Blogs, Recipes

Zucchini Salad with Honey Orange Dressing

Light, Fresh & Easy! I swear that could be a song title! LOL!!

This zucchini noodle spaghetti salad is tossed in a homemade honey orange dressing and loaded with flavor! Perfect for summer cookouts, or a light lunch! 

If you haven’t spiralized zucchini yet, you’ve got to. In addition to it being a fun thing to do, the noodle shape somehow transforms raw zucchini into something absolutely delicious. 

If you do have a vegetable spiralizer, great. If not no worries. I didn’t use one, just cut the zucchini into long strips. You can even buy zucchini already spiralized at some grocery stores. 

When I was first preparing this dish, I thought I would saute the zucchini noodles in the sauce. But as I tossed the noodles in the sauce and tasted it, I decided this would be delicious as a cold salad with the tangy fish I was planning to serve as the main dish. So my point being, this dish can be served hot or cold. Totally up to you!

In a few steps, you have yourself a delicious side dish or even a lunch!

Ingredients

  • 2 zucchini 
  • 2 garlic cloves, minces
  • 2 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • ¼ cup Light Soy Sauce
  • 2 teaspoon White Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon Honey
    1 tablespoon Orange Marmalade 
  • 1 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • Salt and Pepper to taste.

Instructions

Cut zucchini into long strips like noodles.

Whisk the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.

Toss zucchini noodles in sauce and let sit in the refrigerator for at least ten minutes.

Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve.

Blogs, Recipes

Grouper Piccata

Living in Florida has many benefits, sunny days, beautiful beaches, and it also comes with the benefits of AMAZING fresh fish. 

I was lucky enough to grab some grouper fillets from my local fish market but you can also score some at your store’s frozen section. If you are unable to find grouper fillets, you can use snapper, cod, catfish or even chicken. 

This sauce highlights the fish without taking over. In this recipe, I use a simple piccata sauce with lemon and capers to create an easy meal that everyone will love! Oh, and this is a one pan dish! Hello easy clean up! 🙂

I’m not usually a Chardonnay fan but since I received a bottle of Scout & Cellar Fiddleneck Chardonnay I thought I’d give it a try. I am now a Chardonnay fan! The Fiddleneck Chardonnay is the perfect pairing to this recipe! It’s not oaky like most Chardonnays I have tried in the past. It’s light and refreshing with notes of yellow apple, candied lemon peel, and ripe pineapple. It truly is delicious with the buttery lemon flavor of the grouper piccata! 

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 6-ounce grouper fillets
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

INSTRUCTIONS

Sprinkle grouper fillets with salt and pepper. 

Dredge fillets on all sides in flour. 

Melt 2 tablespoons butter and olive oil in a large skillet. 

Add fillets to skillet; cook until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes on each side. Remove fish from skillet.

Add garlic, lemon juice and wine to the skillet, scraping browned bits from the pan. Add the chicken broth and stir to combine. 

Cook for 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. 

Tip: if the sauce is too bitter, just add ¼ cup of chicken broth at a time. 

Remove from heat; stir in remaining 1 tablespoon butter, capers and parsley.

Serve sauce over fish.

I served mine with a side of angel hair pasta and baby broccoli.

Recipes

Everything Bagel Cloud Eggs

I love when my friends text me pictures of the food they have made! This morning, my friend Adam texted Brian and I a picture of his breakfast and in his words, “Cloud Eggs. Holy ****! Delicious.”

Since I was trying to decide what I should eat for breakfast, I decided to give it a try and Adam was right, DELICIOUS!

Cloud Eggs are egg whites whipped to stiff peaks, seasoning folded in, formed into nests, baked with yolk in the center and covered with shredded cheese. 

All you need are 3 ingredients—egg, seasoning of your choice, and cheese. Per Adam’s recommendation, I used Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel seasoning! 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. 

Separate the egg yolks from the whites. Make sure there are no little pieces of egg yolk in the whites or you will have difficulty getting the whites to beat properly. I find it is easiest to crack the whole egg into a bowl and then using your hand, pull the yolk out and place in a separate bowl. 

Place the egg whites in a mixing bowl. Beat the egg whites with a whisk attachment in a mixer (or using a hand mixer), starting on low speed and then slowly increasing to high speed, until stiff peaks form.

Gently fold in the seasoning, making sure not to deflate the peaks. 

Spoon two mounds of the egg white mixture on the lined baking sheet. Form the mounds so they look like nests, using the back of a spoon create an indent in the middle of the mound. Carefully, pour the yolk into the center of the indent and sprinkle shredded cheese on top. 

Bake for 7 minutes. 

INGREDIENTS (per serving)

  • ¼ teaspoon seasoning of your choice
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 yolks
  • 1 tablespoon cheddar cheese, shredded

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Separate egg whites from egg yolks
  3. Whips the egg whites until stiff peaks form
  4. Gently fold in the seasonings of your choice
  5. Spoon one portion of the egg whites onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. 
  6. Use the back of the spoon to create an indent in the middle of the egg white “cloud”. 
  7. Repeat for additional servings. 
  8. Gently place an egg yolk into each egg white “cloud” indentation. 
  9. Sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese. 
  10. Bake for 7 minutes.

Please comment, if you tried a different seasoning. The possibilities are endless!

Recipes

Kona Coffee Crusted Steak

My friend, Amy travels for work so when she texted me that she just ate one of the best meals of her life and wanted me to learn how to recreate it, I felt like I had to accept the challenge. 

This steak recipe will have you licking your plate and asking for more! 

The coffee rub is quick and easy to whip up. You may be thinking, “Really? Coffee on steak??” YES! It gives the steak such a rich, bold flavor. After trying this coffee crusted steak rub you will likely want to keep a jar of it in your cabinet at all times. 

First, you’ll need to choose the coffee, I personally love to use Kona Vanilla Macadamia Nut. It gives the steak a slightly sweet but savory flavor. But you can choose any coffee! 

Whisk in a bowl: the coffee, granulated garlic, ground black pepper, grated parmesan cheese, salt and dry mustard powder. 

Here’s a tip I learned, it is best to take the steaks out of the fridge about half an hour before you plan to cook them. Why? In the words of Food Network’s Bobby Flay “freezing-cold steak won’t cook evenly!”

Remove the wrapping from the steak, roll the steak in the coffee rub pressing to create a crust. Place on a plate and let the steak come up to room temperature on the kitchen counter while you make the Shallot butter. 

I love making different types of butter so when I saw this recipe called for a Shallot butter, I was super excited. You will need to allow 2 sticks of butter to soften to room temperature. While the 2 sticks are getting to room temperature, take 2 additional tablespoons of butter and melt, I usually use a coffee mug in the microwave for 30 seconds. 

Warm a sauté pan over high heat, slowly pour in the melted butter, and heat for about two minutes, this is called the smoke point. Add the sliced shallots and caramelize for two minutes, seasoning with salt. Continue to caramelize as shallots start to brown, add the garlic and sauté for one minute. As the shallots and garlic start to brown deglaze with white wine and lemon juice. Once the mixture starts to boil, take off the heat and let cook for one minute. Place the two softened butter sticks into a bowl, pour the shallot mixture on top and whip together. 

I fell in love with this butter and keep a small amount in my fridge at all times. I use it for almost anything from scrambled eggs, sauteing vegetables to pasta dishes. 

Preheat the grill. 

Place the steak at the hottest part of the grate, and let it sear for two to three minutes, then flip the steak and sear the other side for two to three minutes. If you try to lift the meat before it’s ready, it’ll stick to the grates. 

After the steak is seared on both sides, use tongs and move it to the warm side of the grate (not directly over the coals), brush with Shallot butter. Close the lid and continue to cook the steak until it’s at your desired temperature. Here’s another tip, do not stab them with a fork, or press down on them with a spatula, this will release their flavorful juices into the flames below. Just let them cook until your desired temperature. I like to use a digital instant-read meat thermometer to check the temperature of the steak while it’s still on the grill. 

130°F for rare, 135°F medium-rare, 145°F medium, 150°F medium well and 160°F for well done.

Keep in mind that the steak will continue to cook a few degrees more when it’s removed from the grill.

Using the tongs, remove the steak from the grill, place on a cutting board, and brush with the Shallot butter, loosely cover it with aluminum foil, and allow it to “rest” for five minutes (the temperature will continue to rise a few degrees).

After 5 minutes, brush Shallot butter onto a plate, place the steak on top and serve. 

I served my steak with a twice baked potato and garlic wilted spinach. Yum! It was the perfect steak night meal! I included the garlic wilted spinach recipe below. 

INGREDIENTS 

  • 2 6 oz filet mignon steaks, trimmed of fat

Coffee Rub:

  • 1 tablespoon coffee, grounded                         
  • 1 tablespoon granulated garlic                                       
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper    
  • 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ tablespoon seasoning salt                                           
  • ½ tablespoon dry mustard powder

Caramelized Shallot Butter: 

  • 2 sticks butter, room temperature                                      
  • 1 cup shallot, sliced 1/8 inch thick
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced                     
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted                                         
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt                                                
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper                             
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice     
  • 2 tablespoons white wine                                                

Warm a saute pan over  high heat. Add the melted butter, heat to the smoke point, and add the shallots.

Caramelize the shallots for two minutes and season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Continue to caramelize the shallots, add the garlic and deglaze with 2 tablespoons of white wine and ½ teaspoon of lemon juice. Bring to a boil and remove from the heat for one minute.

Combine shallot garlic mixture and softened butter in a mixing bowl and whip to combine. 

Roll the sirloin in the coffee rub pressing upon rub to create a “crust”. 

Grill the steak to the desired temperature being careful not to burn the crust. Brush the sirloin with the butter and allow the sirloin to “rest” for 5 minutes. 

Brush Shallot butter onto a plate, place the steak on top and serve. 

Inspired by Capital Grille Recipe.

Garlic Wilted Spinach

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb baby spinach 
  • Salt & pepper to taste 

DIRECTIONS 

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add oil and garlic. Saute garlic in oil for 2 or 3 minutes. Add spinach to the pan in stages. Fill the pan with leaves and turn leaves in warm oil until they wilt. Add more spinach to the skillet and repeat the process until all of the spinach is incorporated. Season the wilted spinach with salt and pepper, then serve.

Recipes

Slow Cooker Ranch Chicken Tacos

This recipe was very popular a few years ago on Pinterest. It’s definitely become one of my go to recipes when I know it is going to be a long day at work and want something easy for dinner!

These Slow Cooker Ranch Chicken Tacos are ridiculously easy and sure to become your go-to lifesaver dinner! The chicken turns out super moist and flavorful every time.

Add chicken breasts, salsa, and a Ranch seasoning packet into your slow cooker. And let the slow cooker do all of the work. Before serving shred the chicken, serve it on a tortilla with all your favorite toppings! For my tacos, I add a Cilantro Lime sauce and fresh Pico de Gallo, I included the recipes for each!

RANCH CHICKEN TACOS INGREDIENTS

  • 4 skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) chunky tomato salsa
  • 1 packet Ranch Seasoning and Salad Dressing Mix

RANCH CHICKEN TACOS DIRECTIONS

Pour salsa mixture over chicken and turn chicken to coat.

Cover with a lid and cook on HIGH for 2.5 to 3 hours, or on LOW for 4 to 4.5 hours.

Transfer chicken to a cutting board and shred with two forks.

Stir the chicken back into the slow cooker; evenly divide chicken over warm tortillas and garnish with your favorite toppings.

Serve.

FRESH PICO DE GALLO INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • I clove garlic, minced 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

CILANTRO LIME SAUCE INGREDIENTS

  • 1 small bunch cilantro 
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 1  medium avocado 
  • 2 tbsp water

RANCH CHICKEN TACOS DIRECTIONS 

Pour salsa mixture over chicken and turn chicken to coat.

Cover with a lid and cook on HIGH for 2.5 to 3 hours, or on LOW for 4 to 4.5 hours.

Transfer chicken to a cutting board and shred with two forks.

Stir the chicken back into the slow cooker; evenly divide chicken over warm tortillas and garnish with your favorite toppings.

Serve.

FRESH PICO DE GALLO DIRECTIONS

Stir all ingredients together in a bowl.

CILANTRO LIME SAUCE DIRECTIONS

Combine all ingredients in a food processor/blender and blend until smooth.

Recipes

Cheesy Popovers

I totally have a recipe bucket list, I mean, shouldn’t everyone? 🤣

I have always wanted to make popovers. So, I decided to try my hand at making them and I’m so mad I haven’t made them before. 

They are easy to make and delicious! 

You may be asking yourself, what is a popover?

They are like a muffin but light, airy, and crispy around the edges. In this recipe, they pull apart to a buttery cheesy magical pastry.

The name comes from literally “popping over” the sides of the pan and are baked in a hot oven until they “pop” up. They are a simple side item for a weeknight meal or holiday entertaining.

You may have heard that popovers are usually made in a special pan. Good news – you can use a regular muffin pan and they work just as well.

If you use a muffin pan, you may want to skip every other opening just in case they “pop” over onto each other.

Guess what? No mixer or blender is required. Just one bowl, a whisk and a rubber spatula is all you need.

You can get pretty creative with popovers! In the recipe below, I used Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese, but you can use any cheese combination you like and then add your favorite seasoning, instead of garlic powder and cayenne in the recipe below. Or, switch it up completely, and make them sweet for a dessert by using sugar and cinnamon. The possibilities are endless! Get creative! 

Ingredients 

  • 12 cup muffin pan or popover pan 
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder 
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan 
  • 4 tablespoons minced chives
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or smoked paprika

Directions

1.    Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

2.    In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and melted butter until combined. Whisk in the flour and salt and then fold in the cheeses and chives until even. Cover the batter and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

3.    Put a muffin pan on the middle rack in the oven to warm for 10 minutes.

4.    Remove muffin pan from oven (careful, hot!) and pour the batter into the cups of the hot pan, filling almost to the top – make sure they are almost to the top.

5.    Lightly sprinkle with the cayenne or smoked paprika (a very small amount of cayenne). Bake the popovers until crisp and golden, about 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven.

6.    Take each out of the pan, place on a wire rack, and pierce with a small paring knife to let steam escape. Serve hot.