Saturday, May 28, 2016

Spiralized Tri-Color Lemon-Parmesan Salad

Good morning, friends!

I know I’m a little late to the spiralizer trend, but bright, colorful, nutritious, and delicious salads never go out of style, right? That’s why I am so excited to share this recipe for Spiralized Tri-Color Lemon-Parmesan Salad with you!

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This salad is the perfect dish for any sort of summer entertaining or gathering on your calendar. (Perhaps a last-minute Memorial Day recipe?) It’s fun and festive and soooo easy to make, there’s no reason why you wouldn’t give it a whirl!

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With the help of my handy-dandy spiralizer and a simple homemade dressing, this dish comes together in no time at all and the flavors (and colors!) are guaranteed to wow just about any crowd!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 medium summer squashes
  • 2 medium orange carrots
  • 2 medium purple carrots
  • 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan + 1 tbsp for sprinkling on top
  • 1/4 tsp of both salt + pepper (more if desired)

Directions:

Spiralize squash and carrots and place in a large mixing bowl.

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In a separate smaller bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon, lemon zest, Parmesan, salt, and pepper. Add tomatoes to large mixing bowl.

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Pour dressing over veggie noodles and tomatoes; mix well. Serve salad on a large platter (or in a large bowl) and then sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese.

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Recipes makes 4 servings. Enjoy!!

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Roasted Eggplant Stuffed with Lamb

Eggplant and Lamb 1An edible serving dish made of roasted eggplant halves stuffed with cinnamon and paprika scented lamb. How does that sound for dinner tonight? The eggplant is roasted until the texture is creamy enough to eat with a spoon. The ground lamb is cooked with onion, garlic and aromatic spices. Combined, the eggplant and lamb turn into a meal that is the definition of simple, healthy and delicious.

Can you substitute ground beef, pork or even turkey in this recipe? Certainly. But don’t forget about what lamb has to offer: All eight essential amino acids, several B vitamins, niacin, zinc, iron and lots of conjugated linoleic acid. As with all meat, grass-fed is ideal. Although lamb is more likely to be grass-fed than beef, much depends on where the lamb is raised. Before stocking up on ingredients for this recipe, read this guide for figuring out whether or not lamb is grass-fed. (And check out the tips below for buying perfect eggplant.)

Servings: 4

Time in the Kitchen:
1 hour

Ingredients:

Primal
  • 2 eggplants, halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil, plus more to brush eggplant (30 ml)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste (10 ml)
  • 1 pound ground lamb (450 g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (2.5 ml)
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika (10 ml)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (a pinch)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro (or parsley) (60 ml)

How to Pick Perfect Eggplant:

To avoid bitterness, choosing a good eggplant at the market is more important than pre-salting and rinsing the eggplant. Look for smooth and shiny skin and a firm, but not rock-hard, texture. The stem should have a nice green color, and the area around the stem should also be firm, not mushy. The larger and older an eggplant is, the more likely it will be bitter and seedy. Choose medium-sized eggplants and ideally purchase from a farmer’s market where the eggplants are likely to be young and freshly picked.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 °F/204 °C.

Score the flesh of the eggplant with the tip of a knife in a crosshatch pattern, cutting not quite down to the skin. To make a crosshatch pattern, tilt the top of the eggplant to the right. Cut diagonal lines about an inch apart. Tilt the top of the eggplant to the left. Cut diagonal lines over the first lines so you have a diamond pattern.

Brush the eggplant flesh with a generous amount of coconut oil or olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Place the eggplant halves, flesh side down, in a roasting pan (lined with parchment for easier cleanup).

Roast 35 to 45 minutes until the skin is collapsing. Remove from the oven. The flesh should be very soft.

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While the eggplant is cooking, heat 2 tablespoons coconut oil/olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, cooking until soft, 8 minutes.

Add the garlic, then tomato paste. Stir, and cook another 2 to 3 minutes.

Raise the heat to medium-high. Add the ground lamb. Season the meat with salt, plus the cumin, paprika, and cinnamon. Break the meat up into small pieces as it cooks. When the meat is cooked, mix in the cilantro.

Spoon the ground lamb on top of the roasted eggplants. Serve.

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Farmers’ Market Finds: Scapes and Rabes, Beyond Broccoli and Garlic

If you haunt your farmers market looking for signs of spring, you’re probably familiar with garlic scapes and broccoli rabe…they’re some of the first greens you’ll find. But scapes and rabe come in more varieties than garlic and broccoli. Here’s the skinny on what they are and what other varieties to look for.

 

What Are Scapes?

These shoots are one of the first edible greens to crop up in spring. Scapes are simply flower stalks that grow out of the bulbs of garlic, onions and leeks. At the top of each is a bulb that will flower if left unplucked. For eating, though, scapes are picked when the green stalk is sturdy and the bulb is still a bulb. Scapes taste like the alliums they grow from, and you can use them in places you would use chopped onion.

 

How to Use Scapes

To cook scapes, remove the bulbs and use the stalks. Chop them finely and saute to soften. Add them to omelets or quiche, blitz them into a pesto or preserve them by pickling.

What Is Rabe?

Like scapes, rabe (also referred to as raab or rapini) is the outgrowth of more recognizable plants. Most greens, left to grow wild, will sprout and flower, turning into rabe. At the end of a harvest season, if plants like kale, broccoli, mustard and collard greens are left in the field, they’ll go to seed and sprout, even forming yellow flowers. That entire plant (including the leaves and flowers) is edible.

 

How to Cook Rabe

One of the easiest and best ways to cook any kind of rabe is to blanch it and then saute it in olive oil and garlic.

 

Kerri-Ann Jenning is a registered dietitian who writes on food and health trends. Find more of her work at kerriannjennings.com or follow her on Twitter @kerriannrd or Facebook.



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