The Feastie Blog

Pizza-esque Tomato Basil Quinoa Casserole

I could eat pizza literally every day of the week. I know I've discussed this before (more than once, embarrassingly enough), but it's true. And my freshman year of college I believe I did eat it every day (cheese pizza dipped in ranch, you KNOW it!), in the very dining hall where the singer Jack Johnson met his wife. How's that for trivia?! *please note that it did NOT look like that when I was eating there - the food options look much less disgusting more palatable now* But, alas, I cannot eat pizza every day of the week if I still want to fit into my clothes. So now and then I attempt to fool myself into thinking that I can make something that will taste like pizza but not be pizza - that's where this tomato basil quinoa casserole comes in. I saw this bruschetta quinoa casserole on The Iron You, and decided that it needed to be in my life - I needed to eat it for dinner. It looks suspiciously like pizza - but it's full of (relatively) healthy ingredients. Score? Score. It's so good! It does taste like pizza! Well...it's not Woodstock's or anything...but it's very good. It's cheesy and tomato-y and it's got that great fresh zip from the basil - it's a great weeknight dinner and the leftovers are fabulous. I served this with a big Caesar salad and it was the perfect dinner. So if you're wanting to call out and order in some pizza...but you're thinking that may not be the best idea...make this instead. 

Feastie Friday: 19 Tasty Creative Tacos for Your Weekend Feast

At its most basic, a taco consists of a crunchy shell, some ground beef, and a topping or two, usually shredded lettuce and some cheese. These 19 creative tacos go way beyond basic - everything from vegetarian tacos to Korean style beef tacos bowls, breakfast tacos and shrimp tacos. Have a taco feast this weekend and give one (or more) of these tacos a try. And if you're jonesing for some fish tacos, try our very favorite fish tacos with cilantro lime cabbage slaw - they're not only ridiculously delicious, they're actually healthy. Win-win. 

1. Moroccan Chicken Tacos with Spiced Harrisa from Mountain Mama Cooks
Taco Tuesday: Moroccan Chicken Tacos with Spiced Harrisa from Mountain Mama Cooks
Photo from Mountain Mama Cooks

 

Almost Flourless Chocolate Cake with Meyer Lemon Whipped Cream

For Valentine's Day, The Mr. and I like to stay home and cook for each other. Okay that's a lie. We stay home and HE cooks for ME! It's glorious! This year he made me Parmesan risotto (it was perfection) and pan-roasted asparagus with garlic and a touch of Parmesan. I felt it was only fair to make him dessert - and of course it had to be chocolate. I like chocolate as much as the next guy, but as far as chocolate cakes go, well, when given the option, I'll usually choose something else. If I'm shown a fruit crisp or pie, or even a creme brulee, I will choose it over the chocolate every time. But The Mr. is the opposite - in fact he always chooses the chocolate dessert. We were at one of our favorite ice cream stores in town, The Bent Spoon, and they have amazing flavors that change frequently - I chose a mixture of vanilla bean with sea salt caramel bits and then a lavender mascarpone. They were heavenly. The Mr.? He chose chocolate. When faced with a bazillion creative, delicious, unique flavors, he will always go for the chocolate. So back to dessert - I decided he deserved a chocolate cake. A dense, chocolaty, flourless chocolate cake. I decided on the almost flourless chocolate cake with meyer lemon whipped cream from Food 52, and it did not disappoint. It was so decadently fudgy and chocolaty, but not too sweet - and the meyer lemon whipped cream is sweetly tart and creamy - the perfect combination. This cake is a must-make for chocolate lovers - and it's super quick and easy to whip up! 

Feastie Friday: 11 Reasons You Should Be Eating Quinoa

If you haven't already tried it, heard of it, or said it out loud, say it with us now: "KEEN-WAH". Quinoa is the "it food" of the moment - it's everywhere. For good reason - it's incredibly high in protein and gluten-free, so it works with most diets. It's showing up in everything from pizza crusts to cookies, and we've rounded up 11 recipes and reasons why YOU should be eating quinoa, too. Inexpensive, versatile, nutritious - no wonder it's the food of the moment.  

1. Crispy Quinoa Sweet Potato Tacos from Mountain Mama Cooks
Crispy Quinoa Sweet Potato Tacos from Mountain Mama Cooks
Photo from Mountain Mama Cooks

 

Soft and Chewy Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you're in the mood for cookies, but not super excited about making the same old chocolate chip cookies yet again, this recipe is what you're looking for. The classic combination of peanut butter and chocolate is perfect here - and the texture from the oatmeal is awesome. These are definitely a keeper - The Mr. is only slightly obsessed with them. But they really are (and stay!) soft, chewy, thick - and peanut-buttery in every bite. 

Feastie Friday: One Pot Dinners - 13 Easy Recipes

A huge pile of dirty pots and pans kind of takes the wind out of our sails when we're cooking - sure that lasagna is tasty, but the 2 saucepans, frying pan, and casserole dish aren't fun to scour when we're cleaning up after our meal. That's why one-pot and one-pan meals are brilliant - same awesome lasagna, but only ONE pan to clean! Magic! We've rounded up 13 easy recipes for one-pot dinners that will liberate you from your dish scrubbie (and yes, lasagna is one of them). Rice, beans, and chicken in the same pot? Yep. Soups, sausages, pastas, quinoas that all cook in one single, solitary, lonely little pot. 

1. Chicken Rice Beans Skillet from Food Wine Thyme
Chicken Rice Beans Skillet from Food Wine Thyme
Photo from Food Wine Thyme

 

Olive and Artichoke Tapenade

This is one of those things that I've been obsessed with for years, and every time I make it (which is often - I make this for just about every dinner party we host or attend) I say to myself, "I really should take a picture of this." But I never do - I'm too busy eating it. This olive and artichoke tapenade is the easiest, tastiest, most impressive appetizer you can make - it literally makes itself. I always have the ingredients on hand in my pantry - I can make this at the drop of a hat. It's (barely) adapted from Smitten Kitchen (who adapted it from Mario Batali), so it's not a culinary breakthrough or anything, but for some reason whenever I serve this, everyone is impressed, loves it, asks for the recipe, etc. It's a nice change from hummus or regular tapenade - it's salty, savory, garlicky, and just dang delicious. You can make this a few days in advance if you're having a party - and it travels easily if you're going to a potluck. And don't relegate this spread to the baguette crostini - toss this with some pasta, like Deb suggests. OMG. Unbelievable! I tossed this with some hot spaghetti and The Mr. and I literally scarfed it down. 

Feastie Friday: 17 Ways (and Recipes!) to Share the Love on Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! If you're planning a special meal for loved ones today, we've got a few fun recipes for you - 17 ways to share the love on Valentine's Day! If there's any day to splurge and enjoy something decadent, rich, and delish it's today. We've rounded up recipes for breakfast, dinner, dessert, even cocktails, to help you put your menu together. Why buy chocolates when you can whip up some chocolate Kirsch cupcakes or chocolate mousse poached pear tarts? No need to make reservations at a fancy shmancy restaurant when you can make perfect filet mignon or lasagne for two (and we're not kidding - you really can whip these up quite easily). Check out our Pinterest boards (breakfast,dinner, dessert) for even more inspiration and ideas! We hope you have a sweet day filled with love and chocolate!

1. Creme Brûlée with Caramelized Blood Oranges from Portuguese Girl Cooks
Creme Brûlée with Caramelized Blood Oranges from Portuguese Girl Cooks
Photo from Portuguese Girl Cooks

 

Shrimp Pitas with Tzatziki

I love tzatziki. And until recently, I'd been unable to reproduce tzatziki as good as what I'd find in a restaurant - no longer, my friends. I've found THE recipe! I'm sharing it with you below - it's seriously ridiculously good. These shrimp gyros with tzatziki from Prevention RD were good - not stellar, not mind-blowing, but good. My main issue is the fact that they're called "gyros" - because they're not. Not at ALL. So I think that was part of the disappointment - I was expecting something "gyro-ish" and I got something that was tasty, but nothing even remotely resembling a gyro in any way.They're fairly light and relatively quick and easy to make - in other words, they're not bad. I'm sharing this recipe with you because The Mr. really liked it - and the tzatziki is STELLAR. The tzatziki is my own creation, after mashing together 6 different recipes and coming up with a final product that made me really, really happy. So I'm changing the name to "shrimp pitas" to avoid being misleading, and I'm giving you MY take on tzatziki, which I highly encourage you to make! I've been making a double batch of this every week - we dip carrots into it, spread it on crackers, dollop it on salads and to be quite honest - I eat it straight with a spoon. It's that good. 

Feastie Friday: 19 Ways to Celebrate World Nutella Day Every Day!

Okay so we missed World Nutella Day by a few days - but that doesn't mean you shouldn't celebrate World Nutella Day every day. You don't need an excuse or a holiday to eat Nutella - it's the kind of thing that deserves to be celebrated and eaten every day. The sheer fact that something as amazing as that delectable and addictive chocolate hazelnut spread exists on this earth and is jarred and sold at stores for our convenience - you should eat it with wild abandon. So we've rounded up 19 ways for you to celebrate Nutella every day! Nineteen recipes that highlight the spread in creative ways like pancakes, shakes, crepes, coffee, and more. And although we didn't include it in the list, using a spoon to just get your groove on straight from the jar is also completely acceptable. So get your jar of Nutella and join us as we shamelessly scream from the rooftops, "WE LOVE NUTELLA!" 

1. Nutella S'mores Pulls from Plain Chicken
Nutella S'mores Pulls from Plain Chicken
Photo from Plain Chicken

 

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The Founder of Feastie.