Come get a good beeting.

Who doesn’t love a good beeting?

If you’ve only tried pickled beets or not tried any at all, then you’ve been missing out on some great ways to enjoy this sweet vegetable.

Beets have an earthy fruity flavor and are so versatile you can turn them into a salty snack or utilize them in your baking, and not feel guilty when indulging, since beets are chock full of vitamins, antioxidants, and help boost your hemoglobin and immune system.

Here are a few ways to give yourselves a good beeting.

BEET CHIPS – Warning: They are highly addictive.

beetchips

Ingredients:

2 large beets

3 TBSP olive oil

2 tsp. finely minced fresh rosemary leaves

2 cloves roasted garlic (mashed) if you don’t have any of this on hand, then 1 tsp. of powdered garlic

Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 300F

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or use non-stick spray)

Peel the beets.

Using a mandolin (or a good cutting knife) slice the beets thinly (like the thinness of a potato chip)

In a large bowl, add all your sliced beets.

Add: rosemary, oil, garlic, salt & pepper and toss well to coat all the beet chips

Place them on your baking sheet, do NOT overlap.

Bake for one hour, or until edges are crispy and the beets look like they have dried into chip consistency.

Remove from oven when done and put them on a cooling rack until cool, and even crispier once they are not warm.

***Note*** You can use the same recipe to make sweet potato chips and serve them along with the beet chips. Use any of your favorite dips as well.

GLUTEN-FREE BEET BROWNIES

beetbrownie

Ingredients:

1/4 cup almond flour

1/4 cup gluten free flour

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1/3 cup beet puree (bake beets (1 or 2 depending on size) in oven, until tender enough to mash into a puree

1/4 cup brown sugar

3 TBS honey

1 cup banana, mashed (or use apple sauce)

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup milk chocolate chips (or semi-sweet)

1/2 cup pecans (or any nut that you like or leave the nuts out all together)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350

Spray a baking pan 9 x 9 with non-stick spray

In one bowl add all the dry ingredients, mix well.

In another bowl add all the wet ingredients, mix well.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, whisking until batter is smooth.

Pour batter into pan and cook for 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

***Topping*** Ice with your favorite chocolate icing, add berries or just dust with confectioner sugar.

GLUTEN-FREE CHOCOLATE BEET CAKE

beetcake

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups almond flour

1/2 cup Gluten-free flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar

2/3 cup cocoa powder

2 medium beets (baked and mashed and cooled)

3 eggs

1/2 cup milk (I used almond milk)

1/3 cup vegetable oil (I used grapeseed oil)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1/2 tsp. almond extract

Directions:

Preheat oven 350F

Add all the dry ingredients into one bowl and mix well.

In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, oil and vanilla and almond extracts

Add the cooled, pureed beets to the egg mixture and stir well.

Pour wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until everything is incorporated.

Line baking pan with parchment paper (or use non-stick spray, but I prefer using parchment paper, works real well)

Pour the cake batter into cake pan and bake for 30 – 35 minutes, or until toothpick  comes out clean.

Cool cake completely before icing with your favorite frosting or serve with freshly whipped cream.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fun with Telemarketers & Chocolate Flour-Less Cake

Parts of this blog have been published before. I am re-posting for the new followers (thank you all for coming over to the light side of life) plus I’ve added a new telemarketer’s call and a recipe for Chocolate Flour-less Cake.

“Ring, ring, why don’t you give me a call…”

(Yes, I admit to knowing the lyrics to some ABBA songs. It was during a Nordic period of my life.)

phonebooth2

Continue reading Fun with Telemarketers & Chocolate Flour-Less Cake

Lookin’ Gouda In No Noodle Lasagna

As an F.B.I. (full blooded Italian) you’d think that a lasagna recipe with no noodles would make you all think that I’ve lost my noodle (well, that’s for another kind of book).

As someone who suffers from gluten intolerance, this recipe satisfies my lasagna craving. It’s great for anyone cutting out carbs or has problems with gluten. It’s also embraced by Italians in Italy, as it has two vegetables that are readily used in many dishes; eggplant and zucchini.

COVER-CALIBRI_Med

Welcome to Tasty Tuesday

Today I am featuring a recipe that is in the book, (which is coming soon) Cook Like a Writer by The Book Posse.

NO NOODLE LASAGNA

Ingredients:

2 large yellow (or green) zucchini (sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick)

2 medium-sized eggplants (peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick)

2 cups ricotta cheese

1 1/2 cups gouda cheese

Selena’s Sassy Sexy Sauce (or your own type of plain tomato sauce, and again, if you’re in a rush and don’t have any homemade tomato sauce on hand…deep breath here…you can use store bought jar sauce).

2 eggs slightly beaten (one egg will be for coating the zucchini)

2 TBSP chopped fresh parsley

4 TBSP chopped fresh basil

1 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained well

Shredded mozzarella cheese

Grated Parmesan cheese

Flour (for coating the zucchini) (I use chickpea flour because of my gluten problem, you can use any type of flour)

Vegetable oil (to fry the zucchini)

Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:

Pat zucchini and eggplant slices dry.

Add vegetable oil to pan and heat.

Coat zucchini slices first with flour then dip in egg, fry until golden brown, pat and put aside.

In a bowl, add: ricotta cheese, gouda cheese, chopped parsley, Parmesan cheese, spinach, one beaten egg, salt & pepper to taste and mix well together, put aside.

Heat the oven to 375F.

Lightly spray a baking dish with a non-stick spray.

Layer the baking dish as follows:

zucchini

ricotta and gouda cheese mixture

eggplant

tomato sauce

sprinkle some fresh chopped basil on top of the sauce

sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on top (not too much, just about half a handful)

Repeat in the same order, except for the last layer, do not add any mozzarella.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top.

Bake UN-covered for 10 minutes (or until all the cheese is melted and lightly browned)

Remove from oven.

Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

For more recipes from the Cook Like A Writer book, please stop by and visit one my fellow Book Posse writer’s blog:

Marry Me Squares by Nancy Lauzon

Passionate Fruit Martini by Renee Wildes

So, how does one eat a Taco?

The fist time I ate a taco was when my husband and I were on our honeymoon.

(Sometimes I ask my husband to proofread my blog, this was one of those times and he read the first sentence and already had an editing comment: “You should delete the words my husband and I, because who else would you be on a honeymoon with?” Everyone is a critic! I didn’t make the revision, because it’s my blog and the sentence makes sense to me, but I digress…)

Why have I never eaten a taco before then, you wonder? There weren’t many Mexican restaurants in our area at the time and I hadn’t been to Mexico yet, so I didn’t know much about Mexican food. Although, as I understand it from talking to the people in Mexico when we visited a few years later; taco’s are more Tex-Mex than they are Mexican. Kind of like pineapple on pizza is a North American creation and not something you’d ever find in Italy.

I’m telling you this so you will understand what happened during my first taco tasting experience. Also, please keep in mind that I was in Honeymoon Heaven, so that allows for some ditzy-nano-second moments.

So off we go to a restaurant to try out a taco.

First of all, they look complicated to eat. They are stuffed with meat, salsa, lettuce & cheese and after assessing what was on my plate, I figured this was not something you’d eat with a knife and fork. Just like one wouldn’t eat a hamburger with utensils…although, when friends from Italy visited Canada and we took them out for burgers, they did cut it up with a knife and fork.

(I know, I’m off topic, (so says my blog-editor, sitting beside me) and my mind goes all over the place, but the hamburger memory helped me realize that I’m not the only one in the world who wouldn’t know how to eat a new-to-me-food.)

Back to the honeymoon taco lunch. Upon further examination of the taco on my plate, I said to my husband: “How do you eat one of these?”

Hubby: “Turn your head sideways.”

With taco in hand, I turned my head, smiling at the couple seated to my left, who I’m sure were thinking, “Why is that woman holding up a taco and staring at us?”

Confused, I straightened and said to my husband, “You’re joking, right? How the hell am I supposed to eat it when my head is turned to the side?”

My groom literally laughed his ass off.

Me: “What’s so funny?”

He stopped laughing long enough to say, “Honey, turn your head sideways, not turn your head to the side.”

Me: “That sounds stupid, why do I have to turn my head sideways?”

Hubby: “To take a bite from the side, so the filling doesn’t fall out.”

Me: “Show me.”

Hubby: “I can’t right now.”

Me: “Why not?”

Hubby: “I can’t risk eating and laughing. I’ll choke.”

I glared.

He then demonstrated what he meant.

(Yes, I know, we have the most intriguing, deep, serious lunch conversations).

It’s a memory he  likes to bring up once in awhile. It’s what he calls; “A Selena moment of; you just had to be there.”

It is in RARE moments like this when he wishes he had a video to capture it all. But he wouldn’t dare even if he had a camera handy, because then I’d have to let go of my zen-like, passive tendencies and go all Italian-Kick-Ass-Chick all over him.

I blame the whole taco tasting incident on his lack of precise instructions and the fact that I was in glowing new bride mode and not really thinking straight.

For this week’s Tasty Tuesday, I am sharing a recipe which I have created, fusing Italian and Mexican food together for an EASIER TO EAT and healthier and LESS CRUMBLY Italian Taco.

THE ITALIAN TACO

(Can be eaten with a knife and fork, hence no head tilting, turning or other movements necessary, except chew and enjoy!)

 Ingredients:

1/2 pound Italian Sausage

½ pound lean ground beef

½ pound lean ground pork

(You can substitute lean ground turkey sausage and ground turkey if you like)

2 cups of Sexy, Sassy Sauce (told you this sauce comes in handy when creating dishes) OR – You can use any kind of tomato sauce.

½ cup Parmesan cheese

Shredded Mozzarella cheese

3 cloves of roasted garlic (OR if you don’t have roasted garlic, minced garlic and saute until tender)

½ cup fresh basil, chopped finely

½ cup Italian Salad Dressing

Salt & Pepper to taste

Optional: Hot chili peppers (if you like it spicier)

Optional: ½ cup Pine nuts

Large Romaine Lettuce Leaves

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F

Wash and dry the Romaine Lettuce Leaves and set aside.

In a small pot, add your tomato sauce and warm it up. Not to boiling point, but heated all the way through.

In a skillet, combine the ground meats and cook over medium heat until evenly browned.

Drain off excess grease.

Turn stove top heat to medium-low and to the meat add: garlic, sauce, salad dressing, stirring meat mixture, until all liquid is absorbed.

Remove mixture from stove and put in a large bowl and stir in: chopped basil, salt & pepper to taste, (hot peppers if you are using them), (pine nuts, if you are using them) and tomato sauce.

Note: Add just enough tomato sauce to cover the meat, and leave some behind in the pot.

Spray a casserole dish with a non-stick spray and put the mixture in the casserole dish.

Top the dish with shredded mozzarella cheese.

Bake for about 8 – 10 minutes, until the mozzarella is all melted.

When done, remove from oven and scoop the mixture inside the lettuce leaves and wrap it up and spoon leftover warmed up tomato sauce over the wraps.

Please drop by my fellow Tasty Tuesday authors who are changing the world one word and recipe at a time:

Pumpkin Martini by Pg Forte

Spaghetti Pie by Nancy Lauzon