Tuscan Kale & Bean Soup

This hearty, winter bean soup is the perfect Italian comfort food on a cold February night. You can make it vegetarian or with some Italian sausage. Either get ground sausage and cook it up in a skillet with some oil and add to the soup for the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Or you can slice sausage (remove the casings first) and cook it in a pan with a bit of oil and add to the soup for the last 10 minutes it’s simmering.  Mmmm….enjoy a little slice of easy, satisfying and warming comfort food.

Tuscan Kale & Bean Soup

Tuscan Kale & Bean Soup

Yields: 8 cups of soup

Serves: 4 heartily

Ingredients:

 

  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 2 tablespoons safflower or sunflower oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch curly leaf or lacinato kale
  • 2 cups cooked cannellini or white navy beans (canned or cooked from dry beans)
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1  (28 ounce) can whole tomatoes or 3-4 large fresh tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano and/or dried basil
  • Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • ¾ cup heavy cream (optional)
  • ⅓ cup parmesan cheese (optional for serving)

 

Directions:

Slice the onions thinly. Heat a large saucepan or stockpot (with lid) over medium heat and add the oil. Saute the onion for 5 minutes, or until translucent. You can saute longer if you want the onion to be sweeter. Mince the garlic and add to the onion.

Cook for 30 seconds and then add cooked (drained) beans, vegetable or chicken broth, tomatoes (crush them in bowl first if using fresh tomatoes), dried herbs, salt and red pepper flakes if using. Season with black pepper. Start with 1 teaspoon of salt and you can always add more later if needed.

Bring to a boil. Then cover and reduce to medium low. Cook for 20 minutes. Remove the stems from the kale and then tear the kale into 2 inch pieces. Add kale pieces to the soup for the last 2 minutes of cooking time. Taste and adjust salt and seasonings as needed. Remove from heat and add heavy cream. Juice the lemon and add ½ the juice of the lemon to the soup. Taste and add more lemon if needed. Serve hot. It’s great with crusty bread for dipping! You can even drizzle the soup with a little olive oil and top with parmesan or more red pepper flakes. Enjoy!

The Empowered Kitchen Tips:

To make this a meat dish, you can add cooked Italian sausage to this dish near the end, about 5-10 minutes before the end of the simmering time. You can also substitute 1 inch cubes of potato for the beans if you prefer to make it a potato soup. This soup doesn’t freeze well, so you can enjoy it for the next 5 days when kept in your refrigerator.

Gin & Cranberry Mash

Happy New Year’s Eve 2018! What a year it has been. For me it’s been a year of opening my heart further than it’s ever been open before. It experienced deep love, followed by heartbreak. This was definitely a year of discovering more about myself, understanding how I need to grow, and feeling stronger for all of it. I’ve learned it’s all about loving yourself above all. Then you have love to give and accept from others. Here’s a virtual toast to us all creating more love in the world, for ourselves, and all of those around us.

Super ready to ring in a new year with a delicious cocktail and surrounded by the love of friends and family! I sincerely hope you do the same!

Gin & Cranberry Mash

Ingredients:

1/4 teaspoon grated ginger

1 Tablespoon plain cooked cranberries

1 oz gin

1/2 oz simple syrup

2 ice cubes in shaker

2-3 dashes bitters

1/2 ounce dry vermouth

1 oz apple cider (optional)

Squeeze of lime (optional)

 

Directions:

Place all ingredients in cocktail shaker. Shake well. Serve over ice.

Garnish with optional rosemary and/or fresh cranberries. 

Enjoy! 🍸

Citrus & Fennel Salad with Toasted Almonds

This is a WONDERFUL side dish for Thanksgiving or any holiday meal. It’s fresh, light and a huge crowd pleaser. This is a simple, gourmet salad that’s easy to throw together, and perfect to make ahead!

Fennel is great for digestion and the citrus gives you a boost of vitamin C. An added benefit to help ward off sickness this time of year. 🙂

Any extra fennel you have can be used to make homemade stock or you can roast it and throw it in a puréed soup!

Citrus Fennel Salad on Mixed Baby Greens

Citrus & Fennel Salad With Toasted Almonds

Yields: 8 ½ cups

Serves: 8 as a small side salad

Ingredients:

 

  • 2 ruby red grapefruits
  • 2 blood oranges
  • ½ fennel bulb thinly sliced
  • Vinaigrette
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • (1 medium or 2 small limes)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ small shallot
  • pinch of salt

 

Topping

 

  • ¼ cup roasted almonds

 

Directions:

Carefully peel and segment the fruits using a paring knife. Slice the fennel bulb where it meets the branching part of the stems. Thinly slice the bulb and cut a wedge out of the heart of the bulb, which is fibrous and difficult to eat.

Finely mince the shallot. Combine all vinaigrette ingredients in small bowl and whisk well. Alternatively, put ingredients in shaker or mason jar. Fit tightly with lid and shake well. Label with name of dressing and date if there is extra and refrigerate.

Arrange fruits and fennel slices/shavings on serving plate(s).

You can toast the almonds if you’d like. If doing this step, heat a small skillet over medium heat. No oil is needed. Add whole almonds to the hot pan and toast for about 8 minutes. Stir occasionally. Once they smell fragrant and become golden brown, they’re ready. Remove almonds from the pan.

Coarsely chop the almonds (toasted or raw) and rough chop a few fennel fronds. Top the salad with almonds, fennel fronds and vinaigrette. Toss well to combine and enjoy!

The Empowered Kitchen Tips:

You can put this on a bed of fresh greens to make it even heartier. If you want to meal prep this, you can make the recipe as above and even add the dressing. It will last up to 3 days in the refrigerator. If putting on fresh greens, add the greens right before serving, so they stay crisp and fresh.

Summer Squash, Tomato, Goat Cheese & Mustard Tart

This is a beautiful, French-inspired, summer tart. It’s a great way to use up all that extra zucchini and yellow squash laying around this time of year. 🙂 Make the most of it before it’s all gone for the season!

What the final tart looks like. Yum! 🙂 (This was right before we took two slices, left the kitchen for 5 minutes, and when I came back my dog had eaten about half of it. 🙁 Lesson learned…again.

Roll out the crust and gently place in tart pan. Carefully form to the pan and smooth out any folds. Leave a little extra crust around the edges to allow for the crust to shrink up a bit.

Sliced veggies and rounds. At this point you would place pie weights in the crust, poke it with a fork a few times in the flat part of the crust and then bake it for 12-15 minutes. (I forgot to bake it before spreading with mustard in these pictures, so please bake it before adding any filling.)

There is one mistake in this picture. Please bake the crust for 12-15 minutes before spreading with mustard and adding the other fillings.

Here is the filled tart before it goes into the oven. You can use any kind of goat cheese or cow’s cheese that you like. I also dotted it with fresh rosemary and sprinkled the top with a little salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Yum! The taste of summer. 🙂

Tomato, Zucchini & Goat Cheese Tart

Yields: 2 tarts

Serves: 8 as an entree, 16 as a side dish

Ingredients:

Crust

 

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • 6-8 tablespoons cold (ice) water

 

 

Tart

 

  • 1 small zucchini
  • 1 small yellow squash
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 5-6 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 12 ounces goat cheese
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

 

Directions:

Cornmeal Crust

Cut butter into ½ inch cubes. Stir flour, cornmeal, sugar and salt into a bowl. Add butter cubes and cut into the dry ingredients with a pastry cutter or use your fingers until the mixture resembles small peas.

Add the cold ice water by starting with 4 tablespoons. Incorporate that water into the dough. Add 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is a soft consistency, and pliable, but not too sticky. You want it to come together into a ball.

Place the dough in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Assembling the Tarts

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Divide the chilled dough in half. Roll out the dough to about ¼ inch thick and gently form to tart pan. Pierce gently with a fork and place pie weights on the dough. Repeat with second crust. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and carefully remove the pie weights without burning yourself.

While the crusts are baking, slice the zucchini, yellow squash and tomato into ¼ inch slices. Slice the cheese into chunks and pull the rosemary off the stems.

When the crusts come out of the oven, spread them with a layer of mustard to your liking. At least thinly cover the entire crust. Then layer with multiple layers of the vegetables. Top with pieces of goat cheese and sprinkle with rosemary. Sprinkle with a few small pinches of salt.

Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until golden brown and the fully cooked through. Sprinkle with freshly cracked black pepper. Serve hot and enjoy!

Seared Tempeh with Cashews, Edamame on Greens with Asian Dressing

Trying out tempeh for the first time, or just looking for a fresh take on it? Well, this is your recipe. It’s been a huge hit every time I’ve made it and gives tempeh so much great flavor, you’ll be sure to keep this recipe in your back pocket. 

Tempeh is a fermented cake of soybeans that includes the entire bean, thereby giving it more nutritional value in the form of more vitamins, protein and fiber. It’s a great food to add to your diet, whether or not you’re a vegetarian. This recipes is a great one to give it a try if this is your first time. It’s very affordable and satiating.

I want to acknowledge that there are a number of ingredients to make the Honey Sesame Dressing, but once you have them on hand, it’s quick and easy to put together a variety of Asian dressings, dipping sauces and marinades. Having these items stocked in your pantry will greatly increase the diversity of flavors available to you in your cooking. 

Once you have some of this dressing made, it will keep for about a week plus a few days in your refrigerator. You can the ingredients directly below. Now let’s get cooking!

Seared Tempeh With Cashews, Edamame On Greens With Asian Dressing 

Yields: 3 salads and Serves: 3 heartily

Ingredients:

Salad

  • 6 cups baby greens, arugula or spinach
  • ¾ cup cashews (raw or toasted)
  • ¾ cup edamame or fava beans (shelled)
  • 8 ounces tempeh
  • 2 tablespoons safflower or avocado oil

 

Marinade

  • ¼ cup tamari
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese 5 Spice

 

Honey Sesame Dressing

(Yields ~ 1 ¼ cups)

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup tamari
  • 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, optional

 

Directions:

Marinade

Combine all the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together to combine well.

Braise and Marinate the Tempeh

Cube tempeh into 1 inch cubes. Soak in marinade and toss to coat well. Let marinate for 5 minutes.

Preheat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add oil to hot skillet. Once oil is hot, add tempeh cubes. Stir occasionally to sear on each side until golden brown. This will take about 1 minute on each side. 

Make Dressing

Mince the garlic. Peel ginger with a spoon and grate it using a microplane or box grater. 

Combine all dressing ingredients in a mason jar and shake well. Label, date and keep excess in refrigerator for up to 1 week. 

Steam Edamame and Assemble Salad

Put a small saucepan, fitted with a steamer basket, and filled with 2 inches of water over medium heat. Cover with a lid. When water is boiling, after about 2-3 minutes, place edamame in a steamer basket. Steam for about 5 minutes, or until cooked, but still maintain some firmness. Drain and rinse to cool if desired. 

Assemble salad greens on plate with slices of marinated tempeh, cashews, edamame and honey sesame dressing.  

The tempeh will last in the fridge for up to 3 days. Enjoy on salads or with rice and vegetables until then!

Enjoy!

Pea, Cilantro, Lime Gazpacho

It’s August and it’s been a hot one this summer! Keep your kitchen cool by experimenting with chilled soups this summer. Zero cooking needed. 🙂 If you have a blender or food processor, you can easily make this green gazpacho soup. Plus if you make it ahead, it only gets better after a few days in the fridge. 

You just need to chop the vegetables in big chunks like this. You can remove the seeds from the cucumber, but it’s not necessary.

Summer picnic with a friend and chilled green gazpacho. Mmm…joys of summertime. 

Pea, Cilantro, Lime Gazpacho

Yields: 6 cups

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

 

  • 1 ½ large cucumbers
  • 1 avocado
  • 6 ounces fresh or frozen peas
  • 4 sprigs cilantro
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ medium shallot
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 lime
  • ¼ jalapeño
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ⅔ cup vegetable broth (low sodium)
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt to taste (Start with ½ teaspoon)

 

Optional

 

  • More cilantro to garnish
  • 1 tomato for garnish

 

Directions:

Add the following ingredients to the blender as you peel and slice them. However, keep aside about ⅓ of the cucumber to cut into a medium dice. You will add this diced cucumber before serving the soup. It will not be blended with the rest of the ingredients.

Peel cucumber. Slice down the middle lengthwise and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Save for another recipe, or place in compost bin. Slice avocado in half and scoop out flesh with a spoon.

Rough chop the cilantro, stems included. Peel and rough chop the shallot and garlic. Juice the lime into the blender. Slice jalapeño in half and carefully scoop out the seeds with a spoon and discard. Make sure to wash hands well with soap after handling hot peppers and don’t touch eyes or sensitive skin. Add oil, whipping cream, broth and spices to the blender.

Turn blender to medium. If it’s starting to blend, turn to high until everything is well blended. If it doesn’t want to blend, add a few tablespoons of broth at a time until it begins to blend.

Taste and adjust ingredients to your liking. After finished blending, add diced cucumber pieces and pour into serving bowls. You can serve with a swirl of olive oil or cream, more cracked pepper and a garnish of cilantro and/or diced tomato if desired.

Enjoy!

Variations

You can use fresh parsley and a few sprigs of mint in place of the cilantro. In that case, the lime can also be substituted by lemon. Have fun experimenting! Comment below if you’d like to share your variations or how you liked the recipe.

Shakshuka

Shakshuka is a wonderful, savory and filling dish to serve for brunch, lunch or dinner. It goes great with a side of bread, couscous or a Mediterranean-style salad. This dish originates from North Africa and the Middle East and is very common in Israel. 

It can be adapted to include what you have on hand, making it a great end of the week, clean-out-the-fridge dish. Vegetables such as summer squash, eggplant, broccoli or carrots can easily be added to cook down with the sauce and make it your own. If you buy a bunch of parsley for another dish, this is a great way to use up the rest of it. Shakshuka is a great way to use up bumper crops of your fresh garden produce.

Give this a try for your next brunch for something new and different. It’s so satisfying! 

Shakshuka

Yields 4 cups sauce plus an egg (Serves 4)

Ingredients

 

  • 2-3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 1/2 large yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 cups fresh tomatoes or 32 ounce can San Marzano whole tomatoes
  • 4-6 eggs (based on your preference)
  • 1 teaspoon ras el hanout (substitute cumin if you don’t have this spice blend)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder (more if you like it spicier)
  • Pinch cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste (start with 1 teaspoon salt)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley (for garnish and added flavor)

 

Optional

 

  • Zucchini, yellow squash, bell pepper, hot peppers, carrots, broccoli and green beans are all possible additions to this dish and a great way to minimize food waste by using up odds and ends of leftover vegetables. 

 

Shakshuka ingredients

Directions

Thinly slice the onions and mince the garlic. Heat a medium cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium heat. Once heated add oil and then place sliced onions in hot oil. Sauté for 8 -10 minutes until translucent and beginning to slightly caramelize. While onion is cooking, dice the eggplant and any other vegetables you’re using into a medium dice, about 1/2 inch cubes. There is no need to peel the eggplant. 

Add garlic, eggplant and any other vegetables to sauté with the onions for 5 minutes to slightly brown the vegetables. You can add some minced jalapeño or Serrano at this time if you like extra spice.

Add tomatoes. If using whole tomatoes, crush them in a bowl before adding to the skillet. Or you can do what I did and squeeze them with your hands as you add them to the skillet. Add the spices and sugar to the pan and stir to combine well. Let simmer over medium low for 10 minutes. Carefully taste and adjust salt to your preference.

While simmering you can rough chop the parsley leaves to have them ready. Keep the stems to either add to a pesto, chimichurri sauce or freeze them with your other vegetable scraps to make a simple, homemade broth. 

After 10 minutes, gently crack the eggs onto the shakshuka while it’s still cooking. Let cook for another 10 minutes, or until the eggs are fully cooked to your liking. You can cover with a lid to cook the eggs faster if you’d like. 

Sprinkle with freshly cracked black pepper and parsley for serving. Serve hot with a side of hearty, crusty bread, pita or couscous. Goes well with a fresh salad topped with feta cheese. 

Enjoy! I’d love to know how you like it and how you adapt it to make it your own. You can easily add sausage to this dish. Just cook it while cooking the vegetables and before adding the tomatoes. Another spice that is a great addition is Aleppo pepper, which adds a warm earthy spiciness to the dish.

Shakshuka simmering in tomatoes

Eggs cooking in shakshuka

Chimichurri

This is a wonderfully flavorful sauce that seriously takes just a few minutes to put together. If you can operate a blender, you can make this sauce! 🙂 It’s also a great use for an abundance of parsley in a backyard garden and the parsley stems get blended in too, so less food waste!

You’ll get all the benefits of the antioxidants in the parsley and health benefits of extra virgin olive oil and red pepper too! It’s a great nutrition boost to add to any meal.

CHIMICHURRI RECIPE

Yields about 1 1\4 U.S. cups

Ingredients

 

  • 1 cup fresh parsley sprigs with stems included (don’t waste that flavor!)
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (more if you like it spicier, but you might start with less)
  • Salt to taste (start with 1/2 teaspoon)
  • Cracked black pepper to taste
  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves (more if desired)

 

Simple ingredients for Chimichurri.

Directions

Combine all ingredients except the olive oil in food processor and blend until smooth. Pour in the olive oil and stir to combine.

Taste and adjust seasonings or other ingredients as desired. Goes great with fish, steaks, on veggie burgers, on seared tempeh, with pork or chicken. It’s also delicious as a condiment for roasted vegetables.

Hope you enjoy trying out a new sauce! Let me know if you try it and how it turns out!

A New Old Way of Eating: Let’s Stop Dieting & Start Cooking

Healthy Relationship With Food

How we relate to food matters. In the United States we have a notoriously fraught relationship with food. We’re afraid of it and susceptible to fear tactics waged by companies warning us to be afraid of certain ingredients and that suddenly a food that used to be healthy is now going to harm us. Food is meant to nourish and fuel our bodies. When did we become so afraid of it? When in balanced portions food wants to do the right thing in our bodies if we’ll let it. In many other cultures, food is seen as a way to share time with loved ones, care for yourself and savor the taste and culinary knowledge that has been passed down for generations. Let’s get back to that.

We’re all craving real connection, and that can start with simple, whole food around the dinner table. We can all get back in sync with the rhythms of regular mealtimes and cooking routines. Cooking is a form of taking care of ourselves and our loved ones with healthy, homemade food that tastes good, keeps us sharp and well-fueled, and brings people together. That’s what food has done for generations and there’s no need to fear it or to dive into the next fad diet. We just need to be in charge of what is going into our food, and cooking is the best way to do that. 

It may seem like too much to ask for us to cook scratch meals in our busy 21st century lives, but food is fundamental to the success of our days and there are practical ways to make this a reality. Taking care of this essential part of your life will pay great dividends in both physical and mental health. 

Listening To Your Body

Simply tuning into how you feel after eating a meal will give you all the information you need about how healthy that meal was. For instance, if it fired you up or made you feel sluggish. If you feel vibrant, energized and ready get after your day, then you know what you ate was a combination of foods that your body craves. If you feel off or tired after a meal, that may indicate something you ate was not the best food to fuel yourself for the day. Or perhaps the portion size of a particular ingredient was too large or not enough.  

Everyone’s body is different, so portions and kinds of foods will vary somewhat for each individual. Generally a hearty helping of fresh fruits and vegetables, some grains with small amounts of vegetable or meat protein and fats in nuts, seeds or dairy create the foundation for a healthy, filling meal. It’s all about getting a sense of your mental clarity and level of energy after a meal and making slight adjustments until you intuitively know what your body thrives on. Then you make that your routine and keep adding foods and new dishes to it. 

Photography by Amanda Tipton

Meal Prep Techniques

It may seem overwhelming and unattainable to cook every meal for yourself everyday, but with a few new simple food preparation techniques throughout your week, it’s every bit possible to fit into your life. 

Learning a few meal prep techniques will help you make this a regular habit that is as natural as brushing your teeth twice a day. Here are some to get you started.

 

  • Buy 3 or 4 vegetables to roast, along with a whole chicken, some fish or shrimp, pork chops or a chuck roast. If you’re vegetarian buy a block of tofu or tempeh or whatever other vegetarian protein you typically use. 
  • Roast the vegetables and meats. While these are roasting you can prepare 1 or 2 homemade dressings, a sauce or two and cook one or two two kinds of grains. Then chop a few fresh vegetables to have for salads and snacks for the first half of the week.  
  • When the roasted vegetables and meats come out of the oven you can store them to use to create meals later, or make a few dishes right away. Soups are really easy and versatile to make with roasted vegetables. The cooked veggies can also be used in tacos or enchiladas, with eggs for breakfast, in rice or noodle bowls, sliced on salads or sandwiches. Let yourself get creative with it so you’re never bored with your meals for the week.  

 

This will take 2 1/2 -3 hours, depending on if you make a few dishes right away or wait until later. Cooking a couple of dishes immediately may be the most efficient use of time, since you’re already in the kitchen with equipment out and ready to use. Some people like to cook most of their meals once a week, and some do a small batch on Sunday and a small batch on Wednesday. Experiment with which days and how much cooking at one time works for you.

You can use these same principals to prepare smoothie ingredients ahead and freeze them, or other healthy breakfasts, as well as snacks or nutritious desserts for the week.  It’s about finding recipes for foods that will last well in the fridge, or the pantry for the week, or in the freezer for a couple of months.

Use That Freezer

Remember your freezer! It’s your friend. If you prepare one batch of enchiladas, either freeze half of it or double the recipe to freeze one batch. Puréed soups freeze great too. It’s a wonderful thing to pull these out of the freezer to thaw in the morning and have dinner ready to heat up when you get home. Meatballs, falafel, veggie burgers, meat burgers and many sauces freeze well too, so you can save whatever you don’t use in the week for a later meal with no cooking required…just reheating. You’ll be so impressed with yourself that you’ll never go back to cooking one meal every night or grabbing fast food on your way home everyday. 

Photography by Amanda Tipton

Pay Attention To How You Feel

Once you start trying out some new recipes, you’ll start to see what your body responds well to, and tailoring your diet to more of that. You know how you feel, so this is much less about adhering to a new diet regimen and a specific list of foods that someone else has determined. This way of being and cooking is about knowing what you like to eat, how much is good for your body and how to choose food that makes you feel great and fuels you. It may take a little while to get a sense of which foods energize you and which drag you down. Be gentle with yourself as it is a process that will unfold naturally. Enjoy the food you eat and savor it, even the chocolate cake or fruit tart. Yes! Those are parts of the beauty and enjoyment of living this life and eating good food, so hold onto every delicious bite. 

Let’s learn together how to cook simple, whole ingredients from scratch again, so we never have to fear food and are empowered to take charge of our kitchens and our health. 

Let’s Gather & Learn

If you’d like to learn some practical, healthy cooking skills and learn more about The Empowered Kitchen’s meal prep cooking classes, join Healthy Women Leaders for the Summer Evening Farm-to-Table Cooking Class on August 14th!  Details here

You can learn about Katrina’s meal prep cooking classes at www.empoweredkitchen.com

Follow Me On Social Media: https:

Facebook or Instagram

Turnip Greens with Cherries & Walnuts

You may not have tried cooking with turnip greens, or turnips at all for that matter. I encourage you to head to your local farmer’s market and pick up a beautiful bundle of turnips. When fresh from the farm or garden, they’re tender and wonderful shaved into salads, roasted, and sliced thinly for salads or sandwiches. If you roast them, they’re a fantastic addition to soups and stews.

Ingredients for this warm summer salad. Delicious & gourmet use of turnip greens.

 

You can use the whole plant in your cooking too! Save the stems for stock that you make the say of, or place in a sealed bag and freeze your vegetable scraps until you have enough to make stock. 

I love using the greens in warm salads like the one below. They can also be added to risotto, beans with greens or a Tuscan soup with beans. 

Turnip Greens With Cherries & Walnuts

Yields about 3 1/2 cups salad

Ingredients

 

  • Greens from 5 large turnips
  • 2 small garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup red onion 
  • 8-10 red dark cherries 
  • 1/4 cup walnuts 
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Salt to taste (start with 1/4 teaspoon)

 

Directions

Thinly slice the red onion and mince the garlic cloves. Rough chop the walnuts. Set aside. 

Cut the turnip greens at the base of the leaves from the stems. You can save the stems for stock. (Tip: Add to a sealed freezer bag of vegetable scraps to make broth later)

Tear the turnip greens into bite sized pieces and set aside.

Pit the cherries and break up with your fingers or slice into quarters. Do this carefully, as cherry juice will stain. 

Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Once warm, add the coconut oil. When oil is heated, after about 1 minute, add sliced onions and saute for 4=5 minutes. The onions will be starting to become translucent. Cook longer if you want them more caramelized. 

Add garlic, walnuts, cherries, greens and balsamic vinegar to the skillet. Saute for another 2-3 minutes, or until the salad is cooked to your liking.

You want the turnip leaves to still be bright green, but cooked through. Serve hot! Goes great as a side to a leg of lamb or a peppery steak.