Category Archives: Salads and Sides

Summer Squash Bake

It is zucchini season. Finding delicious ways to eat this vegetable is quite easy. It’s subtle sweetness and versatile texture lend it to be delicious eaten raw or cooked. This recipe for “Summer Squash Bake” is currently my favorite way to eat zucchini, but some other options include: sauteed with onions and spinach, in a green curry, made into flax crackers, or puree into soups (adds a nice viscosity without cream).

 

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Gluten Free Buckwheat and Amaranth Bread

gf-breadThis bread is hearty with a nice bite, something that is hard to achieve when baking gluten free bread varieties.  Great as a compliment to dinner, as a grilled sandwich, or toasted with grass fed butter and homemade jam, this is a recipe that I encourage you to try if you are gluten free.  Buckwheat flour makes up the majority in this bread recipe followed by amaranth flour, both of which are full of nutrition.  Buckwheat is not wheat, it is a groat or seed that is usually toasted before being ground into a flour.  Different varieties have been around since 5300 BC, but have probably been eaten by humans even longer.  It is a good source of magnesium, phosphorus, and fiber.  Amaranth, as well, is nutrient dense containing a good amount of protein, fiber, calcium, and some vitamin C.  This recipe yields two short loaves, but you could put all of the dough in one loaf pan for a larger loaf and cook longer, 60-70 minutes.  The bread is thoroughly cooked when you can flick the top of the bread, it feels solid and thuds with a hollow sound remitting back.  Here is the recipe:

Dry Ingredients
1  1/2 c. buckwheat flour plus more for dusting
1 c. amaranth flour
1/2 c. brown rice flour
1/2 c. arrowroot flour
1/4 c. almond flour
1/4 c. ground psyllium husk
1  1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt

Wet Ingredients
 2  1/2 - 3 c. water
 3 T grass fed or organic butter
 1 T chia seeds
 1 T gelatin
 1 T molasses

Warm 2 1/2 c. water over medium-low heat.  Add butter, chia, molasses, turn heat to low and stir well.  Sprinkle gelatin lightly and evenly over warmed mixture and let stand to dissolve.  If all of the gelatin does not dissolve, then gelly balls will end up in the final product, so try to remove any gelatinous bits that do not dissolve well.

In a large separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients and whisk together to incorporate well.  Whisk wet ingredients until they are coherent and butter is melted.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir.  The dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl and stick to itself making a dough ball, but will remain slightly tacky.  Divide dough into two halves.  Use some more buckwheat flour for dusting over the top, sides, and your hands to help navigate the dough into a pan.  Press into two loaves pans that have been greased with coconut oil or butter.  Cut a shallow groove lengthwise down the center to encourage even baking.  Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 – 50 minutes.  The bread is cooked, when you can flick the top of the bread, it feels solid and thuds with a hollow sound remitting back.  Cool slightly before removing loaves from pan to a cooling rack.  Let the bread cool completely before slicing, or else it will be gummy.  It will keep longer stored in the fridge.  Enjoy.

Bacon and Veggie Hash

This is a really satisfying breakfast that is perfect for weekend mornings.  What makes it thoroughly satisfying is the blend of flavors lent from salty, smoky bacon paired with the sweet from the sweet potato, sweet and pungent onion set the stage for earthy shiitakes.  There is always room for spinach, so that goes in too.

2 slices bacon, cut into lardons.
1/4 of an onion, sliced thin
4 shiitake mushroom caps, sliced
1 small sweet potato, pre-cooked and diced
2 c. fresh spinach
sea salt

Slice bacon and place in a cool pan.  Put pan over low heat to render the fat slowly.  This will make the bacon crispy all the way through.  Stir occasionally until bacon becomes desired crispness.  Drain off excess fat, reserving about 1 T. in the pan for sauteing.  Add onion and sprinkle with a dash of sea salt, stir.  Let onion cook until translucent over low-medium heat stirring occasionally.  Now add shiitakes, a dash of sea salt, the sweet potatoes, a dash of sea salt and the spinach with a teeny bit of sea salt.  Do not stir yet, the order in which these veggies were added to the pan will allow them to cook just as is, in the pan for 3-5 minutes.  Now, stir until spinach is wilted and serve.  This would be good topped with an over easy egg or hollandaise sauce.  A breakfast fit for one, but can easily be doubled or quadrupled.

Parsnip and Potato Mash

4 large parsnips, cut into 1 inch chunks
2 c. small red potatoes
2 T. grass fed butter
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. dried rosemary
2 large cloves garlic, grated
2-4 grinds of black pepper
1 tsp. sea salt, plus more for boiling water

Place washed potatoes and parsnips in a large pot and cover with water.  Add a big pinch of sea salt.  Bring water to boil, remove lid and continue to cook parsnips and potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender.  Drain water from pot.  Return parsnips and potatoes to pot and let them release steam into the air.  By removing extra moisture this way, the parsnips and potatoes can soak up flavors better.  Now, add everything else to the pot and begin to mash with a potato masher or the back of a spoon.  (My masher broke and I keep forgetting to buy another one, so end up using this technique more often than I wish to.  This technique just takes a little bit more arm strength and perseverance.  Haha, such is life!)  Taste it, maybe it needs more salt or butter, add it, if that suits your taste.  Makes about 4 servings.

I served these mashers with a mixed baby greens salad tossed in a Preserved Lemon and Lemon Thyme Vinaigrette along with a chorizo sausage, nitrate free of course, and a little bit of dijon mustard.  This is a delicious early autumn meal and pairs well with hard cider.

Red Skinned Potato Salad

This potato salad is dairy free and egg free, but full of flavor lent from garlic, shallots, and a hint of lemon.  Makes a great summer side dish to pretty much anything.  🙂

about 16 red potatoes cooked in salted, boiling water until tender
1/4 c. minced shallot
5 garlic cloves, grated
1/2 c. chopped parsley
1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c. apple cider vinegar
3 tsp sea salt
zest from half a lemon
juice from 1 lemon
dash black pepper

Clean red potatoes and place in a large pot.  Cover with water and a hefty pinch of sea salt.  Bring to boil and cook until tender, 10-15 minutes.  Drain and let cool, until cool enough to handle.  Meanwhile, prepare dressing by combining remaining ingredients into a bowl, mix thoroughly.  Cut potatoes into eighths and return to boiling pot.  Cover with dressing, stir to coat.  Refrigerate for 1 hour to overnight and serve.

Mediterranean Dressing

I topped a salad of mixed greens, cucumber, and radish with this dressing.  It was such a deliciously unexpected summer lunch that I felt like I was treating myself.

1 c. chickpeas, preferably cooked from fresh
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. tahini
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
zest and juice from 1/2 lemon
1 large garlic clove grated
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp cumin
dash ground black pepper
1/4 c. parsley

Put everything, but the parsley in a Vitamix or high powered blender.  Blend until smooth and creamy.  Add parsley and pulse a couple of times to coarsely chop parsley into the dressing.  Use as a salad dressing, or dip for veggies, chicken, or lamb.

Roasted Eggplant, Tomato, and Basil Salad

1 eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 c. grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 sprigs, about 10 large leaves of basil, chiffonade
1 T. lard or ghee
1 T. extra virgin olive oil
1 T. balsamic vinegar
1 garlic clove, grated
1 small shallot, minced
sea salt
dash of black pepper

Place eggplant in colander and sprinkle with salt.  Let sit for at least 20 minutes.  Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.  Coat a large baking sheet with lard or ghee and toss eggplant onto it.  Pat eggplant with a dry paper towel to remove some moisture.  Bake for 25 minutes.  While the eggplant is baking, combine everything else in a bowl.  Once eggplant is browned on one side, place it into bowl with all other ingredients and toss to coat.  Taste, adjust sea salt and balsamic vinegar to taste.