Blog Posts by Country Living

  • A 30-Minute Recipe for Green Tomato Salsa with Grilled Sea Bass

    This recipe by the executive chef-owner of Recess in Indianapolis tops grilled sea bass with a flavorful salsa that uses green tomatoes, jalapenos, and cilantro. Try it on other types of grilled fish or in burritos.

    Ingredients
    • 1 1/4 (about 5) Green Tomatoes, finely chopped
    • 1 cup(s) chopped fresh cilantro
    • 1 small red onion
    • 1/4 cup(s) (from about 1 1/2 limes) Lime Juice
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • 2 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped
    • Salt
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • 8 (6 ounces each) sea bass filets
    • Olive oil, for brushing fish and grill

    Plus: 30-Minute Meals for Busy Nights »

    Directions:

    1. For salsa: In a large bowl, combine first 5 ingredients. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

    2. Heat grill to medium-high. Cut 3 slits into the skin of each fillet, brush both sides of fish with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Brush grill with oil. Grill fillets, skin sides down, until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes, flipping once halfway

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  • How to Make Pumpkin-Ricotta Stuffed Shells — and Save 18 Grams of Fat

    By incorporating pumpkin, this recipe requires less cheese than is typically used to stuff shells. Opt for fat-free ricotta and you'll save a total of 168 calories, 18 grams of fat, and 67 milligrams of cholesterol per serving.

    Ingredients
    • 24 jumbo pasta shells
    • 1 tablespoon(s) extra virgin olive oil
    • 22 ounce(s) (2 1/2) cups fat-free ricotta
    • 1 can(s) 15-ounce pumpkin puree
    • 2 1/2 ounce(s) Pecorino Romano, grated (3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
    • 1 large egg white
    • 2 clove(s) garlic, minced
    • 1 cup(s) fresh basil, chopped
    • 1 tablespoon(s) finely chopped fresh sage
    • 1 teaspoon(s) salt
    • 1 teaspoon(s) freshly ground pepper
    • 1 jar(s) (26-ounce) store-bought tomato sauce


    Plus: 49 Kid-Friendly Family Recipes »

    Directions:

    1. Cook pasta shells according to package instructions; drain. Transfer to a baking sheet and drizzle with oil. Set aside and let cool.

    2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together ricotta, pumpkin, 3/4 cup pecorino

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  • 6 Decorating Tricks that Glam Up Your Living Room in a Flash

    In the newly renovated, wide-open front room of our 2013 House of the Year, we established two living areas above-one traditional; the other-laid back.

    1. Let ceilings soar. Once-dark wood beams and rafters got an instant lift from Benjamin Moore's Decorators White paint.


    2. Add opposing colors.
    Shaw's recycled-hickory flooring, in a deep-brown stain, anchors the airy space and contrasts against the walls, painted Spring Mint by Benjamin Moore. Bonus: The purposefully distressed planks look as if they've been here forever.

    Plus: 31 Ways to Sneak Storage Into Your Home »

    3. Strive for balance, not boring sameness. Note how the 8-by-10-foot jute rug (from Surya's CL line) is echoed by the round one on the right. A vintage Aero Studios floor lamp and a fig tree bring height, but in different ways.

    4. Strive for balance, not boring sameness. Note how the 8-by-10-foot jute rug (from Surya's CL line) is echoed by the round one on the right. A vintage Aero Studios floor lamp and a fig

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  • How to Make Crispy Potato Chips Yourself at Home

    Skip the vending machine, and reach for these made-from-scratch chips instead. They're sprinkled with fresh rosemary, crunchy sea salt, and cracked pepper.

    Ingredients
    • 2 1/2 cup(s) vegetable oil
    • 1 pound(s) russet potatoes, scrubbed and dried
    • 1 teaspoon(s) chopped fresh rosemary
    • Sea salt
    • Freshly ground pepper

    Plus: 49 Kid-Friendly Family Recipes »

    Directions:

    1.In a medium saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer, heat oil to 325 degrees F. Using a mandoline, slice potatoes widthwise into paper-thin slices.

    2. In batches, fry potatoes in heated oil, 1 to 2 minutes, making sure not to overcrowd pan. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain. While still hot, sprinkle each batch with rosemary and salt and pepper to taste.

    See more from CountryLiving.com:

    Our Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Decorating »
    13 Salad Recipes Hearty Enough »
    30-Minute Meals for Busy Nights »

    20+ Fruity Cocktail Recipes »

    Reprinted with permission of

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  • How to Make "Fried" Chicken with 75 Percent Less Fat

    When pretzels (not deep-friend skin) deliver crunch, each serving of this recipe contains 75 percent less fat and 165 fewer calories.

    Ingredients
    • 1 whole(s) (3-pound) chicken
    • 1 pound(s) unsalted fat-free sourdough pretzels
    • 2 tablespoon(s) paprika
    • Salt
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • 1 cup(s) low-fat buttermilk
    • 2 egg whites
    • 2 tablespoon(s) Dijon mustard

    Plus: 6 Figure-Friendly (and Delicious!) Desserts »

    Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut chicken into 10 pieces: 2 drumsticks, 2 thighs, 2 wings, and 2 breasts (cut in half to yield 4 pieces). Remove skin and trim any fat. Set chicken aside.

    2. Place pretzels in a heavy-duty, resealable plastic bag and crush into coarse crumbs. Mix in paprika, 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, and 2 teaspoons pepper. Divide pretzel crumbs between 2 shallow dishes.

    3. In a bowl, whisk together buttermilk, egg whites, mustard, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Working with 1 piece at a time, dredge chicken in pretzel crumbs from

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  • 20 Creative Ways to Sneak Storage into Your Home

    Let clutter be a thing of the past! Here's how to find extra storage space in every room of your house.


    1. Build your own unit. Spray-painted yellow and topped with plywood, three Goodwill filing cabinets morphed into a bright storage space.

    2. Give antiques new life. Use vintage breadboxes as sneaky storage for table linens in a kitchen.

    3. Try industrial shelving. Construct a pantry from a pair or metal storage units.

    4. Seek out open spaces. Rather than let a rarely used fireplace go to waste, stack books inside.

    5. Install floor-to-ceiling shelves. Replace upper cabinets with shelves and hooks that make kitchenware easily accessible.

    Plus: Our Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Decorating »

    6. Go for an artistic arrangement. Cover cardboard boxes in old French maps and newspapers.

    7. Use what you've got. Remove cabinet doors underneath window seats to create a clever spot to stash your stuff.

    8. Take advantage of vertical space. Rather than waste a kitchen closet, use tall

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  • Guilt-Free Margaritas with Way Less Sugar – and Only 80 Calories

    These Guilt-Free Margaritas skip sugary triple sec, instead gaining its flavor from fresh lime juice, agave syrup, orange zest, and mint-for a savings of 80 calories per cocktail.

    Ingredients
    • Juice of 15 limes (about 2 cups)
    • 1 cup(s) anejo tequila
    • 1/3 cup(s) dark agave syrup (see note)
    • 1/4 teaspoon(s) dark agave syrup (see note), for glass rims
    • 6 strip(s) orange zest
    • 12 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon(s) sea salt
    • 34 ice cubes

    Plus: 17 Lightened-Up Versions of Your Favorite Recipes »

    Directions:

    1. In a large pitcher, combine lime juice, tequila, and agave syrup. Rub each old-fashioned glass rim with 1 orange zest strip, then place zest in glass. Put 1/4 teaspoon agave in a small bowl, and combine mint and salt on a small plate. Dip your finger in syrup and rub along glass rims. Dip glasses in mint-salt mixture to coat rims. Put 4 ice cubes in each glass.

    2. Place 5 ice cubes in a cocktail shaker. Pour half the lime-tequila

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  • Make Corn Salad with Radishes, Jalapeño, and Lime in 3 Minutes Flat

    This corn salad comes together in just three minutes, no cooking required.

    Ingredients
    • 3 cup(s) (about 3 large ears) fresh corn kernels
    • 6 radishes, thinly sliced
    • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and ribs removed, finely chopped
    • 3 tablespoon(s) fresh lime juice
    • 2 tablespoon(s) fresh cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
    • 1 1/2 tablespoon(s) olive oil

    Plus: 30 more recipes for tempting sandwiches, salads, and more »

    Directions:

    1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and season with salt to taste.

    2. The salad can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 day.

    See more from CountryLiving.com:

    Our Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Decorating »
    97 Grilling Recipes for an Epic Summer Cookout »
    64 Delicious Vegetarian Recipes »

    25 Sensational Grilling Side Dishes »

    Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.

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  • 5 Decorating Tricks that Open Up a Small Kitchen

    When Hurricane Sandy pounded the East Coast, we decided to rehab our usual approach to our annual House of the Year. Our plan: redo a real cottage damaged by flooding-Marian Lizzi's 1,000-square-foot bungalow in Breezy Point, New York. Since the kitchen is visible from the front door, we lavished the space with personality.

    1. Don't settle for a blah backsplash.
    Faux-bois tiles from 14Ora Italiana create a functional focal point.

    2. Ask a lot from little appliances. This 2½-foot-wide Maytag stove manages to pack in an impressive two ovens and five burners.

    Plus: 20 great ideas for kitchen islands »

    3. Utilize every inch. More than mere prep surface, an island also serves as a social hub come happy hour. And Cost Plus World Market's rubberwood version helps delineate the kitchen from the rest of the room.

    4. Don't be afraid to mix metals. Instead of matching the stainless steel Maytag stove, fridge, and dishwasher, we opted for contrast via matte black hardware: a Moen

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  • Make Salmon Avocado Sushi at Home – in a Snap

    Sushi-making is a snap-and so healthful-with our salmon-avocado sushi recipe. Be sure to use authentic sushi rice, which retains an appropriately sticky texture for expert rolling.

    Ingredients
    • 1 cup(s) sushi rice
    • 2 tablespoon(s) rice vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon(s) rice wine
    • 4 nori sheets
    • 1/2 avocado, cut into thin slices
    • 12 thin asparagus spears, blanched, cooled
    • 1/4 pound(s) cured salmon (gravlax), sliced into 1/2-inch strips
    • 1 tablespoon(s) toasted sesame seed

    Plus: 30 more recipes for tempting sandwiches, salads, and more »

    Directions:

    1. Cook rice according to package instructions. While the rice is still hot, sprinkle with vinegar and rice wine. Toss to mix and cool completely.

    2. Hold the nori over a low flame and gently heat it until the sheet turns bright green. Place the nori on a sushi mat, shiny side down, and pat 1/2 cup rice with moist hands onto the nori sheet, leaving a 1-inch border on the opposite edge.

    3. Line slices of avocado and either asparagus

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