Thursday, April 12, 2012

Steamed Mussels in a Goat Cheese, Jalapeño, Tomato Sauce
  • 2 to 3lbs of Mussels
  • 2 Large Shallots (or 3 small ones)
  • 1 to 3 Fresh Jalapeños (depending on your heat preference)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 1/4 Cup White Wine
  • 1/4 Cup Stock (fish would be best, but you could use vegetable or chicken too)
  • 1/4 Cup Tomato Sauce (use a high quality jarred sauce or your own recipe if you're up for it!)
  • 3 oz Goat Cheese or 3 tbls Heavy Cream (35% or Whipping Cream)
  • 1 tbls Olive Oil
 ➾ Start by cleaning the mussels and removing their beards. Discard any that have broken shells, and they are most likely dead and un-eatable.

➾ Next, finely chop the shallots and garlic.
Remove the seeds from the jalapeños if you want it a little less spicy, and dice the peppers.

➾ Add the olive oil to a large stock pot and turn stove to medium heat.
➾ Add Shallots and cook for about 5 minutes.
➾ Now add the jalapeño peppers into the pot and cook for another 5 minutes.
➾ Add the garlic and cook for about 2 minutes, but do not let the garlic get brown (stir often).
➾ Now add the wine and cook for another 2 minutes, scraping any brown bits off the bottom of the pot.
➾ Add the stock, tomato sauce and goat cheese and stir until the goat cheese has melted and the sauce starts to bubble.

➾ Next, add the cleaned mussels to the pot. Give them a good stir to coat them in the sauce and then cover with a lid. Keep covered for about 4 minutes. Remove cover and give them another good stir and cook for another minute or so.

➾ Serve & Eat!
Make sure not to eat any mussels whose shells are not open.
If They Don't Open, Don't Eat'm!
It means they were dead when you bought them and therefore, bad.

**3 lbs is enough for 2 large, entrée servings.** We ate ours with garlic bread for sopping up this delish sauce.

The finished product 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Grilled Shrimp & Quinoa Salad, Mango Cashew Salad, Cilantro Lime Dressing

Cilantro Lime Dressing:

  • 3 Limes
  • 1/2 Bunch of Cilantro Leaves
  • 1 Tbsp Tarragon Dijon Mustard (or regular Dijon)
  • 1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil (good quality)
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • Pinch of Pepper
Chop the cilantro, removing as much of the stems as possible. Add the juice from the lime and all the ingredients into a Magic Bullet or blender. Blend until all ingredients are combined and the dressing is slightly emulsified.
If you don't have a Magic Bullet or Blender to use, then combined all ingredients in a bowl except the oil. Using a metal whisk, whisk vigorously. Keep whisking while you slowly add the oil, a little bit at a time, until all the oil has been combined. This should create the same results....only with a lot more muscle work!

Grilled Shrimp & Quinoa Salad

Grilled Shrimp & Quinoa Salad:

  • 2 Cups Quinoa (could use 1 cup regular and 1 cup red quinoa)
  • 1 Bag Frozen Shrimp (fresh would be even better!)
  • 2 Cans of Corn (if it's corn season, use fresh corn)
  • 1 Pint Organic Cherry Tomatoes
  • 3 Avocados (firm but ripe)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 Jalapeños (seeded and finely chopped) 
  • 1 Bunch Cilantro (use flat leaf parsley & my citrus dressing  if you hate cilantro)
  • Dash of Sea Salt and Pepper (to taste)
Cook the quinoa as per package directions. I use a rice cooker for mine and it always comes out perfectly. Let quinoa cool before mixing with the rest of the ingredients.

Defrost and rinse shrimp under cold water. Drain, pat dry & skewer. Grill Shrimp on BBQ for about 3 minutes on each side - Do NOT over cook them!

Now here's the annoying part...once shrimp is cool enough to touch, peel off all the shells. This takes a while but it really makes a difference to your guests - No one likes taking shells off their shrimps once they are in a meal!

Next, slice the tomatoes in halves, lengthwise and add to bowl of cooled quinoa and peeled shrimp.

Add drained or fresh corn kernels.

Cube avocados and soak them in the lime juice for 1 minute. This will prevent them from browning. Add to bowl, discarding leftover lime juice.

Roughly chop the cilantro, using just the leaves (it's ok if there are a few stems in there too :)

Now add approximately 1/4 cup of the Cilantro Lime Dressing, a little dash of sea salt and as much cracked black pepper as you like. Give it a really good toss and voila! You've got yourself a delicious, nutritious salad that will keep for about 4 days in the fridge.
Serves about 12+ side dish sized portions.

Mango Cashew Salad with Spinach & Sunflower Sprouts:

Cube Mangoes.
Roughly chop the cashews. 
Add all ingredients together in a bowl (use as many or as little sprouts as you like). 
Add approximately 2 tablespoons of the Cilantro Lime Dressing and toss well.

Serves about 4-6 side dishes or 2-3 main dishes. You could add chicken or shrimp to this to make a yummy dinner too.
This little jar may not look like much, but it's full of my super spicy, delcios dip!
  • 2 Avocados
  • 1 to 4 Chipotle Peppers (depending on how HOT you like it?!)
  • Lime Juice (from 1 medium lime)
  • 1/8 Cup Olive Oil (use the extra virgin, good stuff!)
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • Pepper to Taste
Blend all ingredients in a blender until combined. I used 4 chipotle peppers in mine because I love things really spicy, but I suggest starting with one and working your way up from there!

Enjoy on salads or as a dip.
Lately I've been using this as a dip for Live's Raw Crackers for a fully vegan, healthy midday snack!