by Allison Milam in Recipes, April 24th, 2013
by Allison Milam in Recipes, April 17th, 2013
A lot of our favorite spring sides come mashed — or smashed, depending on your word-choice preference. This week we’re zeroing in on a texture for side dishes that makes for good eating — and easy chewing. Some mashed dishes entail a ricer or the back of your fork. Others are mashed in a more casual sense. All of these dishes, however, involve a certain level of deconstruction.
When it comes to smashed spring peas, the British know what’s up. Go for Jamie Oliver’s Minty Mushy Peas, which will work as a hearty, vegetarian side. Though he opts for frozen peas, we all know the fresh ones are ripe for the mushing. Rachael Ray adds creamy, slightly sweet cheese to her Smashed Peas and Ricotta Cheese recipe.
This last recipe is not mashed in its entirety, but it shows how mashed ingredients fit into bigger pictures. Tagliatelle With Smashed Peas, Sausage and Ricotta Cheese by Giada De Laurentiis uses the pulverized pea for its creamy, filling and subtly sweet attributes. The spicy sausage counteracts the mild peas and cheese, creating a pasta side ready for any night of the week.
Get more mashed sides from friends and family
by Allison Milam in Recipes, April 10th, 2013
It seems that spring is finally gracing us with its presence. Good thing we didn’t hold our breath, eh? In celebration of the season, bolt to your nearest farmers’ market — or produce section — for some fresh, fresh, fresh produce.
Here’s the catch: rather than zapping these veggies with heat, reach for a trusty kitchen tool instead: the mandoline. With its thin-slicing capabilities, this gadget converts veggies into some sensational no-cook sides. But be sure to watch yourself — this tool is seriously sharp. (Don’t have a mandoline? A standard vegetable peeler will work just fine too.)
Summer Squash Carpaccio by Food Network Magazine is vibrant and vital as we progress into the warmer months. Here ribbons of yellow squash and zucchini are thin but perky as they marinate in a simple lemon vinaigrette with herbs and grated pecorino.
Get more no-cook recipes from friends and family
by Allison Milam in Family, Recipes, April 3rd, 2013
Fixing a bowl of raisin-laced quinoa and calling it dinner just won’t do. Yes, many wholesome grains are packed with protein and all that good stuff, but they’re that much better when things are kept balanced. With this fleet of recipe combinations, your grain-based sides are not just an afterthought; they’re a fluid and integral part of your meal.
A Tupperware of some-sort-of-quinoa-salad may be all the rage at lunchtime these days, but quinoa is much more exciting when it’s transitioned to the dinner table. Food Network Magazine‘s Spice-Rubbed Pork With Quinoa and its Scallops With Citrus and Quinoa are both sophisticated and relatively light, and the grain itself is prepared very simply.
Couscous works wonders when combined with shellfish. Sandra Lee whips up a homemade basil-walnut pesto for her Shrimp Scampi Over Pesto Couscous, and Food Network Magazine’s Greek Shrimp and Couscous integrates the grain with a sauce brimming in tomatoes, fennel and feta. The chefs in Food Network Kitchens aren’t kidding with this 20-Minute Shrimp and Couscous With Yogurt-Hummus Sauce (pictured above) — this dish comes out quick. Store-bought Greek yogurt and hummus make for an easy dipping sauce when blended, while the whole-wheat couscous is studded with dried apricots.
Get more grain-focused side dish recipes
by Allison Milam in Recipes, March 27th, 2013
Think about it — your oven has done a lot for you this season. It’s seen pies and casseroles, pot roasts and big birds. It’s gotten you through holidays and frosty nights. Let’s not even mention all the cookies and cakes. But soon enough, you’ll be trading your boots for shorts and your oven for the grill. It’s just how the cycle goes.
This week, as you get your hands on some of that fresh spring produce, keep that faithful oven of yours in mind. It roasts veggie after veggie to sheer perfection, making certain your sides are simply sensational.
When asparagus meets the oven, it doesn’t need much else. Food Network Magazine’s pristine Roasted Asparagus calls upon nothing more than toasted pine nuts and lemon to accentuate its earthy flavors. Ina Garten’s Parmesan Roasted Asparagus, on the other hand, is luxurious and the perfect mate to a sumptuous steak.
Though Roasted Carrots may scream fall, this recipe by Food Network Magazine uses lemon, red onion, cilantro and spices to inject a seasonal flair. Add a dose of green for Roasted Carrots and Peas, ensuring that the vibrancy of the season shines through. Here’s a good tip: It’s a good idea to parboil hard veggies like carrots so the finished product comes down without a crunch.
Get more roasted side dish recipes from friends and family
You’ve heard it all before: Spring is a time for change. It’s a time when we kick off our puffy down coats and swing our windows wide open. It’s also a time when our diets change for the better. But before getting carried away with all the green-as-can-be produce you can get your hands on, use this first stage of the season for some serious spring cleaning, with a special emphasis on that pantry of yours.
This week, Food Network’s combining forgotten pantry items with the freshness of spring produce. Together, these two elements create bright and budget-friendly side dishes.
Those cardboard boxes of pasta sure stock up in the shadowy depths of your pantry. Get that stuff boiled by making one of these spring-forward pasta dishes. Serve Food Network Magazine’s Spaghetti With Snap Peas and Prosciutto alongside a nice chicken breast. Or try Pasta Salad With Asparagus, Corn and Sun-Dried Tomatoes by Food Network Magazine as a cold side for a spring picnic.