Category Archives: Recipes

Corn, Edamame, Avocado, and Sesame Salad

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Longest title ever, I know. This is the recipe I promised last week in my “things I’ll eat after my cleanse” post. This recipe is my slightly altered version of a recipe I found in a cookbook called Veganomicon. The original version of this recipe suggested the avocados as an optional addition but I think this salad is lacking without it, so it’s a must. I altered a few other things to make it my own, which is something you can certainly do as well. I originally wrote this post for a new health and wellness blog, One Life Well, but I thought you’d want the recipe too :) 

This recipe is satisfying on so many levels. First, it’s easy. It takes less than 20 minutes to prepare this salad and the only cooking skill required is knowing how to boil water. You’re welcome. Second, it’s healthy. There isn’t one ingredient in this dish that I wouldn’t feed to my most loved friends and family (and myself!). And third, it is so delicious. Some of the most delicious foods are the simplest and to me, this one is perfect. Enjoy this salad as a side dish to your favorite Asian inspired meal or eat it on its own for a snack or light meal. I usually just keep eating it til it’s gone. Terrible. But that’s how good it is!

 

The Recipe

  • 1 1/2 cups of fresh corn, or frozen corn, thawed
  • 2 cups of frozen, shelled edamame (non-GMO, of course!)
  • 1-2 ripe avocados, cut into small pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons of toasted sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons of soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon of rice vinegar
  • A sprinkle of crushed red chili flakes
  • A sprinkle of garlic powder (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the dressing: Whisk together the sesame oil, rice vinegar, and soy sauce. Set aside. If you can’t find toasted sesame oil, don’t worry! Extra virgin olive oil works just fine in this recipe.

For the salad: Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil. Add the frozen edamame and boil for about 2 or 3 minutes. Add the frozen corn to the pot and boil for another 2 minutes. Pour the corn and edamame into a strainer and rinse with cold water. In a bowl, combine the corn, edamame, avocado, dressing, and toasted sesame seeds. Season with salt, pepper, chili flakes, and garlic powder if you prefer it. Cover the salad and allow the flavors to meld together in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes. Be sure to serve this salad as soon as possible, as the avocados will turn brown not long after being removed from their skins.
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Note on sesame seeds: Usually sesame seeds are sold raw but toasting them is a piece of cake! Just add the required amount to a dry skillet (no oil) and turn the heat to medium. Keep the seeds moving by stirring them or shaking the skillet until you see that they’re a more golden brown color and you begin to smell them, about 3 or 4 minutes.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I have!

Amaretto Cherry and Pear Crisp

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Yesterday I went out to water my garden and noticed some of the cherries on our lovely cherry tree were finally red and ready to be picked. I’d actually been waiting for a few weeks for them to finally ripen and now they’re ready! I’m a big fan of sharing the entire life span of an ingredient with you. Thus, the picture below. You can see in the right of the picture, some of the cherries are still yellow and are continuing to ripen. The star of this picture, however, is ready to be used in the mouthwatering recipe I’ve created for it. Yum!

I was inspired to use the fresh cherries in a baked crisp by a great blog post I recently read. You can check it out here if you’re interested! This is awesome as a dessert topped with ice cream but it also works well as a breakfast fruit bake since I’ve added minimal sugar. I might even have this after my morning juice today. Shhh!

I chose toasted almonds in this recipe because before baking, the cherries with get a little amaretto bath. The almond flavored liqueur in the filling and toasted almond in the topping work perfectly together.

The Recipe

  • Total active prep time: 10 minutes
  • Total inactive prep time: 30 minutes
  • Total cook time: 30 minutes
  • Serves: 4

The Ingredients

For the filling

  • 1 cup of cherries, pitted and halved
  • 2 medium pears, cored, peeled, and sliced
  • 3 Tablespoons of amaretto liqueur (can be replaced by a couple teaspoons of almond extract if you’re not into liqueur)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon of unbleached granulated sugar

For the topping

  • 1/2 cup of toasted sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup uncooked rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons of Earth Balance buttery stick, melted (this is a butter alternative with healthy Omega-3s)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Dash or two of salt

The Preparation

1. Combine all filling ingredients. Let soak for at least 30 minutes, stirring occasionally so each piece of fruit gets it’s time in the amaretto bath.

2.  Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. To prepare your topping, combine all of the ingredients listed and set aside until the fruit has finished bathing. When the fruit is ready, steal a couple tablespoons of the amaretto liquid and throw it into the topping mix. If you need more liquid, add more of that liquid.

3. Spoon the fruit into four ramekins or a small glass baking dish. If a little bit of the liquid makes it’s way into the baking dish that’s ok but avoid adding too much extra liquid since the fruits let off their own when baking. If using ramekins, place them on a baking sheet just in case the yumminess bubbles over. Top the fruit filling with the almond topping and bake for 30 minutes.

I’ve found this recipe to be crunchy and satisfying with just the right amount of sweetness. I hope you enjoy it!

There’s a reason Olive Oyl loved Popeye

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It certainly wasn’t because of his tall stature, his flowing head of hair, or his love of clean air (note the ever present pipe). It was because of his muscles and his affinity for spinach, of course! Popeye made his debut in 1929 and even way back then, it was pretty well known that spinach was good for you. Even then, the entertainment industry subliminally, or in Popeye’s case, not so subliminally, tried to introduce kids to the idea that eating veggies was fun. I totally experienced this first hand. My brother John and I used to watch Popeye all the time, especially on Saturday mornings. I feel pretty certain that if we ate spinach at all, it was because Popeye thought it was cool (therefore it must have been, right?). I really miss those days.

“I yam what I yam!” Or in the context of this post, “You are what you eat.” If you are indeed what you eat Popeye was made of all these things, just to name a few: so much Vitamin A and Vitamin K, Vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, and zinc. And to boot, one cup of raw spinach (think salad) has only seven tiny baby calories and zero cholesterol or saturated fat. Spinach really packs a huge nutritional punch. See what I did there? No wonder Olive Oyl loved him. Shoot, I love him. Can we get a modern day Popeye up in here for all my single girls?

Now, I must say, unless you’re making spinach and artichoke dip or something like that, canned spinach is gross. Sorry, Popeye. Spinach can be a little finicky to grow but almost every single grocery store, in America anyway, sells fresh spinach in the produce department. This is my baby spinach plant that really hasn’t even grown into toddler spinach yet. I was not lying when I said it can be finicky.

If you’re in need of a super simple spinach recipe to try, try this one. It’s a great side dish recipe for both spinach lovers and apprehensive spinach eaters. And in my opinion simple is almost always the way to go. In parting, I’ll leave you with this serious thought for the day: AC thinks I look like Olive Oyl. See any resemblance?

Even if you do, at least my feet aren’t as big as hers. I’ve got that going for me! Now, if only he had muscles like Popeye ;)

Sexy Sticks

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Get your head out of the gutter, I’m talking about asparagus. I know, I know. This sounds like it’s going to be as entertaining as watching white paint dry with your most annoying relative. But it won’t be! I’ll tell you why asparagus is sexy.

1. It has such a cool growth pattern.

  • Although it takes about 3 years to grow before its first harvest, an asparagus plant can continue to produce stalks for 10-20 years. Did you know that?? That just amazes me. Before I learned this I kinda thought that Michelle Duggar was the only thing that produced for up to two decades. One of the gardeners in our community garden grows asparagus in her plot so I’m lucky enough to show you a true to life picture that I took just yesterday. It’s a little difficult to see because of the asparagus “fern” growing around it but it just grows straight out of the ground like this:

2. It is really good for you.

  • Asparagus has loads of calcium, fiber, folic acid, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium. And that isn’t even the full list! I just stopped because I promised this would be entertaining. It even has some protein so stop asking me where I get my protein from! Just kidding, you can ask me whatever you want :)

3. It spruces up ANY plate and makes you look like a domestic super star.

  • This is a fact. Asparagus makes your dinner look like the P. Diddy (or whatever he goes by these days) of your dinner world. This is a dinner that I made the other night which consisted of a grilled portobello mushroom cap topped with tomato, basil, and sweet onion quinoa with a side of grilled asparagus. I’ll post that recipe later on if you want it but see how much better the plate looks because I added that sexy greenery? Even when asparagus isn’t the star it plays a great supporting role.

4. It’s so easy to prepare. Of all the ways you could prepare asparagus, this is my favorite way:

  • First, wash your asparagus and preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  • Second, snap off the very bottom of each piece of asparagus. It tends to be very tough and the spear is much better without it.
  • Third, place all of the stalks on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and use your [clean] hands to toss everything together so each spear is coated with the flavorful additions.
  • Your last step is to bake the asparagus until you hear it sizzling in the oven. That’s what I do but if you aren’t preparing other things in the kitchen and can’t keep an ear out, bake it for about 12-15 minutes or until tender, which I guess is how normal people know when to take something out of the oven.

Asparagus is an early spring veg and it’s at the very, very end of it’s season so get your ass to the produce department or farmers’ market before it’s not anymore!

Happy Thursday! :)

Arugula and Fennel Salad with Shaved Romano and Lemon Vinaigrette

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Speaking of arugula, Ac and I have a new favorite salad. This came from our local co-op and it’s such an amazing spring salad. And if Ac loves it you then you know you have to try it. No brainer. Heeeere ya go:

 

What you’ll need:

  • 4 cup loosely packed baby arugula
  • 1 small fennel bulb (that’s about 1/3 cup)
  • Shaved Romano cheese
  • Juice of 1 lemon (about 4 Tbsp.)
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

1. Wash and dry arugula. Duh.

2. Cut the green stalks from the fennel and discard any damaged outer layer. Cut the bulb in half long ways and slice each half crosswise into very thin slices.

3. Juice the lemon, add olive oil, salt, and pepper. Wisk until combined.

4. Use a vegetable peeler to shave the romano wedge til you have the amount you like.

5. Mix everything together and enjoy. Welcome to springtime in your mouth.