Thursday, June 23, 2011

Garlic Scape Pesto

In my first CSA delivery I received garlic scapes.  I looked online for what I can use them for and the only thing that kept on coming up was making a pesto.  Other sources say that you can use them in place of garlic, in any dish.  Some pesto recipes said to add the traditional basil and some didn't, I chose to add some in!  I used the pesto over some fish for dinner along side a CSA lettuce salad.  I'm saving the rest of the pesto in the freezer for a night where I get in the mood for some pasta!  Yummy!

So here's the recipe I came up with (based on Dorie Greenspan's recipe and this one from Serious Eats).

Garlic Scape Pesto
(makes about 1 cup)
6 garlic scapes
15-20 basil leaves, about 1/2 cup
1/2 of a lemon, zested and juiced
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Place all ingredients, except the olive oil in a food processor.  Pulse ingredients until finely chopped. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil and pulse until smooth. Taste pesto and adjust the salt, if needed. Serve on top of fish, chicken, pasta, or eggs! Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Trim Down Tuesdays: BBQs & Grilling

Slowly slowly Feed Your Sister, is coming back.  Summer is supposed to be about relaxing, time off (if you are a teacher like me), and enjoying the weather...well, for me it's been none of that. I'm working, have no time to cook, am always out and about, and am sort of relaxing in the midst of all that.  I'm trying really hard to work my CSA veggies, and soon fruits, into my posts.  I still have a garlic scape pesto recipe that I want to share, but haven't had time to write it up!  Trim Down Tuesdays are great because Karen Moreno, our in-house nutritionist, posts her own recipes along with great information about various topics.  Today, she'll discuss grilling.  Isn't that what most of us eat a lot of during the summer?! I know I do! I hope you enjoy reading what Karen has to share!  We love to hear your feedback!
This week's question is,What are some tips and rules readers should follow when it comes to grilling on the BBQ? Here's where Karen takes over...
I don’t know about you but I love BBQ’s in the summer, its one of my favorite summer foods and the best thing about it is that it’s healthy too (as long as you follow some of my tips below). Grilling fish such as tuna steaks and salmon can make for a healthy lunch or dinner and if your grilling meats, stick to lean (turkey breast) burgers, white meat chicken, and lean cuts of steak such as round, sirloin, and flank steak. Also remember that you can grill tomatoes, onions, corn and pretty much any vegetable you like just remember to limit the amount of red meat (and hotdogs) you have this summer.
One of the problems though with grilling is that grilling meats at high temperatures can create mutagens known as heterocyclic amines (HCA) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) which can lead to cancer. But don’t worry, if you follow these tips you can grill safely this summer:
  • Avoid cooking meats at high temperatures for a long time
  • Marinating the meat before cooking it can remove compounds that turn into HCA’s (it doesn’t matter how long you marinate for or what’s in it. Even dipping the meat right before grilling it seems to help)
  • Keep the meat on the grill for minimal time at lower temperatures
  • Microwaving the meat before cooking has also been found to eliminate up to 90% of the HCA’s if you microwave for 1 ½-2 min (and throw out the juices) then throw onto the grill
  • Seafood and fish have less HCA’s then meat
  • Keep the meat moist- drying it out and over grilling creates more HCA
  • To switch things up a bit, try baking, roasting, or stir frying meats because they create the least HCA
  • Flip the meat often-flipping every 6 minutes (per side) vs. 10 cuts the HCA production by 70%
  • Skip the drippings-which contain more HCA then the meat itself
  • Veggie burgers and cooked vegetables create barely any HCA’s and cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower and brussel sprouts may actually help the liver detoxify HCA’s.
Side Tip:
You would be surprised to learn that dark meat chicken with skin contains more calories and fat than a hot dog and hamburger:
BBQ chicken (2 pieces) 390 calories, 20 grams of fat
Hot dog contains 260 calories, 17 grams of fat
Hamburger contains 245 calories, 10 grams of fat
So, always opt for white meat chicken with no skin, hamburgers made from extra lean beef and if you must have a hotdog, choose the low fat low sodium variety.
Here's today's recipe!
Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Skewers (serves 4)
(Time Saving Tip: You can buy premade chicken skewers at your local supermarket (and marinade on your own) or make your own at home.)
8 wooden skewers
16 oz white meat chicken, sliced into 2 oz strips
4 Red bell peppers, cut into 2 inch squares
2 medium onions, quartered
For Sauce:
½ cup teriyaki sauce
4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp light soy sauce
½ tsp each: garlic powder, onion powder, pepper
Thread chicken onto skewer, alternating between chicken cubes, peppers, and onions. Set aside.  In a bowl, mix all ingredients for sauce.  Brush sauce over chicken skewers and pour remaining over skewers. Cover and refrigerate for one hour (or less if necessary).  Heat grill and grill chicken skewers for 6-7 minutes per side, or until meat is thoroughly cooked.  Serve with a mixed green salad!
 Nutrition Content (Per 2 skewers with 4 oz chicken): 273 calories 4.5 g fat 1.25 g saturated fat 39 g protein 18.7 g carbohydrates 3.3 g fiber 1637.5 mg sodium 625 mg potassium
-Karen Moreno, MS, RD, CDN 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

CSA Week #1....and I'm Back in the Kitchen!

Between the school year ending, working out a bunch, starting a new job, and enjoying the weather it's been pretty busy around here.  This week brings my first CSA delivery!  I have been so excited about it since I signed up months ago!! If you don't know what a CSA is, click here. It's a great way to get farm fresh vegetables and fruits and support local farmers.  It's also great if you are new a neighborhood because your CSA pick up location is usually somewhere near where you live, allowing you to meet new people in the area! Plus it forces you to eat fresh and healthy! All great things!

This week I got the following:
Rhubarb, Radishes, Red Sail Lettuce, Buttercrunch Lettuce, Mizuna, Suehlihung Mustard, Garlic Scapes, and Sage with Edible Flowers

Some of the items are familiar and some not.  The good thing about not knowing an ingredient is going online and researching ways to use it! There are many places to find recipes. My CSA, which comes from Stoneledge Farm has it's own blog, so does the 92Y (where I pick up my share), and Tastespotting are all great resources for finding new recipes. Another farm that I came across online that has a blog with more great recipes is Free Bird Farm. Check them out!

Today I share with you a recipe I found on Food Woolf.  I adapted it a bit, making it completely non-dairy.

Rhubarb Berry Crostata
For the Crust
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1  1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1  1/2 sticks pareve unsalted margarine, cubed (can substitute butter)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk, soy works too)
For the Filling
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or extract
3 cups sliced rhubarb (about 1/2 inch thick)
1 small container of raspberries
1 cup slices strawberries
2/3 cup sugar
1 large egg, beaten
Raw Sugar or Turbinado, for sprinkling.

To make the crust: Combine the flours, sugar, and salt in a food processor.  Pulse to combine.  Add cubed butter and pulse until it forms pea-sized pieces.  In a small bowl whisk egg and milk, then pour it to the flour mixture in the processor.  Pulse until moist clumps form.  Scoop dough out and make into a round flat circle. Cover with plastic wrap and let chill in the fridge for at least 1 1/2 hours. (Dough can be made up to two days ahead.)
To make the filling: In a small bowl dissolve the cornstarch and water, set aside. Combine the rhubarb, berries, and sugar in a saucepan.  Cook over medium heat and stir often.  Sugar will dissolve and fruit juices are released, this takes about 4-5 minutes.  Stir in cornstarch liquid and bring to a boil. The rhubarb will not be tender at this point.  Transfer mixture to a bowl and let cool for about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Roll out dough onto floured surface (I used a silpat) until it reaches about 12 inch circle. Brush dough with beaten egg.  Mound the filling in the center and spread it out leaving about a border enough to fold the edges to form a crust.  Gently fold back the edges, about an inch or more, over filling, pleat as necessary.  Place silpat or parchment paper on a baking sheet and bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly, about 45 minutes.  Let cool on a baking rack, slice in wedges, and enjoy!
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