Tomato, Mozzarella, Basil, and Spinach Frittata and an Egg Blog Hop

Tomato, mozzarella, and basil comprises one of my all-time favorite flavor combinations. It always makes for a reliable panini, is perfect served on its own as an appetizer, and is fun to play around with (as in here, here, and here). Combine this with the fact that I’ve been obsessed with my new cast iron pan (as evidenced here and here) and it was only a matter of time before this frittata came about. Of course, one of the things I so adore about frittatas, like omelets, is their versatility so really and truly you can put anything you have on hand into this baked egg breakfast. Here I’ve added fresh spinach for nutrition and flavor!

Frittata with Tomatoes, Basil, Spinach and Mozzarella

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Armenian Cucumber Salad and a Cucumber Blog Hop

One of my favorite parts about living in Israel is the incredible quality, low price, and seasonality of the produce. That and learning about new ingredients. It’s nearing the end of the time when we see Armenian cucumbers at the shuk, recognizable by their light green color and peach fuzz. I didn’t learn until recently that these sweet cucumbers aren’t cucumbers at all – they’re in the muskmelon family along with cantaloupe and honeydew (although these, I’ve learned, are more closely related to cucumbers than I could have imagined). Their slightly sweet, melon-like flavor should have tipped me off. Also called yard-long cucumbers and snake melons, I’ve heard that you can actually find these tasty fruits at farmers markets in the US.

Armenian Cucumbers
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Cheese-Stuffed Burgers for World on a Plate

Just in time for Memorial Day, this month’s theme for World on a Plate is grilling! I don’t have a backyard, or a grill, but I do have a cast iron pan, which can be a worthy substitute. Since I’m representing America, I immediately knew that I would be bringing burgers to the party. But I didn’t want to go with just any old burger – so I stuffed some cheese inside to make them extra special. That’s right: a cheese-stuffed burger. When you cook the burger, the cheese inside melts, creating an ooey-gooey surprise that any cheeseburger-loving person is bound to go nuts over. You can even go extreme and put more cheese on top, but that’s just crazy talk (which I fully support).

Cheese-Stuffed Burger
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Guest Post: Zucchini with Ricotta and Mint and a Mint Blog Hop

I love Fridays, don’t you?! Today is particularly special because not only do I have my weekly blog hop for you, but I am also guest posting over at Everyday Maven! If you don’t know Alyssa of Everyday Maven then you are missing out on some seriously simple, healthy, delicious recipes (yes, she hits the nail on the head with all three!). She’s a total sweetheart, a great blogger friend, and I don’t think I’ve met a recipe of hers that I don’t want to make. Yesterday I shared a recipe for zucchini, ricotta, and mint appetizers presented in two different ways over at her blog.

Zucchini with Mint and Ricotta

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Quinoa Salad with Chickpeas and Paprika Vinaigrette

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club I was thrilled to be assigned A Fit and Spicy Life. Mellissa is a 30-something marketing manager who lives in Minneapolis who loves fitness, food, and wine – sounds like a great combo to me! Mellissa posts healthy, mouth-watering recipes (yes, I said those two words in the same sentence) as well wine and fitness posts. While usually I spend a lot of time hemming and hawing over which recipe to make, this month it was no contest. As soon as I saw Mellissa’s Quinoa, Garbanzo and Spinach Salad with Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette I knew it was the one. Love at first sight, if you will.

Quinoa Salad with Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette

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Edamame, Basil, and Ricotta Pasta

Here’s another simple, delicious, healthy weeknight pasta for you. Spring is in the air, and this dish is the perfect way to celebrate. Shelled soy beans are combined with plenty of chopped fresh basil and creamy ricotta to create a simple, flavorful sauce for pasta. I used try-color penne here, but any shape or flavor would be delicious. To save time, cook the soy beans briefly in the pasta water. This dish is on the table in about 20 minutes flat and is packed with nutrients – not to shabby! Don’t you just love easy pasta recipes like this?

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Arugula Salad with Fresh Mozzarella, Tomato, and Basil Vinaigrette

Arugula Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

It’s starting to warm up here in Israel. The rains are over (and what rains they were this year!), we had a proper sandstorm (not fun), and the temperature is rising every day. As soon as I get my first taste of spring I start to crave light, bright, fresh foods. That’s where this salad comes in. I got a beautiful bunch of fresh basil from my local produce market and the intoxicating smell followed me all the way home, planting the idea of this vinaigrette in my head. Continue reading "Arugula Salad with Fresh Mozzarella, Tomato, and Basil Vinaigrette"

Mediterranean Pasta with Pine Nuts and Feta

Mediterranean Pasta-5

My feta obsession continues with this recipe for flavorful Mediterranean pasta with pine nuts and feta. It’s another quick and easy meal that comes together in about the time it takes to cook the pasta. And, because it has cheese, vegetables, nuts, and carbs it’s a filling main dish (although a side salad never hurt anyone). I was originally inspired by this recipe from the March, 2011 issue of Cooking Light Magazine. The ingredients are basically the same, but the quantities are all different and I omitted basil while adding lemon juice and balsamic for a bit of acidity. I also used fresh red peppers instead of roasted, and I enjoyed the bite that it gave to the dish. Finally, instead of toasting the pine nuts separately, I just added them in with the onions and peppers, which allowed them to get a nice golden brown. Continue reading “Mediterranean Pasta with Pine Nuts and Feta”

Turkey Enchiladas and a Mexican-themed Blog Hop

Turkey Enchiladas with Chipotle Sour Cream Sauce

Oh how I miss good Mexican food! Israel is a food lover’s paradise, but reasonably enough Mexican is not one of the country’s culinary strengths. As a friend of a friend once said, “Why we should have Mexican food? We are not Mexican.” Point taken. So that leaves it up to me and my kitchen, where I’ve managed to produce some satisfying alternatives. I first saw the recipe that inspired me on Pinterest, and was immediately sold on the idea of a chipotle sour cream sauce. While I had yet to find chiles in adobo (I just did in Tel Aviv and am so excited!), I had brought back some chipotle powder from the States and was excited to put it to good use. Continue reading “Turkey Enchiladas and a Mexican-themed Blog Hop”

Garlicky Roasted Chickpeas with Feta and Mint

This is my new favorite recipe. I would seriously eat it every day if I could. In fact, I would be eating it right now if I had remembered to pick up more chickpeas at the supermarket. The garlicky roasted chickpeas with feta and mint come together in under half an hour and besides being quick, vegetarian, and fairly healthy this is an amazingly delicious dish. So good that I’m skipping a Shout-Out Friday to share it with you. Continue reading “Garlicky Roasted Chickpeas with Feta and Mint”