Snack Series: Zucchini Butter

Though I would be the last person to talk smack about a good zucchini bread recipe, when it gets to be that time of year where garden-growing friends are trying to foist off watermelon-sized summer squash on all their acquaintances, it’s only a matter of time before all the sugary, oily overhead costs of endless loaves of zucchini bread start to, uh, weigh me down. Sometimes I need a little savory counterpoint. That was my mindset when I came across this zucchini butter recipe on one of my favorite food websites.

This is a great recipe not only because it’s delicious but also because it’s versatile, makes great use of large quantities of zucchini, and requires little more than the vegetable itself to make something spectacular. It’s nice and smooth and garlicky – if you want it to be – and goes well with a variety of flavors. Continue reading “Snack Series: Zucchini Butter”

Marinara Sauce & A Spanakopita-Inspired Pizza

More often than not, when I go to make a recipe that I’m excited to share on this site, I end up leaving out a major ingredient or burning something or taking pictures that I think are good at the time but then look like a Pinterest fail to me later. For example, I was going to finally post the hummus recipe that I’ve been in love with for several months, but I must have been distracted when I made it last weekend because I left out one of the liquid ingredients, and the end result, while tasting delicious, looked a bit more like wood putty than something you’d want to spread on crackers.

Fortunately, my failed plans tend to be counterbalanced by unexpected successes that keep my enthusiasm alive. Case in point: spanakopita-inspired pizza.

Continue reading “Marinara Sauce & A Spanakopita-Inspired Pizza”

Mexican Black Beans

Every time I eat beans, I ask myself why I don’t eat them more often. For such a humble and inexpensive food, they’re surprisingly delicious, healthy, and substantial. They come in enough varieties and are used in enough world cuisines that I could eat them for a long time and not get bored. So if you, like me, are resolving to eat more beans this year, here is a great preparation to add to your repertoire.

These Mexican black beans are fantastic over Mexican rice, plain rice, on their own, or as a side. They’re nice and toasty from all the cumin and fresh from the cilantro and lime. You can keep this dish really easy and fast by using canned beans or you can make it cheap and folate-rich by using dried beans. These aren’t too shabby topped with shredded cheese either. Continue reading “Mexican Black Beans”

Creamy Pesto Pasta with Zucchini

One day, I made cilantro pesto as I am wont to do when I have extra cilantro and Parmesan cheese on hand.  Then I realized that I also had leftover cream cheese.  And there was much rejoicing.

This pasta concoction turned out to be one of my happy let’s-throw-several-yummy-things-together-and-see-what-happens success stories.  The first time I made it, I used spaghetti noodles, and the second time, I used whole wheat rotini.  I enjoyed it thoroughly both times, so you can really use any pasta that suits your fancy.  The flavors are bold enough that they stand up well to whole wheat, though, and I appreciate the wholesome heartiness. Continue reading “Creamy Pesto Pasta with Zucchini”

My Friend, Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a friend that I once took for granted.  It has always been there for me, but not until recently did I show it the appreciation it deserves.  If you, too, have been neglectful toward this noble condiment, simply using it as a last resort, I-only-have-thirty-seconds-to-make-lunch ingredient, I hope these two recipes will inspire you to spend a little more quality time with this valiant kitchen staple. Continue reading “My Friend, Peanut Butter”