Dinner

Curried Socca

This curried socca is a terrific side dish or appetizer! I really enjoy having an option that is just as satisfying as bread but much healthier. I love to serve this along with my peach chutney or, you guessed it, my salsa verde. Both options are delicious! If I make the salsa verde, I actually make it a little more “mint heavy” as mint and curry are long-time good friends. I found this recipe in one of my absolute favorite cookbooks, “At Home in the Wholefood Kitchen” by Amy Chaplin. I love this cookbook and keep coming back to it for guidance and inspiration in my day to day cooking. This Socca is delicious and naturally gluten-free, it won’t cause the bloating that so many of us experience after eating glutinous products. Hope you enjoy making it and pairing with tons of yummy foods like grilled meats and veggies. This recipe makes about 6, 9-inch socca. Enjoy! Ingredients: 3 cups chickpea flour 2 ¼ teaspoons sea salt 3 cups warm filtered water, divided 2 tablespoons melted extra virgin coconut oil 2 tablespoons ghee, plus more for cooking socca 2 teaspoons black mustard seeds 5 teaspoons homemade curry powder (or high-quality organic store-bought) 2 onions finely sliced Directions: 1. Mix the chickpea flour and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine well. 2. Pour in 1 ½ cups warm water and whisk until completely smooth, then add the remaining water and coconut oil; whisk again and set aside. 3. Warm 2 tablespoons of ghee […]

Kale and Toasted Pistachio Pesto

  Pesto is so delicious and I love making it so I challenged myself to try a vegan version and I have to say, I think it is the best I have made so far.  I removed all dairy by using nutritional yeast in place of the parmesan and also increased the nutritional value by adding Kale. I also added some toasted pistachios instead of pine nuts and wow!!!  What a difference it made. This pesto is so creamy and full of flavor that you are not missing a thing. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do. You can use pesto for so many things, I enjoyed it mixed with some brown rice pasta and a few tomatoes for an energizing meal!     Ingredients:  4 C chopped kale 1 C fresh basil 2 garlic cloves ½ C roasted and salted pistachios ½ C nutritional yeast Juice of 1 ½ lemons Zest of 1 lemon ½ C of olive oil Salt and pepper to taste Brown rice pasta cooked according to box *check the box and make certain it is gluten-free if you are gluten intolerant.     Directions:  1. In a food processor, add kale, basil, garlic, pistachios, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, zest, and salt and pepper.     2. While processor is on the low speed, add in olive oil in a slow and steady stream until pesto comes together.  If you want a looser consistency you can add some additional olive oil or water […]

Sauerkraut

This Saurkraut recipe is such a satisfying side with grilled chicken or some kind of roast. Something about the flavor helps to round out the meal and make you feel full. Its also make from cabbage which is a cruciferous vegetable that can help improve digestion with the fiber it offers and also balances hormone levels. The probiotics in this recipe work to elevate the good hormones in your body. Besides that, it is an incredible asset in preventing cancer and can actually decrease cancer risk by removing toxins (xeno-estrogens) from the body. I try to find ways to incorporate fermented food into my diet and this is a great way to do so. It’s so good for your overall gut health. A little side note: If you choose to strain the whey when making my homemade yogurt, this is the perfect use for it. If you don’t have whey then water also does the trick. This recipe and the yogurt are perfect to make in the same week. Enjoy making these fermented foods and pay attention to how it makes your tummy feel. It has definitely helped me. Happy eating! Ingredients: Fresh Organic cabbage, 1 medium/large head 1/2 cup of whey from organic yogurt and (or) filtered, lightly salted water 2 TBS Salt (kosher or sea salt, non-iodized) A bowl Mandolin (optional) A potato masher or similar tool A large jar for fermenting with a lid A small ziploc bag   Directions: 1. Slice your cabbage into thin pieces or shreds. (you can […]

Grilled Lamb with Chimichurri Sauce

   Lamb Chops in a Lemon, Chive and Garlic Marinade Ingredients:  6 Lamb Chops 4 sliced garlic cloves 1 T chopped mint 1 T chopped fresh rosemary  ½ C minced chives or green portion of green onions ¼ C olive oil ⅓ C white balsamic vinegar Salt and pepper     Directions:  1. Combine garlic, mint, rosemary, chives, olive oil and vinegar and pour into a 9×13 baking dish. 2. Coat lamb chops with salt and pepper.  3. Add the lamb chops to marinade and flip once or twice to evenly coat them. 4. Refrigerate 4-6 hrs 5. 1 hour before grilling, remove lamb chops from the fridge, flip them over and allow to come to room temperature in the marinade. 6. Heat up the grill. 7. Grill lamb chops for 3 minutes on each side and then allow to rest covered in foil for 10 minutes.  This will give you a medium-rare lamb chop. If you desire well done, just add a minute to each side. 8. Top with chimichurri and ENJOY!     Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients:  ¼ C flat-leaf parsley ½ C cilantro 2 T fresh oregano 3 garlic cloves 3 T red wine vinegar ¼ C sherry vinegar 1 tsp crushed red pepper 1 tsp sea salt ½ C extra-virgin olive oil   Directions:  1. In a food processor or blender, combine parsley, cilantro, oregano, garlic, vinegars, crushed red pepper and sea salt.   2. With food processor on low, slowly drizzle olive oil in from the […]

Charcuterie Plate

Everyone needs to have a recipe in their back pocket that is elegant and beautiful when entertaining. In my case, I prefer something like this charcuterie plate. It’s not really a “recipe”, in the strictest sense of the word, but I don’t really enjoy constraints in case you haven’t noticed. So allow me to share my guide to building this gorgeous platter. It features my homemade pimento cheese as well as the ricotta crostini I shared this week. There are times when I enjoy making something visually beautiful to eat, it stimulates my creative side and brings me happiness in a way that simply filling my belly cannot. I try and make my charcuterie platter with plenty of bright, beautiful veggies and serve some seed or whole grain crackers instead of only white. I find the options are endless and the flavor combinations much more interesting to my taste buds when I add fresh elements to a charcuterie plate. I love the bright colors of cucumbers, tomatoes and cherries and sprigs of herbs; all fantastic options for the conscientious eater. My guests love it because it looks and tastes amazing and I can rest easy and enjoy myself knowing that I have many wholesome options before me. Sometimes the extra effort it takes to make something beautiful is just as enjoyable as actually eating the food. You are in charge of what you put in your body and can have fun entertaining without getting off track! Below are the different […]

Roasted Spatchcocked Chicken

  So the big question is what is a spatchcocked chicken??  Well, it is a way of cooking chicken by removing the backbone from neck to tail and flattening out the chicken so it cooks in half the time and also cooks evenly.  Basically you are butterflying the chicken! There are so many ways you can prepare this chicken and many different seasonings you can use as well.  I am using some Chimichurri because I find when I make chimichurri I tend to have lots of leftovers so using it as a marinade is a great way of not wasting one bit of this delicious sauce.    Ingredients: 1 whole chicken Salt & Pepper 1 cup Chimichurri sauce or desired seasoning. (link) 1-pint cherry tomatoes   Directions: 1. To butterfly the chicken, take a pair of kitchen scissors and cut up on both sides of the backbone of the chicken to remove it.       2. Clip the chicken wings off as well. 3. Break the breastbone by pressing down the wings and flattening out the bird.     4. Liberally salt and pepper both sides of the chicken and then cover with chimichurri or desired seasoning.     5. Place chicken in a 9×13 baking dish, cover and refrigerate for at least 5 hours. 6. Remove chicken from fridge about 15 minutes before roasting to get the chill off the meat.  It will cook much more evenly when not so cold. 7. Rub the bottom of a cast-iron skillet […]

Grilled Skirt Steak Platter

You all know how much I love grilling season! This might be the simplest marinade recipe of all time yet it is so incredibly delicious. My favorite way to serve this skirt steak is to make a big platter with tortillas, delicious salsa, guacamole, grilled spring onions and jalapenos. Everyone can make their own taco or just eat it smothered in guacamole or my tomato and red chili salsa. The presentation looks rustic and beautiful with the charred veggies and there are options for everyone’s taste. Mexican food is one of my favorite things to make! I just love the fresh flavors especially this time of year when all the veggies are in season. Skirt steak can tend to be a bit tough so a marinade really helps to break down the meat and then with just a quick sear on each side it turns out perfectly. I get my skirt steak from Riven Rock Farms, they have amazing pasture-raised meat that is not ridden with GMOs and their animals are healthy and humanely raised. They have incredibly high standards which means the meat I get from them is out of this world delicious. This marinade is the simplest but shockingly delicious. The original recipe comes from Rio Grande Cafe which is one of our favorite Tex- Mex restaurants in Washington DC. Our friends, David and Jackie were able to obtain their  secret and sweetly shared it with us! The pineapple juice has enzymes that not only help to tenderize […]

Simple Enchilada Casserole

   I love using my leftover Crockpot Carnitas to make a quick and easy enchilada casserole! This recipe is a great one to try when you still have a fair amount of shredded meat leftover and really is a completely new meal that your family will love! This recipe builds off my Crockpot Carnitas recipe, but you can also use shredded chicken, ground beef, or even black beans! Many of you have asked me how to use leftovers that taste good and hold up when reheated and this is the perfect solution.  Since I have a stocked pantry, I’m was able to grab some canned tomatoes and chili powder to make a quick sauce. Here is my stocked pantry list here if you want to see what I stock regularly. It is invaluable when it comes to repurposing leftovers! This was a recipe that my Mom made quite often and one that I made for my children. I am now passing it down to you!  ENJOY!!   Enchilada Sauce Ingredients:  1 28-ounce can whole, peeled San Marzano Tomatoes 2 T Chili Powder 1 tsp. Ancho Chili Powder ½ tsp. Garlic powder ½ tsp. Onion powder 1 tsp. Salt Pepper to taste   Directions: 1. In a blender, add tomatoes and all the seasonings.   2. Blend until smooth and set aside.     Enchilada Ingredients: 5 C leftover Carnitas, Mexican Shredded Beef or Grilled Chicken, chopped.  2 C Shredded Cheddar, pepper-jack or Mexican melting cheese 15 corn tortillas (or Siete tortillas for […]

Mahi Mahi Fish Tacos with Mango and Caramelized Kiwi Salsa

 In anticipation for spring, I am sharing these delicious fish tacos with you all! Although tomato salsa is my favorite, I like to make this mango salsa in the spring when mango and kiwi are in season.  The sweet element to this salsa really compliments the spicy seasoning on the fish. The cilantro lime slaw is a twist on my basic slaw recipe  and is a MUST to finish off these fish tacos.   My favorite fish to use is Wild Mahi Mahi but one tip to remember is that Mahi can become too “steaky” if overcooked so the key here is to just to saute’ until almost done. It will continue to cook for a few minutes once you remove it from the heat. Take a bite and just wait….tastes a bit like summer!!! You can almost imagine that the sun is shining and its 75 degrees outside. Enjoy!!   Ingredients:  For the Tacos: 1 lb. wild Mahi Mahi or other white flaky fish ¼ tsp. cumin ½ tsp. sea salt ¼ tsp. smoked paprika pinch of cayenne pinch of coriander ghee or olive oil 8 corn tortillas     For the Salsa: 1 ½ cups diced mango 2 kiwi sliced and caramelized 2 T red onion, finely chopped 2 T cilantro, chopped 2 T red bell pepper, chopped 1 jalapeno’, seeded and finely chopped pinch of chile de Arbol, crushed (I get this from the international store) or pinch of crushed red pepper sea salt juice of ½ a lime     For the Cilantro Lime Cole […]

Roasted Squash Lasagne Boats

  This recipe is a spin-off from a great recipe by Half Baked Harvest. I simplified the recipe and definitely made it my own. The great thing about any recipe is that you can easily tweak any one of them to suit your tastebuds! This is the perfect meal for a cold evening, and I didn’t even miss the pasta.   Ingredients: 1 spaghetti squash 3 T olive oil 1 medium yellow onion, finely diced 1 carrot, finely diced 4 cloves garlic 1 lb. ground pork, beef or lamb 1 24 oz. can of San Marzano crushed tomatoes 1 T tomato paste concentrate 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce 2 T chopped fresh oregano ¾ C whole milk ricotta cheese ¼ C shredded parmesan cheese ¼ C shredded mozzarella 2 T chopped fresh basil 4 slices smoked provolone cheese Salt and pepper     Directions to roast squash: 1. Preheat oven to 350. 2.  Slice off stem area. 3. Stand squash on the freshly cut end and using a sharp knife, cut the squash in half. 4. Scoop out the seeds. 5. Drizzle insides of the squash with 1 T olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 6. Put face down on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet and puncture the entire surface with a fork. 7. Roast squash for 30 minutes or until it is easily punctured with a fork. 8. Set aside.    For the meat sauce:  1. In a large pan, heat about 1 Tablespoon of olive […]