Quick-Chili Loaded Baked Potatoes

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You guys, this weather we are having around here!  It’s COLD!  Gorgeous, but man does that change in temp feel like a chill or what?  It’s pretty much the best kind of weather.  You know, the kind of weather where it’s not too cold to sleep with your windows open…but them when you wake up in the morning you can’t possibly seem to peel yourself out of those perfectly warm, cozy covers because your room has an insane chill going through it.

We have been comfort-fooding around here like crazy people lately.  It must be the weather.  And these Quick-Chili Loaded Baked Potatoes made the roster.  I feel like I say this a lot, mostly because I only tend to share the recipes that get my family’s stamp of approval, but these are definitely a favorite among the kiddos. Continue reading

Potato Gratin with Poblanos, Pancetta and Corn

SONY DSCHow about this weather, friends?  It’s so random this time of year.  Mornings feel like fall at its finest:  cool, crisp air perfect for that cozy sweater.  Head into afternoon and the sun is blazing and the temps are rising forcing you to tear that sweater off as quickly as you can.  Part summer, part fall, no?

And this gratin is right there with the weather these days.  Part summer with those farm fresh poblanos, potatoes and corn.  Part fall with that comfort an warmth.

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The Maverick Blended Burger

SONY DSCA couple of months ago I had the honor of attending the launch of the James Beard Foundations Blended Burger Project here in Minneapolis.  The blended burger initiative aims to influence chefs to incorporate mushrooms into burger recipes, both for sustainability and health benefits.  Makes perfect sense to me.  And the coolest part is that this movement is being welcomed and respected to no end.   From elite restaurants to classic burger joints, these blends are showing up on menus all around the world.  And get this, schools throughout the country have incorporated blended burgers into their menus.  Can you imagine?  It’s time for change, friends, and I suppose we could start one household at a time.   Continue reading

Baba Ghanouj | Eggplant Dip

SONY DSCWeekend warriors!  It’s Saturday!  What’s the good word?

We have a whole lot of nothing planned this weekend and I just couldn’t be more thrilled about it.  The weather here in MN is feeling a bit crisp and fall like-so as you can imagine, I intend on a cozy cup of coffee this morning with my husband who is [finally] back in town and a couple of kids running around in jammies until we decide what random Saturday adventure we would like to partake in.  Man, my kind of day.   Continue reading

Steak Balsamic Summer Panzanella

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Well now if this doesn’t scream my husbands name, I’m not sure what does.  This, right here, is one of his very favorite meals…and I have to admit, he has pretty darn good taste.

Lets just start this party immediately, guys.  There’s a lot of celebrating to do, no sense in wasting anyones time.

First, we’ve got grilled bread.  No, wait.  Glazed with olive oil, grilled, crunchy on the outside slightly crisp on the inside bread.  And you know, I don’t eat much bread on the regular.  But this bread right here?  ALWAYS an exception for this girl.  Continue reading

B.B.T Lettuce Wraps

SONY DSCMonday Monday.  Give me allllll the coffee today, friends.  You feeling it too?  Some Mondays I am so ready to rock into the week…this Monday, totally ready to rock myself back to sleep.  Perfect day for a hardly-a-recipe recipe, no?!

B.B.T Lettuce Wraps.  Bacon Bleu Tomato Lettuce Wraps.  Because you know what?  Sometimes I don’t really feel like cooking.  And sometimes, even though I don’t feel like cooking, I still feel like eating something yummy.

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Parmesan Crusted Zucchini Bites

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So I think my family has fully recovered from the zucchini overload that transpired a few weeks ago.  I’ve learned that putting them through the hells of zucchini recipe testing for a couple of weeks actually isn’t too bad of a tactic to get them to completely appreciate all of the other veggies out there.  Lately I’ve been hearing things like We aren’t having zucchini?  We’re having broccoli?  YESSSS!!!  So really, we are all sort of winning here.

But this Parmesan Crusted Zucchini Rounds recipe shouldn’t even technically count as zucchini.  Fried cheese? Now that’s more like it. Continue reading

Quick + Easy Garden Fresh Salsa

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There really is no excuse not to make this stuff.  It takes about as much time as it takes to open up a jar of salsa from the market and, well, I don’t need to tell you how the taste compares, right?

We all know how delicious fresh salsa is.  And when the tomatoes, peppers and onions are as fresh and perfect as it comes it really is just the most unbeatable condiment on the planet, in my humble opinion.  Gobs of garlicky, acidic, sweet, spicy flavor…yes, please, I’ll go right ahead!  Continue reading

Grilled Chicken Mediterranean Bowls

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Summer is officially halfway over you guys.  Each year around this time I seem to begin easing into fall mindset; it’s a  point of bittersweetness thinking about what’s shortly ahead.

School.  Structure.  Less daylight.  Earlier bedtimes.  More responsibility.  And quite honestly, each time around this year, that all tends to sound slightly appealing to me.  As much as I adore our summers here in MN, the fall brings so much wonderful newness.  The scenery is impeccable.  The crisp air and lack of mosquitos are like a dream.  The kids getting into a new routine and their utter excitement about school is so uplifting.  And schedules…you know I love a solid, predictable schedule 😉

But before all of that comes, while things are still warm and sticky and loosey-goosey, please, please, I beg you, do me a favor?  Celebrate these last days of summer in your kitchen and make this dish.  It’s sheer delight; summer at its very very very finest.  And if you have even the slightest love for Mediterranean flavor, this is absolutely for you. Continue reading

Gooey Chocolate Zucchini Bread

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Guys, I write to you with reservation.  This is not how this was supposed to go.  We weren’t supposed to end our zucchini week this way.  I had big dreams.  High hopes.  Goodbyes are difficult…zucchini goodbyes, well, they deserve more than a confidence-lacking post.

You see, I was kind of saving the best for last here with this bread.  I made it last week…it was incredible…but I didn’t take photos.  Figured I’d make it again this week because my kids acted like famished wolves when I made the last batch…it would be a perfect opportunity for me to get some photos for you. How special to be able to share them on this last day we have together with zucchini.  I hate goodbyes.   Continue reading