Baked Zucchini Fries

This season our garden has given us more zucchini than we know what to do with. Every week we harvest AT LEAST 2-3 large zucchinis and when I say large, I mean the equivalent of 2-3 store bought zucchinis in just one. I have been loving picking my produce from my own backyard but with so much of the same vegetable, I’ve had to think up some creative ways to use it without boring myself. One of the first things I thought to make was zucchini fries. If we’re using the word “fries” in the title, I 1000% expect it to be crispy and to live up to the glory that is potato based french fries. I knew it would take some time to perfect the recipe, but this last batch I made was about as perfect as it could get. Coated in fresh parmesan cheese, crispy panko breadcrumbs, and seasoned with Italian seasonings, these are out of this world incredible. This recipe is very straight-forward and although I am trying to create recipes right now that will allow you to avoid heating up your house with the use of your oven, let me just say that these zucchini fries are worth heating the house up. My last batch was gone in under 15 minutes and that was just between Adrian and myself. Now before we get into the recipe, let’s talk about the nutritional value of our star vegetable–zucchini.

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Cauliflower Ceviche

Back in March, I was looking forward to a potluck with all of my coworkers after closing a chapter on a job. We had all signed up for a particular dish to bring and one of my coworkers wrote down “cauliflower ceviche” I was intrigued and I asked her for the recipe. After making it, I became obsessed with it and decided to make a few tweaks to make it my own. It didn’t take much tweaking as it was delicious as is but I generally like my ceviche extra tangy so that is exactly what this recipe entails. For those of you who are skeptical to try this, I promise you will be blown away by the results. This is so delicious it is even well loved by those who are not a fan of seafood or fish. The ingredients are very simple, requires minimal heat, and the results will get you hooked. As always, let’s talk about the nutritional benefits of our star player–cauliflower.

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Easy Roasted Potatoes

One of my favorite foods to have for breakfast is potatoes. I’m not talking about the sweet kind either, I’m talking about the good ol’ golden Yukon potato. For whatever reason, potatoes have gotten a bad reputation over the last decade but I am here to tell you that in this household potatoes are an absolute must and household staple. Russet potatoes, golden Yukon, and red potatoes have just as much nutritional value as sweet potatoes do the only difference being the amount of minerals varies by each variety. Each potato has its appropriate use and for the purpose of roasting at a higher heat, I have found that golden potatoes yield the best results. I am working on a comprehensive blog post to outline each use of different types of potatoes but for now, i’m letting you know that golden yukon and/or red potatoes are the best types for roasting in the oven.

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Spinach & Artichoke Dip

One of my boyfriend’s favorite snacks is spinach and artichoke dip. Anytime it is offered as an appetizer we usually order it. I have to admit, it is also one of my favorite dips as well and I can usually kill half if not all of the dip by myself. A couple months ago, I was playing around with recipes for this to make it healthier since the traditional recipe for spinach and artichoke dip involves using multiple cups of cheese in addition to mayonnaise. I started by swapping the mayonnaise out for a leaner and much lighter Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is high in protein and lower in fat than mayonnaise and also contains probiotics which is beneficial for our digestive health. From there, I decided to also reduce the amount of cheese used by substituting nutritional yeast in for about half of the cheese. Nutritional yeast is rich in B vitamins and is significantly lower in sodium and contains no saturated fat or cholesterol in comparison to traditional cheese. Nutritional yeast still gives a cheesy flavor to any dish so you won’t even notice that this recipe has less cheese than usual. The few times I have made this dip, it has not made it past the 6 hour mark. The entire bowl is always left completely clean and no one even knows that it’s a healthier version of the traditional spinach and artichoke dip. Now that we’ve gotten all the info out of the way, let’s dive into what you need for this recipe.

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Flatbread Two Ways

flatbread 2 ways

Superbowl Sunday is fast approaching and if you’re hosting the party, chances are you’re looking for ideas on what to feed your hungry guests.¬†Well in combination with my panko crusted cauliflower wings,¬† I think these flatbreads will be the perfect appetizers to serve your guests. Not only are they vegetarian-friendly, but they are also packed with flavor so that even your picky eaters will never notice the difference. Flatbread has been a recipe that I have been playing around with for such a long time and after going back and forth between using whole-wheat flour & regular flour, I ultimately decided to stick with all-purpose because nothing else compares.

Now, as much as I talk about making healthy choices and their importance of contributing to a long and healthy life, I also want to be sure to share with you the importance of balance. I’m someone who does not restrict and if I feel like having a piece of cake or a cookie, I let myself have it. Why? Because when you allow yourself to have little indulgences here and there, it helps to prevent you from going overboard. So for that exact reason, I don’t feel bad about sharing with you this delicious recipe for flatbread that is not whole-grain but sure does make you feel good inside.

Just because I decided to stick with traditional white flour for this recipe, that does not mean that this recipe is not healthier than flatbread you would get at a restaurant. Instead of focusing on making a completely nutrient dense crust that would have probably tasted very similar to cardboard, I decided to deduct some extra calories by being more mindful of the amount of cheese and oil I used as well as by using my own marinara sauce. By making your own flatbread at home, you are able to control the amount of cheese and oil you put into it because it is your own version. I am so excited to share these with you as they were definitely a crowd pleaser! Now let’s talk ingredients.

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