Quick and Easy in 15 Minutes – Cherry Tomato & Garlic over Zoodles

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Cherry Tomatoes & Garlic Sauce over Zoodles

Photography & Recipe copyrighted by Jacqueline Peppard

Copyright 2017 by Jacqueline Peppard, all rights reserved

Quick and Easy in 15 Minutes – Cherry Tomato & Garlic Sauce over Zoodles

If you like bruschetta, you’ll love this!

Enjoy the last of the summer veggies with an amazingly light and easy to prepare dish bursting with flavor. Juicy-sweet cherry tomatoes combined with butter create a luxuriously silky sauce for a dish that comes together in 15 minutes or less. Eat over zoodles or baked spaghetti squash for a low-carb alternative, or fresh sliced sourdough bread. Yummy!

A PERFECT mid-week meal – double the recipe for fabulous leftovers or lunch.

Tools:

12 or 14 inch Skillet  (bigger the better) – A wide bottom is best. Follow the link to get good value for the price. They are awesome and if well cared for, should last a lifetime.

Spiralizer – This is truly the best made one on the market. Once you start making vegetable noodles with this gadget, you will not miss grain-based pasta. They are inexpensive and fun to use. I have been using mine for the last 5 years without any problems.

Ingredients:

1 bunch fresh basil chiffonade; about 1 TBS reserved for serving

2 TBS Butter

2 TBS Olive Oil

10 large garlic cloves coarsely chopped

1lb cherry tomatoes halved

Salt and coarse ground pepper to taste

Freshly grated Parmesan (for serving)

Directions:

Stem basil and stack the leaves on top of each other, roll into a tight wad, and use a sharp knife to slice into thin ribbons; set aside.

In a large skillet over medium-high, heat olive oil with butter until butter is melted.

Add garlic and saute until fragrant but not brown (about 1 minute).

Add cherry tomatoes and continue to saute another few minutes until tomatoes start to juice.

Season with salt and coarse ground pepper

Turn heat down to medium/medium-low and simmer until juices are reduced, stirring occasionally; about 8-10 minutes.

Stir in basil and cook a few seconds more until basil is wilted and reduced to half its size; remove from heat.

Serve over zoodles or baked spaghetti squash.

Garnish with reserved basil chiffonade and grated Parmesan.

Variations:

Add sliced cooked chicken or Italian sausage the last five minutes of simmer time.

1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes.

Roma tomatoes quartered instead of cherry tomatoes.

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Zesty Avocado Lime Salsa Helps Beat the Summer Heat

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Avocado Lime Salsa

Avocado Lime Salsa

Copyright 2017 by Jacqueline Peppard, all rights reserved

Cool down as the weather heats up with this zesty and easy Avocado Lime Salsa served as a side, a tasty topping to your barbeque, or scoop it up with celery sticks for a refreshing snack. Real simple and ready in a snap.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 avocados

4 TBS fresh lime juice

1/2 red onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1/4 TSP salt, or to taste

1 small jalapeño, seeded and minced (optional)

Directions:

Halve, pit, quarter, and peel avocados.

Cut quartered avocado into cubes.

In a medium bowl, toss avocado cubes with lime juice immediately to prevent browning.

Add remaining ingredients and toss lightly.

Serve immediately.

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Cool as a Cucumber Gazpacho – Easy No-Cook Recipe

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Cucumber Gazpacho Soup

Cucumber Gazpacho Soup

Copyright 2016, Jacqueline Peppard, all rights reserved.

Stay cool as a cucumber on warm summer days with this easy no-cook soup. Gazpacho, for those unfamiliar with the dish, is Spanish in origin and served cold. Traditionally, tomatoes are used to create the soup base, but the below recipe flips around the ingredients and uses cucumber as the soup’s base with tomatoes added as a topping.

Cucumbers Are Amazingly Healthy!

Really they are. Who would have guessed they can do so much more than de-puff your eyes after a night of too much fun.

They are made predominately of water, so they are super hydrating yet rich in fiber. They get you going in more ways than one.

Did you know they protect your brain and are great for relieving stress? Gosh, sign me up!

Dr. Mercola has published an article “9 Health Benefits of Cucumbers” Check it out and learn more about the super powers of a vegetable that seem oh so boring.

Here is the super delicious recipe:

Serves 4

Tools:
Food Processor
or Blender

Ingredients:

Tomato:
1 lb cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (depends on size)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro or dill sliced fine
1 minced garlic clove
Salt and coarse ground pepper to taste

Cucumbers:
1 lb cucumber chopped
3/4 cup sour cream or full cream yogurt
4 large scallions chopped
2 TBS fresh lime or lemon juice
1 cup chicken broth

Directions:

Prepare the tomatoes first so they have time to soak up the herb and garlic flavors. Add cut tomatoes, minced garlic, sliced cilantro or dill, salt and coarse ground pepper to taste, to a large bowl; toss lightly to combine and set aside.

Place 1/4 TSP salt, cucumber, scallions, 2 TBS lemon or lime juice, 3/4 cup sour cream in blender or processor; process until smooth. Slowly drizzle in 1 cup chicken broth until well blended. Divide among four bowls.

Top with prepared tomato (and optional shrimp) evenly divided among bowls.

Variations:

Add 1 cup pre-cooked baby shrimp to tomato topping.

Don’t like the herbs cilantro or dill? Try basil or mint instead.

Cook’s Notes:

Taste your cucumber to make sure they are sweet and not bitter before preparing soup. While any variety of cucumber works, Lemon or English cucumber are reliably sweet.

While I have made it with yogurt a few times, using sour cream produces a far richer and satisfying meal. The organic Wallaby brand in particular is made with live cultures and full cream. No milk or additives. It is AWESOME!

For those that cannot tolerate dairy, substitute a gelatin rich chicken broth for the sour cream (you know the kind that actually sets up and shakes). This will help with thickening and provides a filling yet savory experience.

Try serving with grilled salmon.

The cucumber soup pairs so well with something grilled. Have you seen my grilled salmon recipe? This is another simple recipe, but it will still impress your friends with it’s gourmet taste and presentation. Check out the recipe here.

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Grilled Cod Fish with Meyer Lemon Butter Sauce

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Cod with Meyer lemon butter sauce

Cod fish with Meyer Lemon Butter Sauce

Copyright 2015 by Jacqueline Peppard, all rights reserved.

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Grocery shopping in the after work rush, again, sigh! I am in a dilemma and deliberating on what to buy, and all I really want to do is get the heck out of the store. Mental notes – need to stay within the budget, yet get dinner on fast – I am hungry! Continue reading

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