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Our recipe section will feature new recipes each week, using the freshest produce and vegetables available in the Southeast!

Chunky Eggplant and Sausage Pasta Sauce

It rivals any Sunday sauce you can throw at it and is my new favorite sauce.

I know I say that all the time but it’s the truth.

The thing is – I love eggplant but I never know what to do with it other than make eggplant parmesan.That gets old fast.

Now I’m going to change things up and tuck it intoallmy sauces.

I’m kind of obsessed.

I was afraid the eggplant would turn mushy and watery but it stayed firm yet soft.

I cubed it and cooked it over medium heat with the peppers, onion, and garlic without adding any salt because it draws the water out. I cooked them until they were still firm but soft around the edges because they’re going to cook further in the sauce. I did the opposite of what I usually do and didn’t season them with salt and pepper until the end.

The veggies are removed so the sausage can cook – sweet or hot – whatever you prefer – I happen to really like hot sausage for this – eggplant loves that pop of spice.

A can of crushed tomatoes is stirred in along with Italian seasoning and simmered for a half an hour or so then finished with a bunch of fresh parsley to brighten things up.

Spoon over your favorite pasta and dollop with ricotta or mascarpone cheese, my second favorite part of the recipe, after the eggplant.

For a vegetarian version leave out the sausage and double the eggplant – add a couple pinches or more of red pepper flakes too.

This makes eggplant so easy to love!!!!!!

Really.

Miso Glazed Salmon

Yields: 4 Servings

Roasted Chipotle Potatoes

Baby red potatoes coated in a spicy chipotle sauce and roasted to perfection. They have a little crunch to their outsides with creamy, buttery middles touched by the smoky heat of chipotle peppers.

Chipotle peppers are nothing more than smoked jalapenos. They’re a lot hotter than fresh jalapenos and have a smokiness to them that I love.

You can buy them canned in adobo sauce – look for them in the Mexican/Spanish section of your supermarket. If you’ve never had them before please don’t use 2 cans of them in this recipe. One of my readers did that awhile back and her dish was so hot it was inedible. I feel bad when you make my recipes and they don’t turn out right!

You only need to use 2 of the peppers out of the can. The rest you can freeze either in ice cube trays or divide them up into little freezer bags so you can take them out as needed. I pop the bags into a small bowl of hot water to thaw them quickly.

Anywho. . . the chipotle peppers are smashed and whisked with some of the adobo sauce, olive oil and melted butter then half of it is poured over the potatoes and tossed.

They’re roasted for 20 minutes and then the hot potatoes are tossed again with the rest of the sauce and left to sit for a couple of minutes to help it soak in.

They’re baked again until fork-tender and as crispy and golden on the outside as you like them. I like them well roasted but not burnt so I always let mine go a few extra minutes while keeping a close eye on them.

These are great alongside so many things! Meatloaf, burgers or chicken; they’ll make taco night special along with anything else that has a Tex-Mex vibe to it.

Taco Stuffed Peppers

Spice up taco night, everyone’s favorite, with these baked bell peppers!

Taco meat seasoned with the usual spices plus Ro-tel diced tomatoes and green chiles are stuffed into peppers with rice and cheddar cheese for a zesty, delicious twist on tacos.

They’re ridiculously easy to make even on a busy weeknight plus they freeze well.

To begin the tops of the peppers are sliced off and the seeds removed. The peppers go into the oven to get a head start on cooking giving you just enough time to make the filling.

Ground beef is cooked with a packet of taco seasoning (or my homemade mix), the Ro-tel and minute rice or already cooked rice (a great way to use leftover Chinese takeout!).

A generous amount of sharp cheddar cheese is mixed in then the peppers are stuffed and baked until soft with a little bit of firmness left to them.

Serve on a bed of lettuce with a dollop of sour cream and taco night is reinvented.

Mozzarella & Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Chicken

Chicken cutlets rolled up with roasted red peppers and mozzarella cheese stuffed inside and pesto sauce slathered on top.

All my favorite things.

Chicken cutlets are skinny chicken breasts – if you can’t find them in your market you can pound out regular chicken breasts with a meat tenderizer. You want them to be very thin – less than an inch thick.

I use fire-roasted red peppers in the jar – you can find them near the olives. They’re huge on flavor with a pop of vinegar that is perfect with the mild-mannered mozzarella.

I also use pesto sauce in the jar but you can make it homemade if you prefer. Maybe I’m being lazy but lately, I’m all for convenience. . .

And quick, easy and delicious meals being I’m still unpacking and trying to get organized from my move. Six weeks later and I still have boxes. Insert giant sigh here.

I just found a box of spices I’ve been missing dearly every time I cook. . . Note to self: never split up your spices, stick them all in one box so you can season your food properly from the get-go.

Those are my words of wisdom for today.

Along with this: make these for an easy weeknight dinner when you’re short on time but want something extra special.

And super tasty.

Zucchini Mushroom Alfredo

Main Entrees, Noodles, Vegetables

Yields: 4 Servings

Roasted Lemon Feta Potatoes

Potatoes get a bright, sunny lift from lemons and feta cheese.

Russet potatoes are tossed in an olive oil dressing that has both lemon zest and juice, mustard, Parmesan cheese, dried thyme and oregano then baked until crusty and browned.

To finish, they’re tossed with more lemon juice and crumbled feta cheese.

All together they make a perfect trio.

Do you want to know my secrets for getting the potatoes so dark and crusty? Set them on a well greased non-stick baking sheet (I use Wilton) so they’re not crowded and don’t move them until the bottoms are dark brown which is somewhere around the 20-minute mark.

Maybe even a little longer.

Then toss them around so some of the other sides can get a nice color to them too. If you don’t grease the pan well you won’t be able to toss them properly and they’ll tear leaving all that lovely potato crust, the best part, stuck to the bottom of the pan. I cry.

Giving the potatoes a good soak in ice water beforehand helps too, even if you only have ten minutes to spare.

The bite of the lemon and the saltiness of the feta with the crusty, creamy potatoes is beyond delicious.

They’ll be the highlight of any and all meals, the center of attention.

Superstars.

Quick Tomato Herb Hummus

Yields: 4 Servings

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