Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Jump Start Breakfast Smoothie




I mentioned in a previous post that I was on a kale kick.  Well, with that comes the smoothie kick as well.  Kale is going in all of my smoothies these days.  We usually have one smoothie each day, usually for breakfast, but sometimes even for lunch.  Here's another smoothie recipe that I make for breakfast frequently.  My ten month old daughter even loved this one.

Ingredients


large handful kale
large handful swiss chard
large handful spinach
small handful parsley
2 cups water
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 pear, peeled and core removed
1 slice of pineapple
1 tablespoon chia and flax seed powder


Directions


Put all ingredients into a blender.  Puree and serve!





Cod Fillets with Asian Marinade


I love fish, but my family doesn't necessarily feel the same.  So, in order to eat fish as often as I would like to I am challenged with the task of choosing meaty varieties and making sure that it is flavourful.  In other words, I need to get fish to not taste like fish!  The ginger, garlic and shallot in the food processor gives this marinade a thicker consistency, so I was able to put a nice thick layer on top of the fish and finish it off with another dose.  It was a hit!

Ingredients


2 cod fillets (or fish of your choice)
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 shallot, peeled
1/2 lemon, juiced
1" fresh ginger
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pat fish fillets drive and place them in a small casserole dish.  Set aside.

Put all remaining ingredients into a food processor and mix until blended.

Pour into a small sauce pan and heat on low for 10 minutes.


Pour 1 tablespoon of sauce over each fish fillet.  Place casserole dish into the oven and bake fish for about 10 minutes.

Leave remaining sauce on low heat.  When fish is cooked add more sauce when serving.

Alternately, you can marinate your fish fillets for one hour before cooking.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Mushroom & Kale Medley


I have been on a kale kick lately.  I keep in washed, wrapped in a paper towel and in a ziploc bag in my refrigerator and I use it where ever possible.  I used it here with mushrooms and red pepper and it was delicious!

Ingredients


3 Portabello mushroom caps, sliced
12 Shiitake mushrooms, sliced
1 1/2 cups kale, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
1 tablespoon sunflower oil
1" fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 of a lemon, juiced
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce (you could use a fresh chili or dried chilies instead)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
fresh pepper to taste

Directions


In a large saucepan over medium heat add oil.  Once heated add ginger, garlic and red peppers.  Saute for 2 to 3 minutes.

Add mushrooms and soy sauce and continue to saute for another 5 to 10 minutes or until mushrooms begin to brown.


Add kale, Sriracha and sesame seeds.

Once kale wilts add fresh ground pepper and lemon juice to taste.



Sarah's Super Supper


I wanted to have a vegetarian meal that included as many super foods as I could (or that I had on hand).  This is what I came up with!  Even my meat loving husband enjoyed this one.

Ingredients


1 cup green lentils
1 cup quinoa
1 cup freekeh
1/2 cup thinly sliced kale
1/3 cucumber, diced
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1 1/2 lemons, juiced
1" fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red chili pepper, finely sliced with seeds
1 teaspoon olive oil

Directions


Cook the lentils, quinoa and freekeh at the same time.  Following the instructions on the package.  It should be around 15-20 minutes.

While the above is cooking in a small sauce pan combine lemon juice, ginger, garlic, red chili and olive oil.  Heat on low for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl combine cooked lentil, quinoa and freekeh.  Toss with dressing from saucepan.

Add kale, cucumber and parsley.  Toss and serve!


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Cumin Roasted Carrots


I originally got this recipe from Chef Jean Georges' cookbook, Home Cooking with Jean George:  My Favorite Simple Recipes.  I played around with the recipe a little bit, so it would be easier and less time consuming, but still resulting in a very flavourful, healthy side dish or salad ingredient.  This has become a household favourite!

Ingredients


1 pound medium sized carrots, or 1 bunch of carrots with the leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon fresh thyme (dried if you do not have it)
1/2 teaspoon red Chile flakes
course salt and fresh ground pepper to taste


Directions


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Wash and scrub the carrots and place them in the boiling water.  You want to blanch the carrots, so be careful not to cook them fully.  Depending on the size of the carrots I would cook them for about 10-15 minutes.  Once done, drain, dry and and lay in a casserole dish.

Meanwhile, with a mortal and pestle crush the spices, add garlic, oil, vinegar and lemon juice to make a paste.  Spoon over carrots.  

Bake carrots for 20-25 minutes.

These are fantastic on their own or even better in a salad.  Chef Jean George uses them in a salad recipe that I think is phenomenal: Carrot and Avocado Salad with Crunchy Seeds.

To purchase his cookbook go to the below link:
http://www.amazon.ca/Home-Cooking-Jean-Georges-Favorite-Recipes/dp/030771795X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1361379251&sr=8-1




Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Green Vinaigrette




Here is another great way to get some additional greens into your diet without even trying!  Parsley has many health benefits, so throw it in anything you can.  Did I mention it tastes good too?

Ingredients


1/4 cup fresh parsley
small handful of lettuce (any variety that you are using in your salad will do - I used Boston)
3 tablespoons champage vinegar
1.5 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 clove of garlic
salt & pepper to taste

Directions


Blend all ingredients with an immersion blender.

Bacon & Egg Salad with Maple Vinaigrette



To be honest I came up with this recipe because we didn't have much else in the refrigerator.  I wanted to make something quickly for brunch and I was pleasantly surprised with the result.

Ingredients


1 head Boston lettuce
1 cup arugula
1/4 cucumber, quartered and sliced
5 sliced of organic farm fresh bacon
2 eggs, hard boiled, cooled and sliced

Directions


Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and top with Maple Vinaigrette (recipe follows).

Maple Vinaigrette

Ingredients


3 tablespoons real maple syrup
1.5 tablespoon white wine vinegar
salt & pepper to taste



Friday, February 15, 2013

Eggplant and Lentil Curry



The thing you will learn about any curry is, once you have all the spices on hand they are very easy to make.  It's also easy to mix up the combination of spices and the variety to get a completely different flavour.  Stock your cupboard with the essentials and have some fun!

I wanted to make a vegetarian meal.  I also wanted something that was healthy and yet had some great flavour.  This was very easy to make and it was delicious.  I have used this same spice combination with chicken before, so I thought I would try it out with eggplant and lentil.  You can serve this with a rice of your choice.  I think it would go nicely with wild rice or brown Basmati rice, although we ate it as is and it was tasty and filling.

Ingredients


1 large eggplant, peeled and cubed
2 cups water
1 cup green lentils
1 onion, diced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil (I used organic sunflower)
1/2 can diced tomotoes
1" fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon chili pepper (or cayenne)
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek
1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 cardamon pods, seeds only
optional - 2 fresh hot red chili peppers, sliced with seeds in
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped (for garnish)

Directions


Put diced eggplant in a colander and cover with salt.  This draws out excess moisture and reduced the bitterness of the eggplant.  Set aside for about 30 minutes.  Then rinse and pat dry with paper towel.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.  Once it begins to smoke add the eggplant and pan fry until golden brown.  Set aside.

In the same frying pan add the remaining oil and heat until smoking.  Add onion, ginger and garlic to the pan and fry until golden brown.  Add all seasonings to the pan and continue to fry for another 1-2 minutes.


Add tomatoes, water and lentils to the pan.  Turn heat to high and bring to a boil.


Reduce heat to medium low.  Add eggplant and simmer for about 25 minutes or until lentils are cooked, eggplant is tender and the sauce has thickened.

Top with fresh cilantro and serve.



Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Toasted Coconut & Almond Curry Chicken


The combination of coconut and almonds is fantastic!  The toasted almonds and coconut add a nice crunch to the curry and the coconut milk gives it a nice coconut flavour.  Give this recipe a whirl, you won't be disappointed.

Ingredients


3 tablespoons shredded coconut
3 tablespoons slivered almonds, chopped
1 can coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon tumerick
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (or cayenne)
1" fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 onion, diced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil (I used organic sunflower)
1 bay leaf
3 cardamon pods
1 large dry chile crushed (more if desired)
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped for garnish

Directions


In a frying pan over high heat toast the coconut and the almonds.  Transfer to a medium size bowl.   Add coconut milk and set aside.

In the same frying pan add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.  Once it begins to smoke add onions and ginger.  Saute for 2 minutes or so and then add the cumin, tumerick and chili powder.  Saute for another 1-2 minutes.   Add to bowl with coconut milk mixture.


In the same frying pan add remaining vegetable oil.  Once it begins to smoke add the cubed chicken, bay leaf and cardamon pods.  Brown chicken to seal it, about 5 minutes.



Once chicken is brown add the coconut mixture to the pan.  Reduce heat to medium and add chiles.  Cook for about 15 minutes.


Add cilantro and serve with rice or naan bread.












Saturday, February 9, 2013

Mocha Coconut Ice Cream


Ingredients


2 cans coconut milk
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup cocoa

Directions


In a large bowl whisk all ingredient together.

Pour into an ice cream maker and follow the machine's instructions.  Typically 20 -30 minutes or until desired thickness is achieved.  If it's not thick enough put ice cream into an air tight container and put in the freezer.


Delicious Butter Chicken



We eat many varieties of curry in our home.  We love all different varieties from different parts of the world.  This recipe is a great combination of flavours that gives you a wonderful curry flavour, but with the richness of the butter and whipping cream.  Serve it with rice or naan bread.

Ingredients


Curry seasoning:  (you can make a double batch and save this for the next time)
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon fennel
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek
1/4 teaspoon tumerick
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon chilies or cayenne
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
4 cardamon pods, seeds only

2 chicken breasts, cubed
1/4 cup butter, plus one tablespoon butter
1 large onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1" fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup whipping cream
2 whole dried chilies
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped

Directions


With a mortal and pestle crush the curry seasoning.

cardamon seeds


In a frying pan over medium heat melt one tablespoon of butter.  Brown chicken in the butter and set aside.

In a frying pan over medium heat melt the butter.  Add onions, garlic and ginger and fry until golden brown.  Add curry seasoning.


Add brown sugar, tomatoes, chicken, whipping cream, chilies, bay leaf and water.