Chickpea Flatbreads With Tzatziki and Pickled Red Onions

Chickpea Flatbreads With Tzatziki and Pickled Red Onions

Ingredients:

3 cans of chick peas

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp coriander

Recipe for flatbreads (store bought is fine if you don’t have the time/energy/interest – but this is an easy recipe so maybe give it a peek before you discard the idea of making)

Recipe for tzatziki

Recipe for quick pickled vegetables (I do just red onion for this recipe, but you do you)

Large handful of cilantro, stems removed

Method:

In a bowl, combine the chick peas with the cumin and coriander.  To assemble (preferably at the table where each diner does his or her own), top flat bread with tzatziki, chick peas and pickled red onion.  Add cilantro if you choose.

Tzatziki

Ingredients:

1 english cucumber, cut into small dice

16 oz plain whole milk yogurt

2 tbsp fresh chopped or 1 tbsp dried dill, optional

Juice of ¼ of a lemon

1 clove garlic, crushed

Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  That’s it. You’re done. Use this on chicken, lamb, in a pita sandwich, with grains, wherever you want a little healthy tang and crunch!

Quick Pickled Vegetables

Ingredients:

2 cups of preferred vegetables: red onion, radish, cucumber, fennel are all good choices, a mix or just one

½ cup white vinegar

1 cup water

1 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp salt

Method:

Cut your chosen vegetables into thin slices and place them into a bowl.  Place water, sugar and salt in a saucepan. Heat until sugar and salt are dissolved.  Add the vinegar and stir. Pour this pickling liquid over the vegetables and let it sit.  These will last in the refrigerator for 5 days to a week.

Minimal Effort, Maximum Impact: Buttery Herbed Rice

Minimal Effort, Maximum Impact: Buttery Herbed Rice

Buttery Herbed Rice

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup white or brown rice (or cauli-rice), cooked according to package directions

2-3 tbsps butter

One large or two small shallots, minced if you have the patience, or a fine chop is acceptable

¼ cup total of any mix of chopped fresh herbs – parsley, chives, basil, oregano, tarragon, thyme, etc, 1 tbsp if using dried

Salt

pepper

Method:

Cook rice according to package directions.  In a small saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the shallots and cook until softened and translucent, 3-4 minute.  It is fine if they start to brown a bit on the edges. Remove from heat and stir in the herbs.  Stir this whole mixture into the rice and add salt and pepper to your liking.

So Fresh! So Clean! Mexican Bean and Fruit Salad

So Fresh! So Clean! Mexican Bean and Fruit Salad

Mexican Corn Bean and Fruit Salad

Serves 4-6 as a side

Ingredients:

1 small to medium english cucumber, cut into roughly ½ inch pieces

1 can black bean, well drained and rinsed

1 mango, or about 6 oz pre-cut, cut into roughly ½ inch pieces

6-8 oz pineapple, cut into roughly ½ inch pieces

2 cups corn (frozen and thawed is fine, even better if you can find the roasted sort)

¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

½ cup grated cotija cheese

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp chili powder

Juice of 1 lime

1 tbsp olive oil

Salt to taste

Method:  Mix it all.  Enjoy. Works well also as a salsa on top of fish or chicken, or just to scoop up with chips.

Shake off the Winter Doldrums With Spring On a Pizza

Shake off the Winter Doldrums With Spring On a Pizza

Welp, there it is. My first grass covered sneaker Saturday morning – the first of plenty. Cutting the grass is one of those chores that I not only don’t mind, but actually kind of enjoy, especially at the beginning of the season. I get so tired of the gray by the end of the winter. When all the green starts returning I kind of turn into this

(Just ignore the fact that these were taken in winter – dogs just get excited all the time – they don’t know any better.)

The spring air and the influx of color definitely give me an energy boost.

I feel the same way in the stores at this time of year. New green abundance shows up – asparagus, watercress, fiddleheads (here in the North East, anyway – idk about other parts of the country), artichokes, peas. So yum and inspiring! There are so many great ways to use these, in salads, pastas, dips, sandwiches. Today, though, calls for pizza. It’s a weekend afternoon, we’ve worked hard and now it is time for some tasty, healthy comforting spring on a plate. When you try this out, feel free to use your favorite pizza dough recipe,or alternative – cauli-crust, gluten free, etc – or use this one that I like. Hopefully you can eat it surrounded by green and flowers and with your grassy sneakered feet up.

Spring Fling Pizza

Serves 4

Ingredients:

½ pizza dough recipe

12 oz ricotta cheese

About 10 thin or 8 large stalks of asparagus, woody ends cut or snapped off, stalks shaved or cut thinly

1 ½ cups watercress

2-3 oz prosciutto

3 radishes, thinly sliced

1 scallion, sliced

Several tbsps chopped fresh dill

Olive oil

Pepper

Method:

Heat oven to 450.  Stretch and/or roll out the pizza dough into a circle or rectangle and place it onto a lined or oiled pan.  Brush some olive oil over the pizza then spread the ricotta over it. Crack some pepper all over the cheese.  Next, pile on the asparagus and watercress. Place the prosciutto around on top of the vegetables then sprinkle on the dill.  Cook for 12-15 minutes, until the crust is nicely browned in spots. Remove from the oven and scatter the radishes and scallion over the top before serving.

Note: I have written this in a way that is meant to work in any kitchen with any supplies.  If you have a pizza stone and peel or backyard pizza oven or some other perfect set up, then by all means use your best available method.  This pizza (as any, imho) would be delicious on the grill.

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