Tag Archives | leeks

Fresh Fava Bean & Walnut Dip

Fresh Fava Bean & Walnut Dip

Have you ever tried fresh fava beans? They seem kind of high maintenance maybe, or perhaps you just didn’t know what to do with them? Now is your chance.

Fresh Fava Bean & Walnut Dip

A little more work than opening a can of beans, but arguably less work than soaking and cooking dried beans. Also, when do you get the chance to eat fresh legumes? Almost never! ‘Tis the season, go get some at the farmers market. Do it today, you will be so happy about it later.

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Spinach & Artichoke Dip

If you ate out in restaurants in the ‘90s, this post is for you. It’s a little throwback inspired by one of my sisters who has been pregnant on and off (mostly on) for the last 5 years. I have leaned on her from time to time when planning menus for clients going through chemo. She gives me info about foods she could see herself eating during morning sickness, exhaustion and feeling generally crummy.

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This dish isn’t super high on her list for major nausea times, but fits the bill during comfort food craving times when green smoothies and salad are out of the question. Maybe because we grew up in the ‘90s when it was served in a weird sourdough bowl at parties, or microwaved and served with tortilla chips at every chain restaurant. Does spinach and artichoke dip have a place in the world today? I’d like to think so –with a few tweaks, of course.

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Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Chanterelles and Parsnip Purée

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From a young age, once I realized that they had very little to do with Cabbage Patch Kids, I paid no attention to Brussels sprouts. Did anyone when they were kids? They popped up at Christmas and Thanksgiving but were pretty easy to ignore. Once I finished cooking school and was working in fine dining, the challenge was to make them delicious (hello bacon, cream, blue cheese, char-grill and sometimes deep fry), and even then it was only for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

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The general consensus seemed to be that it took all of the most intense/aggressive flavours and techniques to make them edible. You could have subbed just about any veg into one of those recipes back then and it would have tasted close to the same. It wasn’t about celebrating the Brussels sprouts, it was about making them taste like the other stuff. Secret ingredient fail.

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Just Add (more) Veggies

When it comes to eating a healthy diet, sometimes it’s better to focus on what you are adding in versus what you are taking out. Even some of our simplest go-to recipes that are perfectly clean and nutritious can be amped up without a peep from the peanut gallery.

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Let’s look at tomato sauce: tomatoes, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil stirred in at the end, more or less, right? We have lycopene in the tomatoes, a powerful anti-cancer antioxidant, garlic, a big help in cancer prevention and recurrence and basil, which contains antioxidants and anti-aging properties. This sounds pretty ideal, however there are some sneaky additions that we can use to enrich this recipe to let the cancer know we mean business. You may want to send your Nonna out of the room now.

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Kombu is a type of kelp that you will often see in various Asian cuisines. It is one of the main ingredients in the broth base of miso soup (dashi). I add this to most things that simmer on my stovetop, to add a host of minerals and some alkalinity. Sea vegetables in general also protect us from radiation toxicity. Mixed in with the somewhat aggressive flavours of a tomato sauce, I promise you will not even notice it’s in there. PS- Although you could certainly eat it (it would be very good for you), my recommendation is only for you to simmer it in the sauce and then remove it, like a bay leaf. (more…)