Chilled Spinach Detox Soup for your Meatless Monday

Chilled Spinach Detox Soup for your Meatless Monday

Whether you’re a vegetarian, vegan, conflicted omnivore or ardent carnivore, it doesn’t hurt to give yourself at least one day each week where you focus on a plant-based diet. I love the Meatless Monday movement for this very reason. It’s approachable, non-preachy and good common sense. I’m completely inconsistent with my posts to this end and am way overdue in offering a new recipe for you all. As some of you know, I am a big believer in whole foods, home cooking-focused detoxes. I’ve guided over 100 different folks from all over the country through my seasonal detoxes over the course of the last two years and really enjoy coming up with meals that are simple, tasty and clean. My latest 4-day detox includes the following recipe. If you want to buy the self-guided version it’s now available through my online store. I love picking up ingredients for this and all detox recipes from my local farmers market. Food is always better – both in taste and nutrient density – when locally grown with less transport and shelf time. Chilled Spinach Detox Soup {makes 4 side portions or 2 mains} Ingredients: 1 Tbs olive oil 1 Tbs organic unsalted butter 2 small sweet onions (the size of baseballs) 2 cloves of garlic 1/2 tsp sea salt 1/2 tsp muchi curry powder 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock Juice of 1/2 lemon 5 oz baby spinach 2 sprigs fresh thyme leaves Freshly ground pepper to taste Top with a couple tablespoons of low-fat, plain Greek yogurt Directions: Sauté onions in butter and oil over medium heat until soft, adding a...

Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers

After a weekend of eating way more meat than usual (ballpark franks – go Nationals! – and barbecue), I decided it was high time for a Meatless Monday recipe. I love making homemade veggie burgers because you’re in charge of what goes in, and what stays out. My Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers are loaded with plant-based protein (1 cup of lentils has 20 grams), iron, zinc and antioxidant-rich veggies like asparagus and carrots. I used rolled oats in place of bread crumbs and gelled chia seeds instead of eggs to bind these beauties together, keeping the end result gluten-free and vegan. Serve them over a bed of fresh mixed greens, some sliced fresh avocado and tomato, and kick it up with your favorite hot sauce for a simple, healthy supper or easy-to-pack lunch for those of you on the go. These would also be awesome for any vegetarians in need a Fourth of July BBQ alternative to burgers and hot dogs. Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers {makes 6 patties} What You’ll Need: 1 cup black rice 1/2 cup lentils 1/2 cup carrots, coarsely grated 1/2 cup asparagus, coarsely grated 1/2 red onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats 1/4 cup chopped mint 2 Tbs chia seeds (soaked in 4 Tbs of water) 1 Tbs cumin Salt and pepper to taste 1/4 cup olive oil How to Make It: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F Bring the rice to a boil with two cups of water. Reduce to a simmer and let cook, covered, for 35-40 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork....
Gluten Free Strawberry Balsamic Tart with Mint

Gluten Free Strawberry Balsamic Tart with Mint

Two weeks ago, I shared a recipe for Gluten Free Pie Crust. On this Meatless Monday, it’s time to fill it! With all the yummy fresh strawberries I’ve been receiving in my weekly From the Farmer basket, I couldn’t resist making a Strawberry Balsamic Tart. This sweet and savory treat is perfect for a summer night and easy to transport to a friend’s BBQ as long as you leave it in the pan. It’s on the healthier side of dessert so feel free to indulge guilt-free or perhaps break the rules and have it for breakfast! Gluten Free Strawberry Balsamic Tart What You’ll Need: 1 recipe of Gluten Free Pie Crust 1/2 cup + 2 Tbs balsamic vinegar 2 tsp raw (or lavender-infused…) honey 1 pint fresh strawberries (washed, hulled and sliced) – or about 2 cups sliced 5-10 mint leaves How to Make It: Pre-heat oven to 400 F. Add balsamic to a saucepan and cook over medium heat until reduced by about half. Let cool and it should form into a nice syrup or “reduction.” Melt honey and add to the balsamic reduction. Stir to combine. Roll pie crust thin between two sheets of parchment paper. This doesn’t have to be perfect as you’ll press it into your pie dish or tart pan. Make sure you get all the way up to the edges and rim of the pan and spread the dough around evenly. In a large bowl, mix cut strawberries and balsamic/honey mix. Spread mixture evenly inside crust. Bake for 25-30 min or until the crust edges turn a nice golden brown. Remove and let cool 10-30 min.  Cut...

Chickpea, Quinoa & Kale Taco Salad + Radicchio Wraps = Super-Bowl

Step up your lunch game with this vegan, gluten-free, Meatless Monday superfood taco salad recipe. Try saying that ten times fast. If you’re underwhelmed or unsatisfied by your attempts at green salads, don’t throw in the towel on healthier habits. Salads don’t have to be all rabbit food. In fact, adding healthy whole grains, nuts or seeds and legumes to the mix will increase satiety (that feeling of, one, I’ve had enough and, two, it was downright tasty) and decrease the desire to graze after the meal. The fiber, healthy fats and proteins these ingredients bring to the table help improve digestion, stabilize blood sugar and nourish your muscles and mind. All of the nutrient-dense ingredients (kale, quinoa, chickpeas, etc) in this upgraded taco salad fit into those three categories of superfood add-ons. If you take it a step further and replace your tortilla strips or flour wrap with radicchio leaves, you’re kicking it up to a whole new level of good-for-you. The magenta hue of radicchio comes from a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory pigment called anthocyanin. Anthocyanins are members of the same family of phytochemicals found in teas, honey, wines, fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil and cocoa–all of which have received a lot of well-deserved positive buzz from the health and nutrition field. The cherry on top–as well as the moderation factor–are a few coins of baked plantains. It’s amazing how a little something special can take a salad from boring to a monumental taste-bomb of deliciousness. Raddichio-wrapped Quinoa Kale Taco Salad w/ Spicy Avocado Dressing Makes 6 servings What You’ll Need For the Quinoa Kale Taco Salad: 1 small head of radicchio 1...

Potato Leek Soup w/ Watercress for your Meatless Monday

If you’re looking to join the Meatless Monday movement, or simply cut back on your weekly meat intake, my vegetarian and gluten-free Potato Leek Soup is a tasty way to go. It’s heartiness is also sure to warm you up after that polar vortex that nearly sucked us all into a cold abyss last week. I love this recipe because it’s straightforward, filling, inexpensive and uses seasonal ingredients. I made a similar version (Tri-Color Potato Leek Soup) a year ago and have modified this one with a couple of my favorite super foods: ghee and nutritional yeast. Ghee is clarified butter originating from India, which has a long shelf life when stored in an airtight container. It’s definitely a process to make, but if you do it with a friend (what’s up, C$!) it can be really fun. Not only is ghee a real food (aka none of that margarine junk), but it’s loaded with health benefits. First of all, it contains Vitamins A (good for the eyes), D (good for the bones), E (good for the skin) and K (good for the heart). These all just so happen to be fat-soluble vitamins and since they’re embedded in this dietary fat your body can readily absorb them. Secondly, ghee provides a cancer-fighting antioxidant named conjugated lineolic acid (CLA), which has been linked to preventing cancer. Lastly, ghee is great for cooking because it doesn’t break down in high heat like many cooking oils (e.g. canola and safflower). When cooking oils break down in high heat they produce free radicals, which damage our cells and DNA leading to mutations that can cause certain...