Nostrana Radicchio Caesar Salad

Nostrana Caesar Salad Sometime ago Brian and I went to Oven and Shaker, a restaurant here in Portland owned by Cathy Whims, who also owns Nostrana.  We were headed to see Tool, you read that right, and I wanted good pizza.  Plus I had never had her famous Caesar Salad using radicchio.  I took one bite and I was super hooked, no joke hooked.  I crave it a lot.  And I am not in that area often enough to run down and order it, so I made it at home.

I had the pleasure of meeting Cathy at Diane Morgan’s writing workshop, she is a sweet lovely person.  And she makes amazing food, which makes her sweeter.  Oddly enough I looked around for her recipe before I actually would email her for it, but I remembered Diane shared it in one of her cookbooks.  It is a very well known famous salad, everyone loves it!

It is perfectly acidic, crunchy, savory, and has a nice hint of but not overpowering anchovy paste. Perfectly salty from the mound of parmigiano-reggiano cheese, the best croutons I have ever eaten, and oh so good.  So without further ado, please make this, it is worth every moment of your time.

Note:  Soaking the radicchio in ice cold water for an hour makes it crunchy and less bitter.

Cathy Whims recipe from Diane Morgan’s the Christmas table cookbook.

Serves 8


3 heads radicchio, about 1 1/2 lbs total, cored, torn into bite sized pieces

For the Dressing:

6 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1 fresh large egg yolk

2 teaspoons anchovy paste

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Ingredients for the Croutons:

2 cups (3/4-inch) fresh bread cubes, cut from an artisanal white loaf with the crusts removed

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh sage, finely chopped

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly grated

Freshly ground pepper


1.  Tear the radicchio leaves into bite sized pieces and soak in ice cold water in fridge for an hour.  Drain the radicchio and place in a salad spinner, or in a kitchen towel.  Get as dry as possible.

2.  To make the dressing, place the olive oil, vinegar, mayonnaise, egg yolk, anchovy paste, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper in a jar and shake until combined.  You can also use a blender, or a bowl and whisk.  This can be made a few days in advance, store in fridge in an airtight jar.

Croutons: Preheat oven to 400 degrees

1.  Place the bread cubes on a baking sheet, and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from pan, add to a bowl.

2.  In a small saute pan, add the butter.  Once melted, add the rosemary and sage.  Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and pour over bread cubes, toss to combine.  These can be made one day in advance, and stored in an airtight container, at room temperature.

To serve, give the dressing a shake, or mix.  In a large bowl, toss the radicchio and dressing together, combine well.  Add the parm, toss to combine.  Add the croutons to the top. Serve immediately.

Note:  This salad is best served fresh, not leftovers.

Nostrana Caesar Salad

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Thank you Sabra, I’m going to Blog Her Food in Miami!

4 product shot

As you may know I have been working with Sabra for one year now, it is sort of our anniversary.  So it is very fitting that I announce that they are sponsoring my trip to Miami to attend Blog Her Food 2014!

Flatbread and Sabra

Blog Her Food is the mecca conference for food bloggers of all sizes.  It moves to a different location each year.  Last year it was in Austin and this year it is in Miami.  Blog Her is an amazing organization that supports bloggers of all kinds.  They have conferences for food and non food bloggers.  I, naturally, will be attending the food conference.  It basically is a two day event, Friday and Saturday, full of food, the entire time, no one goes hungry for one moment.  Break out sessions where I can learn anything from SEO to food photography tips.  It is a wonderful opportunity to meet other bloggers face to face, and build on friendships.  It is also a chance for bloggers to meet the companies, like Sabra, that respect bloggers and want to work with them.

There are intensive breakouts, small group sessions, get into the kitchen, keynotes, and seriously so much more.  I am nervous, excited, and grateful to be a part of this event.  There is a lot of business to take care of and most importantly blogger friends to MEET!

The sponsors that go to Blog Her Food understand the nature of blogging, and the value in working with us.  So they go to great lengths to connect with us, which feels pretty good to be honest.

If you are a blogger and will be attending Blog Her Food, connect with me, or email me.  I will be hosting a party in a suite sponsored by me and Sabra!  You can expect white and red wines that pair so well with hummus, snacks, refreshing lime water, and a chance to relax before heading out to more events.

I would like to thank Sabra for their continued support of Not Just Baked.  They are few and far between and it has been such a delightful pleasure to work with them on a continual basis.  Cheers to many more years!  Thank you.

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Mascarpone Parfaits with Roasted Strawberries and Almonds

Mascarpone Parfait with Roasted Strawberries and Almonds I feel like I can tell when the first strawberry hits the farmers market.  Like it telepathically says, “hey I am here”.  It does, just so we are clear.  As soon as the sun shines, we get juicy strawberries, and I will eat them daily for months, until they are no longer in season.  That’s how I roll.  Naturally I have been conspiring for new ways to take advantage of the new arriving beauties, and well did I ever.

Fresh Strawberries

I have made mascarpone cheese from scratch a dozen times.  I have also roasted strawberries a dozen times.  I, however, have never put the two in the same bowl with other goodies.  Well this time I did.  And you are going to like it, trust me!  I ask you to trust me every single time I write a recipe or post, this is no different.  I have also said things are life changing.  This is, again.  Some people have never had macarpone, so let’s discuss.  It’s creamy, slightly tangy, and very thick.  Think thicker than Greek yogurt, but less than cream cheese.  And does not taste like either of those, so no worries.  It’s not cheese in the typical sense.  It is a “cheese” commonly used in desserts, but also savory dishes like pasta.  You just have to try it and trust me.

So lets make mascarpone and sour cream mixture a couple of days before your Easter celebrations, Mother’s Day, or the weekend.  It only takes 10 minutes.  Then stash it in the fridge.  On the day of an occasion roast some strawberries.  Then make magic by putting them in a pretty cup together.  You will not regret this decision my friends.  Not. One. Bit.

I like playing with textures in my food.  I like playing with food in general.  But it is important for me to have creamy with a crunch.  Otherwise it can be a monotonousness dessert.  So I added toasted almonds, they go well with strawberries.  But you could also do pistachios, which are meaty and amazing!

I will be sharing this recipe on my monthly TV segment over at KATU AM Northwest on Wednesday April 16th at 9:40am.  So tune in locals, or wait, and I’ll upload the video shortly after.  You won’t want to miss it, I’m showing you how to make cheese for dessert, and that is magic!  Here is the segment!

This is really nice for a weekend brunch and easy enough to make the mascarpone ahead of time.  You could also assemble these early the day you need them.  Make ahead desserts are always so nice.  Especially in a jar, top with a lid and serve it, so cute!

Roasted Strawberries

Makes 4 parfaits


2 pints strawberries, about 4 cups, hulled and sliced in half

1 cup mascarpone, store bought or homemade

1 cup sour cream

2 teaspoons sugar

1 lime, zested, and reserve 2 teaspoons juice, 1 teaspoon zest, optional: reserve 1/2 teaspoon zest to garnish

1 teaspoon honey, I use Bee Local

1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 cup toasted almonds, pistachios would be nice too

Preheat oven 400 degrees

Method Roasted Strawberries and Parfait:

1.  Place the strawberries on a parchment lined baking sheet, and place in oven for 20 minutes.

2.  While the strawberries are roasting place the mascarpone, sour cream, sugar, lime juice and zest, honey, and salt in a medium bowl, whisk to combine.  Once the strawberries are finished roasting, scoop them into a bowl.  Get as much as the juice as possible off the sheet pan.

3.  In a glass jar, or pretty glass, add a spoonful of mascarpone to the bottom, making sure to cover the entire bottom.  Add the spoonful of the roasted strawberries, and a sprinkle of toasted almonds.  Repeat.  Sprinkle some lime zest on the top to garnish.

Note:  You can make the mascarpone and sour cream mixture, and toast the sliced almonds a couple of days before.  Roast the strawberries the day of.  You can assemble the jars or glasses in the morning the day you want to serve this.

Have you ever had roasted strawberries?  I love them so much, I think they are magic!


Macarpone Parfait with Roasted Strawberries and Almonds

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Grilled Yam Taco with Roasted Poblano Yogurt Sauce & Tillamook Package Giveaway!

Grilled Yam Tacos with Roasted Poblano Yogurt Sauce

It’s no secret via all of my social media accounts that I have been eating the new Farmstyle Greek Yogurt from Tillamook for the past few weeks.  Thanks to Tillamook, they sent me this new yogurt line to check out all of the buzz.  It is sold out in many stores and being devoured by many bloggers across the country.

I decided to make a luscious, creamy, thick roasted Poblano yogurt sauce for these tacos.  Using the Greek yogurt makes this cream sauce a healthier choice and adds a nice tang to the spiciness of the pepper.  Grilled yam tacos has really never occurred to me until I was pursuing the internet and saw some other squash tacos.  Thus the grilled yam taco recipe was born.

Grilled Yam Tacos with Roasted Poblano Yogurt Sauce

Tillamook wants my readers to get a chance to taste their new line of yogurt, so I am giving away a package, sent to you directly from Tillamook.  It will be packed full of several flavors of Farmstyle Greek Yogurt!  Flavors include Strained thick Plain, Washington Raspberry, Oregon Strawberry, Coffee, and Vanilla Bean.

Disclosure:  I was sent a package of yogurt from Tillamook.  They are also providing the package of yogurt for the giveaway, sent directly to the winner from Tillamook.  The sad part is, they can only send it to certain states.  I am very sorry for this, but this is how it is.

This giveaway has ended.

Please only enter the giveaway if you live in one these states…

Elligible states for giveaway:  OR, WA, ID, CA, NV, AZ, UT, MT, WY, CO, NM

I will choose a winner at random on April 16, 2014, 12am PST.  I will email the winner of the giveaway on April 17.  The winner will then have 24 hours to respond.  If I do not receive a response, I will choose another winner.  If you enter the giveaway and do not live in the states mentioned above, I will choose another winner.  Thank you for understanding!

Grilled Yam Tacos with Roasted Poblano Yogurt Sauce

This giveaway has ended.

To enter the giveaway:

1.  ”Like” Not Just Baked Facebook page AND leave a comment below letting me know you did so!  If you already like my Facebook page, leave a comment below letting me know you do!  Good luck!

For an extra entry:  Leave a comment letting me know, have you ever had squash tacos?

Makes 8-10 tacos


2 large red garnet yams, cut into long wedges 1/2 inch thick

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

1 lime, zested, 1/2 teaspoon lime juice, the other 1/2 cut into wedges for serving

2 Poblano peppers

8-10 corn tortillas, store or freshly made

1 small, about 1 lb red cabbage, sliced thinly

1 bunch fresh parsley, chopped

Note:  I found the easiest way to organize this recipe is as follows:  I started our gas grill then worked on the yams, cut and “marinating”.  Then put the yogurt sauce components together in a bowl, other than the Poblano pepper.  Then get all of the garnish ready; lime, cabbage, and parsley.  This way it is all ready when you come inside to lastly peel the pepper to add to the yogurt sauce that is all ready to go.


1.  Place the yams, olive oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl, toss to combine, set side.  Place the yogurt, lime zest, 1/2 teaspoon lime juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper in small bowl, whisk to combine, set aside.

2.  On the grill:  first place the peppers over medium high heat to char.  Rotate until charred evenly.  Once charred evenly, place in a bowl, cover with a towel and steam for a few minutes.

3.  Place the yams on the grill over medium heat, grill for 15 minutes.  The last 5 minutes of yam grilling, place the tortillas on the grill to warm.  Place in a tortilla warmer or clean kitchen towel to serve.  When the yams are done, place them in a bowl, and keep covered while you peel the pepper.

How to peel the pepper:  Remove the charred skin, stem, and seeds.

4.  Chop the pepper finely and add to the yogurt sauce, stir to combine.  Taste for seasoning, add salt and pepper if needed.

I served this as a “make a taco” as you go scenario.  On the table:  Grilled yams, roasted Poblano yogurt sauce, lime wedges, a bowl of sliced cabbage, and chopped parsley.

Grilled Yam Tacos with Roasted Poblano Yogurt Sauce


This giveaway has ended.

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Posted in 21 Day Food Lover Cleanse, Affordable Meals, Entrees, Light fare, Simple Weeknights, Sponsored, Vegetarian | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Chorizo Black Bean Soup

Chorizo Black Bean Soup with Chipotle Crema

These last few weeks have been crazy nuts! In a good way, but nonetheless, crazy. To be honest, I am sitting here recalling what happened and I am having a hard time remembering it all. I do remember making this Chorizo Black Bean Soup, only because I wrote it down while developing the recipe. This is the prefect dish for a crazy week, lazy week, or you just want a good soup kinda week. I recall so many meetings over coffee, so not so bad. Lunch with my blogging cohorts, media dinners, dentists appointments, family moving, again. We are in the middle of re-branding the site, designing, planning to take over the world, and do you know how much time that takes? A lot!

The weather has also been crazy. Cold, warm, sun, 70 degrees, cold again, now rain, but tomorrow sunny and warm again! So making this soup was a no brainer. Especially because I love chorizo and black beans, so it makes perfect sense to put them together in a soup.

Serves 6


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 cup Mexican chorizo, remove casing

1-14.5 oz can whole peeled tomatoes, chopped and reserve juice

2-15 oz cans black beans, strained

1 cup chicken or vegetable stock

1 cup frozen corn kernels

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 green onions, white part removed, chopped for serving

1 lime, cut into wedges for serving

1/2 cup sour cream for serving

Spiced lime crema: (optional) add 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice, and 1/8 teaspoon chipotle powder to the 1/2 cup sour cream, mix to combine.

6 quart pot

large wooden spoon


1.  Place the pot over medium heat, add the olive oil, heat until shimmering then add the onions.  Cook for 5 minutes until translucent.  Add the chorizo, break up into large chunks with a large spoon.  Cook for 10 minutes, stir occasionally.

2. Add the chopped tomatoes, and tomato juice. Using a wooden spoon scrape the bottom of the pan to remove the brown bits. Add the black beans, stock, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Lower the heat to medium low, leave uncovered, and simmer for 30 minutes.  In the last 5 minutes of cooking, add the corn, and stir to combine.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, and green onions.  I also served seeded quinoa tortilla chips.  You could serve this with crackers, chips, or this amazing honey cornbread recipe.


Chorizo Black Bean Soup with Chipotle Crema


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Posted in Affordable Meals, Entrees, Mexican, One pot, Simple Weeknights, Soup | Tagged , | Leave a comment