Bella Bruschetta

Broo-sket-tah, Italian for fabulous appetizer, is my go to dish for dinner parties and potlucks.  It requires minimal effort and you can bring something dazzling, flavorful, and healthy to the table.  A small batch of bruschetta goes a long way.  I made a small dish and it served 5, easily.

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Consuming tomatoes provides an array of benefits to your health, including reducing bad cholesterol, improving skin, making stronger bones, fighting cancer, regulating blood sugar, making hair shinier and stronger, and preventing kidney stones and gallstones.  To avoid using white bread, I served bruschetta with whole grain wheat toast for a healthier take on the traditional recipe.

In terms of taste, they say the uglier the tomato, the tastier it is.  Here, I used 10 ounces of mini heirloom tomatoes from Trader Joe’s.

Recipe after the jump!

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Smoked Salmon Mango Salad with Mustard Dressing

If you’re looking for a new recipe for smoked salmon, this mango salad is a satisfying and fresh plate.  It’s also low carb.  Yay!

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Recipe after the jump!

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Tomato Basil Seared Scallops

I cooked scallops for the first time last night.  I was nervous about cooking to the perfect “done-ness” but the process proved to be pretty fail proof.   This recipe was also improvised and I love how it turned out!  The tomatoes, basil, and rosemary add so much flavor but the dish isn’t drenched or submerged in a stew, allowing  you to appreciate the taste and texture of the scallops on their own.

IMG_1293Recipe after the jump! 🙂

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All You Need for Peanut Sauce: Peanut Butter, Hoisin Sauce, and Water

Most recipes for peanut sauce for satay or dipping sauce for spring rolls call for a handful of ingredients.  The big secret is that you only need 3 ingredients!

Chunky Peanut Butter + Hoisin Sauce + Water, that’s it!  More specifically, you need 3 parts peanut butter to 1 part hoisin sauce.  Add water to yield desired consistency.  Microwave for 15 seconds to help the sauce mix.  Mix slowly with a spoon or whisk.  Add 1 tablespoon of water at a time, mix, then add more water if the sauce is still too thick.  Garnish with fresh chopped peanuts.

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Recipe after the jump for chicken thighs.

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Oysters Magic Sauce

Oysters don’t have to be reserved for a special occasion or only enjoyed in a fine restaurant.  They’re quite easy to prepare at home whether served raw or cooked.  I’d also like to share with you a delectable, magical, fantastical sauce made from Hog Island’s hogwash recipe and my own little sumthin sumtthin on top.  This preparation is absolutely the best way I’ve had oysters.
IMG_1236Recipe and how to shuck video after the jump.  I hope I’ve demystified making oysters at home for some 🙂

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Garlic Butter Cornish Game Hens

If you haven’t roasted a whole bird before, I would highly recommend starting with cornish game hens.  They’re quite small, only about 16 oz. each, they cost about the same price as cut chicken breasts, and they make a beautiful presentation.  Cook time is a little under an hour but it looks like you worked on these all day. 1 cornish game hen  per person is just right.  Here, I served with steamed chinese broccoli for a simple, yet elegant plate.

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Recipe after the jump 🙂 Continue reading

The Best Whipped Butter Spread, Ever

In my opinion, whipped butter is the best thing to come along since sliced bread.  I came up with this super simple recipe to serve whipped butter with dinner rolls for Thanksgiving dinner.  Roasted garlic also is amazing when spread on bread, why not have it all?  Add in some chopped fresh herbs and you have a sinfully savory spread.

Roasting garlic in the oven takes about an hour.  You can roast the garlic the day before and finish in about 5 minutes the day you want to serve.

I find that removing the garlic bulb skin before roasting is a lot easier than cutting the bulb in half and wrapping the cloves with the skin in aluminum foil.  It’s a little extra work in the beginning but once the bulbs are roasted, they can just get dumped into a food processor.

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