Melissa d’Arabian is host of Food
Network’s daytime cooking series Ten
Dollar Dinners and Cooking Channel’s
Drop 5 Lbs with Good Housekeeping.
D’Arabian is the season-five winner
of The Next Food Network Star and
has also appeared on Food Network’s
The Best Thing I Ever Ate and Food
Network Challenge. She lives with her
husband, Philippe, and their four young
daughters in San Diego.
Spinach Salad with Blue Cheese
Recipes developed by Melissa d’Arabian
1⁄₃ cup pecan halves
2 pinches of kosher salt, divided
½ small red onion, thinly sliced
1 First Fruits pear, cored and
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3 cups baby spinach
¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1⁄₈ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Place pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until fragrant and toasted,
5-7 minutes. Transfer to a large plate, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and set aside.
Prepare an ice-water bath in a small bowl. Submerge onion slices and set aside
for 10 minutes. Drain, place the onion on a paper towel and set aside.
Place pear slices in a large salad bowl and gently toss with lemon juice. Add
spinach, cheese and onion.
Whisk vinegar, a pinch of salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Whisk in oil
and then pour over the spinach. Toss together, sprinkle the pecans over the top
and serve. Makes 4 servings.
Recipes adapted from the book Ten Dollar Dinners, by Melissa d’Arabian.
Copyright © 2012 by Melissa d’Arabian. Published by Clarkson Potter,
a division of Random House, Inc.
Apple-Carrot Mini Muffins
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup whole-wheat flour
½ cup bran flake cereal
¼ cup ground flax seeds
2 tablespoons wheat germ
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of kosher salt
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 24-cup mini muffin pan with nonstick spray
or line with mini muffin liners.
Whisk all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, bran flakes, flax seeds, wheat
germ, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt together in a large bowl.
Whisk egg and sugar together in a medium bowl. Mix in oil and vanilla, then
whisk in milk. Use a wooden spoon to stir in carrots and apple, then pour the
egg mixture over the flour mixture. Stir just until combined.
Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups, filling each one about ¾ full.
If you’d like, sprinkle a little sugar over each muffin. Bake until the centers of
the muffins spring back to light pressure, 10-15 minutes. Remove from the
oven and cool for a few minutes in the pan before transferring to a rack to cool
completely. Makes 24 mini muffins.
Note: Other vegetables such as spinach or zucchini can be used.
1 large egg
¼ cup packed light brown sugar, plus
more for topping
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2⁄₃ cup plus 1 tablespoon whole milk
¾ cup grated carrots (see note)
½ cup finely chopped First Fruits
apple and/or pear