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Posts tagged “Dill

Hummus Havarti Harvest Pizza

Hummus Havarti Harvest Pizza

I woke up early this morning. There is a chill in the air. It is cool enough to open the windows and to sit on the patio and have a cup of tea. The fresh air smells so wonderful after the stale air conditioned air I’ve been breathing all summer.

There are tomatoes on my little potted tomato plants! Not a lot of them, but enough to give me a little of that wonderful juicy fresh garden tomato taste that you just can’t get from a store. I feel grateful for these beautiful little plants and the pollinators who visited my porch to help create this plump red fruit. I love the soft fuzziness of the vines and the lively fresh tomato scent on my fingers after I touch them.

Tomatoes on the vine

It’s Friday. We will be seeing my parents tomorrow. I feel happy and content.

I made this pizza for lunch the other day. It is such a good pizza to make this time of year when the harvest starts coming in. If I have just a few cherry tomatoes, then I like to use them on pizza to really highlight their pretty color and juicy flavor.

Hummus Havarti Harvest Pizza

Hummus Havarti Harvest Pizza

The smoked Havarti cheese was a gift from Dofino cheese. It is a creamy, soft, smoky cheese that goes so wonderfully on so many things. I’m not giving amounts here because I was making a little individual-sized pizza, but you can easily scale it up to make a full-size pizza for your family.

  • Pizza crust (I used my Zucchini Asiago Whole Wheat Flatbread)
  • Hummus
  • Smoked Havarti cheese, shredded
  • Fresh cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Chopped cucumber
  • Avocado, pitted, peeled, chopped
  • Fresh dill, snipped (or a sprinkle of dried dill would do in a pinch)

Heat the flatbread briefly in the oven at 425, then spread with a thick layer of hummus. Top with the shredded Havarti cheese and the halved cherry tomatoes and then pop it the oven to bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Add a tumble of fresh cucumber and  avocado, then sprinkle with dill and enjoy!

Hummus Havarti Harvest Pizza

This recipe was shared at Katherine Martinelli’s Tomato BloghopFoodie Friends FridayFit & Fabulous FridaysScrumptious Sunday and Weekend Potluck.


#Tomatolove: Sundried Tomato Ranch Dressing

Sundried Tomato Ranch Salad Dressing

After making Melissa’s Sundried Tomato Vinaigrette, I still had a few sundried tomatoes left and I thought perhaps I should try throwing them in some ranch dressing too? Yep, it works. Tastes mighty fine. The sundried tomatoes do make it thicker, so if you want a drizzle for your salad, you’ll need to thin it out a bit.

Sundried Tomato Buttermilk Ranch Salad Dressing (or Dip)

  • 1/3 c. light mayonnaise
  • 2/3 to 1 c. buttermilk
  • 1/4 c. nonfat greek yogurt
  • 3 heaping tablespoons chopped sundried tomatoes
  • 2-3 big fresh cloves of garlic
  • A handful of fresh basil leaves
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Several fresh parsley leaves or ½ teaspoon dried parsley
  • A few fresh dill twigs or ½ teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • A sprig of fresh rosemary leaves
  • 2 green onions (tops only)

Whir all the ingredients in a handy chopper or food processor until smooth. Adjust seasonings to taste. Add more buttermilk as needed to get the dressing to the desired consistency. Mine was pretty thick, but I was using it for a pasta salad so that was just perfect.

Use for pasta or potato salad, on green salads or as a dip with vegies. Store in a covered container in the fridge.

Sundried Tomato Ranch Dressing (or Dip)

This is a post for #tomatolove.

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This recipe was also shared at Summer Salad SundayScrumptious Sundays, Weekend PotluckManic MondayTip Junkie, Cast Party Wednesday and EveryDay Mom’s Meals


Hot & Cheesy Kale & Salmon Dip

Hot & Cheesy Kale & Salmon Dip

I was seriously craving spinach artichoke dip yesterday … but alas! I am all out of spinach. Hmm, but I have kale … and it occurred to me … why does spinach get all the attention? Shouldn’t kale get to play in the dip too?

I also had some salmon that we had barbecued the other night that needed using, so I threw that in the dip too. By this time, it was getting pretty tasty, so I skipped the artichokes altogether and threw it in the toaster oven to bake. It totally satisfied my craving, and then some. I’m kinda wishing I hadn’t eaten it all … I would really like some more now … these pictures are making me hungry!

I think this dip would be fantastic with shrimp or crab in place of the salmon …

Hot & Cheesy Kale & Salmon Dip

Hot & Cheesy Kale & Salmon Dip

This makes a small portion, just right for 2 people snacking (or one hungry muncher). Double (or triple) the recipe if you are serving to several people.

  • 1 heaping up of kale leaves, chopped roughly (about 2 ribs of kale)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • Several sprigs of fresh dill
  • 3 Tablespoons white wine
  • 3/8 cup of salmon, flaked
  • 1/4 cup fat free plain greek yogurt (or more if you want a creamier dip … I like lots of “stuff” in my dips)
  • about 2 oz. of goat cheese
  • 1/3 cup shredded Dubliner cheese (or parmesan)
  • A bit of shredded mozzarella or Italian blend, for the top

Directions:

  1. Put the kale leaves, garlic, onion, and dill in a food processor or handi chopper and process till the kale is chopped into tiny bits.
  2. Heat a frying pan to medium heat, spray with cooking spray, then add the kale mixture and the wine. Stir it around a little and cover to cook for just a few minutes, then remove the cover and cook a minute longer to evaporate the moisture from the wine.
  3. Mix the kale mixture with the greek yogurt, salmon, goat cheese and shredded Dubliner cheese.  Put in a small casserole or oven-safe bowl and top with a little bit of shredded mozzarella cheese.
  4. Bake at 350 for about 10 – 15 minutes or until the cheese is all melted and bubbly. Serve with chips, crusty slices of bread, or vegies for dipping.

Hot & Cheesy Kale & Salmon Dip

This recipe was shared at Melt in your Mouth MondaysMakin’ you Crave Mondays and Totally Tasty Tuesdays.


Herbed Asparagus Quinoa Egg Ramekins

with Goat Cheese & Havarti

Herbed Asparagus Quinoa Egg Ramekins

I was wishing I had some hashbrowns this morning so I could make some hashbrown & asparagus egg cups with cheese … but I didn’t have any. No potatoes either. But I did have some cooked quinoa in my fridge … and quinoa is a very versatile ingredient.  So I decided to try my little breakfast cups with quinoa in them instead of hashbrowns. Although I really really love hashbrowns, I have to say the quinoa was marvelous, and just one of these little ramekins filled me up for quite a while.

Quinoa is a super-healthy grain about the size of a small couscous that has a great texture and a lot of protein and fiber in it … so it’s the perfect breakfast food because it will help keep you going strong for a long time.

Herbed Asparagus Quinoa Egg Ramekins

Herbed Asparagus Quinoa Egg Ramekins

with Goat Cheese and Havarti

Makes 2 small (3-inch diameter) ramekins, just perfect for two light eaters or one more hefty appetite. You will want to multiply the recipe if you have many mouths to feed!

  • Several asparagus spears (I think I used 5 or 6 spears about 6 inches long each)
  • 4 Tablespoons cooked quinoa
  • A few crumbles of goat cheese
  • A few tablespoons of shredded havarti cheese
  • Red onion, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/8 cup milk
  • Mixed snipped fresh herbs: basil, terragon, dill, green onion, garlic scapes (or other fresh herbs! use what you’ve got!)

Directions:

  1. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray, then place the clean asparagus on the sheet. Spray the spears lightly with cooking spray, then sprinkle with Red Robin seasoning or your favorite seasoned salt. Bake at 350 for about 5 minutes or until the spears are crisp tender. Chop the spears into little chunks.
  2. Spray each ramekin with cooking spray, then put 2 tablespoons of cooked quinoa in each cup. Add a few goat cheese crumbles to each, then some red onion, a bunch of asparagus, and a bit of havarti on top.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the egg and milk till smooth, and season with Red Robin Seasoning (or salt) and freshly ground pepper. Stir in a bunch of snipped fresh herbs.
  4. Pour half the egg mixture into each ramekin. Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes or until the egg is set and the cheese is melted.
See the pretty little bits of quinoa in there? They add a lovely chewy almost-crunch to the dish. I think you’ll love it.

Herbed Asparagus Quinoa Egg Ramekins

This recipe was shared at Totally Tasty TuesdaysDelicious Dish Tuesday, Cast Party Wednesdays, Recipe of the Week and Fit & Fabulous Fridays.


Roasted Asparagus, Bacon & Smoked Gouda Omelet

with fresh tomato, dill, garlic scapes and red onion

Asparagus Bacon & Smoked Gouda Omelet with Tomato, Dill, & Garlic Scapes

I needed something hot, hearty and healthy for breakfast this morning … after the big fundraiser last night, I was so exhausted, all I had for “dinner” was snack mix and beer. So I remembered I still had a bit of asparagus in my vegie drawer … what could I make with that?

I scrounged around and found half a tomato, some red onion, smoked gouda cheese, and a bit of bacon. Sounds like great omelet, right? It was perfect: just what I needed. Delicious, comforting, hot, and it gave my body all the things it needed … the only problem was I loaded it so full of good stuff, I had a hard time sliding it out of the pan. (This is a common problem with my omelets … I tend to overload my eggs!) No matter, I thoroughly enjoyed this delectable mess.

Asparagus, Bacon & Smoked Gouda Omelet with Fresh Tomato, Dill & Garlic Scapes

Roasted Asparagus, Bacon & Smoked Gouda Omelet

with Fresh Tomato, Dill & Garlic Scapes

  • 1 egg + 1 egg white
  • Several spears of fresh asparagus
  • 2 slices of bacon
  • Chopped red onion
  • Chopped tomato
  • Snipped dill
  • Garlic scapes (the green part of the garlic plant), snipped into small bits
  • Shredded smoked gouda cheese + shredded Italian blend of cheeses

Directions:

  1. Prepare your chopped vegetables and shred the cheese.
  2. Set the asparagus on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray and set in the toaster oven (or the oven) to roast at 400 for about 5 minutes or until it’s crisp tender.
  3. While the asparagus is cooking, in the same pan you would cook the omelet in,fry the bacon till it’s crisp, then remove the bacon to a clean towel and dab the top to soak up the extra fat. Pour the bacon fat out of the pan (save it for making things like bacon popcorn!) and wipe out the pan with a clean towel so there is just a very thin layer of bacon fat there. Crumble the bacon into bits
  4. In a small bowl, whisk the egg, egg white, and 1 tablespoon of water till fluffy. (Use water to keep the eggs moist without sticking to the pan.) Season with salt and freshly ground pepper (and/or my favorite: Red Robin seasoning). Add the snipped dill and garlic scapes and whisk briefly to combine.
  5. If you do this quickly enough, your skillet or omelet pan will still be hot. Turn the burner to medium-low heat, pour the egg into the pan and rotate it a little to spread the egg out over the bottom of the pan.
  6. Quickly sprinkle the herbed egg with the cheeses, chopped vegetables, and crumbled bacon. By the time I got done adding everything, the egg was cooked and the cheese was melted. Still I covered the omelet and cooked just briefly to make sure everything was cooked through. The omelet should be just lightly browned on the bottom.
  7. With a spatula, carefully fold over one side of the omelet onto the other, then slide it out of the pan onto a serving plate. Hopefully you’ll have better luck with that than I did … those tomatoes you see on top there? They were actually INSIDE the omelet when I started. Oh well! As long as it tastes good, right?
I can only eat about half of one of these omelets at a time … but that makes for a perfect quick meal later. Today this was breakfast AND dinner! Now I’m all ready for yoga and then a glass of wine. Ah what a perfect day!

Asparagus, Bacon & Smoked Gouda Omelet with Fresh Tomato, Dill & Garlic Scapes

This recipe was shared at  Trick or Treat TuesdaysCast Party WednesdaysTastetastic Thursday, Fit & Fabulous FridaysThis Week’s Cravings: Eggs and Fabulous Friday.


Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream

Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream

It’s my favorite time of year. Asparagus season. I adore asparagus. It’s beautiful. It’s elegant. It’s delicious. It’s versatile. It’s the perfect vegetable.

I suppose I could go buy it at the store just about any time I want it, but I don’t. I wait for spring. I wait to go to my parents’ house where they have this HUGE asparagus bed and I can pick and pick and pick to my heart’s content.

And then once asparagus season is over, I don’t cook with asparagus till next spring. Don’t ask me why. That is just how it is.

Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream

Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream

I made 8 rollups. I have seen this type of thing done with store-bought crescent rolls. I suppose you COULD do that, but being the freakazoid make-my-own-bread fiend that I am, I just used my bread machine to make the dough. It’s so simple … why not?

Dijon Dill Cream

  • 3 Tablespoons light cream cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Several little sprigs of fresh dill, snipped
  • 1/2 cup shredded Havarti cheese

Rollups

  • Fresh bread or crescent roll dough (I used this bread dough)
  • 16 – 48 asparagus spears (just the top 3 – 5 inches of each spear)
  • 8 Slices (or chopped) lean ham (I used chopped ham, but I think thin slices wrapped around the asparagus would be prettier)

Directions:

  1. Make the bread dough. I used my French bread dough and made it in my bread machine on the dough setting. I made a whole recipe of the dough, then used about 1/3 of the dough for this recipe and made the rest into a small loaf of French bread. If you want to make all of the dough into rollups, just make about 3 times as much Dijon Dill Cream and adjust the amount of asparagus accordingly.
  2. Make the Dijon Dill Cream. In a small bowl, mix the cream cheese, yogurt and mustard until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the dill and havarti cheese. Set aside.
  3. Place the asparagus spears in a microwaveable dish, add a little water, then cover and microwave for a minute or three until the asparagus is just crisp tender.
  4. Roll out the bread dough into a large rectangle. Cut out half as many 4 inch squares as you will want for rollups, then cut each square in half diagonally to make a triangle.
  5. Spread each triangle with dijon dill cream, then lay the asparagus and ham on the triangle, with the tips of the asparagus poking past the tip of the triangle. I used 2 sprigs of asparagus per rollup but I wish I had put in more! I think 3 or 4 per rollup would be just perfect.Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream
  6. Roll the bread dough around the ham and asparagus, then carefully lift and place on a greased baking sheet.Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream
  7. Spray the rollups with cooking spray, cover with a clean towel and let rise in a warm place for about 20 – 30 minutes.
  8. Bake at 350 for about 10 – 12 minutes or until they are lightly golden brown. Let sit for just a few minutes before serving and serve while they’re still warm. If you have any leftovers, keep them in a bag in the fridge then reheat for a few seconds in the microwave.

They really don’t need any dipping sauce … they are SO good just like this, but if you like, you can serve them with avocado ranch dressing … or thin out some of the dijon dill cream with a little milk to make it into a dipping sauce.

You could serve this as an appetizer or alongside soup or salad for a lovely lunch or light dinner.

It needs a little more than 2 spears per rollup, don’t you think?

Ham & Asparagus Rollups with Dijon Dill Cream

If you want to see what they would look like with slices of ham wrapped around the asparagus, check out this beautiful post from The Fresh Fridge.


Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing (Low Sodium Option)

Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing with Low Sodium Option

I found some lovely ripe avocados at the store today and it just occurred to me that avocado would be delicious in a Ranch Salad Dressing. Maybe I live in a hole, but why haven’t I ever seen that before?

Before today, that is. Because here it is! Tada! Super quick, super healthy, super delicious, and if you have someone who is watching their sodium, then just leave out the salt! It’s still fantabulous.

Lowfat Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing with Low Sodium Option

Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing with Low Sodium Option

To reduce sodium: If you leave out the salt altogether, this salad dressing has 75 mg of sodium per 2 Tablespoons; with 1/4 teaspoon of salt, this dressing has 149 mg sodium. I did a quick check and store-brand ranch dressings have sodium content ranging from 200 to 500 mg in 2 Tablespoons of dressing.

Makes about 1 cup of dressing (8 servings/2 Tablespoons per serving)

  • 1/3 c. light mayonnaise
  • 1/3 c. 1% milk
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • About 1/2 a handful of fresh basil leaves
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Several fresh parsley leaves or ½ teaspoon dried parsley
  • A few fresh dill twigs or ½ teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • Several chives
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • A sprig of fresh rosemary leaves
  • 3 green onions (tops only)
  • 1/4 of a ripe avocado (you could probably even add more avocado if you want …)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (Leave out the salt altogether if you want less sodium … I made sure to taste it before I added salt, and it was delicious.)
  • 1/3 c. nonfat greek yogurt

Whir all the ingredients except the yogurt in a handy chopper or food processor until smooth. Stir in the yogurt. Adjust seasonings to taste. Store any leftovers in a covered container in the fridge.

Lowfat Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing with Low Sodium Option

This recipe was shared at Newlyweds Recipe Linky and Full Plate Thursdays.


Salmon, Havarti, Blue Cheese & Veggie Omelet

Salmon, Havarti, Blue Cheese & Spring Vegetable Omelet

I still had some salmon in my fridge from the other night when I made it for my daughter (I made extra just for times like this … salmon is such a fun fish to “play” with!) and a bit of Havarti and blue cheese, some cucumber, red onion, tomato, and dill … sounds like a fantastic omelet … It was.

You see, Wednesday night was yogilates night. It’s a tough workout. Usually after yoga on Wednesdays, we go out for wine. I never eat after that … I just roll into bed. So I tend to wake up on Thursday mornings just STARVING … time for an omelet.

Salmon, Havarti, Blue Cheese & Spring Vegetable Omelet

Salmon, Havarti, Blue Cheese & Spring Vegetable Omelet

Blue Cheese Dilled Salmon Spread:

  • 1 oz. light cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon or so of blue cheese
  • A sprig of fresh dill, snipped
  • Garlic scapes, snipped … or a bit of fresh garlic, chopped
  • A bit of finely chopped onion … or green onion
  • A small fillet of salmon, grilled or smoked

Omelet:

  • 1 egg + 1 egg white
  • Dabs of the Blue Cheese Dilled Salmon Spread
  • Chopped red onion
  • Chopped tomato
  • Chopped cucumber
  • Snipped dill
  • Shredded Havarti cheese
  • Flakes of cooked or smoked salmon
  • Tomato slices and sprigs of dill for garnish and toasted french bread

Directions:

  1. Mix up the Blue Cheese Dilled Salmon Spread by mixing all the ingredients together in a small bowl. This will make more than enough for an omelet, so use the rest for salmon cucumber toasts or serve it as a spread with crackers. It’s lovely that way.
  2. Prepare your chopped vegetables and shred the cheese.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the egg, egg white, and 1 tablespoon of water till fluffy. (Use water to keep the eggs moist without sticking to the pan.) Season with salt and freshly ground pepper (and/or my favorite: Red Robin seasoning).
  4. Heat a skillet or omelet pan over medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Arrange your omelet toppings close by so you can work quickly once you start cooking.
  5. When the pan is hot, add the egg to the pan, swirling to coat the bottom of the pan, then quickly sprinkle with dabs of the salmon spread, the chopped vegetables, dill, salmon, and Havarti cheese. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook for a few minutes or until the cheese is melted and the egg is cooked. The omelet should be just lightly browned on the bottom.
  6. With a spatula, carefully fold over one side of the omelet onto the other, then slide it out of the pan onto a serving plate.

Salmon, Havarti, Blue Cheese & Spring Vegetable Omelet

This recipe was shared at Weekend Potluck, the Egg Blog Hop and Talent Show Tuesday.


Tulip & Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toasts

a.k.a., Tiptoe through the Tulips with Me Salad

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Blue Cheese Cucumber Toast

I have been wondering what beautiful blossoms in my yard are edible? There must be something besides dandelions and wild violets …

So I did a little research and it turns out there is a reason the deer chomp off the tulip blossoms so quickly … they’re delicious! Tulips have a faint taste sort of like asparagus, but with a lighter, more flowery taste.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Blue Cheese Cucumber Toast

I have planted a lot of tulips, but I don’t get to see very many of my sweet tulip blossoms, thanks to the deer that visit my yard so frequently. I welcome the deer as a magical presence in my life … and at the same time I get frustrated with them for killing my trees, eating all my tulips, lilies, strawberries, hostas, apple and apricot trees (will I EVER have apples?) … it’s very hard to garden with deer around.

I had just three surviving tulip flowers  … I figured I had better pick them before the deer got them.

Please do not try eating your tulips if you use chemicals on your tulips or on your lawn anywhere near your precious tulips.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toast

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Blue Cheese and Pinons

  1. Find some greens. I snipped some “volunteer” greens from my garden. Make a bed of greens on your salad plate or bowl.
  2. Arrange tulip petals and wild violet greens and blossoms (whatever you have) on top of your greens.  (Just please make sure there aren’t any nasty lawn chemicals on your flowers!)
  3. Sprinkle your beautiful salad with crumbled blue cheese and toasted pine nuts (pinons) … or other nuts of your choosing.
  4. Drizzle with your favorite vinaigrette. I was sure I had some berry vinaigrette in my fridge, but I couldn’t find it and settled for my maple cranberry vinaigrette. It worked out beautifully anyway.

Salmon Cucumber Toasts

  • French bread
  • 1 oz. light cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon or so of blue cheese
  • A sprig of fresh dill, snipped
  • Garlic scapes, snipped … or a bit of fresh garlic, chopped
  • A bit of finely chopped onion … or green onion
  • A small fillet of salmon, grilled or smoked
  • Cucumber slices and basil leaves, for the top

Directions:

  1. Toast the french bread lightly
  2. Mix the cream cheese, blue cheese, scapes or garlic, onion, dill and salmon in a small bowl till mixed well.
  3. Spread the french bread toast with the cheese mixture and top with cucumber slices and basil leaves.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toast

This recipe was shared at Full Plate Thursdays, Tastetastic Thursdays, Katherine Martinelli’s Easter Blog Hop, Fit & Fabulous FridaysEveryday Mom’s Meals and Totally Tasty Tuesdays.


Garlic Ranch Potato Bake with Mushrooms

Garlic Ranch Potato Mushroom Spinach Bake

I was in a potato mood. This was just one of those things that just happened one day. I walked into my kitchen, pulled out things that ought to go with potato, snipped some fresh dill from the rogue dill plants that just volunteered to grow in the pots I brought inside and suddenly I had this crazy potato mushroom spinach bake all hot and ready … it was the perfect potato lunch.

Before you can make this baby, you need to make some of this skinny garlic basil ranch dip … go do it … you won’t be sorry …

Garlic Ranch Potato Mushroom Spinach Bake

Garlic Ranch Potato Bake with Mushrooms

This is for a small bowl of potatoes, just right for one person for lunch, but you could easily scale it up to make a big casserole dish full. I ate it as a meal, but it would make a nice side dish too.

  • 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 potato, sliced thin
  • 3 – 4 mushrooms, sliced
  • Chopped onion
  • Fresh spinach and/or arugula leaves
  • Lowfat garlic basil ranch dip (recipe is here … or I suppose you could substitute another ranch dip if you have some on hand)
  • Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • A bit of bacon, cooked till crisp, drained on a clean towel, and crumbled
  • Fresh dill, snipped
  • Green onion, snipped

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Arrange the potatoes and mushrooms on the pan.
  2. Mix the olive oil and garlic in a small bowl and brush the potatoes and mushrooms lightly with the oil. Sprinkle with Red Robin Seasoning (or your favorite seasoned salt) and pepper. (If you want you could roast the onions alongside the potatoes and mushrooms as well. I wanted my onions crunchy.)
  3. Roast the potatoes and mushrooms at 400 F for about 10 minutes or until they are tender.
  4. Now take a bowl (or casserole dish if you are making this on a larger scale) and spray it with cooking spray.
  5. Make a layer of potatoes on the bottom, then top with mushrooms, onion, dabs of ranch dip, a bit of cheese, a few bacon crumbles, and dill. Top with some spinach leaves, then start another layer of potatoes.
  6. Repeat the layers until you run out of potato, ending with potato slices on top. You can sprinkle a bit of cheese on top if you like. I was trying to limit the amount of cheese and bacon to keep this dish light and healthy.
  7. Bake for 15 – 30 minutes (depending on the size of your pan), or until the cheese is nice and melted.
  8. Sprinkle with fresh dill and green onion and serve.

Garlic Ranch Potato Mushroom Spinach Bake

This recipe was shared at Cast Party WednesdayTastetastic Thursday and Full Plate Thursday.


Skinny Garlic Basil Buttermilk Ranch Dip

Skinny Garlic Basil Buttermilk Ranch Dip

This is an incredibly flavorful dip, but it doesn’t have to be a dip … add a little extra buttermilk and it’s a salad dressing. Or use it as the sauce for a pizza, instead of the red sauce. Spread it on little toasts and top with your choice of bruschetta toppings. It could be a sandwich spread. There are so many things you could do with this stuff!

I have actually shared this dip before, with my Blue Devil Jalapeno Poppers, but I made it again to use in a different way, and I think it deserves its own post. You can serve it with vegies or chips or jalapeno poppers or chicken nuggets. Add some blue cheese and use it for dipping buffalo chicken wings. This is such a versatile dip. You really need this in your life.

Skinny Garlic Basil Buttermilk Ranch Dip

Skinny Garlic Basil Buttermilk Ranch Dip

This dip has an intense garlic flavor … if you don’t like things too garlicky, reduce the garlic.

Inspired by Mother Thyme and Alice Q. Foodie

  • 1/3 c. light mayonnaise
  • 1/3 c. buttermilk
  • 1/4 c. nonfat greek yogurt
  • 2-3 big fresh cloves of garlic
  • A handful of fresh basil leaves
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Several fresh parsley leaves or ½ teaspoon dried parsley
  • A few fresh dill twigs or ½ teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • A sprig of fresh rosemary leaves
  • 2 green onions (tops only)

Whir all the ingredients in a handy chopper or food processor until smooth. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Skinny Garlic Basil Buttermilk Ranch Dip

This recipe was shared at Midnight Maniac Meatless Mondays, Totally Tasty Tuesdays, Cast Party Wednesday, Midweek Fiesta and Fit & Fabulous Fridays.


Grilled Corned Beef & Gouda Sandwich with Dill

Toasted Corned Venison & Gouda Sandwich with Dill and Green Onion

I made my corned “beef” early this year. (It’s not really corned beef, it’s corned venison … yes, it’s true. My dad corned some venison roasts and gave me a few … I love it when he does that!)

I will probably make another for St. Patrick’s Day proper, but my daughter wanted meat last week and she LOVES corned venison (or beef … I don’t think she really cares, as long as it’s meat). So I pulled out a corned vinnie roast and made it for her. But it was a rather large one this time, and we still had quite a bit left.

What do you do with leftover corned beef? Well, it makes for a lovely sandwich. Especially if you happen to have some homemade bread around, and I do. And if you have some fresh dill and green onions and some gouda cheese and garlic peppercorn mustard, well, that makes it all the better.

Toasted Corned Venison & Gouda Sandwich with Dill and Green Onion

Toasted Corned Beef & Gouda Sandwich with Dill and Green Onion

  • Fresh homemade bread, sliced (I used my honey oatmeal bread for this one)
  • Light butter
  • Corned beef (or venison), sliced and heated
  • Shredded Gouda cheese (about 1/2 cup per sandwich)
  • Fresh snipped dill weed
  • Chopped green onion
  • A nice gourmet (or dijon or spicy brown) mustard

Directions:

Spread one side of a slice of bread with light butter, flip it over and spread the other side with mustard. Sprinkle on some of the cheese, then add the corned beef slices. Top that with some snipped dill weed and green onion, then more shredded cheese. Sprinkle a bit more dill weed and green onion on there for good measure. It should look something like this:

Making a Dilly Toasted Corned beef & gouda sandwich

Okay, now take your other slice of bread and put it on top and lightly spread the outside of it (the top side, that is facing you) with some light butter.

Heat a frying pan to medium low heat and spray the pan with cooking spray. Carefully place your sandwich in the pan and cover the pan. Let the sandwich cook until it is brown on the bottom, then carefully flip it over with a spatula and cook, covered, till the cheese is melted and the other side is a lovely golden brown.

Slice it into quarters and chow down!

Dilled & Toasted Corned Beef and Gouda Sandwich

This recipe was shared at Foodie FridaysThursday’s Treasures, and Katherine Martinelli’s St Patrick’s Day Blog Hop.


Chicken & Tangerine Salad with Honey Ginger Yogurt Dressing

Chicken & Tangerine Salad with Honey Ginger Yogurt Salad Dressing

Sometimes it’s good not to have anything in the fridge to eat. It means I have to get creative if I want to have something good for lunch. I went into the kitchen at lunchtime, starving, completely ravenous, because all I had for breakfast was one of my little cranberry apricot energy balls, which seriously wasn’t enough …

So here I am digging through the fridge. The soup is gone. The ham is mostly gone … but there are two mostly-empty containers of salad greens that need to be used up … okay, then, a salad, but what to put on it? I pulled some chicken nuggets out of the freezer and looked for something to dress this up. In the fruit bowl are some forgotten tangerines … my daughter has me buy these big bags of “cuties” for her … she can eat a whole bag in one or two days, and then she wants more … but eventually she gets tired of them. At that point, there are usually a couple neglected tangerines left. This is one of those times. She has moved on to gala apples, and forgotten the tangerines.

So I settled on chicken and tangerines, and then started wondering what shall I dress this baby with? Scrounged some more and found a partly-emptied container of greek yogurt … yes! that’s it! yogurt and some freshly grated ginger … perfect.

Oh yes. Perfect.

Chicken & Tangerine Salad with Honey Ginger Yogurt Salad Dressing

Chicken and Tangerine Salad with Honey Ginger Yogurt Dressing

  • Mixed Salad Greens
  • Sliced Red Onions
  • Tangerines, peeled, separated, and chopped into chunks
  • Chicken nuggets or other cooked chicken, heated and chopped into chunks
  • Toasted almonds (yes, toast them … they are SO much better toasted!)
  • A bit of fresh dill for garnish

First make the dressing and let it set to mix the flavors while you prepare the salad.

Fill the salad bowl 3/4 full with the organic greens, and sprinkle with remaining ingredients as you please. Drizzle with the Honey Ginger Yogurt Dressing … or go ahead and DOUSE it with it if you so desire because this salad dressing is SO good for you.

Honey Ginger Yogurt Salad Dressing

There is no fat in this dressing (unless there is fat in your greek yogurt) and it has all kinds of goodness for your body. This is like the healthiest dressing EVAH, and I can’t believe it only has 5 ingredients. I never make things with only 5 ingredients!

I need to warn you: I really love ginger. I love the spicy heat of it. So I used a LOT of it in the dressing and I loved the intensity of it with the sweet tangerines and the crunchy chicken and the toasted almonds. If you are not a ginger fanatic, or if you are not sure if you are, I would recommend seriously toning down the amount of ginger in the dressing.

  • 1/8 cup plain greek yogurt (nonfat or lowfat)
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger root (if you’re not a ginger fanatic like me, cut it down to 1/2 – 1 teaspoon)
  • 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Mix all ingredients until well blended. The dressing will not be smooth because of all that yummy ginger root in there. It’s okay. Chunky dressing is a good thing sometimes.

Chicken & Tangerine Salad with Honey Ginger Yogurt Dressing

This salad was featured by Bon Appetit Magazine.

This recipe was shared on Foodie FridaysKatherine Martinelli’s DIY blog hopTotally Tasty TuesdaysKM’s Honey Bloghop and Gooseberry Patch Inexpensive Recipes.


Pomegranate Walnut Salad with Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette

Pomegranate Walnut Salad with dried cranberries, apricots, mixed cheeses and Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette

Pomegranates are so beautiful. I’ve been entranced with them since I studied Greek mythology way back in junior high school.

Then when we lived in California, our neighbors had a pomegranate tree … one long branch of the tree stretched into our yard and that one branch always gave us plenty of pomegranates. Not that it really mattered, because the neighbors let us go into their yard and pick pomegranates whenever we wanted. My kids used to sell pomegranates like some kids sell lemonade. The neighbors loved it.

When you open up a pomegranate, it is full of all these gorgeous little jewels; it looks like a treasure chest to me. And the taste of the little jewels when you bite into one … oh my.

If you want to make this salad, you will first need to make the Cranberry Raspberry Vinegar, and that takes about a week … just giving you fair warning. You could do some clever substitutions, perhaps, but the jewel-toned vinegar with the little pomegranate jewels in the salad is really quite nice.

Pomegranate Walnut Salad with Mixed Cheeses and Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette

Pomegranate Walnut Salad with Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette

with Dried Cranberries, Apricots and Mixed Cheeses

  • Organic Herb Mix (or mixed greens)
  • Pomegranate Seeds
  • Shards of Parmesan Cheese (cut very thin slices off the edge of a hunk of parmesan)
  • Toasted Walnuts, chopped roughly
  • Dried Cranberries
  • Chopped dried Apricots
  • Blue cheese crumbles

First make the dressing and let it set to mix the flavors while you prepare the salad.

Fill the salad bowl 3/4 full with the organic herb mix, and sprinkle with remaining ingredients as you please. Drizzle with Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette.

Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

  • 3/4 cup cranberry raspberry vinegar (recipe here)
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon strawberry or raspberry jam
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon, Spicy Brown or other fancy mustard (I used garlic peppercorn mustard)
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard seed
  • A couple of basil leaves, a small sprig of rosemary, and several sprigs of fresh dill weed

Mix all ingredients together in a handi chopper and whir until the herbs and garlic are well chopped and everything is mixed well. Refrigerate any of the remaining dressing.

Pomegranate Walnut Salad with dried cranberries, apricots, mixed cheeses and Maple Cranberry Vinaigrette

This recipe was shared at Midnight Maniac Meatless MondaysTotally Tasty Tuesdays, and Full Plate Thursdays.


Pumpkin, Pepper, Ham & Cheesy Rice Skillet Casserole

with dill, thyme, and tomato

Pumpkin, Pepper, Ham & Cheesy Rice  Skillet Casserole

This is a comforting, homey dish that goes straight from stovetop to oven to the table and is a delicious, complete and healthy meal all in one pan.

I returned from Thanksgiving at my parents’ house with a car full of food, wine, a spectacular placemat my mom found for me and a very special new pan. My dad had found a couple beautiful cast iron skillets at the thrift store for $3.50, and I just casually joked that I was tempted to take one home with me. So my sweet mother cleaned one up and gave it to me to take home. Did she know how much I wanted one? My mom is the best.

We had a ham on Saturday, so everyone got a big chunk of ham to take home with them. A skillet casserole seemed like the perfect thing to make to “christen” my beautiful new cast iron skillet.

Pumpkin, Pepper, Ham & Cheesy Rice  Skillet Casserole

Pumpkin, Pepper, Ham & Cheesy Rice Skillet Casserole

  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • Dried or fresh dill & thyme
  • Red Robin Seasoning (or your favorite seasoned salt)
  • 3/4 – 1 cup lowfat milk (I used 1%)
  • A dash of ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used a blend … I recommend a white cheddar, swiss, or
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked Bismati rice
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped tomato
  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat ham, chopped
  • Breadcrumbs, almond slices, tomato & feta cheese, for topping

Directions:

If you don’t have a cast-iron or other oven-proof skillet, just bake this in casserole dish.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Start the rice cooking.
  3. While the rice cooks, melt the butter in an oven-proof skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and bell pepper and sautee.
  4. When the onion is soft and translucent, add the flour and stir until the vegies are coated with flour.
  5. Add in the milk and stir, cooking over medium heat until you have a creamy white sauce.
  6. Continue stirring as you add the pumpkin and the shredded cheese. You should have a very creamy sauce. Season with nutmeg, dill, thyme, Red Robin Seasoning (or salt) and pepper to taste.
  7. Stir the rice, tomato, and ham into the cheesy sauce.
  8. Flatten the rice mixture with the back of a spoon and sprinkle with breadcrumbs, almonds, halved cherry tomatos (or chopped tomato) and feta cheese. I sprinkled a little extra dill and thyme on top too, just for good measure.
  9. Put the skillet in the oven and bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until the topping is lightly browned and the casserole is good and hot.

Pumpkin, Pepper, Ham & Cheesy Rice  Skillet Casserole

This recipe was shared at Newlyweds Blog Recipe LinkyThis Chick Cooks, Fit and Fabulous Fridays, and Gooseberry Patch Skillet Meals.


World’s Best Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki Sauce - Greek Cucumber Garlic Yogurt Sauce

I do sincerely have to thank Kalyn’s Kitchen for this Tzatziki Sauce recipe. I didn’t have everything that her recipe called for, so this is what I ended up using. You really have to go see her recipe for the step-by-step instructions with pictures. She did such an awesome job of it!

World’s Best Tzatziki Sauce

Adapted from Kalyn’s Kitchen’s recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 BIG cucumber, peeled and seeded
  • 2 -3 cloves of garlic
  • 6 oz. (3/4 c.) plain Greek yogurt
  • 6 oz. (3/4 c.) light sour cream (or use all Greek yogurt … makes for a more traditional tzatziki … I just didn’t happen to have enough Greek yogurt on hand, so I substituted some sour cream)
  • a bunch of fresh dill (about 1 T. of the fine green ends, chopped … that’s what Kalyn says … I didn’t measure it!)
  • a few fresh mint leaves

Directions:

  1. Peel and seed the cucumber, then sprinkle with salt and put in a strainer to drain off the excess juices.
  2. Put the cucumber on a clean kitchen towel and pat off any excess moisture.
  3. Throw the cucumber with the rest of the ingredients into a food processor and blend till smooth.
  4. Use on Gyro burgers, felafel, or as a dip with crackers and vegies–or actually this might sound crazy but I think my favorite thing to dip in tzatziki sauce is french fries. Seriously! It’s SOOOoooo good.
Tzatziki Sauce - Greek Cucumber Yogurt & Garlic Sauce

Healthy Herb-&-Parmesan Crusted Shrimp

Healthy Herb-&-Parmesan Crusted Shrimp with Angel Hair Pasta and Cantaloupe Salad

I asked my daughter tonight whether we should do burgers (I mean real MEAT burgers … ) or shrimp tonight, and she requested shrimp. She loooooooves shrimp. And crab legs. I haven’t cooked crab legs at home … that’s one of those things that I would rather have served to me at a restaurant. But shrimp … THAT you can cook at home. Deliciously.

This is a great way to make “breaded” shrimp without all the fat of deep frying the shrimp because you bake it! It’s fast too … It was Gina at Gina’s Skinny Taste that suggested that you could do this with shrimp! I have breaded and baked fish this way, but for some reason hadn’t thought of “breading” shrimp this way. It’s delicious … if it wasn’t for my kids (who don’t like nuts), I probably would have added some nuts … a few toasted pinons or almonds would be so GOOD in this … Ah well. It’s was super-yummilicious just like this.

Because the shrimp take a little bit of work, I wanted simple sides with it. So I served it with angel hair pasta tossed with a little Basil-Lime Pesto and a simple mixed green salad with some cantaloupe and a tequila-lime vinaigrette I had made for some previous dinner.

Let’s look a little closer at those shrimp, shall we?

Herb-&-Parmesan Crusted Shrimp

Well, maybe just a bit closer …

Healthy Herb & Parmesan Crusted Shrimp

Are you hungry yet? Let’s get started!

Herb and Parmesan Crusted Shrimp

Ingredients:

  • about 1 lb. large shrimp
  • 3/4 c. whole wheat bread crumbs
  • about 1/4 c. freshly grated parmesan (or asiago or romano) cheese
  • 1/2 t. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 t. tarragon
  • 1/2 t. dill
  • 1/2 t. Red Robin Seasoning (or seasoned salt)
  • 1/4 t. granulated garlic
  • freshly ground pepper (to taste)
  • 1 egg (you can substitute 2 egg whites or use egg beaters if you like)

Directions:

  1. Prepare your side dishes. Once the shrimp is done, you will want to serve it right away!
  2. If you are doing this in an oven, preheat to 450 degrees F. I use a convection toaster oven ( … so no preheating needed)!
  3. Coat your baking pan with cooking spray.
  4. Mix together the bread crumbs, grated cheese, and spices in a good-sized bowl for dipping.
  5. If the cheese shreds look too lengthy for breading (mine did!), whirl them in your food processor or handy chopper for a few seconds.
  6. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg (or egg whites or eggbeaters) till it’s well mixed and a bit frothy.
  7. Dip a shrimp or two or three in the egg first (to coat), then in the crumb mixture, flipping to coat each piece. I like to set the shrimp in the breading and use my fingers to “bury” it in the crumbs. Then carefully lift it out and set it on the baking dish. This makes for very messy fingers and I find myself rinsing them off a million times, but it’s fun AND it gets a little extra of those lovely crumbs on the shrimp. (You can also double dip your shrimp if you want extra breading–put them back in the egg mixture, then in the breading again.)
  8. Set the shrimp pieces on the baking tray, leaving a little space between them. Admittedly, mine were not spaced all that well.The "breaded" shrimp all ready for baking!
  9. When you’ve finished dipping all the shrimp, spray them liberally with cooking spray.
  10. Bake at 450 for about 6-7 minutes. At this point, you should go warn your eaters that it’s almost time to eat!
  11. Flip the shrimp, spray with cooking spray, then cook another 3-5 minutes on the other side.
  12. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and your delicious side dishes. :)

Oh yes! About that salad …

I was desparate for something quick to throw together to go with this shrimp and my girl had just cut up an entire cantaloupe into chunks for munching on. I had never put melon on a “green” salad before and I’ve got to tell you it was SO delicious! All it is is mixed organic greens with a few hunks of melon and sprinkled with Cooking Light’s Tequila Lime Vinaigrette on top. Oh so simple and oh so sweet! The dressing is even sweet, too, so even your children would like this (you could make the dressing without the tequila for them). The sweetness of this fresh melon salad with the salty herbed breaded shrimp and the garlicky angel hair pasta was just SO perfect!

Cantaloupe Salad with Mixed Organic Greens & Tequila Lime Vinaigrette

Here’s the dressing recipe again so you don’t have to go look it up:

Tequila Lime Vinaigrette (from Cooking Light Magazine)

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons tequila
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • Dash of salt

Directions:

  1. Toss all ingredients into a food processor and whir till blended. Or you can just whisk them all together in a bowl, but the food processor will chop up the cilantro really nicely. I used watermelon-infused tequila (made by soaking watermelon cubes in tequila for several  days). Cover and chill until ready to use.

This recipe was shared at: Recipe of the Week: Seafood


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