Currently Browsing: First Course & Sides
Fabulous Fresh Tomato Vinaigrette
In the height of the Tomato Season – make this vinaigrette for many salads and for drizzling over roasted or grilled proteins and vegetables. Made in a blender! The method ~ remove seeds from tomatoes with your fingers, cut tomatoes in half and grate, discard the skins. Add all ingredients to the blender saving some […]
Burst Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes over Pasta & Shrimp
Create a Quick Sauce with Local Cherry Heirloom Tomatoes to Toss With Pasta and Shrimp. Tomatoes “burst” – fall slightly apart with all of their natural sweet juices. Your choice – use the sauce with or without the shrimp. Vegan if you omit the cheese (and of course the shrimp.) I have used Gluten Free Pasta […]
Poke Bowl with Fresh Tuna, Rice & Summer Veggies
Combine Asian umami flavors and great quality tuna with a dash of local veggies for color and taste. A light summer meal that is a snap to prepare! No two Poke Bowls are alike! I would say Marinated Ahi (Sushi Grade Tuna) and Steamed short grain rice are the start – the base of the […]
Corn Pudding with Cheddar and Chipotle Crust
14 CORN RECIPES to Make and Savor All Summer! Plus NEW Corn Pudding with Cheddar and Chipotle Crust – a must side-dish that is healthy, light & delicious. See bottom for recipe. Butter and Sugar corn is considered the best tasting corn. It is a favorite for its sweet flavor, texture and quality. I’m obsessed […]
12 Beet Recipes You Will Love for Summer + NEW Quattro Colore Beet Salad
I can’t get enough of the earthy-sweetness of Beets! Especially in summer when they are just pulled from the ground in a myriad of colors. They are healthy, easy to prepare – adds a little color to your life. A Simple Beet Salad Showing Off Their Natural Glorious Colors. Four different colored beets are sliced […]
Watermelon & Coconut Salad with Thai Dressing
Keeping it simple – Crunch, Color and Flavor! A wonderful and refreshing summer salad. Such an easy salad to put together – a cool salad for warm Summer days and nights. Shaved Fresh Coconut is a must! (Easily found at many grocery store & health food shops – coconut meat chunked out of it’s shell – […]
Chickpea “Baked Beans”
Tastes like the best homemade baked beans but better! More easily digested than all beans! No barbecue feast or picnic is complete without them! Vegan, Vegetarian & Gluten Free. Any homemade baked beans are superior to canned! See below all the preservatives, chemicals and “natural flavors” most major companies add. I Love Baked Beans – just […]
Karen’s Zesty Ponzu Dipping Sauce
Citrusy Ponzu Sauce can be made ahead of time – adds flavor and Zest to all! See all my Make Ahead Sauces, Salsas and Condiments for easy-breezy meals! Ponzu is a citrus based sauce used in Japanese cooking. Ponzu meaning “punch” – does just that… punches up flavor with Umami tastes and benefits. It’s incredibly fragrant ~ […]
Seared Scallops with Karen’s Ponzu Sauce
Sweet Sea Scallops team with a Zesty & Citrusy Ponzu Sauce – Easy and Delicious! A Healthy Japanese inspired meal, gluten free. Citrusy Ponzu Sauce can be made ahead of time – adds flavor and Zest to all! See all my Make Ahead Sauces, Salsas and Condiments for easy-breezy meals! Steamed Rice is a wonderful accompaniment for […]
Grilled Caponata – A New Twist with Deep Flavor!
From the Mediterranean area – Caponata is a Sicilian eggplant relish or eggplant salad typically served room temperature. I’m seriously grilling lately – so I have turned one of my favorite dishes into a grilled spectacular Italian dish. Caponata is a Sicilian eggplant relish or eggplant salad typically served room temperature. This vegetarian feast has […]
Memorial Day – 20 Inspiring Recipes and 3 Menus I Love
Best Memorial Day BBQ Recipes: creative, inspiring and something for everyone! Beyond Hamburgers and Hot Dogs – there are so many healthy & tasty Memorial Day recipes to explore… plan ahead and Heat Up the Grill! Three Fabulous MENUS I am recommending are: The Perfect Healthy ALL AMERICAN BBQ Menu Global Flavors – The Ultimate […]
Karen’s Tomato Jam with Shallots – Less Sugar
A Savory and Sweet Interesting Jam with Tomatoes and Shallots – not overly sweet! I’m using it to fill my Savory Cheese Shortbread Linzer Thins, has so many other uses. Uses for Tomato Jam: As a filling for my Savory Cheese Shortbread Linzer Thins A topping for a chunk of cheese on a cracker – […]
How to Make Falafel at Home – With Zesty Tahini Sauce
A Middle Eastern plant-based healthful fritter does not need to be deep fried. See my method for pan-frying and then finishing in the oven for the tastiest falafel! Gluten Free. Crispy & Crunchy with tender insides and bold flavors – enjoy making them at home! Falafel is a fantastic vegan-friendly meal that is packed full of […]
Zesty Chimichurri Sauce and How To Use It!
This classic Argentinian Sauce takes only minutes to make and the perfect little sauce/condiment to pair with all your grilling specialties. Chimichurri is a herb-based raw sauce & condiment – you simply chop and stir all the ingredients together. No two recipes are alike – this is how I make it ~ “a mixture of […]
Grilled Asparagus & Hearts of Palm Salad with Chimichurri
A creative and healthy stunning salad with my master Chimichurri sauce/condiment I had fun putting this together! First, I found these amazing FAT asparagus from Mexico. I’ll have to wait a few more weeks until local asparagus are cut from the fields. I thought Hearts of Palm are a similar size, so I paired the […]
Delicious Dan Dan Noodles – They’re Vegan!
Dan Dan Noodles are a traditional street food from Sichuan, China and can easily be recreated in your home kitchen! I’m lightening them up with Tofu & Mushrooms in place of pork, and adding vibrant greens. I love these noodles! A combustion of flavors — savory, nutty, spicy, and smoky. It’s Earth Day! We’re celebrating […]
Spring Egg Drop Soup
Classic Egg Drop Soup gets a healthy overhaul with Spring Veggies and a topping of Fresh Crab. Spring Produce is popping up everywhere – so I’m using glorious green vegetables and enhancing the classic Egg Drop Soup – I think for the better! The crab is optional, yet adds a lingering sweetness and a pop of color… fresh […]
Karen’s Rhubarb Vanilla Bean Jam
Spring Rhubarb cooks into a delectable jam! I add a little chopped apple for balance and I love the lingering vanilla bean aroma. These vibrant pink to crimson stalks are tart with a flavor all their own. I find the taste to be intoxicating. Easy to make – stir up chopped rhubarb and apple in […]
Karen’s Parmesan Crisps – Master Recipe with Flavoring Suggestions
These are so easy, crunchy & delicious! The crisps are made with grated Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese and your choice of seasonings (I have many suggestions!) Easy Parmesan Crisps can be made into these clever Caesar Salad Tacos. Did you know one tablespoon of Parmesan Cheese has a mere 20 calories? That’s one crisp! Crush these crisps on top […]
Caesar Salad Tacos – In a Parmesan Crisp Shell
Ready for a Umami-rich treat? A creative genius recipe that is so delicious and low in carbs! All your favorite Caesar Salad Ingredients – I love to add roasted red peppers too. Gluten Free – no problem! I have used gluten free bread for the garlic croutons. Also see my Quick Caesar Dressing You Will Love! […]
Quick Caesar Dressing You Will Love!
This method takes away the raw egg yet adds all the zesty flavors! Add all ingredients to a bowl, whisk in extra virgin olive oil until nicely emulsified. Ingredients you will use: Fresh garlic, grainy mustard & dijon mustard, fresh lemon juice, worcestershire sauce, grated parmesan cheese, natural mayonnaise, anchovies, freshly cracked pepper and extra […]
Herbed Tomato and Fennel Soup with Parmesan Crisps
In the Mediterranean Tradition – the flavors here are a combination of mellow and bold. Aromatic Basil and Fennel both have hints of anise (licorice) and team beautifully with sweet San Marzano Tomatoes. Soup making is about using the best quality ingredients and understanding the method of how to prepare it to perfection. I like the […]
Red Coconut Curry with Sesame Tofu & Roasted Vegetables
A delicious & healthy Thai inspired meal. Totally satisfying and hearty with out being heavy. Vegan – Vegetarian – Gluten Free! I’m in love! ~ with this Red Coconut Curry Sauce. Coconut Milk creates a creamy essence and Red Curry Paste lends deep flavor, color and heat. Tip: this little can of red curry paste is a cook’s […]
Classic French Onion Soup – Karen’s Way
Oh-La-La ~ Warm up with a Classic Crock of Onion Soup with a Secret Ingredient – Shiitake Mushrooms! Using Vegetable & Chicken Broths – no beef broth. A delicious, hearty broth starts with good vegetable and chicken broths (no beef broth here) – added to perfectly caramelized onions and shiitake mushrooms. The mushrooms add a […]
Simple Romaine Salad with Shaved Cucumbers and Radishes with a Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette
Lots of crunch with a Zesty Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette Shaving vegetables brings a nice look and texture to a salad. Shave with a sharp, wide vegetable peeler… so easy and fun. I like to have watermelon and purple daikon radishes in my fridge, they are great keepers and add a blast of gorgeous color and […]
Peruvian Potato Salad with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette
These steamed potatoes are naturally bright purple and team brilliantly with Olives, Scallions and Parsley with this Zesty Vinaigrette I’m loving these Peruvian Purple Potatoes! Beyond an exceptional dose of antioxidants – they are sweet and the deep-purple color can brighten anyone’s day! I steam them whole, peel when cool and cube them. Mixing them with […]
Very Veggie Tempeh Chili with Homemade Chili Powder
Vegan Chili with Homemade Chili Powder Packs Flavor and Mild Heat. I love eating in a crock ~ but today serving the chili over Roasted Sweet Potatoes with plenty of toppings! You know I’m always adding loads of vegetables… but what makes them truly delicious are the seasonings! Tempeh is a wonderful; meat substitute with […]
Quick-n-Easy Chili Oil
A great little flavored oil condiment to have in the refrigerator! Takes minutes to make and adds a blast of heat and complexity to many dishes. Uses for Chili Oil: Add part chili oil to the oil in your stir-fries. Use in a marinade As a dipping sauce – adding a splash of soy sauce […]
Citrus, Fennel & Mint Salad – Citrus Vinaigrette with Vanilla Bean
I’m combining many types of Citrus and teaming them with Shaved Fennel and Mint. Drizzling on top with a delicious Citrus Vinaigrette with Vanilla Beans. Refreshing and light – a ray of sunshine in Winter! Make the season bright this year with the freshest jewel toned citrus. A great way to beat the “Winter Blahs” […]
Karen’s Master Dinner Mini Roll Recipe
I’m making these dinner rolls in a circular wreath pattern to serve and dunk into my Classic Cheesy Fondue. Simple and fun to make with a wonderful smell wafting though the kitchen as the rolls bake! See my recipe: Karen’s Cheesy Swiss Fondue with Garlic & Chives
The Best Butternut Squash Latkes! (an updated “potato” pancake)
A new twist for your Potato Pancake repertoire.Butternut squash with warm spices makes a delicious sweet latke that is perfect for Chanukah or anytime! Gluten Free adaptable. Latkes are that ethereal treat; a potato mixture made by dropping large tablespoons into a skillet of shimmering, hot oil. Enjoy year-round! The trick for a perfect latke is twofold: […]
Karen’s Easy Honey Peanuts
Delicious Honey Peanuts coated last minute with a little sugar. Simple and fun to make. Caution: These are addictive!! The perfect nosh! Also use as a garnish for a dessert like my Lightened-Up Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Chocolate Biscotti Crust and Honey Peanuts
Natural Candied Yams with Apple Cider Cinnamon Glaze
A must for Thanksgiving! A wonderful thick glaze surrounds rounds of yams with a cinnamon essence. A healthier lightened- up recipe! A beautifully sticky glaze that’s not too sweet. The trick: reduce Fresh Apple Cider!
Incredible Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Garlic
These are a weekly staple in my house. Serve them too for Thanksgiving – everyone loves these! Seasoned, Roasted and Tossed in Garlic, Butter and Parsley.
Yummy Pumpkin & Oatmeal Pancakes
Delicious and loaded with healthy ingredients with tips on how to cook a pumpkin and make homemade Pumpkin Puree.
Mediterranean Gypsy Soup
A Healthy, Satisfying Soup with all the flavor to awaken your taste-buds. “Gypsy” ~ a free spirited soup with a rich assortment of ingredients.
Raspberry Crunch Salad with Raspberry-Almond Oil Vinaigrette
Crispy, Crunchy & Sweet ~ a brilliant, colorful, healthy salad… make place at your Thanksgiving table for this treat! Make the dressing ahead and adorn with my Nut and Seed Crunch (see recipe) This recipe is included in The Salad Gazette from the great minds at The Devil Wears Salad in Australia. The salad is on […]
Butternut Squash Gnocchi ~ It’s Gluten Free
Using flavorful Honeynut squash – these pillowy gnocchi include the roasted squash in the dough and also served in the finished dish. Serve with simple browned butter and fresh herbs – delish! So much fun to make! See recipe for how to cut into 1 inch lengths and form Delicious Butternut Squash Gnocchi includes Ricotta […]
Karen’s Pasta Puttanesca with Fresh Tomatoes
A vibrant sauce takes makes only minutes to prepare – this is one of my favorite dishes ~ Buon appetito! The sauce is cooked in a big skillet – pasta is folded in, then served Puttanesca Sauce is big on flavor! Use fresh tomatoes if you can; the rest are pantry ingredients. Chock full of fresh […]
Grilled Zucchini with Japanese Miso-Glaze and Cashew Crema
Zucchini & Summer Squash off the grill get jazzed-up with these Japanese inspired flavors Local Zucchini is simply sliced and grilled. I add the Miso Glaze on the bottom of the plate, and Cashew Crema on top. Beautiful Zucchini and Summer Squash off the grill served with a flavorful Miso Glaze and Cashew Crema
Mediterranean Stuffed Shishito Peppers
Blistered Shishito Peppers are cut in half and stuffed with a medley of Mediterranean ingredients for an addictive appetizer Stuffed with softened goat cheese, colorful peppers. tomatoes and herbs, then broiled one minute Recipe makes 24 pick-up stuffed Shishitos The ultimate pick-up tasty three bite little stuffed peppers! The mild peppers are stuffed with an explosion […]
Cheddar and Herb “Pennies” ~ Savory Shortbread Crackers (yes, gluten free option too!)
Simple to make – roll mixture into a log – chill, slice & bake! Top with garden herbs for an elegant touch. A revised recipe from the 1950’s – these popular Cheesy Shortbread “Pennies” are the perfect little crackers with big flavor. Fabulous for snacking and company! Crispy and full of flavor. Aren’t they beautiful? […]
Summertime Panzanella Tomato Salad – you should be eating this right now!
Ripe Heirloom Tomatoes team with Garlicky Toasted Bread and Plenty of Basil Leaves. Top with my Zesty “Shaken” Italian Dressing and scatter some thinly sliced Red Onions and cubes of Cucumber. The Heirloom Tomatoes I have used: Red Zebra, Green Tiger and Strawberry Tomatoes
Gluten Free Summertime Panzanella Tomato Salad
Ripe Heirloom Tomatoes team with Garlicky Toasted Gluten Free Bread and Plenty of Basil Leaves. Top with my Zesty “Shaken” Italian Dressing and scatter some thinly sliced Red Onions and cubes of Cucumber. This Zesty Italian Dressing pairs perfectly with my Panzanella Salad. Gluten Free Bread is garlicky, tasty and cut the same size as the […]
Sungold Tomato Butter – Slather on Everything!
A deeply flavored whipped butter combined with slow-roasted Sungold Cherry Tomatoes. The uses are endless! Slather on Sourdough Bread The finished slow-cooked tomatoes – ready to blend with the butter Recipe Overview: Slow-roast halved tomatoes over thyme branches. Cook garlic so it has softened. Add butter to a small food processor – whip until light. […]
Karen’s Arroz Blanco (Mexican White Rice)
My version of a simple side rice dish that is easy to prepare and full of flavor. I’m serving it with my Veracruz-Style Snapper with Fresh Garden Tomatoes. The perfect little side dish Adding Fresh Thyme Branches elevates the flavor of this simple side dish Medium grain rice is soaked for 10 minutes in water, then […]
Thai Basil Pesto – and what to do with it!
The flavor has a pronounced licorice essence and a little spicy kick. So many uses – see my list. Find this wonderful variety at farmers’ markets. Makes a delicious and unique pesto! Thai Basil Pesto adorns Pasta Squares, Roasted Zucchini and Toasted Pignoli Nuts Karen’s Thai Basil Pesto includes Thai Basil Leaves, Garlic, Pignoli Nuts, Nutritional Yeast, […]
Steamed Baby Beets with Garlic Scape Vinaigrette
A Simple Recipe using Ingredients from a local Farmers’ Market. It’s easy to steam beets! Add to an assertive and zesty vinaigrette with Green Garlic Scapes; the curly shoot of the garlic bulb… they’re like scallions with a garlic kick! A bunch of Fresh Beets from a farmer’s market makes a whole lot of scrumptious […]
Karen’s Garlic Scape Vinaigrette
An assertive and zesty vinaigrette with Purple Scallions (can use shallots or red onion) with delicious Garlic Scapes Garlic Scapes available now ~ late Spring through Summer Green Garlic Scapes; the curly shoot of the garlic bulb… they’re like scallions with a garlic kick! Look for them at your local Farmers’ Market.
Karen’s Puerto Rican Sofrito Rice
The local cuisine of Puerto Rico comes alive with vibrant colors and a melange of flavors. A few tablespoons of Sofrito will transform everyday rice into zesty deliciousness! An easy flavorful rice – fluffy & flavorful every time! Sofrito is a Latin cooking essential – make a batch today!
Karen’s Essential Puerto Rican Sofrito
The mother starter sauce of Latin Cuisine. A mixture of aromatic ingredients, either chopped or pureed, used to add layers of flavor to different foods. Serve raw, or add a few tablespoons to your cooking to jazz it up! A fresh mix to stir into so many recipes… the essential flavors of Puerto Rican Cuisine! […]
Velvety Cool Corn Soup with a Roasted Peppers & Jalapeño Garnish
Velvety corn soup to cool you down! Minimum ingredients so you have lots of Pure-Corn-Flavor. Roasted Pepper with Jalapeño and EVOO adds just a punch of interest.
Weeknight Lightened-Up Shrimp Scampi
All the buttery, garlicky and lemony flavor with a sprinkling of fresh herbs in a lighter sauce you can make in minutes! What’s different about this recipe? The sauce has been “lightened-up” ~ which means ALL OF THE FLAVOR with less calories and fat; less butter. How did I accomplish this? The quick answer is […]
Really Amazing Rhubarb BBQ Sauce
Seasonal Fresh Rhubarb is blended in a tangy & zesty Barbecue Sauce!An easy Sauce & Glaze – terrific using on the grill and as a side sauce. A fruity Barbecue Sauce does not need to be loaded with sugar to be flavorful. Homemade is better ~ no unwanted preservatives and flavorings!
Chicken and Veggie Tacos with Mulato Chile Sauce
Delicious with Authentic Flavors!Warm and Zesty Grilled Chicken & Vegetables are bathed in a Flavorful Chile Sauce. Filling ingredients: Marinated chicken tenderloins, portobello mushrooms, red onions, fresh corn and cotija cheese. Experiment with ingredients you have on hand or love! The flavor profile of Mulato chiles is a bit sweet with hints of smoky chocolate, […]
Karen’s Mulato Chile Sauce
An Authentic Sauce for tacos and versatile for many Mexican creations! Cooked in a cast iron skillet, then quickly whirled in a blender. Mulato Chiles are dried Poblanos. The name Poblanos pays homage to the native region these chiles were first cultivated which is a city in Mexico called Pueblo. I recommend these Mulato Chiles. […]
Artichokes à la Grecque
Spring Recipe: the French version of an antipasto-style vegetable preparation with intense zesty flavors. Learn how to prepare fresh seasonal artichokes! Vegetables à la grecque is a French dish ~ vegetables are typically slightly pickled in a broth of vegetable stock and wine. I’m swirling in a little butter and serving with fish; great over pasta too! […]
Tomato Risotto – Northern Italian Style
Delicious and Creamy!! I’m using Three Tomatoes – Peeled Plum Tomatoes, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Fresh Sliced Cherry Tomatoes. Risotto is a traditional Northern Italian dish, and a common way to cook rice in Italy. It’s a creamy & tender mixture made from a starchy short or medium-grained rice. Arborio is the most popular short-grain […]
Karen’s Gluten Free Matzo
In my test kitchen, I used carefully measured gluten-free “flours,” pulsed the ingredients in a food processor, rolled and cut the dough, then cooked each piece for a moment in a hot cast iron skillet until it slightly blackened. Finally, the matzo crackers were baked in the oven at a low temperature, just to crisp […]
Mediterranean Chickpea Stew with Pantry Ingredients
An Aromatic Stew made with pantry ingredients: chickpeas, extra virgin olive oil, diced tomatoes in juice, sun-dried tomatoes and tomato paste, Add fresh ingredients you have – potatoes carrots, onions, spinach and cupboard Mediterranean spices.