Sorghum Pilaf with Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Beets, and Cranberries

This dish has all the right textures and flavors—hearty sorghum is paired with creamy Brussels sprouts, sweet beets, and tart cranberries with the underlying fall-inspired herbs and spices and earthy mushrooms. If you want to add some crunch, toss in a generous handful of toasted hazelnuts or pecans before serving.

sorghum, brussels, beets

Sorghum Pilaf with Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Beets, and Cranberries

3 tablespoons (45mL) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup (240mL) finely chopped celery (with leaves)
1 small onion
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon (3mL) poultry seasoning
1/8 teaspoon (1mL) fine sea or Himalayan salt
2 3/4 cup (660mL) water
3/4 cup (180mL) sorghum grain, rinsed
1/2 ounce (14g) dried mixed mushrooms
1 pound (454g) Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
3/4 pound (340g) beets, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1 cup (240mL) fresh cranberries
Fine sea or Himalayan salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Heat 1 tablespoon (15mL) of the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the celery and onion and cooked until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, poultry seasoning, and salt. Cook for 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant. Add the water, sorghum, and mushrooms. Bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook until the sorghum has absorbed the water and is cooked through, about 55 minutes.

Meanwhile, toss the Brussels sprouts and beets with the remaining oil. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Top with the cranberries. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake until the Brussels sprouts and beets are cooked through and starting to brown and caramelize, about 30 minutes. Let stand until the sorghum is finished cooking.

When the sorghum has finished cooking, add the Brussels sprouts mixture. Adjust seasonings to taste. Serve warm.

sorghum, brussels, beets 3

Baked Rice Pudding with Bananas, Raisins, and Toasted Almonds

Originally written for a Hallowe’en article (in 2008…and titled “Creamed Maggot Pie with Bug Bits, Phlegm, and Fingernails), this sweet treat is as comforting as it is delicious. Unfortunately, I don’t have a photo on hand.

Baked Rice Pudding with Bananas, Raisins, and Toasted Almonds

2 tablespoons tapioca starch
2/3 cup nondairy milk
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fine sea or Himalayan salt
3 cups cooked, short-grain brown rice
1 cup banana chunks
1/2 cup raisins
1 tablespoon unrefined cane sugar
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Preheat oven to 400°F . Lightly oil a 9-inch pie dish and set aside.

Whisk together tapioca starch and 2 tablespoons of the nondairy milk until smooth. Whisk in the remaining nondairy milk and the maple syrup. Add the vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. Stir in rice, bananas, and raisins. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the mixture into prepared pie dish. Sprinkle with the sugar.

Bake for 17 to 20 minutes, until bubbly. Let cool about 30 minutes. Top with sliced almonds. Serve with extra nondairy milk, coconut milk iced cream, or pure maple syrup, if desired.

Pear-Ginger-Orange Tea

Simple and satisfying, this tea is bright and balanced, and will warm you up on the coldest of days.

ginger pear tea

Pear Ginger Orange Tea

1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (from an orange! Not a carton)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 heaping tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
1 large, very ripe pear, grated

Put the water, orange juice, lemon juice, ginger, and pear in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium-low heat and let simmer for 30 minutes. Strain the mixture into two mugs, pressing the pulp to get all the flavor. Serve warm.