Archive for the ‘Pepper Recipes’ Category

Favorite Raw Red Pepper Hummus Recipe

Monday, May 19th, 2014
Use zucchini from the garden to make hummus, and werve with other garden veggies

Use zucchini from the garden to make hummus, and serve with other garden veggies

Garden Recipe: Raw Red Pepper Hummus

This is now officially my new favorite hummus recipe!  Why, you ask?  ;)   Well, I’ll tell you.
1) The flavor is outstanding!
2) It is very fast to make, requires no cooking, and there’s very little cleanup.
3) It is fresh.  (I don’t particularly care for vegetables stored in metal cans (including beans) nor do I trust the chemicals they use to treat the cans.)
4) It’s very healthy.  Have you ever actually looked at the ingredient list on the storebought hummus?  Very scary.  This recipe contains only healthy good stuff to fill your tummy and nourish your body.

1 cup chopped zucchini
1 chopped red bell pepper
2 small cloves fresh garlic, minced
juice from 1 lemon
1/8 cup extra virgin, cold pressed olive oil
1 tsp sea salt (more to taste, if desired)
3/4 tsp ground cumin
1/3 c tahini
pinch cayenne (to taste)

Put everything in the food processor & process until smooth.  If the lemon’s too strong, add a little more tahini.  Let sit for a couple of hours before serving, for the flavors to meld.  Serve with other fresh garden vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, scallions etc.) or with whole wheat crackers.  (My hubby likes to eat it on Ezekial bread.) 

This recipe easily doubles to make a tasty take along for pot-lucks and parties.

Note:  it will be a little soupier than the storebought version. cut back on the liquid ingredients a little, if that’s a concern.

Garden Recipes – Garden Pasta Salad

Saturday, March 31st, 2012

A Garden Recipe Idea from

Pasta salad is one of my favorites for keeping in the fridge.  Makes great quick lunches, side-dishes for supper, snacks, etc.  And you can do just about whatever suits your fancy with them (see my entry on BLT pasta salad, just to prove that point!) :)   Plus, it’s a handy way to introduce some fiber and raw vegetables into the meals.

I’ll describe what I used for this variation, but put your creative hat on & use what you and your family enjoy.

- 1 box pasta, fully cooked (I prefer whole wheat pasta)
- 1 cucumber, quartered and sliced into bite sized pieces
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 1/2 cup fresh spinach, finely chopped
- 1 small red onion, finely diced
- 2 tbsp dried parsley (or 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley)
- 1 cup diced cheddar (small dice)
- enough salad dressing to lightly moisten the mixture (I used Ceasar dressing)

Mix all ingredients, chill and serve.

Other suggestions: Parmesan cheese, olives, cherry tomatoes, artichokes, steamed asparagus, beans, red cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, snow peas, zucchini

Hummus Recipe

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

A Garden Recipe Idea from

Hummus Recipe

Hummus is such a tasty treat – and home-made is even better than the store-bought varieties.  Besides tasting better, have you ever looked at the ingredient list on the packages of hummus at the grocery store?  There are so many chemicals listed there, it’s a little frightening (particularly for something that you’re expecting to be healthy).  Never fear – making your own, while a little time-consuming, isn’t difficult.

If you’re not familiar with hummus yet, it’s a Middle-eastern spread/dip made from ground garbanzo beans, tahini (sesame paste), a little olive oil, and whatever flavoring you’d like.  It’s high in protein and quite nutritious.  We use it as a sandwich spread, and as a dip for crackers, vegetables, etc.

Note:  Mine in the picture above is a little moister than I usually like it.  But, my food processor went on the blink, so had to use the blender.  And, my blender needs more moisture to chop than the food processor does.  Still, it’s spreadable, nutritious and tasty.

Hummus Recipe:

Rinse 3/4 cup dried garbanzo beans (chick peas).  Place in a bowl and cover with water.  Add. 1 tsp apple cider vinegar.   Let soak overnight.

Note:  adding the vinegar to the soak, will help the beans cook faster the next day (this is true for any beans that you soak).

Drain beans and place in a pot.  Cover with water so that there’s 2″ of water over the top of the beans.  Bring to a boil, and boil until quite tender.

Drain, but save the cooking water.

Place the garbanzo beans in the food processor, along with:

  • 3/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons tahini sauce
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Blend until smooth, adding a little of the cooking water as needed to the mixture until it’s the consistency you like.

Add your favorite seasonings (have fun experimenting!) (My favorite’s roasted red pepper.)

To roast peppers:

  • preheat the oven on the broil setting
  • coat the pepper(s) with vegetable oil
  • place under the broiler, watching for the skin to blacken
  • when the skin is fairly blackened, turn the pepper so that another side is facing up, and let blacken.
  • continue until all sides are roasted.
  • remove pepper and place in a bowl, and immediately cover tightly with aluminum foil.  Let sit until cool.  (this steams the pepper & finishes cooking it).
  • Once cool, peel the skin off, slice the pepper open.  Remove the seeds and pulverize in the food processor with the hummus.  (I add a little garlic and cayenne also.)

Note:  Share your garden recipes (or your comments on these recipes) with your fellow gardeners by emailing them to:

Garden Recipes: Salsa Recipe

Friday, September 16th, 2011

A Garden Recipe Idea from

What a wonderful and easy treat to make… home made salsa.  And a delicious way to enjoy the efforts of your summer garden.

I always make a ton of salsa & can it for winter, but you can make it in whatever size batch you like.

A note about preparing the tomatoes:  Some people prefer to remove the skins also.  I leave them as that’s where so much of the nutrient value is.  And, as I grow my tomatoes organically, no worries about pesticide residue.  Also, if you’re wondering about why you remove the seeds, it’s because they have such a high water content.  Removing them will help make your salsa less runny.

I like a salsa that’s more tomato-ey.  So, I do a ratio of double the tomatoes vs the combined peppers.  You can change the ratio to suit your own tastes though.

Salsa Recipe

2 cups chopped tomatoes
1 cup chopped peppers (combined sweet and hot)
1 cup diced onions
1 minced garlic clove
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp minced cilantro
1 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan.  Boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Note:  if your salsa’s runny, you can simmer until it’s the consistency you like.  Chill and serve.

Note:  Share your garden recipes (or your comments on these recipes) with your fellow gardeners by emailing them to:

Also, fresher is always better… better taste, and higher nutritional content.  To  learn more about how to grow your own produce to use in these (or your own) garden recipes,  see also:

How to Grow Tomatoes

How to Grow Peppers

How to Grow Cilantro

How to Grow Onions

How to grow Garlic




Garden Recipes: Aloo Palak recipe (Indian cuisine for Spinach and Potatoes)

Saturday, February 19th, 2011

A Garden Fresh Recipe Idea /

This is one of our new favorites.  A very flavorful  vegetarian dish (as a main dish, or a side dish) that’s a great way to use vegetables from the garden too.

1 bag/box of spinach, washed.
2 cloves garlic
1″ fresh ginger root, chopped finely
2 onions chopped
2 green chili peppers (optional), chopped
4 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 tsp tumeric
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cumin seed
1 tsp garam masala (indian spice mixture)
Note:  if you don’t have access to this, you can use  a mixture of cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg instead (primary ingredients in this spice blend))
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp cumin

I left the peppers out, well – mostly because I didn’t have any at the time.  It still turned out delicious!

Saute garlic, onions, ginger, peppers, and spinach for 10 minutes, stirring as needed.  Empty into food processor and puree.  Set aside.

Boil potatoes with salt and tumeric until done (when fork is inserted easily into potato cube).  Note:  only add enough water to cover the potatoes.  More water will dilute the flavor of the tumeric.

Add everything together and simmer for a few minutes to blend flavors.  Serve over rice, or with pita type bread on the side.

Also – I left some of the potatoes out of the mixture, to see if I’d like them by themselves.   The flavor seemed to change after they’d had a chance to sit a little, and I think would make a simple but delightful side dish for other meals.

Note:  Share your garden recipes (or your comments on these recipes) with your fellow gardeners by emailing them to:

Also, fresher is always better… better taste, and higher nutritional content.  To  learn more about how to grow your own produce to use in these (or your own) garden recipes,  see also:

How to Grow Spinach

How to Grow Onions

How to Grow Potatoes

How to Grow Peppers

How to Grow Garlic

Garden Recipes: Sour Cream Refrigerator Pickles Recipe

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

A Garden Recipe Idea from

This is another family favorite way to prepare refrigerator pickles…

Sour Cream Refrigerator Pickles Recipe

1 small package of sour cream
Cucumbers, washed and sliced very thinly (peel, if desired, before slicing)
1 medium sized onion, halved and sliced thinly
1 green pepper (optional), seeded and diced.
fresh (or dried) dill

Wash & slice cucumbers.  Salt and stir.  Let sit in fridge overnight. (The salt draws some of the water out).  Empty water from bowl & mix in remaining ingredients.  The flavor is best, if you give this dish a chance to sit for several hours before serving.

Note:  Share your garden recipes (or your comments on these recipes) with your fellow gardeners by emailing them to:

Also, fresher is always better… better taste, and higher nutritional content.  To  learn more about how to grow your own produce to use in these (or your own) garden recipes,  see also:

How to Grow Cucumbers

How to Grow Dill

How to Grow Onions

How to Grow Peppers

Potluck tomato basil salad

Saturday, June 13th, 2009

I like to take this one to potlucks.  It’s so bright, colorful, flavorful, and healthful.  There’s not usually many healthy alternatives at potlucks, so it’s generally greatly appreciated.

Sorry – again one that I don’t measure. .. but that’s the way I tend to cook (unless I’m baking), if you haven’t figured that out yet.

- Cherry or grape tomatoes, washed, drained, and halved.
- a large handful of basil leaves, washed, drained, and shredded.
- scallions or red onions, diced finely
- celery washed, drained and diced (optional)
- 1 clove of very finely crushed, diced garlic (go easy on the garlic if this is for a potluck or public supper… most folks don’t take kindly to strong garlic.  I, on the otherhand, can never get enough of it! :)
- basalmic vinegar
- black pepper to taste

Toss everything together, adding only enough vinegar to flavor lightly. (you don’t want soupy salad, and the tomatoes will release their juices as the dish sits… keep that in mind.)  If you make it a bit ahead of time and find that it’s too soupy, you can drain the dish and add a little extra basalmic vinegar again.

I like to garnish with a small, pretty sprig of basil.

To “fancy” the dish up a little, I’ll place the bowl w/salad on a platter.  Fill the platter that’s exposed (not covered by the bowl) with shredded lettuce and a few quartered black olives for accent (or even a little shredded motzerella cheese), or crackers with slices of fresh mozzarella cheese.  Note:  Don’t mix the cheese in with the salad.  While it’ll be tasty, it’ll end up looking disappointingly unappetizing.


PS – if you like a little zip to your dish, add a hint of finely diced jalepeno.  Remember to wash your hands very well when you’re done chopping or you’ll be sorry!

Alfredo Veggie Lasagne

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

I love to serve Italian for company.  It makes such a hearty, warm, satisfying meal that creates a mood of comfort and conversation.  This is a good one for that… it’s hard to go wrong with alfredo lasagne (of course, check w/your guests for lacto-issues first!).

- 12 lasagne noodles, cooked to package directions.
- 2 medium sized zucchini, washed, trimmed, and sliced.  I like to halve lentghtwise, then slice into 1/4″ thick bite sized slices.
- 2 medium sized summer squash, prepared same as zucchini.
- 2 cups shredded motzerella cheese
- 2 tbsp parsley flakes
- 2 tspn dried oregano
- one carton ricotta cheeese (mix with 1 tbsp parsley flakes)

Make alfredo sauce:
1 stick unsalted butter, melted)
3 cloves fresh crushed, diced garlic (I LOVE garlic though… use your own judgement on quantity for your tastes.)
1 large onion, diced

Saute garlic and onion in butter over medium heat until just tender.

Add 1 cup of heavy cream, and 1 cup of parmesan (or romano, or mixed) freshly grated cheese.  Add parsley and oregano, and salt/pepper to taste.  Turn heat to low and stir until melted and blended.  Remove from heat.

Grease your lasagne pan, and place a single layer of the noodles, then a layer of ricotta, then zucchini, then alfredo, then noodles, then ricotta, then squash, then alfredo… continue until out of ingredients, or out of space in the pan.   Top with shredded motzerella.

Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.  Remove from heat and let stand for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.

Use any extra ingredients for an impromptu pasta meal another day!

***Also, for a little variety, try a version using sauteed asparagus, onions, and mushrooms!  Or, broccoli and carrots.  Or sun dried tomatoes, peppers and black olives.  Or Spinach/Other Greens and mushrooms.  Use your imagination for a creative, beautiful, and tasty meal option!  :)

*** Remember, while there’s nothing like freshly made italian food…  the flavors only get even better after they sit for a day.  The flavors meld and strengthen… so go aheaad and make extra and enjoy it as leftovers!

Garden Pilaf

Monday, May 4th, 2009

Use rice, or other grains for variety, like Quinoa.  Precook the rice (or other grain), per directions on the grain package.  I like to use a broth like vegetable, chicken or fish instead of water when cooking the rice.  It adds an extra depth of flavor to the dish.

1/2 cup diced carrot
1/2 cup diced onion (or green onion)
1/4 cup diced red pepper
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup diced green pepper (I prefer to leave out the green pepper with this dish)
6 cups cooked rice or grain
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 tsp oregano
1 cup almond slivers
1/4 cup olive oil

Saute vegetables in olive oil just until they start to soften.  Add oregano.  Add to the cooked rice and mix well.  Salt to taste.

Dry roast the almonds in a hot skillet until lightly golden brown.  Add to the pilaf and serve.

Shrimp Scampi Recipe

Sunday, April 12th, 2009

This is my version of Shrimp scampi.  It’s a very pretty dish, fast and easy to make, and my husband absolutely loved it… kept asking me to make sure I remember how I made it, to make it again another day!

1 bag of med-sized shrimp (cooked)
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
6 garlic medium sized garlic cloves, crushed and minced
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 cup freshly ground romano/parmesan cheese
1 tbsp lemon juice

Prepare the garlic first (it should sit for 10  minutes after being crushed, before cooking, for it to provide the most nutritional and health-giving properties to your meal).

Heat the olive oil and butter in a skillet over medium high heat.  Add the garlic and saute for a few minutes before adding peppers.  When the peppers are nearly done (to whatever degree of crispness you prefer), add the shrimp, parsley and lemon juice.  Cook for a few minutes until the shrimp are heated through.  Stir in the romano/parmesan.

Serve over a bed of your favorite pasta.