...because how can you not make tomato, mozzarella and basil salad when you just got some fresh sungold cherry tomatoes at the farmers' market. Made for a perfect lunch!
sungold cherry tomatoes, halved
red grape tomatoes, halved
mini bocconcini balls
good quality olive oil
fresh cracked pink himalayan salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients to your taste. Let the salad sit for at least 30 minutes so the flavors can marinate. Buon Appetito!
Farmers' Markets are a bustlin...Go Go Go!!
pictured below (top to bottom, left to right): ramps, breakfast radishes, fiddelhead ferns, lilacs, rhubarb,
sungoldherry tomatoes, apple blossoms
Cauliflower is so versatile, light and tasty! I've been experiment with a few different recipes. Here is my take on a cauliflower soup...and I think it came out pretty good! I finished off my serving with a little truffle oil. This added a little decadence to this light soup.
half a head of cauliflower, chopped
1 large garlic clove, sliced
½ white onion, diced
optional: truffle salt, truffle oil
Steam the cauliflower until tender, not too mushy. Sauté the sliced onion in a little olive oil on a medium heat for a few minutes. Add the garlic. Continue to sauté until fragrant. Put everything in a blender. Add water or your favorite vegetable stock until desired consistency (not too thick!) Season with fresh cracked pepper and himalayan pink salt. Return the cauliflower mixture to the pot and simmer the for 15-20 minutes, I added some truffle salt to my portion and topped it off with a little truffle oil for good measure. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley (or chive, or scallions) to add some color and more fresh flavors. DELICIOUS!
This is a quick easy side. You can easily make it an entrée with the addition of salad or your favorite protein.
1 package Frozen spinach
1 can artichoke hearts, chopped
1 8oz container greek yogurt
1 tbsp butter
fresh cracked salt & pepper to taste
top with grated pecorino romano (about 1 tbsp)
Preheat oven to 350°.
Mix it all together and place in a prepared casserole dish (sprayed with non stick or greased with olive oil). Bake until everything is melted together.
EGG WHITE OMELETTE WITH FRESH SLICED AVOCADO
One of my go to, feel good, fresh start meals (though good anytime of day) :
Egg white omelette with fresh diced scallion, a little sharp cheddar cheese and a side of perfectly ripe avocado sprinkled with cayenne & fresh lemon juice
PRODUCT ALERT: Trader Joes Organic New Zealand Cheddar cheese (blue label) never disappoints. They sell it in a brick or sliced, I usually buy the brick.
MUSSELS WITH WITH WINE & GARLIC
When the weather gets sunny/warm and I start smelling those fresh spring breezes, I crave seafood like crazy! Lucky for me, I have a fish stand at the farmers market and they're back for the season. They provide great quality fish and their shellfish is always cleaned very well.
This is such a simple delicious dish, I hope you give it a go.
MUSSELS & SCALLOPS WITH WHITE WINE AND GARLIC
fresh, cleaned mussels, white wine (preferably something on the dryer side that you enjoy),
2-3 cloves of sliced garlic, sliced onion, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp butter
optional: add a little fresh diced tomato near the end of the cooking time.
Heat the butter and olive oil on a medium heat. Add the onions and cook for a few minutes, then add the garlic and continue to sautée until just fragrant (a few minutes). At this point I add my wine, 1/2 - 1 cup and bring to a boil. Add the cleaned, drained mussels, stir to combine and cover. Give the pot a good shake now and again to avoid burning the ones on the bottom. Cook until all mussels are opened. Top with fresh chopped parsley and serve with good quality baguette to soak up all of the delicious juices!!
So...this happened... I just finished a 3 day juice/soup cleanse the other day. JUS by Julie is run out of Brooklyn which was one of the reasons I decided to go with her company. It's always nice to keep it local! Let me first say that all of the juices and soups I had were delicious (honest)! Everything tasted fresh made. You could tell you were eating quality food with no additives.
The cleanse itself is very easy to follow. Information on what to do before, during and after is provided in their pamphlet, as well what to do if you really must have other foods during the cleanse (i.e. recommending eating raw/steamed green veggies or egg whites). My one big issue with the juices, included in my package, was that they were all pretty sweet... therefore having a fair amount of sugar in each one. When added up, it's quite a bit of sugar intake for one day. I think I was just expecting more of a mix. Meaning most juices being vegetable forward (less sugar) and a couple sweet treats along the way. Though I was uncomfortable with the amount of sugar, I still wanted to give this cleanse a try.
The hardest part for me ended up not really having to meal plan or prep food. I didn't realize how much a part of my life food prep, farmers markets and cooking were, until I had to spend just 3 days without! ha Be sure to drink lots of water during the cleanse, more than you normally would. I found the one day I was slacking on water, I would get abdominal cramping. So be sure to drink up! Overall this cleanse isn't too "tortuous" because you have the addition of satiating, tasty soups as well as the juices.
I ended up sticking with all my HIIT and weights classes for the 3 days, mainly to counter the sugar/carbs consumed, but also because I love my classes! Because of this, I ended up being pretty hungry in the evenings. A couple stalks of celery or sliced cucumber paired with lots of water curbed my hunger until morning though :-)
Once I finished the cleanse, I did notice a flatter belly as well as a little more energy in the morning, which is always nice! This was a good challenge for me in many ways, but overall I don't think I'd do another one. But if you're interested in cleansing, I would definitely check out JUS by Julie’s customizable cleanses. This way you can pick all of the juices according to your taste and preference!
This time I only used baby bella mushrooms, but I highly recommend adding in some king oyster and/or white button mushrooms as well. Sauté the minced mushrooms on a medium-high heat with a little extra virgin olive oil. Once they are less "watery", mix in the rest of the ingredients: fresh diced red tomato, sliced garlic, minced shallots, a dash of vegan worcestershire sauce and a splash of water. Cook at a simmer for 30-45 minutes. The longer it simmers the better. If it gets too dry, you can add a little (like a tbsp or so) water. And as always season with fresh cracked salt and pepper to taste.
To keep this meal a bit lighter, I served the sauce over raw zucchini noodles and a little whole wheat spaghetti. I keep the zucchini noodles raw because i prefer a little crunch. The heat from the pasta and sauce will cook them enough.
***And if you happen to have basil olive oil on hand....I recommend a little drizzle along with some extra fresh cracked pink himalayan salt.***