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Recipe: Orecchiette with Sausage & Spinach

Recipe: Orecchiette with Sausage & Spinach

Ingredients

1 lb Orecchiette, cooked to package directions
1 lb ground sausage (breakfast, sweet Italian or Andouille)
1 tbsp olive oil
½ chopped red onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups baby spinach
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
splash dry white wine
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 oz high quality crumbled feta (I prefer sheep feta for it’s deep, tangy flavor)

Directions

Cook the pasta to package directions in plenty of salted water. Drain and return the pasta back to the cooking pot, set on the counter.

While the pasta is cooking make the sauce. Heat a 10 inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground sausage and break apart with a wooden spoon. Cook until no pink remains, about 7-10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage to a bowl.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the olive oil and onions to the skillet. No need to rinse the skillet, leave a small amount of sausage grease in the pan to enhance the flavor of the onions. Cook the onions for about 5 minutes, until fragrant and translucent. Add the garlic at the last 30 seconds of cooking the onion. Add the spinach, wine and lemon juice to the skillet. Cook a few minutes until the spinach is wilted. Transfer the sausage back into the skillet. Cook until all is hot, season to taste with salt and pepper.

Transfer the sausage mixture into the pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to a large serving dish and top with crumbled feta cheese.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Campfire Loaded Veggie Nachos

Recipe: Campfire Loaded Veggie Nachos

Ingredients

1 15 oz can whole kernel corn, drained
1 15 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 10 ounce can Rotel, drained
½ large red onion, diced & divided
1 2 ounce can sliced black olives, drained
1 tsp Tajín Clásico mexican spice blend
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp cumin
1 16 ounce bag tortilla chips
1 8 ounce package shredded Mexican blend cheese
1 ripe avocado
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
lime slices
sliced jalapeños

Directions

Line a 10 inch cast iron skillet with foil.
Combine the corn, beans, 1/2 of the onions, Rotel, olives, Tajín Clásico, pepper and cumin in a large bowl.

Place 1/2 of the chips in the skillet, top with 1/2 of the cheese and 1/2 of the corn mixture. Repeat with another layer of chips, corn mixture and cheese.

Campfire or Grilled Nachos

If you are heating over the campfire; tent with foil and grill until the cheese melts 8-10 minutes. Remove from the fire, carefully remove foil. Top with avocado, the rest of the onions, cilantro, lime wedges, jalapeños and drizzle Chipotle Cream Sauce.
If using the grill, heat over medium high heat and follow the rest of the directions. Serve immediately.

Baked Nachos

Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit with rack in the middle. Place the skillet in the oven, tent with foil and bake for 8-10 minutes until cheese is melted. Remove from the oven, carefully remove foil. Top with avocado, the rest of the onions, cilantro, lime wedges, jalapeños and drizzle Chipotle Cream Sauce. Serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Grilled Brie with Tomatoes and Basil

Recipe: Grilled Brie with Tomatoes and Basil

Ingredients

2 wedges brie cheese, or 1 large round
1 pt grape tomatoes, quartered or 1 pound ripe tomatoes diced
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
¾ tsp salt and more to taste
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup chopped basil ribbons, chiffonade
1 loaf sliced rustic baguette or pita chips
balsamic glaze and shaved parmesan for topping

Directions

Tomato Basil Salad

Combine the tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, balsamic vinegar, salt pepper and basil in a large bowl.

Grilled Brie

Line a 10 inch cast iron skillet or griddle with foil (this makes for an easier clean up.) Place the brie in the center of the skillet. Grill over a campfire or hot grill for 15-20 minutes or until the brie softens and bubbles.

Baked Brie

This is easy to make in your kitchen too! Simply preheat oven to 375˚F with the rack in the middle.

Line a 10 inch cast iron skillet or griddle with foil (this makes for an easier clean up.) Place the brie in the center of the skillet. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the brie softens and bubbles.

Serving

Top the melted brie with the tomato basil mixture. Top with a drizzle of balsamic glaze and shaved parmesan. Serve with baguette.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Asian Cucumber Salad

Recipe: Asian Cucumber Salad

Ingredients

1 English cucumber (about 1 pound)
3 tbsp seasoned rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 pinch garlic powder
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp chopped pickled ginger
2 sliced green onions

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and serve immediately. Adjust any ingredients to taste.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Greek Barley Salad

Vegetarian Greek Barley Salad recipe is healthy and delicious! Great for summer entertaining as a side or main dish.

4-6 servings

1 1/2 cups barley, cooked to package directions
1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill, plus more for serving
pinch of sugar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Persian cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, cut in half
4 ounces sheep or goat feta cheese, crumbled, plus more for serving
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
4-6 sliced pepperoncini

Cook the barley to package directions, transfer to a large serving bowl and set aside.
For the dressing: In a bowl whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, dill and sugar. Whisk in the olive oil until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Toss the barley with the salad dressing. Fold in the cucumber, tomato, onion, olives, cheese, mint and pepperoncini. Season with more salt and pepper to taste if desired.
Garnish with more crumbled feta cheese and dill. Serve cold or at room temperature.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Spring Pasta with Prosciutto & Peas

We all love this Fast, Fresh and Easy! Spring Pasta with Prosciutto & Peas recipe. Great for warm weather healthy lunches, dinners and entertaining.

2-4 servings

8 ounces of linguine or fettuccine, cook according to package directions
a few splashes garlic olive oil
1 cup plus a handful of fresh arugula
2 ounces prosciutto, roughly chopped
3 ounces baby peas
splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice
fine sea salt, to taste
cracked black pepper, to taste
shaved cheese such as Pecorino Romano or Parmesan

Prepare pasta and set aside.
In a large sauté pan add some garlic olive oil, heat over medium heat. Add the 1 cup arugula and heat until just wilted about 1 minute. Add peas and prosciutto. Heat until just warmed through.
Remove pan from heat and toss pasta with the mixture. Add more oil if needed. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Serve with shaved Pecorino or Parmesan cheese. Top with fresh arugula.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Spring Pasta with Prosciutto & Peas

We all love this Fast, Fresh and Easy! Spring Pasta with Prosciutto & Peas recipe. Great for warm weather healthy lunches, dinners and entertaining.

2-4 servings

8 ounces of linguine or fettuccine, cook according to package directions
a few splashes garlic olive oil
1 cup plus a handful of fresh arugula
2 ounces prosciutto, roughly chopped
3 ounces baby peas
splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice
fine sea salt, to taste
cracked black pepper, to taste
shaved cheese such as Pecorino Romano or Parmesan

Prepare pasta and set aside.
In a large sauté pan add some garlic olive oil, heat over medium heat. Add the 1 cup arugula and heat until just wilted about 1 minute. Add peas and prosciutto. Heat until just warmed through.
Remove pan from heat and toss pasta with the mixture. Add more oil if needed. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Serve with shaved Pecorino or Parmesan cheese. Top with fresh arugula.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

Around here we can’t get enough chicken wings and this recipe for Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings is among our favorites! Serve as part of your weeknight dinner or for any kind of entertaining. Great for game day!

4 servings

–for the chicken
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp garlic powder
2 1/2 pounds chicken wings
olive oil to drizzle garlic
–for the sauce
4 tbsp butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 425˚F with the rack in the middle.
Line a baking sheet with tin foil. Place a wire rack onto the prepared pan.
Pat dry the chicken wings with paper towels. Combine the seasonings in a medium bowl and toss the wings one at a time in the seasonings.
Place the chicken in a single layer onto the rack. Bake for 25 minutes or until the chicken is completely cooked through.
While the chicken is cooking make the sauce. Melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low, add the garlic and sauté for about 2-3 minutes, until fragrant and softened. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl to cool. When the butter is room temperature mix in the olive oil, parsley and parmesan.
When the chicken is done baking, transfer to a serving platter. Spoon the garlic, parmesan mixture over the top. The sauce will melt again as it hits the hot chicken. Serve immediately with lots of napkins.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Vegan Avocado Spinach Soup

We love this super healthy Vegan Avocado Spinach Soup recipe, it’s filled with flavor, healthy fats and vitamin packed. Delicious any time of the year!

3 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp ground turmeric
8 cups, packed fresh baby spinach
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
2 ripe avocados, pitted, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
–top with
chopped italian parsley
chopped toasted walnuts

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large dutch oven or soup pot. Sauté the shallots for 5 minutes, stirring so they cook evenly. Add the garlic and tumeric, cook for another minute. Add the spinach and sauté for 3-4 minutes until wilted, mix to combine.
Pour in the broth, bring to a boil. Add in the avocado and lemon juice. Cook a few more minutes.
Remove the soup from the heat and let cool a few minutes. Carefully pour the soup and purée in a blender or with an immersion blender until smooth.
Serve soup hot, topped with parsley and walnuts.

~ Marla Meridith