Isn’t that Ironic?

I’m sitting here on my computer surrounded by my cookbooks and chowing down some Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie Ice Cream Oh! and watching some cooking show about desserts. I don’t know if thats sad or…? I won’t go further. I find it ironic because I’m going through Clean Eating cookbooks and finding new ways to be healthier…. and here I am eating ice cream. Like some sad wanna-be chick flick except I’m not crying or wallowing in my self pity of why I can’t find a man.. haha okay that was a little overboard BUT you get what I mean now. :)

I want to share with you my favorite recipe so far. I was making a chimichurri sauce one day and I accidentally screwed it up.. Well I was standing there thinking I was going to have to throw it away and start over which really bothered me by the way because thats a lot of herbs! So I look over on my counter and I have some avocados left over from the other night… utilize those bad boys. My sauce had separated and I didn’t want to add mustard or honey or anything like that as an emulsifier so I used avocado as my emulsifier and BOOM sauce came back together and tasted way better than I had intended! Beautiful creamy chimichurri sauce and who knew adding avocados would make it so wonderful and balanced?! It took the bite away from my careless addition of too much vinegar. (note, don’t get carried away with the vinegar like I did, you can always add, never take away!)  So, who wants to see a new recipe?! I do! haha

 

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Quinoa patties, these things are dynamite. Delicious little crispy bursts of flavor.

Quinoa Patties: 

Cook quinoa as follows on package. I like using red because of the color. But you can use any kind of quinoa you’d like!

1/2 c shredded carrots

1/2 c sliced spinach

3 green onions, sliced

4 cloves garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

start with 1/2 c almond meal (it all depends on how much liquid you leave in the quinoa…)

1 egg

Instructions: 

cook the quinoa, let cool slightly mix in the carrots, garlic, spinach and onions. Season. Taste and adjust. NOW here comes the tricky part. Add the egg, start with 1/2 c almond meal and mix. You want a thick consistency and you also want it to stick together. Test it by making a ball in your hand and press it out like a patty, if it stays together voila you’ve reached the correct consistency. if not, keep adding almond meal.

Make the patties and cook in olive oil until crispy and golden brown!

 

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I like odd shaped plates.. and I wanted to play around with the presentations since I usually just serve everything family style. I think I may start doing this more often. Makes for neat photos :)

 

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Corn Relish: 

2 Avocados, diced

1/2 lime, juiced over avocado

1/2 Purple onion, diced

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 large jalapeno, minced

3 ears of corn, cut off of the cob

2 roma tomatoes, diced

salt and pepper

 

Instructions: 

Prep all ingredients but the avocado. Mix together and when you are ready to serve the dish add in the avocado and squeeze lime juice over to prevent oxidation.

 

 

Chimichurri: 

1 bunch parsley

1/2 bunch cilantro

2 T oregano (preferably fresh, but you can used dried)

1 cup spinach

1 jalapeno

2 T Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 avocado

salt and pepper

6 T olive oil

Instructions: 

Rip off the leaves (stems are okay) of the parsley and cilantro, add in leaves ONLY of oregano (because of the woody stem) and then the rest of the ingredients except olive oil into a blender. Blend until slightly smooth.  Then slowly add in olive oil and taste the sauce, adjust the seasoning to your liking. and enjoy with chicken, pork chops… steak. Anything you’d like!

 

Make the dish your own. Let me know how you like it :)

April

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Finding new foods.

Alright, I have finally sorted through all of the photos I took at Megarun. All 1,127 of them. Ridiculous, I know. I will post those whenever WordPress decides to let my photos load!! If not I shall find a way for you to see those pictures because I must say some of them are magazine cover worthy. ;) just saying!
The trip was a blast, and even though it was not a huge turnout like usual, it was just as fun as any year before!

Last night I threw a bunch of stuff together hoping that it would taste good, and well… It did :)
I love it when that happens. I went wayyyy back to culinary school whenever they ask you to make that warm bacon vinaigrette and toss it with some spinach.. Well instead of spinach I found this really awesome “power greens” package at Kroger. Which contained mizuno, baby kale, baby spinach and baby Swiss chard. Aka super foods in a bag. I’m really digging this whole super foods kick people are on lately and even more so now that companies are producing such things to accommodate us “health nuts.” Better than filling our bodies with terrible sugar filled, fried and not to mention sodium packed foods that fast food places offer. Just because it’s convenient doesn’t mean you need to go buy it and eat it people!!! Anyways, I will save you my rant because believe me, you’ve heard it plenty of times, I’m sure of it. So, back to this dinner last night. It was wonderful and had so many different flavors going on. I loved it and so did my dad, which is really hard to get him to try new things and be pleased with them. SUCCESS!
With the greens portion you can totally add in morel mushrooms or take it to a sweeter side by adding in dried cranberries or something. But I think I would like to add in the mushrooms since the salsa I made was citrusy and sweet to the bitter greens. Like I always say, make it your own and play around with flavors you like! Or hey! Try something new!

Serves 6

Balsamic chicken
3 chicken breasts, halved
1/4 c olive oil
1/3 c balsamic vinegar
5 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper

— mix the marinade together in a gallon bag and add the chicken. Let that get all happy together while you prep the rest of the meal :)

You will be grilling the chicken so plan accordingly!

citrus salsa
1 medium sized jicama, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapeño, minced
1/2 medium-large purple onion, diced
1/4 large pineapple, diced
1/4 bunch of cilantro, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 lemon juiced

instructions
Chop all of your ingredients and try to keep them roughly the same size except your garlic and jalapeño. Toss all together and taste.

Warm Super Salad Greens

1 radicchio, quartered and grilled
1 package of the super greens
Salt and pepper to taste
1 T apple cider vinegar
1 T bacon grease

instructions

Heat the bacon grease in the skillet, add in the greens and wilt SLIGHTLY.*** You don’t want to kill the beautiful greens.
Once they are slightly wilted drizzle the apple cider vinegar over them and add in the sliced, grilled radicchio. Toss all together season to your liking and serve.

***Note: I recommend as soon as you get the pan piping hot, add the greens and then take the pan off of the heat/burner and toss… that way you don’t wilt them down to nothing and they stay nice and pretty :)

Make the dish your own! Add mushrooms or cranberries or anything you’d like! And let me know what you did! :)
Enjoy!
April

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Let the Adventure Begin!

Recently I took on a new job. But as these past three months have gone on, I realize this isn’t the place for me.. So where am I going to next? No idea. I just know that I’m going to have fun wherever I go and enjoy the adventure that comes along with it.

I’m young, determined and so ready to try new things.  I just have to be fearless and not take no for an answer! Prove myself because this career isn’t for the faint of heart.  Obviously.  Work at places that will continuously bring me closer to my goal in life.  Owning a restaurant. Which seems to be every Chef’s dream, but some settle for less and some settle for working under someone else. I’m determined to have my own place, and to get there I need as much experience as I can get!

On a side note, later this week I will be taking an adventure to Gilmer, Texas! My family is apart of a four wheel drive club and we are going to MegaRun! Anyone ever heard of this?

Hundreds of families come out to the mountain this weekend with their Jeeps, Wagons, Dune Buggies pretty much any vehicle made into a four wheel drive is out there. I mean HUNDREDS of people! It’s so much fun! I’ll definitely be posting tons of pictures and video if I can figure out how to post one of those up here. haha. So stay tuned for that!

Now on to the best part of the blog, the FOOD! I have a crazy recipe for you today.  A Kale Salad with some interesting flavors. :)

I can’t seem to link the picture on here, but you can find it on my Instagram! http://instagram.com/p/kn9MTcjbkG/

Kale Salad:

1 package Baby Kale

3-4 Blood Oranges, peeled, segmented

2 Small Red Beets (pickled, recipe down below**)

1/4 cup Pecans (chopped)

Quick Pickle Beets: 

2 small beets, sliced thin into triangles, or whatever shape you like

1/2 c water

1/2 c apple cider vinegar

1/4 c sugar

2 T pickling Spices

Instructions: 

Mix the pickling liquid and spices together and add the beets, let sit for at least 20 min, or longer!

Toss ingredients together with vinaigrette and enjoy this flavor explosion in your mouth!

 

Vinaigrette: 

Juices from the blood oranges (from segmenting them..)

zest of 1 lemon

1 1/2 T honey

salt and pepper to taste

6 T olive oil

Instructions: 

Whisk together the ingredients, taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.  I like my vinaigrettes  sweet, so I added a bit more honey until I liked the taste :) But make it however you like! add more flavors or completely do another vinaigrette! Make it your own and let me know what you came up with :)

Enjoy!

-April