A blog by ordinary people about living an extraordinary life

A delicious end to another busy weekend

This weekend was another jam-packed weekend for Meg and I.  After a long week of work, Saturday morning marked the opening of the Wakefield Farmers Market.  A morning rain shower gave way to another sunny and humid day.  We walked down to the market with the dogs, spent about an hour walking around and seeing what all the vendors had to offer, made our purchases and came back home to brainstorm our menu.  (I am really looking forward to trying the Maple BBQ sauce this week).  Because Meg was away Saturday until Sunday afternoon I had already decided I would make her a special dinner Sunday night.

As is often the case, Giada De Laurentiis inspired the menu with her episode of Giada at Home last weekend.  I skipped the dessert course (shame on me, but we could still head down to Cravings for some ice cream tonight), and made a few changes to the 2 dishes (eliminating pancetta, actually eliminating Parmesan cheese and substituting Baby Swiss cheese for Gruyere).  The empty plates lead me to conclude that dinner was a success.

Orzo and Artichoke salad


  • 8 oz of orzo
  • 1 cup of frozen corn
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 10 oz can of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1/4 cup of fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon of dried oregano
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • salt
  • pepper
  • a dozen or so grape tomatoes

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the orzo, about 8 minutes.  Drain and put into a large bowl.

Heat a pan over medium heat and add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.  Add the corn and cook until slightly browned, about 5 minutes.  Add the corn to the orzo.

In a food processor, add 2/3 of the artichokes, parsley, oregano, garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and pepper.  Pulse to combine.  Add extra virgin olive oil and continue to mix until smooth.  Add to the bowl with the orzo.  Mix.

Add the tomatoes and the remaining chopped artichoke hearts.  Season with salt and pepper if needed.

Spinach Bakes


  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 thick slice of day old bread (I used an olive bread we got at the Farmers Market, it added a nice salty bite)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup of spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup of grated Baby Swiss cheese

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Warm a pan over medium heat and drizzle in some extra virgin olive oil.  Add the shallots and cook for 3 minutes.

In a bowl, beat the eggs and then add the shallots, bread, spinach and cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.

Spoon the mixture into ramekins that you have sprayed with a  non-stick cooking spray.

Bake for 25 minutes.  Allow to cook and remove from ramekins to serve.


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This entry was posted on June 24, 2012 by in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , .
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