Date Balls

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Dear readers, my family and I are about to move for the second time this year. We are about to embark on an 8 hour car ride with all of our things and three kids in tow.  We need snacks. Healthy ones. Enter: the miraculous date ball. I first started making these when my cravings for Lara bars got too extreme (they’re expensive, guys!). When my third baby came around and I was nursing every second of every night and day, these quick bites saved my life. They’re packed with nuts and fruit, sweet and a bit salty, good fiber and fast energy. I have to hide them from my kids so they don’t eat them all. I’m not sure if that’s a selling point or not.

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Spinach Pie Pizza

Let me tell you guys something about homemade pizza. Not only does pizza hold a special place in my heart, my husband and I have been perfecting ours for about 8 or 9 years now.  We’ve tried a zillion different pizza crusts, sauces, and cheese combinations. I feel like pizza in general deserves a bigger, much more expansive post. A story. A tutorial for every pizza aspect and variation. I could write about pizza all day. But alas, I am but one blogger and you are but one reader. I guess we will do them as they come. Recently, we made our version of a spinach pizza. We basically made a Greek spinach pie filling and put it on a pizza. It was pretty rad.

Spinach Pie Pizza

Ingredients

  • 1 batch of Roberta’s Pizza Dough
  • 2 lbs spinach, rinsed and chopped
  • 1 can artichoke hearts, quartered and drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 olive oil
  • kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 8 oz block mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 4 oz provolone cheese, shredded
  • 2 oz Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tbs unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp garlic salt

Method

  1. Make your pizza dough well ahead of time, even the day before will work, but the afternoon usually works okay too. When it’s ready preheat your oven to 350. If using a pizza stone (see what I’m talking about with homemade pizza variations?! You basically need a pizza stone though, thank me later), make sure it’s heating up with the oven.
  2. Heat about 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Saute the onion, green onions, and garlic until soft. Stir in the spinach and parsley and cook until spinach starts to wilt. Remove from the heat.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the eggs, ricotta, artichokes, and feta. Fold in the cooled spinach mixture. Add a bit of salt and pepper.
  4. In a small bowl, mix all the shredded cheese together.
  5. Once the oven is ready, take out the hot pizza stone and, doing the best you can (it never turns out perfect), stretch the dough into the rough shape of a circle. Pop it in the oven for about 15-20 minutes or until the crust is puffy and lifting off the stone around the edges.
  6. The butter is for the crust -smear it liberally around the outside crust, following it up with the garlic salt. Spread the spinach mixture on the pizza, just like you would do with regular sauce. Don’t be afraid to put a bit extra on it. Top this with the cheese mixture. Back in the oven it goes.
  7. Bake the pie for about 10 more minutes, until the cheese is nice and melted. To get it golden brown on top, I turn on the broiler for a couple of minutes near the end. Allow to cool for a few minutes before cutting up and serving.

Interested in more pizza recipes? Sauce tutorials? Step by step pictures? I’ll probably get to it eventually but you still let me know in the comments below 🙂

Korean Beef

I’m always looking for excuses to break out my slow cooker. Sure, you could always use a pressure cooker, but there’s a special joy in doing some prep work in the morning, forgetting about dinner all freaking day, and then remembering you have a delicious meal ready to go in your kitchen come dinner time. It’s pretty much magic. Magic that you work for, but still magic.

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Zuppa Tuscana

If you’re reading this, it means you have weathered the proverbial storm that was (is) my life and are anxiously awaiting new recipes. Believe me, I have some for you. It’s quite suddenly cold outside and, as everyone knows, that means it’s soup weather inside. Zuppa Tuscana literally means, a soup in the style of Tuscany, a place famous for its rustic and delicious simplicity. Whatever you do, don’t go to Olive Garden. Ever. Just don’t. Make the food you love at home and it will be a hundred times better. I promise.

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Seedy Peanut Butter Date Oatmeal Bars

These bars, you guys. I wish I had a camera to do them justice. They’re my new favorite thing. Peanut butter? I’m there.  Dates? Fantastic! Both together? Its a food dream team I never before considered. Packed with fiber and protein they make a quick breakfast or healthy snack. Salty and sweet, they’re a definite crowd pleaser.

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Simple Farrisotto

Buckle up, kids. It’s stupid easy side dish time. Rice is nice, but it does get a little boring after awhile. Recently I’ve been reaching more for the farro. It’s got a nice nutty flavor and more of a bite to it, like brown rice but better. And better for you! Farro has about 3 grams more of protein and fiber than brown rice. Fun fact: I learned that just now. I was just eating it because it tasted good.

Oh, in case you were wondering, a “farrisotto” is just a bunch of farro cooked like a risotto. I saw the word kicking around the internet and I thought it was pretty clever. Here is my simple (a word which here means easy) take on it.

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