roasted red pepper hummus

Roasted Red Pepper and Green Olive Hummus

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Today I bring you a recipe perfect for picnic season. A little cheese, a bottle of wine, a few crackers, some crunchy veggies, and this roasted red pepper and green olive hummus are an all-star al fresco dining cast. If you need something sweet (as I always do), throw in some cookies or pie bars. Of course, you can easily pick up hummus at the market, but making it yourself is simple. All you need is a food processor or blender, and you can customize ingredients to make a silky smooth, fresh hummus.

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spicy edamame

Spicy Edamame

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I’m all about keeping it simple this summer. It was a great school year but it just gets so busy toward the end and I’m looking forward to a big sigh of relief at the close of this week. Our plans so far include some hikes, picnics, pool, lots of arts and crafts and perfecting the art of folding laundry as well as loading and unloading the dishwasher. (As you might have guessed, those last two items are for my 8 year olds and they are not nearly as excited about them as I am.) Yes, I am aware how blessed we are. I am also aware of how ready we will be to get back in the school routine in the fall but for now… ahhhh.

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spicy roasted cauliflower with cilantro

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower with Cilantro

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It’s a new year so I’ve adopted a new attitude. I’m lightening up, cutting out junk food, trying to stay away from Facebook, cleaning out the closets and getting organized. Yep, totally embracing the cliche and feeling pretty good about it. I got a Fitbit for Christmas (I asked for it, my husband’s not a jerk), started counting Weight Watchers points again and just finished my first Bikram yoga class a few hours ago. Go me!

It was time. I spent most of 2014 focused on what everyone else was doing or needing and I am ready to shift inward. Don’t worry, I’ll still take care of my children.

You might be surprised by the Weight Watchers thing because it can mean different things to different people. Some have the misperception that you have to eat their food and some who follow probably do, indeed, eat a lot of processed, fat-free and artificially flavored foods, all things I try to avoid. I appreciate that it’s taught me about portion control and it restricts no foods. I don’t like being told I can’t eat something, especially a whole food group like grains or dairy. It also forces me to eat more fruit and veggies than I normally would. It worked well for me ten years ago when I had 30 pounds to lose so I revisit it every now and then.

Naturally, I’ve been inspired to come up with some new, healthy, point-friendly recipes. This is my favorite so far! I love the texture of roasted cauliflower and the spices and lemon juice make it super flavorful. You could try using different types of chili powder if you like, I used ancho which is a pretty mild heat but chipotle powder would also work really well if you want to kick it up. The cilantro adds nice color and freshness. Eat it as a side dish or set it out for an appetizer. Only 1 point for those of you who know what I’m talking about… For the rest of you, it’s just delicious and healthy too!

Oh, and did I mention how incredibly easy it is? You’ve got to try it.


Spicy Roasted Cauliflower with Cilantro

(serves 4)

6 cups cauliflower florets
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (I used ancho chili powder)
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup cilantro, rinsed, dried, and roughly chopped


Preheat oven to 400 degrees convection or 425 degrees conventional.

Place the cauliflower florets in a large bowl and sprinkle with cumin, chili powder, oregano, salt, and pepper.

cauliflower with spices

Drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil then, using your fingers, massage spices, lemon, and oil onto the cauliflower florets until they are all coated.

lemon juice added to cauliflower
olive oil added to cauliflower
coating cauliflower with seasonings

Place in a single layer on a baking pan coated with cooking spray or lined with parchment paper, leaving a bit of space between florets. Roast in the preheated oven for about 12 -15 minutes, depending on your oven. Check about halfway through and toss with tongs.

cauliflower on sheet pan

Chop cilantro just slightly, it should still be leafy.

loosely chopped cilantro

When the cauliflower is finished, it will be golden with dark toasty bits.

roasted cauliflower just out of the oven

Toss the hot cauliflower with the cilantro and serve.

tossed cilantro with roasted cauliflower

Happy New Year!!!

I like this…
“Take a leap of faith and begin this wondrous new year by believing. Believe in yourself. And believe that there is a loving source – a sower of dreams – just waiting to be asked to help you make your dreams come true.” 
Sarah Ban Breathnach
refried black beans

Smoky Refried Black Beans

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Our streets here in Bend, OR are covered in a sheet of ice this morning so the girls and I are enjoying a forced day at home. I’m feeling a little giddy because although there are many times this would really be a giant pain, today I am in just the kind of mood to not go anywhere. Who knows, I may even tackle the pantry reorganization I’ve been threatening for months. We’ll see.

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