foodie, celeriac, married at first sight, jamie otis,

A Meal Fit For A Foodie


Hi, I'm Jamie. I tend to eat way too much, way too often. And coffee, I drink it double fisted...except here. Here I am holding my food baby. ;-)
I tend to eat way too much, way too often. And coffee? I drink it double fisted! …Except here. Here I have to hold my food baby. 😉

I Was ‘Married At First Sight’ to a ‘Foodie’

So I’ve been married to my amazing man, Douglas, for almost two years now. (Whoop whoop!!!) No, but seriously, one of the very first things I learned about him was from the minister lady. She said that he was a foodie who ‘enjoyed cooking.’ Immediately after, we said ‘I Do’ and she announced us husband and wife.

At our wedding reception Doug continued to claim he was a die-hard foodie. “I cook A lot.” The famous words from his lips. Not famous because he became known as the foodie from ‘Married At First Sight,’ but because 2 hours into our marriage this was the ONLY thing I was certain I liked about my stranger “husband.” I’ve never, ever liked cooking. Frankly, I’ve never been very good at it. I was glad to be married to someone who enjoyed cooking.

‘Married At First Sight’ Cook … Err, Maybe Not

After 2 years living alone in New York City and surviving off Seamless home deliveries & take-out I was thrilled to marry a man who liked to cook! Fast forward to a few months shy of our second wedding anniversary: Doug’s “I cook a lot” turned out to be only a handful of times, lol. And, I think Doug only cooked those few times because he wanted to impress me. 😉 It worked, too! 😀 But anyway, now-a-days his dinner of choice comes from the freezer in a cardboard box. If he had his way we’d live off tv-dinners, sandwiches, cereal, and granola bars…SO unhealthy! This is probably why I’ve gained a little weight since being married. Well, that combined with a lack of exercise. Ugh, I need to stop being so lazy. Ha!

Chicken winnerWinner Winner Chicken Dinner

I’m far from perfect, but I am trying to be a good wife. I know Doug and I need to eat healthier. So, I’ve taken cooking into my own hands. Last summer I took Doug’s friend, Caryn’s, advice and ordered meals from Blue Apron. (For the record: I’ve totally converted her-she’s definitely my friend now, too! YES!) Another friend of mine, Erica Eckman, has an amazing website dedicated to foodies. I love following her blogs because she always posts simple, YUMMY recipes. Plus, it’s an added bonus when we can subscribe to a site that doesn’t fill our inboxes with spam. If you’re a foodie, go subscribe to her site! It’s definitely worth the free subscription. 😉

I had the honor of posting a version of this blog directly on Erica’s blog! (YAY! A foodie pro approved my fav recipe and my cooking – I’m feeling like a winner!) I got this recipe from Blue Apron. And guys, I’ve gotta tell you about this Blue Apron! They send great recipes and all of the ingredients needed to make the dish right to our front door every week. Last week we got this Chicken Meatball recipe I’m sharing with you now. It’s awesome because we get to try new ingredients we’ve never heard of (celeriac). And, we’ve never received a package from them that wasn’t filled with fresh ingredients! (*SIDE NOTE: I do not get paid to ‘endorse’ Blue Apron. I just love the idea of not having to search for recipes and go grocery shopping every week. I figured I’d share their info with ya in case you guys would like that, too.)

Give me some of that Yum Yum Yum ... celeriac?
Give me some of that Yum Yum Yum … celeriac?
Does this look like a brain to you?! lol
Does this look like a brain to you?! lol

Celeriac, what is it?

Celeriac is like common celery, but instead of eating it’s stalk you eat it’s root. Ok, so if you’re looking at the photos of celeriac you may be a bit turned off. I showed Doug and he said it looked like a “knotted, hard brain.” (Eww!) Well, it may not look appetizing, but it’s what’s on the inside that is far more appealing (and tasty) than it’s outside appearance gives it credit for. (Kind of like the story about the very first time I laid eyes on my hubs at the end of the aisle. I didn’t initially find him attractive, but man when I got to know him it was Game Over! …P.S. what Was I thinking??!! He is hot, hot, hot!)

This easy recipe is a real comfort food for cold weather eatings. And, if you’re trying to sneak some healthier options on your family’s dinner plates – that don’t taste bland or altogether disgusting – you’re going to love this!


Chicken Meatballs Over Celeriac Mash

-Makes 2 servings

-About 575 calories per serving

-prep time: 15 min/Cook Time: 20-30 min


Healthy never tasted so good. Ok, I may hate stolen that slogan. ;-)
Healthy never tasted so good. Ok, I may have stolen that slogan. 😉


  • 10 ounces ground chicken
  • 1/2 bunch of Kale
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 1/4 pounds celeriac
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 2 tbsp cream cheese
  • 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp “everything bagel” spice (onion flakes, garlic flakes, black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, and poppy seeds)
  • 2 tsp meatball spice blend (harissa powder, ground cumin, ground sage)


  1. Prep: Wash and dry fresh produce. Heat a medium pot of salted water to boiling on high. Peel and large dice the celeriac. Peel and mince the garlic. Thinly slice the parsley leaves and stems. Remove and discard the kale stems; thinly slice the leaves.
  2. Make Celeriac Mash: Add celeriac to the pot of boiling water. Cook 18-20 minutes or until tender. Drain and return to pot. Off the heat, add cream cheese and 2/3 of the “everything bagel spice.”
    Jamie Otis Celeriac
    I definitely used a pot that was WAY too big. I said I love to cook, not that I am a pro. That’s definitely all my friend Erica! 🙂
  3. Meatball Time:  While the celeriac cooks, in a medium bowl, combine the ground chicken, garlic, breadcrumbs, half the parsley, and as much of the meatball spice blend as you’d like, (depending on how spicy you’d like it.) Season with salt and pepper. Gently mix until just combined. Using WET HANDS (otherwise the meatballs will stick to your fingers) form the equal-sized meatballs and place on a plate. In a medium saucepan (nonstick, preferably) heat 2 tsp of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until browned on all sides.
    Chicken meatballs are just as yummy and have lots of protein just like red meat. But, they're half the fat! You in the bikini this summer will thank you for this tiny switch.
    Chicken meatballs are just as yummy and have lots of protein just like red meat. But, they’re half the fat! You in the bikini this summer will thank you for this tiny switch.
  4. Braise the Meatballs & Kale: Add the kale, vinegar and 1/2 cup of water to the pan of browned meatballs; season with slat and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8-10 min. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Plate it & EAT: Divide the celeriac mash and braised meatballs and kale between 2 plates. Garnish with the remaining parsley and remaining ‘everything bagel’ spice blend. ENJOY!
    Ok, I messed up. I accidentally added the kale and sherry vinegar to the celeriac mash instead of braising it with the chicken meatballs. ...hey, at least I own up to my shortcomings! ;-) lol
    Ok, I messed up. I accidentally added the kale and sherry vinegar to the celeriac mash instead of braising it with the chicken meatballs. …hey, at least I own up to my shortcomings! 😉 lol

Helpful Hints

It’s seriously half in the presentation. If something looks gross then your family is already thinking it is probably gross. At least I know that to be true when I cook for my husband, sisters, nieces and nephews.

I'm still learning to make my plates look delish. Doug did eat it! He really liked the chicken meatballs! Yes! I'm feeling like a successful little wifey! :-)
I’m still learning to make my plates look delish. I must’ve done something right because Doug ate it! He really liked the chicken meatballs – not so much the kale. Half isn’t so bad. Yes! I’m feeling like a successful little wifey cook! 🙂

I’ve really gotten into cooking. It’s become SO fun to try new recipes and then share them with you guys. Let me know if you like the idea of a new recipe weekly. If you’d like, I can create a space on my site where we can swap recipes and chat about cooking tips, tricks, and do’s & don’ts! (And please, if you have a super tasty recipe don’t keep it from the rest of us. 😀 Share it in the comments below.) Happy Eating, friends!

The Cook’s Shopping Corner

A few items I cannot cook a meal without are my non-stick frying pan, exra-virgin olive oil, and an amazing spatula. I’ve scoured Amazon for the BEST of the BEST that has an affordable price. I provided the links to these awesome finds below. If you shop Amazon via these links I share I will receive a small commission. (You pay nothing extra.) The reason I take time to search and share from Amazon is twofold:

  1. I enjoy finding you guys the best bang for your buck. (You pay nothing extra.)
  2. The small commission I get for showing you guys this awesome stuff keeps my blog alive so we can keep sharing.
  3. It’s a Win-Win situation! 🙂

Non-Stick Frying Pan:

  • Thermo-Spot heat indicator (shows when the pan is perfectly preheated)
  • Exceptionally durable and scratch resistant
  • Safe for use with metal utensil
  • Stainless steel disc for even heat distribution and anti-warp protection
  • Dishwasher Safe
  • Oven safe up-to 350 degrees F
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty

 Handy, Dandy Spatula:

  • ✔ 4.8 OUT OF 5 STAR RATING: Professional chefs, amateur cooks and ALL of our customers clearly agree that the #1 rated Precision Kitchenware Turning Spatula is the best on the market.
  • ✔ ERGONOMIC DESIGN: Featuring a non-slip rubber handle, a large hanging loop and a large flat surface area paddle have been designed to ensure maximum control when handling food.
  • ✔ SAFETY FIRST: Lift and flip with ease, avoid germs and prevent the risk of burns by using this fantastic Kitchen Spatula.
  • ✔ DISHWASHER SAFE: The Precision Kitchenware Kitchen Spatula is made from top quality stainless steel, BPA free silicone and is simple to clean. Simply put in the dishwasher and hey presto, you’re done!
  • ✔ FULL PRECISION KITCHENWARE WARRANTY: If there are any issues with your purchase you can simply return your product and will be issued with a FULL refund or a replacement unit (whichever you prefer) ZERO QUESTIONS ASKED.

Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil:


  • Organic and Non-GMO
  • Early picked on-site within 2 hours to guarantee very low acidity
  • Harvested exclusively in a single family-owned estate in Andalucía, Spain
  • Harvested early to keep the freshness and the healthy properties of the fruit (natural antioxidants, Vitamin E and K).
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