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Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding

This little chia seed is packed with high fiber, protein and omega 3 fatty acids! The raspberries are an extra boost in fiber and one of the highest amount of fiber in berries!

I’ve been hooked on this since I started making this a few months ago.  I eat it several times a week.  It’s a great breakfast because all you need to do is open your fridge – and – wah la – it’s ready!  It also keeps you satisfied for a long period and it makes you feel like you are eating something luxurious due to how creamy it is! It doesn’t seem like it is healthy! 

Chia seeds benefits include promoting healthy skin, reducing signs of aging, supporting the heart and digestive system, building stronger bones and muscles, and more. 

One cup of chia seed pudding has 16.9 grams of fiber, 8 grams of protein (not including the cashew milk that it’s made with) and 14.8 grams of healthy fat!! This one cup is literally half of your recommended fiber intake for the day and we know how hard it is to get a lot of fiber in your diet. It’s a win win for weight loss as well as lowering your risk for heart disease and diabetes!! Fiber slows the rate the sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream! 

It’s loaded with ALL 8 essential amino acids, a host of trace minerals and micronutrients ~  manganese, phosphorus, calcium, zinc, copper & potassium!  It has the highest amount of omega 3 of any plant source. And while the best source for omega 3s is oily fish due to EPA and DHEA – a recent study found (Appalachian State University) that when female subjects tested took 25 grams of milled chia seeds over a 7 week period their EPA plasma increased not just ALA. This is awesome for vegans and vegetarians that need to get their omega 3s from plant sources. I always put chia in my smoothies but I just love the pudding!!

Fiber is a very important part of our diet especially for weight loss and something that is often overlooked. This one is packed with all the essentials – fiber, protein & fat and a little carbohydrates.

You can find chia seeds at your local supermarket or health food store.  However, if you have a local Costco by you they sell a huge bag of organic chia seeds for under $7.00. Can’t beat it!

Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup 8 tbs - chia seeds
  • 2 cups cashew milk (I love Elmhurst Milked Cashews - so good!)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 6-8 raspberries

Instructions

  1. Put ingredients in a container with cover and mix together thoroughly with a whisk. It's not completely necessary but I find it comes out better if you stir it half way or after an hour or so of settling.  Sometimes I will just shake the glass container!

  2. Let it sit in the fridge overnight (or at least several hours) and place a handful of raspberries on top when serving. Enjoy!!

Recipe Notes

You can also make this with coconut milk if you are allergic to nuts.  Use half canned coconut milk and half carton (mixed well before other ingredients are put in)

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Anti-inflammatory Golden Milk

Achy joints may need extra attention especially in the winter when you may not be moving as much! Do you know that stagnation is not good for achy joints? You need to keep moving if you want to help your joints. I know that sounds counter-intuitive but they need movement to keep them healthy. You just want to make sure you are doing the right exercises. For example if you suffer with bad knees or hip issues, jogging would not be good. You get the picture!

This drink is so comforting – perfect for winter! It’s soothing and immune boosting! Drinking it before bed actually helps you have a more restful sleep while boosting your immunity while you sleep.

The secret spice actually is the curcumin in the turmeric that has numerous health benefits. Curcumin has been extensively studied. It has shown benefits to support digestion as well as alleviate inflammation in your digestion system. Boosts immunity, reduces inflammation due to osteoarthritis to name a few and has numerous studies in reduction in many types of cancer.

Too many benefits not to include this in your diet several times a week! If you aren’t allergic to tree nuts, I find it’s most delicious using cashew milk (regular dairy is inflammatory so I wouldn’t use that). I used cashew milk but it’s commonly made with other non-dairy milk such as almond or coconut or any combo of them both.  

If you can find fresh turmeric it really comes out so delicious vs. dried turmeric in your spice aisle – although that is good too but fresh just has a different flavor.  You can find fresh turmeric at your local supermarket (my stop & shop carries it), Whole Foods, or health food store should also have it if they sell produce.   Here’s a picture so you know what you are looking for:

Anti-Inflammatory Golden Milk

Servings 1
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cashew milk my favorite is Elmhurst Brand (so creamy)
  • 2 tsp grated fresh turmeric or 1 tsp dried turmeric (fresh is best)
  • 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger or 1” sliced
  • Pinch black pepper freshly cracked
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp organic raw coconut oil or ghee
  • 1 tsp raw honey optional

Instructions

  1. Heat in a saucepan, over medium heat until hot but not boiling.

  2. Stir and let steep for about 5 minutes. 

  3. Strain through a fine mesh sieve over a mug. 

  4. Serve with an additional sprinkling of black pepper (helps with absorption) and an extra sprinkle of cinnamon.

Recipe Notes

You can find fresh turmeric at your local supermarket (my stop & shop carries it), Whole Foods, or health food store should also have it if they sell produce.  

 

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Pumpkin Paleo Waffles

Lets just say I’m not big on waffles.  But, I am loving these pumpkin paleo waffles especially since they are gluten free and you’d never know it.

Yup that’s me! Not even the kind that you would get wrapped around an ice cream cone. I really never got into what was so special about waffles even before I was gluten free.  I guess it’s because I rarely ate that kind of stuff when I was a kid probably because my mom didn’t buy or make them.  This waffle maker was given to me at my bridal shower 26 years ago – hence the hearts ;).  The recipe would be even better if I had a belgium waffle maker but this did the trick for now.

A few weeks ago one of my personal chef clients requested chicken and waffles for the kids!  Ever since then I’ve been kind of craving waffles plus my kids prefer waffles over pancakes. Happens a lot when I cook for my clients.  When Sunday rolled around, this was exactly what we had two weeks in a row!  

Enjoy!  Let me know if you try them and what you think!

Pumpkin Paleo Waffles

Delicious light and fluffy paleo pumpkin waffles.

Servings 6
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • 4 ea eggs
  • 2 tbs avocado oil
  • 1 1/4 cups unsweetened almond milk (can use vanilla almond milk)
  • 2 tbs organic maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour + 1 tbs
  • 1/2 cup arrow root flour + 1 tbs
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour + 1 tbs
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Heat your waffle maker as you are putting together the recipe.

  2. Blend all the wet ingredients (pumpkin puree, almond milk, eggs, vanilla, avocado oil). 

  3. In a separate bowl combine all the dry ingredients. 

  4. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients while whisking either by hand or with a powered hand blender until it is completely combined.  It will thicken a bit as it sits.

  5. Spray your waffle iron with oil so it doesn't stick.  Pour the waffle mixture in the middle of your iron.  I can't tell you exactly how much because every iron is different.  Mine makes 4 waffles at a time.  Mine also beeps when it's ready although I prefer to check it a little before I know it might beep otherwise mine gets a bit too dark.  You want to cook them until they are golden and crisp.

  6.   Serve with maple syrup and grass-fed butter if you choose.

 

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Chick Pea Curry with Kale & Basmati Rice

This is the perfect warm and comforting dairy-free vegetarian/vegan dish for a cold NY night!  

I don’t eat rice very often because I have a very slow metabolism and well rice just doesn’t do well when you have a slow metabolism!  Lots of my clients have either a love or a hate relationship with curry but I encourage you to try it.  I didn’t love them years ago but I do now!  They are very comforting and grounding especially in the winter months they are perfect because we need to incorporate more warming foods! Both the inflammatory spices of ginger and turmeric in this dish help with inflammation and are good for your gut as well!

Let me know in the comments if you try the recipe what you think!!  I would love to hear your results!  The recipe is super easy and comes together so quickly – my kind of recipe!  It’s easily a mid-week meal!

Chick Pea Curry with Kale

Dairy-free Chick Pea Curry with Kale & Basmati Rice

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

  • 3 cans organic chick peas drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cans coconut milk organic native forest brand
  • 2 cups vegetable stock I like natures promise (1/2 box)
  • 2 tbsp madras curry
  • 1 1/2 tsp grated ginger heaping
  • 1 dash garam masala optional (it's not completely necessary)
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 3 ea plum tomatoes seeded and diced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste heaping
  • 1 bunch kale large bunch - stemmed and chopped
  • 4-5 ea carrots sliced
  • 1 med onion small dice
  • 2 cloves garlic grated
  • 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt or to taste
  • evoo for cooking
  • 1 1/2 cups basmati rice (dry to cook)
  • crushed hot pepper upon serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Prepare basmati rice according to package directions and cook for approximately 18 minutes on low.  Set aside when done.  

  2. Meanwhile, saute onion in extra virgin olive oil in a wide braising type pan or dutch oven.  Add carrots, ginger and garlic and continue heating for just a few minutes more.

  3. Add coconut milk and vegetable stock, diced tomatoes, stir in tomato paste.  Add curry and rest of spices.

  4. Add rinsed chick peas. Add the chopped kale and bring to simmer. Reduce and adjust spices according to taste.  Sprinkle with crushed hot pepper for extra spice when serving.

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Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sauteed Spinach & Shitake Bacon

Coconut bacon seems to be very popular these days and my next post may be just that but I think more with a breakfast type food.  I actually bought the coconut I needed because that was my intention when I went to the store.  I’m so intrigued that you can turn coconut into bacon and I needed to taste it!  Now that I think of it I don’t know why I would think “why wouldn’t that be the norm” you can turn coconut into almost anything these days without it truly tasting like a coconut ~ aka coconut aminos, coconut vinegar (my favorite and actually has more benefits than apple cider vinegar).  Neither of these taste like coconut and are good for you!!

So lets get to the yummy shiitake bacon – that’s what I’ve created here.  It truly does taste like bacon and has a similar texture as well.  It was the perfect topping to my spaghetti squash with spinach & tomato – it made the recipe so much more flavorful.  The best part is it took no time to make.   You can make it in like 5-10 minutes which is less than what real bacon takes.

Here’s the recipe for this delicious meal!

Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sautéed Spinach & Shiitake Bacon

Delicious vegetarian dish adding the extra flavor of shiitake bacon!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 1 person
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

  • 1 ea spaghetti squash
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes cherubs
  • 1/4 ea large viladia onion sliced
  • 1-2 ea garlic cloves grated
  • extra virgin olive oil for drizzling or as needed
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt

Shitake Mushroom Bacon

  • 1 5oz sliced shiitake mushroom package
  • 4 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika heaping
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt fine grated
  • 1/2 tsp Hickory liquid smoke (found in spice section)

Instructions

Roasting the Squash

  1. Preheat oven to 385. Slice you squash in half lengthwise. Scoop of the seeds/middle with an ice cream scooper for easy removal. Drizzle Extra Virgin Oil over the flesh. Roast squash flesh side down for approximately 30 minutes or until the skin is soft when pressed.  

Shitake Bacon

  1. While the spaghetti squash is roasting, Mix the avocado oil, smoked paprika, liquid smoke and salt together in a bowl. Large enough to toss the mushrooms in (I used a 1/2 aluminum tray).

    Spread out on a large rimmed baking sheet that is lined with parchment or a non-stick foil. Roast on 385 degree preheated oven (convection if you have or bake is fine) - top rack. Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until starting to crisp being careful not to burn. Cool on the baking sheet. 

Putting it all together:

  1. While the spaghetti squash and mushrooms are roasting. Sauté the onion and tomatoes in a little extra virgin olive oil on the stovetop in a non-stick pan over med-high heat. Add the garlic last and saute for just a little longer. 

  2. When the squash is cooled to touch, take a fork and scrape one half of the squash into the pan. Add spinach and stir until wilted. Add Himilayan pink salt to taste.

  3. Transfer the squash mixture to a bowl and top with the shiitake mushrooms and serve. 

 

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Delicious Paleo Pancakes

These paleo pancakes are the perfect breakfast for any day.  They come together in just about 10 minutes.  They are dairy-free, gluten-free, grain-free.  They are very light both when you eat them as well as you don’t feel drained and heavy after as you may feel eating regular pancakes.

#paleopancakes

Paleo Pancakes

Paleo Breakfast Pancakes - a delicious breakfast that is for both paleo lovers and non-paleo lovers. It comes together in just about 10 minutes and is gluten free as well as dairy free.

Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 3
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

  • 2 bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup coconut flour (or a bit less)
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of Himalayan Sea Salt fine grain
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • splash almond or coconut milk
  • coconut oil (for cooking)

Berry Sauce

  • 1 cup Frozen organic mixed berries
  • splash coconut water (or more to your desired consistency)
  • drizzle maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Chunk the banana in a bowl, add eggs, vanilla and mash with a fork or I used a potato masher. It's okay if they are lumpy. Add the rest of ingredients and continue to mix until incorporated and mixed together.

  2. Over medium heat add coconut oil to a non-stick pan and ladle about a 1/2 cup in pan. May need to help it along to spread it out with a silicone spatula. As you can see they are not perfectly round shaped but taste yummy!

Berry Sauce

  1. For the berry sauce just heat the berry ingredients in a sauce pan until reduced a bit and the berries are broken up and has come together until the desired consistency.

 

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Roasted Dandelion Root Latte

Roasted Dandelion Root is the perfect restorative tonic to support your liver and help get it in optimal functioning shape. The liver is so taxed from our everyday environment, household cleaning chemicals, poor diet, etc. Not only does the liver detoxify it also helps convert T4 (inactive thyroid hormone) to T3 (active thyroid hormone). If your thyroid is sluggish it’s something to consider cleaning up the function of your liver besides just looking at your thyroid for optimal functioning.  

Roasted Dandelion is bitter which is what the liver loves to help clean it up – bitter foods/herbs! Other plants/herbs that are bitter and helps support liver function are the dandelion greens itself, asparagus, arugula, kale, cilantro, parsley, milk thistle, to name a few.  Adding these foods to your diet will help support your liver.  

In this latte, I’ve used the dandelion root itself and turned it into a powder to make the latte.   Using roots keeps it fresher for long term storage vs. buying the powder.   You can also make dandelion tea by steeping the root.  It is actually a good replacement for coffee as well.  You can purchase dandelion root tea right at your local grocery store.  The roots and other herbs I buy from a reputable supplier such as Mountain Rose Herbs.

I hope you enjoy this healthy and detoxifying latte!!  

Let me know in the comments if you give it a try!

Roasted Dandelion Root Latte

Great detox tonic for your liver!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Servings 1

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp Organic Roasted Dandelion Root Powder
  • 1/2 cup full-fat organic coconut milk such as Native Forest Brand
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • dash of cinnamon sprinkle on top after blended

Instructions

  1. In your high speed blender (or regular blend) add ingredients and blend it all up until frothy.  Enjoy.  

Recipe Notes

I like to buy roasted dandelion root in its whole form and make powder in a high speed blender (you can use a spice grinder or nutribullet to do this as well) instead of purchasing it in powder form for optimal effectiveness as well as freshness.  Unless you plan on using the powder within a short time.  

 

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Simple Detox Salad

Good-bye summer!  Good bye beach, bbq’s, cookouts, parties and all the other fun and indulgences that go along with summer! Let’s embrace a new season and start with a fresh clean slate.  

I like to do that with letting my digestion rest so it can work at optimal levels and detox naturally – with food.  

It’s a good idea to cleanse your body at least two times per year. Even with eating a very clean diet our environment is filled with toxins all around us. In spring, our bodies naturally detox on its own more than any other season. I guess that’s why, as human beings, we also like to do spring cleaning in our homes to detoxify our environment! But after just a few extra indulgences during summer it can certainly send our bodies into a downward spiral. 

So, it’s the perfect time to get your bodies back into eating a bit more clean and healthy.  Just as we like to start things on Mondays, we also like to start new things when seasons change. We tend to get more organized, structured and in a routine as September rolls around.  Especially with the kids back in school. It also gets your mind, body and spirit in line with a healthier you before the holidays are upon us. This way you won’t want to over eat, drink or indulge in desserts that are loaded with refined sugar.  Imagine getting a head start on a healthier you finishing the year strong and going into 2018 with a healthier you!  

Start with this yummy detox salad!

Incorporating these types of food in your daily regimen helps your body naturally cleanse, rebuild, detoxify and thrive.  This specific salad is alkalizing and has ingredients that help your body naturally detox.  Here’s the low down on each ingredient:

Cabbage – It is an excellent source of vitamin K and C, along with being a good source of fiber, manganese, folate, vitamin B6 and potassium.  It is particularly noted for being a powerful cleanser of the GI tract and is anti-inflammatory.

Kale – is high in vitamin K,  A and vitamin c and also high in chlorophyll which is great for the cleansing the blood.  It’s also a natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory as well.

Carrots – high in vitamin A (from beta-cartotene), C, B6, K and potassium.  Carrots also are rich in glutathione which helps detoxify the liver.  It’s an all around good cleanser and best to eat them raw in their natural state. 

Cilantro – is rich in flavonoids and and phytonutrients.  It also is loaded with vitamins A, C, E, K, calcium, iron, potassium, and magnesium.  It’s a natural detoxifier of heavy metals in your body. 

Lime – has so many cleansing and nutritional benefits!   It is loaded with vitamin C.  It also has calcium, iron, potassium, copper, magnesium and phosphorous.  Also the zest or peel is rich in phytochemicals. Limes help detoxify the liver.  Helps with weight loss, improves digestion, treatment of scurvy, piles, peptic ulcer, respiratory disorders, gout, gums, urinary disorders.

Ginger – is naturally anti-inflammatory, anti-septic and anti-carcinogenic.  Ginger helps calm the  digestive tract and intestines.

Garlic – has manganese and sulfur compounds and helps boost your immunity and support your liver.

Maple Syrup – has far more health benefits that you can imagine. Helps prevent anemia, aids in digestion, good for immunity, rich in antioxidants, helps balance blood sugar. 

This salad is loaded with healthy nutritional benefits that not only cleanse your body but nourish it as well.  

Add it to your meals this week and let me know how you like it in the comments below.

 

Simple Detox Salad

This simple detox salad is so crunchy and tasty you will be coming back for more.

Course Salad
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

Salad

  • 1 cup shredded organic green cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded organic red cabbage
  • 2 ea shredded organic carrots
  • 1 cup chopped organic kale
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Vinaigrette

  • 1 ea zest of 1 lime
  • 2 ea juice of 2 limes
  • 2 tsp real organic maple syrup
  • 1 clove grated garlic
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tbs organic extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. Mix all the shredded salad ingredients together.  Add the vinaigrette and toss together, adjust seasonings to your liking.

Vinaigrette

  1. In a small bowl, zest one lime using a microplane.  Add juice of two limes.  Add garlic, ginger, maple syrup and evoo.  Whisk together and season with Himilayan pink salt to taste.

Recipe Notes

You can use a knife to thinly slice the cabbage or a mandolin.  Use a box grater to shred the carrots or use a knife to julienne cut them.  

Feel free to add some cumin to the dressing and top it with a sliced avocado & sprinkle with sesame or hemp seeds which I thought of after taking the picture!

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Thai Vegetable Curry Soup

This is soup is just so so so good!  I love thai food, it’s one of my favorite cuisines!  I’ve made this delicious soup for dinner this week, ate it for breakfast the next day.   I’m eating it right now for lunch as I write this.

Of course, this is my own spin on making this soup so I suppose if you are an authentic thai food cook perhaps the sweet potatoes, peppers and kale in this particular soup may make your eyes roll.  They happen to be good for you so that’s why they are in it!  You can literally put any of your favorite vegetables in here or whatever you have on hand.  Make it your own!  Chicken or shrimp would be awesome as well.  I like to eat vegetarian at least a few times a week if I can and this comes together as an easy weeknight meal.

It actually took me a long time before I realized that I actually love curry.  I never had curry growing up and it wasn’t until I became a personal chef that I started exploring.  Now if you are not a curry lover don’t automatically dismiss making this delicious soup.  Often I have clients that tell me that they hate curry but when I make them certain soups they didn’t even realize that was what they loved about it.   I don’t often make things that my clients don’t like on purpose (lol).  But, as I cook for certain clients I can see how they like to eat ~ that’s when I know they might like it and don’t even know it. 

Please try this delicious soup and feel free to make it your own! Let me know in the comments what you think!

 

Thai Vegetable Curry Soup

Delicious Thai Vegetable Curry Soup

Course Main Course
Cuisine Thai
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 large onion small dice
  • 2 cloves garlic large and grated
  • 2+ tbsp fresh ginger grated (about 1" piece)
  • 1/4 cup thai red curry paste see notes
  • 1+ tsp madras hot curry powder
  • 1 large sweet potato large dice
  • 1 bunch kale large bunch, torn in pieces, discard stems
  • 1 ea yellow pepper med dice
  • 1 ea red pepper med dice
  • 5 ea carrots sliced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup cilantro chopped (and more for garnish)
  • 1 1/2 cans Native Forest organic coconut milk full fat (save the rest in freezer for later or use the entire 2 cans if you wish)
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 ea limes juiced
  • 1 pckg vermicelli rice noodles soaked in hot water separately
  • 2 tsp lemon grass paste see notes
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • Himilayan Pink Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Saute onion in avocado or olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium high heat.  When translucent add grated garlic, ginger, lemon grass paste (or grated fresh lemon grass -- see notes).  Lower heat to medium and cook for a few minutes.  

  2. Add rest of vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, yellow & red pepper) excluding the kale.

  3. Add vegetable stock and coconut milk, stir until blended. Add thai curry paste, curry powder, lemon grass, fish sauce, chopped cilantro. Add brown sugar and Himalayan Pink Salt to taste. Bring to up to a boil then reduce heat simmer for about 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender and flavors have come together. Add the torn kale pieces and juice of 2 limes cook for another 10 minutes.  

  4. Stir, taste, and adjust seasonings to your liking.

  5. While the soup is simmering, bring a small pot of water to a boil for the vermicelli. Pour the hot water over the vermicelli in a bowl and soak until tender. Drain in a colander and set aside.

  6. To serve, divide the rice vermicelli among bowls. Ladle the soup and vegetables over the vermicelli and garnish with chopped cilantro.

Recipe Notes

thai curry paste:  

You can find Thai Kitchen Red Curry Paste right in your local supermarket in the asian aisle or on amazon.  If you don't like a lot of heat you may like this brand.  It's very mild and has lemon grass flavor so you can leave out the lemon grass if you wish.  Also, you may need more than 1/4 of a cup.  Just follow your taste buds and add a little at a time.

If you like heat and are looking for an authentic paste - I love Mae Ploy Red Curry Paste which can be purchased online or in an asian supermarket.  It's stored in the fridge and lasts a long, long time.  It is a bit hotter so you may need less so again follow your tastes buds and add a little at a time.  However, with this particular curry, I'd add the lemon grass to the soup.  When I made it at home, I actually used a 2 drops of doTERRA lemongrass essential oil and was perfect!  When I made it for my client I used the above Thai Kitchen curry in the supermarket because thats what they prefer.

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Eating Lighter for Spring – Fresh Shrimp Spring Rolls

These fresh shrimp spring rolls are bursting with fresh flavor!  My clients eat these lovely spring rolls any time of year. I especially love them during spring which is why it was on their menu today. They are light but surprisingly filling! It’s packed with colorful nutrient dense veggies! It’s gluten free and did I mention delicious!

Using a mandolin helps keep the julienne vegetables in uniform size but not necessary.  Feel free to use any veggies you like. One of my clients that often wants this happens to like this combination but the possibilities are endless.  Sometimes I will add a layer of jasmine rice which is how my kids like it, or vermicelli rice noodles.  Avocado and red cabbage add even more nutrients.  Fresh herbs like cilantro or mint are great additions too!  However, when it comes to lettuce in these fresh spring rolls; the “living lettuce” that comes in a shell with the roots is the way to go.  Otherwise, it’s cumbersome to roll and tends to make holes using a harder lettuce like romaine.   If that is all that is available then just remove the spine of the lettuce and use the pliable leaves.  

This is a great friday night appetizer or light dinner after a long week with a glass of Prosecco or I suppose a Saki might go too!  Hmmm, know what else would be delicious with these fresh shrimp spring rolls? A   delicious sparkling fresh green juice with a little bit of fruit topped served in a wine glass to give it extra pizazz! The best part of the green juice is it won’t make you tired like a glass of Prosecco will.  It will energize you!  And, you can feel awesome drinking it!  These spring rolls can be prepared ahead of time. It keeps in the fridge for up to 2 days pretty well. Keep it in a sealed glass container that is lined with non-stick aluminum foil so it does not stick – parchment paper tends to stick for some reason.  Once it’s cold it actually doesn’t stick too much.  

You can find rice paper wrappers at your local Whole Foods stores or asian market.  I usually buy them online at amazon so I have them on hand any time I want a fresh snack or light meal.  Look in the natural food aisle of your local supermarket for coconut aminos and asian section for the chile garlic sauce.

Most of all don’t fret on the process of making them.  It really comes together quickly and is a lot easier than it looks!

If you try these delicious spring rolls please post a comment and let me know how you liked them.  

 

Fresh Shrimp Spring Rolls


Course Appetizer, Main Course
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 10 rolls
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

Shrimp Rolls:

  • 2 yellow peppers (julienned)
  • 2 orange peppers (or red) (julienned)
  • 1 large english cucumber (seedless, middle removed) (julienned)
  • 5 large carrots (thick) (julienned)
  • 1 container living leaf lettuce
  • 10 poached shrimp (11-15 count - jumbo) sliced in half lengthwise
  • 10 sheets of rice paper wrappers (three ladies brand)

Asian Dipping Sauce:

  • 1 8 oz bottle coconut aminos
  • 1 lemon (squeezed)
  • 1-2 cloves garlic (finely grated)
  • 3 scallions (thinly sliced on an angle)
  • 1 + tbs asian chile garlic sauce
  • 1 tbs grated fresh ginger
  • 3 tbs rice vinegar (natural)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Instructions

  1. Shrimp: bring a 3 qt pot of water to a boil. Add cleaned shrimp to the boiling water, and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. Once cool slice in half lengthwise, set aside until ready to assemble. 

  2. Vegetables: julienne all the vegetables into matchstick size pieces. See recipe notes if you'd like to watch a video. Otherwise, a mandolin also helps if you have one.  Keep each julienned vegetable separated and on paper towels to absorb extra water before assembling.

  3. Rice Paper Prep:  once you have the filling ready and you are ready to assemble.  Keep a pan large enough to hold the wrapper such as a cake or pie pan with hot water from tap.   Place one rice paper in the hot water at a time prior to wrapping.  It softens in about 20-30 seconds.  Once it is softened, place one wrapper on the non-stick foil, blot with a paper towel.  Sometimes I lift it with two hands to dry it a bit as well.  I usually blot it with a paper towel, wipe the foil and than flip it to the other side before proceeding to wrap.  

  4. To wrap:  Place one split shrimp on the softened rice paper about 1/3 in (closest to you).  The pink side of the shrimp should be face down.  Next, add about 1-2 leaves of lettuce folded, and proceed to add a handful at a time of each vegetable, keeping it neat.  When you are assembling one, add a new fresh wrapper to the water so it's ready when you are ready to roll the next.

  5. To roll:  hold the filling and bring the side closest to you over and around.  Start to roll then fold in the sides and continue rolling tightly.  It should automatically stick.  Try to keep it as tight as possible.  

  6. Slice the fresh shrimp spring roll in half and serve with the asian dipping sauce.

Asian Dipping Sauce Instructions:

  1. Mix first 7 ingredients together then swirl in sesame oil at the end.   Adjust seasons to your taste.

Recipe Notes

It is actually easier if you are not familiar with how to julienne vegetables to just hop on over to u-tube than me trying to explain it in the instructions.

Coconut aminos is a gluten free "soy sauce" that is made from coconuts but does not taste like coconuts and is healthier than tamari or regular soy sauce.  It is a bit sweeter and not as salty or strong as tamari.  It's perfect for this dipping sauce.    Should you choose to use tamari sauce over coconut aminos you will need to cut it with a bit of water as well as add some honey to sweeten it up. 

As noted on the blog, other variations of fillings are great as well, jasmine rice, vermicelli rice noodles, avocado, red cabbage, etc.