I just realized how pasta-heavy my posts have been recently. I guess I just feel into the pasta rut with my busy schedule as of late – but that’s no excuse for my lack of creativity! I am going to revamp my food planner later today and make sure there are fewer pasta dishes.
This recipe can be made in 20 minutes and is absolutely delicious (and cheap to make too)!
Roasted Red Pepper Pasta (GF)
- 12 ounces, gluten-free pasta (I used rotini)
- 2 Tablespoons Butter (I used Earth Balance Vegan Spread)
- 2 Tablespoons EVOO
- ½ whole Large Onion, Finely Diced
- 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
- 1 jar (15.5 Ounces) Roasted Red Peppers, Drained And Roughly Chopped
- 1 cup Vegetable Broth
- ½ teaspoons Salt, More To Taste
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- ½ cup milk or soy milk
- ½ cup Parmesan Shavings or Rice Dream Vegan Parmesan
- Finely Minced Parsley
- Chopped Fresh Basil
- Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions.
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute for 2 to 3 minutes or until starting to soften. Add the chopped red peppers and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until hot.
- Remove the skillet from the heat. Carefully transfer the contents of the skillet to a food processor or blender. Place on the lid and puree the pepper mixture until totally blended (there will still be some texture to the peppers.)
- Heat 2 tablespoons EVOO back to the skillet over medium heat. Pour the pepper puree back into the skillet. Add the broth, salt, and pepper, and stir until heated. Splash in the milk and stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings if you need to.
- Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet. Add Parmesan and parsley & basil, then stir it together to coat the pasta.
- Serve in bowls with extra Parmesan and a sprinkling of basil on top.
Protein packed pesto with a punch? Yes, please! I am absolutely obsessed with pesto and I have a penchant for downing edamame more than the average folk.
This type of pesto is a little thicker than traditional pesto and is perfect as a sauce, dip or sandwich spread. I am sure there are more uses for it – get creative! Here is the recipe:
- 14 oz package of frozen shelled edamame, thawed
- 1 cup basil leaves, packed (more to taste)
- 2 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 T nutritional yeast (optional, but recommended for that cheesy flavor)
- 1 t – 1 T extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 t salt
- oregano, cilantro or any other spices you desire
Put the liquid in the food processor first and then add the other ingredients, blending until smooth. Serve over pasta, pizza, or any other dish you want!
Nick loves alfredo sauce. In fact, I can’t remember a time when we went to an Italian restaurant and he didn’t get some sort of alfredo dish. Unfortunately for him (and fortunately for my waist line) I do not share the same adoration for this sauce.
Since Nick is such a good sport about trying out my little experiments, I compromised with him and made a dish that incorporated this sauce. I recently discovered gluten-free tortellini, so I decided to make a hearty pasta bake.
I’m going to warn you, this is NOT the healthiest of dishes – I had a small portion with a big salad .:)
Baked Tortellini (GF)
-1 pkg. gluten-free cheese tortellini, uncooked
-3 cups homemade Marinara sauce
-1/2 cup water
-1/2 jar Alfredo four cheese sauce (All “Classico” sauces are gluten-free!)
-1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
-1/2 cup shredded Smoked Mozzarella Cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In 3 quart glass baking dish, layer tortellini and marinara sauce. Put water into empty sauce jar, close lid, and shake. Pour this mixture over the tortellini.
Spoon Alfredo sauce over the tortellini. Sprinkle with cheese.
Cover tightly with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes. Uncover and bake 10 minutes longer, until tortellini is tender and cheese is bubbling and golden brown.
Quick-Marinated Cherry Tomato Salad (GF) (V)
1 pint red cherry tomatoes
1 pint yellow cherry tomatoes
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 heaping tablespoon vegan pesto (same as normal pesto but with Rice Dream Parm)
1/4 teaspoon brown sugar
1 clove garlic, pressed
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
1 head iceberg lettuce, cut into chunks
- Halve the tomatoes and add them to a large zipper bag with the sliced red onion. Add the olive oil, balsamic, parsley, pesto, sugar, garlic and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Seal the bag, getting all the air out. Place into the fridge until ready for dinner.
- Place the iceberg lettuce in a large bowl and pour on the tomatoes. Toss and serve! (The dressing from the tomatoes becomes the salad dressing.)
I had a request to post vegan dinner recipes more frequently – a request that I was more than happy to accommodate. I love it when readers reach out and give you suggestions on what to post so keep the requests coming y’all!
This is my vegan and gluten-free take on Pasta Florentine:
1 pound gluten free rotini or penne
2 tablespoons vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup low-sodium broth, more if needed
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 bag baby spinach
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
- Cook the pasta according to package directions in lightly salted water. Drain and set aside.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and quickly stir to avoid burning. After about 30 seconds, pour in the broth and wine, stirring to deglaze the skillet. Allow the liquid to bubble up, and then continue cooking until it’s reduced by at least half (most of the surface of the liquid should be bubbling at this point).
- Turn off the heat. Add the spinach, tomatoes and cooked pasta to the skillet. Toss to combine; the spinach will wilt as you toss everything. Serve immediately.
Mac n’ Cheese Alton Brown Style (GF)
1/2 pound gluten free elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons gluten free all purpose flour
1 tablespoon powdered mustard
3 cups milk
1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 large egg
12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh black pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it’s free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.
Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.
It’s monsoon season! The best way to enjoy the dust storms? Curl up on the couch with a pot pie, a glass of wine and watch re-runs of SVU! It’s a dangerous habit, I know…
I made a simple veggie pot pie for myself, and threw some cooked, shredded chicken into Nick’s. This recipe makes a big batch – perfect for left overs. I like to make a lot so I can freeze it for future dinners. Yum!
Veggie Pot Pie (GF)
- 4 Tablespoons Earth Balance “Butter”
- 1/2 cup Finely Diced Onion
- 1/2 cup Finely Diced Carrot
- 1/2 cup Finely Diced Celery
- 1/4 cup Gluten Free Flour
- 3 cups Veggie Broth, Plus More If Needed
- Splash Of White Wine (optional)
- 1/4 teaspoon Turmeric
- Salt And Pepper, to taste
- Chopped Fresh Thyme To Taste
- 1/4 cup Milk
- 1 whole Gluten Free Unbaked Pie Crust, (Pillsbury makes some now!)
- 1 whole Egg
- 2 Tablespoons Water
- Preheat the oven to 375 F.
- Melt the “butter” in a large pot over medium-high heat, then add the onion, carrots, and celery. Stir them around until the onions start to turn translucent, about 3 minutes.
- Sprinkle the flour over the top and stir it until it’s all combined with the vegetables (if using meat, throw it in now). Cook for 1 minute, then pour in the broth (and wine if using) and stir it around and let it cook and thicken.
- Once it starts to thicken add the turmeric, salt, pepper, and thyme.
- Add the milk, then stir the mixture and let it bubble up and thicken, about 3 minutes. If it seems overly thick, splash in a little more broth. Turn off the heat.
- Pour the filling into a 2-quart baking dish. Roll out the pie crust on a floured surface and lay it over the top of the dish. Press the dough so that the edges stick to the outside of the pan. Use a knife to cut little vents here and there in the surface of the dough.
- Mix together the egg with 2 tablespoons water and brush it all over the surface of the crust. (You will have some egg wash left over.)
- Place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the crust is deep golden brown and the filling is bubbly. To prevent the crust from getting too brown, you might want to cover it lightly with foil for the first 15 minutes of baking time. I made mine in little souffle dishes – this recipe was enough for 6 of those dishes.
New York Style Chopped Salad with Homemade Vegan “Honey” Mustard Dressing
- 3 cups Mixed Salad Greens
- 3 cups Bibb Lettuce
- 8 whole Romaine Leaves
- 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- Grape Tomatoes, Halved
- 1 cup blueberries
- Sliced Or Diced Bell Pepper
- Avocado, Sliced
- Cucumbers, Halved Then Sliced
- 1 bunch radishes, sliced
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
- Vegan “Honey” Mustard Dressing (recipe follows
- Lay out different greens and all the veggies in small dishes.
- Have a big stainless bowl with tongs. Have everyone build their own salad by throwing what they want into the bowl. Toss with dressing, then pour tossed salad onto a cutting board.
- With two knives, quickly chop the salad so that it’s chopped into smaller pieces.
- Transfer to a plate and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.
Vegan “Honey” Mustard Dressing:
- 3 1/2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1/3 Cup Agave Nectar Light
- 2 1/2 Tbsp Spicy Brown Mustard
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- 1 Clove of Garlic, minced
- Black Pepper to taste
- 1/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1. Whisk all ingredients in a bowl and serve.
Yummy yummy! It’s time for brunch! I always like to serve breakfast on sizzling platters to keep them piping hot from start to finish. The ones I use, I found at an estate sale for a screaming deal. Let’s just say I make fajitas more often now…
Breakfast Potato Hash
12 russet potatoes
Canola oil, for frying
Butter, for frying
1 large onion, cut into fine dice
1 green pepper, cut into fine dice
1 red pepper, cut into fine dice
1 yellow pepper, cut into fine dice
Salt and ground black pepperMethod:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and bake until fork tender, about 45 minutes.
- Place the hot potatoes on a cutting board and dice them into 1-inch pieces.
- Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-low to medium heat. Next, put a tablespoon of canola oil in the skillet. Add in some butter and the onions and saute until they start to turn brown. Next, throw in the cooked diced potatoes and the peppers. Salt and pepper the potatoes, then stir them around, slightly pressing/packing them in the skillet. Cook without stirring for 5 to 7 minutes. You want to make sure the pan is hot enough to crisp the potatoes. Add more butter to the pan as necessary for moisture.
- After several minutes, use a spatula to flip the potatoes over and cook on the other side for another 5 to 7 minutes.
Always use fresh eggs. If you can’t see the difference between the “thick” white and the “thin” white, the yolks will probably break in the pan. Always deliver the eggs to the pan with a custard cup or large spoon. Avoid cracking directly into the pan. When using a non-stick skillet cook in no more than an inch of water. If you don’t have a non-stick pan, poach in a deep saucepan containing at least 3 inches of water. Always acidulate the poaching liquid with either vinegar or lemon juice (1 tsp per each cup of water). Bring liquid to a boil, add eggs, then remove from heat and cover. How long you ask? It depends on how many eggs. I like my yolks barely runny so I’ll cook 4 eggs for 7 to 8 minutes depending on their size. Since more eggs will absorb more heat from the water, they will take longer to cook, so for large batches always include an extra “test” egg. Always remove eggs with a slotted spoon. Poached eggs can be refrigerated in ice water for up to 8 hours, then reheated in hot water. Do not re-boil.
I can’t think of a more enjoyable way to welcome the summer season than having a BBQ. Well, maybe reading a good book on a white sanded beach could rival it, but let’s be real!
In Scottsdale, the temperature is already in the triple digits and we’re getting dangerously close to record-breaking heat for this time of year – really 112 before it’s even summer?? We Arizonans may be in for a brutal attack this year.
To beat the heat, make something cool and refreshing to pair with hot and crispy bbq items. I like to make a salad of watermelon, tomatoes, feta and fresh herbs.
Doesn’t that combo sound delectable?
That’s because it is!
Watermelon, Tomato and Feta Salad
1 lb watermelon
1 lb red ripe tomato
2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves
7 1/4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- Peel the watermelon and cut into bite-sized cubes.
- Cut the tomatoes into quarters and toss in the olive oil and balsamic vinegar with the fresh mint and basil leaves.
- Scatter the feta cheese and oregano over the top to serve.