Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Restaurant (Re)creation: Arii Moana's Chilled Cucumber + Coconut Soup





I just got back from an amazing trip to the Bora Bora and this dish was inspired by a soup I had at the Four Seasons' signature restaurant, Arii Moana.  It was love at first bite.  It's the perfect soup for a balmy evening, totally ingredient driven, light, and refreshing.  Naturally, I went back home on a mission to bring Bora Bora's finest to my very own kitchen.  This soup is simple, straightforward, and perfect for spring!

Serves 2-4

Ingredients:

1 cup light coconut milk
1/2 cup coconut yogurt (plus extra for garnish)
2 large organic cucumbers, sliced in rounds and halved
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1 tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

-Cut 1/4 of one of the cucumbers off, finely dice and set aside for later.
-Next, add the remaining sliced and halved cucumbers to a high powered blender or Vitamix.
-Pour the coconut milk and yogurt into the blender with the cucumbers.
-Add the shredded coconut and salt and blend to your desired consistency.
-Ladle into bowls and top with diced cucumbers and a dollop of coconut yogurt.

~Enjoy~


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Recipe Creation: Spring Asparagus + Feta Frittata




I love that we are finally getting to enjoy the produce of spring.  Asparagus is one of those bright green veggies I associate with the the onset of this wonderful season.  This frittata is the perfect dish for Easter brunch or any lazy spring day.  It's actually just as delightful for dinner or as leftovers.  It's so easy, yet looks and tastes divine. Enjoy!

Serves 2-4

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup minced shallots
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1 lb. asparagus, ends removed and sliced diagonally in 1-inch pieces
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup crumbled feta

Directions:

-In a 10-inch ovenproof skillet, heat butter over medium heat.
-Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.
-Add the asparagus, cover, and cook on medium-low for 3 minutes.
-Add a pinch of salt to the eggs and pour the eggs over the asparagus. 
-Cook for 5 minutes, or until set, and preheat the broiler.
-Sprinkle feta over the eggs and place in the oven for 5 minutes, or until cooked.
-Remove from heat and let cool on a platter.
-Slice and serve with a simple green salad.  

~Happy Easter~

Friday, March 21, 2014

Recipe (Re)creation: The PERFECT Green Smoothie



I wish I could take full credit for this recipe.  Alas, I cannot.  I found it on a wonderful blog called, oh she glows. I added flaxseeds to the original recipe and tinkered a bit with quantities, but otherwise, I stayed pretty true to the original.  I will say, it is a pretty darn near perfect smoothie.  You can also swap the apple for a pear, if you prefer.  I have tried both, and it turns out delicious either way.  Your body will thank you for this one.

Serves 1-2

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup baby kale
  • 1 gala apple, cubed
  • 1/2 large english cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp. fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1/2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp. ground flaxseeds
  • 5 ice cubes

Directions:

-Place the kale, apples, cucumber, lemon juice, ginger, coconut oil, and flaxseeds in a high powered blender or Vitamix.  
-Next add the ice and maple syrup and blend until smooth.
-Serve immediately and gulp down the liquid goodness!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Recipe Creation: Exotic Mushroom Tacos






I usually find vegetarian tacos boring.  These tacos, on the other hand, are anything but that. They are juicy, hearty, and unbelievably flavorful.  I based the recipe on this Heidi Swanson recipe, and adapted it to my own tastes.  I also used tortillas that are a blend of corn and wheat.  I find that they don't break apart as easily and aren't as dry as corn tortillas, yet still have a great texture and corn flavor.  You can double or triple the recipe and easily feed a crowd.  Next, all you have to do is whip up some of these delicious margaritas, and you have yourself a party!

Serves 2

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 white onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 japaleño, seeded and chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 6-8 oz. sliced exotic (or wild) mushrooms
  • 4 corn & wheat blend tortillas
  • sea salt
  • freshly grated parmesan

Directions:

-In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat.
-Add the onion, jalapeño, garlic and a pinch of salt.
-Sauté for a few minutes, or until the onion starts to turn light golden in color.
-Add the mushrooms and cook for another 5-6 minutes, or until browned.
-Turn on a separate burner and place the tortillas directly on the burner to warm.
-Once the tortillas begin to blister, remove from heat.
-Place the tortillas on plates and distribute the mushrooms evenly on each tortilla.
-Sprinkle each taco with grated parmesan cheese and enjoy immediately.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Recipe Creation: Radish + Edamame + Feta Salad




This salad was inspired by a beautiful salad I came across in the Ottolenghi Cookbook. It is amazingly light and refreshing, yet it's packed with protein and fiber and is surprisingly filling.  It can be served as a nice light lunch or dinner accompanied with hummus and pita, or as a lovely side salad at dinner.  I would call this a perfect spring salad.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb shelled frozen edamame
  • 6-8 radishes, sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 3 tbsp. chopped cilantro
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • crumbled feta
  • salt & pepper

Directions:

-Bring a pot of water to boil and add the edamame.
-Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until cooked.
-Drain and rinse with cold water before transferring to a medium bowl.
-Add the sliced radishes, onion, cilantro, lemon juice, cilantro, and olive oil.  
-Toss all the ingredients together and add salt and pepper to taste.
-Top with feta cheese and serve as a side or alongside pita and hummus.  


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Recipe (Re)creation: Butternut Squash Carbonara



Yet another winner inspired by Bon Appetit!  If you are looking for a guilt-free, creamy pasta recipe, your search it over.  I served this lightened-up comfort food for the Super Bowl and it was a hit.  I used quinoa linguine and turkey bacon to make the recipe just a tad more healthy.  Otherwise, I pretty much stuck to the original.  You'll be amazed how creamy this cream-less sauce is... oh the wonders of squash.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 slices turkey bacon, chopped
  • 1-2 Tbsp. fresh sage, chopped
  • 1 2-lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 cups organic chicken broth
  • 8-10. oz. Ancient Harvest quinoa linguini
  • 1/4 cup shaved Pecorino, plus more for serving
  • Kosher salt & pepper, to taste
Directions:

-Heat oil in a large skillet and cook bacon until crisp on both sides.
-Add sage and toss to coat, then transfer bacon and sage to a paper towel to cool.
-Add squash, garlic and onion to the skillet and season with salt and pepper.
-Cook until the onion is translucent, about 8-10 minutes, and add the broth.
-Bring to a boil & reduce heat to a simmer for about 15-20 minutes, until squash is soft.
-Puree in a blender and return the sauce to the skillet.
-Meanwhile, cook linguini in a large pot of salted boiling water.
-Cook linguini until al dente, about 6-8 minutes, and drain. 
-Place linguini in the skillet with the sauce & cook over medium heat, about 2 minutes.
-Mix in 1/4 cup Pecorino and serve topped with bacon, sage, and more shaved Pecorino.


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Recipe (Re)creation: Black Rice + Roasted Sweet Potato Salad


                         


I found the inspiration for this dish while perusing my January edition of Bon Appétit.  I made a few tweaks here and there, opting for sweet potatoes in lieu of butternut squash and using pine nuts instead of pistachios, and topping the dish with crispy sweet potato chips.  You can modify this to your heart's desire!  The best part is, it is gluten free, vegetarian, vegan, and totally-nutrient packed.  I added a fried egg and feta cheese to make it a well rounded and wonderfully satisfying meal, but it works just as well as a side.  Enjoy!

Serves 6-8 (as a side) 

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup black rice
  • 1/2 cup wild rice
  • Kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 2 scallions
  • 1 cup mustard sprouts
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • Optional additions:
    • fried eggs
    • feta cheese

Directions:

-Preheat oven to 450 and begin peeling and cutting your sweet potato into 1 inch cubes.
-In a baking dish or sheet, place the peels on one side, and the cubes on the other.
-Toss with 1/4 cup olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper.
-Meanwhile, cook rice in a large pot of boiling salted water for 35-40 minutes.   
-Roast the sweet potato for 15 minutes, remove the crunchy peels, & cook the cubes for another 5-10 minutes.
-Whisk together the vinegar, honey, and 1/4 cup olive oil in a small bowl. 
-Transfer the rice to a large bowl and top with scallions, sprouts, pine nuts & sweet potato cubes and skins.
-Add the dressing, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.
-Serve as is, or add a fried egg and feta to the salad to complete your meal.