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I’m super excited to share this recipe with all of you, because it includes one of my favorite fishes, Turbot. Most people don’t even know about this delicious flat fish. Its firm, yet delicate, with an extremely buttery taste. I would compare it to Sea bass in texture and taste, but its less than ½ the price per pound. That makes this recipe not only good for your heart, but good for your wallet too. There are a lot of steps to this dinner, but they are easy steps, and so worth the outcome.

baked turbot

Pesto baked Turbot with leeks and roasted tomatoes, rainbow quinoa, and Parmesan romanesco.

 

2 6-8oz fillets of turbot skin off

2/3cup rainbow quinoa

1 1/3 organic chicken stock

6 crimini mushrooms chopped

2 leeks chopped and soaked clean

Handful of cherry or grape tomatoes

1 head of romanesco (about 1lb)

¼ cup good quality fresh cello grated parmesan

1 shallot diced

2 cloves of garlic (smashed and diced)

1 cup of fresh basil leaves

1 cup fresh spinach leaves

Zest of one lemon

Juice of one lemon

Teaspoon of dried oregano

Teaspoon paprika

Olive oil

1 sauce pan

Pot with lid

Tinfoil lined baking sheet.

Oven safe glass or casserole baking dish

 

First step is the quinoa because it will take the most amount of time.

Quinoa: Begin by toasted the quinoa in a hot pan. Toast over med-hi heat for about 3-4 minutes or until you can smell the grain actually toasting. To prevent burning the quinoa, consistently swirl the grain around the pan. Once it’s toasted, set it aside.

Heat your chicken broth in a small pot with a lid until its boiling. Add a pinch of salt, and then toss in your toasted quinoa. Put the lid on the pot, and simmer for about fifteen minutes at low heat.

Now add your chopped shallots to a hot pan and sauté with a tablespoon of olive oil until they start to soften, add your chopped mushrooms, (more oil if needed) garlic, dried oregano, and sauté for another 3 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and cook for another minute. Once all of your veggies look soft remove from the heat.

If the quinoa has absorbed all of the liquid in its pot, remove it from the heat, and mix in the mushrooms and shallot mixture. Lightly stir all together. If you’d like to keep the quinoa warm while the fish bakes, put all of it back into your pan, turn heat to lowest setting, cover with a lid and let sit until dinner is ready. You may want to add a bit more broth at the end of this step if it gets dry.

Fish: Pre-heat your oven to 375F.

Rainbow Carrots glazed in Ginger Orange Sauce

This recipe is simple, quick, and even kids seem to love it. The naturally sweet flavor of the carrots is complimented perfectly by the spicy ginger and tangy O.J.

Ingredients:

1 lb of rainbow carrots

1/4 cup organic orange juice (not from concentrate)

2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger w/ juices (use a microplane to grate)

1/2 tablespoon of butter

1/4 teaspoon sugar

pinch of salt

Cilantro for garnish

Directions:

Wash and slice your carrots into 1/4 inch size slices. Heat the butter in a sauce pan until it is melted, then turn up the heat to med-high. Add your sliced carrots into the pan. Allow them to cook in the butter until they start to turn brown on one side. When they have begun to caramelize, deglaze your pan by adding the orange juice and stirring around all of the carrots in the juice. Scrape the bottom of the pan to release all of the brown bits from its grasp. Now add in your grated ginger with its juice, the sugar and salt, and stir everything together. Cook for another minute allowing all of the flavors to meld and form a thick syrupy glaze. Remove from heat and plate. Garnish with cilantro and orange zest.

Blanched Green Beans with sautéed Mushrooms, Garlic, and La Nogalera Walnut Oil

Wandering around the Santa Monica Farmers market, I stumbled upon a luxurious new find: La Nogalera Walnut oil. It’s locally harvested oil from the Central California Coast made from 100% premium quality walnuts. The rich creaminess and nutty flavor of this oil would be good on almost anything. It wasn’t cheap, but you don’t need much more than a couple of drops to add substantial flavor.  Here’s just one of the dishes I have concocted with this awesome oil.

Ingredients:

1 lb Green beans (washed, ends removed)

8oz Crimini mushrooms (cleaned and sliced)

3 cloves garlic (smashed and minced)

1 tablespoon La Nogalera Walnut oil

Large bowl of ice water (for blanching)

1 tablespoon olive oil

White sesame seeds for garnish

Directions:

First you want to blanch your green beans. Blanching the beans ensures that they keep their beautiful bright green color and a bit of crispness to their bite.  To do this you will need to bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a low rumbling boil. Once the water has reached a boil, add the green beans. Boil the beans for 2 minutes or just until slightly tender. When the beans have boiled for about two – three minutes remove them from the boiling water with a slotted spoon, and place them quickly into the cold ice water bath. You want the texture to crisp outside and soft within. Allow them to sit in the cold water for a minute, and then drain the beans in a colander.

While the beans are drying, sauté the mushrooms and garlic in a frying pan. Allow your frying pan to become hot over med-high heat before adding your oil. Once the pan is hot add the olive oil and the sliced mushrooms. Sauté for about two minutes, stir the mushrooms around, and then add a pinch of salt and the minced garlic. Turn the heat down to medium, and sauté for another two minutes – careful not to burn the garlic. When the mushrooms have caramelized, they are done. Remove the pan from the heat, and set aside.

To plate the green beans toss them in the La Nogalera Walnut Oil in your serving bowl of choice, then top with your garlic mushrooms, and garnish with white sesame seeds. This recipe is so simple and quick. The walnut oil really brings a creamy rich element to what is a normally basic side dish.

Not in L.A.? No problem, order the oil online at www.lanogalerawalnutoil.com

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Pesto Stuffed Mushroom caps

This recipe is somewhat intricate due to three main ingredients. All of which can be store bought to cut down on prep time, but if you have some to spare I highly recommend making your own. They are all very simple to put together and the amount of extra time that it takes is worth every second. Your food will have much less salt, and obviously, none of the preservatives. Plus it will taste great!

This is what you will need:

1 cup homemade ricotta cheese

1 cup of hazelnut pesto

1 cup bell pepper marinara

8 medium size portabella caps

1/8 cup of organic breadcrumbs

Olive oil

Baking sheet

Mixing bowl

Fork, spoon

Clean hands

Directions:

First preheat the oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with tinfoil. Then, drizzle the foil with olive oil. Next, clean your mushroom caps. Do this by carefully removing the stem, and then with the edge of small spoon gently scrape the gills out from under the cap. Next wipe the outside clean with a paper towel, and set the mushrooms aside.

Now grab your mixing bowl, and toss the ricotta cheese and hazelnut pesto together. I use a fork, and a folding motion, it fully incorporates the two without breaking down the ricotta too much. Once the mix is blended well, use the spoon to load the mixture into the cavern of the mushroom caps. About a tablespoon into each cap, but it varies on the size of your mushrooms. You want a small mound of the filling to sit on each cap. After you stuff your caps, place them onto the foil lined, oiled, baking sheet. Sprinkle the mushrooms with your cheese and breadcrumbs, and then drizzle them with more olive oil.

Next, pop the tray into the oven and cook those babies for around 15 minutes. You will know they are done when the mushroom has softened and looks moist. The Cheesy breadcrumbs should be golden and crispy. Garnish them with torn pieces of basil or shredded zucchini and serve with a side of marinara sauce for dipping.

Home Made Ricotta Cheese

This is one of the easiest and most gratifying things I have ever made. All you will need is:

½ Gallon Organic Cream Top Milk (the milk has a cream top because it has not been homogenized.)

2 cups organic Heavy Cream

½ cup organic plain full fat yogurt

1 teaspoon sea salt

2 teaspoons white vinegar

A deep bowl

A strainer that fits over the bowl you are using securely

A piece of cheese cloth folded into four

A Large pot

Directions:

Pour the Milk, heavy cream, yogurt, salt, and vinegar into the pot and bring to a low boil over med heat, continuously stirring with a whisk to prevent burning and clumping. Once the milk starts to curdle turn the heat down to low and simmer for another two minutes.

While the cheese is simmering, line the strainer with the folded cheesecloth (leave the cheesecloth large enough to drape over the edges of the strainer) Place the strainer over your bowl. The bowl below will catch the whey as it drains from the ricotta.

When the cheese is ready, slowly pour it onto your strainer over the bowl. Make sure the bowl is deep enough so that the ricotta is not sitting in the liquid below.

This is the part of the cheese making that you have full control over. The longer you allow your ricotta to drain, the dryer the consistency will become. I always allow it to strain for at least 5 minutes. Once it has reached the moister consistency you are happy with it is ready to serve, or you can keep it in a container and chill it for later. It should last in your fridge for 3-4 days. That is if you don’t eat it all on the first night, like I usually do.

If you are using the ricotta for the mushroom cap recipe above, I recommend letting it sit for 20-25 minutes, then allow it to cool fully before blending with the pesto.

Hazelnut Pesto

Ingredients:

½ cup unsalted toasted hazelnuts

4 fresh organic cloves of garlic

2 cups fresh organic basil

1 cup wild arugula

½ cup high quality freshly grated Parmesan cheese

¾ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Salt and cracked black pepper to taste

Directions:

Add the nuts, basil, arugula, garlic, salt and pepper to the food processor. Blend using the pulse button for about 30 seconds. Then begin to add your olive oil slowly while the food processor is running. Once the herds and nuts have come together add the Parmesan cheese and continue to blend until the pesto has reached a consistency of slightly crunchy peanut butter. If you like a smoother texture add more olive oil and continue to blend until the pesto makes you happy.

Bell pepper marinara

Ingredients:

2 cups canned San Marzano crushed Tomatoes

1 red bell pepper diced

1 green bell pepper diced

1 yellow onion diced

3 cloves fresh garlic crushed

1/8 cup vegetable broth

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried Thyme

1 teaspoon finely diced fresh rosemary

4 large basil leaves torn into small pieces

1 tablespoon high quality balsamic vinegar

Directions:

Heat a large pot over medium low heat. When the pot is hot add the olive oil and the onions. Season the onions with a teaspoon of sea salt and cook the onions until they start to become translucent. Add the bell peppers, garlic, dried oregano, and thyme. Continue to sweat the veggies with the herbs for another 4 or 5 minutes. Once all of the veggies are soft, add in the crushed tomatoes, basil, rosemary, and simmer for a minimum of 30 minutes. The longer you simmer the sauce, the better the flavor will become.

Once the sauce is finished simmering, I puree it with an immersion blender right in the pot I cooked it in. Finish by stirring in the balsamic vinegar.
If you don’t have an immersion blender, use a regular blender.

Puree the marinara and enjoy.

Beet Salad with a creamy Sun-dried Smoked Tomato dressing

This salad is so loaded with heart healthy tomatoes, detoxifying beets, and potassium packed avocados, its okay to add a little bacon and bread… The combo of the sweet beets and creamy buttermilk dressing with the salty crunch of the bacon, and crispy fresh lettuce is just one word— WOW!

Ingredients Salad (serves 3)

3 cups of organic washed and dried romaine or ice berg lettuce

(a very crunchy lettuce is what your going for)

1 avocado cut in to sixths

1 large organic hot house tomato cut into sixths

3 soft boiled eggs cooled and peeled

1 red/purple beet roasted

1 golden beet roasted

3 slices of organic bacon

1 cup Croutons

(I rip up 2 pieces of day old ciabatta bread and toss it with olive oil and then toast it in the toaster over for about 3 minutes or until crunchy.)

Dressing: (this recipe will make enough for the salad plus leftovers, so I always make it in a re-sealable glass jar)

food processor

1/2 cup organic buttermilk (low fat will work)

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup organic sour cream or 2% Greek yogurt

3 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

2 cloves of roasted garlic

3 reconstituted sun dried tomatoes ( I use smoked tomatoes from Windrose Farms however any sun dried tomatoes will work)

salt and pepper to taste


Ruby Red Anti-oxidant salad


Its super easy to assemble this salad, and the simple syrup dressing can be kept in the fridge for weeks and used on all fruit and yogurt.


Ingredients:
1 large pink grapefruit

2 navel oranges

1 pint strawberries

1 pomegranate

1 cup organic sugar

1 cup filtered water

hand full of mint sprigs

handful of basil

Directions:
Make the dressing the night before so that all of the flavors (basil, mint, sugar) have time to come together.
Combine the water and sugar in sauce pan. Bring to simmer and stir until sugar has dissolved. You will know it has fully dissolved because the water will go from cloudy liquid to a clear syrup.
Turn heat off and add basil and mint.
Remove from heat, place lid on pan and leave overnight, (longer the mixture sits, the better it tastes).
Strain and store in fridge.
To assemble the fruit salad, start by peeling and segmenting the citrus fruit with a parring knife.
Next remove the leaves from the top of the strawberries and cut into halves or quarters. Toss all of the fruit into a bowl.
Crack open the pomegranate and squeeze it over the fruit releasing the seeds and some juice. If the seeds are stubborn, smack the back of the fruit with a large spoon, that will release the seeds more easily.

Pour as much of the refreshing dressing over the salad as you’d like, then enjoy!


Fiery Spiced Cauliflower salad

Rich warm flavors, smells, and colors warm up this cool cauliflower salad. I use herbs and peppers from my Humble Seed garden.

Ingredients:

I large head of cauliflower (any color or variety will work)

1 small red onion

1 sweet bell pepper (red or orange)

1 can organic chick peas drained an rinsed1/2 cup of Castelvetrano olives (pitted and halved)
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (dried and ground from my Humble Seed garden)
1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

5 sprigs of thyme (leaves removed)
1 clove garlic smashed or diced super fine

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

8 tablespoons Spanish or Italian Olive oil (plus 2 tablespoons for roasting)

Directions:

Mix the bell pepper, onion, chick peas, olives, and cauliflower together then coat and toss with citrus dressing. Salt and pepper to taste. Then enjoy this bright nutritious salad!

The zest from one orange
1 tablespoon white vinegar
Pre-heat oven to 425. Wash and cut all of the cauliflower from the head. After drying the cauliflower line a baking sheet with tin foil and lay all of the cauliflower on baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil and then coat the cauliflower with the turmeric, paprika, and cumin. Toss the florets until they all get covered in the spices. Roast the Cauliflower for about 15-20 minutes or until just barely fork tender. You want the stems to be tender enough to eat but not mushy.While the cauliflower is roasting, finely slice the red onion and julienne the sweet bell pepper, then set them aside.

Next roughly chop equal handfuls (about 1/4 cup) of cilantro and parsley.

If the cauliflower is still in the oven, take a minute to toss together this super easy dressing. I use a jar with a lid, but a bowl and a whisk will work just as well. Begin by combining the lemon juice, the white vinegar, the zest from an orange, thyme leaves, and the smashed garlic. Mix all these ingredients together before adding the oil. If you are using a bowl slowly incorporate the olive oil while whisking all the ingredients together. If you are using a jar add the olive oil, screw on the lid and SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE!

Now allow the cauliflower to cool down completely. Once it has cooled and come to room temp you can toss everything together.

Dont forget to use coupon code KP10 for 10% off all of your Humble Seed Orders

Blueberry Scones with Lemon and Rosemary

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp granulated sugar
4 tbsp butter
2 whole eggs
1 egg white
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh is always best, however frozen is fine as long as the berries have been defrosted drained and dried)
The zest of 1 med-large lemon
1 tbsp finely minced rosemary

Directions:
Pre heat oven to 400 F

In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt.

Cut the butter into the mixture until it becomes crumbly. You can use a large fork or a pastry cutter for this.

In a separate bowl beat two eggs together then stir in the heavy cream. Now stir this cream mixture into the dry ingredients.

Gently fold in the blueberries with your hands. Careful not to squish them too much. Once the dough comes together turn it onto a floured cutting board. Press the dough together into a lump. You can add a bit of water or cream if you need more moisture to work with the dough. Only use a teaspoon of liquid at a time to not over do it. Also do not over work the dough.

Roll dough into the thickness of a 2 inch log. Cut into 1 inch rounds using a pastry cutter. Place the scones onto a lined baking sheet. Brush the tops of the raw scones with the egg white and then sprinkle with a generous amount of sugar.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden on the tops.



“I’m strong to the finich, cause I eat me lots of Spinach…

Cooking for kids can be tricky! It can be difficult to get them to eat their veggies with out a couple of tricks up your sleeve. Sauce and purees are always a great way to hide vegetables in children’s food, but if you are always camouflaging what veggies your feeding your kids, they will never really learn what they like and dislike. Ive come up with this super simple recipe which incorporates whole spinach leaves with ham and cheese, and turns the leafy green into a kid friendly snack. These little guys are packed with fiber, protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, Zinc, and Niacin (thank you spinach) Their small size makes them perfect for school lunches or an afternoon snack.

Ingredients: (makes 12 spinach cups)

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup organic whole milk

1 organic egg (lightly beaten)

4 oz mild cheddar cheese

4 oz uncured deli ham (chopped)

3/4 cup fresh chopped organic spinach

2 tablespoons minced shallots (not necessary)

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350. Grease your 12-cup muffin pan.

Sift flour and baking powder together in a large bowl. Whisk in your milk and beaten egg. Stir in the cheddar and ham, and let the batter rest for ten minutes.

After ten minutes re-stir the batter, and divide it amongst the 12 muffin cups. Bake for 20 -25 minutes or until the cheese starts to turn golden.

Allow these tiny cuties to cool completely before serving. I use a mix of equal parts of Dijon mustard and Greek yogurt for a dipping sauce if desired.

Mmmmmmm Summer…

Beet Salad with Stone Fruit dressing and a little bit of help from my Humble Seeds

As we approach warmer weather, nothing beats a great salad for a delicious meal. This recipe pairs beets with arugula creating a salad that is full of flavor as well as healthy benefits. The benefits of beets have been shown to improve anemia, blood circulation, cancer, and various heart diseases. In addition, arugula is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, folic acid, calcium, manganese and magnesium. Here’s the recipe, and here’s to healthy eating!

Salad:

4 medium bulls blood beets from the Humble Seed (roasted or boiled and peeled)

2 oz of crumbled Queso fresca cheese (may substitute with mild feta)

1/4 red onion sliced super thin

1/4 cup pistachios

4 cups or organic arugula

Dressing:

1 organic medium yellow peach (frozen also works if not in season)

3 Tbsp. grape seed oil (extra virgin olive oil can be used to substitute)

3 Tbsp. champagne vinegar (White vinegar will do, as well as white balsamic)

3-5 drops of Umi plum vinegar (not necessary, however adds a great flavor)

1/2 tsp. salt

Directions:

Roast your beets at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes or until fork tender. Cover the beets with olive or grape seed oil, and sea salt prior to baking and wrap in tinfoil to put into the oven. I’m sure that they can be boiled as well, I however find roasting them to bring out the sweet earthy flavor more.

After the beets have been roasted, peeled and cooled, cut them into 1/4 inch cubes. Toss them together with the thinly sliced red onions and let them absorb each other’s flavors while you prepare the dressing. In a blender combine the peach, oil, salt, champagne vinegar (white vinegar), and Umi plum vinegar (optional). Blend on pulse until everything has come together into a creamy peach color. In a large bowl toss the beets, half of the dressing and the pistachios together until all of the beets are coated in dressing. Plate with a handful of arugula and then sprinkle the crumbled queso fresca (mild feta) and splash a bit more dressing on top. Viola you have a super simple summer salad that has the perfect amounts of creaminess, sweetness, tartness, and crunch!

A perfect way to use up those May 5th leftovers…

Chicken Tortilla Soup

The best part about making Chicken tortilla soup is that you can make it out of any leftover chicken you’ve got, and most of the other ingredients are inexpensive pantry staples. You can substitute any veggie for another. Just use whatever you’ve got left over in the fridge. I’ve used squash, mushrooms, and all different color peppers. I’ve substituted kidney beans for black beans, and almost any type of canned tomatoes will work. If you like rice, throw in some rice. It’s a super easy, versatile, hearty meal that tastes delicious!

Ingredients:

1 large onion (any color you’ve got)

2 large cloves of garlic

½ cup diced bell pepper (any color you’ve got)

½ cup diced Zucchini (not necessary, but if you’ve got it in the fridge…)

1 quart Chicken broth (maybe a bit more, maybe a bit less, depends on the veggies)

1 large can (28 oz) stewed, diced or whole tomatoes

1 can of diced green chilies or one roasted Pablano chili seeded and diced

1 can black beans (washed and drained)

1 ½ cup of corn (I roast my corn fresh for this soup if I can, but frozen corn will also work

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon dried cumin

2 teaspoons dried oregano

1 tablespoon paprika (any variety will work, but I prefer smoked paprika)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

Garnish:

Chopped scallions

Handful of cilantro

4 tortillas (stale leftover tortillas work perfectly)

¼ cup peanut oil

1 cup shredded jack cheese

Sour cream or plain yogurt

Hot sauce

Zest of one lime

Directions:

Begin by dicing your onion and bell pepper (and any other veggies your using, such as zucchini or mushrooms) and then sautéing them with the spices; bay leaf, dried cumin, cumin seeds, dried garlic, oregano, and paprika. This step will not only cook your veggies, but it should mildly toast your spices bringing out the fragrances. Once the onions are translucent, add the green chilies or pablano pepper, the stewed tomato, and the chicken broth. Bring to a low boil, and then reduce heat to simmer for 30 to 45 minutes.

While your soup is simmering, use this time to fry up your tortilla strips. Fold tortillas in half and cut into ¼ in strips. Heat ¼ cup of peanut oil in a deep skillet or frying pan. Once the oil is hot (350 degrees) add the tortilla strips, and fry until barely golden and crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and cool on paper towels.

By now, your soup should be done. Remove the bay leaf, and add the corn, beans, and some cilantro. Simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes. That’s it! Now just garnish with your shredded cheese, sour cream or yogurt, green onions, lime squeeze and crunchy tortilla strips.

Enjoy this fantastic way to use up all of your leftover veggies and chicken.

Enjoy this fantastic way to use up all of your leftover veggies and chicken.

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