Curds, Pickles and Soups! Oh My!

January 5, 2012(updated on October 3, 2018)


This morning while I was bending over to make the bed, I felt a noisy ping in my lower back. I went from feeling entirely energetic and ready to leap mountains to a painful lump, crawling for a heating pad.

I shelved my cooking schedule and spent the day on the couch watching mindless TV. After a couple of doses of Ibuprofen, some gentle yoga and plenty of quiet time, I’m feeling better. While I continue to recuperate, check out a few recipes I’ve cooked up recently for some other websites.

orange cardamom curd

Orange cardamom curd. I made this for Simple Bites and it’s positively dreamy. I ate it this morning stirred into yogurt and later went back for a spoonful as an afternoon pick-me-up.

pickled Brussels sprouts

For my latest In a Pickle column, I pickled a pound of Brussels sprouts. They are yummy and my new favorite thing is to eat them along side a bowl of chicken soup.

marinated carrots

Though this recipe is more marinated salad than pickle, it is very much worth making. I cooked it up when I was still out in Portland. Both my parents went back for seconds and my aunt asked for the recipe. Not bad for a quick, cheap and simple salad.

lentil soup

Finally, for my most recent piece for the FN Dish, I made Alton Brown’s lentil soup recipe. It’s easy, inexpensive and warming. This is another one I made while out in Portland and I froze the bulk of it in lunchtime-sized portions for my mom. It was nice to know that I left her with a week’s worth of stressless mid-day meals.

Just one word of advice if you do choose to make that recipe. Go easy on the salt, particularly if you’re using boxed stock. I followed the recipe exactly and ended up having to add extra water to counteract the effects of the salt. Beyond that, it was excellent.

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21 thoughts on "Curds, Pickles and Soups! Oh My!"

  • hmm, that carrot salad is calling my name! I have been craving vinegar lately, particularly rice vinegar.

  • Nico, I’m Marisa’s dad and I’m telling you that carrot salad is so simple and so delicious, it will become a staple in your salad rotation. If you brought it to a potluck, you would never have any leftovers.

  • “go easy on the salt” is good advice for nearly every Alton recipe I’ve ever made… and I have all his cookbooks!

  • Thanks Marissa for your reminder of the Lemon Ladies. Having spent more than 50 years in SoCal and now transplanted to New England, I too, miss having Meyer lemons outside my front door. (just learned the folks who bought our house removed the Meyer lemon and the unbeatable tangerine from the front yard.. who are these people?) Going right now to order from the Lemon Ladies. Their prices are fab and very doable. Thank you too for the gentle introduction to citrus curds. Might just give them a try now :)!

  • Yumm, that orange curd sounds amazing and I’ve never seen pickled brussel sprouts…very interesting 🙂

    1. Nope, it doesn’t have enough acid for water bath canning. That’s why I didn’t offer canning instructions, only ones for freezing.

  • I’m sorry about your back! That’s a total bummer. Feel better, eh?

    I’m definitely going to try those pickled Brussels sprouts, and the photo of the marinated carrots with mint is making my mouth water.

  • I just made a lime curd, and I have some sprouts languishing in the veg drawer, so that might be the next item on the agenda. I love that your dad jumped in to give props to the carrot salad!

  • I love the little calendar! May I ask where you got it?

    The lentil soup looks so tempting! I think I’ll try it tomorrow.

  • Love the pickled Brussel Sprout recipe! Most of the recipes I see call for loads of sugar, and who wants that?

  • I made the carrot salad for dinner tonight, and it really was excellent. My five year old asked me to pack some for school lunches next week, so I just made a second batch, five hours later.

  • I made the carrot salad yesterday and am eating it right now. So awesome! I never knew carrots could taste like that!

  • I was asked a question about brussel sprouts this morning and told the lady as far as I knew you can’t can them . I think they would mush up like cabbage. Is freezing the only thing you can do.

  • i recently made some pickled sprouts….the water/brine kinda dissappeared into the sprouts after the jars came out of the canner and waited for jars to pop. I packed them, most of the sprouts were cut in half, then threw in the spices and garlic etc, then vinegar and boiled water. I think I processed them 10 minutes, can’t remember. How did you process them to overcome this problem. I’ve been storing them downstairs – I have 6 jars, i’ve been rolling them from side to side every couple days. Trying to get them pickled evenly. I only attempted this because I managed to pick up a huge bag of them in the reduced veg section for about a $1. So what else does one do with a big bag of reduced veg that no one really like to eat, pickle it. Haven’t tried them yet. I processed them first week of march I think. I should open a jar…..