Meatless Monday: Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella

Serve this up on a platter: Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella

Whether you include one veggie and your favorite cheese, or you mix things up with a bunch of ingredients, a frittata makes a great meal any time of day, and especially on a Meatless Monday. This recipe for Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella will hit the spot and it offers up fab flavor, too.

Slice up a frittata: Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella

Late in the day on Sunday, I turned on the TV and bopped around the house trying to pick up this and that (mostly to make it seem like I did a little weekend cleaning). The Red Carpet event for the Oscar’s was on, and the talented and lovely Naomi Watts was being peppered with the requisite questions. Somehow, it came up that she made herself a frittata earlier in the day because she knew it was going to be a long night.

On the table: Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella

It’s a coincidence that I decided to share this recipe for Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella, but it made me feel extra glamorous to know that Naomi and I were on the same wavelength as far as food goes! Wonder if she enjoyed a few scoops of Ben and Jerry’s for dessert, too? Yeah, I didn’t think so either.

A skillet dish:  Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella

This vegetarian frittata is a winner, not only because I was able to use up some leftovers, but because the mix of flavors work really well together: the touch of sweetness from the sweet potatoes, the peppery arugula, and the smoked mozzarella. They might seem like unlikely ingredients for a frittata, but that’s the beauty of this egg dish – pretty much anything goes. For a colorful springtime frittata, try my recipes for Asparagus and Asiago Frittata.

I don’t know if I’ll win an award for this recipe for Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella, but eating it made me feel a little like a movie star!

Recipe for Sweet Potato and Arugula Frittata with Smoked Mozzarella
Serves 4

Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce

Dig into a bowl of Ramen and Veggies in Orange-Chili Sauce for easy-to-make comfort food

I used a few of the last oranges from my backyard to make Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce. I was looking for a comforting dish that was easy to put together, and this did the trick. Ramen clearly makes me feel better, and this recipe for Bacon, Egg and Asparagus Ramen (Mazemen Style) is another feel-good-food example of that.

Pile your bowl with Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce for a comforting meal

I really thought I’d escape the ravages of the flu this winter, but unfortunately, it captured me in its clutches. Not once, but twice. I guess I should have eaten more of those oranges for better prevention.

Oranges always brighten my day, and since I was on the mend from being down and out for a few days, I felt up to cooking a little. Nothing fancy. Nothing time consuming, but I definitely wanted comfort food.

Hot and tasty, a bowl of Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce hits the spot

Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce was just what I needed. I love a dish that’s this easy to make. It’s loaded with veggies (pick the ones you like best), orange juice (hello vitamin C), and another favorite of mine, chili garlic sauce. This noodle dish is coated in a sweet and zesty sauce that made me feel a whole lot better. You can enjoy Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce when you’re feeling at your healthiest, too!

Here’s hoping for a healthy 2015 for us all.

Recipe for Ramen and Veggies in Orange-chili Sauce
Serves 4

Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach

Fresh basil adorns a bowl of Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach

This recipe for Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach has many things going for it, including the fact that it’s easy to make. It’s simple, yet elegant, and perfect for a festive gathering or dinner for the family. The sauce may be rich, but it’s not overwhelming, and it works perfectly paired with hearty white beans, fresh spinach, and bits of roasted red pepper.

I was recently asked by retailer UncommonGoods to review an item from its wine glasses/gifts category (click here to see all there is to choose from). After doing a quick search on its site, I found the perfect glasses to fit my style: the Floral Wine Glasses. I was drawn to these glasses – small tumblers – because they reminded me of dinnertime growing up. During family dinners, my Italian family rarely drank from stemware, and usually poured homemade wine into short, juice-type glasses.

Set of six Floral Wine Glasses from UncommonGoods

The UncommonGoods’ Floral Wine Glasses are festive and unpretentious, decorated with simple flowers (a different design on each) with an Art Deco flair. The glasses come in a set of six, hold 6.5 ounces of your favorite wine, and are made in the USA. They arrived on my doorstep packaged in a cute cardboard carrier with a spot for each glass, and individually covered in protective bubble wrap.

These glasses were spot on sitting next to a bowl of Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach. For me, they added a time-honored tradition to serving a glass of wine with a simple and delicious meal: not overly ornate, but welcoming and relaxed.

UncommonGoods Floral Wine Glass with a bowl of Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach

UncommonGoods has something for everyone’s wine style, whether you’re looking for glasses, cool accessories, or a unique gift. If you’re not familiar with the company, you should check it out. With headquarters in Brooklyn, New York, it was founded in 1999. Half of the items sold by UncommonGoods are made by hand, and most of its products are made here in the USA. You’ll definitely find something special on its site.

Pasta meals are more than mere red sauce. Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach is the perfect example. No fuss, but definitely special.

Recipe for Creamy Pasta with White Beans and Spinach
Serves 4-6

 

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for which I was compensated. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Zucchini Pasta with Fava Beans and Harissa Sauce

Bolw of zucchini pasta with fava beans and harissa sauce

Zucchini is pretty much everywhere during these days of summer. It really is a versatile veggie with so many mealtime possibilities, and I absolutely love turning zucchini into “pasta.” It’s easy to do and it gives you a fresh take on traditional pasta, not to mention another way to serve zucchini.

You can use a julienne peeler to turn your zucchini into pasta. I found that my peeler didn’t produce long strands of “pasta” and it was a little clunky. I recently bought a hand-held peeler (no room in my cupboards for a big peeler), and it couldn’t be easier to use. My GEFU Spirelli Spiral Slicer easily turns zucchini into noodle-like strands in minutes, with no fuss. This is the perfect tool if you like to turn veggies into noodles for dishes like Zucchini Pasta with Fava Beans and Harissa Sauce, and you want something small enough to store easily.

Zucchini pasta

So these fava beans you’ve heard so much about (you know…to serve with the Chianti?). What are they and how do you prep them? Well, fava beans are super-hearty, and come packaged in big, green pods. They can be served any number of ways, but when you buy them, make sure to get about a pound per serving.

Their pods are big and thick, but they only hold 3-4 beans each. Shell them (break off the tip and open up the pods), then submerge them in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Next add them to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process, then peel off the waxy outer cover. After that, the world is your oyster, so to speak.

Fava Beans in their Pos

If you’ve never had or made harissa, I highly recommend it. Harissa is a paste (or condiment, really) made using chilies, herbs, and spices, and is prevalent in North African cuisine. I made some for a recipe for work recently, and since it was so easy to make, I tossed together another, slightly different batch for this dish. Its spicy goodness goes well in so many dishes. For example, you can add it to eggs, casseroles, stews, or use it as a rub or paste for meats.

My idea was to add the harissa to some marinara sauce and toss it with the zucchini and fava beans. The added sauce was perfect over the cool zucchini “noodles” and hearty beans.

Zucchini pasta twirled up on a fork

Enjoy this summer dish of Zucchini Pasta with Fava Beans and Harissa Sauce with a glass of… well, you know.

Recipe for Zucchini Pasta with Fava Beans and Harissa Sauce
Serves 2

 

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Pea and Ricotta Spread

Pea and Ricotta SpreadLike my niece says, Pea and Ricotta Spread “tastes like the garden.” I love this spread because, while cheesy, it’s not goopy or heavy, and the green peas and mint add a vibrant, springtime freshness.

I served Pea and Ricotta spread on Easter along with slices of my mom’s homemade bread. The color and garden-like flavors of the spread scream spring, and after a dreary winter, what could be better?

Easy pea and ricotta spreadMint and peas is a classic pairing, but if you’re not a fan of mint, try making the spread with fresh basil, rosemary, or thyme (I think lemon thyme would be excellent with this spread). I’m a garlic freak, so I think it’s perfectly acceptable to add a little to this spread, but I recommend using light touch for this one.

If you’re set to serve an appetizer this spring, look no further than Pea and Ricotta Spread. I love it mounded on slices of crusty bread, but crackers work well, too. Don’t forget fresh veggies that you can dip into it. This is a simple, springtime appetizer that brings the flavors of the garden indoors.

Spingy pea and ricotta spread

Recipe for Pea and Ricotta Spread
Yields about 3 cups