Strawberry Goat Cheese Quesadillas with Mint and Caramelized Onion

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The World’s Most Delicious (and EASY!) Chocolate Cake (2014)

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I don’t know about you all, or if this is just a Georgia thing, but there are strawberries Everywhere! It’s awesome!

For the last few week I have been eating strawberries like they are going out of style, and I have no intention to stop.

My normal method of eating strawberries is to slice them up and put them in my morning oatmeal or on top of a bagel. However, I have grown to really love strawberries in the main course and in side dishes. People do not expect to see strawberries in their wraps or in their salad, but I have never received a complaint!

So, if you’re feeling a little springy, healthy, and like trying something new, give these delicious quesadillas a try! Strawberries on the dinner table or in the lunchbox will make everybody happy. 🙂

Come back soon!

Love, Sarah

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Ingredients*:

  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 box of button mushrooms
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Black Cherry Balsamic Vinegar (or regular BV)*
  • 1 pint of strawberries, rinsed and sliced thin
  • 5 sprigs of mint leaves, rinsed and diced
  • 6 ounces honey goat cheese
  • 10 whole wheat tortillas* (Use gluten free quesadillas if needed!)

Directions:

  1. Slice the onion and mushrooms into small strips/ bite size pieces.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and mushrooms and sauté, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and beginning to brown. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, and cook for another few minutes until the onions look slightly caramelized. Remove from heat.
  3. Assemble the quesadillas by spreading a layer of goat cheese on a tortillas. Top with sliced strawberries, diced mint leaves, and a hearty spoonful of the onion/mushroom mixture.
  4. Place in a large frying pan over medium heat, and top with another goat-cheese spread tortilla. (Do not use oil or non-stick spray! The oil will make the tortilla soggy and ruin the quesadilla!). Cook for a few minutes on each side, remove from the skillet, and cut with a pizza cutter.
  5. Serve warm and enjoy!

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Notes and Tips!:

  • I made these quesadillas for a potluck, which is why there are 10 tortillas listed. Feel free to half the ingredient list to fit your own serving needs!
  • Looking for Black Cherry Balsamic Vinegar? I got mine at a specialty Balsamic Vinegar and Olive Oil store in Kansas City, however grocery stores such as Whole Foods also carry a variety of vinegars, and any fruit flavored balsamic vinegar will have a similar affect! If all else fails, regular BV will also work well!
  • Like this recipe? Try these other spring dishes from ‘A Rented Kitchen’ (recipe links found below photos!):

Honey-Roasted Pears With Lavender

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So this dish is delicious. Seriously and dangerously delicious.

I know I say that about a lot of things, which I hold to be true, but THIS! This is good.

There is something really special about this dish. The pairing of the zesty lemon juice with the fragrant herb, and the sweet savory mascarpone cheese- yes please. I promise you will love it.

One additional pro, (I could go on, but I will spare you!), is that this dish is very simple to prepare, but is very elegant in presentation and appearance. Bookmark this one for the next time you have company, and come back tomorrow for one more lavender recipe!

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Lavender Week

Day One- Lavender Hot Chocolate with Homemade Whipped Cream

Day Two- Roasted Yukon Potatoes with Lavender

Day Three- Lemon Lavender Loaf

Day Four- Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Hazelnuts and Lavender

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Ingredients

  • ½ Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 large, ripe pears, halved
  • ¼ cup local honey
  • 2 sprigs fresh lavender
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 Tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons mascarpone cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F, and smooth a thin layer of butter on a 7 x 11 inch baking dish.
  2. Arrange the pears, cut side up, in the baking dish. Drizzle with honey, and then sprinkle the lemon zest and lavender over top.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, remove from the oven, and spoon the honey from the dish back over the pears. Bake an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the pears are soft and golden.
  4. Remove from the oven and top with 1 teaspoon of mascarpone cheese, drizzle the remaining honey in the baking pan, serve warm and enjoy!

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Notes and Tips!:

  • Adapted from: Health
  • Like this recipe? Try these other delicious dishes from A Rented Kitchen! (Recipe links below):

 

Cranberry Orange Sauce

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Sooooo, Thanksgiving.

It has come and gone, and boy was it good. I hope you found yourself surrounded by family, and hopefully some of your favorite dishes!

If you were staying tuned before Thanksgiving, I posted a few updates on potential menus for Thanksgiving (check it out here!). There are always more recipes and dishes I would love to make and share than I have time or energy for. However, as you may have guessed, this cranberry orange sauce is one recipe that made the cut, showing up on our Thanksgiving table! It was delicious!

Without turkey at the meal, some may wonder why my vegetarian family would have cranberry sauce. That’s a good question. Part of it is nostalgia and habit. My parents and brother have only been vegetarian for a few years, so they are used to a thanksgiving celebration with cranberry sauce and turkey on the table. Thus, we kept the cranberry sauce, despite forgetting the turkey! However, in addition to turkey, cranberry sauce goes really well over roasted asparagus, roasted Brussels sprouts, eaten plain, and spread on biscuits- similar to jam.

While I do love canned cranberry sauce, (I know, I’ll admit it), this three ingredient sauce feels soooo much healthier and natural. Not to mention, this recipe is incredibly easy, with only one pot to clean! Thus, you have no reason not to try it!

It’s easy, it’s simple, it goes well on SO much more than just turkey, and it is bound to be a crowd pleaser.

Tis’ the season 🙂

Happy cooking!

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Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • ½ cup sugar, or more, to taste
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 (12-ounce) bag fresh cranberries

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan combine the first four ingredients. Cook, over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Add the cranberries to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and let simmer, uncovered, until sauce has thickened, about 20 minutes.
  3. Cool completely before serving.
  4. Optional: Garnish with an additional sprinkle of orange zest!

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Notes and Tips!:

  • Yield: About 3 cups
  • Source: Damn Delicious
  • Like this recipe? Check out these other scrumptious dishes form ‘A Rented Kitchen’ (recipe links found below!):

Spiced Pumpkin Pie Dip

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Hello Wonderful People!

If you are reading this it is either because:

  1. You’re my friend and thought you’d look into how I have been spending all my free time this week. (Haiiiii guys)
  2. You really love pumpkin and found this page courtesy of social media or a search engine. (I love pumpkin too! Linger a while- I got some yummy recipes headed your way!)
  3. You’re lost. (Look at all the chocolate though! Why leave now?)

Regardless of the reason, I’m glad you’re here and reading this page. Today brings us to day three of Pumpkin Week, which means yet another delicious pumpkin recipe to add to your collection.

I made this pumpkin dip over the weekend and somehow managed to kill an entire box of ginger snaps and two apples with this dip- All. By. Myself.

Wooooops.

I share this confessional to attribute to how absolutely incredible this dip is! You are going to become addicted- I’m warning you! Perfect for potlucks, holiday parties, or a healthy snack with an apple, I highly suggest adding this to your regular collection of recipes! With only one mixing bowl, a few minutes of your time, and an incredible flavor- you’ve got nothing to loose!

Dig in! And Come back tomorrow for more of A Rented Kitchen’s Pumpkin Week!

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Pumpkin Week

Day One- Pumpkin Recipe Review!

Day Two- Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

Day Three- Pumpkin Pie Dip

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Ingredients:

  • 6 oz Vanilla Greek Yogurt
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 can (15oz) pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • 4 oz Cool Whip
  • Serve with ginger snaps and apple slices!

Directions: 

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and whisk together until smooth and blended.
  2. Refrigerate for one hour to allow the flavors to blend.
  3. Serve with apple slices, graham crackers, and ginger snaps!

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Notes and Tips!:

  • Source: Shugary sweets
  • Stores well in a refrigerated air-tight container for several days!
  • Like this recipe? Check out these other delicious treats from ‘A Rented Kitchen’ (Recipe links found below photos):

 

Harvest Peach and Cherry Summer Salad

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There are a lot of pros and cons to moving around the country. However, one major pro to moving from Kansas to Georgia, is Georgia peaches. Holy cow, there is seriously nothing better than Georgia peaches!

Last summer my family had the opportunity to go pick peaches while on vacation, and I went a little crazy with the peach recipes. However, despite my deep love of the fruit, this ingredient combination was one entirely new to me. As strange as it may sound to combine some of these sweet and savory flavors together, the flavors beautifully compliment each other, blossoming under the dressing and making this fruit salad unique, visually striking, and delicious to eat!

If you have any summer peaches left sitting on your window sill, try whipping together this delicious fruit salad. You just might fall in love.

Not ready to be so bold and adventurous with your last sacred peaches of the summer? Try these other delicious peach recipes from ‘A Rented Kitchen’! Like I said earlier, with peaches, you just can’t go wrong.

Peach Favorites:

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Ingredients:

  • 1 large yellow peach
  • 1 heirloom tomato
  • 1 cup cherries, halved and pitted
  • 2 Tablespoons basil, chiffonade (roll up and chopped into ribbons)
  • 2 Tablespoons cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon mint, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 Tablespoon agave nectar
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Slice the peach into thin slices, and toss, along with the cherries, into a medium sized serving bowl.
  2. Cube the tomato into one-inch chunks, and add to the peach and cherry mix.
  3. Gently stir in the herbs.
  4. In a small measuring cup, whisk together the lime juice, agave, olive oil, salt, and pepper until thoroughly blended. Drizzle over the herbs and fruit, serve, and enjoy!

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Notes and Tips:

  • Yield: 2-4
  • Source: The Kitchy Kitchen
  • Like this recipe? Try these other delicious treats and salads from ‘A Rented Kitchen’! (Recipe links below):