Entries Tagged 'Side Dishes'

Spicy Pumpkin Soup with Cilantro Pepita Pesto

Spicy Pumpkin Soup with Cilantro Pepita Pesto, Pomegranate Arils, and Cotija Cheese

I don’t always love pumpkin soup.  So many winter squash soup recipes out there are very sweet and seasoned with either pumpkin pie spices or store-bought curry powder.  I do love pumpkin pie, but I prefer to eat it after dinner.  I know there’s a reason these flavor combinations are so prevalent – winter squash is absolutely delicious mixed with warm spices and sugar.  I just prefer something a little different in my soup bowl.

This spicy, smoky, and creamy soup is exactly what I was hoping for.  Brightened with a dollop of cilantro-pepita pesto and a generous squeeze of lime juice, it was really hard to stop after one bowl (so I didn’t).  I had some pomegranate arils in the fridge so I added a handful to my bowl along with a sprinkling of crumbled Cotija cheese.  The sweet crunch of the pomegranate seeds and the salty cheese were perfect with the soup and pesto.  And the more lime juice I squeezed on top, the better it tasted. Continue reading →

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Fall Fest: Spinach Pomegranate Salad with Apples and Walnuts

Spinach Pomegranate Salad with Apples and Walnuts

Fall has finally arrived here in California, bringing thunder, rain, and the cooler temperatures I’ve been waiting for.  While these cool gray skies have me dreaming of hearty soups and warm baked goods, the theme this week for Fall Fest is fall salads.  I’ll save the soup-making and bread-baking for next week since my kitchen is still only half unpacked – an easy fall salad was the perfect thing for me to make this week.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Continue reading →

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Melon and Mozzarella Salad with Honey, Lime, and Mint

Melon and Mozzarella Salad with Lime and Mint

I bought a delicious Crenshaw melon at the Farmer’s Market on Saturday and after eating a few slices for breakfast yesterday morning, decided to turn the rest of it into melon balls.  I had no particular reason for wanting to do this, it just seemed like a fun thing to do.  And we all know that food tastes better when it’s cut into fun shapes, right?

As I was scooping out the flesh with the antique melon baller that has been in my family for as long as I can remember, I thought about the half-empty container of fresh mini mozzarella balls in the refrigerator.  I had never combined melon with mozzarella before, but the melon balls and mozzarella balls were the same size and shape and the more I thought about it, the more it seemed like they were destined to end up in the same bowl. Continue reading →

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Summer Fest: Green Beans with Balsamic Browned Butter

Green Beans with Balsamic Browned Butter

It’s Summer Fest time and this week we’re celebrating herbs, greens, and beans.  My contribution to the party is a simple side dish of green beans dressed in a rich balsamic browned butter sauce.  It can be thrown together in minutes and has an extremely short ingredient list, but don’t let that fool you.  The flavor of these green beans will blow you away! Continue reading →

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Summer Fest: Creamed Corn with Bacon and Rosemary

Creamed Corn with Bacon and Rosemary

Summer Fest is in full swing and this week we’re celebrating corn, one of summer’s sweetest pleasures.  I have many fond memories of eating fresh corn on the cob in summer – sweet and salty and dripping with butter, it was always a welcome treat.

There’s even a special place in my heart for those funky plastic corn holders (shaped like corn cobs, of course) that my grandma would stick into the ends of the cob to keep our fingers clean and unburnt.  I can still remember how they felt in my hands as I rolled the hot corn against a cold stick of butter until it was was coated with a thick, drippy layer and the stick of butter had molded itself into a shape more suitable for the task at hand. Continue reading →

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Summer Fest: Grilled Zucchini with Lemon and Olive Oil

Grilled Zucchini for Summer Fest 2010

For the rest of the summer, my Wordless Wednesday posts will be replaced by Summer Fest 2010 – a cross-blog food event that celebrates the beautiful fruits and vegetables so readily available from home gardens and farmer’s markets at this time of year. The event is in its third year and I’m thrilled to be a part of it for the first time this summer.  Thanks to Margaret Roach and Deb Puchalla for creating this fabulous summer blogging party!

Each Wednesday for the next five weeks a group of us will be sharing tips and recipes centered around a specific garden theme.  There are several bloggers participating, new friends and old, and we will be linking to each other and encouraging you to share your favorite tips and recipes as well.  It’s a big celebration of summer produce and you’re all invited! Continue reading →

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Aunt Kathy’s Pickled Beets

Pickled Beets on Salad

While I haven’t always been a huge fan of beets – I swore they tasted like dirt when I was a kid – I will always eat them pickled.  To be honest, I’ll eat almost anything once it’s pickled (I still won’t eat pigs feet), but pickled beets are especially good thanks to the natural sugars present in the bright red root.

While there are tons of recipes for pickled beets out there, I want to share my Aunt Kathy’s method for pickling beets.  It’s simple and the results are absolutely delicious.  She douses the cooked beets with vinegar, seasons them with salt and pepper, and stores them in the fridge.  It’s really that easy.  The sweet and sour beets are a wonderful addition to salads, but I also like to eat them alone as a snack. Continue reading →

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Food Blog Friday: Fattoush from Kalyn’s Kitchen

Fattoush - a Lebanese salad recipe

This Lebanese salad is a perfect way to use up stale pita bread, but it’s so good that you’ll want to buy (or make) extra pita to ensure you’ll always have some left over for Fattoush.  The lemony garlic dressing spiked with sumac is what really makes this salad shine – I think I would eat just about anything as long as it was drenched in that concoction! The crisp pita soaks up and helps balance the tart dressing while the garden fresh vegetables and herbs make this a summer classic.  You really need to try it. Continue reading →

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