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Category: Meat Free

Instant Pot Lentil Soup

Instant Pot Lentil Soup

Instant Pot Lentil Soup

1 medium onion, chopped

2 large carrots, chopped

2 small celery, chopped

2 C. green or brown lentils, rinsed & drained (uncooked).  Red Lentils OK, but reduce cooking time by 14 minutes.

28 oz can diced or crushed tomatoes, low sodium

2 tsp. cumin

2 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. salt

Ground black pepper, to taste

2 bay leaves

2 bouillon cubes + 10 C. water or 10 C. veggie stock, low sodium

11 oz box of spinach or kale

1 large garlic clove, grated

Parmesan cheese, for serving


In Instant Pot, add onion, carrot, celery, lentils, tomatoes, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, bay leaves and bouillon cubes. Add water enough to fill up to 2/3 full line or approximately 10 cups. Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cook on High pressure for 18 minutes. Display will say ON, Instant Pot will take about 30 minutes to come to pressure, you will see a bit of steam coming out from a valve, then float valve will rise and countdown from 18 minutes will begin. Lentil soup is ready but your Instant Pot needs to bring pressure down before you can open it, which will be indicated by a dropped down float valve. You can let it do it on its own which will take less than an hour – Natural Release. OR you can do Quick Release by turning pressure valve to Venting position, which takes 3-4 minutes. I recommend doing so outside to avoid the mess and smell. Open the lid, add spinach and garlic, stir and serve hot garnished with Parmesan cheese.  Make Ahead: Refrigerate chopped veggies with spices in an airtight container for up to 3 days and mix with the rest when ready to cook.


Freezer Meal: Add all ingredients in the order listed in the recipe minus water, spinach and garlic and freeze uncooked in a gallon size Ziploc bag. Cook from frozen with 10 or 14 C. of water for 20 minutes. Do quick release, then add spinach and garlic.

Polenta Patties with Sautéed Greens, Poached Egg and Roma Tomato Basil Salsa

Polenta Patties with Sautéed Greens, Poached Egg and Roma Tomato Basil Salsa

Polenta Patties with Sautéed Greens, Poached Egg and Roma Tomato Basil Salsa

1 C. corn grits or corn meal

4 C. water or broth

2 T. olive oil

4 C. of soft, tender greens

6 eggs

Salt to taste


1 lb. Roma tomatoes, diced into ¼-inch pieces

1 T. garlic, peeled and minced

½ C. chopped fresh basil

½ C. extra-virgin olive oil

¼ C. balsamic vinegar

1 T. cracked black pepper

1 tsp. salt


Bring water or broth and salt to boil in a large pot over high heat. Once the liquid is boiling, slowly add the corn meal, stirring constantly with a whisk to keep lumps from forming. When the grain is mixed smoothly into the liquid, reduce the heat to low and simmer gently for 30 minutes until very thick. Stir occasionally to keep the polenta from sticking. Remove the cooled polenta from the pan, slice off 6 ¼-inch slices.

Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add polenta patties, fry until golden brown on both sides, about three minutes per side. Remove to a plate and keep warm. Raise the heat to medium-high again, add 1 T. of oil to the pan and sauté the greens until wilted and tender. Heat 2 inches of water just to a boil in a medium fry pan and add one tsp. of white vinegar, then reduce heat to low. Crack eggs into the water and poach until desired doneness, about two to three minutes for soft yolks. Using slotted spoon, remove the eggs from water, being careful not to break the yolk. Place one polenta patty on each plate. Top with the greens, then the poached egg. Pour salsa over all. Serve the salsa warm or cold. Mix the tomatoes, garlic, basil, oil, balsamic vinegar, pepper, and salt in a bowl. The salsa is best when used immediately. Variations: Top the polenta patties with tomato, basil, and mozzarella in a baking dish. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over all and bake in a 350° oven until warm. Top the polenta patty with sautéed spinach, Roma tomato salsa and a poached egg.

Dandelion Greens and Goat Cheese Empanadas

Dandelion Greens and Goat Cheese Empanadas

Dandelion Greens and Goat Cheese Empanadas

1 C. whole-wheat flour

1 1/4 C. all-purpose flour

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 C. (1 stick) cold butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1/2 tsp. cider vinegar

1 egg, separated

Ice water

3 large bunches dandelion greens, rinsed

11/2 C. (about 1 onion) finely chopped onion

1 C. (about 1 leek) finely sliced leek

1/4 C. olive oil

3 cloves garlic, finely minced

1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp. cayenne

11 oz. goat cheese

1/2 C. grated Pecorino Romano

Coarse sea salt


In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the whole-wheat and all-purpose flours, 1 tsp. salt and one-half tsp. black pepper to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the butter is reduced to pea-sized pieces. In a measuring C., whisk together the vinegar and egg yolk (reserving the egg white) and add enough ice-cold water to bring the volume to one-half C.. Add the liquid to the processor in a steady stream while pulsing. Continue to pulse just until the mixture looks crumbly and damp, and the dough just adheres when pressed together. Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a disk. Wrap tightly and refrigerate for at least one hour, up to overnight. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and blanch the dandelion greens, in batches, for about 1 minute to bring out the color and soften slightly. Run the greens under cold water and chop coarsely. Squeeze the chopped greens in a towel to remove as much liquid as possible and set aside. In a large sauté pan, cook the onions and leeks in the olive oil over medium heat until soft, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook until the garlic is aromatic, about 1 minute. Stir in 1/4 tsp. salt, the pepper flakes, one-fourth tsp. black pepper and the cayenne. Remove from heat and cool. In a large bowl, combine the cheeses, dandelion greens and onion mixture. Divide the chilled empanada dough into 8 disk-shaped portions. On a floured work surface, roll out each portion of dough into an approximately 7-inch circle. Place one-third C. of the filling in the lower middle section of the circle. Whisk the reserved egg white in a small bowl and use it to brush the outer edges of the lower half of the dough. Fold the dough in half over the filling, pressing the edges and making sure there are no air pockets. Trim any rough or uneven parts and either crimp the edges with your fingers or use a fork to seal the edges. Place the empanadas on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush the empanadas with the egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Bake until puffed and golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool on a rack.

Caramelized Fennel on Herbed Polenta

Caramelized Fennel on Herbed Polenta

Caramelized Fennel on Herbed Polenta

2 to 3 cups / 450 to 675 ml vegetable broth or water, as needed

1/2 cup / 85 g organic, non-GMO polenta

fine sea salt

1 large fennel bulb

knob of ghee or clarified butter

2 tablespoons raw fennel seeds

1/2 tablespoon pure maple syrup, or to taste

1/4 cup / 5g chopped mixed herbs, such as dill, chives, parsley

1/4 cup / 27 g grated Pecorino Romano cheese

cold-pressed olive oil

herb flowers for garnish


Heat the vegetable broth in a large saucepan until simmering. Slowly pour in the polenta in a steady stream, whisking all the while to prevent clumping. Add a few pinches of salt. Stir constantly for a couple minutes; then reduce the heat and simmer, stirring every 5 minutes or so, for 30 to 45 minutes (read the label on your polenta for cooking time approximations). If the polenta becomes too thick, add more broth or water and whisk until smooth The polenta is cooked when you rub a small amount of it between your fingers and it is no longer gritty, but instead creamy and smooth. While the polenta is cooking, cut the fennel bulb into thin vertical slices (from the top to the base). Heat the ghee in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the fennel slices to the skillet, making sure that they all come into contact with the surface of the skillet (not overlapping). Sprinkle with sea salt. Do not stir or move the fennel until it is golden on the bottom, 5 to 7 minutes. When all the pieces have browned, flip them onto the uncooked sides. When the underside has also browned, add a sprinkling of fennel seeds and the maple syrup, and let cook for 1 minute. Toss to coat, transfer the fennel to a plate. Season with more salt if needed. Add the chopped herbs and grated cheese to the polenta and give it a final stir. Whisk in a little more broth or water if necessary. To serve, scoop a portion of polenta onto a plate, then arrange the caramelized fennel on top. Add a drizzle of olive oil. Garnish with herb flowers if available.

LTS Crunchy Asian Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing

LTS Crunchy Asian Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing

LTS Crunchy Asian Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing

This tangle of noodles with a peanut dressing upgrade tastes great. If you like more heat, add another 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes. If you don’t like heat, leave it out.


1/2 C. peanut butter

3 T. tamari or other soy sauce

2 T. rice wine vinegar

1/2 tsp. light brown sugar

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste

1/8 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 C. water

8 oz. rice vermicelli or ramen noodles

1 T. toasted sesame oil

1 (8-oz.) can Carrots, drained (You can use a shredded fresh carrot if you have some in your root cellar)

1 (8-oz.) can Straw Mushrooms, drained (sub 2/3 C. peas, if they are available)

1 (8-oz.) can water chestnuts, drained

1/4 C. dry-roasted peanuts


In a bowl, combine the peanut butter, tamari, vinegar, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder, stirring to blend well. Add the water, stirring until smooth. Set aside. Soak the noodles in enough boiling water to cover until softened (if using rice noodles), otherwise cook according to package directions.. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Toss with sesame oil to coat. Add the carrots, mushrooms, water chestnuts, and peanuts to the bowl with the noodles. Add the reserved peanut sauce, tossing gently to combine.


Cannellini Beans and Potatoes with Dandelion Greens and Parsley

Cannellini Beans and Potatoes with Dandelion Greens and Parsley

Cannellini Beans and Potatoes with Dandelion Greens and Parsley

1/2 cup dried cannellini beans (to make about 1 1/2 cups cooked)

1 pound young potatoes, red or white, cut into 1-inch cubes with the skins

2  cups chopped dandelion greens, in 1- to 2-inch pieces

2  cups chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

3  garlic cloves, sliced

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup water

1/2 teaspoon paprika, plus more for garnish

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 1 tablespoon)

Edible flowers (such as calendula, comfrey, rose, violet, chive blossom, and/or lilac), for garnish (optional)


Soak the beans overnight in enough water to cover by 8 inches. Strain the beans and combine them in a saucepan with enough water to cover by 2 to 3 inches. Bring to a boil, skim off any foam, reduce the heat, and cover: simmer over low heat, stirring often, until the beans are tender, 45 to 75 minutes. Set aside to cool in the cooking water. Combine the potatoes, dandelion greens, parsley, garlic, oil, water, paprika, salt, and pepper in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and let simmer, covered, stirring often, for 30 minutes. Strain the beans from their cooking water and add to the pan, along with the lemon juice. Simmer, uncovered, stirring almost continually, for 5 minutes. Serve hot, garnished with paprika and edible wildflowers, if desired.

Baked Ricotta

Baked Ricotta

Baked Ricotta

1 pound (about 2 cups) whole-milk ricotta cheese

1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried

1   tablespoon fresh thyme or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried

2  teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary’ or 1 teaspoon dried

1-2 tablespoons chopped garlic (2-4 cloves)

Zest of 1 lemon, finely’ grated

1/4 cup thinly sliced sun-dried tomatoes (optional)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 egg, lightly’ beaten

Ground paprika, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 375°F (19O°C). Use a drizzle of oil to grease a 2-cup baking dish. Combine the ricotta with the oregano, thyme, rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, sun-dried tomatoes (if using), and a few grinds of pepper. Mix well and season generously7 with salt (I usually start with 1/4 teaspoon). Add the egg and mix thoroughly. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the top with paprika and a drizzle of oil. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the top puffs up slightly and the mixture is hot and bubbling. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. The ricotta has to be well drained; if it is too liquid, the finished product will be soupy. Most ricotta comes strained, but if the ricotta you have has any’ liquid on top, pour it off rather than mixing it in.

One Pot Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca with Chickpeas & Artichoke Hearts

One Pot Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca with Chickpeas & Artichoke Hearts

One Pot Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca with Chickpeas & Artichoke Hearts


1 tsp. olive oil

1/2 large white or yellow onion diced

2 cloves garlic minced

12 oz spaghetti

2 oz sliced black olives (up to 4 oz. for olive lovers)

14 oz artichoke hearts rinsed and drained, and chopped

3/4 cup cooked chickpeas rinsed and drained

2 T. capers

14 oz. canned diced tomatoes

1 T. dried oregano

1 tsp. dried basil

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes (reduce to 1/4 tsp. if sensitive to heat)

1/2 tsp. ground black pepper (reduce to 1/4 tsp. if freshly ground)

salt to taste (see notes)

4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth


Warm the olive oil in a large, deep, skillet and then add the onions and garlic, stirring occasionally until just starting to turn golden. Add the pasta to the skillet, breaking in half if needed (a saucepan may also work). Add the rest of the ingredients, minus the broth, to the pan on top of the pasta. Then pour the vegetable broth over everything. Cover the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a steady simmer (medium to medium-low heat) and, keeping covered & stirring occasionally, cook for 8-10 more minutes, or until pasta is done through to your liking.

Pantry Friendly Pasta con Ceci

Pantry Friendly Pasta con Ceci

Pantry Friendly Pasta con Ceci

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

3 tablespoons good tomato paste

1 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste

1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (or one 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed)

1/2 cup uncooked ditalini pasta (or another small shape, like macaroni)

2 cups boiling water

Crushed red pepper flakes, for serving


In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the olive oil until it shimmers. Add the garlic and cook, stirring until it becomes lightly browned and fragrant. Stir in the tomato paste and salt and fry for 30 seconds or so. Add the chickpeas, pasta, and boiling water. Stir to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pot, lower the heat, and simmer until the pasta is cooked and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 to 20 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. To serve, ladle the pasta into shallow bowls, sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes, and drizzle a bit of extra-virgin olive oil on top.

Canning Vegetable Soup

Canning Vegetable Soup

Canning Vegetable Soup

19 Quarts


11 lb. tomatoes

4 1⁄2 lb. potatoes

3 1⁄2 lb. carrots

2 lb. turnips (optional)

3 3⁄4 lb. green beans

7 cups corn

1 1⁄2 lb. celery

1 lb onion

1 1⁄2 lb. green peppers

3 lb. cabbage


Per quart:


1/2 teaspoons pepper

1/2 teaspoons sugar

1/2 teaspoons salt

Pinch of parsley


Chop as for soup. Heat, fill jars and process. Makes about 38 pints or 19 quarts. Add per quart: 1/2 teaspoons pepper, 1/2 teaspoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoons salt and a pinch of parsley. Process: 15 lb. pressure. pints – 60 minutes. quarts – 70 minutes.

Lemon–Goat Cheese Gnocchi with Shelling Peas and Green Garlic

Lemon–Goat Cheese Gnocchi with Shelling Peas and Green Garlic

Lemon–Goat Cheese Gnocchi with Shelling Peas and Green Garlic

8 ounces slightly soft, mild fresh goat cheese, at room temperature|

8 ounces cream cheese (preferably without stabilizers), at room temperature

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (from 2 small lemons)

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 eggs

1½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus additional for rolling the dough

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 small stalks green garlic, thinly sliced on the diagonal, or 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

¼ cup dry white wine or vermouth

3 cups freshly shelled green peas

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh tarragon

Freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons fresh chives, cut into ½-inch lengths


In a large bowl, combine the cheeses, zest, salt, and eggs. Mix with a rubber spatula until smooth and add ¾ cup of the flour. Combine well and gently mix in the remaining flour to form a moist, slightly sticky dough. Do not over- mix or your gnocchi will be heavy. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. Lightly flour a baking sheet or large platter and set aside. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface, form it into a ball, and cut the ball into quarters. Roll each quarter into a ½-inch-thick rope. Use a sharp knife to cut the ropes into ½-inch gnocchi and put them on the baking sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining dough pieces; you should get about 84. Lightly dust the gnocchi with flour. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Boil the gnocchi in batches of 15 to 20; they will take about 3 minutes to cook. They’re done when they float—wait a few seconds before using a slotted spoon to remove the gnocchi to a baking sheet to cool. (They will be delicate when warm but will become sturdier as they cool.) Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid. The cooked gnocchi will keep in the refrigerator for 24 hours. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until the liquid in the skillet has reduced by half, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the gnocchi, peas, butter, and ½ cup of the reserved gnocchi cooking liquid to the skillet. Cook until the ingredients are warmed through and the sauce thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Add the lemon juice, tarragon, and salt and pepper to taste and toss to combine. Divide the gnocchi between 6 or 8 bowls. Garnish with the chives and serve immediately.

LTS Pumpkin Soup

LTS Pumpkin Soup

LTS Pumpkin Soup


1 can Vegetable Broth

1 29oz. can Pumpkin Puree

1 can Chicken Broth

2/3 C. Powdered Milk

2 T. dried Bell Pepper

¼ C. dried Onion

1/8 tsp. Thyme

¼ tsp. Nutmeg

½ tsp. Salt

1-2 T. Parsley Flakes


Dissolve Powdered milk in broth in pan.  Add all other ingredients except parsley; heat through.  Sprinkle parsley over each serving. (100-Day Pantry)

Linguine with Artichokes and Leeks

Linguine with Artichokes and Leeks

Linguine with Artichokes and Leeks

2 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, cleaned

6 marinated artichoke hearts with stems (from a specialty food shop), or two 12-oz. jars marinated artichoke hearts in oil, drained

3 T. olive oil

1 T. lemon juice

3 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 lb. linguine

1/2 C. freshly grated Parmesan


Halve the leeks lengthwise and cut into 1-inch pieces. Halve the artichokes lengthwise.  Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat, add the leeks, and cook until soft but not browned, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Remove the leeks from skillet and set aside. Increase heat to medium and add the artichokes. Cook about 3 minutes per side. Return the leeks to skillet and toss to mix. Stir in the lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Cook the linguine according to the package directions, reserving 1/2 C. of the pasta water. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the vegetables to the linguine and toss with half the Parmesan. Add some of the pasta water to moisten, if necessary. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Garlic Flan

Garlic Flan

Garlic Flan

1 head of fresh garlic with large cloves

2 cups heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

4 egg yolks

Butter for the ramekins or dish

2 tablespoons chopped chives for garnish


Six 3-1/2 inch ramekins or a soufflé dish

Potato masher


Baking pan that’s as deep as the ramekins/dish


Preheat the oven to 350º F (175º C). Start boiling 2 cups water in a medium saucepan. Pull the head of garlic apart, but leave the cloves unpeeled. Have the water boiling, and drop the garlic cloves in. Lower the heat, and cook for 5 minutes. Drain the garlic onto a medium bowl and allow it to cool. In the meantime, butter the ramekins or soufflé dish well. Beat the egg yolks in a small bowl. Put the saucepan aside for later (no need to rinse). Start boiling 4 cups of water in a kettle for the final baking in a bain-marie. Squeeze each garlic clove – the cooked garlic will emerge from the root end, not the pointy top. Discard the peels. Mash the garlic with a potato masher until you obtain a paste. Pour the cream into the saucepan and add the garlic paste. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Stir in the thyme, salt and pepper. Take the saucepan off the heat. Add the beaten egg yolks to the cream mixture and whisk to distribute them well. Spoon the cream into buttered ramekins or soufflé dish. Place in the baking dish and put the whole thing in the oven. Pour enough boiling water into the baking dish to come up halfway up the sides of the ramekins/dish. This is important: less than halfway up, and the cream won’t cook all the way through. Bake for 25 minutes. Peek into the oven after 15 minutes. The top will caramelize, but if it looks like it might burn, place a layer of tin foil lightly over the tops of the ramekins/dish. If serving in ramekins, wait 10 minutes before turning them upside down to serve. If using a soufflé dish, serve the flan out of it in generous spoonfuls. Either way, garnish with chopped chives

Gill’s Poached Leek and Blue Cheese Tart

Gill’s Poached Leek and Blue Cheese Tart

Gill’s Poached Leek and Blue Cheese Tart

1 1/2 C. all-purpose flour

1/2 C. (1 stick) unsalted butter

a pinch of sea salt

1 egg yolk

2 to 3 tablespoons cold milk


2 or 3 medium leeks (about 1 pound), white part only, washed and sliced into 1/2 inch rounds

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

2/3 C. crumbled good blue cheese

2 eggs

2 egg yolks

1 1/3 C. heavy cream


First make the pastry. Put the flour, butter, and salt in a food processor and pulse until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. I don’t have a food processor, so I do this by hand with a pastry blender. The butter should be fresh from the fridge and cold. If you’re going to blend the butter and flour by hand, cut the butter into 1/4-inch cubes first. Once the mixture is blended add the egg yolk, then pour in the milk in a gradual stream. As soon as the dough starts coming together, stop adding the milk. Turn out and knead lightly a couple of times, then wrap the dough in plastic and chill in the fridge for half an hour. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. On a lightly floured surface, roll the pastry out quite thinly and use it to line a 10-inch two-part tart pan, letting the excess pastry hang over the edges. Line the pastry with parchment paper, fill with dried beans, and blind bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Take the tart out of the oven and remove the paper and beans. Lightly prick the bottom all over with a fork, and return to the oven for 5 minutes, until the bottom is dry but not too colored. Carefully trim off the excess pastry with a small, sharp knife. Turn the oven temperature up to 350 degrees. To make the filling, put the leeks into a saucepan with 1/2 C. water, the butter, and some salt and pepper. Bring to a low simmer, then cover and cook gently, stirring once or twice, for about 10 minutes, until just tender. Drain the leeks, reserving the cooking liquid. Spread the cooked leeks on the baked tart shell and cover with the crumbled cheese. Give the leek liquid a chance to cool, then put it in a bowl with the eggs, egg yolks, and cream. Beat the mixture with a whisk until smooth, then season with salt and pepper. Pour the custard over the cheese and leeks. Put the tart back into the oven and bake for about 30 minutes- the custard should be just set when you gently shake the pan. Serve warm or cold.

Dump and Start Instant Pot Creamy Ziti

Dump and Start Instant Pot Creamy Ziti

Dump and Start Instant Pot Creamy Ziti

1 1/2 cup chicken broth

1  cup heavy cream

1 tsp minced garlic dried

salt and pepper to taste

8 oz dry ziti pasta

1 cup red pasta sauce

1 cup parmesan cheese shredded

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese shredded


Add the broth, cream, garlic, salt, pepper and noodles to the instant pot in that order. DO NOT STIR, but make sure all noodles are covered. If you need to move some noodles around, that’s okay. Set your Instant Pot to Manual for 6 minutes. Let it naturally release its pressure for an additional 6 minutes then quick release. Add the red pasta sauce to the Instant Pot and give it a stir. SLOWLY add in the cheese while stirring. The cheese will melt and thicken the sauce. The sauce will also thicken as it cools.

Enjoy! Recipe Notes:  This is a very saucy dish- If you like yours with less sauce, just cut back on the red pasta sauce at the end.

Instant Pot Fried Rice

Instant Pot Fried Rice

Instant Pot Fried Rice

2 cups Long Grain Rice, uncooked

2½ cups Vegetable Broth

2 Carrots

3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

½ cup Frozen Peas

2 Medium Eggs

Salt & Pepper to taste


Add rice and vegetable stock in your instant pot. Mix so the rice is spread around evenly. Throw in diced carrots and close the lid. Instant Pot Settings: turn the vent to “SEALING” position, press “MANUAL” and adjust the time to 3 minutes. When the instant pot finished cooking, press “CANCEL” button. After 10 minutes, release the pressure manually. Now mix the rice, it will be quite sticky but it should change its texture and lose quite a lot of its stickiness. Move the rice to a side and press the “SAUTE” function. Add oil and frozen peas and sauté for about a minute before mixing everything together. Make a well in the middle of the rice and add beaten eggs. Stir the egg into rice and fry everything together for a further 1-2 minutes before turning off Instant Pot completely. Taste it and if needed, season with salt and pepper. Notes: Remove the inner pot from the instant pot body in order to stop cooking/burning the rice after you are finished.

Palermo Pasta with Anchovies, Raisins, and Pine Nuts

Palermo Pasta with Anchovies, Raisins, and Pine Nuts

Palermo Pasta with Anchovies, Raisins, and Pine Nuts

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

3 Tablespoons olive oil

¼ cup pine nuts

¼ raisins

3 Tablespoons tomato purée

2 ounces red wine

6 salt-packed anchovy fillets (or 8 from an oil tin)

½ pound dried pasta (in this case you really do want to splurge on a “fancier” pasta but the type is less important – margarita, bucatini, spaghetti, fettuccine all work well)

homemade breadcrumbs


Heat oil in large, deep skillet over medium-low heat. Fry garlic slowly. Once garlic is golden brown, add raisins, pine nuts, and anchovies. Continue frying, stirring regularly, for 2 minutes. Add tomato purée and wine and stir well until combined. Meanwhile, cook the pasta until al dente. Try to time it so the pasta is done at about the same time as the sauce. (Serious Italian cooks tell you that rinsing pasta in cold water ruins it, but I’ve been known to do it quite frequently. I’m working on my timing.) Add the pasta to the sauce and stir until incorporated. Serve garnished with breadcrumbs (they’re missing in the picture below, but the crunch they add is really essential!).

Wild Mushroom, Goat Cheese and Watercress Crepes

Wild Mushroom, Goat Cheese and Watercress Crepes

Wild Mushroom, Goat Cheese and Watercress Crepes




2 eggs

1 1/4 cups low-fat milk

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 to 2 tablespoons melted butter




2 tablespoons unsalted butter (divided)

8 ounces wild mushrooms, cleaned and sliced

1 medium shallot, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 bunch watercress, stems removed

4 ounces herbed goat cheese


To make crepes: Place the eggs, milk, salt and flour in a blender and process until smooth. Let the batter rest at least 15 minutes (or up to 2 days) before using. Place an 8-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat for a couple of minutes. Brush the pan lightly with melted butter. Pour a 1/4 cup batter into the hot pan, wait a few seconds, then tilt the pan in all directions to spread the batter into an even circle. Cook over medium heat until the top is dry, about 1 minute. Loosen the edges with the tip of a spatula, slide it underneath the crepe and carefully turn it over. Cook the other side for about 30 seconds, then slide the crepe onto a plate. Repeat with the remaining batter, stacking the cooked crepes on the plate. To make mushrooms: Heat a large sauté pan over high heat. When hot, add 1 tablespoon of the butter and half the mushrooms. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are seared, golden brown and dry. Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining butter and mushrooms. When all the mushrooms are cooked, return them to the pan, set the heat to medium and add the shallot. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the shallot is beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute more. Season to taste with salt and pepper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the watercress and toss to coat. Heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add one crepe and spread about 1 tablespoon of the goat cheese on top. Sprinkle with warm sautéed mushrooms and cook until cheese begins to melt. Top with a small handful of watercress, fold the crepe over and slide onto a plate. Repeat with the remaining crepes and filling (save some of the watercress for garnish). Serve 2 crepes per person, topped with watercress.




1/2 medium yellow onion

One 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Handful of fresh parsley

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)

3 garlic cloves

4 tablespoons whole-wheat all-purpose flour (or gluten-free all-purpose flour)

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided


1 cup plain full-fat Greek yogurt

3-inch piece cucumber, grated

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


4 pita pockets or lavash, warmed in the oven

Thinly sliced cucumber

Thinly sliced radishes

Thinly sliced red onion

Roughly chopped pea shoots


Preheat the oven to 4OO°F. To make the falafel, simply whiz all the ingredients (leaving out 1 tablespoon of the olive oil) in a food processor until mostly smooth (with a few remaining chunks). Grease a baking sheet with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Using a tablespoon measure, place heaping scoops of the falafel mixture on the baking sheet, then flatten them with the back of the spoon. Bake the falafel rounds for 10 minutes, flip them, and then bake for another 10 minutes, until edges are crisp, and tops are golden. While the falafel bakes, mix together all the sauce ingredients in a medium bowl. Serve the baked falafel with warm pita pockets or lavash, yogurt sauce, sliced vegetables, and pea shoots.

One Pot Pasta with Zucchini, Garlic Scapes, and Leeks in a White Wine Lemon Sauce

One Pot Pasta with Zucchini, Garlic Scapes, and Leeks in a White Wine Lemon Sauce

One Pot Pasta with Zucchini, Garlic Scapes, and Leeks in a White Wine Lemon Sauce

2 tsp. olive oil

2 leeks white and light green parts (see notes)

12 oz whole wheat rigatoni (see notes)

1 small bunch garlic scapes (see notes)

1 large zucchini cut into quarter moons

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 tsp. salt scant (adjust depending on how salty your broth is – mine was not salty)

pinch ground black pepper

1 tsp. lemon zest loosely packed

1 T. lemon juice

1/2 cup white wine of choice

1/2 cup plain , unsweetened almond milk

2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

fresh basil


Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Add the chopped leeks (and minced garlic if substituting for the garlic scapes). Stir and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the leeks are somewhat softened. Add the pasta, garlic scapes, zucchini, spices, and lemon zest. Pour the lemon juice, white wine, almond milk, and vegetable broth over the top. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Keep partially covered, and stir frequently, cooking until the pasta is done to your liking and the liquid is thickened – about 7-10 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serve topped with fresh basil. The sauce will thicken up a little more once cooled.


To use white, instead of whole wheat pasta, increase the liquid by about 1 cup (please note that I haven’t tested yet with this recipe, but a similar substitution has worked in other recipes). Other pasta shapes should also work. My opinion is that spaghetti/linguine are the best choice, since the more textured pasta shapes can get slightly gummy – they still taste great, though.


If you intend to use this for leftovers then I would recommend adding another small drizzle of olive oil to the cooking liquid, to help keep the pasta from sticking together when it cools.

Instant Pot Goat Cheese & Mushroom Frittata

Instant Pot Goat Cheese & Mushroom Frittata

Instant Pot Goat Cheese & Mushroom Frittata

1 T. unsalted butter, plus more for the soufflé dish

5 T. grated Parmesan cheese

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

8 ounces cremini or white mushrooms, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 T. finely chopped fresh sage

2 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme

1 tsp. kosher salt

9 large eggs

1/2 C. whole milk

2 T. all-purpose flour tsp.

¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

3 ounces soft goat cheese (or grated hard cheese like cheddar)


Butter a porcelain or ceramic (not glass) 7-inch soufflé dish and dust the sides with 2 T. of the Parmesan. Set aside. Using the sauté function, melt the 1 T. butter and the oil in the pressure cooker pot. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic, sage, and thyme and cook until the mushrooms are tender, another 2 minutes. Scrape into a small bowl, sprinkle with V4 tsp. of the salt, and set aside until cool, 3 to 5 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, flour, pepper, and the remaining 3A tsp. salt. Stir in the cooled mushrooms and goat cheese, then scrape into the prepared souffle dish. Cover the dish with aluminum foil. Pour 1 1/2 C. water into the pressure cooker (no need to wash it out first). If your steamer rack has handles, place the souffle dish on the rack and lower everything into the pressure cooker pot. If your rack does not have handles, first place the rack in the pot, then lower in the souffle dish using a homemade sling. Lock the lid into place and cook on high pressure for 25 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then manually release the remaining pressure. Carefully remove the dish from the pressure cooker, using the sling or oven mitts. Remove the foil. Heat the broiler. Sprinkle the remaining 3 T. Parmesan cheese over the frittata, then broil until it is golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Instant Pot Baked Eggs & Tomato Cheese Grits

Instant Pot Baked Eggs & Tomato Cheese Grits

Instant Pot Baked Eggs & Tomato Cheese Grits


3 T. unsalted butter

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

1 C. old-fashioned or stone-ground grits

114.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 C. half-and-half or whole milk, or more to taste

1 1/2 C. shredded cheddar cheese (6 ounces) Tabasco or other hot sauce

4 large eggs

Sliced scallions, for serving


Using the sauté function, melt 1 T. of the butter and the oil in the pressure cooker pot. Add the grits and cook, stirring occasionally, until toasted, about 3 minutes. Stir in 1 1/4 C. water, the tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Lock the lid into place and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then manually release the remaining pressure. Using the sauté function (set to low, if possible), stir the milk, cheddar, and remaining 2 T. butter into the grits. Add Tabasco sauce to taste. Adjust the seasonings if necessary. Immediately, while the grits are still steaming hot. make 4 divots in them, then crack in the eggs. (If the grits have cooled down, turn on the sauté function and reheat them, stirring, before adding the eggs.) Cover the pot (but do not lock on the lid) and let the eggs cook in the residual heat of the pot until they are set to taste, 3 minutes for very runny eggs, 4 to 5 minutes for firmer eggs. Serve immediately, with more hot sauce and scallions sprinkled on top.

Welsh Rarebit with Tangy Watercress Salad

Welsh Rarebit with Tangy Watercress Salad

Welsh Rarebit with Tangy Watercress Salad


1 loaf (1 lb./500 g) crusty country bread, cut into 8 thick slices

1 apple, preferably Fuji, cored and thinly sliced

1 bunch (about 2 1/4 C./2 1/4 oz.) watercress, tough stems removed

1 1/2 C. (1 1/2 oz./45 g) chopped romaine lettuce

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Fleur de sel or flaky sea salt

Freshly ground pepper

3 Tbs. unsalted butter

3 Tbs. all-purpose flour

1/2 C. (4 fl. oz./125 ml) pale ale

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp. whole-grain mustard

1/2 lb. (250 g) aged cheddar cheese, shredded


Place a rack in the top third of the oven, about 4 inches (10 cm) below the broiling element and preheat the broiler.  On a rimmed baking sheet, arrange the bread slices in a single layer and broil until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and leave the broiler on. Arrange the apple slices in even layers on top of the bread slices; set aside. In a large bowl, toss the watercress and romaine with the oil and lemon juice and season to taste with fleur de sel and pepper; set aside.  In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the beer and cook until the mixture is thick and bubbly, about 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low and add the Worcestershire sauce, mustard and a handful of the cheese. Cook until the cheese has melted, whisking in only one direction to prevent the sauce from becoming stringy. Continue adding the cheese by the handful and stirring it until melted before adding the next handful, until all of the cheese has been added and melted. The mixture will be very thick and paste like. Working quickly, spread the cheese mixture evenly over the apples. Broil until the cheese is bubbly and browned in places, about 1 minute. Place 2 cheese toasts on each plate, top with a big mound of salad and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Savory Apple Tart with Onions, Cheddar and Thyme

Savory Apple Tart with Onions, Cheddar and Thyme

Savory Apple Tart with Onions, Cheddar and Thyme

16 T. (2 sticks) (8 oz./250 g) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and frozen until firm

2 2/3 C. (13 1/2 oz./425 g) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 egg plus 1 egg yolk

1/4 C. (2 fl. oz./60 ml) plus 3 Tbs. ice water


1 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

2 yellow onions, sliced into thin rings

1 C. (8 oz./250 g) crème fraîche

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 1/2 C. (6 oz./185 g) shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 T. fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped, plus more for garnish (optional)

3 or 4 baking apples, such as Granny Smith, cored, partially peeled and thinly sliced

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


To make the crust, in a food processor, combine the butter, flour and salt and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with some large pieces. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolk and ice water. While pulsing, drizzle in the egg mixture until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, shape into a rectangle and wrap well. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour or up to 2 days. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into a 14-by-21-inch (35-by-53-cm) rectangle and refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes. Coat a nonstick baking sheet with cooking spray. Fit the dough into the prepared baking sheet. Fold the excess dough under and pinch to form a crust that comes 1/2 inch (12 mm) above the rim. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes. Position 1 rack in the upper third and 1 rack in the lower third of an oven. Preheat to 375°F (190°C).  Line the dough with parchment paper, pressing it flush against the surface of the dough and leaving a 2-inch (5-cm) overhang on all sides. Top with pie weights or dried beans. Fold the parchment over the edges of the crust. Bake on the lower oven rack for 25 minutes, rotating the baking sheet halfway through.  Remove the parchment and weights. Continue baking until the crust is golden brown and crisp, 15 to 17 minutes more. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let cool slightly. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (180°C). Meanwhile, make the filling: In a large fry pan over medium heat, melt the butter with the olive oil and swirl the pan to combine. Add the onions and cook until lightly browned and starting to caramelize, about 8 minutes per side. Remove from the heat.  In a small bowl, stir together the crème fraîche and mustard and spread evenly over the crust. Sprinkle with 1 C. (4 oz./125 g) of the cheese and the thyme. Arrange the apple slices and onions on top. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 C. (2 oz./60 g) cheese, and season with salt and pepper. Bake on the top oven rack until the pastry is golden and the cheese is melted, about 25 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes, then garnish with thyme, cut into slices and serve. Serves 6.

Very Green Spaghetti

Very Green Spaghetti

Very Green Spaghetti

5 oz dried spaghetti

4 cloves of garlic

7 oz cavolo nero (Tuscan Kale)

1 oz Parmesan cheese

1 oz ricotta cheese

Cook the pasta in a pan of boiling salted water according to the package instructions. Meanwhile, peel the garlic. Tear the stems out of the cavolo and discard, adding the leaves and the garlic to the pasta pan for 5 minutes. Pour 1 1/2 T. of extra virgin olive oil into a blender, then finely grate in the Parmesan. Use tongs to carefully transfer the cavolo leaves and garlic straight into the blender and blitz for a few minutes until super-smooth. Taste and season to perfection with sea salt and black pepper. Drain the pasta, reserving a cupful of cooking water. Return the pasta to the pan and toss with the vibrant green sauce, loosening with a splash of reserved cooking water, if needed, then divide between your plates. Dot over the ricotta, drizzle with a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil, and tuck right in.

Florentine-Feta Rolls

Florentine-Feta Rolls

Florentine-Feta Rolls

4 green onions, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 T. olive oil, divided

1 (6 ounce) bag fresh Baby Spinach

1⁄4 cup fresh basil

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1 (13 7/8 ounce) package refrigerated pizza dough (I have used both whole wheat dough and crescent rolls with great results!)

1⁄4 cup crumbled feta cheese

2 T. toasted pine nuts

1 T. butter, melted

1⁄4 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese


Preheat oven to 375. Grease 12 muffin cups and set aside. In a large skillet, heat 1 T. oil and cook green onions and garlic until tender. Add spinach and basil; cook and stir over medium heat until just wilted. Drain off excess liquid. Stir in salt and pepper; set aside to cool. On a well-floured surface, unroll pizza dough and shape into a 12×8 rectangle. Brush surface of dough with remaining olive oil. Spread spinach mixture to within one inch of the edges of the dough. Sprinkle with feta and pine nuts.

Starting with a long side, roll into a spiral. Slice roll into 12 pieces and place cut-side up in prepared muffin cups. Brush with butter and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand in muffin cups for 2 minutes. Remove carefully and serve warm.

Heirloom Tomato and Ricotta Tart

Heirloom Tomato and Ricotta Tart

Heirloom Tomato and Ricotta Tart

Not worth making this unless you have good, home grown, lovely tomatoes. It is too simple not to use the best ingredients.

1 sheet frozen puff pastry (thawed)

1/2 C. ricotta cheese (fresh homemade is perfect here!)

5 heirloom tomatoes (it is gorgeous with multiple colors, but that’s not required)

Flaky sea salt (Maldon, for example)

Fresh thyme

Preheat oven to 400F.  Place puff pastry on a sheet of parchment paper and gently roll with a rolling pin to even out pastry. Place parchment with puff pastry on a baking sheet and evenly spread puff pastry with ricotta leaving a 1-inch perimeter of puff pastry as you go. Sprinkle ricotta with salt and fresh thyme leaves. Bake pastry for 15 minutes. While the pastry bakes, slice your tomatoes into 1/4 slices (you will need 3-4 slices of each color, depending on the size of your tomatoes). Remove pastry from oven and let cool at room temperature for about 10 minutes. Top pastry off with tomato slices and sprinkle tomatoes with salt and thyme leaves. Slice and serve.

Mushroom Risotto with Lemon and Thyme

Mushroom Risotto with Lemon and Thyme

Mushroom Risotto with Lemon and Thyme

1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil Here’s our favorite organic olive oil.

4 cloves garlic chopped

2 C. Carnaroli rice

3/4 pound mixed mushrooms sliced thin

1 C. dry white wine

6 C. Chicken and Mushroom Broth  or Homemade Chicken Broth

1 T. fresh thyme leaves

1 T. finely grated lemon zest

2 tsp. fine sea salt

1/4 C. heavy cream


Warm the olive oil in an enameled cast iron braising dish over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and saute it until fragrant, about three minutes. Stir in the rice, making sure each grain is well-coated with the olive oil, and sauté it until the tips of each grain of rice turn translucent. Turn up the heat to medium-high. Stir in the mushrooms, and pour in wine. Stir the rice and mushrooms gently, but continuously until the rice absorbs the wine. Add the broth a half C. at a time, stirring continuously, and waiting for the rice to absorb the broth before adding more. When the rice is tender and has fully absorbed the broth, yielding a gorgeous creamy texture, turn off the heat, stir in the thyme, lemon zest, salt and heavy cream. Serve warm.

One Pan Skillet Butternut Squash Lasagna

One Pan Skillet Butternut Squash Lasagna

One Pan Skillet Butternut Squash Lasagna

1 lb cubed butternut squash

1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper

1 C. ricotta cheese

1 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary

pinch freshly grated nutmeg

2 C. marinara sauce ((store bought or homemade))

1/2 C. chopped fresh basil

6 no-boil lasagna noodles

2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese ((about 8 oz))


Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Place the butternut squash on a baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and stir to combine. Spread the squash into a single layer, then roast until the squash is fork-tender, 25-30 minutes, stirring once or twice during baking time. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. In a medium bowl, combine the squash, ricotta, 3/4 C. of the Parmesan, the rosemary and the nutmeg. In another bowl, combine the marinara with the basil. Spread 1/2 C. of the marinara in the bottom of a large nonstick skillet. (Mine is a 12-inch skillet.) Cover the marinara with 2 of the lasagna noodles. Spread half of the butternut squash mixture on the noodles, then sprinkle 1/3 of the mozzarella over the top. Add another layer of noodles, the rest of the butternut squash mixture, 1 C. of the marinara, and half of the remaining mozzarella. Top with the remaining noodles, the rest of the marinara, then the remaining mozzarella. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 C. of Parmesan over the top.

Cover the skillet and cook over medium-low heat until the pasta is tender and the cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Halfway through the cooking time, check to see if the edges look dry, and if they do, add up to 1/2 C. of water.) Let the lasagna sit for 5 minutes before serving.


Garlic and Cilantro Soup with Poached Eggs and Croutons

Garlic and Cilantro Soup with Poached Eggs and Croutons

Garlic and Cilantro Soup with Poached Eggs and Croutons

2 C. crustless bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1/4 C. plus 2 T. extra virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp. white wine vinegar

4 large eggs

3 garlic cloves, finely minced

5 C. chicken stock

5 C. packed fresh cilantro leaves


Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Place the bread cubes in a medium bowl and drizzle 2 T. of the olive oil over them. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat with the oil. Place in the oven and toast, stirring once halfway through, until the bread cubes just begin to get crisp, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.  Fill a bowl with ice and water. Bring a saucepan of water to a simmer over medium heat, add the vinegar, and mix well. Break each egg into a C. or ramekin and gently transfer the eggs from the bowls into the simmering water, coming as close as you can to the water as you add them. Poach the eggs until the whites are set but the yolks remain runny, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove each egg from the simmering water and transfer to the iced water bath for 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and cover loosely with foil.  In a large saucepan, heat the remaining ¼ C. olive oil over low heat. Add the garlic and cook until it just starts to turn golden and become fragrant, about 3 minutes. Slowly stir in the chicken stock and season with salt and pepper.  Add the cilantro leaves just as you are ready to serve. Divide the toasted bread cubes and eggs among the soup bowls, ladle the soup on top, and serve.

Savory Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

Savory Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

Savory Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

9 inch pan, either a tart pan, pie plate or even a springform pan, it doesn’t matter as long as you brush it well with olive oil so nothing sticks

3 zucchini, sliced lengthwise with a knife, not too thin or it will disappear in the ricotta, thick enough so it still can bend a bit, leaving the skin on so you can see the green sticking up from the ricotta, don’t bury it.

2 C. ricotta cheese

½ C., Pecorino Romano

½ C. of grated mozzarella plus a little more for sprinkling on top

1 garlic clove minced finely

zest of 1 lemon

3 beaten eggs

1 tsp. each of chopped parsley and basil

olive oil for brushing and drizzling


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Oil your pan well on the bottom and sides so nothing will stick. In a bowl add all ingredients and mix well until all is combined. Place mixture into your prepared pan. Take your zucchini slices and arrange them into the ricotta, you might have some leftover slices depending on how big your zucchini is. Place pan onto a rimmed baking sheet for easy in and out of the oven. Bake for 30 minutes then take it out and sprinkle more shredded mozzarella on top, it will give it a nice golden-brown color. Place bake into the oven and bake for 15 to 30 more minutes, ovens and moisture in the ricotta will vary, just continue baking until golden on top and the ricotta is set, check it with the tip of a knife in the center to see if it comes out clean. Let it cool down to room temperature before cutting into it. Drizzle a little olive oil on top before serving.

Baked Mushrooms

Baked Mushrooms

Baked Mushrooms


8 large flat mushrooms, such as portabellos, wiped and stalks removed

1 bunch spring onions, sliced

1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped

A few sprigs fresh thyme leaves

8oz. Taleggio Cheese

Fresh rocket (arugula)

Juice of 1 lemon

olive oil


Preheat the oven to 200°C, 400°F, Gas Mark 6. Lay the mushrooms on a large baking tray and sprinkle with the onions, garlic and thyme. Slice the Taleggio thinly and use to top the mushrooms. Combine the breadcrumbs with the parsley in a bowl and sprinkle over. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until breadcrumbs are brown and the mushrooms are cooked through. Serve with a rocket salad dressed with lemon juice and oil. Alternatively, serve the baked mushrooms on toasted ciabatta.

Fried Lemon Pasta with Chile Flakes

Fried Lemon Pasta with Chile Flakes

Fried Lemon Pasta with Chile Flakes

Kosher salt, as needed

4 lemons, preferably Meyer or other thin-skinned lemons

l pound linguine or spaghetti

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

pasPinch of sugar

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

3/4 teaspoon red chile flakes, plus more to taste

2/3 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving (optional)

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1/2 cup fresh celery leaves, coarsely chopped (optional)

1/3 cup fresh parsley leaves, coarsely chopped (optional)

Flaky sea salt, for serving


Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Finely grate the zest of 2 lemons and set the zest aside. Juice one of the bald lemons and set the juice aside. (Reserve the second bald lemon in case you want more juice.) Trim the tops and bottoms off the other 2 lemons and cut them lengthwise into quarters; remove the seeds. Slice the lemon quarters crosswise into thin triangles. Blanch the lemon pieces in the boiling water for 2 minutes; then use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a clean dish towel. Taste the lemons; if they seem bitter, repeat the blanching. When the water returns to a boil, add the linguine and cook until it is just shy of al dente, about 2 minutes less than the package directions. Drain, reserving V2 cup of the pasta cooking water. While the pasta is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the lemon pieces and a pinch each of salt and sugar. Cook until the lemons are browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Melt the butter with the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil in the same skillet over medium heat. Add the chile flakes and reserved lemon zest, and cook until fragrant. Whisk in the reserved pasta cooking water. Toss in the pasta, the reserved lemon juice, the cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, and black pepper to taste. Cook until the pasta is well coated with the sauce and has finished cooking, about 1 minute. Toss in the caramelized lemons, and the celery leaves and/or parsley if using. Taste, and add more lemon juice if needed. Serve, topped with a drizzle of olive oil, plus more cheese if you like, and a sprinkle of flak}’ sea salt.

Sheet Pan Lemon-Parmesan Gnocchi with Mushrooms

Sheet Pan Lemon-Parmesan Gnocchi with Mushrooms

Sheet Pan Lemon-Parmesan Gnocchi with Mushrooms

16 ounces dried gnocchi

8 ounces sliced cremini mushrooms

1 bunch asparagus cut into 3-inch pieces

1 lemon, juiced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup Parmesan, plus more for serving

1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic

1 lemon, thinly sliced

5-6 fresh basil leaves. thinly sliced (optional)


Heat your oven to 450ºF.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the gnocchi, mushrooms, asparagus, lemon juice, olive oil, parmesan, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Stir well to combine. Pour the gnocchi mixture onto a baking sheet and spread into a single layer. Scatter the lemon slices over top. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the gnocchi is plump and tender and the asparagus is slightly charred.  Remove the gnocchi from the oven and discard the lemon slices. If desired, Stir in the fresh basil. Serve with extra parmesan.

Wild Mushroom and Brie Quesadilla

Wild Mushroom and Brie Quesadilla

Wild Mushroom and Brie Quesadilla

1 C. Crimini mushroom, sliced

6 oz. oyster mushroom, sliced (approx. one head)

1 small shallot, diced (approx. 2 T. cooked)

1 T. white wine

1 – 8 oz. package brie

2 T. fresh parsley, chopped

2 T. fresh sage, chopped

2 T. fresh rosemary, chopped

2 T. fresh thyme, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

8 low carb tortillas

Preheat 10″ sauté pan over medium heat. Add butter and mushrooms in sauce and cook until lightly browned- about 5-7 minutes. Add salt and pepper, shallots and prepared herbs and cook 3 minutes more. Pour wine in pan to deglaze for 2 minutes. Take mixture off heat and strain well in colander. Cool mixture. Place about 2 T. mushroom mixture in center of top half of each tortilla. Cut the cheese in eight slices. Pull slices of cheese apart with your fingers and spread equal portions over mushroom mix. Fold empty tortilla half over half with filling to form half moon shape. Pan fry quesadillas in 10″ nonstick pan with a T. of olive oil until golden brown on each side. Cut each quesadilla into three wedges and serve.

LTS Alpine Spaghetti

LTS Alpine Spaghetti

We are camping this weekend.  4 families, 8 girls, daisies and incoming juniors.  I dunno why this is “Alpine”, its not made with pine needles or something.  Maybe just because they make it while hiking.   Since we are car camping, I may put fresh herbs from my garden in the cooler instead of using dried herbs.

Alpine Spaghetti

8 oz. of spaghetti or noodles

1 tbsp of olive oil

1 cup of parmesan cheese

3 tsp of dried sweet basil

1 tbsp of parsley flakes

1 garlic clove, minced


Bring a pot of water to a boil and add spaghetti. Boil for 10 minutes and drain. Add olive oil, mix with pasta, and then add the remaining ingredients. Mix again and serve.

WIW: Deliciously Dented Tofu

WIW: Deliciously Dented Tofu

WIW: Deliciously Dented Tofu


This actually looks pretty tasty for tofu, doesn’t it?

1 package (14 oz.) firm or extra-firm tofu, cut into 3/4-inch thick slices

2 T. peanut oil

1 T. sesame oil, plus more for serving

1 tsp. yellow miso paste

1 tsp. soy sauce, plus more for serving

Nonstick cooking spray

2 C. cooked Asian-style short grain rice or Thai sticky rice

Sriracha, for serving

Black sesame seeds, for serving (optional)


Preheat waffle iron to medium. Lay a lint-free kitchen towel or two layers of paper towels on a rimmed baking sheet. Lay the tofu slices on top in a single layer. Top with another two layers of paper towels. Place another baking sheet on top, and weight it down with large cans for about 20 minutes to extract excess moisture. In a shallow bowl or deep plate, combine peanut oil, sesame oil, miso paste and soy sauce. Place tofu in soy sauce mixture and turn to coat. Coat both sides of a waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray. Place tofu in waffle iron, close lid, and cook until golden brown and crisp, about 3 to 8 minutes, depending upon your appliance. Repeat until all the tofu is cooked. Spray both sides of waffle iron with more nonstick cooking spray. Place a generous 1/2 C. of rice in the waffle maker. Close lid and cook until rice is just golden and holds together, about 2 to 6 minutes, depending upon your waffle maker. Repeat with remaining rice. Place rice and tofu on plates. Sprinkle tofu with black sesame seeds, if you like. Accompany with more soy sauce, sesame oil and Sriracha for drizzling at the table.

Pantry Pasta with Kale, Chickpeas and Sun Dried Tomatoes

Pantry Pasta with Kale, Chickpeas and Sun Dried Tomatoes

Pantry Pasta with Kale, Chickpeas and Sun Dried Tomatoes

1/2 pound whole wheat or spelt rotini (or any other short pasta)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (or 2 tablespoons of the sun dried tomato oil and 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil)

1 small onion, cut in half and then chopped into thin half moons

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 teaspoon crushed red chilies (optional)

1 14 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

3 cups frozen chopped kale

1 (~200 mL / 7 ounce) jar oil-packed julienned sun dried tomatoes

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Freshly ground pepper (about 10-15 turns of the pepper grinder) and sea salt


Cook pasta to al dente, according to package directions, and reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil or sun dried tomato oil in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Add onions and cook until softened. Add garlic and chilies (if using) and cook for a minute more or until garlic is fragrant. Drain sun dried tomatoes of their oil or remove them from oil using a slotted spoon, and then stir sun dried tomatoes, chick peas and frozen kale into the onion mixture and cook, stirring frequently, until kale is hot. Toss pasta with kale mixture, adding 1 tablespoon of olive oil and enough pasta water to get a consistency you are happy with. (I usually end up using about an eighth to a quarter cup of water.) Stir in pepper and parmesan cheese, and add salt to taste (about 1/2 teaspoon).