Grilled Lamb with Yogurt Mint Sauce and Cous Cous
It’s Ina Garten Friday and I’ve cooked up her recipe for grilled lamb chops with yogurt mint sauce, served with one of my recipes for tabouli. The men in my family loved it! But is lamb healthy for you?
About ten years ago, a friend of the family had a heart attack and his doctor put him on a strict diet eliminating salt, sugar, eggs, oil, alcohol, and meat. He was miserable, but he was a good patient and he followed his doctor’s advice. He slowly grew stronger and showed improvement. About six months went by and when we saw him again he was beaming! Our friend told us that he had a new doctor and this doctor told him that he could eat lamb, limited of course, but yes, it was OK.
I wondered, is it healthy to eat lamb? Dr. David L. Katz answered this question on Oprah.com, saying that a mostly plant-based diet is healthier, “but if you eat meat, consider how the animal was raised.” George Mateljan at whfoods.org indicates that meat from pasture-fed lamb contains less trans fatty acids than indoor fed lamb and that you should look for “pasture-fed” on the label. Also consider how it’s cooked; grilling, broiling, and roasting are better than pan-frying.
Ina’s recipe comes from FoodNetwork.com, the tabouli recipe is mine.
Total Time: 2 hours and 49 minutes Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 9 minutes
Ingredients for the Lamb Marinade:
4 large garlic cloves
3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 lemons)
1/2 cup good olive oil
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 racks of lamb, “frenched” and cut into 8 chops each (trim the meat to expose the bone if it hasn’t already been done for you)
Yogurt Mint Sauce, recipe follows
Ingredients for the Yogurt Mint Sauce:
6 scallions, white and green parts, chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
2 tablespoons minced fresh dill
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
7 ounces Greek-style yogurt (recommended: Fage Total)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Ingredients for the Cous Cous
1-1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1-1/2 tablespoons barberries, or 2 tablespoons pomegranate seed
1/4 cup pine nuts
1-1/2 tablespoons minced parsley
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Marinade the Lamb Chops:
Place the garlic, rosemary, oregano, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse until the herbs are finely minced. Add the lemon juice, olive oil, and red wine and combine. Place the chops in a glass or ceramic dish just large enough to hold them in a single layer. Pour the marinade over the chops, turning to coat both sides. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight.
2. Make the Yogurt Sauce:
Place the scallions, mint, dill, red pepper flakes, olive oil, and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree until it’s a coarse paste. Add the yogurt, salt, and pepper and pulse until combined. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to develop. (My note* 2 hours is good).
3. Make the Cous Cous:
10 minutes before grilling the lamb – Pour the olive oil into a small pot, and then add the minced garlic and cook one minute. Add the water and bring it to a boil. After the water comes to a rolling boil add the dry cous cous, the salt, and the barberries. Let the cous cous rest while you cook the chops. Later, when you are ready to eat, fluff up the cous cous, add the parsley, and serve with the lamb chops and the yogurt sauce
4. Grill the Chops:
When ready to cook, prepare a grill with one layer of hot coals or turn a gas grill to medium-high heat. Remove the lamb from the marinade, sprinkle generously with salt and pepper, and grill for 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove to a platter, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and set aside to rest for 10 minutes. Serve hot with the cold Yogurt Mint Sauce.
Serve and enjoy!
This recipe is also posted at Full Plate Thursday and the Pennywise Platter
Okonomiyaki a la Española
Okonomiyaki a la Española
One of my favorite blogs, written by Deb Perelman, is Smitten Kitchen. Her conversation is perky, the food is varied, and her food photos will make you drool! Last week she posted her rendition of okonomiyaki, a Japanese pancake that can be made small or large, and is served with a special mayonnaise sauce. I’ve made something similar to the little cakes, carrot and zucchini latkes, but when she said that okonmiyaki are also made into large pancakes in certain areas of Japan, right away I thought, “OK, tortilla española.” The Spanish omelette, known as the tortilla española, is traditionally made with potatoes, onions, and eggs. Other ingredients it might have are bell pepper, chorizo, ham, sardines, or tuna. Less common are vegetable tortillas, which are starting to come into fashion as people try to eat healthier. The main vegetable ingredients for the Japanese pancakes are the same vegetables common to Spanish and Mediterranean cuisine: cabbage, onions and carrots. So, I thought why not make okonomiyaki a la española with Romesco sauce? However, being that the main ingredient was cabbage, I did have some doubts about whether my boys would like it or not, but it was an all round hit with everyone. The sauce really made the dish!
Servings: 4 Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Ingredients for the Tortilla:
5 to 6 cups cabbage, finely shredded
1 small onion, very thinly sliced
½ red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
5 to 6 tablespoons olive oil
Ingredients for Sauce:
Vegetable Pancakes with Romesco Sauce
1 tablespoon garlic
1/3 cup almonds
1 red bell pepper, (may be fresh or roasted)
1 tomato (peeled or unpeeled, your choice)
1 ounce fresh French bread
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ to ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1. Use a potato peeler to cut the carrot into strips, and then cut the strips into lengths about 3 or 4 inches long, and about ¼-inch wide. Add the carrots to the shredded cabbage, chopped onion, and the shredded bell pepper.
2. Heat 1-1/2 tablespoons of olive oil in a 10-inch pan. Add the vegetables, stirring frequently until they are tender. When they are ¾ of the way cooked, remove the pan from the heat. Put the vegetables in a medium bowl and let them cool for 5 minutes.
3. Beat the eggs until they are well mixed, and then add them to the vegetables along with the kosher salt. Sprinkle the pastry flour over the eggs and vegetables and stir well.
4. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan, and when it is hot pour the egg mixture into the pan. Set the heat to medium low. After about 6 to 7 minutes you should see the egg starting to set up. If you stick a spatula under the tortilla and it holds together well, then it’s ready to flip. If is not ready, continue cooking until it holds together better.
5. Place a plate over the frying pan. If you are right-handed, hold the frying pan by the handle with the right hand and place your left hand on top of the plate. Quickly flip the pan over 180 degrees. Now your left hand will be holding the plate from underneath. (Reverse the process if you are left-handed. Your left hand will hold the panhandle and the right hand will be on top of the plate, and then you will flip the pan over).
6. If the pan is dry add about 2 tablespoons more oil and spread it around. Slide the tortilla back into the pan and allow it to cook it about 7 more minutes. Use a spatula to push down the sides so the edges become more rounded. If the top of the tortilla is uneven, pat it with the spatula to even it out. You don’t want a lumpy tortilla. Flip the tortilla out onto a serving platter when it is done. (*Note – if you have a thermometer you can use it to check if the tortilla is done. The center of the tortilla should reach 145°).
7. To make the sauce, place the garlic and the almonds in the food processor and let the machine run for a few seconds to break up the nuts. Add the remaining ingredients: bell pepper, tomato, French bread, vinegar, olive oil, paprika, salt, and red pepper flakes. Process until the sauce is smooth and store it in the refrigerator.
This recipe is linked to the Pennywise Platter
Middle Eastern Vegetable Salad
One book that I can recommend to people who like great taste without complications, is Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa how easy is that? Her recipes are familiar, easy to prepare, tasty, and elegantly served. This week for the Ina First Friday blog group I chose her recipe for Middle Eastern Vegetable Salad, which many people by the name of fattoush. Fattoush is an Arabic salad, like the Italian bread salad Panzanella, it incorporates dried bread, but this one uses dried pita (see Kayln’s Kitchen). Other ingredients the traditional salad often incorporates are sumac, and purslane. Sumac is a spice that has a lemony taste, and purslane is an edible weed. I prefer Ina’s way of toasting the pita bread and serving it on the side, especially if there will be leftovers. One thing I can’t stand is soggy bread in a salad. This is a good alternative to tabouli for those on a grain-free diet. Anyone will appreciate this summer salad because it’s healthy, nourishing, and very tasty. Enjoy this slightly modified recipe!
Preparation Time: 25 minutes Servings: 4 Large Yield: 6 cups
Tofu Pumpkin Pie with Yogurt Topping
Did you know that April is Soyfoods Month? I didn’t know this until just recently. The Soy Association of North America (SANA) chose my blog and sent me box of samples so I could try them and let my readers know what I think about soyfood products; that’s where the tofu pumpkin pie with yogurt topping comes in. You might remember that I do like soy products as shown by these delicious recipes: zesty lemon tempeh, scrambled tofu, spicy marinated tofu, and miso soup with vegetables. But, it’s my impression that there are still many people out there that think tofu, tempeh, and miso are for vegetarians. As part of my healthy eating habits I aim to eat a variety of foods and soy products are a part of that mix. Though I eat little meat, I’m not a vegetarian. I eat soy products because they are high in protein and calcium, and low in fat and cholesterol. And as far as tofu tasting bland, well…there is a remedy for that—it’s called marinade. Look for organic tofu and tempeh. All organic products are non-GMO, but not all non-GMO products are organic (Wildwood Foods); they might still be sprayed with pesticides. If you’re not sure about a product you can check the verified foods on the Non-GMO Project website.
So you’re probably wondering what goodies SANA sent me. I got a small box with Soyjoy bars, Nutz (honey toasted soy nuts), and coupon for a Wildwood soy product—which I picked up at Whole Foods Market. I’m not the best judge of bars since I prefer to eat foods with minimal processing, but my husband liked the chocolate cherry bar. The family favorite was the Nutz. These roasted soybeans make a nice little snack to take along in your lunchbox. The baked tofu tasted great in a whole wheat sandwich I made with roasted bell peppers, avocado and Miso Mayo. To test out the Wildwood Sproutofu, I decided on a tofu pumpkin pie with a yogurt topping.
Cut the pie with a professional look
About the recipe – The recipe below will give you a dense pumpkin pie. If you prefer a more custardy pie omit the firm tofu and use firm silken tofu in its place. The yogurt topping is optional if you prefer a dairy-free pie, buy I like it because it tastes like pumpkin cheesecake. For a vegan pie use a butter alternative in the graham cracker crust and omit the yogurt topping.
Kitchen Tip – I recommend cutting this pie into small pieces. For a professional look when cutting, press a 2 to 2-1/2 round cookie cutter in the center of the pie. Next cut the outer cake into quarters, and then cut each of the quarters into 3 pieces. This will provide you with 13 servings and no straggly tips at the end of each piece. After cutting the pie remove the cookie cutter from the center.
Hey there. It’s Ina Garten Friday, which means that the members in this blog group will be making and posting one of her recipes, or making a food item inspired by one of her dishes. Do you know who she is? Ina is host the Barefoot Contessa on Food Network. You may have seen some of her books at the bookstore or at the library.
She goes by the name “the Barefoot Contessa,” after the specialty food shop she bought with that name. She owned it for over 20 years. Throughout her life Ina Garten has proven to be a multi-talented woman who has worn many hats: wife, Washington budget analyst, political activist, pilot, specialty food shopkeeper, magazine article contributor, New York Times bestselling cookbook author, and Food Network television host (Wikipedia).
What I like about much of Ina’s food is the simplicity of flavors and preparation, and the fresh flavors of the food. She’s not big on heavy cream and overdoses of butter, though she does favor cheese. Her overall theme is ease of preparation and her standard is delicious.
I chose to do a variation of her recipe sausage-stuffed mushrooms from her book barefoot contessa how easy is that? She serves these stuffed mushrooms instead of traditional stuffing along with the Thanksgiving turkey. That way, she says, the turkey won’t end up being dry. Good tip Ina! I have adapted the recipe for my healthy eating habits by using non-fat yogurt instead of marscapone cheese, chicken sausage instead of pork, fresh whole wheat bread crumbs instead of panko crumbs, and I’ve used less salt and less Parmesan cheese.
Servings: 6-8 Prep Time: 30 Minutes Bake Time: 50 minutes
The instructions below are Ina’s minus the ingredients that I’m substituting with something that I feel is a healthier choice. My substitutions or changes appear in parenthesis.
16 extra-large mushrooms, caps and stems separated
5 tablespoons good olive oil, divided
2-1/2 tablespoons Marsala win or medium-dry sherry
¾ pound sweet Italian (chicken) sausage, casings removed
¾ cup minced scallions, white and green parts
2 teaspoons minced garlic, 2 cloves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup (fresh whole wheat bread crumbs)
5 ounces (non-fat Greek yogurt)
(1/4) cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2-1/2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1. Pre-heat the oven to 325°
2. Trim the mushroom cap stems and chop them finely. Set aside. Place the mushrooms caps in a shallow bowl and toss with the 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the Marsala. Set aside.
3. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage, crumbling it with a wooden spoon. Cook the sausage for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until it’s completely browned. Add the chopped mushroom stems and cook for 3 more minutes. Stir in the scallions, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook another 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the bread crumbs, stirring to combine with the other ingredients. Finally, (remove from the heat and) swirl in the (Greek yogurt) and continue cooking until the (yogurt) has melted and made the mixture creamy. …stir in the Parmesan and parsley and season to taste. Cool slightly.
4. Fill each mushroom generously with the sausage mixture. Arrange the mushrooms in baking dish large enough to hold them all in a snug single layer. Bake for 50 minutes, until the stuffing is browned and crusty.
Salmon with Pesto Wrapped in Filo
Last night a documentary called The River of No Return was on Nature, a PBS presentation. A wolf biologist named Isaac Babcock and his wife Bijornen, took a year trek along the Frank Church-River, in the Idaho Wilderness. As you can imagine, much of the show dealt wolves, but the biologist also spent time filming other species like birds and fish. The mountainous area is so pristine and the photography is gorgeous. It was especially moving to see the images of the salmon swimming upstream against the full force of the river having to jump into and over the waterfalls in their struggle to return to the spawning grounds. Salmon are born in fresh water then they live most of their lives in the ocean. They return to fresh water to lay their eggs. Their journey home is Homeric.
Watching that show last night made me feel that salmon was the perfect finish to our 38th power foods blog group. This fish is a symbol of power and strength. As a food it provides our bodies with essential anti-oxidants and vitamins. It has both DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), which are omega 3’s that help lower cholesterol, and are the components you’re looking for when you buy fish capsules. Check with your doctor to see the amount of DHA and EPA you should be taking. The salmon’s pink hue comes from the krill the fish eats which is full of powerful antioxidants like selenium, and astaxanthin. It’s also rich in vitamin D, B6, and B12. According to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, it’s best to eat wild salmon. Farmed Atlantic salmon should be avoided because it poses environmental problems and doesn’t the same nutrients. Check the Monterrey Bay Aquarium page to see best choices when choosing.
If you’re looking for an easy, but delicious and memorable dinner to prepare, try wild salmon with pesto wrapped in filo. It’s easy to put together and it bakes in just 20 minutes. In this recipe the dough is brushed with olive oil, which is a healthier choice than brushing with butter or using puff pastry. And the pesto is dairy-free, cutting back on the additional fat and calories as these pouches are very filling.
Servings: 4 Prep Time: 35 minutes Cooking Time: about 20 minutes
Cookie rack of same size
Ingredients for Dairy-Free Pesto:
2 ounces fresh basil leaves (about 2 cups)
2 small tooth garlic
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons pine nuts
Salt to taste
1 box filo dough
4 salmon filets, skin removed (5 to six ounces each)
1/3 cup pesto
1/2 to 3/4 cup olive oil
Procedure for the Pesto:
1. Place the garlic in a food processor and process 10 seconds. Add the salt, basil, and the pine nuts and then process a few seconds. Next, slowly add the olive oil.
2. Scrape the sauce into a small bowl and cover with plastic.
Filo dough with oil
Procedure for the Salmon:
1. Pre-heat the oven to 375°
2. Line the sheet-pan with aluminum foil and then place the cookie rack in the pan.
3. Wash the fish filets and then pat them dry.
4. Lay down one sheet of filo dough horizontally on the counter and brush it with a thin layer of olive oil.
5. Lay a second layer of filo dough on top to the first sheet and brush it with the oil. Next, take the side end and fold it over so the corners meet. Brush the top with oil and lay a ½ sheet of dough over the top.
Salmon before wrapping
6. Spread 1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons of pesto on top of the dough about the same size as the salmon filet. Set the fish on top of the sauce and then brush the dough with oil. Fold in the sides of the dough, and brush the top with oil, and then set the fish pouch on the cookie rack. Make two angular slits in the top of the dough, each about 2 inches long. Repeat this whole procedure with the remaining filets.
7. Bake the fish pouches until they are golden brown —about 20 to 25 minutes.
Power Foods: 150 delicious recipes with the 38 healthiest ingredients
Today is the last day of our blog group which has been talking about and writing about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients, (from the editors at Martha Stewart’s Living Magazine). It’s been a lot of fun! I’d like to thank all the participants who have taken part in this collaborative effort, and especially to those who crossed the finish line. I’m looking forward to our next group hosted by Alyce at MoreTimeattheTable.blogspot. It will be a once monthly post and the subject is Ina Garten. If you would like to participate please contact Alyce at afmorgan53(at)yahoo.com.
Check out what these other bloggers have cooked up! Alyce - More Time at the Table, Ansh - Spice Roots, Martha - Simple-Nourished-Living, Minnie – The Lady 8 Home, Mireya - My Healthy Eating Habits
Steelhead Trout with Turkey Bacon and Rosemary
This week while researching rainbow trout for the 38 Power Foods blog group, I realized that some grocers and fishmongers don’t understand the —what appears to be folklore term— “salmon trout”. They call the pinkish to reddish colored fish by their proper names: rainbow trout, or steelhead trout, whereas, I have always known pinkish-reddish fish as salmon trout. I’ve learned, there is a slight but important difference between the two. Both rainbow trout and steelhead trout are the same species and are closely related to salmon, and both share a pink to reddish colored flesh. But the rainbow trout that leaves freshwater rivers to spend 2 to 3 years at sea before returning to fresh water to spawn, is called Steelhead trout. These fish are larger than rainbow trout and have a deeper red color, closer to that of salmon. Both Steelhead trout and rainbow trout taste close to salmon, but the last one has more of the trout undertones.
According to the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch, farmed rainbow trout and steelhead trout are a “best choice” based on abundance, well-managed environmentally friendly farming practices, and health benefits. These fish offer the important inflammation fighting omega-3 fatty acids docosahexaenoic (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic (EPA), and they are also loaded with B vitamins, niacin, and selenium. While rainbow trout and steelhead trout offer many of the same benefits as salmon, they are more affordable, and in most cases can be prepared in the same delicious ways.
About steelhead trout with bacon and rosemary: My family and I used to enjoy trout with bacon and loved it, but when we started to eat healthier that recipe went out the window due to the quantity of saturated fat. This week I had the idea of using turkey bacon, which contains 50% less fat than pork bacon, and has half the calories. It’s a healthier choice and it’s better for your healthy eating habits.
Servings: 4 to 6 Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: about 10 minutes
2 pounds steelhead trout (2 filets for a total of 2 pounds)
6 bay leaves
6 sprigs rosemary
4 slices turkey bacon
2 teaspoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 lemon, cut into 6 wedges
1. Preheat the oven to broil, and set an oven rack 5-½ to 6 inches below the broiler.
2. Wash the fish filets and then pat them dry.
3. Put the filets on a roasting pan, rub a teaspoon of olive oil on each filet and then sprinkle a little salt and pepper over them.
4. Evenly space 3 bay leaves over each fish filet, and then put 3 sprigs of rosemary on each filet. Top each filet with 2 slices of turkey bacon.
5. Bake the fish about 10 minutes until it is no longer raw in the center, or until a thermometer reaches the internal temperature of 145°.
To serve: garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs and lemon wedges.
Secret Ingredient Mushroom Soufflé
I’ve been waiting patiently for this week’s edible item to come up in our 38 Power Foods blog group. The simple and unassuming egg is the power pick of the week and I’ll be making something that only the egg can do —the soufflé. From a cook’s perspective, eggs are one of the most versatile foods around. But, they also contain all the essential amino acids, they’re high in protein, low in calories, and help to make you feel satiated. Eggs are also a good source of vitamin D and B12.
This week I was in the mood for some experimentation because last year I came across a delicious whole wheat Mac ‘n cheese recipe in Mark Bittman’s The Food Matters Cookbook. Mark’s creamy sauce isn’t made with milk —it’s made with, surprise… cauliflower. Yeah! And it’s good too! So, I thought why not use this creamy cauliflower sauce in a soufflé to pump up the amount of plant food in the recipe. It worked. I got a good rise on the soufflé, about 2.5 inches. It didn’t rise above the bowl because was too big for the number of eggs in the recipe, but it rose as it should. Only those with keen taste buds might uncover a faint flavor of cauliflower; the mushrooms disguise it well. I served it with red bell pepper sauce, but you could also serve it with your favorite tomato sauce. My son loved it. And by the way, that’s a good sign if you have finicky eaters. Enjoy this secret ingredient mushroom soufflé.
Servings: 6 Prep Time: 25 minutes Bake Time: 42 to 45 minutes
2-½ tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup dry bread crumbs
1 pound mushrooms, cleaned, and end tip cut off and discarded
1-½ cups cauliflower cream sauce
¾ teaspoon Herbs de Provence
6 large eggs, at room temperature
½ cup Gruyere cheese, shredded
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
Ingredients for the white sauce: (for both the soufflé and the spinach basil sauce)
1/3 pound cauliflower
2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock, or chicken stock
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons flour
Preliminary Steps. Place an oven rack just below the middle position in the oven, and pre-heat the oven to 350°. Oil an 8-cup soufflé dish and dust it with 1/3 cup dry bread crumbs. Set it aside.
For The Sauce Base:
1. Chop 1/3 pound of cauliflower and cook it until it is tender in 2 cups of vegetable, or chicken stock, along with 2 bay leaves and ¼ teaspoon sea salt.
2. When the cauliflower is very tender remove the bay leaves. (If you separate the cauliflower from the sauce, you should have about 1 cup and 2 tablespoons to 1-¼ cups remaining cups of stock. If you have less add a little water or stock until you have at least 1 cup and 2 tablespoons.) Blend the stock and the cauliflower until the sauce is very smooth.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a 2-quart sauce pan, and add 2 tablespoons of flour. Cook the flour 3 to 4 minutes over medium-low heat stirring constantly with a whisk, and then add 1-½ the cauliflower mixture. Stir until it thickens up, and set this sauce aside while you prepare the mushrooms.
For the Soufflé:
1. Use a food processor to finely chop the mushrooms in two batches until they resemble fine gravel. Next, place the mushrooms in an 8-inch pan with one tablespoon olive and cook them until all the moisture they release evaporates and they are pretty dry. Cool them a couple of minutes.
2. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites.
3. In a large bowl, mix the egg yolks, mushrooms, shredded Gruyere, 1-½ cups of the cauliflower white sauce, the Herbs de Provence, and the white pepper.
4. Beat the egg whites with ¼ teaspoon sea salt until the whites hold a stiff peak.
5. Gently fold the egg whites into mushroom mixture and then pour the mixture into the previously prepared soufflé pan. Bake at 350° about 40 to 45 minutes.
Roasted Vegetables with Pepitas
Have you ever heard of “pepitas”? In Spanish that means –little seeds. I’ve seen them called for in recipes, but I didn’t know until this week that they were referring to pumpkin seeds. This week the 38 Power Foods blog group is discovering that there’s more to this little seed than meets the eye. According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, The World Health Organization recommends that people eat pumpkin seeds due to their high content of zinc, which boosts immunity and keeps your immune system functioning well, as well as helping to keep eye-sight from age related vision loss, like macular degeneration. In addition, zinc plays an important for healing wounds. Pumpkin seeds are also a very good source of manganese, tryptophan, and magnesium.
What do they taste like? They are similar to the sunflower seed but in my opinion they taste better. But watch out, like sunflower seeds and popcorn, once you start eating pepitas it’s hard to stop. You’ll find them in the markets with the shell on, or the shell off, toasted or raw. If you buy them raw you’ll want to toast them in the oven at 170° for about 15 to 20 minutes, but no more than 20 or they lose their nutritional value. Eating pepitas is good for your healthy eating habits, and it’s best to bake them without added salt.
Though the name of the dish “Roasted Vegetables with Pepitas and Minted Curry Yogurt Sauce” is quite a mouthful, this vegan recipe is uncomplicated, and you can easily add roast chicken or turkey to make it more interesting for the non-vegan. I recommend serving it over Quinoa Pilaf (you can omit the pomegranate seeds).
Prep Time: 15 minutes Baking Time: 25 minutes Yield: 4-1/2 cups
Ingredients for the Roasted Vegetables:
¾ to 1 pound rutabaga
¾ to 1 pound turnip
¾ pound broccoli
1 pound sweet potato
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup toasted pepitas (to add after the vegetables are cooked and topped with the sauce)
Ingredients for the Sauce:
1 cup plain yogurt
½ teaspoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon curry
½ teaspoon turmeric
1/3 teaspoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon chopped mint
sea salt to taste
1. Pre-heat the oven to 375°, and then peel and roughly chop the rutabaga, turnips, and the sweet potatoes. Wash the Brussels sprouts, remove loose outer leaves, trim the bottom and slice them in half lengthwise.
2. Place the rutabaga on a large sheet pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and put it in the hot oven for 5 minutes. And then, add the remaining vegetables and sprinkle with the sea salt and the garlic salt. Put the sheet pan back in the oven and bake another 15 to 20 minutes, depending on your ideal for tenderness.
3. Whisk together well the ingredients for the yogurt sauce and check the seasonings.
4. Dish up the vegetables, pour on the sauce and sprinkle the pepitas over the top.
People have found uses for the flax plant for hundreds of thousands of years. The plant fiber has been used to produce linen, twine, and rope. Painters used linseed oil –the oil from flax seed– as a paint-drying agent. This week the 38 Power Foods blog group celebrates flax for its health benefits.
The flax seed is a good source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is an essential fatty acid in the omega-3 family. ALA provides anti-inflammatory and cardiovascular benefits, and studies show that the ground seed is good for lowering one’s cholesterol and for lessoning the severity of diabetes by stabilizing blood sugar levels. It also provides a lot of fiber. Eating whole seeds will have the effect of a natural laxative for someone with a sluggish digestive system. My mother-in-law, for example, adds two tablespoons to her cereal daily to keep her regular. You should use the ground seed to take advantage of the nutritional benefits. Keep in mind that ground flax seed goes rancid quickly, so it’s best to buy whole brown seeds and grind them as you use them, and store both the whole seeds and the ground flax in the freezer.
About the recipe: If you look around at granola recipes (1, 2, 3) you start to see common elements; oats, sweeteners, nuts, dried fruit, oil, flavorings, and salt. I came up with this recipe for Cocoa Granola with Flax and Other Power Goodies using all to the above ingredients and cocoa powder to mask the strong flavor that flax leaves in the mouth. The dried fruit is optional because the cereal is more easily digested without it. Updated February 26th, 2013 to include recipe.
Prep Time: 10 minutes Baking Time: 25 minutes Yield: 4-1/2 cups
2 cups rolled oats (not quick cooking)
1/3 cup organic brown rice syrup
2 tablespoons cane sugar
2 tablespoons water
2-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon chocolate extract
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut, ground in a coffee mill (Grinding is optional)
1/3 cup sliced almonds
¼ cup ground and toasted flax seed
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon sea salt
Optional – 1/3 cup raisins, or another of your favorite dried fruit
1. Pre-heat the oven to 300°
2. In a small pot, mix the brown rice syrup, the cane sugar, and the water. Bring the liquids to a boil and cook until it is very foamy. Remove it from the heat and then add the olive oil, the chocolate extract, and the vanilla. Stir the ingredients well and then set the pot aside.
3. In a large bowl, mix the rolled oats, the coconut, the almonds, the ground flax seeds, the cinnamon, and the salt. Add the syrup to the dry ingredients and mix it well by using a spatula to fold the cereal over itself until it is well combined.
4. On a sheetpan, spread the cereal out and bake it for 12 minutes. After this remove the sheet pan from the oven, stir the cereal well and pat it into a pile about ¾-inch thick. Return the pan to the oven and bake another 12 minutes.
5. After you remove the granola from the oven, press the cereal together and then flatten it using the back of a spatula. Let it cool and then break the cereal into clumps. Add the optional fruit.
Power Foods: 150 delicious recipes with the 38 healthiest ingredients
Other granola recipes:
Coconut Granola, Two Peas and Their Pod
Easy Homemade Granola, The Amateur Gourmet
How to Make Homemade Granola, The Prepared Pantry
If you are a blogger and would like to take part in our group blogging about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients, (from the editors at Martha Stewart’s Living Magazine) we’d love to have your company. Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.
Check out what these other bloggers have cooked up! Alyce - More Time at the Table, Ansh - Spice Roots, Casey –SweetSav Jeanette - Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Martha - Simple-Nourished-Living, Minnie – The Lady 8 Home, Mireya - My Healthy Eating Habits
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