Three Healthy Meal Plans coordinated with the ingredients in this week's Veggie basket...
#1 ENTRÉE Creamy Polenta with Caramelized Chicory [Vegan]
This Creamy Polenta with Caramelized Chicory will be your new favorite winter comfort food. It is incredibly creamy, full of flavor and very filling, especially if you combine it with fried vegetables.
3 cups water (or more if necessary)
2 cups of non-dairy milk, unsweetened (almond, light coconut ...)
1 teaspoon Himalayan salt or sea salt
1 teaspoon vegetable broth powder (or extra salt)
1 cup of cornmeal
2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast flakes (for a 'cheesy' taste)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
Coconut oil (or olive oil)
4 to 6 stalks of chicory, cut in quarters lengthwise
Pinch of coconut blossom sugar (optional)
Black pepper and Himalayan salt or sea salt
Bring the water to the boil together with the milk, the salt and the vegetable broth powder.
Lower the heat and add the cornmeal bit by bit. Stir well for several minutes so that the cornmeal does not clump.
Let the polenta simmer for a while. The cooking time depends on the type of cornmeal you use (stated on the package). Most types of polenta need 20 minutes or longer until they are ready. If your polenta is too thick, you can stir in some extra water.
Remove the cooking pot from the fire once the polenta is ready. You will notice that the result is nice and creamy and contains almost no grains. Add the noble yeast flakes, olive oil, turmeric, and black pepper. Mix well.
Cut the chicory lengthwise into quarters or even finer.
Heat some coconut oil in a large pan and then add the pieces of chicory. Reduce the heat from high to medium, and season with salt and black pepper. After a few minutes, I cover the pan with a lid so that the chicory cooks faster. Do not stir too much in the pan until the chicory is baked golden brown.
When all the pieces are well baked, turn them over so that the top can also caramelize. Add some coconut blossom sugar or maple syrup for a deeper caramelized taste. If necessary, season with extra salt and pepper.
Serve the polenta with the caramelized chicory, fresh herbs and possibly a little olive oil.
This polenta remains freshly sealed in the refrigerator for at least 3 days. Not a fan of chicory? You serve this polenta with any vegetables: fennel, mushrooms, tomato, eggplant, kale, chard.
Grilled Cabbage, Zucchini and Radicchio Coleslaw
Total: 25 min Active: 25 min Yield: 6 servings
5 zucchini, quartered lengthwise
1 medium head purple cabbage, cut into 1-inch-thick slices
1 head radicchio, quartered
1/2 cup olive oil, plus more for grilling
2 tablespoons dried basil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 2 tablespoons agave nectar
Heat a grill or grill pan on high heat until hot.
Brush the zucchini, cabbage and radicchio with some olive oil and sprinkle with the basil. Season with salt and pepper. Add the veggies to the grill and cook until tender and grill marks appear, 10 to 20 minutes depending on the vegetable. Chop the grilled veggies lengthwise into thin strips.
In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, apple cider vinegar and agave. Season the vinaigrette with salt and pepper to taste. Toss the grilled veggies in the vinaigrette.
SAUTEED MUSHROOMS WITH SESAME AND GINGER
Recipe by Sharon123 Adapted from Cook's Illustrated magazine, these have all the flavors I love!
READY IN: 35mins SERVES: 4
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 ⁄ lbs white button mushrooms, cleaned quartered
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar (to taste)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
2 scallions, sliced very thin on the bias
Heat 1 tbls. of the peanut oil in a 12" skillet over medium high heat until they shimmer.
Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms release their liquid, about 5 minutes.
Increase the heat to high and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer.
Add the remaining peanut oil, reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring once every minute, until the mushrooms are dark brown, about 8 more minutes.
Add the sesame seeds and ginger and cook, stirring constantly, until the ginger is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add the rice vinegar, sugar and soy sauce and cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid has evaporated, about 30 seconds.
Remove from the heat and stir in the sesame oil.
Move to a serving dish, sprinkle with the scallions, and serve.
NUTRITION INFO Serving Size: 1 (199) g Servings Per Recipe: 4 AMT. PER SERVING % DAILY VALUE Calories: 133 Calories from Fat 86 g 65 % Total Fat 9.6 g 14 % Saturated Fat 1.6 g 7 % Cholesterol 0 mg 0 % Sodium 512.9 mg 21 % Total Carbohydrate 8.5 g 2 % Dietary Fiber 2.3 g 9 % Sugars 4.2 g 16 % 12
OVEN BAKED CINNAMON-PECAN ALMOND BUTTER BANANA BOATS
Bananas stuffed with almond butter and cinnamon toasted pecans, baked in the oven for a healthy treat! If you’re trying to eat healthier this year these are the perfect way to satisfy those sugar cravings. Kids will even love them!
To make the boats, first toast some pecans in a little bit of coconut oil over medium-high heat. While they are toasting, sprinkle in some cinnamon. Then, slice the bananas lengthwise, about half way through.
Shape a piece of foil around each banana, supporting it so it will sit flat on a baking sheet and not tip over. Spread some almond butter down center of the bananas then stuff with some of the cinnamon toasted pecans as well.
Give the bananas an extra sprinkle of cinnamon over the top then pop these babies in the oven!
Warm bananas with crunchy toasted pecans and creamy almond butter…mmmm. And the cinnamon adds just the touch of both sweetness and spice.
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tbsp coconut oil
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, plus extra for dusting bananas
2-4 tbsp almond butter
Preheat oven to 350
Melt coconut oil in a small pan over medium-high heat. Add pecans and cinnamon, cook, stirring continuously until toasted. Set aside.
With peels still on, cut each banana 1/2 inch deep (about half way through)
Place bananas on a sheet of foil. Crimp and shape foil around the bananas so they will sit flat on a baking sheet.
Fill bananas with 1-2 tbsp almond butter and 1-2 tbs toasted pecans. Sprinkle with a dash of cinnamon.
Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until bananas are soft. Let cool slightly before removing the peel and eating.
**use more or less almond butter and chopped pecans
New Potato, Fennel, Onion and Mushroom Pie with Mozzarella
Delicious! Made this pie for dinner yesterday, and it came out great. Happened to have all the ingredients that the recipe called for, so gave it a go, and it was surprisingly delicious.
Prep 10 min Cook35min Ready45min
Low Cholesterol, Trans-fat Free, High Fiber
4 cups new potatoes scrubbed, cut up
2 bulbs fennel bulb chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 each onions chopped
2 cloves garlic crushed
1 cup mushrooms flat, sliced
1 tablespoon bread crumbs
2 tablespoons parsley leaves chopped
1 cup mozzarella cheese sliced
½ cup cheddar cheese vegetarian, shredded
Cook the potatoes in salted boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes, Drain, then push through a sieve.
Preheat the oven to 350℉ (180℃).
Cook the roughly chopped fennel in salted boiling water for 7 minutes.
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onions and fry for 5 to 10 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook for a further 1 minute.
Add the mushrooms and cook for a further 2 minutes.
Season with salt and black pepper.
Sprinkle half the breadcrumbs over the base of a shallow pie dish.
Add half the mushrooms and onions, fennel, parsley, basil, mozzarella and cheddar cheeses and potatoes in layers.
Repeat these layers, finishing with a layer of potatoes, and sprinkling over the remaining breadcrumbs.
Bake for 20 minutes until golden and bubbling.
Serve straight from the oven with a crisp green salad.
RED CABBAGE, RADICCHIO AND ENDIVE SALAD
A light and crunchy winter salad.
20 min Prep Time
For the Salad
1/2 small red cabbage, finely shredded (using a mandoline or the shredding disk of a food processor if possible)
1 small radicchio, finely shredded
2 Belgian endives, finely shredded
1 small fennel bulb, fronds reserved and finely shredded
2 Tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup / 60g toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
1/4 cup / 30g crumbled goat cheese (optional)
For the Dressing
2 Tablespoons /15ml apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons / 15ml pure maple syrup
1/4 cup / 60ml extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons / 30 ml walnut oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Combine the thinly shredded cabbage, radicchio, endives and fennel in a large bowl with the parsley and chopped fennel fronds.
Whisk the vinegar, maple syrup, olive oil and walnut oil in a small bowl. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Toss the salad with the vinaigrette just before serving, top with toasted walnuts and crumbled goat cheese if desired.
Baked apple and pear chips
Total Time 52 min Prep 7 min Cook 45 min
If sweet-crunch is what you crave, then you'll love these cinnamon-spiked fruit chips made from fresh pears and apples. You only need five ingredients to make them, one of which is nonstick spray. Make a batch and store them in an airtight container whenever you have a craving for a quick snack. Just be sure to try to slice the pears and apples as thinly as possible for maximum crunch. Top them with a simple coating of Splenda and ground cinnamon, let them bake away in the oven, and they're ready to go. It's so easy, you'll find yourself making them over and over again.
2 medium, Bosc, halved, cored
2 medium, Gala, Red Delicious or Granny Smith, halved, cored
Splenda No Calorie sweetener packets
6 tsp, or to taste
Preheat oven to 325°F. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.
Using a very sharp knife, or slicing blade of a food processor, slice pears and apples into 1/8-inch-thick slices.
In a small bowl, mix together cinnamon and Splenda. Place fruit slices in a single layer on baking sheets and sprinkle with cinnamon mixture. Bake, rotating baking sheets halfway through baking, until crisp and lightly browned, about 30 to 45 minutes. Yields 1/4 of chips per serving.
Turmeric Banana Smoothie with Ginger
This Turmeric Banana Smoothie with Ginger is the perfect Spring inspired smoothie – fresh, colorful, and most importantly, tasty!
Prep Time5 mins
Total Time5 mins
Author: Kaylee Pauley
2 medium-sized bananas
1 1/2 cups Vanilla Almond Milk Unsweetened
2 tbsp hemp seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp ginger minced
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
6-8 ice cubes
Add all ingredients to NutriBullet or Blender
Blend 20-30 seconds or until smooth and creamy
Top with additional hemp seeds and turmeric, if desired
Serving: 1g | Calories: 245kcal | Carbohydrates: 43.6g | Protein: 5.5g | Fat: 7.1g | Saturated Fat: 0.6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4.4g | Sodium: 137.4mg | Fiber: 5.3g | Sugar: 27.4g
Chicory and White Bean Soup
Makes 4 first-course servings
2 medium onions, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth (40 fluid ounces)
1 head chicory (1 pound), torn into 2-inch pieces (16 cups)
1 (16- to 19-ounce) can white beans, rinsed and drained
Accompaniment: grated Parmigiano-Reggiano; extra-virgin olive oil
Cook onions in oil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and oregano and cook, stirring, 2 minutes.
Stir in broth and bring to a boil. Stir in chicory and beans, then simmer, uncovered, until chicory is tender, about 15 minutes.
Transfer 2 cups of soup to a blender and purée until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids), then stir into remaining soup to thicken. Season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with cheese and drizzled with oil.
#2 APPETIZER OR SIDE
ZUCCHINI AND APPLE SAUTE
READY IN: 35mins
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium apple, chopped into cubes
1 medium tomatoes, chopped into cubes
1 lb zucchini, cut into 2 in. pieces
salt and black pepper
4 tablespoons parsley, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
Heat 2 tbs. oil in a frying pan, add the onion; cook over low heat 7-8 minute.
Add apple and tomato; cook for 5 minute stirring.
Remove apple, tomato and onion from pan and set aside.
Sprinkle zucchini with salt; toss. Heat remaining oil in same pan and fry zucchini until tender. Reduce heat; add onions mixture back to the pan.
Simmer for 5 minutes. Mix the parsley and garlic, then add to the zucchini and onion mixture in pan. Simmer for a few minutes, then add salt.
NUTRITION INFO Serving Size: 1 (237) g Servings Per Recipe: 4 AMT. PER SERVING % DAILY VALUE Calories: 175.1 Calories from Fat 124 g 71 % Total Fat 13.9 g 21 % Saturated Fat 1.9 g 9 % Cholesterol 0 mg 0 % Sodium 16.6 mg 0 % Total Carbohydrate 13.1 g 4 % Dietary Fiber 3 g 11 % Sugars 7.6 g 30 % Protein 2.1 g 4 %
#3 APPETIZER OR SIDE
PEAR GINGER COCKTAIL
Pear Ginger Cocktail has muddled fresh pears, ginger syrup, citrus vodka, and a sparkling finish. This ginger cocktail recipe is guaranteed to be a hit!
4.5 from 6 votes
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Author: Melissa Erdelac
1/2 cup fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
4 ounces citrus vodka
1 ounce ginger simple syrup
1/2 pear, cored and chopped
1 ounce freshly squeeze lemon juice
6-8 ounces ginger ale or soda water
Combine ginger, sugar, and water in small saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool for 30 minutes. Set a mesh strainer over a bowl. Pour ginger syrup through, discarding ginger. Transfer ginger syrup to an airtight container and store in refrigerator until ready to use. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
Pear Ginger Cocktail
Divide chopped pear between 2 glasses and muddle. Pour in vodka, ginger simple syrup, lemon juice and fill glass with ice. Float ginger ale on top and give a quick stir. Garnish with pear slice and/or lemon wedge.
Other Alcohol to Try in Pear Ginger Cocktail
If you are looking for something different than a vodka ginger cocktail, try any of these alternative mixers.
Bourbon or whiskey
Alternative vodka flavors, such as pear vodka, vanilla, cinnamon, or traditional
Calories: 227kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 52mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin C: 7mg | Iron: 1mg
Sticky Fennel & Apple Tart
6 tablespoons Salted Butter
1 cup All purpose flour
6 teaspoons Iced water
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sticky Fennel & Apple Filling
5 tablespoons sugar
5 tablespoons water
2 granny smith apples, peeled & chopped
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 fennel bulb, finely chopped
In a food processor, whirl together flour and salt. Add butter, pulsing until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
Add water 1 teaspoon at a time, process just until dough clumps together and begins to form a ball.
Flour your surface and roll out pastry.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place rolled pastry on top.
Sticky Fennel & Apple Filling
Heat the sugar and water together in a saucepan.
Once the sugar is dissolved, stir in the fennel and apple. Bring to the boil then reduce heat and simmer until softened. Stir in cornstarch.
Spoon mixture onto rolled out dough. Slowly draw the pastry towards the center of the mixture
Bake in pre heated oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with freshly whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.