I'm an absolute sucker for rice pudding, mostly because I've found it to always be pretty delicious, regardless of the source. Whether it's something ordered at a New York diner, an Indian restaurant, or bought at the supermarket in a Kozy Shack plastic tub, if I see it as an option, I'm usually getting it. This rice pudding recipe is adapted from Monica Bhide, who suggests serving it with fresh mango. While that is good, the recipe does stand up on its own as well, as the coconut and cardamom bring something nice and different to the table, without changing the overall goodness.
“Make your own…” bars are super fun, and incorporating them into a party is always a hit - everyone gets exactly what they want. And a Cinco de Mayo taco bar couldn’t be more awesome! Get yourself a meat or two, lettuce, sour cream, cheese, radishes, and some leftover guacamole and pico de gallo, set them all out in bowls with a stack of warmed tortillas for soft tacos and a stack of taco shells. And I recently made the life-changing discovery of these taco plates that keep your tacos upright and your ingredients safely inside the shells.
So what’s to serve with the tacos?
Cinco de Mayo is here! And if you’re not hip to the actual reason the fifth of May is celebrated, let me clue you in! On May 5, 1862, 4,000 Mexican soldiers defeated the French army and an army of traitor Mexican soldiers to regain control of the country in Puebla.
Anyone can go to their local Mexican joint to celebrate. But WHY? Over the course of today, I’m going to lay out easy recipes to cover your celebration, from drinks to dessert. First up, horchata!
Beans and rice, rice and beans. Endorsed by scores of nations worldwide, beans and rice provides a balance of protein and carbs that can hardly be beat (not to mention the combination creates a very thrifty meal). Add some chicken for an extra protein bump and some salsa for flavor, and you have a dinner that’s quick, healthy and delish.
This recipe came to me via the print edition of Clean Eating magazine, which I highly endorse.
Risotto has a reputation for being tedious, laborious, and finicky. To some extent, I agree. It takes a while to prepare, you have to have your mise en place* on point, and if you’re really hungry you could end up eating your fill WHILE you’re cooking dinner. However, if you have some time and don’t mind putting up with a tired arm from all of the stirring, risotto can be one of the most satisfying meals or elegant sides you’ll ever make.
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (or 2 teaspoons minced garlic from a jar)
- Black pepper to taste
- 1 cup Arborio rice
- 2 to 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley (also called Italian - this is NOT curly parsley)
- 1/2 cup frozen peas (I use petite sweet peas but any kind work)
- 1/4 to 1/2 grated Parmesan cheese (as always, fresh is best but the pre-grated stuff from the store works just as well)
This recipe was passed to me from a friend who has been a vegetarian all her life. So, needless to say, she has an arsenal of delicious veggie recipes that I have gleaned to add to the eclectic bunch that I rotate throughout the week. I love this particular recipe for tofu because everyone (including my kids) who has tried it, loves it. And it makes tofu taste like you would never believe. It has a few ingredients that one might seem would not be paired together but all of the flavors blend so well and it is a recipe to be tried on the naysayers of tofu. It is a meal that needs an extra day to prep, but it is so easy and foolproof. It is a healthy, protein packed meal that you will feel good about feeding to your kids. Serve it on top of white or better yet, brown rice; I like to add a green vegetable on the side to add that bit of color to please the eyes as well as the palate. I usually go with broccoli or green beans, but also love asparagus lightly sauteed with some olive oil and kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
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