Friday, March 30, 2018

Spring Roll Salad

This light and tasty salad is the perfect appetizer for spring. Fresh greens are combined with peppers, herbs and shrimp, a healthy recipe that requires a lot of chopping but is easy to prepare.

See the pictorial and get preparation tips at Style Blueprint

Spring Roll Salad — Fresh, Light & Tasty

Prep time: 23 mins Total time: 23 mins

Author: Liza Graves

If you like fresh spring rolls, you'll love this adaptation, which uses the filling as the main meal. It's quick, easy and tasty!


2 cups chopped cabbage

1/2 orange bell pepper, chopped

1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 English cucumber (or seeded regular cucumber) sliced in half, then chopped

1 cup cilantro, chopped

1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped

A handful of pea shoots

20 leaves of mint, chopped

10 large leaves of basil, chopped

1 cup edamame

Avocado (to garnish)

Green onions (to garnish)

Large leaves of Bibb lettuce (chopped if adding to salad, left whole if using to "wrap" the salad

1 pound shrimp, cooked, shelled, deveined and cut (lengthwise) in half

8 oz (approximately) thin rice noodles (found in the Asian section of the grocery store)

salt and pepper to taste


3 tablespoons honey

3 tablespoons fish sauce (found in the Asian section of the grocery store)

3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

2 tablespoons water

Juice of two limes squeezed

2 garlic cloves, minced (or 1/4 tsp garlic powder)

2 tablespoons fresh grated ginger (or 1 teaspoon ginger powder)

1/4 cup diced shallots


1. First, soak your rice noodles in a bowl/pot of warm water. Then, make the dressing as it gets better the longer it stands. Combine all ingredients, stir and set aside.

2. When you are finished making your dressing, your noodles are likely done. Rinse them with cold water so that they are no longer hot. Then, season the noodles with salt and black pepper to taste. Cut noodles into smaller pieces. (The easiest way to do this is with kitchen sheers — like 10 seconds easy!) Set aside.

3. Chop all your vegetables. When complete, toss with the rice noodles and the dressing. Use the Bibb lettuce as wrappers for the salad (refer to photo), or you can chop and add to the salad. When complete, garnish with green onions, avocado and sliced lime as well as any leftover herbs.

Recipe by StyleBlueprint at

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Broccoli Mushroom Casserole

This one is neither vegan nor Kosher, but maybe it could be with some tweaks?

Charlie found a recipe he liked the look of that called for bacon, so we got some from the store that sells Amish-raised meat. That recipe -- Long story.

ANYWAY, since I had the bacon, and I had some broccoli, and I had some mushrooms, I made this casserole.

First, I cut the florets off the broccoli stems (saved the stems for another dish), put the florets into a microwave-safe dish with a little water, covered it, and nuked it until the broccoli was tender. Then I mixed in a can of cream of mushroom soup.

Meanwhile, I chopped and cooked one slice of bacon. When it began to give off grease, I added some mushrooms, onions, garlic, and rosemary.

Mix it all up and bake it, and you get this.
I probably stirred some cheese in there, too -- I usually do.

It was yummy!

I'm posting today on my blog about another broccoli/mushroom/cheesy dish, this one without bacon.

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Sweet Pertaters, Shrooms, and Speargrass #Vegan

If you speak MomGoth, you can translate that title as Sweet Potatoes, Mushrooms, and Asparagus. Because we had this for supper:

I baked the sweet potato, o' course. That's vegan margarine on it, along with salt and pepper. I fried the sliced mushrooms in vegan margarine. After they started to throw off liquid, I made li'l skinny slices of the asparagus with my trusty veggie peeler and tossed them in the pan with the mushrooms and cooked until the liquid was gone, the mushrooms were slightly browned, and the asparagus was tender.

Okay, yeah, I cheated and sprinkled the fry with shredded Italian cheese mix, but that could have been vegan "cheese". It wasn't, but it could have been.

ANYWAY, it was delicious.

I'm posting at my own blog today about Pad Thai that even my husband liked. Not vegan or vegetarian. But it could have been.

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Friday, March 16, 2018

Chocolate Mint Cups

When I first saw this recipe, I thought it was going to be a peppermint patty-like treat. But, instead, it's a parfait. Still, how can you go wrong with chocolate and mint? Please click the link below for further information.

Chocolate-Mint Cups


 1 4-serving-size package sugar-free instant chocolate pudding mix
 2 cups fat-free milk
 1/4 8 - ounce container frozen light dessert topping, thawed
 1/8-1/4 teaspoon mint extract
 Green or red food coloring (optional)
 Frozen light whipped topping, thawed (optional)
 Mint sprig (optional)

Prepare pudding mix according to package directions using the 2 cups fat-free milk. Set aside. In a small bowl combine dessert topping, mint extract, and, if desired, food coloring to make desired color.

In 8 small dessert bowls layer half the pudding, followed by dessert topping and remaining pudding. Cover with foil and chill for 2 hours or until set. If desired, top with whipped topping and mint. Makes 8 individual desserts.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Spears and Spuds #Vegan

I've been buying asparagus for the past few weeks, because we haven't had it all winter. I know I could buy it canned or frozen, but it just isn't the same. Mind you, I like canned asparagus, but it's a totally different thing from fresh.

ANYWAY, here's one of our meals. Again, we aren't vegan, but we eat as if we were, more often than not, or at least vegetarians. We just kind of slipped into the habit, somehow.

Now, look at this. As my husband's Aunt Ora Mae used to say, "Now, ain't that perty?"

The yellow stuff is hominy from a can. I drain most of the liquid and pan-fry the homs in vegan margarine and seasoned salt.

I cooked the asparagus by putting it into a glass bread pan with salted water and minced garlic, and microwaved it for about 6 minutes or until tender.

Our #1 Daughter brought us a sack of mixed new potatoes, so I made New York Salt Potatoes -- which is just potatoes boiled with a butt-load of salt in the water. It's crazy good!

Sounds like a lot of salt, but we don't add any at the table. I do pepper. Husband doesn't.

I'm posting today at my blog about speargrass sammiches. That's asparagus sandwiches, for those not fluent in my language.

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Friday, March 9, 2018

Berry Pudding Cake

These adorable little tarts would be an elegant dessert to serve to guests. They'll never guess how easy they were to make. Please click the link below for further instruction and nutritional information.

Berry Pudding Cake


 Nonstick cooking spray
 2 eggs
 1/4 cup sugar
 1 teaspoon vanilla
 Dash salt
 1 cup fat-free milk
 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
 3 cups assorted fresh berries (such as raspberries, blueberries, and/or sliced strawberries)


Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Lightly coat six 6-ounce individual quiche dishes with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange in a 15x10x1-inch baking pan; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine eggs, granulated sugar, vanilla, and salt; whisk until light and frothy. Whisk in milk until combined. Add flour and baking powder; whisk until smooth.

Divide berries among prepared quiche dishes. Pour batter over berries. (Batter will not cover berries completely.) Bake about 20 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Serve warm. If desired, sift powdered sugar over each serving. Makes 6 servings.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Grilled Cheese Inna Toaster #ProductReview

Grilled cheese is easy enough to make in a skillet or in a toaster oven, but I'm a kitchen gadget kinda gal, so I bought these.

They're also supposed to be good for crisping up leftover fries, heating fish fingers or chicken fingers, and stuff like that.

So I made cheese sammiches and tucked 'em in the bags, all snug and cozy.

And shoved 'em inna toaster.

The following is actually my second attempt. The first worked fine, but some of the cheese leaked out onto the bottom of the bag and had to be peeled off. So the second time, I pinched the edges of the bread together to hold the cheese in.
Bottom line:

Grilled cheese is easy enough to make in a skillet or in a toaster oven.

But if I didn't have a stove or a toaster oven, this would be a stellar invention!

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Friday, March 2, 2018

Nutty Carrot Cake Bars

This recipe comes to us from Diabetic Living. Please click on the link below for more information and to see a photo of the cake bars.

Nutty Carrot Cake Bars


 Nonstick cooking spray
 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
 1/2 cup sugar or sugar substitute* equivalent to 1/2 cup sugar
 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
 1 teaspoon baking powder
 1/8 teaspoon salt
 1 cup finely shredded carrot
 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted
 1/3 cup refrigerated or frozen egg product, thawed, or 3 egg whites, lightly beaten
 1/4 cup cooking oil
 1/4 cup fat-free milk
 1 recipe Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting (see recipe below)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9x9x2-inch baking pan with foil, extending foil over the edges of the pan. Lightly coat foil with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
 In a medium bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt. Add carrot, 1/2 cup of the nuts, the eggs, oil, and milk. Stir just until combined. Spread mixture evenly in the prepared pan.
 Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool bars in pan on a wire rack.
 Using the edges of the foil, lift the uncut bars out of the pan. Spread top evenly with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup nuts. Cut into 20 bars.