Great Northern and Sun-Dried Tomato Spread

 

This company-friendly, quick, flavorful spread is a wonderful appetizer, especially when paired with some fresh, crusty bread and a bowl of marinated olives. The Great Northern (also known as cannellini) is a rich and creamy bean and pairs beautifully with the grassiness from the fresh thyme, the deep, citrusy flavor of the lemon infused olive oil and the acidity from the lemon juice.

Serve the spread with warm pita bread cut into triangles.

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Mexican Slow Cooker Turkey Chili Mac

 

Here’s one more chili recipe for the season, this time inspired by flavors of Mexico and just in time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. After slow cooking for hours, and filling the house with an amazing aroma, this chili is infused with smoky Mexican spices and the deep, slow roasted caramel malt notes from the beer.  The addition of the sweet potatoes adds a healthy dose of vitamins B and C, plus their inherent sweetness balances the heat from the poblano peppers.

The chili itself is very hearty and filling; however, if you have a noodle-head at home as I do, the addition of the pasta works great here.  Either way of serving, it’s sure to be a family favorite.

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Not Your Grandmas Deviled Eggs

 

One of my favorite childhood memories is coloring Easter eggs.  Even today years later, whenever I smell white distilled vinegar, my mind instantly goes back to Easter eggs.  The next logical progression for our beautifully colored eggs was either egg salad or deviled eggs.  When you’re a kid, stuffing half of a deviled egg into your mouth was fun and totally expected.  When you’re a grown up not so much.  So this version is a bit more mature and refined, however, you still get those wonderful flavors of rich egg yolks, spicy mustard, and creamy mayonnaise, but then there’s just a hint of heat from the Sriracha followed by the salty brine of the pickle juice.

And when no one is looking, you can stuff as many of these in your mouth as you can and still feel like a kid!

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Volume 2 Cookbook Now Available on Amazon.com!

 

Steve and I are very excited to announce the publication of our second cookbook from the If My Eyes Could Eat site, this time featuring all vegetarian recipes that are still beautiful to look at, flavorful for the taste-buds and good for the body!

There’s also a special section of yummy desserts for the days where you need a little bit of indulgence. (wink)

I hope you enjoy the recipes in this new book as much as you did in Volume 1!  Happy cooking!

Thai-Style Mussels and Prawns in Coconut Broth

 

I had a lot of fun creating this recipe because I had never cooked with fresh coconut before but had always wanted to.  I had no idea what to expect as far as the availability of fresh coconuts in St. Louis, so, fortunately, my local grocer sells whole coconuts which have been previously scored.  After only a few firm taps with a hammer on the score lines, the shells broke open, and the room was filled with the wonderful aroma of fresh coconut.  When I saw the gorgeous interior of the shells, I knew that was going to be the vessel for serving.

The flavors in this dish are classic Thai with an intricate blend of texture, color, strong aromatic components, delicate seafood, and a spicy edge at the finish.

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Roasted Garlic and Cauliflower Soup

 

This soup is perfect on a chilly day when you want to warm up with something smooth and satisfying. There are no dairy products, yet the soup is rich and creamy. The secret is using hummus and cashews soaked in water which is a great trick if you’re trying to avoid dairy products. And using roasted garlic and cauliflower as your flavor profile give the soup a luxuriously deep, nutty taste.

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Fettuccine Aglio e Olio

 

This recipe is my daughter’s second favorite pasta dish.  In Italian, it’s called Fettuccine Aglio e Olio.  In the United States, we call it Olive Oil and Garlic Fettuccine It’s a simple yet very flavorful traditional dish comprised of garlic two ways; herb infused olive oil, fresh herbs, and tender cooked pasta.  And if you have your prep done ahead of time, you can easily have this dish on the table in less than 30 minutes.

There is a fair amount of spice here between the Serrano pepper and the red chile flakes so scale up or down according to taste.

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Nova Lox with a Schmear

 

After the holidays, I got into this binge craving for lox and schmear, which is a mixture of softened vegan cream cheese mixed with fresh dill, spicy red onion, briny capers, a dash of pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice. Imagine chewy, fresh warm bagels, thick, rich, amped up softened cream cheese, and tender, slightly smoky, silky lox. Dang! There I go adding the ingredients to our grocery list again!

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Quadruple Chocolate Espresso Drop Cookies

 

These insanely, chocolaty, indulgent cookies are not for the faint of heart so make sure your Valentine is worthy (and medically sound)!

How insane, you ask?  How about four different types of chocolate AND a double infusion of espresso?  That should get your blood pumping!  The best part about these cookies is they have a brownie-like, crunchy top, a chewy, chocolaty center, and a rich coffee flavor at the finish.  One bite of these cookies and you may decide you’re your favorite Valentine this year!

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Vegetarian Malaysian Laksa

 

I made this dish right after the holidays to help make up for some of those less than healthy meal choices we ate between Thanksgiving and New Years.  This is an immensely flavorful vegetarian dish guaranteed to restore your body’s antioxidants, beta-carotene, potassium, and vitamins A and C.

If you haven’t had Malaysian food before, prepare your taste-buds for a treat.  Authentic characteristic in traditional Malay cuisine is first and foremost the generous use of spices closely followed by coconut milk which gives Malay dishes their rich, creamy flavor.

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