When you think of apples, two classic combinations come to mind: apples and cinnamon and apples with peanut butter. Who doesn’t love a hot, gooey apple cinnamon cobbler? Or some crisp, fresh apples dipped in creamy peanut butter? These popular pairings are certainly delicious, but the repertoire of our tart and fruity friend certainly does not end there.
This week, we are highlighting some ingredients you might not have thought to pair with apples, but that nonetheless make for a perfect—not to mention tasty—marriage. I now pronounce you apple and wife. You may cook the bride.
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I was vegetarian for about 16 years of my life. It was the lifestyle my parents were used to, so that was just the way they raised me. While I was vegetarian, I operated primarily on the Indian lentils-rice-vegetable diet. In other words, whatever my mother fed me was what I ate. Unfortunately, the one vegetable my mother hated was eggplant, so I went the majority of my childhood and young adult life unexposed to what I later realized was a truly fabulous vegetable. These babies are actually a vegetarian’s best friend. They are hearty, flavorful and actually filling on their own in a way that few other vegetables are. They are also currently in season. Take advantage of this tasty vegetable by trying it as a substitute for meat in some classic dishes – whether or not you are vegetarian, you won’t miss the meat with these healthy and flavorful recipes!
Love Chicken Parmesan? Make Eggplant Parmesan instead
This one may be the most obvious, but Robin’s version is lightened up and given a kick of chili pepper.
Recipe: Robin’s Neapolitan Eggplant Parmesan
Craving a Ham and Cheese Tortilla? Try a Vegetable Tortilla instead
Eggplant, along with onions, tomatoes, zucchini and green bell pepper give this frittata loads of interesting texture and flavor.
Recipe: Vegetable Tortilla (above)
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Oftentimes, we go to great caloric lengths to cool down, whether it’s slurping down a fluorescent margarita by the pool or downing a teetering ice cream cone. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
If there’s anything that melon’s good for, it’s cooling you down. And the refreshing capabilities of cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon go far beyond the category’s prominent presence in fruit salad. On the contrary, melon does wonders in a salad, adds creaminess to a cool soup or can be transformed into something entirely unexpected. Melon fettuccini, anyone? Unlike other ultra-tangy, sugary fruits, melon serves as a foundation for bigger things. Seriously, the options are endless.
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- Ellie's Peach Pie Smoothie is a healthy and refreshing take on a classic dessert.
Peaches are one of the top reasons I love summer. There is nothing quite like biting into a ripe, juicy peach on a hot day and feeling the sweet nectar dribble down your mouth. Napkin? No, thank you.
Unfortunately, peaches are the kind of fruit that can get overripe pretty quickly. Forget them in your crisper for even a few days, and you are stuck with mushy, bruised fruit. Luckily, there are loads of healthy ways to prepare overripe peaches that still bring out all the same delicious summery, peachy flavor. Here are Healthy Eats’ top 5 uses for peaches that are past their prime.
1. Make a chutney – The peaches are already mushy, so they will cook quickly. Plus, you are cooking them with loads of other pungent flavors like shallots, mustard and cherries, so you don’t have to worry about tasting any sourness that might have developed in your peaches.
Recipe: Food Network Kitchens’ Peach-Mustard Chutney
2. Freeze them and blend them into smoothie – Freeze overripe peaches and blend them into a refreshing fruit smoothie. The final product will have great peach flavor and color, and no one will be able to tell they were bruised or mushy to begin with. Freezing peaches generally is also a great way to preserve them past the summer months.
Recipe: Ellie’s Peach Pie Smoothie (above)
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Sliding a knife through its glossy skin, the pepper’s crunchy disposition is immediately audible. We hear it when we’re chomping away on a raw slice and we relish it still when it’s cooked off into a sweeter, softer version of itself. Unlike a scorching hot chili pepper, the bell pepper is known for its unique, refreshing sweetness. Whether red, green, orange, purple or yellow, bell peppers can take us from breakfast to dinnertime, breathing color and texture into our meals.
Looking for ways to incorporate abundant, in-season bell peppers into three main meals? Take a peek out our list of breakfast-to-dinner recipes.
Roasted Red Pepper Frittata
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There’s the bottle of ketchup in the fridge. A weightlifter’s load of canned tomatoes in the pantry—crushed and whole, of course. You’ve got your tomato paste, your bag of sun-dried, your jar of marinara, your jarred salsas and your canned tomato soups. You could survive a natural disaster with the amount of tomatoes in your house. In its preserved form, the tomato is your lifeblood, your fallback. A sauce injects limp pasta with life and tomato soup reinvigorates grilled cheese with just a dip. It graces the tops of our favorite pizzas and finds its way on top of our hotdogs. Tomato products—keyword: products—build the foundation of our kitchens and is one of the only products that we do not insist on freshness. And that’s fine, up until a certain point.
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- Zucchini Rounds: Like pepperoni, but different!
The summer squash is like a Little Black Dress: it’s one of the more versatile items in your fridge (or closet). It comes in many different varieties like zucchini (cylindrical and green), crookneck (usually yellow and bent) or pattypan (white-ish and flat). So what is it that makes this glorious summer vegetable so multipurpose? In the end, it comes down to how you slice it. Grate it, and it becomes hash; thinly slice it, and it becomes carpaccio; halve it, and it becomes a base for stuffing. It is the quintessential chameleon vegetable, and as long as you know all the ways you can cut it, the possibilities are truly endless.
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- Stay cool as a cucumber with Ellie Krieger's no-cook soup.
Week three of our season-long garden party Summer Fest 2011 welcomes food and garden bloggers to feature garden-to-table recipes and tips. We’ll help you to enjoy all that this season has to offer. So far, we’ve delved into eggplant and peaches. This week we’re getting creative with: cucumbers.
With temperatures reaching 90 degrees in many areas of the country, it’s just too hot to cook. But it’s never too hot to eat right, so mercury rising is no excuse to roll through the drive-through. Ellie Krieger’s Cool Cucumber Soup is just the solution. It’s perfect for the height of summer because:
- You won’t need to turn on the oven or stove to make it.
- It’s done in 20 minutes.
- It’s a great way to use up the cucumbers growing like crazy in the garden.
- It clocks in at just 130 calories and 2.5 grams of fat, so makes a waistline-friendly light lunch or appetizer.
- Per Ellie, it’s a good source of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and calcium.
What are you waiting for? Get out the blender and whip up this super-cool, creamy-yet-good-for you cold soup.
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- Tomato-Peach Salad from Food Network Magazine.
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers to host Summer Fest 2011, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today, we’re exploring peaches.
Peaches are finally in season, so get your hands on some while they last and enjoy them in as many ways as you can (but don’t forget to freeze some for the colder months!). Here are 8 healthy ways to eat the sweet stone fruits that you might not have thought of.
8. As a side dish: Tomato-Peach Salad from Food Network Magazine (pictured above)
7. With chicken: Bobby Flay’s Grilled Chicken With Spicy Peach Glaze Read more »