Perfect for Brunch: Kale and Goat Cheese Fritatta Cups

The link below is to the original recipe on TheKitchn, I copied it as is, I didn’t need to change a thing!  And I will be making these for the next big group brunch, they are perfect for sharing : – )

Photo credit: Megan Gordon

Photo credit: Megan Gordon

Kale and Goat Cheese Fritatta Cups 
I always use lacinato kale for this recipe, but you could really use any leafy green you’d like. And since you’ll have kale stems leftover, why not reserve them for a stir fry later in the evening?

Makes 8 individual cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Dash ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese, crumbled

Procedure:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. To get 2 cups kale, remove the leaves from the kale ribs. Wash and dry the leaves and cut them into 1/2-inch-wide strips.
  2. In a 10-inch nonstick skillet, cook the garlic in 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat for 30 seconds. Add the kale and red pepper flakes and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the salt and pepper. Add the kale and thyme to the egg mixture.
  4. Using a 12-cup muffin tin, use the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to grease 8 of the cups (you may also use butter if you’d prefer). Sprinkle the tops with goat cheese. Bake until they are set in the center, about 25 to 30 minutes.
  5. Frittata is best eaten warm from the oven or within the next day, but leftovers can be kept refrigerated and reheated for up to a week.

Jamaican Jerk Veggie Curry with Mahi Mahi

And now for some on the fly leftover Jamaican jerk ‘curry’ with whatever is in the vegetable crisper…

1/3 of a quart ball jar of leftover Jerk sauce. 1/3- 1/2 can of coconut milk. Purple cabbage from the garden, roughly chopped. A small handful of carrots from my Dad’s garden and a few thick slices of onion.

Turn the heat to medium, mix and simmer with a lid on for 3-4 minutes. Add the thickest part of some chopped kale, simmer for 3-4 minutes more with the lid on.

Add the rest of the chopped kale. Put the lid back on and simmer til it’s done.

Add some toasted (or raw) coconut flakes and serve with….

baked Jerk Mahi Mahi, leftover carrot ginger soup and hot ginger tea, yum!

Camp Food and Travel Pictures: Cape Hatteras N.C.

The Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, only 4 more hours to go!

Last week Dana drove us over 600 miles from the Berkshires to Frisco, NC on Cape Hatteras and back again, whew!   Our little ’84 Jetta was packed with camping equipment and of course, lots of food!  The state forest camp grounds were beautiful and totally worth the long drive to get there.  We camped for the first part of our trip and then moved a few miles down the road to a house on the beach that we shared with friends, what an awesome vacation!

The view of the Atlantic from our camp site in Frisco, NC

First I want to share my favorite way to enjoy avocados, with some tamari, wasabi and a spoon….

Chipolte, salt and lime on the left and my tamari and wasabi half on the right.

All you need is a spoon, and maybe someone to share the other half with : – )

Dana’s camp stove, which he took bike touring with him over a decade ago, decided it was time to retire when we tried to use it our first morning.  So we had to rely on the charcoal grill at our site.  Good thing we brought our cast iron pan!

Chopped cabbage, sauerkraut, bacon and eggs; everything you need for a hearty seaside breakfast.

I cooked the bacon first, then sauteed the cabbage, pushed everything to the side and fried the eggs in the rest of the bacon fat. Flax crackers and sun tea on the side. Eating directly out of the skillet means no dishes to do, we are on vacation after all!

One night for dinner we grilled asparagus and then cooked sausages and kale with mushrooms and onions in the skillet. Dinner is served.

Best beach house dinner: fresh fried mahi mahi fish tacos (‘slaw and corn tortillas not pictured) and sashimi tuna with bacon tacos. Gotta give Bill credit for the bacon and sashimi combo and the picture too!  I used romaine lettuce leaves to make my tacos, wicked good guys, you gotta try it!

Pack A Power Lunch

Lacinato kale from the garden

Need a make ahead, balanced meal to take to work?  This one dish salad has lots of protein with hearty greens and some carrots and onions for good measure.  This recipe makes a large amount so there is plenty to share or save the leftovers for the next day!  It’s important to really work the olive oil into the kale.  The oil helps to break down the cell walls of the plant making it possible for your body to get the vital nutrition inside.  It also makes it much easier to digest.  Not all canned tuna is created equal, wild caught tuna from Crown Prince is a sustainable company with a high quality product.  I always get the no salt added so I can give the water from the can to my kitties!

Yoshi and Ms. Kitty Rickets

This raw salad is easy to assemble once you’ve prepped all the veggies.  I like to stack the kale up once I’ve removed the stems and slice the all the leaves together into thin ribbons.

Ingredients:

2 large bunches of kale, center stalk removed, sliced into ribbons

1/3 of a medium onion, sliced in very thin half moons

1 large carrot, grated

enough olive oil to coat the kale, about 1-2 Tablespoons

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

4 Tablespoons mayo

3 tablespoons mustard, I like Trader Joe’s Spicy Dijon

salt and pepper to taste

2 cans of tuna, drained

Combine the veggies in a large bowl with a few dashes of salt, the balsamic and olive oil to coat.  Massage the oil in with your hands or using a broad flat wooden spoon.

In a separate bowl, combine the tuna with the mayo and mustard, add salt and pepper to taste.

Add the tuna to the kale and mix well to combine.  This makes about 4 generous servings and is a well-balanced, make ahead, take along meal.  The leftovers will still be good the following day.  And, if you have nori sheets, this salad makes an excellent filling.

Crunchy Kale Salad

I found this salad at The Biscuit in Somerville last weekend while my family and I were in town for my sisters college graduation.  I had this for brunch and it was so simply delightful.  Kale salad is great traveling food since the greens and onions get softer and the flavors meld together the longer they sit before serving.  So I got one to go for the car ride back to the Berkshires.  And when we got home I used the list of ingredients on the container to make my own version.

A big healthy serving of greens, no cooking required!

Ingredients for two large portions:

1 ½ bunch of kale, ribs removed, ripped into bit size pieces

2 T olive oil

1 carrot, grated

Handful of thinly sliced purple onion

2-3 ounces chevre, soft goat cheese

For the dressing:

2 T olive oil

2 T spicy brown mustard

1 T lemon juice

1 garlic clove, mashed or pressed

Salt to taste

First, using your hands, massage 2 Tablespoons of olive oil and some salt into the ripped kale pieces.  The more you work the oil into the kale, the better.  The oil makes the kale soft, flavorful and easier to digest.  Add the onion and carrot and goat cheese and toss to combine.  Set aside and make the dressing.

For the dressing put all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk to combine. Add the dressing to the kale salad and toss to coat evenly.  Eat now or set some aside for later, this salad gets better with time and is great to make ahead for lunch or travel food!

Mushroom Kale Salad

This recipe from The Washington Post Food editor Joe Yonan was inspired by Animal restaurant in Los Angeles, where a baby kale salad with chili-lime vinaigrette, pecorino and pumpernickel crumbs is a standout on an otherwise carnivorous menu.

Mushroom Kale Salad

2 servings

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups baby kale or adult kale, minus their stems
  • Freshly squeezed juice of 1 lemon ( 3 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon mild miso (I like chickpea miso but soy is fine as well)
  • 3 teaspoons water
  • 2 large eggs, local, free range, of course!
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 ounces cremini, oyster, hen of the woods or other meaty mushrooms, chopped (not stemmed)
  • 1 ounce pecorino cheese, coarsely grated
  • 2 Tablespoonspoons chili-flavored oil or olive oil and chili flakes
  • Coarse, flaky sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Wash and dry the kale. If its stems are thick, remove the leaves from the stems and reserve the stems for another use. Cut the leaves into thin slices and transfer to a medium bowl; add the lemon juice, 2 Tablespoons chili oil, sprinkle of salt and toss to coat.

Whisk together the miso and water in a small bowl, then whisk in the eggs until well combined.

Heat the oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they collapse and exude their juices, about 4 minutes.

Pour the miso-egg mixture over the mushrooms; cook for about 1 minute, or until set on the bottom; lift the edges of the set egg on one side and tilt the pan so the uncooked egg runs underneath, then fold over a time or two to form an omelet. Cook for a minute or two on each side, until just cooked through. Transfer the omelet to a plate to cool.

Once the omelet has cooled, transfer it to a cutting board and chop it into small pieces.  Add the omelet pieces and pecorino to the kale in the bowl and drizzle more olive oil if necessary; season with salt and pepper (lots!) to taste, then toss to combine.

Gringa’s Mole Verde y Pepitas

A quick and easy version of mole with greens, onion, raw carrot and toasted pepitas

Dana came up with this recipe (I came up with the name!) when I was craving Mole sauce but the traditional recipes we had were all too far off my diet.  I made this for lunch yesterday, the most time-consuming part was stripping the kale leaves from the ribs, which can be done in advance.  The toasted pepitas and grated raw carrot add crunchy sweetness to this dish.  If you don’t remember how easy toasted pepitas are, here’s a reminder!

Ingredients and procedure for 2 servings:

Collards or kale, one big bunch, ribs removed, leaves chopped

A big bunch of lacinato kale chopped and ready for the skillet.

In a cast iron skillet over medium heat saute about 1/3 cup chopped onion

and 2 cloves crushed garlic

in 2-4 Tablespoons of olive oil with salt.  After a couple of minutes….

Add 1/2 teaspoon each: chile or chipolte powder, sweet smoky paprika, (smoked) black pepper and 1/4 teaspoon each cumin and coriander.  Mix to combine.

Ground smoked black peppercorns, chipolte pepper, coriander, cumin and smoky sweet paprika

Then add a heaping tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder, a tablespoon tomato paste, juice from half a lemon and a little water, about  3-4 Tablespoons.

Mix well again to make the chocolatly sauce, if it’s too thick, add a little more water or oil and then…

Combining the spices, onion and garlic with cocoa powder and a tablespoon of tomato paste to make the sauce.

Add the chopped greens, salt and a bit of stevia to taste.  Cook, continuing to stir so that the greens get completely covered in mole sauce.  Cook until the greens are wilted.  Taste and adjust any seasonings.

Top individual servings with toasted pepitas and grated raw carrot.

If you want to add cooked chicken, tempeh or pulled pork you can easily make this side dish into a filling meal.  This recipe is easily doubled and wicked delicious.

Back to Basics: Green Soup

Green soup with sriracha, mmmm!

I’m really looking forward to my workshop, ‘Food as Medicine’, that I am preparing for the Women’s Wellness Weekend at Becket-Chimney Corners.  I have been thinking a lot about which foods are truly medicinal for me.  When I’m not feeling well there are certain foods that always make me feel good, especially when my Candida is getting out of balance because of too much stress, too little sleep or hormonal fluctuations.  I realized that my go to Green Soup recipe is at the top of my good for me foods list.  And I have not been eating it! It’s so important to eat the foods that best support a healthy you and I think it’s time to incorporate Green Soup back into my diet.

This is the soup I ate while recovering from Candida, it’s very low in carbohydrates, very high in fiber, vitamins and minerals and easy to digest.   Green Soup goes really well with all sorts of herbs and spices that encourage a healthy internal balance.  It’s basically an immune boosting multi-vitamin you can eat as often as you like.   A few servings a week is about the right dose for me, enough to keep me healthy but not so much that I’ll be bored to tears eating it all the time.  It freezes well so I can make a big batch, put it into single serving containers in the freezer and take one out when I need it.  It’s very helpful for me to have some meals planned in advance that require only that I heat and eat.  If I don’t plan anything ahead I sometimes end up making less than awesome choices.  Here’s my basic recipe for Green Soup along with a few heat and eat serving suggestions so that you can customize the flavor of the soup.  This is very important as far as getting medicinal doses of different spices and herbs as well as keeping you and your taste buds happy!

Green Soup ingredients: leeks, kale, zucchini, broccoli, jalapeno and garlic.

Green Soup ingredients: leeks, kale, zucchini, broccoli, jalapeno and garlic.

Ingredients:

4-6 Tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil  (this is the only significant source of calories in the whole recipe so don’t be shy!)

3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped or pressed

1 jalapeño, chopped.  Add more or less or none at all.  I used a whole one and still added spice to the finished soup.

3-4 large leeks, white/light green parts only, sliced thin in half moons

3-4 medium zucchinis, chopped into roughly 1 inch cubes

Veggie broth, about 4-6 cups

1 bunch of spinach or kale (I used kale today and really like the flavor!)

1 bunch of broccoli chopped into bite sized pieces.

*A note about broccoli:  My grandmother, who was a young girl during the great depression, explained to me that broccoli stems are for eating.  I often peel them and grate them up with cabbage when I make coleslaw.  Today I peeled the rough bits towards the end, chopped them up small and added them in with the rest of the broccoli.  Unless you are going to feed the stems to your farm animals or add them to your worm bin, please consider eating them!!

The Procedure

Over low-medium heat in a large, heavy bottomed soup pan add your oil, garlic, jalapeño and leeks, sprinkle with salt and cook, stirring occasionally until the leeks are wilted and soft.

Sautéing leeks, garlic and jalapeno in olive oil.

Next, add in all the zucchini and keep on sautéing until the zucchini is soft.  About 8-10 minutes.

Add in the veggie broth, about 4+ cups to start with.  Honestly I never measure, I just pour water from the kettle and add a few of those handy broth concentrate packets from Trader Joe’s.  You can add more broth for a thinner soup but I prefer mine thick and more like stew.  Get the broth hot by turning the heat up to medium.

After you have added all the veggies adjust the broth so that the veggies are barely covered.

As soon as the broth is hot add in the broccoli and kale/spinach and cook until just tender.  DO NOT overcook the broccoli, over done broccoli is not awesome and a whole pot of over done broccoli soup will not get eaten.  I know because I have done just that and it was sad.

Remove from heat, use a wand blender or regular blender (make sure to vent the blender!!) to puree the soup.  Adjust for salt and add more broth if you want.

Now you have basic Green Soup.  I like to portion mine out into large servings, the soup is really low in calories so be generous with portion size!  Keep some in the fridge and some in the freezer for later in the week.

This is all the soup I had left over plus the big bowl I ate for lunch!

Variations….they are limitless but here are a few to start:

When you want to re-heat refrigerated or frozen soup, start with a tablespoon of oil in a pan large enough for the soup.  Heat up your spices over medium-low heat until they are fragrant and then add the soup and heat til it’s warm.  Add fresh or dried herbs at the end.

*another note: I think microwaves are weird and I don’t trust them so that’s why my instructions are always for the stove top.

Italian style: fennel, cumin, chili flakes, more garlic in olive oil.   Then basil, parsley and oregano to the warmed soup.

Curry: your favorite curry powder mix in coconut oil, heat then add coconut milk with the soup.  Add cilantro and or parsley at the end.

Sautee mushrooms in butter with salt and black pepper.  Add the soup and mix together.

Top with a dollop of unsweetened greek yogurt, or goat cheese,  this is especially great on spicy green soup.

You can eat this soup cold, like a green gazpacho, just add cilantro and parsley, a splash of vinegar and hot sauce.

Today I added some sriracha and about 2 teaspoons of raw apple cider vinegar directly into my soup bowl for a tangy, spicy flavor.  There are more variations, I will post them as I try them out.

Please post your own suggestions and favorites!

Coconut Fish Curry with Greens and Quinoa

Coconut Fish Curry with Greens and Quinoa, looks like dinner!

This was an awesome dinner, and the leftovers were great too!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa (optional)
  • 2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 pound cod fillets (any  firm white fish will do)
  • lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder plus 2 teaspoons
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk (reserve 1/4 cup in a small bowl)
  • 1 large bunch kale
  • 1 large carrot, sliced into thin discs
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup of the coconut milk

Directions

  1. Bring the water and quinoa to a boil in a pot. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes.
  2. Mix the fish with lemon juice and about 2 teaspoons curry powder and a sprinkle of chili powder if you like.

The fish is ready for the oven.

  1. Place the fish in an oiled glass baking dish and bake at 350 for about 30 min, check after 20, it’s done when it flakes easily.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion, garlic and carrot pieces and cook 1 minute. Mix in curry powder, chili powder, turmeric, cumin, salt, and pepper.

Ready to add the cornstarch and reserve coconut milk.

  1. Mix in the vegetables (you can use other greens, snow peas, regular peas, ect.)  and then add the coconut milk. Cook until vegetables are tender.
  2. Add the coconut and cornstarch mixture to skillet to thicken sauce. Serve over the baked fish and the quinoa.

 

You can find the original recipe here on AllRecipes.com.   This meal took me about 30 minutes to make.  If I had used a whole pound of fish it would make 4 servings.  I used about 2/3 of a pound and had a small portion of leftovers, yum!

Dana’s Frittata with Greens and Chilies

As the weather continues to get colder it’s time to turn up the heat and that includes the food we are eating.  A great way to keep warm during the cold months is to eat foods that warm us up and the following recipe is for a one dish meal that’s served hot and also has a healthy dose of heat from chilies in adobo sauce.  This is my husband’s recipe and our go to, one dish dinner.

Dana’s Frittata with Greens and Chilies

Since this is a one dish meal the amount of the ingredients depends on the size of your skillet.  My cast iron skillet is about 11 inches in diameter, so adjust accordingly. You don’t need to worry about getting the measurements exact.  And, as with most of the recipes I love, there is plenty of room for improvisation and substitution.  This recipe will feed about 3-4 people and can be made in about 30 minutes or less.

The Ingredients: Local and Organic, please!

2-3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

5-7 large Eggs (I always get my eggs from the farm on Michael’s Road in Hinsdale) lightly beaten with a pinch of salt and 1 Tablespoon of water or milk.

1 bunch of Greens, any kind will do, Kale and Collards are my favorites, ribs removed, finely shredded.

1 medium Onion, chopped or sliced into half moons

2-3 cloves of Garlic, pressed or finely chopped

1-3 Chilies in Adobo (Goya brand) these are HOT so use with caution!  Chop them fine and be sure to include some of the sauce.

1 teaspoon Cumin

1 teaspoon smoked Paprika

1 teaspoon Oregano

½ teaspoon/dash of Lemon juice

Salt to taste

Cheese, optional, for topping

 

Dana adds the chopped kale to the onion mixture.

The Procedure:

Add a couple tablespoons of olive oil to your skillet over medium heat.

Sauté the onions until soft with about 1 teaspoon of salt.

Add in the garlic and cumin and sauté for another 2 minutes.

Add the green veggies, chilies and paprika and a dash of lemon juice.  Mix well and continue to cook until the greens are wilted.

Add the oregano to your eggs, mix well and pour the egg mixture evenly over everything in the skillet.

Let it cook until the eggs are mostly set.  Top with cheese if you like.

Put the whole thing in the oven under the broiler.  This is why cast iron is so handy!  The top will set and bubble and then brown.  When it’s got a nice toasty top that means it’s done and ready to eat.  Serve straight out of the skillet.  This is a complete meal but you can always serve with whole grain toast and a side of greens.  Also, if you have leftovers this makes an excellent breakfast and you get extra bonus points for having veggies at breakfast!

Just out of the oven and ready to eat!

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