Endive Salad Bites

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Appetizers are the little things you keep eating until you lose your appetite. ~ Joe Moore
I don’t know who Joe Moore is but I’m with him on this.  The way I look at it, you might as well make the appetizer as yummy and nutritious as dinner.  This one is sure to satisfy, or at least start your night off on a delicious, healthy and low cal note.  I’m loving the three bite salad!

I am a sucker for foods that have a nice presentation and are easy to eat appetizer style, my kind of eating! The shape of endive spears is perfect for stuffing. Just toss all the salad ingredients with the dressing and pile them up in the endive spear, or boats as I have always thought of them.  Their slight bitterness is offset by the sweetness of the orange and grapes and the creaminess of the avocado and soft cheese.  The vinaigrette is simple but helps to blend the flavors nicely and done in just a few minutes.

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Alternatively, you could julienne the endive and toss the whole thing together as a large salad.  Either way, delicious!

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The first time I made this salad was when I was getting weekly CSA boxes and my endive came with an informational blurb which I found quite interesting.  Endive is a member of the chicory family (which makes me think of coffee for some reason).  Belgian endive is grown from chicory roots in a dark environment, which is why their tender leaves are such a light color. I was enthralled, so I googled, and here is what endive looks like growing. At first glance I thought I was looking at a photo of a factory chicken farm! You can click on the photo link for the full story on endive.

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Photo Credit: http://endive.com/how-endive-is-grown

For their pale complexions, endive are surprisingly nutritious, providing many valuable vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, calcium, iron and zinc, among many others.  The biggest surprise is that it is a good source of beta-carotene which we usually attribute to the orange vegetable family.  But that’s not all.  It has more than 50% of the potassium of a banana. Not too bad for our pale friend, the endive.  It also makes a darn good edible appetizer boat.

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ENDIVE SALAD BITES

1 head Belgian endive
1 orange or grapefruit
1 avocado
1/2 cup red grapes
4 scallions, chopped
1/3 cup crumbled goat, gorgonzola or feta cheese (or vegan Vio Life Feta or Miyoko’s Classic Chive soft cheese)
1/3 cup cilantro or parsley, chopped (or more for garnish)

Marinade

2 Tbsn olive oil
1 Tbsn balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsn red wine or apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

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  • Cut the ends off orange and remove the peel by cutting in a downward motion going all the way around.  Cut into wheels and then sections.  Place in a large bowl.
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  • Slice grapes and admire their gorgeous jewel toned colors.
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  • place in the bowl with the oranges.
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  • Halve avocado and cut into pieces a similar size to the orange segments.
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  • Add avocado, cilantro, scallions and crumbled goat cheese to the bowl.
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  • Prepare marinade and drizzle over salad sparingly.  You can always drizzle more later and since they are to be eaten by hand, you don’t want them too drippy.
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  • Cut the core end off the endive. Clean by gently wiping both sides with a lightly damp paper towel. Pull off as many leaves as you want to use. The remainder can be stored in the refrigerator under a lightly damp paper towel. Place 1-2 tablespoons of salad into each endive spear.   Arrange on a platter and garnish with extra cilantro.

Endive Salad Bites

  • Servings: 12 pieces
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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1 head Belgian endive
1 orange or grapefruit
1 avocado
1/2 cup red grapes
4 scallions, chopped
1/3 cup crumbled goat, gorgonzola or blue cheese (or vegan Vio Life Feta or Miyoko’s Classic Chive soft cheese)
1/3 cup cilantro or parsley, chopped (or more for garnish)

Marinade

2 Tbsn olive oil
1 Tbsn balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsn red wine or apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

  • Cut the ends off orange and remove the peel by cutting in a downward motion going all the way around.  Cut into wheels and then sections.  Place in a large bowl.
  • Slice grapes and place in the bowl with the oranges.
  • Halve avocado and cut into pieces a similar size to the orange segments.
  • Add avocado, cilantro and scallions to the bowl.
  • Crumble goat cheese and add to the salad.
  • Cut the core end off the endive. Clean by gently wiping both sides with a lightly damp paper towel. Pull off as many leaves as you want to use. The remainder can be stored in the refrigerator under a lightly damp paper towel.
  • Prepare marinade and drizzle over salad sparingly.  You can always drizzle more later and since they are to be eaten by hand, you don’t want them too messy.
  • Place 1-2 tablespoons of salad into each endive spear.   Arrange on a platter and garish with extra cilantro.

Black & Wild Rice Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash & Pomegranate

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Black and Wild Rice with Roasted Butternut Squash and Pomegranate

People often ask for food recommendations.  Here it is people –    one of my top five favorite dishes so far!  This is a Wow! dish. I have updated a few photos from this 2014 blog when Goodmotherdiet was only 2 months old and I was a newbie at food photography.  I can remember feeling it was a major accomplishment just to get a photo onto the blog regardless of quality. But I digress… Black and wild rice, roasted butternut squash, scallions, pumpkin seeds, pomegranate and microgreens, all topped with a yummy honey vinaigrette!  I have made this dish out of season with dried cranberries or cherries with good results but nothing compares to the zing and pop that you only get from pomegranate seeds.

I love this grain salad because it can serve as a main course or a hearty side dish. It’s fabulous as a party or buffet dish since it’s served at room temperature. It can be made ahead and you just toss it when ready to serve.

To see the original blog post click on the link: https://goodmotherdiet.com/2014/01/27/meatless-monday-black-wild-rice-with-roasted-squash/amp/ But check out the new photos and recipe below first to see all of the goodness that goes into this dish. -Joyce

BLACK AND WILD RICE SALAD WITH ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND POMEGRANATE

  • 1 1/2  cup black rice
  • 1/2 cup wild rice
  • kosher salt
  • 1/2 medium or 1 small butternut squash
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (divided)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 cup microgreens (or parsley or cilantro)
  • 1/2 cup pistachios (or pepitas – shelled pumpkin seeds)
  1. Cook black rice and wild rice in a large pot of boiling water with about 4 cups vegetable broth or salted water about 35 minutes or until tender.  Remove from pot into a large bowl.
  2. Preheat oven to 450. Half, seed and peel the squash and cut into cubes.  I found a small squash so used the whole thing.  Place squash cubes in a baking dish and toss with 1/4 cup olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Roast squash 20 to 25 minutes, stirring a couple of times.  Remove from heat and let cool.
  4. Whisk vinegar, honey and 1/4 cup oil in a large bowl.  Add rice, squash, pomegranate, microgreens and pistachios; toss to combine.
  5. To make ahead, combine all ingredients except for dressing and microgreens and refrigerate. For serving, bring to room temperature, add dressing and microgreens and toss.

Meatless Monday – Penne with Roasted Cauliflower & Greens

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Move over pasta with tomato sauce, penne with cauliflower roasted with parmesan and buttery wilted greens will knock you out of the ring! This is an easy and delicious, complete dinner in one bowl. Pasta is an easy go to for dinner because it’s inexpensive and quick to prepare. Did you know that the average American eats 20 pounds of pasta a year? That’s a lot of carbs but luckily there are many whole grain and nutritious pastas from which to choose that are not empty calories but actualy boost nutrients and dietary fiber. My current favorite is Ancient Grains Penne by Tru Roots (that I buy from Costco) made with a blend of organic whole grains including, brown rice, quinoa, amaranth and corn. It is naturally gluten free and has a great taste and texture in addition to all of it’s wholesome goodness. I also love Vio Life Vegan Parmesan which comes in a solid block to shred as needed. Try it!-J

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Move over pasta with tomato sauce, penne with cauliflower roasted with parmesan and buttery wilted greens will knock you out of the ring! This is an easy and delicious, complete dinner in one bowl. Pasta is an easy go to for dinner because it’s inexpensive and quick to prepare.  Did you know that the average American eats 20 pounds of pasta a year? That’s a lot of carbs but luckily there are many whole grain and nutritious pastas from which to choose that are not empty calories but actualy boost nutrients and dietary fiber.  My current favorite is Ancient Grains Penne by Tru Roots (that I buy from Costco) made with a blend of organic whole grains including, brown rice, quinoa, amaranth and corn. It is naturally gluten free and has a great taste and texture in addition to all of it’s wholesome goodness. I also love Vio Life Vegan…

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Tomato feta pasta (vegan) — The healthy rabbits recipes

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I’m finally posting the viral tomato feta pasta!🍅let me tell you that it is amazing and…I used gluten free pasta for mine, but any pasta will work beautifully! this recipe was so GOOD I can’t even explain it!! You must try it! tomato feta pasta Vegan feta. I used violife feta, but any vegan feta […]

Tomato feta pasta (vegan) — The healthy rabbits recipes

Today is Earth Day, so I thought to honor it with a vegan recipe. This recipe from The Healthy Rabbits Recipes veganizes the Tomato Feta Pasta that went viral on Tik Tok. They use Vio Life feta which I love and gluten free pasta. I’ll be making this recipe soon! The more we move away from animal products, the better off our earth will be. Enjoy!-J

Matzo Crack (Vegan and Gluten Free)

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You asked what to do with your leftover matzo besides Matzo Brie… How about Matzo Crack? It’s delicious with homemade toffee and drizzled with chocolate, then sprinkled with pecans and sea salt. Warning! It’s pretty addictive. I followed the recipe except that I veganized and gluten freed it with the following tips. I made it half nuts with Maldon Salt and the other half low salt/no nuts because people have different needs and likes.

I used Miyoko’s butter which is made from oat milk and is divine. It is the only butter I use now. Its great for eating, sauteeing and baking. You can find Miyoko’s butter in Whole Foods and other smaller stores. The website has a store finder so check it out. https://miyokos.com/

It is harder to find a vegan chocolate but I just happen to have a hoard of No Whey Milkless Chocolate Bars which we were giving away as party favors for a wedding that didn’t get to happen because of Covid. You can order online at https://nowheychocolate.com/

The recipe I adapted is from Jenn Segal at Once Upon a Chef. She has easy to follow instructions with photos, much like I do. Try her recipe and check out her site. You won’t be disappointed.

https://www.onceuponachef.com/recipes/chocolate-toffee-matzo-crack.html

Wheatless Wednesday – Oat Nut Bars

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WARNING – HIGHLY ADDICTIVE! I am often looking around the kitchen for something quick to eat with my morning coffee without making a whole production. These whole grain bars are delicious for breakfast but could also be the perfect afternoon or afterschool snack, now that kids are starting to go back to school. Easy, mix, bake, slice… Enjoy!-GMD

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Oat Nut Bars

WARNING – HIGHLY ADDICTIVE!  I am often looking around the kitchen for something quick to eat with my morning coffee without making a whole production.  Most  convenience foods are not very good for you, even if the packaging tells you otherwise.  So when I saw this recipe in Bon Appetite (January, 2014) I thought it could be just the thing.  Boy was I right (or wrong)!  These are so delicious that its hard to eat just one.  Luckily, they are loaded with nutrition.  They are made with 100% whole grains, seeds and nuts which means the bran and the germ are left intact which is where most of the nutrients are. I used whole almonds, sesame seeds and added coconut flakes, since I love all things coconut, and really like the result.  I would also recommend having coconut oil in your pantry as one of the ‘good’ oils with many health benefits.  The maple syrup…

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Meatless Monday -Vegan Mini Meatloaf

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Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day! Vegan meatloaf might not spring to mind as a delicious main course but I’m here to tell you it is….It’s reminiscent of my mother’s traditional meatloaf using Quaker Rolled Oats, onions, ketchup and Beyond Meat ground ‘beef’, cooked to a nice perfection and then topped with barbecue sauce for the last bit of cooking. It’s pretty delicious. Vegan and GF!-GMD

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Vegan meatloaf might not spring to mind as a delicious main course but I’m here to tell you it is….It’s reminiscent of my mother’s traditional meatloaf using Quaker Rolled Oats, onions, ketchup and Beyond Meat ground ‘beef’, cooked to a nice perfection and then topped with barbecue sauce for the last bit of cooking.  It’s pretty delicious.

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I was asked to come up with a vegan main course for a St. Patrick’s Day event where the main course was going to be corned beef.  This was a nice (and perhaps selfish)  challenge for me since even though I have gotten used to eating around the main course or making side dishes into dinner, its always nice to have a dinner option available.  Vegetarians and vegans are often in a pickle at parties where a vegetarian/vegan option isn’t being served.  We don’t want to be perceived as difficult or judgey, but…

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Meatless Monday – Sesame Crusted Tofu

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This is my favorite, quick and easy, protein filled, go-to dish. I especially like to make it for my meat eating friends who think they don’t like tofu. I have changed some pretty closed minds with this one. The tofu is savory and crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. I like to serve sesame crusted tofu over pasta or rice to take advantage of the yummy pan drippings. Surprise! Vegan food can have pan drippings. This time I tossed together some sugar snap peas sauteed with ginger and garlic until they glisten, tender but firm.

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I’m sorry for going MIA this summer.  A combination of travel without my computer,(Iceland is another coming post)  made blogging (and cooking) difficult and the recent illness and death of my beloved father left me with a void that I am struggling to fill.  He was a kind man. He chose family and a career in education over wealth and prestige. Dare I say it was not the exciting career he probably thought he was going to have. He and my mom fostered dozens of kids and believed in uplifting others, especially those that really needed help the most.  I suppose, his death, following hers three years ago, only reaffirms my growing belief that we should try our best to  leave a gentle footprint on the earth and make a positive difference in the world, no matter how small.  Kindness matters. Voting with your pocketbook matters.  Our choices matter. Speaking up…

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Meatless Monday – Roasted Butternut Squash Salad

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Here’s a hearty and flavorful main course salad featuring roasted butternut squash, pecans, dried cranberries and feta. To make it dairy free and vegan, try Vio Life Just Like Feta. Enjoy! Share pics!

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Salads in winter must have a hearty element to them or they just don’t work for me, especially in cold, wet weather, like now.  This one has roasted butternut squash, toasted pecans, dried cranberries and salty feta over a bed of dark leafy greens, drizzled with a rich balsamic vinaigrette.  Yum! Best of all it’s simple, just a few delicious ingredients and good for you. Butternut squash is my favorite of the hard winter squashes and still in season.  Butternut squash has a natural sweetness that really shines when brushed with olive oil and roasted, and it is loaded with vitamins and minerals, as evidenced by it’s brilliant orange color.
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This salad is easy to make except for the peeling and cutting of the butternut squash  It is not that really that hard to peel but if you are looking for a shortcut, many supermarkets offer it already pre-cut into…

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Limoncello

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This year has provided a bumper crop of of Meyer Lemons. (Actually, that would be an understatement.) So I decided to bring out my old Limoncello recipe. Local Marin friends, if you would like to try this recipe but need lemons, I have plenty to share. Just send me a message. -J

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“I believe when life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade…and try to find someone whose life has given them vodka, and have a party.” (Ron White, Author)

…Or you can combine the two and make Limoncello! I am lucky to have a beautiful, and bountiful, Meyer Lemon tree right outside my kitchen door. Most citrus trees bear two crops a year, a smaller one in the summer and the heaviest crop in winter.  Meyer lemon trees, however, are known for bearing fruit all year long, although their largest crop is now. With such an abundance of fruit, I am always looking for ways to use lots of lemons at once. I don’t mind sharing but I hate when they are wasted. Limoncello is an easy way to use extra lemons, although is not instantly gratifying since there is a considerable wait time until you have a final product. Limoncello…

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Meatless Monday – Creamy Mushroom Soup (Vegan)

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Here’s what’s for dinner tonight. Just a few ingredients, less than 30 minutes, vegan, gluten free, low cal, delish! Boom!

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Calling all mushroom lovers!  My husband declared this the BEST MUSHROOM SOUP HE’S EVER HAD – and I have to agree with him.  I have had some pretty delicious mushroom soups in restaurants but I think this one, stocked with a blend of earthy mushrooms and a rich and creamy base, beats them all.  Best of all it is very easy, ready in less than 30 minutes and requires few ingredients.  It’s vegan too! Many soups are made delicious by adding thick creamy ingredients that add fat and cholesterol and actually mask the natural flavors of the main ingredients.  I substituted the traditional heavy cream with almond milk and veggie broth, thickened with a bit of flour, which really cuts calories without losing flavor.  This soup was wonderful served immediately after cooking, but the small bowl that was leftover that I ate for lunch a couple of days later was even better.  So this is a great soup…

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Meatless Monday-Veggie Zucchini Enchiladas

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Love Mexican food but not the heavy carbs and calories? You might like these vegetarian enchiladas packed with fresh corn, black beans, mushrooms and pasilla peppers, sauteed with garlic, cumin and chili powder, then rolled in thin slices of summer squash, nestled in a bed of zesty red enchilada sauce and topped with pepper jack cheese or one of the yummy new vegan cheeses. Bake in the oven until the cheese is melty and the sauce is bubbling. You won’t miss the tortillas (or the calories).

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Love Mexican food but not the heavy carbs and calories? You might like these vegetarian enchiladas packed with fresh corn, black beans, mushrooms and pasilla peppers, sauteed with garlic, cumin and chili powder, then rolled in thin slices of summer squash, nestled in a bed of zesty red enchilada sauce and topped with pepper jack cheese.  Bake in the oven until the cheese is melty and the sauce is bubbling. Yum!  You won’t miss the tortillas (or the calories).

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These enchiladas are seriously good!  I made them twice.  The first time (above) I used corn, mushrooms and pasillo peppers.  You can see that the zucchini slices were harder to roll. (*See TIPS) The second time I added black beans and black olives.  I loved both versions but preferred the second one but I happen to love beans. I understand that some people don’t like or can’t tolerate beans.  It’s pretty easy to adapt this recipe to…

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Meatless Monday-Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Balsamic Drizzle

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Here’s a recipe from last year that is worth bringing back. Cauliflower is the chameleon of vegetables and can become whatever you want it to be. In this case, it takes center stage as a beautiful plant based steak with a caramelized crust and drizzled with a balsamic reduction. Infused with herbs and smoked paprika, it is delicious and surprisingly hearty and done in 30 minutes. I recommend serving over rice or couscous to soak up the delicious juices. Click through for this and eight more cauliflower recipes.

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Move over portobello mushrooms, Cauliflower Steak is the hot new vegan main course, and rightly so.  Cauliflower is the chameleon of vegetables and can become whatever you want it to be.  In this case, it takes center stage as a beautiful plant based steak with a caramelized crust and drizzled with a balsamic reduction.  Infused with herbs and smoked paprika, it is delicious and surprisingly hearty and done in 30 minutes.  I recommend serving over rice or couscous to soak up the delicious juices.

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When buying cauliflower, choose a head that is firm and heavy.  A lighter head will probably fall apart when you try to cut thick slices.  As it is, I plan on two steaks per head.  Sometimes I get lucky and get two more smaller ones but sometimes its mostly florets, which are still delicious but don’t have the same presentation.  If you are lucky enough to…

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Homemade Plum Jam & Canning Tips

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It’s plum time and everyone’s trees are bursting with fruit, maybe more than we know what to do with it all. I mean, one can only make so many crisps and muffins. Plum jam is an easy way to use up extra plums, even the ones that got blemished or split after falling from the tree. I include canning instructions but you can also freeze it in plastic bags or containers or just eat it fresh. Happy jam making!

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It’s plum season!  I have a lovely Santa Rosa Plum tree that grows the most delicious plums that have that perfect balance of sweet and tart.  I would have a hard time selling the house and moving because of this tree. One Arbor Day, almost 20 years ago, my very excited kids brought several sticks bare root fruit trees home from school. Now, I will have to admit that these ‘trees’ looked a lot like dead twigs to me, but as a good mother does, I along with my boys, ceremoniously planted them and thus began our now flourishing fruit orchard, home to plum, orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit, nectarine, cherry, kumquat, satsuma, avocado, Asian pear and several apple trees.  The queen of the orchard though, is the Santa Rosa Plum tree, one of the unlikely Arbor Day trees which grew from a 3 foot bare root stick to a glorious…

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Wheatless Wednesday – Santa Rosa Plum Crisp

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Its plum season and it’s a doozy this year! You might call it a bumper crop and they are abundant in markets or in neighborhood back yards. Take advantage of nature’s bounty and make a stone fruit crisp for a simple 4th of July or summer dessert. Other stone fruits are in season right now like peaches, cherries and nectarines. Crisps are very forgiving to make as there is little that can go wrong, no crust to make or fruit to arrange. Just cut up your favorite fruit, sprinkle it with a yummy topping and bake. I’m making this tomorrow but in individual ramekins as a food safety precaution. They are also easier to serve but they are cute too!.

The beauty of this dessert is it’s simplicity. This recipe is easily made vegan and gluten free and for a dessert, it’s pretty nutritious. The oats and almond flour combined with the fruit and dates are loaded with vitamins and minerals ( and fiber, of course). As an added bonus, your kitchen will smell divine! Happy 4th!

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Looking for a simple 4th of July or summer dessert?  How about an easy Stone Fruit Crisp? Plums are in season right now as are other stone fruits like peaches, cherries and nectarines. Crisps are very forgiving to make as there is little that can go wrong, no crust to make or fruit to arrange. Just cut up your favorite fruit, sprinkle it with a yummy topping and bake. The beauty of this dessert is it’s simplicity.  This recipe is easily made vegan and gluten free and for a dessert, it’s pretty nutritious.  The oats and almond flour combined with the fruit and dates are loaded with vitamins and minerals ( and fiber, of course).   As an added bonus, your kitchen will smell divine!

I have a wonderfully prolific Santa Rosa plum tree in my garden in California.  Usually I make plum jam which I put on toast or in my yogurt for the rest of the year.  This spring in California…

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