41st Birthweek Bonanza Day 3: 6 New Recipes We Tried That Made It Into the "Keeper" File

Welcome to Day 3 of this week's 41st Birthweek Bonanza (7 days, 7 lists, 41 good things)!

My husband and I have been on a new recipe kick this winter and today I'm sharing a few of the ones that made it into the “keeper” file. Just writing this post made me hungry.


1. Curried Green Lentil and Kale Soup

I was a little nervous going into this one because with ingredients like ginger paste, garlic paste, garam masala, cayenne and cumin it promised to pack quite the punch. Turns out the flavours blended together perfectly and though it had kick, there was a lingering sweetness to it too. We substituted rainbow chard for kale and most likely used chicken broth instead of veggie because that's what we had open in the fridge. Definitely a keeper!

2. Not Your Average Potato Soup

This hearty, cold weather soup was an instant and unanimous two thumbs up! We used yellow split peas because that's what we had; I was subsequently told that yellow split peas have a different flavour than green ones so our substitution may have changed the final product. We also most likely used chicken broth and we omitted the mustard seeds because we didn't have any. It was comfort in a bowl.

3. Pecan Chickpea Loaf

I served this vegan main to two big meat loving men and they gobbled it up faster than you can say gimme-some-meat! I don't have a food processor so preparing the initial chickpea mixture for the loaf was pretty tricky, but between a blender and some hand mixing (after giving up on the blender), I managed. I'm glad I persisted because the results were well worth it. If I had a food processor I'd probably make this one more often.

4. Steak With Creamy Whiskey Mushroom Sauce

When it comes to new recipes, I try chickpea loaves and lentil soups. D., my husband, tries steak. And oh does he ever cook a goooood steak. Butter, cream and bourbon in this one. You can thank me later.

5. Yellow Split Pea Dhal

I got my recipe from the back of a store brand bag of split peas, but except for the salt (there was none in our version), it's identical to this one. This recipe was sooooo yummy, plus it's simple to make, filling and flavourful – three criteria that make it a keeper in my books. We had it with basmati rice and it smelled aMAzing!

6. Oven Baked Chicken Fajitas

We originally found this recipe floating around in Facebook-land, but after a quick search I found it online. We used regular canned tomatoes because that's what we had on hand, and the FB-land recipe called for 1 1/2 tsp of cumin instead of 2 tsp. I imagine 2 tsp would be even better – assuming you're a cumin fan, of course. This dish is extremely flexible: you can can use it to stuff pita halves, roll it up in soft tortilla shells (though it might be a little liquid-y for that) or do like we did and pour it over rice. Either way it's easy to make, uses stuff you'll most likely have in your fridge or pantry, and it packs a good flavour. Keeper!


I hope you're enjoying the birthweek celebration so far! Just in case you missed the other good things that came before, here are Day 1 and Day 2.

Day 4 coming soon...