Haricots Verts with Honey Orange Dressing

Haricots Verts (French for green beans) are those skinny (and usually more expensive) green beans you see next to the regular green beans in the grocery store.  I will always chose them over the standard green beans mainly because they are more tender and more flavorful.  I was looking for something a bit different to do with my beans the other day and happened upon this recipe.  I remembered my Trader Joe’s Orange Muscat Champagne Vinegar in the fridge and substituted it for the white wine vinegar the recipe called for.  The result was a delicious, very flavorful dish with a nice hint of orange.  Pretty AND tasty!  🙂
Hericots Verts with Honey Orange Dressing

Hericots Verts with Honey Orange Dressing

Trader Joe's Orange Muscat Champagne Vinegar

Trader Joe’s Orange Muscat Champagne Vinegar

Haricots Verts with Honey Orange Dressing

slightly adapted from Bobby Flay


  • 1 pound haricots verts (French green beans)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice plus 1 teaspoon zest
  • 2 tablespoons Trader Joe’s Orange Muscat Champagne Vinegar 
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ¼  cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼  cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup ricotta salata, grated


To a large pot of boiling salted water, add the haricots verts.  Bring back to a boil, and cook about 2-3 minutes or until crisp-tender.  Drain and immediately plunge beans into a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.  Drain and pat dry.

For the dressing, whisk together the orange juice, zest, vinegar, honey, and some salt and pepper in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in the olive oil until emulsified.

Combine the haricots verts, almonds and about half of the ricotta salata in a serving bowl. Pour some of the dressing over the top and gently toss to coat. Taste and add dressing a little at a time adding salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheese, and serve.

Liz’s Tidbits:

  • If you don’t have Trader Joe’s Orange Muscat Champagne Vinegar, use white wine vinegar.
  • If you can’t find ricotta salata cheese, use feta.

If you like this recipe, feel free to Tweet it, Facebook it, or just email it by clicking the “share” button below. 🙂



Sweet and Sour Black-Eyed Pea Succotash

Trader Joe’s is one of my all-time favorite grocery stores.  Initially, I wasn’t so quick to hop onto their bandwagon, but fast forward and I’ve since become one of their most loyal customers!  I truly love their products!  If you’re still skeptical about all the hoopla, hop on over to one of many websites to see all the lists of some of the most popular products, and see what you’ve been missing.  I’ll post my “TJ’s Favorites” list in a future post, but for now, here are a few you can check out.



Today, though, it’s all about their steamed blackeyed peas.  I’ve posted before how I love their steamed lentils (see this post), so I thought I’d blog about their blackeyed peas along with a great recipe to showcase them.  Since summertime is all about using the abundance of fresh garden produce, this succotash fits the bill.  Feel free to add whatever produce you’d like to make it your own.

Sweet and Sour Black-Eyed Pea Succotash

Sweet and Sour Black-Eyed Pea Succotash


Trader Joe's Steamed Blackeyed Peas

Trader Joe’s Steamed Blackeyed Peas

Sweet and Sour Black-Eyed Pea Succotash

Adapted from: Bobby Flay


  • 2 cups fresh or frozen corn
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 small chile pepper, finely diced (can use fresno, jalepeno, etc)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 package Trader Joe’s steamed blackened peas (or 1 can, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • salt & pepper to taste


Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, bell pepper and chile and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, cook about 30 seconds more then add the blackeyed peas cooking another 2 minutes or so. Add the sugar and vinegar, bring to a boil, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Fold in the corn and parsley and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Liz’s Tidbits:

  • Bobby Flay grilled 4 ears of corn then cut it off the cobb.  In the essence of time, I used frozen and it was great!

If you like this recipe, feel free to Tweet it, Facebook it, or just email it by clicking the “share” button below. 🙂




Back to the Islands-Marinated Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Orange Vinaigrette

“…And watch the sun go down
Listen to the sea roll in
I’ll be thinkin’ of you
And how it might’ve been
Listen to the nightbird cry
Watch the sun set die
Well I hope you understand
I just had to go back to the island”


British Virgin Islands

Liz & Skip - British Virgin Islands

White Bay Beach, Jost Van Dyke

A couple of years ago, hubby and I took a sailing trip around the British Virgin Islands.  It was absolutely fantastic, with a captain and a gourmet cook.  I can’t wait to do it again!  I was recently reminiscing about our trip and found myself craving some of that Caribbean flavor.  Bobby Flay came to the rescue with his recipe for Marinated Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Orange Vinaigrette.  I served it over black beans and rice to which I added a diced mango, chopped cilantro & serrano pepper.  It definitely satisfied that Caribbean craving!  Now if I could just figure out how to get back to the islands!

Marinated Pork Tenderloin

Marinated Pork Tenderloin w/Spicy Orange Vinaigrette

Printable Recipe

Marinated Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Orange Vinaigrette

Bobby Flay


  • 2/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons ancho chile powder
  • 3 tablespoons pasilla chile powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 2 (2 pound) pork tenderloins

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Reserve 1/2 cup of the marinade, pour the remaining marinade into a large baking dish, add the tenderloin and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours. Preheat grill pan until almost smoking. Remove pork from marinade and grill for 10 to 12 minutes basting with the reserved marinade. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing.  Drizzle with Spicy Orange Vinaigrette.

**Can be served on top of black beans & rice.  I add a diced mango, cilantro & serrano pepper.

Spicy Orange Vinaigrette:

  • 3 cups fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 cup olive oil

Heat orange juice in a medium saucepan and reduce to 1/4 cup. Let cool slightly. Combine the orange syrup, vinegar, mustard and ancho chile powder in a blender and blend 30 seconds. With the motor running slowly add the oil until the dressing emulsifies. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Son-in-law, Chris, has requested that I post the “Famous” Painkiller recipe from the “World Famous” Soggy Dollar Bar on White Bay Beach.  This recipe comes straight from Festiva Sailing Vacations who hosted the sail we were on.  We drank WAAAY too many of these while wasting the day away at the Soggy Dollar Bar!

White Bay-home of the Soggy Dollar Bar

White Bay-home of the Soggy Dollar Bar


courtesy: Festiva Sailing Vacations

Printable Recipe


46 fluid ounces canned orange juice

46 fluid ounces canned pineapple juice

16 fluid ounces Coco Lopez

2 cups Cruzan Rum

freshly grated nutmeg

Mix ingredients together, serve over ice with freshly grated nutmeg on top. Enjoy!

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