Monday, June 30, 2014

Happy Canada Day! Fresh Mache and Pea Salad & Strawberry Scones

This post won't be long because I want to get outside and enjoy the fantastic weather we've been having. However, I wanted to give you a couple of really fresh testing seasonal recipes with a hint of red and white to help you celebrate our nation's birthday. Happy Canada Day!

Fresh Mache and Pea Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
adapted from "Spring Mache Salad" from Food to Live By by Myra Goodman 2006
serves 1

1/2 C fresh shelled peas, sugar snap peas or a combination of both
1-2 large handfuls of Mache
1 large stalk of celery, sliced
2 radishes, trimmed and thinly sliced

1. Arrange all ingredients in a bowl and top with Lemon Vinaigrette

Lemon Vinaigrette
serves 2-3

Juice from 1/2 of a large lemon + an equal amount of garlic infused olive oil
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp tarragon
1/2 tsp dill

1. Place all ingredients in a jar with a lid. 
2. Shake vigorously. 
3. Store left overs in the fridge for use within a couple of days. 

Approximate Nutritional Information per serving with vinaigrette

cal 211
fat 14g
   sat fat  2g
carbs 14g
    fiber 4g
    sugars 5g
protein 6g

Strawberry Scones
adapted from "Raspberry Cream Scones" from Food to Live By by Myra Goodman 2006

parchment paper
1.5 Tbsp chia seeds
1 1/4 C Almond Milk 
3 C unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 C sugar plus 2 Tbsp for topping
1.5 Tbsp baking powder
3 tsp lemon zest
1/4 tsp salt
6 Tbsp butter cut into bits and chilled
1.5 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 C fresh strawberries, hulled, washed, and sliced

1. Line baking sheet with parchment paper
2. Preheat oven to 400F
3. Mix chia seeds with 1/3 C of the milk in a medium bowl and set aside to gel
4. Place the flour, 1/2 C sugar, baking powder, lemon zest, and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine. 
5. Add the butter, and using a pastry cutter or your hands, blend the mixture until it is crumbly
6. Add the rest of the milk and vanilla to the chia mixture. Whisk well to combine. 
7. Add the chia mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just barely combined. Gently fold in the strawberries. 
8. Turn out the dough onto a gently floured work surface. Shape the dough into a disk about 4 cm thick. Cut the dough into 10 wedges. 
9. Place the wedges on the prepared baking sheet. 
10. Brush the scones with a small amount of milk and sprinkle with remaining sugar.
11. Bake until golden brown and firm to touch, about 15-20 minutes. 
12. Serve warm. 

Approximate Nutritional Information
per scone

cal 260
fat 8.9g
  sat 4.9g
carbs 40.6g
   fiber 2.4g
   sugars  10.4g
protein 4.5g

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Charred onions and Fiddleheads

When we were kids, my family would head to northern New Brunswick for at least a week every summer to spend time with my grandparents and extended family. My grandparents owned a farm, so I remember picking (and eating) fresh vegetables and berries, collecting eggs, and running around in the barn and yard. When it was raining or we had moved in for the night, we always played UNO or Lobsters and Fiddleheads. I would take a wild guess that most of you have never even heard of the game Lobsters and Fiddleheads. When I googled it, the only thing that popped up was the abandoned trademark information. I honestly can't remember how to play the game, but I know that the next time I'm at the farm, I'm looking around to find that game and relive some family memories. Outside of playing a game about fiddleheads, fiddleheads were also always on the menu when we were there. My grandmother picked her own fiddleheads and froze them to have out of season. As a child, I don't think I was enamoured with them, but their unique shape helped get them down ( along with a healthy helping of vinegar to mask the bitter taste). Now, I like to have them at least once a year when they're in season, and this is how I like them cooked. I know I'm late posting this recipe, but if you can still get some fiddleheads, this is a simple and tasty way to cook them up.

Charred Onions and Fiddleheads

2 Handfuls of Fiddleheads washed
2 onions, chopped
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 handful slivered almonds

1. Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat.
2. Saute onions in dry skillet until they begin to char
3. Add fiddleheads and continue to saute for another 10 minutes.
4. Turn off the heat and stir in the balsamic
5. Serve topped with almonds

Thursday, June 12, 2014

My Return to Blogging and Chocolate Chili Power Balls

My return to Blogging (and a Life)

Well let's just say that I definitely didn't keep my promise to provide you with a new recipe every week this year. I haven't even been able to do one a month for the past little while, but things, they are a changing. I have a new job, a nicer schedule, and my stress levels are down which means lots more time to do the things I love like cooking, blogging, exercising and eating healthy food.

I've decided to start with a great recipe that I adapted slightly from the Thrive Diet. I am going hiking this weekend with a great friend of mine and need some portable snacks that provide an energy boost and more importantly, chocolate.

It's been a while since I've been on a good hike, and I'm looking forward to reconnecting with nature. Although this time of year is the worst for bugs, the temperatures are perfect for a day outside in the sun. We're going to a mountain that used to be a ski hill. I guess some local residents have been fixing the place up for the last couple of years so that people can enjoy the mountain again on foot or on their bikes. We used to drive by the hill all the time when I was younger so I'm hoping that I get nostalgic when we arrive. I love the memories that seem to resurface in those times.

This recipe is so easy. It only takes minutes to prepare so you could even do it the morning before a hike if you wanted.

Chocolate Chili Power Balls
adapted from "Spicy Chocolate Energy Bars" from The Thrive Diet by Brendan Brazier 2007

1 small banana
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 C soft medjool dates
1/2 C sunflower seeds
1/4 C cocoa
1/4 C ground flaxseed
1/4 C walnuts
sea salt to taste
2 Tbsp hemp seeds

1. In food processor, process all ingredients together except the hemp seeds. 
2. Shape into balls and coat with the hemp seeds

Makes 12 balls

Nutritional Information ( per ball)
cal 129
fat 4.7g
carbs 22.7g
    fibre 3.4g
    sugar 17.2g
protein 2.6g