{Asian Fusion Salad + Honey Ginger Dressing: can you guess the superfood ingredient?}

  Summary:  Summer = fresh and cool cuisine. At least for me… So as you will see most of what I created lately has been juices, smoothies and salads. Well nothing beats the heat like these healthy meals and snacks! … Continue reading

{5 de MaYo: Mexican recipes roundup}

Healthy, Happy & Whole’s Mexican food obsession: So by now you’ve probably noticed how we loveeeee Mexican food…how do I love thee? Let me count the ways… Well first of all it’s so visually appealing. Home cooked mexican can be … Continue reading

{Banana-coconut oatmeal muffins}

Summary:  These are so yummy. The ripe bananas sweeten these muffins naturally. You’ve got a fiber packed muffin made with whole grains, and other simple, natural ingredients. These muffins are EASY to make. If you are not much of a … Continue reading

{Meatless Monday: shortcut spaghetti bolognese}

Summary: Yummy, comforting weeknight meal…now made quicker, healthier and meatless! This recipe can be done in under 30 minutes. Just boil, chop and simmer. Traditional bolognese recipes also contains celery – I omitted this ingredient because I am NOT a … Continue reading

{Asian night – vegan style: quinoa stuffed lettuce wraps with hot peanut sauce}

Summary:  After a couple of sweet posts….I bring you something salty. Creating this dish was so much fun. You can either eat this quinoa as an “asian fried rice” or go ahead and make the peanut sauce and use as … Continue reading

{Farfalle e Limone Insalata: a lemon infused warm pasta salad}

Summary: My love for lemons. I love using lemon juice and zest along with fresh herbs in my recipes. Why? Because it’s a great way of boosting flavor and nutrition without having to use heavy ingredients like butter. Lemon juice … Continue reading

{Negative Calorie Raw Shredded Salad – load up on this to curve hunger}

Summary:  Have you heard of negative calorie fruits and vegetables? For those who haven’t….you can eat these amazing items without feeling guilty since the amount of calories these veggies have are burned during the digestive process! At least most of … Continue reading

{Mango, Peach & Basil Chutney}

Summary:  Tired of the same boring weeknight meal? Brown rice with chicken, fish and potatoes, huge garbage salad? Well I’ve got a very simple solution that will spruce up your meals. Meet the Mango, Peach & Basil Chutney. A lot … Continue reading

{Arugula, Beet & Avocado Salad}

*This recipe is adapted from Giada di Laurentis “Beet and Goat Cheese Arugula Salad”

Summary: 

This makes a great side salad. The flavors are subtle but work nicely with each other.  Beets offer protection against coronary artery disease and stroke; lower cholesterol levels within the body, and have anti-aging effects. Additionally they are considered a great detox food. Cooking & adding flavor to beets can be tricky. TIP for best results: after cooking the beet and letting it cool slightly, soak the pieces in the salad dressing for about 5 min. This will help enhance the flavor. Avocados are packed with vitamins and omega-3 FAs which are good oils. In conclusion all the savory ingredients in this salad help protect you against cardiovascular disease. Be healthy, be happy & enjoy! 

Servings: makes 3 to 4 side salads

Ingredients:
3 cups arugula leaves
2 cups spinach leaves
1/2 large beet
2 tbsp dried cranberries
1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 avocado, cubed
2 tbsp sliced almonds
3 tbsp herbed goat cheese

Directions:
1. COOKING THE BEET:
Do not peel or remove the skin of the beet this will help preserve its nutrition and color. Slice the beet into 1 in slices. Cut in half. Add to a pot with water. Add 1/4 tsp of brown sugar, 1/4 tsp of salt and a bit of olive oil. Cook on high for 30-50 min. I suggest inserting a fork into the beet slices after 30 min. to asses if they are cooked. You’ll know if they are cooked because the fork will easily go through.

2. After the beet is cooked: Drain. Remove the skin with a knife. Cut into 1 inch cubes. Let cool for about 8-10 min. IMPT – do not skip this step! If you add the beet while it’s hot, the avocado and goat cheese will “melt” away…the result will be an ugly looking salad. TIP – if this seems too complicated for you, try using canned beet. I’ve never tried it but it should work nicely with this salad.

3. SALAD ASSEMBLY:
First throw in the spinach and arugula. Add the onion, avocado pieces & the dried cranberries. Add the beet pieces (make sure they are mostly cooled) and the crumbled goat cheese. Finally garnish with almonds or walnut pieces.

4. SALAD DRESSING (Recipe from Giada):

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons shallots, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon honey
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Whisk the vinegar, shallots, and honey in a medium bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in the oil. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with salt and pepper.

 

Arugula & Citrus Balsamic Salad


Yield: 1 to 2 servings

Summary:

The peppery arugula with a spike of citrus, marinated tofu pieces with balsamic vinegar and a touch of basil make this a very savory salad. Low in calories, low in fat, low in cholesterol yet surprisingly good? I’ll take this any day of the week. This recipe makes enough salad for 2 people or one big serving worthy of being a main dish. TIP: if you are not a big fan of tofu I suggest buying the extra firm kind, it has a better consistency yet it’s still able to absorb all the flavor you add to it. I experimented with this recipe and realized that the longer you let the tofu marinate, the better! Try chopping it up, seasoning it and adding the balsamic vinegar along with the basil leaves. Now let sit for 15-20min…the result..you’ll swear it tastes like the Mozarella di Buffala in a Caprese salad. I promise. Quality guaranteed.

Ingredients:

6 oz extra firm tofu
2 cups arugula
1 cup red cabbage, sliced
1 small orange, diced
3-4 small radishes, thinly sliced
4-5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
salt & pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp extra virgen olive oil

Directions:

1. PREP THE TOFU:
Chop the tofu into 1/2 in pieces. Drizzle with all of the balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let the tofu absorb all of the seasoning.

2. COOKING THE TOFU:
Add the olive oil to a non-stick pan. Set on medium high heat. Add the tofu and the chopped basil and let cook for 2-3min. The vinegar may create a sizzling sound. Turn of the heat and mix gently. Set aside.

3. ARRANGING THE SALAD: the bottom layer should be the arugula, next add the cabbage, then the diced oranges, then the sliced radishes and finally group the tofu pieces in the middle of the salad. Garnish with basil leaves if desired.


Notes:
For additional dressing: I used a simple balsamic vinaigrette.

Nutritional Information:

2 cups of arugula = 50 cal.
1 cup of cabbage = 27 cal
3-4 small radishes = 10 cal
1 small orange = 45 cal or less
3oz of tofu = 60 cal for one person / 120 cal if full 6oz serving
tofu seasoning = estimated 70 cal
TOTAL = about 322 calories for this huge plate of salad