Monday, May 2, 2011

BBQ Chicken Salad

Lettuce of your choice, washed and torn
1/2 pkg. frozen corn, thawed
1 can black beans, rinsed
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped up
1 hand full of fresh basil, torn
Mix all above ingredients.
Mix ranch dressing over the salad mixture
Top with tomatoes, Monteray Jack cheese, and crushed corn chips
Gently toss again.
Grill 2-3 chicken breast that have been salt and peppered.
Once chicken is cooked slice into strips and then cube.
Pour honey BBQ sauce over and add to salad.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Garam Masala

Ayako sent me this recipe that she got from an Indian friend. This spice is found in several of the Indian recipes we come across. Enjoy making your own!

Grind all together:

1 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon cloves
3/4 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon cardamon
3 bay leaves

Olivia M's - Whole Wheat Graham Crackers

Cream together well:

1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup brown sugar

Combine dry ingredients:
2 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking powder

Add to creamed mixture with 1/2 cup water and 1/2 tsp. vanilla. Mix well, let stand 30 minutes. Roll out dough on large greased cookie sheet. Cut into cracker rectangles and prick each with a fork. Bake at 350 until browned about 12 minutes.

Homemade Almond Milk

Soak raw almonds overnight. Drain and rinse well.

Measure out 1 cup of the almonds and blend with 3 cups of water.

This is an alternative to dairy and soy "milks".

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Maple-Glazed Salmon

1 cup Nama Shoyu soy sauce or tamari
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon fresh ginger
1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 cup pure maple syrup
4 fresh salmon fillets, well rinsed


Mix the soy sauce, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, and maple syrup in a blender. Spread the soy mixture over the fish evenly in a baking dish. Marinate the fish in the refrigerator for 1 to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit/230 Celcius. Bake the fish for about 18 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

NOTE: I made this for my family for dinner tonight. It's nice, but not amazing... Still--we all ate it, including picky Weston, so it can't be SO mediocre...

Nearly Instant Thai Coconut Corn Soup

6 servings, 15 minutes prep/cook time

1 tablespoon light olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 to 5 scallions, thinly sliced
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into short, narrow strips
Two 14 to 15-oz cans light cocount milk
1 1/2 cups rice milk (can substitute cow's milk)
One 16 oz bag of frozen corn
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro

1. Heat the oil in a small soup pot. Add the garlic, the white parts of the scallions, and the bell pepper. Saute over medium-low heat until softened and golden, 2 to 3 minutes.

2. Add the coconut milk, rice milk, corn, curry powder, and the green parts of the scallions. If using the curry paste, dissolve it in a small amount of water before adding it to the soup.

3. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 3 minutes. Season with salt and remove from the heat.

4. Serve, passing around the cilantro for topping.

NOTE: Vegan and delicious!

Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Wilted Spinach

4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup canola oil
2 large red onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup butter
1 bag baby spinach (between 10 ounces and 16 ounces), soaked, well-rinsed and dried

1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In a mixing bowl, season potatoes with salt and pepper and toss with oil to coat. Place on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove briefly from oven and toss in onions, and return to oven to roast until potatoes are tender, approximately another 20 minutes. Transfer roasted potato mixture to a bowl. Drizzle honey over potatoes, add butter, mixing well, and then gently toss in spinach. The heat from the potatoes will wilt the spinach.

NOTE: My current personal favorite... Not too sweet but so filling and delicous!

Steamed Cauliflower with Cheddar Mustard Cream Sauce


2 medium heads cauliflower florets, chopped about 1 inch square

For Sauce
1 cup heavy cream
4 oz cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)
1 tablespoon grainy mustard
pinch cayenne pepper
salt and ground black pepper


For Cauliflower

Fit a large saucepan with a steamer basket. Fill the pan with enough water to reach just below the bottom of the basket. Bring the water to a boil over high heat and add the florets to the basket. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and steam until the cauliflower is tender but firm, about 7 minutes.

For Sauce

Place the cream in a small saucepan and bring to a bare simmer over medium heat. When the cream is steaming and just starting to boil around the edges of the pan, turn off the heat and add the cheese, mustard, and cayenne. Whisk together until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss the cauliflower gently with the cheese sauce in a serving bowl. Adjust the seasoning and serve immediately.

Note: This is yummy, and tho not low-cal, my kids eat lots of cauliflower when I make it!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Bread: Macaroni Grill Focaccia Bread

1 Tablespoon Dry yeast
1 Teaspoon Canola oil
1 Tablespoon Sugar
Nonstick cooking spray
1 Cup Warm water
2 Tablespoon Margarine
2 1/2 Cup White flour
1/4 Cup Fresh rosemary; chopped − (or 2 tbsps dried)
1 Teaspoon Salt

Place yeast, sugar and water in a large bowl or food processor and allow the
mixture to become bubbly. Mix in 2 c of flour and salt. Knead for about 10
min or process in food processor for 15 sec until smooth and elastic; add
flour if necessary. Oil a bowl, put dough in it and cover with a towel. Let
dough rise in a warm place for 1 hr, until doubled.
Punch down dough and divide in half. Let the dough rest for a few minutes.
Coat 2 9−in square cake pans with nonstick spray.
Press dough into pans. Melt margarine. Brush margarine over the tops of the
loaves. Sprinkle rosemary over the loaves and lightly press into the
surface. Let the loaves rise again until doubled, about 45 min.
Preheat oven to 450 F. Lightly sprinkle salt over the loaves. Bake for 20 −
25 min, until lightly browned.

Personal Notes: This is the most awesome bread. It is great with sandwiches or just dipped in olive oil and fresh black pepper. I really can't get enough of it and it is really not too hard to make. Good luck!

Dinner: Grilled Veggie Sandwich on Focaccia Bread

Grilled Veggie Sandwich on Focaccia Bread

1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/8 cup olive oil
1 cup sliced red bell peppers
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 red onion, sliced
1 small yellow squash, sliced
2 (4-x6-inch) focaccia bread pieces, split
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1. In a bowl, mix the mayonnaise, minced garlic, and lemon juice. Set aside in the refrigerator.
2. Preheat the grill for high heat.
3. Brush vegetables with olive oil on each side. Brush grate with oil. Place bell peppers and zucchini closest to the middle of the grill, and set onion and squash pieces around them. Cook for about 3 minutes, turn, and cook for another 3 minutes. The peppers may take a bit longer. Remove from grill, and set aside.
4. Spread some of the mayonnaise mixture on the cut sides of the bread, and sprinkle each one with feta cheese. Place on the grill cheese side up, and cover with lid for 2 to 3 minutes. This will warm the bread, and slightly melt the cheese. Watch carefully so the bottoms don't burn. Remove from grill, and layer with the vegetables. Enjoy as open faced grilled sandwiches.

Personal Notes: I have an awesome recipe for Focaccia bread that will post also. Great sandwich!!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Wilted Spinach

copyright 2006 Robert Irvine, All rights reserved
Prep Time: 25 min Cook Time: 40 min Serves: 6 servings

• 4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered
• Salt
• Freshly ground black pepper
• 1/2 cup canola oil
• 2 large red onions, finely chopped
• 1/4 cup honey
• 1/2 cup butter
• 1 bag baby spinach (between 10 ounces and 16 ounces), soaked, well-rinsed and dried


Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F.

In a mixing bowl, season potatoes with salt and pepper and toss with oil to coat. Place on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove briefly from oven and toss in onions, and return to oven to roast until potatoes are tender, approximately another 20 minutes. Transfer roasted potato mixture to a bowl. Drizzle honey over potatoes, add butter, mixing well, and then gently toss in spinach. The heat from the potatoes will wilt the spinach.

Personal Note: Lots of butter in this--SO yummy. Great main dish, side or lunch. Reheats nicely too for leftovers.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Quinoa, Mango, and Black Bean Salad

Thank you! This is awesome. :) I can hardly wait to try your yummy recipes!

This is one of my favorites! (I sometimes leave out the sesame oil, since it's a little strong for me.)

Quinoa, Mango, and Black Bean Salad

½ cup quinoa
1 cup water
¼ cup orange juice
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. minced fresh ginger
1/8 tsp. salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 small mango, diced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 cup canned black beans rinsed
2 scallions thinly sliced

1. Toast quinoa in a small dry saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until it crackles and becomes aromatic (4-6 min.). Transfer to a fine sieve and rinse thoroughly. (Wait till any froth goes away). Return the quinoa to the pot and add water. Bring toa simmer; reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cover and cook until the quinoa is tender and liquid has been absorbed. 15-20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, whisk orange juice, cilantro, vinegar, oil, ginger, salt and cayenne in a medium bowl. Add mango, bell pepper, beans and scallions; toss to coat.
3. When the quinoa is finished cooking, add to the mango mixture and toss to combine.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Dinner: Chickpea Curry

from The Essential Vegetarian Cookbook

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total cooking time: 40-45 minutes

Serves: 4

2 onions

4 cloves garlic

1 Tablespoon oil

1 teaspoon chilii powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon tumeric

1 teaspoon paprika

1 Tablespoon ground cumin

1 Tablespoon ground coriander

2 x 440 g (14 oz) cans chickpeas, drained

440 g (14 oz) canned tomato pieces

1 teaspoon garam masala

1.) Slice onions finely; crush the garlic. Heat oil in a medium pan. Add onion and garlic to pan; cook over medium heat, stirring until soft.

2.) Add the chilli powder, salt, turmeric, paprika, cumin and coriander. Stir over heat for 1 minute.

3.) Add chickpeas and undrained tomatoes, stir until combined. Simmer, covered, over low heat 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in garam masala. Simmer, covered, for another 10 minutes.

PERSONAL NOTE: This makes a delicious meal wrapped inside chapattis or naan bread. I usually double the recipe, because we love it.

Lunch: Lentil Salad with Walnuts and Scallions

from The New Best Recipe cookbook

Serves 4

1 cup Lentils du Puy (green lentils), rinsed and picked over
1/2 medium onion, halved
2 bay leaves
1 large-sprig fresh thyme
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted in a dry skillet over medium heat until fragrant, about 3 minutes, then cooled
2 scallions, white and green parts, sliced thin
1/2 cup drained jarred roasted red peppers, diced

1. Bring the lentils, onion, bay leaves, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer until the lentils are tender but still hold their shape, 25 to 30 minutes.

2. Whisk the vinegar, mustard, 1/4 teaspoon salt, the pepper and oil together in a small bowl; set aside.

3. Drain the lentils through a fine-mesh strainer and discard the onion, bay leaves, an d thyme. Transfer the lentils to a medium bowl. Toss the warm lentils with the vinaigrette and cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes. Stir in the walnuts, scallions and roasted red peppers and serve immediately.

This is Bret and my favorite salad and we have it at least once per week for lunch. I've been taking it to potlucks and having it at parties as it's a nice, filling, non-dairy, vegetarian dish that suits multiple diets. We usually make it ahead and keep it in the fridge for the weekend. My kids don't eat it as it doesn't LOOK nearly as good as it tastes and they aren't convinced lentils are delicious. I'm confident they will come around someday... :)

Sanck: Hummus

from The New Best Recipe cookbook
Makes about 2 cups, serving 8-10

1 (15 oz) can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 medium garlic clove, minced or pressed through a garlic press
3/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons juice from 1 large lemon
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water

Process all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth, about 40 seconds. Transfer the hummus to a serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill until the flavors meld, at least 30 minutes; serve cold. (The hummus can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.)

PERSONAL NOTE: My family LOVE this recipe. We dip all sorts of veggies. I cut them up and leave red peppers, carrots, mushrooms, peas, jicama, broccoli, tomatoes, etc ready for dipping...

Breakfast: Green Lemonade

1 head romaine lettuce or celery
5 to 6 stalks Kale (looks different than US Kale but can be found here!)
1 to 2 apples
1 lemon (I cut off peel)
1 Tablespoon fresh ginger

Process the vegetables through a juicer. Pour into a large glass (I strain it and add ice). Delicous!

Note: My son LOVES this so I usually double the recipe for the four in my family and serve it at breakfast. The lemon really cuts the 'green' taste.

Welcome to Eat Well Beijing

Let's do this together! Jennie gave us a great kickstart with her lesson last week. Here's my proposal:

Each week we'll ask three people to post a snack and dinner plan that is healthy, whole, and (may I add) MOSTLY meat-free. The idea is that we'd love to try new ideas, give suggestions and rate our best recipes. Let's share resources, ideas and excitement as we feed our families healthy, good food!

Looking forward to getting inspired with each of you!