One of the things I love about this salsa is that it’s such a summery recipe and I really do love the summer season—even if it can get a little too hot at times! This salsa is made with some of my favorite fruits and veggies…strawberries, avocado, and cucumber! It’s a Continue reading
Tortilla pinwheels are great for a summer snack or appetizer–they’re easy to make and, best of all, you don’t have to use your oven to make them! I try to make no-bake things on hot days to help keep things cool inside.
Let me just say that it does take a little practice to get nicely shaped pinwheels. The two most important things to remember are to roll up the tortillas tightly and refrigerate at least several hours. They’re much easier to slice and they keep their shape better when you do these two things.
VEGGIE TORTILLA PINWHEELS by NancyC
Makes about 4 dozen pinwheels
- 1 (8-ounce) block of cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
- 1 cup (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
- 2/3 cup finely chopped green onions
- 3/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
- 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chilies, drained
- 1 (4.25-ounce) can chopped black olives
- 1/2 Tablespoon dried parsley flakes
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon garlic powder, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 8 (8-inch) or 5 (10-inch) flour tortillas (flavored or plain)
In medium-size bowl, mix softened cream cheese, sour cream, and shredded cheddar cheese until well blended. Add in chopped green onions, red bell pepper, green chilies, and black olives, blending everything together. Stir in parsley flakes, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste.
Spread mixture in a thin layer over one side of each flour tortillas. Roll tortillas up tightly, then wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours or overnight.
(You’ll probably have some extra cream cheese mixture left over–you may be able to make another tortilla roll with it, or save it to use as a spread on some bread).
Remove from refrigerator, remove plastic wrap, and place each tortilla roll seam side down. Cut into slices about 1/2″ thick (a small serrated knife works best for slicing). Arrange on a large tray or platter and serve.
Just about everyone loves these pinwheels, so you can’t go wrong making these for a potluck or party. Have you make tortilla pinwheels before?
I’ve grown basil every summer for many years–sometimes in a garden, but lately in a large pot, since I don’t have space for a garden right now. I love making homemade pesto with my basil! It’s really easy to make and there’s nothing like cutting fresh basil from your own garden or pot to make it. What probably takes the longest time in making this recipe is picking the basil leaves off the cut stems…but even that task is enjoyable because you get to sniff the wonderful aroma of fresh basil while you’re doing it! Here’s a simple recipe I use…it’s a good starting point, and you can adjust the amount of certain ingredients (like the garlic, for example) to suit your taste. You can use a food processor or blender–a food processor probably works best, but a blender will work, too.
BASIL PESTO by NancyC
Makes 2/3 to 3/4 cup
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves. packed
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1-2 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 3 Tbsp. pine nuts (I often substitute pecans or walnuts, because they’re less expensive)
- Dash or two of salt, to taste (optional)
In a food processor or blender, add the basil, olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic; blend or process until smooth (the mixture is on the thick side, so if you’re using a blender, you may have to stop the blender and stir with a spoon to help it along). Add the Parmesan cheese and nuts (and salt, if desired) to the basil mixture, and blend well. Spoon it out of the blender or food processor into a small bowl (or covered container if you’re going to use it later).
I mostly eat pesto spread on a thick slice of crusty bread. It’s also really good on the Asiago cheese bagels you can buy at Panera Bread or Atlanta Bread Company. If you’re a sourdough bread fan like I am, it’s good on that too!
Do you grow your own basil too? What do you like to make with it?
Beets were never on my list of favorite foods as a kid, but I’ve grown to like them. And I especially like that they are so healthy and good for you. I make recipes with beets every so often–probably not as often as I should–and I had the perfect opportunity to make a beet recipe when I received a complimentary package of Gefen’s Vacuum-Packed Beets, which are organic and also pre-peeled, making them very handy and convenient to use.
These beets work great in everything from salads to smoothies. I decided to make Red Beet Hummus. I love trying different hummus recipes and hadn’t tried one with beets yet. I really like this hummus! It doesn’t have a super-strong beet flavor, since it just has about 1 medium-size beet in it. I think the mild beet flavor goes nicely with the other hummus ingredients, and adding beet to the mix makes this hummus so healthy! If you don’t happen to have any Gefen’s beets on hand, you can use precooked beets or roasted beets instead.
RED BEET HUMMUS by NancyC
- 1 (15-ounce) can of Garbanzo Beans (also called chickpeas)
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped, cooked (or roasted), peeled red beet (about 1 medium size beet)
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 1 clove minced garlic (you can use 2 cloves if you want a stronger garlic flavor)
- 1/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- pinch of sea salt
- pinch of pepper
- pinch of paprika
Add garbanzo beans, chopped beet, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil in a blender or food processor. Puree until mixture is smooth. Add sea salt, pepper, and paprika and blend everything together. Add more seasoning to taste if desired. Serve with crackers or veggies or use as a spread on bread or bagels.
I’ve learned that beets are a great source of of vitamin C, iron, fiber, and essential minerals. I really need to get more beets in my diet! Do you make any dishes with beets?
Trail Mix is such a great snack and so easy to make! I just made a mix with some healthy ingredients I had on hand and also added in some new Lärabar Bites that I had recently received as complimentary samples. These are truffle-like bites made from real food like fruits and nuts, just like Lärabars. The bites come in 4 different flavors: Cherry Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Macaroon, Double Chocolate Brownie, and Mint Chocolate Truffle. I really liked all the flavors, which is not surprising, since I love chocolate so much! But you can feel good about eating these bites, since they’re made with healthy ingredients and fair trade certified chocolate chips. They’re also gluten-free, non-GMO, vegan and dairy-free.
I thought these Lärabar Bites would be perfect in this trail mix I came up with, which you can make in no time. It’s perfect when you want a healthy sweet snack! This makes 2 1/2 cups, but if you want a larger amount, you can always double the recipe.
DARK CHOCOLATE–ALMOND TRAIL MIX by NancyC
Makes 2 1/2 cups
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup chopped Lärabar Bites, cut into fourths (I used the Double Chocolate Brownie bites) or, substitute 1/2 cup chopped dates
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup unsweetened or sweetened coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup roasted almonds
Add all ingredients to a medium-size bowl and mix. Store in an airtight container for 2 to 3 weeks.
It’s nice when a snack is both yummy and healthy, isn’t it? What healthy snacks do you like to keep on hand?