Sunday, January 8, 2012

A new year -- a new book and roasted vegetable cake

YAY! Love? Maybe is finally out. I am so, so happy. This was definitely a long haul with lots of different editors and drafts. But, this time around I really learned attention to detail and how to be patient (two lessons I pretty much hate.) I think it came out really great though. Here it is:

From the cover of Love? Maybe:
Just because Piper's birthday is on Valentine's Day does not mean she's a romantic. In fact, after watching her father and then her stepfather leave, she's pretty sure she doesn't believe in love at all. Then her friends concoct a plan to find them all Valentine's dates, and somehow Piper finds herself with the most popular guy in school. But true love never follows a plan, and a string of heartfelt gifts from a secret admirer has Piper wondering if she might be with the wrong guy. 

In this heartwarming romance, true love is more than a maybe - and it might be closer than you think.

Every year I have this urge to go back through all of the photos I've taken over the months. There are a few that stand out. Here's one from Halloween. It makes me smile. One ninja and one? Ummm. Well, I just pulled some things out of my garden and added a couple of fake bumble bees and butterflies.

This week we made something new --roasted vegetable cake. I know it sounds gross, but it was AWESOME. We messed with it a lot from the original recipe, adding more carrots and taking out the sweet potato. I know... I just don't like sweet potato. I know I should because it's so good for you, but I just don't.

So here it is. We're going to focus on Valentine's over the next few weeks both because of my new novel and because I do like any chance to give  out (and receive!) candy.

Roasted Vegetable Cake
Courtesy of


  • 8 eggs
  • small container of part skim ricotta cheese
  • 8 oz cream cheese (we used low fat, but you could use fat free (eww) or regular.
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper to taste
  • 4 Tolive oil for drizzling over the vegetables
  • 2 grams butter to saute the spinach
  • 3 large waxy potatoes, peeled and sliced (this is where the sweet potato comes in if you want to substitute one or more for the regular potatoes.)
  • 1 red pepper, roasted, skin removed (or do what I did -- I just bought a jar of roasted red peppers.)
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 large carrots diced
  • 6-8 oz baby spinach leaves

  1. Place the eggs, ricotta, cream cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper in a food processor and mix until smooth -- With a minimum of help, H was able to do everything with the food processor -- easy and it was fun for him.) If you don't have a food processor, all of this can be done by hand. It just takes more time.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 350F. Peel and slice the potatoes (and sweet potato if you are using one.) Drizzle with some olive oil, season with salt and pepper and bake for 25 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft enough that you can pierce through them with a fork.
  3. If you are roasting the peppers yourself, char each pepper over an open flame using a pair of tongs. When the peppers have blackened, place them in a large bowl and cover with clingwrap for a few minutes. Carefully peel the skin off the peppers. Otherwise, you can use store bought peppers as well.
  4. Heat a pan with some olive oil and saute the carrots and onions until soft.
  5. Heat a pan with some butter and lightly saute the spinach. Remove from heat and set aside. (You can just use the same pan as above. No need to clean it. Just dump the onions and carrots out.)
  6. In a large round cake pan (I used a nine-inch spring form pan.), layer the potato slices, the sweet potato, red peppers, cubed pumpkin, and then pour over the egg mixture. Finally, add the sauteed spinach. Allow the mixture to settle for around ten minutes.
  7. Bake the frittata for around 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when you insert this through the center of the cake.
  8. Remove from the oven and slice and eat it.
Options: I think when we make it again (and we will -- it was YUM!) I'll add some browned and chopped veggie bacon -- of course you could use regular bacon -- we're veggie in my household. I also think adding some green vegetables like roasted asparagus or broccoli.

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