Kale Salad

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We all know by now how great kale is for you. Everywhere I go I see kale in many forms. Whether it is raw, sautéed, fried or oven baked, kale packs a mean nutritional punch. Kale is by far my favourite green for salads. It is crunchy, tasty and holds onto dressing like no other green. Kale is full of fibre, vitamins, antioxidants, and iron. It is detox friendly, anti-inflammatory and has cardio vascular support. Oh and… for all you dairy lovers, per calorie, kale has more calcium than milk! The whole milk makes your bones strong ordeal was really just a marketing campaign that helped boost dairy sales. What does this all mean?

Kale helps:
• you feeling full
• digestion
• protect from cancers
• cell growth, functioning of iron
• bone health and blood clotting
• lowers cholesterol
• immune system
• metabolism
• liver health

This is only one of the many kale salad combinations I make. I also add kale to smoothies, make chips and puree it into cauliflower for a beautiful green mash! This salad is filled with beautiful raw veggies, roasted sunflower seeds and hard boiled eggs and avocado for extra protein and healthy fats. I topped this salad with a mustardy vinaigrette and freshly chopped dill. It is so wonderful and fresh and is great for a filling lunch or a light dinner. Bon appetit!

Serves 2-4

Salad Ingredients:

• 1 bunch kale, chopped
• 1/4 cup chopped cauliflower
• 1/4 cup chopped radish
• 1/4 cup chopped cucumber
• 1/4 cup chopped brussels sprouts
• 1/4 cup sliced cherry tomatoes
• 1/4 cup chopped celery
• 1 avocado sliced
• 2 tbsp chopped dill
• 3 tbsp sunflower seeds

Dressing Ingredients:

• 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
• 1 tsp Dijon mustard
• 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 1 garlic clove, finely minced
• 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• Sea or himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

1. For eggs: pour cold water just enough to cover the tops of the eggs. Sprinkle in the salt. Heat the pan on medium high heat until water stars to boil.Once the eggs begin to boil, remove from the heat, and allow them to sit in the hot water for 15 minutes, covered tightly by a lid.

2. Rinse kale very well and chop. Remove tough stems.

3. Chop veggies, eggs, avocado and dill.

4. For vinaigrette: whisk lemon juice, Dijon mustard, vinegar, and garlic in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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Homemade Hummus

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Chickpeas are an incredible vegetarian source of protein and fibre.They have a low glycemic index which helps leave you satisfied.Garbanzo beans also contain vitamins and minerals which help boost your intake of manganese and folate. The mineral manganese helps support bone development and wound healing and also helps carry out chemical reactions important to your metabolism. They also help lower LDL cholesterol!

Hummus is a versatile dip that can accompany meat, veggies, crackers and sandwiches. Buying hummus from the grocery store is convenient and a healthy way to add nutrients to your dishes. However grocery store brands add more canola than olive oil (sometimes none) with a nice price tag. For about half the cost you can make your own hummus with extra virgin olive oil and have double the amount. Plus it is SO easy. All you need is a food processor or an amazing blender. This recipe is for basic hummus but the possibilities for flavours are endless! Add roasted red peppers,olives, chilli peppers or herbs. Bon appetit!
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Ingredients:

• 1 3/4 cups cooked chickpeas or one (15-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (for dried chickpeas only)
• 1 medium garlic clove, peeled and smashed
• 2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice (about one lemon)
• 1/4 cup roasted tahini
• 1/4 cup water, plus more as needed
• 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to serve
• 8-10 dashes hot sauce (I always use Frank’s Red Hot)
• Salt

Tip if using dried chickpeas:
Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and cover them with at least twice their volume of cold water, leaving them to soak overnight. The next day, drain them, and saute them in a medium saucepan with the baking soda (which many find reduces the gassy effects of fresh beans) for about three minutes. Add 3 1/4 cups water and bring it to a boil. Skim any foam that floats to the surface. They’ll need to cook for 20 to 40 minutes, sometimes even longer, depending on freshness, to become tender. When tender, one will break up easily between your thumb and forefinger.Drain the chickpeas (saving the chickpea broth for soups or to thin the hummus, if desired) and cool enough that you can pick one up without burning your fingers.

Directions:

1.In a food processor, blend the chickpeas until powdery clumps form, a full minute, scraping down the sides. Add the tahini, lemon juice, garlic and salt and blend until pureed. With the machine running, drizzle in water or reserved chickpea cooking water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you get very smooth, light and creamy mixture.

2. Taste test! Add more salt, lemon juice, garlic or hot sauce to your taste!

3.To serve, drizzle with olive oil and lightly dust with paprika.

Pan Roasted Dijon Salmon with Herb Oil and Asparagus

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Salmon is loaded with protein and omega-3 fatty acids to give our brains a dose of happiness and intelligence. It is also a versatile and easy to cook. Salmon is one of my go-to’s when looking for a light yet satisfying meal. Whether you eat it raw, oven roasted or pan-seared it is a great base for any seasoning or sauce your appetite desires. My rule when cooking salmon in a pan is to simply let it be. People flip it and move it around which ends up with an unattractive and overcooked meal. Follow my directions carefully for a perfectly cooked, crispy skinned salmon.

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The herb oil I made with this fish is light, refreshing and super easy to make. Fresh herbs are a great way to add flavour to a meal without adding extra sauce, oil or seasoning. Dill, parsley, basil are my three favourites but you’ll see how I explore other herbs such as rosemary, thyme and oregano in future posts. Bon appetit!

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Serves 1 or 2

Ingredients:

• Wild caught or organic salmon
• 1 bunch asparagus
• 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
• 1 french shallot
• 2 tbsp avocado oil
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• fresh parsley
• fresh dill
• 1 tbsp stone ground dijon mustard
• sea salt and pepper

Directions:

1. Coat salmon in 1 tbsp of avocado oil, mustard, sea salt and pepper

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (for asparagus)

3. Heat avocado oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. When the oil begins to smoke, add salmon, skin side down. Keep your fingers on top of the salmon filet for a bit to keep it nice and flat. Watch the side of the piece of salmon for color changes. When 2/3 of the salmon has turned opaque, flip it to the other side and cook until it’s done (about 3-4 minutes depending on how pink you like it.)

4. While the salmon is cooking, finely chop up dill and parsley (about 1/4 cup worth) and add to a small bowl.

6. Finely chop one shallot and add it to herbs.

7. Add olive oil, lemon juice and more stone ground dijon mustard if you like to the herbs and shallots and whisk. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper (add more olive oil if it looks too thick).

8. Check back on your salmon!

9. Boil asparagus for five minutes and drain.

10. Plate asparagus and salmon, drizzle with herb oil. Enjoy!