Tag: sensational sides

6 Ways to Bundle Up Asparagus This Spring

by in Recipes, April 14th, 2016

Asparagus BundlesWinter may have been the time to bundle yourself up in sweaters and coats, but springtime calls for bundling of a whole different sort. This season, bundle up slender spears of asparagus — which is at its very peak right now — in all kinds of ways. Not only does this all-wrapped-up method mean easy, breezy serving, but it also brings big flavor to fresh, tender spears, which are tall, skinny and made for bundling.

Make a Bacon Blanket

Hey, if you’re going to wrap anything in anything, one of those things should definitely be bacon, right? In her Asparagus Bundles, Trisha Yearwood doesn’t stop at wrapping the asparagus with the salty staple. From there, she douses the dish in a buttery brown sugar-soy sauce mixture before baking.

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How to Eat Salad for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner (and Not Be Mad About It)

by in Recipes, April 7th, 2016

Greens, Grapes and Granola Breakfast SaladSalad has come a long way — or maybe we’re the ones who have. While the words “finish your salad” followed many of us from meal to meal as children, we’ve thankfully grown out of our resistance to everything green, and our love for a big, hearty, leafy salad has grown massively since then. But, even if you love a good salad, odds are you haven’t eaten it for three square meals a day — until now, that is.

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5 Ways Peas Are Better with the Italian Treatment

by in Recipes, March 31st, 2016

Peas and ProsciuttoIf winter was the time for stick-to-your-ribs meat sauces, hearty layered lasagnas and other forces of Italian-made comfort, spring is the time for dishes with a much fresher inclination. And if there’s anything that screams “spring” above all else, it’s peas. This week, we’re celebrating the season by giving peak-season peas the Italian treatment in pea-centric sides, pasta dishes and more. Though many of these recipes call for frozen peas, go the fresh route instead. ‘Tis the season, after all.

Giada De Laurentiis combines peas with an Italian mainstay, prosciutto, for the epitome of a fresh springtime side. Her recipe for Peas and Prosciutto is a stunner when served beside any main dish, and it takes just 18 minutes to prep.

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5 Side Dishes That Are More Important Than the Easter Ham

by in Holidays, Recipes, March 24th, 2016

Marmalade-Glazed Carrots with Candied PecansFor those who celebrate Easter, the holiday’s food is a whole lot more than bunny-shaped marshmallows, giant chocolate rabbits and candy eggs. Instead, it’s all about the real food — the substantial dishes that tear everyone away from the Easter egg hunt and get them to the table. This year, load up your menu with crowd-pleasing, seasonal Easter sides that will complement (and might just outshine) any ham, roast of lamb or holiday main dish you choose.

If your carrot dish has been pretty one-dimensional in the past, let these Marmalade-Glazed Carrots with Candied Pecans (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine change all that. Cooked in a buttery orange juice-marmalade glaze, this sweet and crunchy dish is extra-striking thanks to multicolored carrots.

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Picnic Pasta Salad Season Is Here — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, May 14th, 2015

Spinach Artichoke Pasta SaladRepeat after us: You will not buy gloopy, mayo-clad, made-yesterday pasta salad from the deli container this summer. No way. As the most-fun salad of all the salads (seriously), summer pasta salad is the one irresistible picnic side we just can’t wait to make, partly because of how crazy-easy it is to throw together. Taken cold with an array of pasta shapes, the pasta salad genre can take so many different forms, each fresh, satisfying and bound to bulk up your picnic without much effort. Toss these bold summer pasta salads at home for on-the-go eating ideal for any outdoor potluck, low-key picnic or backyard cookout you come across this summer.

Make your first pasta salad of the season extra-special by doing it up with cheesy tortellini. Rachael Ray uses the tender store-bought stuffed pasta for an extra-satisfying Spinach Artichoke Pasta Salad (pictured above) that will be the star of the potluck from the very first spoonful.

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6 Ways to One-Up Side Dish Favorites with Cheese — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, May 7th, 2015

Goat Cheese Mashed PotatoesCheesy does it, cheese lovers. In addition to taking your favorite food by the block, don’t forget that one of the most-splendid ways to use cheese is in go-to side dishes.

1. Mashed Potatoes + Cheese

Mashed potatoes are normally improved upon with a lake of gravy in the center, but they’re even better than that when a little cheese gets involved. Ina Garten stirs garlicky herb goat cheese (as well as sour cream, butter and half-and-half) into her Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes for Food Network Magazine (pictured above). After sprinkling the creamy side with Parmesan, she sets it in the oven so it gets a nice golden-browned top. You might never take your mashed taters without cheese again.

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The Freshest Ways to Pass the Peas, Please — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 30th, 2015

Pasta, Pesto and PeasWho are we kidding? You probably aren’t on the edge of your seat waiting for peas to come in season. That’s because, as far as frozen fare goes, peas are the king, requiring little defrosting before you can toss them into a dish and start eating. Still, even if that lifestyle works for the rest of the year, springtime is the time to get your fresh pea fix. In the spirit of the season, we’ve got quite a few ways for you to put these little green gems to use. Most of these recipes call for the frozen alternative, but you can make your dishes worthy of springtime by swapping in the fresh stuff to your heart’s content.

When a need for pasta salad arises, Ina Garten’s Pasta, Pesto and Peas (pictured above) is the freshest way you can make it. Toss the pasta with homemade pesto and be sure to swap in fresh peas for frozen for that extra pop.

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Why Side Salads Are the Best Salads — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 23rd, 2015

Why Side Salads Are the Best SaladsThe utterance “I’m going to get a salad” often evinces visions of diets and other streaks of healthy eating. But, if you’re asking me, leafy greens and their accompaniments are anything but punishment. On the contrary, our favorite green salads emanate fresh vibrancy with every invigorating bite. Plus, when they’re enjoyed as a main dish, they bring a certain brightness to the main event. Next time you’re on the hunt for a side dish, think of these glorious side salad recipes for all kinds of leafy greens.

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5 Quirky Grain Switch-Ups You Gotta Try — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 16th, 2015

Healthy Farro Fried Amazing grains, how sweet the sound! (That is how the song goes … right?) Either way, there’s no denying the awesome powers of whole grains. Beyond the obvious health benefits of swapping them in for pasta, white rice and more, using grains as a nourishing alternative brings a welcome quirkiness to your go-to side dishes.

1. Take the rice out of your fried rice by using farro instead.

The glory of digging fried rice out of a takeout container could never be fully replaced, but making a good grain swap is a sure way to keep things interesting. Look to farro, an Italian grain of wheat that’s satisfyingly tender and chewy, for Healthy Farro Fried “Rice” (pictured above) that ups the texture of the classic Asian staple.

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The Asparagus Motto: The Simpler, The Better — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 9th, 2015

Roasted AsparagusThere’s a time and a place for a really involved recipe — and cooking with fresh, seasonal asparagus in springtime is not one of those times. It doesn’t take much for a side of asparagus to shine. When in-season asparagus is simply roasted, steamed or grilled, its innate flavors are given the chance to come out without any distractions. In the spirit of loving asparagus in its truest state, each of these spring-focused recipes is as simple as it gets, using just eight ingredients at the very most.

With just four ingredients on the roster, Ina Garten’s Roasted Asparagus (pictured above) reins in more than 300 reviews and a five-star rating. Simply drizzle fresh asparagus with quality olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt, as well as freshly ground black pepper, and roast until tender but still crisp. Watch Ina Garten make it herself and you’ll never have lackluster asparagus again.

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