Perfect Vegan Biscuits

AAAHHH!!! VEGAN BISCUITS!!! I think I just peed my pants in excitement.

I went to Ruby Tuesdays with Jess the other night and had a sad little moment eating my salad while she enjoyed a couple of their cheddar garlic biscuits. Now I can make my own and eat them all! Can you tell I’m excited?


Biscuit-making and -eating is not in my heritage; I can’t recall having these savory, flaky quick breads on my dinner table even once throughout my childhood. It’s a shame, really, because they’re such a tasty and effortless side that perfectly compliments almost any meal. Traditional or “authentic” southern biscuits may be beyond the scope of my abilities, but I do know that I like mine tall, tender, and fluffy, with more flavor than just plain flour can bring to the table. Fresh herbs and a healthy handful of vegetables liven up this simple staple, making it ideal for serving with soups, smothered in gravy, or just eaten solo.

Garden Herb Biscuits

2 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
2 1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon Coarse Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chopped Parsley
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chopped Chives
1 1/2 Teaspoon Fresh…

View original post 312 more words

Fiesta Salsa

Beautiful photo by Jess!

Because it’s a party in the bowl AND a party in your mouth!

In case you didn’t know, Jess has a green thumb. She’s been able to keep our three outside plants alive with LOTS of dedicated watering throughout this ridiculous heat and lack of rain. Well, during our weekly trip to the Farmers Market on Saturday, we stopped by a vendor that had tomatillos and got the scoop on how to know when they’re ready to be harvested. Apparently they should still be pretty firm and the husk will get pretty dry. Then they’ll be ready! So, Jess went outside and picked off the three that we’ve been patiently waiting to harvest from our own tomatillo plant.

What does a person do with only three tomatillos? I looked through my cookbooks (sadly, not many tomatillo recipes) and found a couple for salsa that looked good. But still, I only had three. Then, I looked up at the beautiful heirloom tomato in our hanging fruit basket. It only had about 3 days left until it would get soggy and I decided it needed to be used as well.

Now I had enough tomato/tomatillo to make a salsa! Those, plus some jalapenos and even a habanero that’s been in my freezer for months came together with the other essential salsa ingredients and the result was spectacular. This salsa is a farmers market delight. As long as you have jalapenos, onion a little lime juice and a lot of cilantro, you can literally make any salsa your heart desires. Mine was sweet from the heirlooms and the tiny bit of cane sugar and spicy from the habanero. And the garlic (german garlic, which is ginormous), was a spectacular find from last week and it lent its flavor splendidly. No need to waste those heirlooms anymore. If it can go in tomato sauce, it can go in salsa!

Beautiful photo by Jess! Don’t you just want to dig in?

Fiesta Salsa
Servings: 1 (about 1.5 cups worth)
PointsPlus Per Serving: 1


  • 3 small tomatillos, finely diced
  • 1 cup skinned and finely diced red heirloom tomato
  • 1/2 medium white or red onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 3 small jalapenos, seeded and finely diced
  • 1 habanero, seeded and finely diced
  • 1/2 tsp organic cane sugar (or regular sugar), 1 PP
  • 1 tbsp fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp sea salt

1. Take your garlic, onion, jalapenos, sugar and tomatillo and simmer for a few minutes over medium heat in a nonstick pan. This tempers the bitterness of the tomatillo.

2. Put your heirloom tomato and habanero into a bowl. Pour in the simmered tomatillo mixture. Put in the lime juice, cilantro and sea salt. Mix well. Let sit for at least 30 minutes so the flavor can deepen.

3. Serve with chips and enjoy!

Queso Blanco Dip

Since I’m getting Mexican for dinner tonight, I have queso on the brain. I saw this recipe and knew that I wanted to share! If you can find a reduced-fat cheese and use 1% milk, this can definitely be a WWF appetizer :)

Delicious Goodies Galore

1  1/4  Pound block White American Cheese,* cut into 1-inch cubes
1  (4 ounce) can diced green chiles
1/4  Cup chopped pickled jalapenos
2  Tbsp. pickled jalapeno juice
2/3  Cup milk
1/2  Cup cold water
1/8  tsp. ground cumin

Place cubed cheese in a microwave safe bowl.

Add chiles, jalapenos, jalapeno juice, milk, water, and cumin.

Microwave on HIGH for 4 – 5 minutes, stopping to stir well after each minute.

Part of the melting process is completed with the stirring.

Serve immediately with tortilla chips or can be used as a sauce for Mexican dishes.

Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

Reheat in the microwave in increments of 30 seconds until creamy and hot.

View original post

Thai Fish Cakes

So fun to make and so fun to eat!

Thai food is one of my many culinary weaknesses. Put it in front of my face and I will inhale it. It doesn’t really matter what it is because I know it’s going to taste amazing. Stir-frys? I like them spicy, saucy and full of veggies. Soups? I like them with warm, spicy, coconutty flavors and filled with veggies, rice and chicken. But my experience with Thai food has only touched the brim.  There are soooo many different Thai dishes out there!  A whole realm of flavor combinations that I haven’t tried yet.  So, I did a little research.

Thai fish cakes kept popping up on my radar, so I thought I’d give it a try!  They seemed relatively simple and a nice change of pace from the typical fish I’ve made before. Seriously, how many times can you pan fry or broil tilapia before it all starts tasting the same?

Well, these fish cakes were definitely tasty, different and very satisfying. I found a bunch of different recipes, but the one I went with comes from Adora’s Box. The reason I picked her fish cakes is because she decided to make them with ordinary ingredients; no need to go out to a specialty store just to find kaffir lime leaves or a bird’s eye chili! You can find all the ingredients at your local grocery store. I think that they could have tasted slightly more “thai-ish” with a few of the special ingredients (like maybe some thai curry paste or some coconut milk?), but they were still delicious.

The sweet chili sauce on the side is essential.

Thai Fish Cakes (slightly adapted from Adora’s Box)
Servings: 12
PointsPlus Per Serving: 1


  • 8 oz (or two fillets) white fish, 4 PP (I used tilapia)
  • 1/4 cup sliced scallions
  • 1/4 cup chopped zucchini (she used green beans, but I didn’t have any)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp thai green hot chili peppers (she used a green finger chili)
  • 1 egg, 2 PP
  • 2 tbsp flour, 1 PP (i used masa corn flour, but it gave it a Mexican taste)
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice (she used the juice and zest of one lime)
  • 1 tbsp packed light brown sugar, 1 PP
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 3 tsp vegetable oil, 3 PP (she used more, but I like it healthy!)

A nice change for my fishy palate.

1. Mix all of the ingredients, except for the zucchini and scallions, in a food processor and puree. Transfer to a bowl and mix in the zucchini and scallions.

2. Heat up a small non-stick skillet with 1 tsp oil to medium heat. Drop in spoonfuls of the mixture and pan fry on both sides until golden brown. You can flatten out the mixture into more of a “cake” once it’s in the pan. Fry in groups of four, using 1 tsp of oil every time. This way you can cut down on the oil instead of deep frying them like everyone else does!

If you want to make a meal of them, you can have 6 of them for only 7 PP! Otherwise, they’re great as an appetizer. Just have a little sweet chili sauce on the side for dipping and you’ll be set. Many people, including Adora, pair their fish cakes with a cucumber dipping sauce. I don’t eat a lot of cucumbers, so I went with the sweet chili sauce. I hope you enjoy them! I sure did :)

Microwave Paper Bag Popcorn

Here’s a little something to tide you all over until I can get together a tasty Thai food post! I’ve heard rumors about being able to make popcorn in minutes with literally just KERNELS and a PAPER BAG.

BOOM. Proof. Time to go buy paper bags.

We eat a lot of popcorn in our house. A lot! We usually prefer using the hot air popper so it’s on the healthier side, but occasionally we’ll make a large batch of kettle corn. We never eat microwave popcorn. Besides the fact that is laden with all sorts of unhealthy ingredients, we just can’t stand the smell! I found this idea on Pinterest. It’s one of those simple ideas that works beautifully. It’s also great when you want a single serving of popcorn. The recipe below is for decent single serving. I use a sandwich sized brown bag, but if you’re looking for a nice bowl of popcorn to share, then just double the recipe and use it with a larger brown paper bag.

Paper-bag Microwave Popcorn


  • 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
  • paper lunch bag

Place 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels into lunch sized paper bag. Fold the top…

View original post 31 more words

Spicy Sweet Potato Hummus

Click here for this Red Lentil Hummus recipe by “Sweet Potato Soul”!

There is hummus among us. This simple dip/spread has worked it’s way into my life over many years. My parents used to make hummus and tabbouleh for dinner occasionally! I’ve had spicy ones, savory ones, plain ones. I’ve eaten it on sandwiches, crackers, veggies, chips, spoons. It’s pretty much awesome.

It’s also super filling and good for you! There aren’t many health and fitness blogs that haven’t mentioned the awesomeness of hummus at some point. Today is that day for me! I’m sharing with you a recipe that I found on The Novice Chef Blog. That Jessica, she’s so crafty! Not only is she a hilarious writer, but her recipes and pictures are just amazing. I want to be like her when I grow up. Especially if it involves eating this hummus.

Click here for this Jalapeno Cheddar Hummus recipe by “Eat Live Run”!

Spicy Sweet Potato Hummus (based off a recipe from The Novice Chef Blog)
Servings: 12 (1/4 cup per serving)
PointsPlus Per Serving: 4


  • 1 large sweet potato, 4 PP (she used two, but I only had one)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained, 17 PP
  • 1/4 cup tahini, 10 PP
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, 7 PP
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 PP
  • 1 tablespoon cumin, 1 PP
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)

Click here for this Roasted Garlic and Sriracha Hummus recipe by “Olives for Dinner”!

1. If you haven’t already baked the sweet potato, go ahead and turn your over to 400 degrees. Wrap the sweet potato in foil and set in there for about 45 minutes to 1 hr. You’ll know it’s done when it’s soft and mushy to the touch and your whole house will smell like sweet potato pie.

2. Once your sweet potato has been baked, peeled and mashed, get out a food processor and puree the chickpeas and garlic. Add tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, brown sugar, and spices. Puree until smooth. Then add sweet potatoes and puree until completely combined.

Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve. To freeze, place in a freezer safe ziplock bag and ensure there is no air in the baggie and freeze for up to 3 months.

Now, I only have a two-cup food processor, so I tried this in my blender at first. Blenders are practically USELESS when attempting to puree something that isn’t mostly liquid already. Sheesh. That was a big mess. So I just mixed all my ingredients in a bowl and then did two batches, one at a time, in the food processor and it worked just fine!

Creative Popcorn!

Photo Courtesy of: The Girl Who Ate Everything

One of the most common “filler” foods for dieters all over the world is fat free popcorn.  It’s like 2 points for 4 cups of it and if you eat it one piece at a time, it lasts longer!  At least that’s what I hear from all my WW peeps.

Photo Courtesy of: Skinny Kitchen

But I can get burnt out on popcorn really fast.  It just starts tasting like lightly salted cardboard after a while.  I need a little more flavor and a LOT more options to be satisfied with popcorn.  As much as I like butter and salt, there are other spices in the world that can provide a flavor burst too.  I’ve seen a lot of recipes lately for flavored popcorn and it just looks delicious.  It makes complete sense to flavor your own popcorn!  You know what you want flavor-wise, you know what’s going on it and you can flavor it differently according to everyone’s desired tastes.

So here’s a recipe from Weight Watchers Online that looked tasty.  I’m definitely trying it soon!  Also, all the pictures link to their own recipes from other blogs, so make sure to click on a few different ones that strike your fancy.  Or… make your own, send me a picture and the recipe and I’ll post it up here!  Popcorn will never be monotonous again.

Photo Courtesy of: Tokyo Terrace

Parmesan-Thyme Popcorn
Servings: 4 (2 cups)
PointPlus Per Serving: 2


  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 3 PP
  • 1 tsp ground thyme
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp table salt
  • 8 cups plain air-popped popcorn, 6 PP
  • 2 sprays cooking spray

Photo Courtesy of: Living Lou

1. In a small bowl, mix together cheese, thyme, garlic powder and salt.

2. Place hot popcorn in a serving bowl and coat with cooking spray; sprinkle with cheese mixture, tossing all the while, until well coated.

Jalapeno Poppers

Photo Courtesy of:

We all know I’m a spice addict. It all started with jalapenos. My dad always had a jar of them in the fridge, but I never actually ventured out and tried them until high school. I made up my mind one night that I wanted to cook chicken because I’d never cooked it before (I was lucky enough to have two parents that knew how to cook and a budget that didn’t allow much eating out). I threw some things together and ended up making REALLY tasty jalapeno BBQ chicken strips. After that moment, I was hooked.

Jalapeno poppers are one of my favorite comfort foods. If they are at a restaurant or party (at least in the past), I was definitely eating more than one… or three. I’ve never actually made my own before, but when I stumbled upon this recipe from Gina’s Skinny Recipes blog, I knew I was going to give it a try!

I haven’t made them just yet, but you can be sure I’ll be making them for the next party I host! And since they’re only 1 point a piece, I’ll definitely be eating more than one!  **NOTE** I calculated the pointsplus from the WW online recipe calculator and it said it was 1 point each.  Gina’s site says they are 2 points each.

Gina’s Skinny Baked Jalapeno Poppers
Servings: 24
PointsPlus Per Serving: 1


  • 12 jalapeño peppers, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 4.5 oz light cream cheese, 7 PP
  • 5 medium scallions, green part only, sliced
  • 2 oz shredded low fat sharp cheddar (she used Cabot 50%), 2 PP
  • 1/2 cup egg beaters or egg whites, beaten, 2 PP
  • 1/2 cup panko crumbs, 6 PP
  • 1/8 tsp paprika
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp chili powder
  • salt and fresh pepper
  • spray oil

Photo Courtesy of:

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Wearing rubber gloves, cut peppers in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and membrane.

2. Combine cream cheese, cheddar and scallions in a medium bowl.

3. Combine panko, paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in another bowl.

4. Fill peppers with cheese filling with a small spoon or spatula.

5. Dip peppers in egg beaters.

6. Place pepper in panko mixture, using a spoon to make sure all the seasoning doesn’t fall to the bottom of the bowl.

7. Spray a baking pan with oil spray. I lined my pan with parchment for easier cleanup. Lightly spray the peppers with a little more oil spray.

8. Bake in the oven for about 20-25 minutes, until golden and cheese oozes out.

9. Remove from oven and serve immediately. Serve hot.