Monthly Archives: January 2015

Watermelon Radish and Beet Salad

I spied watermelon radishes at the market the other day. They’re not often in the produce section, so I scooped a few up. They’re so dang pretty inside. This variety of radish is also sweeter and less peppery than the red globe most of us are familiar with. They also dress up any dish you put them on…jewelry for your salad. I find them particularly vibrant and tasty when paired with golden beets, and they offer a nice textural component.

I’ve been super short on time for dinner prep, recording recipes, and picture taking with running my guy all around for his various treatments, doctor’s appointments, meetings, etc., so I had to come up with something quick for dinner and my column this week. The good news is that I always have roasted beets handy, which makes throwing a nutritious salad together on a weeknight effortless.

After leaving our local Farmers’ Market on Saturdays, the first thing I do is get my beet booty wrapped in aluminum foil and roasting in the oven. It really helps to have them cooked, peeled, and sliced for the week. I highly recommend it. But then again, I’m beet obsessed.

3 Golden beets

1 watermelon radish

Arugula (micro-greens) to taste

Spiced pecans to taste

       Dressing-

Zest from ½ a Meyer lemon

Juice from 1 Meyer lemon

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. Greek yogurt

1/3 cup avocado oil

Pinch of sugar

Pinch of salt

If you don’t have pre-cooked beets, wash them off and cut the root off. Wrap tightly in aluminum foil and roast in the oven at 400 for 1 hour. Remove package from the oven, open, and let cool. Once you’re able to handle the beets, peel the outer skin off and quarter the beet from the middle of the globe down. Cut each quarter in half. Set aside.

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Scrub your radish and use a mandolin, on 3.0mm setting, to slice radish into circles.

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Stack the circles and julienne. Set aside.

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Start building your salad. Place the beets on the plate, then the radishes, then pecans, and then the arugula. You could also add some chunks of quality goat cheese if you have any.

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Make your dressing. Add the Meyer lemon zest, Meyer lemon juice, and balsamic vinegar to a small jar. Add the salt and sugar. Put the lid on the jar and shake. Add the yogurt and avocado oil. Shake vigorously until fully emulsified. Dress your salad and enjoy. Oh, you’ll have leftover dressing to enjoy the rest of the week. It’s a good thing.

Eat well,

April

“Breathe properly. Stay curious. And eat your beets.” – Tom Robbins

 

 

 

 

Lemon-Thyme Chicken

I’ll never take the zippy citrus fruits dangling off our trees for granted. Those vibrant, fragrant yellow and green orbs dangle bewitchingly from their branches just begging to be consumed. We’ve been living in California for ten years now and it still feels like a small miracle each time I walk out our door and pluck a lemon or lime off our trees for either a meal, or an adult beverage. Especially in January! A gin and tonic with a just picked lime from your own backyard is pretty darn special.

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Lemons go brilliantly with thyme and chicken, so I pulled 4 lemons from our tree and got cooking.

Here’s what you’ll need-

4 boneless and skinless chicken breasts, tenders removed

4 lemons

3 thyme stems

2 garlic cloves

1 large shallot

½ cup pear tomatoes (or other small tomato, like cherry, etc.)

8-9 oz. of linguini (I used Maninis lemon thyme gluten free linguini) cooked slightly less than al dente.

1 tbsp. ghee

2 tbsp. salted butter

Salt and pepper

Heat oven to 400

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Thinly slice three lemons and juice the fourth into a small bowl. Mince the shallots, crush the garlic cloves with the side of your knife, and halve the tomatoes.

Add ghee to large sauté pan and melt. Sprinkle the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and add to the pan once the ghee is melted and begins to shimmer. Do not flip them until they release from the pan. At this point they will be nice and brown.

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Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

Add the shallots to the pan and cook until translucent. Add the garlic cloves and deglaze the pan with the lemon juice.

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Add the chicken breasts back to the pan, sprinkle the thyme over the chicken, and then cover with the lemon slices. Place the pan in the oven until the breasts reach an internal temperature of 165-degrees.

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Remove the pan from the oven and pull the chicken and lemon slices out. Set aside.

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Add the butter to the pan and melt. Mix the juices and the butter well until they’re well integrated. Add the linguini to the sauce and sauté until hot and al dente. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve the chicken over the linguine and top with lemon slices. I also added haricot vert, but you can usewhatever floats your boat.

Eat well,

April

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu

Crispy Fried Egg and Kale Salad

Eggs often receive a bad rap when in fact they are a super food. One humble little egg contains vitamins A, B5, B12, B2, D, E, K, B6, calcium, zinc, folate, phosphorus, and selenium!! They’re also a compact source of protein (6 grams). An egg contains almost every nutrient the human body requires. The bad rap comes from the fact that they are high in cholesterol; however, it’s important to remember that cholesterol in the diet doesn’t automatically raise cholesterol in the blood. The French don’t concern themselves with all of the claptrap about eggs, bread, pastries, and butter and look at how svelte they are. They enjoy all kinds of food in moderation and they’re doing just fine. That being said, with Roger’s brain still healing, I continue to load him up with only good fats, protein, plenty of greens, and zero gluten or sugar. We’ll go back to practicing moderation, as we always have, once this cancer is behind us.

I made this dish for his breakfast the other morning. What you see below is only one serving (except for the dressing, which I used on kale salads and beets the rest of the week), so you’ll have to modify the measurements in order to serve more than one.

Dressing

1/2 cup Fage yogurt

Juice of 2 large limes

1 tbsp. + 1 tsp. chopped chives

pinch of sugar

Egg Dish

¼ cup tiny tomatoes (I used pear tomatoes)

A handful of baby kale

1 tsp. feta cheese

1/3 cup garbanzo beans, rinsed

1/8 cup pre-cooked quinoa, optional (I always have a batch on hand in the fridge)

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

2 tsp. ghee

1 ripe avocado

sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

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First you make your dressing. Add the yogurt, limes, pinch of sugar, feta (adds saltiness) and chives to a small bowl. Whisk with a fork and set aside.

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Slice your tomatoes in ½.

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Crisp up your garbanzo beans in ghee. Add the quinoa and smoked paprika. Set aside to cool.

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Begin building your breakfast. Give your kale a massage to soften up the leaves. Toss them with some of the yogurt dressing. Add the tomatoes, then the chickpea mix. Set aside.

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Wipe out your non-stick pan and add the other tsp. of ghee to middle of the pan. Place the pan on med-high and melt. Once the ghee begins to shimmer, crack the egg into the center of the ghee. Sprinkle some sea salt and pepper over the egg and turn the heat down to medium. Cook until the edges are nice and crispy. The yolk will be warm and still runny.

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Remove from the pan and lay on top of your assembled salad. Top with slices of avocado and serve.

Eat well,

April

“It may be the cock that crows, but it is the hen that lays the eggs.” – Margaret Thatcher