Spanish picnic, part 2: Goat cheese stuffed piquillo peppers

August 9, 2013

Stuffed Piquillo Peppers

Last week I told you about my fabulous Spanish themed picnic, and gave you the recipe for a killer gazpacho that packs a tomato punch but is tempered with some roasted red pepper. Well, continuing in that vein, today I have the recipe for the stuffed piquillo peppers I made for the picnic.

Stuffed piquillo peppers are not the first thing that comes to mind when I think picnic food. Stuffed with softened goat cheese, I wasn’t even sure I could make this work, but they’re so good that I was willing to give it a try. I often make these for appetizers at home, or just as a great little finger food for company. They always get rave reviews, and they never last long.

How did they hold up for the picnic? (more…)

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Summer bounty: Fried squash antipasti

June 28, 2013

Fried Squash

Fried squash is one of those dishes that takes me back to my childhood. I can remember both my mom and great grandmother making fried squash, carefully flipping over each circular slice in the pan, getting an even golden brown on each piece. Back then, it was the only way I would eat squash — probably because it was the only way I had known squash! Fast forward a few years, and we’ve simplified the recipe a bit so you don’t have to tend it so closely. (more…)

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Using up leftovers: Vegetable Pakora

December 27, 2012

Vegetable Pakora

It always happens after the big holidays – you have a few leftovers in the refrigerator. At first you work your way through the the prepared foods, simply reheating or making sandwiches from hams and turkeys, but there’s always those extra bits of raw ingredients left over, such as excess vegetables that may not have made their way into the rich dishes you created for Christmas dinner.

Fear not! Instead of simply steaming or boiling these veggies, why don’t you add some spice to your life, making this modern take on vegetable pakora? (more…)

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Easy Apps: Figs with Whipped Goat Cheese and Bacon

September 13, 2012

Figs with Whipped Goat Cheese and Bacon

When fresh figs start appearing in the market, I get excited. There’s something about a fruit so fleeting that you can only get it a couple of times a year. When I made my locavore-inspired dinner a while back, the first figs had hit the market, and luckily Whole Foods wasn’t just carrying the black mission figs I’m not a fan of, but also the greenish-brown calmyrna figs that are my favorite, fresh or dried.

I had picked up a basket of these guys with no idea what I planned on doing with them. The next day, I decided on the summer vegetable gnocchi for dinner, so I began my fig brainstorming with an appetizer in mind. Wine-poached figs? No, that seemed more suitable for a dry fig. Balsamic-glazed figs? Now we’re talking! (more…)

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Summer’s Simple Pleasures: Bruschetta

July 17, 2012

Bruschetta

I’m not sure if it’s the “heat”, the lazy lull of summer, or years of actually living somewhere hot and humid that makes me want to kick back and nosh on something simple for dinner. This time of year I’m very apt to make a meal out of caprese salad or proscuitto and melon. No cooking, no oven, just a couple of ingredients sliced and plated, and best served with a glass of wine.

To that end, when someone suggested bruschetta to me late last week, it immediately grabbed hold of that place in my brain that stores my cravings and didn’t let go. What could be simpler? While I did have to fire up the grill (gas, this time, to keep things simple), there wasn’t much more effort needed. (more…)

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