Monday, November 30, 2015

Green Tomato Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette


I tweaked a Cooking Light recipe and used bottled Wishbone red wine vinaigrette instead of making my own dressing.  This is a nice fall/winter salad.


  • Spring mix salad greens
  • Prosciutto, three slices (crisped under the broiler and crumbled)
  • Green tomato
  • Blue cheese (2-3 tbsp.)
  • Sliced almonds (2 tbsp.)
  • Red wine vinaigrette (I used Wishbone)
1.  Combine all "dry" ingredients in a large bowl.
2.  Use a small amount of dressing to toss (only 1-2 short squirts).  Toss until all greens are evenly coated and serve.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes

This is an old Martha Stewart FOOD Magazine recipe that I'd never gotten around to trying.  These are a little bit sweet and a little bit savory, which is a nice combination.


Recipe Notes
These take between 1.5-2 hours start to finish, so make sure to allow for extra preparation time.  I omitted the chives in the version shown above and it turned out great.  If your sweet potato skin falls apart a little bit when you scoop out the sweet potato, you can reshape the skin when you add the contents back in.  The skin will adhere to the filling.  This recipe is easily halved.

  • 5 medium sweet potatoes
  • 4 oz. fresh goat cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp. finely chopped fresh chives
  • 1/4 c. chopped pecans
  • 1/4 c. panko bread crumbs
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature
1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2.  Prick sweet potatoes several times with a fork and wrap in foil.
3.  Bake approximately 1 hour or until tender when pierced with a knife.
4.  When cool enough to handle, cut sweet potatoes in half lengthwise.  
5.  Scoop out all but 1/4 inch flesh from inside sweet potato skins.
6.  Arrange skins in a single layer in a 9x13-inch baking dish.
7.  Place sweet potato flesh, goat cheese, salt, pepper, chives, and 2 tbsp. butter in a food processor.  Process until smooth.
8.  Spoon mixture into potato skins.
9.  In a small bowl, combine remaining butter, panko, and chopped pecans.  Spoon panko mixture over the top of the sweet potatoes.
10.  Bake at 375 degrees or until topping is golden, approx. 10-12 minutes.

Cranberry Avocado Salad with Candied Pecans & White Balsamic Vinaigrette

I found this salad while perusing Pinterest.  The original recipe is from, but I have modified it slightly based on my family's tastes.  This is a nice substantial salad.  The original recipe makes WAY too much dressing....I made a half recipe of the below dressing and am still using it three salads later.


Recipe Notes
The original recipe calls for candied sliced almonds.  I used candied pecans in the below version.  I think that the dressing can do without the poppy seeds and sesame seeds if you'd like to exclude them, also.

  • 1/3 c. sugar
  • 1-1/2 tbsp. poppy seeds
  • 1-1/2 tbsp. sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. dried mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 c. white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 c. vegetable oil
  • 1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 oz. baby spinach, arugula, or field greens (I used a combination of arugula and field greens)
  • Chopped cilantro, to taste
  • 1 medium avocado, peeled and sliced or chopped
  • 1/2 c. dried cranberries
  • 1/2 c. candied spiced pecans
1.  Combine first 10 ingredients (sugar through olive oil) in a glass jar.  Shake well to emulsify.
2.  Combine greens, cilantro, avocado, cranberries, and pecans in a large bowl, toss with dressing to combine.  

Please note: dressing recipe above makes a very large batch of dressing.  Not all dressing will be needed for this recipe.  Save extra dressing for future use!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Sweet Potatoes

Great fall side alert!  I found this while browsing Pinterest and it went great with grilled chicken.  It requires some chopping but otherwise this is a super-easy side.


Recipe Notes
The original recipe includes pecans (which I've included here as well).  I skipped the pecans in the version above and it turned out great without as well.  Recipe credit to

  • 4 c. brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch to 1 inch chunks
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin (go lightly here)
  • Pinch of allspice
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt, or more to taste
  • 1/4 c. raw pecans (may exclude)
  • 1/3 c. feta cheese
  • 1/2 c. balsamic vinegar
1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2.  Mix all ingredients through sea salt in a bowl, stir well to combine.
3.  Turn out vegetables in a glass 8x8 baking dish coated with cooking spray.
4.  Place on center rack in oven and bake for 45-60 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.  Stir once halfway through cooking.
4.  While vegetables roast, heat balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until boiling.
5.  Cook at a full controlled boil, stirring frequently, until vinegar is reduced to between 1/3 and 1/2 of its original volume (approx. 5-7 minutes).
6.  Remove vegetables from oven and sprinkle with feta cheese.  Drizzle balsamic vinegar over the top and serve.