Main dishes

Homemade thin crust pizza:

I’m so grateful I asked for tips on making my pizza crust crispy earlier in the week. The problem wasn’t with the recipe I was using; it was that I needed a pizza stone! After asking for recommendations from y’all I went with a Pampered Chef stone, made in the USA of course (many of their products are made in China, but this is one exception)- it received many great reviews, and I like that it has… handles to make it a bit easier to grab from the hot oven. I made my 1st pizza with it last night using the same recipe I’ve been using for a while that I just couldn’t get to crispen up, and it turned out awesome! Being on a tight budget I hesitated for a minute at the $40 price tag, but know that this is something that will be used at least 2-3 times/month over the course of many years, and going out to eat at my favorite pizza place that uses local & organic ingredients runs ~$30/pizza so that helps put it into perspective.
Homemade thin crust pizza- SUPER easy:
2 cups flour (I do 1 cup all-purpose, 1 cup whole wheat)
½ tsp dry active yeast dissolved in ¾ cup warm water ½ tsp salt
1 tsp. dry herbs (I love this idea, I do a blend of oregano & basil, use whatever you like!)
This recipe makes two 12” crusts. So we had pizza for dinner last night & I refrigerated the other ball which I’ll use to make a cold veggie pizza today or tomorrow. Obviously, cut the recipe in ½ if you don’t want extra.
Preheat oven to 450. Mix crust ingredients together, press onto your stone/pan & bake crust by itself for 10-12 minutes or until just starting to turn golden brown. Remove from oven & add your favorite sauce & toppings then stick back in oven until golden brown. Seriously- it couldn’t be much easier!
The pizza in the photo is our standard: I lightly sauté onion, red pepper & garlic with some herbs, add on top of some Applegate pepperoni & Organic Valley mozzarella & that’s it. This turned out so delicious. My other favorite combo is caramelized onion, spinach & feta, but as we all know: the sky’s the limit when it comes to pizza making!

Lentil Walnut Burgers:

I followed this recipe from Whole Foods pretty closely, plus or minus a few of the herbs & spices they suggest– I basically use what I have. The only other thing I do differently is I bake them in my oven instead of pan frying, I always have trouble with my veggie burgers falling apart when flipping them. If you bake them you don’t have to worry about flipping, I baked at about 400 until bottom started crisping, then broiled on low until top was done. These are wonderful, very tasty veggie burgers!!
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small carrot, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped button mushrooms
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
2 cups cooked brown rice, divided (Learn to Cook: Brown Rice [1])
1 1/2 cup cooked lentils, or 1 (15-ounce) can lentils, rinsed and drained
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons high heat sunflower oil or expeller-pressed canola oil, divided
1.Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add carrots, celery,
mushrooms, walnuts, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper and cayenne and cook, stirring
frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes; transfer to a large bowl.
2. In a food processor, purée 1 cup rice, lentils and egg until smooth.
Transfer to bowl with vegetables, add remaining 1 cup rice and stir to combine.
Form lentil mixture into 10 to 12 patties, using about 1/4 cup of the mixture to
make each one.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Arrange half of
the patties in skillet and cook, flipping once, until golden and crisp, 8 to 10
minutes total. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and repeat process with
remaining sunflower oil and patties. Serve hot. Serves 6.”

Quinoa Black Bean Burgers:

I follow the recipe in the link from Vegetarian Times, except the steak seasoning, I just add my own blend of favorite seasonings. I’ve added shredded carrot also. My favorite veggie burger of all time. You can pretty much add any veggies/mushrooms, whatever you want to the sauteeing process. Also, when I make this I make a huge batch of quinoa & beans, so we had these last night, tonight we’ll have chicken enchiladas with the extra beans, there’s enough to freeze a portion of beans/quinoa. Makes life easier to cook in large batches. This makes about 8 nice burgers so I freeze 4 of them. Or, you could cut recipe in 1/2.
½ cup quinoa
1 small onion, finely chopped (1 cup)
6 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and finely chopped (¼ cup)
1½ cups cooked black beans, or 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp.)
2 tsp. dried steak seasoning
8 whole-grain hamburger buns
1. Stir together quinoa and 1½ cups water in small saucepan, and season with salt, if desired. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 20 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed. (You should have 1½ cups cooked quinoa.)
2. Meanwhile, place onion and sun-dried tomatoes in medium nonstick skillet, and cook over medium heat. (The oil left on the tomatoes should be enough to sauteé the onion.) Cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until onion has softened. Stir in ¾ cup black beans, garlic, steak seasoning, and 1½ cups water. Simmer 9 to 11 minutes, or until most of liquid has evaporated.
3. Transfer bean-onion mixture to food processor, add ¾ cup cooked quinoa, and process until smooth. Transfer to bowl, and stir in remaining ¾ cup quinoa and remaining ¾ cup black beans. Season with salt and pepper, if desired, and cool.
4. Preheat oven to 350°F, and generously coat baking sheet with cooking spray. Shape bean mixture into 8 patties (½ cup each), and place on prepared baking sheet. Bake 20 minutes, or until patties are crisp on top. Flip patties with spatula, and bake 10 minutes more, or until both sides are crisp and brown. Serve on buns.

Crispy Crunchy Baked Fish Sticks w/ Herbed Yogurt Sauce:

Submitted by Jennifer, from the site Clean & Delicious: Realistic Recipes for a Nutritious Kitchen:
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Salt and pepper
1 cup of whole wheat Panko bread crumbs
1 tbsp of garlic powder
1 tbsp of olive oil
1 lb of tilapia fillets
Herbed Yogurt Sauce
½ cup of plain non-fat Greek yogurt
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
½ tsp horseradish sauce
Pre-heat oven to 475. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray lightly with cooking spray. Set aside.
Cut tilapia into strips by cutting in half lengthwise once and then again. Then cut in half horizontally to create strips.
Place the egg in a large bowl and generously season with salt and pepper. In another bowl combine, panko, garlic powder, and olive oil. Dip the tilapia into the egg (shaking off an excess) and then into the panko. Press panko crumbs on to the fish to be sure that they stick and then place each breaded strip onto the prepared baking sheet.
Pop in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes or until cooked through. Sprinkle with a little more salt as soon as you pull them put of the oven. Serve along side Herbed Yogurt Sauce* and enjoy!
In a small bowl combine yogurt, parsley, mustard, lemon juice and horseradish sauce. Enjoy! Serves 4.

Kale Pesto-Dipped Chicken Tenders:

Also submitted by Jennifer from the site Clean & Delicious: Realistic Recipes for a Nutritious Kitchen. I’ve made these, and they’re absolutely delicious!
1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken tenders
1/4 cup Kale Pesto
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp kosher salt
Cover a rimmed baking sheet in foil and place a wired cooking rack on top.
Toss the chicken tenders in the pesto until all of the tenders are lightly coated in pesto.
In a separate bowl, combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and salt. Coat each tender in the breadcrumb mixture and then place on top of the wired rack being sure that none of the tenders are touching.Broil on high for 2-3 minutes on each side or until the tenders are cooked through. Enjoy dipped in your favorite tomato sauce. Makes 5 servings.

Chiles Rellenos w/ Fresh Roasted Corn Guacamole

Contribution from Patricia who says “Mexican food my specialty”…
About five poblano peppers or more depending on how many you are feeding
3 eggs whites beaten (add 2 yolks in beat again till well mixed)
oil for frying
Mozzarella string cheese works best for me
Cast iron griddle for roasting
Make sure the poblano peppers are flat on all sides makes for easier roasting and have a stem on them as well
On the griddle place washed peppers on it turning every few mins the goal is to get the skin to peel off rather easy ****do not over roast as it will thin out the pepper skin and rip while stuffing
Once peppers have roasted place in a bag close up the heat from them will help in peeling the skin
Peel peppers and slice your cheese sticks rather thin
Cut a slit up towards top of pepper on the side
Slide cheese strings in (((there is no easy way to get rid of the seeds as I have tried )))
Coat in flour once all stuffed
Oil should be ready for frying by this point
Dip the flour covered pepper on the egg wash using stem of pepper to hold on To it while dipping
Once oil is ready place pepper in and when all sides are golden brown it is ready to come out (( repeat process ))
Roasted corn guacamole:
Red onion
Roasted corn on griddle
Fresh lime juice
Serrano or jalapeño pepper
salt to taste
Use as much or as little of the above ingredient chop finely or chunky

Baked Ricotta & Zucchini Casserole

Thanks to Patricia for this recipe!
For this one I used 3med zucchinis shredded
Chopped red onion (use as much or as little as you like )
Dash of red pepper flakes( optional)
Salt and pepper About half a tsp but I kinda just dash here and there
Sprinkle in some parmesan cheese
About 1/2cup of ricotta cheese
I added some flour can’t remember how much just to hold it and not have it so runny but could use bread crumbs /Panko
Mix well pour into bakeware and I gave it roughly 15ish min till golden brown

Crisper Casserole
I call this Crisper Casserole. When my crispers are overflowing with veggies (& my counter tops too) I just chop it all up & bake it at 400 until bubbly & veggies feel tender when forked. Then I add cheese to the top & finish cooking until golden brown. Goes with anything!
This is ready for the oven: tomatoes, green & yellow summer squash (zucchini), beans, peas, banana peppers, garlic, onions, basil, coated with olive oil & a bit of ground pepper & sea salt. 100% organic, from my or my friend’s garden. I LOVE harvest time!!

Artichoke Spinach Lasagna

Thanks to Laura for this share:
9 uncooked lasagna noodles
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 (14.5 ounce) can vegetable broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 (14 ounce) can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1 (28 ounce) jar tomato pasta sauce
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1 (4 ounce) package herb and garlic feta, crumbled
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2.Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
3.Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium-high. Saute onion and garlic for 3 minutes, or until onion is tender-crisp. Stir in broth and rosemary; bring to a boil. Stir in artichoke hearts and spinach; reduce heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in pasta sauce.
4.Spread 1/4 of the artichoke mixture in the bottom of the prepared baking dish; top with 3 cooked noodles. Sprinkle 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese over noodles. Repeat layers 2 more times, ending with artichoke mixture and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle crumbled feta on top.
5. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover, and bake 15 minutes more, or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

Homemade Mac N Cheese

Contributed by Funky LittleEarth Child:
5 Tbsp butter
3.5 c uncooked mac
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 to 1 lb grated cheese
Dash of pepper
6 cups milk
Melt the butter in a 9×13 inch pan. Pour the uncooked macaroni into the melted butter. Stir in the salt, pepper and cheese – mix it well with the macaroni. Pour the milk over the mixture – do not stir the milk in. Bake at 375 degrees F for on hour. Don’t stir while baking. I found this recipe on the web over a year ago and can’t find it again to give credit. It was the first time I found a macaroni and cheese recipe that called for so few ingredients. I sometimes put in 5 cups of milk, usually when I realize I was lower on milk than I anticipated. It works out just fine, maybe a little creamier. It makes a lot, but doesn’t last very long in my house. It re-heats well. For the milk, I almost always have a bottle of non-homogenized, which means it has the cream top. I use the cream for this – YUM. I try not to eat too much pasta stuff, so I will use this same recipe with potatoes, with half the amount of butter and milk. I do that one in a dutch oven and it comes out well.

Fish Tacos

A super easy, different way to eat fish.
Take any white fish you like, I use wild Alaskan cod, & slice it into strips.
Coat the fish strips in olive oil & dust with taco seasoning, then cook on med heat til done, only 3-4 min if the strips are small.
Serve on a bed of red cabbage, diced peppers & tomatoes, or any veggies you like. The red cabbage adds nice color, and doesn’t wilt like lettuce.
I always add cilantro, and a squirt of lime juice.
Serve on a warm corn tortilla, or flour if you prefer. Soooo easy, and delicious!!
Fish taco sauce:
I used a variation on this sauce recipe. I didn’t have capers on hand so eliminated those, and used plain greek yogurt instead of both mayo & sour cream. You can really use any combination of those that you would like. It was really, really good!
1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream (Greek yogurt is delicious as a substitute if you’re not a fan of sour cream)
1/2 cup reduced fat mayonnaise (you can use full fat, but, the spices are so delicious, you won’t miss that particular flavor contribution)
1 lime, cut in half
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
1/2 teaspoon capers, minced
1 hot pepper of your choice, seeded and minced (jalapeno is delicious, as are the cherry bomb poppers I used in this batch).
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
1. In a small bowl, whisk the sour cream and mayonnaise until well blended.
2. Squeeze the juice from one lime half into the fish taco sauce mixture, then whisk thoroughly. You’ll want the consistency of a pourable, creamy salad dressing. If still too thick, add more lime juice from the other half. If too runny, add sour cream.
3. Add all of the spices, whisking to mix thoroughly. Add the capers, minced pepper and cilantro, and whisk thoroughly.
4. Cover the bowl with wrap and refrigerate the fish taco for at least one hour — the longer the better.
5. Serve chilled. Spoon white sauce over fish tacos, or add into taco salads or rice bowls.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Julie Clark
    Jun 15, 2018 @ 21:19:18

    Your thin crust pizza looks so good. I especially love how easy it sounds to make. I’ll have to try it soon.



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