Blackberry Compote

Blackberry Compote. With blackberry season ending this month I wanted to share this compote recipe again. So if you have a bunch of blackberries leftover in your garden or spot them at your local market you have to try out this delicious compote. But remember when buying blackberries to look for a shiny dark color to them. They are a great snack and are perfect in desserts and drinks. Not to mention chock full of health benefiting nutrients. This recipe is incredibly easy to make and versatile. You can use it on your pancakes, french toast, ice cream, crepes, cocktails and more. My kids love it!. And the best part is that depending on the sweetness of the berries or preference, and you can cut down the sugar. Store it in an airtight jar or container for up to two weeks when it’s done. Substitute with a berry of your choice if you can’t find blackberries or don’t like them.  Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Blackberry Compote

 

Blackberry Compote

1 Pound blackberries, fresh or frozen (thawed.)
3 Tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
Pinch sea salt

In a medium saucepan, add blackberries, sugar, lemon, and salt. Simmer over low heat until berries have broken down and the sauce has thickened. About 20-25 minutes transfer into a jar or container and allow to cool. The sauce will thicken more as it cools down.

Tip- If you’re not a fan of compotes, you can strain the berries and push out all of the liquid. Then you will have a blackberry syrup.

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 has numerous health benefits and happens to be pretty darn tasty. Check out my cookbook for “The Seasoned Life” for a quick “Kale Chip” recipe that is sure to be a favorite. 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 that pairs perfectly with pasta. Share your favorite way to eat kale in the comments 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
Two 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. This glaze is a great sauce that adds the perfect amount of tang and sweetness to the salmon. Are any of you fig lovers? Share in the comments below.

 

Enjoy,

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

Orange Fig Sauce:

One cup California figs, stems removed and halved.
Two tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup orange juice
Three tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Two tablespoons honey
Two tablespoons dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
One 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. Stream in olive oil and pulse until well combined. It will be thick! But will melt wonderfully over the hot fish.

Place salmon, skin side down on a lined baking sheet. Brush with glaze and cook through until flaky, about 12 to 15 minutes. You can brush salmon with remaining sauce if desired and serve with steamed rice.

Lamb Ragu

Lamb Ragu. Let’s throw it back to this delicious and crave-worthy dish. This rich and creamy, pasta is a spin on the traditional spaghetti sauce. Served over your favorite pasta. And flavored with tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, and a little red wine. Perfect for lunch or dinner! You can’t go wrong. This just may be your new favorite dinner to make. My kids were a big fan of this. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Lamb Ragu

 

Lamb Ragu

1lb ground lamb
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-28oz can whole peeled tomatoes (I used San Marzano)
2 cloves garlic, minced.
One small red onion, diced.
Three cups cremini mushrooms, sliced.
One cup full-bodied red wine (I used cabernet)
One cup sour cream
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence
1 1/2teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/12 tablespoons brown sugar (Of course I’m going to use it!)
1lb box favorite pasta (I used fusilli pasta)
Grated parmesan cheese for garnish
Fresh basil or parsley for garnish

 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Make sure to salt your water! Add the pasta and cook according to instructions. Drain pasta. And set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add your onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the ground lamb into the pan. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, and Herbs de Provence.

Break up your lamb as it browns. Letting all of the liquid evaporate in the pan until you see little bits start to stick to the pan. Add mushrooms.

Add wine and deglaze the pan by getting all those brown bits off the bottom of the pan. (So much flavor!!) Let the wine cook down to half its size. Add the whole tomatoes and gently break up, simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes. Add brown sugar and sour cream and mix well.

Serve over the pasta. Garnish with freshly grated parmesan and freshly chopped basil.

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 you can even jazz it up with some chicken or shrimp for a protein-packed salad. Simple, fast, and tasty you can’t go wrong with that. What’s your favorite way to eat watermelon? Comment below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Watermelon Salad

Watermelon Salad

Four 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.

Simple Arugula And Tomato Salad With Brown Sugar Dressing

Simple Arugula And Tomato Salad With Brown Sugar Dressing. Keep it simple and fresh with this arugula and tomato salad that’s Drizzled with delicious brown sugar and balsamic dressing. Now The real winner here is the flavorful dressing that comes together in no time, and with five ingredients no less. The salad consists of arugula, sweet cherry tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella. I love to use arugula for its peppery taste, and it just adds another level of depth to your salad. It is topped with some quickly seared shrimp or whatever protein you have on hand. This salad is one of those meals that looks so pretty and impressive but without all the work. And It’ll be on your table in less than ten minutes! Let me know what you think in the comments.

Enjoy

Xo- Ayesha

 

Simple Arugula And Tomato Salad

8 ounces baby arugula

One cup cherry tomatoes, whole.

4 ounces mozzarella balls. (Pearl mozzarella)

Brown sugar balsamic dressing, recipe to follow.

In a large bowl add arugula. Top with tomato and mozzarella balls. Drizzle with dressing or serve on the side. You can top it with a protein or serve as is.

 

Brown Sugar Balsamic Dressing

3/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tablespoon brown sugar

1⁄2 cup balsamic vinegar

One tablespoon garlic, finely minced.

One tablespoon shallot, finely minced.

Pinch salt and pepper

In a small bowl or mason jar add brown sugar, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Mix well. Slowly whisk in olive oil until combined.

Toss salad with dressing and store remaining in the refrigerator.

 

Tip- Using a mason jar is always a go-to for me. It’s so easy to add everything into the jar and give it a good shake. Plus its easy storage for leftovers.

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp

Quick Pan Seared Sweet Chili Shrimp. Now In my cookbook “The Seasoned Life” I have a recipe for “Sweet Chili Shrimp Wraps” they are quickly fried and served inside butter lettuce with a jicama salad, and they are oh 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!

 

Island Green Smoothie

Island Green Smoothie. For a sweet and tropical pick me up, try out this recipe. It just happens to be one of my husband’s favorite drinks to get when we go to any smoothie place. And with only three simple ingredients that you probably already have at home.  You can add in protein powder, chia seeds, and more to make it your own — also a perfect substitution for a sweet tooth craving. For the full recipe and more, go out and get my book “The Seasoned Life” available at book retailers nationwide. And if you’ve already tried this let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy.

Xo- Ayesha

Island Green Smoothie

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

Cucumber And Tomato Salad. In my cookbook, “The Seasoned Life,” I  have a recipe for “Cucumber Salad.” Here I added in some fresh tomatoes from my garden. I also used Thai chili powder in place of red pepper flakes. It’s perfect in this chilled salad. If you can get ahold of it and enjoy a little heat, give it a try! Such a quick and straightforward way to use produce that you have on hand or can get ahold of at your local market or farmers market. This dish is sweet, vinegary and has a touch of heat — the perfect complement to your next summer cookout.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

1 Cucumber peeled and sliced
1-pint baby cherry or heirloom tomatoes
Two tablespoons red wine vinegar
Two tablespoons minced red onion
Two teaspoons light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

In a small bowl mix vinegar, onion, sugar, salt, and chili flakes. mIx well.

In a large bowl add cucumber slice and tomatoes. Add in dressing and toss to coat. Allow to sit for atlas 5 minutes before serving or refrigerate and serve chilled.

Tip* I personally think it tastes better the longer it sits. So if you have time to make beforehand and refrigerate I would suggest it.

Seared Scallop And Teriyaki Bowl

Seared Scallop and Teriyaki Bowl. Who needs takeout when you can whip up a meal in just minutes. And you can use any protein or rice you have on hand. I love the subtly sweet and rich flavor of scallops, and they take little to no time to prepare. You just need to make sure they are completely dry. A wet scallop won’t sear properly. The teriyaki sauce is sweet yet tangy with a little bit of heat from the red pepper flakes. You can use this sauce in so many different dishes. Dinner in a bowl is my kind of meal. I hope that you enjoy it.

Thanks,

Xo- Ayesha

Teriyaki Sauce

1 cup of soy sauce
1 cup of water
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
One tablespoon honey
One tablespoon ginger, minced.
1-2 garlic cloves, finely minced. (Depending on your taste)
Pinch crushed red pepper flake
Slurry to taste.

Heat a small pot at medium-high heat and add all ingredients. Cook until sugar has dissolved.

Slurry-

Two tablespoons cornstarch
Two tablespoons water

Mix until combined.

Combine all of the ingredients in a saucepan on medium heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add slurry a little at a time until you get the desired thickness.

Assemble bowls with cooked rice, protein, vegetables and drizzle with sauce.

Scallops-

Pat dry. Season both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat a large pan with one tablespoon of olive oil and butter at medium-high heat. Sear the scallops on each side for 2-3 minutes per side. You want a golden color with a slightly firm touch. Remove from pan and serve immediately!

Herb Roasted Baby Potatoes

Herb Roasted Baby Potatoes. Who doesn’t love a flavorful but simple side dish of oven roasted potatoes? Not to mention, it can put together in no time. This recipe is a mix of gold and purple baby potatoes that are tossed in olive oil, chopped herbs, garlic, shallot, and simple seasonings before roasted to perfection. The freshly chopped rosemary, thyme, and parsley give it a herbaceous punch that will have your kitchen smelling amazing in no time. You can also easily swap out for your favorite herbs and potatoes that you already have on hand. Dinner time perfection let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy.

Xo- Ayesha

Herb Roasted Baby Potatoes

Herb Roasted Baby Potatoes

Two pounds assorted baby potatoes, halved. (I used Yukon gold and purple potatoes)
Two tablespoons olive oil
Two garlic cloves, finely chopped.
One tablespoon shallot, finely chopped.
One tablespoon thyme leaves, chopped.
One tablespoon rosemary leaves, chopped.
Two tablespoons parsley, chopped.
Salt and black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a large bowl combine halved potatoes with olive oil, garlic, shallot, and herbs. Add salt and pepper to taste and toss well to coat.

Pour seasoned halved potatoes onto a prepared baking sheet.

Roast for 25- 30 minutes at 400 degrees. You want them to be lightly browned and crisp around the edges. Top with chopped parsley and serve immediately.

Smoky Wet Rub

Smoky Wet Rub. This throwback is Fathers Day approved. Turn a simple steak dinner into something extraordinary for dinner this week. Now usually my go-to recipe is “Pan Steaks” from my cookbook “The Seasoned Life,” but every once in a while I like to change it up. I love that you can mix and match different seasonings to your liking in this rub. No marinating required it adds an extra punch of flavor to your steak. You could also use this on chicken and pork. Just throw the “rub” ingredients into a mason jar give it a shake and voila dinner is just minutes away. I hope that you enjoy it. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Xo- Ayesha

 

Smoky Wet Rub

Smoky Wet Rub

1/2 cup olive oil
One tablespoon smoky paprika.
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
One teaspoon dry mustard
One tablespoon brown sugar
One teaspoon cayenne pepper

**Before using rub make sure to season your meat with salt and pepper to your liking.**

Place all of the ingredients into a mason jar. Close the lid and shake until well combined. Rub evenly over meat before grilling. Enjoy!