Posts Tagged ‘Olive oil’

Roasted Beet Hummus | Perfect Summer Snack

Perfect Summer Snack

Spring is bleeding into summer shortly. With more hours of daylight and warmer temperatures, summer always seems to lend itself to relaxed outdoor parties, dinner soirees and the like. And that means I get to whip out all my favorite party foods. To start the season off, this is my all-time *favorite* appetizer for a party of one or twenty…

Quick, simple AND guilt-free: beet hummus is a fun twist on the traditional (if, dare I say, over-featured) hummus dip party option. Standalone hummus is healthy enough, with the tahini full of calcium and chickpeas a great source of protein. Not to mention, you can always pair the dip with carrots or cucumber instead of the more carb-heavy pita bread option. Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2-4 medium sized beets (depending on how strong you want the beet flavor), scrubbed clean, cooked, peeled, and cubed*
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup tahini sesame seed paste
  • juice and zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus extra if desired
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for thinning the hummus

*To cook the beets: put them in a covered dish with about 1/4-inch of water in a 375°F oven, and cook until easily penetrated with a knife or fork. Alternatively, cover with water in a saucepan and simmer until tender, about 1/2 hour. Peel once they have cooled.

METHOD

Place all ingredients, chickpeas and olive oil last to be added, in a food processor (or blender) and pulse until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings and ingredients as desired.

Makes 2 cups.

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Bowl of Tasty Pasta with Swiss Chard

Spring Pasta!

Confession: I love pasta. I could eat pasta twice a day, every day. I could prepare a decadent bolognese or creamy alfredo sauce. But the truth is–these are neither very healthy choices for an already high-carb/low-protein meal. So, with spring (and summer!) around the corner, I set out to find a healthier, guilt-free option.

I started with my favorite pasta, orecchiette — which means “ear” in Italian and is shaped as such. I found this recipe from the New York Times inspiring me to choose Swiss chard as the base ingredient. It is a wonderful, if overlooked, vegetable with loads of calcium (so that down the line, you’re ready to take in some Vitamin D from the sun!) as well as Vitamin A and beta-carotene.

Otherwise, I improvised by throwing in mushrooms and sausage for protein, then choosing an olive oil “sauce” to save calories. If you add goat cheese to an olive oil mix, it helps add some texture and taste without costing you in the nutritional department.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch Swiss chard
  • 3/4 lb orecchiette pasta
  • 1 or 1 1/2 lbs Italian sausage, diced
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese, sprinkled in pieces
  • 1/2 lb crimini mushrooms cut; as the weather becomes warmer, opt for cherry tomatoes, cut in half with the seeds
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt/pepper to taste; add red pepper flakes if you desire (I love spicy food so I opt for a lot)

1. Boil a large pot of water. After stemming and washing the chard, steam it in the boiling water.

2. In a skillet, saute the diced sausage pieces and mushrooms in olive oil and garlic clove. Add in the chard and season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Separately, boil another pot of water to cook the pasta in. When it’s cooked and drained, mix pasta with steamed chard, sausages, mushrooms. Finally, add the crumbled goat cheese and red pepper flakes.

Serves four! Enjoy!