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Life changes + 10 nutritious back-to-school snack ideas

10 nutritious back-to-school snack ideas | www.ricottaandradishes.com

It’s hard to believe it’s September already.  Time for a good old fashioned life update!

Well, here it is: I’ll be going to grad school.  Again.  I’m trying to be all calm, cool and collected, but the truth is I’m freaking out a little!

There are textbooks to pick up, Facebook groups to join and a new fall wardrobe to buy (ok, I added that part in.  But aren’t collegiate blazers and equestrian boots half the fun of campus life?) [click to continue…]

Low sugar, low fat mini apple crisps {vegan}

Low sugar, low fat mini apple crisps | www.ricottaandradishes.com

Today I bring you…drum roll please…a dessert!  Other than the Italian pizzelle I posted last Christmas, this mini apple crisp recipe is the first real dessert to see the light of day on this blog. I’m pretty proud of this, mainly because I suck at baking, but also because I was quite resourceful in making this recipe.

We had a fruit bowl full of Granny Smith apples which my husband doesn’t exactly love but I thought looked pretty for our home staging. I wasn’t eating them fast enough myself, so my mind started wandering to apple slaw, apple salads and baked apples. With September on the horizon, there’s no better time to have apples on the brain.  Eventually I settled on apple crisp after realizing we also had some flour, oats, coconut oil and other baking ingredients that needed to be used up as well. [click to continue…]

Sunday links, summer produce edition

Sunday-Links-summer-produce

I’m baaaaaack!  Back to posting Sunday Links, that is.  It’s been a little while since I’ve written my weekly list of links, but now feels like a good time to regroup and gather my thoughts.

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Chickpea and grilled vegetable couscous salad with tahini dressing | www.ricottaandradishes.com

I’ve had this dish up my sleeve for a while and am excited to finally get to share it with you. Grilled vegetables–including summer’s darling, zucchini–combine with Israeli couscous, chickpeas and silky tahini for a Middle Eastern-inspired salad that’s ideal for a late summer lunch or dinner. [click to continue…]

Corn on the cob with cilantro chimichurri 

Corn on the cob with bright, fresh cilantro chimichurri! | www.ricottaandradishes.com

Today’s recipe is a throwback to last summer’s cilantro chimichurri (recipe also shown at the bottom of this post) but I couldn’t help talking about it again.  It’s just so fresh and delicious and absolutely perfect for these last few weeks of summer.

Our house is all staged and ready to be scoped out by prospective buyers, so I’ve been temporarily banned from cooking in my own kitchen!  More accurately, I can’t make anything strong-smelling or messy.  This means homemade curries are out, bagged salads and store-bought quiches are in! [click to continue…]

6 healthy habits to get into before fall

6 healthy habits to get into before the fall season hits! | www.ricottaandradishes.com

We’re already more than halfway through summer.  Can you believe it?  There’s something about the warmer weather and lack of rigidity and structure in the summer that makes us feel relatively carefree.  Sometimes this means eating a little more than we would normally, or reaching for snacks we wouldn’t otherwise have eaten just because the time seems right (hello, ice cream sandwiches!).

Summer is all about fun and enjoyment, but that doesn’t mean you have to throw away those healthy lifestyle habits completely.  In fact, picking up some new habits before the fall season hits might even be easier now that you have a little less to worry about (school, the holiday season, etc.).

Small steps can really add up, so incorporating just a few small tweaks this month–like the 6 healthy habits below–can help you get you into a groove so that you’re all set come fall. [click to continue…]

What I Ate Wednesday #12: A Visit to Chicago

What I Ate Wednesday, Chicago Edition | www.ricottaandradishes.com

My favourite kinds of What I Ate Wednesday (WIAW) posts to write (and read!) are travel-themed ones. No matter how short the trip or how ho-hum the dining choices, there’s always something new to taste and experience while on the road.

This week I’m writing to you from the Windy City.  It’s my first time visiting Chicago, but I’ve heard nothing but good things – especially from a food perspective.
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Pickled garden veggie dogs

Veggie dogs topped with spicy pickled vegetables, honey mustard and green onions | www.ricottaandradishes.com

In the final installment of my healthy vegetarian hot dog toppings series, I bring you these pickled garden veggie dogs.  Like the Greek dogs and spicy pineapple dogs posted last week, these puppies can be made with regular hot dogs or vegetarian hot dogs.  The choice is up to you of course, but just know that veggie dogs taste great and usually have a better nutritional profile than normal hot dogs.

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14 refreshing smoothies, chilled drinks & cocktails to keep you cool this summer | www.ricottaandradishes.com

Whether you’re spending the dog days of summer by the pool, at the cottage or in your own backyard, one thing that’s guaranteed to make the experience more enjoyable is a cold, thirst-quenching drink.  It doesn’t have to be boozy (though that’s good too!).  Fruit smoothies, naturally flavoured waters and chilled coffee and tea drinks are just as refreshing on a hot day as an icy cold beer.

I don’t get around to posting many drink recipes on this blog, but I know you guys love getting ideas!  So I’ve put together a roundup of delicious and refreshing smoothies, chilled drinks and cocktails from some of my fellow food bloggers to keep you cool this summer.  Scroll through the list, find one you like and then click through to get the recipe. [click to continue…]

Spicy pineapple veggie dogs

Spicy pineapple veggie dogs | www.ricottaandradishes.com

Next up on the healthier hot dog agenda: these ridiculously simple, so-basic-you-don’t-need-a-recipe spicy pineapple veggie dogs!  The only toppings are diced fresh pineapple, finely diced red onion and pickled jalapeño peppers.

You could also throw some light mayo on there for a hit of creaminess if you want, but I didn’t feel the need at the time I made these. [click to continue…]