Thanksgiving Sides

Thanksgiving is upon us!  Time with family, a break from work and school, and great food all mean that there is so much to look forward to!  Here are two new sides you may want to try for Thanksgiving:  Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad and Oven Baked Butternut Squash Risotto.  What’s unique about both of these is that they can meet the special dietary needs- gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, and nut free- of anyone coming to dinner. If you are looking for something easy, yummy and good for everyone, try these!

Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Lemon Zest (serves 6)IMG_3114

1-1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts

1/4 cup roasted sunflower seeds

1/4 cup yellow raisins

2 peeled hard boiled eggs, diced (optional)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Prepare Brussels sprouts by trimming bottoms and removing discolored or tough outer leaves. In a food processor with a grating attachment (or with a box grater), grate sprouts. Collect into a medium bowl (about 10 ounces total). Toss with sunflower seeds, raisins, and eggs (if using). In a separate small bowl, whisk lemon juice, vinegar and mustard. Drizzle in olive oil, whisking to combine. Add zest and shallots. Toss salad with dressing.

This salad can be served immediately or place in fridge for up to an hour. Toss again before serving and season with salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!

Adapted from

Oven Baked Butternut Squash Risotto (serves 6)IMG_3115

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup finely chopped shallots

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped

1-1/2 cups Arborio rice

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled and diced (4 cups)

4 cups vegetable stock

1 bunch curly kale (or Lacinato/Tuscan kale), tough stems removed and cut into ½ inch strips (about 4 cups loosely packed)

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium Dutch oven or oven proof pot with a lid, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Sauté shallots until soft, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add rice and cook, stirring frequently, until edges of rice are translucent, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, and add wine. Stir and cook until wine is absorbed. Add squash and stock, bring mixture to a boil. Stir in kale. Cover and transfer to oven. Bake for 20 minutes until most of the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Serve hot and garnish with parmesan. Enjoy!

Adapted from Meatless by Martha Stewart


Salade Nicoise

Salade Nicoise

Produce and eggs fresh from the farmer’s market last weekend sparked my desire to make this beloved salad.  Its roots are in Provence and traditionally is made with tomatoes, anchovies, black olives, capers, French beans and lemon juice. I prefer tuna to anchovies in my version and have opted for the olives but not the capers.  It is slightly labor intensive but so worth the effort for this main dish salad. And, because I don’t use lettuce, leftovers of this dressed salad keep nicely in the fridge for a few days.  This salad is one of the many reasons I don’t want summer to end!  Enjoy!

Salade Nicoise (serves 6)

1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed

1 pound tiny new potatoes, scrubbed

1 yellow bell pepper, sliced into thin strips

2 or 3 medium ripe tomatoes, quartered

2 or 3 baby cucumbers (or 1/2 large English cucumber), sliced

3 scallions, green and white portions sliced

2, 5 ounce cans water-packed albacore tuna, drained

3 eggs, hard cooked and peeled

1/2 cup black olives


3 tablespoons good quality cider vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup flat leaf parsley leaves. chopped

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Prepare the vinaigrette by whisking the first 3 ingredients in a small bowl.  Slowly whisk in the oil.  Stir in garlic and parsley.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Set aside.

Steam green beans for 5 minutes or until tender crisp.  Rinse cooked beans immediately under cold water to quickly cool.  When drained and dry, combine beans with the bell pepper and toss with a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette to lightly coat.  Set aside.

Cook potatoes in a pot of salted boiling water until tender, about 15 minutes.  Drain and while warm, add a few tablespoons of vinaigrette.  Toss and set aside.

To assemble the salad, use a large platter.  Place potatoes on the platter and top with the beans/peppers.  Flake the tuna on top of the salad and add scallions and olives.  Arrange the cucumbers and tomatoes around the salad and add quartered eggs.  Drizzle the final creation with a few tablespoons of vinaigrette.  Bon Appetit!!

Albacore Tuna, Chickpea, and Roasted Beet Salad

Albacore Tuna, Chickpea, and Roasted Beet Salad

This photo may look familiar… I sent it out last week to promote a class I was teaching.  But for all my friends and followers who do not live close enough to get to class, here is the recipe!  The premise behind this recipe is putting together a great main dish salad with ingredients you have ‘on hand’:  (in pantry) canned albacore tuna, canned chickpeas; (in fridge) roasted beets, mixed salad greens, and cucumbers.  Please let me know how you like it!!

Albacore Tuna, Chickpea, and Roasted Beet Salad with Dijon Dressing (serves 4 main dish portions)

1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 cans (5 ounces) albacore tuna packed in water, drained

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 head romaine lettuce, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

3 ounces baby spinach (3 cups)

1 package (8 ounces) cooked beets, quartered

1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Small seedless cucumber, diced

In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, mustard, and oil. Reserve 1/3 cup dressing and combine tuna in dressing bowl. In a serving bowl, toss together romaine, spinach, beets, cucumbers and chickpeas. Toss salad with remaining dressing and top with tuna.




Summer Salads

Summer Salads!

This fun salad was enjoyed this week at ‘Summertime Fun‘ Kid’s Culinary Camp at Marcel’s.  

Are you looking for a new & easy salad recipe for a summer BBQ or backyard party?  Myplate2yours to the rescue! Here are some of my summer favorites:

Arugula Salad with Roasted Beets and Goat Cheese (GF*)

Festive Barley Salad

Edamame Salad with Corn and Quinoa (GF)

Lentil Artichoke Salad (GF)

Caribbean Chicken Salad

Please let me know if you do make one of these.  I’d love to hear how these nutritious and delicious recipes are being shared!  Enjoy!!

*designates gluten-free 



Asian Slaw with Sesame-Hoisin Dressing

Asian Slaw

We needed a quick side salad for our teriyaki chicken and rice dinner last night.  I had a head of Napa cabbage in the fridge and was able to quickly assemble this salad. My family voted this ‘lick-your-plate-clean’ yummy!

Asian Slaw with Napa Cabbage and Sesame-Hoisin Dressing (serves 4-6)

1 pound Napa cabbage, sliced

4 large radishes, sliced into strips

1/2 cup shredded carrots

1 scallion, sliced thin strips

Dressing (adapted from

1/4 cup canola oil

2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon sesame oil

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Prepare dressing by combining ingredients with a whisk in a small bowl.

Place salad ingredients in a large bowl.  Toss with dressing.  Serve immediately.  Enjoy!