As we’ve previously discussed, dinner is a struggle for me. Waking up at 5:15am to workout, then going to work all day leaves me little motivation to make a meal when 5:30pm rolls around, especially if it’s just for me. I’m one of those people that prefers to cook for others. Cooking for myself is extremely unappealing.
When Jesse has dinner with me, it’s awesome. I tend to make an actual meal, but most days, on my own, I tend to snack. So I’m trying to come up with better solutions. My number one solution right now is to keep it simple.
So in my quest to keep things simple, yet flavorful, I discovered a Moroccan Spice Blend that is so versatile you can basically kick up any plain dish without adding fat. The best part is you can control how much salt goes in it.
Moroccan Spice Blend
Adapted from Epicurious
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt (or less if you’d like)*
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp mace
Combine all ingredients until well blended. Store in an air tight container until ready to use.
*Feel free to adjust the amount of salt. You can completely omit it, if you’re trying to go low sodium. You can also add more if you like things salty (the original recipe calls for 1 tsp of salt, but I tried that and thought it was too much. 1/2 tsp was more to my liking).
I mixed up a bunch to keep on hand for easy meals. So far using this blend I’ve made: Moroccan Spiced Chicken Thighs and Moroccan Spice Tilapia.
Super easy! In both cases, I sprinkled the chicken (bone-in thighs, skin and excess fat removed) or fish generously with the spice blend and baked. Both times it turned out awesome! I can’t wait to keep making this. If you’re interested, I can do a full recipe post on either of these. Let me know if you’re interested.
Tonight, the ultimate quick dinner for 1: I took a piece of tilapia, covered it in moroccan spice blend, then roasted it along side some asparagus for 17 minutes at 400F. Done in less than 20 minutes, and easy clean up. I like it.
Give this Moroccan Spice Blend a try! It’s a great way to add a ton of flavor while still keeping things healthy.
What’s your favorite quick and easy weeknight meal?
This past weekend was a very Italian weekend for me. I went to the Getty Villa.
If you’re in Southern California and haven’t been to the Getty Villa, you should go. I grew up here and had never been. It’s a beautiful museum built to look like a villa you would around Pompeii or Herculanum around 30 AD. It’s seriously beautiful, not to mention the exhibits are awesome.
To add to the Southern Italian-ness of the weekend, Jesse and I also saw Pompeii. While I question the historical accuracy, I must say I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s as if Titanic and Gladiator came together to make one ridiculous film.
If there’s one thing Pompeii taught me, it’s that Jon Snow is hot in a skirt. After leaving the theatre, the one thing both Jesse and I had to comment on was Jon Snow‘s abs (because Kit Harington will forever be known as Jon Snow to me).
First we thought, those have to be digitally enhanced or airbrushed. No one can have abs like that. Of course then the conversation transitioned to: how does one get those abs?
I did some research. Basically, if you want abs you have to lose fat and build muscle (no surprises here). Vanity Fair confirmed with an interview by the actors of the movie:
The four-hour workout: two hours of fight training with weapons, an hour of weight lifting, an hour of cardio, and an 1,800-calorie diet “designed specifically for our bodies to be attuned to lose fat and pop out muscles,” Akinnuoye-Agbaje told us.
So for the rest of us that aren’t working out for four hours a day or consuming a diet “designed specifically for our bodies to be attuned to lose fat and pop out muscles,” we should probably just stick to eating clean and maybe increasing our protein.
I’m not really in the market for Jon Snow abs (yep, that’s what I’m calling them now), but getting fit is always a good idea. So to help you in that direction, I made you dinner:
Healthy Baked Turkey Meatballs
1 lb lean ground turkey (from 1 package in the meat section)
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1 tbsp fresh chopped mint
1 tbsp fresh chopped rosemary
1 tbsp fresh chopped cilantro
2 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400F.
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Using your hands work together all ingredients and form into golf-ball sized meat balls. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cooked through (note: this might vary depending of the size of your meatballs and your oven).
Serve over cauliflower puree, on spaghetti squash or with your vegetable of choice and enjoy! This recipe will make about 20 meatballs.
This low carb (paleo, gluten-free) meal will get you in the right direction to getting those Jon Snow abs. Or if you’re like me and you just want to be a little bit healthy, to balance out an enormous piece of cake, this meal is great for that too.
Anyone else see Jon Snow’s abs in Pompeii and have their jaw drop?
Hi All! I was nominated for Favorite Sweet and Baking blog. Thanks to whoever nominated.
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I love mustard. No really. Like a lot. For as long as I can remember, mustard has been one of my favorite condiments. Even the cheap yellow mustard you get on Subway sandwiches (no mayo, extra mustard please). I love it. It adds such a nice flavor profile to most foods.
But fancy mustard, that’s a whole different ball game.
Recently, I got in touch with the guys at Green Mountain Mustard. They make fancy pants mustard, but in the least pretentious way possible.
But anyway, these guys know mustard. They sent me two jars of their mustard so I could make an EPIC grilled cheese sandwich. While the grilled cheese sandwich is still in the works, I had this idea and had to make it asap. It involved one of the mustard flavors they sent me: Deli Dirt. Their Deli Dirt tastes like all the goodness of a deli put into one little jar, and this mustard is THICK. It’s basically the consistency of hummus, which is awesome.
I’m in love. And thus, this creation was born:
One of the things that I love about mustard is that it adds a ton of flavor to food without a ton of fat (or calories). You know I like to make things as light as I can. So while this looks fatty and decadent, it’s a little bit lighter than you would think (please note, I’m not actually saying this is healthy, but it’s better than eating something deep fried).
Oh and I should probably mention that I had no idea what to call this. I couldn’t really call it a “Pile of Deliciousness,” which is what it is. So instead I thought of a more Pinterest-friendly name: German Nachos (ish). Ish is a really important qualifier here. Enjoy.
German Nachos (ish): Baked Fries with Sauerkraut, Sausage and Muenster Cheese Sauce
3 large potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Deli Dirt mustard
1 sausage (bratwurst are tasty. true story.), sliced
1/2-1 cup sauerkraut
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp Deli Dirt Mustard
1 cup milk (I used non-fat)
3 oz Muenster cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Pre-heat oven to 425F. Slice potatoes into fry shape.
Toss with 2 tbsp of olive oil and 1 tbsp of Deli Dirt. Sprinkle with salt and lay on a cooling rack that is placed over a baking sheet.
This will help your fries get crisp all around and keep the bottoms from burning. Bake 30-40 minutes or until fries are golden and crispy (start checking them after about 30 minutes, since everyone’s oven is different and you might have cut yours thinner than mine). While your fries bake up, have a dance party. This is not optional.
10 minutes before your fries are ready to go (aka 20 or so minutes after you put them in the oven), brown your sausage in a pan and set aside. Then make your cheese sauce.
Melt butter in a sauce pan, add flour and stir together. Cook for 2 minutes or until golden. Stream in milk very slowly while whisking to break up any clumps that form. Once you’ve added all the milk and whisked smooth. Whisk in the mustard and cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Now assemble. Lay some fries on a plate. Top with sauerkraut (you’ll note in the recipe I said 1/2-1 cup, because I love sauerkraut and ended up adding a ton more after I photographed, but if you don’t care for it as much, add less) and sausage, then drizzle with cheese sauce. Serve immediately.
This recipe will serve 2-4 people. Confession: Jesse and I devoured the entire thing. I don’t feel guilty.
The perfect bite will include a bit of potato, sauerkraut and sausage. I promise it’s delicious. If you wanted to keep this low carb, I bet this would be delicious if you replaced the potatoes with spaghetti squash. Ok, I might have to try that ASAP.
I can’t wait to try more recipes with this awesome mustard. Don’t worry, grilled cheese is coming soon!
Do you love mustard? What’s your condiment of choice?
I started out wanting to do another cutesy Valentine’s Day treat, but then I remembered that Valentine’s Day is a totally made up holiday (as all holidays are, I suppose). And really, some people hate it. I can’t say that’s the case for me, but I know for many, there is heart break and sorrow that goes along with this Hallmark holiday. And you know what? They deserve a treat too.
So this Valentine’s Day, if you want to stick it to the man, make yourself these hand pies.
It’s basically like saying F-you to sprinkles and red roses. So go for it. And just to warn you, I’m saying F-you to the idea of having a full recipe on a blog today. This is sort of a wing-it-non-recipe recipe. Be brave. Try it.
Brie-Chocolate-Raspberry Hand Pies
Pie Crust of your choosing (like the one here)
Brie (a few ounces)
Raspberries (a small container will do)
Preheat oven to 375F.
Roll out your favorite pie crust a little on the thin side (because the whole point is for the dough to crack so raspberry can seep out). Using heart shaped cookie cutters, cut out heart shapes (or any shape you want really, if you have duckie cookie cutters, you’re awesome and you should use those).
Spread about 1 tsp of brie (not the rind, just the center creamy part) onto the center of a heart. The top with a few chocolate chips (maybe 6? or go crazy fit as many in there as possible), and 1 raspberry cut in half. Obviously, how much you fit in there is going to depend on the size of your cookie cutter. Mine was about 3 inches at the wides part of the heart.
Place another heart on top of the brie/choco/raspberry goodness. Use a fork and press down the edges to bind. It’s ok if the dough cracks and breaks. That’s kind of the point and exactly how you get the bleeding heart look. So if your hand pies fall apart then you’re winning. Put those bad boys in the oven and bake 20-25 minutes or until golden all around. Allow to cool and serve. With one double pie crust recipe (or a box of frozen pie crust from the store), you’ll probably get about a 2-3 dozen hand pies depending on the size of the cookie cutter. This means you’ll need a few ounces of brie and a small pack of raspberries, in case you’re trying to estimate how much you need from my non-recipe.
Oh and if you’re going to tell me brie + chocolate sounds like a gross combo, keep the haterade to yourself.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
I’m going to ask you to brace yourself, because I can already tell that what I recently discovered is going to cause a whirlwind over here at Foodologie.
Well, let me just tell you. It’s totally worth it and not nearly as difficult or time consuming as I thought it would be. All the recipes I read required 8-10 egg whites, too much cracking… corn syrup, um no. But finally I found one without corn syrup that was easily to scale down and gave it a try. Thank you, Martha Stewart, for introducing me to marshmallow frosting.
Easy Marshmallow Frosting
from Martha Stewart
2 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 big pinch of cream of tartar*
1 pinch of salt
Place a glass bowl over a sauce pan that has about 1 inch of water in it, make sure the water is not touching the bottom of the bowl (aka build a double boiler). Add egg whites, sugar, vanilla extract, cream of tartar and salt. Mix together. Heat, stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves and the egg whites are warm when you touch them.
Transfer egg white mixture to a stand mixer and attach whisk attachment. Stir on low and turn up the speed every 15 seconds or so until it’s on high speed. Beat 5-7 minutes or until glossy, stiff peaks form.
Frost cupcakes and serve! Refrigerate if you’re not using it right away. This recipe will make enough to frost about 8-10 cupcakes using a lot of frosting per cupcake (as I did in this photo), or 1 small 6 inch cake. I would probably double the recipe if you are doing a larger cake or 2 dozen cupcakes. *Note: the original recipe called for 8 egg whites, 2 cups sugar, 1/2 tsp of cream of tartar, so when I scaled it down I just did a big pinch. If you double this recipe, use 1/4 tsp cream of tartar.
I’m seriously amazed at how delicious and easy it was to make this marshmallow frosting. I already have a million ideas for variations on this type of frosting. What I really loved about it is that it’s super light and NOT sickeningly sweet like other frostings I’ve had. I almost want to say I’d add more sugar next time, but I think this would be the perfect frosting for an already sweet cake.
So be prepared for lots of cupcakes to come!
What’s your favorite type of frosting? I usually love chocolate ganache or just plain whipped cream, but this marshmallow frosting is going to be on the top of my list now.
P.S. Two days left to enter the Peanut Butter & Co. Dark Chocolate Dreams Giveaway! Head over to Facebook to enter! Click the Giveaway tab! Make sure to tell your friends and get extra entries daily by tweeting about the giveaway.