Seriously Lemon Tart


No, but really – the title of this pie definitely does not lie. I might even rename it to be “Seriously, Seriously, Seriously Lemon Tart”.

Nonetheless, even though it does provide quite the pucker, this Seriously Lemon Tart from Cooking Light is definitely a keeper. This is a great alternative to the traditional lemon dessert basically due to the sheer amount of lemon juice and lemon bits required. Plus, the layering effect of the lemon slices on top makes it to be a “pretty” dessert too (now I totally realize that “prettiness” is a dessert isn’t everything, but it can definitely add a nice extra touch!).

If you have the time, make sure to check out this recipe from the latest edition of Cooking Light as well as a few others including the Gumbo!

Cheers!

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Chicken and Prosciutto Salad With Arugula and Manchego


I have a huge crush… on arugula. All of a sudden, I’ve developed a penchant for the peppery-garlic-earthy flavor of this salad green whether it’s on pizza, on it’s own or combined into a sauce. In my opinion, it makes eating a healthy salad just that much easier because I love the flavor (as opposed to eating a bland iceberg lettuce that needs calorie-laden dressings to make it bearable). As a result, I’ve been on the hunt for more and more recipes that utilize arugula to add to the usual rotation for dinner.

I was instantly drawn to this recipe after seeing it in one of the latest issues of Cooking Light. This recipe calls for Asiago cheese; however, I substituted Manchego instead. What I particularly liked about this salad is the fact that it uses arugula (obviously) and combines that with a mix of salty, sweet and tangy/citrus flavors through the prosciutto, tomatoes and lemon flavored dressing. Super simple, healthy, filling and a balanced meal!

Cheers and have a great Sunday evening!

Lemon Bars

Sometimes I just get the urge to bake. Tonight was no different. Unfortunately, I am in desperate need of a grocery shopping excursion. As a result, I’m left to the bare minimum for food. This lack of items did not help me with my baking quest at first; however, it did help me uncover easy recipes that I could use with both few and ordinary items. I settled upon making Lemon Bars – delicious, refreshing and probably one of the best desserts to make if in a bind for ingredients.

Step 1: Cream Sugar and Butter; Add Flour

Step 2: Mix Wet Ingredients

Step 3: Bake Dough; Pour Wet Ingredients

Step 4: Bake and Enjoy!

Did I mention this is a Barefoot Contessa recipe? Although this is a dessert served better in the summer, I personally think it is a perfect change for a season that’s filled with way too many heavy items.

Cheers!

How To: Guacamole

I have a newfound love: guacamole. Oddly enough, I used to detest avocados and it wasn’t until a few months ago that I decided to give them another shot. I am not quite sure what changed, but I developed a very sudden liking for them. After sampling a few different types from restaurants (freshly made) versus grocery stores (very preservative friendly), I decided that I wanted to make my own because I liked the freshly made kinds much better.

As taught to me by one of my best friends, I have provided some easy instructions on how to make guacamole:

Step 1: Cut Avocado in Half

Step 2: Cut Slices in Desired Thickness

Step 3: Scoop Out With a Spoon

Step 4: Strike Pit With Knife and Twist to Remove

Step 5: Mash With Spoon and Add Desired
Amount of Lemon Juice; Season
With Salt, Pepper and/or Garlic

This is a very simple recipe for guacamole. But, this tastes so much fresher than the store bought kind. Next time, I would like to experiment with adding salsa, jalapeño or peppers.

What other ingredients do you use in your homemade guacamole?

Cheers!

Fresh Lemon Pasta


If you haven’t noticed already, I’m literally all about “ease, ease, ease” and “few ingredients, few ingredients, few ingredients”. Rarely a time exists where I cave and use a recipe that requires over 12 seperate ingredients. That being said, this Tuesday was no different. A friend from college came over to visit my roommate and I. I decided to make a simple dinner and one that would require few ingredients (of course!!).

I had already picked up a lemon at the store a few days prior and decided I wanted to incorporate it somehow. Since I already had pasta on hand, I figured I’d try to figure out some type of pasta-lemon duo. After some glancing around the cupboard, I decided to make Fresh Lemon Pasta as a nice, summery dish.

Step 1: Smash Garlic and Chop Finely


Step 2: Grate Parmesan; Juice and Zest Lemon


Step 3: Combine Zest, Juice, and Olive Oil


Step 4: Combine Cheese, Cooked Noodles, Sauteed
Garlic, and Olive Oil/Lemon Sauce Together; Enjoy!

Although it almost seems too simple, my tastebuds were not disappointed and my wallet was sure happy with me too. As cheesy as that sounds, it is completely true! Anyway, the key to this recipe’s success is lots of garlic (lots!) and playing around with the lemon-to-olive oil ratio in order to make a sauce that includes enough lemon, but doesn’t make your mouth pucker in a sour grin. Next time, I’d like to add chicken or perhaps olives and tomatoes. Until then…

Cheers!

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes With Lemon Curd & Raspberries

One of my best friends came to visit me this past weekend. Like me, she loves to bake and cook. In fact, she is an inspiration to me and even taught me some new tricks with cooking (whether she knows it or not). For her visit, I wanted to make a fun breakfast that would encompass three traits: ease, few ingredients, and fruit (have to take advantage of fruit during the summer season). I happened to find a recipe for Lemon Ricotta Pancakes that looked enticing — especially because prior to this cooking experience, I’d never used ricotta in a “sweet” recipe or used lemon curd.

Step 1: Combine Dry Ingredients;
Combine Wet Ingrediens


Step 2: Combine Dry and Wet Ingredients


Step 3: Drop Batter Onto Greased Hot Griddle;
Flip When Golden Brown; Add Powdered Sugar
and Raspberries; Enjoy! 

Although these look “pretty” — they were tough to make. The batter does not hold together as easily as I would have liked. The best trick is to carefully watch the heat and make sure to master the perfect art of the quick-flip (I had a few fall apart…). But, nonetheless, these were absolutely delicious and the combination of fresh lemon and raspberries flavors provided a nice contrast to the boring egg-and-cheese-combo of the usual Sunday morning breakfasts.

Cheers!

Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Parmesan, and Fresh Herbs


After making this recipe, the song “My Favorite Things” from Mary Poppins started to play in my head. At first this seemed strange, but then it dawned on me why this song was stuck in my head — this recipe encompasses many of my favorite ingredients: lemon, basil, cheese, and garbanzo beans.

But, to be perfectly honest, I usually do not make “bean salads.” So, nonetheless, I was a bit hesitant to try this recipe of Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Parmesan, and Fresh Herbs; however, since it contained my favorite ingredients, I was hoping that the marriage of these elements would produce a fantastic result.

This recipe was a definite hit. The only modification I would make is to reduce the amount of lemon juice. But, other than that, this recipe is so simple that I will continue again and again to make it on days when I’m not in the mood to cook!

Cheers!