The Local Ladle

Healthy Spaghetti Squash with Lemon, Thyme, Asparagus, & Ricotta

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So what’s this big trend around Spaghetti Squash?  This gorgeous yellow squash is available year-round in most grocery stores and can be considered both a summer or winter squash.  By adding this vegetable to your table, you will easily get hooked on this delicious treat and the several health benefits it can bring to your body.

That moment you realize you may have waited a little too long shed that winter coat and jump into that new tiny bikini… this summer squash might just be a life saver!   With only 42 calories and 10 carbs in a 1-cup serving of cooked spaghetti squash, this vegetable is a safe addition to any diet!

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Spring Salad of Asparagus, Ramp, and Broccolini With Poached Egg and Lemon Zest Vinaigrette

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There’s nothing better than seeing fresh organic spring ingredients at the grocery store,  especially when majority of these vegetables have such a short season. You really know spring has sprung when you see ramps! Ramps are sometimes called wild leeks or spring onions, look like scallions, but they’re smaller and slightly more delicate.

So here’s a quick salad to celebrate these beautiful Spring flavors!

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Grilled Mediterranean Romaine

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This salad is a fun healthy twist on a Cesar salad. Rather than a heavy cream dressing, I have tied in one of my favorite yogurt dressings and substituted a meat protein for chickpeas and pine nuts!

Grilling romaine is actually something I learned from my mom. One of her favorite summer dinners is a large plate of grilled romaine with a light dressing. After picking up romaine at the grocery store today, my plan was to make a fulfilling winter version of her salad!

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Spiral Mediterranean Veggie Salad

Spiral Mediterranean veggie salad

The effort put into this salad doesn’t even come close the beauty and flavor that comes out it.  The earthy and deep raw flavors of the vegetables seamlessly compliment the creamy richness of the chickpea hummus. The addition of cilantro and sumac not only add great color, but celebrate the Mediterranean pops of flavor!

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Boozy Summer Popsicles!

Boozy Summer Popsciles

Stepping into summer, the only thing better than an ice-cold cocktail at the end of a long day is a cocktail that comes in popsicle form! These popsicles will be the star at any summer party or are a tasty healthy alternative for the kids to enjoy, mock-tail version of course! 

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Citrus Endive & Eggplant Salad

Citrus Endive and Eggplant Salad

As I am sure most of you know by now, I love to make warm salads with roasted vegetables. I was inspired to make this particular salad because I really wanted to experiment with roasted endive. Endive is a member of the chicory family, which includes radicchio, escarole, frisee and curly endive. It has a crisp texture and a sweet, nutty flavor with a pleasantly mild bitterness. It’s delicious both raw and cooked. Read more

Warm Quinoa & Vegetable Salad

Quinoa Vegtable Salad

There are so many people and hands that go into creating one dish. We easily forget about this. Our society has come to a point that if we can't directly see or feel something, its not there. I fell in love with food because of the story it tells. Not by cooking exactly, but by the story of how the ingredient came upon the plate has always fascinated me. We fail to remember the artisans of cheese, the farmers of the organic carrots, or even the coffee roaster who provide you with the robust aroma and satisfying jolt of caffeine every morning.   These are the hands that need acknowledgement because, end of the day, my part is simple. My role is to take these beautiful ingredients that are given to me and unify them to become one piece of art.

Next time you are in the kitchen, I encourage you to stop to reflect on the love already put into these ingredients

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Harissa Hummus with Pomegranate Molasses

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I have been making homemade hummus for years now and I will never go back to the pre packaged products! I get that it’s just easier to grab the container at the grocery store, but let me open your eyes to the advantages of making your own! Read more

Stan’s Donuts- Chicago

Stan's Donuts- Chicago

If a place could be made for Instagram, it would be Stan’s. Walking into the door, you are immediately hit the smell of sweet yeast and dark coffee. Your eyes are quickly drawn to the massive case of about forty donut and pastry options. When it comes down to making a decision, the pressure feels like choosing from about a million because there isn’t a wrong choice! Read more

Lemon Blueberry Bundt Cake

Lemon Blueberry Pound Cake

When it comes to my sweets I can honestly say healthy isn’t really in my vocabulary. Even though I will admit there are several amazing vegan and gluten free bakers floating around the internet, I like to keep my sweets traditional.

I was inspired to make this Lemon Blueberry bundt cake because of a bundt cake pan I recently received from my grandma, that looks like its been baked in for about one hundred years. I wanted to do something with light and refreshing flavors, so what better than lemon and blueberry. Read more

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