Living and Eating Well!

 

Spicy Tuesday – Warm Gingered Pineapple – Ginger

Woo hoo! Its not often we get to share a recipe with two ingredients. You read correctly – only two!

Those two ingredients are super stars in the world of flavor, though. Rich, sweet, juicy pineapple often stars on it own, but with the addition of a crystallized ginger it becomes a knock-out. Pineapple not only tastes great plus, its full of bromelain.  It is bromelain’s ability to keep blood thin and prevent it from clotting, as well as its anti-inflammatory properties that makes it a good immune booster for the body. Pineapple is also full of Vitamin C.

Then there is the zing of ginger that rounds out the sweet and spicy flavor of this easy dish. Ginger has been used for centuries as a home made remedy for upset tummies because it interrupts the communication between the stomach and the nausea center in the brain. Crystallized ginger is fresh ginger that has been preserved in sugar. Just a little bit will make this dessert fantastic, and a cup of tea even more delicious. There is lower sugar crystallized ginger available – try to find it in speciality stores or online (www.gingerpeople.com is a great resource).  Ginger is being studied all over the world to fight obesity, build one’s immune system, and help sore muscles. For a cancer patient, we recommend making a few easy ginger recipes and teas to use when you have a bought of nausea. This is a great recipe just for that reason!

Warm Gingered Pineapple

1 Whole Pineapple cut into chunks

2 TB Chopped Crystallized Ginger

Turn the oven to broil. Toss the pineapple and ginger together in a bowl and let sit on the counter while the oven comes to temperature. When the oven is hot, spread the pineapple with the ginger on a sheet tray lined with aluminum foil. (We like the nonstick kind of foil for this recipe.) Cook for 5 – 7 minutes or until the pineapple gets browned around the edges, stirring at least once. Remove from the oven and serve warm or at room temperature.

Spicy Tuesday – Touch of Thai Lime Salad – Parsley – 040814

Its that time of the year here in Atlanta.  Flowers bloom and the weather is gorgeous, and full of the promise of spring. We break out our shorts and get excited for warmer weather. And then…days like yesterday. Rainy, gloomy and dark, fog filling the sky and putting a damper on outside fun.

Gloomy and grey? A perfect day for a salad filled with sunshine! This one is full of flavor and texture from the crunchy Napa cabbage, to the creamy-rich avocado, the vivid green taste of the parsley and the snap from the peanuts. Yes, peanuts. If you are craving Thai cuisine, this salad makes a wonderful substitute for a high fat-high calorie Masaman Thai curry, typically made with avocadoes, tomatoes, peanuts and lime. You can still enjoy the character of the Thai cuisine without feeling guilty. What’s better than that?

Parsley adds to the gorgeous color of the salad, as well as to the taste. Sometimes we think of parsley as just a garnish. But parsley is full of nutrition, too! Studies show that there are compounds found in parsley that not only inhibits tumor formation (especially in the lungs), but also activate enzymes that help fight against oxidized molecules. You should shoot for 2TB a few times a week to get the benefits of this rich antioxidant herb.

Touch of Thai Lime Salad

1 Cup of Chopped Parsley

½ Head of Napa Cabbage, Shredded

2 Large Carrots, Shredded

1 Avocado, Pitted, Peeled and Chopped

2 Tomatoes, Chopped

½ Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese

¼ Cup Dry Roasted Peanuts

1 Recipe *Lime Honey Dressing

Toss all the salad dressing ingredients together in a large bowl. Drizzle the Lime Honey Dressing over it and toss before serving.

*Lime Honey Dressing

Juice of 2 Limes

1 TB Honey

2 TB Unseasoned Rice Vinegar

1 TB Dijon Mustard

½ Cup Grapeseed Oil

Sea Salt and Freshly Cracked Black Pepper to Taste

Shake the dressing ingredients together in a jar – season to taste with salt and pepper.

Spicy Tuesday – Kale Chips – Smoked Paprika

Every time we serve these crispy treats we make friends! Although kale seems to be in the news all the time, it seems like many people haven’t made their own kale chips. Yes, you can buy kale chips in the store, but no, they aren’t as good as this easy-to-make, delicious and flavorful recipe! Baked, not fried, this is a great way to talk the whole family into loving kale.

Any spices or spice mix can be used to flavor the chips, but we love smoked paprika. The taste of “bacon without bacon” is how this bright red spice has been described by a student in one of our classes. Smoked paprika is made by grinding capsicum peppers into powder. When you eat at least 1 T of the yummy spice, you get several health benefits including carotenoids, B Vitamins, and Vitamin E. And who would have ever known that smoked paprika can actually help control blood pressure and boost metabolism? The capsaicin in the peppers is what causes the heat and helps your body with both of these. So these chips are a win win in every way—-enjoy!

Kale Leaves Ready for the Oven!

Kale Chips

Preheat the oven to 275F. Make the chips by removing the tough stem from the kale leaves. (You can use the flat or curly leaves.) Wash the leaves and dry them thoroughly. Toss them very lightly with olive oil spray, sea salt and smoked paprika to taste. Place them in one layer in a cookie sheet, and place the sheet in the preheated oven. Bake for about 25 minutes, or a little longer, until very crisp.

Spicy Tuesday – Cream of Asparagus Soup – Chives

No chives? Use the tops of green onions!

It seems like we are on a soup kick lately – but there’s nothing like soup to warm up a chilly spring evening and get us ready for sunny weather. This soup is made with asparagus – a real harbinger of spring. Just because its thick and creamy doesn’t mean its made with cream! We use dried split peas to add body and texture to this soup, which is pureed with an immersion blender.

The bright green flavor in this soup is highlighted by the acidity of freshly chopped tomatoes and the tang of chives. They add just the right slightly onion-ey taste to bring out all the complexities in this celebration of spring soup. Chives are super easy to grow in a pot on your windowsill and can add color and pop to almost any dish. They have several antioxidants in them; one in particular that reduces inflammation is quercetin. Chives also contain carotenes, zeaxanthin and lutein, which help protect against lung and oral cancers. In addition, traditional folk remedies use chives to ease an upset stomach and flatulence and stimulate digestion. What a wonderful soup to bring us into the spring here in Georgia…enjoy!

“Cream” of Asparagus Soup

2 Cups Chopped Asparagus

½ Cup Chopped Onion

½ Cup Chopped Fennel

2 TB EVOO

2 Cups Dried Split Peas

6 Cups Veg Broth

2 Cloves Garlic

1 Tsp Sea Salt

½ Tsp Black Pepper

½ Tsp Red Pepper Flakes

2 TB Fresh Lemon Juice

Fresh Chopped Tomatoes and Chives for Garnish

Sauté the asparagus, onion and fennel together in a large stock pot with the EVOO. Add in the peas, broth, garlic, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Bring to a bowl and then turn the heat down. Simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Using the immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth. Stir in the lemon juice and serve garnished with the tomatoes and chives.

Spicy Tuesday – Tuscan White Bean and Kale Soup – Fennel

This is one of our  favorite soups because it highlights a powerfood—KALE! Plus, it tastes so good that the whole family will love it on these cool spring evenings. Kale is a cancer fighting powerfood because of all its phytochemicals! FORTY-FIVE different types of plant compounds are in this tasty green. It also has fiber, vitamins, and minerals that give your energy throughout the day.

A delicious compliment to the kale is our spice of the week, fennel. This crunchy and slightly sweet herb adds a refreshing contribution to Mediterranean dishes. The fennel bulb is an excellent source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is the body’s primary water-soluble antioxidant, able to neutralize free radicals. Fennel also has fiber, folate, and potassium. We’ll be serving up Tuscan White Bean and Kale soup along with our kale goodies tomorrow in our “Kale is King” class at Cancer Wellness at Piedmont West. We can’t wait to share it with our wonderful participants!

Tuscan White Bean and Kale Soup

2 TB Olive Oil

1 Cup Chopped Onion

1 Cup Chopped Red Pepper

1 Cup Chopped Fennel

1 Cup Chopped Carrot

2 TB Italian Seasoning

1 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes

1 Bunch Kale, thinly sliced

2 Garlic Cloves, Grated

4 Cups Veg Broth

1 Can (15 OZ) Chopped Tomatoes, undrained

1 Can (15 OZ) Cannellini Beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 Tsp each Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Optional: Sauté 8 Ounces Chicken Sausage, coarsely chopped and add to the soup when cooking for 15 – 20 minutes

Garnish: ½ Cup Shredded Parmesan and Basil for Garnish

In a large dutch oven, sauté the onions, pepper, fennel, carrots, seasoning and red pepper flakes together, until the onion is just tender. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add kale and garlic; cover and continue cooking for 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients; cover and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Taste for seasoning and serve, garnished with the Parmesan and basil.

Spicy Tuesday – Rooibos Poached Pears – Mint

We’re heading towards the end of pear season here in the US, and before it leaves, it’s the perfect time for these luscious and super easy-to-make poached pears. The pears we buy in the grocery store are most likely from Northern California or Washington State. Between the months of August and May you can find many different varieties in season and available.

Pears are a good source of fiber, B Vitamins, and potassium. And most importantly they just taste great! This recipe shows off the versatility of juicy pears. Topping the dessert is an herb that we love, mint. Sweet or savory, chopped or whole, mint plays an important role in many of our favorite dishes. Its bold bright flavor adds just the right pop to the sweetness of the honey and zesty ginger glazed pears and the richness of the frozen yogurt.

We love using mint because it promotes healthy digestion and aids in decreasing any nausea. And mint alone is a natural stimulant so besides taking in some of this beautiful spring weather in Atlanta; you can enjoy this recipe to lift your mood too!

Don’t put this recipe away until next pear season. Sweet summer peaches are also a great star in this dish!

Rooibos Poached Pears

4 Cups Brewed Rooibos Tea
(You can find it in the grocery store)

½ Cup Honey

2 TB Chopped Crystallized Ginger

4 Pears, peeled, halved, and pitted

Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Mint for Garnish

Step One In a large saucepan, heat the tea and honey until just simmering. Add the pear halves with cut side facing up. Reduce the heat to low and cook until tender, when they can be pierced easily with a skewer, about 10 – 15 minutes. Remove the pears from the sauce. (If the sauce is still very liquid, you may want to reduce it further by continuing to simmer it.

Step Two To serve, place the pear in a bowl and top with vanilla frozen yogurt. Drizzle additional sauce over the top and garnish with fresh mint.

Spicy Tuesday – Mediterranean Farro Salad – Parsley

Don’t you just love something like soup or salad that tastes even better the next day? We do too! This salad is one that you can make and serve one night and eat the leftovers in a pita pocket for lunch the next day or two. The salad continues to develop great flavors as it sits in the fridge. One of the reasons why is the grain that we used – Farro just keeps absorbing all the wonderful flavors from the basil-balsamic vinaigrette and the other yummy ingredients in the salad.

So what exactly is FARRO? Farro (FAHR-oh) is a grain that hails from the Mediterranean and was the staple food that is said to have sustained the Roman legions. Look for it in the rice and pasta section of your local grocery store. The chewy and nutty grain is full of fiber and complex carbs which keep you satisfied and “even-keel” for a few hours. It is a perfect stand-in for brown rice, quinoa or barley in your favorite dish.

Not only are there delicious and healthy spices in the dressing, parsley plays a lead role in the salad itself. Although you may think of parsley as just a little green on the side of a plate, it has myristicin, an organic compound that inhibits tumor formation (especially in the lungs). Myristicin can also neutralize carcinogens. The Vitamin C and  A help keep the immune system up to par. Enjoy the salad and share with friends!

Mediterranean Farro Salad

½ Cup Chopped Kalamata Black Olives

1 Cup Chopped Tomatoes

¼ Cup Capers

½ Cup Raisins or Dried Figs

½ Cup Chopped Fennel or Celery

¼ Cup Chopped Parsley

1 LB Bag FARRO, prepared as directed on bag

*1 Recipe Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette

Step One Place all the ingredients in a large salad bowl. Toss with the *Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette, beginning with half the dressing and adding more as needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

*Basil-Balsamic Vinaigrette

1 Garlic Clove, Grated

2 TB Red Wine

2 TB Balsamic Vinegar

1 Tsp Dijon Mustard

½ Cup Basil Leaves, (Packed)

¼ – ½ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Sea Salt and Black Pepper

Step One Place the first 5 ingredients in a food processor or blender and process well. Drizzle in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Spicy Tuesday – Delicious PRO Biotic Soup – Dill

We had a blast in Orlando, Florida speaking at the C4YW 2014 Annual Conference. We met some wonderful women and had fun presenting our live cooking demo. This is the soup we prepared. It was so well received we decided to share it on our Spicy Tuesday blog. Shayna highlighted the pre/probiotic benefits in the powerful soup. And Chef Nancy demonstrated how to make it. The highlighted herb in the recipe is dill. It helps with digestion. Dill also has volatile oils that help neutralize particular types of carcinogens, such as cigarette smoke and charcoal grill smoke.
This wonderful soup can be made in a slow cooker so that you have a healthy meal for the family waiting for you when you get home after work. Enjoy!

White Bean, Artichoke and Sauerkraut Soup
1 TB Olive Oil
2 Yellow Onions, Chopped
1 TB Smoked Paprika
2 Tsp Turmeric
½ Tsp Each Sea Salt and
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
3 Garlic Cloves, Grated
12 Cups Veg Stock
1 LB Sauerkraut, Rinsed and
drained (from the refrigerated
section of the grocery store)
2 (15 OZ) Cans Cannellini
Beans, drained and well rinsed
1 Cup Chopped Frozen Artichoke
Hearts
1 Cup Non Fat Greek Yogurt
Chopped Dill and Toasted Fennel
Seeds for Garnish
Step One Heat the olive oil in a stockpot and sauté the onions with the smoked paprika, turmeric and salt and pepper until the onions are very soft. (About 30 minutes over low heat.) Add the garlic cloves in, and cook and stir until fragrant.
Step Two Add the veg stock, sauerkraut, cannellini beans and artichoke to the pot and cook for an additional 20 minutes or until warm. Remove from the heat and stir in the yogurt. Garnish with dill and the toasted fennel seeds and serve. This soup keeps well in the fridge for 3 days.

The following foods contain PROBIOTICS:

* Yogurt
*Kefir
*Kim chi
Soy sauce
*Miso
*Tempeh
*Sauerkraut
*Buttermilk

The following foods contain PREBIOTICS:

*Chicory root
*Artichoke
*Oatmeal
*Onion
* Garlic
* Leeks
* Legumes
*Asparagus
*Leafy greens
* Berries
* Bananas

We are still enjoying the memories of the Angels on Earth Luncheon last week. The friends, the food, and the fun are still with us…as we get ready to head to Florida and speak at the Annual Young Survivors Conference! This will be our third appearance at the conference; we love sharing good food and nutrition facts with the attendees. But before the glow of the luncheon wears off, we want to share this beautiful recipe with you.

Easy, gluten free and luscious – it’s packed with protein from the almonds and delicious nutrition from the lavender – one of our favorite herbs. Research has revealed that the essential oil of lavender may be useful for treating anxiety, insomnia, depression, and restlessness.

Some studies even suggest that lavender can help digestive issues such as vomiting, nausea, intestinal gas, upset stomach, and abdominal swelling.

Enjoy creating and eating this special treat!

Lavender Almond Cupcakes

1 ¾ Cup Almond Meal

4 Large Eggs, at room temperature, separated

1/2 Cup + 1 Tsp Lavender Honey ****

1 Tsp Vanilla

1/2 Tsp Baking Soda

1/2 Tsp Fine Sea Salt

Step One Preheat oven to 350F. Spray and line a 9” springform pan. OR spray and line a round or square 9″ pan OR spray a cupcake pan or cupcake liners.

Step Two Beat the 4 egg whites on medium speed until very foamy, white and doubled in volume, about the soft peak stage.

Step Three Beat the 4 egg yolks, the honey, vanilla, baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. Add the ground almonds and beat on low until combined.

Step Four Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the nut mixture until just combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

Step Five Bake the cake until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. If using a springform pan, Run a knife around the edge of the pan and gently remove the side ring.) To serve, brush the top of the cake with honey and sprinkle with sliced almonds – or frost with the recipe below.

**** To make the cupcakes, infuse the honey with lavender. Put 1 Tsp of edible lavender flowers in a cheesecloth sachet, (cheesecloth package tied with kitchen twine), with the honey in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and turn off the heat. Let cool with the lavender in it – remove the sachet and proceed with the recipe using the cooled lavender.

Lavender Honey Frosting

3 Large Egg Whites

1 Cup Lavender Honey***

1/4 Tsp Fine Sea Salt

1 Tsp Vanilla

***Instead of letting the honey cool, use it while still warm – not hot.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the egg whites, salt and vanilla, beat until stiff. Slowly pour the honey in a thin stream while the mixer is running at slow speed. When all honey is combined, turn the mixer speed to high and beat for 7-10 minutes, or until the frosting is “set”.

Spicy Tuesday – Lunch with the Angels on Earth – Lavender

No recipe today for us – instead enjoy the picture of the beautiful table setting we will be sitting down to at lunch. The Angels on Earth is an organization of men and women who are dedicated to helping others to be the best that they can be. They are a sponsor of our much loved Cancer Wellness Center at Piedmont. We’ll be back next week with another healthy and spicy recipe!