Sautéed Brussels Sprouts

I love brussels sprouts. I will eat them all year round! I also love balsamic vinegar, I put it in a lot of things (including chili). I saw this recipe and knew I had to try it. I added shallots because I wanted to add a depth of flavor and love the sweetness of the shallots and knew it would balance out the vinegar.

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts

sauteed brussels sprouts

Ingredients

1 (10 ounce) package shredded Brussels sprouts (you can buy them at Trader Joes)
1 shallot, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Directions

Place 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large (12-inch) saute pan and heat it over medium heat. Add the sliced shallots until soft and tender. Add the butter and the remaining olive oil. Add the sliced Brussels sprouts, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and saute them, stirring frequently, for about 4 to 5 minutes, until tender but still bright green. It might look like a lot of Brussels sprouts when you add them in the pan, but just like spinach, they will cook down. Once tender, turn off the heat and stir in the balsamic vinegar, season to taste, and serve hot.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/sauteed-shredded-brussels-sprouts.html

Buckwheat with Lemon-Parsley Pesto

My husband grew up on buckwheat so we decided to give it a try. We found this barley recipe and decided to use buckwheat instead. Adding pesto, pine nuts, and a little red pepper flakes makes this side dish a must-try!

Buckwheat with Lemon-Parsley Pesto

buckwheat with lemon parsley pesto

Ingredients

1 cup buckwheat
2 cups parsley
1 garlic clove
1 tsp lemon zest
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp kosher salt
pinch of red pepper flakes

Directions

Cook 1 cup of buckwheat as the label directs; transfer to a bowl.

Pulse 2 cups parsley, 2 tablespoons each olive oil and toasted pine nuts, 1 garlic clove, 1 teaspoon lemon zest and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt in a food processor until smooth.

Add the mixture to the buckwheat along with 2 more tablespoons toasted pine nuts and 1 tablespoon lemon juice; toss. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little something extra.

TIP: If the mixture is too sticky, just add olive oil until your desired consistency.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/barley-with-lemon-parsley-pesto.html

Crab and Lemon Aioli Bruschetta

My favorite new appetizer!! I love having crab in the summer, there is just something so light but meaty about it! Mixing the crab with the lemon aioli definitely makes this app what it is!

Crab and Lemon Aioli Bruschetta

crab and lemon aioli brushetta

Ingredients

Toasts:
1 ciabatta loaf, cut into 12 (1/2-inch thick) slices
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 clove garlic, peeled and halved
Crab:
8 ounces lump crabmeat
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Aioli:
1/3 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1 large lemon, zested
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

For the toasts: Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange the bread slices in a single layer on a heavy baking sheet. Drizzle both sides of the bread with the oil. Season with salt and bake until light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool for 1 minute, and then rub the toasts with the cut side of the garlic.

For the crab: In a small bowl, gently combine the crab, lemon juice, chives, and salt.

For the aioli: In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon zest, salt, and cayenne pepper.

Mix the crabmeat with the aioli mixture and place on top of the toasts.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/crab-and-lemon-bruschetta-recipe.html

Creamy Avocado Yogurt Dip

This recipe is such a great alternative to hummus. It contains minimal and simple ingredients to create such a healthy dip. The best part about this dip is that it doesn’t brown. Most avocado dishes will brown the next day, but this dip stayed green! If it does brown a tiny bit, your best bet is to add a little lime juice and mix.

Creamy Avocado Yogurt Dip

creamy-avocado-yogurt-dip

Ingredients
1/2 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt
2 ripe avocados, peeled and seeded
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
1 tablespoon finely chopped seeded jalapeño pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin (optional)
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
Pita chips, tortilla chips, cut up veggies-for serving

Directions

1. Place the yogurt, avocados, garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, lime juice, and cumin in a blender or food processor. Mix until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

2. Scrape dip into a serving bowl and serve with pita chips, tortilla chips, or cut up veggies.

Recipe Source: http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/creamy-avocado-yogurt-dip/

Caprese Panzanella Salad

Need a light, healthy, easy dish to bring to your next BBQ? This dish will be a hit on everyone’s palate! Buying ingredients that are already cut up, or the size you want them to be, makes this dish, and any, quicker to make. I used day old baguette slices to create my “croutons” for this salad. The best part about this recipe is that you can make as much or as little as you prefer of it, which is why the ingredients don’t have measurements.

Caprese Panzanella Salad

caprese panzanella salad

Ingredients

  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Mozzarella balls
  • Basil, chiffonade
  • Bread, any kind, cut in bite size pieces (It is best to use day old bread, or bread that is a little hard for this dish)
  • Italian dressing

Directions

Drain the mozzarella (if packed in water) and add them to a bowl with the cherry tomatoes. Chiffonade (or chop) the basil and add that to the bowl as well. Cut up bread into bite size pieces and add that into the bowl. Add just enough Italian Dressing to coat your salad. Toss and serve.

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts and Cabbage with Toasted Almonds and Shallots

This recipe takes my love for brussels sprouts to a whole new level! This healthy side-dish/salad is by far the tastiest! I even ate the leftovers cold the next day and it was just as good.

You can adjust the ingredients based on what you have on hand or add more of the ingredients you prefer most. As you can tell I used a lot of cabbage and brussels sprouts, and less of the almonds.

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts and Cabbage with Toasted Almonds and Shallots

brussels sprouts and cabbage salad

Ingredients

2 cups of Brussels sprouts, trimmed and sliced in half
2 cups of purple cabbage, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons of oil
¼ cup of slivered almonds
¼ cup of diced shallots
2 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper

Directions

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a pan oven medium-high heat. Add the Brussels sprouts. Cook the sprouts for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they start to brown.

While the sprouts are cooking, heat up the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a small pan over medium heat. Add the shallots. Sautee for 3-4 minutes until clear and then add in the almonds and garlic. Cook for another 3-5 minutes until everything starts to brown, but be very careful not to burn the almonds or garlic. Remove from the heat.

Once the sprouts have started to brown, add the red cabbage and continue to sauté until the cabbage is tender. Turn off the heat and add the toasted almonds and shallots. Give it a good toss and then season with salt and pepper.  Serve warm.

Serves 6-8 as a side dish

Recipe source: http://www.whatwouldcathyeat.com/2012/11/sauteed-brussels-sprouts-cabbage-with-toasted-almonds-and-shallots/

Buffalo Cauliflower

Talk about a healthy and spicy snack! This take on anything buffalo style takes cauliflower to the next level! These little bites of goodness are also baked and not fried which makes them that much healthier!

Buffalo Cauliflower

buffalo cauliflower

Ingredients

1 head of cauliflower (or 1 bag of cauliflower florets)

For the batter
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup water
dash of Frank’s Wing Sauce or Frank’s Original Hot Sauce (or any hot sauce of your choice…I am partial to Sambal chili sauce)
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon dried onion

For the buffalo sauce
1/4 cup Frank’s Wing Sauce (or any hot sauce of your choice…still partial to Sambal)
3 Tablespoons salted butter, melted
pinch of salt

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tin foil and spray with non-stick spray and set aside.

Wash your head of cauliflower and cut into florets. You can make a variety of sizes. Or buy your cauliflower already cut into florets.

In a medium bowl, mix together the batter ingredients. It will be fairly thick.

Dip each piece of cauliflower into the batter until fully and evenly coated. Place onto the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for about 15 minutes until the batter just hardens.

In a small bowl, mix together the buffalo sauce ingredients.

Once the cauliflower are done, remove from the oven and brush them with the buffalo sauce. Again, fully and evenly coat each piece.

Put back into the oven and bake for a few more minutes (5-7 minutes), until the sauce has mostly dried and the cauliflower is crispy.

Remove from the oven, let cool, then enjoy!

Recipe source: http://www.persnicketyplates.com/2013/04/buffalo-cauliflower.html

Zesty Shrimp Ceviche

This curbs any fancy ceviche craving with the simplicity of this recipe! I made this recipe at Christmas for my huge family and everyone LOVED it! I am not keen on cilantro, but if you are, this recipe will work great with some extra cilantro! What is great about this recipe too is that you can customize it. If you don’t like as much tomato, don’t add as much. If you’d like it a little spicier, keep the seeds in the jalapeño. I am sure you can fancy it up by adding lobster, or scallops! Mmmmm

Zesty Shrimp Ceviche

shrimp ceviche

Ingredients

  • 1 lb jumbo cooked shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails off, chopped
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 1 hass avocado, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeds removed, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • salt and fresh pepper to taste

Directions

Dice your onion. In a small bowl combine red onion, lime juice, olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper. Let the onions marinate for at least 5 minutes to mellow the flavor.

In the meantime, chop up the rest of your ingredients. In a large bowl combine chopped shrimp, avocado, tomato, and jalapeño. Combine all the ingredients together and gently toss. Adjust the taste with salt and pepper.

Recipe source: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2011/05/zesty-lime-shrimp-and-avocado-salad.html

Spinach Balls

I got this recipe from my aunt and I have officially declared this the easiest appetizer (and healthiest) of them all! It is a simple mix, form, and bake routine. You can have these as a side or as an appetizer but either way you can’t get any better than these bite size morsels of goodness!

Spinach Balls

spinach balls

Ingredients

2 packages of frozen chopped spinach; thawed and drained (I used frozen whole spinach in the pic above because that it what I had on hand)
2 cups italian breadcrumbs
1 medium onion, diced
4 eggs
3/4 cup melted margarine or butter
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
Form into balls with your hands (however big or small you prefer). I usually make these as a side, so I half the recipe (because there is only 2 of us), and form the balls about the size of my palm.
Bake on a baking pan for approximately 20 minutes or until golden. Do not let them brown.

Cheddar and Scallion Garlic Bread

I bought this Scallion Garlic butter at whole foods the other day and I had a whole stick of it. I have been using it with eggs, using it to cook meat and fish but still had quite a bit left. I saw that Giada made this cheddar and scallion garlic bread and I thought, “I have all those ingredients in one stick of butter!” So this recipe was super simple for me because most of the ingredients were already marinading together, all I had to do was add the cheddar cheese!

Below are the ingredients in case you don’t already have a stick a butter that has those ingredients in it. Even if you don’t already have a pre-made butter, this recipe is really easy and super yummy! I will never eat garlic bread the same way again!

Cheddar and Scallion Garlic Bread

cheddar scallion garlic bread

Ingredients

8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded or coarsely grated
6 ounces butter, at room temperature
4 scallions, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1  loaf ciabatta bread, cut in half horizontally

Directions

Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a food processor, combine the cheese and butter. Process until the mixture is smooth. Add the scallions and pulse until combined. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Spread the cheese mixture on the cut sides of the bread. Sprinkle a little bit of shredded cheddar cheese on top of the spread for extra cheesiness! Place on a baking sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes until golden.

Using a serrated knife, cut the bread into 1-inch thick slices and serve.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/cheddar-and-scallion-bread-recipe/index.html