Crispy Kale Chaat

If you have been to an Indian restaurant in Washington D.C., then you have seen either a “crispy spinach chaat” or “crispy kale chaat” on the menu. Its a twist on a popular Indian street food – chaat – which is basically a loose term for a collection of sweet/savory dishes that are usually found in roadside stalls in India (but is usually found in restaurants both there and here all prettied up!). I think chaat is kind of hard to explain unless you have had it, since the flavors are a real explosion of sweet/salty/tangy/crispy all in one. I love it. Chaat nights where we just eat a bunch of different types of chaat is up there with my favorite meals of all time.

I tried to recreate the crispy kale chaat I love so much at a restaurant here called Bombay Club. I am not sure its as good as the restaurant version, but it does the trick for a unique appetizer thats not very hard to put together!

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Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream

Yum, home-made ice cream! I have been wanting to make this for a while, but since I don’t have an ice-cream maker at home it seemed like a more challenging task than I was up for. Luckily I got to visit my parents and brother/sister-in-law this weekend and spend some quality time with my 8-year old niece and 12-year old nephew as well as my family’s ice cream maker.

This recipe is really easy and taken straight from the ice-cream maker’s recipe book so I can’t take much credit for doing anything special. But it came out so delicious and I got to do some fun “cooking” with my adorable nephew and niece so its worth posting!

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Black Bean and Quinoa Enchiladas

These enchiladas are what we had for dinner on Wednesday! It totally hit the spot for my once-a-week Mexican food craving. Ok, honestly, its more like once a day Mexican food craving.

I have never used quinoa as a filling for enchiladas before but since I just bought some red quinoa and wanted to put it to use, I figured it would be a great substitute for rice. It worked really well with the creamy black beans. I also tried my hand at making my own enchilada sauce by adapting this recipe I found on Add A Pinch and it worked super well! I am normally obsessed with Trader Joe’s enchilada sauce (which you should try if you haven’t), but I can honestly say this was a better home-made substitute!

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Sweet Bell Pepper Rings With a Jalapeño-Sour Cream Dipping Sauce

This past long weekend was so nice and super relaxing – we really didn’t do much except shopping, brunching, and grilling a ton. In fact, we made pizza’s for the first time on the grill and they turned out awesome! I also made this grilled corn/kale salad with a cilantro vinaigrette that was killer. But alas, we didn’t take pictures of any of these delicious meals so I can’t post them. I am going to try and remake in the coming weeks so I can share!

I did want to post something from this weekend and last night I decided to try something fun and new for a snack that could also be a good go-to appetizer option for when we have people over. These fried bell pepper rings tasted like onion rings but with a sweeter taste. They were tiny, so it is a perfect finger food.

My husband grilled some jalapeños over the weekend and made a sauce with it so I used that to make the dipping sauce by adding some sour cream to cut out the heat. It was a perfect sauce for these rings!

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Kale Pesto

I realize I have posted quite a few recipes in my short time blogging featuring kale. I didn’t realize I love it so much, but I guess its so versatile that this veggie is like a gift that just keeps on giving!

A few nights ago I wanted to make a pasta but do something fun with it so I decided to make kale pesto for the sauce. It came out so delicious! Instead of pine nuts I used cashews which totally worked well to make the sauce creamy, and the addition of lemon really adds a nice summery flavor. This is super quick to whip up and I bet it would be great to store. Next time I might make more so I can do that.

We paired our pesto with penne and added some slightly cooked grape tomatoes and a little bit of mozzarella cheese on top. This is on the list of go-to sauces to make again and again!

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Sticky Rice with Mango

I am not sure when we first discovered the Thai dessert “Sticky Rice with Mango”, but it was within the past 5 years and it was definitely love at first taste for me. I couldn’t believe I had been going to Thai restaurants for ages before this and had never had it!

A friend of ours brought over some mangoes and although I like mangoes, it is definitely not my go-to fruit (I am a nectarine and berry gal all the way).  I decided to use the mango and try to re-create our favorite Thai dessert! It was nearly impossible to find the glutinous, sticky rice that you need for this dish at a grocery store near me, so I ended up ordering a big bag off Amazon.

This dish is really easy to make, so pretty with the mango in the middle, and tastes a lot like Kheer (an Indian rice pudding that I love).

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