What is it with grain salads? For decades, we didn’t know they existed, and now they’re everywhere. Here’s a hint: they’re delicious.

In this one, I tried out a new grain: pearled barley. It’s sort of like farro, but a little less nutty and a little more… barley-ey? It’s great for a weeknight, since it boils up to al dente in fifteen minutes.

This fish sauce vinaigrette, adapted from The Kitchn, pulls everything together nicely with tart, umami, and salty notes. Although fish sauce is famously not fishy, here, I play up the seafood element by pairing the sauce with griddled scallops (scallops a la plancha). To get a beautiful crust on the scallops (or any protein), I recommend salting them a day before and leaving uncovered in the fridge. I paired it with roasted brussels sprouts, too, for vegetal, crispy, chewy deliciousness.

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Fish Sauce Vinaigrette with Pearled Barley Salad

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • ¾ cup pearled barley
  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • Half a bundle of scallions, sliced
  • Protein of choice, cooked to taste – I used scallops

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Blend the vinegar, fish sauce, honey, and olive oil in your Magic Bullet.
  3. Meanwhile, boil the pearled barley in heavily salted water for fifteen minutes or until al dente. Rinse with cold water to cool.
  4. Toss the brussels sprouts with a dash of olive oil and a hefty dash of salt and roast in the oven until crispy and brown, about twenty minutes.
  5. Toss brussels, scallions, barley, and protein with the vinaigrette.
  6. Enjoy!

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Sometimes, the best pancakes are the ones that come completely out of left field. That’s the case with this recipe, which uses granola, applesauce, and yogurt to create a light and fluffy pancake that isn’t heavy and tastes absolutely great. It’s a sweet break from a traditional pancake blend, and one that you’ll find yourself making over and over.

I topped my pancakes with berries, but you can top yours with fresh, sliced apple, cinnamon, or a drizzle of honey. Your choice!

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Apple Yogurt Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup oatmeal
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup apple sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Blend all ingredients in Magic Bullet.
  2. Cook on non-stick frying pan. Be extra careful with them, though, and keep heat relatively low to keep from falling apart.

Make sure you make extra – you’re going to want seconds!

The summer can be brutal, and the majority of the time, I just want to enjoy a nice, refreshing piece of fruit. Almost daily, my kids and I venture to the pool with packed lunches and sunscreen. The last thing I want to eat is a sandwich, so I created this salad as my g0-to summer lunch. It’s light, refreshing, but still totally filling. And, you won’t feel heavy or bloated in your bathing suit!

We all know how important that it!

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Strawberry Mint Watermelon Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped, seedless watermelon
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/3 cup feta
  • ½ lime, juiced, or 1 whole lime if it’s not super juicy
  • 6-7 mint leaves
  • zest of ½ lime

Directions

  1. In a bowl, add chopped watermelon, strawberries, and feta. Using the smallest Magic Bullet cup, add in your lime juice and mint leaves.
  2. Blend until the mint leaves are chopped up and the lime is well incorporated.
  3. Add the dressing to the salad and mix. Top with lime zest, and enjoy!

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This dish is such a classic for me that I couldn’t believe I’d never blogged about it for Magic Bullet. It’s an easy weeknight dish: an incredibly delicious pasta with somewhat off-beat ingredients and is reasonably healthy to boot.

If you think you don’t like cauliflower, this will change your mind: the high heat gets it crispy, sweet and delicious. And if you think you don’t like anchovies, well, first of all, you’re nuts, but second of all, this will also turn you into a convert: the combination of raw garlic and anchovies (which creates the lovely Italian flavors of “bagna cauda”) gives a lip-smacking, slap-your-grandma flavor burst in lieu of a sauce. When I started making this dish, I wasn’t too acquainted with using fennel seed, either, but it gives a nice subtle anise-y flavor that really contrasts nicely with the rest.

With a big thank you to Adam Roberts (aka the Amateur Gourmet), from whom I’ve adapted this amazing dish.

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Pasta with Cauliflower and Garlic Bagna Cauda

Ingredients

  • 1 pound short pasta (like rigatoni)
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets, stem removed
  • 1 tin anchovies, reserving oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 Tbsp fennel seeds
  • Olive oil, to taste
  • Big dash of red pepper flakes
  • Grated parmesan cheese, for serving

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Roast cauliflower florets until crispy, about twenty minutes. Meanwhile, boil pasta in heavily salted water until al dente.
  2. Blend garlic in Magic Bullet, then add the anchovies with their oil and the red pepper flakes and blend.
  3. Mix together the pasta, the blended ingredients, and the cauliflower. Drizzle with olive oil for added richness. Serve, passing parmesan.

Enjoy!

Jun
23
0

Broccoli Tots

Who doesn’t like a good tot? While potato-based tots are by far the most common, sometimes, you’re in the mood for a little spin off. This recipe uses cooked broccoli, cheddar cheese and some spicy Sriracha to make a baked broccoli tot that’s not only healthy, but just as tasty as any tater tot out there!

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Broccoli Tots

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2-2 cups broccoli, chopped
  • 1/4 cup scallions, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Sriracha, or your favorite hot sauce
  • 1/2-1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 slices bread
  • Salt & pepper

Directions

  1. First thing, let’s make bread crumbs! Toast 1-2 small slices of bread, break apart, and add to your Magic Bullet cup. Blend until crumbly.
  2. Chop broccoli and add to pot of lightly salted boiling water. Remove after two minutes.
  3. Add broccoli to Magic Bullet and blend until finely chopped.
  4. Beat egg, combine all ingredients in mixing bowl and mix together.
  5. Roll mixture into cylindrical shapes and place on oiled oven pan. Bake for 9 minutes at 400 degrees, flip the tots over and bake for another 9 minutes.

Potato who?

That’s it! Enjoy!

Jun
22
0

Breakfast Strata

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This ham and cheese breakfast strata is an easy dish to make for a complete breakfast. It is also one of my favorite dishes to bring to a brunch, since it can easily feed a lot of people. You can use white or whole wheat bread — white bread tastes a little better in my opinion, but whole wheat bread is healthier and will keep you full longer. I usually opt for the whole wheat bread option, especially in this dish, which is already hearty and full of flavor!

Best of all, it’s super easy to make. Arrange a few pieces of bread on the bottom of a greased baking dish (I used an 8×8-inch pan.) Top with chopped ham and pour beaten eggs over, sprinkling with cheese before baking it in the oven. The bread becomes soaked with egg and, once it bakes in the oven, it tastes fluffy and scrumptious. It is almost like a savory baked French toast!

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Breakfast Strata

Ingredients

  • 3 slices of whole wheat bread, halved
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped ham
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar and jack cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Arrange the bread at the bottom of a greased 8×8-inch baking dish.
  3. Add the eggs, milk, salt and pepper to a Magic Bullet cup and blend until well combined and frothy.
  4. Sprinkle the chopped ham over the bread and pour the egg mixture on top.
  5. Top with shredded cheese and bake for 30 minutes until cheese is starting to brown.

Makes 1 8×8 dish.

Hello salad, my old friend.

I’ve come to enjoy you again.

Because as lately, I’ve been eating,

Foods that I should not be eating –

Pizza, mac n’ cheese,

Cheeseburgers, wings –

And yet the hunger deep inside my stomach

Still remains.

And so… I eat salad.

(With salmon and farro and Brussels sprouts, and a lemony vinaigrette.)

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Salmon, Farro, and Brussels Sprouts Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 medium wild salmon filet, about 8 ounces
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and sliced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 2/3 cup farro
  • ¼ cup olive oil, plus more for cooking
  • Juice and zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp mustard (I used a mix of Dijon and spicy brown)

Directions

  1. Add a dash of olive oil to a large pan over medium-high heat and add the brussels sprouts. Cook until beginning to brown, then remove to a bowl.
  2. Pat the salmon dry with a paper towel and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add more olive oil to the pan and add the salmon, skin side down. Cook until salmon skin will release from pan without any resistance, then flip the salmon over and cook few minutes more until the salmon is medium-rare on the inside.
  3. Meanwhile, boil the farro in two cups of salted water until cooked, about twenty minutes.
  4. In Magic Bullet, blend the olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and the mustard.
  5. Add the farro, cucumbers and brussels sprouts to a bowl. Add the vinaigrette and stir everything around. Plate the salad, topping with salmon.

I love a good meatball, but I’ve always been a bit intimidated by the preparation process. First, you need an Italian grandmother, a chicken that lays fresh eggs, and years, even decades, of meatball-making wisdom. Well, needless to say, I didn’t have any of that. So, instead, I tested the waters and actually tried a recipe that sounded relatively simple. I was surprised — the recipe was easy to make, the meatballs were tasty, and they actually tasted better with time.

You can make them in a snap in your Magic Bullet. Enjoy them on their own, in a sub, or in a pasta dish of your choosing, and voila! The perfect, homemade meal.

This recipe also substitutes chicken for the classic ground beef to produce a healthier meatball. The chicken adds a nice consistency and flavor, as well!

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Easy Chicken Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound boneless chicken thighs, cooled
  • 1/2 yellow or white onion
  • 1 egg
  • About 2 Tbsp fresh or dried rarsley
  • 1 tsp. rosemary
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 oz. parmesan cheese
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • flour

Directions

  1. Lightly chop onions and blend in Magic Bullet with Parmesan cheese and parsley.
  2. Cut chicken into small cubes.
  3. Add chicken, egg, rosemary, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to parsley, cheese and onion in Magic Bullet and blend.
  4. Roll mixture into balls and coat each in flour.
  5. Add meatballs to well-oiled frying pan over medium heat, turning frequently to cook evenly. Cook each for 10 to 15 minutes.

Throw these into some pasta with your favorite sauce and you’ve got yourself a heck of a meal!

Jun
13
0

Easy Mexican Rice

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Have you ever wanted to create your own Mexican style rice at home? I bet you didn’t realize how easy it can be to make it from scratch. All you need are a few ingredients you probably already have in your pantry — to make a spicy version, you can also add in some chopped jalapeño. The secret is letting the rice absorb the seasoned tomato sauce while cooking, instead of stirring it into already cooked rice. Serve this Mexican rice as a side with your favorite Mexican dish!

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Easy Mexican Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Directions

  1. Add the tomato sauce, water, garlic, cumin and chili powder to a Magic Bullet cup and blend.
  2. Add the olive oil and rice to a pot and turn on the heat to high.
  3. Pour the blended sauce over the rice, stir in the peas and bring to a boil.
  4. Cover and turn the heat to low, and cook for 20 minutes.
  5. Fluff with a fork and top with fresh cilantro when ready to serve.

Makes 4 servings.

Sometimes, your inspiration comes from a great food mind like Mario Batali, Mark Bittman, Kenji Lopez-Alt, or Julia Child. And sometimes your inspiration comes from an anonymous commenter at the bottom of a recipe on the Internet. That happens to be the situation here, as in my endless quest for the perfect carbonara, I came across this somewhat zany, completely delicious variation from a person named “aburitoro” in the comments section of a Serious Eats carbonara recipe. I mean, aburitoro does sound like someone who knows what’s what, and carbonara with an Asian flare? What could go wrong?

As it turns out, this was really tasty! Soy sauce amped up the umami quotient in the sauce, and scallions and nori cut the richness of the dish in all the right ways. Definitely recommended!

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Asian Carbonara Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound dried spaghetti
  • ¼ cup diced bacon or pancetta
  • 1-2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 whole egg plus 3 egg yolks
  • 1 chunk parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. black peppercorns
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 3 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 1 piece of nori (dried sushi seaweed), ripped into pieces

Directions

  1. Cook pasta until al dente in heavily salted water. Remove the pasta without draining the pasta water.
  1. Add bacon to pan with oil over medium heat and cook until crisp. Turn off heat.
  1. Blend garlic in the Magic Bullet and place in a large metal or glass bowl. Blend the parmesan and add to the bowl. Blend the black pepper corns and add to the bowl.
  1. Add the eggs, egg yolks, garlic, parmesan, soy sauce and black pepper back to the Bullet and pulse a few times.
  1. Add cooked pasta to the pan with the bacon and stir everything together. Add the egg mixture and 1/2 cup pasta water to the pan and stir. Separately, bring the leftover pasta water back to a boil.
  1. Dump everything in the pan back into the bowl and place the bowl over the boiling water to create a double boiler. Let the pasta cook from the heat of the steam until you have a creamy sauce.
  1. Serve immediately, topped with scallions and nori.

Enjoy!