We have lemons this year!
It’s been a while. The dwarf Meyer lemon tree I bought at the farmers market in the Bay almost 5 years ago has been through a lot. Pots on a balcony then in a backyard, mild Bay temps, hot Central Valley temps…
But it’s been in the ground for at least a year now, and it seems happy. If you can define happy by about 40 lemons.
Peas and carrots have never been all that appealing to me. Carrots by themselves, good. Peas by themselves, or maybe in a pasta dish, good. Together? It’s lost on me. I’m simply not a fan.
So what do I do when I’m not a fan of something? I make my own version. Sub green peas with chickpeas and magically I find one of my favorite side dishes.
It’s like broccoli rice casserole, but without the broccoli or rice. That’s the first description that came to mind when I made this. Or at least that is what I envisioned when I came up with the recipe.
I’m still not over riced cauliflower. Maybe the rest of the world is? I don’t know. But I love the stuff. I’m always stir-frying it into things. So last week I thought – why not stir it into things…and then bake it.
Alas, a casserole was born.
In this recipe, cauliflower rice is tossed with a spinach and basil pesto and chickpeas. It makes an easy light meal or side dish for anyone at the table because it also happens to be vegan and gluten free.
I usually post things on Instagram the day I make and shoot them with a note about when they will be live on the blog. Call me old fashioned, but I’m just one of those diehards who still believes in preserving the real-time aspect of social media. Especially those platforms that have a portion of the word instant in their names.
I typically get a few comments from people who can’t wait to see it, but none quite like this recipe. After posting this cauliflower rice, I not only got comments on Instagram, but also follow up on other social sites about when the recipe would be live.
I think there is some unspoken rule that says your simplest recipes, the ones you just kind of throw together on a whim, are the ones that garner the most attention.
That is definitely the case here.
These boneless short ribs make the best winter comfort food when braised in white wine and served with a seasonal cabbage slaw. The short ribs were among several cuts of high-quality grass-fed beef that I recently received from Butcher Box.
Beyond burgers, I don’t claim to be an expert at cooking beef. That’s why I like it when I receive a little something that makes me step out of my comfort zone. This time is was grass-fed boneless beef short ribs.
Last minute gift idea alert. If you have a beef lover in your life or someone who loves to cook it, Butcher Box is the answer.
A little while back, I was sent a Butcher Box full of high-quality grass-fed beef. Sirloin tips, steaks, short ribs, ground and bacon. It was loaded with good stuff.
These savory snacks make a great start to holiday meals. Their rich, earthy flavors are an ideal match for the Cabernet Franc I received from Cultivar Wine.
The idea of snacks for Thanksgiving day seems a little absurd. It’s not like we really need to include more food in the celebration. And having snacks around certainly isn’t because we need to satisfy hunger. If you are like me, hungry won’t even be a part of your vocabulary for at least 36 hours.
Yet there is something about little bites to kick off the celebration that feels like a necessity. All that cooking makes you want to eat. Why not take things over the top? It is Thanksgiving after all.
Soon, we’ll be frantically running out to the supermarket to get overlooked ingredients. Soon, we’ll forget what it’s like to shop during the holidays and find ourselves elbowing our way to a check-out line. Soon, we’ll be waiting in line at the post office (something we swore we’d never do again) to get gifts mailed before the last possible hour.
Soon, no matter how hard we try to stay in control, things are going to get crazy.
I love the holiday season, crazy or not. So I say bring it on! As long as I have some lights sparkling in the living room and cookies in the oven at some point throughout the season, I’ll take it.
This butternut squash dish is not sweet. I repeat, this dish is not sweet.
If you are like me, no matter how many versions of winter squash you’ve made or been exposed to, your brain still thinks of nutmeg, cinnamon and maybe even maple, when you envision the rich, orange, tender squash.
Okay, I’ll admit that this does contain cinnamon. But cinnamon is one of those interesting spices that can swing sweet or savory. It this case, it’s savory.
The secret to this recipe is some heat. You don’t have to burn your mouth off, but use at least a medium spicy chili powder. I could even see a chipotle chili powder working. When you use these deeply flavored spices you get a beautiful balance of slightly sweet squash, with earthy pear, a bit of heat and crunchy walnuts.
There is a good chance that just opening this book will make you healthier. I know it’s a pretty bold claim, but I’m certain it’s true.
I received a review copy of Superfood Snacks: 100 Delicious, Energizing & Nutrient-Dense Recipes by Julie Morris a few weeks ago and it has been sitting on my desk glowing with health and vibrance ever since. I gladly accepted the offer from Navitas Naturals to review the book. They even sent along some goji berries and cacao nibs so I could make this recipe. But I wasn’t sure what to expect until I finally go the copy.
It turns out, I’m kind of crazy about it.
In this recipe, slow cooker lentils are topped with turkey meatballs and then brightened with a sprinkle of fresh spinach for an easy one-bowl meal!
I tend to eat in earth tones. It’s something I didn’t realize until I began photographing my food.
Think about it. The occasional leafy green aside, many healthy foods are pretty much a big bunch of off white, beige and brown.
Lentils, beans, chickpeas, cauliflower, oats, onions, garlic, meats, mushrooms — all pretty much the same boring color. It’s unfair, too, because they can be pretty darn delicious.