Category Archives: Side Dish

Kale and Red Pepper Fried Rice

Jasmine rice is fried in toasted sesame seed oil along with freshly chopped onion, kale and diced sweet red pepper. A perfect, healthy meal ready in less than 20 minutes!

Fried Rice with Kale and Roasted Red Pepper...a quick, easy dinner ready in less than 20 minutes!

Technology makes me want to throw things against the wall.

One might think that since I am a blogger, I get it. One would be wrong. One would be super duper wrong.

Fried Rice with Kale and Roasted Red Pepper...a quick, easy dinner ready in less than 20 minutes!

On Tuesday and well into Wednesday my site crashed. Like big time. If you’re a regular reader (I hope you are!) you probably noticed, and just in case you were planning on making one of my recipes for dinner on Tuesday and I ruined it I am so super sorry! I didn’t mean to, I swear!

Somewhere up in the clouds Maebells just got lost for a while. Luckily, it is back up and running now. But it did make me realize how very much I do enjoy this little virtual friendship we have here. I like you guys, like a whole lot, so it kind of threw me off my game to suddenly not be able to share things with you. Super fabulous things like this crazy easy Kale and Red Pepper Fried Rice!

Fried Rice with Kale and Roasted Red Pepper...a quick, easy dinner ready in less than 20 minutes!

Last weekend I wanted something for lunch that was healthy and filling but I wasn’t feeling a salad. Fried rice totally fit the bill (when does fried rice not fit the bill?!) instead of going the normal peas and carrots route I opted for freshly sliced kale and little red sweet peppers. The result was a totally fantastic grown up version of fried rice.

Fried Rice with Kale and Roasted Red Pepper...a quick, easy dinner ready in less than 20 minutes!

This is a great vegetarian meal by itself, or you could throw in shrimp or chicken for a tasty change up. Then of course, if you want to go all out you can make it with this Kung Pao Chicken for the ultimate Asian inspired feast!

Kale and Red Pepper Fried Rice
Recipe type: Main Dish, Side Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Jasmine rice is fried in toasted sesame seed oil along with freshly chopped kale and diced sweet red pepper. A perfect, healthy meal ready in less than 20 minutes!
Ingredients
  • 2 cups cooked jasmine rice (very dry, works best if it is a couple days old)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2½ tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2½ cups chopped kale
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup sweet red pepper or bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • ⅛ cup reduced sodium soy sauce
Instructions
  1. Heat a large skillet or wok to medium high heat.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in skillet and add minced garlic. Stir garlic approximately 30 seconds or until fragrant.
  3. Add rice to skillet and do not stir, let it cook approximately 1-2 minutes until it begins to lightly brown.
  4. Stir rice, add red pepper and onion, let it cook another minute. Rice should be lightly browned at this point.
  5. Add kale, stirring as you go, kale will shrink up a lot as it cooks, about 30 seconds.
  6. Push rice to one side of the skillet and add the last ½ tablespoon of oil to skillet. Crack egg directly into skillet and scramble it.
  7. Mix egg into fried rice and add soy sauce.

 

Cheddar and Summer Squash Cornmeal Muffins

Cheddar and Summer Squash Cornmeal Muffins

If you have been reading long you know I like to hide as many fruits or vegetables in my recipes as possible. I will eagerly shove some sort of baked good Mr. Maebell’s way and ask with unmasked anticipation “So what do you think?!” when he gives me some sort of approval I blurt out “Guess what’s in it?!” Then he looks at me fearfully until I answer.

This time was no different. When Mr. Maebell got home from work I shoved one of these beauties in his mouth before he even said hello. As he was still chewing his eyes got big and I got a thumbs up. “There are THREE WHOLE SQUASH in there!” I yelled.

Cheddar and Summer Squash Cornmeal Muffins...totally delicious! www.maebells.com

He was way less excited about that then I was.

Three whole squash! I thought that was pretty impressive. Of course, the vegetables are balanced out with some cheese and butter. Magical things happen when cheese and butter are involved, right? :) These are seriously easy and seriously good. It just tastes like good ole comfort food! And a huge plus is that they come together very quickly!

Cheddar and Summer Squash Cornmeal Muffins

Add these to your menu for next week, you won’t be sorry!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Cheddar and Summer Squash Cornmeal Muffins
Recipe type: Side Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup corn meal
  • ½ cup AP flour (I used GF Bisquick)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup packed shredded squash (three small/medium squash)
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Shred your squash and drain off as much water as possible by placing it in a small mesh strainer and pressing it against the side. Alternatively, you can just squeeze the water out of the shredded squash one handful at a time.
  3. Mix the flour, corn meal, baking powder, salt and pepper and mix well. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until well combined.
  4. Lightly spray a 12 count muffin tin with cooking spray. Scoop batter into muffin tin, filling ¾ full. (I used an ice cream scoop)
  5. Bake 12-15 minutes until they are lightly brown and set.

 

Sweet Corn Salad with Cherry Tomatoes and Lime

Grilled Sweet Corn Salad with Tomatoes and Lime

If you follow me on Instagram you know I am a total sucker for the Farmers Market. My Saturday morning ritual is to make the trip downtown, fight someone over a parking spot, circle the whole market twice, scope out what looks good, load my arms as full as I possibly can, then hitting up this little coffee shop on the corner.

I love it. It just seems like such a great way to start the weekend. There is usually a band playing from one of the upper floors of the downtown shops. It is the only time this place we live in now actually reminds me of the town I grew up in. The community, the fellowship, the good food. I love it all.

Grilled Sweet Corn Salad with Tomatoes and Lime

Last week I ended up with a load of sweet corn because I just couldn’t help myself. I knew from the start I wanted to grill it. I just didn’t know what else I wanted to do. Ultimately, I settled on corn salad because the tomatoes I had were absolutely perfect and I knew the combo would be amazing.

It definitely did not disappoint. I grilled the sweet corn, cut it off the cob and threw in some halved cherry tomatoes, a chopped bell pepper, lime juice, cumin, garlic salt, and a little pepper. I topped the salad with a little crumbling cheese and some chopped green onions and cilantro. We ate this with steak, but the leftovers were great with tortilla chips or in a quesadilla.

Grilled Sweet Corn Salad with Tomatoes and Lime

5.0 from 3 reviews
Sweet Corn Salad with Cherry Tomatoes and Lime
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 4 ears sweet corn
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • ½ lime, juiced
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • ¼ cup chopped green onions
  • ¼ cup Queso fresco (or other mexican crumbling cheese)
Instructions
  1. Soak the unshucked ears of sweet corn in water for 20 minutes. (This will prevent the corn from burning the outside before it cooks all the way through) After the corn has soaked remove it from the water and lightly pat dry with a paper towel.
  2. Heat your grill to medium heat. Place the corn directly on the grill and let cook for 25-30 minutes, rotating every 10 minutes.
  3. Remove corn from grill and let it cool
  4. Meanwhile, chop the tomatoes and bell pepper. Place them in a large bowl.
  5. When corn has cooled enough to handle remove the husk and silk (it should easily come off). Then carefully cut the corn off the cob and place it in the bowl with the tomatoes and bell pepper.
  6. Sprinkle with cumin, pepper, and garlic salt and squeeze a lime over the top. Stir until everything is evenly coated.
  7. Top with green onions and the crumbling cheese. Garnish with cilantro if desired.

 

 

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

It is kind of a pet peeve of mine when I hear other people talk about a gluten free lifestyle as a fad. I feel like I am always coming across news articles that talk about people jumping on the gluten free bandwagon. Or when someone who isn’t really familiar with our situation will say “Well gluten free isn’t even healthy” or something silly like that.

Let me just kind of put it in perspective, for some people they choose to avoid it because they feel better without it. Some people avoid it because they have to. Both reasons are valid enough for me. But if Mr. Maebell didn’t have celiac, there is no way we would do this. I would order Pizza Hut right now, or crack open a can of cinnamon rolls. Seriously, I am so not kidding. And I can totally guarantee you he would be drinking a beer he doesn’t have to struggle to swallow. We do it because I kinda sorta really like him, and I want to keep him healthy.

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

Fortunately, we do have to deal with it and I think in a lot of ways it has saved us from making unhealthy choices. I do feel like we have really found a nice balance. I feel like a large portion of our diet is healthy, but another portion is indulgent. Which, in my opinion, is exactly how it should be. Everything in moderation. Thankfully for me, some of the indulgent foods come in the form of bread. We have some sweet breads like this, this, and this little gem, some fantastic buttermilk biscuits, and these Three Cheese Basil Biscuits.

Holy cow. I have no words.

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

So. Good.

These little guys are packed with ricotta cheese, goat cheese, and fresh basil leaves, and then topped with freshly shaved Parmesan. They baked up into these massive, beautiful, fluffy biscuits that were perfect. Better yet, there isn’t a speck of gluten in them.

So just in case you know someone who is gluten free invite them over and bake up these biscuits. They are a game changer.

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

Three Cheese Basil Biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy, you would never guess they are gluten free!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Three Cheese Basil Biscuits
Recipe type: Side
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • For the Biscuits
  • 2 cups Bisquick (I used GF Bisquick)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup ricotta
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 ounces of goat cheese
  • ⅛ cup freshly chopped basil
  • For the Topping
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • ¼ cup parmesan
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Combine flour, baking powder and salt until blended.
  3. Using a fork, pastry blender, or stand mixer cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is incorporated well. The mixture will be course and crumbly.
  4. Add in the ricotta, beaten eggs and slowly add in milk as you stir.
  5. When the dough seems well incorporated lightly fold in the basil and the goat cheese.
  6. The dough should be soft and slightly fluffy.
  7. Flip dough onto floured work surface. Use a biscuit cutter or the top of a mason jar to cut out biscuits. Place biscuits in a greased cast iron skillet or other oven proof dish. Just be sure to place biscuits close together.
  8. Melt the remaining one tablespoon of butter and combine it with the minced garlic. Lightly brush or spoon the garlic butter over the biscuits.
  9. Top with Parmesan cheese.
  10. Bake 15 minutes until fluffy and golden brown. Garnish with additional basil if desired.

 

 

 

Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Rice

My general rule of thumb for recipes that I share with you is pretty simple.

Creamy Cheddar Broccoli Rice

If the recipe is delicious, simple to make, easy to understand, and uses regular ingredients most people already purchase then it goes on the blog.

If it is super complicated and requires a ton of ingredients it is a no go.

Personally, I like both types of recipes. I like quick and easy, but I also like multi step-stand-in-the-kitchen-for-three-hours recipes. I like the challenge.

Creamy Cheddar Broccoli Rice

But from the get go I decided Maebells was going to be a resource for regular people. I want all of the recipes to be easy enough someone learning to cook can follow along, but also something a home cook extraordinaire can appreciate. This Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Rice is just that. Simple, classic flavors that come together for the perfect comfort food.

Creamy Cheesy Broccoli Rice

This dish starts with sautéing onion and minced garlic to add extra flavor to your dish. Then I pour in a good quality chicken broth and bring to a boil. Next, pour in a cup of jasmine rice and let it simmer. By cooking your rice in chicken broth it adds a ton of extra flavor making this dish super rich. After about 10 minutes, the rice is nearly done. I add a little more liquid, give it a stir, and add in the broccoli and spices, cover and let it cook an additional five minutes. All that is left is a hearty dose of cheddar cheese!

I could eat this all by itself as a meal, but it would make a great addition to some grilled chicken or a salmon dish. Or for an extra quick dinner grab a rotisserie chicken and whip this rice dish up in under 20 minutes for a complete, well balanced meal.

Creamy Cheddar Broccoli Rice

5.0 from 1 reviews
Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Rice
Recipe type: Side Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1½ cup chopped broccoli
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a medium size sauce pan over medium heat, add chopped onion and minced garlic and saute 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. In the same sauce pan add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the jasmine rice, cover and reduce temp to low, stirring occasionally. After the rice has simmered on low for 12 minutes remove cover and stir well. Add in two tablespoons butter, ⅓ cup water, salt and pepper, cover and let simmer for 3 more minutes.
  3. After three minutes stir in broccoli. Continue to let the rice cook on low for 4-5 minutes or until your broccoli is the desired tenderness.
  4. Stir in cheese and serve.

 

Italian Herb Kale Chips

I am so predictable.

Italian Kale Chips

This big beautiful bowl of kale is how I kick off my Saturday afternoon. By mid afternoon all of my errands have been run, the house is clean, laundry is well on its way. I have made a couple dishes for the blog, and am ready to kick back for a bit. Kale chips happen to be my afternoon snack of choice. Now, if you haven’t tried kale chips yet you should try them! They are crunchy and full of flavor, it is a completely guilt free snack!

Italian Kale Chips

There is really no wrong way to make kale chips, it is pretty simple. Just tear kale leaves making sure you get rid of the tough stems, spray or toss the leaves in oil and spices, bake until crispy. Pretty simple, right? I have tried a lot of variations, but this is my favorite. A little italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and pepper, and of course a sprinkle of parmesan.

Italian Kale Chips

I prefer to buy a bunch of fresh kale, instead of the bag of already chopped kale they sell at most groceries. The bag of chopped kale has the tough stems mixed in and is usually cut so small your kale chips end up being teeny tiny because they shrink so much when they cook.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Italian Kale Chips
Recipe type: Snack
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • 4 cups (about 4 big handfuls) loosely torn kale, stems removed
  • Spray oil (I used spray olive oil)
  • ¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1.8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon of Parmesan
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Spray a large cookie sheet with cooking spray, place kale leaves in a single layer, spray with cooking spray.
  3. Mix spices in a small bowl, sprinkle evenly on kale.
  4. Bake 10 minutes on the top rack in your oven.
  5. Sprinkle with parmesan, enjoy!

 

 

 

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

If you have glanced at the recipe index you may notice that the number of side dish recipes are kind of sparse.

This is not for lack of trying, I can assure you. I am constantly trying to think of new and exciting side dishes to share with you, however I feel that most of them are far from “blog worthy” so I don’t share them with you. And the ones that are blog worthy are pretty much 100% potato recipes. I cannot help it! I am a carb loving girl! I will take them anyway, baked, mashed, smashed, stewed, grilled, fried, white, red,  or sweet. Whatever, I don’t care. I don’t discriminate! Give me those wonderful, filling carbtastic potatoes. That is all I want!

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

But for fear you guys may not be as fond of this particular vegetable as I am, I try to hold off from bombarding you with a zillion of the same kind of recipes. But these..these Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes are too fantastic not to share! A big plus is that I threw some broccoli in the mix so you can have two side dishes, your greens and your carbs all roasted on one big old pan.

Your going to have to forgive the excess step by step photos today. Sometimes I feel like I am not very good at writing out multistep directions so I hope the photos will help!

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

So, this is how we do it! Grab some potatoes. I used these abnormally large red potatoes, and gave them a rough chop. I chopped mine pretty small because I was starving and I didn’t want to wait an hour for them to finish cooking. Set your potatoes aside and make up your Lemon Dijon glaze. This is so simple, just basic ingredients like olive oil, lemon juice, a good dose of tangy Dijon mustard, a little salt, pepper, and a smidgen of sugar to mellow out the mustard. Then I threw in a tablespoon of minced green onion just for fun. So whisk your mixture until it is nice and creamy. Now, if you are like me and you taste test as you go, your going to think this is crazy because it is a lot of flavor! But fear not, everything comes together nicely when it roasted, so just trust me!

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

Toss your potatoes in about 2/3 of the mixture, reserving some for your broccoli. Grab a nice big cookie sheet, line it with foil and give it a good spray with some cooking oil. Now, sprinkle a little Parmesan on half of the pan, just like I did here. Then place your potatoes directly on the Parmesan. Time to roast! Now your just going to pop the potatoes in the oven for 25-30 minutes.

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

Grab your broccoli and toss it in the rest of the Lemon Dijon sauce. After your potatoes have roasted 25-30 minutes take them out of the oven and give them a good stir. They should be tender and have this fantastic Parmesan crust on them. Place the broccoli on the empty side of the baking sheet and roast for 7-10 more minutes until your broccoli has reached the desired tenderness.

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli

That is it! Fabulous, tangy roast potatoes and broccoli in about 40 minutes! Just serve with lemon wedges and you have a knock your socks off side dish that will please even your pickiest eater!

Lemon Dijon Roast Potatoes and Broccoli
Recipe type: Side Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • 4 cups red potatoes, chopped
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • ¼ cup shredded Parmesan
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray.
  3. Chop potatoes into small chunks, place in a large ziplock bag or bowl, set aside.
  4. Combine olive oil, mustard, lemon juice, green onions, sugar, garlic, salt and pepper in a small mixing bowl or measuring cup.
  5. Toss the potatoes in ⅔ of the mustard mixture.
  6. Sprinkle the parmesan on half of the baking sheet, sprinkle potatoes directly over parmesan. (leaving the other half of the baking sheet empty for your broccoli)
  7. Bake potatoes for 25-30 minutes.
  8. In the same ziplock bag or bowl you tossed your potatoes in toss the broccoli with the rest of the mustard mixture.
  9. After potatoes have roasted for 25-30 minutes remove from oven and lightly stir.
  10. Place the broccoli on the other side of the pan, put back in the oven for 7-10 minutes until broccoli is roasted.
  11. Serve with lemon wedges.