Raw Mini Turnips and Dip!

raw turnip sticks

raw turnip sticks

As many of you know, I am a happy cook in the kitchen during the winter season. Once the good weather hits, though I am less inclined to spend the day creating a new soup or tending a classic Irish stew. I prefer to be out of doors playing instead. Yesterday, at lunchtime, I discovered a left over turnip at the back of my fridge, and wondered what I could do with it since I just didn’t feel like making any more turnip soup, (delicious as it was this past winter).

 

That’s when I came up with the idea to use sliced raw turnip as a snack with a hummus dip. Believe it or not I had never eaten raw turnip before, and I wasn’t even sure I’d like it, but of course I loved it or I would not bother to share it with you here today.

 

The taste is sweet, the texture is cruchy, and turnips are probably the cheapest vegetables on the planet. At cool temperatures they keep well for ages and are packed with lots of fiber, vitamin C and calcium.

All you need for this recipe is 1 turnip ( any size).

Hummus or your favorite veggie dip.

Chopping a turnip into bite sized slices is a challenge for me and if you don’t have strong wrists, I suggest:

  1. peeling the waxy outer layer off first.
  2. cutting away several outer portions and working your way to the center of the turnip, instead of trying to hack through the center straight off.
  3. chopping chunks into thin 1.5 inch pieces

Serve with a dip and enjoy!

Healthy Chocolate Coco Butter Cups

I am on a mission to limit my sugar intake and to add healthy saturated fats (coconut oil and coconut butter) at the same time. Even though this is not a sugar free recipe, as I use some honey and, of course, there is some sugar in the dark chocolate, this is my current desert of choice when I get that chocolate craving!  One more good thing; they are gluten-free and dairy-free.

The ingredients are simple and no baking is required!  Please note you really need toasted coconut flakes for this to work.  Shredded coconut just is not the same at all.

Yummy Choco-Coco-butter cups

Yummy Choco-Coco-butter cups

RECIPE

I used

500 g of Roasted Coconut flakes (2 packages)  see image below.

Unpasturized honey to taste. ( I use about 1 TBS)

About 2/3 Cup of melted dark or semi sweet chocolate

Melt chocolate over low heat while you let your food processor blend the coconut flakes into a soft almost liquid butter.  Add a bit of honey if desired.

Fill greased or lined mini muffin tins 1/3 full with  coconut mixutre.  Chill slightly in freezer for 5 mins.  Remove from freezer and add a layer of liquid chocolate in each cup, then return to the freezer for a few minutes and top up the cups with more coco butter and chill one last time again.  If you don’t devour them all in one sitting, keep the rest refrigerated!

*I use a bit of coconut oil to grease the pans  when I run out of mini muffin papers.

Makes about 2-3 dozen mini cups.

OPTIONSIMG_3727

* I sometimes add celtic salt to the chocolate  and pop a pecan in the center before chilling.  Experement and let me know how it goes!

Coco nut flakes

Coconut flakes

MISO SOUP!

This insanely nutritious soup is simple to make and can be changed to make use of what you may already have on hand. The indispensible ingredient however is miso.   Miso comes in  paste form and can be found refrigerated at the health food store and all enlightened grocery stores.  Miso  is high in protein and vitamins and minerals but since it is a fermented product it is also good for your digestion.  Some people worry about the high sodium content in miso, (which does have a salty flavour), but studies have shown that this type of sodium does not affect blood pressure the way table salt will, and consuming miso actually protects cardiovascular health.  Miso should never be combined with boiling water as this will kill off the beneficial bacteria that contribute to your health!

The veggies are barely cooked, just warming them in the steaming water will do fine, and this is a great way for raw-food lovers to jump off that bandwagon and start to integrate more warm, ‘nearly cooked’ foods into their diet.

When I head in for a long day at the clinic this is my lunch of choice.  All I do is prepare the fixings ahead of time and use my kettle at work to produce this re-energizing miso magic!!

Did I mention how DELICIOUS this soup tastes??? Light but satisfying! One caveat, I don’t measure anything when I make this soup, so the following  recipe is my best estimation!  The following should make 4 hearty helpings.

Rosie's Miso Soup

OK, collect :

4 Baby bok choy (or 1 or 2 grown-up bok choy)

Carrots , slice these nice and slender, almost matchstick size, but don’t obsess about it

2-4 green onions, sliced

1 zucchini , matchstick sliced, if desired

A handful or two of shitake mushrooms chopped roughly

Approximately 2-3 tbs sauce or ‘Bragg’ (a non sodium replacement)

A dash or more of sesame oil.

1/4 cup of warm water.

A heaping tablespoon of organic miso paste.

Chopped, fresh cilantro

Mix miso and warm water (not boiling) together in small bowl and set aside to dissolve. Pour vegetables into a medium sized saucepan and add 5-6 cups of water.  Add soy sauce and sesame oil.  This broth will taste rather thin until the miso get added.  Heat to steaming.

Meanwhile make sure that the miso paste is completely disolved, then divide equal portions to each soup bowl and top with the vegetable-broth mixture and cilantro.

Modify this soup by using other vegetables, think chinese cabbage, green string beans, etc.  For more protien try adding cooked shrimp or chicken.
Bon appétit, as we say here in Quebec!

BUTTERNUT SQUASH-CURRY SOUP

I make soup of all kinds but my absolute favorite of all is butternut squash soup.  It is low in fat, high in vitamins A and C, has strong anti-inflammatory properties and is in season now. The secret to making sweet tasting soups is to sauté the onion until it caramelizes. I also use curry paste to enhance the delicate flavour.

Don’t throw out those seeds!  Rinse them, coat with olive oil and a dash of salt and roast them at 275 for 15 minutes. Makes for an awesome and nutritious snack!

Back to the soup.  You’ll need:

2 medium butternut squashesIMG_1565

2 large yellow onions, chopped

1tbs coconut oil

1tbs butter

2 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped

1-2 tsp of red curry paste

4 Cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 Can coconut milk (optional)

Sea salt – sel de fleur to taste, (not table salt)

1.   Cut each squash in half, remove seeds: wrap each half in tinfoil and bake at 350 until soft and tender, (1.5 -2 hours).  Weather permitting, squash can alternatively be barbequed for a richer, sweeter flavor.  Once cooled, scoop squash from shell and set aside.

2.   In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt coconut oil and add onions, stirring often until onion turns golden brown and begins to caramelize.

3.   Turn heat to low and add butter, garlic and curry paste, stirring frequently for 5 mins.

4.   Remove onion mixture and blend in food processor until smooth. Add squash and 1/4 cup of broth and purée  until smooth. Depending on the size of your processor you may have to do this in batches.

5.   Transfer soup purée to large saucepan and add rest of broth and heat till steaming. Season with sea salt.

6.   Serve in bowl and swirl in a dollop of coconut milk.  Garnish with fresh cilantro and enjoy!

Un Petit Déjeuner ‘Médicinal’

Petit Déjeuner aux Céréales D’avoine

Voici une excellente façon de commencer votre journée; et ce en vous préparant un bon bol de céréales d’avoine. Ce plat vous fournira l’énergie nécessaire pour partir votre journée du bon pied. Il est important que les organes de votre système digestif préparent et assurent une digestion efficace pour les repas à venir et cette recette favorisera et optimisera celle-ci.  Je cuisine cette recette depuis plusieurs années,  au moins une fois par semaine.

 Je préfère utiliser de l’avoine biologie et particulièrement l’avoine concassée. L’avoine contribue à calmer votre système nerveux, à balancer votre glande thyroïde  et aussi à lubrifier vos intestins.

 INGRÉDIENTS

  • 1 tasse d’avoine concassée
  • 3 tasses d’eau
  •  Une poignée de fruits frais ou secs selon vos goûts
  • Morceaux de pommes ou de raisins, des canneberges séchées ou des petits fruits.  Vous pouvez ajouter quelques protéines comme des amandes, des pacanes ou autres noix de votre choix.

Combinez l’avoine et l’eau dans un poêlon et amenez à ébullition.  Fermez et retirez le poêlon de la cuisinière.  Optimiser ce plat en y ajoutant les ingrédients de votre choix et laissez le tout reposer de 45 – 50 minutes tout en le couvrant.

Vous pouvez saupoudrer de graines de lin moulues et ajouter une touche de sirop d’érable, un peu de lait d’amande ou de lait de riz rendra le tout homogène.

 Vous obtiendrez 4 portions

 Bon appétit !

Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce

My sister loves to cook and loves to write about cooking and it looks like I do too! Over the years, we’ve exchanged dozens of recipes, as sisters are apt to do.  I visited her recently at her home in Arizona where we had a cook-off and I showed her how I make spring rolls.  I sometimes make them with tuna, mayo, dried cranberries and lettuce but this is my vegetarian version. Hope you enjoy them as much as we did after our hike in Sedona!

Image

Spring Rolls and Peanut Sauce
INGREDIENTS

1 package of Spring Roll Wrappers – made with rice

Fresh Veggies: (carrots, red peppers, zucchini)
Fresh cilantro sprigs
Spring mix lettuce

Slice vegetables into narrow 3 inch long pieces.  Fill a large bowl with warm water.  Dunk a wrapper sheet in the water for about 15 seconds and lay on a clean flat surface. On the wet wrap, place a handful of veggies, a sprig of cilantro and some of the lettuce then roll together, tucking in edges of wrapper as you go.   There are many variations of these rolls so go ahead and use your imagination.  Make as many as you wish. Devour with peanut sauce!

Image

A little jet-lagged but loving being in my sister’s kitchen!

 Peanut Sauce

1/3 C Peanut Butter

1/4 C Maple Syrup or Honey

1/4 C Sesame Oil

1/4 C Apple Cider Vinegar (or use orange juice or regular vinegar)

1 Tsp Ginger Powder (optional)

Whisk to combine and use as a dip for your spring rolls!
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***A few friends have been asking about where to find the spring roll wrappers. Look for these at any grocery store – usually in the Chinese food section.

Summer Salsa Update!

Salsa has quickly become my favorite side dish this summer. Earlier this week I posted the first salsa recipe I ever made. Since then, I’ve been experimenting and have come up with a new version!

The key to the great taste, I think is the combination of capers, coriander and lime juice.

The recipe is the same as the original but with just a few additions. Today I added mango, avocado, a bit of red onion and a few artichoke hearts…So here it is, the tweaked up version of my summer salsa.

4-5 ripe, Italian tomatoes, diced or pulsed in the food processor for a few seconds.

2 ripe avocados, chopped

1mango, chopped

1-2 tbs red onion, diced

1 can of pitted, black olives, chopped

3 strands of garlic flowers or 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped.

2-3 tbs small capers

4 artichoke hearts, chopped

Add the following herbs to taste: Coriander, basil, thyme

Juice of 1 lime and or lemon

Toss all ingredients together in a medium sized bowl and serve with wheat-free crackers or as an accompaniment to whitefish !

Just glancing at what other bloggers are posting, I see that there are so many more salsa combos out there, some using pineapple and others blueberries…going to give those a try for sure…and I hope this recipe inspires you to try a new salsa this summer.