Simple Tasty Quinoa Breakfast

It took me awhile to warm up to the idea of quinoa for breakfast, it always seemed more like a savory lunch/dinner grain to me. But add a few toppings and Bwhamo!! – quinoa is breakfast!! Tailor this to your own tastes (I recommend at least one crunchy thing like toasted almonds or coconut and one sweet thing like raisins, apples, honey, or maple syrup) and enjoy knowing that you’re starting your day with almost a full deck of protein building amino acids.

2 large servings

1/2 cup quinoa

1 cup water

Optional toppings:

Raisins

Toasted coconut

Toasted almonds (whole or slivered)

Diced apple

Seasonal fruit

Spices: Cinnamon, apple pie spice, cardamom, ground ginger, etc

Rinse quinoa thoroughly in water. Bring to a boil in a covered pot, then turn heat down to low and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add your favorite toppings and enjoy hot and toasty.

 

Bieler’s Broth

Bieler’s Broth

I think calling this concoction a ‘broth’ is very hopeful, or maybe they just chose that title because it rolls of the tongue so nicely. In reality it’s more of a vegetable puree. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, I just don’t want you to be misled.
All broth aside though, this is a great tonic recipe, and especially great for west coast fall and winter cleansing. I love the high content of greens, the anti inflammatory effect, the healing/detoxifying effects on the kidneys and liver. And it’s warm!!  So many of the cleansing tonics out there are cooling to the body and are not appropriate for our rainy cold west coast winters.
You can use this recipe as a occasional or daily addition to your regular diet to increase your vegetable intake, reduce inflammation, and increase healing or you can use it as a part of a cleanse.

Serves 2

1 cup green beans (ends trimmed off)
1 cup chopped zucchini
1 stalk celery chopped
1/2 cup parsley
1 cup water

Put water in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add beans. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add zucchini and celery and simmer 5 more minutes. Pour all contents of the pot into a blender or food processor with the parsley and blend until smooth. Have 1-2 cups/day or as many as you like.

Raw Carmel Dip for Apples and Deserts

I would love to take credit for this amazing (and simple! and nutritious!!!) desert, but I can’t. It comes from one of my favorite sites: Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen. The author of this site is truly brilliant and I devour almost every recipe I’ve made from the site; they’re all delicious. Kids and adults alike swarm around this desert until every last apple slice has been dipped and every sticky finger has been licked clean.

1 cup raw cashews
1 cup medjool dates, pitted (about 8-10)
1/4 cup real maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of sea salt
date water as needed

1) Place cashews and dates in their own separate bowls, cover with water and let soak for 2-3 hours.

2) Drain and rinse cashews and place in blender or food processor with dates, vanilla, maple syrup, and salt. Add 6-8 tbsp date soaking water and blend mixture until smooth.

3) Serve with apple slices or drizzle over yoghurt, granola, or whatever you have a hankering for!

Kale Chips

Kale chips last about as long as it takes them to cool down in my house.  It’s an incredibly effective way to eat a LOT of greens all at once! They are pretty comparable to regular chips in terms of tastiness and ‘you can’t eat just one-ness’, but you get to control how much salt goes on them and anything else you can think of.

Serves 2-3 (or 1 if you’re me)

2 bunches of kale washed and dried
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 375°. Ripe kale off the spines so that you have bite sized ‘chips’.

2. Place the chips on a baking sheet and toss with olive oil and salt.

3. Put into oven and set timer for about 12-15 minutes, checking to make sure they’re not burning. They should be crisp and a little brown on the edges.

4. Remove from oven and enjoy.

Coconut Lime Chicken with Almond dipping sauce

Serves 4

Marinade:
2 tbsp coconut milk
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp wheat-free tamari

Almond-Lime Dipping Sauce:
6 tbsp almond butter
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 cup coconut milk
1-2 tbsp tamari
1 tbsp agave nectar
1-2 cloves garlic

1. Place chicken breast pieces in to a bowl and cover with the ingredients for the marinade. Stir chicken and marinade together with a spoon to evenly distribute. Let chicken marinade for about 20-30 minutes.
2. Heat a 10 inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add about 1 tbsp of virgin coconut oil, then chicken pieces. Saute, stirring frequently, for about 3-5 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Cooking times will vary depending on the size of the chicken pieces.
3. Place all ingredients for dipping sauce into a bowl and whisk together until the mixture is thickened and well combined. Sauce can also be warmed on the stove in a small pot over low heat.
4. To serve, divide dipping sauce into four small serving bowls for each person to dip chicken into.

Basil Balsamic Salmon with Plum Tomato Topping

Serves 3-6

1-2 lbs wild local salmon

Marinade:
1 lemon juiced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup wheat free tamari or 1 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup tightly packed fresh basil leaves
3 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tsp lemon zest

Topping:
1 cup chopped fresh plum tomatoes
1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
1/2 cup crumbled organic feta cheese (optional)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2-3 tbsp finely chopped basil

1. Rinse salmon fillets under cool running water and place skin side up in a shallow baking dish. Place all of the ingredients for the marinade into a blender and blend on high until completely pureed and smooth. Pour marinade over salmon fillets, cover, and place into the refrigerator for 1-4 hours.

2. Preheat oven to 400° F. Drain off marinade and place the salmon fillets skin side down in a shallow baking dish. Bake salmon at 10 minutes per inch of thickness. Drizzle some of the remaining marinade over salmon half way through baking.

3. While the salmon is baking, prepare the topping. Place all the ingredients for the topping into a small bowl and gently mix. To serve, let each person spoon a desired amount of topping over their fish.

Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Corn Bread

I have to admit that gluten-free baking is not my forte. I`ve been blessed to be tolerant of gluten, so wheat free does it for me meaning that I`ve had no need to seriously explore the world of sorghum and rice flours. Luckily, there are others out there who are very, VERY good without gluten in their larder: www.glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com/. Goddess is a very appropriate word for this woman as she pumps out amazing gluten-free recipes and charm in every post she delivers. She also has somewhat of a fixation on chocolate which no one seems to be complaining about either. Enjoy this lovely bread with a hot bowl of Moroccan Yam Soup or simply by itself with a bit of butter.
3 large organic free-range eggs
1/2 cup extra light olive oil or vegetable oil
3/4 cup sweet potato puree
3/4 cup organic light brown sugar, packed
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup Bob`s Red Mill gluten-free stone ground cornmeal
1 cup Pamela`s Ultimate Baking Mix – (or your own flour mix with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and a good pinch of sea salt added)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie spice blend
Sea salt, to taste.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Grease the bottom of a 8-inch cake pan and dust it with cornmeal. I used a Springform pan.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until foamy; add the oil; whisk again to combine. Add in the sweet potato puree and mix well. Add the light brown sugar, and bourbon vanilla extract, and mix to combine.
4. In a separate mixing bowl whisk together the dry ingredients: cornmeal, gluten-free flour mix, baking powder, cinnamon, Pumpkin Pie Spice blend, and sea salt.
5. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, add the dry ingredients into the wet; and stir by hand just enough to make a smooth batter.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan.
7. Bake on a center rack in the preheated oven for about 45 minutes or so, until the cornbread is firm to the touch and golden. Check with a wooden pick, if necessary; if it emerges clean, the cornbread is done. [Remember, Dear Reader, I bake at high altitude, so please use your own tried-and-true guidelines for baking times.]
8. Cool the cornbread in the pan- on a wire rack- for ten minutes. Remove from the pan and continue to cool.
9. Serve slightly warm with a dab of your favorite butter or buttery spread.

Grilled Portobello Onion Burgers with Creamy Dijon and Feta Sauce

My husband always rolls his eyes at me whenever I pull out the Portobello. I have a little bit of an obsession with this gigantic fungi, and once I start, it can be on the menu for days!!
All eye rolling aside though, mushrooms are a great source of niacin (B3), folic acid, and B12. They also provide a good amount of selenium which helps rid the body of free radicals.

Serves 4

Burger
4 large porobello mushroom caps, wiped clean with a damp cloth
4 slices red onion, about 1/4 inch thick each
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
4 whole wheat or Ezekiel burger buns
2 oz crumbled feta cheese
4 leaves of romaine lettuce

Creamy Dijon sauce
2 tbsp plain Greek-style yogurt
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tsp dried basil
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1/8 tsp sea salt

1. Heat a grill pan on medium-high. Lightly brush mushrooms and onion with oil. Grill mushrooms and onion for 4-5 minutes per side or until mushrooms are tender (up to 10 minutes per side – you’ll know the mushrooms are done when they start releasing their juices). Set aside the mushrooms and onions. Grill buns, cut side down on the grill pan for 1 to 2 minutes until toasted.
2. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Combine all sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Spread sauce on bottom half of each bun, dividing evenly. Top with onion, mushroom caps, and lettuce. Enjoy.

This recipe comes from the Clean Eating magazine.

Chickpea Pancakes with White Bean and Basil Tapenade

Chickpea Pancakes with White Bean and Basil Tapenade

This recipe is very easy to prepare and the chickpea pancake is a nice break from the regular cracker or pita that is normally served with bean dips. This would go great as a starter to a Greek or Mexican meal, or on it`s own as a light meal.

Serves 8

1 cup chickpea flour (also called garbanzo bean flour)
5 tbsp olive oil
1 cup canned or cooked cannellini beans or white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp chpped fresh basil
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp sea salt, plus additional to taste
fresh ground black pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 450°
2. Prepare pancake: pour 1 1/3 cups water into a medium bowl. Add flour to bowl slowly, whisking in until smooth. Allow mixture to stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour. When hour is complete, stir in 2 tbsp olive oil and 1/2 tsp salt.
3. Heat a 10 inch cast iron or oven-safe heavy skillet on medium-high. Add 2 tbsp olive oil, pour in vatter and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the edges of the pancake begin to turn golden brown. Do not flip. Place skillet in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes, until crisp around edges and light golden brown. Slide pancake onto a cutting board and slice into 8 wedges.
4. Prepare tapenade by placing white beans, remaining 1 tbsp olive oil, 3 tbsp water, basil, and garlic in a food processor and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Scrape mixture into a sealable container, and set aside until needed, or dollop directly onto chickpea pancakes and enjoy.

This recipe is from Clean Eating magazine.

Pickled Beet Carpaccio

Pickled Beet Carpaccio

This is a truly elegant dish. The combination of the pickled beets with the spiced honey makes for tart yet earthly sweet melange.
Beets are great liver cleansers and are very high in iron, making them a great blood building food. Combining this dish with some steamed greens or a summer salad will keep your body cleansed and energetic.
Having a mandolin is a major bonus for this recipe, as the beets are best when cut very thin.

1 cup rice vinegar
1 star anise
4 pods cardamom
1 stick cinnamon
2 tbsp organic evaporated cane juice
1/2 tsp sea salt
10 oz beets, thinly sliced (I highly recommend using a mandolin for this step as the beets are better the thinner they are sliced)
2 tsp olive oil
2 tbsp plain Greek style yogurt, optional
Fresh mint, optional

Italian honey
3 oz honey
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme

1. Prepare pickled beets by combining vinegar, spices, cane juice, salt, and beets. Cover and marinade at room temperature for 1 hour.
2. Meanwhile, prepare Italian honey by combining honey, salt, and herbs in a bowl. Set aside.
3. To serve, drain marinade from beets. Spoon one tablespoon of the Italian honey and toss very gently to mix. Plate the beets onto a platter, drizzle with remaining honey and garnish with optional yogurt and mint if desired.

This recipe comes from the magazine Clean Eating.