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  1. Sunday, April 7, 2019

    Week 619 Weekly Menu

    Spring break is over and it’s back to the normal routine of life. Our oldest Cate went to visit her aunt in Singapore last week and came home with a stomach bug, as often happens after an international trip. I suppose the fates wanted her to get the full experience. So this week I’m trying to make lighter, vegetarian meals to soothe her belly back to normalcy.

    Week 619 Weekly Dinner Menu: Caprese Salad, Sweet Potato & Black Bean Burritos, Lentil Rice Bowls, and Breakfast for Dinner

    MONDAY:
    – Caprese Salad
    – Baguette

    TUESDAY:
    Sweet Potato & Black Been Burritos or Rice Bowls

    WEDNESDAY:
    Lentil Rice Bowls with Lime Tahini Dressing

    THURSDAY:
    – Leftovers

    FRIDAY:
    – Potluck Party

    SATURDAY:
    – Eat out after cello recital

    SUNDAY:
    – Breakfast for Dinner: Waffles, Eggs & Fruit (Birch Benders Paleo Pancake & Waffle Mix for me, normal waffles for everyone else)

    Your turn! Share those menus in the comments, plain or fancy!


  2. Tuesday, January 29, 2019

    2019 New Year’s Resolution: More Plant-Based Eating

    Each year I pick a New Year’s resolution that ties what I do in the kitchen with some sort of positive environmental impact. (Click here to see past years’ resolutions and related posts.) My 2019 resolution is no different: more plant-based eating. This goes beyond just eating less meat and I have lots of ideas for making this year’s resolution a success!*

    Fresh produce, oat milk and canned beans for the 2019 New Years Resolution for This Week for Dinner More Plant-Based Eating kick-off post

    Over the past year, due to some health reasons, I’ve really changed how I eat (there’s another post about that experience coming soon!). One of the changes has involved finding dairy substitutes. I haven’t given up meat completely, but I have started looking at more plant-based options. Looking for milk alternatives kicked that process off for me and really got me thinking about more plant-based eating overall.

    So why should we care about plant-based eating? Bottom line: animal-based food takes more of a toll on the environment (especially food coming from cows). When you talk about vegetarianism or veganism, many omnivores get nervous and feel like it’s just too hard to make that kind of switch. But focusing on more plant-based eating doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go vegetarian or vegan. There are lots of ways to incorporate plant-based foods and ease yourself into a new way of eating. In addition, looking at where the highest environmental impacts are in the food system and then adjusting from there can have a really big impact, beyond just plant-based foods.

    For example, take a look at the chart below (data taken from an article published in Nature assessing land use changes and climate change). It is both surprising and unsurprising. First, a vegan diet clearly has the smallest negative impact on the environment. But what pops out at me is the impact foods sourced from cows have. A vegetarian that eats dairy has a larger carbon cost than a person who eats poultry and eggs but skips dairy and beef. That is excellent food for thought.

    Chart showing the carbon costs of different diets, with vegan having the smallest carbon footprint

    As I was getting ready for my resolution, I came across a journal article published in Nature. I turned to my friend Dr. Megan O’Rourke, Assistant Professor of Sustainable Food Production Systems at Virginia Tech, with some questions I had. Megan and I have known each other since middle school (in fact I introduced her to her husband of 20+ years!). As Assistant Professor at Virginia Tech, Megan examines the value of biodiversity in agriculture and the environmental impacts of different food systems. Megan’s interest areas include sustainable agriculture, organic production, international development, land use change, and agroecology. She has extensive international and policy experience working with the Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service as the organization’s climate change advisor. In addition, Megan studied farming systems and deforestation in Cambodia where she worked for the United States Agency for International Development as their senior climate change advisor.

    Dr. Megan O'Rourke of Virginia Tech in CambodiaThat’s Megan on the right! This is a photo from when she was in Cambodia. Image Source: Virginia Tech

    As Megan and I got to talking about food issues, I felt like I just couldn’t keep her to myself and, lucky for us, I convinced Megan to contribute to the blog. Now I get to share Megan and all the awesome stuff in her head with you. Welcome, Megan!

    Over the next year (and hopefully longer) I will share tips and tricks for more plant-based eating and Megan will offer her expertise. I’m really excited about this year’s resolution and for you all to join in on the journey.

    To kick things off, here’s a little something from Megan (she does a good job of filling in between the lines of the chart above):

    Recent research is showing how eating a plant-based diet may be good for slowing climate change. You may be thinking, what does a plant-based diet have to do with slowing climate change? Everything we eat has a carbon cost and some foods have lower carbon costs than others. Too much carbon in the atmosphere is what traps solar energy and causes things to heat up. The total carbon cost of food includes how much carbon is directly emitted during production from inputs such as fertilizers, tractor fuel and pesticides. It also includes an opportunity cost for using the land for agriculture.

    The carbon costs of agricultural inputs are pretty straight forward to wrap our heads around; growing stuff takes energy and releases carbon. But understanding carbon opportunity costs is a bit trickier. Think about a forest and a corn field. The forest has much more plant mass than a corn field and stores more carbon, so cutting down a forest to grow corn has a large carbon opportunity cost. If you think about how much land and inputs are required to produce beef (about 2 acres per cow) compared to corn (2 acres for about 20,000 lbs) you start to realize that eating beef requires a lot of land and has a much larger carbon cost than eating a plant-based diet. In fact, one pound of beef has a carbon cost almost 75 times higher than a pound of corn and 40 times higher than a pound of rice. In addition, not all animals are created equal.  The carbon cost of beef is 14 times higher than chicken and nine times higher than pork.

    When we start to compare different diets, we also come up with vastly different carbon costs.  If we compare a typical western diet with a 50% less meat, vegetarian, no beef or dairy, and vegan diets, we find that a vegan diet has the lowest carbon costs.  The total carbon costs of each diet are about 9, 6, 5, 3, and 2 tons of carbon dioxide per year, respectively.

    Now does this mean that everyone should run out and become vegan?  Well, maybe. Climate change is one of the most serious environmental threats facing our planet. But there are, of course, many other things to consider. Lifestyle and proper nutrition are important personal choices. Preference for local foods is another. Animals can be produced on dry hilly grasslands in places like Oklahoma, which are terrible for growing many plant-based foods (remember the dust bowl?). Environmental impacts besides carbon should also be considered. Many more species of birds and plants and insects can coexist with livestock on grazing lands compared to in the typical monoculture crop field. While this new research makes a compelling argument to shift to a more plant-based diet, it’s one more data point to help us make informed choices and navigate our complex food system. — Dr. Megan O’Rourke, Virginia Tech

    *In case you’re wondering. Last year was the first time I completely failed at my This Week for Dinner new year’s resolution. I had planned to learn how to can food. Well, I did not can one piece of food last year. Not one. Nate canned some peppers, so at least a little bit of canning happened in our house. So, nevermind, I totally completed the resolution…by proxy! 😉


  3. Wednesday, April 25, 2018

    Lentil Rice Bowl with Lime-Tahini Dressing

    Today I have a recipe to share with you that is now my favorite. It’s a lentil rice bowl with lime-tahini dressing. That may or may not sound good to you, but no matter what you are thinking right now I promise you will like it. Well, okay, there may be someone out there not down for the lentil rice bowl but I kind of doubt it.

    Last week I had a photography job in Orange County. I needed to grab lunch on the road and noticed a place called CAVA. Now that I’m not eating wheat, dairy and sugar and my diet is still quite strict (waiting to get that allergy testing done!), eating out is tricky. CAVA looked like it could be promising so I decided to give it a try. I am so glad that I did, I love this restaurant!

    Recipe for Lentil Rice Bowl with Lime-Tahini Dressing from This Week for Dinner. Healthy and delicious!

    Heartbreakingly, we do not have a CAVA restaurant anywhere near my house. (Insert trombone.) I think the best way to describe CAVA is that it is essentially a Mediterranean-inspired Chipotle. You create a bowl, choosing your grains, greens, proteins, veggies, etc. While there were ingredients that did have wheat and dairy, there were plenty that did not. There was so much to choose from it made me happy! I ended up creating a lentil rice bowl with lime-tahini dressing and was, quite frankly, surprised how much I liked it.

    I had a bit of my bowl left over when I picked up Owen from school. He ended up stealing the rest of my lunch…I have never seen him inhale unidentified vegetables and grains that way! For the last week he has been begging me to recreate the bowl at home, so last night I gave it a go.

    Recipe for Lentil Rice Bowl with Lime-Tahini Dressing from This Week for Dinner, delicious and healthy dinner that makes great leftovers!

    This is my new favorite meal. It took some effort to get all the ingredients prepared, but the final dish was worth it. And now I have a fridge full of ingredients I can easily throw together for lunch or leftover dinner this week.

    Nutritious and delicious recipe for Lentil Rice Bowls with Lime-Tahini Dressing from This Week for DInner

    I did include leftover rotisserie chicken in our bowls to use it up, but you could easily leave the meat out and the bowl would be just as delicious…and completely plant based! Yay for delicious vegan food! (Update: the last time Nate and I ate this, we decided it really truly does not need chicken. This bowl is hearty and filling and delicious without meat.)

    Animated GIF showing how to create a Lentil Rice Bowl with Lime-Tahini Dressing from This Week for Dinner

    I am going to list below exactly how I built our bowls. Obviously you can mix and match ingredients or come up with your own creation. The CAVA menu provides some pretty great cooking inspiration, click here to check it out. (CAVA also has locations in 9 states as well as Washington D.C. If you live near one, I highly recommend it. Go and enjoy it for me!)

    Lentil Rice Bowl with Lime-Tahini Dressing
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • Brown Rice
    • Lentils (Green, Brown and/or Black)
    • Cooked chicken, bite-sized pieces (leave out to make this dish vegan)
    • Carrots, diced
    • Golden beets, diced
    • Cauliflower, bite-sized pieces
    • Super or Power Greens, chopped (I bought a mix from the grocery store produce section)
    • Broccoli Slaw (no dressing, again, I bought a mix from the grocery store produce section)
    • Hummus
    • Chimichurri sauce
    • 3 handfuls grape tomatoes, chopped
    • 1 cucumber, chopped
    • Olive oil
    • 3 limes
    • ⅓ cup tahini (stir well before using)
    • ⅓ cup water
    • 1 garlic clove, minced or pushed through a garlic press
    • ¾ teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon sugar
    Instructions
    1. Combine the juice from 2½ limes, tahini, water, garlic, salt and sugar in a small bowl. Whisk well and set aside.
    2. Roast carrots, beets and cauliflower together in a 425º F oven for 15-20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Toss in olive oil and sprinkle with salt before roasting.
    3. Cook brown rice and lentils as directed on the package.
    4. Put tomatoes and cucumbers in a small bowl, drizzle with olive oil and squeeze the juice from the final ½ lime you haven't yet used. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat.
    5. In a bowl, layer the ingredients as follows: brown rice, lentils, chicken (if using), roasted vegetables, greens, slaw, spoonful of hummus, spoonful or two of chimichurri sauce, cucumber-tomato mixture. Drizzle generously with the tahnini dressing, mix all together and enjoy!
    6. Tip: I mixed and prepared all the individual ingredients in the containers that I would be storing them in the refrigerator in after dinner was done. It made clean-up much easier!

    OTHER RECIPES YOU MAY LIKE:

    EQUIPMENT I USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE:

     


  4. Monday, July 10, 2017

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry

    Hi friends! This is an evolution of a recipe I already have shared on the site, Curry in a Hurry. Click here to read about the origin of that recipe and if you love chicken. Today’s version, however, is vegetarian.

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynard

    I’ve gotta tell you, this vegetarian version of Curry in a Hurry is just as good as the original. Indian food just lends itself so beautifully to vegetarian cooking.

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynardVegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynard | Homemade Paneer

    The first time I made this, I tried making paneer (a fresh cheese common in India) from scratch. It was delicious but took FOREVER. When I posted my paneer on Instagram and lamented the amount of time it took, several of my friends said, “Well, it shouldn’t have taken that long.” I followed this recipe from Aarti Party on the Food Network and I think the bottom line is that I could have increased the heat to speed things up. My paneer tasted great but when I discovered I could buy it at Sprouts, I may have broken into a little Hallelujah chorus right there in the cheese section. Maybe one day I’ll try making it again. We’ll see…

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynard | Homemade PaneerVegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynard

    That’s about all I have to say about this recipe besides that fact that it’s simple and delicious!

    If you want to try making baked homemade samosas, click here. The ones pictured in this post, however, are from the freezer section at Sprouts…and they are delicious! I’m getting really good at cheating at my Indian food, eh?

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry from @janemaynard

    Vegetarian Curry in a Hurry
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 1½ tablespoons oil
    • ½ of a small onion, chopped
    • 5 teaspoons curry powder
    • ½ teaspoon garam masala
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 3 dried red chilies (I just used 1 so it wouldn't be too spicy for my kids)
    • 1 can unsweetened coconut milk
    • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
    • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
    • 3-5 cups fresh spinach
    • 1 cooked cauliflower florets
    • Half package frozen peas
    • 1 cup cooked potatoes, cubed
    • 1 can chickpeas
    • 8-12 ounces paneer, cubed
    Instructions
    1. Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until translucent.
    2. Add curry powder, garam masala, garlic and red chilies. Stir for one minute.
    3. Add coconut milk, tomatoes, tomato paste and simmer until thickens, stirring regularly.
    4. Add spinach, stir and cook until spinach as wilted. Add cauliflower, peas, potatoes and chickpeas and cook until heated through. Add paneer just before serving.
    5. Serve over rice.
    Notes
    You can do any combination of the vegetables and cheese above - you could leave out the paneer and just do the veggies, or do paneer with just one or two of the veggies. Basically it's totally flexible and the measurements do not have to be exact either!

     


  5. Tuesday, January 28, 2014

    Kitchen Sink Quesadillas

    This post is years overdue. I throw “Kitchen Sink Quesadillas” up on my menu fairly regularly and I’ve always just linked to a page with the recipe typed straight out of a Real Simple magazine, with no notes or pictures. Since it’s such a reliable go-to meal around here, I figured it deserved a bit of attention!

    go-to meal: kitchen sink quesadillas from @janemaynard

    I got the recipe from Real Simple long before I started this blog. In fact, it was one of my first attempts at vegetarian cooking. I’ll never forget the first time I made kitchen sink quesadillas. As Nate and I finished eating, he looked at me and said, “I didn’t even realize there wasn’t any meat.” We were both surprised how delicious and filling our dinner was!

    go-to meal: kitchen sink quesadillas from @janemaynard

    Our family has come along way since then – nowadays about half of our dinners are vegetarian. I really think this recipe all those years ago helped me realize that eating less meat is no big deal!

    go-to meal: kitchen sink quesadillas from @janemaynard

    Anyway, vegetarian or not, this is a great go-to meal and a nice step up from the basic quesadilla with very little extra work. They are simple and fast to prepare and there is also an option to cook the quesadillas all at one time, which can be especially helpful when cooking for a family.

    Kitchen Sink Quesadillas
     
    Adapted from Real Simple
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dish
    Ingredients
    • Quesadilla ingredients:
    • 1 can black beans, drained
    • 1 can corn kernels, drained
    • ¾ cup salsa, drained (you don’t have to drain the salsa, but it makes for a much less messy quesadilla, so if you don’t mind the step it’s good to do)
    • Small flour tortillas (twice as many as the number of quesadillas you want to make
    • Shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack
    • Optional side salad ingredients:
    • 1 tablespoon minced red onion
    • ⅓ cup fresh cilantro leaves
    • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
    • Juice of 1 to 2 limes
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 2 teaspoons sugar
    • 1 head romaine lettuce, chopped
    Instructions
    1. If cooking the quesadillas in the oven, heat oven to 400° F. In a medium bowl, combine the beans, corn, and salsa.
    2. Place 4 tortillas on a parchment- or foil-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with cheese. Lightly spread the bean-corn-salsa mixture over the cheese, then top with more cheese. Place flour tortillas on top. Bake until cheese is melted, about 5-7 minutes. You can also cook the quesadillas on the stovetop one at a time if you prefer.
    3. If you would like to whip up the side salad, while the quesadillas are in the oven, combine the onion, cilantro, salt, pepper, lime juice, oil and sugar. Mix well. Toss with the chopped lettuce. (I hardly ever make the salad!)
    4. Cut quesadillas into wedges and serve with the salad. Also good with salsa, sour cream and guacamole!

     


  6. Wednesday, May 8, 2013

    Asparagus and Spring Onion Tart

    One of the delicious dishes we were treated to at our latest book club was an asparagus and spring onion tart, as made my dear friend Barbara.

    asparagus and spring onion tart from @janemaynard

    LOVED THIS TART. The “shortcrust” was delicious, the top had a pleasant chewiness thanks to a melted Parmesan cheese, and all the flavors blended really nicely together. Of course we all begged for the recipe. Barbara had found the recipe in the latest issue of Vegetarian Times, which she happily shared. She’s not one to keep secrets when it comes to good food!

    You all may be wondering (as I am) what the difference between a quiche and a tart is. If anyone has a good answer, please feel free to share! Tarts may be savory or sweet, while quiche are savory, but beyond that their “official” definitions are almost identical. So, I say just call it whatever you want!

    Asparagus and Spring Onion Tart
     
    Savory and delicious!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dish
    Ingredients
    • Shortcrust
    • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
    • ⅛ tsp. salt
    • 6 Tbs. cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes (I just use salted butter)
    • 2 large eggs, divided
    • Filling
    • ½ pound trimmed asparagus spears
    • 1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. olive oil
    • 2 cups spring or green onions
    • 4 large eggs
    • 1½ cups whole milk or heavy cream
    • 1 ounce (1/4 cup) grated fresh parmesan cheese (I might use a bit more myself)
    Instructions
    1. Shortcrust:
    2. Mix flour and salt in large bowl. Rub in butter with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. (Jane note: I use my pastry blender.) Beat 1 egg and 2 Tbs water in a small bowl. Stir egg mixture into flour mixture just until dough comes together, adding 1 Tbs. more water if needed. Flatten dough into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and chill at least 1 hour (up to 1 day).
    3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out dough to 12-inch circle on floured surface. Press dough into 9-inch springform pan or fluted tart pan with removable bottom. (Jane note: Barbara baked and served her tart in a pretty fluted dish without a removable bottom. It worked very well.) Trim edges, prick bottom all over with a fork. Line tart shell with parchment paper and fill with dried beans. Bake 25 minutes or until barely golden. Remove beans and paper. Beat remaining egg and brush on bottom of crust. Bake 5 minutes more.
    4. Filling:
    5. Cook asparagus in large pot of boiling salted water 3 minutes. Drain and cut into 1¼-inch lengths. Heat oil in skillet over medium-low heat. Add onions, cook 8-10 minutes until softened. Remove from heat. Whisk together eggs and milk in bowl. Stir in onions and asparagus.
    6. Pour filling into shortcrust and place pan on a baking sheet. (Jane note: line baking sheet with foil for easy clean-up.) Sprinkle tart with parmesan cheese. Bake in the 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes, or until tart is set in the middle and top is browned well. Cover edges of crust with foil if they start to brown too much before the tart is done. Pop out of pan and serve.

     


  7. Thursday, February 21, 2013

    Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos {Sweet Potato Day with ONE}

    Before we get into the heart of today’s post, I need to whet your appetite. You do not want to miss today’s recipe. It comes from my sister-in-law Cora and is amazing. Appetite whetted? Good.

    Way back in the day, I was an International Relations major at Boston University, with a focus on developing countries. When I met the folks at ONE about a year ago, I was super excited to get involved and help support their work, especially since one of their main focuses is world hunger. My food blogging and international relations lives were coming together in a very cool way. The folks at ONE have been amazing to work with, too. Win, win, win!

    Today is Sweet Potato Day, a special day coordinated with ONE where a big group of loving, talented bloggers are all writing about sweet potatoes to raise awareness on the issue of hunger. Why the sweet potato, you ask? We are trying to make the sweet potato famous! It is nutritional and hearty and is saving lives in Africa, making it a worthy mascot for the cause! (Click here to read the Sweet Potato Day kick-off post I wrote for the ONE website.)

    As part of the big day, I am sharing a keeper of a recipe with you below. It is so so so so good. These Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos come from my culinarily-talented sister-in-law, Cora. The first night she made them, she called me simply to tell me how delicious her dinner was. I knew I would have to make it myself pronto! Each element of this “recipe” is great on its own: the black beans are deliciously sweet, the sweet potatoes are simple and flavorful with a hint of spice, and the slaw is fresh and has bite. When you put them all together, you get something really special.

    To support Sweet Potato Day, I hope that you will visit ONE’s website and see how you can get involved. There are two main issues I would love for you to check out. First, the budget. You can learn more on the budget issue and send a letter to your Congressperson on this page. Second, food. ONE has oodles of great info on food and hunger on this page, where you can also sign a petition to encourage world leaders to make hunger and food a top priority. We really can make a difference. I am blessed with abundance and want to do my part to help share the love. I hope you’ll join me!

    Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • Roasted Sweet Potatoes (see recipe below)
    • Aunt Kathy's Black Beans (see recipe below)
    • Jalapeño Slaw (see recipe below)
    • Shredded cheese
    • Sour Cream
    • Flour tortillas
    Instructions
    1. Stuff all the good food above into your flour tortillas, eat, and enjoy!

    Roasted Sweet Potatoes
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
    • Olive oil
    • Salt
    • Pepper
    • Chili powder
    • Oregano
    • Cumin
    Instructions
    1. Spread cubed sweet potatoes on a large baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil over sweet potatoes evenly, to coat. Sprinkle sweet potatoes with salt, pepper, chili powder, oregano and cumin. Mix and move sweet potatoes around on the sheet to coat with spices. Roast in a 350 degree F oven while you prepare the beans. Cook until soft then remove from oven, 10-20 minutes.

    Aunt Kathy's Black Beans
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 2 (16oz) cans black beans, mostly drained
    • ½ cup water
    • ⅔ cup olive oil
    • ⅛ cup vinegar
    • ⅓ cup sugar
    • 1 tsp pepper
    • 1 bay leaves
    • 2 T fresh, minced garlic
    • 2 tsp salt
    • ½ tsp cumin
    • 1 tsp oregano
    • ⅓ onion, chopped
    Instructions
    1. Sauté onions. Combine all ingredients, including sautéed onions, in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 20 minutes.

    Jalapeño Slaw
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • ¼ cup lime juice
    • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
    • 2 teaspoons sugar
    • ¾ teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
    • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • ½ cup chopped cilantro
    • 1 16-ounce package cabbage and carrot coleslaw
    • 1 jalapeño, sliced thin and chopped (add more if you want it hotter)
    Instructions
    1. Mix all the ingredients except the coleslaw together in a large bowl. Add coleslaw and toss to coat.

    Be sure to visit the other blogs taking part in Sweet Potato Day! I have listed them all below. There is a lot of love and deliciousness in these posts. You will be well fed.

    Sweet Potato & Black Bean Burritos from This Week for Dinner
    Truffle Sweet Potato Frites from Savory Sweet Life
    Sweet Potato & Chicken Sausage Stew from Chefdruck
    Honey Sweet Potato Biscuits from Food for My Family
    Sweet Potato Burgers from Cutie Booty Cakes
    What’s Gaby Cooking and Sweet Potato Day
    The MIssion List and Sweet Potato Day
    World Moms Blog and Sweet Potato Day
    Go Graham Go and Sweet Potato Day
    Cranberry Sweet Potato Crumb Cake from Barbara Bakes
    Bourbon and Marshmallow Sweet Potatoes from Boston Mamas
    Documama and Sweet Potato Day
    Sweet Potato Bread Pudding from Eat the Love
    Lamb Shanks with Sweet Potatoes and Sausage from Kitchen Gadget Girl
    Sweet Potato Love To Help End World Hunger from Love That Max
    Celebrating Sweet Potato Day with Mom Trends
    Sweet Potato Chili from Righteous Bacon
    Cooking Sweet Potatoes for Picky Eaters from Rookie Moms
    Sweet Potatoes and Global Health from Third Eye Mom
    Indian Spiced Sweet Potato Kielbasa ONE Skillet Bake from Tickled Red
    Sweet, Dude, Sweet Potato Breakfast Hash from Helen Jane
    Oh My Sweet Potato Apple Bake from Bowl Licker
    Sweet Potato and Peanut Gratin from Non-Reactive Pan
    Sweet Potato Fries from When You Wake Up a Mother  (also found on Million Moms Challenge)


  8. Tuesday, May 3, 2011

    Beets That Are Pure Gold + Roasted Beet Salad

    I’ve tried to convince you to like beets before, and I’m not going to stop until I get at least one of you beet haters on the beet bandwagon. As a beet convert myself, I know it’s possible. And, today, I’m going to make it even easier for the beet haters to give them another try.

    Here’s the secret: eat golden beets. I don’t even know where you can find them because I found them in my CSA bag the week before Easter. But all of you (beet haters and lovers alike!) should try to find fresh, in-season, golden beets sometime. The flavor is milder and, well, just plain yummy. (I think the food magazines are knocking on my door after that amazing description.)

    Before I get you thinking golden beets don’t taste like beets, they do. And, I’ll be straight with you…the non-beet lovers at the Easter feast did not gobble these beauties up. But the non-beet lovers did admit these beets are better than your average, run-of-the mill red beet. I consider that success.

    Plus, they’re gorgeous. Seriously. My camera ate them up almost as enthusiastically as I did.

    Roasted Beet Salad with Spinach and Goat Cheese
     
    Prep time
    Cook time
    Total time
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • - Beets (golden if you can find them)
    • - Spinach
    • - Goat cheese
    • - Your favorite salad dressing”¦Girard’s Champagne dressing is awesome with this salad
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the greens and ends off of the beets and wrap each beet in some foil. Place in a roasting pan. Roast 40-60 minutes, until beets are pierced easily with a sharp knife. Let cool a bit, then peel of the skins.
    2. Slice beets then top with spinach, crumbled goat cheese and salad dressing.


  9. Tuesday, September 7, 2010

    My New Fave Go-To Meal: Stuffed Shells

    I’m always on the lookout for easy go-to meals. While I tend to rely on my go-to recipes a little too heavily, eventually making myself totally sick of them, I’m still grateful to have these gems in my arsenal!

    My latest favorite go-to meal is simple stuffed shells. No meat involved, super easy to make, and mighty delicious. It’s a little more effort than throwing together spaghetti, but not much. You just need to think ahead a bit – make sure you have the cheeses on hand, and give yourself time for baking. But, seriously, they’re easy to make. And my girls gobble them up.

    Please feel free to share your own stuffed shells recipe!  Here is how I’ve been making mine lately. Yum.

    great go-to stuffed shells recipe from @janemaynard

    Simple Stuffed Shells
     
    Simple, delicious and reliable go-to recipe for stuffed shells.
    Author:
    Recipe type: Italian
    Ingredients
    • Half box of pasta shells (about 20)
    • 1 container ricotta cheese (I think they’re 16 oz – whatever is at your standard grocery store)
    • A few cloves of garlic, mashed through garlic press
    • About 1 tsp. salt
    • A few shakes of black pepper
    • A few tablespoons chopped fresh basil
    • 1 egg, slightly beaten
    • About half a jar of tomato-based pasta sauce
    • Handful shredded fresh parmesan cheese
    • A few handfuls shredded mozzarella cheese
    Instructions
    1. Boil shells as per package directions. Drain and make sure they don’t stick to each other.
    2. Mix together the ricotta, garlic, salt, pepper, basil, and egg.
    3. Stuff your shells, maybe about a tablespoon per shell. Use up all the filling for about 20-24 shells.
    4. Place shells in a 9×13 baking dish, drizzle with pasta sauce (I think I used about half of a jar or so), then sprinkle the top with mozzarella cheese.
    5. Bake in 350 degree oven until hot and bubbly, about 25-30 minutes or so.


  10. Thursday, April 15, 2010

    Vegetarian Chickpea Burgers

    Since we’re on a quest to eat less meat, I’ve decided that I need to find some good veggie burger recipes. Nate’s mom was raving about a vegetarian chickpea burger recipe, which she shared with me this week. I made them last night and they are Yum-O. (I just said that because it’s a Rachael Ray recipe. I promise never to say “Yum-O” again.) vegetarian chickpea burgers 1 web These vegetarian chickpea burgers have really great flavor, and they are super easy and fast to make. As with many homemade veggie burgers, handle with care so they don’t fall apart on you. Last night we topped ours with lettuce, tomato, avocado and sauteed mushrooms. While the mushrooms were tasty, I think next time I’ll switch them out for thinly sliced cucumber and sprouts…and I won’t forget the cheese, which I did this time. Phooey. I will definitely be trying other veggie burger recipes as well and will let you know how they go!

    Vegetarian Chickpea Burgers
     
    From Everyday with Rachael Ray via my mother-in-law Pat
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dish, Vegetarian
    Ingredients
    • 1 15-oz can chick peas, rinsed and drained
    • 1 4-oz can diced green chiles
    • ⅔ cup packed flat leaf parsley
    • ⅔ cup bread crumbs (Pat note: I use regular, flavored, Panko – whatever. Jane note: I used Panko last night)
    • Salt and pepper
    • 1 large egg
    • 2 tablespoons veggie oil (Pat note: I have used olive too)
    • 4 thin slices cheddar cheese
    • 4 burger buns
    • Ketchup, mayo or other toppings (Pat note: I never use these or the cheese or the buns. Jane note: she’s being totally serious here. ha!)
    Instructions
    1. Now”¦ In a food processor, pulse the chickpeas, chiles and parsley till finely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the bread crumbs and s and p to taste (Jane note: I only did ~1/2 tsp salt – should have done more). Stir in the egg and form the 4 patties, each about ⅔ inch thick.
    2. Then”¦ In a large skillet heat the oil over med low heat. Cook the burgers for 4 minutes then flip and cook for 3-5 minutes and add cheese if desired. Pat usually cooks till they are nice and golden brown. (Pat note: Don’t forget, you can shape them into fun designs, like fake turkey legs or letters for your kids!)
    3. Postscript: These are way easier to flip in the pan if you make them into mini-burgers. Click here for a follow-up post with more info on miniaturizing the burgers!

    vegetarian chickpeak burgers 2 web