Panzanella Salad

Throwback Thursday! With my end of summer Panzanella Salad. What better way to use produce than to make a Panzanella salad. Which is a traditional Italian “bread salad.” Crispy croutons made from toasted baguette cubes along with fresh, crunchy veggies bring this powerhouse salad together. Drizzle with a little dijon vinaigrette love, and you can’t go wrong. Gardening is such a joy to my family and me. Nothing beats growing something with your own hands and watching it flourish. We’ve created so many delicious recipes using various tomato plants, cucumber, zucchini, and watermelon.

Along with so many amazing fresh herbs. Start your own garden! It’s a fantastic way to get the kids involved too. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Panzanella Salad

1/2 cup olive oil
1 long baguette, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 6 cups)
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
One orange bell pepper, seeded and cubed
One red bell pepper, seeded and cubed
One English cucumber halved and cut into 1/2 inch pieces.
1/2 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 Handful fresh basil leaves, chopped
3 tablespoons capers

For the vinaigrette:

1 clove finely minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
1 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Whisk together all ingredients for the vinaigrette and set aside.

Spread cubes of bread onto a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Baked in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until golden all around. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

In a large bowl, mix tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, red onion, basil, and capers. Add the bread cubes and toss with the vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper.

Drizzle with vinaigrette. Toss well.

Serve immediately, or allow the salad to sit at room temperature for 25-30 minutes. (The longer it sits the better it gets!)

End Of Summer Watermelon Salad

End Of Summer Watermelon Salad. We are in our last official days of summer. So I wanted to share with you a ridiculously simple and refreshing salad. It combines sweet watermelon, salty feta, herby mint and drizzled with a little balsamic. A very classic take. You can make this in a large bowl or make individual salads. So refreshing and perfect for your next cookout side dish. Simple, fast and tasty you can’t go wrong with that. What’s your favorite way to eat watermelon? Comment below.

Xo- Ayesha

Watermelon Salad

Watermelon Salad

4 cups watermelon, cubed.
1/2 cup feta, crumbled.
Handful fresh mint, roughly chopped.
Salt and pepper to taste. (Just a pinch should do)
Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling.

In a large bowl add watermelon, feta, and mint. Gently toss together. Season with salt and pepper before drizzling with balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Tips- You can add red onion or arugula as well (For arugula add a little extra balsamic to dress it). You can also substitute basil for mint.

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta. Heres another quick and flavorful meal to make when you are short on time. And as a busy mom of three, I am always looking for a recipe that can be put together in a flash. I made this for my family this week, and it was a hit.  Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

Super Quick Shrimp Pasta

1lb pasta, spaghetti.
1lb peeled, deveined shrimp
Three tablespoons olive oil
One clove garlic, minced.
1 cup flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped. (about a handful)
One tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
1/2 stick salted butter (I always buy grass-fed)
1/2 cup white wine (plus more for drinking!)
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

In a large bowl add shrimp and season with lemon pepper seasoning before carefully tossing to coat.

Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook for 1 minute. Add in garlic and butter and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Deglaze the pan by adding in the white wine. Making sure to get any bits off the bottom of the pan. (That’s flavor!) Season with pepper and add in chopped parsley. Remove from heat. Now add the cooked shrimp mixture to the cooked pasta and top with parmesan. Gently toss to coat. You can add in reserved pasta water if needed to thin out the sauce. Serve hot and garnished with extra parsley and parmesan is desired. Enjoy!

*Tip* reserve about 1 cup of pasta water to stretch the sauce if needed!

 

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce. I’m in love with this quick and easy no-frill pasta dish. It has Kale in it which is a highly nutritious vegetable. It has numerous health benefits and happens to be pretty darn tasty. And for those of you that are scared of anything green. Give it a try! It turns out to be a smooth and silky sauce, so delicious, and a great side dish for almost anything. Do you have a favorite way to prepare kale?? Leave a comment below.

Enjoy!

Xo-Ayesha

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

Pasta With Quick Kale Sauce

12 ounces favorite pasta (I used orecchiette pasta)
1/2 white onion, roughly chopped.
1/2 cup basil leaves, roughly chopped.
2-3 garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup walnuts or pine nuts
2-3 cups fresh kale, ribs and stems removed.
3/4 cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste (I used about a teaspoon each)

 

Cook your pasta according to the package directions.

Remove the pasta from the boiling water and set aside. Add your chopped kale to the water and quickly blanch for 1-2 minutes and remove.

In a blender or food processor add blanched kale, garlic, onion, parmesan, lemon, and nuts. Stream in olive oil and puree until smooth.

Add kale sauce to your cooked pasta and toss to coat! Serve immediately!

Fig And Orange Glazed Salmon Fillets

Fig and Orange Glazed Salmon Fillets. Hey everyone! Now I’m always on the hunt for a new and exciting approach to cooking salmon. And this dish is so darn flavorful and pairs one of my favorite proteins with FIGS! I’m a colossal fig lover, naturally, since I live in California where most of the nation’s fresh figs are grown. Their subtly sweet creamy and seedy texture makes them great for both sweet and savory dishes. And the combination of sticky figs and orange is a winner in this recipe. A great sauce that adds the perfect amount of tangy and sweetness to the salmon. Are any of you fig lovers? Share in the comments below. Have a great week!

Xo- Ayesha

Fig and Orange Glazed Salmon Fillets

 

Fig and Orange Glazed Salmon Fillets

Ingredients:

12-16 ounce salmon fillet, cut into four pieces.
Coarse salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil

Orange Fig Sauce:

1 cup California figs, stems removed and halved.
1/2 cup orange juice
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Cut stems from figs and cut into quarters. Place figs, orange juice, balsamic, and mint in a small pot. Bring to a boil and allow the sauce to reduce about 15-20 minutes. Once your figs have reduced and softened remove from heat.

In a blender add in hot fig mixture along with honey, dijon, and salt. Blend at low speed until well combined. It will be thick! But will melt wonderfully over the hot fish.

Drizzle your salmon with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place salmon, skin side down on a lined baking sheet. Bake until cooked through and flaky, about 12 to 15 minutes. Brush sauce liberally over salmon and serve with steamed rice.

Easy Caprese Salad

Flashback Friday with my “Easy Caprese Salad.”

Hi guys! I hope you all enjoyed your week! Here is a super simple Caprese salad recipe. It’s easy and so delicious! Perfect for a busy weekend or work week lunch! My kids love to eat this, and it would be a great addition to those back to school lunches coming up. What is your go-to salad? Please share yours in the comments below.

Enjoy the weekend!

Xo- Ayesha

Easy Caprese Salad

Ingredients

6 -8 small fresh mozzarella balls

8-10 Cherry tomatoes

salt and pepper to taste

3 Leaves of fresh Basil (chopped)

A Drizzle of Aged Balsamic Vinegar

Directions

Comine all of the ingredients into a bowl, drizzle with balsamic and enjoy! It’s really that simple, I love it. Be sure to use aged balsamic as it has a thicker and sweeter consistency.

Flashback With My Baked Eggs Breakfast Souffle

Baked Eggs Breakfast Souffle. Flashback to one of my old recipes with this delicious souffle this weekend! This is a quick and easy egg recipe. It’s definitely a husband pleaser. The recipe below is a base recipe. Meaning you can add in whatever you like to it! Shrimp, chicken, sausage, bacon, tomatoes … ANYTHING would be delicious in this soufflé. Try it and let me know what you think!

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

 

Baked Eggs Breakfast Souffle

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Baked Eggs Breakfast Souffle

Ingredients:

3 eggs

3/4 cup of milk

1/2 cup of FRESHLY grated cheese (it makes a difference)

handful of spinach

salt and pepper to taste

It’s simple! Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl, then transfer to a buttered baking dish. Bake for 15 to 20 mins and enjoy!

*** This recipe is for 2 people. Double ingredients for 4 :).

Hope you like it!

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp. In my cookbook “The Seasoned Life” I have a recipe for “Sweet chili Shrimp Wraps” they are quickly fried and served in butter lettuce wraps with a jicama salad, SO delicious! My condiments of choice are always sweet chili sauce and ketchup. There are always bottles of it stashed in my cupboards and refrigerator. This recipe is a simple pan-seared shrimp that incorporates sweet chili sauce without the frying. It’s a quick and easy recipe when you are looking to have a flavorful meal in twenty minutes or less. (That’s counting the rice cook time!) What is your favorite way to prepare shrimp? (Fried, pan seared, grilled?) Comment below!

Enjoy,

Xo-Ayesha

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp

1 Pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined.
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste (I used about 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, optional.
One shallot, minced.
1-2 cloves garlic, minced.
3 Tablespoons sweet chili sauce (I prefer Mae Ploy)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon lime juice
One tablespoon brown sugar

 

Add spices and one tablespoon of olive oil into a large bowl and mix well until a paste is formed.

Place dry shrimp in the bowl and toss to coat. (You have to dry your shrimp after you rinse them. Shrimp tend to absorb water and will change the outcome of your dish!)

Now in a small bowl, whisk together the chili sauce, soy, lime juice, brown sugar and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add in one tablespoon of olive oil to heat. Add garlic and shallot and cook for about 1 minute before adding the shrimp to the pan and cooking for 1-2 minutes per side. Do not overcook! Remove the pan from heat and pour the sauce mixture over the shrimp and stir to coat the shrimp evenly.

Serve over jasmine rice or pasta and enjoy! (Any rice is excellent.)

 

Maple Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

Maple Balsamic Roasted Vegetables. Okay, so this side dish (Or main if that’s your preference) can be put together in a flash! Deliciously seasoned and roasted vegetables are coated in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup before being roasted to perfection! But please don’t overcook it. Always set a timer to avoid mishaps in the kitchen. (You can also use your oven or microwave timer) It is a lifesaver/food saver! Nothing smells worse than overcooked broccoli! Maple and balsamic give this dish a sweet and sour flavor. This is seriously the easiest, simplest, and the BEST way to roast your vegetables.

Enjoy

Xo- Ayesha

 

Maple Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

Maple Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

2 cups broccoli florets

One zucchini, sliced and quartered.

One yellow squash, sliced and quartered.

One orange bell pepper, seeded and chopped.

One yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped.

One small red onion, peeled and cut.

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, optional.

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl add chopped vegetables.

In a small bowl mix balsamic, maple, olive oil, and red pepper flakes. Mix well.

Season the vegetables with spices and salt and pepper to taste. Add vinegar mixture and gently toss to coat.

Lay evenly on a non-stick baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until tender.

Mango And Avocado Guacamole

Mango and Avocado Guacamole. Hey everyone! Now mango is not only a household favorite snack for myself and my kids but its just so reminiscent of my childhood. And I put it in as many dishes as I can. Did you know that its only 100 calories for a cup of mango?! You can easily prep this and store it in some glad containers or baggies to take on the go or pack in your kid’s lunch for camp or school. Another favorite of mine has to be avocado. So making guacamole and adding in mango was natural. You get a little spice from the jalapeño and a subtle onion/garlic bite from the shallot. Do you have any interesting recipes for guacamole? Share in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Mango And Avocado Guacamole

Two ripened avocados, halved pitted and diced. (I like mine chunky)
One jalapeño chile, deseeded and minced. (Leave some of the seeds if you like heat)
One shallot, finely chopped.
Two tablespoons lime juice
1 Tommy Atkins ripened mango, peeled and cut into chunks. (Most common mango found in stores)
1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped.
Salt and pepper to taste.

In a large bowl add avocados, jalapeno, shallot and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to your liking and give a gentle toss. Now fold in your chunks of mango and cilantro. Check for seasoning and adjust if necessary.

Serve with vegetable or tortilla chips and enjoy!

Creamy Edamame And Avocado Dip

Creamy Edamame And Avocado Dip. Hey everyone! Here is another quick and easy recipe. Edamame and avocado dip. I happen to love edamame. So I wanted to create a creamy dip using both edamame and avocado. It transforms into a healthy and tasty dip that will brighten the table at your next gathering. Its fresh flavor is loaded with fresh lime juice, garlic, and cilantro. And the added siracha gives it a nice tangy and spicy kick. Enjoy this as a dip, healthy snack or sandwich spread!

Enjoy!

Xo– Ayesha

Edamame and Avacado Dip

12oz. Edamame shelled.
One large avocado pitted and cubed.
1/4 cup onion, diced.
1/2 cup cilantro
1-2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup lime juice
1-2 tablespoons sriracha
One teaspoon sea salt
One teaspoon black pepper
2-3 tablespoons olive oil

Heat a large pot of water over medium-high heat. Add frozen edamame and quickly blanch for 2-3 minutes.

Place the hot edamame into a blender or food processor. Pulse five or six times until slightly broken up. Add in avocado, onion, cilantro, garlic, lime, and sriracha. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and drizzle in olive oil. Puree until smooth but still chunky. You can adjust the seasonings to taste.

Transfer to a bowl and serve with desired accompaniments. (Cucumber slices, pita, bell pepper, carrot sticks, etc.)

Turkey Sloppy Joe- A Spin On A Childhood Favorite

Turkey Sloppy Joe. Sure to be of your next family dinner favorites! Sloppy joes are one of those comfort foods that you grew up eating, but probably don’t admit to actually liking as an adult! Barbecue like sandwiches that consist of sauce and ground beef or as my mom says “Minced meat.” The can of sauce has sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, preservatives and other not so healthy items but let’s be honest when you were a kid who cared? This is a healthier spin on your classic sloppy joe but still has that delicious sweet and tangy flavor we all love. I mean whats not to like about a meal that combines a hearty meat mixture nestled inside a bun and is oh so SLOPPY!

Here I made this with lean turkey meat and most ingredients you probably already have on hand like onion and bell pepper. What makes these healthy? Well first off, they’re a bit leaner thanks to lean ground turkey, but they are also lower in sugar thanks to a homemade sauce that’s been toned down. That’s the best part about cooking from scratch. You control what goes into your food and how much you use. You still get to make those childhood favorites but in a healthier way. I hope you enjoy it.

Let’s get sloppy!

Xo- Ayesha

 

Turkey Sloppy Joe

1lb ground turkey
One tablespoon olive oil
15 ounce can tomato sauce
One small red onion, diced.
One red bell pepper, diced.
Two cloves garlic, minced.
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 tablespoon smoked paprika (You can substitute regular)
1/2 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
Buns, for serving.

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and brown your ground turkey until cooked through. Add garlic, onion, and bell pepper. Saute the mixture for 1-2 minutes and add the remaining ingredients. (Obviously not the bread!) Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Vegetables should be tender.

Spoon mixture inside of your favorite bun. Toasting the bread is also a nice touch. I like to serve it with homemade sweet potato chips or fries and some crunchy cucumber slices! (My kids layer the cucumber inside of their sandwiches.)

Enjoy!