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April 03, 2016

Easy Baked Beans

Beans, beans good for your heart. They are a very healthy choice as a side or meatless main dish. Not only do they provide a good source for protein, they are also high in Vitamins A and C, calcium, phosphorus and iron.

Bush's Best Beans are my go to for baked beans. They come in so many flavors now that you can decide on what you're in the mood for.
My favorite choices are traditional and homestyle. They also have a vegetarian style.

The secret is to slow cook them.

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September 16, 2015

Quinoa Burgers

This recipe came from Eating Well. I wanted a burger recipe that used quinoa because it is a complete protein grain, meaning it contains all essential amino acids including albumin. It is also lower in fats and carbohydrates than most grains.

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August 07, 2015

Pancetta and Herb Risotto

Risotto is made with Arborio rice, a very traditional Italian dish. There have been many variations created with added ingredients such as shrimp, vegetables and cheese but the basic recipe is standard. The dish begins by sautéing onions and rice, stirring in white wine and adding hot broth until the rice is creamy and tender.

To serve this as a vegetarian dish, omit the pancetta and replace the chicken stock with tomato juice.

Wine Pairing: A French or Spanish Rose wine

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July 31, 2015

Tortellini in a Parmesan Cream Sauce

It amazes me how flavors come together to create a delicious recipe. I wanted a creamy sauce without all the calories so I used chicken broth as the base as in my Afredo sauce but this is even richer.

Evaporated milk is used to give it a creamy texture, providing only 2 grams of fat/serving.

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May 23, 2015

Spring Pea Salad with Creamy Curry Dressing

This salad was amazing. It was shared at our Cooking Light Dinner Club last week. All the dishes we prepare come from Cooking Light magazine and this one was from the April 2015 issue.

It was different and that is what I liked about it. Using curry powder gave the salad a unique flavor that most salads don't have and it was yummy.

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May 09, 2015

Savory Mushroom Turnovers


These little mushroom turnovers were so good and the wine pairing at Ashes Wine and Spirits was one of the best- a Pinot Noir from Chile.

This recipe could be made into a mushroom pie large enough to feed 8. See how...

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January 11, 2015

Feta and Dill Galette with Lemony Spinach Salad

Try something different for dinner tonight. Instead of serving crackers or bread with your salad this version provides a salad, carbs, and cheese all in one.

A galette is usually a flat cake made with a flaky pastry dough, a common French tart. It can be savory or sweet, topped with fruit, jam, nuts, meat and/or cheese.

Make your own version by using a different cheese, adding sausage, crumbled bacon or even diced chicken. Might I also suggest using goat cheese and shrimp or crab.

The possibilities are endless!

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January 05, 2015

Vegetable Tart

This tart was delicious and the presentation was inviting, beginning with a flaky crust that was filled with roasted vegetables and creamy goat cheese.

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December 01, 2014

Kale Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash, Beets and Snow Peas

I try not to brag but this salad was so good. I started with a base of fresh kale greens, prepackaged and ready to eat. Kale is a member of the cabbage family and packed with many vitamins and minerals especially vitamins A, C and Folic Acid. Then I added colorful roasted vegetables also packed with vitamins and minerals. The vinaigrette brought all the flavors together.

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May 04, 2014

Ziti with Portobello Mushrooms, Caramelized onions, and Goat Cheese

The way to get the most flavor out of this dish begins with caramelizing the onions and cooking the mushrooms until they are golden brown. With all the flavor you won't need to reach for the salt.

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January 29, 2014

Roasted Red Pepper Relish

Long ago people made relish to use and preserve the vegetables out of their gardens. Today we are more likely to use relish to spice up a dish or add a flavorful topping to meats and vegetable dishes.
Roasting the peppers intensifies the flavor and creates a slightly sweet and smoky flavor.

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January 08, 2014

Simple Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce

Fresh tomato sauce with garlic and basil can be tossed together in just minutes. Add spaghetti and anything else you like. Complete this fine meal with a garden salad and a good bottle of Chianti.

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August 04, 2013

Grilled Eggplant

Eggplant is a wonderful when grilled. With its meaty texture, it can be served as a main dish or in this case a great side. Since eggplant will absorb oil like a sponge, grilling is a great cooking method that requires little oil. The grill will impart a delicate smoky flavor and a slightly crisp surface.

I wanted a new recipe and found this in one of the Fine Cooking issues and got three recipes for one!

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January 02, 2013

3 Sausage Lentil Stew

Dried lentils are high in protein and iron, making them a good substitute for meat. If you prefer a meatless dish follow these directions and just simpley omit the sausage.

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December 30, 2012

Mediterranean Vegetable Pie

I love the presentation and the taste. The outside is crispy and the inside is creamy and cheesy. Try as a side dish or a vegetarian dish.

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July 11, 2011

Buttered Almond Green Beans

Green beans are in season July-late September in the south. I usually have more than I know what to do with. This recipe uses the tender, young beans. The almonds are a great source of nutrients, including protein plus they add great flavor.

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May 07, 2011

Texas Caviar (Black-Eyed Peas)

If you have ever turned your nose up to black-eyed peas try this recipe for a surprising result. Mom always served black-eyed on New Year's Day. She said for every one we ate we would have a day of good luck. I remember eating 365 but I didn't like it at all. If only I had this recipe I would have eaten two for every day of the year and doubled my luck.

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April 23, 2011

Romaine Caesar Salad

This popular salad was first made in 1924 by Italian chef Caesar Cardini at his restaurant in Tijuana Mexico. As coincidently the first time I had Caesar salad was in Mexico while on vacation. It was prepared right at the table and what a show that was.

A "real" Caesar salad has salad greens that are tossed with a garlic vinaigrette with grated Parmesan cheese and anchovies.

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April 14, 2011

Carrot Pachadi

I don't remember where I found this recipe but I love it. The traditional Indian spices combine with the sweet carrots creating a flavor sensation

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April 08, 2011

Wild Mushroom and Rice soup

Any combination of mushrooms will work in this soup. Since each mushroom has its own flavor together they will create a wonderful complex flavor. Make it a vegetarian dish by using vegetable broth to replace the beef broth.

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March 27, 2011

Easy Broccoli Casserole

This was the recipe my mom made for Thanksgiving dinner for as long as I can remember. She doesn't make it anymore but on occasion I do. I usually make a lighter version without the mayonnaise. But this is a traditional recipe that everyone loves.

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February 23, 2011

No Guilt Creamy Spinach

When you taste this rich, creamy dish you won't believe it's a healthy version. Enjoy as a side dish or serve with vegetables, crackers or low fat tortilla chips for an appetizer.

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November 01, 2010

New Ideas for Sweet Pototoes

Bet you didn't know that the sweet potato is a tuberous root vegetable belonging to the same family of plants as the morning glory. It is a particularly popular food in the southern United States, especially during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. Their sweetness makes them versatile so think outside the traditional recipe this holiday season and try these new ideas.

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October 10, 2010

Cooking Wiser Alfredo Sauce with Pasta

Many people love Alfredo sauce but they don't want all the fat and calories. I came up with this recipe several years ago. It has more flavor, better texture and half the calories. I prefer this recipe to the tradition Alfredo recipe that tends to glue my insides together.

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Arugula Salad with Roasted Pears, Beets and Goat Cheese

Arugula is a peppery, aromatic salad green that is becoming more popular in the U.S. The Italians have been very fond of Arugula for many years. Try it in this salad and you will understand why they love it.

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September 26, 2010

Ginger Pumpkin Bisque

This soup is like eating warm pumpkin pie with a spoon. Try the great garnishing ideas and suggestions for adding a zesty twist.

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Marinated Mixed Grilled Vegetables

A great way to use all those garden vegetables plus get at least two servings of the recommended 5 fruits or veggies a day.

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Layered Mint Salad

The layers in this salad create a beautiful presentation. Allow it to set for a few hours before serving to develop the flavor profile.

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September 02, 2010

Mushroom Ragout or Sauce

This is a fantastic side dish that can be used with anything even cardboard :o)Enjoy it with steak, chicken, or add more stock and create a wonderful mushroom soup. See my tip on how to make a very simple mushroom side dish

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June 07, 2010

Basil Pesto

Basil, called the royal herb by ancient Greeks and a token of love by the Italians is the main ingredient in pesto. It provides a peppery flavor with a little spice with hints of clove and licorice

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June 06, 2010

Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding

My friend Nancy shared this recipe with me many years ago and it is one of my favorites. It is a wonderful side dish for the Holidays that utilizes any combination of mushrooms. One mushroom that enhances the flavor is the shiitake but the baby Portobellos (cremini) are also a good choice.

I usually serve it only on special occasions because it is high in calories with lots of cream, eggs and butter. You can alter it to a healthier version but in this case I would recommend you just have a small piece and Enjoy!

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April 30, 2010

Recipe: Roasted Broccoli & Marinara with Penne Pasta

A bit tired of Pasta Primavera (sometimes it feels like that's always the only vegetarian dish many restaurants have)? For a very tasty alternative, try this old world style pasta dish with broccoli and other veggies!

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