Tag Archives: spinach

Baked Eggs with Mushrooms & Greens

21 Feb

One weekend last month, we had a lazy Sunday at home, reading books, watching movies, and relaxing. The only time I left the house was to take a pleasant walk to Starbucks in the suddenly mild, sunny weather with the BF. It was glorious. It also reminds me of how much I miss nice weather, now that we’re setting record low temps here in North Carolina: 7° yesterday!

Since I was ignoring the dirty bathrooms and the Christmas tree still standing in the corner (un-decorated, at least – I did manage to get the lights and ornaments put away only a couple weeks after Christmas), I thought I could at least cook a decent meal for us. I was enjoying my book and tea too much to get off the couch at breakfast time, so I made this for lunch.

My friend Emily made this for brunch a few weeks ago, and I’ve been wanting to re-create it since then. Mine wasn’t as good as hers, but it was still pretty tasty. I’m sure I’ll make it again and see what I can do to improve it – I’m thinking of adding cheese into the mix, maybe something deliciously creamy like gruyere.

It’s pretty simple: cook up the greens, onions, and mushrooms. Pour that into a baking dish. Then crack the eggs right on top.

eewwww

Looks kinda gross, doesn’t it? But it turns out pretty delicious in the end.

egg bake 1

With a side of toast and bacon, this became a substantial and delicious lunch. I think it would be great for any meal of the day, actually, but I’m weird like that. I used half kale and half spinach, which I really liked, though the original recipe called for just spinach. Use what you like!

egg breakfast 2

Baked Eggs with Mushrooms & Greens, adapted from Smitten Kitchen

3 oz (about 2 handfuls) kale, de-stemmed and roughly chopped
3 oz (about 1 handful) spinach
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 onion, finely chopped
2 T unsalted butter
5 oz (about 1 cups) mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup half and half
salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste
4 large eggs
1/4 cup of shredded mozzarella

Preheat the oven to 450 F.

Bring 1/2″ of water to a boil in a large skillet. Add the kale and cook, covered, until it begins to wilt, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook over medium-high heat, covered, until all the greens are wilted, about 1-2 minutes. If there’s any water left in the pan, drain in a colander, then transfer to an 8×8 baking dish.

Wipe the skillet dry, then add the butter and melt over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms are soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in half and half; a dash each of salt, pepper, and nutmeg; and bring to a simmer. Add the mushroom mixture to the baking pan and stir well to incorporate greens.

Make 4 indentations in the greens-and-mushroom mixture. Break an egg into each indentation and bake, uncovered, until eggs are set as desired. (7-10 minutes will have set egg whites with runny yolks; I cooked it 12-15 minutes so the yolks were also set.)

Lightly season with salt and pepper; sprinkle with shredded cheese.

Spinach Artichoke Quiche

3 Mar

I love me a good quiche. Generally people give me a hard time about eating things at inappropriate times, like pasta for breakfast and whatnot. And while I generally feel like those people can build a bridge and get over it (what is this, Alyson, 1998?), it’s also nice sometimes to just not have my culinary choices questioned. (But I mean, really people, why are you limiting yourselves!?)

The thing about quiche is that it’s totally an anytime food. Breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner — no one cares. Eat it whenever! I guess most people would put it in a breakfast or brunch category by default, and I’m even okay with that, because quiche doesn’t taste like a breakfast food. It’s not too sweet like waffles and it’s not too heavy like eggs and sausage. It’s just perfect, breakfast or not.

Spinach Artichoke Quiche

And it’s customizable! You can put anything you want in a quiche! Everyone wins! And it’s really hard to mess up a quiche, y’all. Like, grab a recipe, dump a bunch of cheese in there, and you’re good. Take it to any sort of potluck and it’s great to share, no matter what time of day and no matter how fancy the event. People will be so impressed with a quiche.

Okay, I might have just convinced myself in the process of writing this that quiche is the best dish ever. This may not look like the best thing ever, but I assure you, this spinach artichoke quiche is amazing. Cheesy, spinachy, artichokey. Yum. And I used the same crust as the one for my super amazing to-die-for tomato pie. Next potluck, try this one. You won’t regret it.

IMG_3097

Spinach Artichoke Quiche

Crust:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/4″ cubes
3 tablespoons cold water

Preheat the oven to 375 F.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well with your hands, kind of like kneading, until all ingredients are incorporated. Shape dough into a ball.

Flour your working surface and turn out dough with a floured rolling pin, making a large circle. Transfer crust to a pie pan and press evenly into the dish.

Bake the pie crust for about 8-10 minutes.

Quiche: 

1 tablespoon butter
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
6 ounces (1 bag) fresh spinach
7 ounces (a little more than 1/2 the can) canned artichoke hearts, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups half & half
3/4 cup cheese of your choice, grated (I used colby jack. Mozzarella, asiago, or white cheddar would be delicious!)
1/4 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese, grated

Melt the butter over medium heat in a large pan. Add garlic and onion. Cook 1-2 minutes. Add the spinach and sauté until wilted.

Add chopped artichokes and seasonings. Stir well and remove from heat. Pour into a large bowl to cool.

In a large bowl, scramble the eggs. Add the half & half and cheese, and mix well. Once cooled, add the spinach and artichoke mixture, and mix well.

Pour the filling into the prepared pie shell. Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour or until set.

IMG_3092

Linking Up With:

Funday Monday from Still Being Molly
Block Party from Hungry Happenings
Made by you Monday from Skip to my Lou
Inspiration Monday from Twelve O Eight
Time to Sparkle from Love Grows Wild
Wonderfully Creative Wednesday from All She Cooks
Create It Thursday from Lamberts Lately
Full Plate Thursday from Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
All Things Pretty from Sparkles and a Stove

Cheesy Spinach Tomato Pie + A Giveaway!

2 Dec

I won’t lie, I occasionally listen to Christmas music throughout the year. So it would be incorrect to say that now that Thanksgiving has past, I’m finally getting to listen to my fave holiday jams. What would be more correct is to say that I am finally getting to listen to my fave holiday jams without hiding it. I can put on my Happy Christmas! playlist in the car, and the BF will (somewhat reluctantly) allow it. It’s a very exciting time of year for me.

My dear friend Eleanor gave me my Christmas present already: this beautiful pie pan. She knew I would be baking for Thanksgiving, so she gave it to me early!

Pie PanI’ve already used it for my Secret Recipe Apple Pie and this oh-so-amazing, super delicious, completely to-die-for tomato pie. I’m not kidding: this is one of the best meals I’ve ever made. Our dinner conversation primarily revolved around how delicious it was and how this will definitely be a dish to serve for casual dinner party guests. The BF and I each had thirds, which is amazing for us light eaters. And I may or may not have had some for breakfast the next day.

Here are the star players: Ingredients

It’s really not complicated, though maybe a little time consuming, but totally worth it. After the crust is ready, just add your layers… sliced tomato, fresh basil and sauteed spinach, and then cheese!

Layers

I edited a more classic recipe a bit to include spinach (I figured I needed something healthy to counter all that cheese) and to substitute Greek yogurt for mayonnaise (I’m not a fan of mayo, so we never have any in the house). I tried to squeeze extra water from both the tomatoes and spinach, and it still came out a bit soupy, so maybe I’ll use my cheesecloth next time and try a bit harder. But not to worry — even a little runny, it didn’t stop us from enjoying our third helpings!

Cheesy Spinach Tomato Pie

And in the spirit of Christmas and delicious cheesy tomato pies, here’s my first-ever Giveaway! Enter to win this cute little Clinique gift set.

Clinique Gift Set

Gift set includes:

  • 7-Day Scrub Cream Rinse-Off Formula
  • Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion
  • Clinique Eye & Cheek Colour Compact: Colour Surge Eye Shadow Duo in Pink Slate, Soft-Pressed Powder Blusher in New Clover, and True Bronze Pressed Powder Bronzer in Sunkissed
  • Long Last Lipstick in Bamboo Pink
  • Brush Set
  • Matching large and mini cosmetics bag

* Does not include mascara shown in picture

There are a few ways to enter – the more ways you enter, the better the chance you have at winning – so make sure you comment once for each of the following things you do:

  • Favorite the new Wine & Plum Etsy shop! Favorite 1 item in the Wine & Plum Etsy shop, and comment below to share which item you would like to give or receive for Christmas!
  • Bonus: Follow Wine & Plum on Pinterest! Pin your favorite Wine & Plum recipe or Etsy shop item to one of your Pinterest boards, and share the link to your pin in a comment below.
  • Bonus: Follow Wine & Plum on Instagram and tag 3 friends on my Instagram giveaway post.
  • Bonus: Follow Wine & Plum on Twitter, and tweet about this giveaway: Excited about this delicious Cheesy Tomato Pie #recipe plus an awesome #Clinique #giveaway from @wineandplum! http://bit.ly/1fYGSw8
  • Bonus: Like Wine & Plum on Facebook, and share any post from the W&P Facebook page.

Don’t forget to leave a comment for those bonus submissions!

Now, here’s the recipe for the Tomato Pie! If you make it, come back and let us know how you liked it!

Mmm... cheesy

Cheesy Spinach Tomato Pie adapted from Simply Recipes

Crust:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/4″ cubes
3 tablespoons cold water

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well with your hands, kind of like kneading, until all ingredients are incorporated. Shape dough into a ball.

Flour your working surface and turn out dough with a floured rolling pin, making a large circle. Transfer crust to a pie pan and press evenly into the dish.

Bake the pie crust for about 8-10 minutes.

Pie:

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
3-4 tomatoes, sliced
2 large handfuls spinach
1/4 cup sliced basil (about 7-8 leaves)
2 cups grated cheese (Any combination of your favorite cheese; I suggest mozzarella and cheddar. In ours, we ran out of mozz so substituted havarti, which was delicious)
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
Salt and pepper

Place the tomato slices in a colander and sprinkle some salt over them; allow to drain while preparing the rest of your ingredients.

In a large bowl, mix together the cheeses and yogurt; set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the spinach and stir well, coating leaves with olive oil. Cook until spinach is wilted, only 3-4 minutes. Set aside.

Once the pie crust has baked for about 8-10 minutes, remove from oven and assemble pie. Pressing each slice between paper towels to remove excess liquid before placing, arrange tomato slices in a circle in the bottom of the pie pan. Sprinkle the basil on top of the tomatoes. Squeeze spinach in paper towels or cheesecloth to remove excess liquid and then arrange evenly in the pan. Last, spread the cheese mixture evenly over top of the entire pie.

Bake until the top of the pie is golden brown, anywhere from 25-45 minutes.

Linking Up With:

Funday Monday from Still Being Molly
Block Party from Sumo’s Sweet Stuff
Made by you Monday from Skip to my Lou
Inspiration Monday from Twelve O Eight
Time to Sparkle from Love Grows Wild
Wonderful Food Wednesday from All She Cooks
Create It Thursday from Lamberts Lately
Full Plate Thursday from Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
All Things Pretty from Sparkles and a Stove
Foodie Friday from Simple Living & Eating

Stuffed Acorn Squash

5 Aug

This was so easy and so delish, I’m about to go out and find me some more acorn squash. The acorn made a terrific bowl that both held tasty fillings and also made for good eating. Like a tasty bread bowl for soup expect it doesn’t get soggy and mushy.

As we ate this for dinner last week, we brainstormed all the amazing ways we could prepare it. Italian style with sausage, tomatoes, mozzarella, and herbs. Greek style with lamb, tomatoes, olives, and feta. Mexican style with beef, tomatoes, cheese, and taco seasoning. There are loads of all-veggie options too.

Mmm cheesy goodness

This is such a versatile recipe. If you try it, you should definitely experiment and make it your own. Think up what flavors you’re in the mood for, and run with it. And if you don’t have a veggie on the ingredient list, no worries. Just leave it out or substitute it for something else. No big deal. It will still be delicious.

Better yet, prepare this on a night when you have guests over. The presentation is pretty amazing. They will think you’re a secret top chef.

This recipe was enough for the BF and me, but we’re pretty light eaters, so one half of a filled squash was enough for each of us. I’d recommend getting two squashes and doubling the recipe.

For me, the key to this recipe is to chop everything really small — that way, you can cram more into your squash bowl.

Beautiful Squash

Stuffed Acorn Squash adapted from TheKitchn

1 medium acorn squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 bell pepper, chopped small
handful cherry tomatoes, chopped small
1 large sausage link or vegetarian substitute, diced small (I used sweet apple chicken sausage)
1/2 teaspoon French or Italian herb mix
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 cup baby spinach
Salt and pepper as needed
Bread crumbs (I used crushed-up seasoned croutons — they gave a little extra flavor!)
1/4 cup parmesan, finely grated

Wash the squash and halve it. Scrape the insides and seeds out of the squash. Place the squash in a shallow dish with about half an inch of water. Microwave on high for 7-10 minutes or until tender. Leave in microwave until ready to use.

Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, bell pepper, tomatoes, and sausage. If using uncooked sausage, cook until sausage is almost cooked through. If using pre-cooked sausage, cook until the garlic starts to smell.

Add the spices and stir well. Add the spinach and cook, covered, until wilted. Add salt and pepper as needed. Remove from heat.

Place squash halves on a lightly greased baking sheet. Spoon the filling into squash halves, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add one tablespoon of water to each squash. Coat the filled squash with breadcrumbs. Sprinkle with a thick layer of grated cheese. Broil just until cheese is lightly browned.

Dig In!

Linking Up With:

Funday Monday from Still Being Molly and Lipgloss and Crayons
Market Yourself Monday from Sumo’s Sweet Stuff
Made by you Monday from Skip to my Lou
Time to Sparkle from Love Grows WildInside BruCrew LifeThe Recipe Critic, and The Gunny Sack
Link Party Wednesday from Lil’ Luna
Create It Thursday from Lamberts Lately
All Things Pretty from Sparkles and a Stove and My Fashion Forward Blog

Spinach, Corn & Black Bean Enchiladas

5 Aug

OMG I want to eat these for dinner every night. They were good the first time, and they were just as good reheated. The BF had some and we decided they are restaurant good (though I’m sure, much healthier). These are excellent for serving to dinner guests — they can be completely finished and in the oven, so you have time to clean the kitchen before they arrive and then enjoy a glass of wine with your guests. And, if you’re looking for recipes to introduce skeptics to vegetarian dishes, this is it. It’s so delicious and filling, they won’t miss the meat at all. I very slightly edited the original recipe from Sweet Happy Life, just small things for the sake of convenience.

I actually only made the sauce at first. I spooned a little on top of lunchtime veggie & rice bowls for a few days. It wasn’t until later in the week that I got around to making the enchiladas. So fyi — make a ton, freeze it, and then you can use it for enchiladas (the best option) or to add a little flavor to pretty much any Mexican-style dish.

Enchilada Sauce

FYI, I think the enchilada sauce on its own is kinda spicy, but is not spicy at all when baked on top of the enchiladas. I guess the bread and cheese and veggies balance it out. If you’d like a bit more heat, just add the whole chipotle chili instead of the half, and add another teaspoon of adobo sauce.

The original recipe also said to use an immersion blender to puree the sauce. I thought that was totally unnecessary and therefore a waste of my time (especially since I don’t have an immersion blender, which would mean using my food processor, which is a pain to clean, and the BF wasn’t home to clean it for me). But, you know, to each her own.

These make EXCELLENT freezer meals. I doubled the sauce, and after using what I needed for dinner that night, froze the rest in a couple ice cube trays. (After they froze completely, I dumped them out of the tray to store in a large zipper bag.) For the tortilla rolls, I rolled individual enchiladas up in foil and then froze them in a large zipper bag. For lunch, I grab one foil-wrapped roll, a few sauce cubes, and I’m good to go. I sit my lunch box on my desk so it thaws throughout the morning, then unwrap and heat it up in the microwave. Presto lunch-o.

Enchilada sauce (adapted from Sweet Happy Life)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 an onion, diced
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon oregano (I used Wildtree Hearty Spaghetti Sauce Blend ’cause that’s what I had)
1 cup cooking sherry
1/2 diced chipotle chili
1 teaspoon adobo sauce
1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 cup vegetable (or chicken or beef) stock

Heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes.

Add brown sugar, cumin, and oregano. Stir and cook for 1 minute.

Add sherry, chili, adobo sauce, tomatoes, and stock. Mix well and reduce heat to low. Simmer until desired consistency (20-25 minutes if you plan to pour it over the enchiladas and bake, where it will thicken; 40-45 minutes if you plan to use it as a condiment.)

BONUS RECIPE!

For dinner that night, I stir-friend some extra firm tofu, about 5-6 minutes on each side in olive oil, added some zucchini slices and corn sliced off the cob. I cooked up some brown rice, mixed all that together in a bowl, and topped it with a little of the sauce and some cheddar cheese. Delicious and easy.

Rice & Veggie Enchilada Bowl

A couple nights later, I invited a couple friends over for dinner, and decided to make the full recipe. I had been craving enchiladas since I had made the sauce.

Assembling the Enchiladas

Enchiladas (adapted from Sweet Happy Life)

1 package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 14.5-oz can corn, rinsed and drained
1/2 tsp ground cumin
salt and pepper
1 package tortillas (I used 8-10 whole wheat flour tortillas)
Shredded cheese of your choice (I used a combo of cheddar and monterey jack)

Make sure your spinach is well drained. Squeeze out excess water. Mix well in a large bowl with the beans and corn. Add cumin, a dash of salt, and a dash of pepper, and mix well.

Spoon a little enchilada sauce on the bottom of a greased baking dish.

On each tortilla, spread a few spoonfuls of the filling, and add shredded cheese on top. Roll tightly, tucking the ends in, and lay seam-down in the pan.

Add more sauce on top of all the enchiladas. Cover with foil and baked at 350 F for about 35 minutes.

Enchilada Dinner

Enjoy!

Really, these were so good. Just writing this makes me want to make more. We spent lunch today discussing what other things we could put inside these enchiladas. We decided we can’t wait till fall to try sweet potatoes and black beans… Mmm.

I know I didn’t get too detailed on the amounts when I talked about assembly, but all that is really up to you and your personal preference. This made about 8 enchiladas. I would guess that kids and people with light appetites such as myself would eat just one, but adults with normal to hearty appetites would probably eat two. I served these with brown rice, salsa, and guacamole. Chips and queso wouldn’t hurt either.

Deliciousness

Halfway through (approximately 15 seconds after beginning).

A-Pizza Pie!

26 Apr

Last weekend, I cooked up a storm. The BF was at some boring conference that I opted out of, so I spent the afternoon in the kitchen. Among other things, I made homemade pizza. And I mean, homemade – dough from scratch, sauce from scratch.

Speaking of the term “from scratch,” here’s a little rant for you. (If you’re not interested, just skip this paragraph.) In my mind, “from scratch” means using real ingredients, no short cuts. So when I find a recipe for tomato sauce called “tomato sauce from scratch” that calls for a 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes, I just feel like that’s a little bit of false advertising, you know? Don’t get me wrong, I don’t necessarily oppose cooking with canned goods. I just oppose cooking with canned goods when it’s supposed to be “from scratch.”

Okay, rant over, because you need to see all the amazing pictures we got of this pizza. Mark Bittman ran a piece in the NY Times about homemade pizza, so along with about 1,453,7459 other pretentious hipsters, we tackled the project. I started with his basic pizza dough recipe, though I altered it a bit to feature whole wheat flour. Although this whole project did take a while, it was easier than I expected it to be.

The Dough

I set up my food processor and added in 1 cup whole wheat flour3/4 cup white flour1 1/2 teaspoon fast-rising yeast1 teaspoon salt, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. I turned it on and poured in 1/2 cup water through the tube. It took about 20-30 seconds to process it into a sticky ball – a large clump of dough was swirling around and around inside. (If yours is too dry, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time. If too mushy/sticky, add 1 tablespoon of flour at a time until it comes together.)

I rubbed a little olive oil on my palms to keep the dough from sticking to me when I pulled it out of the processor. I shaped it into a ball and wrapped it in plastic wrap. I left it out on the counter for 2 or 3 hours while I attended to other things. (Mark gives you a few more options in his recipe if you’re tight on time.) (Also, sorry for the lack of pictures – my hands were really messy and I was flying solo on this mission.)

Tomato Sauce

On to the tomato sauce. Before I put the food processor away, I pureed 4 small tomatoes  into mush. In a sauce pan, I heated 2 tablespoons olive oil1/2 diced yellow onion, and 4 cloves minced garlic over medium high. Once the onions started to look a little clear and smell more fragrant, I added the tomato puree in. Then I added about 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning blend and 2 tablespoons white wine. I let that simmer over low heat for about 20 minutes. (Near the end it seemed a little thin, so I turned the heat up high and cooked it without a lid to get some of the extra water to steam off.) FYI, we both thought this was a little heavy on the onion – could have cut that down a bit. And we both thought it could have used more tomato flavor – though if I bought tomatoes in tomato season, that probably would be way better.

Pizza

Fast forward a couple hours, and I’m ready to cook my pizza. I took the dough ball and unwrapped it, shaping it into a ball and dusting the outside with flour. I let it rest for a bit while the oven warmed up to 500 degrees (HOT!) and I prepared the ingredients. I shredded up a whole ball of super high quality mozzarella. And trust me, when you splurge on super high quality mozzarella, you really notice the difference. I sliced up some mushrooms, the BF halved some cherry tomatoes, and I sauteed a handful of spinach with some olive oil and garlic for about 4 minutes.

Mmm... Cheese. Is that a little mushroom I see back there?

Aren't you just the cutest little tomatoes I've ever seen?

Spinach Saute

After that, I turned back to the dough and worked on pressing it out. I just used my hands to press it on the counter to about a 1/2 inch thick flat round. I added a little flour here and there when it got sticky. I didn’t worry about making it too thin, (1) because I’m impatient and (2) because I like thick, soft crust. The BF probably would have preferred a thin, crunchy crust, but he wasn’t the one making the pizza all day.

Dough!

I transferred the dough from the counter to my pizza stone. (I spread some olive oil over the crust, but after cooking it, I realized that was really unnecessary – it was pretty greasy.) I baked the crust for about 5 minutes at 500 F. After that, I pulled the crust back out and added my toppings – spinach and mushrooms on my side, spinach and tomatoes on his side. And course, a very large amount of mozzarella cheese for both of us. (If I’d had some, I would have loved to mix some rosemary into the crust.) I popped it back into the oven for 5-7 more minutes.

Totally Sauced

Ingredient #1

PIZZA

And when we pulled it out – omg gooey deliciousness. I sliced up our pizza, the BF cracked open a soda, and we settled down for a movie on the couch. AMAZING. It was SO GOOD.

PIZZA FTW

Spinach and Salmon Salad

24 Apr

On Friday, the BF and I had the day off, and we took a little time to try to throw together a nice lunch. We wanted something light and healthy because we were anticipating a weekend’s worth of delicious, fatty food, what with Betsy Bundt‘s wedding on Saturday (don’t fret… I’ll have more cupcake and decorating gossip on that later) and Sunday supper with the family. So we hopped on our bikes and rode to Trader Joe’s to pick up some veggies.

Upon our return, the BF fired up the George Foreman and seasoned the salmon with a dusting of chili powder while I assembled the salad. Actually, the truth is, he pretty much did all of it while I moped around the kitchen in a post-exercise, hunger-induced daze. I did, however, manage to make us each a fruit and yogurt parfait for dessert, and then consume every last bit of mine while he made lunch.

In our salad, we had a bed of organic spinach (a seasonal ingredient available in North Carolina March through December!), carrots, walnuts, goat cheese, and croutons. I found that if you scrape the goat cheese with a fork instead of try to cut it with a knife, then nice little crumbs will fall evenly all over the salad, instead of clumping together.

After the BF finished mastering the electric grill (he suggests medium-low heat, about 4-5 minutes on each side), we added a salmon fillet right on top. Carrots + salmon… weird!? But hey, there are no rules in this kitchen. I drizzled mine with some Italian dressing and the BF chose a light cucumber ranch dressing. It was super delicioso!

"Parfaits got layers! Everybody loves parfaits!" Too old? Too lame? Yes.

As I said, for dessert we had a yogurt and fruit parfait, though I had already eaten mine by this point. I mixed 1 part nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt and 1 part store-bought cream cheese fruit dip (to sweeten it a bit — this is dessert, after all) in a small bowl. I filled the bottom of these cute little glasses with grapes, then a spoonful of my yogurt mixture, then blueberries, then yogurt, then mandarin oranges. A small dollop of yogurt on top made it camera-ready.

Healthy Lunch!

How Sue Sees It:

  • I know this recipe is a bit of a scam, since most salad recipes are lame. I mean, does anyone really need a recipe to make a salad? Put vegetables on a plate and top it with salmon. There, you’re done.
  • If you don’t want to buy the fruit dip, you can easily mix your own — my mom, Susie Senior, makes a great one with one part marshmallow creme/fluff and one part strawberry cream cheese. So your overall mixture would be one part marshmallow fluff, one part cream cheese (choose your flavor), and two parts yogurt.