King cakes are synonymous with Mardi Gras! I decided to make my own using store bought pizza dough. They taste homemade, but without all the effort! Just add purple, green & yellow sparkle sugar and you’re good to go! Laissez les bons temps rouler! Qui, cher!
- 1 refrigerated pizza crust from your grocer’s refrigerator section (I used Pillsbury)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 TBS melted butter
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 – 2 TBS milk
- Colored sugar crystals
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Mix cinnamon and sugar together & set aside.
- Remove pizza dough from packaging and roll out onto the prepared baking sheet. Carefully cut in half lengthwise.
- Brush butter on both pieces of dough. Divide cinnamon sugar evenly over each piece of dough.
- Fold each piece of dough over lengthwise. Press the folded side a bit. Now, twist your long piece of folded dough & then form a circle. Pinch where the ends meet.
- Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, until golden.
- While king cake is baking, mix powdered sugar with milk to make a thick frosting. Set aside.
- When cakes are done, remove from oven. Let cool a bit. Then ice & sprinkle with sugar crystals.
This gorgeous bowl has all the goods! The Mediterranean Couscous Salad has tomatoes, cucumber, feta cheese, olive oil and mint from my garden. The falafel and edamame were the perfect toppers! What took it over the top? The Green Tahini Sauce! Now, don’t mind me, I’m going to sit on my back porch all by my lonesome & enjoy this bowl!
Note: This sauce is awesome with falafel, kibbeh, salad and more! I purchase my falafel and kibbeh from Afia Foods. Their products are available at my local grocer and online.
- 1 cup tahini
- 1 cup fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup fresh dill
- 2-3 sprigs of fresh oregano
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, rough chopped
- Sea salt & pepper, to taste
- Filtered water, as needed
- Combine everything in a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Add water, as needed.
This amazing cornbread is from my 2010 Southern Living Annual Recipes cookbook. It is hands down the best cornbread I have ever made. Once I used this version of cornbread, I have never found a recipe that can top it. I made a slight tweak because I can no longer find self-rising white cornmeal mix. My family loves this cornbread so much that they ask for it for Thanksgiving dinner.
Note: This recipe was adapted from the 2010 Southern Living Annual Recipes. For a variation, you could add 1/4 cup chopped & sautéed fresh jalapeño.
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter
- 1 (8 oz) container sour cream
- 2 large eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 (8 oz) can of creamed corn
- 1 cup white cornmeal
- 1 TBS baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat butter in a 9-inch cast iron skillet or cake pan in the oven, until melted. Remove and set aside.
- Mix cornmeal, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- Combine, sour cream, eggs & corn in a medium bowl. Whisk in cornmeal mixture, until just combined.
- Whisk in melted butter.
- Make sure skillet or pan is greased with remaining butter on the bottom and sides. Pour in the batter.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until slightly golden on the top.
Mexican rice is so flavorful and with a little prep, very easy to make. The trick is to sauté the green pepper, onion and garlic in oil prior to adding the rice. It really enhances the flavor of the rice. I love to serve this rice with smoked meats, in addition to other traditional Mexican dishes.
- 1 green pepper, sliced into large strips
- 1/2 white onion, sliced into large strips
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 cup @texmati white rice
- 1/2 can (15 oz) can diced tomatoes (I freeze the other half in a baggie)
- 1 3/4 cup water
- 1 TBS @betterthanbouillon chicken stock
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1 carrot, diced
- 1/2 tsp Sazón spice
- Dash of salt, pepper & ground comino
- Heat oil in medium pot and add green pepper & onion. Cook for 3-4 minutes and then add garlic. Cook for another 1-2 minutes and then add rice. Cook for 3-4 more minutes, stirring occasionally. You want the rice to get lightly toasted - a light brown color.
- Once rice is toasted, add water, bouillon and tomatoes. Stir until combined. Then add Goya packet and other spices. Bring to a light boil.
- Turn heat down to low simmer and add peas & carrots. Cover the pot. Simmer on a low simmer for 15 minutes. Once all liquid is absorbed, remove from heat and let sit for 20 minutes, before serving.
I made this one day after reading a fellow foodies Instagram post about this fab sauce. We just had a party and had a lot of left over veggies from a grazing platter and this was going to be perfect to use them up. It’s rich, flavorful and has a lovely texture. You can use this sauce as a base for a variety of Italian dishes. I’ve even used for a grilled halloumi cheese appetizer. It’s just super versatile.
- 2 TBS olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, rough chopped
- 1 red bell pepper
- 3 carrots
- 3 celery stalks
- 1/2 white onion
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 (28 oz) can San Marzano tomatoes
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- Sea salt & pepper to taste
- In a food processor rough chop the bell pepper, carrots, celery and onion. Set aside.
- Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add chopped garlic and sauté until fragrant.
- Add chopped veggies and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Deglaze with white wine.
- Add canned tomatoes and smash until almost smooth. Add salt & pepper to taste. Let simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes and serve with your favorite pasta.
This recipe is from Ina Garten. I found the original recipe on the Food Network website. I made a few changes for ease of preparation. They got rave reviews from our dinner guests during a recent get together. They just have a kind of fancy feel to them. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe on the Food Network website.
- 2 lbs red or golden potatoes, washed & cubed
- 1 small yellow onion, sliced in half moons
- 3 TBS olive oil
- 2 TBS whole-grain mustard
- Sea salt & pepper
- Italian parsley for garnish
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Prepare a large baking sheet with foil and parchment paper.
- Place prepared potatoes & onions, olive oil & mustard in a large zip lock bag. Toss the bag to mix all the ingredients and coat the potatoes.
- Spread the potatoes on the prepared pan. Sprinkle with sea salt & pepper.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown. You may want to toss the potatoes half way through baking.
- Place finished potatoes on a platter & garnish with chopped Italian parsley.
Last year, I made thanksgiving dinner in NYC. We rented a townhome for our 3 kids, son-in-law, our 6 year old granddaughter, and us. We had big plans all week, so I ordered the turkey & pies. I prepared the sides – deviled eggs, dressing, CRANBERRY SAUCE, and more. We even went to the Macy’s Parade in freezing temperatures. It was awesome!
- 1/2 cup agave or grape nectar sweetener
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup filtered water
- 12 oz fresh cranberries rinsed & checked
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 piece of orange peel
- Combine sweetener, orange juice, and water in a large saucepan over medium heat
- Add cranberries, salt, cinnamon stick and orange peel
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently
- Continue cooking, for about 10 minutes, or until all or most of the cranberries have popped.
- Let cool for at least 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
This creamed corn is life changing! The secret is the Parmesan cheese. YES, parmesan. You can use fresh or frozen corn to make this side dish. It’s great with smoked meats, chicken, or your holiday turkey. Add to your holiday meal plans – this stuff is money!!!
- 1 lb fresh or frozen corn
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp white pepper
- 2 TBS sugar
- 2 TBS Parmesan cheese
- 3 TBS butter
- 2 TBS flour
- In a large pot mix together first 6 ingredients. Once heated add the Parmesan.
- Make a roux with the butter and flour in a small nonstick sauté pan. When lightly brown add the roux to the pot of corn and cook until it thickens.
This chickpea elbow pasta topped with chickpea crumbs is so good in this upgraded macaroni and cheese dish. This would make a great addition to your Thanksgiving menu! And, guest what? The leftovers were awesome all by their lonesome the next day!
Fontina Mac & Cheese Topped w/Chickpea Crumbs
- 1 box chickpea elbow macaroni (I used Eat Banza)
- 4 TBS butter
- 2 TBS flour
- 1/2 cup pasta liquid
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup hatch chile sauce or your favorite hot sauce
- 3 cups cups grated white cheese (I used fontina, parmesan, asiago and mozzarella)
- 1/2 cup chickpea crumbs (I used Watusee)
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta liquid before draining.
- Heat butter and add flour. Mix until smooth and the flour is lightly browned.
- Whisk in pasta liquid, milk & sour cream.
- Add in hot sauce.
- Add in 1 1/2 cups of the cheese. Mix well.
- Return the cooked pasta to the pan & fold together well.
- Top with remaining cheese and chickpea crumbs.
These vibrant purple potatoes are so fun to prepare and serve. The miso adds a wonderful flavor, as does the tangy crème fraiche. They make a wonderful side to meat, chicken and fish. Enjoy!
- 2 lbs purple potatoes, washed
- White miso paste
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 minced clove of garlic
- Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper
- Crème fraiche & chives for garnish
- Boil the potatoes until very tender. Drain.
- Melt the butter & add the garlic in the pot used to boil the potatoes. Sauté until fragrant.
- Return the drained potatoes to the pot of butter & garlic. Add the miso paste. Mash the potatoes, until smooth.
- Add 1/2 cup milk. Using a whisk, mix in the milk. Add more milk, until desired consistency is achieved.
- Add salt & pepper, to taste.
- Garnish with crème fraiche & chives. Serve hot.