Harissa Chicken and Rice with Lemons and Dates

This recipe today is a full-on flavor factory! Harissa Chicken and Rice with Lemon and Dates! It’s spicy, a little sweet and tangy, and super comforting. My favorite part? The rice cooked in the chicken’s salty, hot pepper-flavored juices. Chicken Fat Rice? Juicy Chicken Rice? There’s a good term for it in there somewhere, I just don’t know what it is. Just trust me, it’s the best. 

Harissa Chicken and Rice with Lemons and Dates
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Beet and Bacon Risotto

You guys… this Beet and Bacon Risotto…! It’s too good to be allowed. What’s not to love about risotto already, with all its creamy, carby goodness? But this one is all aswirl with shredded beets and crispy bacon, offering that perfect salty/sweet combo, rounded out with gobs of grated parm and a smidge (more than a smidge) of bacon fat. Are you ready? Let’s go⬇️

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Salami and Hot Pepper Sicilian Pizza

Most favorite thing about quarantine: this Salami and Hot Pepper Sicilian Pizza! Least favorite thing about quarantine: not being able to physically share it with anyone outside my own home. I NEED you guys to make this – it’s so delicious and a thick-crust, cheese-loaded, spicy moment is guaranteed to make your life better.

Salami and Hot Pepper Sicilian Pizza with a slice being taken out on a spatula
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Blackened Chicken Quesadillas

Always on a quest for something easy, cheesy, and delicious, I am very happy to have landed on the combo of blackened chicken and buttery, cheese/onion/pepper-stuffed tortillas. These Blackened Chicken Quesadillas are spicy, smoky, oozy, and simple as all get out. The next time you have chicken in the fridge and lots of laziness in your bones, please give these a shot.

Blackened Chicken Quesadillas stacked on a plate
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Charred Corn Salad

This salad has me feeling all shorts and flip-flops and outdoor dining vibes. And, super grateful spring is here. Charred Corn Salad is fresh and full of crispy-crunchy romain lettuce, raw chopped green beans, bright scallions, spicy jalapeño, creamy avocado, and beautiful shards of golden yellow corn, that’s been charred almost to death, making it toasty, juicy, and super sweet.

Chopped romain lettuce, charred corn on the cob, sliced jalapeño, sliced green beans, sliced green onions, and an avocado on a cutting board
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Summer Squash Spaghetti

Farmer’s Markets are back ☀️ Oh man, is it nice to have fresh, local vegetables again! This Summer Squash Spaghetti is the bright, fork-twirling, crispy-mushroom-topped stuff we need to officially say buh-bye to winter. It’s light and lemony, with lots of bite from crushed red pepper and good yum factor from creamy goat cheese.

Summer Squash Spaghetti with crispy mushrooms in a skillet
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Scallion Flatbread

Judging by the flour shelves at the grocery store, and my instagram feed, quarantine is bringing out the baker in all of us! I am into this but, on certain nights, my interest in big cooking projects has its limits. Luckily, no-yeast, super easy Scallion Flatbread exists!

In the blur of meals I’ve cooked over these past several #stayhome weeks, I cannot remember why I needed to make this bread. It was definitely to pair with something Middle Eastern, with lots of sauce and rice… that is *always* the type of meal that makes me and Joey crave some pillowy, blistered flatbread. I recall only having about an hour before the rest of dinner was ready and before hunger was going to turn me into a monster. Oh, and my oven was full. So, these babies came together in a cast iron skillet in under an hour. Amazing – I know.

scallion flatbread on a cooling rack
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Miso Squash and Cauliflower Soup

Having a real miso soup magic moment right now. Savory and full of rich, round, umami flavor with natural sweetness from the squash… Thick and creamy but with no actual cream (unless you forget to save coconut milk for the drizzle on top and go in with heavy cream, like I did) …. It’s basically the best soup ever. And it eats like a meal thanks to loads of cauliflower and squash. Joey and I had some fried chicken wings on the side the other night because we are in quarantine and I am gluttonous. But, a side of wings is not required. This Miso Squash and Cauliflower Soup is more than enough to make all your dinner dreams come true.

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Caramelized Shallot Butter

Can we chat about smells for a second? The first day I made this caramelized shallot butter, our house smelled like sweet, earthy shallots and wine for the next 24 hours and I loved it. Certain cooking smells just have that warm, cozy hug quality. Onions or garlic cooking in butter has always been my #1. If they bottled the scent, I’d for sure wear it. But, these caramelized shallots, with thyme and generous splash of marsala wine, are a close second.

Caramelized shallots in a pan
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Chocolate Beet Cake

When life gives you beets… turn them into chocolate cake. Specifically, a deeply flavored, mouth-wateringly chocolately cake with a delicious sweetness from sugary roasted beets. Not saying this cake is “healthy” – there is plenty of sugar, flour, sour cream, etc. in there, too. But, I am saying this is an excellent thing to do with a bunch of roasted beets, and it’s so, so good! Somehow, even though it doesn’t have the cream filling, this cake tastes just like Hostess HoHo’s to me. It puts me right back in the elementary school cafeteria, circa 1990, in the best way.

Chocolate beet cake on a cake stand with a slice cut out of it
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