roasted salmon salad with honey-dijon vinaigrette.

I just showed you how to meal prep salmon, so let’s turn those portions of delicious fish into a delicious workday meal!

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This salad is so simple – just toss some chopped romaine, baby kale, carrots, cucumbers and sliced almonds with an easy honey-dijon vinaigrette and top with the salmon (warmed or not!). As you can see, I used a whole filet to top my salad; that I had warmed slowly in a pan on the stovetop. For work lunches, I recommend flaking some cold salmon atop your salad (store separately from the greens until just ready to eat).

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Not only is this great for meal prepping, it’s also a great ‘clean out’ recipe! Toss whatever vegetables you have into the salad bowl, top with a sprinkling of almonds or walnuts, or even some leftover fresh herbs. Possibilities are endless.

roasted salmon salad with honey dijon vinaigrette.

ingredients
2 salmon filets, cooked
1 romaine heart, chopped
4 cups baby kale
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup mixed vegetables such as cucumber, bell pepper, celery, etc. (optional)
1/4 cup sliced almonds
sea salt and pepper
dressing:
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon raw honey
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
dash of sea salt and pepper

directions
In a blender or small bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients and then whisk in the olive oil until well combined and smooth. Taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed.

If serving immediately, toss together all salad ingredients except for the salmon. Divide amongst two plates and toss with 2-3 tablespoons of the dressing (you will have dressing left over). Top with salmon filet each and serve.

To prep: toss together the salad ingredients except the salmon and dressing. In containers, add the salad greens/vegetables. Store salmon separately in an air tight container; same with dressing.

Makes 2 entree-sized salads. *Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

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super simple roasted salmon with lemon.

Honestly, the title says it all. This is SO. EASY. and it’s my preferred way to meal prep salmon!

Yes, you read that right. Meal prep that includes fish. It can be done! To be fair, cooked fish is more delicate than other cooked proteins (chicken, etc.), so it’s best to consume the salmon in 2 days after cooking it, 3 at the most, IMHO.

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My salmon filet was 1 3/4 pounds, but I cut it in half and used one half for this recipe/prep, and the other I cut into 3 filets and slathered with a sweet chili glaze for that evening’s dinner. Fish markets and places like Costco are great to get affordable, fresh whole filets; my cost was under $15 for almost 2 pounds.

I like this simple cooking method because it lends itself to a myriad of meals/ways to consume. My favorite way is to top a salad with some flaked salmon (<– look for this next!), but you can: eat chilled with roasted asparagus, chopped hardboiled eggs and olives for a riff off of a nicoise salad, fold into a a fish cake (use this recipe and replace the tilapia with salmon!), or toss into cooked pasta with some lemon, cream and fresh herbs. Honestly, the possibilities are endless.

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To ensure proper storage, once cooked, divide into portions (I usually keep the portions in tact, but flake if you prefer), wrap in aluminum foil and store in air tight storage containers. You can absolutely heat up leftover fish, but be kind to your coworkers, and only do that at home. 🙂 Chilled leftover fish is delightful!

easy roasted salmon with lemon.

ingredients
1 pound salmon filet (one whole piece or individual filets; your choice)
nonstick olive oil cooking spray OR 1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 lemon, sliced

directions
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. On a baking sheet lined with foil and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray, add the whole filet (or cut into two, as I did). Spray the salmon with olive oil spray or brush one teaspoon oil onto the filet. Season with salt and pepper and top with lemon slices.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, 15 for medium-rare, closer to 20 for well done. General rule of thumb is 4-6 minutes per half inch thickness. Salmon is done when it flakes easily with a fork.

Salmon will keep well for 2-3 days wrapped tightly in foil and stored in an air-tight container.

*Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

 

spicy beef, kale + brown rice bowls.

Happy Passover and Easter weekend friends! For all who celebrate, of course. I am back after  a bit of a hiatus; I was traveling to Colorado (which is stunning!), and I was so busy and with internet service being a bit spotty, I wasn’t able to regularly check in and post!

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I’m back however, and with me I have an easy recipe I made several weeks ago. This is a super simple one bowl meal that hits all of your nutritional goals: protein, complex carbohydrates, and vegetables. This is simply spiced with sriracha, tamari and a little aromatics, courtesy of onion and garlic. It is so flavorful!

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This does take a bit longer to use since I used brown rice, but I try to always use whole grains when I can. The thing I love about rice versus pasta (beside it being GF!) is that much of the cooking time is inactive: boil the water, add the rice, stir, pop a lid on and cook. Most brown rice takes about 40-50 minutes to cook, but check your package directions. The kale cooks with the beef, but please add once the beef (or ground turkey!)  is cooked all the way through, add seasoning, and top the rice with the beef and vegetables.

This is a great meal for meal prepping for weekday lunches! Enjoy!

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spicy beef, kale + brown rice bowls.
inspired by a recipe from HEB. 

ingredients
1 teaspoon grapeseed
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup brown rice, uncooked
1/2 pound ground sirloin
4 cups baby kale, unpacked and roughly chopped
1 teaspoon sriracha or chile garlic sauce
1 teaspoon tamari or GF soy sauce
1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced
2-3 garlic cloves, minced

directions
Cook the rice according to package direction. When done, fluff with fork and keep warm.

Heat a skillet over medium high heat and the oil. Add the ground sirloin, and cook for 7-9 minutes or until no longer pink. Add the onion and garlic at about the 5 minute mark, and continue to cook for 5 additional minutes, or until the onion has softened and the garlic is fragrant; reduce heat if needed to prevent burning.

Add the sea salt, pepper, sriracha, and tamari and stir well to combine. Add chopped kale and stir frequently for 2-3 minutes and let the kale wilt slightly.

Divide the rice amongst four bowls or storage containers. Top with beef and vegetable mixture and serve.

Serves 4. *Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

 

 

 

red lentil + kale soup.

It’s lentil soup time! This time, with kale. Mmmm. Kale is my cheese. It makes everything better.

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Still with me? Hooray! Thanks for staying, even after that kale comment. It may seem so basic, but it’s true! I’ve loved kale (and all other leafy greens) long before kale had its trendy moment in the sun. It is *especially* wonderful in soup, as its hardy texture stands up to the cooking process without turning too soft and wilty. If lentils aren’t up your alley, try these soups with kale: this has been a long time favorite that I need to make soon, this is so comforting and this one is vegan and uber allergen friendly!

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This lentil soup is a little different for me, as I did not puree it at all; it is as brothy as a red lentil can be. 🙂 Chop the kale into bite size pieces before you add it at the end of the cooking process so that it’s nice and manageable, and is similar in size to the tomatoes, carrots and celery. If you want a spicier flavor, use hot paprika in place of the sweet or toss in a few crushed red pepper flakes. Enjoy this! It’s delightful, especially with some toasted naan.

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red lentil soup with kale.

ingredients
1 cup split red lentils
15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes with their juices
1 small carrot, peeled and diced
1 celery stalked, diced
1/2 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, smashed and minced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 cups low sodium vegetable stock
2-3 cups (not packed) curly kale, thinly chopped

directions
Heat a heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat and add the tablespoon of oil. Add the onion, carrot and celery and cook for 3-4 minutes until they begin to turn translucent and soften. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for and additional minute. Add the paprika, ground cumin, turmeric, coriander, salt and pepper and stir to combine and allow the spices to ‘bloom’.

Add the lentils, tomatoes and vegetable stock and stir to combine. Stir, bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer, partially cover and let cook for 12-15 minutes, until the lentils have softened but still retain most of their shape (you do not want them to completely fall apart in this recipe).

Add the kale and let cook for 5-7 minutes longer, until kale has softened.

Serve immediately or let cool completely before storing and freezing. Serves 4 as a main, 6-8 as a starter (1 cup).

*Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

sausage + broccoli brown rice skillet.

After making last week’s sausage sauce, I had a few links of sausage leftover that I stashed in the freezer. I was craving simple and comforting food that didn’t need a ton of effort to put together. You know what I mean? As much as I love to cook, sometimes when I know I’m going to have a really busy week I try and make a dish like this: much of the cook time is low to no hands on effort, it makes enough for multiple leftovers (if you’re feeding one or two) AND it reheats well! Exactly what I was looking for.

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I used brown long grain rice for this, which will require a longer cooking time. If you prefer, you can use quick cooking brown rice or white rice, and adjust the cook times accordingly (you’ll want to toss the broccoli and peppers in earlier if you use either of those options so it cooks all the way through).

Feel free to use your favorite veggies in this… swap asparagus for broccoli, or toss a handful of kale in!

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sausage + broccoli brown rice skillet.

ingredients
8 ounces hot Italian poultry sausage, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
2 cups broccoli florets (about 2 broccoli crowns)
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
splash of dry white wine or rice vinegar
scant 1 cup brown rice
2 cups chicken stock (or water) plus additional 1/4 cup if needed
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
pinch of crushed red pepper if desired

directions
Heat a 3 quart skillet over medium high heat and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Once oil is heated, add the sliced sausage and cook, 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally until sausage is cooked through. Add splash of wine or vinegar and let bubble and reduce, scraping up the brown bits on the bottom of the pan.

Add the rice, chicken stock, garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper if using. Stir together, allow to come to a boil and reduce heat low, and cover, allowing mixture to simmer for 30 minutes, checking and stirring once or twice while cooking to prevent rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan (add additional liquid if needed).

After cooking for 30-35 minutes, Add the broccoli and red pepper, lightly stir and recover, allowing the mixture to cook for an additional 10-15 minutes until the vegetables soften, the rice is tender, and the liquid is absorbed. Let rest for a few minutes and fluff with a fork.

Serves 4.

*Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

roasted red pepper + cilantro hummus.

Hummus is one of my favorite dips. I love the rich flavor, and I especially love that hummus is such a blank canvas. I’ve already posted my favorite recipe for basic hummus (<– it really is the best. hummus. ever.), but today we’re going to change it up by eliminating the yogurt (to keep it dairy free and vegan friendly) and flavoring it with a roasted red pepper and a handful of fresh cilantro. I had both ingredients in my fridge, so I decided to throw them in and see what happens. Luckily this time, it was a smashing success!

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I am always looking for easy and travel-friendly dishes to bring with me to work, get togethers with friends, or just having ready made healthy snacks at home! I don’t know about you, but appetizers are often the best part of the meal and I often forgo an entree to make a meal out of a few appetizers.

As a bonus, hummus is so versatile! Eat is a dip with sliced vegetables and pita, spread it on a pita or tortilla in place of mayo or mustard for a veggie wrap, use it in place of cheese for an egg breakfast sandwich… the possibilities are endless!

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I really love this: the slight sweetness of the peppers is balanced beautifully with the vegetal bite of the cilantro. If you’re a cilantro hater, I would recommend parsley for a grassy note or even fresh basil – how delicious would that be with the roasted red pepper?!

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roasted red pepper + cilantro hummus. 

ingredients
15 ounces chickpeas, drained
2.5 tablespoons tahini
4 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons plus 1/4 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons water
juice of one lemon
1 roasted red pepper (jarred, packed in water or oil)
1 handful of cilantro, roughly chopped (about 3/4 cup)
sea salt and black pepper to taste (1/2 teaspoon-ish)

directions
Drain and rinse the chickpeas. In a food processor add the chickpeas and roasted red pepper. Pulse a few times and then add the garlic, tahini, olive oil, water, lemon, cilantro, and sea salt and pepper. Pulse until smooth and transfer to a serving bowl.

Let chill for an hour before serving. Keeps for 3-4 days in a container with a tight fitting lid.

Serves 4-6.

*Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

 

Indian mulligatawny lentil soup.

Hello from crazy, unpredictable upstate NY! Our weather here has been all over the place, with the past two days reaching in the high 50s, with a forecasted low tomorrow of -1! Never fear, however, because I have just the recipe to fill you up, keep you warm, keep you energized for all that shoveling (boo) with this vegan, gluten free soup! That’s right – SOUP season is back with a vengeance. Hooray!

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Today it’s Indian mulligatawny soup, which I made recently during the cold snap that hit much of the U.S, with temperatures in the negative 20s and 30s with the wind chill. Mulligatawny is a British soup with Indian origins, and literally means ‘pepper water’. This soup is very spicy, but you can scale the pepper down to your taste preferences. We get some of the spiciness from all the warming spices, as well as the fresh ginger. The coconut milk added at the end cools it down some and adds a nice creaminess to the finished soup. This freezes beautifully, so make a double batch for an easy dinner when winter seems never-ending. 🙂

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Indian mulligatawny soup.
inspired by the wanderlust kitchen.

ingredients
3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 small onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 small jalapeño, seeded and diced (can sub 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes)
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced, (scale back to 1 tablespoon if you prefer less heat)
1 medium firm apple, peeled and diced
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons mild curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1/2-1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup red lentils
3 cups vegetable stock
2/3 cup unsweetened coconut milk (canned)
cilantro, to garnish
slivered raw almonds, to garnish

directions
Heat a large, heavy soup pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the oil. Once shimmering, add the onion and carrot and cook for 3-4 minutes. Once onions and carrots are slightly softened, add the garlic, pepper, ginger and apple and cook, 2-3 minutes longer, until all the vegetables are tender, reducing heat to medium if needed (you want the vegetables/fruit to sweat [cooking with no color]). Add the tomatoes, curry powder, cumin, turmeric, paprika, cinnamon, black pepper, cayenne pepper and stir to combine. Add the 3 cups of vegetable stock and lentils and stir to combine again.

Increase heat to a rapid simmer and then reduce to medium-low and cook for 20-30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender and the soup has thickened.

Using an immersion blender (or a stand blender), puree about 50-75% of the soup (I pureed about 75%, but next time I would go a little less, I like a chunkier texture). Taste, and add the sea salt and pepper. With the heat on very low, add the coconut milk and stir to combine and let rest for 5-10 minutes for flavors to meld.

Serve, topping with chopped cilantro and silvered almonds. Serves 4 as a main course, 6 as a starter course.

*Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

winter wassail cocktail.

Hey you! How were your holidays? Mine were full of family, friends, and food. So much food. It was glorious. I served up this cocktail, which is delightfully festive and perfect for any New Years Day celebrations you may have… even if your plans are akin to mine, aka loafing around in your comfy clothes, watching tv, and maybe, just maybe, doing some light housework. Hey, at least you’ve got a cocktail in hand!

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This cocktail was mentioned to me by a friend who tried a sample of this winter wassail juice from Trader Joes, and while the clerk mentioned that it’s wonderful warmed (yum!), he immediately turned it into a cocktail.

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As mentioned, the main ingredient it is this winter wassail, which is essentially an apple/berry juice with mulled spices, so any juice combined with classic mulling spices would be perfect! Classic mulling spices are cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise, orange peel, etc. You can even make your own wassail juice by picking up a mulling spices jar at your market and combining it with an apple or cran-apple juice! So many options! Be sure to use real maple syrup here, garnish with a cinnamon stick, or even a cinnamon sugar rim and a burnt orange peel if you’re feeling extra fancy. Cheers to 2018!

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winter wassail cocktail.

ingredients
1.5 ounces brandy or cognac
3/4 ounces pure maple syrup
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
winter wassail juice
ice
cinnamon stick, to garnish
white sugar/ground cinnamon (optional, to rim the glass)
lemon or orange peel (optional, to garnish)
rocks glass

directions
Pour ice into rocks glass. Add brandy, maple syrup, lemon juice and top with winter wassail juice. Stir virtuously to combine. Garnish with a cinnamon stick. Serve immediately.

Makes one cocktail. 

smoky maple bacon mashed sweet potatoes.

When faced with two leftover sweet potatoes and a smattering of cooked, chopped up bacon pieces, what’s a girl to do? Why, make an impromptu dish of mashed sweet potatoes, of course!

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In truth, I had an entirely different recipe planned for you today, but despite liking it, I still felt (and feel!) that something was missing, and it needs a bit more tweaking before it makes its way to you. Instead? I turned some leftover ingredients into a decadent yet relatively healthy (yes!) side dish.

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Now I know sweet potatoes are considered a staple on Thanksgiving holiday tables, but why regulate them to just that holiday? I love love love sweet potatoes, especially when they are paired with more savory ingredients – like the bacon, chipotle pepper in adobo here. Chipotles in adobo comes in little cans that you can typically find in the International foods aisle in your supermarket, but if you can’t find them or don’t want to purchase a whole can for this recipe, you can substitute one teaspoon of chipotle chili powder. However — the chipotles in adobo freeze really well, so I encourage you to buy the can! The leftover chiles are amazing in chili. Enjoy these – they are simple to make yet fancy enough for your holiday table!

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smoky maple bacon mashed sweet potatoes.
adapted from cooking light. 

ingredients
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped (about 3-4)
1 tablespoon grassfed butter
3 slices applewood smoked bacon, cooked and chopped
4 teaspoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon chipotle in adobo, minced
sea salt and black pepper

directions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pierce potatoes all over with a fork and roast 60 minutes or until a fork would pierce the whole potato easily. Once cooked and cool enough to handle, remove the skins and place the cooked potatoes in a large bowl, mashing slightly.

While the potatoes are cooking, cook the bacon in a large skillet until crisp. Drain on paper towel and roughly chop.

Add the bacon, maple syrup, chopped chipotle chili, sea salt and pepper and mix well. Taste, and adjust seasonings if needed.

Serve immediately.

Serves 2-4. *Please use organic ingredients wherever possible* 

 

hoisin chicken stir fry with sweet potatoes + cabbage.

During these busy days of December, I rely on recipes that are super quick to whip up so I can save myself from an unhealthy meal on-the-go while running seemingly endless errands for the upcoming holidays. This hoisin-spiced stir fry definitely fits the bill of fast, simple, healthy, and oh-so-delicious!

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I normally dislike when hoisin sauce (essentially a Chinese barbecue sauce) is a major ingredient: I find that on its own, the flavor is overpowering for me. However, mixed with the sesame oil, ginger, garlic, a pinch of red pepper flake and the vegetables: the finished dish was aromatic, complex and balanced.

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The longest part of this dish is the cooking of the sweet potatoes: covering the skillet partially and slicing them relatively thin is essential to keeping the cook time under 12 minutes. Adding a splash of water helps prevent the potatoes from sticking to the pan and avoiding too much browning. Once that’s done, the rest of the cooking comes together in no time flat.

I think you’ll love this creative take on a stir-fry as much as I did! It’s wonderful for using up leftover produce – as a bonus, cabbage, celery and sweet potatoes last forever in the fridge and pantry, so this is easy to whip up any time!

hoisin spiced chicken stir-fry with sweet potatoes.

ingredients
2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided
1 large sweet potato, peeled, cut crosswise into 1/3-inch-thick rounds, then cut into 1/3-inch-wide strips
1 medium sweet onion, thinly sliced
2 stalks celery, chopped into half moons
8 ounces skinless boneless chicken, sliced into 1/4 inch pieces
2 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
3-4 cups green cabbage, cored and thinly sliced (about 1/4 medium head)
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
pinch of crushed red pepper, optional

directions
Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add sweet potatoes and onion; stir-fry until yams are just tender, adjusting heat if browning too quickly and adding water by tablespoonfuls if mixture is dry, about 12 minutes. Remove vegetable mixture from the pan, set aside on a plate.

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Add chicken, ginger, and garlic; stir-fry 3-4 minutes. Add cabbage; stirfry until chicken is cooked through and cabbage is wilted but still slightly crunchy, 2 to 3 minutes.

Stir in hoisin sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix in 1/2 cup cilantro.

Transfer stir-fry to serving bowl; sprinkle with remaining cilantro.

Serves 4. *Please use organic ingredients wherever possible*