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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Pasta With Rainbow Vegetables

Back in the 1970’s Pasta Primavera was invented and introduced in a New York City restaurant. (Origins of the dish are somewhat disputed.) It was a pasta dish with springtime vegetables (primavera means springtime) in a cream sauce. I like to try to eat lighter and healthier meals with lower fat. In fact everytime I see my physician for a check-up, she says eat less fat! Today I’m sharing a lighter and healthier pasta dish with a rainbow of vegetables based on spring asparagus. Add carrots, yellow squash, zucchini, mushrooms, and cherry tomatoes for a dish that is both pleasing to the eye and your taste buds.

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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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 Spaghetti With Eggplant & Bean Meatballs  

Many of us are trying to eat more plant-based food.  Eating a plant-based diet improves the health of your gut so you are better able to absorb the nutrients from food that support your immune system and reduce inflammation. I’ve written before about the connection between inflammation and illness. Plant fiber can lower cholesterol and stabilize blood sugar, and it helps prevent diabetes and heart disease.  Even if you only have one meatless day a week, it is a step toward a healthier diet.

Today’s recipe is a meatless version of a favorite dish of spaghetti and meatballs. The meatless balls are made of cooked eggplant, white beans, two kinds of cheese, panko bread crumbs, garlic, and oregano.  I make the meatballs 1 1/2″ to 2″  so they retain their shape better.  Then they are simmered in a flavorful tomato sauce before serving. I like the classic recipe for marinara in the New York Times. Yum! If you prefer, you can use your favorite pasta sauce instead of marinara.

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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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Zucchini and Tomato Gratin

Today’s dish of summer’s fresh, firm zucchinis and tomatoes sliced and topped with cheese is a perfect side or even main entree.  When the garden gives you lots of great vegetables, make a tasty gratin. Classic gratin is fresh vegetables baked with a layer of cheese.  My recipe is slightly different than the classic sprinkling of  Parmesan.  I’m adding thin slices of mozzarello between the rounds of tomatoes and zucchini before sprinkling with  Parmesan.  The result is a beautiful, yummy dish that hits the spot with flavor and ease.  Today’s recipe serves 4 as a side dish or appetizer and 2 as a vegetarian entree. I think it is perfect to accompany garlic herb grilled salmon or grilled chicken. For a meatless meal, serve with bread or rolls and a salad with a lemon vinaigrette.

 

 

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Peach Cole Slaw

This week I’m doing my recipe early due to Memorial Day. Traditionally summer starts with Memorial Day. Wishing you all a day of safe time with family with a few moments remembering those who served our country. Now let’s talk about cole slaw.

Peaches are one of my favorite fruits.  Peaches are available from April to October.  Since Florida is a hot state, you probably think we don’t grow peaches.  Peaches do grow here in mostly the north part of the state.  Our peaches are available April and May. By June our markets are selling Georgia peaches.  No matter the state where they are grown, I just love fresh ripe peaches. I love them as my snack or dessert and also like adding them to many dishes.

 

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