The Organic Kitchen ‘House Salad’ ~ The Salad that Goes Well with Any Main Course!

 

I post a lot of salads on my website and have even taught you The Secrets of Making an Amazing Salad, so you know that some of my salads are simple, and some are fancy, but all are delicious! This one happens to be a simple salad, a staple really: The Organic Kitchen House Salad. Delicious served with just about any main course I can think of!

The Organic Kitchen "House Salad". The salad that goes well with any main course!

 

Assorted baby greens, apple, gorgonzola or feta, caramelized nuts and a beautiful rich Balsamic vinaigrette.

Caramelized nuts are a fancy and delicious option, but using plain raw pecans, walnuts or cashews is great too. If you would like to see my tutorial on How To Caramelize Nuts click!

The Organic Kitchen "House Salad". The salad that goes well with any main course!

 

THE RECIPE: The Organic Kitchen House Salad

You will need a quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar. With so few ingredients I recommend using the best ingredients! And if you want to shake it up so you don’t get bored I love this organic flavored balsamic vinegar pack, raspberry, pear, pomegranate and fig! Just follow the recipe below but use a fruit infused balsamic instead of plain.

5.0 from 1 reviews
The Organic Kitchen 'House Salad'
 
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A delicious and simple salad that goes well with any main course!
Author:
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • Salad:
  • 1 - 5 oz bag baby greens
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, thinly sliced
  • Caramelized pecans (see link above)
  • Crumbled Gorgonzola, to taste (if you prefer milder cheese use soft crumbled goat cheese)
  • Dressing:
  • 1 T chopped green onions
  • ½ cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • pinch sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Salad:
  2. Place all ingredients on a platter and dress. Toss.
  3. Dressing:
  4. Combine ingredients, whisk till blended well, drizzle over salad and toss. Extra dressing can be saved for two weeks.

 

The dishes in this post are from my favorite store,  Shop Anthropologie!

The Organic Kitchen "House Salad". The salad that goes well with any main course!

MAY I PLEASE ASK A LITTLE FAVOR?

Disclosure: We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! Also, if you make any purchases using Amazon I would love it if you would use the affiliate links on this page (highlighted in this post or the Amazon banner in right sidebar). Your cost remains the same but I receive a small commission that helps keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support! ~ Linda Spiker

Pasta with Mint Pea Sauce and Heirloom Tomatoes ~ My Favorite Restaurants Series Part 3

 

Can you keep a secret? I am going to tell you something but you can’t say anything to anyone, promise?  Robert Redford is my neighbor! Keep it under your hat. To be honest, Mr. Redford and I have never met, but he lives very nearby our little cabin at The Sundance Mountain Resort. I am sure one day we will meet and he will ask me for my autograph and a selfie, but until then he will just have to dream about it.

In 1969 Robert (yes we are on a first name basis now) bought the land now known as Sundance and named it after the character he played in the movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Of course Sundance is a ski resort but it’s also an arts community, home to the Sundance Film Festival and host to plays and a summer concert series in the outdoor amphitheater. You can read more about the history of the Sundance community here.

My husband and I love the time we spend on this mountain. As you may or may not know we are empty nesters now. After 30 years of raising a slew of kids we can actually do what we want when we want. So what do we do now that we are finally kid free? We go visit the kids of course! Luckily several of our children (and grandchildren) live in the beautiful state of Utah. So we travel up from California about once a month to spend a few days at The Sundance Resort riding bikes along the Provo river, hiking to waterfalls and just relaxing and enjoying the beautiful mountains.


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Sundance is always picturesque but fall is definitely our favorite time of year to visit. This is what the mountains look like as I type. Pretty unbelievable right?  If you can make a trip to Sundance, I highly recommend it! (Photo courtesy of Sundance Mountain Resort Website)

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Of course when we travel we like to eat out and of two of our favorite dining spots are found right on the mountain, The Foundry Grill and The Tree Room. At Sundance Mountain Resort, dining is considered an art form. Executive Chef David Mullen uses fresh ingredients and locally sourced organic produce because he believes it simply tastes better. This philosophy is integrated into all the Sundance Mountain Resort dining venues. My husband and I love the ambiance and the welcoming staff as much as we enjoy the incredible seasonal food.

Foundry Grill

And speaking of incredible seasonal food, The Foundry Grill is sharing one of their mouthwatering dishes with The Organic Kitchen today! With fresh, colorful ingredients like this you know it’s going to be amazing…

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This is The Foundry Grill’s Pasta with Fresh Mint Pea Sauce and Heirloom Tomatoes. This chilled pasta only takes minutes to prepare. I spent 15 minutes making it, a half an hour photographing it and about 30 seconds eating it. Have I mentioned I love my job?

Three simple ingredients are used in the fresh mint pea sauce: blanched peas, mint leaves and broth. Just toss with pasta, top with more blanched peas, parmesan cheese, heirloom tomatoes and peas shoots…that’s it! A fresh, light pasta dish with just a hint of mint! I picked this mint straight from my herb garden.

Pasta with Peas and Mint

The Recipe: Pasta with Mint Pea Sauce and Heirloom Tomatoes

You will need: pea shoots (if you can’t find them see if your market carries microgreens, they make a fine substitute), a microplane for grating Parmesan, broth (preferably homemade, my recipe here)  and a good quality blender. I use Blentec. If a new Blendtec isn’t in the budget you may wish to consider a Blendtec Classic Factory Recertified Blender for about half the price of new! (affiliate links)

Blendtec Blenders

5.0 from 3 reviews
Pasta with Mint Pea Sauce ~ My Favorite Restaurants Series Part 3
 
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This light and refreshing pasta is truly unique, takes minutes to make and is a real eye pleaser!
Author:
Recipe type: Light Pasta Main Course
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 4 cups Pasta (cooked to package instructions, do not overcook!)
  • 3 cups fresh peas,divided and blanched (if out of season use frozen)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth (I used my chicken broth and it was delicious too)
  • 6 mint leaves
  • 2 cups heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 cups parmesan cheese freshly grated
  • ½ cup pea shoots
  • Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Place a small pot with a few inches of water on high heat, bring to boil.
  2. Pour fresh peas into pot and allow peas to boil for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Pour peas into colander and rinse with cold water.
  4. Place 2 cups peas (reserve the rest for later) 1 cup broth, a generous pinch of sea salt, a few turns fresh pepper and mint leaves in blender.
  5. Blend till smooth. Pour into a small bowl, cover and place in fridge to chill.
  6. Cook pasta according to package instructions.
  7. When al dente (to the tooth!) strain in colander and rinse well with cold water.
  8. Toss pasta with chilled pea sauce, you may not need all of it.
  9. Place 1 cup pasta on each plate,.
  10. Sprinkle with a bit of sea salt and pepper.
  11. Add a ¼ cup blanched peas to each plate, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
  12. Place heirloom tomatoes around the edges of pasta and top with pea shoots!
  13. Serve cold. Enjoy.

 

I hope you love this recipe as much as I do! I also hope you have a chance to visit the spectacular Sundance Resort! You can hang out with me and Bobby, yes we are on a nickname basis now :) ~ Linda Spiker

The dishes and accessories in this post are from my favorite store, Shop Anthropologie!

Pasta with Mint Pea Sauce

 

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Disclosure: We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! Also, if you make any purchases using Amazon I would love it if you would use the affiliate links on this page (highlighted in this post or the Amazon banner in right sidebar). Your cost remains the same but I receive a small commission that helps keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support! ~ Linda Spiker

The Best Ever Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze

 

I have to say lemon is one of my favorite summer flavors! If you still haven’t tried my recipe for The Best Ever Lemon Cake you have been missing out. I use a variation on that recipe for these gorgeous little cupcakes…

The Best Lemon Cupcakes from The Organic Kitchen

 

…moist and dense and just like My Best Ever Lemon Cake they have a secret ingredient that makes them that way! But this time it’s not butternut squash

The Best Ever Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze

Notice the shredded zucchini? That is the secret ingredient and zucchini still in season! Using grated squash is a great way to make a cake ‘melt in your mouth delicious’. But don’t worry, the cupcakes don’t taste like zucchini, in fact they are intensely lemony thanks to lemon zest and juice. No artificial colors or flavors like you find in those boxed cake mixes on the grocery shelves!

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To decorate these little beauties I used a darling cupcake kit from Meri Meri which comes with 48 cupcake papers and cupcake toppers. You can browse through all of them here, or take a look at a few of my favorites… fairies, little garden, Peter Rabbit, flowers, brave knights, doggies, princesses , pirates and these truck cupcake kits! Meri Meri even makes Christmas, wedding/bridal shower and Halloween kits! And trust me there’s so many more…and each one is cuter than the next!

Best Ever Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze

 

THE RECIPE: THE BEST EVER LEMON CUPCAKES

You will need: a microplane to zest lemons, a food processor or box grater to grate zucchini, cupcake tins, a mixer, vanilla paste (I use Neilsen Massey! Get 4oz here, or 36 oz here).

5.0 from 3 reviews
The Best Ever Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze
 
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Moist dense lemon cupcakes with a fresh lemony glaze! Be sure not to make the glaze too thin...I will over emphasize that many times below:)
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 20
Ingredients
  • Cupcakes:
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup (one stick) soft butter
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 1½ cups granulated white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 T distilled white vinegar
  • 2 tsp vanilla paste
  • juice of one lemon
  • zest of two lemons
  • ¾ cup cultured buttermilk
  • 1½ cups grated zucchini
  • Glaze***
  • 2½ cups powdered sugar
  • juice of 2-3 lemons
  • zest of one lemon
Instructions
  1. Cupcakes:
  2. Preheat oven to 325 and place rack in lower third of oven. Place cupcake papers on cupcake tin, set aside.
  3. Grate zucchini, set aside
  4. Place flour baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  5. Place butter, coconut oil and sugar in mixer and mix on medium for two minutes.
  6. Add eggs one at a time and mix till well incorporated.
  7. Add vinegar, vanilla paste, lemon zest and lemon juice.
  8. Then alternate adding dry ingredients and buttermilk. Mix till well combined.
  9. Add zucchini and mix for 30 seconds.
  10. The batter will be very thick, spoon into cupcake papers till almost full. Bake for 22-24 minutes till cakes spring back from touch. When cool drizzle with glaze.
  11. Glaze instructions:
  12. Mix powdered sugar with lemon juice, adding only a little juice at a time. We want the glaze to be really thick, really really thick, like honey, barely pourable. Sorry to repeat myself but everyone makes it too runny the first time and it runs off the cupcakes...don't be that person! When the glaze is a nice thick consistency add lemon zest and stir. When cupcakes are cool spoon glaze onto cupcakes and swirl around till the glaze barely meets the edges. If you blow it and add too much lemon juice, just add more powdered sugar...not that I think you will blow it, I have complete confidence in you. You got this!

 

This cute little cupcake stand is from my favorite store,  Shop Anthropologie!Lemon Zucchini Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze


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Disclosure: We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! Also, if you make any purchases using Amazon I would love it if you would use the affiliate links on this page (highlighted in this post or the Amazon banner in right sidebar). Your cost remains the same but I receive a small commission that helps keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support! ~ Linda Spiker

 

Vegetable Fettuccine with Heirloom Tomatoes, Zoodles and Avocado

 

You may have noticed that this Vegetable Fettuccine looks insanely good….

Vegetable Fettuccine From The Organic Kitchen

 


…and you may have noticed the colorful seasonal vegetables, al dente pasta, and fresh herbs (all finished on the cooktop by the way)

Vegetable Fettuccine From The Organic Kitchen

what you may not have noticed is that there are zucchini noodles (zoodles) mixed in with the fettuccine. I make them with a spiralizer. Using a spiralizer is a great way to add vegetables to a meal in guise of noodles. Ingenious I tell you! Lots of veggies and your kids will be none the wiser!

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The Recipe: Vegetable Fettuccine with Zoodles and  Avocado

You will need: a spiralizer, a quality sea salt, a good knife, a stock pot and a large pan to ‘finish’ the pasta. (affiliate links)

5.0 from 5 reviews
Vegetable Fettuccine with Zoodles and Avocado
 
Prep time
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A light pasta with seasonal vegetables and herbs.
Author:
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 8 oz Fettuccine (gluten free use your favorite, grain free, I recommend Cappello's)
  • 1½ cups heirloom cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 medium zucchini, made into 'zoodles'
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ear corn, kernels cut off cob
  • ten basil leaves, chiffonade
  • sea salt
  • olive oil (2-3 T)
  • 1-2 avocados diced
  • Toasted Pine Nuts (optional, they are pricey but if they fit the budget I highly recommend them)
Instructions
  1. Prepare all ingredients first.
  2. Bring large stock pot of water to boil. When water is boiling add pasta, cook one minute short of package instructions. We want our pasta al dente.
  3. While pasta boils, add 2 T butter to pan on high heat. When pan and butter are hot add corn kernels. Use a spatula to stir corn, for about four minutes. Add garlic and turn heat to medium / high. Continue stirring for one minute. Add zucchini noodles and basil and tomatoes. Stir. Cook 3-4 minutes, just enough now that the tomatoes are warm and veggies are seared. (Soggy veggies are no bueno)
  4. When pasta is al dente, strain in a colander (do not rinse) and add to pan. Drizzle generously with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and toss with vegetables.
  5. Serve topped with avocado and Pine Nuts (optional)

 

Meatless Mondays never looked so good! Please subscribe. I promise to send out emails once every ten days and they are loaded with amazing recipes like this one!

The dishes in this post are from my favorite store! Shop Anthropologie!   Vegetable Fettuccine with Zoodles from The Organic Kitchen

MAY I PLEASE ASK A LITTLE FAVOR?

Disclosure: We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! Also, if you make any purchases using Amazon I would love it if you would use the affiliate links on this page (highlighted in this post or the Amazon banner in right sidebar). Your cost remains the same but I receive a small commission that helps keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support! ~ Linda Spiker

A Few of My Favorite Things! ~ September 2014

 

 

A Few Of My Favorite Things ~ September 2014

My favorite things from around the World Wide Web in September! As Always we start with…

Food, food, glorious food!

My husband and I the read the book “It Starts with Food” and started the Whole 30 Program in May. It has been nothing short of miraculous for him! Whole 30 is an anti inflammation eating plan, essentially completely eliminating inflammatory foods for 30 days. The hope is after 30 days you will feel so great you decide to continue with these good habits for the long haul. My husband lost 23 lbs and and the inflammation in his knee disappeared. The limp and pain he has had for 10 years is no longer there and for now he canceled his plans for a knee replacement! Which brings me to this fantastic Collection of Whole 30 Recipes from Honey Ghee and Me! This is a life saver for anyone doing Whole 30. You may recognize a few of my recipes in there!

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If you have an over abundance of cucumbers from your garden or simply want to try making pickles using cucumbers from the grocery store try this recipe for Easy Refrigerator Pickles from Live Simply!

A Few of My favorite Things ~ Sept 2014

And last don’t be fooled by the hype about Gatorade, it’s terrible for you and your child. This article from Food Babe “The Truth About Gatorade and How to Replenish Electrolytes Naturally” is a real eye opener!

Instagram:

A few of my favorite food accounts: Health Starts in The Kitchen, The First Mess, and Bon Appetite Magazine!

Pinterest:

I love Pinterest. Who doesn’t? It’s such a great way to organize recipes, health tips and decorating ideas. So here are a few of my favorites..

Decor: Brass Jones
Gardening and Green Living: Attainable Sustainable
Food: A Bountiful Kitchen

Of course I would love it if you followed The Organic Kitchen!

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Home and Family:

Just a little reminder that children need to be taught how to eat, just like they need to be taught manners, how to talk, and how to do math. Teach your children where food comes from. If they make a connection to their food they are more likely to eat it. So let them choose produce in the grocery, taste samples at the farmers market, help in the kitchen and pull food out of the ground when possible! Teaching your children to eat well sets them up for a happier, healthier life. For a few simple tips to get your child to eat well check out this article from Conveying Awareness.

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Well I hope browsing all these fantastic sites inspires you! I know it does me! September was a terrific month on the web, I am excited to see what August brings!


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Disclosure: We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! Also, if you make any purchases using Amazon I would love it if you would use the affiliate links on this page (highlighted in this post or the Amazon banner in right sidebar). Your cost remains the same but I receive a small commission that helps keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support! ~ Linda Spiker