Watermelon and Peach Salsa #FoodNetwork

watermelon salad with peaches, cucumbers, and lime.

  It's roundup day for the Food Network's blog, FN Dish, and the theme is watermelon. I confess I wasn't a lover of watermelon until the last couple of years. When I was kid I could never understand what the fuss was all about. It was messy, full of huge black seeds, and not sweet enough for me. Times change, so do our taste buds. Now we have seedless watermelons at our fingertips, and they're plenty sweet for me now. All summer long, I almost always have watermelon in the refrigerator for ...

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10 Ways to Enjoy Quinoa and Get Healthy This Summer!

10 quinoa dishes for summer from salads, casseroles, and patties to an apple crumble.

  Quinoa is an easy way to healthy up a dish. I keep a stash in the refrigerator and add it to salads, breads, wraps, and crumble toppings for an extra hit of protein and nutrients. Earlier this week, I did a round-up for Parade's Community Table of 10 of my favorite quinoa dishes that I make on a regular basis through the summer. Go check them out and pick at least one to make in the next week! If you're looking for a fool-proof recipe for cooking quinoa, here's my go-to recipe. Feel ...

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Mexican Street Corn Tart #WeekdaySupper

Classic Mexican street corn prepared as a tart in a cheesy tart shell.

Ever have Mexican Street Corn? If you're shaking your head, you've missed out. Street vendors all over Mexico City grill ears of corn and then roll them in a mayonnaise-like sauce mixed with cojita cheese, red onion, jalapeño, lime, and chili spices. To. Die. For. This recipe is a tart version of this fabulous treat, so now you only have to buy a few ingredients instead of flight tickets (although, a trip to Mexico can be a nice little getaway in the middle of winter). Cook's ...

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Gazpacho Shooters #SundaySupper

Gazpacho Shooters

Gazpacho shooters are a perfect way to kick off a summer party. I like to start a summer party with cheese, crackers, hummus, and some grapes or cherries. Just as I put the meat / fish on the grill for the non-vegetarians in the group (which is usually everyone), I bring out a pitcher of gazpacho and little glasses. If the gazpacho is more puree than chunky, guests can drink it right from the glass. But I like my gazpacho a little chunky, so I serve it in a short glass with a spoon.   ...

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19 Ways to Eat Cherries All Day, Every Day

19 Ways to Eat Cherries All Day, Every Day

The cherry season is way too short for me. So while these little beauties are in the markets, we snack on them in the car, add them to salads, purée them into soups, and add to grains dishes. They're full of antioxidants, and are the perfect refreshing treat on a hot summer day. If you're looking for new ways to take full advantage of cherries this summer, go check out my latest post for Parade! I've included breakfast options with chia seeds and muffins, several salads, summer drinks, ...

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Zesty Parmesan Baked Zucchini Sticks

Easy side dish: Baked zucchini sticks coated in Parmesan, flavored breadcrumbs, and herbs.

Easy side dish for Secret Recipe Club: Baked zucchini sticks coated in Parmesan, flavored breadcrumbs, and herbs.   I've moved! Not physically - we're done with that for a while, God knows - but to a new Secret Recipe Club group. Now I have a whole new group of blogs to meet and cook from. And now my Secret Recipe Club posts will be at the beginning of each month, instead of the end. I'm stoked. I love to shake things up in my life every once in a while. A friend told me, in my ...

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Plum Frozen Yogurt with Blackberries & Sage

Plum frozen yogurt with blackberries, honey, and sage.

Plum frozen yogurt with blackberries, honey, and sage - perfect treat on a hot summer day. The first year I got an ice cream maker, I made ice cream every weekend. In truth, I went a little crazy. I experimented with infused custard bases, and added balsamic swirls and chocolate chunks. I tried adding a glug of alcohol at the end for a super-smooth, soft texture, and worked with every fruit I could find. I made rich ice creams, sorbets, and sherbets before simplifying with frozen yogurt. I ...

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Spiralized Shoestring Garlic Truffle Fries with Aioli: #SundaySupper

Shoestring garlic truffle fries

When the kids and grandkids come to visit, potatoes are common ground for us. We may not agree on kale (I still threaten the g-kids with kale smoothies), beef, broccoli or (surprisingly) cheese, but we all love potatoes. And when you have 4 adults and 5 kids sitting together at the dinner table, that’s HUGE. I roast them, bake them, whip them, and hasselback them. It’s all good, but even better with Idaho® potatoes. Listen up: if you think all russets are the same, and it doesn’t matter where ...

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Summertime Cooking with Kids!

parade magazine: cooking with kids

Cooking with kids in the kitchen reaps many rewards for everyone! My newest post published on Parade this week is about getting your kids into the kitchen with you this summer. The benefits are long reaching, and cooking a meal, a snack, or dessert together fosters a wealth of rich memories for everyone. My article lists some of the benefits and offers up 21 recipes to start with. Some are recipes you can turn the kids loose on, some are group projects for a few kids, and a few need some ...

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Spiralized Zucchini: Zucchetti with Garlic, Tomatoes and Asiago Cheese: #WeekdaySupper

zucchetti with tomatoes, garlic, corn, basil, and Asiago cheese

Toss together spiralized zucchini with garlic, basil, tomatoes, corn and Asiago cheese for the perfect weeknight dinner! Summer is officially here and we're spending more time up at the Lake (Tahoe). We wake to clear, sunny skies up there every morning, and it's warm enough to go kayaking at 9am. In summer, there's always something fun going on. Hiking, cycling, swimming, seeing friends, and this year I'm determined to try SUP (stand up paddle boarding). I'm not sure my core is up to it, ...

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Crispy Mexican Black Bean Burgers

crispy black bean burger

Food isn’t only about flavor for me. It’s also texture. And that’s why I’ve never been a huge fan of black bean burgers. A burger shouldn’t have the texture of mashed potatoes. Know what I’m saying? And the surface shouldn’t be smooth and soft. Burgers should crumble. The edges should have a little crispy pieces that fall from the patty, fully of intense, savory, burger flavor. And burgers should be juicy – or at least not dry. This bean burger, maybe the 50th I’ve tried now, delivers on ...

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Coconut Shortcakes with Grilled Pineapple: #SundaySupper

coconut shortcakes with grilled pineapple

Summertime BBQs may be my favorite way to entertain. They’re casual and less structured than a winter dinner party, and I’m not constrained by how many chairs I can fit around a table inside our home. Ours is a charming house that’s over 100 years old – which is pretty old in California, but it’s dollhouse small. Luckily we have a large deck off the kitchen that ushers you into the backyard. So when I want to have a lot of people over, summer-time BBQs are the best way to go. Meal planning, ...

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