Saturday, June 30, 2007

Kefir - what?

This is my latest "find/study" and addition to mine and Andy's diet - it is similar to yogurt, with so many additional health benefits. Be adventurous and try some! I mix 2/3 a cup of the plain with 1/4 cup 100% natural fruit juice.

The plain variety is the healthiest as it does not have flavor additives. From Dr. Weil " The one caution I would give you is that commercial kefir often is overly sweetened and full of additives. Read labels carefully. I would buy plain varieties and add your own sweetener and flavoring if you like. And making your own kefir isn't difficult, with starter kits widely available. You'll have to experiment a bit to produce kefir that bests suits your taste. In general, the longer the fermentation time, the more sour the finished product. Enjoy!" http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/id/QAA400018


What is Kefir?
"Kefir is a cultured, creamy product with amazing health attributes. Kefir's tart and refreshing flavor is similar to a drinking-style yogurt, but it contains beneficial yeast as well as friendly 'probiotic' bacteria found in yogurt. The naturally occurring bacteria and yeast in kefir combine symbiotically to give superior health benefits when consumed regularly. It is loaded with valuable vitamins and minerals and contains easily digestible complete proteins."
Where to get Kefir?
Recipes that use Kefir:

Thursday, June 28, 2007

West Coast Grilled Pizza

(5 stars)

3 Tbsp EVOO
1 ball pizza dough (I used whole wheat pizza dough, recipe posted earlier)
2 plum tomatoes, seeded and sliced
2 scallions, sliced
1 log goat cheese, crumbled (I used extra brie from last night)
s&p
1 avocado, diced
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar

Heat grill or grill pan to medium. Drizzle dough with EVOO and shape to fit your grill pan or stretch to place on grill. Grill on one side 4-5 minutes, then flip. Scatter crust with tomatoes, scallions, and cheese, season with s&p. Transfer to a cutting board. Top pizza with spinach and avocado - then drizzle with vinegar and EVOO. Slice and enjoy!

Served with roasted squash and peppers

and freezer pickles.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Peaches and Brie Panini

***Oh my, there's no problem this sandwich can't fix. ***


Makes 2 sandwiches

Ciabatta Bread
EVOO
Brie cheese, thinly sliced
One ripe peach, thinly sliced
Honey
s&p
Spinach or Arugula, handful

Heat a Panini press or grill pan over medium high. Slice loaf in half, drizzle with EVOO, and toast the insides on the grill for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and place 2-3 brie slices on each bread slice (total of 4). Then layer peach slices, drizzle of honey, s&p, and spinach leaves. Place top on sandwich (with cheese on that side too:). Place back on the grill 2-3 minutes until heated through and grill marks on both sides. Remove from grill, slice in half and thoroughly enjoy! Serve with a cold brewskie!


This weeks basket...
any suggestions on what to do with
the green cabbage besides coleslaw?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Babaganoush



I got the best berries this last time - more strawberries and the juiciest blackberries...mmm. We made an unexpected trip to KY this week so not many posts. Tonight I roasted a lot of my veggies: two bell peppers, four summer squash, onion, and leeks. I made babaganoush with the eggplant; I added a can of chickpeas to the recipe and used basil instead of parsley - very good!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Tilapia w/ Dijon, Maple, and Walnut Sauce

Add 2 tsp EVOO to a skillet and heat to med-high, salt and pepper tilapia filets and cook 3-4 minutes per side. In the mean time prepare the sauce in a small bowl. Remove tilapia from skillet and top with sauce and a sprinkling of chopped green onions.

Dijion, Maple, and Walnut Sauce (Everyday Food, July 07)

1/4 c dijon mustard
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients together.

I served the tilapia with a side of freezer pickles (see blog recipe posted on 5/30/07) and roasted summer squash, new potatoes, garlic, and red onions.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

One for now...and one for later!

(click above for recipe)
Stuffed shells awaiting sauce and cheese

One ready to go into the oven and

one ready to freeze for later!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Berry Pavlova

I think I may have just found my 4th of July dessert...

4 large egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 cups fresh berries, of your choice


Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Place a piece of parchment paper onto a baking sheet. Set aside.


In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites, lemon juice, and salt together until glossy peaks form. With mixer running, add sugar in three additions, beating until meringue is stiff and glossy. Sprinkle in cornstarch and vanilla; gently fold to combine.


Mound the meringue in the center forming an 8-inch circle. Using a spatula, evenly spread meringue out towards the edges. Transfer baking sheet to oven. Bake for 2 hours and 15 minutes.


Turn off oven and let meringue cool completely in oven. When meringue is cool and completely dry, top with whipped cream and desired fruits.

Turkey Bolognese Sauce - transformed


Turkey Bolognese *****

This is a great base to MANY great meals. Follow the link above to transform the Bolognese sauce into Turkey Vegetable Chili, Spaghetti Bolognese, and Turkey Tomato Soup. I made the basic sauce today and turned it into the Turkey Vegetable Chili. I have proportioned the remainder sauce so that I have a couple batches to turn into Spaghetti Bolognese and Turkey Tomato Soup during busy work nights! (I’ll post the photos as they come.)

Turkey Vegetable Chili *****



"Spaghetti" Bolognese


Turkey Tomato Soup *****

I altered the recipe and included a 28oz can of crushed tomatoes (just because I love them so much).

Chili Pita Chips - I served the chili with these. They were a great combo together, since these were really crispy they held up well when dipped into the soup. This is also the perfect use for leftover/stale pita pockets.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Quesadillas!

Roasted Red Pepper, Basil, and Provolone Cheese

I love these warm, crunchy and easy “Mexican grilled cheeses.” These are great and can be adapted to anyone’s liking. I chose to use roasted red pepper strips, basil, and provolone cheese but other great alternatives are sautéed mushrooms, grilled chicken pieces, artichokes, broccoli, spinach, sun dried tomatoes, olives, and any cheese you have on hand.

First heat a dry skillet over med-high heat, in the mean time pre-cook, dice, etc. all ingredients. Once the pan is heated place one tortilla on the skillet, place cheese down first, top with additional ingredients of your choice, top with more cheese and then place second tortilla on top. Use a large spatula and flip to the other side after 2-3 minutes, or until golden brown. Cook reverse side. Slice into wedges and enjoy! It is great served with a side of salsa for dipping!


First tortilla with cheese and toppings

Second tortilla placed on top and then flipped


Wedged and ready to enjoy!


This weeks mobile market pick-up!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

On the Lighter Side

Chicken Cordon Bleu Burgers

1 lb ground chicken
1-2 Tbsp grill seasoning
3 green onions chopped
4 oz cubed swiss or mozarella cheese
4 oz cubed ham

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix, and form into patties. Grill 4-5 minutes per side and enjoy!





Jerk Chicken Salad (recipe adapoted from Pampered Chef sent to me by Dusty)

1 pound chicken tenders, chopped, cooked in EVOO with 1 tbsp jerk rub
1 medium pineapple, sliced (I had canned ring slices)
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
1 bag butter or romaine lettuce
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained

Place salad in the bottom of the bowl, top with remaining ingredients and drizzle with dressing. Andy loved this!

Dressing
2 limes, juiced
2 tablespoons pineapple preserves
4 tablespoons EVOO
Whisk all ingredients together.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

New York Style Breakfast

Simple and Delicious...fresh bagel, cream cheese, lox (smoke salmon), red onion, capers, diced tomatoes, and I love a little hard boiled eggs...so good.