Since there was no way I could eat 2 plus cups of turnip green and garlic scape pesto, by the spoon, I decided to use some of it as the ‘dressing’ for a green bean and corn salad. This is one of my favorite things about summer. These kinds of meals are totally my thing. Plenty of fresh produce and meals with lots of vibrant colors! And as a bonus, minimal cooking is involved. I seriously can’t get enough of it!!
A simple salad dressed with my turnip green and garlic scape pesto! YUM!!
- 12 oz green beans, trimmed and chopped into 2" pieces
- 3 ears corn
- 8 oz cherry tomatoes
- small chunk of cheese - I used a hard sheeps milk cheese, swiss cheese is a good substitute
- 1/2-1 cup pesto
- Steam prepared green beans until just tender. Rinse with cold water and set aside to drain.
- Slice kernels off the cob and place in a large bowl.
- Quarter or half the tomatoes and add to the corn.
- Chop the cheese into a small pieces, ~1/4" cubes, and add to the corn.
- Use a paper towel to fully dry the green beans and add to the corn.
- Season with s&p and gently mix.
- Add the pesto starting with a half cup and gently toss until everything is evenly coated. Add more pesto if desired. I think I used about 3/4 cup.
- Refrigerate to chill and serve.
The cheese I used is herve mons pyrenees brebis. It's a hard slightly pungent sheep's milk cheese. Swiss cheese or even parmesan would be a perfect substitute or you can omit the cheese if you prefer.
I enjoyed this for lunch topped with flaked tunafish and balsamic vinegar.
Lately when I make soup I’ve been embracing ‘one’ vegetable soups – broccoli soup, leek soup, roasted squash soup, and now mushroom soup. My usual comfort zone involves cooking soup in the crockpot adding in plenty of this and that and letting the slow cooking method work its magic. But I’m hooked on these stove top soups I’ve been making. They are straightforward requiring minimal preparation and cooking time. I always say good food does not have to be complicated and time and time again I find myself gravitating more towards this. I constantly change things up in the kitchen yet the simple creativity is endless!
A delicate soup made with a mixture of royal trumpet and shiitake mushrooms. Thyme, garlic, onion, and white wine add plenty of flavor and coconut milk creams it out!
- 6 oz royal trumpet mushrooms, sliced thin lengthwise
- 6 oz shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced into thin strips
- 3 garlic cloves, minced/pressed
- 1-2 tablespoons ghee
- 2 large sprigs thyme, leaves removed
- 2 tablespoons dry white wine
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- In a pot heat up the ghee over medium low heat. Add the onion and cook 8 minutes until they have started to soften.
- Raise the heat to medium and once hot add the mushrooms and garlic. As the mushrooms start to sweat stir in the thyme leaves and the white wine.
- Once white wine has evaporated off scoop out a few mushrooms and set aside for garnish. Pour in the chicken stock and coconut milk. Season with s&p.
- Simmer a few minutes and then puree using a blender or immersion blender until smooth. Season with more s&p if necessary.
- Serve topped with a few thyme leaves and reserved mushrooms.
If you can't locate royal trumpet mushrooms use all shiitake instead.
I served this with baked wild salmon.
Sometimes it’s fun to change up your typical side dish. And even better when you can combine two potential side dishes into one. Less dishes, less cooking, all win wins here! I knew I was making sweet potatoes for dinner and when I saw the cauliflower staring at me in the fridge I decided to throw them both into the mix. I know this doesn’t sound super exciting but with the addition of caramelized onion and garlic this became something delicious!
Mashed Cauliflower and Sweet Potato
Mashed cauliflower and sweet potatoes. Creamed with greek yogurt and coconut milk and seasoned with caramelized onions and garlic. YUM!
- 2 sweet potatoes, chopped into chunks
- 1 lb cauliflower florets
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, sliced into thin half moons
- 2 garlic cloves, minced/pressed
- 3/4 cup greek yogurt, plain full fat
- ~1/4 cup coconut milk *
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- Heat up a skillet over medium low heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once warm add the onion and cook until fully softened about 20 minutes. If the onions start to brown too much lower the heat and/or if they stick add the other tablespoon of olive oil. Add the garlic and cook another 5 minutes to just soften.
- Meanwhile using a steamer basket place the sweet potatoes on the bottom and the cauliflower on top. Steam about 12 minutes until fully soft. Remove and place in a large bowl.
- Too the sweet potatoes and cauli add the greek yogurt and coconut milk. Start with 1/8 cup coconut milk. Mash using a hand masher or immersion blender until desired consistency adding more coconut milk if needed. I left mine just a bit chunky and used just under 1/4 cup coconut milk. Season generously with s&p and stir in the caramelized onion/garlic and parsley, reserving a bit for garnish.
* I typically don't have dairy milk in the house, if you do feel free to substitute it for the coconut milk.
Here’s the last of my Thanksgiving recipes I’m going to share with you all. As I mentioned before I was really happy with how everything turned out. Lots of fun bright flavors coming from each dish. And our pie was the perfect ending.
Late summer I made a large pot of strawberry rhubarb pie filling and canned it. The rhubarb was from our garden. I didn’t follow a recipe but instead winged it and hoped for the best. I was extremely happy with the result and the consistency was just right! Not too runny and not too thick. Go me!! And Josh made the crust using this recipe, it turned out perfect!!!
As for brussel sprouts, I really love them. Particularly when roasted. There’s something about their earthy flavor when properly cooked that really hits the spot. I don’t find they need much else other than a nice bit of salt, pepper, and olive oil. But since it’s the holiday season I wanted to change it up. Make a more festive dish with some exciting flavors.. dries cherries, orange zest, walnuts, honey, and balsamic vinegar. Sound festive enough for you? It definitely was for me!
Balsamic Glazed Brussel Sprouts
- 1 lb brussel sprouts, trimmed and sliced into thirds lengthwise
- 1 onion, thinly sliced into half moons
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1/3 cup chopped dried cherries, unsweetened
- zest of one navel orange
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- olive oil
- In a dry pan toast the walnuts over medium heat until lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside.
- In a large skillet heat up a bit of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook a few minutes until it starts to soften. Add the brussel sprouts and stir to coat with oil. Cover skillet with a lid and cook 3 minutes. Remove lid and stir. Cover again and cook another 3 minutes. Remove lid and stir. The brussel sprouts should be browning. Add a bit of water to deglaze the pan while stirring often. The sprouts should be tender crisp at this point. If not cover and cook a bit more.
- Add the walnuts, cherries, and orange zest. Season generously with s&p. Turn heat down to low.
- In a small saucepan add the honey and balsamic vinegar. Over low heat warm through while whisking.
- Place brussel sprouts in a large bowl and top with balasmic vinegar. Mix gently and serve.
On a typical day I make greek salads using rice as the base. Yes you read that right, at home I make rice greek salads and leave the lettuce based ones for the restaurants. But since I’m trying something else, cauliflower is slowly becoming my new best friend. Typically I don’t love cauliflower but I’m finding ways I really do enjoy it. It’s all about discipline when it comes to this protocol, counting your macros. It’s a personal decision I’ve made. I’m doing it for myself, gaining more knowledge, and trying to achieve a better state of fitness and physique. I did make the decision to take on this venture right as the holidays approach, which is going to be a true test of motivation and balance. I will completely own my cheat meals while navigating through traveling and being out of town to the best of my ability. I mentioned I will do a post strictly explaining my approach to counting macros sometime in the near future. Stay tuned!
Now back to this recipe. When I eat cauliflower one of my preferred methods is roasted. Flavored with garlic and lemon juice it transforms into something really delicious. A perfect base to a salad. And from here I ran with it adding in some other veggies, making a greek inspired dressing, and topping it off with some feta cheese. Always sheeps milk feta. It will come packed in brine and should be from Greece. If you do a taste test you will quickly realize how superior it is to get the real stuff! I buy mine from Trader Joe’s, finding it to be priced appropriately for our budget.
This salad is vegetarian and to fulfill my protein intake I served it along with a side of ground lamb. I kept it simple browning it with lots of garlic, lots of fresh rosemary, and topping it with lots of fresh parsley. I was trying to keep my cooking time to a minimum but making lamb meatballs to serve on top would make for a prettier presentation. Just a thought..
A greek inspired roasted cauliflower salad.
- 1 small head cauliflower
- 1 small head romanesco (or use one large head of cauliflower)
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/2 meyer lemon
- olive oil
- 5 green onions
- 3 kale leaves
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives, roughly chopped
- 3 tablespoon capers
- 3 oz feta cheese, sheeps milk
- 1 tomato, chopped
For the dressing:
- zest of 1 meyer lemon
- juice of 1/2 meyer lemon
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon mustard (I used German style)
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon greek seasoning
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Break cauliflower and romanesco into bite sized pieces and place in plastic produce bag. Add a drizzle of olive oil and shake around to coat. Place cauliflower and romanesco in a 9x13 pyrex dish.
- Mince garlic and add to cauliflower. Season with s&p. Zest meyer lemon and set zest aside. Juice half of the lemon over the cauli/romanesco. Roast in oven for 25-30 until tender and lightly charred. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Place whole green onions in produce bag to lightly coat with olive oil. Place in same pyrex dish and roast for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
- Meanwhile remove stems from kale, wash, and dry. Chop into small pieces and place in a salad bowl. Massage with your clean hands until it starts to break down. Add the cauliflower.
- Place the lemon zest in a small jar and add the dressing ingredients.. lemon juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, mustard, maple syrup, and greek seasoning. Season with s&p. Cover with lid and shake. Taste and adjust any ingredients if needed. Pour over cauliflower and kale, mix well.
- Chop green onion and add to salad along with kalamata olives, capers, tomato, and lightly crumbled feta. Season with s&p and toss gently.
- Serve at room temperature.
I chose to serve this salad along with ground lamb which I seasoned with lots of garlic, fresh rosemary, and fresh chopped parsley.