Category Archives: Not in the mood to cook!

Roasted cabbage

med105471_0410_cabbage_wedge_vertWanna pig out on cabbage?  No, really!  Why not?  It is loaded with nutrients that will help your body clear out toxins, give you great energy, and keep the good bacteria in your GUT healthy and happy.

Once you taste this roasted cabbage you are going to want more, I promise.  IT ROCKS!  You can eat this as a side dish or as your main course.  PLUS, you can play with the seasoning so you have exactly what you are in the mood to eat.

Roasted Cabbage

  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 more tablespoons avocado oil or toasted sesame oil
  • 1 medium head green cabbage, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • any herbs, spice, seasoning that you like!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Slice head of cabbage into thin pieces.  Brush both sides with avocado oil.   Season with your favorite spices and herbs, salt, and pepper, etc.  Carefully flip after 7-10 minutes and cook until your reach a cook texture for you ~15 minutes of total cook time is usually good.

Serve and enjoy!

 

 

My asian slaw

My asian slaw

Remember last summer when I had all of that cabbage in my garden–ripe, crispy, delicious, and ready to be consumed?  Well, here is the recipe for one of the many salads that I made with my bounty.  I found the original recipe on Pinterest and have probably made it 20 times since then.  Both the color and flavor are huge in this dish PLUS it is loaded with all sorts of good nutrition!  Enjoy it as a side salad or as your main course, like we do!

My asian slaw

Servings:  2-4 depending upon the size

  • 4-5 c. slaw mix (organic)– Make your own for a super fresh and flavorful salad
  • 2 bell peppers, julienned — I use red and orange
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped (use the green part, too)
  • 1 carrot, grated or chopped into very thin coins
  • 1/4 of a red onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
  • 1 c dry roasted peanuts and/or cashews, finely chopped
  • 1/4 c honey
  • 2 T grapeseed or veg oil
  • 1/8 c toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 c rice wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 T soy sauce
  • 1 + t sirachyra, depending upon your palate
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1/2-1 ” ginger, grated
  • 1 1/2 T peanut butter

In a large bowl combine the first seven ingredients–set aside enough chopped cilantro and peanuts to garnish the salads.  Cover the bowl and shake to evenly distribute the ingredients.  In a small bowl combine the remainder of the ingredients and stir well.  Taste the dressing and adjust the seasoning so it has a nice and strong flavor.  When you are ready to serve, add the dressing and most of the nuts (reserving a few for garnish) to the salad and once again cover the bowl.   Shake to coat the salad with the dressing.  Plate and garnish with the cilantro and peanuts.

Isn’t this gorgeous with all of the bright colors?

Quinoa bean salad

Have you ever heard the saying that “Love isn’t easy.  Especially the really good kind.”?  Thank you Nicole Williams, but I respectfully disagree! This quinoa salad is probably the most delicious and healthful salad that I have ever made.  Let me tell you, that I fell for it–hard and fast!  Even my hubby fell in love with this one, nearly licking every last grain of quinoa from his bowl!  Why is it so good, you ask?  I guess it is the crazy good mix of ingredients with color, flavor, and interesting texture.  Not sold yet, keep reading for more reasons to enjoy this big salad.  This one dish can be the salad AND main course for your next meal–all in one (big) bowl, for easy kitchen prep and cleanup!  The protein and fiber from the beans and quinoa are super filling, so you will leave the table completely satisfied!  Plus, the ridiculous number of micronutrients it provides will help fuel your body to fight disease and clear out unwanted toxins!  Again, all in one big, satisfying bowl!  Can you feel your heart soften?  Not yet?  Well then, I guess you will just have to make it yourself and see how easy it is to fall in love with this gorgeous grain salad.

Isn’t this salad gorgeous?

 

Quinoa bean salad Servings:  2-4, depending if served as a main course or a side

  • 1 cup quinoa (uncooked)
  • 1 3/4 c water
  • generous dash of salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 t dried basil, or more to taste
  • chipotle pepper flakes (to taste)
  • 1 t (or more) dehydrated onion
  • 1/2 c chopped black olives, chopped or sliced
  • 3-4 c grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 can drained and rinsed great northern white beans
  • 1 can drained black beans
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 2-3 T basalmic vinegar
  • 1 T olive oil (I used tuscan flavored oil)
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • 1 t lemon zest, or more to taste
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or crushed
  • 1 c spinach
  • 1 c arugula
  • lots of freshly ground pepper

Bring the first 6 ingredients plus 1/2 t lemon zest to a boil in a medium sized pot.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, until the quinoa is al dente.  Remove from heat to cool to room temperature. While the quinoa is cooking, make the dressing in a small bowl by mixing together the basalmic, olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice.  Add a generous dash of salt, pepper, and hot pepper, to taste.  Set aside. In a food processor, chop the spinach and arugula into small pieces.  Set aside. In a big bowl, mix the tomatoes, black olives, red onion, 1/2 t lemon zest, and the dressing until well combined.  When the quinoa has cooled to room temperature, add it to the veggie mix.  Then add the spinach/arugula mix to the bowl and stir until well combined.  Serve immediately or it may be refrigerated and served cold.  No garnish is necessary, but a sprinkle of lemon zest and/or a generous sprinkle of freshly ground pepper is nice! Bon Appetit!

 

 

 

 

Deconstructed Nachos

I know I promised you some of my favorite recipes from my stay at Anamaya Resort in Montezuma, and they will come.  Today though, I am sharing a recipe from my week with my hubby in Ojochal, Costa Rica.  Ojochal is a beautiful, small village on the Pacific coast, known for its  unspoiled beaches AND fabulous restaurants!  Once we were settled into our house, we conducted an extensive (ok, maybe about 10 minutes!) google search to narrow down our dining choices to only the very best-of-the-best, for our short week-long visit.  Through our search, we discovered a small, quaint place, Adelante, for a casual afternoon snack and drink.  It had a cool, comfortable atmosphere, with a great deck, a good beer list, and really spectacular and relatively healthful munchies.

Their deconstructed nachos were absolutely phenomenal and the presentation was simple and so stylish!  A couple of nights ago I decided to give them a try here at home.  Great idea!  They were so easy and we loved every bite.
Yes, they are just nachos, so you can use whatever toppings you like.  We prefer a meatless, minimal cheese nacho so that is exactly what I made.  What makes these nachos really special is the presentation, so make them fit your style!  Here is a picture of what I created.  Do you like my style??

Is your mouth watering like mine??

Deconstructed Nachos

Servings:  as many as you like!

  • corn tortillas, use a pizza cutter to cut into 4 pieces/tortilla
  • sea salt
  • pam cooking spray or oil
  • cheese of your choice.  I used shredded cheddar mix (very minimal) on these, but I think a thin slice of pepper jack, goat, or a high quality mozzarella would be great!
  • cherry or grape tomatoes, cut into thin slices
  • black olives, cut in half
  • ripe avocado
  • ripe mango, cut into very thin and small slices
  • salsa
  • lime, cut into wedges
  • jalapeno, thinly sliced (not pictured)
  • cilantro, chopped (not pictured)

Preheat the oven to around 400 degrees F.  Use convection if your oven has that feature.

Slice your tortillas into quarters, place them on a cookie sheet.  Spray them with cooking spray or use a brush to add a very light oil to the top.  Sprinkle with a light dusting of finely ground (powdered) sea salt.  Bake until golden brown (about 10 minutes in my oven).  You may need to turn the cookie sheet to make sure the pieces are cooking evenly.  When they are just starting to brown pull them out of the oven and add the cheese.  Bake for another 2-3 minutes, until the cheese has melted and the chips are nice and crispy.

While the tortillas are cooking prep the other toppings.  Cut the tomatoes and jalapenos into thin slices and mangoes into thin and small pieces.  Dice the onion.  Slice the olives in half and fill them with your favorite salsa.

Make the guacamole according to your favorite recipe.  I like my guac very simple.  Here is what I usually do:  mash the avocado with a big squeeze of lime, a generous sprinkle of sea salt, chipotle pepper flakes, and cumin.  Add diced red onion.  Mix well.

Build the nachos!  Take a look at my picture to build like I did.  I had two different nachos.   1.  guac, tomato, olive 2.  guac, mango.  I wish I would have had fresh jalapenos and cilantro to add to the festive dish, but no such luck!  Instead, I sprinkled a mix of ground chipotle pepper and cumin over the top and garnished the plate with a lime.  I served them with fresh salsa and a big mug of Matilda!

Bon Appetit!

 

 

Apple and orange smoothie snack

How absolutely refreshing...even in the middle of an ice storm!

My snack this afternoon was soooo tasty, filled my belly and recharged my energy stores…BIG TIME!  Give this fruity smoothie a try for a quick afternoon pick-me-up!

Apple and orange smoothie 2 servings

  • 1 apple
  • 2 oranges, peeled
  • 1/4-1/2 c almond, soy, or coconut milk

Put all ingredients into the blender and give it a rip!  Drink.  ENJOY!

Mushroom madness

I AM BACK!  I have just returned from five weeks in Costa Rica where gorgeous tropical fruit, fresh fish, and spicy greens abound!  Yes, I took full advantage of that fact and ate, and ate, and ate!  I have so many new recipes and food combinations that I can’t wait try here at 488 and share with YOU!  Last night though, my body was really craving some warm comfort food.  I guess that probably has something to do with returning from the tropics to the very cool (yes, we had a dusting of snow on my first night home!) Ozark air!  So, I decided to try something new and create a saucy mushroom dish.  I found a fairly simple beef and mushroom burgundy recipe online, made some of my usual adjustments for more heat and flavor, got rid of the beef, and wound up with this fantastic dish!  I love this earthy, herbal, rich, classic turned vegetarian and gluten free meal!  It perfectly fed my appetite for a hearty, but healthy comforting dinner, and the meat was not missed one little bit!  I can’t tell you how good it feels to be back home with my family and in my kitchen!  I missed them so!

Mushroom burgundy

  • Mushroom Burgundy
  • Serves 4
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3 pounds portobello mushrooms, in 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/2 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 medicum yellow onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup full-bodied red wine
  • 2 cups beef or mushroom broth (beef broth is traditional, but mushroom will make it vegetarian)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves (1/2 teaspoon dried)
  • 1 cup pearl onions, peeled (optional)
  • 1/2-1 chipotle pepper flakes
  • Quinoa with peas, for serving
  • Sour cream and chopped chives or parsley, for garnish (optional)

Heat the  olive oil and butter in a medium Dutch oven or heavy sauce pan over high heat. Add the pepper flakes.  Sear the mushrooms until they begin to darken, but not yet release any liquid — about three or four minutes. Remove them from pan.

Lower the flame to medium and toss the carrots, onions, thyme, a few good pinches of salt and a several grinds of black pepper into the pan and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are softened and lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for just one more minute.

Add the wine to the pot, scraping any stuck bits off the bottom, then turn the heat up and reduce it by half. Stir in the tomato paste and the broth. Add back the mushrooms with any juices that have collected and once the liquid has boiled, reduce the temperature so it simmers for 20 minutes, or until mushrooms are very tender. Add the pearl onions and simmer for five minutes more.

Lower the heat and simmer for 10 more minutes. If the sauce is too thin, boil it down to reduce to the right consistency. Season to taste.  Serve over quinoa, garnish and ENJOY!!

 

Crantastic Coleslaw

This year I planted 3 rows of cabbage in my garden, which is 25’x30′, so you can imagine that things are pretty green around here!  2 of the rows are flat leaf, which I am drying and freezing for soups and stews this fall.  The other row is head cabbage–just like you find in the grocery store, only much tastier!!  The cabbage is very crispy, bright green, a little sweet, and just bitter enough!  My only problem is that I have about 30 heads of cabbage ready to eat…NOW!  What that means is that we will be doing the cabbage thing here until we rid the garden of the very last head!  It also means I need to run to Sams to load up on beano!!

Good thing we love cabbage here at 488!  It really is a very versatile vegetable — roasted, dehydrated, fresh in salads and slaws, or cooked in soups and stews.  Use it in mexican, american, indian, german, because it works in just about any type of dish you are craving!  I started simple here last night.  I made a crantastic coleslaw as a side dish.  I served it with roasted salmon and steamed broccoli.  It had a perfect trifecta of flavors–sweet, tangy, and salty–and paired beautifully with a spicy salmon and simple, earthy steamed broccoli.  I bet it would pair perfectly with what you have planned for dinner tonight too!

Now I am going to talk about the leftovers!  I had a nice sized bowl leftover so I decided to have it as my lunch.  I mixed in a generous amount of sodium-free, roasted sunflower seeds and gave it a try.  WOWZA!  It was really, really WOWZA!  I love that it had a little bit of crunch from the veggies, and a huge amount of crunch from the seeds!  Talk about energized…I feel so good, I might just go mow the yard!

Make sure you add the seeds if you want to make a meal out of your slaw!  I promise, you won’t be sorry you did!

Let me know what you think and stay tuned for more cabbage recipes!

Bon Appetit!

Dinner last night: Spicy Salmon, crantastic coleslaw, and steamed broccoli

Crantastic Coleslaw

Servings:  4-5

  • 1 head of cabbage, chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped or grated–I use my mandolin
  • 1/2  (or more, to taste) large red onion, diced
  • 1 c (or more, to taste) sweetened dried cranberries
  • 1/2 t celery salt or celery seed
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • chipotle pepper flakes
  • 1/3 c sugar OR 1/4 c honey.  You could probably try agave nectar too!
  • 1/3 c vegetable oil–I used grapeseed oil
  • 1/3 c red wine vingear
  • 1/2-1 c roasted, sodium-free sunflower seeds (optional)
  • 1/2-1 c roasted, shelled pistachios (optional, but delicious!)
  • 1/2 head of broccoli, torn into small pieces (optional)

Put the veggies and cranberries in a large mixing bowl.  In a seperate bowl, add all of the other ingredients and mix the dressing well.  Pour the dressing over the veggies and stir (or put the lid on the bowl and shake) well to distribute the dressing evenly.  You can serve it immediately for a crispier slaw or let it sit for an hour or so for a more tender slaw.  ENjoy!

Chia fruit pudding

Chia seeds are such the rage right now!  I had been silently resisting the temptation to jump on the chia seed party train until I was fully convinced that they were really worth the hype…I didn’t need another trendy food item taking up space in my pantry, afterall!  Well, a few days ago after doing more research on their health benefits (omega 3 fatty acids for mitochondrial renewal, antioxidants to get rid of cancerous free radicals, seed protein with low acidity and high calcium to help build strong, long, and lean muscles and keep my large bones strong, and fiber to keep me GOING!), I finally broke down and bought a big bag from the bulk foods section of my regular grocery store.

Coincidentally, right after I purchased my seeds, I saw a recipe on Pinterest for coconut mango chia seed pudding.  You probably already know how much I love coconut and mango, so I figured this was a pretty safe place to start.  Boy, oh boy, was I right!  I whipped a modified version of this pudding together in about 3 minutes that same afternoon and in the fridge in went.  A short time later, I had to give it a try.  I must say, I liked it.  No, I did not love it–it seemed a bit boring and thin.  Feeling a little miffed and dissatisfied, I went back and read the recipe again.  I had completely forgotten that it suggested waiting overnight (or at least 5 hours) before eating.  Sooooo I stuck it back in the fridge and waited.  WOW, what a difference a few hours made!  My creation had taken on a whole new consistency and honestly, it had a lot more flavor!  I was sooo elated, I ate nearly the whole bowl!!  Since then (which was only about a week ago) I have made it a few more times, trying different fruits and adding some vanilla beans–testing it out to see how versatile it is.  I am happy to report that so far, I have loved everything I made!  Even my hubby–who isn’t crazy about these sorts of dishes– digs on this one!  He had a small bowl with blueberries at lunch today and told me “It is sooo good, it tastes a lot like tapioca”!  When I eat the seeds, I am actually reminded more of poppy seeds because of their size and texture.  Next time I make it, I might try adding some chopped pecans or walnuts to the pudding to make it a great option for breakfast.  Oh, and how about lemon or lime zest?!?  If you want to doll it up a bit more for dessert, try adding some small dark chocolate chips and/or some coconut (toasted coconut?)–I bet it would be fantastic!!  Anyway, I am pretty sure you will almost always find a bowl of this yummy pudding sitting in my fridge just waiting for a hungry tummy to call home!  Bon Appetit!

Chia Pudding

Servings:  4-5

1 c vanilla almond milk (I like Silk’s)

1 c vanilla coconut milk (ditto)

4 T chia seeds

1 c cubed fresh champagne mango (or blueberries, raspberries, peaches, strawberries, blackberries)

dash of sweetener (optional–I don’t do this, but if you like it sweeter add some agave, honey or stevia)

Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate for a minimum of 5 hours.  It will thicken up nicely if left overnight!


Detox Soup

Not a bad way to detox!

My honey was in Vegas last week on business so I had the WHOLE place to myself–ok, Tobi, Henna, and Wison were here to keep me company, but still!  Cue the party lights and music!  It was a crazy time here at 488!  Yep, I spent the week doing laundry, putting away christmas decorations, buying and shipping VERY late Christmas gifts, cleaning, organizing AND COOKING!

Probably my favorite dish from last week was this very brightly colored and flavored soup. I loved it for a lot of reasons, but most importantly for how I felt after I ate it!  What first comes to mind is revitalized…or maybe detoxified.  After a full month (thank you winter holidays) of eating quite a ways outside MY food pyramid, this dish brought me back.  Back to the foods that make me feel good, inside and out!  This dish reminded me why I dedicate so much of my time and energy creating good tasting, healthful meals!

This is a great week night soup because the prep is very minimal and the flavor and energy rewards are HUGE!  Serve this with a big salad, some hot tea (or a splash of wine :)) and a side of Phish and you too will be bouncing around the room, just like me!!

Bon Appetit!

Colorful and flavorful!

Detox Soup

Servings:  4-6

  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 large onions, roughly chopped
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and cut into thick coins or 2 c baby carrots, cut in half
  • 1″ ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 1 t celery seed
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 c veg broth
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
  • 1 c red lentils
  • 3 c baby spinach
  • 4 calamari tomatoes, cut into eighths
  • splash of EVOO

In a medium stock pot, over medium-low heat cook the garlic in the EVOO for a few minutes (do not brown).  Add the carrots, jalapeno, and celery seed and cook for 3-4 minutes.  Add the veg broth, onions, ginger, and black pepper and turn the heat up to medium-high.  Cook for 10-12 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and lentils, turn the heat back down to medium-low, cover, and cook for 20- minutes–until the lentils are cooked to your desired consistency.  Stir occasionally.  Uncover and add the baby spinach.  Cook for 2-3 minutes–until the spinach turns bright green and wilts.  Eat and enjoy!

Not your average poach

There are eggs hiding under the greens!

Nope, I am not going to tire you with a run-of-the-mill breakfast this morning…or another boring ‘ole smoothie.  And nope, you do not have to get up at the break of dawn to prepare it either!  The recipe that I am sharing is taken pretty much straight from Bon Appetit and it is scary what an easy and refreshing change this is for breakfast!  I love that it utilizes stock pantry/fridge items–nothing fancy schmancy (I don’t know how to spell that word–probably means I shouldn’t be using it?!) here!  Plus, the flavor…I can’t wait for you to dip a hunk of your favorite toasted bread in this sauce–it is going to blow your mind!!!  It is a perfect weekend breakfast..or lunch…or dinner!

Bon Appetit!

Not your average poach

Servings:  4

  • 1/4 c EVOO
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 jalapenos, seeded, finely chopped (use one if you are not into the heat!)
  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 t sweet paprika
  • 1 t smoky paprika
  • 2 t ground cumin
  • 1 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes, do a rough crush with a fork
  • freshly ground salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 c feta, coarsely chopped
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 T fresh italian parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 T fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • Multi-grain bread toasted with a dab of butter

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Heat oil in a large oven proof skillet over medium.  Add onion, garlic, and jalapeno until the onion is soft–~10 minutes.  Add chickpeas, cumin, and paprikas, cover and cook for a couple of minutes.  Remove the lid, stir in the crushed tomatoes and simmer another ~10 mintues.  Turn off the heat.  Sprinkle the feta cheese over the top of the tomato mixture.  Carefully crack the eggs (so you do not bust the yolk) and space the eggs evenly over the dish.  Sprinkle some salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper over the eggs and put the pan in the oven.  Bake for 5-8 minutes–until the eggs whites are done, but the yolks are still soft.  Serve with cilantro and parsley as the garnish and multi-grain toast for dippng.