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Red Beet Salad recipe with orange, feta cheese, mint

Red Beet Salad recipe with orange, feta cheese and mint, what’s not to love. To begin with, the taste and texture followed by health benefits and support of detoxification. The idea of eating and cleansing suits me fine with these five reasons.

  1. Colour attraction, deep burgundy red (all natural beetroot juice is a red food and beverages colouring).
  2. Sweet slight earthy taste and crunchy texture
  3. antioxidants
  4. anti-inflammatory
  5. detoxification

 Whether you roast it whole, blend into a classic soup or drink as juice like the Olympians does – beetroot is low in fat, full of vitamins and minerals and packed with powerful antioxidants – a health-food titan. (source link: BBC Good Food – Beetroots)

And that sums it up why I keep buying this power food with this recipe I finally had the whole family fully agreeing not to overlook this green but to make this Red Beet Salad with orange, feta cheese and mint recipe more often. The Beetroot has achieved superfood status, according to scientist claimed beetroot juice is capable of boosting athletic performance. Read more: “Boom time for beetroot” DailyMail online article.

Beetroot Salad Orange, Feta, Mint 1

Red Beet Salad preparations

For the balsamic mustard dressing with fresh herbs, I choose to add a Dutch touch with “Groninger mosterd, grof & pittig” whole seed, grainy mustard for a different flavour and sharpness complementing the beets. I used to whisk everything together but it is much easier to put all dressing ingredients in a jar and give it a good shake, the dressing will thicken nicely blending everything together.

Red Beet salad Orange, Feta, Mint 2

Red Beet Salad with Orange, Feta Cheese, Mint

Pour the dressing over the beets first and mix before tossing in the orange segments, as you can see on the photo image the beet juice bleeds very quickly coating everything in red. What you can’t see, smell or taste, unfortunately, is the ‘cheese’, at the local Turkish supermarket shop I bought their artisan-made sheep cheese for the first time and it was so much better than the standard supermarket packed versions.

Blackbeans Jumble Recipe

Blackbeans Jumble, our Monday night one-pot dinner creation influenced by Creole Jambalaya. The origin of Jambalaya apparently derives from the Provencal which is spoken in the South of France, the word “jambalaia” refers to a mishmash or mix-up. Talking about fusion, diversity and cooking, you definitely will find it in Creole cooking, this cuisine is a living proof of all the descendants of early settlers.

Louisiana Creole cuisine is recognized as a unique style of cooking, which makes use of the “Holy Trinity” (in this case, chopped celery, bell peppers, and onions), but has a great variety of European, French, Caribbean, African, and American influences.

La Chinata smoked paprika powder and gumbo mix spice powder

La Chinata smoked paprika powder and gumbo mix spice powder

Pulses and legumes

I love one-pot dishes, mixing ingredients and blending of spices they are ideal to finish up whatever vegetable is leftover on my kitchen counter. Adding pulses and legumes to your diet is very healthy since beans are considered protein-rich super food. Beans are low-glycemic, high-fiber, high-protein and packed with important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Not to mention very convenient to cook and to add to your weekly meal plan. Beans help you feel fuller for a longer period of time and as a bonus helps to lower your weight.

Double value for health and grocery shopping budget to buy dried beans instead of cans or jars, a bag of beans is very economic, because it triples in quantity. One dried cup yields 2½­- 3½­ cups soaked beans, enough to feed a family of 4-6 persons. Just soak a cup overnight (1-2 days max, refreshing water in between) to let them well double in size, transfer to a pressure cooker and depending the bean and quantity you only have to cook 7-10 min tops and the beans are ready to be used in dishes or as ingredient of a recipe. For an overview of beans with image and description click here.

Black eyed beans

Black eyed beans

Digestion aid

Not everyone has the same experience but it is a well known side effect of eating beans resulting in flatulence, because beans contain raffinose which is a starch that is poorly digested due to a lack of the enzyme galactosidase. In aid to reduce increased intestinal gas production, there are several ways to avoid bean flatulence;

  1. Pre-soak overnight up to 24 hour, rinse in between (48 hours max otherwise it will ferment instead!) is a must and cook them well, the beans must be entirely soft without any hard bits.
  2. Add a knife tip – pinch of baking soda to the soak water of dried beans before cooking, this will significantly decreases the content of the raffinose family of sugars.
  3. From our time in India, were lentils are staple food we learned from Indian cooking to add asfoetida aka ‘hing’ as a digestive aid, this little tub is on our spice rack among Indian spices. In many Indian recipes it includes turmeric and ginger both are digestives spices as well.
  4. Other spices are cloves, cinnamon, and garlic are potent in reducing gas.
  5. According to a Huffington Post article, adding a piece of seaweed (Kombu or Wakame) will make the beans more digestible. Seaweed is another well known power food and it adds an extra depth as part of flavoring the beans as well aid for digestion 

Chili con Carne is a well known recipe with kidney or brown beans, Blackbeans Jumble is made with blackeyed beans and this recipe has creole influences but was mainly inspired by leftover greens, the use of spices like smoked paprika powder and cumin makes it interesting. You can add peppers if you like the heat or leave them out, by omitting the meat it will become a full vegan dish.

Blackbeans as comfort food

Blackbeans as comfort food

Pineapple Ginger Mix – Fruit Juice recipe

Our fruit basket is mostly filled with hand fruit bananas, apples, avocados, grapefruit, oranges and a fresh pineapple. Last week a few of them still a tad unripe so I paired the bananas, avocado and pineapple to speed up the ripening process. The more perishable fruits are kept in the fridge, such as a big punnet of strawberries, raspberries. Yesterday we had a blended strawberry, raspberry, banana and yogurt smoothie for brunch. For this morning Fruit Juice Boost I opted to use my Philips HR1861 Whole fruit juicer instead to extract higher yield keeping all fruits nutritional values without waste. I have written a separate post on Fruit Juicer pro’s & con’s, just click to read the full story.

Don’t know whether you need to have a reason to start squeezing and extracting juice, but full ripe fruits sure needs to have your immediate attention to harvest nature’s nutrients at its prime. So this morning Fruit Juice Mix included; whole pineapple, the last avocado, two apples, 3 stalks celery, and half a cucumber founds it way through the feeding tube, added a knob of fresh ginger lastly, to give a zing to the mix.

Pineapple Ginger Mix

When everything went through the feeding tube into the centrifugal compartment, the juice river promptly flowed into the jug container yielding 400-500 ml of juice including a bit of foam (the bulk remained behind the divider in the plastic container jug). Poured myself a large glass (250 ml) for breakfast and kept the rest in the refrigerator for later use. The recipe is in the box down below.

wpid-pineapple-ginger-fruit-juice.jpg.jpeg

Pineapple Ginger Mix – Fruit Juice

Later in the day I prepared a triple sandwich for lunch and had the remainder Pineapple Ginger Mix poured into 2 glasses (200ml) with ¼ – ½ teaspoon of Chia seeds. Give it a good stir and let it stand it will turn the juice in viscous (thickening) fruit drink.

Now I have some great Grapefruits and Oranges left in the bowl, see for another great Fruit Juice. Click here for another Vitamine C Supercharger recipe with Citrus Boost with Grapefruit, Orange, Carrot and Ginger.

Smashed Beetspuds hodge-podge:

Smashed Beetspuds, hodge-podge

Smashed potatoes with beets, bacon, garlic, onion & fennel seed

After visiting an entertaining seminar I biked home along with a late afternoon sun, but the temperature had dropped to 4°C and I was stone cold by the time I stepped into the house. Time to prep dinner quickly, hot with loads of carbs since everyone was dropping in hungry and on the run for sports night or other social activity.

In the fridge was a packet pre-cooked beets, bacon lardons and we needed a filling so big potatoes or ‘spuds’. A different take on a local Dutch dish “Bieten Stamppot”; Dutch stuff ( ingredients ) + American influence (smashed potatoes) + Chinese cooking (moi) = Smashed Beetspuds! 🙂

Beets are a unique source of phytonutrients called betalains. Betanin and vulgaxanthin are the two best-studied betalains from beets, and both have been shown to provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. 

I am actually the only one who loves beets in our house and just telling they are highly nutritious root vegetables doesn’t cut it. You have to be inventive to balance the earthy ‘beets’ flavour into a nutritional and colourful dish. A Wednesday night hodgepodge, everything nice with sugar and spice with just a drop of balsamic vinegar and pinch of fennel seeds.

Instead of a pureé, opted  to ‘smash’ it and just give it a quick mix so it retains structure instead of a red pinkish mash-up. Unfortunately,the photo’s are not supporting my claim, but give the recipe a try I love to hear your comments or even better share your results send me a photo of your plate.

AppleBerry Oatmeal bake recipe

Over the weekend I received a request by @Erdbeervogel from Australia on my Pinterest pin for my home-made Apple Blackberry Slice recipe on “What’s for dinner – Home Creations” board. On the Creations bar, you can click on our social media Pinterest icon for a direct link or here.

Keeping my promise to bake and write down the recipe I checked my ingredients and only had frozen strawberries, raspberries left. However, I had a last punnet of fresh cranberries waiting to be used so I substituted these instead for the filling and changed the title to AppleBerry Oatmeal Bake. My photos are not complete while doing the layering I totally forgot to shoot, but the instructions are easy to follow. Apologies for that will upload and add the missing steps with my next bake :).

It seemed more befitting since this base can be filled with any fresh and frozen berries, single or mixed (very nice, especially in the summer), the final bakes always came out right.  So I am adding the recipe for my Cranberry-Orange fruit preserve here according to the featuring photo as shown, which I cooked off the cuff. After preparation, I initially thought it would be too tart but the family and guests were nicely surprised with the end result.

Apple varieties: I used Granny Smith, Braeburn, Cox Orange (autumn harvest), Dutch Golden Reinette (goudreinet), Fuji. But having tried once with a sweet apple berry filling, let’s say it didn’t ignite any spark to repeat again. Grate the apples as last otherwise sprinkle some lemon juice to prevent discolouration.

Serving suggestions: Warm AppleBerry Oatmeal Bake by itself is a treat, for a brunch or dessert you can serve together with vanilla ice-cream, or a dollop of Greek cream (fat) yoghurt to make it special. When cooled down and firmed up nicely, the taste is even better and a light custard sauce or half-whipped cream will go down easily with the crowd.

Note: I stumbled upon the original Slices recipes in Better Homes and Gardens magazine June 2005, a quick bread recipe easy to assemble with cupboard ingredients. Have substituted and experimented with various berries and even adaptation to the flour-oat mixture by adding quinoa and flaxseed recipe variation will follow soon.