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Posts Tagged ‘Nuts’

Ok, I’m just going to say it.  My summer guilty pleasure is Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City.  I know that its just a bunch of crude housewives bickering back and forth, pointless entertainment.  But it’s so entertaining!  I gotta say, I’m totally Team Bethenny.  Not that I think she’s the nicest character of the series or anything, but because I love her one liners and just find her quick wit entertaining.

On the show this season, there was a special emphasis on Bethenny’s status as a “chef”.  So naturally, I had to do some investigating.  Turns out, she’s a natural foods, self proclaimed “Skinny Chef”, and has several books out teaching women how to be naturally thin (whatever that means…)  I did some more digging and found some of her health food recipes.  Me, being me, of course I need to try one of these recipes!  So off I went.

I’ve always been wary of health foods – especially health desserts.  But, these cookies are good! I wouldn’t be posting them otherwise.  Although, I’m a little iffy about calling them cookies.  They’re shaped like cookies, but the texture is almost a little bread like…but delicious without all the butter and extra calories.  Win-win.

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Does your romaine lettuce have e.coli??  aww sad…poor you!  However will you be able to eat salad?  Oh wait…I can help!  How about a Baby Spinach Arugula salad with little fingerling potatoes, fresh spring green beans, walnuts, and a lemon yogurt dressing!

I originally made this salad as part of my Mom’s birthday feast.  My mom was born on Earth Day (April 22).  She dislikes the taste of meat.  And she loves vegetables and all things green.  So what better than to have a green birthday dinner feast complete with several courses of all things green.  (Pistachio Strawberry Trifle and Pesto Pasta w/ Peas, Pignoli & Parmesan coming atcha soon!)

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The great modern technological application we call Spell Check is my best friend.  Without it, I’m sure all my college papers would have come back to me with red marks all over and embarrassing communication grades.  Just now typing that last sentence, I misspelled “embarrassing”.  Well, that’s embarrassing… Speaking of embarrassing, I am not ashamed to admit that I learned how spell to Banana from Gwen Stefani’s hit song “Holla Back Girl”.  You know…”This s*^! is bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S.”  I sing it in my head every time I write out the word banana.  And that, my friends, is how my little spiel about spelling has anything to do with today’s post.  Because today is Banana post #2 (and yes, I did just sing that song in my head again).

Over spring break, during a brief recess from CPA misery, I decided to release my frustration over my stupidity through a baking session.  Nothing like a little CPA studying to make you realize how truly deficient one’s brain capacity really is.  A humbling experience surely. (The top pan in the photo above is a little sneak peak for the next post!  Lemon Yogurt Cake)

In Banana post #1, I addressed my curious partiality for green bananas.  And while Caramel Banana Cake is delicious, one does not always have the time and resources on hand to whip up a cake every time banana’s get over ripe (which, for me, means yellow).  So when my bananas over-ripen, I can’t just eat them…that’s gross!  And I also can’t throw them out, I’m Asian!  We don’t waste food…or anything else for that matter.  A frugal bunch we are.  Anyways, my ripened bananas usually end up in a smoothie or…Banana Bread!

Why do I love Banana Bread so much?

Three words: Fruit, Nuts, & Chocolate.  Quite possibly some of my favorite things in life.  While I know it exists, I really don’t understand why someone would make or eat plain Banana Bread when you can have Banana Walnut Chocolate-Chip Bread!

I love the picture above and below.  You can see Cami’s little eyes peering right above the bread…

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Love this salad! It combines all my favorite things…fruit, nuts, and cheese.

::COMPONENTS::

Pear
Dried Cranberries
Pecans (Walnuts or Almonds would also be good)
Goat Cheese (my personal favorite but you could also use blue cheese)
Apple Cider
Brown Sugar
Lemon Juice
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper for dressing
Salad greens

To roast the pears, peel the pears and slice them in half lengthwise.  Scoop the core out with a melon-baller or spoon (this is where the cheese filling will go).  Shave a small slice off of the rounded side of the pear so it will sit flat in the pan for roasting.  Lay the pears core side up in a small baking dish.

Mix in a small bowl the cranberries, nuts, and cheese.  Divide the mixture among the pear halves and fill the pear cavities.

In a bowl, mix together 1/2 c Apple Cider and 2 tbs brown sugar.  Stir to dissolve the sugar and then pour over pears.

Bake the pears in a 375º F oven for 25-30 min, basting the pears every 10 min with the cider mixture.

After baking, set the pears aside to cool.  To make a dressing, whisk together 1/4 c of the remaining cider mixture, 1/4 c lemon juice, 1/3 c olive oil, and salt and pepper.

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