Sweet potato “crostini” with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta


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This recipe is great for a gluten-free vegetarian appetizer or party food.  The sweet potato base replaces a cracker or piece of toast in a more traditional appetizer, and the combination of roasted beets, feta, figs or dates, and cashews adds a sweet and salty flavor that is great for the fall or winter season.

sweet potato beet crostini   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

Ingredients:

  • 1 large beet
  • 2 large sweet potatoes or yams (I used yams, but sweet potatoes would have been better, I think)
  • about 4 oz feta cheese
  • 1/2 – 1 cup chopped dates or figs (dried or fresh, if available)
  • 1/2 cup cashews or walnuts
  • drizzle of honey or maple syrup for sweetness
  • olive oil and balsamic for roasting the beets

Directions:

  • Peel and chop the beets and toss in olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper
  • Wrap beets in tin foil and bake in the oven for ~40 minutes on 400 degrees or until tender
  • Scrub and slice yams or sweet potatoes in 1/2″ thick slices, leaving the skin on

baking sweet potato slices   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

  • Bake sweet potatoes on a lightly oiled cookie sheet (or oiled foil) in the oven for about 30-35 minutes, or until lightly browned on the bottom.  You may wish to brush the tops with oil to brown them as well.
  • In a food processor, pulse the roasted beets, feta cheese, cashews or walnuts, and chopped dates or figs.  I added a drizzle of maple syrup (honey would work, too) to moisten the mixture a bit.  Reserve a little cheese and figs or dates to garnish.
  • Top each slice of sweet potato with a spoonful of the beet mixture, and garnish with feta/figs

feta figs and dates   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

  • Using a salt grinder, add a very small amount of sea salt over each potato slice
  • Drizzle just a touch of maple syrup over the sweet potato / beets and serve warm

If you make extra, keep the beets/feta mixture separate from the potato slices.  Heat potato slices in the toaster oven and warm the beet mixture for 15-20 seconds in the microwave and combine.

Enjoy!

sweet potato beets and feta   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

January 6, 2013
Food, Recipe

 
 

Vegetable Fritters


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With some veggies that needed to be eaten soon, I set to work developing an on-the-fly recipe that would make use of everything available.

This recipe can be modified based on whatever veggies you have.

veggiepatties   Vegetable Fritters  Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, boiled
  • 2 green peppers, diced
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 crown broccoli
  • 1 zucchini
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 white onion
  • greek yogurt (optional-for topping)
  • canola or other oil for frying
  • approximately 1 cup flour (more or less, depending on your mixture)
  • 2 eggs
  • Spices: salt/pepper to taste, Indian spices (garam masala.., turmeric, etc. or other mixture)

Directions:

  • Peel and chop the sweet potatoes and boil until soft
  • Dice onion and saute until caramelized
  • Dice garlic and add to onions, cooking for a few minutes
  • Mash sweet potatoes and add garlic and onion in a large bowl
  • Pulse peeled zucchini in food processor, then remove and squeeze the moisture out as much as possible using a cheesecloth, towel or paper towel
  • Pulse carrots, and broccoli in food processor until they are in very small pieces
  • Dice green pepper (do not add to food processor)
  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl, adding spices to taste.  I used garam masala, salt, pepper, and a small amount of an Indian spice packet.

veggiemixture   Vegetable Fritters

  • Add eggs and flour until mixture is a consistency that can be formed into patties (not too dry)
  • Heat 1″ oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat until hot
  • Add veggie patties and fry until browned, turning once

fryingpatties   Vegetable Fritters

  • Let patties dry on paper towels to drain
  • Serve with a little Greek yogurt!

 

These turned out to be spicy and delicious, and can easily be frozen for a quick snack (just heat in the toaster oven)!


Food, Recipe

 
 

Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup


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Nothing says “autumn” like pumpkin soup.  I’ve made plenty of butternut squash and pumpkin soups before and always enjoyed them.  Last week at the farmer’s market, however, I picked up a bunch of beets, and thinking that roasted beets had a similarly sweet flavor after roasting, I thought maybe they would go well combined with pumpkin in a soup.

According to the internet, I’m not the first one who’s thought of this.

So here is my roasted beet and pumpkin soup recipe.  It was hearty, sweet, and delicious, not to mention incredibly healthy!

IMG 3510 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients:

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Scrub beets and trim leaves off (save the tops, you can eat them!).
Slice beets in half or quarter them.

IMG 3515 1 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Beets before roasting

Place in foil and drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.
Wrap in foil and roast in the oven for ~30 minutes or until soft when pierced with a fork.
Remove from the oven and peel the remaining skin off each beet.

IMG 3490 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Beets

Roast pumpkin (similarly) or place in a pressure cooker and cook for ~5-10 mins once pressure is reached.  You will need to scrub the pumpkin and cut it open to scoop out the seeds first.

IMG 34481 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Scooping seeds out of the pumpkin

Discard the pulp but save the seeds.
Rinse seeds and place on a baking sheet in the oven or toaster oven for a couple of minutes (sprinkle with salt).

IMG 34541 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Roasted pumpkin seeds with salt

Pumpkin seeds are delicious as a snack or garnish on salads or soups! Don’t waste them!

IMG 3449 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Cooking the pumpkin in a pressure cooker

In a large or medium pot, saute diced leek, diced ginger (about 1″ section) and several cloves of garlic in olive oil until tender.

Once pumpkin is roasted or pressure cooked, remove the skin and put the pumpkin pulp in a medium or large pot with the beets.

IMG 3498 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Pumpkin puree and roasted beets with ginger, leek and garlic

IMG 3499 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Blending the pumpkin and beets

Add 1 cups of water and 1 cup almond milk to thin, and blend with a blender or (more conveniently) an immersion blender.

Continue to cook over medium, adding cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, ground fennel, salt and pepper to taste.

Thin to the desired consistency with almond milk or water.

IMG 3509 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Beet and pumpkin soup

Garnish with pumpkin seeds and enjoy!

October 4, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Sesame Tofu Stir-Fry


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This meal is one of my staples when I’m too tired to think of something else to cook, or when I really need some vegetables.

It’s an Asian stir fry made with whatever vegetables you wish (though carrot and broccoli are always good to start with), tofu, and sesame-soy-ginger sauce.

Ingredients:

  • Veggies (any and all!) – I used broccoli, carrots, and mushroo
    IMG 3412 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

    Garlic, leek, jalepeno, carrots, broccoli

    ms (and jalepeno for spice)

  • Trifecta of Awesomeness (Garlic, Ginger, Leek) – diced
  • Tofu (firm/extra-firm) – cubed
  • Can of assorted Asian stir-fry vegetables (baby corn, water chestnut, etc.)

    IMG 3414 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

    Mushrooms and Asian stir-fry veggies

  • Fresh Thai Basil
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Sauce: Soy sauce, sesame oil, chili oil, paprika, salt, pepper, cornstarch (if desired, to make a thicker sauce)

Directions:

Saute garlic and leek in olive or grapeseed oil.

Add veggies (firmest first) and saute until slightly tender.  Add drained can of Asian stir-fry veggies.

Squeeze all excess water from the tofu and cube.  Season tofu with paprika, salt, pepper, soy sauce and a drizzle of sesame oil.  Coat with sesame seeds.

IMG 3415 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

Tofu with sesame seeds

While veggies are cooking, saute tofu in a separate pan.

Mix the sauce together– 4 tbsp  soy/1 tsp sesame/chili oil if you have it.  Add a teaspoon of cornstarch if you would like a thicker sauce (and a little water if you like)

IMG 3416 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

stir-fry

Add sauce and tofu to the veggie stir fry and cook for a minute to combine.  Add fresh thai basil for the last minute or so.  Enjoy!

IMG 3418 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

Sesame Tofy Stir-Fry

October 2, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Vegetable Mini-Quiches


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Weekday mornings are busy, but breakfast is important.  These mini quiches are quick and easy to make and perfect for freezing in individual portions!

IMG 3338 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

Vegetable mini quiches

Ingredients:
VEGETABLES!– any will do, but here’s what I used:

  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2 jalepenos, minced
  • 1 tomato

    IMG 3318 225x300   Vegetable Mini Quiches

    Tomato and Feta

  • 1 1/2 cup broccoli
  • 4 large mushrooms

    IMG 3327 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

    Veggies for the quiche

  • 1/2 cup leek, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 eggs
  • 10 oz egg whites

    IMG 3319 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

    Eggs and egg whites

  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • handful fresh basil, chopped
**Original recipe called for milk as well.  In another attempt I added 1 cup of Almond milk but the quiche came out a little thinner.**
This makes 12 muffin tins full and 1 loaf pan–so maybe 24 muffin tins.

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Chop all vegetables, garlic, and leek.
Saute vegetables in a little butter or olive oil (garlic, leek first, then broccoli, then peppers, then mushrooms) until slightly tender.
Beat eggs in a large bowl.  Add egg whites, vegetables, fresh basil, and crumbled cheese.
IMG 3325 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

loaf-style vegetable quiche

Spray muffin tins and/or loaf pans with oil and add quiche mixture to each.  Be sure not to fill muffin tins all the way to the top as they expand a bit while cooking.

IMG 3323 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

Vegetable quiche before cooking

Bake at 350 for 20-40 minutes, depending on what you are baking them in and if you add milk.  Check quiche every so often for doneness.Enjoy!
IMG 3337 300x225   Vegetable Mini Quiches

Mini Vegetable Quiches!

September 13, 2011
Food, Recipe