Sunday, July 31, 2011


I hate to do this but...

Maybe I can carry this on later, it really was fun for me.

(But since you are here, check out this awesome photo I took of my
girls yesterday morning. I have been laughing ever since.)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Salmon with pineapple rice

I made this fast, delicious, easy meal in under 30 minutes.
We love salmon and I used brown rice instead of white.
We like brown better here at the Nielson home-healthier too!!

I hope you enjoy-
  • 1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine, or water
  • 2 pounds salmon fillet
  • Lemon wedges, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. with a rack in the center. Make the glaze: In a small bowl, stir brown sugar, olive oil, soy sauce, lemon juice, and white wine until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Cut salmon fillet into 4 equal-size pieces; arrange, skin side down, in a single layer in a baking dish. Pour glaze over the fish, and turn to coat evenly.
  3. Bake until fish is opaque but still bright pink inside, basting every few minutes with glaze from baking dish, 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges.
{Here is how I made the rice:}
  • 2 cups uncooked basmati rice- {or brown}
  • 1 pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges, for garnish


  1. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Stir in the rice, reduce to a simmer. Cook until rice is tender but still firm, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain; rinse with cool water.
  2. Transfer to a bowl, and stir in the pineapple, cilantro, bell pepper, and olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper. Cover, and chill. Serve cooled with lime wedges.

Pineapple Cilantro Rice - Martha Stewart Recipes

Soy-Glazed Salmon - Martha Stewart Recipes

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I am back in the kitchen again.

Alright, alright, so its been about 6 months since my last entries.
I am going to put a little more effort into this blog.

Each Sunday after church, I sit at my dining room table and write down a
list of meals for the week-dinner, mostly.
I decided to share with you what I am making each day- It is going to be super!
I hope you enjoy this, and maybe you can find a few of your favorites here too.
As you know {or may not know}, the Nielson clan don't eat meat.

{We don't take after our ranch-raising stock-that's for sure. Just a little heads up}.
And hey, if you have something to share, send me a e-mail and I will try it out.
I always love new foods to cook


{Beginning tomorrow (23rd)}

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Peanut butter coconut tofu

(It looks gross, but its delish...tofu soaking in coconut peanut butter sauce)

Every night Jane asks if I am making tofu.
I think perhaps I never make it much because you have to make it right or it tastes bad.
That means, It is a dish that you have to focus while making.
At the grocery store with Jane yesterday, we passed the tofu and without asking, she chucked 2 containers into the cart.
So, tonight I made tofu. In honor of Jane.

  • 2 pounds firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, plus more for serving
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 tablespoons of natural creamy peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 small onions, cut into wedges
  • 9 ounces button mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 large red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, cut into 1-inch squares
  • 1 1/4 pounds bok choy, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces, stem and green pieces separated
  • 1/4 pound snow peas, trimmed
  • 5 paper-thin slices fresh ginger
  • Lime wedges, for serving

(I love bok Choy)


  1. Halve tofu block lengthwise; slice each half into 8 rectangles. Arrange on a paper towel-lined baking sheet; top with more paper towels and another baking sheet. Weight with canned goods or a skillet. Refrigerate overnight or at least 20 minutes.
  2. Heat canola oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat. Cook tofu until golden, Add can of coconut milk and peanut butter. Keep on low.
  3. In skillet over high heat, cook onions, red pepper, and mushrooms in 2 tablespoons canola or Olive oil until browned, 5 minutes. Next, add bok choy stems; cook 3 minutes. Add peas and ginger; cook 1 minute.
  4. Add tofu to vegetables and stir until well combined.

(The vegetables steaming in the pot)

Serve over brown or jasmine rice. (we have jasmine tonight) and add soy sauce and fresh lime on top. Yum enjoy.

Check back and I am surprise you and cook/ blog more often.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Soup

Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Soup


4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
1 Large Sweet Onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 cloves of garlic
1 Medium head Cauliflower, cored and cut into 1" piece flowerets
2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
4 cups vegetable broth (canned or homemade)
2 cups half and half
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp white pepper
1/2 to 3/4 cups blue cheese
such as: Gorgonzola, Danish blue cheese, Stilton, or Blue Costello
1/8 tsp kosher salt

Chopped fresh basil
blue cheese crumbles

Can also add a few fresh made croutons or a few crosstini.

In a stockpot or large saucepan, heat butter;add onion and garlic, saute until soft. Add the cauliflower and celery; cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Add broth and bay leaves. Cook on medium heat until cauliflower is soft, about 5-8 minutes. Remove bay leaves. Transfer to food processor or blender in batches. Return to pot. Or use a hand held immersion blender, and puree until smooth.

Mix cornstarch into half and half. Add mixture to pot, with pepper, blue cheese, and salt. Taste, add more salt and pepper, if desired. Bring to simmer on low-medium heat, until thickened. Be careful because of half and half not to burn bottom of pot or overheat and cause curdling. Serve with garnish of choice.

Recipe and photos by Marie at Best Wishes Marie... just a person "trying to make sense of it all."
one letter at a time. Thanks, Marie!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Black Bean Burger Recipe with Cilantro-Lime Mayo

Stephanie, your courage and kindness are inspiring. I am sending you many healing thoughts.

In my early twenties, I worked in a restaurant that, while sporting a fair share of meat and seafood dishes on the menu, was staffed by a pack of vegetarians. Not that they actually travel in packs, but they all seemed to congregate in this restaurant. I was one of the lone meat eaters and felt like a mink-wearing socialite at a PETA meeting. Aside from the typical array of salads, the only vegetarian option on the menu was the veggie burger. My experience, to that point, with veggie burgers was one unfortunate meeting with the dense, chewy frisbees of flavorless protein that were first introduced into the mainstream market. After much coercion by my plant-eating friends, I bit the proverbial bullet and ordered the restaurant’s veggie burgers. Black beans, rice, herbs, and spices had me hooked. While I may not have revoked my meat-lovers’ membership, I can say that I am content to work at least one vegetarian meal onto our menu each week. I’ve come a long way, baby.


In the bowl of a food processor, pulse 4 slices stale or toasted whole wheat sandwich bread to form breadcrumbs. Pour into a bowl and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive or canola oil in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add 1 medium onion, chopped, and saut̩ until soft. Add 2 cloves garlic, minced, 2 tablespoons minced jalapeno pepper (membranes and seeds removed Рunless you like more heat), and 1 teaspoon ground cumin. Saute for additional 2 minutes.

Scrape the mixture into the food processor. Add 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed, 1 ¼ cups cooked brown rice, 2 teaspoon fresh lime juice, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Pulse until the beans are chopped, but not pureed.

Scrape the black bean mixture into a large bowl. Add ½ of the breadcrumbs and ¼ cup chopped cilantro. Using a wooden spoon, stir the mixture until combined.

Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions and form into patties. If the mixture is too moist to form patties, add more breadcrumbs. Place the patties on a baking sheet lined with plastic wrap and cover with additional plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour.

Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in a large skillet (preferably not nonstick, so a good crust can form) set over medium heat. Add the burgers and cook for 4 minutes per side.

Cilantro-Lime Mayo

In a small bowl, combine ½ cup mayonnaise, 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice, ½ teaspoon ground cumin, 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro, and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Stir well.

Lightly toast 4 whole wheat buns. Spread 2 tablespoons cilantro-lime mayo on each bun, and top each with a black bean patty, 2 tablespoons crumbled cotija cheese (found in most supermarkets), 1 slice large tomato, and 3 slices avocado. Serve.

Printable recipe (the link for the printable recipe is

Dara can be found cooking up an array of meat and vegetarian dishes at Cookin’ Canuck.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Sugar and Spice Sweet Potatoes

Oh. My. Goodness.

Say hello to my newest favorite potatoes.

The spices on these sweet potatoes are so awesome and can be used in so many ways to liven up these beautiful, orange delights.

This is what I did:

1. Combine well the following ingredients:

1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon course ground pepper

2. Boil the sweet potatoes until soft, take off the skins, and then cut them into 3rds or 4ths.

3. Smash them with a potato smasher and and then brush them with melted butter.

4. Sprinkle them with 1/2 of the seasoning.

5. Roast them, or fry them up in a pan with butter or olive oil. Turn them over and sprinkle with the remaining seasoning. Make sure you get a yummy, golden crust on the potato. It's the best part! Serve with fresh cilantro on top.

It is over the top delicious!

The seasoning would be great mixed in with just a regular baked sweet potato with butter.

This recipe was adapted by Melody of Cheat Day Cafe from DLYN. Photos and recipe courtesy Melody. Thanks for sharing!