Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Italian Night!

Are you in the mood for a three course Italian feast? I cannot think of an occasion when I would not be. The following three recipes are Italian inspired with ingredients like pastas, pistachios, and parmesan cheese. (Do you see another theme running?) I hope you enjoy these tasty dishes.
Baked Couscous Balls
makes 10
½ cup dry couscous
½ cup boiling water
1 tsp Italian seasonings
1 tsp hummus
1 egg
¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tbsp shredded Parmesan cheese
Mix the couscous with the boiling water. Cover and let it sit for 5 minutes. Fluff the couscous out, and allow it to cool once all the water has been absorbed. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all the ingredients together. Roll the mixture into 10 balls. Bake on a nonstick stone for 30 minutes.
baked couscous balls (7)
The pasta balls have a crispy outside, soft cheesy inside, and are filled with the flavor of Italian herbs. They far outshine any appetizer you'll find at a cheap Italian chain as will the following pasta carbonara recipe. It's vegetarian because of the lack of bacon in it, but the creamy noodles are so good that you won't miss the meat one bit.
Vegetarian Mushroom Carbonara (9)
Vegetarian Mushroom Carbonara
serves 1
1 egg yolk
2 ounces dry spaghetti
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
½ cup sliced mushrooms
2 tbsp paste water
Italian seasoning, to taste

Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the directions on the package, reserving 2 tablespoons of the water. Meanwhile, sauté the mushrooms in a little oil over medium heat until they are golden brown. Whisk together the cheese and egg yolk. Once the pasta has cooked, immediately stir the cheese and egg mixture along with the reserved pasta water into the pasta. (It has to be super hot for the egg to cook.) Stir in the mushrooms and Italian seasonings to taste.

Wrap up your meal with these delicious cookies made out of one of the best nuts on earth: pistachios.

Pistachio Cookies
makes three dozen
2 cups oatmeal
2 cups pistachios still in their shells
2 tsp cornstarch
4-6 tbsp almond milk
¼ cup melted coconut oil
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
150 grams pitted dates
½ tsp salt

Place the dates in a bowl of very hot water and allow them to soak for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, blend the oatmeal into a flour. Stir together the oat flour, salt, baking soda, sugar, and cornstarch. Shell and chop the pistachios. Drain the water off of the dates and blend them together with the coconut oil, milk, and vanilla. Mix the wet and dry ingredients, stirring in the pistachios last. Scoop out one tablespoon at a time of the dough onto a baking stone and press the balls flat. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. Let the cookies sit for 5 minutes before removing to a wire cooling rack.
Not to be outshined by the delicious meal, this pumpkin card is all ready for fall. All I did was cut out three ovals and piece them together to make the pumpkin. It's a super simple and cute trick.


  1. This looks great! I love couscous and so do my kids, but take a moment to imagine with me the mess kids leave when they eat couscous. There has to be a way to make couscous balls! I said to myself. Found this on pinterest. :)

    1. I hope you enjoy them. :) I have a 6 year old and 1 year old sister. I know what kinds of messes kids can make.