It’s The One Dish To Serve With Those Grilled Steaks!

eggplant and garbanzo salad
Grilled Eggplant Topped with a Chickpea Mash
Tomato Cucumber Onion Relish, Tahini Sauce, Mint Garnish

It’s a side dish, it’s a salad, it’s a vegetarian entree. Throw some steaks on the grill and serve them with this fabulous vegetable-bean dish! That’s the whole menu, right there. Smoky grilled eggplant is the base, topped with a terrific warm chickpea mash, a lively colorful relish, and a creamy sauce. It’s one unfussy yet pretty vegetarian platter bursting with flavor, the perfect accompaniment to grilled meat, chicken, or fish…

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Annual Library Luncheon & Mrs. Love’s Black-Eyed Pea Squash Salad

library luncheon READ
Welcome to the Evelyn Dawn Memorial Library, where librarian Mrs. Love is holding her annual Appreciation Luncheon for Parent Volunteers to thank them for their energy, support, dedication, and enthusiasm in helping maintain the library throughout the school year.

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Ideas for Personalizing Mother’s Day

Mother's Day Table Setting

I’m thrilled to be a contributing columnist for our local paper Random Lengths News, which covers the Harbor Area of Los Angeles, where I write about food and entertaining.The following is the column I wrote for Mother’s Day.

Personalizing Mother’s Day

It’s no secret that Mother’s Day is the busiest day of the year for U.S. restaurants. Take mom out for a nice meal, give her the day off from cooking and cleaning, what a treat! But if you would like to make the day festive and personal, try these tips for “Making Mother’s Day Special” starting her day by fixing breakfast or brunch. And {hint} you can still take her out for dinner!

brunch strata

Prepare a fresh and easy brunch that is on the healthier side. The menu includes a light egg & cheese strata, fresh fruit parfait, with juice, and coffee or tea. The strata provides a delightful savory element, while the parfait adds a sweet note.

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Swiss Chard Falafel Burger

swiss chard falafel burger

Swiss Chard Falafel Burger
Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, Avocado, Hummus
On a Toasted Ciabatta Roll

Besides the obvious, BLT stands for Bistro Laurent Tourondel. This French Chef and his restaurant empire were my inspiration for our monthly Cooking Club challenge to build a sandwich around three ingredients that start with the letters…BLT, other than bacon, lettuce, and tomato.

I did attempt to follow the challenge rules, but my combinations of B, L, and T foods were uninspiring. And I simply cannot share something here on Taste With The Eyes that I don’t consider fabulous in one way or another. So I turned to a cookbook on my shelf BLT Bistro Laurent Tourondel for help. The Chef melds classic French bistro fare with the American steakhouse style. He poetically reinterprets the dishes in an uncomplicated manner with flavor and flair.

The idea for my reinterpreted BLT sandwich comes from a different source however, an item on his menu at restaurant BLT Burger in Las Vegas, called a Veggie Falafel. I had no idea what ingredients were in his falafel, but it was wonderfully green! With lettuce, tomato, avocado, and hummus. So, here I present my version…a Swiss Chard Falafel Burger.

Now, why go through all the trouble to make a superior vegetarian burger then add bacon to the sandwich? Why indeed. Vegetarian friends will love this swiss chard falafel burger, and why not add bacon for my carnivorous friends who believe bacon makes everything better. Which one are you?

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Un-boring Oatmeal

oatmeal toasted quinoa
Oatmeal Topped with Non-Fat Greek Yogurt
Toasted Quinoa, Dried Blueberries, Sunflower Seeds, Blue Agave Nectar

Would you rather eat farm fresh poached eggs and thick smoky bacon? Me too. But part of my heart-healthy regimen includes oatmeal for breakfast several times a week. And that gets boring. Quite. Boring. In looking for healthy ways to jazz it up, I put together this combination of toppings – tangy yogurt, toasty quinoa, nutty sunflower seeds, intense wild berries, and mildly sweet blue agave nectar. It was a delightful way start to the day.

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mind-blowing appetizer: kimchi jeon (kimchi pancake)

kimchi pancake recipe
kimchi pancake / kimchi jeon 

김치전

I’m obsessed with a pancake. Korean Kimchi Jeon. How does a simple combination of flour & water plus kimchi produce such a sublime pancake? It is kimchi’s spicy, salty, sweet, sour, bitter, umami, fermented flavors when added to a basic pancake batter that result in an extraordinary snack. Complex in flavor with textures ranging from chewy to crispy and a delightful orange-hue, guests can’t get enough of this popular ahn-joo.

With a jar of kimchi in the refrigerator and the rest of the ingredients pretty much standard pantry items, in 15 minutes or so I can serve a mind-blowing appetizer. Pair with cold beer or makkoli (rice wine) to get the party started!

Two ways to enjoy ~ choose either the partially burnt caramelized kimchi pancake or the crispy/chewy version ~ same ingredients, different method.

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