Make Spicy Beer Cheese Dip

This Spicy Beer Cheese Dip is spiked with jalapeño and light beer, and is made with a roux.

This Spicy Beer Cheese Dip is spiked with jalapeño and light beer, and is made with a roux.

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The Super Bowl is my favorite excuse to eat all the snacks ever created. My recent favorite is this spicy beer cheese dip. Have you ever tried to simply melt cheese hoping it would be a dip? Doesn’t work. I tried it long ago thinking it would work like melted chocolate. Silly me. The trick to cheese dip is a roux, much like you make for macaroni and cheese.

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Make Five Spice Chicken

This Five Spice Chicken recipe features anise, cinnamon, cloves and pepper, and requires a multi-day marinade.

This Five Spice Chicken recipe features anise, cinnamon, cloves and pepper, and requires a multi-day marinade.

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Chinese five spice powder is a blend of spices (often containing more than 5 spices) with the warm musty aroma of anise, cinnamon, cloves and pepper. It’s a signature flavor of many Chinese dishes including Char Siu and Cantonese Roast Pork.

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Customize Your Quinoa Bowl Toppings

This Kale Quinoa Bowl recipe features plantains, avocado, pickled radishes, and a hard-boiled egg for a nutrient-dense meal.

This Kale Quinoa Bowl recipe features plantains, avocado, pickled radishes, and a hard-boiled egg for a nutrient-dense meal.

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This is my go-to dinner. This is definitely a far cry from a real recipe where there are exact measurements and ratios. Instead I say make it your own with what you might have in your kitchen. Think of this almost like an idea or blueprint to what you could make with what you have in your pantry.

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Make Tatsoi with Oyster Sauce

Tatsoi with Oyster Sauce is a Chinese stir-fry recipe that is quick to prepare.

Tatsoi with Oyster Sauce is a Chinese stir-fry recipe that is quick to prepare.

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This stir-fry, seasoned with oyster sauce and garlic is one of my favorite preparations of dark leafy greens. Redolent of garlic and toasted sesame oil, this quick vegetable side comes together in less than five minutes, yet it’s loaded with flavor.

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Make Tostones with Mojo Sauce

Tostones are twice fried plantains common in Latin American cuisine. It is paired with mojo sauce, which is made with sour oranges.

Tostones are twice fried plantains common in Latin American cuisine. It is paired with mojo sauce, which is made with sour oranges.

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As a kid who grew up most of her life in South Florida, I grew up eating plantains in all different kinds of iterations: in desserts, very ripe next to rice (maduros), super crispy, straight out of a chip bag, and this way, as tostones. I actually didn’t learn how to make tostones until I went off to college and had a Dominican roommate. I’d watch her slice up the greenest of plantains, fry them up, then smash them and re-fry them. They were my favorite snack.

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Make Honey Lemongrass Chicken

Honey Lemongrass Chicken features chicken marinated in lemongrass then caramelized in a honey glaze for a Chinese entree.

Honey Lemongrass Chicken features chicken marinated in lemongrass then caramelized in a honey glaze for a Chinese entree.

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While lemongrass is a key component in Southeast Asian dishes such as Beef Rendang or Satay Skewers it almost always comes in a larger bunch than I can use in any of these dishes. That’s why I’ve come up with several ways of using up leftover lemongrass.

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Make Red Lentil Hummus for a Snack

Red Lentil Hummus substitute lentils for chickpeas for a smoother version of hummus.

Red Lentil Hummus substitute lentils for chickpeas for a smoother version of hummus.

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Did you play Powerball? I thought the excitement around a billion dollars was pretty fun. When I went into the gas station near my house, there was a line out the door. You could feel the excitement and hope in the air and I was really into it.

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Make Bean Sprouts Garlic Scape Salad

Bean Sprouts Garlic Scape Salad is a quick Asian side dish with a crunchy texture and toasted sesame seeds.

Bean Sprouts Garlic Scape Salad is a quick Asian side dish with a crunchy texture and toasted sesame seeds.

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This is my own take on the Korean side kongnamul muchim, using garlic scapes in place of the garlic and scallions. It comes together in about 5 minutes and makes for a satisfying side with a crisp crunchy texture and heady aroma of toasted sesame seeds. By using garlic scapes, it not only adds a dash of color to the salad, it also adds a mellow sweetness and garlic flavor.

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