Cookbook nr. 4&5 – Banana Fig Smoothie and Chestnut Turkey

January 11, 2015

This Christmas, I took the opportunity to cook some new recipes. I hadn’t cooked like this in a while and I really loved doing it again! So I decided to grab a few more cookbooks and try some new recipes again.

Tanya's 101 - Cookbook goal / Two new recipes

Original title: 500 Smoothies & Juices

The first cookbook was an easy choice. Ruud gave me this book with smoothies and juices. He wanted to contribute to my healthy lifestyle, my weight losing goal and my cooking goal! How thoughtful is that! So to start with a recipe of this book seemed only logical.

I marked a few recipes in the book I’d really like to try in the near future. This week, I made the first one. It was a banana fig smoothie. I love banana in a smoothie, but I especially chose this recipe because of the figs. I never thought of putting figs in a smoothie, but it seemed like a brilliant idea! I wasn’t sure how well they would be cut in the blender, but I decided to conquer my doubts and just try it out.

Tanya's 101 - Cookbook goal / Two new recipes

It tasted absolutely awesome! I used fresh oranges for the orange juice I had to add, which gave me a little bit more work, but that was totally worth it. Fresh oranges make your smoothie taste… Well, fresh. The figs gave the drink an incredible nice sweet flavor, without adding any sugar! And my fear was unjustified, they were cut really well. I’m definitely going to make this drink again!

Note: the book said this recipe was made for one person. I followed the instructions perfectly, yet I was rewarded with three full glasses! (And I used big glasses). Oh well…

Besides a smoothie, I also wanted to try out something new for dinner. I like poultry, so my eyes fell on a book with poultry recipes.

Tanya's 101 - Cookbook goal / Two new recipes

Original title: Chicken and Poultry

The one I chose to make, was turkey in chestnut sauce. That sounded like the perfect winter dish! It also had orange and cinnamon in it, which I really like. To go with the turkey, I baked potatoes and I stir fried Brussels sprout. Yes, you heard that right, I stir fried them. I don’t know about the rest of the world, but in Holland, people cook Brussels sprouts. I never understood why. I hate cooking vegetables, they have no flavor that way… So I stir fried them. I added some bacon for a sweet and salty flavor and in the end I sprinkled them with hazelnut oil. Yum!

But let’s get back to the turkey again. It looked pretty awesome, I must say, but that was mainly because of my garnish actually. The sauce itself was thin. REALLY thin. Even soup is thicker. It tasted okay, but I didn’t discover a lot of chestnut flavor. The cinnamon and the orange were the reason it was nice anyway. But it definitely didn’t have a wow factor.

Tanya's 101 - Cookbook goal / Two new recipes

I thought this was because I added the broth to the chestnut paste way too fast. I was really wondering, if I had added this more slowly, if the chestnut paste had solved better. I had a lot of left-over chestnut paste, so I decided to try it again the next day. This time I made it with chicken.

Tanya's 101 - Cookbook goal / Two new recipes

The chestnut paste did solve way better this time. Unfortunately though, the sauce was still way too thin and flavorless in my opinion. I’d like to try it one more time in the future, and I will add way less broth then. Maybe that will do the trick. But for now, I’m disappointed with the way this recipe turned out. I’m not sure if I’ll ever touch this cookbook again.

Let’s not forget why I made this in the first place, though. My goal! It may not have been the best recipe ever, but I did make something out of another cookbook! With these two recipes, I now have made new dishes out of 5 different cookbooks. That’s half of my goal! Yay!

If you do have a tasty recipe with chestnut sauce or chestnut paste, please let me know!

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