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Egg Sandwich: Kale, Balsamic Red Onions, & Romano

With leftover balsamic red onions and sauteed kale from the other night, another delicious breakfast sandwich creation was about to happen. 

I steamed the kale that I had sauteed in olive oil with garlic the day before to reheat it.  I also reheated the balsamic red onions that I had broiled the night before.  (note: both of these recipes for sauteed kale and balsamic red onions have already been posted on my blog, so just search for them).  I thinly sliced Romano cheese to place on the toast (Bread Alone has the most delicious whole wheat sourdough), followed by the re-heated kale, balsamic red onions, followed by a poached egg.  




Veggie Burrito Bake

I have yet to have a guest over for dinner who hasn’t loved this dish.  It’s also great to make the day before…..for those hectic days when you don’t have time to cook dinner. Garnish with avocados, sour cream, jalapenos, cilantro, radishes, salsa and/or red onions.


3 large clove garlic (minced)

1 medium onion (minced)

3/4 cup uncooked rice

3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth

16 cups fresh spinach

2 cups cooked black beans (I can rinsed)

1 Tablespoon chili powder

1-2 cups Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese (shredded)


Saute  1 minced garlic  clove, onion, uncooked rice, and ground turmeric in 1 Tablespoon oil until onion is tender.  Stir often.  Add the vegetable broth and mix well.  Simmer, covered, until liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes for white rice, 40 minutes for brown rice.  Remove from heat, let stand 5 minutes, fluff with fork.

While rice cooks, heat 1 Tablespoon oil in fry pan on high heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic and spinach, one handful at a time as it wilts, adding a little water as needed to prevent sticking.  Spinach should be moist, with loose leaves, not clumped together.

In a small bowl, mix together the black beans and chili powder.

Layer as follows in a 2-quart casserole: half of spinach, all of the rice, all of the beans, remaining spinach.  Sprinkle the cheese on top.  (At this point, casserole may be tightly covered and refrigerated to be cooked later).  Cover and bake at 375 until sizzling, 45 minutes.   Broil for a few minutes after this to get the cheese nice and crispy along the edges, if you enjoy this effect. Serve it in corn tortillas or by itself.

Garnish with salsa, avocados, guacamole, sour cream, hot sauce, cilantro, lime wedges, radishes, red onion, etc.

*This recipe is from Simply in Season for SPRING*



Instant Tamale Pie

This is one of those quick meals that is always a hit, and you can prepare it in 10-15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350

Lighly oil a 11 inch baking dish.  Empty 1 (15 oz) can of pinto beans with juice into a large mixing bowl and mash with a potato masher.  Add 1 cup corn, 1/2 cup tomato salsa, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, 1/4 teaspoon salt. Mix thoroughly and set aside.

Slice 12 ounces of prepared polenta roll into 1/4-1/2 inch thick rounds.  (Refrigerate any remaiders for another use). Arrange the rounds in the prepared skillet or baking dish slightly overlapping one another.  Spoon the bean mixture oevenly over the polenta. Sprinkle on 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro and top with  1 cup grated sharp Cheddar Cheese.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 15 minutes, and then uncover and bake for 20 minutes. For a crisp, golden topping, place the baking dish under the broiler for 2-3 minutes.  Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Serve with avocado slices, jarred jalapenos, sour cream, and salsa.

Not only is this a great lunch or dinner meal, but it can be a fabulous brunch option topped with a poached egg, as in the picture above.

*This recipe is from Moosewood Restaurant New Classics cookbook.*



Creamy Vegetable Soup

This is a favorite at our house and served with a crusty rosemary roll and a side of roasted squash (or another vegetable of your choosing), you have yourself a meal. 

2 cups cubed potatoes

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup thinly peeled and sliced carrots

1/2 cup thinly sliced celery

1 cup water

Cook together in a large soup pot for 5 minutes.

Add 2 cups broccoli cut into small bite-size florets and continue to cook an additional 5-10 minutes.

Add 3 cups milk, 2 vegetable bouillon cubes, 1 teaspoon Wrocestershire sauce, salt and pepper to taste.  Heat to boiling.

In a separate bowl, whisk 1 cup milk and 1/3 cup flour together until smooth.  Stir into the soup and cook just until thickened.   Turn off heat.

Add  1 cup sharp shredded cheddar cheese and stir until melted.

*This recipe is from the Simply in Season cookbook, that is often used in my home.  They refer to it as Hearty Broccoli Soup in the Autumn section of their book. 



Aged Gouda with a Ten Grain Boule

Freshdirect has a wonderful bakery that offers fresh, frozen or parbaked breads and rolls.  And, I discovered this cheese a few months ago, and it’s so rich and tasty.  

The Ten Grain Boule:

Black Wax Gouda:

And, if you don’t currently use Freshdirect, I only have rave reviews to give about this company:  the greatest employees, fresh produce, wide local selection,and quick and helpful customer service.



Sauteed Mushrooms, Havarti Cheese & Potato Quiche

Fresh Direct makes a lovely pre-made pie and quiche shells.  Since I made an apple pie last night, I decided to make a quiche today for a light lunch with a tossed salad. 

After poking holes with a fork in the pre-made pie crust, place it in the oven at 350 for 20 minutes.  While the crust is cooking, cut 2 yukon gold potatoes into 1/4 inch slices, then steam them so they are soft but not mushy.  Slice mushrooms, and saute them in olive oil with 2 minced garlic cloves and a little salt and pepper until cooked. Sprinkle  1/4 cup cheese( I had havarti, but mozzarella and cheddar would also be lovely) on the baked pie crust. Then put the cooked potatoes on top of the cheese, followed by the sauteed mushrooms and garlic.  Then, cover with 1/2 cup of cheese. In a small bowl whisk together 3 eggs and 1/2 cup of milk. Pour the egg/milk mixture over the vegetables and cheese, then bake at 350 for 45 minutes. 



Eggplant Burgers

I have never been the biggest frozen vegie burger fan, so when I came across this delicious recipe in the “Simply Seasonal” cookbook, my vegetarian “what do I bring to a  bbq” problems were solved.  You can cook these on a grill for 5-10 minutes or under the broiler for 4 minutes for each side. This recipe serves 4-6 people.

Whisk together in a bowl:

3 Tablespoons olive oil

3 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Ingredients for the sandwich:

1 sliced loaf of sturdy bread-sourdough is my favorite

1 large eggplant

4-6 thick slices of Havarti cheese (Gouda and provolone are also delicious)

2 thinly sliced tomatos

1-2 avocados thinly sliced

4 large thinly sliced roasted red peppers

12 leaves of fresh basil chopped

freshly ground pepper

Have all of the toppings ready to go before you start grilling or broiling the eggplant. Cut the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices and dip in the balsamic/mustard mixture so they are thoroughly coated, then broil or grill the eggplant. After the eggplant is cooked put the sandwich together as follows: slice of bread, eggplant slices (1-2 depending), cheese, tomato, avocado, roasted red pepper slices, chopped basil, sliced bread with a bit of mayo.



Portobello Chipotle Sandwiches

This sandwich is spicy, delicious, and pretty messy.You can find it in “Moosewood Restaurant New Classics” cookbook.

Chipotle mayonnaise dressing:

2 Tablespoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

1/2 cup prepared mayo

2 Tablespoon lime juice

*adjust spiciness to your taste*


4 sandwich rolls or a baguette (a hearty thick bread)

4-6 fresh lettuce leaves, rinsed and dried

4 sliced roasted portobello mushrooms tossed in olive oil and 2 chopped garlic cloves cooked at 400 for 10-12 minutes (stirring them half way through cooking)

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

2 tomatoes, thinly sliced

2/3 lb sliced Havarti cheese

Sandwich construction:  Slather the bottom half of your roll/baguette with the chipotle mayo, followed by the sliced roasted mushrooms.  Top with the red onion, and place a cheese slice on top.  Then broil the sandwich for a few minutes, until the  cheese is bubbly.  *NOTE:   The cheese can burn easily in the broiler, so keep an eye on it.* Take out of the broiler and add the tomatoes and lettuce to the  sandwich followed by the top half of your roll/baguette that has been slathered with the spicy mayo.    Enjoy!



Cheese and Fruit Plate: Perfect Afternoon Meal

While doing a little fall cleaning this weekend, I stopped to prepare a mid-afternoon snack for me and my sweetie.  The pears and apples from the farmer’s market are so tasty right now, and we had an abundance of baby tomatoes from our CSA share too.  I sliced the goat gouda cheese we had in the fridge and arranged an assortment of crackers on the plate, along with a small ramekin of salt to sprinkle on the tomatoes. We paired it with a tasty Belgium beer, and it was delicious!