The past three months, I have been traveling and working 24/7. I would come home to get clean clothes, kiss my kids, and then I was off again. Living out of my suitcase, sleeping in hotels and eating out constantly made me ache for my own bed, the familiarity of my kitchen, and cooking with my family.
When I finally returned home, for good, I felt relieved. There is truly nothing better than the comforts of home and being in my own bed is a feeling that is hard to explain(I think you all know what I am feeling). I was yearning for a home cooked meal. After slipping into my favorite, comfortable clothes, I assessed the provisions in my fridge and my pantry. The vegetable bin in my fridge was overflowing with produce that was about spoil. I pulled it all out, put it on the counter and started creating, concocting, chopping, sauteing, and roasting. My pantry, always stocked with the best oils, flavorful vinegars, spices and like a mad scientist I became obsessed. While the hubby was off at the market getting fresh cheese and herbs, I was on my way to creating a buffet that could feed the neighborhood.
My inspiration for my menu was inspired by a restaurant I have grown to love, Lemonade. Lemonade is cafeteria style, but with modern, organic, tasteful dishes. Every time I leave there, I say to myself, I must create this vibe at home. All I really needed was time, the freshest ingredients, and pretty bowls – and that is exactly what I did.
With music blasting in the background, I enlisted my kids to chop, clean, and prep. It was the perfect, weekend afternoon.
Cafeteria Style at Home – Our Menu
Roasted Cauliflower salad – olive oil, curry, pomegranate seeds, S+P
Roasted Broccoli – roasted garlic, sun dried tomato, olive oil, Israeli feta, S+P
Cannellini Beans Salad -Italian parsley, olive oil, jalapeno, fresh thyme, organic sea salt
Roasted butternut squash – truffle oil, olive oil, garlic, tossed with cream fraiche
Roasted Brussel Sprouts, olive, oil, balsamic reduction, fresh grated Parmesan, S+P
Sauteed Corn w/caramelized shallots- 0live oil, jalapeno, tossed with cotija cheese
Boiled Potatoes – rosemary infused olive oil, S+P, goat cheese
The end result was a wonderful family style meal, shared with those that I love and adore. And the beat part – we ate and ate and ate – and still had leftovers!