Categories
Uncategorized Vegetarian

Vegetarian Breakfast Tacos with Microgreens

Are you more a savory breakfast person? Me too! While I do love occasional sugary treats, I usually prefer a savory, protein-packed breakfast over one that will leave me feeling the ol’ sugar crash. 

Since tomorrow is Christmas morning, I thought I’d throw this out there as another option to the standard cinnamon roll Christmas morning breakfast. You’re probably going to need plenty of energy to open presents, clean up wrapping paper, organize all of your many gifts (hopefully), and then cook a fancy meal, so why not have a breakfast that will energize you and take less than 5 minutes to make? Happy holidays, and you’re welcome. 

Ingredients:

½ can vegetarian refried beans

1 Tbsp. butter

1 avocado, diced

4 eggs

¼ c. shredded cheddar cheese 

8 corn tortillas

Hot sauce, I like El Yucateco 

½ c. microgreens

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat up the refried beans in a small saucepan on medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until hot. Heat up the tortillas in a skillet. Scramble the eggs in a buttered pan. Add salt and pepper to taste.

To assemble, divide up the beans, eggs, cheese and avocado equally among the tacos. Top with avocado, hot sauce, microgreens. Enjoy!

Categories
Salads Sides Uncategorized Vegetarian

Grilled Rainbow Salad with Microgreens

Huge, beautiful salads are one of my favorite meals. They are healthy and fresh, but also filling and crunchy and full of diverse flavors. Lately I have been eating a lot of comfort food, so that has caused me to have a serious craving for a big, veggie-packed salad. 

I usually make this salad in the summer when my garden is overflowing with zucchini, peppers, herbs, and greens, but sometimes in the winter a summer salad is just what I need to feel alive and strong. The flavor combo of this salad truly makes your tastebuds feel like they are basking in the summer sun. 

Ingredients: 

4 c. mixed greens 

½ c. mixed herbs, fresh parsley or cilantro

1 zucchini, sliced

1 can of corn

½ c. roasted red peppers, sliced

½ c. feta cheese

2 c. microgreens

2-3 Tbsp. olive oil

Juice from 1 lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

Drizzle zucchini with olive oil and cook in a grill pan until charred on both sides. Remove from pan and place in a bowl. Add the corn and cook until golden brown. Set aside and let zucchini and corn cool. 

To arrange the salad, fill a large bowl with mixed greens and herbs and mix together. Place zucchini on top of the greens, followed by the corn, red pepper, feta and microgreens. 

When you are ready to serve the salad, mix together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Drizzle on top of the salad. Mix and serve!

Categories
Chicken/Turkey Pasta Uncategorized

Hungarian Chicken Paprikash

Chicken paprikash is a popular Hungarian comfort food meal loaded with paprika and sour cream and usually served over buttered egg noodles. It’s perfect for a cold winter night, so last night when it was insanely windy and cold I decided to whip up a batch for dinner. It did not disappoint. The luscious and tender pieces of chicken bathed in a creamy aromatic sauce is just what the body and soul craves this time of year. 

Chicken paprikash is traditionally served with spaetzle, but can be paired very successfully with egg noodles, rice or potatoes. Whatever pairing you choose, it will be heavenly! 

Ingredients:

1 lb. chicken breasts

½ c flour

3-4 Tbsp. paprika or hot Hungarian paprika if you like it spicier

1 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Pepper

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 c. yellow onion, chopped

2 c. chicken broth

1 c. sour cream

Parsley, for garnish

Mix together flour, 2 Tbsp. paprika, salt and pepper on a plate. Dredge the chicken on all sides and save the flour mixture for later. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken and brown on both sides. Set the aside on a plate. 

In the same skillet, add onion and the remaining paprika and cook for about 2 minutes. Make sure to scrape all of the bits of chicken from the skillet for added flavor. Pour in the chicken broth and stir. Add chicken back to the skillet and cook for 30-45 minutes until chicken is cooked through. 

In a small bowl, mix together the leftover flour from dredging the chicken, ½ c. sour cream, and ½ c. liquid from the skillet. Add it to the skillet to thicken the sauce and mix together thoroughly. Turn off the heat on the stove and add remaining sour cream. Mix together and serve hot with noodles.

Categories
Pork Uncategorized

Spanish Tortilla with Chorizo

A few years ago, my parents took us on a once-in-a-lifetime vacation to Spain. Some of the very best memories of my life were made on that trip that we spent exploring through the northern part of that amazing country. 

I found that I had a particular fondness for the Pais Vasco region of Spain due to the beauty, culture, kindness of the people, and the ridiculously awesome pintxos bars. Pintxos are similar to tapas, but they are always served on top of bread and include a toothpick, or “spike,” through them. They are displayed all along the bar and almost call out to people to be social and chat with their neighbors over these lovely little snacks. My family had more fun than was reasonable eating our way through the social, lively pintxos bars. We even made some random, new friends along the way.

As I was plowing my way through all of the pintxos – anything from anchovies to stuffed peppers, there was always one constant on my plate:  tortilla de patatas. When I returned home, I wanted to continue eating these bites of yumminess, so now I make tortillas for meals instead of served on bread and spiked. Tortillas are perfect for any meal and are well-balanced when served with a salad. But admittedly, all of this writing about pintxos has me wishing for a social event. Pintxos party, anyone?

Ingredients:

½ spanish chorizo, sliced

2 Tbsp. olive oil 

8 eggs

2 small Yukon gold potatoes, sliced

1 c. manchego cheese, shredded

1 yellow onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic 

Salt and pepper

Green onion, as garnish

Heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add chorizo and cook until lightly browned. Transfer to a large bowl. Reduce the heat to medium low and add potatoes and onions to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the potatoes are tender, stirring frequently. This will probably take 20 minutes or so. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Spoon the potato mixture into the large bowl with the chorizo. 

Set oven to broil and clean and dry the skillet. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs until fluffy and add a dash of salt and pepper. Pour the eggs into the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and toss to mix together. Add the cheese and mix again.

Heat the remaining olive oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the egg mixture and stir to scramble. Smooth out the egg mixture so that it settles evenly and then run a spatula around the edges so that the tortilla doesn’t stick to the pan. Increase heat to medium high and cook until the edges are set. Transfer skillet to the oven and broil until the eggs are cooked through, or about 2 minutes. Gently transfer the tortilla to a plate, slice, top with green onions and serve!

Categories
Uncategorized Vegetarian

Simple Kimchi Fried Rice

Obviously, I am on a fried rice kick right now. After the amazing Thai fried rice I made the other day, it’s all I can think about. Today when I was thinking about what to make for dinner, I realized I wanted fried rice. Again. I didn’t want the exact same meal, but I definitely wanted fried rice.

So… I took a look at what I already had in the house and bingo! It came to me. I had rice, homemade kimchi, and eggs, so kimchi fried rice it was! It was delicious, and worth the 20 minutes of effort it took to make. Wink, wink. This meal is ridiculously easy to make and on the extreme end of economical. It’s a definite keeper. 

Ingredients: 

2 c. cooked jasmine rice 

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 c. kimchi

¼ c. kimchi brine

2 tsp. gochujang 

2-3 tsp. soy sauce

2 tsp. toasted sesame oil

2 eggs 

2 green onions, sliced 

Cook rice according to package directions. Place in a bowl and mix with sesame oil thoroughly. 

Mix together kimchi brine, gochujang and soy sauce in a bowl.

Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Cook kimchi for a few minutes until it is fragrant.Add rice and mix. Then, add the sauce and make sure you mix together all of the ingredients.

Place the fried rice in two bowls. Top with a sunny side up egg and green onions.

Categories
Uncategorized Vegan Vegetarian

Easy and Super-Tasty Vegan Chorizo Tacos

Does the word vegan make you automatically assume that the meal is not going to be good? If so, I’m sorry to inform you that you are wrong. Dead wrong. These vegan tacos are hearty, delicious and every bit as satisfying as their meaty counterparts. These tacos are full of flavorful ingredients that will leave you wondering why you’d ever even need to have meat tacos again. 

And if you think cooking vegan is a chore, you’re wrong again. This meal literally takes less than 10 minutes to make and requires very few ingredients, but it somehow tastes like a meal that requires much more effort. These tacos are amazing on their own, but over-the-top yummy when topped with all of the good stuff, like avocado, cilantro, green onions, salsa, and vegan sour cream. I guarantee if you try these once, you’ll make them again in the future.

Ingredients:

Meatless chorizo, 2 links – I like Simple Truth

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium sweet potato, diced

1 can black beans

Salt and red pepper flakes, to taste

Heat olive oil over medium meat in a skillet. Add diced sweet potatoes and cook for about 5 minutes or until soft and lightly browned. Add the chorizo and black beans and cook for another 2 minutes or so, or until heated through. Add salt and red pepper flakes to taste. 

Place the filling in tortillas and top with anything you desire – I like avocado, cilantro, green onions, vegan sour cream and/or cheese, salsa.

Categories
Chicken/Turkey Uncategorized

Thai Basil Chicken Fried Rice

Fried rice is pretty much always tasty, but sometimes the same ol’, same ol’ can get stale. If you’re a fried rice lover, but you’re craving something with a little more zing and color . . . try this amped-up Thai version of basil fried rice. The combination of basil, thai chilies, oyster sauce, fish sauce, and shallots meld so perfectly into a flavor bomb of a meal that comes together in 20 minutes or less. Once you try this version of fried rice, there may be no going back to the same ol’, same ol’ version.

Ingredients:

1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 large shallot, sliced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 bunch basil

1-3 Thai chilies, sliced

2 eggs

2 cups cooked jasmine rice

2 Tbsp. oyster sauce

1-2 Tbsp. fish sauce

1 Tbsp. honey or agave

2 Tbsp. olive oil

Heat olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook through until slightly browned. While the chicken is cooking, mix together the oyster sauce, fish sauce and honey in a bowl. Add shallots, garlic, and chilies to the skillet with the chicken and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add cooked rice and mix everything together. Push everything to one side of the skillet and add the eggs. Scramble the eggs and mix into the rice. Quickly add the sauce to the rice and mix together. Add the basil and remove from heat. Toss together thoroughly until the basil is wilted. Serve immediately!

Categories
Fish/Seafood Uncategorized

Lemon Garlic Butter Crab Legs

Whoever first decided to eat these spiny, leggy creatures, I bow to you. There may not be a more perfect meal than a pile of crab legs covered in three of my favorite things: butter, lemon and garlic. So many people pay big bucks to eat crab legs in restaurants, but it’s super easy, much cheaper and much more fun to eat them at home. 

I mean, how can you eat these in public without looking disgusting and ill-mannered? At home, you can just dig into these babies with your hands, and let the butter run down your face as you devour them. If you are blessed to be surrounded by friends who will get down to business and eat crab legs without any shame, invite them over to share this tasty treat. And remember: the friends who love you after watching you eat crab legs are keepers. 

Ingredients:

2 lbs. crab legs 

½ c. butter

4 cloves garlic, minced

Juice from one lemon

2 Tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400. Place crab legs on a large baking sheet.

Heat butter, lemon juice and garlic in a saucepan until it’s melted. Combine with a whisk. Add olive oil and whisk in to mix thoroughly. Pour the mixture over the crab legs and then salt and pepper generously. 

Bake crab legs in the oven for about 15 minutes, or until heated through. Serve with melted, salted butter for dipping if desired.

Categories
Salads Sides Uncategorized Vegetarian

Caprese Salad with Balsamic Reduction

Sometimes in the winter I get a little wistful thinking about summer and all of the beautiful fresh ingredients that go along with it. I long for something bright, fresh and clean to eat. This may be due to the fact that in the winter, I tend to overeat heavier foods . . . which dare I say is a lot of fun. Or maybe it’s because the grayer skies have me wishing for warmer times. But I digress . . .

When I’m feeling this way, caprese salad always comes to mind quickly. Not only is it eye-catching and appetizing in appearance with its vivid colors, it also offers an instant imaginary trip back to warm summer days with its fresh taste combination of basil and tomatoes. It’s fresh, satisfying and healthy, and it makes me forget about winter just long enough to appreciate it again.

Ingredients:

Salad:

4 ripe roma tomatoes, sliced

12 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced

1 bunch fresh basil, leaves only

2-3 Tbsp. olive oil

2 Tbsp. balsamic reduction (see below)

Salt and pepper to taste

Balsamic reduction:

1 c. balsamic vinegar

2 tsp. Honey

Combine balsamic vinegar and honey in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and quickly reduce heat to medium low. Simmer for about 10-15 minutes, or until the vinegar is reduced by about half. Set aside and allow to cool while you prepare the salad.

Assemble the salad by beginning with a tomato slice, then cheese and finally, basil. Continue layering the ingredients in this manner, making sure that all of the beautiful colors are visible. 

After the salad is assembled, drizzle generously with olive oil and about 2 Tbsp. of balsamic reduction. Season with salt and pepper.

Categories
Fish/Seafood Soups Uncategorized

Moqueca Baiana (Brazilian Fish Stew)

People often associate Brazilian food with big chunks of meat and steakhouses, but there’s so much more to Brazilian cuisine – like this beautifully rich fish stew. Moqueca Baiana originated in Bahia, Brazil and was influenced by both Portuguese and African cuisine. 

According to my own super-technical research, the native people of Brazil have been eating this stew for hundreds of years. When the Portuguese colonized Brazil, they discovered it and added coconut milk and new spices to the recipe. The soup changed again when slaves brought from Africa incorporated palm oil into the traditional recipe. This unique meal is a recipe created via a world collaboration, which is why it’s so complex in flavor. 

I hope you enjoy the unique blend of flavors in this stew as much as I do!

Fish:

1 lb. firm white fish, such as sea bass, cod or mahi mahi, cut into bite sized pieces

Juice from 1 lime

1 Tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper

Soup base:

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 carrot, sliced

1 red bell pepper,sliced

1 14 oz. can full-fat coconut milk

1 14 oz. can of crushed tomatoes

1 c. chicken broth

1 Tbsp. cumin

1 Tbsp. paprika 

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

Marinate fish in lime juice, olive oil, salt and pepper in the refrigerator for one hour.

When you’re ready to cook, heat olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the fish and cook through until slightly browned. Set aside on a plate.

In the same skillet, heat a little more olive oil and cook onions and garlic for 1-2 minutes, or until fragrant. Then, add the carrots and red bell pepper and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add coconut milk, tomatoes, broth, cumin, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20-20 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Return the cooked fish to heat up. 

Serve with lime wedges and fresh cilantro. This stew is delicious alone, with a baguette, or over rice or mashed potatoes. Enjoy!