Archive for SIDES

Quinoa Salad

Are you looking for a different side dish to serve with your meals? Try making Quinoa Salad. It is a delicious side dish that is healthy as well as tasty.

You can get creative with this dish by adding your favorite vegetables. I used tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, cilantro and garbanzo beans in my recipe. You can also add diced avocados, olives or red onions. For a totally different take on this dish, try sprinkling some feta cheese on top too!

TMH NOTE: This is an E recipe without the optional olive oil, olives or avocados.  Adding olive oil, olives and avocados will make it a crossover.

Give my recipe a try. I think you’ll like it. 🙂

Quinoa Salad


  • 1 cup uncooked white quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 English cucumber, peeled and seeded (plus about 1 tablespoon salt)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 2 stalks green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 can garbanzo beans, drained
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, optional
  • The juice of one lemon
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


1. Place the uncooked quinoa into a strainer. Rinse the quinoa under running water. Place the rinsed quinoa, water, garlic powder and sea salt into a medium-sized sauce pan. Cook over medium high heat until the water begins to boil. Turn the heat to low then place a lid on the pot; cook for 15 minutes then turn off the heat. Let the quinoa sit in the covered pot for 5 more minutes (do not remove the lid). After the 5 minutes, remove the lid then fluff the quinoa with a fork. Set aside.

2. Peel and seed the cucumber. Dice the cucumber then place into a plastic strainer or colander. Sprinkle the tablespoon of salt over the cucumber; stir to ensure the cucumber pieces are evenly salted. Place the strainer over a bowl to catch the cucumber liquid that will drain. Let the salted cucumbers drain for about 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, rinse the salt off the cucumbers then drain out any excess water. Set aside.

3. Cut the cherry tomatoes into quarters. Place into a small mixing bowl.

4. Add the onions and cilantro to the bowl.

5. Add the drained garbanzo beans to the bowl.

6. Add the cucumbers to the bowl.

7. Add the quinoa to the bowl.

8. Add the olive oil (omit the oil to keep this recipe low fat) and lemon juice to the bowl. Stir to combine the ingredients, taste and adjust the seasonings (salt and pepper) to your liking. I wanted a bit more garlic flavor, so I added more garlic powder.

9. Stir once more, then serve and ENJOY!


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Tangy Coleslaw

This is not your typical coleslaw.  I created this recipe to go with my fish tacos (find the recipe here), but I wanted a healthier version of the tradition mayo-base coleslaw.

My recipe does not use any mayo, and it also has a few HEALTHIER-FOR-YOU ingredients that kick up the flavor as well as the nutrition.  

Give my recipe a try.  I think you’ll like it. 🙂

Tangy Coleslaw


  • 2 bags (10-oz each) angel hair coleslaw (or 12 cups finely shredded cabbage)
  • 6 tablespoons fresh parsley

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses (you can use honey, but the molasses is healthier for you…read more about its amazing health benefits here.)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Stevia sweetener (or you can add 2 more tablespoons of honey)


Place the sliced cabbage in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

Add the parsley.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the dressing.

Pour the dressing over the cabbage and parsley.

Toss the ingredients together. Refrigerate the coleslaw until you’re ready to serve your meal. This will give it time to let the flavors meld.

Serve along with your favorite meal and ENJOY!

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Steamed Wild Rice

This recipe was first published with my recipe for Herb Crusted Salmon (find the recipe here).  Serve this with your favorite meat or fish dish and ENJOY!

Steamed Wild Rice



  • 2 cups wild rice medley (use your rice cooker cup)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 1/2 cups water (use your rice cooker cup), or you can use organic, fat free chicken broth


Place all of the ingredients for the Wild Rice into your rice cooker pot.  Turn the pot to “cook”.  Let the rice continue steaming in the pot (keep the lid closed) for 5 minutes after the rice cooker turns to the “warm” setting.  Fluff with a fork if required.

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Herb Crusted Salmon with Wild Rice and Lemon Balsamic Salad

With the Lenten season upon us, I’m looking for opportunities to cook my favorite seafood different ways.  One of my favorite types of seafood is salmon.

This is a very simple meal that’s healthy and delicious.  I know it’s expensive (unless you’re a fisherman/woman and catch the salmon yourself), but if you can, use wild caught versus farm raised salmon.  Without coming off sounding like a nutrition-nazi, suffice it to say that some (not all) farm-raised fish are grown and raised commercially in tanks or controlled pens.  Due to the compact farming environment, these fish tend to have more artificial dyes, antibiotics, toxins and MORE FAT than compared to the wild-caught varieties.

Okay, I’ll get off my soap box now.  But seriously, like my daughter said, you can’t put a price on your health, can you?

Serve the salmon with Wild Rice and a side salad with my delicious Lemon Balsamic Dressing and you’ve got yourself a delicious and healthy meal. (Click here for my Wild Rice recipe, and here for my Lemon Balsamic Salad Dressing recipe.)

Give my recipes a try.  I think you’ll like them. 🙂

Herb Crusted Salmon with Wild Rice and a Side Salad with Lemon Balsamic Salad Dressing



  • 3-4 pounds wild caught salmon, cut into filets (about 7 or 8 filets)
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 4 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 6 tablespoons dried parsley (or use fresh)
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste



1.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place the salmon filets on top of the parchment paper.


2.  Mix the olive oil, garlic and tahini together.  Rub the mixture all over the top of the salmon.

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3.  In a small bowl, mix together the salt, coconut flour, dried parsley and black pepper.  Sprinkle the mixture over each salmon filet.  Use your hand or the back of a spoon to press it into the tahini mixture.

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4.  Bake at 450 degrees for 10-12 minutes.


5.  When the salmon is done, serve with Steamed Wild Rice and a side salad (about 1 cup of mixed greens and sliced onion) drizzled with Lemon Balsamic Salad Dressing.



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Juicy Cheeseburgers with Baked Smothered Fries

I may be dating myself, but one of my favorite burger places to eat was Cool Spot, a quaint drive-in burger joint in Barrigada owned and operated by Josefina and Francisco Cruz.  The juicy burgers and hot-out-of-the-frier french fries were the perfect lunchtime meal when I was going to high school.

Anyone can make burgers at home, but to me, it’s about the special sauce that set these apart from ordinary.  You don’t have to use my recipe below, but give it a try.  The addition of my special sauce sets these apart from ordinary cheeseburgers.

Juicy burgers are not hard to make, but surprisingly, you’ll find that most homemade burgers use store-bought patties that turn out dry and hard.  Here are some tips to ensure moist, juicy burgers every time.

  1. Use ground beef that has at least 18-20% fat.  Beef that is too lean will make your burgers too dry.
  2. Do not over-handle the meat.  Add your seasonings to the meat then mix as little as possible.
  3. Do not–I repeat, do NOT smash the patties with your spatula!  Doing this squeezes out a lot of the meat’s natural juices that keep the meat moist.
  4. In addition to not pressing on the patties as they cook, another tip is to flip them one time only.  If you like rare burgers, cook them for 2 minutes on each side, 3 minutes on each side if you like them medium-rare, 4 minutes on each side for medium, and 5 minutes for well-done burgers.

Fantastic burgers go hand-in-hand with french fries, but no ordinary fries will do.  Try my version — potato slices (wedges are good too) that are generously seasoned then baked and topped with shredded cheese and bacon.  Yum!!

Give my recipes a try.  I think you’ll like them. 🙂

Juicy Burgers with Baked Smothered Fries

Ingredients for the Smothered Fries:

  • 2 large potatoes (russets are great for this)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (I use garlic-infused olive oil for more flavor)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (you can add more after baking if you’d like it more salty)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese blend (I like a blend of cheddar, mozzarella, asadero and queso quesadilla)
  • 5 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced

Ingredients for the Special Sauce:

  • 4 tablespoons Best Foods real mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup sweet pickle relish

Ingredients for the Burgers:

  • 3 pounds ground beef, 80-82% lean
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 slices of your favorite cheese (I used American cheese in these photos)
  • 12 sesame topped burger buns
  • Optional toppings:  romaine lettuce leaves, sliced tomates, pickles, bacon strips


1.  Prepare the fries.

Peel the potatoes then cut them into 1/4-inch sticks.  Place them onto a large baking sheet.

Drizzle the olive oil over the potatoes.  Use your impeccably clean hands to toss the potatoes to evenly distribute the oil.

Sprinkle the garlic powder, chili powder, paprika and salt over the oiled potatoes.  Toss to evenly coat the potatoes.

Bake the potatoes at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.

After the fries are done, taste one and add more salt if you’d like.

Sprinkle the crumbled bacon and green onions on top of the fries.

Add the shredded cheese.

Bake for 5-10 more minutes, or just until the cheese melts.

Serve alongside the juicy burgers and ENJOY!

2.  Prepare the Special Sauce while the fries are baking.

In a small mixing bowl, place the mayo, mustard and ketchup.

Add the onion powder.

Add the Worcestershire sauce and relish.  Stir, mixing well.  Set aside.

3.  Make the burgers while the fries are baking.

In a large mixing bowl, place the ground beef, garlic, salt and black pepper.  You can also add some chopped onions (optional).  Mix together (do not over-mix) then separate into 12 balls.  Flatten each ball into patties, about 1/4-inch thick (they will shrink as they cook, so don’t make them too thick or you’ll have burgers that are much smaller than the buns).

Cook over a hot grill or skillet (see my tips above for how long to cook them).

Top each burger patty with a slice of cheese.

4.  Assemble the burgers.

Spread some of the Special Sauce onto each sesame bun half.  Top the bottom bun with a juicy burger patty, pickles, tomato slices, bacon strips and romaine lettuce.  Place the top bun on the assembled burger, serve with a side of Smothered Fries and ENJOY!


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