Recipe Box — Kick off a healthy new year with savory roasted squash

January 5, 2016

NEW — 1 p.m. Jan. 5, 2016

Very soon, the season of indulgent eating will be behind us Before we realize it, we will most likely find ourselves struggling with the guilt and frustration left over from such licentious and freeform consumption. Never fear! It’s not too late to begin again. Hopping on the whole food, healthy wagon train should be something we strive to do with each meal. I suspect most of us are already fairly adept at doing so. 

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Berating ourselves with guilt truly is an overrated exercise and oftentimes prevents us from working toward bettering our overall health. I’m all for the gentle discipline of eating well, while all the while allowing myself a few indulgent treats along the way.  As much as I generally dislike the idea of New Year resolutions, I think it behooves us at the very least to take a look at our diets, take stock of our health and resolve each day to feed our bodies the type of fuel they need to keep us healthy, whole and ultimately happy. Read more

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Making pie doesn’t have to be scary

November 24, 2015

NEW — 3:22 p.m. Nov. 24, 2015

If ever there were a season to delve wholeheartedly into pie making, I’d have to say that time is now. For the uninitiated, pie making at its best can be perceived a daunting task, at its worst it’s a full fledged nightmare of flour explosions, tears and torn crust that refuses to cooperate.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

I am here to tell you that this simply needn’t be. Enter into the picture the ever delicious, savior of pie strugglers, the galette — a simple, free form tart/pie that can make even the most hopeless of pie makers stand up and take notice.  Read more

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Pumpkin spice goes well in champagne cocktail

October 26, 2015

NEW — 3:46 p.m. Oct. 26, 2015

If you’ve been living under a rock for the last few years, or have otherwise been disconnected from the larger world, you might have missed out on the notion that, somehow, pumpkin spice-everything has become well, a thing.

I find myself firmly in the pro pumpkin/squash camp, but I have to say even I am getting a bit weary of it all. The day they come out with pumpkin spice deodorant or shampoo may be the day I have to revoke my pumpkin-loving status.

RecipePumpkinCocktail 2015Given the current state of affairs, it’s entirely possible that day may already be upon us. Read more

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Smoke is the secret to salmon chowder

September 22, 2015

NEW — 4:39 p.m. Sept. 22, 2015

Just as no self-respecting Washingtonian should not be without a few good apple recipes up their sleeve, nor should they be bereft of more than a couple chowder recipes either. As we enter into fall and cooler temperatures, it only seems natural now to break out the stockpot and cook up some warm you up comfort food Northwest style.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Never a fan of thick, stand-up-your-spoon chowder, I’ve always been on the lookout for recipes that have just the right combination of cream to broth. A loose, savory base with delicate garlic and onion flavors has always been necessary in my favorite chowder. The individual flavors of seafood and bacon shine at their best when a heavy, thick cream does not overwhelm them. And you can feel a wee bit better about the whole thing afterward.

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Berry bonanza bodes well for blueberry crumble

August 25, 2015

NEW — 6:08 p.m. Aug. 25, 2015

For as long as I can recall, I’ve been a fan of a good berry crumble. Easy to assemble and equally easy to consume, it has stood the test of time in our household.

I think the thing that makes it so appealing, in addition to the delicious flavor, is the simplistic, no-nonsense nature. Less fiddly or time-consuming than a pie, you can quite literally have one in all it’s steaming, bubbly glory on your table in less than an hour.

By Maria Nelson A blueberry ginger crumble is just the right recipe for the height of berry season.

By Maria Nelson
A blueberry ginger crumble is just the right recipe for the height of berry season.

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Make wild rice salad your go-to summer dish

July 29, 2015

NEW — 10:55 a.m. July 29, 2015

Salads and summer are ubiquitous partners, naturally melding together in our conscious and subconscious thoughts and always provide, thankfully, a simple answer to the never-ending question of what to eat for dinner.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Salads are simply the best go-to option for many of us this time of year. They provide a healthy meal that uses the best of what’s fresh, abundant and delicious, and they can be thrown together quickly without the sweat-inducing necessity of turning on the oven.

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June is perfect month to combine ice cream, cookies and strawberries

June 25, 2015

June is definitely the month for strawberries. And ice cream. And cookies.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Heck, if I’m honest it’s always the month for those things, but truly right now it’s all about the berries. Washington strawberries are at their peak right this very minute and it’s all I can do to stop myself from throwing them into everything I eat.

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Enjoy rhubarb season with some easy recipes

May 27, 2015

Rhubarb season is finally upon us, and this year as in most years, I often run out of recipes for using rhubarb before I actually run out of my desire to consume it.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Pies, of course, are always the go-to vehicle for rhubarb around our house, and lately along with them, I’ve taken to lightly pickling rhubarb to add as a savory component to salads and savory cocktails. There are few things as delicious or complex than a vodka martini with a sliver of pickled rhubarb for garnish.

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Recipe Box — Fresh, homemade cookies and milk are never out of season

April 28, 2015

After a few months of kale and Brussels sprouts, I thought it only fitting that I share with you this recipe for these delectable Peanut Butter Candy Bar Cookies.

By Maria Nelson

By Maria Nelson

Healthy is all well and good, but really this is the kind of recipe that makes my heart and stomach most happy. With spring and summer on the horizon, I will no doubt feature plenty of fruit and vegetable recipes here, so it’s only appropriate that we deviate into the world of sweets a bit before the seasonal tide shifts to healthier fare.

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Everything is better with bacon, even kale

March 25, 2015

There is just something infinitely lovely about recipes that can be prepared in advance.

Make-ahead meals have a way of allowing us to feel just a bit more in control of our often hectic daily existence, and the simple fact that some food simply tastes better prepared this way makes those recipes all the more wonderful.

By Maria Nelson This kale and bacon casserole is easily prepared the night before it’s required.

By Maria Nelson
This kale and bacon casserole is easily prepared the night before it’s required.

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