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All Dressed Up

Even though it’s starting to get a little colder (you have no idea how much it pains us to admit that!) we here at Two Saucy Sisters still believe that it is never too cold for a big ol’ salad!

That being said, there are definitely a lot of ways to change up a salad to make it more seasonable.  Adding cooked, cubed sweet potato or squash adds a nice Fall flair, as do some crisp apple slices.  Pair that with some toasty walnuts and creamy goat cheese and you’ve got yourself a pretty tasty fall-ified salad!

But of course, salad just isn’t salad without dressing, now is it?  You could just go with your usual oil-and-vinegar combo, but why not make it a little more special?

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Something you may not know about us is that the house we live in (when we’re not at school) is actually a more than 100-year-old fruit farm.  Most of the orchards are gone now and we only have about 3 acres of the original land left, but we do have a few pear trees that still produce fruit every year.  So, you can imagine that when our gracious father picked us a whole bunch of them, we needed to figure out a way to use them up before they got too ripe.  Who knew the answer would be salad dressing?

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Yup- we made a pear vinaigrette!  It’s a little sweet, it’s a little savoury, and it makes the perfect topping for a Fall-inspired salad!

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This works really well if you just so happen to have a couple slightly over-ripe pears in your fridge.  If you don’t, just leave a pear out on the counter for a day or two and you’ll be ready to make this tasty dressing.  It’s simply a matter of throwing the ingredients in a blender and you’ve got yourself enough dressing for several salads in mere minutes!

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So now you have no excuse not to eat your greens 😉

Happy Fall Salad-Eating!

Pear Vinaigrette

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Prep time: 5 minutes
Makes: ~1 cup

Ingredients:

1 ripe pear
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp white vinegar
dash of salt
pepper, to taste
1/2 c. olive oil

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a blender except for the olive oil, and blend until the pear has been pulverized.   With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady stream.  Blend for another minute or two to ensure the pear is fully blended and everything is combined.  Adjust seasonings to taste.

Store in a sealed jar in the refrigerator. (Just be sure to set it on the counter a few minutes before using it, and give it a stir before pouring)

~twosaucysisters

Do you ever make fun salad dressings?  What’s your favourite way to jazz-up a salad?

Easy Mexican Meals for Busy Days – Guest Post

So we’re basically the laziest bloggers ever! After not posting for more than a month, what’s one of the first things we do? Put up a guest post! But Allison has been waiting patiently for so long now, we just had to post one! We really like the topic, too, because really, who doesn’t like Mexican food? We’re sure your family will love her recipes too! Take it away, Allison!

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I love Mexican food. Tex-Mex really. Since I am a native Texan it only makes sense that I

would love those flavors. However it is not just the taste of Mexican food that I love. I also love

it because it is so easy and quick to put together. Not only that but Mexican food is infinitely

customizable. From vegetarian versions to kid friendly meal ideas, Mexican food is great for any

occasion. Here are a few easy Mexican meals you can make in a snap:

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Tacos

Tacos are a family get-together favorite because they are so adaptable. No matter what taste you

have or what veggies you like you can be sure to load up a taco that is to your liking. Kids love

to use just the basic meat, cheese, lettuce and tomato combo but you can spice it up with salsa,

add some smooth guacamole and more. Here is a basic recipe that your family is sure to love:

Ingredients:

10 Small Corn Tortillas (Taco Shells) Soft or Hard

1 lb.Ground Beef (or Turkey or Refried Beans or Ground Chickpeas)

1 pkg.Taco Seasoning or 2 tbsp. Flour(Optional)

2 cups Shredded Cheese

1 jar Salsa (or Pico de Gallo)

1 cup Diced Tomatoes

2 cups Shredded Lettuce

½ cup Sliced Mushrooms

¼ cup Sliced Ripe (Black) Olives

1 cup Diced Onion

¼ cup Diced Green Bell Pepper

½ cup Sour Cream

½ cup Guacamole (or Avocado Slices)

Directions:

Tacos are easy because they are so versatile. You can assemble them ahead of time or allow

everyone to create their own. First you start with the meat. Ground chuck has the best flavor for

tacos. If you do not wish to use meat you can also use refried beans or ground chickpeas. Brown

the meat and pour off the grease. For a strong Mexican flavor add taco seasoning. For a less

spicy flavor add the flour. Make sure the flour is stirred into the meat well before serving. You

can also do without either. Next you need to prepare the shells. Crunchy shells can be purchased

next to the salsa in the international aisle. They need to be baked until crispy. Soft shells can be

purchased near the bread and must be fried before serving. Using a non-stick skillet spray the

pan with oil and cook each side until lightly brown. Shells will start to bubble when cooked. Let

everyone assemble their own flavor combinations. Or if you want to you can pre-make the tacos

by taking the uncooked crunchy shells, filling them with meat and cheese, and then baking ,

closely packed, in a casserole dish.

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Burritos

I love the chunky, crispy goodness of a burrito. A great meal to eat on the go it is also a tasty

dinner treat that you can whip up in no time flat. Although this recipe is able to feed up to ten

people, you can cut down the ingredients and just make one or two. You can even turn it into a

fun party meal by letting everyone make up their own and then baking them all together.

Ingredients:

10 Large Flour Tortillas

1 can Refried Beans or Ground Chickpeas

2 cups Spanish Rice

1 lb. Ground Beef (or Ground Turkey or Shredded Chicken)

1 pkg. Taco Seasoning or 2 tbsp. Flour (Optional)

2 cups Shredded Cheese

1 can Whole Kernel Corn (Drained Well)

½ cup Roughly Chopped Tomatoes

½ cup Roughly Chopped Mushrooms

¼ cup Whole Ripe (Black) Olives

1 cup Roughly Chopped Onion

¼ cup Roughly Chopped Green Bell Pepper

½ cup Sour Cream

½ cup Guacamole (or Avocado Slices)

1 jar Salsa (or Pico de Gallo)

2 cups Shredded Lettuce

Directions:

Burritos are both similar and different than tacos. First of all, after you cook the meat (following

the directions for the taco meat) you do not cook the shells. Flour tortillas for burritos are larger

than taco shells, about the size of a large dinner plate. Burritos are cooked fully assembled.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Take the flour shell and start in the middle. Make sure you

leave room on the ends and sides. Do not overfill. Spread the bean paste first and then top with

meat and rice. Sprinkle on a thin layer of cheese and add the vegetables, excluding the lettuce.

The veggies should be rather large so that they will not get too soft in the baking process. Wrap

the burritos by folding in the top and bottom first and then wrapping the sides. Hold closed with

a toothpick. In a large casserole dish, place the burritos so that they are touching but not packed

too close. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for twenty minutes. Take off the foil and bake for

five to ten more minutes or until the shells turn golden brown. Serve with lettuce, sour cream,

avocado, and salsa.

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Corn Bread Casserole

This is another great meal for big crowds or hungry teens. This one is a hit and so simple to

throw together. With only a few ingredients you can make this up in minutes and have dinner on

the table. It is also very affordable and filling for those days that you need to stretch the budget.

Feel free to add in more veggies if you would like, but remember that salsa has lots of veggies in

it too!

Ingredients:

2 boxes Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix (2 Eggs and 2/3 cup Milk)

1 can Creamed Corn

1.5 lbs. Ground Beef (or Turkey)

1 cup Diced Onion

½ cup Diced Carrots

1 16 oz jar of Salsa

4 cups Shredded Cheese

Directions:

This tasty casserole makes enough for a crowd! It is very easy to make too. Preheat your oven to

350 degrees. Grease a 9 by 13 casserole dish. Prepare the Jiffy as directed and then stir in the can

of creamed corn. Set aside. Brown the meat, onions and carrots until cooked through. Drain off

grease. Add the jar of salsa and mix well. Pour meat mixture into casserole dish. Sprinkle on half

the cheese. Over that, pour half the Jiffy mix and spread until the meat mixture is well covered.

Sprinkle on the rest of the cheese and then pour on the rest of the Jiffy mix. Spread until Jiffy

mix reaches edges of pan. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the cornbread is fully cooked.

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Mexican Casserole

Also known as Mexican lasagna, this tasty recipe can easily be supplemented by extra veggies

depending on what flavors your family likes. I love it because it is a great one pot meal that

freezes well too. Make a couple of batches of this and freeze one for later. You won’t regret it!

Ingredients:

1 lb. Ground Beef (or Turkey)

1 cup Chopped Onion

2 tbs. Taco Seasoning (Optional)

2 ½ cups Salsa

1 canBlack Beans or Red Kidney Beans(Rinsed and Drained)

¼ cup Italian Salad Dressing

1 can of Whole Kernel Corn (Drained)

¾ cup Sour Cream

6 Small (8 inches) Flour Tortillas

2 cups Shredded Cheese

1 cup Shredded Lettuce

½ cup Chopped Tomato

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9 by 13 casserole dish. In a large skillet brown the

meat and onion until cooked through. Drain off the grease and add the taco seasoning if desired.

Stir in the salsa, beans, corn, sour cream, and dressing until well mixed. Pour 1/3 of the meat

mixture into the casserole dish and spread thin. Take two flour tortillas and tear into bit sized

pieces or leave whole and spread over the meat layer. Sprinkle with 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat

until all layers are complete. Cover and bake for 25 minutes. Serve with lettuce and tomatoes.

These tasty Tex-Mex recipes are sure to become a hit with your family. Why not try out

something new and see how easy it is to have a great meal on the table in minutes!

Author Byline:

Blogging for was a natural progression for Allison once she graduated from college, as it

allowed her to combine her two passions: writing and children. She has enjoyed furthering

her writing career with http://www.nannyclassifieds.com. She can be in touch through e-mail

allison.nannyclassifieds@gmail.com.

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Thanks so much Allison! We hope you all enjoy her recipes as much as we did!

~twosaucysisters

Just Peachy!

It’s August in Ontario. Know what that means?

Peach Season!

One of our absolute favourite times of year, especially living in an area that is well known for the peaches that grow here. We even have a festival specifically for them, where they serve the world’s best (yes, we said it) peach sundaes. In fact, the peaches here are so good that we only eat peaches this time of year. To buy some overpriced  picked-way-before-it’s-ripe peach that’s shipped thousands of miles and isn’t even that good of peach would be doing this magnificent fruit such injustice!

No, we will only eat fresh Ontario Peaches. Call us princesses, we don’t care!

We’ve made Peaches and Cream Baked Oatmeal, Fish Fingers with a Peach Dipping Sauce, a Peach Blondie Breakfast Parfait, Peach Pancakes a La Mode, Peach Raspberry Overnight Oats, Peach Salsa, Peach-Tomato Chutney and so much more! But for today’s post, we thought we’d play up the sweeter side of a peach…

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Using an old date square recipe, we came up with a healthy treat that’s not only delicious, but actually stays together!

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Now don’t get us wrong, they are still Peach Crumble bars, meaning the crumb topping can get a little messy. Unlike many date square recipes we come across, however, they are not dry or overly sweet.

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This recipe took more than one trial to get right, and frankly, we’re proud of the results! The first time we made them, they were a little too salty and just a tad on the dry side – neither of which stopped our family from gobbling them up anyways! We knew that with just a couple minor tweaks here and there, they would be perfect!

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Peach Crumble Bars

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Prep time: 20-30min
Bake time: 30-35min
Makes: 12 bars

Ingredients:

6 ripe, medium sized peaches
2 tbsp honey

1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. ground nuts (we used almonds and walnuts)
2 c. oats
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c. + 1tbsp honey or maple syrup
1/2 c. + 1 tbsp coconut oil

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
Peel and slice the peaches. Toss with honey and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Melt the coconut oil and combine with honey or maple syrup. Mix into the dry ingredients until there are no dry patches and you have a somewhat crumbly mixture.
Remove 2 cups of the crumble mixture and set aside.
Spread the remaining oat mixture in the bottom of a greased 9X9inch square baking pan. Using the back of a lifter/spatula, press the mixture firmly into the bottom of the pan. Pour the honeyed peaches over the top and spread evenly across the pan. Take the reserved 2 cups of oat mixture and sprinkle it evenly over the top.
Bake for 30-35min, or until the crumb begins to turn a golden brown.

~twosaucysisters

What’s your favourite way to enjoy fresh peaches?

**ps- we will be away all this week at Cross Country Training camp, so we apologize in advance if we do not respond to any comments/questions right away, we will be sure to read them as soon as we return!  Have a great week everybody!

Simple Sunday: Another Summer Salad

This morning we were reminded just how much we love the Summer.  We went for a run and it was just so beautiful outside we felt like we could have run forever.  And we have to say that so far this has been one of the best running summers we have had in a long time.  Yes, the heat wave we had a couple weeks ago was a bit much (although we refuse to complain!), but that has gone away and left us with beautiful days like today.

But Summer isn’t just awesome because of its blue skies and warm temperatures.  The abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that can be found at local stands on just about every corner cannot be discounted!  We know we’ve mentioned this many times before and we don’t mean to be repetitive, but every time we eat a fresh tomato from our own garden, or snack on juicy cherries from just down the road, we can’t help but be reminded of how delicious the summer is!

Which is why we made this salad- to showcase the season’s best!

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This salad brings together what in our minds are sort of like the three “stages” of summer produce.  First comes the asparagus in the spring (which is basically like early summer in our opinions!), then you start to get into more of the actual summer months and get strawberries, and then of course the summer is capped off with delicious, sweet corn.

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Of course, there are a million other fruits and veggies that make an appearance during those times, too, like fiddle heads and leafy greens in the spring, cherries, blueberries, raspberries and apricots mid-summer, and peaches are starting to hit the stands now too! 🙂

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Add some chicken and a little tahini drizzle and you’ve got yourself and easy, delicious and fresh-tasting summer meal!  And feel free to change it up a bit, too- local strawberries might be a little tougher to find now, but cherries are out full-force and would work wonderfully in this salad.  The idea is to use whatever summer produce you can find.

We hope you are enjoying your summer as much as we are, and be sure to hit up your local farmer’s market to take advantage of all this awesome food nature has to offer!

Strawberry Asparagus and Corn Salad

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Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20-30 minutes
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

1 bunch of asparagus, ends trimmed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 c. strawberries, sliced
1 c. corn (fresh or frozen)
1 clove of garlic, minced
salt and pepper

2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper

For the tahini drizzle:

3 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper
2-3 tbsp water

Directions:

Sprinkle the chicken with garlic powder, salt and pepper and bake in a 350F oven for 20-30 minutes, or until done.  Alternatively you can barbecue the chicken over medium heat for 20-30 minutes if you prefer.

Meanwhile, toss the asparagus in olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven for about 15 minutes until they can be easily pierced with a fork, or grill over medium heat for 10-15 minutes.  Set aside.

In a frying pan over medium heat, add a small amount of olive oil.  Add the garlic and corn and saute until the corn begins to blacken a bit.  Turn off the heat and add the strawberries so they cook down just a little bit and release some of their juices into the corn.

Cut the asparagus into bit-sized pieces and add to the pan.  Season with salt and pepper and stir until everything is combined.  Slice the chicken and divide the salad onto separate plates.  Place the chicken on top and finish with the tahini drizzle.

For the Tahini Drizzle:

Combine all ingredients except the water and stir until fully combined.  Slowly add the water until the mixture is drippy but still slightly thick.  Drizzle over top of salad.

~twosaucysisters

What is your favourite part about Summer?  What is the weather like where you live?  How do you like to take advantage of these beautiful days?

If You Can’t Take the Heat… Turn off the Oven

We’re not sure what the weather’s doing over in your neck of the woods, but here in Ontario we just came out of a 2-week long heat wave.  We’re talking 107F.  And this is not a dry heat, this is a hair-frizzing pore-clogging kind of heat that basically renders sweating useless.  (Not that our bodies got that memo- every time we came in from a run we looked like we had just gone swimming fully clothed- how’s that for a pretty picture for ya?)

Anyways, we think it goes without saying that in that kind of heat turning on the oven is completely out of the question.  Even barbecuing seemed like a bad idea, so we were really at a loss as to what to make for dinner for our family.

We’d also like to take this moment to blame the heat wave for our decided lack of posts lately.  We’ve hardly been doing any cooking so we really haven’t had much to share with you guys.  Because you can only post so many salad recipes.

Anyways, we’ll stop making excuses for ourselves and continue on to the good part!

As we said in Tuesday’s post , we had a delicious recipe that uses our pesto coming your way, so here it is…

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Quinoa Salad!

Ok, so right after saying that we didn’t want to start throwing a whole bunch of salad recipes at you what’s the first thing we do?  Give you a salad recipe.  But this is a quinoa salad, so it’s a little different and doesn’t really count.

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We discovered quinoa for the first time a few years ago and basically become obsessed with it.  We started putting it in almost everything we made so it found its way onto the dinner table several times a week.  It became a running joke in our family that if you didn’t know what was in something, it was most likely quinoa.  It got to the point where every time we made anything everyone would ask if there was quinoa in it.

We suppose it was a tad excessive…

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So while the quinoa-craze of 3 summers ago has passed, we still do like to break it out every once in a while.  And it was the perfect thing in this heat wave because it’s a great source of protein that can be cooked in 10 minutes on the stove-top.  Minimal prep and minimal heat required.  Which means more time in the pool- the only suitable place to be during weather like that!

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We had a wicked storm last night that took some of the heat away, so we will most likely be turning on the barbecue again, but you can be sure that if another heat wave like that hits we will be making this salad again!  In fact, even if it doesn’t get so hot, we will probably make this tasty dish again anyways 🙂

Quinoa Pesto Tabouleh Salad

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Prep: 20 minutes
Rest Time: at least 30 minutes
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

1 c. quinoa (any colour)
2 c. water

1 recipe of Sage-Basil-Arugula-Walnut Pesto
1c. bell peppers (any colour), diced
1/2 large seedless cucumber, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 c. chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Directions:

Place the quinoa and water in a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil, uncovered.  Once the water has started to boil, place the lid on top and turn the heat to low.  Allow the quinoa to simmer for 10 minutes.  Turn of the heat and allow to sit on the burner for another 6 minutes.  Remove from the burner, take off the lid and fluff with a fork. Set aside to cool.

Combine the veggies and chickpeas in a large bowl.  Add the quinoa and stir to make sure the vegetables are evenly distributed.  Add the pesto and stir well.  Place in the fridge and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes, so the quinoa has a chance to cool and the flavours have the chance to mingle.

Optional: add some chopped walnuts, dried cranberries, or feta cheese to the salad.

~twosaucysisters

What kinds of things do you make when you’re in the middle of a heat wave?

1 Year Recap: Recipe Round-Up

In light of our recent one-year blogiversary celebration, we thought it would be appropriate to do a recipe round-up of some (emphasis on the “some”) of our favourite/most popular recipes from this past year.  Since we can’t just choose a few, though, we’ve broken it down into categories.  Enjoy!

Breakfast

Since breakfast is pretty much our favourite meal of the day, we had a lot of trouble choosing our favourite recipes, but here are the ones that made the cut:

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Chocolate-Banana Upside-down Pancakes

We made these for a crowd a few weeks ago when our family had a giant garage sale along with a few other types of pancakes, but these were the hands-down favourite.  This just confirms in our minds that everyone loves chocolate, peanut butter and banana.

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Banana-Stuffed French toast with English “Cream”

After making this stuffed french toast recipe, we’re not sure if we can ever eat regular french toast ever again.  And as if that’s not enough, we also have a blueberry-lemon version and an apple pie version to satisfy all your stuffed french toast needs!

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Banana Waffles

If pancakes aren’t your thing, well, you’re crazy, but maybe the satisfying toasty crunch of waffles is more up your alley? Regardless, you should make these right away.  Added bonus- make these in the morning and your house will smell like delicious waffles right through into the afternoon!

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Orange Strawberry Banana Pancake in a Jar

Ever since our very first peanut butter banana pancake in a jar, we’ve made countless varieties of the genius creation, but this particular version quickly rose to the top as one of our favourites.  Probably because it’s so pretty- just look at those bright colours!

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Red Velvet Buckwheat Bake 

We love buckwheat bakes, but not only was this one of our all-time favourite versions, this was definitely a reader favourite too!  And who doesn’t want to eat red velvet cake for breakfast?

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Peach Raspberry Overnight Oats Parfait

Summer is on it’s way, which means so is summer fruit!  You can be sure that overnight oats parfaits will be on the breakfast menu for us now that the weather is warming up, and as soon as peach season hits we’ll be re-making this wondrous parfait!

Lunch

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Pizza Crepes

It’s pizza and a crepe at the same time.  What more needs to be said?

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Szechuan Chickpea Patties

Peanutty chickpea goodness all wrapped up in one delicious vegetarian burger. Yum!DSCN5182

Chipotle Chicken Wraps

Creamy spicy chicken inspired by one of our favourite on-the-go store-bought lunches.  A healthier version of an old stand-by?  Yes please!

Dinner

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Baked Salmon with Strawberry Basil Rice Pilaf and Strawberry Avocado Salsa

This dish is summery, pretty, healthy and delicious.  You really can’t ask for anything more now can you?

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Caramelized Onion BBQ Chicken Pizza

Pizza is the perfect food.  And if it’s possible to improve on perfection, then this pizza definitely did!  We loved it, our family loved it- ladies and gents, we have a winner!

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Noodle Bowl

Countless variations of these were consumed to ward off the chill during the extra-long winter we had this year.  Highly recommended when you find yourself in need of a comforting bowl of warmth on a cold winter night!

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Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork

We do not love pork, but we love this meal!  But if pork really isn’t your thing, maybe pulled chicken would suit you better?

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Sweet Potato Mango Lentil Curry

Nothing beats a hearty bowl of curry, but this meatless variety that’s full of veggies, sweet potatoes and chunks of sweet mango really takes the cake!

Sides

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Caper Cranberry Tapenade

These sweet-and salty crisps are perfect for a little appetizer.  Highly recommended for all those summer dinner parties you’re planning on having 😉

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Home Fries

Everyone loves home fries, and these ones use a simple trick to make them nice and crispy every time.

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Easy Greek Salad

Even if you’re not having a Greek-themed feast you should make this salad!  Tangy and colourful, it’s a nice break from a traditional garden side-salad.

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Slow-Cooker Baked Beans

Baked Beans in the slow cooker are an easy way to enjoy the tasty side dish with hardly any effort.

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Roasted Fall Veggie Salad

Roasted vegetables are one of the best things in the world- no exaggeration! And yes, we realize that asparagus is not a Fall vegetable, but that is a minor detail.  We made a roasted vegetable salad and it was the Fall, ergo Roasted Fall Veggie salad.

Dips/Spreads

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Apple Butter

Quite possibly one of the easiest recipes in the entire world with only four ingredients and two steps (ok 3 if you count chopping the apples).  And no added sugar- just pure apple-y goodness!

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Salsa Chipotle Hummus

Obviously you knew a hummus recipe was bound to make it on to our list.  And to be honest, we put up this recipe not because it’s our favourite, but more as a representation of all our hummus recipes, because how can you really choose just one when they’re all incredible?  You can’t.

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Beet and Feta Bean Dip

Ok, so this dip is very similar to a hummus recipe- but it is so good that it needed to be recognized all on its own.  Even if you don’t like beets we bet you would like this dip!  It doesn’t really taste like beets, and it has an amzing bright pink colour.  Who wouldn’t want to eat bright pink food?

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Chai-Spiced Blueberry Jam

Fresh blueberry jam with a spicy twist.  Slather on toast, pancakes, waffles, or eat straight from the jar with a spoon.  However you go about it- you must try this jam!

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Cafe Latte Almond Butter

Its a rich, creamy almond butter that tastes like coffee- Java lovers unite!

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Vegan Cheese Sauce

This sauce is so good you’ll want to put it on everything.  And we promise no one will ever know there’s no cheese in it.

Snacks

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Fig Newtons

These are the best when you need a quick pre-run snack, or you need something small to tie you over until your next meal.  And they’re whole wheat, sugar-free, and delicious!

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Kale Chips

Quite possibly the most addicting snack ever.

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Chocolate Chip Lentil Granola Bars

Want a hearty, chewy granola bar?  Add lentils- simple as that.

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Roasted Chickpeas

If you’re in need of a crunchy snack, nothing will satisfy that craving better than these chickpeas.  We recommend you never allow your pantry to be without a jar of them.

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Lemon Coconut Muffins

Muffins are always fantastic snacks, and these ones are some of the softest, most pillow-like muffins we’ve ever had.  The lemon adds some zing and makes them almost refreshing, if it’s possible for a muffin to be that way!

Desserts

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Chocolate Fudge Black Bean Brownies

We’ve had several people make this recipe and rave about it!  But if you’re in the gluten-intolerant crowd, never fear, our gluten-free red velvet brownies are sure to squash any brownie craving.

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Chewy Ginger Snaps

Don’t wait for the Christmas season to make these, they’re too tasty to only have once a year!

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Pumpkin Rice Pudding

Here’s another one that should not be held off until the appropriate season.  Because really, is there truly a season for delicious, thick and creamy rice pudding?  We like to think that sort of thing is a year-round treat.

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Vegan Zucchini Bread Cheese Cake

Who ever said vegans can’t have cheesecake has clearly never tried vegan cheesecake.  Oh well, their loss!

We also want to give honourable  mention to our chocolate cake from our anniversary post.  We didn’t include it in today’s round-up because we just wrote about it, but it needed to be mentioned!

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So there you have have it- quite possibly the longest post ever written, but maybe the most delicious? 😉

We hope you find something on this round-up that catches your eye, and that you have been enjoying the recipes we’ve been posting all year.  If there’s something that you’d like us to make, please feel free to leave a comment or send us an email (twosaucysistas@gmail.com) – we love hearing from you!

Cheers to a great year!

~twosaucysisters

Chocolate Lavender

Last Monday was the 3rd installment of Heather’s Meatless Monday round-up.  It was for the letter D and in this case, D stood for dark chocolate.

And we missed it.

How could we miss the week that was using chocolate as the main ingredient?!?

We knew we had to make up for it this week, so we called out to our facebook friends to give us a little inspiration as to what we should make.  After all, we knew we had to do something pretty spectacular to make up for missing dark chocolate week!

One very devoted follower found a recipe for a dark chocolate tart that looked incredible, and so we set to work make our own Saucy Sister (aka-healthy) version.  We decided while we were at it, we might as well make it with gluten-free and vegan options because nobody is going to want to be left out of this one!

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On top of that, the weather is warming up quickly over here (woohoo!) so we decided in the spirit of summer, we would make this a no-bake creation, becuase who really wants to turn on their oven when it’s hot outside?

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You also might notice the sprigs of lavender on the top- that is no accident!  You see, we are in the midst of preparing our vegetable garden for another season, and we have purchased a number of herbs to plant in pots on the back porch.  One that we are particularly excited about is our lavender plant, so we thought this was the perfect opportunity to incorporate some fresh summer herbs into our dishes!

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So we give you a No-Bake Chocolate Lavender tart.  The perfect way to start off a summer of baking dessert-making.  And yes, we realize that we failed to follow the rules and make something from one of the participants last week.  Heather, we are very sorry, but we just had to share this recipe!  And I guess we sort of used Laura’s chocolate-avocado idea, didn’t we?  That must count for something, right?

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If you don’t have lavender, you can leave it out and just add a little more water or sweetener, but it really makes this unique, so we highly recommend trying to get your hands on some!

And of course, head over to visit Heather at Better with Veggies to see what everyone else made this week!

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No-Bake Chocolate Lavender Tart

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Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 1 9-inch pie

Ingredients:

2 c. rolled oats (use gluten-free oats for a gluten-free version)
1/2 c. raw almonds
1/2 c. raw walnuts
1 c. chopped dates
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp water

1 large avocado
1/2 c. plain greek yogurt (use dairy-free yogurt for vegan version)
1/4 c. + 2 tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 c. + 2 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 c. hot water + 2 sprigs of lavender
dash of salt

Directions:

In a food processor, combine the oats and nuts and cocoa powder.  Blend for a couple of minutes until the oats and nuts are finely chopped.  Add the dates and pulse until the mixture is crumbly and there are no large pieces of dates left.  Add the water and maple syrup and pulse until the mixture comes together and sticks together when punched between the fingers.

Line a 9-inch pie plate with wax paper.  Dump the crust mixture into the plate and press firmly, making sure to press some of the mixture up the sides as well.  Set aside.

Place the lavender in the 1/4 c. of hot water and allow to steep for several minutes.

In your food processor, combine the avocado, yogurt, cocoa powder, maple syrup, salt and 2 tbsp of the lavender water.  The rest can either be discarded or kept used in something else.  Blend all ingredients until smooth.  Pour the chocolate filling into the crust and smooth with a spatula.  Allow to set in the fridge for at least a couple hours before cutting.

Garnish with fresh sprigs of lavender if you wish.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever had chocolate and lavender together?  What are some of your favourite chocolate desserts?  Are you planting a vegetable garden this year?