Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Asparagus Quinoa Salad

Be sure to mix this salad ahead of time,  as it becomes more flavorful after setting. 


½ cup quinoa
½ lb. asparagus, more or less to taste - the quantity I used measured one very full cup after it was roasted and sliced, which was a bit much, I thought ~ see the photo below
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 radishes, sliced thin
2 tablespoons pine nuts, or toasted slivered almonds
2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh parmesan cheese, grated or cut into thin slivers

Dressing ingredients

1 full tablespoon lemon juice - be sure not to under-measure
1 small garlic clove, smashed/pureed
1½ teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons milk

Asparagus Quinoa Salad


Cook quinoa according to package directions, set aside. Toss asparagus with 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil. Place asparagus on a baking sheet in an even layer, and roast in 425° oven until crisp-tender, about 7 minutes. Cool, and slice into bite size pieces.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Crispy Jicama Fries

Wow! This was my first time trying jicama fries, and they were delicious! The following cook times will produce crispy fries, which is our preference, rather than steak fries. 

Jicama fries plated with Moroccan Chicken


  • Jicama - I used 1 large for 2 of us
  • Olive oil - about 1 tablespoon per large jicama
  • Seasoning of choice: salt, pepper, garlic, paprika, Cajun seasoning, or any combination you prefer - I used about 1 teaspoon of cajun seasoning; further information below

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Healthy Substitutions, Cooking Hints, and more!

Below is a compilation of some hints I recently shared on Facebook, a few from my book, and a new cooking gadget website I discovered.

Save money by using all parts of vegetables

Celery pieces I boiled for vegetable broth

I use all parts of foods that many people throw out!

  • To use broccoli stems, just peel the tough outer skin off and chop them with the flowerets. 
  • Celery leaves/tops can be chopped to use in casseroles, stuffings, soups, etc. Freeze chopped bits for longer storage. 
  • Boil any [typically] discarded vegetable pieces, such as celery tops, broccoli stems, and asparagus ends in water for vegetable broth. Add a few fresh herbs to the water after it starts boiling, if desired. Strain, and use immediately, or freeze for later use. I use vegetable broth in homemade soups and casseroles, and when I make cabbage rolls. You can find my Cabbage Roll recipe in my blog here, and it is on page 116 in my book. 

Cajun seasoning

Friday, April 13, 2018

Coupon Codes for Book Orders

April 2018

Front and back covers.
Available in hard cover, paperback, and e-book.

I am sharing a few coupon codes for anyone looking to purchase a book at lulu.com. I have not tried these codes myself, so I am not 100% certain they are all still valid. The first one is listed on Lulu's site, so that one should work for sure. I also read that if you sign up for their subscription, and this is your first order, you can get 15% off. You may be able to also use a coupon code on top of that.

If anyone tries the following codes, please share your experience!

  • BOOKSHIP18 - 10% off print order, and free mail shipping or 50% off ground shipping; ends April 16th at noon
  • ONESHIP - 50% off
  • SHIPSAVE20 - 20% off all print products, and free mail shipping or 50% off ground shipping
  • FIVEPLUS - 30% off 5 or more books
  • FIFTEEN - 15% off
  • SHIPSAVE17 - free shipping
  • TRGE15 - Buy 3 books, get 1 free
  • LULUORDERS5 - 5% off
  • SHIPIT2018 - free mail shipping, or 50% off ground shipping
  • WORLDBOOKDAY - 25% off

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Curried Celery Soup

I wish my husband enjoyed blended/unusual soups as much as I do, because I love this one!

Some of the ingredients I used


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon died rosemary leaves
  • dash crushed red pepper flakes, optional
  • 4 cups celery, chopped
  • 3½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • ¼ cup uncooked long grain or whole-grain rice
  • Optional garnishes: nonfat Greek yogurt and celery leaves - the yogurt will mellow the flavor a bit

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Tomato Basil Pasta

I love this versatile flavor combination as a base for pasta salad! Stir in 1 lb. cooked chicken strips, to serve as an entrĂ©e*. 

fresh tomatoes, fresh basil, fresh cheese...


  • 1 lb. cocktail tomatoes, chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup dry whole-grain pasta: spirals, bow-ties, or broken spaghetti
  • Additional sliced fresh vegetables, as desired: mushrooms, bell peppers, zucchini, carrots... I use whatever I have on hand, and I happened to have mushrooms this time
  • *1 lb. thinly sliced cooked chicken breast - to prepare as a main dish
  • ⅓ cup fresh cheese, shredded Parmesan or chunked mozzarella - I used mozzarella this time

Friday, March 2, 2018

Ginger Roasted Carrots

I created this from a similar recipe I read, and we absolutely love these carrots! They look so much like sweet potatoes, that I think the next time we have them it may be in a dish with potatoes and carrots. Maybe, I will even throw in some butternut squash or apples. 


  • Carrots, peeled and cut into strips - I used about 2 cups
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less, to taste - I used about ½ teaspoon, which was delightfully spicy!
  • 1” piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt 
  • Dash ground cinnamon, optional

    Click on photo to enlarge