Archives for the month of: November, 2011

Layers of Vegetables

Made this beauty for Thanksgiving. It was a hit! Creamy and delicious and FILLING. Use a mandoline slicer or attachment on a food processor if you don’t want to spend the whole day thinly slicing. Other than that, this recipe is a breeze.

Rutabaga, Green Apple, and Butternut Gratin with MacCashew Cream Sauce

Ingredients:

Gratins
5-6 rutabaga, peeled and thinly sliced
4 granny smith apples, cored and thinly sliced 
1 butternut squash, peeled and thinly sliced
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp coconut sugar (optional)
1/4 cup fresh thyme, roughly chopped
1/2 cup cold-pressed coconut oil, warmed to liquid
Fresh ground black pepper
Fine ground sea salt

Cream Sauce
1/4 cup macadamia nuts, not soaked
1/2 cup cashews, soaked for 4 hours
1 cup water
1/4 tsp salt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. On low/medium heat, slowly sauté red onion with sugar and a tbsp. of coconut oil until onions are brown and caramelized (be patient and careful not to burn.) About 10-15 min.
3. Oil a casserole dish and begin to layer the vegetable slices:
Rutabaga: brush coconut oil, fresh thyme, tiny pinch salt/pepper
Apple: brush coconut oil, tiny pinch salt/pepper
Onion
Butternut squash: brush coconut oil, tiny pinch salt/pepper
4. Whatever layer you finish on, top with a little more salt and pepper as well as some thyme. 
5. Bake for 45 mins. 
6. Make cream sauce while the gratin bakes. Drain cashews from soaking liquid and rinse. Place all ingredients in a high powered blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Pour over gratin when done. 
recipe adapted from : Yum Universe

Work table, courtesy of Craigslist.

Last week we aquired a big wooden work table through an ad on craigslist. While at the owner’s house to pick up the table, I noticed a wall of trees full of banana bunches! As a kid, my dad grew all kinds of tropical plants and I loved eating the tiny sweet bananas that would pop out every once in a while.  Upon questioning, the homeowner informed me that these bananas are a bit more like plantains, you have to cook them in order to eat them. He gave us a big bunch and I promptly fried them up into chips.

If you have never done this, then you should give it a try. Many times, store-bought plantain chips are cooked in a seed oil (sunflower, safflower, etc.) and are laden with omega 6 fatty acids. By frying them yourself, you can ensure a quality fat is used (and they are more yummy, in my opinion).

Here are the steps.

1. cut the peel off the plantain

 

2. It may help to slice down the middle of the peel and go from there.

3. slice plantain into thin-ish slices of equal width.

 

4. Heat up some coconut oil or palm oil in a skillet. Enough to make a pool that will cover the slices once they are placed into the skillet.

5. Once the oil is sizzling hot, leave the burner on a medium-low heat. Drop in the slices and watch them fry!

6. You must keep an eye on them or they will burn! Flip them when you see the bottom starting to turn golden. With a spatula, spoon, etc. remove the done chips from the skillet and let them drain like you would bacon.

7. Stick them in a bowl and season anyway you like! Some ideas: sea salt, cayenne, paprika or coconut sugar and cinnamon.

These are a delicious and healthy, good for sharing and satisfying the “chip” craving.  This method also works for sweet potato, taro, and cassava slices.

Caution: hot oil is dangerous and can cause severe burns. Be careful when placing the slices in the hot oil. Don’t just drop them in, slide them into the oil. Beware while turning and removing the slices as well.

Rice? No. Cauliflower Rice? Yes!

Pulsing cauliflower in a food processor is a great way to mimic a rice-type texture in a recipe. I like this particular dish because it reminds me of the flavors of thanksgiving turkey stuffing. The herbs and the golden raisins really satisfy the savory cravings of the season. Try this recipe with different combinations of herbs, spices, nuts, and dried fruit. Dried cranberries and pecans would be great!

Excuse the poor lighting...

 

Cauliflower Rice with Toasted Almonds and Golden Raisins

 4 T grape seed oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup celery, finely diced
5 cups cauliflower, trimmed and coarsely chopped
1 T fresh thyme, chopped
2 T fresh sage, chopped
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup golden raisins
½ cup sliced almonds
1 t sea salt

  1. In a large skillet , heat oil over medium heat
  2. Sauté onion over medium heat for 10 minutes, until soft
  3. Add celery to skillet and sauté for 5 minutes
  4. Meanwhile, place cauliflower in a food processor with the “S” blade and process until the texture of rice
  5. Add cauliflower, thyme, sage, cabbage and raisins to skillet, cover and cook 5-10 minutes, until soft, then add salt
  6. Toast almonds in a skillet, set aside
  7. Serve warm with almonds as garnish.