Monday, March 23, 2015

A to Z Challenge Theme Reveal

There is a great April blog challenge that has been going around since 2010. I have participated four years in a row on my personal blog but this will be the first year on A Poet's Kitchen.

At first I thought I would create recipes from A to Z and then as I geared up for spring and began gardening, I thought it would be gardening from A to Z. But, that just didn't quite feel right. Something was niggling at me and it finally hit me what I really wanted to blog about for the challenge.

My comfort food.

It seems that everything I do in the kitchen and garden coincides with what is going on inside of me, That I am constantly learning more about myself through food - growing, prepping, cooking, and eating it.

Here it is, after much deliberation, my A To Z Challenge Theme Reveal:

Lessons I've Learned in the Kitchen and Garden with comfort food recipes thrown in. 

I will be sharing life lessons that have bubbled up and spilled over with all things food. How much you learn about yourself as you plant seeds and watch them grow, what's really important, how food is life giving in more ways than one, that it can nourish your soul along the way. Of course you will need some comfort food for such a journey so I will include my favorite comfort food recipes, such as my Skillet Roasted Carrot and Green Bean Pasta shown above.

I love pasta and make it often. I have two different ways that I roast my carrots and green beans, either in a skillet on the stove (I know this isn't technically roasted but they look and taste like they are) or on a baking sheet in the oven. I like cooking it on the stove because it doesn't heat up the house, and it tends to cook a little faster.

Roasted Carrot and Green Bean Pasta

  • Turn the fire under the skillet to medium low.
  • Throw in 2 to 4 cleaned, fresh whole carrots (unpealed) with ends cut off.
  • Drip a tablespoon or two of olive oil over the carrots and shake the skillet a bit to roll the carrots in the oil. Put a lid on the skillet.
  • Wash and dry a handful or so of fresh green beans as the carrots are cooking for a few minutes.
  • Toss the green beans with olive oil to coat evenly and then throw them into the skillet.
  • If you love garlic as much as I do, you can add several whole cloves into the mix.
  • Turn the heat up to medium.
  • Tossing and turning once or twice and cook until nicely browned.
  • As the above is cooking, put on a pan of water for the pasta of your choice. I love long skinny pasta the best with this dish and typically use Angel Hair pasta which only takes four minutes to cook. When the pasta is finished cooking, drain them and leave in strainer.
  • Slice a couple of slabs of butter (be generous with it) and throw into the now empty pan that you cooked the pasta in. Throw in about a heaping tablespoon of Tarragon (crushing the leaves in your palm with your thumb), sprinkling in a little ground onion and garlic with the melted butter. You can add salt and pepper but just a little.
  • Toss the fully drained pasta. into the pan with the buttery goodness and swirl it all around to get the buttery sauce all throughout the pasta. Pour the pasta onto your plate, place the carrots and beans (and garlic cloves) onto the pasta.
  • Grate your favorite Parmesan cheese and/or mozzarella on top and enjoy! What's your favorite comfort food?

If you haven't checked out the Blogging from A to Z Challenge I highly recommend it, you'll meet lots of interesting people and may discover blogs that you will come back to again and again!

Check out the other participants of the theme reveal and find out what they will be blogging.

Have you participated in the A to Z challenge before, if you have, what was it like for you? Are you going to be joining in on the fun this year and do you have a theme?

PageLines- picture20193.jpgMorgan Dragonwillow is a writing rebel, foodie, urban gardener, recovering perfectionist, poet & author that (mostly) doesn't let her fears get in the way of her passion for writing and creating. She is team leader at @StoryDam, creatrix of  #OctPoWriMo You can find her writing and dancing into a wild and juicy life at She lives in Marietta, Ga. with her loving and patient partner, their dog that thinks she's a princess, and the cat that reminds her that she isn't.
You can also find her on Google+

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  1. Sounds like a great theme and I look forward to following your posts. This will be my first year playing and I can't wait.

    1. Hi Deborah, Thanks so much! I look forward to chatting with you during the A to Z challenge especially on how it's going for you. =)

  2. That sounds all sorts of interesting!

  3. What fun! I'm posting about food as well. It will be great to see how you do it. Happy blogging!

    1. I just went and checked out your blog, Jerralea, and look forward to reading your recipes and nuggets during the A to Z challenge! =D

  4. Sounds like a delicious theme :) I know my comfort food is pasta and potatoes and bread (and I'm sure a lot more and that's why I'm 30 pounds overweight :)

    Have a fun challenge!


    1. Thanks Betty, Yes I have extra padding as well and it is probably due to my love of pasta, and butter, and... But, I'd rather be happy than perfect. =D

  5. I love doing the A - Z Challenges. I am currently participating in one every friday about emotions.

    1. Hi Sandy, The Friday challenge about emotions sounds intriguing. I'll go and check out your blog so I can find out more. Happy A to Zing! =)

  6. Hey Morgan! This is simply wonderful! I am a foodie and LOVE pasta; have just saved your recipe :P Super happy with your theme, gonna be hooked on to you now :D Good luck!

    1. So glad to hear it, and if you love pasta I'm sure you will love the recipe! Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to chatting and visiting your blog during the A to Z challenge!

  7. Comfort food is the best kind of food :) Neat theme!

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    Multicolored Diary - Epics from A to Z
    MopDog - The crazy thing about Hungarians...

  8. I'm loving all these A to Z challenges!! Great post my friend, thank you for sharing!! <3 -

  9. Hi Morgan, This will be exciting!! Love food, healthy good food! Never really knew how much tarragon to use. Usually save it for a stew, but now I will try something new. LOL oh that rhymes. Didn't do it on purpose. Ok see you tomorrow. :)

    1. Thanks Sytiva, and you can rhyme anytime you like - by accident or on purpose! I love tarragon and put it in a lot of the food I cook but in particular my pastas. Peace to you.


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