Weekend Special – Spring Has Sprung , Sunny Dinner for a It’s-Still-Cold Evening

Well it’s official. It’s spring. The temperature is still hovering about 30 degrees. The snow is melting very slowly, the roads are getting muddy and the skiing is great! So what do you cook when the calendar says spring and the temperature defies it? I look for dishes that take their flavor and spice from warmer climates but are still a bit cozy.

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Here are a few suggestions for a festive evening:

Start with a taste sunshine: Take your guest to Turkey or Greece with my Roasted Red Pepper Dip. Serve it piled high on pita chips or fresh veggies. Or take your taste buds south of the border with everyone’s favorite Guacamole & Salsa.

The Main Event: If you are in the mood for seafood, try my Caribbean Fish Stew or Creole Shrimp with Cheesy Grits. Imagine yourself on a white sandy beach and enjoy. Maybe you would prefer a taste of hot, dry Morocco with my Spicy Chicken Stew. Serve it with my Couscous with Pine Nuts and Dried Fruit.

Something Sweet: Why not nibble one of my Sweet Dream Bars and dream of spring.

Guacamole

2 ripe avocados, peeled, seeded and cut into large chunks
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3-4 grape tomatoes, chopped
1 tablespoon red onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Pinch cayenne pepper
2 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
2-3 tablespoons sour cream

Put the avocado and lime juice in a small bowl, mash with a fork. Add the tomatoes, onion, garlic, bell pepper, cumin, salt, cayenne and cilantro. Whisk with a fork to combine. Add the sour cream and combine.

Simple Salsa

1 pint grape tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoon (or more to taste) jalapeno pepper, minced
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice or red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped

Combine all ingredients.

Happy spring … Happy skiing … and bon appétit!

What are you cooking up this weekend? I’d love to hear from you! Let’s get a conversation going. To make a comment, just click on Comments below. I’d be delighted to add you to the growing list of blog subscribers. To subscribe: just scroll back up, fill in your email address and click on the Sign Me Up button. You’ll get an email asking you to confirm your subscription … confirm and you will automatically receive a new story and recipe every week.

Want more? Click here for more seasonal menus! In addition, I hope that you will take a minute to learn about my philanthropic project Eat Well-Do Good. © Susan W. Nye, 2011

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