A new love. (Other People’s Food Post #1)

I’ve decided that I must post more, even if I don’t have the fortitude to come up with my own recipe. Today’s star dish is from The Crumby Kitchen, and it is a recipe I have been making for a few years now.

My “new love,” referenced above, is alfredo sauce. Perhaps, growing up, I only ever had bottled, gross, mass-produced alfredo. Who wants that shizz? No one.

The husband and I love our local Italian restaurant, Picasso’s. I’ve never liked fettuccine alfredo until I tried theirs on a whim. It. is. perfect. The sauce is light and packed with flavor, and perfectly coats to their beautifully-cut fettuccine.

Look at that marvelous creation.

Perhaps it was my new-found love for alfredo, combined with my Local Fare delivery of sweet potatoes and gorgeous San Marzano tomatoes, that reminded me of this favorite recipe in my collection.



Spiralizing veggies to sub for pasta is by no means a new craze, and, let’s be honest – it does not hit the spot as pasta does.


It is pretty fun and satisfying to spiralize something – though a little scary, depending on your spiralizer. Mine has a blade that looks like a guillotine! And, in this recipe, the sweet potato “noodles” balance perfectly with the oh-so-decadent sauce.


After making a quick tomato sauce with shallots, you combine said sauce with a lovely alfredo sauce, and the results are delectable.

This recipe does require a lot of dishes – so I’d advise planning well so you can reuse pots or pans without having to dirty new ones.

I want this tomato alfredo to be part of my regular rotation. Tomato alfredo all the time!


Beauty, thy name is alfredo.

Recipe found here.

Tempeh Bacon Eggs Benedict (egg post #3)

Tempeh Bacon Eggs Benedict (egg post #3)

Sometimes, as a vegetarian, I crave the non-replaceable meat things: bacon, fried chicken, honeybaked ham…but I don’t indulge these cravings. Sometimes I really miss bacon and eggs – and I attempted to satisfy that craving in this tempeh bacon eggs benedict.

My dear friend got me a marvelous cookbook for Christmas: Southern Girl Meets Vegetarian Boy by Damaris Phillips. Though my situation is not quite hers (Southern Vegetarian Girl Meets Gun-Toting Carnivorous Maryland Boy), I love being able to indulge my Southern food cravings without sacrificing the flavor. I find myself buying Southern cookbooks and thinking to myself, I can make these vegetarian, but I often don’t make the effort. Luckily, Mrs. Phillips has gone through the trial-and-error process for me.

I wanted to try out her tempeh bacon – I’ve never quite been able to find a sufficient meat substitute for bacon – and was pleased with the results. I think if you slice the tempeh as thinly as possible, it almost recalls that fatty part of bacon.

I decided to make my eggs benedict with the bacon added – usually I forego the “meat” all together and add some kind of green and or tomatoes.

I’d advise getting up early to make the bacon unless you don’t mind waiting an hour for breakfast – with the marinating and cooking, it takes about that long (especially if your cast iron needs seasoning, as mine does…)

First, marinate the tempeh in a combination of soy sauce, liquid smoke, and hot sauce. I used Crystal hot sauce, and if you fear some heat, it does not transfer into the “facon.”


Next, fry it in butter – super key to the closest bacon taste you can get.


Dice up some small cubes of butter to add in if your skillet gets dry. Phillips suggests flipping the facon with forks, as it is delicate. The facon in the center of my skillet cooked faster, so keep an eye on them!

While the bacon cooks, poach some eggs. I have these little “poachies,” but you can simply slide eggs into simmering water as true chefs do. I didn’t want a runny yolk, so I broke the yolks and cooked mine all the way (that is perhaps a benedict sin…)


I also made my version of hollandaise sauce – it is easily vegan with a plant milk – but today I made mine with cow’s milk.


Assembly required, once everything is done. It’s not the prettiest – a blogging sin, I suppose…


Though the facon is rather pretty…


As I mentioned, there was some uneven cooking…

As the facon recipe is not mine, you will need to refer to the aforementioned awesome cookbook for it (you can also find the recipe in the Google Books Preview, but really at $2.99 on Kindle, it is a steal and totally worth it.)

Tempeh Bacon Eggs Benedict

Serves one, but there is enough sauce and bacon for more…just use more eggs and muffins!


  • four slices tempeh bacon
    • See link for recipe book/Google book for recipe in the “preview.”
    • 4-6 TB unsalted butter
  • two eggs
  • one English Muffin, toasted
  • nutritional yeast sauce (hollandaise)
    • 1/2 cup milk of choice (sub almond milk for no-dairy, or other plant milk)
    • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
    • 1 small garlic clove, chopped
    • 1/2 tb dijon mustard
    • dash of cayenne pepper
    • salt to taste

facon method

  1. Slice tempeh very thinly and marinate in soy sauce (I use Bragg’s Liquid Aminos, a pantry essential), liquid smoke, and hot sauce for 30 minutes.
  2. In a cast iron skillet, melt 2 TB unsalted butter over medium heat and wait until it sizzles.
  3. Carefully place marinated tempeh into the butter and cook for about four minutes on each side, until very browned and crispy. Flip using two forks to minimize breakage. Check occasionally to ensure you are not undercooking/overcooking (my skillet had an uneven heat distribution).
  4. Remove to a rack to dry.

“hollandaise” method

  1. Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan, stirring until smooth.
  2. Heat over medium until the mixture bubbles.
  3. Remove from heat (do not boil) until ready to use.

poached eggs method

Honestly, I don’t poach in a chef-y way. Refer to this post, or be lazy and use “poachies” as I did.


Place two strips of facon on each muffin half, and top with eggs and “hollandaise.”


Add greens of choice, pan-fried tomatoes, or anything else your heart desires.


Vegetable Ziti

It’s been a long while, dear readers…today’s recipe is something I made WEEKS ago, but…

more on that later.

This ziti is made with whole-wheat pasta, assorted vegetables, and a tomato sauce that can be used for anything Italian. As my grandmother did in her lasagna, I swapped the ricotta for cottage cheese – it’s a totally optional swap, but I enjoy the change in texture and the richness in flavor.

Now, why, you may ask, has it been so long since I’ve written? In a word, teenagers. (And don’t sigh in resignation – teenagers in general are sweet and wonderful and those that aren’t give the rest of them a bad name.)

I am a 10th grade English teacher, and it’s a job I used to love and now love occasionally and makes me want to smash things occasionally. For some reason, it’s gotten harder every year. Really, I think most people have NO IDEA how hard it is. Ever juggled cats? That might be a comparison.

I’ll spare you my woes, but basically when school starts I have so little energy that I barely cook and use my remaining energy on my students. Every year, I become a better teacher, and every year, I think that results in me working harder (not what I expected.)

Now, for ziti.

My boyfriend often requests ziti, and I think I make it differently every time? Maybe. I always combine a few recipes and kind of wing it, but the result is roughly the same.

First, I make the sauce (which, in this case, I made a day ahead, as we were having friends over for dinner.)

sauce prep
The essentials.

You can dump it all in a pot, and let it simmer for as long as you like – an hour is the minimum necessary. After 30 minutes, you can add in vegetables of your choice – I always have mushrooms and broccoli, and sometimes yellow and green squash.

sauce with veggies
Apologies for the bad picture…I’ll do better next time.

To make ziti, you combine two cups of sauce with your ricotta or cottage cheese, and then blend it with the cooked whole-wheat pasta. Then you pour over the remaining sauce, and top with cheese (and dare I say it – breadcrumbs.)

All in all, it’s pretty easy. Can you do this with bottled sauce? Yes. Should you? No. Once you start making your own tomato sauce, you’ll never go back. This recipe uses the pantry essentials of boxed tomatoes. I switched from canned to boxed a few years back, since there may be danger in canned foods. And new to the pantry essentials list – Italian seasoning and season salt.


Vegetable Ziti


  • [for sauce – makes a large batch; halve for smaller ziti portion]
    • 2 TB olive oil
    • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 2 TB minced garlic
    • 26 oz boxed chopped tomatoes
    • 17 oz container tomato sauce
    • 2 TB tomato paste
    • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 2 TB Italian Seasoning
    • ~1-1/2 TB Season Salt (Morton’s is my preference)
    • freshly ground pepper, to taste
    • 1-2 tsp sugar, to balance the acidity
    • any of the following assortment of vegetables; quantities to your taste)
      • cremini mushrooms
      • yellow and green squash
      • broccoli florets
      • greens, like spinach or kale

sauce method

  1. Heat oil in tall stock pot over medium. Once oil is hot, add bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Saute until onion and bell pepper soften.
  2. Add remaining ingredients (except vegetables), and bring to a simmer (it WILL splatter. Maybe wear an apron). Alternately, you can dump ALL sauce ingredients in a pot and bring to a simmer. You don’t have to saute onion, bell pepper, and garlic first.
  3. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add broccoli and mushrooms, if using. Simmer for an additional 15 minutes and add squash. Continue to simmer for 15 more minutes, watching that the squash doesn’t completely break down. If you are simmering for longer than an hour, adjust times accordingly.

[for ziti]

  • 2/3 box whole-wheat ziti or penne, cooked according to package directions
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese or cottage cheese
  • 1.5 cup shredded mozzarella / 1/2 cup parmesan, or 2 cups of shredded Italian cheese blend
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • cooked tomato sauce, divided


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a small bowl, combine 2 cups tomato sauce with ricotta cheese.
  3. Ladle a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of a 13×9 pan. Pour cooked pasta into over top.
  4. Add tomato/cheese mixture and stir until combined.
  5. Pour remaining sauce over pasta (you may not have to use all of it).
  6. Top pasta with cheeses, and cover with foil.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes. Uncover, top with breadcrumbs, and cook for 15 more minutes.
  8. Serve and enjoy with some garlic bread and a crisp salad.


Creamy Southern Pea and Mushroom Linguine

Creamy Southern Pea and Mushroom Linguine

I am a firm believer that most taste preference hinges on preparation. Sure, there are some things that I really will never like (beets – I am talking to you. I hate you.) But there are others that I thought I didn’t like until I prepared them the right way. This creamed pea linguine has one of those things – mushrooms.

When I decided to become a vegetarian, I had to learn how to substitute vegetables and legumes for main proteins. I never cooked with portobello mushrooms until that point, and they are one of my favorite ingredients now.


Sometimes I buy them pre-sliced – it saves time – but there is something so cathartic about slicing them myself.


They also turn out quite pretty without the shelf-life browning. The mushroom preparation in this resembles a preparation for a mushroom stroganoff or a mushroom marsala. To give the sauce even more flavor, I used some dry sherry – something I always have as a Pantry Essential for the Pioneer Woman’s Sherried Tomato Soup or whatever strikes my fancy.

The other star of this dish is the zipper cream pea. They look a little like black-eyed peas and taste like green peas, with a little more density and substance. When I saw the peas in my farm bag, I couldn’t stop thinking about creamed peas. That dish, I thought, can’t really be a vegetarian main, and I had no inspiration for another main, so I decided to combine my creamed pea craving with my sauteed mushroom craving.

Of course, it also has thyme. Because I obsess over thyme.

Creamy Southern Pea and Mushroom Linguine

serves 4


  • 1 TB minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallot
  • 8 oz sliced portobello (cremini) mushrooms [Publix calls them baby bella]
  • 1 TB chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 TB unsalted butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup sherry or other cooking wine (I use Taylor Dry Sherry)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1-2 cups zipper cream peas, or substitute green peas. I used 2 cups, because that’s what I had fresh.
  • 2 TB freshly grated parmesan
  • 1 TB chopped fresh parsley


  1. If using fresh or dried peas, set a pot of salted water to boil and add peas. Lower the heat and simmer for cooking time that goes with your chosen pea. I cooked the zipper cream peas for 30 minutes. Once peas finish cooking, drain. Cook the pasta according to package directions in the same pot- no need to rinse.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare your ingredients. Once peas are draining, heat the butter in a large saute pan over medium heat until sizzling.
  3. Add shallot and garlic, and cook until shallot is softened and slightly translucent.
  4. Add mushrooms, thyme, salt and pepper, and cook until mushrooms are browned. They will begin to release their juices. I cooked them a few minutes past that point.
  5. Once mushrooms are cooked to your liking, add the sherry to deglaze the pan. Simmer until the alcohol cooks off, about 1-2 minutes.
  6. Gently add peas and cream to the pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens.
  7. Before serving, stir in the parmesan until melted and incorporated. Serve over linguine with a pinch of freshly chopped parsley.


This sauce is decadent, and sticks to the noodles perfectly. This is a hearty vegetarian main that takes the slightly dated creamed pea and makes it new!


Succotash Penne with Blistered Tomatoes and Soft-Boiled Eggs

Succotash Penne with Blistered Tomatoes and Soft-Boiled Eggs

Before I get to today’s recipe – a mild succotash with delectable blistered tomatoes perfectly complimented by a creamy egg, I want to pause a moment and talk about Chamblin Bookmine. I don’t know how or why I never went there until I was an adult (actually – I do – I live in such a sprawling city I didn’t even know that side of town existed until I was driving myself). This place is the mother of all used book stores. If I have in store for me some sort of afterlife, I should think it would be spent in the winding, twisting, infinite aisles of Chamblin.

I only go there about once a year – perhaps because I always spend at least $60. I rarely go there with a specific purchase in mind – I just let the books speak to me. I’ve found two amazing, gigantic cookbooks at half price, including my favorite, Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian.

My friend and fellow English teacher had never been there since moving to Jacksonville area, and we rectified that with great joy.

Just look at those delighted faces!

If I haven’t conveyed how great it is, they have these quirky little signs all throughout. This one is in the children’s section.


Now, back to food. Today’s recipe is adapted from Bon Appétit and Sun Basket. My farm bag delivery this past week included luscious cherry tomatoes, and I could not get the idea of succulent, sweet, blistered tomatoes out of my mind. I found a recipe for them in this month’s Bon Appétit, and adapted it to suit Sun Basket’s succotash-style pasta.

First, I slow-roasted these beauties.

I could eat these and die happy.

Peppers and onions…


And the remaining succotash ingredients sauteed with Cajun seasoning.


Served with a soft-boiled egg and those gorgeous tomatoes, the flavors differ in every bite.


Succotash Penne with Blistered Tomatoes and Soft-Boiled Eggs (steps in order should time everything right; serves 4-6)


[for the tomatoes]

  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 TB lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 TB light brown sugar
  • 1/8 cup olive oil (fill a 1/4 cup measure halfway)
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes

[tomato method]

  1. If using dried lima beans for the succotash, begin the cooking process when needed. I started that before anything else, and pressure cooked them. See below for more.
  2. Preheat oven to 325˚ F.
  3. Combine all ingredients in a square baking dish before adding tomatoes. Stir with a fork to break up brown sugar.
  4. Add tomatoes and toss so they are lightly coated.
  5. Roast in oven for 50-60 minutes, tossing every 20. Keep an eye on them, as you do not want them to burst completely.
  6. Remove from oven and set aside when finished. (If all your timing works out, they will come out of the oven right as your succotash finishes.

While tomatoes roast…

[for the eggs]

  1. Bring 1/2 inch of water to boil in saucepan.
  2. Placed desired amount of eggs in a steamer basket, put into saucepan, and cover.
  3. Steam for about 6-7 minutes. (Mine should have gone for 7). While eggs steam, prepare a bowl of ice water.
  4. When time has elapsed, remove eggs to ice water. Let cool and peel. The shells slid right off of mine!

[for the succotash]

  • 1/2 cup dried baby lima beans, cooked, or 1 can
  • 1 TB olive oil
  • 1 small green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 small ear of corn, kernels removed, or about 1/2 cup
  • Cajun seasoning to taste (I used about 1/2 TB)
  • 1/2 pound (about 1/2 box) of whole wheat penne (fusilli would work too; I almost used cavitappi!)

[succotash method]

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil with salt as indicated. Cook penne according to package instructions. When drained, save 1/4 – 1/2 cup cooking water.
  2. In a medium saucepan (or larger, if your vegetables are medium or large-sized), heat olive oil over medium. Add peppers and onions and saute until soft.
  3. Stir in garlic and cook for another minute.
  4. Add cooked lima beans, corn, and Cajun seasoning. Start with a little seasoning and add more as desired. Be careful – some varieties are salty! Cook for about 3-4 minutes more and turn off heat if your other ingredients are not ready. You can leave it on the burner.

[bringing it all together]

  1. When everything is ready, return the drained pasta to the pasta pot, and stir in succotash. Add 1/4 cup cooking water, or more if needed. Gently stir in the tomatoes (I used tongs to lift them from the baking dish, but I imagine that delicious cooking oil in the dish will only add amazing flavor!) Try not to smash the tomatoes, unless you want to!
  2. Garnish with chopped basil, parsley, or any fresh herb your heart desires. You can also add a little freshly grated Parmesan, because really, that goes with almost anything I make. Slice an egg in half and add to your serving. (I broke my egg up and stirred that runny yolk into the pasta, but my eggs were a little less done than I’d have liked.)

I suggest you do not skip the egg, because it added a nice kick of flavor. The pasta itself doesn’t pack a whole lot, depending on the level of seasoning you selected.

As a short cut, you can skip roasting the tomatoes and just stir raw tomatoes into the succotash as it cooks. But oh man, those blistered tomatoes are something else…


White Bean Veggie Burger with Coriander and Thyme

White Bean Veggie Burger with Coriander and Thyme

Today’s recipe is a black-bean burger alternative – a savory white bean burger with bursts of flavor surprises, perfect for weeknights or burger nights (if you live with meat-eaters!)

There are some things that just do not have a vegetarian equivalent. Ground beef is one of those things – sure, one can buy Boca crumbles, or many other beef substitutes, but they are usually made up of ingredients one can’t pronounce, and have a texture that just doesn’t quite match. I’ve never really missed beef – if I didn’t go vegetarian all those years ago I would have at least eliminated beef from my diet – but I do like making veggie patties.

Non-vegetarians usually make a black bean burger for vegetarians. At most meat-centric restaurants, it is usually the sole vegetarian option. As a result, I am quite weary of black bean burgers. My interest also waned when I got food poisoning from one – I am unsure how that happened, but it probably came into contact with bad beef.

Because of this, I’ve been drawn to the white bean patty lately. Most of these are made with cumin, and I’m a little tired of that flavor in my veggie burgers too. I’ve been making loads of meals with thyme lately – and I thought, why not make a white bean burger with thyme?

Added to the patties is silver queen sweet corn – a delectable local variety here in good ol’ Northeast FL. Yellow corn works just as well!

This oh-so-happy tool easily removed the kernels from the corn, which goes into the patties as well.

The crucial ingredient in these patties is coriander seed. This is a true pantry essential for me. I first used these flavor-packed seeds in an Indian curry, of course, and knew they’d be a lovely complement to the thyme. When you bite into them, they bite back with a citrusy, aromatic burst of flavor.

This style masher works best on beans.

I used my favorite white bean, the Great Northern. They have such a creamy, deep flavor, and add a denseness to the patty.

Mash the beans, add some thyme, lemon zest, salt, and pepper before adding other ingredients. 


I debated whether or not to cook the veggies before putting them in the patty mixture, but it softens the sometimes tough coriander seeds, and helps the flavors blend. This step isn’t absolutely crucial, as I’ve made patties with raw veggies and they cook enough, if not thoroughly.

I’m not sure from which food blogger I learned the ice cream scoop trick from, but it is so much easier to make veggie burgers with the aid of this tool. If the mixture is dense enough, all you have to do is scoop and press! Loose mixtures may need to be formed into patties before cooking.

I like my patties crispy!


This veggie burger is layered with flavor, and a great alternative to the tired black bean burger! (Cooking prowess: I made the fries from scratch too! Go me! Not pictured: homemade pickles I added to my toppings.) Enjoy!

White Bean Veggie Burger with Coriander and Thyme


  • 1 cup dried Great Northern beans, cooked, or 2 cans.
  • 1 TB chopped fresh thyme (chopping releases the flavor and aroma. MMM)
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • zest of one meyer lemon (optional – I had it already from another meal, but it adds more citrus flavor to pair with the coriander seeds)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds (do not substitute ground coriander)
  • 1 TB minced garlic
  • 1 small egg
  • olive oil, for sauteeing and frying (see method for quantities)


  1. Cook beans, if applicable, and chop/gather all ingredients.
  2. Remove 1/2 cup of beans and set aside; mash remaining in large bowl.
  3. Stir in breadcrumbs, thyme, salt, pepper, and lemon zest, and set aside. If you are having trouble incorporating ingredients, add a small dash of water or olive oil.
  4. In a non-stick pan or cast-iron skillet, heat 1 TB olive oil and coriander seeds over medium, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes to toast and soften the seeds. When it starts to shimmer, carefully add onions and peppers, and cook until soft. When softened, add garlic and cook for a minute or two more.
  5. Once the pepper and onion mixture is nearly cooked, crack the egg into the bean mixture and stir with fork to incorporate. Then stir in the whole beans (I did this last to prevent these from mashing). Once incorporated, add in pepper and onion mixture. You may not need to add the entirety of the mixture – add in enough as fits your preference.
  6. You may use the same skillet – no need to clean – and heat another tablespoon of olive oil over medium. When it starts to shimmer, scoop in patties with a large ice cream scoop or add in already formed patties. Cook until golden brown on one side and flip (time always varies for me, depending on how hot the skillet is. My second batch always cooks faster). You may need to add more oil, if the patties are not sizzling. I added 1/2 TB for each turn, and angled the skillet to spread to the other patties.
  7. When patties are cooked to desired doneness, remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve with your favorite burger toppings on a toasted bun.

Food from my father

It’s a bit late for a father’s day post, but on Father’s Day I asked my dad for his recipe for “beefy thing.” That is the sophisticated name of my favorite dish of his.

I am not sure I’d be much interested in food were it not for my dad.

Classy, I know…a picture of a picture. I decided not to edit it because of the lace on the photo album!

He’s always been an adventurous eater and cook. He exposed me to so many different cuisines as I grew up. I remember the first time I ate sushi, Thai, and Indian foods…*contented sigh.*

One thing characteristic about the adventurous cooking of my father’s is that he never really made the same meal twice. Until “beefy thing.”

His version of beefy thing is ground beef, made into a curry dish complemented by sour cream and artichokes. The big boost comes from the coffee grounds – my dad is the only non-professional chef I’ve encountered that uses coffee grounds in his cooking, and it is such a great idea!

I have been craving beefy thing for so long – and not able to eat it because, well, beef. I always use lentils as my beef replacement, so I substituted them here. And added a few quirks of my own. I love shallots; they have such a beautiful color and aroma. Dad forgot to tell me that he puts shallots in his, so I was pleased my instincts were right when I told him I was adding shallots to mine.


I also made some asparagus for a side dish. I usually just make a big hearty meal and forego the side, but I picked up these beauties on a whim at Publix. One thing I take a bit of pleasure in is turning people on to vegetables they hate. My asparagus has won over a few critics!


This recipe uses a number of pantry essentials that have not yet made my list: curry powder, wide-noodle pasta (perfect for my favorite lentil stroganoff), and full-fat Greek yogurt. I use the latter in place of sour cream in so many things. Fage brand is the best, obviously, being quintessentially Greek. Don’t be afraid of dairy fats; they’re good for you!

I give to you…Lentil Thing (formerly Beefy Thing.)


  • 1 cup lentils
  • 3 quarts water
  • 1 TB olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1 TB garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground coffee
  • 1 TB curry powder
  • 1/2 cup full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 jar drained marinated artichokes
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice, or more to taste
  • 6 oz whole grain extra broad pasta


  1. In a large heavy-bottom pot, add lentils and water. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20 minutes with lid tilted.
  2. Chop garlic, mince shallot, and ready other ingredients.
  3. Once lentils are cooked, drain. Then, use the same pot to cook pasta according to package directions.
  4. Heat oil over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic, and cook until softened.
  5. Add lentils, coffee grounds, curry powder, salt, and Greek yogurt. Stir until combined, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. I had to lower the heat a bit to keep the Greek yogurt from cooking down too much.
  6. Add artichokes and cook until heated through. (It’s okay if a little marinade gets in your mixture.)
  7. Add lemon juice and taste. Adjust seasonings by adding more lemon juice or salt if needed.


Serve over pasta with additional yogurt, if desired!

Kathryn’s Roasted Asparagus


  • 1 package/bundle of asparagus
  • ~1 TB olive oil, depending on the amount of asparagus
  • freshly ground pepper and kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 TB minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/8 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Trim asparagus by gently bending spears near the end and snapping off the tail.
  3. Place asparagus in a baking dish (my usual, but baking sheets work too) and toss with olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. You don’t want to drown the spears in oil, but just a gentle coat.
  4. Sprinkle desired amount of bread crumbs over the top. Push asparagus to a single layer, if possible.
  5. Bake for 10-20 minutes. I like the tips of the spears to be crisp and slightly blackened. Thin asparagus takes about 10 minutes, and is my preference, but the pictured asparagus was quite thick and baked for about 18 mintues. Add in parmesan during the last few minutes of cooking.
  6. Once out of the oven, toss with lemon juice. You can also top with toasted pine nuts, add red pepper flakes for a bite, or really anything your heart desires!


The only thing not lovely about asparagus is the aroma of asparagus you’ll get on your next “wee” (that sounds better the British way.) Otherwise, it’s a tasty, easy side for just about any dinner.