Saturday, November 20, 2010

Smashed Potatoes!

I know I sound like a big a big loser. But, I just discovered a new way to do potatoes and I'm excited! I was reading my friend Alicia's blog,, and agree that sometimes, cooking a good meal at home can me so much more gratifying than eating out. I too, get into the cooking process, and find it relaxing.

B and I spent the morning at the Westside market, and hungry let me add, bought a tone of produce and snacks. We decided to cook a simple meal of grilled flank steak, asparagus, and smashed potatoes. Yes, everyone knows we will be eating gallons of mashed potatoes at the end of this week(Thanksgiving, yeh!), so, I varied it up tonight with "smashed potatoes". Yes, there is a subtle difference.

Smashed potatoes are prepared as follows: 1. Boil some small redskin potatoes for about 20 minutes with the skin on. 2. drain potatoes and smash slightly with a spoon until they double in diameter. 3. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 4. Other herbs such as rosemary or thyme can also be sprinkled over the top. Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees or until browned. They are crispy, delicious, and yes, healthier! No butter or sour cream(which by the way, is stocked in my frig for later this week) means less saturated fat and cholesterol.

Next we had asparagus. I tossed the asparagus in olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper. Then I broiled it for about 10 minutes in a 450 degree oven. It had a richer flavor as compared to boiling or steaming.

And lastly, the grilled flank steak. Yum. We bought Northwoods rub from Penzey's spice store to season the steak prior to grilling. Yes, Penzeys is now open across from the Westside Market in Cleveland. Happy! Happy!

Flank steak is a lean cut of beef. We simply grilled for 10 minutes per side.

Can't get easier or more delish(new word) than this.... I love being home.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Spicy braised clams with sausage and corn

Every year for probably the last 10 years, my sister has come over to help me carve pumpkins with my kids. It has become one of my favorite traditions over the years. Now, she has a fun little toddler(the fairy below) and my kids have gotten older. So, we have switched roles. I come over with the pumpkins and we carve, cook, and gab.

My niece is adding her own special touches to the pumpkin.

My daughter carving out a cool face on our gigantic bargain pumpkin from Buyers Outlet in Warren Village.

And of course, what would Halloween be with out the roasted pumpkin seeds? We just brush them with olive oil, sprinkle them with sea salt and pepper, and roast in a hot oven until they are golden.

Our finished jack'o'lantern warranted this delicious antipasto plate. My sister roasts the red peppers in a 450 degree oven until they are charred. Then puts them in plastic freezer bags to steam them. Lastly, peel off the blackened skin. Then add some olive oil and balsamic vinegar. These are the unbelievably good! We also had some Parano cheese and a variety of olives.

After our appetizers, my sister made a clam, sausage, and corn chowder from cooking light.

We substituted mussels.....

Here is the recipe..... Enjoy!

Spicy Braised Clams with Sausage and Corn

1 t. olive oil

8 oz turkey italian sauage

3 cloves garlic, thin sliced

1 jalapeno thinly sliced

1/2 c white wine

3 c. chopped plum tomatoes

2 T. oregano

2T. basil

1/8 t. sea salt

1/2 t. pepper

1 1/2 c fresh corn kernels

1 1/2 # Littleneck clams

Heat oil in dutch oven. Remove casings from sausage and cook for 4 minutes. Add garlic and jalapeno and cook for 1 minute. Add wine and cook for 2 minutes, scraping the pan to loosen brown bits. Stir in tomatoes, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper; bring mixture to a simmer. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add corn and cook 2 minutes longer.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Borderline Cafe...... Best Breakfast

Hi! I know I've been out of commission for a while in the blogging world. I've been busy with good stuff. Most of my fall weekend mornings have been occupied with fall sports. There is nothing like a crisp morning and a hot mug of coffee while cheering your kids on in a beautiful park somewhere in Northeast Ohio. That's my daughter below running cross country. I'm so proud that she is a runner and I'm proud of all you bloggers out there that take on running as adults. My husband has also returned to his running roots and is getting up daily to run before work. I'm impressed and happy that he is taking control of his health. Your accomplishments as runners inspire me daily.

Although I'm not a soccer Mom, I am a soccer aunt. There's my nephew below. He's the one pushing everyone aside with the flaming hat. You gotta love the girl in the pink with the matching pink shin guards. That would have been me back in the day.

After all of this grueling spectating, what else is there to do but eat. This morning we went to one of my favorite breakfasts places called the Borderline Cafe. For those of you who are not familiar, it is located in Lakewood, Ohio. Kelly Wright is the owner and they have been around now for 17 years! That is some staying power. She serves breakfast with a southwestern twist. She told me that the restaurant is due for an update, but, I still love the quotes stenciled on the wall from artists like Jewel, the Guess Who, and John Denver. They all have to do with breakfast.

This is one my favorite items on the menu.... the vegetable burrito.

Its is full of black beans, eggs and vegetables all wrapped in a spinach tortilla. For those looking to lighten-up, you can order any of the breakfast foods with egg whites.

Just a little word on the benefits of breakfast(for my friends out there that like to skip this meal)....
Did you know that research shows those who eat breakfast have better attitudes at work, increased productivity, and do better with tasks that involve memory? And did you know that those who skip breakfast are more irritable, tired and restless? And for you runners... breakfast eaters have more strength, endurance and problem-solving abilities. O.K. I'm done. Happy eating.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Roasted Pear-Butternut Squash Soup

You can tell the weather has changed suddenly to fall by the type of food that is being served around my house. We have gone from grilling to soups and stews. I think I actually eat more healthy in cold weather than summer. Comfort foods do not have to mean heavy, calorie laden dishes.

But enough dietitian lecturing and back to good food. This soup is really delicious. But, I must warn you that it is a little labor intensive. It involves pealing and chopping butternut squash. Does any one out there have a good technique for this or do you just have to endure the pain? I'm not kidding you, I was sweating while I was trying to peal the skin. Then, this waxy substance(which I think was a preservative, yuk!) was all over my fingers afterward. You know that feeling when you get super glue on the tips of your fingers??? Annoying!!! I'm definitely splurging on a farm bought squash next time without that stuff on it. Even better, I think you can buy already cut up butternut squash at Trader Joe's. Its worth the extra couple dollars for sure.

If I have not scared you off, this soup was really delicious. You start off by roasting the squash, pears, leeks, and tomatoes before pureeing them which caramelizes their sugar and maximizes their sweetness. Butternut squash, despite its lack of pealability(new word), is loaded with nutrients. A serving provides 350% of the daily value of Vitamin A and 70% of your daily vitamin C needs. It is also a good source of calcium and fiber. So here is the recipe(found from Eating Well) and some pretty pictures.

Roasted Pear-Butternut Soup with Crumbled Stiltson
  • 2 ripe pears, peeled and quartered
  • 2 lbs of butternut squash, peeled and seeded and cut into chunks
  • 2 medium tomatoes cored and quartered
  • 1 large leek, sliced and thoroughly washed
  • 2 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 2 T. virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 t salt, divided
  • 4 c vegetable stock
  • 2/3 c. crumbled Stiltson
  • 1T fresh chives

Combine pears, squash, tomatoes, leeks, garlic, oil, 1/4t salt and pepper in a bowl; toss to coat. Spread out vegetable mix on a baking sheet. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Place half the vegetables and 2c broth in a food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to a large saucepan. Puree the remaining vegetables with 2c broth. Add to pan with remaining 1/4t salt. Cook the soup over medium to low heat for 10 minutes.

Serve with a sprinkle of cheese, chives, and I added some turkey bacon. Enjoy with your favorite fall beverage and some crusty bread. Enjoy.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fall Stew

Today was the first time in a while I actually felt like have having cold weather comfort food. I watched Julie and Julia today and tossed around the idea of making Julia's Beef Bourguignon. However, then I noticed the recipe had 43 steps! Wow.... that must be some pretty awesome stew. Unfortunately, my family will not get to try it tonight because I was not feeling that ambitious. I'll save that for when I am snowed in. Instead, I dusted off my green Cuisinart cast-iron dutch oven and made my favorite... 5 Hour Stew from Penzey's. In case you are not familiar with Penzey's, it is an exceptionally cool spice store. They have a large variety of spices and rubs. But, I really love the catalogue because it has tons of really good, fail-proof recipes that are simple. We have a store on Chagrin Rd. on the eastside of Cleveland, but you can also mail order products from the website at

In case you are worried that beef stew doesn't actually fall under the healthy eating category... I beg to differ. This recipe has 250 calories and 3.5 g of fat in a 2 cup serving. I did not have to add any additional fats or oils in the cooking process. This makes this dish great for heart health as well as weight loss. To determine if your meal or product is low-fat, follow the rule of thumb which is 30% or less of the food's calories coming from fat. Fat has 9 calories per gram, so if you multiple the stew's 3.5 g by 9 calories, you get about 35 calories coming from fat. This definitely weighs in under 30% of the 250 total calories. Hope I didn't lose you there. Believe me, I am no wizz in math. But, overall this is a healthy meal and if you pair it with a salad and some red wine, you'll be in good shape.

5 Hour Oven Stew

1- 1/2 lbs stew beef

6 cups peeled and cubed potatoes

2 medium onions cut into chunks

4 cups peeled carrots cut into 3 inch rounds

2 cups cut celery

1 -15 oz can of petite diced tomatoes

1 to 2 tsp of salt

1/2 to 1 tsp of pepper

1-2 tsp of oregano

1/4 to 1/2 garlic powder

In a large oven-proof pan combine all of the ingredients with the lesser amount of spices. It is not necesary to brown the meat. Cover and bake at 250 degrees for 4 to 5 hours. 30 minutes before serving, taste the stew and add the remaining spices to your taste. It doesn't get easier than that!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Crop Bistro.... Sunday Supper.

Well, its been weeks since I started talking about going to Sunday Supper and I'm happy to announce that The Wellness Warrior(Tina) and The Caring Foodie(me) finally made it to Crop Bistro! Yeh! And, yes, it was well worth all of the built-up anticipation. You can get an idea of how cozy and inviting the dining room is from the picture above. I loved the blown-up images of random vegetables which hang above the notty-pine woodwork on the wall. Its a cool mix of modern and traditional. The images are also on each of the tables set under a plate of glass.

As I mentioned in my previous post, The Idiot's Guide to the Sustainable Plate, Sunday Supper is a weekly event that takes place on Sunday's from 5:00 to 9:00 at Crop Bistro. Chef Steve, creates a last minute menu using the foods which he has on hand from the week and his imagination. I love the spontaneity of this concept! Dinner includes a salad, side dishes, entree, and dessert. You select your entree and the rest just appears, family-style. The cost of the entire meal is only $25 which is a great value! Of course, we managed to blow the budget on our wine.... but, you only live once.
My tastebuds were dazzled immediately from the time the bread and butter arrived. This was no ordinary butter. It was light, fluffy and infused with honey and pepper. Sounds like an odd combination, but, somehow it worked. The salad below was also a great combination of every summer fruit you can imagine tossed with some baby greens. Thus, the name, Summer Salad. The beets were a great addition.
Next round was the entrees.. I chose the chicken parmesan at the recommendation of the chef. The fresh tomatoes and balsamic were a nice change from the usual heavy tomato sauce. I had to apologize to Tina at this point for not speaking. I was totally engrossed in my meal.

Tina ordered the seared tuna with heirloom tomatoes and quinoa salad. I think the picture speaks volumes!

Our side dish.

Under that cloud of whipped creeam is our dessert which was a warm berry, dark chocolate tart .

This group next to us was having a blast!

The Sunday night blues don't exist here. What a great way to start the week!

The End...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

It Really is All Good, Even Washing Dishes

Well, I've no new recipes or food pictures or festivals to share with you tonight. I just have a lot of thoughts brewing and felt like sharing.

An old friend contacted me today with great news! She is in love! This is extraordinary because she is an older women who has had a lot of pain and difficult relationships in her life. She got divorced rather abruptly, after a 25 year marriage, when her husband came home one day and announced that he was in love with someone else. Then, she entered into a difficult marriage with an alcoholic who died from alcohol-related complications a year after they were married.

I became friends with her sometime during the second marriage. We worked together and I came to respect her a great deal professionally as well as personally. It's amazing what some of us are able to endure without going completely mad! The human spirit really is a resilient thing. Although, I admired her for her strength, I could tell there was a part of her that had been damaged. You know? I could sense that wall of protection that she had built around herself which kept everyone at arm's length.

Her happy announcement really caught me off guard because lately it seems like there has been a lot of bad news going around in my circle of friends(divorces, affairs, illnesses, etc.). How sad is that that I have come to expect bad news? Anyhow, it turns out that she is seeing someone that was a childhood friend that she has known for 50 years! All this time he has been right there, but, the circumstances were never right. Now, 2 marriage (for both) later, something has inexplicably changed and they are head-over-heels in love. She told me that he has brought to her a joy she hasn't felt, maybe ever. She said that there was piece of her that had died, but, is back and thriving. She said, I know this is an overused and cheesy saying, but, "It's all good".

You know, I've always hated that saying.... I've always been annoyed by the people that have said it. Usually they are shallow celebrity types that don't have the first clue what suffering and pain means. But, when my friend of 60 years said it tonight, I really felt like it was true.

I have been reading a book by Thich Nhat Hanh called Peace Is Every Step. This book teaches that in this hectic, goal -oriented society we live in, peace can be found in each moment. It has introduced me to the concept of mindfulness and finding joy even in the most mundane of daily activities. This is key in practicing yoga as you probably know. But, I have been able to experience this concept mostly in taking the time to cook a great meal and in enjoying it slowly. It's rejuvinating for me to slow down and really look at, smell, and taste the food I've prepared. Now mind you, with a family and career this doesn't even happen daily. But, for the times that it does happen, I am grateful.

As foodies, we all know that the worst part of cooking is DOING DISHES. Well, Thich Nat Hanh even has this covered in the book. He describes the act of doing dishes in a way that has revolutionized the way I feel about this chore(I mean moment). Now, that is one powerful feat! So, with that I leave you with an exerpt(about washing dishes, mindfully) from Thich Nat Hanh's Peace Is Every Step:

"To my mind, the idea that doing dishes is unpleasant can occur only when you aren't doing them. Once you are standing in front of the sink with you sleeves rolled up and your hands in the warm water, it is really quite pleasant. I enjoy taking my time with each dish, being fully aware of the dish, the water, and each movement of my hands. I know that if I hurry in order to eat dessert sooner, the time of washing dishes will be unpleasant and not worth living. That would be a pity, for each minute, each second of life is a miracle."

Monday, August 30, 2010

Beautiful Eggplant Rollatini!

I love August. I love the summer sound of crickets that come in my window at night. I love the way the summer sun starts to become a little softer. I love watching the kids get back on the school bus(sorry, Molls and Tim). And I especially love the end of summer produce that appears on my counter tops. I suddenly had 5 eggplants staring at me in my vegetable bowl at home, so, I made rollatini(by Giada) which is one of the greatest recipes ever!
Here are the ingredients you will need...
4 medium eggplant, cut lengthwise into 1/2 in slices
1T. sea salt
1/2 cup olive oil
3 T. toasted pine nuts
32 oz whole-milk ricotta cheese
2 large eggs beaten
1/2 c. shredded mozzarella
3T. grated Parmesan cheese
20 basil leaves
2 c. black pepper
I started off by placing the eggplant on a baking sheet and sprinkling it with the salt. I set aside for 15 minutes. This will help extract some of the moisture. Then I rinsed and patted dry. Next, I brushed the eggplant with olive oil and grilled, about 4 minutes per side(thanks B).
In a large bowl, combine your beaten eggs and ricotta. Stir in your mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, and toasted pine nuts. Fold in the basil leaves.

Place 1 T. of cheese mixture at the end of your eggplant and roll up tightly as seen below.

Place the rollatinis seam-side down into a lightly oiled 13 X 9 in baking dish.

Make some marinara sauce(I used Giadas), but any sauce would substitute fine.

Pour sauce over your rollatinis and add salt and pepper. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes. Drizzle some more olive oil across the top and serve.


Hope your summer was as fun as mine.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Idiots Guide to the Sustainable Plate

Are you jealous? I got to meet and chat with one of the most talented chefs and restaurateurs
in the Cleveland area. This is head chef, Steve Schimoler, of Crop Bistro. I met him at a Crocker Park event yesterday called The Green Factory where he gave a presentation called "The Sustainable Plate". He is way cool, personable, and knowledgeable and I can't wait to give his restaurant a try.

What is the definition of that trendy, foodie term we keep hearing about lately? Even as a dietitian, I wasn't really sure. So, I was relieved when he said that he believes it is still a concept that is evolving. First, it is about serving up food of high quality and nutritious value. He believes that this can be attained by buying local foods(according to him, more important than buying organic). Local foods are better simply because they are picked at the peak of ripeness when the BRIX value is at its best. Don't worry- I didn't know what BRIX meant either. But, it is a measurement of the sugar content in produce. It relates to how good something tastes. For instance, the BRIX would be higher in a garden tomato vs. a pale red tomato that has traveled many miles and sat on refrigerated truck. He recommends that we consumers challenge the restaurants we eat at by asking them the BRIX content of some of their produce. He also recommends that we ask our restaurants of choice which of their foods are bought locally. After all, a restaurant is only as good at its patrons and we should demand the best. The Crop Bistro provides about 60% locally grown foods on its menu which is about the highest it can go considering that we live in Northeastern Ohio. We don't have a lot of access to meats which are raised locally.

Sustainable foods also refers to our food providers having a conscience. It may cost a restaurant more money to purchase foods which are locally grown, but, it gives back to the local economy which is good for all of us. Buying locally grown food also benefits the environment in 2 ways. First, it obviously takes less fuel for a tomato to travel from Kamms Corner than from Texas. Secondly, that heavy packaging that is necessary to protect produce when it travels a far distance, well, that is one less thing that goes into our landfills.

But, the best thing I learned about was Crop Bistro's Sunday Supper! This restaurant walks the walk when it comes to sustainable foods. They actually use the foods which he still has on hand from the week to provide an extraordinary meal on Sunday nights. Before you say, "Ew, I can eat leftovers for free at home". Check out todays Sunday Supper menu online at It looks amazing! FYI- he doesn't post the menu until 3:00 that day. How fun is that? Talk about spontaneity and talent!

For $25, you can have an appetizer, entree, and dessert which is a great value for such a high-end restaurant. I can't wait to go with my blogging buddy and fellow foodie, Tina. Any of you care to join us?

Oh, and by the way, I will have more recipe posts this week since I also have a lot of local produce on hand.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Roseangel- restaurant review

The last time I was out in the Gordon Square neighborhood, I ate at this great restaurant called La Boca across from Happy Dog. So, then I passed by a week later and it was gone. Pffff! But tonight my happiness was restored when I ate at the restaurant that took its place called Roseangel.

I had read in Cleveland magazine that Roseangel was a casual and "modern taqueria". So, I was confused when I walked in the door to an upscale appearing restaurant. I was also surprised at how quickly the owner(Marlin Kaplin of Luxe) was able to create such a beautifully done space so quickly after the closing of the previous restaurant. My favorite room was magenta red with white and black polka dots on the tables. I sort of felt like I was on the cover of a Whitestripes album. I had my heart set on eating on the patio, but, it was hard to leave the Whitestripes room.
Out on the patio, my sister and I started our meal with some salsa, chips and drinks. Our server, cute guy with the glasses, (sorry, didn't get your name) was helpful and obviously a big fan of the foods he was serving. There were 9 salsas to choose from! This restaurant reminds me a bit of Momocho in Ohio City(except much more reasonable). We did the 2 salsas for $4.50 deal. Pictured below is the salsa verde and salsa del dia(salsa of the day) which was a corn, tomato, and garlic combination. Delicious! They also had some more exotic varieties such as the pomegranate mole salsa. I'll be back for that!
I'll also be back for the drinks which are all prepared using fresh fruit juice. We had the house margarita called The Rose and some Sangria which were both exceptionally good. However, there were so many great looking drinks. There was also a cantaloupe and basil infused margarita which sounded interesting. FYI- they have happy hour before 7:00 which is a 2 drinks for 1 special. These include mixed drinks, beer, and wine.

Onto the best part... The tacos! They were gorgeous! True works of art as you can see below. There were 15 varieties of tacos. Holy mole, bat man! Again, we had good guidance from our server. We decided to try a platter deal which was 4 pairs of tacos for $30.00. The 4 we chose, as seen below, are the grilled pork with bacon and potatoes, the walleye taco with cilantro pesto, the duck confit, and the tres queso with chorizo. Obviously, they were awesome. However, I though the walleye taco was missing something tangy or spicy(perhaps lime or jalapeno?). Overall, we had a great time and meal. My only warning.... if you don't like tacos, pick another place because there is not much else on the menu. But, with 15 tacos to choose from its hard not to find something you love.
Happy Birthday to my sister and fellow foodie, Judy!!! Love ya.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Organic Food vs. Your Grocery Bill

I was reading my friend Tina's blog at yesterday about the dilemma of buying organic vs. non-organic and balancing your food budget. I'm so glad someone brought this up! I've often agonized in the grocery store over the price of organic vs. non-organic and feel guilty when the price tag wins out. Its just that feeding a family of four, especially a picky family of four, can get so outrageously expensive!

I did some research on the subject and found this article from Eating Well, Organic—or Not? Is Organic Produce Healthier Than Conventional?. It basically said that that are two valid reasons for buying organic which are 1. to increase nutrients and 2. to consume less pesticides.

Lets start with the nutrient part. A study from 2007 showed that there were some nutrients(vitamin C, iron, and zinc) which were found to be 40% higher in organic foods. However, you can also increase your nutrients just by buying locally grown foods. It is common sense, the less a food travels, the less nutrients lost in the travel process. I happen to think that you are still doing great just by simply buying nutrient rich fruits and vegetables, lean meats/dairy, and whole wheat grains(organic or not). It also has a lot to do with how a food is stored and prepared. I've never been a purist when it comes to organic.

On the topic of pesticides... this is what I took from the article. There are trace amounts of residue from pesticides which are absorbed into fruits and vegetables. Some of the residue can be removed by washing the fruit. A large amount of the residue can be removed by taking off the skins or peals(but then you lose out on the fiber- it's a trade off). Most of us do not develop cancer and other fatal illnesses from these trace amounts of residue. However, in kids, the residue can build up more in their little bodies. So, naturally it makes sense to be concerned more about your kids when it comes to organic vs. non-organic.

So if you are independently wealthy and can afford to buy all organic, all the time for your family than great! I recommend it. However if you have to balance health and wealth a bit, then check this out... This organization, The Environmetal Working Group(EWG), pored over 51,000 tests on pesticides in foods from the FDA and USDA and found out that some foods absorb more of these trace contaminants than others. EWG came out with a sort of "dirty dozen" list. These are foods which you should probably try to buy organic most often. The article also listed the produce which is not so concerning. I will just list the "dirty dozen" below. Hope this helps make your organic shopping less perplexing and your wallets a little heavier.

Foods with Highest Amounts of Contaminants from Pesticides:

  1. celery

  2. peaches

  3. strawberries

  4. apples

  5. blueberries

  6. bellpepper

  7. spinach

  8. kale

  9. nectarines

  10. cherries

  11. potatoes

  12. grapes(imported)

Saturday, July 31, 2010

A Cherry Tomato Extravanganza

So last week I found myself with an abundance of cherry tomatoes. We had planted them in our garden. My favorite variety is the Sweet 100's. I bought a container at Marc's(without thinking). Then, my mom brought me 2 large bags of cherry tomatoes. What's a girl to do with all these cherry tomatoes? Make Checca sauce! I found this recipe from one of Giada's cookbooks. These pictures don't even do it justice. It is a great tasting and simple sauce. The best part is that you don't even cook the sauce. Some times the simpler the better, you know? I paired it with some freshly made pasta from Ohio City Pasta. I hate to drown this pasta in an overpowering sauce, so this sauce was perfect.
I'm writing this recipe from memory, so forgive me if the amounts are not exact.
1. Cook your past until it is al dente.
2. In a food processor, combine 1- 12oz container of halved cherry tomatoes, 3 cloves of garlic, 8 basil leaves, 1/4 c. of chopped green onions.

3. Pulse your food processor until the tomatoes are finely chopped but not pureed. Drizzle 3 T. of olive oil into your tomatoes as you pulse
4. Add 1 oz. of fresh Parmesan cheese.

5. Fold your warm pasta into the tomato mix.

6. Slice or chop 4 oz of fresh mozzarella over the top of your pasta dish. (I was missing this part, unfortunately)


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Night at the Ballpark

Last night B and I had a date to go watch the Indians beat the Yankees. B's a bit of a diehard when it comes to the Indians(got to give him credit for his perseverance). I tossed around the idea of finding healthy dining fare at the ballpark, but this could prove to be too much of challenge. So, we decided to make a stop at Johnny Mango on the way to the game.

Now, I know there are many mixed reviews on Johnny Mango. But, I am here to defend it. I think it is, hands down, one of the healthiest restaurants in Cleveland. I love the laid back, unpretentious atmosphere and fresh fruit drinks which are actually juiced as you order. Here are some more reasons I love it!

I love that this menu changes daily and the fresh produce comes from down the street at the Westside Market. The grapefruit margaritas were phenomenal!

I had the steak salad which is more salad than steak. Many cultures around the world understand this healthy concept... more vegetables and less meat. This is key to a heart-healthy, lean diet. The salad had big chucks of grilled vegetables. The flank steak was well-prepared and served in a citrus-peanut dressing.

I think this picture is beautiful! Only you foodies could appreciate garbanzo beans as a work of art. B ordered the tomato, mushroom, and garlic quesadillas(big plate). The big plate always includes the grain of the day, tangy slaw, and the "happy beans". Fresh salsa is served on the side.

This is what was left of B's meal.

Onto the game! Cleveland was looking lovely tonight.

Cleveland wins 4 to 1! Sorry Yanks.