Category Archives: Meatless Monday

Cranberry Salsa

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It’s that time of year again! The holiday season is upon us. This means turkey, pumpkin pie, Christmas songs, overly decorated stores, extra calories, and that all too familiar frantic holiday pace.

It’s also time for my favorite dip in the world.

Cranberry Salsa over cream cheese.

OMG SO GOOD.

Mmmm Cranberries.

cranberries

It’s simple. Take the following ingredients:

1 (12-ounce bag) or 3 cups fresh cranberries,  rinsed and drained

1/4 cup minced green onions

3 Serrano chilies, cored, seeded and minced

1/2 cup coconut sugar (Yes, it looks like a lot, but you need it with those cranberries!!)

1/4 cup fresh cilantro,  minced

2 tablespoons finely-grated fresh ginger or 2 tsp dried

2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice

2 (8-ounce) packages organic cream cheese

Cranberries and/or cilantro sprigs for garnish

It’s so easy to make. Pop all ingredients (minus cream cheese and garnish items) into your food processor, and pulse until everything is combined and slightly chunky. Pour over cream cheese. Garnish as desired, and serve with your favorite crackers.

The colors are perfect for the holidays and the flavor? OMG…you will be addicted.

I picked up some cranberries at Sprouts last week and when I placed my CSA order this week, I discovered that green onion, cilantro, and serrano chilies were all available.

It’s a sign.

Yes, it’s a dip, but I seriously serve this as dinner from time to time. My family loves me for it.

And they should! Cranberries are #1 when it comes to antioxidant power. They are so good for you! So is just about everything else in this recipe.

No mommy guilt here.

I’ll save that for the chocolate that never makes it to their stockings.

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Dill Hummus (Or, Hiccup Prevention Dip.)

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When you think of dill, what comes to mind?

Pickles?

Maybe a garnish on fish?

Dill can be so much more! And it’s so good for you. I found this graphic that outlines some of the health benefits of dill. There are so many great reasons to eat dill, but I’m pretty sure my favorite is unusual:

Health-Benefits-of-Dill

 

“Can halt the hiccups.”

Seriously? Amazing. I HATE the hiccups. And I can’t ever just get them once. As soon as my body opens the door to hiccups, they just come on in as they please, off and on, all.day.long.

So, I got dill (aka hiccup ninja herb) in my CSA box this week.

I wanted it to be more than a sprinkling on a hard boiled egg.

SOOO, I made dill hummus. Wanna make some? It’s pretty simple:

2 cans organic garbanzo beans, drained.

1/4 cups plain yogurt 

1/4 cup olive oil

1/3 cup lemon juice

4 tablespoons freshly chopped dill leaves, plus extra for garnish

1 teaspoon ground cumin

4 teaspoons hot paprika, plus extra for garnish

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Pulse all in a food processor until smooth. Serve with veggies, pita chips or a SPOON.

Get more from your food.

Take that parsley and make it the focus of your dish, not just an accessory.

Make your cilantro the star.

Turn that butternut squash into the main course, not just a side.

Get creative, think outside the box, and (in some cases)  enjoy the hiccup-free benefits.

 

Rad(ishes)

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My grandmother loved radishes. She didn’t call them “radishes”, though. She called them “RADeeshes.”

She would slice the greens off, scrub them up, put them in a tupperware bowl filled with water and stick them in the fridge for future snacking. I didn’t understand why she did that (it is done to help them keep their crunch) but I always thought they looked really pretty floating around the container. Radishes were beautiful, I thought. Too bad they tasted like dirt.

Fast forward 20 or so years, which is how long it took me to try radishes again. The only reason I tried them? I grew them. The only reason I grew them? Because I heard they were easy to grow and dang it, nothing else was coming up. I discovered that I was not only able to grow radishes, but I was able to grow them REALLY WELL. I had TONS of them. Red radishes, french breakfast, daikon…I had them all. The rabbits I was raising at the time were thrilled. I wasn’t sure I liked radishes THAT much.  The point of all this? They taste better when they aren’t from your grocery store. They don’t taste like dirt. They taste a bit spicy and sometimes a bit sweet and sort of …earthy? How is that for a terrible description? It also depends on your variety, so, yeah…go taste some for yourself. Do not rely on my poor use of adjectives and (sort of) descriptive phrases.

I ordered English Breakfast radishes last week in my CSA box. I’m no longer growing radishes and hadn’t had one in a while. I received this darling bundle:

radishes1

They have been eaten raw, juiced, sliced on salads, served with tacos, and admired for their beauty.

Especially when they are floating in water.

This week I am ordering red radishes AND daikon and will be trying my hand and roasting them into “radish chips”. If it is a successful venture, I will post the recipe. 🙂

While we wait for the results on that, take a look at reasons to eat radishes. There are many:

Health-Benefits-of-Radishes (1)

 

Don’t be afraid to revisit the foods that you thought you hated. It may taste surprisingly good to you now. All the more reason to check out your local Farmer’s Market…where food tastes like its supposed to. 😉

 

All Hail Kale!

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So excited about greens right now. I love “green’s season”! I am most excited about my favorite leafy love, KALE.  While I enjoy kale cooked in many ways, my favorite is the fairly newly popular kale chip. Crispy, satisfying, and easily consumed without having to try too hard, (aka, you don’t have to force yourself to eat them), the kale chip my favorite way to stock up on the goodness of greens.

Why eat kale? Here are a few reasons:

KALE-Info-largeMy recipe for kale chips can be found HERE. They are quick, easy, cheap and DELICIOUS. Season however you like. I prefer mine with a little sea salt and garlic powder, but I have heard they are delicious dusted with nutritional yeast too. 🙂

Kale is available at most grocery stores, but being that it is time for greens in so many areas, check your local farmer’s market to see if it is available locally grown. Go with organic whenever you can…especially with tender plants like greens. I ordered some in my CSA box this week and am so looking forward to bakin’ it up. So grateful to live in an area where so much fresh food grows. Even more grateful for the local farmers that take the time to grow our food without chemicals, pesticides and franken-seeds. 🙂

Take just a few minutes to prep these yourself, and save LOADS on the packaged ones. Homemade kale chips are a million times better than store-bought, and I prefer to know exactly what went into the process.

Love yourselves, ladies…from the inside out. 🙂

 

Dairy-Free “Choco-cado” Pudding

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So, true story, I made this for a friend one time. She loved it. She ate quite a bit of it. She was very surprised that she liked it, because avocados had always grossed her out.

We quickly discovered that her body had been trying to tell her something all along:

She was allergic to avocados.

So in a way, I sort of poisoned my friend. Not cute.

Thankfully, she recovered just fine, but needless to say, avocados do not make an appearance in my kitchen when she is around.

Now that I have frightened you with that little tale, let me tell you how to make poisonous choco-cado pudding!

Ingredients:

2 med sized avocados, pitted and peeled. (I used mexicola from my CSA box)

1/4 cup organic REAL maple syrup OR  6-10 medjool dates

1.5 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Trader Joe’s)

1/4 cup vanilla hemp milk

Put all ingredients into the food processor. Process until creamy and smooth. If it is too thick, add more hemp milk about a tsp at a time. If its too thin, you need more avocado. 🙂  Fold in sliced bananas if desired.

chococado

 

Today was the perfect day to make this because I had 2 mexicola avocados on my counter that were *just* about to die on me. I saw this the other day and thought it was quite possibly the most perfect little bit of kitchen truth:

avocadosnotyet

 

Right? I know.

Also, little sidenote; My favorite variation of this recipe:

Substitute the hemp milk for raw cream. Blend all of the ingredients (minus the cream) together first, then add the cream in. Puree for 5-10 seconds until it begins to “whip”, making for a really nice mousse consistency. 🙂

This is delicious with fresh strawberries too!

Definitely file this one under the “treat” category as the sugar content is pretty high in this one, but still a nice alternative to the packaged garbage. 🙂

Enjoy… Unless you’re allergic to avocados. 😉

Huevos Rancheros Con Aguacate

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I love eggs. Usually. Right now, I am pretty tired of eggs, but in an effort to boost my protein intake, I am trying to find new ways to eat them.

On Sunday, I made two attempts at egg preparation, using my CSA box as inspiration.

One peek into my fruit bowl was all it took to spark an idea for breakfast dish #1.

I spy….avocados. Yessss!

avocado

The cutest, tiniest avocados ever, by the way. They are called “Mexicali” Avocados, and they are divine. Bonus? The skin is edible should you choose to eat it. No peeling!

Once I spotted the avocado, I had another thought. Last week, I made (and canned) some salsa. Super simple salsa too. Tomatoes, onions, peppers, squeeze of lemon and pinch of salt. The end.

Very similar to the recipe here, but without the cilantro, and it was cooked (because I was canning it.)

Then I thought, “It’s Sunday…I can eat a corn tortilla!” (Sunday’s are my “day off” from dietary restrictions.)

I knew what I had to do. Huevos Rancheros Con Aguacate (Rancher’s Eggs with Avocado.) Or, Fried eggs on a tortilla with red sauce and avocado on top.

It was SO easy guys. Even if you don’t have salsa just lying around, it is SO easy to make.( <—- click there!)

P.S. get your tomatoes now and fill up the freezer or pantry with salsa for later. You won’t be sorry!

I started off by cracking two eggs into a little egg pan over med heat, coated in butter. Once the whites started to solidify a bit, I sprinkled a small lid with water, and topped the pan with it, turning heat to low. This essentially steams the top of the eggs so you don’t have to flip them. If you prefer to flip, go for it, but I find that breaking a yolk while flipping makes me want to break someone’s face, so I do what I have to do to avoid that.

While the eggs are cooking, Fry up a corn tortilla in a little refined coconut oil. You don’t want it crispy, just a little toasty yet still pliable. Drain the oil, then set on your plate.

Once the whites are done, but  yolks are still a bit runny, slide the eggs onto the tortilla.

Take some of your salsa, and heat it up a bit in the egg pan (save the dishes!)

Top the eggs with warm salsa.

Last? Top with slices of fresh avocado and a sprinkling of sea salt.

This would have been so yummy with sauteed nopales on the side!

YUM.

huevos rancheros

If I *really* wanted to cheat, this would have been heavenly with refried beans. In fact, it begged for them. If I’d had any in the pantry or cooked up, they would have been on that plate. So good.

Step outside the box guys. Keep your meals interesting and delicious. “Eating healthy” doesn’t have to mean “lacking flavor”. Gone are the day of stale rice cakes and crappy peanut butter.

Eat good quality, fresh, healthy foods that make your body and taste buds happy.

You really can have your cake and eat it too. 😉

 

 

Ch-ch-ch-Chia!

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I have mentioned chia seeds more than once, I am sure, but today I am going to again.

I LOVE CHIA SEEDS.

Every day (usually for lunch) I have a smoothie. It is almost always the same.

1 cup frozen strawberries

1 cup raw milk kefir

1-2 tbsp coconut cream (excellent lymphatic system cleanser!)

A bit of coconut water, milk, or unsweetened almond milk to thin it out

2 TBSP melted coconut oil

1 TBSP of chia seeds.

I am super funny about textures, and even I can handle the chia in the smoothie. Reminds me of berry seeds so I am able to rationalize their presence.  😉

There are so many reasons to eat chia. Here are just a few:

chia-seeds-y-e1351642136350

Chia. Not just for crappy Christmas presents anymore.

Drink up!