Meet Nikki

I am a chef, TV host, cookbook author, blogger, radio host, professional voice over artist and terrace gardener. I cook mostly "Meat on the Side" which makes veggies the star of the plate. 

More about Nikki...



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    Junk Food Flip

    Tuesdays at 9pmET on Cooking Channel

    Meat On The Side Cookbook

    Food Network Star

    Nikki Dinki on Food Network Star Season 9!! Click here for pics, clips and more from the show


    Chili Stuffed Portobella



    Game day in our house is always a good day. I’m usually pretty into football, but when the game loses its energy with endless penalties or Eli has thrown his 5th interception, that’s the perfect time to whip up some game day food.





    Though I love my Buffalo Chicken Spring Rolls or Mozzarella Sticks, when we are talking game day dinner, we are talking chili!


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    Spicy Asian Noodle Soup Bowls with Pickled Cucumbers



    NYC really does have it all: there are over 300 restaurants that will deliver food directly to my apartment, I can enjoy a glass of Sancerre al fresco 50 stories up, and most importantly, I can get bone broth in a coffee cup from a to-go window in the East Village.





    It’s a place called Brodo and they make long cooked, rich and comforting broth with fun additions like roasted garlic and turmeric.



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    Breakfast Nachos with Eggs, Cheese + Beef



    First, in my book Meat On The Side, I put cabbage on your nachos.





    Now, I’m putting eggs on them, you got a problem with that?


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    Pea Threaded Pasta


    Since I’m normally coming up with new and hopefully inventive recipes, there are definitely times in my kitchen where things don’t turn out quite as I expected.







    And then there are the times that you put a pea on uncooked pasta, throw it in boiling water and instead of it falling apart, the pea and pasta fuse together for one insanely cute dish. 


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    Cauliflower Parm



    You know the commercial where Payton Manning sings “Chicken Parm you taste so good” in the Nation Wide advertisement?





    Well that’s my husband, well the loving chicken parm part, not the being a professional athlete part.


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    Quinoa Stuffed Endive with Roasted Grapes + Feta



    Let’s face it, quinoa has taken over the grain industry (even though it’s actually a seed). It’s well deserved rise to fame, who wouldn’t want loads of protein and fiber in their starchy side dish, and I do mean LOADS.





    It’s true it really good for you, and since it’s been trending on twitter since 2011 you can now find it almost anywhere (P.S. Amaranth (link to popped amaranth recipe) is trending next, time to buy stock).



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    Spaghetti Squash Tacos



    I'm pretty obsessed with spaghetti squash, not as obsessed as I am with cheese, or positioning the fan in my bedroom just right so it cools just my feet while I sleep, but pretty darn close.





    It's so sweet, the texture is awesome and it can be morphed into so many things.



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    A Tour of Nikki's Terrace Garden



    I’ve lived in NYC for 14 years and had always been chasing the dream of having outdoor space when 2 years ago we were lucky enough to move into an apartment with a terrace!!




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    Creamed Corn + Blueberry Pasta



    Summer is my season; I am perpetually cold unless it’s 90 degrees outside and I’m pretty sure that I am a better swimmer than I am a walker sometimes. One of my greatest joys in life is my terrace garden with all my plants and my bird friend Harold.





    Although I don’t like to admit it either, we have to face it, summer is coming to an end (can’t type… crying too much).



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    Chili Spiced Cucumbers



    I’m obsessed with parties, and any party of mine is bound to have an endless array of appetizers. In order to get the variety I want and not lose my mind making my 10th labor-intensive app, I always like to include some appetizers of the “silly easy” variety.





    And these cucumbers are just that, they get a bath of lime juice, a sprinkle of chili powder and sugar, and a hit of salt, resulting in a crisp, tangy, spicy, salty treat that takes minutes to make.



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