In November I'm teaching an Indian cooking class so I thought I'd better bone up. With lots of eggplant in the garden and a cool, rainy day outside, this stewy, roasted eggplant dish is just the trick. Serve with nan or pita as an appetizer or over rice for a main dish. Eggplant is high in fiber and the breadth of herbs and spices offer flavor without a lot of fat.
Rosemary-Roasted Fall Veggies, Gruyere and Sage Béchamel Lasagna
November 15, 2009
If that name doesn't get you drooling, I think your belly may be broken. This is a ridiculously delicious, warm and cheesy in-season main dish that would be great for any chilly weeknight meal and also would make an exceptional vegetarian main for Thanksgiving. Sage-infused, creamy béchamel hug layers of lasagna noodles, sauteed spinach, onions and garlic, and rosemary-roasted sweet potatoes and mushrooms. A combination of tangy gruyere and sharp parmesan compliments the vegetables throughout the layers and forms an amazingly gooey and crunchy crust on top. And it's surprisingly not too high in calories and fat - I'm in heaven!
Roasted Garlic Artichoke Pesto with Penne, Asparagus, Peas and Leeks
April 22, 2012
The ultimate spring-time dish using all the season has to offer - artichokes, garlic, lemons, asparagus, leeks and peas. This light dish can be served as a main or first course. Swap out sage for mint or thyme. For a gluten-free recipe, use corn or rice pasta.
Patsy’s Two-Step Chili
January 16, 2011
Michael's mom, Patsy, makes some kick-ass vegetarian chili. Two-step here refers to the ease of putting this protein-fiber-packed main together or just it's Southwestern Country style. The best part is you can really take it in any direction you want. In this version, I opted for Texas-style veggie burgers and added two fiery chipotle peppers with adobo sauce, dried oregano and ground cumin. Patsy called for three cans of beans so I went for the trifecta - black, pinto and red kidney. Add grated cheese, more hot peppers, chopped cilantro, diced green onions, crumbled tortilla chips, a dollop of sour cream - garnish possibilities are endless.
Roasted Carrot Mac N Cheese
April 29, 2012
This is another lovely spring time pasta, this time using in-season carrots. They do double duty: cutting down on the fat and calories of traditional mac n cheese as well as adding healthy vitamins and nutrients. I roasted them as I did in my Roasted Carrot Soup (click for recipe) and used smoked cheddar and fontina, which allows you to use less and still get a rich, deep flavor. This is great as a main course or side dish. I think both little and big kids will eat their veggies tonight!
May 19, 2013
I've always loved this Greek meze, and recently had a wonderful version similar to this in San Francisco. The gigantes bean (pronounced yee-gahn-tes) has been grown in the Kastoria region of Greece since the 17th century. Like California has the American Viticultural Area (AVA) wine-growing regions, the gigantes has a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) - that's one important bean! Serve with bread and a salad for a main dish. For a vegan version, simply omit the feta.
Artichoke Feta Panzanella Salad
April 28, 2013
Artichokes were born in Greek mythology, then traveled across the Mediterranean to France and from France to Louisiana and finally carried by the Spaniards to California. Today, Castroville, California (near Monterey on the coast) proclaims itself "The Artichoke Center of the World." And rightfully so, Castroville, with a population of less than 7,000, boast 75% of the world production of artichokes. I paired some home-grown artichokes with bright, spring flavors reminiscent of ancient Greece rather than the traditional Italian summer panzanella (but summer is right around the corner...here's my Italian version with tomatoes, peaches and basil).
White Bean Salad
May 13, 2012
It's been so hot this week I couldn't bear to make something with heat. This salad is light, fresh, cool and quite versatile. Stuff into a pita with lettuce and tomatoes for a sandwich. Add to arugula for a peppery main salad. It's packed full of protein and fiber, and a snap to put together.
Tofu Tostadas with Grilled Orange Chipotle Sauce
February 17, 2013
What happened to crispy tacos and tostadas? The taco food craze is all about the soft tortilla, which I'm loving, don't get my wrong, but I do miss the crunch of the hard shell. Inspired by seasonal produce and the warming day, I got busy on an indoor grilling session. Grilled, brown sugar-coated oranges add sweetness, and complement spicy chipotle peppers in a marinade/sauce for grilled tofu and veggies. Mashed avocado and queso fresco brighten as well as tame this snack, app or main dish. Simply omit the cheese for a vegan delight!
Grilled Fig and Olive Strudel
October 13, 2014
Using seasonal ingredients in an unconventional combination was the inspiration for this dish. A savory, sweet and cheesy tapa or main dish, this strudel highlights all the best of Spain (albeit the name!). Honey-marinated figs are grilled and paired with black olives and red onion, then spread on top of a Manchego and rosemary-layered filo dough and melty Cabra Romero then baked until golden.
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