Gluten Free · Home Cooking · Quick Weeknight Recipes · Simple and In Season · Vegan

Thing to Do

Summer Quinoa

Summer Quinoa

The combination of rain and sun has resulted in a glorious garden, which is resulting in a large amount of delicious produce and with that meals filled with vegetables.  Thanks to some coworkers I’ve had a steady supply of beets and swiss chard, and thanks to my garden I now have large amounts of tomatoes and carrots – a vegetarian paradise!  When it came time to cook everything I relied on the Top Chef motto of “what grows together, goes together” and combined anything and everything to see what would happen.  At the end of the week I had a little bit of everything but with the exception of the tomatoes I didn’t have enough of any of thing to make it a feature.  So everything got tossed together with some quinoa in the ultimate tribute to summer vegetables.

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I topped mine with some greek yogurt for dinner and had it “naked” for lunch the next day and both ways were amazing.  This is one of those dishes that is guilt free, even if seconds are involved!

Salad · Side Dish · Vegan

We Will Rock

Potato Beet Salad

Potato Beet Salad

Okay, I promise this will be the last beet recipe for the near future but when a coworker brought in a bag of beets from his local garden I couldn’t pass!  I decided to recreate a potato salad that I frequently have with Joe’s family, after asking his Aunt and Uncle to share their secret.  I had to make a few changes since I try to avoid mayo as much as possible, but that’s what Greek yogurt is for so wasn’t a problem at all.  The best part is this is one of those dishes were parts can be made in advance, in fact this dish tastes even better when it has time to sit and embrace all the flavors going on.

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This dish might be an interesting shade but it’s delicious, and probably one of the healthier picnic salads out there.  For a twist stuff the salad inside of a cabbage leaf for a different type of taco – one with all the crunch and half the guilt!

Casserole · Gluten Free · Home Cooking · Quick Weeknight Recipes · Simple and In Season

Told Me To

Vegetable Lasagna

Vegetable Lasagna

Greetings!  Hope everyone had an excellent 4th of July – and is now having a great weekend.  Summer is finally starting to arrive, and the sun is finally shining.  My garden isn’t as far along as it was last year but thankfully the local farmer’s markets aren’t having those issues.  This layered treat is essentially a lasagna without the lasagna, just squash and other delicious vegetables.  I kept things nice and simple and focused on vegetables that are currently in season, also making this the perfect Simple and in Season recipe!

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I’m looking forward to doing this again in a few weeks with vegetables from my own garden but until then I’m lucky to have so many great farms just down the road.  Hopefully the sun will continue to shine and the temperatures will stay up as I can’t wait to start enjoying tomatoes and eggplant that are as local as local gets!

52Weeks · Home Cooking · Italian · Simple and In Season · Vegan

To the Beat

Beet Risotto 

Beet Risotto

I have this habit of becoming borderline obsessed with something and then trying to incorporate it into everything.  Be it a type of food or a cooking technique or a serving style – I enjoy exploring all aspects with something before pushing it to the back burner.  With my recent beet discovery lots of food has been turning pink around here, as I try to figure out which ways of cooking beets are acceptable and which ways are just not for me.   One of my favorite ways to experiment with a new food is to use it in preparations that I’m familiar with: pasta, omelettes, pizzas, and grain dishes.  While I’m not quite brave enough to try beet pizza this week I decided to give beet risotto a whirl, figuring beets are the perfect local ingredient for two blog challenges I’m participating in.  The first one is for the weekly challenge sponsored by /52weeksofcooking while the other is the awesome monthly challenge Simple and in Season which is hosted by the incredible Ren.  Beets are just starting to come into season here in the DC area, and I’ve been snatching them up for my experiments.  By time I had my beet realization it was too late for this growing season but I’m planning to add some to next year’s garden – along with the carrots, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant that are currently growing.

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I have to admit one of my favorite parts of this dish might be watching the dish go from a basic cream to a vibrant magenta.  However my favorite damask apron is not appreciating this new addition to the kitchen so I might have to start looking for a more beet tolerant apron.  Anyone have any suggestions?!?!

Simple and in Seasom
Casserole · Home Cooking · Simple and In Season

Over Unannounced

Potato & Beet Casserole

Potato Beet Casserole

One of the best parts of traveling, in my opinion, if is trying new and exciting and (hopefully) delicious dishes!  One of the best parts of getting home (outside of seeing hubby and puppies) is getting in to the kitchen and attempting to recreate some of those dishes.  After my UK and Ireland adventures I knew that I had to recreate the incredible dish I had in Ireland at Cornucopia – even though I had no idea how on earth to do that.  I knew the ingredients (beets, potatoes, spinach, cheese, and phyllo) but outside of that I had no idea what needed to be done.  Since beets and I are just getting used to each other I decided to grate them, figuring the smaller amounts might blend better with the other vegetables as well as reasoning that round discs might tempt me to just remove them.  The other thing to figure out was the phyllo dough on top but some quick Googling proved that it could be done.   Once I had finished with the research and planning it was time to head to the kitchen, with some pasta and pesto on hand just in case it didn’t work out.

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There is something to be said about a pink dish – it just goes well with everything!  While I served this as a simple vegetarian main it would also be a great side dish for company as it comes together quickly and looks rather impressive coming out of the oven.  Still not sure about other versions of beets but after the success of this dish I’m willing to give them a try again, we’ll see how that goes!

Potato Beet Casserole

I’m also sending this treat over to Ren‘s fabulous Simple and in Season since it highlights two vegetables that are popping up in local gardens: spinach and beets! I didn’t grow either of this year due to my trip but my summer veggies are starting to take off so I see lots of peppers, eggplants, carrots, and tomatoes in my near future!