Sunday, January 20, 2013

Hey all you Herbies out there!

As most of you know, I love to eat, thus my quest to find new and exciting recipes! I have a collection of cook books numbering somewhere around 60+! The Internet is a great way to find new recipes to try out on my family and friends.

So this morning, I was reading the Houston Chronicle and found the following recipes which I plan on trying. Let me know if any of you try these recipes and your opinion, please! 

Remember that all of these recipes can be made even better by adding some fresh herbs! Of course fresh flat-leaf parsley is always a great addition to most any dish, but use your imagination and add the herbs you like the best. I would add fresh chopped dill and/or fresh chopped fennel to both the Lima Bean Salad and the Quinoa and Good Stuff. Also Mexican Mint Marigold a/k/a Texas Tarragon would be a great addition to either of these two recipes.  If you haven't had pea soup made with fresh dill or fresh mint, you don't know what you are missing. Add some right before serving the Simple & Delicious Vegetarian Pea Soup. Also add fresh basil to any of the dishes for an extra treat! Fresh herbs can made the difference between a good dish and a great dish! Enjoy!

Marci's Table

Delicious helpings from a philosophizing foodie with Marci Izard

Resolution Check: Forget Losing Weight, Are you a Muffin or a Cucumber

If it’s true that you are what you eat, I’m peanut butter. All natural, but generic. I’d like to say I’m broccoli, but at least I’m doing better than my friend Carolyn who eats about five power bars a day. Sorry Carolyn.
Anyone I work with will corroborate that I habitually make a lunch out of whole wheat English Muffins smeared with crunchy p-b and a sloppily sliced organic apple (darn office plastic ware). It isn’t exactly a lunch of champions, but it requires very little homework and the peanut butter fills me up. It’s delicious too.
But especially after that Ayurveda appointment a few weeks ago (see earlier blog), I’m all the more aware of the concept that physiologically, we are what we eat. It’s said that the human body is entirely renewed within seven years. So our cells are continuously breaking-down and transforming the foods we eat into new tissues and flesh. What we ingest fuels and ultimately becomes our form. When you think about it like that, food choices become more significant.
Are you made up of brightness and vitality thanks to a diet that’s rich in freshness, color and variety? Or are you a hodgepodge of chemicals and unnatural junk? It’s worth thinking about, because the qualities of the foods you eat, will likely become your own. Are you a processed, oversized muffin or a cool, collected cucumber? Maybe you’re more like me, nuts.
Especially as New Year’s resolutions are both heating up or dwindling, this is a useful topic to consider. It’s made me tweak a few things. Don’t get me wrong, I still have two jars of peanut butter in my fridge, and it will continue to be a lunchtime go-to when I have nothing else (which is sadly often). But I’m also trying to add variety to my afternoon regimen. Leftovers from a healthy dinner are ideal, but there are other simple possibilities too.
So here are a few of my faves. If I have anything too heavy for lunch, I’ll subsequently fall asleep at my desk, so these recipes are light and yummy. They’re made-up of vital ingredients that can revitalize your system, ultimately making you even more powerful than a power bar. Sorry again Carolyn.
They say variety is the spice of life, so let’s get spicy!

Moroccan Zucchini Soup
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 medium zucchini, finely sliced
1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 can (13.75 oz.) artichoke hearts, roughly chopped
½ cup whole wheat couscous
1/3 cup raisins
4 green onions, chopped
1 tbsp dried parsley
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground red pepper
½ tsp basil
½ tsp oregano
Bring the broth and water to a boil. Drop the heat to low, add the remaining ingredients and simmer, uncovered, about 10 minutes.
Serves 4.

Lima Bean Salad
1 cup frozen Lima beans, defrosted
¼ cup unsalted almonds, roughly chopped
2 tbsp raisins
2 tbsp sunflower seeds (or any seed variety)
½ lemon, juiced
1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground pepper to taste
In a medium bowl, combine the Lima beans, almonds, raisins and seeds. Squeeze in the lemon juice. Coat with olive oil, vinegar and pepper. Stir to combine.
Serves 2.

Quinoa and Good Stuff
1 cup quinoa, cooked according to package’s instructions
4-5 tomatoes
¼ cup Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
1 avocado, chopped
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Add the chopped vegetables to the cooked quinoa. Top with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix well.
Serves 4.

Orange Fennel Salad
¼ cup red onion, thinly sliced
2 tsp lemon juice
1 bulb fennel, sliced thinly
10 baby carrots, sliced thinly
1 small can of tangerines, no sugar added (preserve 1 tbsp of juice)
1 cup spinach, chopped
2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1½ tbsp white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Soak red onion slices in lemon juice. Set aside.
In a separate medium-sized bowl, add the sliced fennel, carrots, tangerine juice, spinach, olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Stir.  Add the red onion mixture, and then lightly toss in tangerine slices.

Simple & Delicious Vegetarian Pea Soup
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
Dash of salt and pepper
½ tsp cumin
¼ tsp thyme
½ tsp cayenne pepper (or less to taste)
16 oz. bag dried peas
32 oz. vegetable broth
1½ cups water
In a large pot or Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, thyme and cayenne. Cook, stirring frequently for about five minutes, until soft and translucent.  Add the peas, broth and water. Bring the mixture to a boil, and then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 1 hour.
Serves 4.

Find more recipes, categorized by how they make you feel on my blog, Feelfoods.comFor more recipes, Facebook members can check out:!/Feelfoods

Categories: Healthy, Recipes, dinner

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 Website courtesy of the Houston Chronicle:


Herbal Rose said...

I've made a very similar quinoa salad, it can also be made with bulgur wheat and is just as good either way. The zucchini soup is very similar to one I make but it is not vegetarian, it uses cubed and browned pork, some in my family put in a tablespoon of peanut butter. It's so good I think it is What's for Supper tonight. Good post, Linda.

Herbie said...

WOW! Peanut butter in soup?! I would never have thought of it. I love peanut butter, so I think I'll try it the next time I make a vegetable soup! Thanks Ruth for the PB suggestion! BTW, I do add roasted, unsalted peanuts to lots of dishes including rice and salads!