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With Labor Day right around the corner, summer is soon coming to a close!  But what better way to end the summer with some delicious new ways of eating sweet corn?  It’s easy to find right now, so get it while you can.  I came up with the combination for this recipe because they are three of my husband’s favorite foods – corn (he’s from Indiana), lima beans, and potatoes.  This is a really an incredible dish, and I paired it with some delicious scallops.  Stay tuned for that recipe tomorrow – they taste great with this fresh, summer salad.  I thought about adding black beans, feta, and basil at different points along the way, but it tasted so good, I didn’t want to mess it up.  They could be worth a try though.

Ingredients:

2 ears of corn – de-cobbed (is that a word?!)

1/2 cup lima beans (I used frozen and thawed them out)

Fingerling Potatoes – diced into 1 in. pieces (as many as you’d like)

1 Leek – thinly sliced and soaked in water

1 clove garlic minced

1 Tbs Dijon mustard

2 Tbs. lemon juice

2-3 Tbs. Olive Oil (for dressing)

Salt/ Pepper to taste

 

Directions:

1)  Bring saute pan to medium/ high heat.  Add 1-2 tbs. olive oil and saute the garlic and diced potatoes for 8-10 minutes or until almost cooked through.  Salt/ Pepper to taste.

2)  Add the lima beans, corn, and leeks to the mixture.  Add a little more salt/ pepper – it’s always good to season as you cook so you can adjust along the way.  You might also need to add a little more olive oil if you need more moisture.

3)  Meanwhile, prepare the dijon vinaigrette.  Whisk the Dijon and the lemon juice, then slowly add the olive oil until it emulsifies.  I try not to add too much olive oil, since there’s already some in the veggies.

4)  After the potatoes, beans, and corn have cooked for 10-15 minutes, remove from heat and add the Dijon vinaigrette.  Toss and enjoy!

To see the final dish come together – check out my scallops later this week!

Lemon Lime Green Beans

One of my favorite bloggers, Heidi Swanson from 101 cookbooks, published this recipe in her new cookbook Super Natural Cooking. All of her recipes use fresh, healthy ingredients and are packed with flavor. These green beans are no exception. They are super simple to make – so simple I almost passed over this recipe thinking they might be too boring. So glad I didn’t! The zest from the lemon and the lime adds a nice punch of citrus flavor while bringing out the freshness of the green beans. I hope you like them as much as I do!

Ingredients
3/4 lb green beans – ends removed
2-3 green onions, chopped (Heidi calls for chives, but I didn’t have any on hand) 
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. water
1 zested lemon
1 zested lime
sea salt/ pepper to taste

Directions:

1.  After trimming the green beans, chop them on a diagonal cut.  They should be about a 1/2 inch.

2.  Add the green beans to a hot pan and coat with the olive oil.  Add the water.  Cover and cook for 2-3 minutes.

3.  Remove from heat and add zest, green onions, and salt/ pepper to taste

There’s nothing I love more about Saturday mornings than to be able to sleep in, work out and eat a good breakfast.  It’s such a nice way to start the weekend feeling refreshed and healthy.  One of my favorite Saturday morning breakfasts is a fruit smoothie because I rarely take the time during the week to break out the blender.  Now, there are a million different ways you can make a fruit smoothie by changing the fruits, consistency, liquid (milk vs. juice), and other add ons (i love honey!).  So what’s the perfect combination??  Well, you’re reading the right post, because I’ve figured out my favorite way to make healthy, fruit smoothies.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups frozen fruit – any combination.  here’s my usual:

  • 1/2 raspberries
  • 1/2 blueberries
  • 1/2 strawberries

1 1/2 cups skim milk

6 oz. plain or vanilla greek yogurt

A good squirt or two of honey

Protein Powder for the guys – I  don’t usually add.  The greek yogurt adds enough protein for me.

Directions:

Blend until smooth!  Couldn’t be easier.

This may just have to be my new go to salmon marinade or at least an addition to my list of favorites.  Usually when I’m going to grill salmon I use either my standard soy, lime, and OJ marinade or a classic balsamic and garlic marinade.  Well this one combines the best of both, and it’s incredible.  A little sweetness from the balsamic (and honey) balanced by the saltiness of the soy.  Delicious! 

Ingredients:

3 Tbs. Balsamic – a good aged one works best

3 Tbs. Soy – reduced sodium of course

2-3 Tbs. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Tbs. Brown Sugar

1 Tbs. Honey

Directions:

1) Whisk and marinate.  An hour is ideal, but we don’t always have that time.  Try not to marinate for more than 2-3.

2)  Preheat grill to medium-high.  Sear skin side down (if skin is still on) for 4-5 minutes.  Flip and grill for another 2-3 minutes.

Done!  Serve with freshly grilled or roasted veggies ( I like asparagus with mine) and a nice mixed green salad.  Easy and healthy.

My husband and I just got back from a wonderful weekend in NYC!  We went into New York for a couples cooking class at the Institute of Culinary Education.  Our chef instructor was James Biscione.  He looked really familiar to me and then half way through the class I found out he was on a few episodes of Chopped.  He won his first show during season 1 and then in season 2 they brought back all the winners for a tournament and he wo that too!  If you’ve never watched the show, you really should – they give these contestants the most bizarre ingredients to work with, so it’s fun to watch what they come up with. 

On our couples cooking class menu:

1)  Smoked Salmon Pizza – turned out fabulous!  I’ve never made my own dough, but it was surprisingly easy.  Might have to be a new St. Patty’s day recipe.

2)  Goat Cheese and Roasted Veggie Sandwich – the goat cheese was really creamy and delicious.  This would be perfect for an appetizer or afternoon lunch. 

not a great picture - but they tasted great!

3)  Roasted Rack of Lamb – My husband loved it, but I don’t eat red meat.  I did have some potatoes that were roasted in the same pan though, and they were incredible.

4)  Pan Seared Flounder with Green Pea Puree and Mushroom  broth- we were in charge of the green pea puree and it was delicious.  Think mashed potatoes but with peas.  I really liked the mushroom broth too – it helped keep the fish really moist.

that's the pea puree we made!

 

5)  Glazed Root Vegetables – these were wonderful too.  I’ve never glazed vegetables before, but essentially cooking them in water with butter, sugar, and salt and as the water evaporates you’re left with a shiny coating of all the good stuff. 

6)  Butter Bean Pasta with Pancetta – Oh my goodness, definitely one of my favorites.  This was delicious ( I ate around the pancetta of course).  The butter beans (aka lima beans) were infused with the white wine and rosemary from the sauce.  Such an easy dish, and everyone loved it.

7)  Lemon Mousse with Marinated Strawberries.  Joe and I were also in charge of the lemon mousse.  It was a little tricky and the Chef had to step in and save the day.  The mousse turned out great though.  I’ll let you know if we actually end up trying this at home!

Send me a message if you want any of these recipes!  I have them all printed out 🙂

Watermelon Salad

I’ve been making this salad for years and really can’t get enough of it during the summer!  I think I found it in a Coastal Living magazine, but now you see versions of this everywhere.  This one really is the best though – the watermelon is so refreshing and the light lemon vinaigrette is the perfect pairing.  All you need is a nice glass of white wine and you can make this a meal! 

Ingredients:

Chopped Watermelon

1 bunch parsley roughly chopped – about 2 to 3 Tbs.

1 Tbs mint, chopped – (optional, I usually hold on the mint, but some people love it)

2-3 cups arugula or mixed green lettuce

1 handful walnuts or pine nuts toasted

1 red onion sliced in half moons

Feta cheese

2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

Lemon Juice

Salt to taste

Directions:

1)  To make vinaigrette, whisk lemon juice, olive oil, and salt until emulsified. 

2)  Layer the remaining ingredients in a large salad bowl and drizzle the dressing on top.

Serve and Enjoy!

I know, it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but I’m back and hope I haven’t lost my few loyal readers!  Since I’ve been away, I  must say my cooking style has changed a little – for one I use about a quarter of the olive oil and everything still tastes great.  I used to go through a bottle of olive oil every other week, but now that I’m on this P90X kick I’ve tried to cut back – the way I like it, it really can’t be healthy.  I’m also eating more veggies, and focusing more on portion control.  Really, I don’t have to fill my plate every night – especially since my plates are huge!

So, tonight we had Steamed Cod with Mango Salsa – it doesn’t get any healthier or easier than this recipe.    Really this is a must try.  The fish is so fresh and flaky and the mango salsa adds the perfect sweetness. 

Ingredients:

2 6-8 ounce filet of wild cod

1/2 yellow onion sliced in half moons

1 red pepper sliced length wise

4-5 basil leaves

2 tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1/2 lemon, juiced

salt/ pepper to taste

Mango Salsa:

1 mango diced

2-3 green onions sliced

1/2 red pepper diced

1/2 lime, juiced

1/2 jalapeno minced

Salt

1)  Preheat oven to 400.  Arrange sliced onions and red peppers on 2 large squares of parchment paper.  Place fish on top and drizzle each with a Tbs of olive oil and lemon juice.  Season with salt, pepper, and torn basil leaves.

2)  Make packets with the parchment paper:  take two ends of the parchment paper and fold down then twist the sides together.  Make sure there are no gaps where air can escape.

3)  Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes.  The packets should puff up.

4)  Mix all the ingredients for the mango salsa and serve over the fish.

Serve left over mango salsa with chicken, shrimp, quesadillas – it makes everything taste better!

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