zucchini fritters

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Happy fall! I posted a zucchini fritters recipe about a year ago, but I’ve since tweaked it and I’m happier with the result. It yields a bigger batch of heartier, crispier, hemp-ier (yes I added hemp seeds) fritters. I like eating some right away and freezing the rest for later. They’re excellent topped with soft artisan cheese, fresh tomatoes, and parsley.  One of my favorite ways to use that garden zucchini, which is still going strong for me right now!

Here are the revised zucchini fritters. Let me know if you try them!

Makes 8-10 fritters

Ingredients

  • 5 cups of graded zucchini
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 C. chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 C. Panko breadcrumbs
  • 3/4 C. hemp seeds
  • 1 tsp of salt & pepper, more to taste
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 oz. artisan soft cheese (like quark or goat cheese)
  • 1 C. cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1/4 C parsley, chopped

Directions

  1. Drain excess water out of the zucchini using nut milk bag or a cheesecloth.
  2. Combine the graded zucchini and chopped onions in a bowl.  Add the eggs, breadcrumbs, hemp seeds, garlic, salt & pepper, and thoroughly stir.
  3. Heat 1-2 tbsp of vegetable oil in pan. Turn heat to medium. Pick up ~1/4 C. of the batter, roughly form into a patty with your hands, and drop in pan. Working in batches, cook 2-3 patties at a time.
  4. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until browning. Flip, and cook another 3-4 minutes on the other side. Remove from pan and set on a plate.  Add more oil to the pan to continue to make the rest of the fritters.
  5. Spread a bit of soft cheese on top of the fritters, and add the tomatoes and parsley right before eating.

Enjoy!

parsnip apple soup

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I think spring is around the corner, but I’m not really sure. Seattle is full on dreary, wet, and cold lately. We’ve had storm after storm and a record amount of rainfall lately. The wintertime blues and all the stressors from life seem to seep in from time to time, which is why I like to put everything aside and dedicate an evening to cooking. If time is limited, even an hour is good. Whether it’s making pasta by hand, slow roasting veggies, or cooking a comforting soup, it lifts my spirits, allows me to be mindful, and brings me back to what’s truly important.

I’ve been really liking the nuttiness of parsnips lately, so here I have a simple parsnip and apple soup. It’s earthy, smooth, a bit tart from the apples, and definitely comforting. I do want to try it with roasted parsnips at some point, perhaps that will be will be next. Especially if the weather keeps up at this rate.

serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 large parsnips, chopped
  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 32 oz. vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup half & half
  • 3 tbsp walnut oil
  • 1 tbsp crumbled walnuts
  • bushel of parsley
  • salt & pepper

Directions

  1. Heat 2 tbsp walnut oil in a large pot and cook onions and parsnips on low/medium for about 20 minutes or until softened. Add apples and garlic and continue cooking for a few more minutes.
  2. Pour in vegetable broth and bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 20 more minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt & pepper. Use stick blender or transfer to blender, and blend until very smooth.
  3. Transfer back to pot on low heat, add apple cider vinegar, half & half, and more salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Serve up drizzled with 1 tbsp walnut oil and garnish with crumbled walnuts and fresh parsley.

Enjoy!

    Recipe adapted from BBC food creamy parsnip and apple soup

    grilled radicchio salad

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    Let’s get right to it. Fall is moving into winter, and this salad could definitely work well for the holidays as a nice precursor to the main dishes. It could also be easy for a weeknight dinner. Radicchio is excellent grilled; it takes on a nutty taste. I added some blue cheese yogurt drizzle, broccoli buds, pumpkin seeds, and pomegranate arils to make it a hearty, flavorful salad.

    Ingredients  –  serves 2-4

    salad

    • 2 radicchio heads
    • 1 cup of finely cut broccoli buds
    • 2 tbsp pomegranate arils
    • 1 tbsp sunflower seeds
    • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • salt & pepper

    blue cheese yogurt drizzle

    • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
    • 1 oz crumbled blue cheese
    • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
    • 1 tbsp milk
    • juice of 1/2 lemon

    Directions

    1. Slice radicchio heads in half lengthwise, leaving the core intact. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    2. Prepare blue cheese yogurt drizzle by whisking all ingredients together in a bowl. Add more blue cheese if a thicker consistency is desired.
    3. Grill radicchio on medium heat until each side begins to get tender and slightly brown. Turn back to flat side, and up the heat to med/high for the final few minutes to get some grill marks.
    4. When grilling is done, quickly serve up with blue cheese yogurt drizzle, broccoli buds, pumpkin seeds, and pomegranate arils.  Cut halves into quarters or even smaller chunks if desired.

    Happy holiday planning!

    grilled apple, kale, & gouda quesadilla with sage

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    We all know those long days at work where you really want spend minimal to no time on dinner, but you’re hungry for something good. Quesadillas are lifesavers for those nights. Why not get creative and try different things that you usually wouldn’t on a ‘dilla. On this one, I loaded it with lemon-soaked local apples, garden kale and gouda cheese. I grilled it and topped it with garden sage and a drizzle of honey (yes, local honey). Super quick for a weeknight dinner, lunch, or midnight snack. No judgements here. Just try it.

    Ingredients – makes 2 quesadillas

    • 1 apple
    • 10 baby kale leaves
    • 4 oz gouda
    • spoonful of honey
    • juice of 1 lemon
    • 8-10 sage leaves
    • 4 small flour tortillas (or 2 large)

    Directions:

    1. Slice apple wedges fairly thin and soak the slices + kale leaves in a bowl with lemon juice. Slice gouda into thin pieces.
    2. When the grill is heated, place the tortillas on and spread gouda slices on 2 tortillas and the apple slices and kale on the other 2 tortillas. Grill on medium-low for around 5 -7 minutes.
    3. Once gouda begins to melt, flip cheese tortilla onto apple/kale tortilla. Cook for 1-2 minutes on med-low to melt the gouda more, then on med-high for about a minute or until quesadilla is crispy. Serve up with sage leaves and drizzled honey.

    fig, blueberry & prosciutto salad

    fig-2-1fig-2I fell in love with figs after trying my first one in Oregon a while back.  I’d previously eaten fig jam, dried figs, and fig newtons – but seriously – nothing compares to a fresh, ripe fig.  Its sweet, delicate flavor and contrasting textures have me looking forward to fig season every year.  Figs are versatile and there are so many ways to use them to whip up an excellent dish.  In this salad, I combined figs, blueberries, parmesan, prosciutto, walnuts, my favorite olive oil and passion fruit vinegar to make a vibrant plate that highlights the beauty of figs.

    Ingredients

    • 6-8 figs (black mission, brown turkey are my favorites)
    • 1 cup of blueberries, rinsed
    • 3 oz. of parmesan reggiano
    • 3 slices of prosciutto
    • 1/2 cup of walnuts, roughly chopped
    • 2 tbsp Tuscan EVOO and 1 tbsp Apero passion fruit vinegar from Oregon Olive Mill
    • a dash of salt & pepper

    Directions

    1. Slice ripe figs and prosciutto. Wedge off small chunks of parmesan and chop walnuts.
    2. Assemble salad by layering figs, prosciutto, parmesan, blueberries, and walnuts. Drizzle evenly with olive oil and vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve with rustic bread slice.

    Serves 2

    enjoy! p.s. check out Red Ridge’s online store – they’ve got some great gift boxes.

    sweet potato naan pizza

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    Here’s an awesome naan pizza to try for your next pizza night. I whipped it up making use of leftovers and ended up really loving it. The flavors are an incredible blend of sweet, savory, and earthy.  Using  parsley spinach pesto as the base really packs in the nutrients. Check out Well-Being Secrets’ nice article on 34 science-backed health benefits of spinach, and maybe make some extra pesto for later! Recipe makes enough for 2 personal pizzas.

    Ingredients – parsley spinach pesto

    • 3 tbsp parsley
    • 6-8 baby spinach leaves (or 4-5 regular leaves)
    • 1 cup olive oil
    • juice of 1 lemon
    • 1 tbsp walnuts
    • salt & pepper

    Ingredients – pizza

    • naan (freshest you can find!)
    • 2-3 prosciutto slices
    • 1 sweet potato
    • 4 sliced crimini mushrooms
    • 1/2 cup de-shelled pistachios
    • 6 oz feta cheese crumbles
    • 1 tbsp parsley for garnish
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

    Directions

    1. To prepare the sweet potato chunks, skin the potato, and chop into ~1/2 inch – 1 inch cubes. Toss in olive oil and sea salt until evenly coated. Spread chunks out onto baking sheet, and bake for 35 minutes at 425° F, tossing halfway through.
    2. To prepare the parsley spinach pesto, blend parsley, spinach, olive oil, lemon juice, walnuts, and a dash of salt & pepper in a blender or magic bullet.
    3. Spread pesto onto naan, and top with sliced mushrooms, prosciutto, sweet potato chunks, and feta. Bake on center rack at 425° for 8-10 minutes, or until naan edges are crisp and browning. Sprinkle pistachios on pizza towards the end of baking time.
    4. Once pizza is done baking, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar and top with parsley. Slice and enjoy!

    beet & blue cheese pita pockets

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    The combination of beets and blue cheese is a glorious one. Try roasting the beets to give them great texture and taste. Works great as a salad of course, or stuff it into a pita pocket for lunch or a light dinner.

     Ingredients

    • 4-5 cups micro greens
    • 2 medium beets (or 3 small beets)
    • pita pockets
    • 3-4 oz. crumbled blue cheese
    • handful of candied walnuts (see this post on how to candy)
    • olive oil
    • balsamic vinegar
    • salt & pepper

    Directions

    1. Roast the beets: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, slice the stems of the beets off and chop beets into thin, ~1 inch chunks. Place on baking sheet, and lightly toss in some olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 35-40 minutes, turning beet chunks 1/2 way through. By the end, they should be tender and slightly crisp on the edges. Let cool for several minutes.
    2. Toss micro greens with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. Add roasted beet chunks, blue cheese crumbles, and the candied walnuts, toss and add more olive oil and balsamic vinegar if needed. Stuff pita pocket full of salad mixture & enjoy!