Heart Healthy Salad

Sunday, February 11th, 2018

On the Home Page for February, I listed 10 foods that are considered heart healthy by the Global Health Center. These 10 foods in alphabetical order are: ALMONDS, ASPARAGUS, AVOCADO, BROCCOLI, CHICKPEAS, OLIVES, RED WINE, SALMON, and WALNUTS. I have many recipes already using these foods (except salmon), but I decided to design one just for February using spinach, walnuts (or almonds) or avocado, olives and/or olive oil, and chickpeas*.

 

Utensils: Cutting board and knife, strainer, salad spinner, mixing bowl and serving platter
Prep. Time: 15 minutes if chickpeas are already cooked*
*Cooking Time: 30 minutes to cook chickpeas if using dried and soaked garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
Categories: Vegan (V), Gluten Free (GF), No Sugar Added (NSA)

 

Ingredients (organic items when available)

1 1/2 – 2 cups fresh, organic baby spinach, rinsed and dried
two or three sliced scallions (mostly white part)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts/sliced almonds or sliced avocado+
1/4 cup of your favorite olives++
1/4-1/2 cup chickpeas
2 or 3 sliced radishes or 1/2 sliced carrot (for color & taste)
1 Tbl. olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon or red wine vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
Sprouts (optional)

Directions

  1. Place rinsed and dried spinach in large bowl. Add scallions, nuts, olives, and cooked chickpeas.
  2. Add olive oil and lemon and toss. Add small amounts of salt & pepper and toss again.
  3. Place salad on a serving platter or salad bowl. Garnish with sprouts, if using and serve deliciously….maybe with red wine??

*I soak dried chickpeas and sprout them for 3 or 4 days. I then freeze them on a cookie sheet and take out a handful as needed, cooking them for about 25 minutes. The sprouting cuts down on cooking time and increases their nutritional value. Canned chickpeas can be used, but be sure to drain them
and to use cans that have no BPA lining.

+ The fats in nuts seem to be enough without the avocado, so feel free to use avocado instead of nuts

+ +My favorite olives are called Castelvetrano from the city of the same name. They are naturally green when ripe and do not have that mouth puckering effect that non-ripe green olives have. Available in health food stores, Wegman’s olive bar, and probably gourmet food shops. Love them!

Cashew Sauce over Roasted Veggies

Thursday, February 8th, 2018

We ate at an Indian restaurant recently and I ordered veggies in some kind of curried cashew sauce which I enjoyed, so I thought I would experiment at home with roasted veggies, instead of stewed veggies.

Utensils: Cutting board and knife, baking pan, small pot, bowl, platter and spoon for serving
Prep. Time: About 10 minutes
Cooking Time: About 20 minutes
Categories: Vegan (V), Gluten Free (GF), No Sugar Added (NSA)

Note: The beauty of this dish is that you can choose whatever vegetables appeal to you, keeping in mind they need to be cut about the same size in order for them to roast at the same time. (See my P.S. with alternative suggestions.)

Ingredients

2- 2 1/2 cups bite-sized (Organic) veggies, such as:
one carrot, scrubbed and cut into thin circles or toothpicks
one leek, washed with green tops removed (use for soup stock) & cut into circles
2 oe 3 cauliflower flowerets, washed and sliced thinly, lengthwise
4-5 Brussels sprouts, washed, trimmed, and sliced thinly
3-4 small mushrooms, wiped with a wet cloth and sliced from top to bottom
2-3 Tbl. Ghee, butter, or your choice of oil for baking pan

Sauce:
1/2 cup soaked cashews (raw or roasted)
approx. 1 1/4 cups coconut water or water
Curry powder to taste (start with 2 teaspoons.)

 

Here are the veggies on the oiled baking pan. They tend to shrink when roasted,
so add more of each veggie for additional servings.

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Soak cashews in warm water. (Best soaked earlier in the day for ease of making it into a puree.)

2. Scrub and slice veggies as noted above. Toss with 1 – 2 Tbl.oil, ghee, or butter.

3. Brush final Tbl. oil, ghee, or butter on baking pan. Spread prepared veggies and bake for about 20 minutes, turning at least once. They should be tender, but not mushy. (Feel free to sprinkle with salt and pepper.)

4. While veggies are roasting, drain soaked cashews, place in blender with coconut water (or water) and curry powder (start with 2 tsp.) and puree until smooth. If too thick to pour, add more (coconut) water and blend again. Also add more curry powder, if needed.

5. Place the cashew cream in a small pot and warm on the stove for about 5 minutes, stirring to avoid burning.

6. Remove veggies from baking pan and spoon onto a serving platter. Turn off stove and pour cashew sauce over the veggies and serve.

Yield: Serves 2 to 4 depending on if it is a main dish or side dish. For a main dish feel free to add a protein source, such as chickpeas.*

*P.S. On the Home Page for February I listed 10 foods from the Global Health Center site that are heart healthy, so you can use broccoli instead of cauliflower (although they are both good-for-you cruciferous veggies) and add thick asparagus stalks when  in season. Then serve a green salad using spinach, avocado or walnuts, olives, and chickpeas and you have a super heart-healthy dish!

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