Watermelon, Feta, Jalapeno Salad

watermelon feta jalapeno salad

I love a good summer salad. One of my favorites, includes the sweetness of watermelon, the saltiness of feta cheese and the richness tartness of balsamic vinegar. I wanted to play on these flavors and created my Watermelon, Feta, Jalapeño Salad. The slight heat of the jalapeño is the perfect addition to this summer time favorite. 

 

watermelon, feta, jalapeno salad

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Orzo Summer Salad

summer orzo salad

Very rarely does my husband, Hussein ask for a salad for dinner. He is not picky, per se, but doesn’t like ‘diet food’ or cereal for dinner (yes, I sometimes have a bowl of cereal for dinner :P).

orzo pasta salad, Amanda's Plate summer salad 

I first made this dish two years ago, during a super hot stretch of summer. We did not turn the oven on and barely the energy to come up with an elaborate meal. I had been to the farmers market earlier in the week and a had a beautiful bounty of fresh vegetables on had. I decided to make a pasta salad and thus this Orzo Summer Salad was created 😀

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Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream

strawberry ice-cream recipe

Summer is the season to eat ice-cream on a daily basis and feel absolutely no guilt about it. I mean, we have to stay cool somehow 😛 

In 4th grade, my class made ice-cream using salt and ice cubes to freeze the cream and sugar. It was delicious and so much fun. That was probably one of my favorite ‘lessons’ in that class 😀 After that, I did not make cream based ice-cream. My sisters and I made popsicles and slushy drinks but now…

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I love my kitchen aid stand mixer and one of my favorite things about it is the versatility and add ones. I purchased the ice-cream maker bowl, when it was on sale. Combined with a coupon I got it at a great price! #Score 

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed July as National Ice Cream Month and  National Ice Cream Day as the third Sunday in the month of July. So today, July 17th is #National Ice Cream Day! wohoo 😀

strawberry ice-cream

I love strawberries and had a ton on hand… which led to the creation of this recipe 😀

STRAWBERRIES

*Note you will need an ice-cream maker for this recipe.

Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1½ quarts
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound strawberries, trimmed and quartered
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream
Instructions
  1. Mash strawberries with sugar, lemon juice in a large bowl. Let stand, stirring and mashing occasionally, for 10 minutes.
  2. Transfer half of strawberry mixture to a blender and purée with cream until smooth.
  3. Return strawberry and cream mixture to the bowl with remaining strawberries and chill, until cold.
  4. Freeze mixture in ice cream maker, according to machine instructions.
  5. Transfer to an airtight container and place in freezer for a few hours to firm up.
  6. Enjoy!

This blog post was created in Partnership with Fred Meyer, all opinions and content are my own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who allow me to create and share these fun, new recipes! They help keep this blog going 🙂 

Make this dish? I’d love to see! Tag me using #CreateAmandasPlate or @AmandasPlate <3

homemade ice-cream, strawberry ice-cream recipe

 

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Red White & Blue Popsicles

popsicles, homemade popsicles, 4th of july popsicles

I love popsicles! Especially in the hot summer heat. What I don’t like is all the added preservatives and dyes in many store bought popsicles, so I decided to make my own! #YayForHomemade 😀

Happy Dance

 

With Independence day a few days away, I decided to make Red, White and Blue popsicles using raspberries, coconut milk and blackberries! The blackberries make a more

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Mediterranean Pasta Salad

hellmanns5

As the warm days of summer approach, so do the picnics, cookouts and outdoor gatherings. One dish that is always on the menu during our summer parties, is pasta salad! It is one of our favorite summer salads. As with many salads, pasta salad is versatile and easy to make your own!

I’ve partnered with the Feed Feed and Best Foods to create my Mediterranean Pasta Salad. Best Foods Organic Mayonnaise makes for the perfect base to dress this pasta salad. Added bonus; all the ingredients in the mayo are free of the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and GMOs!

Hellmann's Mayo

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Peach and Blackberry Cobbler

peach and blackberry cobbler

Peaches are one of summers best treats! Sweet, juicy, easy to eat and a great addition to almost any dessert! While at the Farmer’s Market, I picked up some beautiful peaches that were grown in Cashmere, WA.

Washington Peaches

I knew immediately that I would make a favorite; peach cobbler. But I couldn’t just make an ordinary peach cobbler. I wanted to add another fruit and decided on the beautiful blackberries that I also picked up at the Farmer’s Market.

peach, peaches, blackberries
Aren’t they beautiful together?

 

I made individual cobblers, because I L-O-V-E serving up cute, individual portions of dessert 🙂 There is something special about an individual treat.

Be sure the make my Peach and Blackberry cobbler before summer is over! Serve with a large scoop (or two) of your favorite vanilla ice cream! So may say the ice cream is optional… but I think not 😛

 

Here is my recipe:

 

Ingredients:

2 cups peaches, peeled and cut into segments
3/4 cup blackberries
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, unsalted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
pinch of salt
For the Topping:
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup all purpose flour
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk
mint for garnish, optional
vanilla ice cream

 

Procedure:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large saucepan, heat butter and brown sugar. Add in peach segments and blackberries, vanilla, salt and lemon juice.
  3. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. In a bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, and melted butter.
  5. Spoon fruit into baking dish or individual ramekins.
  6. Drop topping on top of the fruit. Leave some spots open for the fruit to peek thru!
  7. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until topping is golden brown.
  8. Serve with vanilla ice cream and mint for garnish!
  9. Enjoy 🙂
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Loaded Hummus Dip

loaded hummus dip

This summer has been unusually dry and hot for the Seattle area! Climate change? Al Gore would say so! Whatever the case, it is often too hot to cook and bake. I find myself looking for a quick dinner using the tomatoes and cucumbers from my little patio garden 🙂

Garden

The quickest dinners in our household consist of grilled chicken breast, a large salad and fresh baguette from one of many favorite bakeries. Some days, I would be okay with a bowl of cereal for dinner but Hussein says “that’s not dinner” and “has no protein”.

This recipe was developed on a super hot day. It was 90 degrees and I was not feeling the heat in my kitchen 😛 I grilled some chicken and decided to make a salad and hummus. Then it hit me; we often dip the chicken into the hummus, and add salad to the top for a perfect bite, so why not make it a loaded hummus!

I made my hummus using canned chickpeas, but feel free to use a premade hummus for an even easier dinner! I served this dish with Stacy’s Pita chips 😀


 

Ingredients:
3 cans chickpeas, rinsed
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup tahini
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup cucumber diced
1 1/4 cup tomatoes, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup Kalamta olives, pitted and halved
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons red onion, finely minced

 

Procedure:

  1. Reserve 1/2 cup chickpeas.
  2. In a food processor combine remaining chickpeas, tahini, garlic cloves, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and fresh lemon juice.
  3. While on low speed, slowly stream in the olive oil and blend until smooth. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl mix tomatoes, cucumbers, bell pepper, olives, parsley, mint, oregano, and 1/2 cup chickpeas.
  5. Using a mason jar make dressing by combining olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper and red onion. Shake until emulsified. dressing
  6. Pour dressing over salad and toss until well coated.
  7. Smooth hummus over serving plate.
  8. Top with salad mixture and sprinkle feta crumbles over the top.
  9. Serve with fresh pita, pita chips, or whatever you like!
  10. Enjoy 🙂

Loaded hummus, easy hummus, hummus and salad

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National S’mores Day

S'mores cookie!

Today is National S’mores Day! What a great food celebration! S’mores are a classic summer treat. Whether your on the beach sitting around a camp fire, or in your kitchen roasting a marshmallow on your stove top, S’mores are a delicious confection!

I had come across a picture of a S’mores using a Reese’s peanut butter cup in place of the classic piece of  Hershey’s Bar. And then it hit me! Combine the classic flavors of a s’mores into a cookie! And then use that cookie to make a S’more!

Here is my recipe:

 

Ingredients:

2 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cup roughly crushed graham crackers

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup white sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup + 1/4 cup mini marshmallows

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 cups mini Reese’s peanut butter cups

 

Procedure:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. In a stand mixer, cream together butter, sugars and vanilla. Add in eggs one at a time.

2. Add flour, graham cracker crumbs, salt and baking soda to butter and sugar mixture. Combine well.

3. Fold in 1 cups of the marshmallows, chocolate chips and Reese’s.

4. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and scope dough 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Be sure that none of the marshmallows are on the edges of the cookie.

5. Bake until golden brown; about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and top each cookie with two or three mini marshmallows place under broiler for 1 minute.

6. Enjoy! 🙂

 

 

 

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Easy Broccoli Soup

Broccoli Soup by Amanda's Plate

Now that the cat is out of the bag, and you all know I will be competing for a white apron on Master Chef, I can share my inspiration for this soup!

I was inspired by none other than Gordon Ramsay!! One day early last week, I was binge watching Youtube when I came across a super easy broccoli soup recipe by GR. I decided to recreate it and put my own twist on it.

The soup is delicious on its own and makes for a great base for a number of toppings! I list some of my favorites below.

Here is what I came with! 🙂

 

Serves: 2

Prep: 5 minutes   Cook: 10 minutes

 

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups broccoli florets

1 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable stock

1 cup water

pinch of kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon garlic powder

Ingredients

Toppings:

Walnuts, almonds

goat cheese, crema

toasted baguette, croutons

herbed oil, parsley, cherry tomato

 

 

Procedure:

 

1. In a pot, boil broccoli in water and vegetable stock, just until broccoli is cooked (overcooking will cause soup to loose bright green color). Season with salt, pepper and garlic.

pot

2. In a blender, such as a Nutribullet, blend broccoli and 1 1/2 cup of the stock/water. Blend until smooth.

Blending

3. Pour into a bowl and garnish as desired!

Pouring

4. Enjoy 🙂

 

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