Monday, April 14, 2014

Sausage and Peppers in an appetizer

I made these for an appetizer at our holiday party (a little delayed in posting this) and they were a hit!  




Ingredients:
  • A bag of those cute peppers, the tops and inner seeds removed
  • 1/2 pound of italian chicken sausage
  • 1/2 large or 1 small  yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 1-2 cups of shredded Mozzarella cheese 
Directions:
  1. Saute the sausage, onion and garlic together until the sausage is cooked.  Add the cooked mixture to a bowl and stir in the cheese.  You can add other cheeses as well, parm and fontina would be great.
  2. Stuff the mixture into each pepper and set them inside of a mini cupcake sheet.  This is will help the filling stay inside the pepper and not ooze out.
  3. Bake at 350F for 20-30 minutes, until the pepper is soft.

Mango Salsa

We've had this on top of eggs and with shrimp tacos.  It's so bright in color and flavor that it's a fun way to welcome the spring season.  I add avocado to it but the recipe below is the basic salsa. 


Ingredients:

  • 3 Mangoes, skin cut off and flesh cut off of core
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 jalopeno pepper
  • 1/2 of a lime, juiced
  • 1/4 cup of red onion, diced
Chop everything the size you choose and mix it together, add the lime juice and stir.  I only added the green parts of the jalopeno to avoid too much spice, but add as much as you like for heat.  Allow it to sit in the fridge for a day before serving!

Garlic Crostini topped with gorgonzola and honeyed arugala

A dish at a local restaurant inspired this appetizer.  It's simple to whip up for a delicious and light small bite!


Ingredients:

  • A couple handfuls of arugala
  • Gorgonzola Dolce (a creamy and slightly sweet mild blue cheese I get from Whole Foods)
  • 16 thinly sliced baguette 
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp (or a little more) of a tasty olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled with the end cut off
  • salt and pepper to sprinkle

Directions:
  1. Heat the oven to 350F and brown the baguette pieces, when they come out of the oven, smear the top with the raw garlic
  2. Spread on some gorgonzola cheese
  3. Mix the honey, olive oil, arugala and salt and pepper to taste and place a small bunch of top of each crostini.
  4. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a delicious nutrient dense food and great choice for a side dish or snack.  My favorite way to eat them is below.  The sweet potato alone is only 100 calories/cup so it packs a lot of vital nutrients in a small package, making a really healthy snack or side dish.


I promise that that taste is better than the photo!

Stab the sweet potato with a knife, wrap in parchment and put it in the microwave for about 3 minutes.  Then finish cooking it in the oven heated to 375F for 40-50 minutes.  When it comes out, cut it in half, mash it up with a fork inside the skin and smear a couple small scoops of coconut oil on top.  Then sprinkle with sea salt, pepper and lots of cinnamon!

Roasted Asparagus and Gruyere Frittata




We have been eating so much asparagus lately that we are now close to being sick of it!   It's great roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper, in a frittata or mixed into a spring risotto.  Recipe for the frittata is below!

Ingredients:

  • A bunch of asparagus, roasted in the oven at 400F for 20 minutes with salt and pepper.
  • 1 cup of gruyere cheese
  • 8 eggs, whisked
  • 1/2 cup of yellow onion, diced and sautéed
  • 1 clove of garlic minced and sautéed with the onion
  • 2 tsp of organic, salted butter

Directions:

  1. In the pan that the onions and garlic are sautéed in, heat to medium heat and add the butter,  eggs, all but a handful of the gruyere and salt and pepper.
  2. Mix it with a spatula while it cooks, once it is half cooked and there is still a lot of runny eggs, arrange the asparagus on top and push it down a bit.  Cook it on the stove top for about 5 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle the top with remaining gruyere cheese and put under the broiler for about 2 minutes, until the top is cooked and browned.  

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Revamped Veggie Sandwich


I had posted an original vegetable sandwich recipe when I first started this blog and various versions have come about since.  This one is my favorite so far!

Ingredients for 2 sandwiches:

  • Ciabatta rolls or a 4inch piece of a loaf, sliced in half
  • 2 red peppers, roasted with skins peeled off (roast in oven at 400 degrees, cooked for 15 minutes until the skin bubbles)
  • 1 large zucchini, sliced into about half inch rounds
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1 tbsp of finely chopped red onion
  • a small bunch of basil leaves, chopped
Directions:
  1. Start by adding the feta cheese, lemon juice, onion, and basil to a bowl.  Add about a tsp of olive oil to the mixture and stir to mix.  It will almost form a paste.
  2. Next, heat a large skillet to medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil.  Add as many zucchini rounds as you can and flip them after a minute or two.  You want them to be browned but not translucent and mushy (overcooked).  Do this until they are all cooked.  After they are cooked, sprinkle some crushed black pepper over them.  The feta cheese mixture should be salty enough to season the sandwich.
  3. To assemble the sandwich, spread the feta cheese mixture on one half of the bread and add the zucchini and red pepper, top the sandwich with the other half and press down for a few seconds so it all stays together. 

Quick Turkey Bolognese Stuffed Peppers


I made these for an easy and healthy packed lunch.

Ingredients for 6 halved peppers:

  • 1 lb ground turkey (to make these vegetarian, beans would be a great sub)
  • 6 big bell peppers, cleaned and halved longways (I used green but any color would be great)
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 large can of whole tomatoes
  • About a 1/2 cup of red wine, I didn't measure I just circled the pot a couple times with the bottle
  • 1 tbsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 slices of provolone cheese
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a soup pot, drizzle with a little olive oil and heat to medium.  Add the turkey and break it up as it cooks with a spatula.  Make sure to leave it alone a bit without stirring to allow it to brown.  Once browned add the onion and garlic and cook for a couple minutes.  
  3. Add the basil, oregano, salt and pepper and stir in.
  4. Add the red wine and stir the bottom of the pan to bring up anything stuck to the bottom.
  5. Now add the tomatoes and reduce the heat to low.  Break up the tomatoes to make a chunky sauce, and simmer for a half hour to 45 minutes.  You want it to be thick and reduced.  If it is watery, it will run out of the peppers.
  6. Now assemble in a 9x13 baking dish.  Place the peppers cut side up, spoon in the sauce to fill and top with one slice of provolone cheese.  Bake in the over for 25 minutes, until the cheese is browned. I served them with some garlic cous cous.

Crispy Ham and Shallot Frittata




We obviously like eggs considering this is the third egg post in a row!  They are so versatile and easy for any meal.  In this recipe I used a mixture of cheese that I had on hand, Monterey Jack and Pecorino Romano.  Use whatever cheese you prefer.

Ingredients for 2 servings:
  • 4 eggs, 2 yolks removed
  • 1/4 lb of ham, cubed (I used Whole Food's deli black forest ham but bacon with the fat rendered and discarded would be great too)
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/3 cup of shredded cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
  1. Heat a pan to medium with butter and olive oil.  Add the shallot and cook for 5-10 minutes, until they are just browning. Remove and sets aside.
  2. Add the ham and cook for 10 minutes, it will be done when the ham appears browned and slightly crispy.
  3. In a bowl add the eggs, ham, cheese and shallot, reserve enough cheese to sprinkle on top.  Stir to combine.
  4. Add the egg mixture to the pan, slowly swirl until it is cooked on the bottom side and slightly runny on top.  Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and place under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, until the cheese is browned.
  5. I served this with roasted garlic broccoli.




Spanish Inspired Breakfast

We cannot seem to get enough of spanish/mexican style eggs.  Whether is it is huevos rancheros or egg burritos, we seem to consume them multiple times a week.  This recipe is my own version of something similar we had during our trip to Aruba.  




This recipe is for 2 breakfasts

Ingredients:

  • 2 corn tortillas
  • Red sauce (recipe below)
  • 4 eggs
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro

Red Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 large link of chorizo sausage (I used what I found at Whole Food's)
  • 1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • About a half cup of chopped onion
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Place the corn tortillas on a baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes, until they are golden brown.
  2. Drizzle a little olive oil in a pan and heat it to medium.  Add the chorizo and as it cooks, break it up with a spatula.  
  3. After about 5 minutes, add the onion and garlic.  Cook for a couple minutes and add the tomatoes, cumin, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper.
  4. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.  It should lightly bubble while cooking and be thick after 15 minutes.
  5. In another pan, cook the 4 eggs how you desire.  I chose to do over easy, but scrambled would be great too.
  6. To assemble, spoon half the red sauce on each tortilla, top with 2 eggs and cheddar cheese, place under the broiler for minute of you want to cheese to melt and brown.  Top with cilantro and enjoy!


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Breakfast Pizza


Ingredients:

  • Multigrain pizza dough
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 4 slices of organic black forest ham, crisped in a pan
  • a couple hands full of fresh spinach, wilted
  • 4 slices of muenster cheese
Directions:
  1. Flatten the pizza dough into the shape and thickness you desire, and put in a oven heated to 400.
  2. Once the dough is cooked but not browned, layer on the ingredients except for the eggs and scallions.
  3. Cook the pizza for 5 minutes, so the cheese melts the ham gets even crispier.
  4. Take the pizza out, crack 4 eggs on top and sprinkle the chopped scallions on the eggs.
  5. Place back in the over for 5-8 minutes, until the egg whites are cooked but the eggs still have a little jiggle to them (so the yolk will be runny).

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Lunch Solutions

These recipes are meant to be simple.  Just throw together ingredients, no exact measurements.  It will turn out great!

Quinoa with kale, feta, sausage and mushrooms

 Ingredients:

  1. Quinoa, cooked in vegetable stock and some chopped onion.
  2. A bunch of sauteed kale
  3. A couple hand fulls of feta.
  4. 4 links, skins removed, of sauteed italian chicken/turkey sausage.
  5. Sliced cremini mushrooms.


Cous Cous with feta, garbanzo beans, zucchini and roasted red pepper.


Ingredients:

  1. Middle east garlic cous cous.
  2. Chopped zucchini, seared with salt and pepper.
  3. Sliced roasted red pepper.
  4. Rinsed, canned garbanzo beans.
  5. A couple hand fulls of feta cheese.
Mexican quinoa
(no photo)

Ingredients:
  1. Shredded chicken
  2. Quinoa cooked in vegetable stock
  3. Sliced green/red peppers and onion, sauteed
  4. Canned black beans, rinsed
  5. Salsa
Top with avocado and shredded cheese.


Not a lunch but great energy snack...

Date and fig nut balls


Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup roasted cashews
  2. 1 cup roasted whole almonds with skins on
  3. 1 cup roasted walnuts
  4. 15 dates
  5. 6 figs
  6. water
First, in a food processor, blends the figs and dates with a tbsp of water.  Once it is pureed add the nuts and blend until the mixture forms a clump, you may need to add a couple tbsp of water to get it sticky enough to clump together.  Roll into balls.

Additional comment:

I made these again and substituted roasted pumpkin seeds for walnuts, added dried apricots and chia seeds to the mixture and they turned out great.  Experiment with different ingredients!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Healthy. Brownies.


Just when I thought I was giving up on baking (because I have a difficult time adding all the butter/oil/sugar/white flour and nothing turns out decadent when you substitute the flour/oil/butter/sugar for other things) I found this recipe!  They are fudgy and decadent with no oil or flour!!  I will post the recipe below, I halved the sugar (1/2 cup of turbinado sugar) and used smucker's natural chunky PB then followed the rest of the recipe.  Enjoy!

http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2012/06/10/skinny-peanut-butter-swirl-brownies/