Kale Salad

I have tried every way I can think of to get my kids to eat kale. I finally gave up, and when I got kale in my CSA box this week I figured I would end up eating it all myself.

I made this delicious Kale salad and the first time I made it I made just enough for myself. Well, my 2yr old and my 7yr old came along and ate the entire salad for me. Apparently, they like it raw, but not cooked!

Kale Salad

1 bunch of Kale
1/4 cup raisins
1 yellow pepper
1/4 cup cherry tomatoes
Italian vinaigrette dressing

Rinse and remove stems from the kale. Then chop the kale into pretty small pieces. Dice the yellow pepper. Put all vegetables in a bowl, add Italian dressing to taste and stir well.

Super easy and so delicious!

Food Friday – Veggie Mac & Cheese


I have lots of random veggies that I don’t usually cook with a lot in my fridge these days, so I’m trying out new recipes. I’m loving how sweet the orange and yellow peppers are.

Veggie Mac & Cheese

1 can of corn, drained or 3 corn cobs with the corn cut off
1 yellow pepper (or any pepper of your choice) – diced
1/3 cup sliced okra
Handfull of cherry tomatoes
2 Tbsp butter
salt & pepper to taste

Mac & cheese of your choice – I made a slightly spicy mac & cheese

Make your macaroni and cheese according to package directions or follow your favorite recipe.

Place butter and vegetables in a skillet over medium heat, cook stirring often until peppers are slightly softened. Season as wanted with salt and pepper.

You can mix the veggies in with the mac and cheese or put them on top like I did. Cheese and veggies are such a delicious combination!

CSA – Week 12

So many delicious vegetables this week!


Basil, it’s a different kind than I’ve gotten in the past. It’s a much stronger basil, I haven’t figured out what I want to make with it yet.


Corn, only 4 ears this week, it’s so delicious!


Cherry tomatoes. These are so good!


Potatoes, these are always easy to eat up. My kids love baked potatoes.


Tomatoes, lots of tomatoes this week!


Red torpedo onions, these are super strong and so tasty once cooked.


More Japanese Eggplant. Not really a winner around here, but I am finding things to make with them.


And, peppers, or “apples” according to my 2yr old. Who also likes to eat them like apples. I guess it’s a good way for him to get his veggies!

CSA – Week 11

Wow! 11 weeks of veggies already! Now that we’re well into summer, the last couple of boxes have been really great. Here’s this week’s box.


More onions. These red torpedo onions are strong but so very tasty cooked! I just cry a LOT when I’m cutting them up.


Corn. Last week’s corn was so delicious. I’m so excited to have more!


Baby potatoes. My girls were super excited. We made baked potatoes. I’m hoping for more in the next box.


Eggplant. I’ve never seen eggplant like this, but it’s actually easier to use because it’s in smaller portions, I can kind of sneak it into dishes and hope no one notices – let’s just say that they haven’t been impressed with my eggplant cooking skills. “It’s squishy” has been the most common comment.

I made some spaghetti sauce and tossed some eggplant in. My 6yr old caught me and asked what I was putting in the sauce. “Eggplant” I told her, “I’m going to puree it all when it’s cooked, so you won’t even know it’s in there.” 6yr old looks at my like I’m crazy, “but I know it’s in there!” She totally missed the point. She did eat the sauce for dinner and loved it. It’s amazing what you can hide in a puree.


Red and yellow peppers. I love peppers.


Tomatoes – these look a little rough, probably from the week of non-stop rain we had. They’re still tasty though and made great spaghetti sauce.


Cantaloupe, a favorite fruit at my house. This one didn’t have a ton of flavor but it was nice and juicy, so still pretty tasty.

Food Friday – Second CSA Box Recipes

I still have green onions to use up. That’s on my to-do list for this week. “Find Green Onion recipes that the kids will eat”. This could be interesting…

Did you know that soups are hard to photograph? Or maybe it’s just me. I feel like I need to take a class in food photography to do this right. Anyways…we already had a bunch of carrots in our fridge and we got some in our CSA box. My 6yr old has been begging to make carrot soup, and with all these carrots I agreed that this would be a good time to give it a try.


Carrot soup

1 lb carrots – peeled, and sliced into small pieces.
1 onion – roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic – chopped
2 leaves fresh basil
2 Tbsp oil (I used coconut oil)
2 Cups chicken stock

Place first 5 ingredients in a skillet and cook, with the lid on, over medium heat until carrots are soft. About 30 minutes.

Transfer to a blender and blend until everything is blended well. Add chicken stock and blend until well combined and to desired texture.

Pour into a large pan and heat on low for as long as needed. I just let mine simmer while I made the rest of our dinner.

This soup was surprisingly rich, I was going to eat a huge bowl and just couldn’t.



We had a few carrots left over so later in the week I made carrot sticks and red pepper sticks and we dipped them in ranch dressing – which is the kids favorite way to eat carrots.


Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

These didn’t make it to the end of the day. They were eaten up almost immediately.

First, wash the strawberries and then cut off their tops. I put my tops in a tupperware in the freezer for later use in smoothies.

There’s two reasons for cutting the tops off before dipping. First, I want the tops for smoothies. Second, the kids will ask me to cut the tops off before they will eat them, so I may as well cut them off first and have tops for my smoothies.

Next, I highly recommend a decent quality dipping chocolate. I found this Ghirardelli dipping chocolate and it’s awesome. You melt it on the defrost setting in your microwave and it melts in just a couple of minutes. It’s also basically room temperature after you melt it so I don’t have to worry about the kids burning themselves on hot chocolate or melting something I don’t want melted with my chocolate when I dip.

Then, dip away!

It dries fast, by the time I had finished dipping all the strawberries, I could pick up and eat the first ones I had dipped. And they were delicious!


Skillet-Fried Chicken

Last night I tried out a fried chicken recipe from my Feb. Bon-Appetit magazine. A lot of times I find the recipes in this magazine to be unnecessarily complicated, however, this chicken recipe was perfect!

I did use a package of chicken breasts cut in thirds and I cut the recipe in half since my meat weight was half of what the whole chicken in the recipe is. It tasted delicious!

2 Tbsp kosher salt, divided
2 tsp plus 1 Tbsp black pepper
1 1/2 tsp. paprika
3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 3-4 lb chicken cut into 10 pieces, backbone and wing tips removed
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
3 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp. conrstarch
peanut oil (for frying)

!hisk 1 Tbsp salt, 2tsp black pepper, paprika, cayenne, garlic powder, and onion powder in a small bowl. Season chicken with spices. Place chicken in a medium bowl, cover, and chill overnight.

Let chicken stand covered at room temp for 1 hr. Whisk buttermilk, egg, and 1/2 cup water in a med bowl. Whisk flour, cornstarch, 1 Tbsp salt, and 1 Tbsp pepper in another bowl.

Pour oil into a 10″-12″ straight-sided skillet (not nonstick) to a depth of 3/4″. Heat over med-high heat until 350 degrees. Meanwhile, set a wire rack inside a large rimmed baking sheet.

Working with one piece at a time dip chicken in buttermilk mixture, allowing excess to drip back into bowl. Dredge in flour mixture. Fry chicken, turning with tongs every 1-2 minutes and maintain a temp of 300 to 325 degrees, until skin is deep golden brown and a thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken registers 165 degrees, about 10 min for wings and 12 min for thighs, legs, and breasts.

Using tongs, remove chicken from skillet, allowing excess oil to drip back into skillet; transfer chicken to prepared rack. Let cool 10 min before serving.

Dutch Apple Pie

So, Cayenne pepper is my new favorite spice. I made an apple pie yesterday and I couldn’t resist using it. Before you think, oh, no!, spicy apple pie. Don’t worry, I didn’t use that much! I’ve discovered that a tiny amount of cayenne pepper adds flavor to sweet foods without being spicy.

I was making a dutch apple pie and when I went to make the crumb topping I discovered that I was out of brown sugar. The pie was already sitting in the pan ready to go and I really didn’t want to make a crust for the top. So, I improvised:

1 C Sugar
1/8 t cayenne pepper
1/2 C shredded coconut
4T unsalted butter

Blend well and sprinkle on top. It was quite yummy! The pepper adds flavor without adding spice, and without it I think using the white sugar would have been a bit too bland for the top of my apple pie.

I also tried a new crust, which actually turned out! I have trouble with my crusts being too tough. I think I overwork them. Use oil instead of butter, so you mix it all together with a fork and then press it into the pan instead of rolling it out. My crust was actually flaky for once!