February 2013

Erin Gleeson

Let’s Party: Olive Pastry Bites

Hello! Erin from The Forest Feast here, with a simple entertaining idea. These little Olive Pastry Bites are quick, easy and impressive. Not to mention tasty!! Simply wrap big pitted olives in puff pasty, sprinkle with parmesan and bake. Warm out of the oven, they are a fun addition to cocktail hour!

Ingredients:

1 small jar of stuffed green olives (pimento, garlic, almond or blue cheese stuffed. Approx 24 olives)

1 package puff pastry (store bought, defrosted)

1/4c grated parmesan cheese

Directions:

Drain and pat dry the olives using paper towels. Using a jar lid or a small glass, cut circles out of the puff pastry dough. Place an olive in the middle of each pastry circle and pinch to enclose the olive fully. Place the wrapped olives on a cookie sheet (pinch side down) and sprinkle each with a pinch of parmesan. Bake according to the pastry’s packaging instructions- approx 20 min at 350 degrees (or until they are golden).

The Forest Feast is a blog by Erin Gleeson full of simple, colorful vegetable based recipes with photos and watercolor illustration. After working for many years as a food photographer in NYC, Erin moved to a cabin in the woods where she is currently working on The Forest Feast Cookbook. Follow Erin on Twitter and  Instagram, @theforestfeast.

 

 

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Kristin Porter

in-season eats: Honey-Soaked Quinoa Salad with Grapes & Cashews

Alright, so there’s nearly a foot of snow on the ground, but that isn’t stopping me from dreaming about warmer weather ahead, specifically, spring break!

In just a few week’s time folks from all over the country will be shedding their hats and mittens for shorts and flip flops, and flocking towards warmer weather, wherever that may be. Me? I’m heading to Charleston, South Carolina at the end of March with my husband for a week of fun, sun, and what else – lots of southern food!

Anyways, after months of enjoying hearty, homestyle suppers, I’m on the lookout for lighter, yet flavorful meals that will fill me up, but ensure I’ll be able to fit into the tank tops and sun dresses I’ll be packing for my trip, like Honey-Soaked Quinoa Salad with Grapes, and Cashews.

This hearty salad is as flavorful as it is colorful with the additions of crisp grapes, spicy red onion, sweet dried apricots, and creamy cashews, tossed with hearty quinoa, baby spinach, and a zingy, gingery dressing. Quinoa and cashews are high in protein, so this salad filled me right up, but it’d also be great topped with a chicken breast marinated in some of the dressing and then grilled. Either way – you can’t go wrong.

Start by making that gingery dressing I mentioned, which combines fresh ginger with garlic, honey, vinegar, lime juice, and extra virgin olive oil. Pour all the ingredients into a jar with a tight fitting lid then shake to combine.

Next cook up some quinoa then add to a bowl with with dried cashews and dried apricots. Tip: make sure to rinse your quinoa very, very well in a fine mesh sieve under cold running water before cooking, even if the package says “pre-washed”. Quinoa has a naturally bitter coating called saponin which will throw the taste of the dish off if it isn’t properly rinsed off before cooking.

Next add halved red grapes and thinly sliced red onion.

Finally, add vitamin-rich baby spinach on top then toss everything together with half the dressing.

Plate up, then dig in!

Fresh and flavorful, you will absolutely love this light, figure-friendly salad. The mixture of textures and flavors kept my mouth guessing with every bite. Fun, and delicious to eat!

Click here for the Honey-Soaked Quinoa Salad with Grapes & Cashews recipe >


Delish Dish Editor

Spicy Brazilian Turkey Soup

Hello again, it’s Sheena, digital food editor for bhg.com, joining in today. This week my checking account was dangerously low and I had several perishable ingredients in my fridge to use up so I turned to this healthy Spicy Brazilian Turkey Soup recipe from Eat Well, Lose Weight magazine. This homey recipe allowed me to use up a partially-used can of leftover coconut milk, cilantro, and that one random bottle of beer in the back of my fridge, while utilizing other ingredients I have stockpiled (peanuts, garlic, onions, etc).

As usual, I improvised a bit to make this soup recipe fit my needs. I didn’t have turkey on hand and didn’t want to spend the money protein usually costs, so I opted for pulling from the many, many chicken breasts in my freezer. The greatest moment making this recipe came when I had the ingredients in the pot simmering. I had to run upstairs to transfer laundry and as I made my way back downstairs I caught the wafting aroma of beer, tomatoes, and ginger mingling on the stovetop. Irresistible!

In keeping with my theme of using up ingredients, I opted to garnish each bowlful with some chopped avocado that needed to be used up. The avocado seemed to marry nicely with the other Mexican ingredients. All the wonderful flavors from bold ingredients and fresh herbs made this a wholly satisfying, low-cal meal! Check out more great healthy recipes when you download your digital copy of Eat Well, Lose Weight magazine by clicking here. Get the recipe here: Spicy Brazilian Turkey Soup

 


Lauren Brennan

Cornmeal-Blueberry Scones

 I was going through my pantry the other day trying to seek a little organization when I came across an almost full cornmeal container. Why was it so full? Because I only use cornmeal for cornbread. And when do I make cornbread? Whenever I make some chili.

Clearly it’s been a while since my family has eaten chili.

And cleaned out my pantry, apparently. Umm….anyways….

I headed to bhg.com in hopes to find a different way to use my neglected cornmeal and boy did I find a winning recipe!

I found a fabulous recipe for Cornmeal-Blueberry Scones. They seemed pretty simple to whip up, but the recipe called for lime zest and juice! A little unexpected, but definitely turned out to be the hero of this treat! The zest adds such a light and fresh flavor and the juice made the glaze tangy and delicious! I loved these and so did my husband’s co-workers!

My daughter wasn’t a big fan of the tangy glaze, so she opted for butter on hers which ended up tasting pretty good too! Duh.

Butter + anything = amazingness.

If you’d like to try these Cornmeal-Blueberry Scones out at home {which you totally should}, click here for the printable recipe.

Enjoy!


Kate Taylor

better cook: the anything frittata recipe

the anything frittata by cookie and kate

Hello! Kathryne from Cookie and Kate here. Frittatas are one of my go-to quick, clean-out-the-fridge meals, so they seemed the perfect subject for my latest Better Cook post. As long as you have some eggs, milk, cheese and vegetables, you can whip up a frittata for breakfast, brunch or dinner in no time! Slices of frittata also make great leftovers, too, whether served warm or cold.

I based my frittata off BHG’s “Anything Frittata” recipe, but in the spirit of the “anything” frittata, I used the Greek-style ingredients I had on hand. I also halved the recipe, using 4 eggs and 1/4 cup milk, and cooked the frittata in an 8-inch pan. Other ingredients included a big handful of chopped fresh spinach, sliced Kalamata olives and roasted red pepper, chopped shallot and crumbled goat cheese.

To make a frittata, simply whisk together eggs with a splash of milk or half and half and a dash of salt, pepper and maybe some dried herbs. Chop up your vegetables, shred the cheese, and start cooking.

Preheat your broiler and put an appropriately sized, oven-proof skillet on the stove over medium heat. Add a splash of olive oil or a big pat of butter. Cook the vegetables until crisp-tender, then pour the egg mixture on top. At this point, I just use a spatula to push the curds to the middle as they set, cooking for a few minutes, then I top the eggs with cheese and put the whole pan in the oven for a few more minutes, until the frittata is fully set. Slice and serve!

frittata tips by cookie and kate

Once you have the basic method down, frittatas are basically foolproof. Here are a few more tips to help make sure your frittata turns out fantastic:

1) Use quality eggs. My eggs came from a local farm; they are better for you and taste better, too.

2) Most recipes will tell you to use a non-stick skillet, but I have better luck with a well-seasoned cast iron skillet. Cast iron skillets are non-toxic, too, and you don’t have to worry about scratching them—just slice and serve right from the pan.

3) Top the egg mixture with cheese right before you put it in the oven. Melted, golden cheese on top is extra delicious.

4) If you aren’t in a rush to eat, try preheating your oven to 350 degrees and letting the frittata bake for longer instead of using the broil setting. I think it produces a creamier texture. And don’t skip the splash of milk!

5) For a simple side, roast fingerling potatoes while you’re working on your frittata. Just scrub the potatoes and pat dry, then toss with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. Bake until the potatoes are easily pierced through with a fork (about 25 to 30 minutes).

Enjoy! And don’t miss BHG’s “Anything Frittata” recipe.

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Michael Wurm, Jr.

A Night at the Oscars

 

It’s hard to believe that the 2013 Academy Awards are just around the corner. While I can’t say I’ve seen all of the movies on this year’s list of nominees, I’m always excited for the star-studded event. I will admit I’m a huge fan of Adele, so I’m pretty exited about seeing her perform “Skyfall” and I do hope she takes home the award for best original song. No offense to the other equally deserving nominees. Anyway, I think the Oscars are a reminder for all of us to indulge in the finer things of life. This year, for your Oscar celebration I recommend serving up some steak. It doesn’t get any finer than that, right? Start the night off with one of these fabulous grilled steak recipes from BHG. Serve something unique like Sirloin Kabobs with Avocado Sauce or cook up a classic such as Ribeye with Garden Tomatoes. Personally, I think I’ll make the Chocolate, Balsamic and Blue Cheese Fillet.

1. Cowboy Steak and Whiskey Butter // 2. Rosemary Porterhouse Steaks with Olive Mayo // 3. Tenderloin with Grilled Corn Relish // 4. Chocolate Balsamic and Blue Cheese Fillet // 5. Peppered Rib-Eye Steak with Grilled Sweet Peppers // 6. Top Sirloin Kabobs and Avocado Sauce // 7. Ribeyes with Garden Tomatoes // 8. Lemon Butter Flank Steak

 

To add even more glamour to your celebration, I’m sharing a few Oscar-inspired party accessories. These are some of my favorite pieces that won’t break the bank, but certainly look like a million bucks. They also have classic style, so they can easily be incorporated into your other celebratory decor.

1. Swirled Symmetry Dinner Plate // 2. Laguiole Steak Knives // 3. Alexander Decanter // 4. Mercury Candleholders // 5. Foiled Dot Napkin Set  // 6. Ernest Chrome Bar Cart // 7. Sorrento Platter // 8. Quartz Plate

 

Let’s get this party started! Best of luck to all the nominees. And the Oscar goes too…

 

Cheers,

Michael Wurm, Jr. – Inspired by Charm