Tag Archives: basil

Simple Asparagus Pasta Salad

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Today I’m coming clean…

I want to talk about how food bloggers really eat. In particular, I’m talking about one food blogger.

Yours truly.

(I’ll let the rest of you speak for yourselves…)Continue Reading

Lemon Basil Hummus

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Hummus is one of those foods that I often overlook. At least, I used to.

Lately, I find myself cooking a big batch of garbanzo beans every other week so that I have plenty of them on hand to make fresh, homemade hummus. Since I ditched sweets, it’s one of my new go-to snacks. I like it with baby carrots, bell pepper slices, and gluten-free whole grain sesame crackers (another new favorite).

Since I’ve been eating more and more hummus, I am constantly looking for new flavors to make. Sundried tomato and artichoke hummus is always a hit at my house, and this lemon basil hummus is quickly becoming a new favorite, as well.

While the outdoors may not agree yet, I’m ready for some fresh summer flavors in my kitchen. It’s been a long winter (yes, technically it’s spring, but I’ll believe it when I see it)!  To brighten things up a bit, I’ve been keeping a fresh basil plant on my kitchen window sill. The fresh basil adds a lovely hint of summer in this hummus. It pairs beautifully with lemon, and the combination just taste like summer to me.

Caprese salads are my favorite use of basil, but we’re months away from fresh, local tomatoes. Until then, you’ll find me snacking on this lemon basil hummus… Wearing my knee-high fleece socks. Under a blanket.

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Lemon Basil Hummus
Makes about 2 ½ cups

  • 2 cups cooked garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup cooked cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • Handful of fresh basil
  • ½ – ¾ cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Combine the garbanzo beans, cannellini beans, tahini, lemon zest, lemon juice, and basil in a food processor or blender. Blend slowly, streaming in the olive oil until you have a smooth and creamy mixture. Season and pepper to taste.

Serve drizzled with additional olive oil and topped with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Let the hummus come to room temperature before serving.

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Grilled Zucchini Caprese Salad

I’ve had a change of heart…. This summer, I am embracing salads.

In the past, salads were just a way to get rid of the plethora of lettuce that fills our CSA box all summer long. And, I’ve never been a fan of lettuce. This year, though, I have realized that salads don’t have to be full of lettuce. I realize that the rest of the world embraced this concept a long time ago. I guess I’m just a bit slow. But, this realization has completely changed the way I’ve been planning meals.Continue Reading

White Bean Burgers with Sundried Tomato and Herbs

I love grilling in the summer.  But, I find that I often fall into a burger rut.  We offer to have friends over to cook out, and I end up making the same beef burgers over and over and over again. Don’t get me wrong… The burgers are delicious, but we really try not to eat too much meat. So, I had to change it up a bit.

I’ve been meaning to make some bean burgers at home for a while… They are a perfect meatless option for the grill and, if done correctly, are equally as delicious. I think what held me back was that I’ve had some bad experiences with bean burgers in the past. They were too runny, too bland, or simply fell apart when I cooked them. If a bean burger is going to replace some juicy grass-fed beef on the menu, it’s got to be great. Runny, bland, and falling apart just won’t do.

Rewind to the Big Summer Potluck last summer… I was pregnant and not feeling up to par. I think there might have been fried chicken for dinner (or something like that… I don’t even remember), and I knew it wasn’t a good idea. So, instead, I tried some of the black bean burgers that Pam made. I loved them. I made sure to ask her if the recipe was the one in her Cook Without a Book: Meatless Meals cookbook, the one that I already loved and had sitting on my shelf at home. Sure enough, they were.

Almost a year later, I have finally gotten around to making the bean burgers, and I am even more impressed now than I was then. They stay moist and don’t fall apart on the grill… And, using the formula in the book, you can really pump up the flavor to have a great tasting meatless burger that will make you forget about beef entirely. This time around, I used herbs and sundried tomatoes to make my own version of Pam’s recipe. I topped them with a super quick herbed mayonnaise (so quick a recipe seems silly, though I’ll share it at the end!). Even my husband was a huge fan. You can be sure they’ll be making a few more appearances on the menu at my house this summer!Continue Reading

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

I’ve recently started to really appreciate whole grains, especially quinoa. Sure, I’ve always been a fan of baking with whole wheat flour, and that’s all fine and great. But, I’m talking about cooking and eating whole grains that aren’t incorporated into baked goods.

It all started when I discovered salads made with whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, and bulgur wheat. On their own, I’ve always found the grains to be somewhat dull. Given the choice between a potato or rice as a side with my dinner, I’d take the potato every time (slathered with butter or topped with bacon and cheese, preferably, but that’s a recipe for another day). When the grains stop being a side dish and become the base for a flavorful salad, though, everything changes.

I fell in love with quinoa salads a few summers ago when I attended the Big Summer Potluck where all of the food was gluten-free. The usual summer pasta salad was off the table, but it was replaced with an assortment of gorgeous salads made with quinoa (which, happens to be gluten-free). The flavorful salads were hearty enough to eat as a main dish, but still felt light and summery.

Afterwards, I set out to make my own quinoa salads at home. I came across a great salad formula in Pam Anderson’s Cook Without a Book: Meatless Meals (yes, that’s an Amazon affiliate link) cookbook, and I’ve been happily whipping up my own salad creations ever since.

This summer, I am finding that I keep going back to the quinoa salads more than ever. Trying to cook my way through our weekly CSA share while also chasing Miss Maddie around the house has proved to be a bit of a challenge. I love that I can make a batch of quinoa the night before and keep it in the fridge overnight. Then, all I have to do is chop a few veggies, make a quick vinaigrette and stir it all together the next day. This particular version, loaded with Mediterranean flavors like marinated artichokes, olives, spinach, and feta cheese is my new favorite for a quick meal. Lunch is served!Continue Reading