One Pot Caprese Pasta #RecipeRedux

Once summer ends and school starts, fast and easy meals become necessary. This one pot caprese pasta is the fast and easy meal of your dreams. 

One Pot Caprese Pasta

Around here, it feels like things are always on the go. I never really used to think I was busy because there was always time for a House of Cards episode or a little guilty pleasure America’s Next Top Model. But in reality, things are busy and fast meals are necessary. I’ve been stocking the freezer with meals lately, trying to stock-pile for sports season so we don’t end up at McDonald’s every night of the week.

One Pot Caprese Pasta

And while the pasta may not be freezer-friendly, it couldn’t be any easier. It fits perfectly with the Recipe Redux theme of getting back to the table. The quick and easy nature of this dish leaves plenty of time to sit down at the table together and grab a meal before heading off to a sports practice or a neighborhood run. Plus it has all the good things in life. Pasta, tomatoes, basil, luscious pearls of mozzarella cheese. What is there not to like?

One Pot Caprese Pasta #RecipeRedux

Ingredients

  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. pasta of your choice (I used spaghetti)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves
  • 1 cup mozzarella pearls

Instructions

  1. Combine all but mozzarella in a pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat and to medium and simmer until the liquid has reduced. Remove from heat.
  3. Stir in mozzarella.
  4. Divide into bowls and top with additional parmesan if you choose.
http://www.feedmeseymourblog.com/one-pot-caprese-pasta-reciperedux/


Korean Beef Bulgogi

“By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by The Beef Checkoff and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

Korean beef bulgogi is a perfect 30 minute meal for busy nights, busy parents and hungry kids! 

Korean Beef Bulgogi

In our old office, there was a little sundry shop on the first floor. Every morning, it smelled like fresh, hot bacon. Every afternoon, some different lunch specialty. It was hard to resist and my wallet got a great workout. Out of all the things this woman made, my most favorite was the beef bulgogi. Beef bulgogi is a traditional Korean dish. It’s thinly sliced meat, marinated in a fantastically flavorful mixture for hours. It gives the meat time to soak up those juices, to really absorb the flavors and become moist.  Until now, I’ve only ever made with chicken. A quick flick through these pages will show you that I’m kind of a ground beef gal. I think the reason is ground beef is simple to understand. Brown, season, done. 

Korean Beef Bulgogi

When stepping out of that realm, there is a whole world of beef I wasn’t privy to. Different cuts, different styles, different cooking methods. But beef is a really great ingredient to work with once you understand it. Plus the health benefits are fantastic. I know red meat has a bad rap. But it’s just misunderstood. A lean cut of beef can have up to 25 grams of protein and 10 nutrients. And now I’ve tried beef in this bulgogi and I’m never going back.

The method is simple. Cut any visible fat from your sirloin (mine had very little to start). Marinate your meat with some peppers and onions for a few hours and then just cook it up in a pan. It’s a great, quick 30 minute meal perfect for busy nights and leftover lunches. Now, get yourself some beef and get to cooking.

Korean Beef Bulgogi

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. thinly sliced sirloin steak
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients except cornstarch in a large zip-top bag and remove the air. Seal and then toss all to coat everything evenly. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  2. Heat 1 Tbsp. of olive oil a sauce pan over medium high heat. Add ingredients from the bag.
  3. Cook until the steak has browned and is completely cooked through. The liquid mixture should be bubbling and very hot.
  4. Place the cornstarch in a small dish. Add 2 Tbsp. of the hot liquid from the pan and whisk with a fork.
  5. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pan and stir well. The cornstarch will thicken the liquid. Cook two more minutes until thick and completely cooked.
  6. Serve over rice.
http://www.feedmeseymourblog.com/korean-beef-bulgogi/

Korean Beef Bulgogi


Tuna Cakes with Honey Mustard Aioli

By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Bumble Bee Seafoods and am eligible to prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

Tuna cakes with honey mustard aioli are an economical, delicious and healthy lunch choice  all year round. 

Tuna Cakes with Honey Mustard Aioli

If you live in Maryland, then you know we are good for one thing: seafood. Or, more specifically, crabs. And Marylanders take pride in having the best crab cakes, chock full o’ plump, fresh crab meat. There’s a constant unspoken competition in creating a no-filler crab cake and having it shine, every time. Having judged a crab cook-off for a few years, I can tell you there are plenty of delicious crab cakes, crab soups, crab fritters and crab pretzels out there.

Crab, however, is not even remotely close to economical. I can’t often be bothered spending so much on crab meat, so I turn to tuna instead. Tuna is so practical and flavorful and filling. In college, I used to get a tuna noodle salad every Friday before editing class. It was so loaded with mayo, I’m sure it cancelled out any health properties the tuna had but man, it was delicious. Tuna itself is full of protein, so I love eating it for lunch. It keeps me full forever and a day, which is great when you’re trying to NOT eat everything in sight out of boredom.

My favorite way to prepare tuna these days is in cake form. Why should crab cakes get all the attention when a properly seasoned and well-prepared tuna cake can be just as perfect? I am very loyal to Bumble Bee brand and used their prime fillet to make one serious, virtually filler-free tuna cake. And to top it off, some honey mustard aioli. I’d had a crab cake at the Taste of Cambridge that came with this aioli – I almost called it mustard until a wiser, more experienced foodie corrected me. It is the perfect compliment to the tuna, giving it a nice zing but not outshining the flavors from the cake.

This year, make tuna cakes with honey mustard aioli your summer go-to!

*A note about fillers – breadcrumbs – in these cakes or in crab cakes.  Do not, under any circumstances, add breadcrumbs because you think they are needed to hold things together. Whoever told you that was trying to sell you a cheaper cake.

Tuna Cakes with Honey Mustard Aioli

Ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. yellow mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. Old Bay
  • 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 cans Bumble Bee Solid White Albacore Tuna
  • For aioli:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp. stone ground mustard
  • 2 tsp. honey

Instructions

  1. In a bowl, whip together mayo, mustard, egg, Old Bay and Worcestershire sauce until smooth. Open the tuna and drain it well. Fold it into the egg mixture.
  2. Using a 1/3 cup measure, form patties with the tuna. Place them on plastic wrap, cover and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the tuna patties on a foil-lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until cooked through and browned.
  5. While they cool, make the aioli by whisking together mayo, mustard and honey. Dollop some on each cake.
http://www.feedmeseymourblog.com/tuna-cakes-with-honey-mustard-aioli/


Mango Raspberry Breakfast Smoothies

When it comes to cold and refreshing drinks, there are few more appealing than mango raspberry breakfast smoothies. 

Mango Raspberry Breakfast Smoothies

When I was a teenager and worked in the mall, I used to get a smoothie nearly every day. This was before they were even super trendy so let’s consider me ahead of the game here. I doubt these smoothies had many health properties, I don’t even know if they really had actual fruit in them. But they were sweet and creamy and cold. I was loyal to a fault when it came to this little stand peddling fruit concoctions.

I forgot about smoothies for a long time and even now only occasionally make one. As healthy and fruit-filled as a real smoothie can be, it’s still a lot of calories spent on a drink that doesn’t necessarily fill me up. I cannot and will not replace any meal with a smoothie, even breakfast. It’s not substantial enough. However, on a hot day, a cold and refreshing smoothie still hits the spot. I love the tropical fruit smoothie from a few years ago and will always say yes to an orange creamsicle style one. 

The mango raspberry breakfast smoothie is my new favorite. I say breakfast because it can definitely provide a good pick-me-up on those rough, too-early-for-anything mornings. It shouldn’t replace your meal – or your coffee – but should compliment it. It’s got the sweetness of the mango and the slightly tart flavor from the raspberries. Layer it in a glass to make it look extra pretty and you’ve got a great breakfast side!

Mango Raspberry Breakfast Smoothies

Ingredients

  • For the mango section:
  • 2/3 cups frozen mangos
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • For raspberry section:
  • 2/3 cup frozen raspberries
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt

Instructions

  1. In a blender, combine all ingredients for the mango section until very smooth. Place in glasses, half way to the top. Rinse the blender well.
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the raspberry section in the blender until smooth. Place on top of mango sections.
http://www.feedmeseymourblog.com/mango-raspberry-breakfast-smoothies/

Garlicky Kale and Spinach Omelets

Garlicky kale and spinach omelets are the perfect breakfast pick-me-up – filled with vitamins, proteins and a great flavor to keep you going all day. 

Garlicky Kale and Spinach Omelets

I don’t want to be one of those lame people who touts the benefits of exercise and gets in your face about it. If you don’t want to exercise, you won’t. It will take an eye-opening experience for a person to realize how good exercise makes them feel. For me, saying “I’m going to run” and hitting the road did NOT work. I’d run for five minutes, feel winded and give up. It wasn’t at all motivating and I wasn’t happy when I was doing it. Even trying to get others involved wasn’t a working tactic for me, I needed something else.

So I joined a summer field hockey league with some parent friends from my daughter’s team. Just to give some background on how nervous I was at our first game, let me tell you that I’ve only played one sport in my entire life. 6th grade softball. I had no real skills or experience to speak of and only had a few hours of practice under my belt for our first game. But now, I am addicted! It is such a rush and really has motivated me to do more, exercise-wise. I still hate running – it’s just so boring – but I want to be on top of my game and conditioned, so I do it. It makes playing more fun later.

Proper nutrition – or at least eating the right things pre-game – is definitely something I need to keep me energized and full. Countless google searches and research let me to find a few “superfoods” that are great for athletes – ha! Calling myself an athlete is hilarious. One such superfood that is sooooo beyond trendy is kale. Stop your eye-rolling, since I’m sure you all did! But really, kale is where it is at. It has a bunch of vitamins, plus protein and fiber. It’s nice and bulky, so it leaves you feeling full but not heavy. Light on your feet, perhaps.

I won’t go over the ways in which to properly prepare kale, since it’s not a “new” vegetable. But I’ll give you this kale and spinach omelet recipe, which is easy and delicious. I saute my kale for a bit before adding it to the omelet to take out some of the raw flavor. And if I’m going to saute, I’m going to add a bunch of garlic. Garlic is a must!

Loaded with kale, lots of spinach and a sprinkle of some good quality cheese, this omelet is perfect for the athlete in your home.

Garlicky Kale and Spinach Omelets

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 small bunch kale
  • 1 small bunch spinach
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Instructions

  1. Heat half a tablespoon of butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add in the garlic and cook 30 seconds until fragrant.
  2. Add in kale and cook 1 to 2 minutes until it wilts. Add in the spinach and cook an additional 2 minutes. Remove to a plate.
  3. Heat the other half tablespoon of butter in the same pan. Add in the eggs. Once they begin to set, place the kale, spinach and cheese on one side of the eggs.
  4. Once the eggs have cooked and are no longer liquid, carefully fold the empty side over top of the kale-loaded side. Press down slightly. Allow to cook for an additional minute or two then remove carefully to a plate.
http://www.feedmeseymourblog.com/garlicky-kale-and-spinach-omelets/