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Eating Well, Recipes, Seasonal

MEXICAN TORTILLA SOUP

October 6, 2016

Cooler temperatures call for hearty soups that can replace a meal.  And this recipe makes a large quantity which can provide plenty of leftovers.  It’s great for game day, or a delicious Sunday dinner, and it has lots of protein with the chicken and black beans.   A simple green salad is all that is needed to make it a complete nutritious meal.   

MEXICAN TORTILLA SOUP

3 tablespoons olive oil
5 corn tortillas chopped
2 onions chopped
4 garlic cloves
2 jalapeño peppers seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons cumin
1.5 quarts chicken stock (3 cups full sodium 3 cups reduced sodium)
2 28 oz. cans chopped tomatoes (Muir-Glen fire roasted preferred)
1.5 pounds raw chicken tenders breast meat cut into bit size pieces
1 bag frozen corn
1 can organic black beans drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

additional salt and pepper to taste

fresh cilantro and queso fresco for garnish

In large non stick pot heat oil on medium heat. Add chopped tortillas, onions, jalapeños, garlic, and cumin to saute,  stirring occasionally until the onions are translucent ( app 5-8 minutes).  Add stock and tomatoes, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Puree soup with hand held blender. Bring soup back to simmer, add chicken, roasted corn, black beans, and seasonings.  Cook app. 30 minutes until chicken is done.
Garnish with cilantro, shredded cheese, and sour cream (if desired).
Enjoy!

 

Eating Well, Recipes, Seasonal

FRESH BLUEBERRY SCONES

July 27, 2016

WHILE SUPPLY LAST, ENJOY A DELICIOUS TREAT WITH THE LAST OF THE FRESH PICKED SUMMER BLUEBERRIES. PAIRED WITH TWO SCRAMBLED EGGS MAKES FOR A PERFECT SEASONAL BREAKFAST

BLUEBERRY SCONES

2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
1 egg
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 heaping cup fresh summer blueberries

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pulse flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon with cut up cold butter in food processor. Well egg, cream and vanilla and mix gently with several additional pulses. Fold in fresh blueberries. I use my hands to press berries into dough. Turn dough onto floured surface and with floured hands form an even rectangle Cut scones into desired triangles and place on baking sheet. Brush tops with additional heavy cream. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or desired doneness. Broil for one minute at end of baking to make tops golden brown. Enjoy!

Recipes, Seasonal

A WARM WINTER MEAL; BEER-BRAISED BRISKET FOR YOUR HOLIDAY CROWD

December 1, 2015

Cooler temperatures call for warm slow cooked meals and dinners that will satisfy a crowd.  Whether entertaining during the holidays or hanging out for a relaxing Sunday with the family, this brisket is sure to be a hit for those who love their beef. If possible, make sure your cut is grass fed and purchased from a local organic farmer to ensure the highest quality.   Just four ounces of beef contains 28 grams of protein and is full of essential B vitamins, including the elusive B12, Iron, and an ample supply of the minerals Phosphorus and Zinc.  One to two servings of lean beef per week is all part of a healthy eating lifestyle plan.

Stay warm and enjoy!

 

BEER-BRAISED BRISKET

6 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne
3 tablespoons fine sea salt
1 6-8 pound untrimmed flat front brisket
2 large onions sliced
1 12-oz can lager beer

Finely chop garlic in food processor, then add the next 8 ingredients. Pulse until smooth. Rub over entire brisket and wrap meat in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 325. Bring meat to room temperature for at least one hour before cooking. In large roasting pan, scatter onions and set brisket on top, fat side up, then cover with beer.  Cover with either foil or the lid to your roasting pan and cook for 6 hours. Remove from oven and heat broiler. Broil brisket, uncovered, until top is browned and crisp, 5-10 minutes.
Let brisket cool slightly then shred meat. Remove onions with a slotted spoon and mix into brisket. Taste and moisten with some of the cooking liquid. Serve with a hearty slaw and buttermilk biscuits.
Enjoy!

 

Recipes, Seasonal

Strawberry Tarts with Pecan Crust

June 3, 2015

June is Strawberry month in the state of Maryland and these delicious tarts are an excellent low sugar desert to celebrate the onset of summer.  

Needed: a 12 cup muffin pan

coconut oil spray for muffin pan

2 cups unsalted toasted pecans

5 tablespoons agave syrup total

2 tablespoons whole wheat flour

2 tablespoons coconut oil

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound fresh strawberries hulled, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 vanilla bean split lengthwise

(optional: fresh whip cream sweetened with agave)

Lightly spray muffin pan with coconut oil.

Pulse nuts in food processor until coarsely ground.  Add 3 tablespoons of agave syrup, flour, ginger, salt, and 2 tablespoons of coconut oil.  Process until course dough forms.  Gather dough into a ball.  Press 1 heaping tablespoon dough into bottom and up the sides of each muffin cup.  Chill for one hour.

Preheat oven to 350*  Bake crust for 8-10 minutes until golden around the edges.  Let cool completely in pan on stove top or wire rack before removing.

Mix strawberries, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons agave along with seeds from vanilla bean together just until incorporated.  The riper the strawberries the better!  Fill shells and serve immediately.  Can top with fresh whip cream if desired.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

Recipes, Seasonal

Creamy Artichoke Soup

February 9, 2015

With another six weeks of  winter to go, it’s time to get creative with what’s in the pantry. Warm up with this healthy artichoke soup full of vitamins, minerals and vegetables from the all important cold/flu fighting members of the allium family.  This soup is rich in fiber and has natural detoxing agents from the artichokes, which have a mild diuretic effect on the kidneys. It is hearty and delicious  but without the heaviness of cream.  Enjoy!

4 servings (double recipe if cooking for more than two people)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 leeks, white part only, cleaned and sliced

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 potato, peeled and chopped

1 can artichoke hearts packed in water, drained (good quality: trader joe’s, whole foods)

3 cups reduced sodium chicken chicken stock

additional  sea salt in necessary and fresh black pepper to taste

room temperature mascarpone cheese (a soft Italian cream cheese found in most grocery stores)

Heat oil in heavy, large, non-stick pot on medium heat.  Add leaks and garlic and cook for two minutes.  And potatoes and cook for an additional five minutes, stirring often. Add artichokes, stock, salt and pepper (if desired) and cook until vegetables are tender, approximately 20 minutes.  Puree with hand held blender then add 2 tablespoons of soft mascarpone cheese.  Blend again.  If desired top with fresh thyme or lavender.  Serve with a dollop of additional softened cheese and warm crusty bread.

 

Recipes

Pasta-N-Spinach Sauce

December 16, 2014

This winter vegetable sauce can be made anytime for a quick delicious meal, or side dish, in less than 30 minutes.  I love that this recipe’s ingredients are usually always in my pantry and available when the craving hits.  I serve over a whole grain pasta but it can also be served with couscous, kamut, farro, or other whole grains that can stand up to a hearty sauce.  Make it soon, you will be hooked.  Enjoy!

Serves six

Olive oil of sautéing vegetables

2 carrots diced

1 onion chopped

4 cloves garlic minced

2 cans good quality diced tomatoes (can use plum tomatoes and cut up in can before using)

crushed red pepper to taste

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 box frozen spinach or 4 cups fresh spinach

3/4 cup 1/2 and 1/2

salt to taste if using low sodium tomatoes

fresh parmesan

 

Saute carrots, onion, and garlic on medium heat in 3 Tablespoons olive oil until soft, approximately 7-10 minutes.  Add diced tomatoes, spinach, red pepper and oregano and simmer on low for 20 minutes until flavors have developed.  Add 1/2 and 1/2 and serve warm sauce immediately over pasta of your choice. Top with fresh grated parmesan.