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Ask the Expert Archive


Have you ever been in the produce section and wondered what those odd looking, small, green tomatoes were? Or seen tomatillos referenced on the menu at your local Mexican restaurant?  If so, it’s time to add this delicious veggie to your grocery cart.  Tomatillos are also known as the Mexican Husk Tomato and are used in similar ways you would use tomatoes.  They have a sweet, yet tangy flavor and are especially good in salsas.  Tomatillos are also nutritious.  They are low calorie, cholesterol free, sodium free, and a good source of Vitamin C.



Mango Tomatillo Guacamole puts a creative spin on an already delicious recipe.  You’ll roast fresh tomatillos and add them to a food processor until smooth.  Combine this with avocado, chopped mango, chopped jalapeno pepper, chopped garlic. chopped onion, chopped fresh cilantro, salt, pepper, and the juice of a lime.

Courtesy of Destination Delish


Roasted Tomatillo and White Bean Soup is a spicy dish that’s quick to make (40 minutes).  You’ll roast the tomatillos until the skins blacken and then puree in a blender.  In a large pot add olive oil, chopped onion and garlic and cook until the onion begins to soften.  Add vegetable stock, tomatillo puree, and one can of navy beans. Season with salt and pepper to taste and add fresh lime juice before serving.  Serve this soup with tortilla strips, chopped avocado, chopped cilantro, and plain yogurt.

Courtesy of The Kitchen Paper


Tomatillo Salsa Verde is perfect to enjoy with tortilla chips or as a topping for chicken or fish.  Roast fresh tomatillos along with onion, jalapeno and garlic.  After roasting, deseed and chop the jalapeno.  Peel and chop the garlic and chop the onion.  Add all the roasted ingredients to a food processor along with fresh cilantro and salt and process to the desired consistency you want.

Courtesy of She Wears Many Hats


I’ll return next week with some easy recipes you can use for your Labor Day festivities.


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Cole slaw is a popular side dish, especially at summer month gatherings like picnics and barbeques.  The traditional recipe uses shredded cabbage and a dressing made from mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, and spices.  It works well, but the mayonnaise base can carry a lot of fat and calories.  I’ve collected a few other options that not only lower the calorie and fat content, but also add some variety of veggies to the recipe.


Crunchy Asian Slaw with Peanut Dressing uses a bag of broccoli slaw, shredded red cabbage, thinly sliced red bell pepper, sliced radishes, sliced red onion, shelled edamame, chopped cilantro, and sunflower seeds.  The dressing is made from creamy peanut butter, rice vinegar, soy sauce, olive oil, sesame oil, honey, and chili garlic paste.  This slaw is packed with a combination of flavors and textures.

Courtesy of A Spicy Perspective


Southwest Slaw has a little kick to it.  Finely shredded green cabbage, fresh corn, fresh jalapeno, thinly sliced red bell pepper, and chopped fresh cilantro provide the base of this slaw.  You’ll cook the corn and jalapeno in a cast iron skillet until charred on all sides. Scrape the skin from the jalapeno and discard the seeds, then mince.  Combine all ingredients in a bowl.  For the dressing you’ll whisk together fresh lime juice, honey, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper.  Pour over the slaw mix and stir together.

Courtesy of Taste of the South Magazine


If you really love the traditional coleslaw recipe, try this Clean Eating Coleslaw, as it uses Greek Yogurt in place of the usual mayonnaise base.  You’ll need shredded red cabbage, shredded green cabbage, and shredded carrots.  Your dressing is made from Greek yogurt, water, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, olive oil, coriander, salt, and pepper.

Courtesy of ifoodreal


I’m back next Monday with a look at tomatillos and some great recipes for this flavorful veggie.


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When you think of eating at the beach, you probably think of packing a few sandwiches in a cooler, right?  Recently, I joined a bunch of friends at the beach where you can surf fish.  This means you can also drive up on the beach and use gas grills–a big bonus.  Forget about snack foods and sandwiches …this group had a major cookout going on.  Chicken kebabs, grilled veggies, and corn on the cob, just to name a few of the items served.  A lot of state park areas at the beach allow surf fishing where you can drive up on the beach.  You’ll need to have the proper permit, but it’s easy to obtain, check with your local or state agency to find out where to get one.


Being able to grill on the beach, as well as having more room to set up a tent and tailgate, allows you the ability to serve a wider variety of food than the traditional beach fare.  Let’s start with this Greek Orzo Salad. Make it ahead of time and put it in a container in the cooler, ready to be served once you get to the beach.  It contains orzo, feta cheese, cucumber, grape tomatoes, black olives, red onion, fresh basil, and fresh parsley.  It’s topped with a dressing made from olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and salt/pepper.

Courtesy of Cooking Classy


Spicy Grilled Shrimp Tacos can partially be prepared ahead of time.  Marinate your shrimp in advance and place in a sealed container and place in your cooler so they are ready to be grilled when you arrive at the beach.  You’ll create the simple slaw in advance by combining cole slaw mix with onion, olive oil, honey, lime juice and a little salt and pepper.  Let this marinate together for at least an hour. Bring to the beach in a sealed container.  Make your own guacamole in advance by mashing an avocado and adding onion, garlic, jalapeno, lime juice, cumin, and salt and pepper.  Once you’ve grilled your shrimp you’re ready to assemble your tacos (you can use either corn or flour tortillas).

Courtesy of The Healthy Maven


Fajita Chicken Kebabs combine marinated chicken and fresh veggies together on the grill.  You’ll marinate your chicken ahead of time (the marinade is made from canola oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, garlic, jalapeno, and salt) and place in an airtight container in your cooler until you reach the beach and are ready to place on the grill.  Cut your veggies such as bell pepper and red onion into large chunks ahead of time and put into a zip lock bag for transporting to the beach.  Thread the chicken and veggies onto skewers and place on your grill for 6-8 minutes, rotating half way through the cooking time.  Make sure the chicken is cooked evenly and all the way through.

Courtesy of Well Plated


Enjoy and next week I’ll return with some different ideas for cole slaw recipes.


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