Corn and Farro Salad with Spiced Chick Peas

IT. IS. HOT. I know. It’s late July, this shouldn’t come as a shock to me, but somehow I am still surprised. The upside to this heat is that summer corn in everywhere! So I say let’s throw some in a salad. This beautiful Corn and Farro Salad with Spiced Chick Peas from Sun Basket is a dream served as a light main course or side salad for whatever you’re grilling!
(This post contains affiliate links. I make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Corn and Farro Salad with Spiced Chick Peas

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Now, Let’s Talk About This Salad!

Here is the scoop: Peppery arugula topped with cooked farro, spiced chick peas, roasted hazelnuts, seared corn and salty ricotta salata combine to make a delicious summer salad! If you aren’t familiar with farro, let me make an introduction. Farro is an ancient wheat grain that is high in protein, fiber and nutrients like magnesium and iron. Farro is as easy to cook as rice and has a delicious nutty flavor which works beautifully with the spiced chick peas, sweet corn and salty cheese in this salad. Last and certainly not least, this lovely salad is drizzled in a sherry vinaigrette…so tasty!

Corn and Farro Salad with Spiced Chick Peas

The Recipe: Corn and Farro Salad with Spiced Chick Peas

Tips and what you will need: you will need a small pot to cook farro, a good sea salt (I like to buy the tub and save money!) and a “y” peeler to shave the cheese. If you can’t find farro in your nearby store, you can have it delivered to your door!

Corn and Farro Salad with Roasted Chicken Peas

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 2

Nutty, earthy, chewy, farro has a lot to love. Today it’s regarded as a special treat, but in Ancient Rome, the wheat was a military-issue staple. Here it is  tossed with sweet corn, salty ricotta salata, and paprika-spiced chickpeas for an al fresco-worthy meal.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup semi-perlato farro
  • 1½ ounces hazelnuts
  • 1 to 2 shallots
  • 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (separated)
  • ¾ cup chickpeas
  • 2 ears corn
  • 4 sprigs fresh dill
  • 1/4 teaspoon of each: onion powder - coriander - sweet smoked paprika
  • 2 ounces baby arugula
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 ounce ricotta salata
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Instructions

Cook the farro

Heat the oven to 350ºF

In a pot, combine the farro and 2 cups salted water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain. While the farro cooks, toast the hazelnuts.

Toast the hazelnuts

On a sheet pan, spread the hazelnuts in an even layer. Toast in the oven until lightly browned, 7 to 10 minutes. Let cool, and then coarsely chop. While the hazelnuts toast, prepare the vegetables.

Prep the vegetables

  • Peel and thinly slice the shallot.
  • Rinse the chickpeas.
  • Shuck the corn; lay the ears flat and cut the kernels from the cobs.
  • Coarsely chop the dill.

Cook the chickpeas and corn

In a pan over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil until hot but not smoking. Add the shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chickpeas, onion powder, coriander and smoked paprika and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chickpeas are heated through and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the corn and cook until just warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.

Finish the salad

In a bowl, combine the chickpea-corn mixture, farro, dill, arugula, sherry vinegar, and 2 tablespoons oil. Toss well to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve

Transfer the salad to individual bowls. Using a peeler, shave or crumble the ricotta salata on top. Garnish with the hazelnuts and serve.

 

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Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

Summer and grilling… two of my favorite things! This week we grilled up these Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Naan Pizzas and were they a hit! So fresh, summery, flavorful and delicious, it’s hard to eat only one!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

Grill or Oven? It’s All Good!

While I prefer to make these on the grill (who wants to heat up a kitchen?) I will give you instructions for both the oven and the grill. Each are equally easy and tasty. Look at those sweet peaches and fresh basil…yum!

Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

The Bread and The Toppings:

I start with a delicious store bought naan bread drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with freshly grated parmesan cheese. Then I add a couple slices of prosciutto, burrata cheese, fresh peach slices and walnuts. Burrata cheese is a combination of mozzarella and cream. Dreamy is what it is! Pop pizza on the grill or into the oven and just 6-7 minutes later you have an amazing meal. Garnish with fresh basil and (affiliate link)  balsamic glaze and serve!

Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

That Glaze Though:

I know the balsamic glaze may seem like a small thing, something maybe you could skip, but please DON”T! That balsamic makes all the difference. Balsamic glaze is reduced balsamic vinegar with the consistency of syrup, which is why is stays put where you pour it, and the glaze adds spectacular flavor to this pizza. Sweet and tangy it is the perfect finishing touch drizzled on creamy burrata and warm peaches.

Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

The Recipe: Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

What you’ll need: If you don’t use a grill due to lack or room, let me introduce you the the cool little grill we have! We take this mini grill to the beach and the park. It’s small enough to store easily and fits on apartment balconies with no problem! You will need a microplane for grating parmesan. The balsamic glaze can be found in most grocery stores or you can have it delivered to your door.

3 votes

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Peach, Prosciutto and Burrata Grilled Naan Pizza!

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4

An easy to make, delicious grilled summer pizza! 

Ingredients

4 pieces of naan (a traditional Indian bread)

2 tablespoons olive oil (give or take)

1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan

8 slices prosciutto

4-6 ounces burrata cheese

3 ripe peaches, sliced

1/3 cup raw walnuts pieces

1/3 cups freshly chopped basil

balsamic glaze

Instructions

Preheat grill or oven to 425. If using oven, place oven rack in upper third of oven.

Brush each piece of naan with olive oil, leaving an inch of crust without oil

sprinkle with parmesan

place two pieces of prosciutto on each piece of naan

drop tablespoon size balls of burrata onto pizzas and arrange peach slices however you wish

sprinkle with walnuts

Place naan onto grill and close lid. If using oven, place pizzas directly on rack (you may want to put aluminum foil in bottom of oven just in case cheese melts off pizzas)

Cook for 6-7 minutes or until bread is warm and cheese is melted

Remove, sprinkle with fresh basil and then drizzle generously with balsamic glaze. Eat and give the universe some gratitude for those peaches!

Courses dinner

 

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The Kitchen Makeover That Snowballed into The Living Room…

I know, I am a food blogger not an interior design blogger. But after sharing my Mini Kitchen Makeover that snowballed into a not so mini makeover, I felt I should follow up. That snowball continues to roll three years later, right into the breakfast nook and living room. WHICH in all fairness are connected to the kitchen…which explains that it is not at all my fault this project keeps expanding. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
(This post is sponsored by The Shade Store)

After 15 Years The Gold/Tan Walls Are Gone!

After 15 years of having gold/tan paint on the walls of our house we were ready for a change. We wanted to shift toward the cooler tones that are so popular right now but because the kitchen, breakfast nook and living room are all connected the challenge here was finding a color we loved that still worked with our warm kitchen counter tops. It only took 497,003 trips to the paint store to find the perfect color.

Fifty Shades Of “Greige”

Ok, 497,003 trips might be a little bit of an exaggeration but I did come home with at least 50 shades of ‘greige’ (that’s a combo of gray and beige) and only one hit the nail on the head: Edgecomb Gray by Benjamin Moore. It is the perfect neutral! While most of the grays I tested on the walls fought with the counters, this one did not. And it had that super soft, serene feel that we were looking for. We painted this color in the kitchen, living room, breakfast nook and hallways and couldn’t be happier with the change!

Let’s Talk Window Treatments:

I wanted something casual, functional and understated for the windows. I headed to The Shade Store in Pasadena. They have a fantastic selection of fabrics and are super helpful. They come out to your home to measure the windows, answer all your questions, have a two week turnaround (so fast!) and install for you. I chose a classic Roman shade in a gray Diane Von Furstenberg floral for the living room and an off white woven for the nook. I love them both.

The Art: Always the Biggest Challenge For Me!

Let’s face it, choosing art is difficult, at least for me. The space above my sofa is rather large and the ceilings are ten feet high, so I had to get something that filled the space, worked with the room and the color palette. I searched. For two months I searched. Everything I came home with either didn’t fit the space, didn’t work with the colors or I just plain didn’t love it. Then I emailed my artist friend Jody Hewitt! She is an artist that works with bees wax and pigment to create the most beautiful and interesting pieces! She custom made these four pieces just for my room and I LOVE them. She also has ready to go pieces in her Etsy shop!

The Rug: One of My Favorite Elements of the Room

I am in love with Loloi area rug. It is excellent quality and because it’s a significant purchase I bought it through Monger.com. Monger is a very interesting company. Monger applies 40% of the cost of your purchase toward a student loan of your choice allowing you to pay down your debt while you shop! Yep, get what you want and pay down your debt. Win/win!

I feel like the room came together beautifully. It is comfortable, tranquil and functional. The colors, the window treatments, the art, and the wall color all work so well together and the best part? No more gold!

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.

Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

Hello friends! I have a delicious, probiotic rich Banana Blueberry Kefir Smoothie recipe for you today and a delicious, healthy giveaway! Shanley Farms in Southern California is sharing this beautiful morning smoothie recipe and giving one of my followers an incredible gift box filled with fresh California produce!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

The Smoothie:

This delicious smoothie is made with ‘muddled’ blueberries, frozen bananas, rich creamy kefir, and topped with beautiful, tangy finger lime pearls. I know, you’re thinking ‘what the heck are finger limes?’ That is exactly what I thought. No worries, I am going to give you the scoop…

Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

Let Me Introduce You to The Finger Lime!

Finger limes are small oblong limes that are filled with little pearls of citrus deliciousness! Aren’t they interesting, not to mention beautiful? You can buy finger limes whole or just buy the pearls! And if you are wondering what else you can do with these lovely little limes and pearls, click for more recipes! (like tacos, popsicles and more!)

Smooth, Creamy and Loaded with Belly Pleasing Probiotics:

This smoothie is a bonanza of goodness! Let’s discuss: Kefir is full of belly pleasing probiotics, blueberries are antioxidant and fiber rich, and the finger limes provide much needed vitamin C. So much goodness in one smoothie!

Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

 The Giveaway: Rules and Entry

The winner of this giveaway will receive a box of freshly picked avocados, finger limes, a jar of finger lime pearls, a variety lemons, limes, a decorative dish towel and avocado socks from Shanley Farms. Yep avocado socks! Enter below. To win you must live in the contiguous 48 states (sorry Alaska and Hawaii). The winner will be selected on 7/12/17.

Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

To Enter:

Just follow the prompts below and enter as many times as you like! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Recipe: Banana~Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

Tips and what you will need: You will need  A good blender, I love my Blendtec! You may use fresh or frozen bananas, frozen make the smoothie colder and creamier.

15 votes

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Banana Blueberry Kefir Smoothie

Prep

Total

Yield 4 smoothies

A beautiful, nourishing smoothie made with finger limes!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pint (6 oz.) blueberries
  • 1 quart kefir (drinkable yogurt)
  • 4 bananas ( I like mine frozen so the smoothie is colder)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 6 teaspoon Citriburst pearls ( or 6 finger limes)

Instructions

Muddle blueberries. (Muddle means smash, you can use a fork or potato masher)

Separate evenly into 4 tall glasses (about 1/3 cup per glass)

In a blender combine kefir, bananas, and honey. Whirl until smooth.

Stir in Citriburst pearls.

Pour mixture over muddled blueberries.

Enjoy!

 

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy. 

Egg and Avocado Mash Breakfast Sandwich

Breakfast. Desayuno. Déjeuner. No Matter what language you speak, it means the same thing…you get to wake up and eat! After all, sleep is just a time portal to breakfast. Allow me to introduce you to The Organic Kitchen’s Egg and Avocado Mash Breakfast Sandwich.
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Let’s Get To It!

There is no need for a long explanation here. This recipe is super simple. Scrambled eggs with minced jalapeño and diced tomatoes, served on top of toasted ciabatta slathered in avocado mash. High in protein and healthy fats. If the bread is too much for you, serve in a wrap of your choice instead!

The Recipe: Egg and Avocado Mash Breakfast Sandwich

 

2 votes

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Egg and Avocado Mash Breakfast Sandwich

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 2 sandwiches

A simple, delicious egg sandwich with a little kick!

Ingredients

1 teaspoon minced jalapeño (or less...or more)

1 small roma tomato, diced

1 ripe avocado, mashed

4 eggs

Ciabatta bread, toasted or not (or use a wrap)

sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon butter or ghee

Instructions

Mince jalapeño (see instructions linked above) and dice tomato, set aside

Cut avocado in half, remove seed and scoop out flesh. Mash avocado with a fork, mix in a small pinch of sea salt and pepper if desired

Slice ciabatta bread (toast if desired) and spread with avocado mash, set aside

Crack eggs into a bowl, add a pinch of sea salt and a few turns of black pepper and whisk until combined. Add 1 teaspoon minced jalapeño peppers and tomatoes, whisk gently

Heat a pan on high heat. When pan is hot add butter, use a spatula to spread butter evenly in pan

Pour in egg mixture and cook, stirring frequently until eggs are cooked and scrambled

Place eggs onto ciabatta and serve!

Courses Breakfast

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy. 

How to Peel Garlic Easily!

Garlic is one of those herbs that adds so much flavor and health benefits to food, but many people avoid using this incredible fresh herb because it’s kind of  pain to peel. When I taught cooking classes I ran into a lot of people with very interesting ways of peeling garlic. The most popular was the ‘smash with the knife’ method.  I was taught in cooking school that while this method works, it smashes the heck out of your clove making it difficult to mince or grate properly. So today I am going to share two ways that make peeling garlic a snap while keeping the clove intact!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

How to Peel Garlic Easily!

Two Ways to Peel Garlic: Plan A, No Special Tools Needed

The first method is for the person that thinks ahead…simply soak garlic cloves in warm water. Yep, that’s the big secret. Soaking garlic cloves in a small bowl of warm water makes the peels swell and you can literally slide the skin right off with your knife, or even your fingers. Just plop the cloves into warm water 30 minutes or more before you plan to use them. the earlier the better actually. Easy peasy, but it does require forethought. If you are in a bit more of a hurry, move on to the next easy option.

How to Peel Garlic Easily!

By the way, my cute little bowl is from Anthropologie!
Shop House & Home Top Picks at Anthropologie.com.

Plan B: The Quick Method

If you are not the type of person that thinks ahead or you don’t have time to soak, my next go to is this handy dandy rubber tube that instantly peels garlic! No mess, no fuss and it works every time. It only costs a few bucks and lasts forever. I am not big on kitchen gadgets because I use my knife (an 8″ Wusthof Ikon Chef’s knife) for just about everything, but I LOVE this thing! All you do is place the clove in the center of the tube, press down and roll. The peel comes right off. And it’s easy to clean, just rinse and put away for the next time.

How to Peel Garlic Easily!

So there you have it, no more struggling to peel garlic. I hope I just made your life in the kitchen a little easier. After all, the easier and more convenient something is to do, the more likely you are to do it. Enjoy your new found skill!

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.

Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

I am a huge fan of grilled naan. It’s delicious all by itself, but fill it with a flavorful salad and you have yourself an amazing meal! Greens, leftover roasted or rotisserie chicken, soft goat cheese and fresh peach salsa all drizzled in a champagne vinaigrette and wrapped in warm naan fresh off the grill…your family is going to love these Grilled Naan Chicken and Peach Salad Wraps, and you’ll love them too because they are so simple to make!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

The Salsa:

We start with fresh peach salsa! It’s as simple as dicing fruit and tossing together with herbs, lime juice and some jalapeño peppers. So flavorful and rich in antioxidants. I love it when food not only tastes great but is also good for you! If you need to learn how to handle hot peppers click here.

Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

The Salad:

For these wraps I used a green mix that includes sprouts. I love that extra nutrition and texture. But you can use your favorite greens, whatever they may be. To keep it simple I dice up an organic rotisserie chicken, but if I am lucky enough to have leftover roasted chicken I use that. I add plenty of soft goat cheese, then drizzle it all in a simple champagne vinaigrette and toss!

Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

The Dressing:

So, so simple. Just whisk together a little olive oil, champagne vinegar, honey and a little sea salt and pepper. Drizzle over the greens, chicken, and goat cheese, then toss. Scoop the salad into warm, fresh off the grill naan and top with peach salsa. Swoon. Summer in a wrap!

Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

The Recipe: Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

Tips and what you will need: if you aren’t sure how to handle a hot pepper click here for a tutorial. You can grill the naan on a BBQ or on a grill pan on the cooktop. To make this recipe gluten free, use GF naan or pita!

3 votes

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Chicken and Peach Grilled Naan Salad Wraps!

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4

A simple summer meal made with fresh peach salsa and warm naan straight off the grill!

Ingredients

Peach Salsa:

3 cups fresh peaches, diced

1/4 cup red onion, diced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1-3 teaspoons jalapeño pepper, minced finely (see link above to see how)

2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

sea salt and pepper to taste

Champagne Vinaigrette:

1/3 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil

3 Tablespoons champagne vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

pinch sea salt and a few turns freshly ground black pepper

The Salad:

4 cups fresh salad greens (I used a mix that included sprouts)

4-5 oz soft goat cheese

2 cups diced rotisserie chicken or leftover roasted chicken

fresh peach salsa (recipe above)

6 pieces of naan bread, grilled

Instructions

Salsa Prep:

Dice peaches and chop herbs (to see how to handle a hot chili pepper click link in body of post)

Place everything except jalapeño in a bowl, squeeze with fresh lime juice and add a little sea salt and fresh pepper. Add jalapeño a teaspoon at a time until you are happy with the heat (1 teaspoon is mild, 2 medium, anything more will be heading toward hot!) Stir and set aside. Note: unlike other salsas, peach salsa is best used fairly quickly. I usually make it right before serving, at the very most make it one day ahead or the peaches get soggy.

Salad Dressing Prep:

Place all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk

Salad Prep:

Place greens and chicken on a platter, use fingers to drop small amounts of goat cheese over salad. Toss with desired amount of dressing.

Grilling naan:

If grilling on a BBQ preheat clean grill to 400 degrees. When grill is hot, place naan on grill and cook until grill marks are established, turn bread over and cook until grill marks form on second side. Remove from grill

If grilling in a grill pan on the cooktop, heat pan on high heat, add naan and cook until grill marks are established, turn bread over and cook until grill marks form on second side. Remove from grill.

Plate:

Scoop generous portions of salad into naan, top with peach salsa, fold and eat!

Courses Dinner

 

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.

 

Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes

I have become a bit of a baker. It didn’t used to be my thing, but it is slowly becoming exactly that, my thing! I was always more of a cook than a baker, making meals without a recipe, tossing in whatever I felt like and experimenting. With baking though, you need to be precise, measurements matter, and quite frankly that was annoying to me. But then I discovered that when it comes to baking, as long as you get the base right you can still play with flavors. And that is exactly what I did with these Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes with Orange Zest Glaze!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes  The Cake Batter:

These sweet little cupcakes are made with the same batter as my Blueberry Lime Cake, but I cut the recipe in half and subbed the lime for orange zest. That little experiment turned out 12 of the most lovely cupcakes I have ever eaten. Quite dreamy if I do say so myself!

Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes

How to Zest an Orange:

Use  a microplane to zest citrus, scraping just until the white is exposed and then move onto a new area. There is nothing like the aroma of freshly grated citrus and it adds so much flavor to baked goods!

The Glaze: To quote The Beetles, let it be, let it be…

The glaze for these charming little cakes is as simple as whisking together powdered sugar, orange juice and zest and spooning onto slightly warm cupcakes. Then you just let it melt and go where it goes. You don’t have to make it perfect, in fact I think the imperfections make them perfect! There I go with the free form cooking again. But that’s my advice. Let it be people, let it be.

Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes

The Recipe: Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes

Tips and what you will need: this recipe makes 12 cupcakes, if you need more of course you can double up. Fresh blueberries are preferred but in a pinch you can use frozen (thaw first!) You will need a cupcake tin, cupcake liners, and a microplane for the orange zest. As always I prefer vanilla paste over extract.

2 votes

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Orange Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 12 cupcakes

Beautiful orange blueberry cupcakes with orange zest glaze! I make this recipe with fresh blueberries. When in a pinch you can use frozen, just thaw them first. These cupcakes taste great the day you make them but are also wonderful a day or two later!

Ingredients

The Cake:

  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup soft butter (1stick) room temp 
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil (or baking oil of your choice)
  • zest of half of one large orange (you will use the other half for icing)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
  • 3 eggs, room temp
  • 2/3 cup cultured buttermilk (room temp)
  • 3/4 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed, dried and stems removed (plus a few more for the top of cupcakes)

    The Glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • zest of half a large orange
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice (give or take)

Instructions

Prep:

Preheat oven to 350, place oven rack in center position, place cupcake liners into cupcake pan and spray with organic cooking spray. Set aside

Cake Prep:

Place flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and set aside

Use a microplane to zest orange, scraping the skin of the orange until the white is exposed and then moving to a new area

Use a mixer to beat together butter, sugar, coconut oil and orange zest until smooth

Add vanilla paste or extract, eggs (one at a time) mixing until incorporated

Add buttermilk and flour alternately and mix until smooth

Gently stir in blueberries by hand

Spoon into cupcake liners (3/4 full), tap pan on counter to take out any bubbles

If desired, place 2-3 blueberries on top of batter and press them in a little. This way you will have berries showing on the top of each cupcake

Bake for 25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean

Allow to cool for 10 minutes or so, you'll spoon the glaze on while still warm

Glaze prep:

Whisk together powdered sugar, zest and juice

Glaze should be pretty thick, you'll be spooning it onto warm cupcakes so it will melt a bit and become spreadable. But if needed, add a few more drops of orange juice to thin out.

By the spoonful, spoon glaze onto cupcakes. Use the back of the spoon to spread the icing towards (but not quite to) the edges. Then let the warmth of the cupcake do the rest! Serve when cool. Enjoy.

Courses Dessert

 

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Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes (gluten free option)

Pasta, not gonna lie, I love it! Especially when it’s tossed with loads of fresh vegetables and flavorful herbs and spices. And pasta doesn’t get any prettier than this Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes from Sun Basket!
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes (gluten free option)

Me and Sun Basket….we got a thing going on….

If you aren’t familiar, Sun basket is a meal delivery service that brings fresh, organic ingredients right to your porch and this is why I love it:

  1. Sun Basket saves time~ no going to the store or deciding what to make. Just go online, pick your meals, and everything you need is dropped off at your door!
  2. It saves money~ Less trips to the store means spending less money. Fact! 
  3. Sun Basket teaches you how to cook healthy meals~Each box comes complete with recipe cards, instructions and photos of the finished recipe.
  4. Sun Basket broadens your food horizons~ We all get stuck in a food rut using the same recipes, ingredients, herbs and spices over and over. Sun Basket meals are designed by a talented chef and they offer a different menu every week. No more food boredom! But if you love a meal you can always make it again because you have the recipe card.
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Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes (gluten free option)

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About This Dish:

Al dente Penne pasta tossed with protein packed Moroccan spiced chickpeas, fresh arugula, tomatoes, feta cheese, and Marcona almonds: easy, simple clean eating! And the flavors in this pasta are amazing thanks to traditional Moroccan spices. One of the things I love most about Sun Basket is being introduced to spices and flavor combinations I wouldn’t ordinarily be familiar with. For example in this recipe we use Ras el hanout,  a legendary Moroccan spice blend; meaning “top of the shop,” it traditionally contains a spice merchant’s best goods. Here it subtly perfumes this nourishing summery pasta dish. And the Marcona almonds lend a hint of rosemary and sea salt. perfection!

The Recipe: Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes (gluten free option)

Tips and what you will need: This recipe makes two generous portions. Of course you can double (or triple) the recipe if you are cooking for more. To save time, prepare veggies and herbs while pasta water heats. You will need the Moroccan Spice blend Ras el hanout. If it’s not in the spice aisle of your grocery store you can have it delivered to your door. Marcona almonds are drizzled in olive oil, sea salt and rosemary and can be found at most grocery stores, but again they can be delivered to your door. Gluten free friends, sub with your favorite GF pasta.

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Penne with Moroccan Spiced Chickpeas and Tomatoes

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 2

Al dente Penne pasta tossed with protein packed Moroccan spiced chickpeas, fresh arugula and tomatoes, feta cheese, and Marcona almonds: easy, simple clean eating!  Ras el hanout is a legendary Moroccan spice blend; meaning “top of the shop,” it traditionally contains a spice merchant’s best stuff. Here it subtly perfumes this nourishing summery pasta dish. 

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces penne pasta (about 2 cups) gluten free friends use your favorite brand of pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, separated
  • 5 ounces chickpeas (about 1/2 a cup)
  • 1 to 2 shallots, peeled and sliced
  • 5 ounces cherry tomatoes (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill, roughly chopped
  • 2 ounces Marcona almonds
  • 1/2  teaspoon ras el hanout (a Moraccan spice blend)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 ounces baby arugula (2 large handfuls)
  • 2 ounces feta (1/3 cup)
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt

Instructions

Cook the pasta:

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the penne and cook until just tender but al dente (usually instructions on package are right on) Drain, reserving ½ cup pasta water. Transfer the penne to a bowl, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil, and toss to coat.

While water heats and the penne cooks, prepare the vegetables.

  • Rinse the chickpeas
  • Peel and thinly slice the shallot
  • Cut the cherry tomatoes in half
  • Coarsely chop the dill
  • Coarsely chop the almonds

Cook the chickpeas and shallots, finish the pasta:

In a pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 tablespoon oil until hot but not smoking. Add the chickpeas and shallot. Season with salt and cook, stirring a few times, until the chickpeas are toasted and the shallots are slightly caramelized, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the ras el hanout and garlic powder, cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the penne and reserved pasta water. Stir in the cherry tomatoes, dill, arugula, feta, and sherry vinegar. Cook until the arugula is just wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve:

Transfer the penne to individual bowls. Dollop with the yogurt, garnish with the almonds, and serve.

Courses Main Course

Cuisine Moroccan

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Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (with a Gluten Free Option!)

I am in love with this Kale Chicken Caesar Salad. It’s a complete meal, takes less than 20 minutes to make and it’s healthy: fresh organic greens, high quality protein, and plenty of healthy fats!
(This post is sponsored by Chosen Foods!)

Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (with a Gluten Free Option!)

Why All The Healthy Fats?

The dressing on this Caesar Salad is made with coconut oil mayo from Chosen Foods! Coconut oil is rich in MCTs: medium chain triglycerides… otherwise known as healthy fats! Coconut oil + cage-free organic eggs = rich and creamy mayonnaise. It tastes just like the mayo you grew up with, only healthier! Perfect for sandwiches, pasta salads, creamy salad dressings, and more.

    • Non GMO
    • Gluten-free
    • Made with cage-free, organic eggs
    • No coconut flavor
    • Clean ingredients, crazy good taste!

Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (Egg and Gluten Free Option!)

Get a Bottle of Mayo Free!

Chosen Foods Mayo is available at Kroger locations as well as online at Chosen Foods, and you can BUY ONE, GET ONE FREE right now using the discount code: COCONUTBOGO (case sensitive)

The Dressing:

You can make your own Caesar Salad Dressing very easily, and all you need to do it is a bowl, a whisk and five minutes! It’s so simple to do and tastes so much better than store bought that there really is no reason to buy a bottle.

Kale Chicken Caesar Option (Egg and Gluten Free Option!)

The Salad:

The greens in this salad are a combination of kale and romaine tossed with avocado, leftover roasted or rotisserie chicken, and your choice of croutons or Parmesan crisps…or both if you like things extra crunchy.

Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (Egg and Gluten Free Option!)

The Crisps:

Parmesan crisps are easy to make, but many stores carry them and often offer seasoned versions like the one pictured below.  If you would like to make them yourself it’s as simple as freshly grating parmesan cheese and baking on a silicon mat at high temp. You can also make them seasoned by sprinkling with pepper, sesame seeds and garlic powder. Complete instructions in recipe below.

Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (Egg and Gluten Free Option!)

The Recipe: Kale Chicken Caesar Salad

Tips and what you’ll need: if making your own Parmesan crisps you will need a baking sheet and a silicon baking mat. Gluten free friends, skip the croutons or use your favorite GF brand. The Parmesan crisps are naturally gluten free. I use leftover roasted or rotisserie chicken for this recipe.

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Kale Chicken Caesar Salad (with a gluten free option!)

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4

A delicious complete meal Chicken Caesar salad with avocado, croutons and Parmesan crisps. 

Ingredients

If making Paremesan crisps yourself, please make ahead of time. You can use rotisserie chicken in this recipe or leftover roasted chicken.

Parmesan Crisps:

2 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese

pepper, sesame seeds, garlic powder are all optional

The Caesar Dressing:

  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced or grated on microplane
  • ⅔ cup mayo 
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan, plus more to grate on top of salad
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste (optional)
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1 generous pinch sea salt, a few turns of freshly ground black pepper

    The Salad:

  • half a head of kale (about 4 cups), ribs removed and chopped
  • half a head romaine (about 3-4 cups), chopped
  • 1-2 ripe avocados, peeled and diced
  • croutons (optional)
  • parmesan cheese crisps (store bought or make your own)
  • sliced rotisserie chicken or leftover roasted chicken

Instructions

If making your own Parmesan crisps:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place oven rack in upper third of oven. Place a silicon baking mat on a cookie sheet.

Form 6-8 rows of parmesan (about 3" long, 1 inch wide) on a silicon baking mat and press cheese down a little. If using seasonings, sprinkle each row lightly with seasoning. Place in oven for five minutes or until crisps are golden. Allow to cool and become crispy.

Dressing:

Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Set aside

The Salad:

Wash, dry and chop lettuce. Wash and dry kale, remove center 'ribs' from leaves and chop. Place prepared lettuce and kale onto a platter.

Add diced avocado and croutons if using. Toss with desired amount of dressing. If you have any leftover place in the fridge for up to a week.

Plate salad, add sliced chicken and parmesan crisps. Sprinkle with a little more black pepper and parm if desired and serve.

 

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.