Beer Braised Pork Lettuce Cups with Mango Salsa

Juicy pork ribs are braised in flavorful beer until they are fall-apart-tender. Then, we top them with the sweet/savory flavor explosion that is mango salsa. This dish is easy to prepare, and makes for very versatile leftovers.

It’s a meal that’s great for carb lovers and carb avoiders alike. Even my carboholic Ovi, didn’t miss the tortillas when I served him a plate full of tender cabbage leaves topped with succulent pork, and tropical salsa. Actually, I don’t think he said anything. There was however, a lot of nodding, eye closing, and there was definitely a trip made for seconds. Strong endorsements.

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Herbed Turkey Meatloaf with Caramelized Onions

Meatloaf is a perfect food. It’s like a giant meatball, shaped like bread. I mean, on a yumminess scale from overcooked-brussel-sprout to 10, meatloaf is a 10. It’s packed full of flavor from the herbs and veggies, and stays moist and delicious in the oven. It’s firm enough for clean slices, and removal from the loaf pan, but keeps a light and tender middle – pretty much the holy grail of meatloaf textures. The caramelized onions make a good thing even better, and seriously take things up a notch. No ketchup necessary. This recipe is my favorite meatloaf! It’s a great way to sneak some veggies in to your diet, and is a serious wallet-friendly, crowd pleaser. Continue reading

Miso Glazed Salmon

This tender flaky fillet is topped with a sweet and savory miso glaze that caramelizes under the broiler. It comes together quickly, and totally fits the bill for a healthy week night meal.

Do you ever make something and it totally tastes about 1,000,000 times better than it looks? That’s exactly what happened with this salmon. Actually, I hesitated on sharing these photos with you guys because they look a little odd. Let me tell you though, miso glaze and salmon were just meant to be together. They’re food soul mates. Pair that salmon with some sesame kale, and you have a delicious weeknight meal that will come together for you in about 15 minutes!

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Sesame Kale Sauté with Garlic and Shallot // Quick and Easy Side

I’ve been really burned out in the kitchen the past 2 weeks, and have been turning to quick and easy meals to keep Ovi and I fed and happy. Kale is a staple that I reach for whenever I haven’t planned dinner, and want to get something nutritious on the table fast. This sesame kale saute was ready in about 10 minutes, and was a delicious accompaniment to some equally quick and yummy grilled salmon.

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White Beans with Sausage and Kale

I think if I were to ask Ovi what his favorite dish that I make is, this one would be really high on the list. We almost always have the ingredients in the pantry/fridge to throw this one together, and it’s enjoyed immensely every time. Whenever the question of “what should we make for dinner?” is asked, this one is usually thrown out there as a suggestion. White beans with sausage and kale is a rustic and nutritious dish that requires only one pan. Plus, it’s packed with flavor. Definite favorite.

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Grandma’s Turkey and Rice Meatball Soup

This simple soup is a staple in our house. It’s easy to prepare, and oh so very delicious. It’s Ovi’s grandmother’s recipe, and she’s been making it for the family for years. The first time she made it for me i fell in love. The flavors are light, simple, perfection. It’s infinitely more interesting than chicken noodle soup with all of the same warm and cozy feelings attached. To me, this soup feels like a hug in a bowl.

We’re so close to spring time! I’m very excited about it. Sunshine, and warm weather, and sandals. Ahhh…my favorite time of year. This dish beautifully bridges the gap between that awkward sometimes cold, sometimes sunny weather we get here in Southern California. It’s light enough to be eaten on a warm sunny day, and comforting enough to fill your belly and take the frost off your toes (only me?)

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Classic French Onion Soup with Gruyere Gratin

I had my very own Julie and Julia moment this week via her often imitated French Onion Soup recipe. I love instant gratification as much as the next girl, but this soup was worth every single stir, every tear and sniffle, and most certainly worth dragging the big soup pot out from the back of the cupboard. It’s rare that I will follow a recipe to the letter, but there are a few exceptions. Julia Child definitely gets first chair in my symphony of culinary heroes, and the respect of a mostly unadulterated recipe preparation.

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Shepherd’s Pie with Buttermilk Mash

Shepherd’s Pie is one of those dishes that just screams comfort food. It’s hearty, delicious and family friendly. The rich and savory sauce-coated filling is topped with a beautiful potato mash that is sent for a trip in the oven to get browned and crisped on top. Sometimes, simple really is best.

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Lightened Up Loaded Potato Soup

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love a baked potato. I’m skeptical that these people exist. A tender potato loaded with all of your favorite toppings is hard to argue with. This hearty bowl of soup can tame even the most ravenous of appetites and is as easy as it is delicious. It’s substancial enough to be served as a main course, but would pair beautifully with a bowl of lightly dressed, fresh peppery greens, such as rocket.

This loaded potato soup is sneaky. It’s creamy, it’s dreamy, and it tastes so very indulgent. What’s in there? Cheese? Cream? Butter? No, no and no. It’s sneaky in a good way. Let’s get stealthy with some vegetables; let’s get busy with some buttermilk; let’s make some magic.

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Pearl Barley Risotto with Mushrooms and Leeks

Barley is a hearty and nutritious alternate to the traditional arborio rice, and has a wonderful toothsome texture. It pairs perfectly with the earthy mushrooms, and the leeks add a lovely onion flavor that’s present, but not overpowering. This risotto, like any great risotto, requires a bit of love and tenderness. Sure, it needs a bit of attention, but it will repay your patiently stirring hands with a belly full of hearty deliciousness.

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