Parsley Salad with Pecans & Dried Cranberries

Parsley Salad with Pecans & Dried Cranberries {Domesticated Academic}

This salad is light, refreshing and highly addictive! I’ve been working to integrate more whole grains in my diet. The best way for me is to make a big batch of something on the weekend so I can eat off of it during the week. I saw the idea for a parsley based salad from budget bytes and really liked the fresh herb as the green in it. Since fall is here in full swing, this is also great because it’s not quite so heavy. Fall often brings warm, comforting, gooey foods and I’m also trying to NOT eat those for every meal. This is perfect. I mixed chicken with it for lunches for a satisfying bite and spruced it up with more vinaigrette when it dried up a bit.

Parsley Salad with Pecans & Dried Cranberries {Domesticated Academic}

You can mix up your grains on this. From brown rice  to quinoa, to bulgar, it’s up to you. You could even make this out of orzo or any kind of fun pasta. Be mindful of the amount of vinaigrette you make, you might want more. My vinaigrette recipe is BASIC (not basic like the college girls are currently using) but basic in the sense that it’s a single batch with some nice flavors but not overly heavy. Spice it up, add more salt and pepper, whatever makes you happy. I like extra garlic and extra mustard, but that’s just my taste preference.

You’ll need:


  • 1 c. cooked brown rice that’s been cooled
  • 1 c. cooked quinoa that’s been cooled
  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley, clean & dry
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped small
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (craisins), chopped roughly


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar (apple cider vinegar works too)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • salt + freshly cracked pepper to taste
  1. Whisk the dressing ingredients together while the quinoa and brown rice are cooking and cooling so the flavors will marry. Put all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk with a fork or whisk until combined. Set aside.
  2. Rinse parsley and pat dry with paper towels or dry in a salad spinner. Finely chop the leaves and put in a bowl for mixing.
  3. Roughly chop the cranberries and pecans. Place in bowl with parsley.
  4. Top with the cooked and cooled quinoa and brown rice.
  5. Top with dressing and lightly toss.
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Peach Caprese

Peach Caprese | Domesticated Academic

Summer produce cannot be beat. The magic of a perfectly ripened peach is something that is simply divine and an almost religious experience. Paired with some creamy, smooth fresh mozzarella, and the bite of some fresh basil makes peaches my number one summer fruit right now.

Peach Caprese | Domesticated Academic

No matter how food technology improves, there’s nothing better than biting into a ripe, juicy peach or a fresh ear of sweet corn. Tomatoes, cukes, berries, beans, etc…a whole plethora of goods are marching into my door to never come out 😛

Peach Caprese | Domesticated Academic

I picked up some beautiful, fresh, fuzzy Virginia peaches on a visit to the farmers market and gave them a few days to ripen on the counter. Once they were firm but not soft, I dug in. Fresh mozzarella, juicy sliced peaches, and basil from my garden made the perfect triple threat. It’s filling enough to serve as the main course, classy enough to serve to company, and light enough for a summer cook out. You can cut everything into chunks for easier serving and Chiffonade basil in right before serving. Adding some olive oil or balsamic vinegar can add a nice level of acidity but it will make it get soggy faster.

You’ll need:
10 min.

  • 2 ripe peaches
    1 1 lb. ball of fresh mozzarella
    5-6 fresh basil leaves
    **optional: olive oil and balsamic vinegar
  1. Slice peaches and remove pit.
  2. Slice thin slices of mozzarella.
  3. Layer together however it makes you happy.
  4. Chiffonade the basil and sprinkle right before serving.
  5. Drizzle with olive oil or balsamic.

Tomato Beet Salad | Domesticated Academic


Beet & Tomato Salad



Balsamic Green Beans With Tomatoes |Domesticated Academic

Balsamic Green Beans with Tomatoes

Skillet Potato & Sausage Hash

Potato & Sausage Hash | Domesticated Academic

You’ll love this because it’s so versatile, can come together for a fast meal or a slow and lazy weekend, and will make use of the leftover baked potatoes & brats from summer cook outs. While I love some summer cook out food, there always seems to be an abundance of leftovers, which I’m sure has nothing to do with the sheer amount of food that gets cooked or because the chef is a bad cook. Our eyes are just too big for our stomachs.

Potato & Sausage Hash | Domesticated Academic

You don’t have to use pork–chicken, sausage, venison, or any kind of sausage will do. Potatoes are relatively inexpensive so this dish doesn’t have to cost and arm and leg for you to put together. This also reheats nicely in case you need a quick lunch or a meal on the go. Add a fried egg for a delicious breakfast or enjoy it straight up. It can be made in advance and just tossed again to heat it up and no one will know you didn’t get up at the crack of dawn or stay home all day making this dish. Seriously: I love this stuff.

Hash is one of my happy places in life. There’s nothing that doesn’t go with potatoes and a runny fried egg. Except maybe some ketchup and Sriracha! Now we’re talking……

New York is famous for having ‘salt potatoes’ at every function and you can always count on a dish of them left over, making them perfect for this dish.

I chopped everything up and went to town in my skillet. Two runny fried eggs made this the perfect supper and the leftovers served as lunch for a few days and at least one more fried egg supper. I never met an egg I didn’t like 🙂

You’ll need:

30 min. (tops)

  • 1 lb. sausage of choice (I had links & cut them up)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cups potatoes, diced/cubed & cooked
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • a pat or two of butter
  • some runny fried eggs! 😀
  1. In a large skillet, cook the sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.
  2. Add the onion, potatoes, garlic, rosemary, and green pepper; cook until tender.
  3. Reduce heat; cook and stir for 20 minutes or until lightly browned and heated through.
  4. Longer if you like a nice crust on your hash like I do.

Roast Rosemary Potatoes | Domesticated Academic


Rosemary Potatoes

bacon cheddar mashed potatoes | Domesticated Academic


Bacon Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

Balsamic green beans & cherry tomatoes w parm

Balsamic Green Beans With Tomatoes |Domesticated Academic

Warm weather means bountiful produce and I’m thinking ahead to fresh beans cooked with fresh cherry tomatoes and topped with some balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese! Is your mouth watering too?

Balsamic Green Beans With Tomatoes |Domesticated Academic

I was lamenting that it was cold and yucky during a stretch of rainy weather and took to the grocery store to cheer me up. Not exactly a good coping technique, but thankfully, I made this healthy choice! Fresh green beans were looking good and a pint of festive cherry tomatoes also landed in my basket to be whisked away to an exotic location: my kitchen. Cook the beans to your desired tenderness, I prefer to keep them a bit firm, the same with the tomatoes-do what you like to eat.

You’ll need:

20 min.

  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • olive oil
  • 1 lb. green beans, trimmed
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 2-3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parmesan cheese
  1. Saute the onion and garlic in olive oil on medium heat until they become translucent.
  2. Add green beans and chicken stock. Put a lid on the pan so the beans will cook down until desired tenderness, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add cherry tomatoes and balsamic vinegar.
  4. Turn heat off of pan and cover. Let stand for about two minutes, or until cherry tomatoes are heated through or starting to break down.
  5. Finish with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Sprinkle parm over the top before serving.

Veggie Noodles | Domesticated Academic

Veggie Noodles

Spicy Bacon Sprouts | Domesticated Academic

Spicy Bacon Sprouts

Spicy Bacon Sprouts

Spicy Bacon Sprouts | Domesticated Academic

Brussels sprouts might become your favorite vegetable in 2014…maybe not. You’ll love this because it’s sweet, spicy, and with a hint of some bacon, you can’t go wrong knowing everything is better with bacon. For the health conscious, leave it out or use turkey bacon. I promise you won’t regret it. Use one strip if you want the flavor with a lot less guilt!

Spicy Bacon Sprouts | Domesticated Academic

Brussels sprouts grew on me over time and now I’m always looking for them fresh. Frozen is good if that’s all you can get but fresh are sometimes a good option when they’re in good shape at the grocery store. If the pickings are slim, opt for frozen. You can leave out the spice or sub in your favorite. Just make it yours–just like you!

You’ll need:

30 minutes

  • 1 1/2 lbs brussels sprouts, trimmed & halved
  • 2 slices of bacon of choice, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce 
  • 3 tablespoons oil of choice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Cook the bacon in a sauté pan or preferred method. Chop into small pieces or cut before cooking with scissors <–yes, it’s really a great method!
  2. Cut the sprouts in half. If some of the leaves come off, that’s ok, cook them up too!
  3. Sauté  the sprouts and garlic with some olive oil (or bacon grease) 8-10 minutes until golden brown.
  4. Finish the sprouts by tossing in the chili sauce, honey, and adding the bacon back in.
  5. Salt and pepper to taste.

bourbon creamed spinach | domesticated academic

Bourbon Creamed Spinach

Healthy Spinach Alfredo Sauce | Domesticated Academic

Spinach Cilantro Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce

Super Bowl Round Up!

Super Bowl Sunday is about football…and food! From melted cheese and bacon to baked wings, meatball sliders to spicy deviled eggs, here are some scrumptious possibilities for your Super Bowl get together.

The Super Bowl and the NFL have become a marketing machine. Not only do we as American’s rally around our TV’s, but we eat, drink, eat, drink, and repeat the cycle several times over. People can’t get enough of Super Bowl snacking and celebrating. No matter who you’re rooting for or if you’re like me and you tune in for the commercials and the ‘show,’ odds are, you’ll be eating and drinking like a champ!

Below are some of my favorite recipes! Consider putting a few of them on your Super Bowl Sunday menu!  I tried to pick some decadent treats and some food that is healthier to help offset the bountiful dishes of melted cheese you’ll likely eat!

1. Bacon Wrapped Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. Honestly: these are #1- err’y time I serve them. No one gets bored popping these into their mouths (that’s what she said).

Bacon Grilled Cheese Bites | Domesticated Academic

2. Turkey Meatball Sliders. If you’ve shoved too many mini grilled cheese sandwiches into your stomach, a turkey meatball might be a slightly healthier option. Slightly….

Turkey Meatball Sliders | Domesticated Academic

3. Sticky Garlic Wings. Baked, not fried….you won’t miss the deep fryer on these. I promise.

Garlic Sticky Wings | Domesticated Academic

4. Crock Pot Crab Dip. Mix it, turn it on, walk away….Can’t get much easier or tastier than this one! The mini-crock pot might be my new favorite thing this year!

Crock Pot Crab Dip | Domesticated Academic

5. Devilish Srirachi Eggs. Spicy deviled eggs aren’t what they seem at first glance. These guys can be made in advance, left in the fridge and be pulled out just in time for kick off.

Deviled Srirachi Eggs | Domesticated Academic

6. Greek Yogurt Fruit Dip. When you’ve had your fill of savory, move onto a little sweet. No one will know the greek yogurt is healthy and you can mix this before and pull it out in time for Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers halftime show.

Greek Yogurt Fruit Dip | Domesticated Academic

Bacon Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

bacon cheddar mashed potatoes | Domesticated Academic

You will LOVE these because the bacon and the cheese get married to creamy mashed potatoes and then you die and go to mashed potato heaven. The end. Good story right?

These were the happiest accident that ever landed on a holiday table. In charge of Thanksgiving dinner, I had some bacon and cheese that looked lonely. So I added them to my potatoes. And my family LOVED them. What’s NOT to love? Potatoes mashed to perfection and then add piles of cheese and cooked bacon with the slightest hint of minced onion. The onion is a secret my Mema used to employ and her potatoes were always excellent.

bacon cheddar mashed potatoes | Domesticated Academic

Be as generous or as stingy with your mashing aides–milk, sour cream, butter, whatever floats your potato boat, I won’t judge. The same with the bacon and cheddar–go big or just use the “stay home” portion, it’s totally up to you.

You’ll need: (a large stomach)

Serves 6-10 with leftovers….potato patties anyone?

  • 5 lbs. potatoes, peeled, chunked & boiled until soft
  • 8 oz. cheddar of choice (grated)
  • 8 oz. bacon, cooked & chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • milk
  • butter
  • sour cream
  • salt & pepper
  • jalapeno (optional)
  1. Mash the cooked potatoes with milk, butter, sour cream, or other aides of choice.
  2. Fold in bacon and cheddar.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Serve hot!

Roast Rosemary Potatoes | Domesticated Academic

Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Horseradish Mashed Potatoes | Domesticated Academic

Horseradish Mashed Potatoes