Seasonal Sundays (Week 16) Mid April

This week's collection of recipes speaks to April, stuck between the last flakes of winter (which are falling as I write ..) and the first blossoms of spring (which sadly, are also falling as I write ...). I hope to inspire your week with the usual blend from Kitchen Parade, "fresh seasonal recipes for everyday eating plus the occasional indulgence". C'mon in!
Seasonal Sundays ♥, a seasonal collection of recipes and life ideas in and out of the kitchen.

Welcome to Seasonal Sundays ...

We Must Not Look Away.

The war on Ukraine is now less about flags, more about fear; less about valor, more about violence; less about honor, more about horror.

Human attention spans are notoriously short. Moreover, it's spring, Easter is upon us. Life does go on. And it's the other side of the world, even if it's as close as our screens, as large as our big screens.

And so I contend, I cajole, I cry out. WE.MUST.NOT.LOOK.AWAY.

Looking away lets the bad guys act with impunity.

Looking away shreds borders and boundaries and condones brazen behavior.

We Must Not Look Away. We Just Mustn't.

About the Photo By Popular Request, a Little Insight into the Top Image: The loveliness of Ukrainian wheat fields swaying beneath clear skies belies the atrocities happening before our very eyes.


Pick One is for those of us overwhelmed by life's unending choices. If that resonates, then check out this one recipe and then call it a day. It's one that I think could make the most difference, the one I hope will become a regular in your kitchen, as it is in mine.

Lemon Asparagus Pasta ♥, a classic for spring, fresh asparagus and bowties in a simple lemon cream sauce.

What's New?!

Wondering about a recipe from the last while? Check Recent Recipes from Kitchen Parade and Recent Vegetable Recipes from A Veggie Venture.

Ham & Beans ♥, an easy, budget-friendly one-pot supper that makes best use of a leftover ham bone. High Protein. Weight Watchers Friendly.

It's Pasta Salad Season!

My InBox and RSS Reader is full of carrot cake this and carrot cake that right before Easter, I have my eye on this sheet cake.

But LOL, just you watch because there's a certain "season" for pasta salad and we're right in the middle of it.

And I couldn't be happier! Over the years, I've developed a particular style for pasta salad, one that minimizes or eliminates the mayonnaise and makes sure that "soft pasta" is matched with "good crunch". All the recipes have this in common: fewer noodles, more crisp veggies, big flavors. Enjoy!

Italian Pasta Salad with Garlicky Tomatoes & Collard Greens, another healthy refrigerator salad ♥ Vegan. Weight Watchers Friendly.

Best-Ever Macaroni Salad, the summer classic, just better ♥ Great crunch, thanks to six different vegetables in a light and bright savory dressing. Budget Friendly. Potluck and Party Friendly. Weight Watchers Friendly.

Garden Pasta Salad with Mint Vinaigrette ♥, light on the pasta, generous with the summer's best fresh veggies and all tossed in a g-o-r-g-e-o-u-s mint vinaigrette.

Asparagus for Easter

I'll save an Avalanche of Asparagus recipes for later, but the grocery-store asparagus is just gorgeous right now! Here are a few ideas for your Easter table ...

Party Asparagus with Aioli ♥ The trick to serving asparagus chilled? Salt. A little effort but definitely worthwhile for perfect chilled asparagus.

Asparagus Tapenade, another healthy vegetable appetizer ♥ Fresh & Seasonal. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly. Great for Meal Prep. Vegan. Gluten Free.

Asparagus Custard Tart ♥, a simple vegetable tart, perfect for spring brunches and light suppers. So pretty!

Favorite Asparagus Recipes ♥ Sides to salads, soups to suppers and more.

The Gifts of Covid

So much disruption, so much isolation, so many lives lost.

But how many of us also discovered good things from the Covid years?

Three Habits My Family Started in the Pandemic That We Want to Keep (NYT, no paywall) by Tish Harrison Warren got me to thinking.

She cited hiking, gathering with friends outside around a fire and inspiring "reconciliation teas". (Click through for all the details, quite intriguing.)

In my husband's rangy extended family, there were six weddings, six brides and six grooms who couldn't wait to formalize their love and commitment. THAT is a good thing, we hope to honor them with a giant family gathering and Wedding Feast some time this fall.

But what else? Maybe the casual summer porch I'd long wanted but never pulled the trigger on until May 2020? Maybe setting up our family room more as a cozy spot for two than a big gathering room?

What about in your circles? Have there been "gifts"?

The Dinner Bell

Seven days a week, 52 weeks a year, the dinner bell rings. If we're gonna eat, somebody's gotta cook, some nights fuel, some nights a feast. Let's make it good, a welcome end to our days.
Honey Mustard Chicken ♥, fast & simple, five ingredients. Weight Watchers Friendly!

Easy Skillet Stroganoff (Beef or Chicken), more weeknight comfort food ♥ Budget Friendly. High Protein.

Asparagus Risotto, the spring classic ♥, except lighter, with more flavor, thanks to a gorgeous Aspargus Stock that uses the whole spear. Weeknight Easy, Weekend Special. Gluten Free.

Good to Know

Ham 101: What to Know Before Buying a Ham, a detailed guide ♥ Easter, anyone?
  • THE INFO Ham 101 What to Know Before Buying a Ham
  • THEN FIRE UP THE SMOKER Twice-Smoked Ham How & why to smoke a smoked ham a second time.

Put an Egg on Top aka "How About Eggs for Dinner?"

Why should breakfast get all the eggs?! If eggs for dinner were a club, I'd be president, chief marketing officer, resident evangelist, public advocate and ... hey, wanna join my club? Start here!

How to Cook Eggs in a Coffee Mug in the Microwave ♥

Something New to You? A Challenge!

It's one thing to know what we like. It's another to get caught in a rut of repetition. Every so often, I may offer a challenge to try something that just might be new. The challenge is yours to accept – or y'know, not – but I hope to pique your palate!

Hot Cross Buns, an Easter tradition ♥, spiced sweet buns topped with icing crosses.

Savoring Sweet Potatoes: A Challenge

So usually my "challenges" are, well, a challenge, an undertaking, an endeavor, a project. But here? For a few weeks, I hope you'll throw a few sweet potatoes onto your grocery list, knowing there'll be a simple recipe to tackle. Who's game?!
Veggie-Lentil Burritos with Cilantro Sauce ♥, a vegetarian concept recipe for what's on hand, gorgeous sauce. Very adaptable. Rave reviews.

Meal Prep

Greek Rice Salad with Artichokes & Feta, another easy salad ♥ Fresh & Seasonal. Great for Meal Prep. Weight Watchers Friendly. Vegetarian. Gluten Free.

This Week's Soup

Everyday-to-Elegant Asparagus Soup ♥, one recipe for either rustic or refined asparagus soup, a spring classic. Weight Watchers Friendly. Rave Reviews!

Finnish Food

Finnish Fruit Tart (RahkaPiirakka) ♥, here with sour cherries, also try rhubarb, raisins, blueberries. One Bowl. Press-in Crust. Super Easy.
  • THE RECIPE Finnish Fruit Tart For blueberries, lingonberries, sour cherries, rhubarb, raisins, figs and more ...
  • THE BITE-SIZE VERSION Mini Blueberry Tarts With a "pop" of fresh blueberry right in the middle.

Lookin' for Love

We're all proud of our best recipes that family and friends (and the Internet!) just love. But what about the recipes we love but are, ahem, so far under-appreciated? This recipe is just that, it could use a little extra love!

Turkey Orzo Soup with Lemon & Spinach ♥, a hearty mix of cooked turkey, pasta and vegetables brightened with lemon, perfect for spring. Weight Watchers Friendly. High Protein.

Sautéed Balsamic Peppers, another quick and easy side ♥

Recipes That Stand the Test of Time

To mark A Veggie Venture's 15th anniversary in 2020, I took a hard look at the first 365 vegetable recipes from the first year to select just 15 which, all these many years and recipes later, remain ever so useful. The result is a fascinating collection of recipes, 15 Favorite Vegetable Recipes, Still Useful After 15 Years. Here's just one.

How to Roast Peppers in the Oven, tips & techniques ♥ Easy Meal Prep. Vegan.

PS Who's noticed? I'm big on "usefulness". See? Best-Ever “Most Useful” Recipes 2002 – Present, just one recipe per year from Kitchen Parade.

Made Me Think ...

Worth Watching ..

  • River (affiliate link), the voices that speak to Detective John River are quite something. The actor who plays River is great but I especially love the actor Nicola Walker, so much so that I've gone back to re-watch ...
  • Unforgotten, a Masterpiece Theater series where she's the lead character.
  • My sister recommended Modern Love and boy, was she right. These episodes are short and each one is quite surprising.

Confessions ...

A blogger whose work I appreciate shares "confessions" every so often. It's not always pretty but it is, well, real.

  • GUILTY PLEASURE I confess ... to a weird fascination with the reality show Love Is Blind on Netflix. The cultural differences in the American, Brazilian and Japanese versions were completely compelling, perhaps, since it's "reality TV" and not actually "reality" then the programs are skewed to stereotypes? Probably. Still.
  • WHEW I confess ... to feeling glad the kitchen was spotless when my husband's daughter unexpectedly knocked on the door Dark Early to retrieve an iPad needed for school.

  • And you? Any "confessions"?

Soups & Salads Especially for April

For seasonal cooks, switching seasons happens gradually, over the course of a few weeks. Here in the Midwest, it's still definitely "early spring" so the recipes cross between soups that warm us up on those chilly days and salads that call when it's easy to stretch an outdoor meal into evening. So what sounds good depends on the day, yes? That's why I spent a year gathering all of A Veggie Venture's best soup and salad recipes into easy-to-scan month-by-month collections.

Dig into Seasonal Soup & Salad Recipes for April, so many ideas!

Here's a sample!

Golden Beet Carpaccio ♥, thin slices of pretty roasted beet topped with a quick caper relish.

Feeding a Sugar-Conscious Sweet Tooth

You too? We're cutting back on sweets without demonizing dessert, usually with smaller batches, smaller servings, shareable desserts or fruit desserts in addition to limiting frequency. But some times?

Strawberry Milk ♥, not a smoothie, almost a strawberry milkshake.


My Top 10 Recipes are predictable, hello Should Cooked Pork Be Pink? and (Sloooow) Baked Potatoes (How Long to Bake a Baked Potato). But every week, seasonal recipes catch the internet's attention and start to trend.

Homemade Mushroom Soup ♥, just a few ingredients, results are nothing at all like from a can.

Afghan Eggplant & Tomato Casserole (Borani Banjan) ♥, an explosion of tastes and textures and temperatures. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly.

Just Updated!

Kitchen Parade's best recipes 2002 - present, just one per year ♥

Split-Pea Soup with Sausage & Kale, another classic soup ♥ Gluten Free. Easy to convert to vegan.

Don't Be a Stranger ...

I'd love to hear from you. Comment, send me a quick e-mail via, dot-dash in Morse code, build a fire for smoke signals, launch a message in a bottle, send a Christmas letter, get the dog to yip, toss me a note wrapped in a rubberband, write a message in the sky, scratch a note in the sand, listen to a seashell, tuck a question into a plastic Easter egg, whatever.

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. If you make this recipe, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below.

© Copyright Kitchen Parade

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.