gorgonzola + honey crostini

I’m currently in the sky, headed back to the West Coast! I’ll call it the “best” coast if it feels more like the fall weather I enjoyed in New York, and less like the summer weather I didn’t enjoy in LA this past weekend. (I loved being in NYC, the energy feels so different than in LA – I only wish I could have extended my trip so that I could have stayed longer than 36 hours!)

But back to the weather (I am from the midwest after all, and we do like to talk about it), I’m ready for squash and soup and chili and hot tea ALL the time! Temps in the 80’s make that complicated.

Gorgonzola + Honey Crostini |anutritionisteats.com

But I’ll try not to complain about the weather and continue to drown my weather woes with good appetizers. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Appetizers are the way to my heart. They are my heart.

Gorgonzola + Honey Crostini |anutritionisteats.com

And easy appetizers are best. Because when you’re hungry, you’re HUNGRY!

Here, crunchy crostini is topped with creamy and slightly pungent gorgonzola cheese (I used a triple cream!) and a drizzle of sweet honey. You can’t go wrong with this combination. Crunchy, creamy, sweet and salty.

Gorgonzola + Honey Crostini |anutritionisteats.com

Three minutes until crostini is in your belly.

  1. Lightly toast bread
  2. Spread cheese
  3. Drizzle honey
  4. Lightly toast again

Gorgonzola + Honey Crostini |anutritionisteats.com

Perfection in a bite.

Gorgonzola + Honey Crostini
 
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Ingredients
  • french baguette
  • 4 oz gorgonzola (or blue) cheese
  • honey
Instructions
  1. Lightly broil bread for about 2-3 minutes, until golden brown.
  2. Spread blue cheese and drizzle with honey.
  3. Broil crostini for another 2 minutes, or until cheese has melted.

pumpkin hummus with crispy sage

(Thank you all for the sweet, sweet comments on my exciting news! It means so much.)

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

How was the weekend? We were both a little under the weather but managed to look at two apartments. Neither are good and I’m not looking forward to the massive search ahead of us, but, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen not thinking about it. (It’s good to ignore your problems, right?) I made a sausage & lentil gumbo (from food52), protein pancake muffins, curried tuna salad and THIS pumpkin hummus with crispy sage.

On Friday afternoon, I set out a can of pumpkin on the counter because something, just SOMETHING needed to be made with pumpkin.

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

I know what you’re thinking…just what the world needs, another pumpkin recipe.

But it is the season and I’m 99% certain that it will be the only pumpkin recipe I share this year. So I feel ok about it.

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

Speaking of pumpkin, if you are pumpkin-obsessed, be sure to check out these tempting, healthy pumpkin breakfast recipes:

I’m more of a savory person, so I went with the savory (and appetizer!) route with pumpkin hummus with crispy sage. Do you know what crispy sage is?

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

Let me tell you. It’s sage that’s cooked in sizzling butter. With garlic. It’s definitely what takes this from being regular hummus….to OMG hummus!

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

The pumpkin flavor isn’t too intense in this dip, but it’s there. And it tastes like fall. It would make the perfect appetizer for all of these parties coming up, or you know, just snacking at home as I love to do. :)

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

I decided to serve my pumpkin hummus with crostini because I wanted it to feel a little more special than your run-of-the-mill hummus with pita chips but you could use just about anything. And you’ll want to dip just about anything in this hummus, trust!

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage | anutritionisteats.com

Pumpkin Hummus with Crispy Sage
 
Author:
Serves: 3 cups (6 servings)
Ingredients
  • 1-15 oz can garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped sage
Instructions
  1. Combine beans, pumpkin, olive oil and salt in food processor.
  2. Process until desired consistency. I like to leave mine a little chunky and rustic.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Heat butter in small pan over medium heat.
  5. Add garlic, turn down to medium-low and stir occasionally for 1 minute.
  6. Add sage and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Drizzle butter mixture over hummus and sprinkle with sea salt.
  8. Serve with crostini, crackers or bread.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 184 Fat: 15 grams Carbohydrates: 11 grams Sugar: 1 gram Fiber: 3 grams Protein: 3 grams

PS. I’m taking any and all apartment-hunting advice…

honey-thyme marinated sharp cheddar

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar | anutritionisteats.com

On our early-morning flight home from DC last week, I was far too exhausted to read the book I planned on reading (I’m currently reading Steve Jobs), so I picked up the November issue of the Food Network Magazine. (Buying magazines at the airport is definitely a guilty pleasure of mine!)

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar | anutritionisteats.com

And in between short sleeps on that cross-country flight, I paged through the magazine, ripping out the recipes I want to try. I love the variety that comes in a magazine like Food Network. I currently only subscribe to two food magazines: Bon Appétit, which is great for more modern, upscale recipes and I just re-subscribed to Rachael Ray Magazine, which is great for simpler, family-friendly meals. Often times, I like to merge the two styles into my own cooking style.

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar | anutritionisteats.com

Given that the Food Network is my favorite tv channel, I always enjoy the magazine from time to time. (Food Network side note: I really miss Rachael Ray’s cooking shows.)

But the cheese! This marinated cheese recipe in the magazine caught my eye, right away! I used to buy marinated feta ALL the time (it’s amazing on salads) and any recipe with cheese as the star…well, it’s bound to catch my eye.

In this recipe, sharp cheddar cheese is marinated with olive oil, honey, thyme, smashed garlic clove and red pepper flakes. It’s a bit sweet and a bit hot with a hint of garlic and so much better than sharp cheddar on it’s own. It’s perfect for snacking straight out of the bowl, or as an accompaniment to crackers, of course!

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar | anutritionisteats.com

Traditionally, cheese plates include a sweet and spicy component – here, it’s all combined! I have a feeling it will become your new favorite appetizer. Bring it to every party, serve it at every party. You can’t go wrong with this easy crowd-pleaser!

Serving suggestion: remove the garlic before serving so no one accidentally thinks its cheese…it happened.

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar | anutritionisteats.com

Honey-Thyme Marinated Sharp Cheddar
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 8 oz block of sharp cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 4-6 sprigs of thyme
  • red pepper flakes
  • salt
Instructions
  1. Cut up cheddar into little squares. (Small enough to eat in one bite!)
  2. Combine remaining ingredients in small bowl (red pepper flakes amount depends on how much heat you want!) and toss with cheese.
  3. Marinate at room temperature for at least a half hour, or make ahead and marinate overnight in the refrigerator if possible.
Notes
The flavors get more intense over time, so if it's best to make a day or two in advance!

 

sautéed banana oatmeal

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

The heat wave finally broke in LA, and now that we can pretend like it’s fall along with everyone else, I’ve got oatmeal on the brain! I love making oatmeal from scratch (as opposed to using the flavored, instant versions – though I use them from time to time!) and loading it with extra flavor, a little sweetness and some protein and/or fat to keep me satisfied until lunchtime.

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

And I can say without a doubt that this sautéed banana oatmeal is going to be a staple this fall. It’s sweet, it’s creamy and it tastes quite decadent. It’s the best of both worlds. It’s enjoyable enough for a weekend breakfast, but it’s also healthy enough for a weekday breakfast! (I like to keep breakfasts and lunches pretty healthy during the week but the weekends are another story.)

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

Sautéing the bananas, as opposed to just topping cooked oatmeal with raw bananas takes this breakfast from “Ugh, it’s Monday” to “Mmm, it’s Sunday morning and I have the whole day to myself!” It’s ridiculously easy too.

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

How easy?

  1. Slice bananas.
  2. Heat coconut oil in nonstick pan and add bananas.
  3. Sprinkle with brown sugar.
  4. Serve over hot oatmeal with hot milk.

And that’s it.

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal | anutritionisteats.com

You’ll be “Mmm-ing” and “Yumm-ing” no matter how early you had to wake up!

Sautéed Banana Oatmeal
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 servings oatmeal, prepared as directed
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 medium sized bananas, sliced
  • 2-3 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 cup milk for serving
Instructions
  1. Heat coconut oil in medium sized pan.
  2. Add bananas to pan and cook for about a minute, stirring briefly.
  3. Sprinkle brown sugar over bananas, cook for one minute and stir so that mixture coats all bananas.
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Divide bananas over oats and serve with warm milk.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 496 Fat: 20 grams Carbohydrates: 72 grams Sugar: 33 grams Fiber: 7 grams Protein: 10 grams