I think you will agree with me when I say that colour is perhaps the most important factor we judge our food by, well before smell and taste. So it is with this in mind that I decided to launch a new monthly food blogging challenge called The Vegetable Palette: natures colours - natures goodness.
The idea behind 'The Vegetable Palette' is to make something with either a fruit, vegetable or combination of both each month. You can make absolutely anything that you wish - sweet or savoury - from a soup, a salad dish, a smoothie, a juice, a stew, a hot pot, a curry, a pie, a pasta dish, cookies or even a cake - absolutely anything, so long as the recipe is vegetarian and includes a vegetable/and or fruit with the chosen colour. The colour for July was Summer Reds.
The first entry ever for Vegetable Palette: Summer Reds comes from Krys aka the Gangsta Gardener from Dine In, Not Out with a blast from the past song by Prince - Raspberry Beret Lemon Muffins. These zingy frugal muffins are gluten free, vegan and naturally sweetened not just from the sweetness from the raspberries, but also dates. Yum, perfect any time of day, not just breakfast.
Next sweet bite is from Caroline Makes with Giant Raspberry Cupcake, you may be surprised to learn that the cupcake case is made from candy melts, very clever. Then this is filled with a baked cake made with raspberries and topped with butter cream and edible wafer flowers and flutterbyes. Too pretty to eat.
Kate at Gluten Free Alchemist sent over these utterly gorgeous looking Cherry and Courgette Cupcakes. I love the fact that the Kate has combined both fruit and vegetable in a cake. Topped off with cherry cream frosting and fresh cherries is simply stunning.
Choclette from the Chocolate Log Blog with some Red Gooseberry Cakes. What you will discover when you bite into these deceptively simple sponge morsels, is a hidden gem. Tucked inside its soft sponginess is a read pearl in the form of a red gooseberry, a true seasonal treat for those blesseth with sweet red gooseberries..
Ros of The more than occasional sent us over quick easy Rhubarb and Redcurrant Cheesecake - swoon! I just want to tuck my spoon in...mmmmm. The cheesecake is made with a ready made compote, a lavish dessert that can be made within minutes. Super.
Glossy Strawberry Daiquiri Traybake from Laura who blogs at I'd Rather Much Bake Than ... Not only do these sound divine, I absolutely love the photograph, perfect front cover for any food magazine, well that is what I think for whatever my opinion is worth. Every time my eyes fall upon them, I take a deep breath, I just wish I could reach in and eat one, or two.
Then we have a beautiful, stunning, airy Strawberry Mousse and guess what it is vegan! Only three ingredients: fresh strawberries, coconut milk and maple syrup. The delight comes from Jasmine who blogs over at Self Sufficient Cafe. I really love the natural colour and can't wait to try this recipe at home.
Another entry comes from Caroline who blogs at Caroline Makes, Thsi time it is a Fake Watermelon Cake! Now you may be wondering what on earth does she mean by 'FAKE', well cleverly beneath all the cream (Quark) and flaked almonds is not a sponge cake, but a cleverly disguised fruit - a watermelon, What a Watermelon?!. Yes, You must go by Carolines blog and feast your eyes over the sliced cake above. Now I wonder what your guest would think of it, once sliced?! I love it.
Laura from How to Cook Good Food shares what she simply calls Tomatoes with a Greek Salad Dressing. I know its just a salad, but my oh my - when in season, ripe red tomatoes are at their peak, brimming with flavour and oozing with natural juices. The dressing sounds just as lovely too its made with feta cheese, yogurt and fresh herbs - more flavour!
A Rich Tomato Blender Soup comes from Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes. It's made with tinned tomatoes, this made me smile big time as some of you will already know, its also the name of Jacquelines absolutely fantastic vegetarian blog. This blender soup is super healthy and intense in flavour.
This Quick and Easy Gazpacho is made with ripe tomatoes including skin and seeds. This soup is described by Vanesther at Bangers and Mash as a 'Summer Salad in a Soup'. Cold soups don't knock them until you have tried them, I've been told. I think this may just be the cold soup to try.
Kellie who blogs over at Food that Glows gives insipid hothouse tomatoes the oven roasted treatment to bring out its natural flavours producing an Intense Tomato Soup with Maftoul. Maftoul is a chewy, giant wholegrain couscous. The maftoul not only serves as a garnish, but is part of the Soup too. Its one of the most beautiful red soups I have ever set eyes on.
A gorgeous, deep and comforting homely plate of Red Curry Lentils comes from Jane at Onions and Paper. Jane had made her Red Curry Lentils with passata. This is not an Indian style Tarka Dal Red Curry Lentils, but American style! Please go on by Onions and Paper for the recipe.
Next we have is thrifty dish of Gigantes Plaki Butter Beans in Tomato Sauce from Lisa at We Don't Eat Anything with a Face. Its made with store cupboard ingredients such as tinned tomatoes, tinned butter beans and spices and fresh herbs!. I love these kind of dishes, especially when served as part of a mezze style meal.
And finally, another entry from Laura at How to Cook Good Food. I am well and truly smacking my lips here with excitement, I love the sound of this Chipotle Chilli Sauce. Laura writes' 'chilli sauce is probably my tomato ketchup'. Well said Laura, that is exactly how I feel about it too. Red comes from two different chillies, as well as red peppers. I may just have to make this.
Thank you so so much to every one who has participated and made the first #VegetablePalette bogging challenge a success.
August 2014 #VegetablePalette Challenge is Mellow Yellow (and Orange)...think yellow beans, yellow tomatoes, golden courgettes, apricots, melons, peaches, nectarines, oranges and even potatoes! For details on how to participate follow this link.