The perfect summer lunch plate – Confetti Slaw, Black Bean Quinoa Salad, and Roasted Carrots – was inspired by a Purple Carrot recipe (Chipotle Roasted Carrots with Confetti Quinoa Salad, Black Beans, and Cumin Yogurt).
I’m a big fan (and subscriber) of Purple Carrot TB Performance meals (high in protein, gluten-free, and plant-based) but I prefer little or no added oils and no creamy yogurt or vegan mayo sauces. So, whenever I start to cook one of these meals, I figure out ways to reduce, eliminate, substitute, and/or add other ingredients so as to not give up flavor. Read more
A few years ago two middle-aged friends were driving south in a Ford F-150 truck filled with household items for their casita in Mexico. At the US and Mexican border crossing, the customs officer asked them what they had in the truck so they read off a list of items and then jokingly added, “and some baby bok choy.” That’s all the customs officer had to hear.
The word “baby” to someone trained in trafficking raises a red flag. He demanded they get out of the vehicle and then searched the whole truck looking for who knows what (my friend thought maybe he was looking for a Chinese baby). They realized the customs officer didn’t know what baby bok choy was so they pointed to the cooler that held the baby bok choy and diffused the situation. Read more
Kale is one of those greens that I am always struggling to get more of because this dark green leafy nutrient-dense vegetable is just so good for our bodies. So, when I received my box from the Purple Carrot this week, I zeroed in on the recipe for “Cajun Roasted Broccoli Bowls.”
After quickly scanning the recipe (I am never one to follow a recipe), I decided to make a variation (from a bowl to a salad) by eliminating the added oils, the Cajun blackened seasoning and a few other ingredients while adding avocado, pumpkin seeds, and a seasoning called Salad Sprinkle by Frontier Co-op – a blend of sesame seeds, bell pepper, black pepper, lemon peel, green onion, celery flakes, and chervil, but you can use any seasoning (salt, pepper, fresh herbs, chopped parsley). Just make sure to add some type of seasoning to enhance the flavor of the vegetables. Read more
Rainbows are in short supply in the wintertime so instead of looking outside turn to the kitchen for an updated version of the spinach salad. I call this salad a Rainbow Spinach Salad because of the array of colors: red, yellow, light green, orange dark green, and deep purplish black. Although beautiful to look at, the Rainbow Spinach Salad is a feast to savor with only one caveat: you must like fresh beets because there are two types (both yellow and red) and they are a substantial part of this easy-to-make salad. Read more
Making soup is super easy, especially if you start with Frontier Minnesota Heartland 11-Bean Soup Mix: a blend of dried beans, peas, and lentils along with parsley and a spice packet that contains no added salt, preservatives, or MSG. The mix provides a great foundation for a thick, hearty soup filled with legumes, lots of vegetables (carrots, tomatoes, onion, and spinach), herbs and spices to add flavor, and pasta to make the soup more substantial.
Consider making this soup on a cold afternoon when the wind is blowing and the temperatures are low. Somehow a big bowl of steaming, hot soup is the perfect answer.
Roasted Vegetable Cannellini Lasagna is a hearty main dish filled with an assortment of roasted vegetables, greens, and cannellini beans in between layers of noodles and sauce. Inspired by the recipe for Roasted Vegetable Lasagna in The How Not To Die Cookbook by Dr. Michael Greger, MD, the following recipe uses lots of Portobello mushrooms (instead of eggplant) to give the dish a meaty texture (but use whatever vegetables you prefer).
Delicious out of the oven, Roasted Vegetable Cannellini Lasagna is even better the next day (just like the traditional dish). Somehow that day of settling brings out the flavor of the vegetables and beans in this variation of the classic Italian dish. Read more
Spinach Salad takes on a new twist this holiday season with the addition of fresh, organic roasted red beets. The dark green spinach leaves tossed with a light mustard maple salad dressing and then sprinkled with dark red beets, light green avocado pieces, lightly toasted pecan halves, and roasted pumpkin seeds makes for a nutritious and delicious lunch or dinner salad.
The Holiday Spinach Salad was inspired by Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s recipe for Roasted Yellow Beet Salad with Warm Maple-Mustard Dressing – a light summertime salad that I often make during the warm months. The Holiday Spinach Salad is a bit more substantial with the yellow beets replaced with red beets and the addition of fresh avocado chunks and crunchy pumpkin seeds – and the omission of red onion. Read more
The base of most homemade soups starts with chopped onions, carrots, and celery along with water or broth. These days, most supermarkets, including Trader Joe’s sell containers of fresh diced vegetables which makes it easy to make a batch of soup in a jiffy. But, if you want to add some pizzaz to a homemade soup, consider adding a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dehydrated vegetables made by Harmony House Foods. Read more
There are times a vegetable bowl will take my breath away – the vibrant colors of freshly cooked vegetables are literally eye candy but it’s the flavor that ends up reeling me in. When I think of a veggie bowl, I try to combine veggies of different colors and textures like beets and spinach.
Beets get a bad rap (i.e.borscht) but freshly cooked red or yellow beets are not only striking but earthy, flavorful and perfect to use in a vegetable bowl. Add sautéed dark green fresh baby spinach and the ultimate snack veggie bowl is done. All you have to do is grab a fork and enjoy. Read more