I have recently gotten hooked on a new food addiction- goat cheese. I have always loved cheese, but never had tried goat cheese until a few weeks ago on a boat in Cape Town. Many thanks to the guys who bought the large assortment of cheeses for the party. Many people do not like goat cheese, probably because of the funky kick it has compared to other cheeses. For me, that is what makes me love it! I have given into the prices and decided to suck it up and buy good cheese. It really does make such a difference when you have fresh real cheese.
As many of you know, the world of food blogging is huge. How can you follow all the good food blogs there are? The answer is you can’t, there are just too many! So this brings up the crucial question- how do you get people to read and follow your own blog when you are just a tiny ant in the food blogging universe? Maybe the answer is in the recipes; but what kind will people want to read- healthy, hearty, easy, quick, gourmet? Or maybe the answer is in the writing; maybe your witty sense of humor or helpful information will win you followers. Personally, I think these two things are important, but every food blog reader has different tastes and personalities. You can never meet everybody’s standards. You need to be yourself and post what you want, and the way to still gain followers when doing this? I believe it’s all in the photos.
While continuing my quest for unique Italian meals that aren’t pasta dishes, I came across an article in Clean Eating magazine on ways to make hearty Italian food a bit healthier. Although I didn’t take their advice on using fish instead of red meat, I did take their advice on using low-fat dairy products and whole wheat pasta. For this recipe I was sure to add lots of spinach for added nutrients.
This week the weather has gotten nicer and it is starting to feel a bit more like summer, finally! The sunshine and warm weather has caused a shift in my food cravings; I’m sure many of you experience the same thing each season. For me, warm weather makes me crave light food and summery flavors, such as citrus.
These individual dishes are light, and not to mention kind of cute! They are great for a dinner party. It does not take long to make and the individual gratins make serving much easier. This recipe is very light and healthy, perfect for summer. The balsamic vinegar gives a great tangy kick to the dish as well. I also baked some extra tomato slices to drizzle with balsamic and serve with the dish. These go great served with roasted asparagus with lemon or a nice salad.
There are a few classic things that I feel like every cook needs to try at some point, even if you just cook at home for fun. Wontons are one of those things. I personally think they are kind of a hassle, but they are a good thing to know how to make and will expand your culinary skills. This week’s throwback recipe is from the first time I ever made wontons, for a wonton soup.
This soup is light and healthy. It is great if you are feeling a bit under the weather or if you simply want a refreshing lunch on a cold day. The fried wontons give the soup a nice crunch if fried properly. I usually struggle with frying things since I don’t have a thermometer and don’t fry things that often. It’s important to fry the wontons at the right temperature or else they will burn (too hot) or get soggy (too cool). Enjoy!
I will start this post by saying that I am aware of my pesto addiction. I find myself putting pesto on everything. The original recipe I found for these turnovers did not include pesto or cheese, but I felt that they would keep them from being too bland. My mom recently posted a recipe for Homemade Italian Sausage that had me intrigued. I was surprised how easy it was to make! I think if you are planning on dicing up your sausage, you might as well just make your own.
These turnovers are a perfect lunch or easy-to-eat dinner. They have lots of healthy veggies and delicious flavor all packed into one little turnover (or one large if you are me!). You want to be sure to strain out the excess liquid after cooking the filling, otherwise you will end up with a soggy turnover.
Also, you will notice that my recipe is in a new format. I finally got my new plugin, Easy Recipe, to work (HUGE thanks to my IT friend Cooper here in Cape Town!). If you are a food blogger you should definitely get this plugin, it helps your recipes get noticed on big search engines like Google by formatting them properly for the recipe search.
We all have those nights where we don’t want to make a complex recipe for dinner. We just want three things- a meat, a starch and a veggie. The problem I have with that meal is that it ends up being so bland! This Thursday’s throwback recipe is an easy way to dress up your chicken for those kind of nights and give your dinner an original taste.
I would like to thank Picky Palate for introducing me to this recipe last fall so that I can talk about it today and pass it onto you! This recipe combines delicious bruschetta with chicken and cheese to give you a brand new type of baked chicken breast.
As a kid, pork chops and applesauce were always a family dinner highlight. In my family it was known as “pork chawwwps and apple sauwwwce”. To this day I still love it, but I also love exploring different sweet combinations for pork. Recently, I discovered this delicious recipe in a cookbook from my grandma called America’s Best Lost Recipes. This recipe has that same sweet kick that applesauce gives pork, but includes more nutritious components.
To make sure that you don’t overcook your pork, be sure to have a meat thermometer handy. Also, I made sure that I cooked the potatoes and pears long enough before cooking the pork, to ensure that they were nice and soft. This dish is easy and great to feed a large group.
I recently read an article about edamame and all of its amazing health benefits. If you don’t know much about edamame, it is a green soybean that is a great source of protein, contains all 8 essential amino acids and has no cholesterol of trans-fats. It is high in fiber and iron as well. I’ve like edamame for a while now, but this just makes eating it even better! It is a great addition to many meals and is definitely one to try if you haven’t yet. This dish is simple- marinated shrimp and rice with edamame. When sautéing the shrimp, deglazing the pan adds a ton of flavor that regular sautéing wouldn’t.
Sometimes nothing can beat a home-cooked Italian meal. I don’t make pasta much after working at Noodles & Co. for a year, but oh man these were good. I would hardly put these into the pasta category; they are so rich and delicious!
For this week’s throwback recipe, I give you my turkey, spinach and cheese stuffed shells. Stuffing these bad boys was a bit of work, but it was totally worth it. Once they are done and you bite into their gooey, cheesy goodness you will understand.