Ingredient: cumin powder

American, Beans/Legumes, Dairy Free, Gluten free, Grains, Grains, Main, Sides, Sides, Sugar Free, Summer, Vegetable, Vegetarian

Quinoa with Gazpacho and Red Beans

I was looking for a vegetarian recipe that showcased the most common vegetables popping up in our gardens, farmer’s markets, and CSA’s this summer, but was filling enough to satisfy any carnivore’s appetite. Between the beans and the high-protein quinoa, this recipe fits the bill and is quite tasty too! I served this to relatives this summer, and both adults and kids went back for seconds!

All Seasons, Fall, Main, Mexican, Seafood, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Winter

Hint O Lime Fish Tacos

Serve with black bean and corn salad-

When I travel to sunny, southern California, this is one of my favorite dishes to devour. The fresh seafood, guacamole and salsas are classic Baha cuisine, especially when sitting at an eatery on PCH (Pacific Coast Highway). Preparing this meal at home transports me back for one surfin’ safari night!

In the suggestions I have provided recipes to make salsa and guacamole from stratch- well worth the extra 10 minutes of preparation. Once all the ingredients are made, this is such a fun meal to eat, as each family member gets to make their own tacos. Crank up some Beach Boys and let the fun begin!

American, Bbq/Grilling, Beef, Dairy Free, Fall, Gluten free, Main, Spring, Summer

Honey Lime Glazed Steak Kabobs with Summer Melon Kabobs

Serve with Quick Greek Brown Rice

When I think of summer and food, my taste buds immediately crave a simple but flavorful grilled meal. This kabob recipe fits the bill with an easy, slightly sweet marinade for both the steak and summer melons. Dipped in a cool, cumin-scented yogurt sauce and paired with a nutrient-rich brown rice side, this meal cries out for al fresco dining.

All Seasons, Chicken, Fall, Gluten free, Indian, Main, Paleo / Primal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Winter

Butter Chicken Masala

Serve with basmati rice and peas

One of my culinary highlights of 2013 was learning how to cook Indian food from my friends Taru Raman and Nirmala Kakkuppi hosted in the kitchen of my friend, Susan Hawkins. It was a fun afternoon filled with friendship, knowledge, and incredibly fragrant and visually delightful cuisine. As a newbie to Indian cooking, I feel honored to have learned from women who confidently prepare their traditional dishes commonly thought to be intimidating my most westerners. They broke this myth as I now prepare Indian food with confidence too (well, the recipes that they taught me).

The original recipe is vegetarian, “Paneer Butter Masala” (paneer is a type of Indian cheese), but I have replaced the paneer with chicken. You can find “Butter Chicken” on many Indian restaurant menus, but I was told this preparation is the real thing. You are in for a treat because either version, paneer or chicken, is amazing and surely to become a family favorite. For the vegetarian paneer butter masala recipe, see Suggestions below.

Some of the spices you may not have and if you do not plan on making more Indian dishes, try to find a market that sells spices in bulk so you can purchase only what you need. Garam masala and dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori Methi) can be found at Indian markets and more gourmet supermarkets.