Cod in a Spiced Tomato Sauce {Whole30}

I’m not really sure what to call this dish.  The recipe I adapted called it Moroccan, but does tumeric and cumin really make something Moroccan?  I don’t know that it does, but the spices sure are nice.  Fish was a nice change after a lot of meat-heavy meals as of … Continue reading

When it Comes to the Issue of Serving Size, Even Vegetables Can Be Misleading

One of the largest sweet potatoes in my bag, approximately 5 servings, may appear to be "medium" once cooked.

When we think about struggles with serving size, we generally think of processed, energy-dense foods high in sugar and fat. It’s the rare individual that  gets four servings out of a pint of Ben & Jerry’s or stops after eating just eleven potato chips.  Serving sizes aren’t one bit realistic, but consumers might not buy the … Continue reading

Asian-Style Scotch Eggs {Whole30}

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I have a bit of an obsession with the concept of scotch eggs as of late.  Traditional scotch eggs are fabulous, but I also love the vast potential for fun takes on the classic British pub fare.  These baseball-sized maple walnut scotch eggs, for example?  Great for breakfast.  But I … Continue reading

Paleo Chicken Curry with Cauliflower & Sweet Potato with a side of stir-crazy {Whole30}

Thank goodness we’re going back to work today because I am so stir-crazy.  Because we can pretty much walk anywhere, we weren’t even that confined by the storm (I would actually go crazy being snowed-in in the suburbs, even if I was going crazy in my great big home with a great big yard). … Continue reading

Salmon & Avocado Breakfast Salad {Paleo, Whole30}

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This dish falls into the category of “if it was on a restaurant menu, it would probably make me a regular.”  Luckily, I don’t have to venture out to find this, which is a mighty good thing since we’re currently sitting on about 20″ of snow.  Despite the snow, I … Continue reading

Zucchini, Sausage & Pesto Roll Ups {Whole30}

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Apparently we’re about to be pummeled with snow.  As last night’s one inch preview if proof of, it doesn’t take a whole lot to cripple D.C. But from the sounds of it, the storm coming this weekend is the real deal.  Essentially the forecast for this weekend is: don’t plan … Continue reading

Paleo Pork & Green Chili Tamales {Whole30, Day 4}

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Last time around, one of the most challenging things about Whole30 was the impact on my social life.  Things are a little different this time, as it’s the fact that I’m in grad school and working full time that is really requiring the social sacrifices – Whole30 is just something I … Continue reading

Twice Baked Breakfast Sweet Potatoes {Whole30, Day 3}

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Today is day 3 of my Whole30.  So far it has been literally zero challenge.  This is pretty much how I like to eat most of the time anyways, so without major behavior change this really just isn’t difficult for me. As you can see, the meals are huge and delicious … Continue reading

Pie Parties, Whole30, Oxymorons and Broken Resolutions {Peanut Butter & Jelly Pie!}

More sweet pies.  I voted for the bacon gingersnap crumble on the middle right for 'most likely to be president'!

When I break a resolution, I almost always do it intentionally.  I’d never calling it “slipping up,” but rather a well thought out weighing of the pros and cons that leads me to believe there’s a valuable reason not to stick to said resolution.  Case in point: “Sober January.” About … Continue reading

Garlicky Spanakopita Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

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There was no dipping my toes into the pool of reality last week.  No, siree – I dove back in head first.  Last Monday wasn’t just my first day back to work after over two weeks of vacation, but also my first day back in graduate school after a four … Continue reading

Year in Review: Best Recipes and best Memories of 2015

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2015 Year in Review: 2015 was a pretty amazing year that started with the trip of a lifetime and was filled with lessons about what’s truly important in life, exciting new beginnings, wonderful new friendships and lots of travel.  I’m so grateful for the opportunities 2015 has brought me and the wonderful … Continue reading

Vegetables Wellington: a Vegan Holiday Centerpiece

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I would imagine the holidays could be a tough time to be a vegan.  You never can really be sure what’s in the salad at the holiday potluck and your co-worker John had no idea butter wasn’t vegan when he proudly offered you those cookies. And then there’s your family … Continue reading

Al’s Diner, the Famous Prongburger (BBQ Burgers in the Slow Cooker)

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This recipe comes to you from Jodie, Texas, 1958.  Times were simpler back then, unless you were trying to prevent the Kennedy assassination.  Either way, burgers were cheap and at Al’s Diner you could have ordered the famous Pronghorn burger, which came with mesquite fries and a double malt shake, … Continue reading

Pecan Crusted Chicken with Cranberry Goat Cheese Sauce

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I have another festive recipe for you all to enjoy, although this one is healthy enough to be a regular weekday meal!  Instead of breading the chicken, you coat it in plain yogurt (calcium! protein!) and roll it in a mixture of rosemary and ground pecans (healthy fats!)  I love any recipe … Continue reading

My First Bake-O-lution! Momofuku Milkbar Cornflake Cookie Sandwiches Filled with Cereal Milk Buttercream

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On my first day at my new job, the whole office gathered for an afternoon break featuring more than half a dozen cakes. While I’d like to say this was all to welcome me to the office, it was actually a fun monthly tradition we have at Share Our Strength: Bake-O-lution. … Continue reading

Festive Pomegranate Guacamole

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There’s no pausing once the calendar flips to December – the holiday parties are immediately upon us.  There’s no denying it’s one of the most festive seasons of the year, but it can also get a little overwhelming… especially if you find yourself having to make a dish for three parties … Continue reading

Vegan Bourbon Laced Pumpkin Pie with Walnut Crumble

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It’s funny that I should decide to make a pumpkin pie this year, because to be honest I never really liked it.  I don’t know if it was the texture (gross!), a subconscious aversion because of my pumpkin allergy (which only ever manifested as as a skin and eye reaction, … Continue reading

A Turkeyless Thanksgiving Feast

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When it comes to Thanksgiving, the turkey is almost always cast as the lead actor taking center stage amongst a scrumptious spread of extras.  I’m not sure how that came to be (I’m sure I could Google it), and I certainly know that Thanksgiving traditions are as diverse as the … Continue reading

8 Gourmet Ways to Repurpose Your Thanksgiving Leftovers

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Thanksgiving is official over, but many of us have leftovers for daysss.  I’m fine with indulgence during the holiday season, but what I can’t get behind is food waste.  The good news is that when it comes to Thanksgiving food, it’s the leftovers that are really the star of the show. … Continue reading

Bacon Wrapped Stuffing Bites

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I have so many recipes to share with you!  What do you want first, the vegan or the bacon? Mmm, yeah, that was an easy question. This is the only photo I got of these bacon wrapped stuffing bites. Wanna know why?  They got eaten that fast.  These are a great Friendsgiving … Continue reading

Our First Annual Friendsgiving for No Kid Hungry

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Hosting Thanksgiving has been a bit of a tradition in the Messy Kitchen, but this is the first year we’ll be hosting two Thanksgiving feasts, less than a week apart nonetheless.  It may sound like a daunting task (it is), but it’s all for a good cause.  On Saturday night we … Continue reading

Pistachio Crusted Chicken Cordon Bleu with Creamy Honey Dijon Sauce

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I didn’t learn to cook from my mom. It wasn’t that she couldn’t cook, it just wasn’t until more recent years that she has enjoyed it. Besides breakfast for dinner (which I still to this day love), Mom had several signature dishes that we all remember fondly. Perhaps because they were … Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Brownies Topped with Pumpkin Mascarpone

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I’m kind of glad Starbucks has a new controversy (for the record, red is my favorite color and I think simple is classy). Honestly, I’ve never had their pumpkin spiced latte (version 1.0 or 2.0).  I’m generally on board with pumpkin flavored foods, although I do tend to think pumpkin should be an … Continue reading

Paleo Tuna Sushirrito {Sushi Burritos at home!}

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I’ve developed a bit of a love affair with a place up the street from my work called Buredo.  They make sushi burritos that are absolutely to die for.  Because I try really hard to bring my own lunch instead of eating out, I’ve been using every ounce of will-power … Continue reading

Paleo Swedish Meatballs with Mashed Cauliflower and Ligonberry Jam

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I’ve been notably absent from this little space as of late.  The truth is, I haven’t really gotten back into a good cooking and eating routine since I got back from Italy… and that was almost three weeks ago!  Not good, not good at all.  It’s one thing to eat all the food when … Continue reading

Fall Sentimentality & Sweet Potato Crusted Quiche

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Some people lament the end of summer, but not me.  For me, there has always been something sentimental about the Fall.  The crisp air hits, filled with that distinctive smell.  I take a deep breath and feel happy.  It could be explained by the fact that many of the most monumental … Continue reading

Butternut Squash & Salmon Curry (Paleo)

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While today was mid-August humid, Fall has been coming and going in spurts.  Rain is plastered across the whole week’s forecast, and it’s bound to break this unseasonably humid weather that hair resembling something from the 1980’s and my mind in a fog.   It’s bound to break into the … Continue reading

Sunday Funday, Foodie Edition! Tasty Things I Ate This Summer

Pak Nam at Thip Khao, my favorite dish of the night.  Crispy watercress with shrimp, tamarind sauce, mango, green apples and cashews.  Not to be missed!

It’s been a while since I kept up Sunday Funday, Foodie Edition where I highlight some of the spectacular things I’ve eaten at restaurants in D.C. and during my travels.  Well, we have some catching up to do!  This round I’m sharing with you not just the tasty things I … Continue reading

Fresh Fig and Pork Loin Ragoût

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I promised you another fig recipe, and I always deliver on my promises!  Let me tell you right now, the photos don’t do this one justice.  This was one of our favorite new recipes in quite some time.  In fact, I plan to make it again before fig season ends!  I … Continue reading

Skinny Lime Shrimp & Avocado Salad

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The last recipe I brought you was quite complicated.  This one is not!  In fact, this is different from that recipe in just about every way possible.  This isn’t a dessert laden in bacon, chocolate and booze, but instead a light lunch option low in calories and carbohydrates.  Because sometimes … Continue reading

Bourbon Chocolate Mousse Pie in a Pretzel Crust Topped with Candied Bacon and Dark Chocolate Ganache

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I’ve got a little collection of recipes I’ve been meaning to share with you, but since I’m in Louisville, Kentucky this week it only seemed appropriate that this one skip to the front of the line.  So it’s from the Bourbon Capital that I bring you this absurdly delicious pie. … Continue reading

Fig, Tahini & Honey Overnight Oats

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It’s fig season!  I don’t think I was big on fresh figs until one summer when I was visiting my dad in southern Spain and tried the figs he picked fresh of the tree in their yard. Every afternoon, there’d be a pile on the patio table where later (much … Continue reading

Tahini & Red Curry Shrimp with Spaghetti Squash

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I’ll take a break in the series of amazing desserts I have to share with you for this important PSA: spaghetti squash is still amazing!  Seriously.  I think I could sit down with a spaghetti squash and a bottle of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! and happily call it dinner. … Continue reading

Macarons: Do Not Try Them At Home

My macarons.  Don't think they will be coming to the bridal shower.

Some things, I’d venture to say most things, are even better when made at home.  Fig Newtons, Shamrock Shakes, Burrito Bowls.  But there are some that should really be left up to the experts (Girl Scout Cookies!)  Yesterday, macarons were added to the list of “don’t try this at home.” Okay, so … Continue reading

Birth Month & Bellini Cupcakes

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September has been a very popular birthday month at work.  We’ve had 1-2 birthdays a week, and that’s in my department alone!  Some people like to celebrate birthdays more than others, or at least some people are more willing to admit it.  I frankly don’t really buy it when people say “I … Continue reading

Spinach Salad with Roasted Veggies & Chicken with Smoky Tomato Vinaigrette

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This roasted veggie salad is the perfect way to make use of your late summer bounty.  Or your bounty from any part of the summer, really, as what vegetables you roast is totally up to you!  I liked the tomato vinaigrette so much that right after dinner, I made another … Continue reading

Balsamic Glazed Steak Rolls

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Sometimes you just want some sautéed vegetables for dinner.  Wrapped with steak.  Sorry my veggie friends, this recipe is not for you.  Although you kind of want it, don’t you?  This is the kind of steak dish that can seduce a vegetarian.  Trust me, I have this from an inside … Continue reading

Dîner en Blanc D.C. – an Encore!

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After last year’s inaugural Dîner en Blanc, D.C. I was eager to do it all over again this year.  But this time, I was going to do it right.  I’d already have the essentials, which we’d invested in last year, and I’d start planning way earlier this time and make an … Continue reading

Farro & Spinach Power Bowl with Chicken, Roasted Red Peppers, Feta and Avocado Tahini Cream

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The Washington Post recently ran an interesting piece rethinking salad.  They argue that for all the resources that go into growing lettuce, it provides pathetically few nutrients or calories.  Essentially, it uses a significant amount of land, water and fuel while doing very little to feed people. I thought they made a … Continue reading

Mexican Style Cornbread Panzanella

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“I like these new beefed up salads you’ve been making.” That was Courtney’s response to panzanella, which would more accurately described as “breaded up.”  Panzanella is a Tuscan dish, traditionally composed of stale bread, tomatoes and onions and dressed in oil and vinegar.  This is a very non-traditional panzanella, incorporating corn … Continue reading

Girls’ Night In: A Tapas Feast at La Casa de Laurita

The resulting tapas feast!

Saturday night I had a craving for Spanish food.  This isn’t particularly unusual, seeing as manchego with olives and a Spanish tortilla are comfort food for me in a way that mac and cheese never has been.  I had a date to catch up with Laura who was happy to eat … Continue reading

Pesto Potato & Green Bean Salad with Cherry Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives and Chickpeas

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Potatoes are treated like the ugly stepchild in our household.  Hubby won’t touch them with a ten foot pole unless they’re sliced thin and heavily fried and or/covered in cheese… basically, he can’t know it’s potato.  And honestly, I don’t feel much more positively about them.  Sweet potatoes are awesome, … Continue reading

Belga Café Beer Dinner: Het Anker Brewery

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Last week, we were excited to finally try Belga Café’s monthly beer dinner.  While I used to be somewhat of a regular, I haven’t been to Belga since they stopped doing the 1/2 priced mussel pot & no corkage fee combo that was clearly too good to be true.  However I’ve … Continue reading

Grainless Tahini & Date Cookies {Vegan}

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Oh man, where have I been!  Well, I started a new job last week, which I’m really excited about.  My day job now also involves talking and thinking about food all day, so assuming at least one of my dreams is about food, that puts me at 20 hours of … Continue reading

Paleo Summer Squash Fritters

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These summer squash fritters were somewhat of a happy accident.  Perhaps not the recipe itself, but that they came to be in the first place. I’d planned to make shredded sweet potato hash browns to serve with our burgers, but when I went to fetch the sweet potato I found … Continue reading

Cucumber Noodle Greek Salad with Tahini Glazed Chicken

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I take a great deal of pride in my ability to make something awesome using only the ingredients on hand.  People have often told me I should go on “Chopped,” but I’m afraid my cooking style involves too much cussing, cutting and burning myself to be appropriate for national T.V.  Regardless, … Continue reading

Lighthouse @ Prequel: Lobster, Burgers and FRIES, oh my!

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A couple of weeks ago, I was looking for a central spot for a lady friend and I to catch up over a glass of wine and discovered 4th Floor Wine Bar.  We were among only a handful of people there on a Tuesday night, but you can’t beat half-priced … Continue reading

Broccoli & Cauliflower Salad with Almonds, Raisins and Bacon in a Maple Tahini Vinaigrette

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Believe it or not, sometimes even I struggle to decide what to do with the ingredients in my fridge.  I wrote a whole post on amazing things to do with cauliflower, but this purple cauliflower was so pretty I wanted to use it in a way we’d fully enjoy it’s … Continue reading