Wednesday, August 29, 2012


                                                              Mizuna Microgreens                                                

Microgreens are tiny, delicate and incredibly flavourful young plants that are harvested while tiny, tender, and tasty. They are intensely flavorful and are used as garnishes, toppings, and also provide bursts of flavor in fresh salads, sandwiches, soups, and vegetable dishes.  They have been touted to be 'packed' with nutrients however, this has not yet been scientifically proven.  They certainly have the same nutrient content as their larger counterpart, tho.  My favorite method of using them is on a sandwich with fresh tomato and cucumber.  Delicious!

                                                        Mighty Mustard Microgreens

The mustards are spicy and hot.  They are very good with curries or just on their own.  They certainly add a zing to salads, too.

                                                                Tatsoi Microgreens

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Easy Tomato Basil Salad

4-6 Vine Ripe or Roma Tomatoes
Olive Oil
Sea Salt
1/3 cup Fresh Basil chopped
Chop the tomatoes into relatively small chunks.  Add the basil. Drizzle 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil over mixture and then sea salt to taste.  Enjoy!
Bonus: If you want to turn this into a Caprese Salad, just add 2 cups of cubed cut skim mozzarella cheese and a splash (3-4 tablespoons) of Balsalmic Vinaigrette.
Either way you choose to prepare, it’s a super simple and tasty way to add a salad to your day!

Fava Bean Potato Salad Recipe

Tender, young broad beans, bright roma tomatoes, and an herbed vinaigrette dressing give a fresh spin to this fava bean potato salad recipe. This salad tastes great right after mixing it up, but give the ingredients a day to mellow and develop in the refrigerator for maximum flavor.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
  • 1 lb fava beans (broad beans), shelled
  • 1 1/2 lbs. new potatoes, quartered and boiled until tender
  • 1 plum tomato, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Boil the fava beans for 3 to 4 minutes, until they are tender, and immediately rinse them in cold water to stop the cooking process. Place the fava beans, potatoes, and tomatoes in a large bowl and set it aside.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, onion, parsley, salt and pepper. Add the vinaigrette to the prepared beans and potatoes and toss the salad gently until it is coated with the dressing.
This fava bean potato salad recipe makes 8 to 10 servings.

Once you shell your fava beans (take them out of the green pod), you should pop the inner bean out of the tough outer membrane.  The inner bean is much more tender. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Lamb and Broad Bean Curry

2 tbsp of sunflower oil
4 tbsp of garam masala
1tsp of mustard seeds
1tsp of tumeric
1 thumb of ginger peeled and finely chopped
500g of shoulder or leg of lamb cut into bitesized
100g of red lentils
1/2 pint of vegetable stock
500ml of plain yogurt
2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 large onion thickly sliced
500g of fresh broad beans *
Heat the oil and fry the garam masala, tumeric , ginger, chillis and mustard seeds
Stir in the meat and allow it to brown , once browned remove and add the onions and garlic
Fry until softened then return the meat to the dish, add the lentils and stock
Simmer for 3 hours on a low heat ( check occassionally that it has not boiled dry and add extra water accordingly) or place in the slow cooker on low for 5 hours
The meat will be tender and falling apart, add the beans and yogurt for the last 15 minutes ( or 30 minutes for slow cooker)
Serve with rice

* Broad beans should be podded, unless they are very young and tender. Put the beans in a pan, cover with boiling water, return to the boil and cook for 3-5 minutes. Then drain, empty into cold water, slit each pod along its seam and run your thumb along the furry inside to push the beans out.
To double pod - or remove the thin skin that covers each individual bean - use your nail to slit the skin, then pop out the bright green bean.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Peter MacDonald's Bean Salad

With all the lovely beans lately I've made this concoction.

Asian Bean Salad


1 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoon hoisin sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
1-inch piece fresh ginger root, peeled and minced (about 1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
1 teaspoon olive, grape seed or other light tasting oil
optional pinch of red pepper flakes to taste


2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 pounds green/purple/yellow beans, trimmed
1 red pepper diced
2 scallions, chopped fine (about 2 tablespoons)

In a small bowl, whisk together vinegars, soy sauce, hoisin, garlic, ginger root, and sesame oil. Add remaining oil in a stream, whisking, and whisk until emulsified. Season dressing with salt, pepper, and chili flakes.

In a small dry skillet toast sesame seeds over moderate heat, stirring, until golden and transfer to a small bowl.

In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook beans until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Transfer beans to a colander and rinse under cold water. Drain beans well.
* Note-I've made this with raw beans as well.

In a large bowl, combine beans, scallions, sesame seeds, and dressing and toss well.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Kim's Basil and Tomato Bruschetta

12 pieces crusty Italian Bread, 1 inch thick
1/3 to 1/2 cup olive oil
2 large, ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
24-36 basil leaves, torn into small pieces
2-3 garlic cloves, peeled, and minced
a handful of kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
sliced mozzarella or feta
salt and pepper

 In the morning when you are getting breakfast, mince 2-3 cloves of garlic and put them in a bowl with  olive oil and about 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar.  Cover and refrigerate.
When you get home from work, toast bread over a grill or a very hot oven of 425 degrees. Brown on both sides. Remove and brush with oil mixture. In a bowl combine tomatoes, olives, oregano and basil (oregano is optional).  Top bread with tomato mixture and slices of mozza cheese or fetta.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Broil till browned and cheese is melted.

Lentil Arugula Salad

Lentil Arugula Salad

Lentils cooked until just tender and ribbon-sliced arugula are tossed with a simple vinaigrette and topped with a bit of feta cheese in this Lentil Arugula Salad.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
  • 1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils
  • 1 onion
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 clove garlic or shallot
  • 1 Tbsp. red or white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch arugula
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (or more to taste!)
  1. Rinse lentils, put them in a pot, and cover them with cold water by at least two inches. Peel and halve the onion and add it and the bay leaf to the pot. Put the pot on to boil. Cook lentils just until tender to the bite, about 20 minutes (note: cooking time of lentils can vary widely; being tasting them after 15 minutes, but it may take up to 40 minutes for them to cook properly). Drain lentils and discard onion and bay leaf.
  2. Mince garlic or shallot and put in a large salad bowl. Add the vinegar, salt, and pepper to the bowl and let sit about 10 minutes. Whisk in the oil to finish the dressing.
  3. Add lentils to the dressing and toss to coat lentils thoroughly.
Rinse arugula leaves and pat thoroughly dry. Lay them in a stack and cut into ribbon-like shreds. Add to the lentils and toss to combine. Toss in feta cheese or use it to garnish