• Simple Skillet Pasta


    • 3 TBSP olive oil
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/2 – 1 tsp. crushed red pepper, to taste
    • 1 tsp. oregano or Italian seasoning
    • 1 (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. sugar, add more to taste
    • 3 1/2 c. water
    • 16 oz. penne
    • 1/4 c. chopped fresh basil
    • Burrata
    • Grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese


    1. Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant but not brown, about 2 minutes; then add the crushed red pepper and oregano or Italian seasoning. Stir in tomatoes, salt, and sugar. Bring to gentle simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
    2. Stir in water and penne, increase heat to medium-high, and bring to vigorous simmer. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook, stirring often, until pasta is nearly al dente, about 8 minutes. Uncover and continue to cook, tossing gently, until pasta is al dente and sauce is thickened, 4 to 7 minutes; if sauce becomes too thick, add extra water as needed. Off heat, stir in basil and season with salt and pepper to taste and top with burrata.
    3. Top individual portions with Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese.

    Simple Skillet Pasta:

  • Shakshuka

    Recipe from Amanda Arafat and Honeycomb Kitchen.


    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 tsp. cumin
    • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
    • 1/2 tsp. chili flakes
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
    • 2 tsp. tomato paste
    • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
    • 4 medium-large tomatoes, diced
    • 4-5 eggs
    • 1/4 block feta, crumbled
    • Parsley, roughly chopped
    • Mint, roughly chopped


    1. In a large skillet heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the diced onion and salt and saute for 2-3 minutes. Next add garlic and saute for 2 more minutes.
    2. Add cumin through tomato paste and saute for 2 minutes; then add the remaining 1 TBSP olive oil.
    3. Next, add the diced bell pepper and saute for 2 minutes, stirring to combine with the garlic and onion; then add the diced tomatoes and raise the heat to medium-high. Stir the tomatoes occasionally until the mix reaches a vigorous simmer, and at that point cover the pan and lower the heat to medium. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching and periodically using a wooden spoon to crush the tomatoes, creating a saucier texture.
    4. After 15 minutes, remove the skillet from the heat and uncover. Using the back of a wooden spoon, smash the tomatoes for 1-2 minutes to improve the texture of the sauce. Return the skillet to medium heat, uncovered, and simmer for 5 minutes.
    5. After simmering, remove the skillet from the heat and create 4-5 divots of the surface of the sauce, making sure they are large enough for an egg to nestle into. Working with one egg at a time, crack the eggs first into a cup and then use the cup to gently drop the eggs into the divots. Cover the skillet, and return to medium heat and cook for 5 minutes, just until the egg whites are set. Remove from heat.
    6. Garnish with feta, parsley, and chopped mint.


  • Kung Pao Spaghetti with Tofu

    Adapted from The Foodie Diaries.


    • 1/2 lb. spaghetti
    • 1 block extra firm Tofu, pressed and cubed
    • 1 TBSP cornstarch
    • Salt to taste
    • 2 TBSP avocado oil
    • Onion, large chunks
    • Red pepper, large chunks
    • 6 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 TBSP ginger paste
    • 1 TBSP sesame seeds
    • 1/2 – 1 tsp. crushed red pepper or gochugaru, to taste
    • 1/2 c. soy sauce
    • 1/4 c. rice wine vinegar
    • 2 TBSP chili paste
    • 3 TBSP brown sugar
    • 1 TBSP cornstarch mixed with 5 TBSP water
    • 1/4 c. crushed peanuts
    • 1 bunch of green onions, sliced


    1. Spaghetti: Cook spaghetti according to package and set aside.
    2. Tofu: Press tofu for at least 30 minutes; then cube the tofu and place in a bowl and toss with 1 TBSP cornstarch and salt to taste.
    3. Veggies: Chop onion, red pepper, and garlic and set aside.
    4. Sauce: Combine soy sauce through brown sugar in a small bowl and set aside.
    5. Prepare Tofu: In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat; then add the tofu and let the tofu crisp for a few minutes, undisturbed; then flip the tofu so it gets all nice and crispy and golden. Once crisp and golden, remove tofu to a paper towel lined cutting board and set aside.
    6. Prepare Kung Pao Spaghetti: In the same skillet used for the tofu, add additional oil, if needed, over medium low heat; then add the onion and red peppers and saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger paste, sesame seeds, and crushed red pepper and saute for 1 minute until the garlic is fragrant; then add the sauce and cornstarch mixed with water and let it simmer to thicken.
    7. Remove from heat and add the spaghetti and toss to coat; then add the tofu and toss. Serve topped with crushed peanuts and green onions.

    Kung Pao Spaghetti with Tofu:

  • Orzo Puttanesca

    Recipe from Chef Tom Walton.


    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/2 tsp. chili flakes
    • 1/2 tsp. oregano
    • Salt, to taste
    • 10 oz. grape/cherry tomatoes
    • 2 TBSP capers in brine
    • 1/3 c. Kalamata olives, sliced
    • 1 c. dried orzo
    • 1 14 oz. can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
    • 2 1/4 c. chicken broth
    • 6 oz. roasted red peppers, sliced
    • 1/2 c. parsley, chopped
    • 3/4 c. crumbled feta


    1. Heat a large skillet with a lid over medium heat, then add the olive oil, onion, garlic, chili flakes, oregano, and salt and cook stirring for 3 minutes to soften the onion; then add the tomatoes, capers, olives, orzo, and garbanzo beans and cook stirring for 2 more minutes.
    2. Add the chicken broth, stir, and bring to a simmer; then turn the heat down to low and cook, stirring, often for 3-4 minutes.
    3. After 3-4 minutes, add the red peppers and place the lid on the skillet and simmer for 15 minutes or until creamy and the orzo has soaked up all the liquid and softened.
    4. Top with parsley and feta.

    Orzo Puttanesca:

  • Eggplant and Tomato Pasta Sauce

    Recipe adapted from The Genetic Chef.


    • 1/2 c. olive oil
    • 1 eggplant about 1 – 1 ½ lbs. unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
    • 4-6 garlic cloves, minced
    • Crushed red pepper, optional to taste
    • 2 lbs. plum tomatoes chopped about 8-10 (or 28 oz. crushed tomatoes or whole tomatoes)
    • 2 tsp. dried oregano
    • Salt, to taste
    • Pepper, to taste
    • Sugar, to taste
    • Fresh basil, chiffonade
    • Serve over pasta with parmesan cheese, Kalamata olives, capers, and/or burrata


    1. In a large skillet, over medium high heat, heat the olive oil and add the eggplant. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper, and toss to coat.
    2. Sauté until the eggplant gets a little color and softens just a bit. This should take at least 5 minutes. Give them a stir here and there, then cover and let them stew for about 5 minutes.
    3. Uncover and stir. You’ll notice the eggplant released some of the oil it had absorbed. Add the garlic (and crushed red pepper if using) and stir until fragrant. Then add the tomatoes, oregano, and some salt and pepper to your taste.
    4. Stir and let cook uncovered for about 5 minutes or so to allow the tomatoes to break down a bit. The tomatoes should have “melted” and created a sauce.
    5. Taste and adjust seasoning and add fresh basil.
    6. Serve sauce over pasta with parmesan cheese, Kalamata olives, capers, and/or burrata.

    Eggplant and Tomato Pasta Sauce:

  • Balsamic Apple Farro Salad – Harvest Salad

    Salad Ingredients:

    • Salad greens
    • Farro, cooked according to package
    • Red onion, sliced
    • Apple, sliced
    • Dried cranberries
    • Pecans, toasted
    • Feta cheese

    Creamy Balsamic Dressing Ingredients:

    • 3/4 c. mayo
    • 4 TBSP balsamic vinegar
    • 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
    • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1 1/2 TBSP brown sugar
    • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • Water to thin, if necessary


    1. Salad: Add salad ingredients to large serving bowl. Top with dressing.
    2. Dressing: Add ingredients to a bowl and whisk together. Taste and adjust as needed. If too thick, add water to thin. Makes enough for 1-2 large salads or 4-6 smaller salads. I usually double.

    Balsamic Apple Farro Salad:

  • Moroccan Quinoa and Chickpea Salad

    Recipe adapted from Two Spoons.



    • 2/3 c. quinoa
    • 1 1/3 c. water
    • 1/2 c. almonds chopped and toasted
    • 1 shallot small, diced
    • 2 carrots, shaved into ribbons
    • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    • 3 c. arugula 
    • 1/2 c. mint tightly packed and chopped
    • 8 or more dried apricots, chopped

    Moroccan Salad Dressing:

    • 1/4 c. + 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 2 TBSP lemon juice
    • 2 TBSP orange juice
    • 1 TBSP honey, plus more to taste
    • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp. ginger
    • 1/2 tsp. cumin
    • 1/2 tsp. coriander
    • 1/4 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
    • Pinch chili flakes


    1. Quinoa: In a saucepan combine quinoa and water. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to simmer and cook quinoa for 12-15 minutes. Fluff with a spoon and cover with tea towel. Let cool.
    2. Toasted Almonds: Toast almonds in a skillet on medium heat, stirring often until fragrant and golden browned (approx. 8-10 mins). Remove from heat.
    3. Moroccan Salad Dressing: Prepare dressing in a small bowl by whisking together oil, lemon juice, orange juice, honey, cinnamon, ginger, cumin, coriander, salt, and red pepper flakes.
    4. Assemble Salad: In a large mixing bowl combine quinoa, diced shallots, carrots, chickpeas, arugula, chopped mint, dried apricots, and toasted almonds. Add the dressing and toss to combine.

    Moroccan Quinoa and Chickpea Salad:

  • Indian Shakshuka

    Adapted from Ministry of Curry.


    • 1 TBSP oil
    • 1 medium onion, finely diced
    • 3 garlic cloves, grated
    • 1 TBSP ginger paste
    • 6 TBSP tomato paste
    • 3/4 c. water
    • 3/4 c. heavy cream
    • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
    • 1/8 tsp. cayenne
    • 1/4 tsp. ground turmeric
    • 1/2 tsp. garam masala
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 4-6 eggs
    • 2 TBSP cilantro, chopped for garnish
    • Serve over rice or with naan


    1. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.
    2. Add the onions and cook for 5 to 8 minutes until translucent and lightly browned. Covering the pan will help speed up cooking and soften the onions with the steam.
    3. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 30 seconds until aromatic.
    4. Stir in the tomato paste and water and mix well to combine. Cook on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes until the sauce starts to bubble.
    5. Lower the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Cook for additional 4 to 5 minutes or until the sauce is heated through.
    6. Add smoked paprika, cayenne, turmeric, garam masala, and salt and mix until well combined.
    7. Reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer for 2 minutes or so.
    8. Make 4-6 wells in the sauce using a spatula for the eggs.
    9. Crack an egg into a separate bowl then place in the well. Repeat with the remaining 5 eggs.
    10. Cover the skillet and allow the eggs to simmer in the sauce for 5 minutes until the whites and cooked and opaque but the yolks are still runny.
    11. Remove the skillet from the heat and garnish with cilantro and serve over rice or with naan.

    Indian Shakshuka:

  • Middle Eastern Rice (Mejadra)

    Recipe adapted from Recipe Tin Eats.


    • 3-4 onions, thinly sliced
    • 1/4 c. olive oil + 2 TBSP olive oil
    • Salt, to taste
    • 2 tsp. cumin seeds (or 1 tsp. ground cumin)
    • 1 1/2 TBSP coriander seeds (or 1 1/2 tsp. ground coriander)
    • 1 c. basmati or long grain rice, uncooked
    • 1 1/2 c. water 
    • 14 oz. canned brown lentils, drained
    • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
    • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
    • 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • Black pepper
    • Serve with a Mediterranean salad: cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, feta cheese, olives, etc. with Garlic Expressions dressing


    1. Caramelize Onions: Heat up to 1/4 c. of olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat; then add the onions and saute until caramelized. Add more olive oil, if necessary. Once caramelized, season with salt, to taste. Remove onions from saute pan.
    2. Rice: In the saucepan over medium heat, add the 2 TBSP of olive oil, cumin seeds, and coriander and cook for a couple of minutes until the spices are fragrant; then add the rice and stir to coat with the oil and spices; then add the water and lentils.
    3. When it comes to boil, add the turmeric, cinnamon, sugar, salt, and pepper; and then turn the heat down to medium-low, cover with lid and let cook for 10 to 12 minutes, or until all the liquid has mostly been absorbed.
    4. Remove from heat and let it rest for 10 minutes – during this time, any residual liquid will absorb.
    5. Fluff rice with a fork and adjust the seasoning with more salt if you wish. Add the caramelized onions and toss to combine.

    Middle Eastern Rice (Mejadra):

  • Curry Udon Noodles

    Recipe adapted from the Foodie Diaries.


    • 16 oz. super firm tofu, pressed
    • Udon noodles (about 16 oz. of prepared heat and serve, such as Ka-Me)
    • 1-2 TBSP oil
    • 1 TBSP ginger paste
    • 2-4 TBSP favorite curry paste
    • 2-4 tsp. sugar
    • 1 onion, sliced thick
    • 1 c. red bell peppers, sliced thick
    • 1 c. green beans, 1 inch pieces
    • 1 can of coconut milk
    • 3/4 can of water
    • Basil, chiffonade


    1. Tofu: Prepare tofu as desired. Option: freeze, thaw, press, cube, sprinkle with 1 TBSP cornstarch and 1 TBSP of oil, and then saute in pan before making sauce (or you can bake at 450F until crispy).
    2. Udon Noodles: Prepare according to package.
    3. Veggies: Heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat; then add the onions, bell peppers, and green beans and saute until just crisp; then remove from the pan.
    4. Curry: Add a bit more oil to the saute pan and then add the ginger paste and curry paste and saute until fragrant; then stir in the sugar. Then add the coconut milk; refill the can 3/4 of the way with water and add the water to the pan and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Then add the Udon noodles, veggies, and tofu, and toss to combine. Top with basil.

    Curry Udon Noodles: