Olive Parmesan Cheese Straws

Today I’m here to save you all from having to brainstorm a last minute Thanksgiving contribution for your celebrations!  This is an easy as pie, 4 ingredient recipe that can be used as an appetizer or to supplement the dinner’s bread baskets.

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Crockpot Short Rib Ragu over Pappardelle

There’s something about short ribs that just encompasses the true meaning of comfort food. I’ve cooked it quite a few different ways (take a look at this BTP recipe from last winter for another inspirational idea) and yet it always transforms the dish into a stick to your ribs, hearty dinner.  It could be the way that the meat becomes melt in your mouth tender when slow cooked. It could also be that the beef provides another dimension of flavor in any sauce you cook it in. It could also be that it tends to be best served over scrumptious starchy sides like polenta, potatoes and pasta. But whatever the reason may be I have found that short ribs are quickly becoming my crowd pleaser weekend meal for all occasions.

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Crispy Eggplant, Polenta and Caprese Stacks with Mom’s Garden Tomato Bolognese

Today is round two of the Italian Garden series recipes inspired by my Mom’s home cooking. If you didn’t read last week’s recipe post for Mom’s Garden Tomato Bolognese, head there first: http://www.behindtheplates.com/moms-garden-tomato-bolognese-recipe/#more-1571 (You’ll need this recipe to complete this meal!)

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Mom’s Garden Tomato Bolognese Recipe

Visiting my parents’ house whenever there is a meal involved always gets me excited. My parents’ share an almost equal level of excitement around their passion for food and cooking as I do. So it goes without saying that there is rarely a bad or boring meal that it is put on the table. Not only do I get to take advantage of a tasty dish but I also get to just sit back, relax and enjoy the meal. It’s definitely a win-win for me! During one of my most recent visits my parents had come up with a recipe to use up the overflowing garden vegetables from the backyard. It was one of the best homemade meals I had in a while. I have had a lack of recipe inspiration the past few weeks. So when I couldn’t stop craving this dish for a whole week after devouring it, I decided to replicate and post about it in my parent’s honor.

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Balsamic Pickled Vegetables Recipe

I love a challenge. Really, anything competitive such as a casual bet, a workout challenge, or trying to replicate a dish (hint hint), really gets my gears going. A few months back I had a work dinner at a local Italian restaurant, Il Cappriccio in Whippany, NJ.  While the dinner was great, what really stood out was the simple bowl of pickled vegetables that they put out as a little amuse bouche with their bread baskets. It was tangy, crispy, sweet and sour. Our table polished off the bowl in about 2 minutes flat. When we politely asked for seconds, I squeaked out a question to the waiter. “What’s the recipe?” While he wouldn’t give me a steadfast reply; he did tell me the secret was balsamic and lemon juice.  Ok, so they wouldn’t tell me how to make it…challenge accepted!

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Sautéed Baby Bell Peppers and Onions Recipe

Every week the brightly colored bags of baby bell peppers call my name while at the grocery store but, I so rarely would actually purchase for fear of waste. My assumption was that a 2 lb bag would be too much for my party of 2 household.  Of course after thinking about it more I realized that I could probably incorporate them into so many different recipes that it would be a money saving purchase that could be spread across meals. I personally accepted my own challenge to make a large batch and use throughout a week of meals.

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Tuscan Sausage and Kale Ragu with Butternut Squash Fettuccine Recipe

It ‘s time to get “Inspiralized”! Tuttorosso Tomatoes is currently hosting a Spring time contest and promotion. They have paired up with the Inspiralized team to bring us all some light Italian-inspired recipes. I was happy to hop on board to share one of these dishes with all of you.

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Chunky Curried Lentil Soup Recipe

As much as I hate to admit it, it is still cold out and therefore, still soup season. Until those winter jackets are firmly packed into the back of our coat closets I won’t believe spring is on its way! And while I can’t wait for all those light, crispy, and bright spring meals; I am still enjoying the savory comfort of warm winter dishes.

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Shrimp Scampi Wontons with Lemon Parlsey Pistou Recipe

I’m so excited to bring all of you today’s recipe. A few months ago my mother called to tell me she saw a recipe blogger challenge in the newspaper and she thought I should enter. It was sponsored by Healthy Solutions Spice Blends. After reading up on this company,founded by Shelly Wolcott, I found that its purpose was to bring healthy and affordable spice blends to households. Her spices are free of fillers and preservatives, most have no salt or sugar added, and there is no MSG in any of the blends. After reading about this small woman owned company and her initiative I knew I would love to help support its mission (And of course try to win the contest along the way!).

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REDPACK© Carnivale Inspired Antipasto Salad Recipe and GIVEAWAY

For today’s recipe I have paired up with REDPACK© tomatoes to honor the traditional Italian winter festival, Carnevale. To celebrate I have brought you an inspired dish along with a chance at a winning a REDPACK© tomato giftpack!

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