|photo courtesy of Mindy Kobrin|
What is your best advice for our M.O.Ms who want to plan a healthy family meal or dinner with guests?
Planning a healthy and fun meal for family and friends can be easy and stress-free when organized and creative. It takes just a few minutes and a quick glance inside your cupboards to see what you have on hand
(Meals on Heels by Mindy's Must-Haves Kitchen Essentials.
Keep it fresh, easy and full of colorful nutrition. Picking a theme "ups the creative ante" and educates along the way. Try and select a theme that includes an international destination and a menu full of protein, carbohydrates and color. Playing a soundtrack from the selected region and creating Q&A cards about historical monuments, literature, art, leadership and more from that region help set the mood while guaranteeing a playful dinner conversation.
Without question, sun-kissed Mediterranean foods exemplify nutritional, flavorful and family-friendly dishes from divine casserole dishes to well-portioned skewered kabobs. They also make for tasty left-overs when paired with fresh mixed greens! Greece, full of history and Homer's adventures toward Ithaka, is a terrific theme that intrigues both children and adults of all ages.
What is the key to prepping meals for the week/that day whether its for 1 or more people?
Meal prep and morning table-setting are the magical turn-key solutions to delicious meals and fuss-free entertaining. Make sure all fresh herbs and vegetables are rinsed, chopped and stored properly in the refrigerator along with any special marinades according to your menu's suggestions so cooking time takes no time at all.
A Kitchen must-have or book ‘to cook by’?
Kitchen Must-Have (skewers; zesters; quality herbs and spices)
Inspiration comes in many forms. Extensive travel and New York City provide me with countless innovative cuisine ideas that help inspire my at-home versions when tinkering with new recipes. Over the years, my go-to archive includes The Silver Palate Cookbook and Foods of the Greek Islands.
Recipe for our M.O.Ms to Enjoy
With so many scrumptious recipes, here is a full-proof Greek Party Menu with three different entree options that promises to please each and every palate while taking you and your guests on a well-deserved culinary vacation:
Tomatoes, cucumbers and feta are a match made by Greek gods! Enjoy this under the hot Greek sun on the sultry beaches and maritime ports of the decadently popular Ionian or Cycladic islands.
HORIATIKI GREEK SALAD
Prepared in 15 minutes or less.
¾ lbs tomatoes, seeded, quartered
2 cups diced seeded peeled cucumber
½ green pepper, thinly sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp capers
3 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1½ tbs red wine vinegar
½ tsp fresh or dried oregano
¼ cup fresh feta cheese (option to place atop salad intact)
6-8 pitted Kalamata olives
Cut all the ingredients except the olives into pieces and arrange in a dish with the tomatoes first, then the onion, pepper, cucumber and lastly the Feta cheese. Garnish with the olives. Before serving, sprinkle with oregano, salt, olive oil and red wine vinegar. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Serve with toasted pita.) Serves 4.
Meet our M.O.M Cook Contributor Mindy
LIFESTYLE & CELEBRATION EXPERT
The go-to Entertaining and Celebrations Expert site, MealsOnHeelsbyMindy.com, fuses food, fashion and travel to create menus and parties with international flare and panache. Every party I plan, no matter the size, is a unique cultural experience that bridges the gap between formal gala and affordable dinner party. As founder of Meals on Heels, I feel the best part of event planning is building menus from scratch with no rules.
Over the past 15 years, I have planned hundreds of events. While serving as the Development Director of Fundraising for the Princess Grace Foundation and HSH Prince Albert of Monaco II and The Princely Family, I spearheaded fundraising and corporate sponsorship for all events including two annual galas that raised over a million dollars. As part of Daniel Boulud's culinary team at Feast & Fetes, I helped orchestrate special events such as the Jazz Aspen Festival and South Beach Food & Wine Festival. With Meals on Heels, I combine my professional and travel experiences with my eye for style and love of cooking to make entertaining flavorful, fun, and fashionable.
Even as a child, it was clear that I had a passion for entertaining. Armed with my Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Cookbook and my mom's heels, I spent much of my childhood hosting themed parties for friends. After graduating from college, my love for fashion led me to Saks Fifth Avenue where I worked as a merchandise analyst. One of my most memorable team building parties was working with designer James Ferragamo on a home-cooked Italian feast at his family's Little Italy home. A few years later, I moved to London to take graduate courses in International Relations. While abroad, I traveled and began honing my palette for ethnic cuisines. This affirmed my belief that no matter what culture or country, food and entertaining are instrumental diplomats that bring people together.
In my spare time, I love to travel. While my favorite destination is the Mediterranean, wherever I go, I can be found in locals' kitchens learning about regional cuisine, entertaining tips and cooking techniques. Often, I can be seen biking around NYC on my old mint green Raleigh adorned with a wicker basket, purchasing fresh ingredients from the farmers' markets and specialty shops.
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Website : http://www.mealsonheelsbymindy.com/