Beet Deviled Eggs

April 1, 2014 in Appetizers, Holidays, Side Dishes

Double duty beets: flavor inside and color outside deviled eggs.

Beet Deviled Eggs

Deviled Eggs, flavored and colored with beets.

Beets add sweetness and flavor to the classic deviled egg – and a bonus: soak your peeled hard boiled eggs in beet water to add a rosy hue to the outsides of the eggs!

Once a year in early spring I become a deviled egg fanatic. I have tried all kinds of mix-ins to the yolks, and I have to say that it was a surprise how delicious the sweetness of the beets was mixed into the yolks. They are delicious mixed with a little Dijon to balance the sweetness.

There are lots of food bloggers doing naturally dyed eggs – so beautiful! I just added my beets in two places!
See How to Dye Easter Eggs the Natural Way, Simple Bites
Tea Stained Easter Eggs, Yummy Mummy
Vegetable Dyed Eggs, Weelicious

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Caulicannon: Irish Comfort Food – minus the carbs

March 16, 2014 in Gluten Free, Healthy Fare, Holidays, Side Dishes, Vegetarian Entrees

A low-carb, nutrient-packed version of the Irish comfort food classic for St. Patrick’s Day.

Caulicannon: The Irish Comfort Classic made low-carb.

This is certainly a last-minute entry for the St Patrick’s Day recipe bonanza that’s blown up the foodblogosphere all week, but the brainstorm just hit me yesterday and it would be remiss of me not to share it with you posthaste. I was hanging out on Pinterest with my morning coffee as per usual, thinking how lovely a nice bowl of creamy, starchy colcannon would be. Wait a minute, I’ve come to love cauliflower rice, why not use cauliflower mash as the foundation of a low-carb colcannon?

All on its own, I do generally prefer either ricing cauliflower or roasting it,  rather than the pureed version that can be substituted for potatoes, but in this instance, it really hits the spot. My only regret is not doubling the recipe so I’d have more leftovers.

Slainte to all! Read the rest of this entry →

Broccoli Stem Salad Recipe

January 16, 2014 in Healthy Fare, Side Dishes

Broccoli stems – rescued from the scrap pile!
You'll never throw out a broccoli stem again.

I am not a huge broccoli fan. The flavor of the florets is so strong that I choose other veggies when there is an option. So I was surprised how much I love this slaw that uses the stems of the broccoli stalk instead of the much prettier tops.

I have seen this slaw/salad in several places, and the the directions called for just shaving thin strips of the stems without ever cooking or blanching the stems in any way. I thought this was a mistake, and so for the first try of this slaw I cooked the stems, cooled them and then took my vegetable peeler to them. It was good.

But then, I tried the raw version – and liked it even better. When you peel the stems into paper-thin slices, raw works just fine. And is, in fact, YUM. I love the very mild hint of broccoli flavor and the crunch of the thin raw slices. This combination is the perfect blend of soft goat cheese, tangy vinaigrette and crunchy broccoli slices.

I really love this easy salad – and feel so good about making a dish out of something that would otherwise wind up in the scrap pile. I like parsley and a little goat cheese (that’s what I had on hand when I made this unique slaw) but you could add pretty much any vegetables you like. And of course your favorite vinaigrette.

Happy Winter Everyone!

– posted by Donna

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Lucky New Year Hoppin’ John Risotto

December 30, 2013 in Holidays, Side Dishes

Black eyed peas bring good luck for the New Year – stirred into risotto!

Lucky New Year Hoppin’ John Risotto

Though I’m not from the South myself, I absolutely adore many Southern food traditions, and one of my absoute favorites is the annual New Year’s Day feast, including greens for prosperity and blackeyed peas for further abundance and luck! (The Urban Luddite also informs me that you DON’T want to eat chicken on New Year’s, as it represents regret and backwards motion.)

I’ve been a little gunshy about risotto innovations ever since a first attempt left me seriously scarred. I don’t know what I was thinking, but it came down to a whole series of Don’ts. I’m reluctant to even talk about it, since I wouldn’t blame you for never trusting my cooking judgment again after hearing about this, but I feel compelled to warn you. For the record, if you’re out of white wine or even vermouth, DON’T think beer will make for a fun new flavor sensation. And if you’re also out of vegetable or chicken stock, DON’T for a minute think that leftover french onion soup will pair nicely with the beer. And when you taste the bitter, nasty heinousness that results, DON’T try to cover up the heinous with endless amounts of cheese and heavy cream. It just wastes perfectly good cheese and heavy cream.

Man, I’m still just aghast at the memory. However bad you’re imagining it was, after that description – trust me, it was worse. Easily the worst thing I’ve ever cooked in my life.

So when it came time to try this New Year’s Day risotto idea, I have to admit I was nervous, and played it pretty conservative. But I’m happy to report that it turned out beautifully after all.

– posted by Anne

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Cinnamon Almond Hasselback Sweet Potatoes

December 16, 2013 in Side Dishes, Vegan Recipes

 Hasselback sweet potatoes for your holiday table. Minimum fuss. Maximum impressiveness.

Sweet Potatoes - Hasselback Style

Sweet Potatoes – Hasselback Style

Hasselback style of cooking potatoes is genius – you get the perfect blend of crispy edges and creamy potato goodness. Kudos to the Swedes for creating this genius recipe!

Hasselback potatoes are really simple to make – just slice, brush with butter and bake in a hot oven.

I decided to attempt a version with yams – just upping this recipe to make it a little more festive for the holidays. And, I am happy to report success! Sweet potatoes work perfectly in this version. And the bonus is that they take only a few minutes of prep and then you shove them in the oven and ignore them while you get the rest of the holiday meal together. I love the almond flavor in this recipe with the almond extract added – and the almond slices help with the “fan” effect.

There is really only one tricky part to this recipe: getting the “accordian”  or fan effect to these potatoes – so I solved this by inserting a sliced almond into each cut – separating the slices and holding them apart while baking. I also used coconut oil spiked with a little cinnamon instead of butter – with very tasty results.

Highly, highly recommend this as a side dish for your holiday table – Minimum fuss. Maximum impressiveness.

– posted by Donna

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Green Goddess Cauliflower Rice: Two Flavor Editions!

November 7, 2013 in Dairy-Free, Healthy Fare, Side Dishes, Vegan Recipes

Green Goddess Cauliflower Rice

The first time I had cauliflower used as a carb substitute, it was in the now-classic form of “South Beach Mashed Potatoes”. As a recovering starch addict, it sometimes did the trick, but I must say, it never exactly became my favorite new comfort food. Fast forward to years later, and the discovery of cauliflower RICE, via both Elana’s Pantry and Kalyn’s Kitchen. This adaptation definitely DID hit the spot for me. I’ve been making variations on this for a while now, and adding it just about anywhere you might use rice (save for, perhaps, sushi).

My recent rainstorm was to apply the cauliflower rice magic to my my intrepid co-blogger’s Green Goddess Rice recipe, which was featured both in our recent cookbook and on her other blog, Everyday Southwest. It worked beautifully with the original flavors, and I liked it so much that I decided to try a variation that would make it harmonious with other cuisines, this one with a touch of Italian influence. Both are creamy, flavor-packed, and the perfect accompaniment to so many dishes.

Or, in my case today, lunch in and of itself, period.  Read the rest of this entry →

Root Vegetable Pancakes

October 1, 2013 in Side Dishes

Easy Peasy Root Veggie Pancakes

Easy Peasy Root Veggie Pancakes

My new favorite way to eat root vegetables is in pancake form.

I know fall is here when I start craving root veggies. These little pancakes hit the spot. I used yams, celery root and parsnip, and beets – and all of them turned out great – but my favorite is the yam version. The beets were a little too moist and the sweet potato version a little too bland. Yams were YAMtasttic.

These can be ready in just minutes – just grate a root veggie and stir in a few ingredients and saute in a hot skillet for a few minutes until golden brown and delicious on both sides.

Root veggie perfection!

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Green Bean Fries Recipe with Spicy Fry Sauce

September 15, 2013 in Side Dishes

Green Bean Fries with Famous Fry Sauce

Green Bean Fries with Famous Fry Sauce

Crispy crunchy outside and with a garden fresh green burst of flavor inside – these are a whole new level of fry deliciousness.

When green beans are piled high on tables at the Farmer’s Market, I just can’t resist taking a paper sack of them home with me. And I wanted to try them in a whole new way, but keep that garden fresh string bean goodness. (( WARNING:  Green Bean Casserole Season is fast approaching – Thanksgiving Day us just a few weeks away. YIKES.)

This way of cooking green beans is my favorite of all time. The cornmeal coating gives a nice crunch, and the beans are perfectly cooked inside by the time the outsides are crunchy golden brown goodness.

I just can’t say enough wonderful things about these “fries.” They are so amazing that I ate a whole plateful before The Hubs got home and had to whip up a new batch for him. He also swooned, BTW.

And, when I moved to the Rocky Mountains, I discovered a new French fry condiment – Fry Sauce. I agree with Sweet Basil blogger Carrian – Utah is all about the Fry Sauce. Basically, mayo and ketchup mixed. But I added a dash of sriracha for heat and smoked paprika for smokiness. This dipping sauce is perfect with these green bean fries.

The downside to discovering these babies: How can I ever eat boring old potato fries again???

Happy end of summer All ~

– posted by Donna

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Bacon Jalapeno Egg Salad

September 12, 2013 in Dairy-Free, Side Dishes


Bacon Jalapeno Egg Salad

Couldn’t be simpler.  We’re heading into the school year, and I’m in search of easy yet (of course) tasty lunch recipes that fit in with my health goals, and here’s a prime example. Lunch boxes (with cooler pack) at the ready.


6 large eggs, hard boiled
1/2 cup mayonnaise (preferably homemade, as in here or here!)
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
3 scallions, chopped (both whites and greens)
1 teaspoon brown mustard
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
4-5 pieces bacon, cooked and chopped or crumbled

Mash the eggs together with a fork to desired chunkiness. Stir in remaining ingredients except bacon (keep separate if you can, for texture purposes; but if you need to put it all together in advance, it’ll still be fine). Chill together at least an hour before serving. Stir in bacon right before consuming, optimally.

– posted by Anne

Check out our end-of-summer giveaway: a 5-Tray Aroma Dehydrator!

August 29, 2013 in Contests and Carnivals and Roundups, Healthy Fare, Side Dishes, Techniques, Vegan Recipes

Enter to win this fabulous 5-tray dehydrator!

Summer’s drawing to a close, and food enthusiasts everywhere are getting down to business with their late-summer preservation efforts. Canning gets tons of attention of course, as well it should. But dehydrating your fruits, veggies and herbs is another wonderful way to extend the life of your produce.  I used to do any dehydrating in my oven on a low temperature, which is manageable, but having this awesome piece of equipment has been a huge blessing.

Check it out!

The Aroma Dehydrator!

It’s lightweight, it’s easy to use, and gets fantastic results.I use it all the time for ludicrously healthful snack recipes like our Cheesy Kale Chips and Crunchy Broccoli Puffs.

From the manufacturer: “Perfect for everyone from outdoor hobbyists to the health-conscious, this dehydrator is designed for efficient, even drying. It handles everything from fruit slices to beef jerky on five spacious, height adjustable trays. It’s equipped with an electric fan and automatically rotating trays that spin in both directions, and was designed to prevent the overheating that eliminates food’s vital nutrients. The clear vented lid controls moisture and lets you monitor the process without disruption. Includes 5 stackable rotating trays, fruit leather sheet, drying screen and instructional cookbook.”

(I should also mention here that this is in absolutely no way a sponsored post. I’m genuinely, authentically enthused about the product, scout’s honor.)

So! You have six ways – one of which can be done once a day! Like so:

1. Leave a comment here, once per day, with something you’d like to try dehydrating. That’s IT! Every comment you leave counts as one entry (the other ways to enter you can only do once apiece).

2.  Like our page on Facebook (and then leave a comment here telling us that you did, so as to give you your point).

3. Follow us on Twitter, and then comment accordingly.

4.  Share the link for this giveaway and then leave us a comment here about that – Twitter, Stumble Upon, Facebook, or any other way!

5. Pin this giveaway on Pinterest, and then tell us so here.

6. Mention our giveaway on your own blog and leave us the link in a comment.

Winner will be selected via We’ll announce the lucky reader after Labor Day weekend, and announce the winner on Thursday  September (yes, we’re already talking about September) fifth. Entries accepted through Wednesday at midnight. Best of luck to you all!

Mmm, bounty. Photos all via Aroma Housewares.

- posted by Anne