Smoky White Cheddar Zucchini Bread

Smokey White Cheddar Zucchini Bread – Candy Coated Culinista

Another year and I am the recipient of a baby sized zucchini from a friends garden; this time around 4 month sized. I had the opportunity to make zucchini bread many years ago for a cooking club; but the idea of zucchini bread never appealed to be. I still feel the same way; but I am willing to give it a try now. Who knows I may just like it right.

Yield/Serving: 8
Prep Time: 20 min.
Cook Time: 30 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 1 medium zucchini, grated
• 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
• 2 tsp baking powder
• 1 tsp sea salt
• ½ tsp baking soda
• ½ tsp nutmeg
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 2 cups smoky white cheddar cheese, grated
• 2 eggs
• 1/3 cup vegetable oil

Assembly
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Spray mini loaf pan with a non-stick spray.
3. Grate unpeeled zucchini, squeeze out any excess water with your hands, and then pat dry using a clean kitchen towel. Zucchini should come to about 1 cup.
4. In a large bowl, pour flour, baking powder, sea salt, baking soda and nutmeg and combine with a whisk.
5. Add in the sugar, zucchini and 1 ½ cups of the cheese.
6. In a small bowl whisk eggs and oil together and then pour over flour mixture and combine until mixed.
7. Pour batter into the prepared pan and smooth down the tops and sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup of cheese.
8. Bake for 30 minutes or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.
9. Let loafs remain in pan for 10 minutes and then transfer to cooling rack.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
The one thing I like about this recipe is I don’t have to be pre-planning getting butter to room temperature. This tasted much better than I expected and this vegetable loaf was loved by my taste testers.

Asparagus & String Beans with Smoky Romesco

Asparagus & String Beans with Smoky Romesco – Candy Coated Culinista

Having a BBQ? Try this interesting grilled appetizer for your guests.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 20 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

From: Food 52 Any Night Grilling

Ingredients
• 2 bunches asparagus
• 1 pound, green, purple or yellow wax beans (preferably a combination)
• 1 thick slice country style bread
• 2 large red bell peppers, halved, cored and seeded
• 2 fresno chilies
• ½ red onion, cut into thick wedges
• ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
• 2 plum tomatoes, halved
• ¼ cup skinned roasted hazelnuts or almonds
• 1 tsp sherry vinegar, plus more as desired
• 2 tbsp freshly chopped thyme or marjoram leaves
• 1 tsp smoked paprika
• 1 clove garlic or 1 tsp smoked garlic (from book)
• Kosher salt, to taste
• Ground black pepper, to taste

Assembly
1. Prepare charcoal grill to medium-high heat and coat the gill pan with extra virgin olive oil over high heat using a paper towel. If you are using a grill basket allow to heat for 10 minutes prior to use.
2. Snap ends of asparagus and trim beans and set aside.
3. Grill the bread over direct heat until grill marks appear, about one minute per side.
4. In a bowl lightly toss bell peppers, chilies and onions in olive oil.
5. Place over grill on in grill basket turning and rotating for 6 to 7 minutes for the onions and continue to char the red peppers.
6. Cover peppers in a kitchen towel (to make it easier to remove the skin)
7. Grill tomatoes and when cooled enough remove skin also.
8. Using a food processor add peppers, chilies, onion, tomato along with nuts, thyme and paprika and salt into a thick puree. Drizzle in olive oil as you go.
9. Grill asparagus and beans and serve warm or at room temperature with romesco.

Tips
• Sprinkle some flaky finishing salt and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This recipes was super simple and very easy to complete. The only thing here is you have to be a fan of romesco. I had heard of romesco before; but never had tried or made it. It reminds me of a salsa or pesto of sorts. Typically it is served with meat or fish; but today it’s served with grilled veggies and totally works. I added some finishing salt and it really rounded out the taste of the veggies.

Buddha Bowls with Turkey & Chicken Kofta Kebabs

Buddha Bowls with Turkey & Chicken Kofta Kebabs – Candy Coated Culinista

These healthful round bowls of proteins, fresh vegetables and grains are a delight to anyone. In addition, the best part of these bowls is you can use whatever you have on hand and skies the limit.

Yield/Serving: 6
Prep Time: 30 min.
Cook Time: 1 hr. & 30 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy, time consuming

Ingredients
Hummus

• 1 red pepper, roasted
• ¾ cups chickpeas
• 2 cloves garlic, finely diced
• 6 tbsp tahini
• 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• ½ tsp Kosher salt
• ½ tsp Black pepper
• any seeds, to garnish
Turkey & Chicken Kofta Kebabs
• ½ pound lean ground chicken
• ½ pound lean ground turkey
• ½ small white onion, diced
• 4 garlic cloves, finely diced
• 1 cup breadcrumbs
• 1 egg
• Onion powder, to taste
• Garlic powder, to taste
• Kosher salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste
• Oregano, to taste
• Dried parsley, to taste
• Curry power, two pinches or to taste
Buddha Bowl
• Kidney beans
• Lentils
• Chives, chopped
• Carrots, steamed
• Broccoli florets, steamed
• Brussel sprouts, halved and sautéed in vegan butter
• Red skinned potatoes, boiled
• Lemon oil, to drizzle
• Slivered almonds, to garnish

Assembly
Hummus

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Cut red pepper in half and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.
3. Roast for 1 hour and set aside to cool.
4. Pour chickpeas, garlic, tahini, extra virgin olive oil, salt & pepper in a food processor and blend.
5. Add in the red peppers and blend once again.
6. Once mixture is smooth, set aside in a small bowl.
Turkey & Chicken Kofta Kebabs
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. In a large bowl add in ground chicken and turkey, white onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, eggs and spices and mix until combined.
3. Form ground meat into a football shape and place of a aluminum foil lined roasting pan.
4. Bake for 35 minutes and let cool.
Buddha Bowl
1. Drain and pour kidney beans into a bowl and prepare the lentils by boiling for 5 minutes. Or use canned lentils if desired.
2. Chop chives and set aside.
3. Steam carrots and broccoli, meanwhile sauté brussel sprouts in a frying pan in vegan butter.
4. In a small saucepan boil 2 red skinned potatoes until tender. Let cool and then cut into chunks.
5. Add all ingredients into a bowl and drizzle with lemon oil and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This was my meal prep for the week. I don’t ever do meal prep; but I found this lends itself to being perfect for meal prepping. My favourite aspect was the hummus and I have come a long way from 2014. I posted a recipe I made for feta hummus where I still wasn’t a fan even though I add feta. So this time I bought feta thinking I would need it once again and I absolutely loved the roasted red pepper hummus without any feta. I can now say I love hummus and I’m excited to make a beetroot hummus next. The preparation of veggies was very simple and my taste testers really enjoyed this. I got told “you trying to show me up by making your own hummus eh.” “what did you use in that hummus and kofta” to which I replied “C’C’s secret spices and love. Love makes everything taste better.”

Super Quick Garlic Bok Choy

Super Quick Garlic Bok Choy – Candy Coated Culinista

Yield/Serving: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 min.
Cook Time: 5 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

From: Eat Delicious from Dennis the Prescott

Ingredients
• 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
• 10 green onions, trimmed and cut into thirds
• 5 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 pound bok choy, ends trimmed and leaves separated
• 2 tbsp soy sauce
• 1 tbsp sesame seeds toasted

Assembly
1. Using a wok over medium-high heat and sesame oil and when oil is hot add the green onions and garlic and stir fry for 30 seconds ensuring to keep them moving the full 30 seconds.
2. Add the bok choy and soy sauce and stir fry for 2 minutes and then transfer to a serving dish.
3. Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over top and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I halved this recipe because I didn’t need 6 servings of bok choy. It tasted so good; I’ve always loved Bok Choy and in the area I live this is always at least two varieties in the grocery store. For this recipe I choose Shanghai Bok Choy as they are bigger in size.

Spring Asparagus Medley

Spring Asparagus Medley – Candy Coated Culinista

An easy peasy evening spring vegetable medley to accompany a chicken or beef dish.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 5 min.
Cook Time: 5 min
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
• 20 Asparagus; hard bottoms cut off
• 5 button mushrooms, sliced
• 10 grape tomatoes, sliced in half
• ½ small red onion, sliced
• Celery salt, to taste

Assembly
1. In a large frying pan pour olive oil over medium-high heat.
2. Add asparagus, mushrooms. Tomatoes, red onion and fry for 5 minutes until tender.
3. Add celery salt.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
A simple yet satisfying spring dish. This would be a great side dish for a springtime BBQ. Crunchy asparagus, and softened mushrooms, tomatoes and onions is a great combination.

L is for … Lentil Quinoa Salad

L is for ... Lentil & Quinoa Salad - Candy Coated Culinista

L is for … Lentil & Quinoa Salad – Candy Coated Culinista

I have had a very long break from my Alphabet Cuisine series and the letter “L” is the reason why. I found a few recipes with Lamb and Lentils but they were just okay and I wanted the series to consist of new and interesting recipes and ingredients I don’t cook with a bunch. I have been working hard to get lentils to work and I finally found a recipe that it out of the park delicious.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 10-15 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
Salad

• 1 cup tri-coloured quinoa
• ¼ cup orange lentils, washed
• ¼ cup green lentils, washed
• 2 stalks celery, diced
• 1 green onion, chopped
• ½ small red onion, diced
• ½ zucchini, diced
• Handful of dill, finely chopped
• Handful of parsley, finely chopped
• Handful of rosemary, finely chopped
• Handful of oregano, finely chopped
• Handful of thyme, finely chopped
Dressing
• 8 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• 8 tbsp apple cider vinegar
• Juice from 1 lemon
• 2 tsp kosher salt
• 2 tsp black pepper

Assembly
1. Using a small saucepan, with the lentils in the pot bring the water up to a boil then let simmer for 5 to 7 minutes. Lentils.
2. In a medium saucepan pour quinoa into the pot and bring to a boil then let simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
3. In the meantime, prep all the vegetables, herbs, and place in a large bowl and set aside.
4. In a small bowl whisk the dressing ingredients together until emulsified.
5. Drain off the water from the lentils and quinoa once cooked and then pour into the bowl with the herbs & vegetables and incorporate.
6. Add in the dressing and mix well.
7. Serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I have another recipe with quinoa and lentils in it that I can say I am thoroughly enjoying. I think the catch with lentil or quinoa is these two ingredients really can’t stand alone and require flavourful and many other ingredients to help the appeal of them. Or that is the case for myself as I can’t enjoy lentils and quinoa alone in . The fresh herbs and vegetables added texture and interest to the recipe and the simple and satisfying dressing just enhanced everything in this salad. I can now eat lentils more often and actually enjoy it. I also managed to turn a friend who can never seem to get through their lentil or qunioa dinner or lunch sides into a lover and I’ve already been asked for the recipe.

Tomato Mushroom Chicken and Pasta Bake

Tomato Mushroom Chicken & Pasta Bake - Candy Coated Culinista

Tomato Mushroom Chicken & Pasta Bake – Candy Coated Culinista

Sometimes it baffles me how picky people really are. I mean with so much different types of foods available to us how you can only eat a handful of foods, especially when you have no food allergies of dietary concerns. When these people enter my life I always advise them to beware if I’m going to be making you meals be prepared to find new produce because it’s not going to kill you and I’d of course never give you anything that would cause you harm. This meal doesn’t contain anything out of the ordinary yet for some reason items here are not commonly eaten if you can believe that. Everyone is different right.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 50 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 1 can Campbell’s Condensed Tomato with Basil and oregano Soup
• 1 soup can of water
• 2 ½ cups rotini pasta
• 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
• 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
• 1 green pepper, finely chopped
• 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast
• Sea salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste
• Oregano, to taste
• Italian seasoning, to taste
• 1 cup mozzarella cheese
• 1/3 cup parmesan cheese

Assembly
1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. In a casserole dish mix soup and water together.
3. Pour pasta and vegetables into the dish and mix well.
4. In a bowl season chicken with sea salt, pepper, oregano and Italian seasonings and place on top of pasta.
5. Sprinkle cheese over top of chicken followed by parmesan cheese.
6. Bake for 45 minutes until pasta is tender.
7. Broil cheese at 450°F for 5 minutes until cheese is a golden brown.
8. Serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This recipe couldn’t be any simpler and that is a perfect meal. Compliments were positive all around from “I loved it” to “man that was some good food you cooked” followed up by what else can you cook lol. Needless to say I sent them home with a serving for later consumption.

Tomato Mushroom Chicken & Pasta Bake - Candy Coated Culinista

Tomato Mushroom Chicken & Pasta Bake – Candy Coated Culinista

BBQ Chicken Whole & Ancient Grain Quesadillas

BBQ Chicken Whole & Ancient Grain Quesadillas - Candy Coated Culinista

BBQ Chicken Whole & Ancient Grain Quesadillas – Candy Coated Culinista

Yield/Serving: 4
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 6 chicken thighs
• Sea salt, to taste
• Black pepper, to taste
• paprika, to taste
• onion powder, to taste
• garlic powder, to taste
• season salt, , to taste
• ground cumin, to taste
• red chilli flakes, to taste
• 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
• 2 springs green onion, chopped
• 1 tbsp vegetable oil
• 2 handfuls of grape tomatoes, halved
• 1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
• Organic Gluten- free BBQ Sauce
• Cheddar cheese, shredded
• Mozzarella cheese, shredded
• 8 Whole Grain & Ancient Grain Tortilla
• 1 avocado, mashed

Assembly
1. In a frying pan over medium-high heat sprinkle chicken with spices and cook the chicken thighs through, let them rest and finally cut into strips.
2. Cut all the vegetables and set aside the bell peppers and green onions in a bowl.
3. Over medium-high heat and pour olive oil into skillet and sauté the tomatoes and mushrooms until most of the liquid is gone.
4. In the last few minutes of cooking add in BBQ sauce to taste and incorporate.
5. Using a clean frying pan the size of the tortilla, start toasting as many tortillas as needed and set aside on a plate.
6. Once all tortillas have been toasted place one back on the frying pan and add in a mixture of chicken, cheese and all the vegetables.
7. Cook and flip at least once until tortilla in crispy and cheese is melted.
8. Cut into quarters and serve with guacamole on the side.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This isn’t a really great dish to look at but it tastes amazing. I even made them the next day again with the leftovers.

Green Beans with Mustard Seeds

Green Beans with Mustard Seeds - Candy Coated Culinista

Green Beans with Mustard Seeds – Candy Coated Culinista

Yield/Serving: 4
Difficulty level is: Easy

From Seven Spoons

Ingredients
• Sea salt
• 255g green beans, trimmed
• 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
• 1 ½ tsp mustard seeds
• 1 small onion, minced
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• A couple handfuls of baby kale or spinach leaves

Assembly
1. Set aside a large bowl with ice and very cold water.
2. Boil a large pot of water and generously salt.
3. Blanch green beans and transfer to ice water bath.
4. Using a large frying pan over medium-high heat; heat oil and fry mustard seeds.
5. Add in the onion once the mustard seeds start to pop and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
6. Stir in garlic for 30 seconds.
7. Drain the green beans and add to frying pan and cook for 2 to 5 minutes.
8. Add in the spinach at the last moment and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This recipe could have used more mustard for me. I think I’d add some Dijon mustard also for some extra mustard punch. This is a simple vegetarian side that can be made in a matter of minutes.

Skillet Roast Chicken with Vegetables

Skillet Roast Chicken & Vegetables - Candy Coated Culinista

Skillet Roast Chicken & Vegetables – Candy Coated Culinista

I am finally starting to love my skillet, don’t get me wrong I still find cooking certain proteins on it a little challenging; but every day it get better and today I am trying to bake a whole bird using the skillet.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 1 hour
Difficulty level is: Easy

Ingredients
• 1 small whole chicken
• Season salt
• Paprika
• Sea salt
• Black pepper
• Garlic powder
• Onion powder
• 3 tbsp, extra virgin olive oil
• 4 medium potatoes, cut into wedges
• 4 stalks celery, rough chop
• 4 carrots, rough chop
• 1 small onion, sliced
• Handful, green beans
• 2 fresh sprigs, rosemary
• 8 chives
• 6 cloves garlic, rough chop

Assembly
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Season whole chicken rubbing seasoning onto chicken.
3. Pour olive oil into skillet and place potatoes on the bottom of the pan.
4. Place celery, carrots, onion, and green beans around the side, leaving space for the whole chicken in the middle.
5. Stuff the rosemary, chives and garlic into the cavity of the chicken.
6. Place chicken into the middle of the skillet and bake for 15 minutes.
7. Then reduce temperature to 375°F and bake for about 45 minutes.
8. The internal temperature should be between 150°F – 165°F, or cut into the thigh meat at the joint and if the juices run clear it is ready.
9. Let rest for 10 minutes and serve with vegetables.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This is my best roast chicken to date. It was so fragrant, juicy and succulent and I could smell the rosemary, chives and garlic throughout the chicken. Cooking the whole recipe in one pan made me so happy as I really dislike using multiple pot and pans, but most times it is needed. The only thing I would change is putting the potatoes in first let cook and then the whole chicken followed by the carrots, celery and green beans.

Skillet Roast Chicken & Vegetables - Candy Coated Culinista

Skillet Roast Chicken & Vegetables – Candy Coated Culinista

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