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Meet Mary Susan

"Welcome to Mommy Magic! An interactive community of real moms, founded by a real mom, to give support and tips to make the chaos of motherhood easier and more fun! I am Mary Susan, an author, a columnist, a life coach for moms and a I have Mommy Magic TV segment too! Most importantly, I have three beautiful (and very busy) daughters! I am a real mom managing the daily insanity of motherhood just like you!"

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Friday
Mar202015

Mashed Cauliflower

Serves 4.

Mashed cauliflower tastes similar to mashed potatoes but with fewer carbs. Top with chopped herbs and grated cheese if you like.

Recipe courtesy of Whole Foods Market.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into small florets (about 6 to 7 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Fine sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Method:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add cauliflower and cook until very tender, about 10 minutes. Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid and then drain well and transfer cauliflower to a food processor. Add oil and reserved water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and purée until smooth. (Or, mash cauliflower with a potato masher). Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Wednesday
Mar182015

Spaghetti with Pecorino and Black Pepper

Serves 6-8.

This simple Roman pasta dish consists of piping hot pasta tossed with a generous amount of salty Pecorino Romano and coarsely ground black pepper. Serve as an accompaniment to roasted pork or chicken.

Receipe courtesy of Whole Foods Market.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound spaghetti or other long thin pasta
  • Salt
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper

Method:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add spaghetti and cook until al dente according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta cooking water and drain pasta thoroughly. 

Transfer pasta to a large bowl and sprinkle with half the cheese and black pepper. Pour in about half the reserved pasta cooking water, then toss thoroughly to combine. Add remaining cheese and black pepper and remaining pasta water if needed to moisten the dish. Serve immediately while still hot.

Tuesday
Mar172015

Herb-Roasted Sweet Potato Skins

Serves 4.

Bake the potatoes until they are just tender and still a tad firm so they don't turn to mush and fall apart. These potato skins are a great side dish to meat, tofu or salmon.

Recipe courtesy of Whole Foods Market.

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for oiling
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Method:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Pierce potatoes all over with a fork then arrange on a greased foil-lined baking sheet, cut sides down, and bake until tender but not mushy, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside until cool enough to handle; reserve foil-lined baking sheet.
Arrange a rack in the oven about 6 inches from the heating element and preheat broiler. Scoop about half of the potato flesh from the skins, leaving a 1/2-inch thick wall around the edges and bottom of each half. (Reserve scooped out flesh for another use.) Cut each sweet potato shell lengthwise into 1/2-inch strips then arrange on the same foil-lined baking sheet in a single layer.
In a small bowl, combine oil, parsley, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, salt and pepper then brush all over potato skins and broil until browned in parts and piping hot, 4 to 6 minutes total.

Friday
Mar132015

Honey-Glazed Carrots

Serves 4.

Sweet honey, tangy vinegar and rich butter provide a balanced glaze for carrots. This dish makes a colorful accompaniment to roast beef or chicken.

Recipe courtesy of Whole Foods Market.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound baby carrots or young carrots with green tops, peeled and greens trimmed to 1/2 inch
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste
  • Chopped flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Method:

Steam carrots over an inch or two of boiling water until just tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large skillet and stir in honey and vinegar. Add steamed carrots to the skillet and sauté over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until carrots are well glazed, 2 to 4 minutes. Season carrots with salt and pepper. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with parsley. Serve immediately.

Wednesday
Mar112015

Oven-Roasted Kale

Serves 4.

You'll be surprised how easy and tasty this kale preparation is. Andrea from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, sent us this recipe with a note: "It's the only recipe I've found where the kale is not masked by other flavors or cooking methods, and it's crunchy. That makes it fun to eat, plus it's delicious." We are in complete agreement; this recipe quickly became a test kitchen favorite.

Recipe courtesy of Whole Foods Market.

Ingredients:

  • 2 bunches kale
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Method:

 Preheat oven to 375°F. Rinse kale and pat dry thoroughly. Remove and discard thick ribs and roughly chop leaves. Pat leaves dry again. Toss with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Spread on a large rimmed baking sheet. Kale does not need to be in a single layer, as it will shrink in volume as it cooks. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring every five minutes or so, until leaves are tender, crisp on edges and slightly browned. Sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving.