Category Archives: recipe

I’m honored to be featured…

I’m honored to be featured in the first edition of the new Florida Keys health and wellness magazine, WELL.

Magazine CoverThis lovely, full-color publication is brought to us by Charlie Wilson owner of Date & Thyme, Tori Mata, General Manager and their helpful, friendly staff.    Their two locations in Key West are:

date & thyme Organic Cafe, Juice Bar and Market, 829 Fleming Street   305.296.7766

date & thyme Organic Coffee Shop, 1130 Duval Street.  305.587.7475

If you are out and about in Key West, please pick up a copy of this great new publication dedicated to the organic lifestyle.  Featured are articles on healthy eating, wellness, gardening, meditation, mindfulness, food, alternative therapies and recipes.

If you are not in Key West, you can download the PDF of the latest issue here for free:  Well Magazine, Fall, 2015 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Almost Dairy-Free Augratin Potatoes

If you’ve been reading my blog for any amount of time, you know that we’re pretty much dairy-free EXCEPT for cheese.  So this recipe is essentially dairy free until you add the cheese.  This is a recipe that was born of my Mom’s potatoes augratin recipe, except I’ve eliminated glutens and most all dairy.  And it’s what I call a ‘warm fuzzy’ dish.  My husband loves this kind of thing. Potatoes Augratin Baked

While this isn’t my usual uber-healthy style of dish, it’s more healthy using coconut milk and olive oil instead of cow’s milk and butter.  The good thing about this is that this recipe does indeed give you some fiber.  I’m a huge fan of fiber!   Most people don’t get nearly enough every day.  Women should have 21 grams a day and men should have at least 32 grams a day.  Without fiber, your digestive system (and colon) simply don’t work properly.  Fiber also helps offset any damaging sugars that you might take in, and along with protein, gives you the energy to stay active all day.

This recipe uses my own version of a bechamel sauce, detailed below.   You can use any type of potato you have on hand, but be aware your results might vary depending on the potato you choose. Today I used Russet potatoes simply because they were the only organic potatoes available here in the store today. Potatoes and Onions wholeThey aren’t the most preferred for this type of recipe.  Your potatoes will hold up better in the dish if you use red or white potatoes.

Some of the ingredients and instructions are approximations.   I go by how things are moving along and by how the sauce looks as I’m building it, so some of this will be up to you as to how much you use when it comes to oil (or butter), corn starch and the coconut milk.

Also, I pealed my potatoes, but to be honest, they’d be far healthier if you leave the skin on after scrubbing, to give you yet even more fiber. PLUS for me, the less time with a knife in my hand, the better.  I’m prone to cutting myself when cooking, and also to burning myself.  Recently, I cut my hand, then when removing something from the oven, I burned the exact place where the cut was!  No kidding!

So, here we go:

Almost Dairy-Free Potatoes Augratin

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Augratin ingredientsIngredients:

  • 4 or 5 medium to large size organic potatoes, pealed & cut in 1/4″ slices or thinner
  • 1/2 cup organic onions, sliced
  • 5 TBS (+/-) organic olive oil (or you can use butter if you wish)
  • 5 TBS (+/-) organic corn starch
  • 4 cups (or less) unsweetened organic coconut milk
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 5 cups grated organic sharp cheddar cheese.

Place the sliced potatoes and sliced onions in a pan.  Fill pan about 3/4 full of water.  Potatoes and ONionsCook on medium heat approx 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender and onions are transparent.   Drain.

Place the potatoes and onions in an 8″ x 8″ baking dish.   Add about 2 cups grated cheese and very gently stir into the hot potatoes to mix.

For the bechamel sauce, start with approx 5 TBS olive oil (or butter if you choose) in a sauce pan.  Allow to heat but not bubble.   Gradually stir in the corn starch until you have a thick roux.  Cook a minute or two until all is well incorporated.

Add coconut milk slowly, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly, allowing the milk to incorporate with the oil / butter and corn starch mix.   Continue to add until you have a good sauce consistency.    You may not need this much coconut milk or you might need more.  I play it by ear.

Add 1 cup grated cheese and stir into the sauce.   Add salt and pepper to taste.

When thickened, pour the sauce over the potatoes in the baking dish, and gently stir or ‘nudge’ it into the potatoes.   PotatoesAugratin Pre-bakeAdd the remaining cheese to the top.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or more.  If you want it a bit dryer and more browned on top, you can certainly cook longer.

 

ENJOY!

Recipe: Quick and Easy Crab Stuffed Avocado

My quick and easy crab stuffed avocado will fool family and friends into thinking you’ve worked long and hard over lunch.  Crab Avocado SaladFlorida avocados are plentiful now, and they are delicious, healthy, high-fiber and will give you a really good dose of ‘good fats’.

QUICK AND EASY CRAB-STUFFED AVOCADO

  • 1 medium to large Florida Avocado (You can use Haas if you can’t get the Florida version)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro (scant)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped celery leaves/hearts
  • scant 1 TBS freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup Soy-free Veganaise (adjust to taste)
  • 2 TBS prepared Dijon mustard (adjust to taste)
  • 1 cup wild-caught lump crab meat, picked and cleaned

Mix onion, cilantro, lemon juice, mustard and Veganaise.  Add crab meat and mix well.

Cut avocado into quarters if it’s really large, peal and arrange on plate. If it’s a medium size avocado, half an avocado will serve one person. (Image above shows avocado half not pealed).  Fill with Crab Salad and garnish.

 

CrabAvocadoSaladIngredientsI buy the crab from Publix and find it to be rather good quality.  You can also buy Snow Crab Legs and remove from the shell.  This is a filling lunch or light dinner.

I made this last week with a larger avocado than shown and it made a very healthy, filling six (6) servings.

**WARNING**  Do not make this or any dish from the ‘crab stick’ or other fake lobster or seafood products.  What is it?  It’s the sweepings from the floor at a fish processing facility!  NASTY!!!!

Simple, healthy meals: Lobster

So many healthy, fresh meals are very, very simple to make.   AND then the leftovers are simple as well.

As an example, a few nights ago, we had Florida Lobster as our main course, with sides of fresh steamed green beans and sautéed fresh mushrooms. This is so simple, has a lovely, colorful presentation and very healthy as well.  This is proof that healthy meals don’t have to be complicated.

Then the next day there were lobster omelets for brunch.

There are many ways to prepare lobster – broiling and grilling and baking.  We’ve found that baking is the simplest simply because we can walk away for half an hour and it’s done.  We prepared the below for three persons:

Baked Lobster

  • 4 lobster tails  (one for each person and one for leftovers)
  • Organic butter

BakedLobsterTailSlit the back shells of the lobster tails, and pull the meat out, leaving attached towards the ‘fin’ of the tail.  Slightly butterfly the meat and arrange on top of the shell.   For presentation, spread the tail and place on a baking sheet.  Put small chunks of butter on each and put in preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.    At the end of 30 minutes, check to be sure that they are cooked through.

Melt butter or ghee and put in small cups to be served with the lobster.   Arrange on serving plate with beans and mushrooms.

Wrap remaining tail in plastic wrap and store in fridge.

 

Mushrooms

  • 1 package fresh white mushrooms, organic
  • 1/2 cup of thinly sliced organic onion
  • 3 tbs organic butter or organic olive oil
  • fresh organic herbs – I like adding thyme

Slice mushrooms thinly. Melt butter in sauté pan over medium heat.  Add onions and stir, until transparent.   Add mushrooms and sauté until slightly browned, still over medium heat. Add herbs and allow to cook another 5 minutes or so.

And now for the leftovers:

Lobster, Mushroom and Onion Omelet

  • 1 lobster tail from previous night
  • 4 large mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 2 Tbs finely shopped onions
  • Organic butter
  • 2 Organic eggs
  • 1/2 cup Shredded organic cheddar

OmeletChop lobster into 1/2″ chunks.

Melt butter in large sauté pan.  Add onions and mushrooms and cook until soft.

Whip eggs with a TBS of water, and pour into pan over vegetables.  Add shredded cheese.   Once eggs are set, add the lobster and fold in half.  Serve hot.

 

 

 

 

 

Recipe: Pasta with fresh tomatoes

I found a recipe recently that looked amazing.  Of course, as usual, I changed it up a great deal.   But I thought I’d share it with you.

Spaghetti with Fresh Tomatoes

Serves 2

  • 2 ripe organic tomatoes (I used one huge organic heirloom tomato)
  • 1/2 teaspoons medium Himalayan sea salt
  • organic spaghetti or any pasta you like (I used Ancient Harvest)
  • 1 clove of organic garlic, smashed then diced
  • 1/4 cup organic basil, cut into ribbons
  • 2 TBS organic butter, cut into three or four pieces
  • Organic Olive oil, as needed
  1. Season the tomatoes with the salt and toss them well.
  2. Put a big pot of water on to boil.
  3. Set garlic aside for a few minutes
  4. Cut the basil into ribbons or roughly chop it.
  5. Heat a teaspoon or two of the olive oil in a large saute’ pan over medium high heat.  Add garlic and cook til just beginning to brown around the edges and soften. This takes a couple of minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, cook your pasta, drain it, put it back in the pot, and oil the pasta to keep it from sticking to itself
  7. Pour the tomatoes into a colander over the saute’ pan so that the tomato juice will drain into the pan below. Set the tomatoes in colander aside, in a bowl.
  8. Swirl the sauce to bring it to a simmer. Add the butter while continuing to swirl or stir the sauce. Keep the sauce moving until all the butter is melted. Add the basil, the pasta and toss to coat the pasta evenly. Divide the pasta two bowls and top with the tomatoes.

Other Ingredients Finished Dish

This recipe has a fresh taste that it impossible to beat!  It is light, it is vegetarian and gives you fiber and nutrients as well.

 

While I changed this up a bit, I do give credit where credit is due.  The original version came from Food52.com in the Genius Recipes section.

Delicious veggie pancakes

A healthy veggie breakfast!  You didn’t think it was possible?  It is.  We did it this morning! It’s all organic and has a healthy helping of fiber, vitamins and protein.

I found the recipe on a site that I enjoy, TheHeartySoul.com, except I made a few alterations so those are included in this version.

Zucchini Pancakes

Zucchini Veggie Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup organic sweet potato with skin on, grated
  • 1 cup organic zucchini, grated
  • 1 cup organic yellow squash, grated
  • 1/8 cup grated organic onion
  • 3 eggs, thoroughly beaten until frothy
  • 4 heaping tablespoons organic gluten-free oat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Organic olive oil, for cooking
  • freshly grated organic Parmesan Cheese
  • Organic sour cream
    Directions:
  1. 1. In a large bowl, mix together the grated veggies, eggs, flour, and salt until thoroughly combined.
  2. Heat a thin layer of olive oil on a griddle at 300 degrees (or if you use a saute’ pan, be sure it’s medium heat.) You want the pancakes to cook all the way through the middle by the time they’re brown on the outside. When the oil is hot, drop pancake-size dollops of the veggie mixture into the pan, without overcrowding. Flatten a bit. Cook until the bottom starts to brown.
  3. Flip and sprinkle with the grated Parmesan cheese
  4. Cook until browned on the second side, then repeat until the batter is gone.
  5. Transfer cooked pancakes to a paper towels.  Serve immediately. If you need to keep warm, you can tent with foil or place in the oven on the lowest setting on a plate.
  6. Serve warm with a topping of sour cream.

Serve with a side of fresh organic cantaloupe or for an extra helping of nutrients,  avocado chunks.

Notes:  The yellow squash and the zucchini once grated, tend to be a bit watery so I added extra flour.  These didn’t turn out fluffy and were a bit flat but were still delicious.  The sweet potato was difficult to grate so watch the knuckles.   I can’t tell you how many times I’ve grated my knuckle over the years! Grating the onion was simple, but it turned out very watery.  However, I think that it added to the dish.

We had three extra and I wrapped in paper towel, put in a zip lock and will warm and have them perhaps tomorrow AM.