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All Recipes, Gluten-Free, Sides

Pumpkin Quinoa Salad with Spinach and Feta

Pumpkin Quinoa Salad

I had made this Pumpkin Quinoa Salad for Noah’s birthday party with the family, back in October. That weekend, we (again) had the most beautiful weather and were sitting outside all afternoon. I always make food, that can easily be prepared or made beforehand and that will feed a crowd. The kids had hotdogs (always a winner) and for the adults, I had made a large Shepherd’s Pie and this lovely, seasonal salad.

Rave reviews

The salad got rave reviews from everyone. There’s sweet roasted pumpkin, flavorful quinoa (cooked in chicken or vegetable stock), spinach leaves and salty feta, all mixed with a simple dressing. When we planned a get together with the family for Sinterklaas, where everyone would bring food, this salad was requested. And once again, everyone loved it. So it was about time that I sat down and write the recipe to share with you all. read more

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All Recipes, Gluten-Free, Low Carb, Sides

Roasted Fennel

Geroosterde Venkel

Have you ever tried fennel before? It is a wonderful vegetable, with a very distinct flavor that reminds you of anise. Some even associate the flavor with licorice. Fennel can be eaten raw in a salad or fried, grilled or roasted. It pairs great with all kinds of food: meat, fish, fruits and vegetables.

Roasted

I love fennel that has been soaking in a nice vinaigrette for a couple of hours, almost liked pickled fennel. It’s also great sauteed, but my absolute favorite way to eat it, is roasted. Its easy, it’s fast and delicious. Prep time is maybe 5 minutes and you need just a couple of ingredients. Roast it to your preference and you’re ready to dish up. read more

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All Recipes, Sides

Tomato Salad

Tomato Salad

Tomatoes are available at supermarkets all year round, but only now is the right season for super tasty and juicy tomatoes that have soaked up all the summer sun. Now, they are at their best. There is so much you can do with tomatoes, but you know what I like best? A simple tomato salad, where that juicy tomato is the star.

The most simple way of course, is a delicious Caprese salad. Sliced tomato, with Mozzarella, fresh basil leaves, a drizzle of good olive oil and Balsamic vinegar, and if desired a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Nothing more. And all with minimum effort, just slice it up, dress on a plate, dig in. read more

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All Recipes, Sides

Couscous Salad with Roasted Vegetables

Couscous Salad & Roasted Vegetables

Couscous salad is a staple in our house for parties and barbecues. You can add basically anything you want, but my absolute favorite is couscous with roasted or grilled vegetables. And feta. The feta is optional of course. If you have eaters that don’t like feta or cheese in general, simply serve it as a separate topping, so everyone can add it if they want to.

We had a barbecue with all the guests at the farm, where we’re staying during our holiday, and everyone brought something. There was potato salad, bell pepper salad, egg salad, macaroni salad, garlic bread and more. And I decided to make this couscous salad. I usually grill the vegetables, but as I did not have a griddle or grilling pan, I roasted them. Which is just as delicious! Got raving reviews from the other guests and more than a few asked for the recipe. So I decided to share it with everyone :). read more

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All Recipes, Gluten-Free, Sides, Snacks

Polenta ‘Fries’

Polenta Fries

Have you ever had polenta before? Polenta is not an ingredient, as some people might think. It actually is a dish made from cooking coarsely-ground yellow cornmeal into a kind of mash. It can be eaten like porridge or mashed potato. I won’t go into the details of the classic dish right now, that will be for some other time.

Grilled polenta

If you let the polenta cool though, the consistency changes and the ‘porridge’ or ‘mash’ firms up so that you can ultimately cut it into pieces, like squares or wedges. When cut into pieces, you can perfectly grill them on the BBQ, roast them in the oven or fry in a pan with a bit of olive oil. Add a few spices and you have a prefect side dish for your grilled chicken or steak. Now I’ve made these patties or cakes on several occasions, but a few weeks ago I saw this recipe for polenta ‘fries’ on Boter, Kaas & Eieren Blog, a fun food blog with great recipes. I really thought this was a fun idea. Why I have never thought about ‘fries’ myself before, is beyond me. And since the boys are crazy about fries, I set to work (almost) immediately. I have made a different version, but you can find the original recipe here (a must-try!). read more

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All Recipes, Mains, Sides

Nasi Goreng with Chicken, Broccoli & Tofu

Nasi Goreng with Chicken, Broccoli & Tofu

Nasi Goreng, Indonesian fried rice… a versatile dish that can be adapted to your own liking.

‘Nasi Goreng’ is a famous Indonesian dish and is very much loved by many Dutch people. ‘Nasi’ means ‘cooked’ and ‘Goreng’ means fried, so literally it means ‘fried rice’. Fried rice is of course known in many cuisines, but ‘Nasi Goreng’ mainly refers to the Indonesian variety. What sets it off from other types of fried rice, are the spices and the combination typically used in Indonesian cooking, like Djahé (ground ginger root), Ketumbar (koriander), Sereh (lemon rass), Laos (Galangal root) and Terasi (or Trassi, fermented shrimp paste). read more

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All Recipes, Low Carb, Mains, Sides

Korean Beef & Curried Cauli-Rice

koreanbeefcurriedcaulirice_title

I absolutely love Asian cuisine. Chinese, Thai, Indian, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean… I love them all. All have their own typical tastes, a great variety but also similarities. I love the simplicity of stir-fry’s, but also the complexity of stews.

In a busy household, with school, work, sports, hobbies and social activities, having dinner ready in a minimum of time is often crucial. And home-cooked meals can be a challenge. We do eat take-out once in a while or go to a fast food-restaurant, but we try to keep that to an absolute minimum. read more

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All Recipes, Gluten-Free, Mains, Sides

Easiest Red Lentil Dal

Red Lentil Dal

To me, cooking with dried legumes was always kind of a daunting idea. I love to cook, no doubt about that. And I don’t mind spending a lot of time in the kitchen. As a matter of fact, I LOVE spending a lot of time in the kitchen. But… with our busy lives, dishes should preferably be easy and fast to prepare and cook. No time (or better: patience) to soak some dried beans for hours, before cooking them… for hours. Until I realized that lentils are a different matter. Especially red lentils.

No picky eaters

We often introduce new foods to our boys. I consider myself extremely lucky, that even at this young age, they are quite adventurous eaters. They won’t pull up their noses at food, just because they don’t know what it is. It’s actually quite the opposite. Don’t know this, yeah, let’s try it! I can tell from all the stories I hear about picky eaters, that this is rather special. So, believe me, I’m really counting my blessings. read more

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All Recipes, Gluten-Free, Low Carb, Mains, Sides

Low Carb Spinach Risotto

Spinach Risotto

If you’re trying to cut down your carb intake, you most likely start with omitting pasta and rice from your evening meals. You might be familiar with substituting rice with cauliflower, like I did in this very simple coconut rice or curried rice. It’s prefect for Asian dishes. But have you tried risotto yet?

Carbohydrates

Risotto was one of those dishes, I had not tried yet. I love a good creamy risotto. And although we’re not strictly on a low carb diet, we try to eat less of those little buggers. Mind you, carbohydrates aren’t bad, it’s just that we eat way too much carbohydrates for our bodies to burn up (and all the excess is stored as fat). Unless you’re an athlete burning thousands of calories a day. Which I am obviously not. So, I have to watch how much I consume. read more

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All Recipes, Appetizers, Gluten-Free, Low Carb, Sides

Spinach Patties – low carb & gluten free

Low carb & gluten free Spinach Patties, delicious as appetizer or as a side dish!

This was on my to-do list for quite a while. I wanted to create a spinach patty that’s low carb. But it got so low on my list of things I want to try/doctor up, that I completely forgot about it. Until I saw a picture of spinach balls a couple of days ago. Usually, these patties/balls/tots are made with flour and/or bread crumbs. And I figured that I could easily swap these for another low carb option. read more

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