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!)

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

Now I am always looking for ways to spruce up our household favorites. So I wanted to share with you a quick and flavorful take on an oatmeal recipe that the adults and kids will like this coming weekend. I pair Irish cut steel oats with a little cream and brown sugar and roasted pears. The house will smell like the holidays all over again as you roast your pears away! For the kids, I sometimes just take the roasted pear and just pour the yummy oatmeal over top. It’s like a pear bowl. The kids will love it. It truly amazes me all the things you can add and mix in to truly transform a plain old bowl of oatmeal. I hope that this becomes a new household favorite.

Xo- Ayesha

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

3 cups water
1 cup steel cut oats
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup heavy cream
One tablespoon brown sugar
Pinch sea salt

Add cinnamon and oats into a pot and bring water to a boil. Stir well and cover. Adjust heat to low and simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Do not overcook! Remove from heat and add butter, sugar, cream, and pinch of salt. Top with roasted pears and a drizzle of pear juice from the pan. Serve immediately.

Roasted Pears

Three pears, cut into halves.
Two tablespoons butter, melted.
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Quarter and core the pears. (Use a melon scooper or small spoon.)

Place pear halves in baking dish. Brush pears liberally with melted butter. Sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon mixture on top evenly.

Bake for 10-15 minutes.

Allow to cool and transfer to a cutting board. (Reserving sauce in pan)

With or without skin on chop into cubes.

Serve over top of oatmeal.

Enjoy!

Simple Turkey Chili

Happy Friday! Heres a simple to make “Turkey Chili” that will jumpstart your weekend. This recipe is full of fresh vegetables, lean turkey and full of flavor! Can you believe that the end of winter is approaching us? Which means locking up most of our hot winter meal recipes in a box until next season. I personally could eat chili or soup year round. It’s such a comforting meal to have any time of the year.

With very little preparation you just have to smell and wait while it out as it simmers away. Ground turkey is also low in sodium and a very lean meat to cook. I add in three types of beans and some crushed tomatoes. I also like to put out toppings such as cheese, sour cream, corn chips (Don’t knock it till you try it!), and even my jalapeño cornbread croutons and everyone just serves themselves. Perfect meal to end the work week. Whats your favorite version of chili? Share in the comments below.

Xo- Ayesha

Simple Turkey Chili:

Two tablespoons olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 cup chicken stock
One 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
1 15-oz can kidney beans, rinsed and drained.
One 15-oz can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained.
One 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
One red bell pepper, diced.
One white onion, diced.
Two garlic cloves, minced.
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons kosher salt. (you can use more to your taste.)
1 bay leaf

For serving: (optional)

Shredded cheese (I prefer cheddar)
Sour cream
Corn chips or jalapeno cornbread croutons

Heat oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Now season with salt and pepper and cook until softened, about 5-6 minutes. Add in the turkey and seasonings making sure to break into small pieces. Cook until no longer pink and cooked through.

Add beans, stock, and tomatoes, reduce heat to low. Allow it to simmer for about 25-30 minutes until the flavors have developed. Discard bay leaf before serving.

This dish pairs well with my Jalapeno cornbread croutons. Click the link for the recipe.

Enjoy!

Flash Back Friday Featuring: Baked Tilapia In Foil

Happy Friday! For Flashback Friday I am bringing back my “Baked Tilapia In Foil” recipe. But honestly, you can use any fish in this recipe. I use salmon in place of the tilapia all the time. We use the leftover salmon the next day for perfect and quick scrambled eggs for the family. Win-win!

Quickly put together with an even easier clean-up. And it can be changed in a flash by substituting different types of fish (Cod, salmon, bass, etc.) and veggie combinations. Tilapia is full of omega-3 fatty acids and protein. In this recipe, I paired it along with some delicious vegetables like kale and sunburst tomatoes. But I love to stuff my fish packages full of veggies I find that are seasonal and drizzle them with a bit of olive oil,  lemon juice, and whatever seasoning I’m in the mood to use. In my opinion its the perfect meal to wind down with on a Friday night. And don’t forget the best part….No cleanup!

Baked Tilapia In Foil

Baked Tilapia In Foil

4 Tilapia fillets
Fresh kale or spinach
Fresh minced garlic (about one clove per fish)
4 Teaspoons olive oil (1 teaspoon for each tilapia)
Fresh lemons (optional.)
Salt, pepper, smoked paprika and your favorite seasonings. Mix in a separate bowl. Sprinkle combined seasoning over each filet. (about one teaspoon for each piece of tilapia depending on size)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Lay each fillet out on its own piece of foil. Make sure that the foil is large is enough to hold the fish and veggies when assembled.
Season each piece of fish with salt, pepper, and smoked paprika.
Combine all of your veggies in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Top each fillet with the mixture.
Drizzle each pouch lightly with olive oil.

Fold over the fillet and roll up the edges to create a seal. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Once your fish is cooked, it will flake easily with a fork.

I love to give it a squeeze of lemon for some acidity at the end.

Now, these can be served straight from the packet for easy clean-up. Or you can remove it from the foil and plate it with the veggies on top.

Enjoy and have a great weekend everyone!

Xo Ayesha

 

A Weeks Worth!

The past week has been a busy one. It’s been quite hectic but extremely fun nonetheless. Riley, my in laws and a few close friends watched my husband and the Warriors fight their butts off to make it to game 7 in the 2nd round of the playoffs. It was an extremely close game, but in the end our guys were tired and simply needed rest. They accomplished more this season than any of the critics and media thought they would. We had 0% chance of even making it to the playoffs! Next season is going to be incredible so get ready Warriors fans!

After a whirlwind season, we hopped on a red eye the following evening and headed to Charlotte, NC (our hometown). I was there attending a blogging seminar. It was great and I learned some great tips that I can’t wait to implement into my blog. I literally went from the airport, changed at the house and went straight to the seminar. We were then able to spend the rest of the weekend with our family. It was AWESOME!!! Riley got some much needed grandparents time on monday while Stephen and I had a date day!

What did we do?

Naturally, we went to the arcade to play games and then hit some softballs at the batting cages. Chic Fil A for lunch? Why yes of course! We ended off our date by seeing The Great Gatsby at a great theatre in Charlotte called “Cinebarre”. COOLEST PLACE EVER! They have a full food and drink menu and you can order and eat in your seats while you watch the film!

The craziness continued the next morning when my little family hopped on a 7 am flight and headed back to the bay just in time to head to (GET THIS) the Mayor’s office! Stephen was presented with the key to the city! Such an honor. It was amazing to see the city come out and support the Warriors for their wonderful accomplishments this season. I was definitely a proud wife, as I see all of the hard work he puts in on a daily basis. Everyone at the event was warm and welcoming and you could genuinely feel what a great place the city of San Francisco and the bay area is. We are so happy to be living here!

Well that’s all I have for now! I am off to the dentist… yikes! Here are a couple of photos and links to vine videos from over the weekend. Enjoy!

1)   https://vine.co/v/b9JJ9qqhBKa

2)   https://vine.co/v/b9Jin1UjFeV

3)   https://vine.co/v/b953hPX19la

image copy 2 image copy 3 image copy 4 image copy image photoSteph Curry

Weekend Roundup

Our weekend was fantastic! It started out with a nice mother-daughter lunch in the square. Riley became a big girl right before my eyes and decided she was more than happy to sit in her high chair with me for an hour and enjoy her food as well. It’s amazing that she’s growing up but so bittersweet and I tend to feel a great deal of sadness about it. Any other mommies out there feel the same?

Our neighborhood had an awesome sailboat event going on so we were able to check that out for a little while after our lunch. We had a great family breakfast the next day, complete with an impromptu early morning at the park and some smoothies! Your day is always better when it starts out at an empty park, as a family. Riley loved it and I think my husband loved it even more (see photos below). Stephen had practice on Sunday so we weren’t able to make it to service, but we did manage to blast our favorite gospel songs through the house and bask in the presence of the Lord as we got ready for our day. I met up with my good friend Sabina (my gorgeous Polish bombshell) for brunch and we had the most delicious citrus beignets and french press. I also had the best scrambled eggs to date. I’m definitely going to play around and see if I can make them myself, but I can’t quite put my finger on what made them so yummy.

Our Sunday continued after “dada” got out of practice. We took a trip to Babies R Us to pick up a baby gate. It’s our ritual to let Riley pick out a toy when we go there and naturally she picked out the scariest most life like toy in the building. She loves the big monkey whom we’ve respectively named Roscoe, but he scares me every time I walk into the room!

The night ended with a little home cleaning session, homemade bread, lasagna and red velvet cupcakes! I’ve included a link to a vine video I made of Riley at the park. 🙂

https://vine.co/v/bF79eiEuhZr

Happy Monday! Enjoy!

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