Posts tagged ‘veggies’

Beets, squash, kale and chickpeas…together at last

There’s nothing like a week off work to spur on more blogging. I’ve been looking through a few photos I took in recent weeks and found this one of a veggie dish I made for a holiday dinner with friends. I started with an ingredient that everyone seems to love: roasted beets. I also had butternut squash, a fresh bunch of kale, chickpeas, pumpkin seeds and shallots, all things that have come to be staples in my kitchen one by one over the past few years, so that’s how this dish came to be.

Uplifting day-glo colours, healthy veggies, a bit of protein, and aside from the messiness of beets it’s a snap to make.

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January 4, 2012 at 4:03 pm 1 comment

First tomato


Finally! Months of coddling tomato plants grown from seed have produced an actual tomato. As you can see below, there are more on the way. I’m sure they will be wonderful, too, but the first tomato brings the clearest sense of victory. Our patio is shady, part-sun at best, and it takes a good stretch of warm weather to make veggies grow. Double victory!

I was paralyzed by it, of course. How does one consume such a precious treat? If I had some buffalo mozzarella handy, I’d have gone for a classic caprese salad without a second thought. But I don’t. So I decided on a home-grown theme. Arugula, basil, chives, and parsley from my garden, olive oil carted back from Spain and sea salt that was a gift from my husband. Such specialness, and oh-so-good.

August 19, 2011 at 8:50 am Leave a comment

Strawberry salad!

A quick post to point you in the direction of my strawberry salad recipe. It’s strawberry season again and enjoying the ripe red fruit in a delicious salad is a rite of summer for me. I found beautiful BC-grown organic strawberries for sale at the corner store on our street this week and I’ve been blissfully eating my way through a big basket for the past two days.

I’ve updated the original recipe to include mint and chopped green onions along with the salad greens, strawberries and goat cheese. Those herbs combined with the creamy cheese and the juicy sweetness of the strawberries is a magical pairing.

Happy strawberry finding and salad eating!

June 12, 2010 at 8:28 pm 3 comments

Kale and lentil potato bake

We all need to eat more leafy greens like kale and more lentils. Here is a recipe to help you do that! If you don’t like asiago cheese, try substituting mozzarella. I can’t believe that some people don’t like asiago, but apparently it’s true.

You’ll notice that there is a three-stage baking process with this dish. This is to help minimize the time it takes to bake the potatoes. Also, I like to add the kale right at the end so it doesn’t cook for too long – I think it tastes better this way and I’m sure it helps to retain more vitamins.

1-1/2 pound of potatoes, thinly sliced (about 4 baking potatoes or 8-10 mini potatoes)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 red onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup chopped mushrooms
1 cup French lentils
2 cups of water
1 cup red wine
1 cup of shredded cabbage or raddicchio
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, minced
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Fresh ground pepper
2 cups shredded kale
1 cup asiago cheese, grated

Layer potatoes in a greased casserole dish. Heat oven to 425F and put potatoes in oven while preparing rest of ingredients (this will help you get a head start on the baking time required to soften the potatoes).

Saute the onions and garlic in oil until softened, about five minutes. Rinse the lentils and add them to the pan with the garlic and onions. Add in mushrooms, half of the thyme, salt and pepper. Cook for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly, and then stir in the wine. Cook until the wine boils down and then add the water. Simmer for five to ten minutes until the lentils are just barely tender. Stir in the cabbage and remove from heat.

Take the half cooked potatoes out of the oven and pour the lentil mixture over top. Stir it around a bit to distribute the mixture with the potatoes and then put the dish back in the oven to bake for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, bring the dish back out again and stir in the kale and sprinkle with the cheese and remaining thyme. Return to the oven for another five to ten minutes until cheese is lightly browned. Serve with salad and a glass of red wine and bask in your healthy glow.

May 26, 2010 at 12:58 pm 3 comments

Zucchini and tomato strata

Egg stratas are a favourite food of mine. They’re healthy and nourishing and one of those foods that can be made with an endless variations of ingredients and flavours. This weekend it’s ripe tomatoes and small organic zucchini along with fresh herbs from my patio garden. The dill tastes beautiful in this dish with the tomatoes and zucchini. If you make stratas, I’d love to hear about new ideas for flavour combinations.

The recipe below serves two to four people and can easily double or triple if you’ve got a larger group.

Zucchini and tomato strata
4 slices of bread
3 eggs
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup onion, finely minced
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped (or 1 teaspooon dried dill)
1/8 teaspoon paprika
Fresh ground pepper
1 tomato, diced
1 small zucchini, chopped
1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup fresh chives, finely minced

Break bread up into small pieces and spread in a greased 9″ round baking pan. Whisk together eggs and milk and add onion, mustard and spices. Pour over bread. Scatter tomatoes and zucchini over top of bread and egg mixture and press down lightly. Top with cheese and bake at 375F for 25 to 30 minutes until egg is set. Sprinkle fresh chives over top.

Serve with muffins and fresh fruit for breakfast or with salad for lunch or dinner.

May 22, 2010 at 1:55 pm Leave a comment

Tomato and tarragon soup

Tarragon is a new ingredient in my kitchen. It’s a leafy green herb that reminds me of the licorice-like taste of fennel combined with the strong, verdant aroma of fresh basil. After tasting it in this creamy tomato soup I will definitely search it out for the kitchen garden we’re planning for our new patio.

This recipe is adapted from Rebar Cookbook. It’s easy to make and relatively quick – everyone at our dinner table loved it. If you don’t have tarragon I’d recommend fresh basil or chives as a substitute.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
4 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes
1/2 cup tarragon, sliced
4 cups vegetable stock
2 cans (28 oz) whole tomatoes with juice
1 cup whipping cream

Saute onion in oil for about five minutes until onions soften. Stir in salt, garlic and chile flakes and saute for another five minutes. Stir tomatoes and half of the tarragon into onion mixture. Break up tomatoes, add stock and simmer for another 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Remove bay leaves, blend soup in batches and return to pot. Stir in cream and remaining tarragon and serve.

April 19, 2010 at 10:39 pm 2 comments

Cream cheese pasta

At the risk of sounding like a shill for the cream cheese company’s latest campaign, I have to say that I have been “cooking with philly” lately with good results. Good in the sense of convenient, easy and reasonably tasty. I won’t call this a recipe, but here is my freestyle method for throwing together a cream cheese pasta for two people with whatever ingredients are kicking around the fridge or freezer. It takes as long as boiling pasta plus five minutes of stirring things together. (more…)

February 28, 2010 at 1:28 pm 2 comments

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