Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Cremini Mushroom Meatballs

I'm a huge mushroom lover and this recipe celebrates the meaty flavor that cremini mushrooms can provide. These hold up really well in the slow cooker if you want to make them ahead and keep them warm until dinner is ready. I served mine with orzo, but these would be great served by themselves with roasted veggies if you're watching your carb intake. For a spicy kick, garnish the meatballs with a scoop of hot giardiniera or a sprinkle of crushed red pepper flakes.


1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic and mushrooms and cook until lightly golden brown, about 8 minutes.


2. Transfer mushroom mixture to a bowl and combine with the remaining meatball ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.


3. Preheat oven to 425. Coat a large baking sheet with olive oil. Use a cookie scoop to make equally sized meatballs. Bake for 15 minutes.



4. Warm the pasta sauce in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the meatballs and allow them to simmer in the sauce for 10 minutes.


5. Serve meatballs over pasta, or by themselves.




Cremini Mushroom Meatballs
Serves 4

All you need:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
16 oz. cremini mushrooms, chopped fine (I used a food processor for this)
1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs (gluten-free or regular)
1/2 cup oats
1/3 cup milk (any variety)
1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 eggs
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 (24 oz.) jars pasta sauce
Pasta, for serving (optional)

All you do:
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic and mushrooms and cook until lightly golden brown, about 8 minutes.
2. Transfer mushroom mixture to a bowl and combine with the remaining meatball ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
3. Preheat oven to 425. Coat a large baking sheet with olive oil. Use a cookie scoop to make equally sized meatballs. Bake for 15 minutes.
4. Warm the pasta sauce in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the meatballs and allow them to simmer in the sauce for 10 minutes.
5. Serve meatballs over pasta, or by themselves.


Monday, February 26, 2018

Salsa Verde Chilequile Egg Bake

This is the ultimate breakfast or brunch dish in my opinion. I first tried chilequiles when Josh and I traveled to Mexico several years ago and ever since then it's been one of my absolute favorite things to eat. And once I figured out how easy it was to make, that was a great bonus. These chilequiles are on the table in less than 15 minutes but they taste like they've been stewing with flavor for days. And talk about amazing leftovers! Serve these with a side of fresh fruit and you've got a delicious spread for a crowd in no time.


1. Preheat oven to 425. Place tomatoes and salsa in a large oven-proof skillet (I used cast-iron) and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.


2. Add chips and toss until fully coated in sauce. Crack the eggs evenly on top and season them with salt and pepper. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 10 minutes.




3. Scoop chilequiles and eggs carefully onto serving plates. Garnish with cilantro, feta and avocado.



Salsa Verde Chilequile Egg Bake
Serves 4

All you need:
2 (14.5 oz.) cans diced tomatoes
1 (16 oz.) jar salsa verde
4 cups tortilla chips
4 eggs
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, for garnish
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese, for garnish
1 ripe avocado, sliced, for garnish

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 425. Place tomatoes and salsa in a large oven-proof skillet (I used cast-iron) and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
2. Add chips and toss until fully coated in sauce. Crack the eggs evenly on top and season them with salt and pepper. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
3. Scoop chilequiles and eggs carefully onto serving plates. Garnish with cilantro, feta and avocado.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Roasted Sweet Potato and Broccoli Grain Bowls with Chipotle Yogurt Sauce

Making sure that our meals are colorful and fiber-rich can be somewhat challenging at times. Grain bowls are a good way to combine lots of delicious flavors and have a meal that contains carbs, protein and healthy fats. I like using farro because it adds a nutty flavor and chewy texture. Combined with the crispy veggies and creamy chickpeas and avocado, this meal is one that I could eat over and over again. And let's talk about the sauce - while very simple, the combination of chipotle peppers, yogurt and agave sends the flavor of this dish to another level!

1. Preheat oven to 425. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat.
2. Combine farro and vegetable broth in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the farro is tender, about 30 minutes. Drain.


3. Place sweet potato and broccoli on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25 minutes.

4. Place yogurt sauce ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth.


5. Scoop cooked farro into serving bowls and top with roasted veggies, chickpeas and avocado. Drizzle with yogurt sauce and serve.




Roasted Sweet Potato and Broccoli Grain Bowls with Chipotle Yogurt Sauce
Serves 4

All you need:
1 1/2 cups farro
4 cups vegetable broth

3 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups broccoli florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 (15 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 ripe avocado, sliced

Yogurt Sauce
1 cup plain yogurt
2 chipotle peppers in adobo
2 garlic cloves
Juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon agave nectar
Salt, to taste

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 425. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat.
2. Combine farro and vegetable broth in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the farro is tender, about 30 minutes. Drain.
3. Place sweet potato and broccoli on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25 minutes.
4. Place yogurt sauce ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth.
5. Scoop cooked farro into serving bowls and top with roasted veggies, chickpeas and avocado. Drizzle with yogurt sauce and serve.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Crispy Tofu with Spiced Korean Glaze

I recently traveled to Vegas and my friend and I had the best time trying out some new restaurants. One of the restaurants had a delicious crispy tofu appetizer that I just knew I had to try to duplicate. This recipe is a great appetizer for parties (simply give each guest a pair of chopsticks and go to town!) or it would also be yummy served over jasmine rice with a side of steamed veggies.


1. Place brown sugar, tamari, 2 tablespoons water, sambal, sesame oil, ginger, garlic and lime zest/juice in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Combine the cornstarch and remaining tablespoon of water in a small bowl and add to the sauce. Cook the sauce until thickened, then remove the pan from heat.


2. Heat a thin layer of vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat tofu with cornstarch and fry until golden brown (working in batches if needed); drain on paper towels.





3. Toss the tofu with glaze and transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Serve with chopsticks.




Crispy Tofu with Spiced Korean Glaze
Serves 4

All you need:
Glaze
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons tamari
3 tablespoons water, divided
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sambal
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, grated
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 block extra-firm tofu, pressed dry and cubed
Cornstarch, for coating
Vegetable oil, for frying
Sliced green onion and sesame seeds, for garnish

All you do:
1. Place brown sugar, tamari, 2 tablespoons water, sambal, sesame oil, ginger, garlic and lime zest/juice in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Combine the cornstarch and remaining tablespoon of water in a small bowl and add to the sauce. Cook the sauce until thickened, then remove the pan from heat.
2. Heat a thin layer of vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat tofu with cornstarch and fry until golden brown (working in batches if needed); drain on paper towels.
3. Toss the tofu with glaze and transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Serve with chopsticks.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Baby Romaine Salad with Fried Goat Cheese

This is not your ordinary salad. This salad tastes like a warm, gooey grilled cheese placed on top of a salad. The combination of crispy, salty goat cheese with nutty almonds, sweet golden raisins and tangy Dijon vinaigrette makes this a perfect dish for entertaining because you will definitely wow your crowd. I suggest pairing this with a well chilled sparking white wine or rose.





1. Cut each goat cheese log into 4 pieces. Dip each piece in egg, then roll in breadcrumbs. Place on a plate and refrigerate for 30 minutes.


2. Meanwhile, combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a large bowl. Add the romaine and toss gently. Transfer the lettuce to 4 salad plates.




3. Warm olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add goat cheese and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.


4. Place 2 goat cheese rounds onto each salad. Sprinkle with almonds and raisins and serve.


Baby Romaine Salad with Fried Goat Cheese 
Serves 4

All you need:
2 (4 oz.) logs plain goat cheese
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup olive oil, for frying

1 tub baby romaine lettuce
1/4 cup whole almonds
1/4 cup golden raisins

Vinaigrette
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
Salt and pepper, to taste

All you do:
1. Cut each goat cheese log into 4 pieces. Dip each piece in egg, then roll in breadcrumbs. Place on a plate and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a large bowl. Add the romaine and toss gently. Transfer the lettuce to 4 salad plates.
3. Warm olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add goat cheese and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
4. Place 2 goat cheese rounds onto each salad. Sprinkle with almonds and raisins and serve.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Spicy Hummus and Roasted Vegetable Pasta

This is my favorite type of food. A little bit of comfort, with a whole lot of nutrition. This pasta dish is bulked up with a ton of roasted veggies which add delicious nutty flavor and color. And the flavor combination of spicy hummus and sweet sundried tomatoes will keep you coming back for more.  If you want to add extra protein, I would recommend adding grilled chicken or salmon on the side.


1. Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the broccoli, cauliflower and carrots on top. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes.


2. Meanwhile, cook the rigatoni in salted boiling water until al dente, about 12 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/3 cup of pasta water.


3. Toss the cooked pasta, roasted veggies, hummus, pasta water, lemon zest/juice and sundried tomatoes in a large bowl.


4. Transfer the pasta to serving dishes and garnish with almonds and basil. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.


Spicy Hummus and Roasted Vegetable Pasta
Serves 4

All you need:
1 small head broccoli, chopped
1 small head cauliflower, chopped
4 carrots, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

8 oz. rigatoni
1 (10 oz.) tub spicy hummus (I recommend Sabra brand)
1/3 cup pasta water
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes packed in oil
Toasted sliced almonds and fresh chopped basil, for garnish
Olive oil, for finishing

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the broccoli, cauliflower and carrots on top. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, cook the rigatoni in salted boiling water until al dente, about 12 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/3 cup of pasta water.
3. Toss the cooked pasta, roasted veggies, hummus, pasta water, lemon zest/juice and sundried tomatoes in a large bowl.
4. Transfer the pasta to serving dishes and garnish with almonds and basil. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.