Spiced Pears and Pomegranates

A pomegranate is a sweet, tart fruit with thick, red skin. While the skin is not edible, it holds hundreds of juicy seeds that you can eat plain or sprinkle on salads, oatmeal, hummus, and other dishes. Bottled pomegranate juice is also an easy way to enjoy some of the health benefits of this delicious fruit.

Today’s dish is great for most diets. It’s vegan with no common allergy triggers, that works well as a fruit salad or as a healthy dessert alternative. It’s made with two autumn fruits, ripe pears and pomegranates, and is a great dish for the holidays from Thanksgiving to New Year. It works well for potlucks. Pomegranates are, of course, a high-fiber, high-antioxidant “superfood” (thanks in part to those hard little edible seeds!). It’ll make you happy to see pomegranates appear in the grocery in the fall…

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Southwestern Quinoa Salad

This is a wonderful Southwestern style salad that is quick and easy to make. It makes a healthy side with quinoa, black beans, corn, peppers, red onion, and cilantro. It also is a great lunch. Best of all, it’s tasty. You can adjust ingredients and spices for your family. The recipe is vegetarian but can be modified to meet vegan needs as noted in the recipe.

Don’t like cilantro? Add Romaine lettuce instead. You can make this salad with white or red quinoa. All quinoa has a nutty, earthy flavor. This flavor is stronger in red quinoa and milder in white quinoa. Red quinoa also has a chewier, almost crunchy texture. Quinoa is a great base for salads because it’s nutritious, and it soaks up the flavors of the dressing and seasonings. Quinoa is gluten-free, rich in fiber and a great source of protein. The longer the salad chills in the fridge, the more flavor it will have. The dressing soaks into the quinoa and makes it super flavorful and delicious. Let it marinate for at least 2 hours for optimal flavor. Try making a bowl on Sunday, and package lunches for several days.

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Summer Nectarine Salad With Cucumbers & Tomatoes

For gardeners, summer can be a time of never-ending cucumbers and tomatoes. Even if you don’t grow your own, the supermarkets and farmer’s markets are loaded with summer produce.  Here’s a tasty salad  that goes great with grilled chicken or fish and is oh so easy to make. Use cucumbers with heirloom tomatoes,  but even grape or cherry tomatoes work well too.

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Black Bean Hummus

Hummus is a Middle Eastern dip, spread, or savory dish traditionally made from cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic. I’ve shared various versions of hummus before in all kinds of flavors. Today my twist is a spicy version based on black beans not chickpeas. Put all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Taste your hummus and adjust spices as needed for your family. I’ve added jalapeño pepper, garlic, and lime juice for a pop of flavor.

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Lentil Soup With Greens, Great Idea For Lent

(For those of you who do not practice Lent, Lent is a period of fasting/self-restraint in preparation for Easter. It begins on Ash Wednesday and ends the Thursday before  Easter. Traditionally Ash Wednesday and Fridays during Lent are meatless.)  Back in 2017, I shared my favorite soup, Lentil Soup With Greens. Today I’m sharing it again. It’s so easy and delicious.

I’ve loved lentil soup for decades. I love the taste, the ease in making it, and the versatility of the soup. Back in the 1980’s, my friend Mary would make a big pot of lentil soup for Lent. Her recipe was pretty basic but for the last 5 to 8 minutes of cooking, she added baby spinach on top of the soup and replaced the lid.  The spinach steamed, and  then she stirred the spinach through the soup before serving in bowls

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Apple Peanut Butter Toast

I like toast for breakfast – all kinds of toast. I’ve shared avocado toast ideas, roasted beets & feta toast, and  even apple yogurt toast with dates.  Today I’m sharing a very easy breakfast or snack idea that is really tasty and nutritious, apple peanut butter toast.  It will please both children and adults with its taste and crunch. It’s also a great after school snack when the kids get home.

 

 

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Easy Gazpacho

Gazpacho or Gaspacho is a cold soup made of raw, blended vegetables. It originated in the southern regions of the Iberian peninsula and spread into other areas. During hot summer days, it is a cool and refreshing meal.  I remember the first time I made it with my sister one hot July day.  I love vegetables, and the soup was so tasty with the flavor of my garden favorites.  One nice thing about gazpacho is how easy it is to make and to modify.  Hate the taste of raw onion? Diminish or eliminate the amount added.

 

 

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