In an attempt to stick with my New Years Resolution, I have a new recipe for you! See….you are happy (and hungry after you read the post)! 🙂 It’s also by complete chance that I’m sharing a pizza recipe during National Pizza Week! Whee!

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Because I am trying to avoid gluten as of lately (for digestion reasons), I was intrigued when I saw a recipe for “Cauliflower Pizza Crust”. Normally, I would have skipped and just made the real thing, but I wanted to try it out given its GF properties! I had to adapt the recipe slightly, but it turned out great. You can certainly try the original which is here. This cauliflower crust has a different taste than traditional pizza crust, but it is a vegetable serving and lower calories if that is what you are going for (I wouldn’t say the same for the toppings ;))!

Pesto, Ricotta & Pancetta Pizza with a Cauliflower Crust

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For the crust:

2 cups of cauliflower, riced

1 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese

1 t garlic powder

2 eggs

Generous pinch of basil

For the toppings:

1/4 cup store bough basil pesto (or homemade)

1/2 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

1/2 cup diced pancetta, cooked

1 cup arugula

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Prep a cookie sheet or pizza stone. You can grease the cookie sheet or use parchment paper (I would recommend parchment paper as my pizza stuck to the greased cookie sheet).
  3. Remove the stems and leaves from your cauliflower and chop the florets into chunks. Add to a food processor and pulse just until the texture is similar to rice. If you don’t have a food processor, you can chop until you get the rice appearance (this is what I did and it did take some time!).
  4. Sauté cauliflower in a non-stick skillet over medium heat and cook until translucent, approximately 6-8 minutes.
  5. In a bowl combine the cooked cauliflower with all remaining ingredients.
  6. Spread dough out evenly over parchment paper (or stone) – about ÂŒ to ⅓ of an inch thick. The pizza should be about 9-10 inches in diameter.
  7. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the crust is golden, crispy on the edges and cooked through the middle.
  8. In the meantime, in a skillet add the pancetta and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  9. Remove pancetta and set on a plate covered in a paper towel to absorb some of the grease.
  10. Remove the crust from the oven and spread pesto evenly on crust (feel free to use less or more, depending on your preference).
  11. Then add your two cheeses and pancetta.
  12. Broil the pizza for 5 minutes, or until the toppings are hot and the cheese is melted. Allow the pizza to cool for 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle arugula on pizza, then cut and serve immediately.

You may want to serve your pizza with forks as this crust is flimsier than your traditional version.

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Feel free to substitute the toppings too for your favorites!

Have a great night!

Question: What are your favorite topping(s) on pizza?

 

Happy New Year Friends!

I hope that you all enjoyed the holiday season and are ready for 2013! Have you set any New Year’s resolutions?

One of my resolutions is to continue to create new, healthy & delicious recipes. Another one of my resolutions is to blog these recipes more which I hope makes all of you happy (and hungry)! 🙂

I made this Sweet Potato Turkey Shepherds Pie last night for my two roommates and boyfriend. Three hungry men and they all liked it! There you have it….this is is a guaranteed man-pleasing dinner!!!

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This is a take on a classic comfort food. By substituting sweet potato for potato and lean ground turkey for ground beef, this version becomes guilt-free without sacrificing flavor.

This Shepherds Pie doesn’t take too much time and the ingredients are also quite minimal. I also love that you can do all the dishes while the pie is cooking in the oven.

Even though I live in San Diego where it doesn’t snow (or even rain much), I picture enjoying this warm dish by a fire during the winter months. Wherever you may be, I hope you try this recipe this winter!

Sweet Potato Turkey Shepherds Pie

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For the Potatoes:

2 Large Sweet Potatoes, peeled, diced (1-1/2 pounds)

1/2 cup 2% milk

1 t butter

salt & pepper

For the filling:

1lb lean italian seasoned ground turkey (I found this at Sprouts)

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 cup frozen vegetable medley (mine included peas, carrots and corn) *You can also use fresh veggies you have on hand

1 cup sliced mushrooms

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/4-1/2 cup organic Ketchup

1 t Worcestershire sauce (omit for Gluten Free version)

1 t Oregano

salt & pepper

Instructions:

Boil sweet potatoes in a pot of salted water until cooked and soft (about 15 minutes). Drain and mash with milk, butter, and salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 400°F.

In a large saute pan brown turkey; season with salt and pepper. When cooked, set aside on a plate. Add olive oil to the pan, then add the onion and sauté one minute.

Add garlic and mushrooms; sauté another 3-4 minutes. Add frozen vegetables, salt & pepper, Ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, oregano, cooked turkey, and mix well. Simmer on low about 5 minutes.

In 6 oven safe individual dishes spread 1 cup of the meat mixture on the bottom of each dish. Top each with 1/2 cup mashed sweet potatoes. Bake 20 minutes or until potatoes turn golden. Remove from oven and let it cool 10 minutes before serving.

 

IMG_0450Bon Appetit! And Cheers to 2013! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Hey friends!

I’m happy because I made dinner tonight on a whim and it turned out WAY better than expected! I love when that happens! Next time a craving strikes for fry ri (fried rice), try this out. It’s GF x 2 (guilt-free and gluten-free) and packed with flavor. My roommate, Ryan, gave it two thumbs up and even went back for seconds (this is rare because his first serving is always massive).

The veggies I used were just what I had on hand. A traditional fried rice would feature eggs, but I didn’t have any of those either. You could definitely substitute eggs for the chicken in my recipe. The quinoa is healthier than white rice and I also like that the quinoa seems to better absorb the flavors of the sauce.

Chicken & Veggie Fried Quinoa

Here is what you will need plus 2o minutes of your time!

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Ingredients (serves 2-3):

1 cup quinoa (prepared according to package directions)

1 cooked chicken breast, seasoned with Thai seasoning and chopped

1 1/2 cups chopped broccoli

1/2 onion, chopped

1/2 cup frozen mixed veggies (I used corn, peas, and green beans)*

1 T fresh grated ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup +/- coconut aminos (this makes it gluten free, you can sub soy sauce here)

1 T siracha +/- depending on the level of heat u can handle 🙂

1 T rice wine vinegar

*Feel free to use your favorite veggies here..mushrooms would be a great addition!

Directions:

Heat a wok or large saute pan with some olive oil or sesame oil. Add your onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes. Then add your veggies, ginger, coconut aminos and siracha. Saute for another 7-10 minutes until veggies are cooked. Season with salt and pepper and adjust sauce to your preference. Add the cooked quinoa and diced chicken breast and toss all together. I cooked my chicken and quinoa simultaneously and the timing was perfect.

Serve immediately with a side of siracha.

There you have it….a healthy twist on fried rice….please try it!!

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Decadent Breakfast Casserole

November 16, 2012

Good morning and happy Friday!

Every Friday in our office, one lucky person brings in breakfast for the office. Obviously, I look forward to my turn, but it’s always stressful cooking something delicious early in the morning and managing to still make it on time to work. I wanted something quick, but still flavorful and decadent. This breakfast casserole I made is just that. My mom has made it a few times in the past for our family on lazy Sunday mornings. It’s deliciously satisfying! The ingredients are minimal and it comes together fast! I was still late to work though! 😩

This would be a great casserole to make Thanksgiving morning (you can prep it the night before) leaving you the necessary times to get your Turkey ready and in the oven!

Decadent Breakfast Casserole

Adapted slightly from here (serves 6)

Ingredients

Nonstick spray

3 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes

1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese (or cheddar)

1/2 cup green onions, sliced

6 beaten eggs

1 12 oz can evaporated milk (or 1 1/2 cups milk)

1 cup Linguica cut into pieces (substitute bacon, sausage, or ham)

Salt & Pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9×13 pyrex dish with nonstick spray. Arrange hash brown potatoes evenly on bottom of dish. Sprinkle the cheese, green onions and linguica.

In a bowl, combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture evenly over potato mixture.

Bake, uncovered, for 40 to 45 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

*I doubled this recipe and I would say it served 12 people per dish, but the original recipe says it serves only 6.

Serve with salsa or ketchup and homemade blueberry muffins! This casserole will surely impress your company! 🙂

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Hi friends,

Hope you had a great weekend! I had quite the event to attend on Saturday. I’m still so excited about it and although my blog is about cooking, I just had to share this awesome story! My brother, Corey Reed, competed in the Sicest of the Southwest Crossfit Competition in Phoenix as the first blind, amputee athlete.

He was part of a 4 person team from the Crossfit Los Angeles Team. Although their team didn’t win, my brother demonstrated the impossible. By following your passion and dreams, you can accomplish anything.

He is an inspiration to people and I am beyond excited for this new chapter for him.

If you want to learn more about my brother’s story, please check out his website – www.ridewithcore.org 

Now onto some eats! I have a dessert to share with you that you can consider for your Thanksgiving menu (I know, it’s less than one month away, you need to start thinking about it).

At some point last fall I became obsessed with pumpkin everything (and also discovered Pinterest simultaneously), so I am still working through trying out a lot of those recipes I pinned. I made this dessert last Thanksgiving and it will definitely be repeated this year. It’s so tasty and light! Kind of perfect after the stomach massacre called Thanksgiving dinner.

Here is what you need for this Pumpkin Spice Trifle

(recipe adapted from here)

For the cake layers:

1 Box of Spice Cake Mix prepared according to package directions

For the pudding and whipped cream layers:

1 box instant Vanilla pudding mix

1 cup fat free milk (or any milk you have on hand is fine)

1/2 cup pumpkin

2 T. brown sugar

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

2 containers of light whipped topping

1/3 cup of ginger snaps or pumpkin cookies, crumbled

Directions:

  1. To make the cake layer, start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13×9 inch baking dish with non-stick spray. Prepare cake batter according to box instructions. Mix until well combined, and transfer into the baking dish. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. When completely cooled, cut into small squares and set aside.
  2. While cake is baking, in a large bowl, whisk milk and pudding mix together for about 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Fold in 1 container of cool whip, and 1/2 cup of pumpkin, brown sugar, and spices until well blended. (Note: Leave the other whipped topping as is for the whipped cream layer).
  3. In a trifle bowl or (I used a large glass bowl), layer half of the cake, half of the pudding/pumpkin mixture, and half of the whipped topping. Repeat layers until the trifle glass is filled to the top.
  4. Garnish with cinnamon or crushed gingersnaps if desired, (I used gingersnaps).
  5. Refrigerate for 1 hour, or until ready to serve.

You can make this the night before and it honestly tastes even better when the flavors have come together in the fridge.

The pudding layer is amazing. You can actually just make the pudding mixture and have that as a dessert as well.

I hope you give it a shot! It’s a nice change from Pumpkin Pie.

Be back soon with a curry recipe! xo

My roommate, Ryan, and I spent a lot of the day at the beach. It was close to 80 degrees. We talked about this probably being the last beach day of the year. I’m okay with that though. We are counting down the days until Thanksgiving when it’s permissible to begin decorating the house for Christmas.

While at the beach, we also talked about our amazing dinner on Friday night at Bangkok Bay, a Thai restaurant nearby us (thanks Mike & Julia!). We had Tom Yum Soup, Yellow Curry with Squid, and Shrimp & Chicken Stir Fry. It left us wanting more so we decided to make a stir fry at home.

Enter: Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry (serves 3-4)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You may recall I had a challenge in the kitchen. My other roommate, A.J., is gluten intolerant. The recipe we had for teriyaki sauce contains gluten (it’s in soy sauce), so we used coconut aminos instead with great results. If you only have soy sauce, that would work just as well. Feel free to use whatever veggies you love or have on hand for the stir fry. Here is what we used.

1 lb. boneless chicken breast

1 cup snow peas

1/2 cup small broccoli florets

1 leek thinly sliced

1 carrot thinly sliced

1/4 cup shitake mushrooms sliced

Teriyaki Sauce (gluten free)

(Adapted from Peas and Thank You Cookbook)

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup coconut aminos (I found it at Whole Foods)

2 T. brown sugar

2 T. cane sugar

1 T. fresh minced ginger

1/2 t. garlic powder (or 2 garlic cloves minced)

2 T. Rice vinegar

1 T. corn starch

Optional toppings: Roasted cashews, sliced green onion

Brown rice

Directions: In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add water, coconut amines (or soy sauce), sugars, ginger, garlic, and vinegar. Heat until sugar dissolves and it’s close to boiling. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with 2 T. of water with a whisk. Add this to the saucepan and simmer until sauce thickens.

I seasoned the chicken breasts with a Thai seasoning and cooked on the grill after the sauce was done. In a wok or large saute pan, heat a teaspoon of olive oil add your chopped veggies. Saute over medium heat for about 7 minutes or until your desired doneness. While the veggies are cooking add about half of the teriyaki sauce. Once the chicken is done, chop into small pieces and add to the vegetable mixture.

Serve the chicken and vegetables over brown rice. I drizzled a little more sauce when serving with toasted cashews. I think green onions would be another nice addition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enjoy this healthy and flavorful stir fry!  The teriyaki sauce is heavenly….you may find yourself thinking of other recipes you can incorporate the leftover sauce into!

These Red Velvet Cheesecake cookies are exactly what you expect for a cookie….soft, chewy, creamy, deliciousness. I guess that could just be my cookie preference, but these are fantastic. They get their softness because they are made with a cake box mix (time saver as well – it’s a win/win!).  The cream cheese is mixed in to the batter giving it a subtle cheesecake taste.

Make them for the holidays with their festive color or bring them to a party. I had several requests for these after I brought them to a potluck!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Recipe adapted from here)

For the cookies:
1 box red velvet cake mix
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup white chocolate chips

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. To make cookies, in a large bowl combine cake mix and flour. Whisk until clumps disappear. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together cake mix, flour, eggs, oil, cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Mix until smooth. Lastly, add the white chocolate chips and stir by hand just until mixed in.
2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Spoon cookie dough onto sheet using about 1-2 T for each cookie. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until the cookies begin to crackle. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Remove from baking sheet to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.