steam while you poach the eggs.

Bring a pot of water to boil. Feel free to add a little white vinegar, as it’s supposed to help the eggs stay together. I never do. Crack each egg into a small bowl. Once you’ve got a rolling boil, stir the water until it’s swirling like a whirlpool; this helps the egg stay together, too. Add each egg carefully and cook for 1:30 to 2 minutes, or until all the white is opaque. I like my poached eggs really soft and runny, so feel free to poach for longer, but not too much: the runny yolk on the veggies is crucial.

Put the veggies on a plate, then place the eggs on top. Top it all off with a sprinkle of salt and Cayenne. I love this, because it feels decadent, but it’s really pretty cheap and easy, if you can poach an egg, and you can. Don’t cheat and get one of those double boiler things like my mom used to have. They’re cute, and they make really nice soft-boiled eggs, but they don’t have the softness or richness of poached eggs.

*Fresh eggs hold together better than old eggs.