‘Tis the season for homemade treats, but they don’t all have to be sugary sweet. This duo of roasted nuts is great for cocktail parties, whether you’re hosting or bringing them as a hostess gift is up to you. The pecans get a refreshing boost from our Blackberry Vinaigrette, and were a hit with my colleague’s 8 year old. Cashews get a sophisticated makeover thanks to our Champagne Vinaigrette and some fresh rosemary, inspired by a recipe from Ina Garten, except our recipe has no sugar or butter.
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I’ve found my children will eat “Orange Soup” more readily than they will eat Carrot Soup or Butternut Squash soup. So any of the numerous variations I make between September and March each year, all fall under the heading “Orange Soup”.
There’s a limitless number of ways you can make this soup, and the glorious thing is that it’s extremely difficult to mess up. It’s also a great way to clean out the fridge, and use up some lonely vegetables.
Right about now tomatoes are flooding farmers’ markets, and just like that, they’ll be gone in a few weeks. That’s just the way it goes as summer fades into fall. Canning is one way to extend the season, but that takes a bit of time not everyone has available. Another way, and one that can take your salad to the next level, is to slow roast them.
Slow roasting takes some time, but it’s all hands off. Pop them in the oven while your doing another project around the house, and you’ll be rewarded for weeks, and months to come. Stored in the fridge, with a thick layer of olive oil, these Slow Roasted Tomatoes will last for up to 2 months. That is, if you can resist eating them all at once.
Slowing down, and savoring the moment is key to feeling balance (though we know the slowing down part is often easier said than done). It’s also the secret to enjoying this salad since the window for enjoying fresh figs seems to close as quick as it opens. On the surface, this is a ridiculously simple salad. No fuss, just our Blackberry Vinaigrette paired with peppery baby arugula, fresh figs, and tendrils of shaved Pecorino cheese (Parmigiana works beautifully, too). It offers a lovely way to end the meal, but also works well as a side salad, served with grilled fish.
As our Facebook and Instagram feeds fill with back to school photos, it’s hard to believe summer is coming to a close. That also means it’s time to pack school lunches again. One thing I’ve always loved about this daily ritual is it provides a way to connect with my daughters when I’m not actually with them.
At ages 8 and 13, they take pride in packing their own lunches, but thankfully they still let me lend a hand the rest of the time. Bento boxes are all the rage, but don’t let rice shaped into cute little bears intimidate you from using them. A homemade lunch can be creative in what you pack without needing to sign up for master craft classes.
I love bento boxes because they rescue plastic and paper from the landfills. They also offer an actual dining experience—think of them as portable, self-contained plates. My daughters love the feeling of surprise as they open them to see what mom tucked into each compartment. So, it was a natural for us to partner with ECOlunchboxes on some back to school recipes. Sophia already uses them for her kids. They graciously sent me a few to test drive. We used them for a summer picnic, proving that these 3-in-1 nesting lunchboxes are useful year-round.
I decided to repurpose some leftovers for one lunch. Heating up last night’s dinner for the next day’s lunch isn’t a new idea. Turning it into something totally different, though, gives new life to leftovers. The resulting main course was Rice & Bean Lettuce Cups. They’re a spin on vegetarian tacos, sans the tortillas. Hope your kiddos love them as much as mine.
Here’s the recipe.