Category Archives: Side Dishes

Spinach & Artichoke Mac 'n Cheese

Oh My Goodness Spinach & Artichoke Mac ‘n Cheese

Is it even possible to make homemade Mac-n-Cheese even better? We think so! Our second featured recipe this month is a great way to enjoy our new Marinated Artichoke Hearts while adding a delicious Mediterranean twist to classic comfort food! Makes a perfect side dish to your Easter Sunday or any night of the week! Not to mention, it’s O.M.G. kind of good!


Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 6-8

INGREDIENTS
¾ lb. elbow macaroni, cooked to package instructions
3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. flour
3 c. whole milk
2 c. Italian Blend shredded cheese, divided
2 c. white sharp cheddar, divided
3 Tbsp. Garlic & Parmesan Everything Spread
1 tsp. salt
Cracked black pepper
2 c. fresh baby spinach, packed
2 jars Jeff’s Naturals Marinated Artichoke Hearts, roughly chopped

Topping:
¾ c. panko breadcrumbs mixed with 2 Tbsp. melted butter

PREPARATION
Preheat oven on broiler.

In a medium sauce pan, on medium high heat, add butter and flour, and stir until for 2-3 minutes while mixture bubbles. Slowly whisk in milk until fully incorporated. Whisk and cook mixture for about 7 minutes, until it thickens and bubbles.

Turn heat off; stir in Garlic Spread, 1 c. each cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pour over cooked macaroni, stir in spinach,artichokes, and remaining shredded cheese.
Place into a baking dish and sprinkle panko topping on top. Place under broiler for a few minutes until breadcrumbs are golden brown.

Five Fresh Ideas For Your Holiday Table

Got a full house for the holidays? Lucky you! The holidays are one of our favorite times of the year because friends and family come together to enjoy each other’s company and a delicious feast while creating special memories that will last a lifetime.

We’ve got some ideas to help you add elements to your holiday feast that are both traditional and tasty. You’ll impress your hungry holiday guests with these creative serving ideas:

Kalamata Cranberry Chutney

Delicious on holiday turkey or ham or on a turkey sandwich made from Thanksgiving leftovers.
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Prep Time: 1 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Serves: 6

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces fresh or frozen whole cranberries
  • 1 naval orange, zested and juiced
  • ½ cup sugar or to taste
  • ¼ cup champagne vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Organic Sliced Greek Kalamata Olives
  • Fresh cracked black pepper

PREPARATION
In a medium sized heavy saucepan, cook shallots in olive oil over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened. Stir in cranberries, orange zest and juice, sugar and vinegar. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries just pop, 10 to 12 minutes, then add olives, black pepper, stir and serve.

Blood Orange Kalamata Martini

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Prep Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 1

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 ounces Blood orange vodka (see chef’s note)
  • ½ ounce Triple Sec or Cointreau
  • 1 ounce fresh squeezed Blood orange juice, reserve orange peel for garnish
  • Ice for shaking
  • Organic Pitted Whole Greek Kalamata Olives with Orange Zest, rinsed, to garnish

PREPARATION
Add vodka, triple sec and orange juice to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a few kalamata olives and an orange peel.
Chef’s note: If blood orange vodka is unavailable in your local grocery store, you can substitute for citron flavored or regular orange vodka.

Olive & Sun-Ripened Dried Tomato Ricotta Dip

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Prep Time: 6 min
Total Time: 18 min
Serves: 6

Ingredients

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400°F.

In a medium-sized bowl, add the ricotta cheese, parsley and garlic. Combine well. Season with salt and pepper. Gently mix in the tomatoes and olives, until just incorporated.

Spread the ricotta mixture in a shallow medium baking dish in a 3/4″ thick layer. Bake about 12 minutes or until slightly browned along the edges and hot.

Remove from the oven and let rest for a few minutes. Serve warm.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 acorn squash, halved and seeded
  • 1 box couscous, cooked to package instructions
  • ½ pound Italian sausage, crumbled and cooked
  • ½ jar Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes, rough chopped
  • ½ jar Roasted Bell Pepper Strips, drained and rough chopped
  • ¼ cup toasted pine nuts
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil for drizzling
  • Optional: balsamic glaze to drizzle

PREPARATION
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Season squash with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Lay on a sheet pan, open side face down and bake about 20 minutes or until squash is fork tender and edges are nicely golden. Remove from oven and set aside.

To prepare the filling, combine the couscous, sausage, sun-ripened tomatoes, roasted peppers and stir together. Place a generous amount of the mixture into each squash, lightly pressing the filling in. Sprinkle with pine nuts, and finish with a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic glaze. Serve hot.

Roasted Olive and Grape Crostini

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 6

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ baguette, cut into ½” slices
  • 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup seedless red grapes
  • 1 cup Organic Pitted Whole Greek Kalamata Olives
  • Fresh thyme leaves to garnish
  • Salt and fresh cracked black pepper

PREPARATION
Heat oven to 450°F.

Brush both sides of sliced bread with olive oil and place onto baking sheet. Bake for about 7 minutes or until toasted and crispy. Remove from oven and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the ricotta and rosemary. Season with a little salt and freshly cracked pepper and set aside.

On another backing sheet, add the grapes and olives, drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil and toss to coat evenly. Roast in the oven in 5 minute intervals for about 15-20 minutes.

Each 5 minutes, shake the pan to get even roasting. Remove from oven once olives are slightly blistered and grapes begin to get soft and juicy. Let set for about 5 minutes, and once cool enough to handle, cut grapes and olives in half.

On each crostini, add about a tablespoon of ricotta and spread evenly. Add a spoonful of olives and grapes to each and top with a sprinkle of fresh thyme, drizzle of olive oil, and a light sprinkle of freshly cracked black pepper. Serve immediately.