Cheese Toasties - Header

Eat like the Irish: Baked Cheese Toasties

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! As we discussed last year, part of my family hails from the Emerald Isle, and as every March 17th approaches, I eagerly anticipate another chance to cook food from the country of my ancestors.

You’re probably already familiar with Guinness beef stew, Colcannon, and soda bread/biscuits, traditional and popular Irish fare, not to mention the many green dishes that take over the table at this time of year.

I love most of these dishes, I truly do, but I’ve been increasingly interested in wanting to know a little more about the meals that aren’t the most familiar or famous, but are the hearty plates that a home cook prepares for their family on a daily basis, like today’s toasties.

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Weekend links

Yesterday I baked a pie, shopped for vintage enamelware at my local antique shop, and purchased two blooming purple hyacinths – all to help combat the March madness brought on by cabin fever and winter blues.

It’s just never ending this year, but let us not focus on the negative. We have two winners to announce from my recent Bite this Book giveaway! Congratulations to David and Cyndi, who each won a copy of Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans. You’ve both been contacted via email. A big thank you to all who entered the giveaway!

Here’s what I read around the web this week:

Have a beautiful Sunday, all!

Nom Nom Paleo

Bite this Book: Nom Nom Paleo

I first met the husband and wife team behind the award-winning blog, Nom Nom Paleo, in Las Vegas with Saveur, but I had been stalking their corner of the web for some time before that.

Michelle and Henry were some of the most down to earth, humble people I had ever met and we chatted about blogging, feeding kids, and their upcoming book. I knew it was going to be exceptional, just by the way they described how it was all coming together.

Well, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans is now in my hands, on shelves all around North America, and has even been spotted on the New York Times bestseller list! The authors have completely raised the bar for cookbooks with this work which features over 900 photos, 100 recipes, and snappy cartoons. This book is packed.

Do I exclusively follow a paleo diet? Not in the least. Do I prioritize real, whole, nutrient-packed food? You bet! And that’s what is continually served up from the Nom Nom Paleo crew.

My Noah lost himself in this cookbook for an entire Saturday afternoon, flipping from comic to comic. Then we made kale chips. I hope some of the enthusiasm that Michelle’s kids display in the book rubs off on him. Both of my boys could stand to eat a few more plants and we’re using Nom Nom Paleo to make them fun.

I’ve already gifted a few of my girlfriends with this cookbook and now it’s your turn. Read on for an interview with the author of Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans and a chance to win one of two copies of your own!

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Spiced Roasted Cauliflower with Garlicky Aioli

I will be the first to admit that I was an incredibly picky eater growing up. The only vegetables I would eat without complaint were carrots and iceberg lettuce (and potatoes if you count those).

Most of the vegetables we ate were frozen or canned, but considering two picky kids and busy schedules, it’s no wonder my parents didn’t insist on us trying more variety and went with the tried and true.

With my own kids, I’ve tried to foster an appreciation of, if not love for, a wide range of vegetables. The little one loves to chew on broccoli, while the big one will ask for peas along with dinner. But while they enjoy those veggies, there are always a few that need a little more coaxing.

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Crispy bacon and roasted asparagus with baked eggs in simplebites.net

For the love of Asparagus (Recipe Round Up)

There is a light at the end of the Winter tunnel! Spring is just around the corner and I couldn’t be more excited. Never mind that there are snowflake flurries whirling just outside my window as I write this, I am still dreaming of blossoms, and sunshine, and Spring produce finally making its appearance.

As one of the first fresh Spring vegetables to make its appearance in the farmer’s market, asparagus is also one of my favorite Spring produce items. It’s a burst of much anticipated green after the long winter.

Asparagus is delicious even at its simplest, lightly steamed, grilled, or sauteed, and eaten plain. Yet it is also a versatile vegetable that adds a lot of nutrition and flavor to soups, tarts, pizzas, and more! You can even can it to enjoy long after spring ends.

Here’s a round-up of some of our favorite Simple Bites recipes for Asparagus. Also, check out this post for tips on selecting the best asparagus and instructions for how to trim it.

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