Well Dined

13Nov/150

Sweet Potato and Chard Gratin

Well Dined | Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Gratin

Are you looking for a new side for your Thanksgiving dinner?  Maybe something a little more grownup and sophisticated?  This gratin with sweet potato, chard, Gruyere, fresh herbs, and lots of garlic may be perfect for you.  You could certainly make it for a non-holiday dinner as well, though it does take quite a bit of time with pre-cooking, layering, and baking.  Luckily, I was with my dear friend Melissa (Smells Like Brownies), who helped with the prep-work.

Well Dined | Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Gratin

Start with a big sweet potato (or two smaller ones) and a whole lot of chard (seriously - a lot)

Well Dined | Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Gratin

Peel the sweet potato and slice thinly, then set aside.

Well Dined | Sweet Potato and Swiss Chard Gratin

Remove the stems from the chard, chop, and place in a big pot with some onion that has been sauteing in butter.  Look at those colors!  Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg; and cook until soft.  

14Oct/150

Caramelized Onion and Burrata Pizza

Well Dined | Caramelized Onion and Burrata Pizza

I love homemade pizza, you know this.  And I really love burrata on homemade pizza - it is so creamy and gooey and just heavenly.  It's great with tomatoes in the summer, but when paired with caramelized onions it becomes this luscious and sophisticated fall combination.

Well Dined | Caramelized Onion and Burrata Pizza

The onions are caramelized slowly with butter (this takes time and patience), and finished with balsamic vinegar.  They are piled on pizza dough and topped with torn burrata, no sauce needed.

Well Dined | Caramelized Onion and Burrata Pizza

Then it is baked and topped with fresh basil.  Oh. My. Gosh.  It is just so good - rich and creamy and perfect.

Well Dined | Caramelized Onion and Burrata Pizza

My thanks to Melissa from Smells Like Brownies, for suggesting that we make this and for teaching me to stop rolling my pizza dough out so dang thin!

12Oct/159

SRC – Broccoli Farro Casserole from The Tasty Cheapskate

Well Dined | Broccoli Farro Casserole

It's time for another Secret Recipe Club post!  This month, my assignment was The Tasty Cheapskate.  Food was not a big focus for Jean growing up, neither eating it nor cooking it, which is pretty much the opposite of my childhood.  Luckily all that changed for her as an adult.  Now she focuses on whole foods and budget friendly family meals.  She even did a challenge where she fed her 6 person family on $6 a day!  Incredible!

Looking through her blog, I found a lot of yummy baked goods.  Like a bunch of different pull-apart breads, but especially this coconut and lime one.  Also zucchini bread with lemon or with coconut.  And self frosting nutella pumpkin muffins - shut the front door!  But despite all those yummy delights, what I really wanted was a nice healthy meal - so my eyes lit up when I saw this Broccoli Barley Casserole.  And I was even more excited when I saw that the original recipe used farro, which I have been meaning to start using for a long time, and that it could be made in one pot.

Well Dined | Broccoli Farro Casserole

Start by sauteing onions and garlic in a Dutch oven.  Then add the farro and allow to toast a bit.

Well Dined | Broccoli Farro Casserole

Add in frozen spinach, water, and vegetable stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer until the liquid is almost all gone and the farro is tender but still chewy, about 20 minutes.

25Aug/150

Grilled Vegetable Flatbread

Well Dined | Grilled Vegetable Flatbread

This week Melissa and Sarah take their vegetarian lunch adventure to the grill!  Woohoo!  We've been meaning to grill all summer, but for some reason every time we pick a day it starts to rain.  This time was no exception - rain was forecasted starting in the afternoon - but we decided to try and grill before it started, and we succeeded!  Finally!

Well Dined | Grilled Vegetable Flatbread

This flatbread had been kicking around in our minds for a while, the product of brainstorming, and I am so pleased with the way it turned out!  Crispy grilled flatbread topped with pesto, grilled and fresh veggies, feta, and fresh basil - the epitome of Summer.

Well Dined | Grilled Vegetable Flatbread

First, we made the flatbread dough - which is very easy and requires no yeast or rising time!  Just flour, salt, baking powder, water, milk, and oil mixed together.

30Jul/150

Vegan Three Bean Chili

Well Dined | Vegan Three Bean Chili

I was making dinner for a vegan friend of mine and found this quick and easy recipe that sounded good.  Using mostly canned products, I was not expecting it to turn out as well as it did (hence no preparation photos).  We were both surprised at how much flavor this chili had.  I added in some chopped leftover steak for Jasper, and he loved it too.  This is definitely going into my records as cheap, easy, customizeable, and well-loved.

Vegan Three Bean Chili with Pesto
adapted from Real Simple
serves 4

1 tbsp plus 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
2 carrots, diced
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian spices, including liquid
kosher salt and black pepper
1 15.5oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 15.5oz can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 15.5oz can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 clove garlic
3 tbsp pine nuts (you can use a less expensive nut)
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and carrots and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the tomatoes and their liquid, 2 cups water, 1 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper and bring to a boil.

Add the beans and cook until heated through, about 3 minutes.

Either finely chop the garlic, pine nuts, and parsley and combine with remaining 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/8 tsp pepper in a small bowl OR put everything into a mini food processor and pulse.

Divide the chili among individual bowls and top with the pesto.

One Year Ago - Greek Style Zucchini Salad
Two Years Ago - Meat Ravioli
Three Years Ago - 4th of July
Four Years Ago - CSA Week 9

6Jul/150

Ricotta and Chard Pizza

Well Dined | Ricotta and Chard Pizza

A few weeks ago, I talked about Cauliflower Crust Pizza and showed you a basic tomato and mozzarella version.  Now I want to tell you about this amazing version with creamy ricotta cheese and garlicky sauteed chard.

Well Dined | Ricotta and Chard Pizza

It all starts with the chard - and luckily Melissa (Smells Like Brownies) was growing some in her yard!

Well Dined | Ricotta and Chard Pizza

Saute the chard stems in olive oil - I love how bright and colorful they are!

Well Dined | Ricotta and Chard Pizza

Then add in garlic and the leaves, which cook faster than the stems, and finish with red wine vinegar.

Well Dined | Ricotta and Chard Pizza

Top a fully cooked cauliflower crust with fresh, whole milk ricotta and the chard mixture.  Enjoy!

3Jun/151

Stuffed Squash Blossoms

Well Dined | Stuffed Squash Blossoms

Have you ever had squash blossoms?  It's kind of weird to eat flowers, right?  But these delicate blooms (stuffed with ricotta cheese and herbs, battered, and fried) are so, so delicious.  They are also extremely perishable and only last a few hours at home.  So it is best to cook them right away.

Well Dined | Stuffed Squash Blossoms

I've only ever had squash blossoms in restaurants before, but as soon as I saw them at the farmers market, I knew that I had to try making them myself.  I really wanted to go with a stuffed and fried recipe, which is what I'm used to eating.  But I found a bunch of other cool recipes I'd like to try if they still have them at the market next week - soup, quesadilla, fritatta.

21May/152

Vegetable Alfredo Pasta

Well Dined | Vegetable Alfredo Pasta

I was looking for a dish to bring over to my friend, Melissa, who just had a baby.  This recipe immediately popped out at me - one dish, easy to transport, easy to reheat, and lot's of veggies (plus cheese and pasta, of course).  There's a reason people are always bringing casseroles!  I also liked that it uses a lot of frozen veggies, making it budget friendly and easy to make year-round.

I also may have used it as an excuse to buy this thing, which I have been wanting for a long time - so cute!

Well Dined | Vegetable Alfredo Pasta

This is actually enough for 2 casseroles - I made one for me, too!

So, we start out with ALL THE VEGETABLES.  Ever.  Just kidding... kind of.  Saute onion and garlic in olive oil, then add frozen broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach.  When those have thawed, add in shredded carrot and zucchini.

Well Dined | Vegetable Alfredo Pasta

I saw this and thought to myself, "not enough vegetables," so I added some frozen peas to the boiling pasta for the last 30 seconds.  You can use whatever shape of pasta you like, I thought bowties would be fun and cute.  I used Barilla protein plus pasta, because it boasts 17g of protein per 3.5oz serving and veggie dishes can always use some extra protein.  I also rinsed the pasta (and peas) in cold water to stop the cooking and get rid of the extra starch (something I only do for pasta salads, and pasta that is going to be cooked again in the oven).

12May/150

Green Goddess Egg Salad

Well Dined | Green Goddess Egg Salad

Now that I am settling into my new place, and Melissa has welcomed her baby daughter to the world, we are getting back into our lunch schedule.  We started with this gorgeous Spring inspired egg salad.  This is really customizeable, and you can add whatever you find fresh in your area.

Well Dined | Green Goddess Egg Salad

We started by finely dicing some celery, scallions, chives, parsley, and dill while we boiled some eggs.  You can use whatever combination of herbs you prefer.  We also separated the greens from a bunch of radishes.

Well Dined | Green Goddess Egg Salad

To that, we added chopped eggs and avocado, caper, garlic, lemon zest, mayonnaise, and dijon mustard.

21Apr/154

Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Herbs

Well Dined | Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Herbs

I have made this salad multiple times in the past two years, but never managed to photograph it or blog about it - until now!  Which is a shame, because it is so delicious and satisfying, and you could have been making it, too.  I'm so sorry!  But I'm sharing it with you now, and I hope that you know how serious I am about loving this salad, because I rarely ever make things more than once.  I even bought pomegranate molasses for my parents so that I could make this for them!

Special thanks to Melissa at Smells Like Brownies, for making it with me again two years after our first time making it together so that we could photograph it.

Well Dined | Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Herbs

First thing is first, you must cook some lentils! I use French lentils for pretty much everything because they retain their shape and texture.  Plus, they are a pretty green.

Well Dined | Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Herbs

Meanwhile - prep your other ingredients.  Chop your vegetables: onion, garlic, bell peppers.  I love how colorful the bell peppers are, and how pretty they make the salad.  So buy one of those 3 packs that has red, yellow, and orange.  It will make you so happy.  We also had a little bit of a green pepper left over, so we threw that in.

Also use this time to rehydrate some sun-dried tomatoes in boiling water.  The water will become infused with tomato flavor, and will later become part of the dressing - neat!  Not pictured - toast some walnuts.  It releases the oils and makes them so much more flavorful.