Roasted Beets and Fennel on Pasta

Roasted Beets and Fennel on Pasta

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How an Accident Became a Favorite Dish
Sometimes it’s hard to find inspiration for meals when you’re cooking for yourself.  Why spend a lot of time to prepare a dish that you’re probably going to eat quickly?

Well, this past year I’ve made Roasted Beets and Fennel on Pasta several times.  It started off as an accident.  One day I wanted to make a meal that required little effort with the ingredients in my refrigerator.  And this dish was the happy result.

 
Red Beets
I usually have red beets in my refrigerator, as I love them prepared so many ways.  I’ll throw…

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Salmon Lasagna With A Butternut Squash Option

Salmon Lasagna With A Butternut Squash Option

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Salmon Lasagna for a Special Family Meal
Mother’s Day
Last Mother’s Day, I invited my family to my home for lunch.  I planned to make roasted baby back ribs, one of my mother’s favorite dishes, along with cole slaw, and baked beans.   Unfortunately, my father became hospitalized so we postponed our family lunch.

 
A Daughter’s Visit
Planning the Meal
Recently my daughter came to Los Angeles to visit my family and me for a month.  I therefore rescheduled our special family meal for her last Sunday here.  Since my daughter is also a food blogger, writing at Eat w…

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Beet Dandelion Pesto – Nutritious and Tasty Greens

Beet Dandelion Pesto – Nutritious and Tasty Greens

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What Inspired this Beet Dandelion Pesto Recipe?
Recently I shared with you my recipe for Dandelion Pesto, prepared primarily with dandelion greens.   My trusty Dandelion Pesto recipe inspired me to make this new Beet Dandelion Pesto.  Yesterday I purchased some lovely organic beets and needed a way to use the beet greens.

 
How to use Beet and Dandelion Greens
I often have high hopes for beet greens.  When I purchase beets, which is quite frequently, I try to select beets with lovely greens still attached.  Beet greens are very nutritious.  It would be such a sha…

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French Onion Soup in 45 Minutes

French Onion Soup in 45 Minutes

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Memories of French Onion Soup Past
I tasted my first real French Onion Soup at Cafe Figaro on Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood as a teen.  My friends and I thought Cafe Figaro with its French bistro-style cuisine was so cool.  It had a good menu, reasonable prices and a European atmosphere.  Taking a date here helped gave me an air of sophistication.  Or at least I thought.

I must have tried French Onion Soup before hanging out at Cafe Figaro with my friends, yet do not have any earlier memory.   Unfortunately Cafe Figaro disappeared almost 20 years ago.  Its French Oni…

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Tomato Fish Soup in 30 minutes

Tomato Fish Soup in 30 minutes

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How to make a Quick Tasty Tomato Fish Soup
Tomato Fish Soup is one of my favorite soups at home and in restaurants.  There are so many ways to make fish soup, some simple, others a little more complicated.  This recipe is super easy to make in less than an hour.

You can make this Tomato Fish Soup in a single pot, making your clean up afterwards much easier.   All you need to do is put a casserole on the stove over a medium heat.  Add an onion, a few garlic cloves and spices.  Then pour in a can of whole tomatoes, mix and let simmer until tomatoes break down.  Finally thro…

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Vegan Tomato Sauce for All Occasions

Vegan Tomato Sauce for All Occasions

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A Versatile Vegan Tomato Sauce
I usually try to feature here recipes for tasty healthy versions of otherwise ordinary dishes.  Or recipes for extraordinary dishes that will wow your family and guests.

Most people already know how to make an Italian-style tomato sauce to use on pasta.  However, here is a tasty healthy version of a tomato sauce that can be used in many of your favorite dishes.  Several friends have asked me to share this recipe for Vegan Tomato Sauce, as it is as yummy as it is nourishing.

I often use this Vegan Tomato Sauce in my vegetarian lasagna as…

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Dandelion Pesto

Dandelion Pesto

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Why make Dandelion Pesto?
Dandelion pesto has brightened up many springtime dishes in past years.  In Belgium, I sometimes gathered the leaves of this wildflower from my backyard lawn to add to salads, soups and other dishes.

 
Dandelion greens grow wild
Picking dandelion greens are an annual tradition that marks the arrival of spring.  Although you can find dandelions all year long, the peak of their growth is during springtime.  Most dandelion greens go unnoticed, except to gardeners who get annoyed by the stubborn growth of this weed as it spreads across their…

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Papoutsakia – Greek Stuffed Eggplants

Papoutsakia – Greek Stuffed Eggplants

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How do you Make Papoutsakia?
The Greek dish called Papoutsakia can be translated from Greek as the Little Shoes or the Little Slippers.  As charming the name may be in Greek, Papoutsakia are eggplants stuffed with seasoned ground veal and tomatoes.  Sounds simple, right? Well, they are!

 

My friend, Thomais, has kindly provided me with this recipe for Papoutsakia.  As you may remember, she has also taught me how to make Authentic Greek Pasticcio and Greek Stuffed Peppers and Tomatoes.  Click on the names of those dishes to find the corresponding recipe.  I appreci…

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Hungarian Goulash Soup Made at Home

Hungarian Goulash Soup Made at Home

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A Cooking Extravaganza with friends in Budapest
On my travel through Hungary at the start of my Journey to Greece, I spent three wonderful days with friends outside of Budapest.  My friends have twin five-year-old children so we planned to spend much of our time at home cooking traditional local dishes.

Little did I know how many dishes we would prepare on my second day there.  I say we but really all I did was watch, take notes, take photos and, of course, taste the final results.  You may think I did nothing, however, these elementary tasks constitute the main duties of…

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Beef Stir Fry for a Quick Vibrant Meal

Beef Stir Fry for a Quick Vibrant Meal

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What makes this Beef Stir Fry Quick and Vibrant?
This Beef Stir Fry is easy to make, is full of flavour and features so many beautiful colours and contrasts.

I have done my research and had my own experiences with stir frying. This is what I have learned. A stir fry is quick and easy to make IF you are organised and have everything chopped and ready to go.  Preparing the ingredients takes a bit of time but the moment you start cooking you won’t believe how quickly it’s ready to serve.

Cooking a stir fry is a great way to boost your confidence in the kitchen, especially…

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Tasty and Healthy Sesame Noodles

Tasty and Healthy Sesame Noodles

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What makes these Sesame Noodles my go-to dish for lunch?
 
The Ease of Making Sesame Noodles
Working at home has several benefits, including an easy commute to work and dressing sporty casual every day of the week.  My favorite benefit, however, remains being able to prepare tasty healthy lunches in less than 30 minutes.

Over the years I’ve tried many variations of salads, soups and pasta dishes.   They make wonderful one-course meals that fill me up enough to hold until dinner time, with only a few apples in between.   If I am in a super hurry, I’ll make a sandwic…

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Belgian Beef Carbonnade (Belgian Beef Stew)

Belgian Beef Carbonnade (Belgian Beef Stew)

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Belgian Beef Carbonnade Made Easy
Belgian Beef Carbonnade is known by many names:  Flemish Carbonnade, Belgian Beef Stew, Beef and Beer Stew, are among the most common.
How to Make Beef Carbonnade
Although recipes for Belgian Beef Carbonnade generally include beef and beer, there are many variations.  Some families spread mustard on bread and add it to the pot for thickness and to reduce the sweetness of this dish.
Many use dark abbey beer to give a deeper flavor.  Depending on the beer used it may also add sweetness.  I prefer a blond Abbey (light ale) beer instead since i…

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Pumpkin Soup with Roasted Garlic

Pumpkin Soup with Roasted Garlic

What makes this Pumpkin  Soup so Sublime?
Every autumn I make pumpkin soup so many different ways.  I prefer pumpkin soup with spices that give a little heat, such as cumin, cayenne, and turmeric.  When I make a spicier version of pumpkin soup, I usually add an apple to soften and round out the flavors.   Sometimes coconut milk serves the same purpose.

In Belgium, however, people generally prefer a creamy milder version of pumpkin soup.  They usually add a little cream, milk or butter in the last minutes to add richness.  This recipe for Pumpkin Soup with Roasted Garlic features more flavo…

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Braised Belgian Endives

Braised Belgian Endives

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Why learning how to braise Belgian Endives is so important?

Everyone in Belgium needs to learn how to braise Belgian endives, commonly known as chicons or witlof in Belgium, at some point in their life.  It should almost be a requirement for citizenship. Many people are a bit intimidated by Belgian endives because they are easy to overcook or often fall apart while cooking.  Yet, braising Belgian endives is actually fairly simple.

How to braise Belgian endives

All it takes to braise Belgian endives is a pan, some olive oil or butter, garlic, a to…

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Open Wonton Soup

Open Wonton Soup

How to innovate Wonton Soup?
Sunday is my favorite day to cook.  I usually start Sunday supper in the early afternoon before exercising and then finish it up afterwards.  Last Sunday I was planning to make one of our favorite dishes:  the Tastiest Carnitas North of the Border.  However, since we were all feeling run down with a cold I decided to make wonton soup with homemade dumplings.  At the last minute I changed my mind about the dumplings and chose to use the filling of the dumplings to prepare meatballs and to add egg noodles into the soup to replace the wonton wrappers.  Not having to …

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