This makes a PERFECT side dish and is also perfect for any BBQ, picnic, church social or potluck.


2 pounds green beans, trimmed to 1 1/2 inch lengths
1 + 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 shallot, minced
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (optional)
1 teaspoon grated zest juice of 1 LARGE lemon
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar

1 LARGE garlic clove, minced
8 regular radishes, thinly sliced (or 1 LARGE watermelon radish, halved & sliced)
1/4 cup avocado oil
3 tablespoons FRESH minced dill or thyme
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Bring 4 quarts of water and 1 tablespoon of salt to a boil.
  • Add ice and COLD water halfway to a LARGE mixing bowl.
  • Add green beans to boiling water, cooking 5-6 minutes to tender crisp.
  • Drain immediately and place beans in water bath to cool.
  • Drain completely and spin dry or use a towel to dry.
  • Whisk together the lemon juice, lemon zest, mustard and shallot until well blended.
  • SLOWLY whisk in oil until incorporated.
  • Toss radishes, green beans and dill or thyme together with vinaigrette.
  • Chill 2 hours before serving.
  • Toss with almonds and season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper just before serving.


12 ounces dried white beans
1 medium onion, LARGE diced
5-6 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1 sprig thyme
1 calabrian chile
2 cups baby spinach

  • Rinse the beans.
  • Add beans to a large pot and cover with 2 inches of water.
  • Add onions, garlic, thyme and chile.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer on medium-low.
  • Simmer 50-60 minutes until beans are tender.
  • Stir in spinach and season to taste.

1/2 cup avocado oil
1 tablespoon FRESH minced thyme leaves
4 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon fennel seeds

  • Heat oil in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat.
  • Add thyme, garlic, red pepper flakes and fennel seeds.
  • Cook until the garlic is golden and herbs are fragrant.
  • Set aside.


  • Puree about 2 cups of the bean mixture in a blender until smooth.
  • Stir puree back into the beans.
  • Transfer the beans to serving bowl.
  • Pour spicy herb oil over top and serve with crusty bread.



2 pounds cauliflower florets, cut into bite sized pieces
8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup FULL fat sour cream
1 1/2 cups FINELY shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 1/2 cups FINELY shredded Monterey Jack cheese
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 – 1 teaspoon SLAP YO MAMA seasoning(depending on your level of heat)
4-6 slices crispy cooked bacon, coarsely chopped
1 bunch FRESH chopped green onions, chives or parsley (save some for garnish)
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper to taste

  • Steam the cauliflower florets 10 minutes until fork tender.
  • Drain WELL.
  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl combine the cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese, Monterey Jack, garlic powder, onion powder and slap your mama seasoning until well blended. Mix until creamy and smooth.
  • GENTLY fold in cauliflower, 1/2 of the bacon and green onions.
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Spoon into a casserole dish and top with the remaining bacon.
  • Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is completely melted.
  • Top with remaining chives and serve.

NOTE: This Loaded Cauliflower Casserole also makes a wonderfully filling full meal by adding 2 cups rotisserie chicken pieces, 1 pound of browned ground beef or pork.


I scoured the internet for a good recipe for authentic British Mushy Peas. Eventually I combined several recipes to make my favorite version with the perfect flavor and texture. You can find a version of authentic British mushy peas in your favorite English pub or eatery.


9 ounces dried marrowfat peas
2-3 cups boiling water
2 teaspoons baking soda
3 cups homemade chicken bone broth OR 1 1/2 cups broth + 1 1/2 cups water
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1-2 tablespoons butter, to taste

  • Dissolve the baking soda in boiling water.
  • Place the dried marrowfat peas in a bowl and pour the boiling water over them so they’re covered by at least 3 inches of water.  Give the peas a stir then leave them to soak for at least 12 hours.
  • Drain and rinse the peas and place them in a pot with broth.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil, cover, reduce the heat to medium-low.
  • Simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the desired consistency is reached.
  • Once the peas have fully broken down add the salt and pepper. 
Continue to simmer with the lid off until it thickens to your liking. (see notes)If the peas are too thick, add a little water.
  • Adjust seasoning to taste adding more if needed.
 Once the peas are done they will start to thicken the longer they sit.
  • Top with butter pat if desired.


  • They can be reheated by adding a bit of water, but are really best the first day.
  • Simmer time will depend on the particular crop and the age of the peas.
  • Marrowfat peas are larger, have a higher starch content and the best flavor and texture than other dried peas and are best for traditional mushy peas.


8 thick-cut slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1 LARGE bunch green onions, sliced thin
1 red bell pepper, chopped
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste (more pepper than salt since the bacon is salty)
4 garlic cloves, minced (or 1 1/2 tablespoon Garden Gourmet chunky garlic paste
2 cups KINDERS or Guy Fieri Carolina Mop BBQ sauce or
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons QUALITY champagne vinegar
Two 15.5-ounce cans navy beans, rinsed and drained
Sliced scallions, for finishing

  • Leave the bacon grease in the pan and add the onion and bell pepper.
  • Season with a pinch of salt, cooking and stirring occasionally for 4-5 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften.
  • Add the garlic sautéing 30 seconds or so until fragrant.
  • Add the BBQ sauce, molasses, vinegar and half of the bacon.
  • Season again with another pinch of salt.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil over medium heat and reduce to a simmer.
  • Stir in the beans, simmering until thickened, about 15 minutes.
  • Season to taste.
  • Sprinkle with the remaining bacon and scallions.
  • Serve immediately.


HARISSA CARROTS & ONIONS adapted from Molly Yeh

2 pounds medium rainbow carrots, halved lengthwise
2 LARGE shallots, cut lengthwise into wedges
1/4 cup avocado oil for drizzling 
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 +/- tablespoon Harissa paste (recipe below)
2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
Zest of 1 LARGE lemon 

  • Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. (see notes)
  • Put the carrots and onions in a large bowl and drizzle with avocado oil.
  • Sprinkle with salt and toss to coat.
  • Place the carrots on the grill and cook, flipping halfway through, until fork-tender, 10 to 12 minutes. 
  • Meanwhile, combine the avocado oil, harissa paste, garlic, lemon juice and black pepper in a small bowl.
  • When the carrots are almost cooked, brush with the harissa glaze.
  • Remove from the grill and transfer to a serving plate, then drizzle with additional harissa glaze.
  • Serve and enjoy!


  • You can alternatively roast the carrots in the oven by preheating the oven to 425° and lining a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  • Once the carrots and onions are salted, spread on a sheet pan and roast, tossing occasionally, until a fork pokes easily into the thickest part of the carrot; begin checking for doneness at 20 minutes for skinny carrots but for big thick carrots it could take up to 45 minutes.
  • Brush the carrots with the harissa glaze during the last 10 minutes of cooking. You can then continue to the next step in the same manner as in the grilling recipe.
  • If using the oven you can also slice the carrots.

Use this North African spice blend to add heat to dressings, sauces, soups, and more!

1 tablespoon +/- Harissa spice blend, depending on desired spiciness
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon QUALITY tomato paste
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup avocado oil

  • Whisk spice blend into lemon juice and vinegar until you’ve achieved a paste.
  • Whisk in the tomato paste.
  • Stir in garlic.
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Adjust flavor as needed, adding more lemon juice or vinegar for acidity, paprika for smokiness, tomato paste for depth of flavor, or salt to taste.
  • Add paste to a jar. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. 


Quick pickling is just that, QUICK! It eliminates the need for a long canning process. All you do is pour a simple brine over the cooked beets and let them chill in the refrigerator. They are perfect for salads, but just as good straight from the jar! They’ll keep 6 weeks in the refrigerator.

You can prepare the beets any way you prefer before the pickling, but I prefer boiling them on the stove top. That way while they’re cooling I also use the same pan to make the brine pickling liquid while they cool.

3 – 3 1/2 pounds red or golden beets

QUICK PICKLED BEETS yields 2 quarts
Sliced or chopped cooked beets
3 cups water
1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

  • Slice or chop the prepared beets to your desired size – I usually chop into 1″ cubes.
  • Add them to a mason jar and set them aside while you make the brine.
  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the water, vinegar, sugar, salt, allspice and peppercorns.
  • Bring mixture to a boil and cook until sugar and salt are dissolved.
  • Pour the brine (straining out the peppercorns if desired) over the beets, making sure to cover them completely.
  • Let cool to room temperature.
  • Seal the jar/container and place it in the fridge to chill. You will be able to taste the pickling in a very short time, but beets are best after 24-48 hours.


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Trim and scrub the beets, removing any greens.
  • Add the beets to the boiling water and cook for 30 minutes, or until completely tender. A paring knife should slide in and out of the beets easily.
  • Beets vary greatly in size and because they are a very dense root vegetable, size will definitely determine how long you need to cook them.
  • Transfer the beets to a bowl of ice water.
  • Peel away the skins with your fingers which will be super simple if you’ve cooked and cooled them perfect.
  • Cut or slice as desired.


  • Trim and scrub the beets, removing any greens.
  • Drizzle with avocado oil (has avocado oil neutral flavor) and wrap in foil.
  • Bake on a baking sheet at 400° for 45 minutes, or until completely tender.
  • Allow to sit for 10 minutes or so, then peel away the skin and cut or slice as desired.


1/2 package Pillsbury pie crust or homemade
1 tablespoon avocado oil
2 tablespoons tomato or basil pesto
3/4 cup shredded Havarti cheese
1-2 LARGE heirloom tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch slices
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon FRESH thyme leaves
1-2 green onions, sliced thin

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Roll out pie dough and shape into baking sheet dimensions creating an edge.
  • Brush with oil and pesto of choice.
  • Sprinkle 2/3 of the cheese onto the crust.
  • Arrange tomato slices over the cheese.
  • Season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Top with remaining cheese.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown and crispy.
  • Cool on wire rack for 5 minutes.
  • Garnish and serve.



2 pounds thin baby asparagus, cut about 4 inches from the top
1/2 pound diced prosciutto
6 slices of smoked Gouda cheese
2 Sheets Puff Pastry Dough or pie crust
1 LARGE egg
2 tablespoons chopped FRESH Thyme
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Roll out dough.
  • Cut dough into 6 rectangles and brush with egg wash.
  • Cut 5-7 asparagus in half and lay evenly in the center of each pastry dough rectangle. Leave about a 1/4 inch of dough on each side.
  • Fold 2 slices of prosciutto into a fan and place on top of the asparagus.
  • Place 1 slice of smoked Gouda on top of the the asparagus and prosciutto.
  • Flip the bottom of pastry dough to cover the bottom half of the asparagus, and to create a pocket.
  • Pinch the edges.
  • Brush the whole pocket with egg wash and sprinkle with pepper.
  • Bake at 375° for 20 minutes or until golden brown.



5 LARGE carrots, sliced into rustic chunks
1 tablespoon butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons red chile flakes
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons orange marmalade
scant cup homemade chicken broth

  • Whisk together chicken broth, vinegar, marmalade, chile flakes, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Add carrots, sautéing 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add broth mixture, cover and simmer 10-15 minutes until softened and well coated.


4 LARGE carrots, sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup homemade chicken stock

  • Blanch carrots in boiling water for 8-10 minutes until JUST tender. Drain.
  • Bring chicken stock to a boil.
  • Whisk sugar and cornstarch into vinegar.
  • Add vinegar mixture to the chicken stock, seasoning to taste and cooking until thickened.
  • Add butter and pour over hot carrots.
  • Toss and serve immediately.


12 cups broccoli florets
1 1/2 cups shredded Fontina or baby swiss cheese
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/2 pound country ham, FINELY diced
1 tablespoon Frank’s hot sauce
1 jar Alfredo sauce or preferably homemade
2-3 cups al dent noodles or pasta, prepare al dente
1 tablespoon FRESH chopped tarragon
1/2 cup FRENCH’S crispy onion rings

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Coat 2 quart baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Add broccoli florets 1-2 minutes until starting to soften.
  • Drain broccoli and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl toss fold together the ham pieces, hot sauce, alfredo sauce, tarragon, 1/2 cup of cheese and broccoli.
  • Arrange ham mixture in baking dish.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes until hot and bubbly.
  • Sprinkle remaining cheese and the crispy onion rings over top, baking 5-7 minutes more until cheese is melted and crispy.
  • Let stand 5 minutes before serving.