Saturday, April 27, 2013

Coconut and Pistachio Sweet Potato Chips

Here is a modern twist on a classic sweet potato chip.  By frying them in coconut oil it gave the sweet potatoes a wonderful flavour.   Adding the pistachios stepped it up a notch!


2 large sweet potatoes, finely sliced into chips
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup pistachios, finely chopped
coarse salt to taste


In a cast iron skillet over medium high heat add coconut oil.  Allow the coconut oil to melt and heat up.  The oil should give you a thick layer of oil over the pan.  If it doesn't add more.

Add the chips to the pan and fry, turning once to cook both sides.  Once browned place on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any additional oil, while you fry the next bunch.

Once all chips are fried put into a large bowl and toss with pistachios and coarse salt.

Pistachio Mushrooms

I have been on a pistachio kick lately.  You will see pistachios in a number of upcoming posts, I hope you will enjoy them as much as I have.  I served these mushrooms with Cajun BBQ steaks, but they would go well with just about any protein, on top of a salad or in fajitas.   


l pound mushrooms (any variety), quartered
1/3 cup pistachios (unsalted and shells removed), crushed with a mortar and pestle
1/2 onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, diced
2 tablespoons butter
salt & pepper to taste


In a frying pan over medium high heat add butter.  Once melted add garlic and onions and saute for 2 minutes. 

Add mushrooms and  saute for 5 minutes or until starting to brown.

Add pistachios and saute for another 1-2 minutes.

Monday, April 8, 2013

African Sweet Potato Peanut Soup

This vegetarian soup is creamy, spicy and hearty. Topped with a cilantro lime drizzle, toasted peanuts and hot red chilies this soup is to die for!


2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery stalks, sliced
1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, diced
2" fresh ginger, diced
1/4 cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne 
1 can chickpeas
4 cups water
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup peanuts, toasted and chopped
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish
1/2 hot red chili, sliced


In a dutch oven over medium high heat, heat coconut oil.

Saute sweet potato and carrots for a couple of minutes before adding the celery, onion, garlic and ginger.  Cook until tender.

Add can of tomatoes, cinnamon, cumin, turmeric and cayenne. Saute for five to ten minutes.

Add chick peas and water and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to simmer and stir in peanut butter.  Allow to cook for 20 to 30 minutes.

While soup is cooking prepare cilantro drizzle (recipe follows).

Serve into bowls and top with toasted peanuts, cilantro drizzle and hot red chilies.

Cilantro Drizzle


1/4 cup cilantro
1 green onion
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 hot red chili


Combine all ingredients in a tall container and blend using a immersion blender.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Arugula, Fig and Mint Salad with Red Wine Raspberry Vinaigrette


2 cups arugula
1/2 cup kale, sliced
1 cup romaine, torn into bite size pieces
2 celery stalks, sliced
1/2 yellow pepper, sliced
1/2 cup blueberries
3 figs, cut into 1/8
2 sprigs fresh mint, torn into small pieces


Toss all ingredients into a large bowl with Red Wine Vinaigrette (recipe follows).

Red Wine Raspberry Vinaigrette


2 tablespoons red wine raspberry vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
2-3 leaves fresh mint, finely sliced
salt & pepper to taste

Pickerel Cooked in Coconut Oil with Mango Pineapple Salsa

On the weekend I went to the St. Lawrence Market, Toronto's largest indoor food market. There are so many wonderful fruits, vegetables, eggs, meat, poultry and other ingredients for purchase.  It is quite an experience to walk the aisles and watch the merchants and customers going about their business.  I saw fresh Pickerel fillets that I just had to buy.  The texture was firm and they were completely odourless, a perfect Pickerel fillet.  The wheels began to turn...tonight we would have a wonderful fresh spring meal!


2 pickerel fillets, skin on
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 mango, finely chopped
1" of a cored pineapple, finely chopped
1/4 red pepper, finely chopped
1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
2 green onions, finely chopped
1/2 lime, juiced
dash cumin
salt & pepper to taste
fresh red chilies, sliced (optional)


Remove the fillets from the refrigerator and cover with salt & pepper.  Allow the fish to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before cooking.

In a small bowl combine mango, pineapple, red pepper, cilantro, green onion, lime juice and cumin.  Set aside while you cook the fish.

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat.

Once pan is hot add coconut oil.

Pan fry pickerel fillets in coconut oil, skin side up first.  Fry for 3-4 minutes per side.  Place skin side down on a plate and top with mango pineapple salsa.  Add a couple hot red chilies if desired.