dinner & dessert.

In keeping with my goals, I remained in the kitchen as soon as I walked in the door after work yesterday. Now, I’ve had problems cooking quinoa unsuccessfully on the stove top before (yet somehow never had a problem with a crockpot). So I made myself a little nervous about attempting a quinoa recipe again. But after last night, I’m not at all nervous anymore!

Quinoa with jalapeño, peaches and pecans


1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3 jalapeño peppers, seeded & minced – Use however many you like. I just used 3 because that’s what I found in the break room at work free for the taking.
1 fresh peach, peeled & diced


1. Cook quinoa according to package instructions. You can substitute the 2 cups of water for chicken broth or something else if you prefer more flavor.
2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat; add pecans and cook, stirring often, 3 to 4 minutes or until toasted and fragrant. Add jalapeño, and sauté 1 minute. Stir in hot cooked quinoa, diced fresh peach, and salt and pepper as needed.


It’s one of my favorite dishes and my first time cooking it successfully! I don’t know why I have had a hard time with quinoa before, as it was super easy last night (and super delicious, too!).

As a treat, I also cooked up a patriotic dessert last night. I’d seen this berry crostata on The Feud with Food this week and knew I wanted to give it a try as I like anything with fresh berries.

Berry Crostata


2 cups blueberries
2 cups strawberries, sliced
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp all purpose flour (and an additional tsp)
Zest of one lemon (about 1 tsp)
1 store-brought pie crust
1 egg white
1 tsp water
1 tbsp raw sugar – I just used regular sugar for this.


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Put the sliced strawberries and blueberries in a large bowl. In a small bowl, stir 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of all purpose flour together and pour over the strawberries and blueberries.  Then add the lemon zest to the bowl of berries and stir until all of the berries are coated with the flour sugar mixture.
2. Sprinkle about a tablespoon of all purpose flour onto your counter top or onto wax paper.  Then roll the pie dough out onto the flour.  Sprinkle about a teaspoon of flour onto the pie crust and roll a rolling pin over the dough until it’s flat around the edges. Once your pie crust is rolled out, place the pie crust onto a greased cookie sheet.  Then pour the berry mixture into the middle of the pie crust.  Fold the edges of the crust around the fruit.
3. In a small bowl, whisk the egg white and 1/2 teaspoon of water together. Using a basting brush, brush the egg wash over the edges of the crust and sprinkle 1 tablespoon of [raw] sugar over the edges of the crust.  Bake in a 450 degree oven for 18 – 20 minutes (until the edges are golden brown).  Set aside to cool for about 30 minutes.  Then slice and serve.


I served this with a side of vanilla bean ice cream and it was amazing! So light and fresh and perfect for this time of year. I’ll definitely be making this again.


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