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Beet & Goat Cheese Salad hmmm…I think I have a thing about making and posting recipes with food I really disliked at one time or another. And, believe me there isn’t much I don’t like! Beets are definitely one of them and goat cheese was another. I’m actually still not totally fond of goat cheese but it also depends on the type and what it’s with.  I prefer domestic over imported because it is not as strong of a gamey taste. And, if you love goat cheese you are probably saying well that’s exactly why I like it! Plus, I have always wanted to love beets because they are so healthy for you.  

I can honesty say now I really do like them.  Especially roasted (preferably cubed roasted in the oven then on top of salad if they make it that far!)!  These are not even roasted at least I don’t think they are. And, drum roll…I actually bought them instead of making them myself. Never go shopping hungry – but who picks up “beets” when they are hungry??  I probably wouldn’t of initially done that 1) I rarely buy premade food from the store. Not that I’m a food snob but I honestly haven’t ever tasted anything that is really good or good for you that is pre-made in the supermarket and 2) I had already taste tested these packaged beets at my best friends house a long ago. And, literally couldn’t stop eating them!  3) Plus, the only ingredient on the label was beets and it was whole and vacuumed packed – so what’s not to love, no messy red stains all over.

The only thing I actually made was the balsamic reduction and truthfully you can easily buy that too  – although check the label for any high fructose corn syrup because then that wouldn’t be good!

You could easily put this on top of some bitter greens like arugula and make it extra fancy but I enjoyed it just like this.

Now the most important thing is beets are a powerful nutrient dense root vegetable!  They contain folate, manganese (good for bones, liver, kidneys & pancreas), potassium (essential for healthy nerve and muscle function) and copper; fiber, magnesium, phosporus, vitamin c, iron & vitamin b6.

Here’s the amazing benefits of why you should add beets to your diet:

  • helps lower blood pressure
  • fights inflammation (contains betaine, a nutrient that helps protects cells, proteins, and enzymes from environmental stress)
  • anti-cancer properties (powerful phytonutrients)
  • immune boosting and nutrient dense 
  • helps detoxify your body

Beet & Goat Cheese Salad

Such an easy delicious beet recipe ~ I really can't call this a recipe because that is how easy it is. 

Course Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Servings 2 - 4
Author Stacey Diverde

Ingredients

Balsamic Reduction

  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tbsp honey

Salad

  • 3/4 cup goat cheese domestic (I prefer a log)
  • 1 pckg beets store bought (vacuum packed) whole beets
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • Himalayan pink salt

Instructions

Balsamic Reduction

  1. In a saucepan add balsamic and honey and reduce to desired consistency.  ( until it sticks to a back of spoon)

Salad

  1. Quarter the beets, divide them amongst the plates.  Top with goat cheese and walnuts (optional:  toast or sweeten them with a little honey over medium high heat until they are just starting to brown) and drizzle with the balsamic reduction.  Sprinkle with a little Himalayan pink salt.

This chinese chicken salad is so good!  We love it and I don’t make it often enough.  I often used to make this for appetizer parties and serve them in the chinese containers with chopsticks.  I have them on hand so that is how my kids love to eat this salad in the containers.

We had it for dinner last week but it’s also great to have it on hand for the week for lunch since it has a protein in it as well!  It’s easy to put together and you can even use left over chicken if you wish from a roasted chicken because it’s the dressing that makes it so flavorful along with all the crunchies that is added.

Let me know how you like it in the comments!  So so good! 

Chinese Chicken Salad

This is a yummy chinese chicken salad that you going to want to make often!

Course Main Course
Servings 4
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

Chicken/Marinade for Chicken

  • 1.5 lbs organic boneless chicken breast (sliced in half/lengthwise)
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 1/2 cup tamari sauce (low sodium)
  • 3 cloves garlic grated
  • 1 ea lime juiced
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger grated

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 head romaine lettuce chopped
  • 1/2 head napa cabbage chopped
  • 4 ea carrots shavings (done with a peeler)
  • 1 bunch cilantro chopped
  • 1 package sliced roasted almonds
  • chow mein noodles La Choy or Wonton Strips (not GF)
  • 1 can sliced water chestnuts
  • 2 bunches scallions sliced

Chinese Dressing

  • 1/2 cup tamari sauce (low sodium)
  • 3/4 cup avocado oil
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 ea lemon (a juicy one) squeezed
  • 2-3 tsp fresh ginger finely grated with microplane
  • 1 clove garlic finely grated with microplane
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • 1 tsp organic sesame oil

Instructions

Chicken

  1. Preheat your oven to 385.  Cleanup the chicken then slice chicken lengthwise so it's not as thick and set aside.

  2. Meanwhile, put all the ingredients for the marinade in a blender and blend it up.

  3. Pour over the chicken in a dish and let marinade for at least a 1/2 hour or several hours if you wish but not necessary. 

  4. Grill the chicken over medium high heat for just a few minutes on each side to get grill marks (or you can grill it on your bbq if not using a grill pan).  Finish in the oven for approximately 10 minutes depending on how thick your chicken is.  Then let rest, and slice on a diagonal to add to the salad when ready.  

  5. Alternatively, you can just use plain chicken either from a whole roasted chicken or plain baked chicken breasts and still be just as good!

For the Dressing:

  1. Add all the ingredients together in a jar or whisk in a bowl. Adjust to your taste.  Note: this makes a lot of dressing and not intended to use on the salad in one sitting.  

For the Salad:

  1. Just chop all the vegetables, cilantro, add the chicken, sliced almonds and water chestnuts.  Toss the dressing together with the salad and add the chow mein noodles when serving.  Note: the dressing is not intended to use in one sitting (it makes a lot) add as you see fit.  I like to have it on hand for the week (stored in the fridge)

Recipe Notes

The chinese chow mein noodles listed here are not gluten free but are great if you are not gluten free because they add another layer of crunch.  Either leave them out if you are GF or look for gluten free chow mein noodles. They are a bit hard to find but you can purchase them online or sometimes you can find them at Whole Foods or your local health food store. My kids love them and I did too before I was GF. They add that extra crunch.

This shaved winter brussel sprout salad is delicious and light!  I’ve made it a few different times over the last few weeks for my clients.  It’s always a welcome addition in the winter.  Although not completely necessary to make the dish with a mandoline, it makes it so much easier to get the thin shreds you want.  You can also use a food processor shredding blade or a sharp chefs knife will work as well but may take you just a bit longer.  These are the times when you wish you had one!

I purchased mine on Amazon – Swissmar Borner V Power Mandoline and have had it for many years and use it often.  It works great because it’s a very sharp blade!  You have to be careful for ones that are not as sharp because that could be dangerous for slipping.  And on the other hand you have to be careful because whatever you are cutting you don’t want to go all the way down to your fingers or you will slice them.

Try this delicious salad as a light lunch or as a side with your dinner.  It’s delicious and comes together so quickly.  It also holds up in the fridge for a few days too so it’s an added bonus!

Winter Shaved Brussel Sprout Salad

Delicious raw winter salad!

Course Main Course, Side Dish
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Stacey DiVerde

Ingredients

For the Salad:

  • 2 packages raw brussel sprouts shaved
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup shaved parmesan (or buy pre-shaved) BelGioioso Parmesan Shaved Cheese, 5 Oz

For the Dressing

  • 3 ea lemons freshly squeezed
  • 3-4 tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp grated garlic
  • 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/2-1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp raw honey
  • 1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

Instructions for salad:

  1. Shave the brussel sprouts with a mandolin being careful of your fingers in a large bowl.

  2. Add cranberries, slivered almonds and shaved parmesan.

Instructions for Dressing:

  1. In a glass jar or bowl, squeeze lemons, add rest of ingredients and shake the jar or whisk to emulsify and toss well into the salad. Adjust seasoning to your taste. 

This has been a long time favorite soup of mine for years despite that it may not look that appetizing in color.  The best part is it’s so simple to make.  I often leave out the asparagus tips and just puree the entire soup.  Mainly because I love to sip this in a mug as a mid-day snack or with my lunch.    

I’ve been cleansing for a few weeks and this is the perfect soup for it! Did you know that asparagus is a vegetable that is a great cleanser for your body naturally? Yes it is! It is a great diuretic, helping in the cleansing process and lifting the detox load of the liver and kidneys.

Here’s some great health benefits from this beautiful spring vegetable:

  • It’s a rich source of glutathione, a detoxifying compound that helps break down carcinogens and other harmful compounds like free radicals. This is why eating asparagus may help protect against and fight certain forms of cancer, such as bone, breast, colon, larynx and lung cancers.
  • Helps slow down the aging process due to it’s high antioxidant properties and neutralizing cell-damaging radicals.
  • It contains the amino acid asparagine which is a natural diuretic, and increased urination not only releases fluid but helps rid the body of excess salts.  Good for edema and high blood pressure!
  • It contains vitamins A, C, E and K as well as has lots of fiber, folate and chromium, a trace mineral that enhances the ability of insulin to transport glucose from the bloodstream into cells. 

Asparagus contains asparagusic acid, among other compounds, that gives urine that unique odor.  Have you ever noticed it?  It literally can happen within 15 minutes of eating it. Its compounds are volatile and released as a vapor through the urine. However, apparently not everyone can smell it and that is because everyones sense of smell is unique to themselves as well as the ability to produce the odor. Interesting!!  

Okay, enough about asparagus pee ~ eat asparagus because it so good for you!

Creamy Asparagus Soup
Serves 4
Dairy-free delicious asparagus soup
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 lbs of asparagus (trim tough ends, cut in 2” pieces) (extra if you want to add some asparagus tips at the end)
  2. 4 cups organic vegetable stock (32 oz con’t - such as Saffron Road or Nature’s Promise)
  3. 1 large onion, chopped
  4. 1 garlic clove, minced.
  5. 3 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  6. Himalayan pink salt
  7. fresh cracked pepper
Instructions
  1. Sauté onion in extra virgin olive oil, add garlic & asparagus and add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and then simmer until soft.
  2. Take asparagus out with a slotted spoon and add stock (a little at a time) to blend in high speed blender or regular blender until smooth and creamy (you may not need all the stock depending on the consistency you prefer (reserve juice and drink it up in a mug if you want). Add Himilayan pink salt (about 1+ tsp) and fresh cracked pepper to taste. Enjoy!
  3. If you are adding asparagus tips to your soup, blanch them for just about 30 seconds (add to already boiling water, than in ice cold water to retain color, remove with slotted spoon). Add them to your soup before eating.
Notes
  1. for future and if you tolerate dairy, you may add a dollup of organic plain yogurt to the mix while blending for added flavor but it is perfect the way it is.
Stacey DiVerde http://staceydiverde.com/
source:  
Eating Well 3/2016
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19895471

This has been my go-to breakfast lately!   Who knew breakfast could be so creamy but delicious, healthy and satisfying while being dairy-free!  I have been really enjoying this!  It all started when I was cleansing a few weeks ago and decided to have this over a smoothie.  Smoothies in the morning are great especially on the days I chef.  However, I become “smoothied-out” sometimes especially after years of drinking smoothies.   Plus there is something to be said about chewing your food.   Digestion starts in the mouth when you chew your food.  The enzymes amylase and lipase are released which starts the digestion process.  

When you are eating healthy you just feel better, think better, move better and your body runs better!   Try this delicious and satisfying breakfast it’s so light and refreshing as well as gluten-free and dairy-free!  Berries are packed with antioxidants and lower on the Glycemic Index!  Ideally fruit should be eaten alone so another plus to have this first thing in the morning.  

Mixed Berries with Sweet Cashew Cream
Serves 1
Light & refreshing!
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Prep Time
30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 2+ cups of berries (strawberries, black berries, blue berries)
  2. 1 ripe banana (divided)
  3. 1/2 cup raw cashews (soaked in hot water for 1/2 hour or more)
  4. 1/2 cup+ coconut milk or almond milk (no carrageenan) (add more depending on consistency)
  5. 1/2 tsp real vanilla extract
  6. handful slivered almonds
  7. chia seed (optional)
  8. cinnamon (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place mixed berries in a bowl and slice up 1/2 of banana. Blend the other 1/2 banana, coconut milk or almond milk, vanilla extract and cashews together until creamy smooth.
  2. Pour cream over fruit and top with slivered almonds. Add cinnamon and chia seeds if desired.
Stacey DiVerde http://staceydiverde.com/