Savory Sweet Potato Fries

img_7430Savory Sweet Potato Fries

Yield: 4 servings

 

Ingredients

2 sweet potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic
¼ tsp hot pepper flakes
2 ½ Tablespoons fresh thyme (rough chopped)

 

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
2. Wash and prepare the fresh ingredients:
– Cut the sweet potatoes in 3rds and then cut each “wheel” in 8ths to make wedges
– Peel and finely chop the garlic cloves.
– Chop the fresh thyme.
3. Prepare the Fries:
– Place all the ingredients in a bowl and toss to coat the potatoes.
– Place the potato wedges on a Teflon coated jelly roll pan (or lightly greased cookie sheet) and spread in one layer on the pan.
4.Cook the Fries:
Cook for 20 -25 minutes on until nicely browned turning once with a spatula after about 10 minutes.  Serve hot or at room temperature. Enjoy!

Zucchini Rice

There’s a new healthy rice substitute that is SP friendly*. With just a few simple ingredients and little effort to prepare, our zucchini rice recipe is the side dish you’re going to be making all summer long. 

MAKES 4 SIDE-DISH SERVINGS
START TO FINISH: 35 MINUTES

INGREDIENTS
4 zucchini, ends trimmed
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 sweet onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS
1. Grate the zucchini on the coarse side of a box grater. Squeeze the grated zucchini with your hands and drain off the excess liquid.
2. Add the salt to the zucchini and toss to combine. Transfer to a strainer and drain, squeezing occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes.
3. In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 4 to 5 minutes.
4. Add the garlic and zucchini to the pan, and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the cheese until combined, and season with salt and pepper.
5. Serve immediately, warm.

* SP = Standard Process Purification Program

Summer Vegetables

My daughter and I started a SP cleanse once together that required us to refrain from grains, dairy, nuts, meat or fish during the purification process.  We were getting bored with simply raw or steamed vegetables and fruit along with our SP Shakes.

Here is a yummy side dish we stumbled upon via Blue Apron, that is both full of flavor and guilt-free too.

DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6392Summer Vegetables

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Serves: 2

DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6367

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces of cherry tomatoes
  • 6 ounces of summer beans
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper

DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6368

1.  Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce.  Snap off and discard the bean stems; cut into 2-inch pieces.  Half the tomatoes. Peel and mince the garlic.

 DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6372
2. Cook the vegetables:

In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the beans; season lightly with sea salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly softened. Add ½ cup of water and cook, stirring occasionally, 6 to 8 minutes, or until the water has cooked off.

DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6373

Add the tomatoes and garlic; add a little bit more of sea salt and pepper if needed. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly softened. Transfer to a bowl. Enjoy!

DFTSI Summer Vegetables _6392

Easy Herbed Cauliflower Rice

cauliflower rice

Easy Herbed Cauliflower Rice

Yield: 8-10 one-cup servings

Ingredients

  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 1 tbsp ghee (or butter)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fine diced yellow onion
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1-2 tsp minced  fresh parsley (or 1/2 tsp if dried)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (or 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1-2 tbsp minced fresh parsley (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cut the cauliflower into florets, and then use a food processor to pulse the florets into rice-like grains.*  Set riced cauliflower aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, add the ghee, olive oil and onion. Sauté onion until it begins to soften. Then, add the salt, dried parsley, garlic powder and pepper. Stir well to combine the seasonings with the onion. Continue to cook onion another 1-2 minutes until soft and translucent.
  3. Add the riced cauliflower to the seasoned onion and stir well to combine. Continue stirring and sautéing the cauli-rice until it begins to soften (about 5 minutes).
  4. Add the chicken stock and cover the skillet. Allow the cauli-rice to steam for about 5 minutes until the stock is absorbed and the cauli-rice reaches desired texture.
  5. Remove cover, add the minced fresh parsley (optional) and fluff cauli-rice to combine.
  6. Serve alongside your favorite healthy meals.

Recipe Variation: By changing the herbs in this recipe, you can create customized cauli-rice to complement you main dish. For example, substitute minced fresh cilantro for the fresh parsley and add about 1/4 tsp cumin and 1/4 tsp chili powder to create a delicious Mexi-Style Cauli-Rice.

* Psst!  You can process a head of cauliflower into rice up to 3-4 days in advance. Store the uncooked cauli-rice in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to cook. Cooked rice should also be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and generally tastes great for up to 2-3 days. My favorite store, Trader Joe’s offers a real time saving option – cauliflower rice in a nice little bag in the refrigerator section.  Saves time and clean up!

Note: recipe creds go to thenourishinghome.com where I first found this tasty and nutritious grain-free “rice” dish.

Caesar Salad with Salmon and Oven-Toasted Sourdough Croutons

Caesar Salad with Salmon and Oven-Toasted Sourdough Croutons

Ceasar Salad with Seared Salmon

Makes: 2 Servings

It is rare that my oldest daughter is home and we get to cook together.  Yesterday was one of those treats.  Together we whipped up a delicious Caesar Salad and turned it into a hearty entree by adding a flakey, pan seared salmon fillet and homemade croutons. The creamy dressing is light and tangy.  This is an easy dinner prepared in less than 30 minutes.   We enjoyed it out on the back patio.  The meal together was heaven on earth!

Ingredients

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Red White and Blue Salad

spinach saladWith summer around the corner, I look forward to colorful and delicious salads full of fresh berries. This is one of my favorites. It is not only full of flavor, but also nutritious and pretty too.

Serves: 8

Spinach Salad with Blueberries, Strawberries, Almonds and Feta

Ingredients

8 ounces fresh spinach
6 ounces fresh blueberries
3 ounces fresh raspberries
16 ounces fresh strawberries
1/4 -1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 – 2 ounces crumbled feta cheese
your favorite raspberry, mango or champagne vinaigrette (or try my vinaigrette recipe* below)

Wash all fresh produce and slice the strawberries.  Dump all ingredients in a bowl.  Add dressing to your liking and toss lightly.  Yum Yum!

 

Favorite Raspberry Vinaigrette*

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Gingered Carrots with Mint

gingered carrots with mintI recently learned of the many benefits of eating carrots.  Here are some great reasons to include more of these crunchy superfoods in your diet:

FIVE Benefits of eating carrots:

1.  Improves vision
Carrots are rich in beta-carotene and that translates to “good for the eyes”.

2.  Slows down aging 

That same beta-carotene found in carrots also acts as an antioxidant to cell damage so it helps slow down the aging of cells.

3.  Promotes healthier skin 
Carrots are also rich in Vitamin A that protects the skin from sun damage, prevents premature wrinkling, acne, dry skin, and uneven skin tone.

4. Helps prevent cancer
Carrots reduce the risk of lung cancer, breast cancer and colon cancer.

5.  Prevents heart disease and stroke

Carrots have not only beta-carotene but also alpha-carotene and lutein.  Studies show that diets high in carotenoids are associated with a lower risk of heart disease. In addition, a Harvard University study showed that people who ate more than six carrots a week are less likely to suffer a stroke than those who ate only one carrot a month or less.

Conclusion: Eat more carrots!  Here’s a delicious way to enjoy them.

Carrots, seasoned with sweet and spicy crystalized ginger, glazed in butter and honey, are a beautiful accompaniment to roasted chicken or even lamb. Use a fragrant honey, such as orange blossom, thyme or tarragon. If you cannot find baby carrots, peel and cut slender full-size carrots into 2-inch lengths.

gingered carrotsIngredients:

  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped crystalized ginger
  • 1 lb. small, thin carrots, peeled
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Directions:

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Seared Baby Bok Choy with Garlic and Chili Oil

bok choy with garlic and chili oil

Benefits of Bok Choy

One cup  of bok choy has just nine calories  and provides protein, dietary fiber and almost all the essential vitamins and minerals you need. This Chinese cabbage is a nutrient-dense food that offers several health benefits.  Here are my top four:

1. Antioxidants

One cup of shredded bok choy has 34 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin C and more than a full day’s intake of vitamin A. Vitamin C works as an antioxidant in the body, protecting cells from damage by neutralizing free radicals, or unstable molecules that result from vital chemical processes. Bok choy contains lutein and zeaxanthin too, which are antioxidants that protect the eyes and lower the risk of age-related macular degeneration.

2. Strong Bones

In addition to calcium, you need magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin K to build and maintain strong bones. One cup of shredded bok choy delivers at least 3 percent of the recommended daily intake of magnesium and phosphorus, 7 percent of calcium and 26 percent of vitamin K.

3. Heart Health

One cup of bok choy provides 11 percent of the recommended daily intake of both folate and vitamin B-6. Folate and vitamin B-6 remove the amino acid homocysteine from the blood. This is important because high levels of homocysteine increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.   It also has 4 percent of the daily value of potassium, which regulates the heartbeat. The calcium and magnesium essential for bones also play a role in maintaining a healthy heart. Calcium stimulates heart muscles to contract, while magnesium encourages them to relax.

4. Cancer Protection

Bok choy has unique sulfur-containing compounds that may reduce the risk of breast, prostate, lung and digestive tract cancers. These substances may help the body eliminate carcinogens, prevent cells from turning into cancer or alter metabolism to stop the development of hormone-sensitive cancers. One cup of chopped bok choy has 38 milligrams of glucosinolates.

Here’s a quick stir-fry recipe has spicy bold flavor and is an easy side dish to perk up most any meal, while giving you all the benefits that bok choy provide.

Ingredients:

1 Tbs. sesame seeds
4 heads baby bok choy, about 1 lb. total
1 1/2 Tbs. canola oil
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Sea salt, to taste
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
2 tsp. Asian chili oil

Directions:

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Tilapia Meunière with Moroccan-Spiced Lentils & Rainbow Chard

Tilapia and Moroccan-spiced Lentils And Rainbow chard

Tilapia Meunière with Moroccan-Spiced Lentils & Rainbow Chard*

Ingredients:

2-3 Tilapia Fillets
½ Cup Black Beluga Lentils
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Bunch Rainbow Chard
1 Red Onion
1 Lemon
2-3 sprigs of  Parsley (for garnish)
4 Tablespoons Butter
2 Tablespoons Capers
2 Teaspoons Ras El Hanout (moroccan spice blend of cardomom, nutmeg, anise, mace, cinnamon, ginger, various peppers, and turmeric)
⅓ Cup Panko Breadcrumbs

Directions:

Ina’s Mexican Chicken Soup

Ina's Chicken Tortilla Soup

Ina’s Mexican Chicken Soup

(Serves 6 to 8 )

Ingredients

4 split (2 whole) chicken breasts, bone in, skin on
Good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chopped onions (2 onions)
1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
2½ quarts chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes in puree, crushed
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced (optional)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
¼ to ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
4 (6-inch) fresh white corn tortillas

Directions

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