Category Archives: herbs

pancetta-wrapped peaches & vinho verde

A topic I’ve been longing to learn more about is wine and of course along with that comes wine and food pairings. While I can easily say that wine is my favorite liquid, I will admit that it is something I don’t know much about. I’ve got books, I’ve got a BF who sold wine for a short stint and yet I can barely determine if something is “oaky” or not.  But what I do know? I know that a vinho verde tastes just perfect with peaches & pancetta.

With a short ingredient list and the use of cured pork I was sold on this recipe when I came across it on the Food & Wine website. Although I’m almost convinced you could wrap anything in pancetta and it would turn out delicious.  

And until my wine palette is more refined, I’ll just have to stick with what tastes good. I think I can handle that.

Pancetta -Wrapped Peaches from Food & Wine, serves 4 as an appetizer

  • 2 ripe peaches, sliced into wedges
  • a few basil leaves, torn into about 12 pieces
  • 12 slices pancetta

Roll pancetta in half. Place basil leaf and peach on one end and wrap pancetta around peach. Fasten with a toothpick if necessary.

Coat pan with cooking spray. Heat to medium-high heat. Add peaches and cook on both sides until pancetta is crispy. 

Serve!

Do you know of any good wine resources to help me out?

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10 Comments

Filed under appetizers, fruit, herbs, in season, Uncategorized, wine

grilled bruschetta

An appetizer that just screams summer to me is bruschetta. Once the tomatoes are good (ie not mushy and tasteless like they are in January) you can be sure that bruschetta is showing up on our plates on a regular basis. Always partial to my Mother’s recipe, although my friend Anna makes a delicious version with mozzarella, simplicity is key with bruschetta and nothing is better than tomatoes, basil, garlic and some olive oil.

This was the first time I’ve tried bruschetta grilled and as with most foods, grilling just takes it to the next level. The tomatoes were slightly roasted, the bread imparted with a smoky flavor that just can’t be replicated in the oven.

Grilled Bruschetta

  • Whole grain baguette
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • fresh basil, julianned

Cut bread into 1 inch pieces and rub with cut side of garlic clove. Set aside. Rub tomatoes with garlic clove.

Thread alternating bread pieces and tomatoes on skewer. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Grill over medium heat for about 4 minutes per side until bread is toasted.

Remove from skewer and put on a plate, and sprinkle with basil.

7 Comments

Filed under appetizers, herbs, in season, Recipes, tomatoes, vegan, vegetables, whole foods, whole grains

herbed goat cheese with edible flowers

I believe that my food and meals should not only taste great and be made from real ingredients but should also look great. I give great consideration to how food looks and how I plate meals, and in case you needed anymore reasons to eat fruits and veggies, it is those fresh foods that always look great on a plate.  A rainbow of color or a sea of white flour and sugar? The answer is simple to me!

But this dip relies on more than just its good looks, it happens to taste as amazing as it looks. Thanks to Susan for this recipe, it is definitely one I’ll be making again. I took it to my friend Morgan’s Bridal Shower and it was a perfect appetizer for a shower, because aren’t they all about flowers and pretty things?

Herbed Goat Cheese with Flowers

  • 1 large log of goat cheese
  • 8 oz neufchâtel cheese (light cream cheese)
  • Fresh herbs of choice (I used basil and chives)
  • Edible flowers

Combine goat cheese and neufchâtel cheese. Fold in chopped herbs. Form into mound and place edible flowers on top. Serve with bread or crackers.


8 Comments

Filed under appetizers, cheese, crackers, Flowers, herbs, Recipes

what to do with 15 pounds of morels

Since all of my friends and family know I love food, I am the recipient of some interesting calls at times. I can handle, “what do I do with zucchini and onions” or “what should I do with truffle oil,” but the question I received last night stopped me dead in my tracks.

“What do I do with 15 pounds of morel mushrooms?” left me screaming expletives that I would never repeat in front of my mother. It just isn’t fair I wailed. I want to go out in the woods and forage for mushrooms but lets be real, even more than that, I want pounds and pounds of morels at my disposal that I don’t have to pay $50/pound for.

The call came from my brother who is currently 25 and single, a wild land firefighter, and living in Idaho. Don’t ask me to elaborate where in Idaho, all I know is that he lives 3 hours from the nearest grocery store, doesn’t have the internet and can’t get cell service to save his life. I’m not sure which of those situations is worst but I’m leaning towards the grocery store.

The upside of Idaho is that the shirt I bought him a few years back will finally come in handy for something.

But getting back to the mushrooms, when I asked him what he had already done with them I was reminded of the Forrest Gump Movie when Bubba is describing the many ways to eat shrimp.

Drew has already sautéed in butter, put them on pizza, deep-fried (yes, I was horrified too), breaded and sautéed and was simply running out of options. I requested that he overnight me a few pounds, but then I remembered that he would probably have to send them via horseback or something and that simply won’t cut it.

My immediate thoughts were to put them in a Quiche and include them in a pasta dish. But since I have access to things like the internet I told him I would see what I could find. As of no surprise, there are endless amounts of delicious-sounding morel mushroom recipes, so here is what I would make with a stash of morels.  Just in case you have a few pounds lying around 😉

Lasagna with Asparagus, Leeks and Morels

Fettuccine with Morel Mushrooms and Sage Cream

Scrambled Eggs with Ramps, Morels and Asparagus

Beef Tenderloin Steaks Stuffed with Morels

Creamy Mushrooms on Toasted Country Bread

Spring Vegetable Sauté

What would you do with a pound of morels?

13 Comments

Filed under ask the nutritionist, cheese, eating local, eggs, farmers market, focus on, herbs, in season, Recipes, vegetables, website

truffled deviled eggs

One thing I’ve been wanting to make since I received truffle salt is deviled eggs – with truffle. Doesn’t it just sound heavenly? I tried it in scrambled eggs, which turns them into a decadent treat but deviled eggs was next on my list.

I figured these upscaled deviled eggs could benefit from the addition of caramelized shallots in replacement of raw onions- a decision that I can confidently say, was a good one.

They would make the perfect cocktail party fare or be a wonderful addition to a brunch. Either way they are sure to impress.

Truffled Deviled Eggs – makes 16

  • 8 hard-boiled eggs
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp light mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 1/2 tsp truffle salt
  • pepper
  • chives

Peel eggs and cut in half, lengthwise, being careful not to break the whites. Remove yolks and set in a medium size bowl. Heat olive oil in pan over medium heat and add shallots, cooking until starting to brown, about 4-5 minutes. Add shallots and remaining ingredients to egg yolk bowl and mash to combine. Fill egg whites with yolk mixture. Top with chopped chives if desired.

18 Comments

Filed under appetizers, eggs, fats, herbs, protein, Recipes, Uncategorized

clam linguine

Cooking with clams was new to me, but they are so simple, I’m not sure why I was so hesitant! All I needed was the motivation of a recipe and a free night to spend a little time in the kitchen.

The pasta was delicious with a bit of spice from the chiles, smoky flavor from the bacon and briny flavor from the sea. All of the flavors that I so often desire, over some chewy, whole-grain pasta.

Linguine with Clams – 2 servings

  • 2 slices bacon
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  •  3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 chile (medium heat), sliced
  • 1 lb little-neck clams
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 4 Tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 6 oz whole grain linguine (I used fresh)

Cook the bacon over medium heat until crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, crumble and set aside.

Add olive oil,  garlic, chile, clams and wine to pan used for bacon and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until clams have opened and released juices. Remove clams and set aside.

Meanwhile cook pasta as directed, saving cooking liquid.

Add pasta, 1/2 cup reserved cooking liquid, bacon, 2 Tbsp parsley and toss until sauce has thickened. Divide pasta onto plates and top with clams and additional parsley.

Healthy Hint: Pasta is something that the taster and I can both overeat without even realizing it. An easy solution? Only making the number of servings we need! No leftovers mean no extra or bites or servings!

12 Comments

Filed under bacon, great meals, herbs, pasta, Recipes, seafood, Uncategorized, whole foods, whole grains

crab salad

This cute appetizer came from the Rachael Ray Magazine and now that summer is here, (at least it feels like it) it is a perfect, light snack for warm summer nights.  And so very fitting for a Friday night on the patio! Complete with cocktail of choice of course!

Since the flavors weren’t too overpowering the crab was able to shine through, which was just what I had hoped for. I love the flavor of crab and when paying a pretty penny for it, I want to be able to taste it!

Crab Salad – adapted from Rachael Ray

  • 8 oz crab meat (I found it in the deli)
  • 2 green onions, minced (reserve some of the green tops)
  • 1 Tbsp light mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro, minced
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 package of Crunchmaster Crackers

Combine crab, onions, mayo, cilantro and lemon juice. Top crackers with crab mixture and reserved onions.

Enjoy your weekend!

13 Comments

Filed under appetizers, crackers, gluten-free, herbs, protein, Recipes, salad, seafood, Uncategorized, whole foods, whole grains