Friday, October 31, 2014

autumn harvest salad

Isn't this just gorgeous! The stunning colors remind me of the bounty of the fall harvest. This salad is full of delicious goodness and is finished off with a perfect maple balsamic vinaigrette. It was a winner with the whole family. Fresh figs add a whole other dimension. Lately our tree decided to overflow with figs (just when we thought none would ripen up this year) so just let us know if you need some. You can also substitute dried figs.  From The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook.



8 cups mixed organic salad greens
1-2 cups finely sliced red cabbage
1 green apple, diced
several figs, cut into wedges
½ cup raisins
2-3 green onions, sliced
½ cup raw walnuts, lightly roasted
½ cup raw pumpkin seeds, toasted


4 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
¼ tsp. sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 350º
2. To prepare the salad, place the greens in a large bowl along with the cabbage, apple, figs, raisins, and green onion and toss gently to combine.
3. Spread the walnuts on a baking dish and lightly roast for 12-14 minutes. Remove from oven and cool slightly, then chop. Add to the salad.
4. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the pumpkin seeds and toast, keeping them moving in the skillet until they begin to "pop". Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Sprinkle on top of salad.
5. To make the dressing, place all ingredients in a jar and shake well. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

split pea soup with fresh vegetables and herbs

For those of you who love split pea soup you may like to know why you should keep on loving it. Split peas are an excellent source of fiber, protein, and B vitamins. They help stabilize blood sugar levels and reduce cholesterol. So warm up and fill up on a chilly evening with this satisfying soup. Recipe adapted from The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook.


2 cups split peas, rinsed and drained
5 cups water
3 bay leaves
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 medium carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 medium red bell pepper
1 Tbsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried rosemary
1 tsp. sea salt
3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
½ tsp. black pepper

1. Place the split peas into a 6-quart pot with the water and bay leaves. Cover, and simmer over medium-low heat for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add more water if needed
2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until they begin to soften, 3-5 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, and bell pepper and sauté for a minute. Add the thyme, rosemary, and sea salt and sauté 3 to 5 minutes more.
3. Add the cooked vegetables to the pot with the cooked split peas, then add the stock and stir well. Simmer over medium-low heat until the vegetables are tender. Add the fresh basil, parsley, and black pepper. Adjust salt and seasonings to taste.

banana-almond pancakes

These high-protein and grain free pancakes make a delicious and filling breakfast. To be honest the kids weren't the biggest fans of this recipe but that just meant I could save the batter to make more for myself over the next few days. Top with fruit and maybe a dollop of Greek Yogurt or mascarpone cheese (and a drizzle of honey if you are in the mood for something decadent). Recipe is from The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook.
makes 8-10 pancakes


4 large eggs
1 medium ripe banana
½ cup water
2 cups almond flour
⅓ cup arrowroot powder
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. sea salt
butter or coconut oil for cooking


1. Place all ingredients, except the butter or coconut oil, into a blender and blend until smooth.
2. Add a few tsp. of butter or oil to a hot skillet. Pour in the batter, about ⅓ cup per pancake, and cook for 60-90 seconds on the first side; then flip and cook for about 60 seconds on the other side.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

roasted butternut squash filled with pomegranate-soaked fruit

This is a fun and easy way to serve squash. It can be a main dish or a starter. You can scoop the mixture onto crusty bread and top with some aged cheese or skip the bread and eat straight up. Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens.

makes 4-6 servings


1 butternut squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
1 Tbsp. olive oil
¾ tsp. salt
2 cups pomegranate juice or port wine (I used a mixture)
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1 cup dried apricots, chopped
½ cup dried cherries, chopped
½ cup salted whole almonds, chopped
aged white cheddar or another favorite (we used Prima Dona which is a parmesan-Gouda mix)

Toasted whole grain bread, optional


1. Preheat oven to 425º. Lightly coat a large baking tray with oil.
2. Rub Squash halves with oil, then sprinkle cut sides with ½ tsp. salt. Place squash, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Roast until easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a platter, cut side up.
3. Meanwhile, in a saucepan combine the juice and/or port, vinegar, ¼ tsp. salt. Bring to boiling over medium heat and cook, uncovered, 4 minutes. Add apricots and cherries. Remove from heat; let stand 10 minutes then remove fruit with a slotted spoon and set it aside. Return saucepan to the stove over medium-high heat. Bring to boiling and cook until reduced to about ½ cup (approx. 20 more minutes). Remove from heat and stir in the fruit and nuts. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Spoon mixture into squash and place any extra in a serving bowl.
5. To serve, top with shaved cheese or place cheese on bread before spooning squash and fruit mix on top.