Spicy Quinoa with Yams

Spicy Quinoa with Yams

I recently made this robust Fall dish for a cooking demonstration for the wonderful employees at Anchin, Block, & Anchin, and it was heavenly. I used all organic ingredients. Why organic? IMG_9193

Organic refers to the way a food was grown, raised, or produced and is certified based on government-defined standards. 

Originally, all foods were “organic.” They were grown and prepared without pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, or irradiation.

Foods were unrefined, whole, or minimally processed. Since World War II and the advent of chemical farming and food processing, the soils and foods of much of the world have been depleted of many important minerals and nutrients.

Our food these days is not only deficient in nutrients, but also full of pollutants and farming chemicals. The modern process of denaturing foods via heavy refining and chemical treatment deeply affects the life force of our food supply, making it difficult to foster equilibrium and health.

Pesticides have been shown to create extra work for the immune system, causing cancer and disease in the liver, kidneys, and blood. Pesticides accumulate in the organs, resulting in a weakened immune system, allowing carcinogens and pathogens to filter into the body. Organic certification is the public’s assurance that products have been grown and handled according to strict natural procedures.

Try making these for a holiday function (family parties are perfect!), or make a big batch on the weekend for an easy stash and dash lunch or dinner.

IngredientsIMG_9183

  • 1 3/4 cups quinoa
  • 1 cup low-sodium organic chicken broth
  • Himalayan sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 2 small yams, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/3 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Directions

  1. Put the quinoa in a bowl and cover with water—let sit for an hour+; drain.
  2. Transfer the quinoa to a medium saucepan over medium heat and stir constantly until the quinoa is dry, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add 1 cup chicken broth, 1 cup water and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  4. Bring to a simmer, then cover the pan, leaving the lid slightly ajar to let steam escape; reduce the heat to medium low and cook until the quinoa is tender and the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  1. Meanwhile, heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the red onion and garlic and cook until slightly softened, about 4 minutes.
  3. Add the chili powder, coriander and cumin and cook, stirring, until the spices darken, about 1 minute.
  4. Add 1 1/2 cups water, the jalapeno, sweet potatoes and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Increase the heat to medium high and bring to a simmer.
  5. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sweet potatoes are tender and the liquid is almost absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  1. Add the sweet potato mixture to the quinoa, then add the cilantro and lime juice and toss; season with salt.

Recipe adapted from the Food Network

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Strawberry-Coconut Smoothie

Strawberry-Coconut Smoothie

Below is a delicious smoothie I made this past week for the amazing employees at Allen & Overy. A big thank you to Allen & Overy for having me!12193295_10100475876037438_3214555096335368018_n

Before we get into the goods, here are some helpful hints for you:

  1. Let your bananas go brown- they’re sweetest when they start to go spotty and perfect for smoothies. Once they begin to spot, you can peel them, cut them into pieces, and stick them in a plastic bag in your freezer. They’re easy to add to smoothies this way. BONUS: If you have an ice cream craving, try bending up the frozen bananas to make “ice cream.”
  2. Berries are a great fruit to add, since they are low glycemic and are a whole food. What do I mean by this? We consume berries as a whole, with the skin, fruit, and seeds. As a whole food, your body knows exactly what to do with it and you get the benefits of each part, acting together to nourish you.
  3. Lemon will add a bit of tanginess to the smoothie, AND when you begin to add greens (go ahead, I dare you), the acidity in the lemon will counter the bitterness in the greens. How cool is that?
  4. As we discussed last week, in every smoothie and every meal you always want three things: Fiber, fat, and protein. This smoothie only has fiber. So how can you easily get fat and protein? Almond butter! The fat and protein in nuts will help slow down the absorption of the sugar in the fruit to give you more sustained energy. You can find some more cool mix-ins for your smoothie here.

Alright, let’s talk about this delicious smoothie…

Strawberry-Coconut Smoothie

smoothiesYield: Serves 1

Ingredients

  • 1 cup slightly thawed frozen strawberries
  • 1 banana
  • 2 Tbsp coconut milk (my favorite is the full fat Whole Foods 365 Days brand)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water

Directions

  1. Blend strawberries, banana, coconut milk, lemon juice, and water until smooth.

 

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