Andrea Meyers http://andreasrecipes.com making life delicious blog Tue, 29 Jul 2014 21:19:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 Thai Cabbage Salad with Spicy Peanut Butter Dressing http://andreasrecipes.com/thai-cabbage-salad-spicy-peanut-butter-dressing/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=thai-cabbage-salad-spicy-peanut-butter-dressing http://andreasrecipes.com/thai-cabbage-salad-spicy-peanut-butter-dressing/#respond Thu, 17 Jul 2014 17:24:49 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13579 Do you ever go through times when you eat a lot of one thing, maybe a little obsessed with eating sandwiches, wraps, smoothies, quinoa, whatever? I go through phases where certain foods satisfy me more than others, and thankfully it’s usually something healthy, though stress can sometimes bring out the ice cream cravings. Salad is... 

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Thai Cabbage Salad with Spicy Peanut Butter Dressing - Andrea Meyers

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Do you ever go through times when you eat a lot of one thing, maybe a little obsessed with eating sandwiches, wraps, smoothies, quinoa, whatever? I go through phases where certain foods satisfy me more than others, and thankfully it’s usually something healthy, though stress can sometimes bring out the ice cream cravings.

Salad is my obsession at the moment. Piles of vegetables with something hot off the grill is getting me through a hot summer without spending hours in a hot kitchen. This fresh salad from Cooking Light is a favorite with my guys, full of crispy Napa cabbage, red cabbage, carrots, and red peppers with a peanut butter dressing that is tasty and easy to whip up. Regular green cabbage can also work, I just happen to like the lacy texture of Napa. For the dressing, I use less fish sauce than the original recipe, which makes it just right for my guys; just enough to be a little salty without a fishy taste.

Thai Cabbage Salad with Spicy Peanut Butter Dressing

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

Thai Cabbage Salad with Spicy Peanut Butter Dressing

Adapted from Cooking Light.

Ingredients

DRESSING
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon chile paste with garlic
1 garlic clove, minced

SALAD
6 cups shredded napa (Chinese) cabbage
2 cups shredded red cabbage
1 cup red bell pepper strips
1 cup shredded carrot
2 tablespoons dry-roasted peanut halves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

Preparation

Combine all the dressing ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until blended. Add the Napa cabbage, red cabbage, bell pepper, and carrot, and toss gently to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Sprinkle on the peanuts, cilantro, and mint just before serving.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
large bowl

Recipe Notes:
The salad ingredients and dressing can be made a day ahead then tossed together just before serving.

http://andreasrecipes.com/thai-cabbage-salad-spicy-peanut-butter-dressing/

More Summer Salad Recipes

Asian Cabbage Salad - Andrea Meyers Spicy Shrimp Salad - Andrea Meyers Asian Tuna Salad (LifeCafe) - Andrea Meyers

More Summer Salad Recipes From Other Blogs

[Disclosure: I am a member of the Cooking Light Bloggers' Connection.]

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Grilled Salmon with Fresh Pineapple Salsa http://andreasrecipes.com/grilled-salmon-fresh-pineapple-salsa/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=grilled-salmon-fresh-pineapple-salsa http://andreasrecipes.com/grilled-salmon-fresh-pineapple-salsa/#comments Thu, 03 Jul 2014 20:50:40 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13551 Spending time at a cancer treatment center is enlightening, to say the least. Though I know people who have lived with cancer—many more now than I ever thought I would—there is no way to fully understand it until you’ve been there and lived it. I read everything my friends ever wrote about it, and yet... 

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Grilled Salmon with Fresh Pineapple Salsa - Andrea Meyers

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Spending time at a cancer treatment center is enlightening, to say the least. Though I know people who have lived with cancer—many more now than I ever thought I would—there is no way to fully understand it until you’ve been there and lived it. I read everything my friends ever wrote about it, and yet I was not prepared when my phone call came in 2013.

The day after finishing the Fit Foodie 5K, I got on a plane to Chicago with my mother to visit a cancer center for a second opinion on my treatment. Michael held down the fort here at home with the boys and did his best to not worry, but you know what that’s like. We were there for a week talking with doctors, enduring more tests, waiting for results, and meeting many people and their families who are also living with cancer. Hospitals are not my favorite place, and it helped that all of the doctors, nurses, and everyone we spoke with were so kind. They went out of their way to make sure we had the information and support we needed. And even the food was good, which is saying a lot for hospital food, a genre that has an unfortunate reputation in this country. Dinner one evening was a pan-fried salmon filet with pineapple salsa, and it only took one bite for me to decide that there is indeed hope for hospital food.

My salsa recipe is probably not exactly like theirs, I just mixed ingredients that sounded good to me, then spooned it over grilled salmon that I put on a bed of spinach. It’s a fast, easy, and very healthy dish for a summer evening, one that will become a regular on the Casa Meyers menu.

Grilled Salmon with Fresh Pineapple Salsa

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Grilled Salmon with Fresh Pineapple Salsa

Ingredients

4 salmon filets

SALSA
2 cups fresh diced pineapple
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
zest and juice of 1 lime
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped (optional)

Preparation

1. SALSA - Stir all of the ingredients together in the bowl. Cover and chill.

2. Preheat your grill according to the manufacturers directions. Rub the salmon with a little olive oil and black pepper on both sides. Grill over medium heat, turning half way through cooking, until the meat is firm and flaky, about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the filets.

3. Spoon the prepared salsa over the cooked salmon and serve immediately.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
medium bowl with lid
grill or grill pan

Recipe Notes:
You can grill outdoors or indoors with a grill pan. Salsa can be made up to one day ahead.

Serve on a bed of spinach, with grilled zucchini, or fresh summer salads.

http://andreasrecipes.com/grilled-salmon-fresh-pineapple-salsa/

Make It A Meal – Choose one or two of these side dishes to go with it!

  

More Salmon Recipes From Other Blogs

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Whiffletree Farm: Basic Chicken Stock http://andreasrecipes.com/whiffletree-farm-basic-chicken-stock/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=whiffletree-farm-basic-chicken-stock http://andreasrecipes.com/whiffletree-farm-basic-chicken-stock/#respond Tue, 01 Jul 2014 19:09:27 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13542 [This blog post showcases a few photos from my spring visit to Whiffletree Farm, and includes a recipe for homemade chicken stock from their pastured chickens. Visit my photography website to see all the photos from this photo shoot. ~ Andrea] In May I spent a morning photographing the daily chores at Whiffletree Farm in... 

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Whiffletree Farm, spring morning chores - Andrea Meyers

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[This blog post showcases a few photos from my spring visit to Whiffletree Farm, and includes a recipe for homemade chicken stock from their pastured chickens. Visit my photography website to see all the photos from this photo shoot. ~ Andrea]

In May I spent a morning photographing the daily chores at Whiffletree Farm in Warrenton, Virginia. The farm is run by Jesse and Liz Straight and their family, along with paid apprentices. (Make sure to check out their apprenticeship program.) They began their farm in 2009 and moved to the current location in 2012. Their specialty is pastured broiler chickens and turkeys, though they also have laying heritage hens, free-forage pigs and grass-finished beef. In their farm store, they sell whole chickens and as various chicken parts, stock, and eggs, as well as their own pork products. In addition, they offer local grass-fed beef and lamb from Over the Grass Farm, and products from a number of their friends and neighbors (full product list for 2014).

Whiffletree Farm, spring morning chores - Andrea Meyers

We started early, around 6 am, and I had to leave my home at 5 am to make it there in time. It was a foggy morning, the kind that makes the tall grass damp and mutes the colors of the pastures and sky. Jesse and his apprentice Matt and I talked as we walked out to the chicken pasture, and his daughter came along to help. While Jesse moved all 20 chicken coops, she tapped the coops with a stick to encourage the chickens to go. The chicken coops are moved every day so the chickens are getting fresh grass and much less exposure to their droppings, all of which helps the chickens stay healthy. This also helps naturally fertilize the pasture.

Pastured chickens at Whiffletree Farm - Andrea Meyers

They get frequent deliveries of new chicks, which stay in protected stalls in the barn with heat lamps until they are about three weeks old, then they are moved out to the pasture. The barn is actually an old horse barn with center stalls on both sides and lots of room for more chickens to come.

Baby chicks at Whiffletree Farm - Andrea Meyers

As the baby chicks grow, they offer fresh pasture grass along with their feed to encourage the chicks to graze when they move outside.

Baby chicks at Whiffletree Farm - Andrea Meyers

There are a few roosters strutting around the barn, but Jesse said they were destined for the pot soon.

Free-range roosters at Whiffletree Farm - Andrea Meyers

I was very impressed with the farm and the family’s commitment to sustainable practices, as well as their support of the local agricultural community. I went back for another quick trip to their farm store and brought home chicken backs (for the chicken stock recipe below), chicken and duck eggs, and a few other local delicacies. We’ve already planned for a summer visit, which is coming up later this month. I’m ready and planning for it to be about 30 degrees warmer.

Whiffletree Farm, spring morning chores - Andrea Meyers

So, now for the chicken stock recipe. I tend to make mine very basic without vegetables, with the exception of onions, because I like it to be a palette for other flavors. So it works well for soup, stir fry, risotto, just about anything that uses chicken stock. If you want a light broth, just use half (or less) of the stock called for in a recipe and add water. There’s no salt in this recipe, so I add extra salt to taste for each dish I make.

I keep jars of stock in the freezer in three different sizes: 1 cup, 2 cups, and 1 quart. This way I can use whatever amount I need at the time without constantly refreezing for smaller amounts.

One of the benefits of using the chicken backs is the extra meat. I pulled about a pound of meat off the bones after making stock, which was great in chicken tacos.

Basic Chicken Stock

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes

Yield: about 6 quarts

Basic Chicken Stock

Ingredients

3 to 4 pounds chicken backs
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon sunflower or olive oil
~6 quarts/liters water

Preparation

1. Using the cleaver, hack the backs into 2-inch pieces. Heat the sunflower oil in the bottom of the stock pot, and arrange part of the chicken pieces around it. Sauté until the the pieces are just browned, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside to drain. Repeat with the rest of the chicken until it's finished. Sauté the onion until soft, about 4 to 5 minutes.

2. Arrange the cooked chicken pieces in the bottom of the stock pot and pour in the water. Cover with the lid and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking at a simmer for 1 hour. Skim any foam or other bits off the top every 10 to 15 minutes as it cooks.

3. Remove the chicken pieces and set aside to cool. Strain any remaining large pieces with a slotted spoon or strainer, then pour the stock through a large strainer, sieve, or chinois. Allow the stock to cool, then transfer to plastic freezer jars. Will store in the freezer for several months.

4. Pull the meat from the cooked chicken pieces and save for chicken salad, tacos, or soup.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
large cleaver
8 to 10 quart heavy stock pot with lid
strainer, sieve, or chinois
large bowl or pot
plastic freezer jars in various sizes (1 cup, 2 cups, quart)

Recipe Notes:
Though you can skim off the fat from the stock, I recommend leaving it for storage and allow it to rise to the top of the jar, then skimming before using in a recipe.

http://andreasrecipes.com/whiffletree-farm-basic-chicken-stock/

More from The Farm Project

Andrea Meyers - The Farm Project: Wegmeyer Farms Andrea Meyers - The Farm Project: Ticonderoga Farms Andrea Meyers - The Farm Project: Chrysalis Vineyards Andrea Meyers - The Farm Project: Al-Mara Farm, Midland, Virginia Andrea Meyers - The Farm Project: Cool Lawn Farm, Remington, Virginia

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Homemade Pizza Sauce (American Homemade with McCormick) http://andreasrecipes.com/homemade-pizza-sauce-american-homemade-mccormick/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=homemade-pizza-sauce-american-homemade-mccormick http://andreasrecipes.com/homemade-pizza-sauce-american-homemade-mccormick/#comments Tue, 10 Jun 2014 20:38:24 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13498 Our common love of good food is one thing that attracted Michael and I to each other, and if we had to give one dish credit for getting us cooking together, it would have to be pizza. Both of us have been making pizza since before we ever knew each other. I had experimented with... 

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Homemade Pizza and Sauce - Andrea Meyers

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Our common love of good food is one thing that attracted Michael and I to each other, and if we had to give one dish credit for getting us cooking together, it would have to be pizza. Both of us have been making pizza since before we ever knew each other. I had experimented with cracker thin crusts, and Michael played with deep dish and Chicago-style stuffed pizzas. When I saw his authentic well-seasoned deep dish pizza pan, I decided this was a man I wanted to get to know better. And Meyers Family Pizza Night was born.

Homemade Pizza and Sauce - Andrea Meyers

Our boys have grown up making pizza with us, first just helping sprinkle on toppings, then graduating to mixing and shaping dough. It’s probably our favorite meal each week, a Friday night tradition that brings us all into the kitchen together. And this year our oldest son started learning how to toss dough, adding even more fun to our pizza nights.

We constantly vary our toppings and change it up each week, but I would have to say that a mixed vegetable pizza and a pepperoni pizza with a full-flavored sauce made with McCormick spices are the favorites for our boys. Even on busy nights, we can still whip up pizza with homemade pizza sauce in about 45 minutes with quick whole wheat pizza dough. And no matter what dough we make or toppings we choose, we still enjoy the good food we made and the time spent together.

Homemade Pizza and Sauce - Andrea Meyers

That’s our American Homemade story. I’m working with McCormick.com to share the love of homemade food, and you can share your stories, too. What’s your family’s favorite meal to make and eat together?

We are adventurous eaters and enjoy making all kinds of food together, not just pizza, and I sometimes use McCormick’s new FlavorPrint tool to get ideas for planning our weekly menu. FlavorPrint is very easy to use, I just answered a few questions about my favorite foods and flavors, and it suggests recipe ideas based on things I like. Give it a try, it’s a great help for meal planning. And then get everyone in the kitchen and cook together!

Homemade Pizza and Sauce - Andrea Meyers

Homemade Pizza Sauce

Prep Time: 35 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes

Yield: 2 pizzas

Homemade Pizza Sauce

Ingredients

coarse cornmeal

SAUCE
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
16 ounces canned tomato sauce
2 to 3 tablespoons dry red wine, such as cabernet sauvignon
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon McCormick Oregano Leaves
1/4 teaspoon McCormick Basil Leaves
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
1 pinch McCormick Sea Salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground McCormick Whole Black Peppercorns

TOPPINGS
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup sliced black olives
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped bell peppers
sliced pepperoni

Preparation

1. Place oven racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425°F/220° C.

2. DOUGH: While the oven heats, prepare the Quick Whole Wheat Pizza Dough.

3. SAUCE: While the dough rests, warm the extra virgin olive oil in a 1 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté just until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, wine, sugar, McCormick Oregano Leaves, McCormick Basil Leaves, and parmesan cheese. Stir well and cook until the sauce is hot, about 5 minutes. Stir in the McCormick Sea Salt and freshly ground McCormick Whole Black Peppercorns, and cook 1 more minute. Remove from heat.

4. For two medium pizzas, divide the dough in half. Roll out one dough ball into a 12-inch circle on a floured surface. Sprinkle coarse cornmeal on a pizza pan, and transfer the dough to the pan. Ladle half of the sauce on the dough and spread evenly around the surface. Sprinkle on the vegetable toppings, followed by the cheese. Repeat with the remaining dough, sauce, pepperoni, and cheese.

5. Place pizza pans in the oven, one on the upper rack and one on the lower rack. Bake for 10 minutes, and then move the bottom pizza to the upper rack and the top pizza to the lower rack. Bake until the crusts are lightly browned and the cheese is bubbly, about 10 more minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool 1 to 2 minutes, then slice and serve.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
stand mixer with dough hook attachment
rolling pin
1-quart saucepan
2 (12-inch) pizza pans

Recipe Notes:
The pizza sauce and dough can be made a day ahead.

For one large pizza, use a larger pizza pan, 14 to 16 inches.

You can also bake the pizza on a pizza stone. Preheat the oven to 500° F/260° C, and bake the pizzas directly on the hot stone or on parchment laid on the stone, about 15 minutes. Assemble the pizza on a pizza pan or pizza peel, and transfer to the hot stone for baking.

http://andreasrecipes.com/homemade-pizza-sauce-american-homemade-mccormick/

More Pizza Recipes

Pizza Pot Pie - Andrea Meyers Pizza Caprese - Andrea Meyers White Grilled Pizza - Andrea Meyers

More Recipes From Other Blogs

[Disclosure: This post is sponsored by McCormick, and I proudly use their spices in my kitchen.]

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Artichoke and Spinach Hummus http://andreasrecipes.com/artichoke-spinach-hummus/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=artichoke-spinach-hummus http://andreasrecipes.com/artichoke-spinach-hummus/#comments Mon, 09 Jun 2014 20:07:13 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13466 I remember coming back from the Middle East in the 1990s and telling everyone about hummus, which most of my family and friends had never heard of it, let alone tasted. It had become a staple for me, and I missed it more than any other food I ate while living in Saudi Arabia, so... 

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Artichoke and Spinach Hummus - Andrea Meyers

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I remember coming back from the Middle East in the 1990s and telling everyone about hummus, which most of my family and friends had never heard of it, let alone tasted. It had become a staple for me, and I missed it more than any other food I ate while living in Saudi Arabia, so I started making my own. It was a healthy snack with vegetables and pita, and I spread it on bagel and pita sandwiches. Plus it was a fantastic way for me to get quick protein after a workout, a habit I have continued for 17 years.

Now grocery stores have entire shelves devoted to hummus in several different flavors, and you can buy huge tubs of it at Costco, Wegmans, and other stores. And while I occasionally will pick up one of those tubs for convenience, I still love to make it at home and experiment with flavors. This is one my whole family likes, and the combination of flavors makes it an interesting appetizer to serve for a party with vegetables, crackers, or pita chips. I use fresh baby spinach leaves and canned artichoke hearts with garbanzo beans, sesame tahini, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, extra virgin olive oil, and plenty of lemon juice. If you like artichokes, I think you’ll enjoy the balance of flavors in this hummus.

Artichoke and Spinach Hummus

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 cups

Artichoke and Spinach Hummus

Ingredients

1-3/4 cups cooked garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
3 tablespoons sesame tahini
4 teaspoons lemon juice
4 to 5 cloves garlic, minced
8 to 10 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
14-ounce (397 g) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
1-1/2 cups baby spinach
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

In the bowl of the food processor, add the garbanzo beans, sesame tahini, lemon juice, 4 cloves of garlic, and 8 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Process until almost smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the drained artichoke hearts, and process another minute. Add the remaining olive oil (if needed), baby spinach, sea salt, and black pepper, and process until smooth, about 1 to 2 more minutes. Taste, and then add the rest of the garlic plus additional sea salt and black pepper as desired. Store in the refrigerator in a covered container. Will keep for up to five days.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
food processor

Recipe Notes:
The flavor is best with garbanzo beans cooked at home, but you can use a 15-ounce (425 g) can of garbanzo beans in a pinch.

http://andreasrecipes.com/artichoke-spinach-hummus/

More Tasty Hummus Recipes

Hummus Bi Tahini - Andrea Meyers Chipotle Hummus - Andrea Meyers Harissa Hummus - Andrea Meyers

More Hummus Recipes From Other Blogs

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Chicken Salad with Almonds and Rosemary http://andreasrecipes.com/chicken-salad-almonds-rosemary/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=chicken-salad-almonds-rosemary http://andreasrecipes.com/chicken-salad-almonds-rosemary/#comments Thu, 05 Jun 2014 16:42:16 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13440 There’s only two more weeks until The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend here in Fairfax, Virginia, and my feet have been hitting the pavement several times a week to prepare. It’s a pretty big day for me because this is my first 5K since starting cancer treatment last year. My break from cancer treatment is... 

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Chicken Salad with Almonds and Rosemary - Andrea Meyers

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There’s only two more weeks until The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend here in Fairfax, Virginia, and my feet have been hitting the pavement several times a week to prepare. It’s a pretty big day for me because this is my first 5K since starting cancer treatment last year. My break from cancer treatment is coming to an end, so I am enjoying this last month before we have to start again.

I like to eat healthy, but this past year has really put the whole idea of “healthy” in specific relief for me. Though we have fun and indulge for special occasions, I have spent many, many hours studying ways to fine-tune our meals to keep them as healthy as possible, and frankly easy for me to prepare because cancer treatment can be exhausting. Though I normally love to cook, some days it’s really hard to muster the energy to face the food preparation and the ensuing clean up. For summer, salads and sandwiches make life much easier, and we really like this sandwich recipe for chicken salad with almonds and rosemary from the Cooking Light Dinnertime Survival Guide. The flavors appeal to me, with fresh rosemary and green onions from our garden, plus tangy Dijon mustard and smoked almonds for crunch. We pile it on buns or whole grain bread and have a side salad with it, a great meal for hot summer days, and it gives me a good protein boost for my exercise routine.

The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend - Fairfax, VA - June 20-22

Don’t forget that as one of my readers, you can take advantage of a 10% discount off your advance online registration for the Fit Foodie 5K and any of the other weekend events, just enter my discount code ANDREASRECIPES when you register.

You can follow The Fit Foodie Race Weekend on Facebook and Twitter. And make sure to watch for the Twitter hashtags #tweetyourfeet, #fitfoodierun, and #runeatdrink.

Chicken Salad with Almonds and Rosemary

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 to 5 sandwiches

Chicken Salad with Almonds and Rosemary

Adapted from Cooking Light Dinnertime Survival Guide, by Sally Kuzemchak.

Ingredients

12 ounces (340 g) chopped roasted boneless skinless chicken breast
4 green onions, chopped
1/4 cup chopped smoked almonds
1/4 cup plain fat-free yogurt
1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
whole grain bread or buns

Preparation

In the medium bowl, stir together the chicken, green onions, almond, yogurt, mayonnaise, rosemary, Dijon mustard, sea salt, and black pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use. Serve on bread or buns, or on top of a pile of greens.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
medium bowl

Recipe Notes:
You can make this a day ahead and keep in the refrigerator until time to eat. Try it with other nuts, such as pistachios.

If you don't have any leftover roasted chicken, use rotisserie chicken.

http://andreasrecipes.com/chicken-salad-almonds-rosemary/

More Delicious and Healthy Sandwiches

Maine Lobster Rolls - Andrea Meyers Open-Faced Grilled Eggplant Sandwich with Pesto, Tomatoes, and Fresh Mozzarella - Andrea Meyers Panini with Prosciutto, Fontina, Spinach, and Slow-Roasted Tomatoes - Andrea Meyers

More Sandwich Recipes From Other Blogs

[Disclosure: I am a member of the Cooking Light Bloggers' Connection.]

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Chickpea Curry with Spinach and Tomatoes http://andreasrecipes.com/chickpea-curry-spinach-tomatoes/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=chickpea-curry-spinach-tomatoes http://andreasrecipes.com/chickpea-curry-spinach-tomatoes/#comments Thu, 29 May 2014 14:08:37 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13410 We are counting down the last few weeks of school, and it seems like everything is hitting all at once. End of year field trips, SOL testing, hockey team events, Scout stuff, plus extended family celebrations like my parents’ 50th anniversary. I’m trying to balance everything, to keep all the plates spinning and the balls... 

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Chickpea Curry with Spinach and Tomatoes - Andrea Meyers

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We are counting down the last few weeks of school, and it seems like everything is hitting all at once. End of year field trips, SOL testing, hockey team events, Scout stuff, plus extended family celebrations like my parents’ 50th anniversary. I’m trying to balance everything, to keep all the plates spinning and the balls in the air. You know what that’s like, right? Everyone rushes home, grabs a sandwich or whatever is in the refrigerator, then dashes back out the door. Having dinner together is becoming a challenge, and I find myself grateful for the coming summer vacation.

So I’m whipping out our favorite fast meals, the food that’s healthy and tasty and on the table in 30 minutes or less. Curry in 30 minutes or less? Oh yes, this easy chickpea curry from Cooking Light can be on the table in a flash. The only real work is chopping the onions and making the beans if you prefer to make them at home, otherwise you just open cans of beans and tomatoes and pull spinach out of the bag.  I make a big batch of brown rice or quinoa once a week and reheat it for leftovers on super busy days. The garam masala spice mix packs a peppery punch and adds plenty of good flavor to the dish, and all those spices are good for you, too.

My guys like lots of sauce for their curry, so I double the crushed tomatoes and add a 15-ounce can of petite diced tomatoes. To balance the flavors, I also double the onion and add  more garam masala. It’s flavorful enough for the family, and those who like heat douse it with hot sauce.

You can purchase garam masala in international grocery stores or possibly in the international food aisle at well-stocked grocery stores. Or you can make your own and keep a bottle in the pantry.

Chickpea Curry with Spinach and Tomatoes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

Chickpea Curry with Spinach and Tomatoes

Adapted from Cooking Light.

Ingredients

1 to 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
2 large onions, diced
2-1/2 teaspoons garam masala, or more to taste
4 cups cooked chickpeas OR 2 (15-ounce/425 g) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 (28-ounce/894 g) can crushed tomatoes
1 (15-ounce/425 g) can petite diced tomatoes
1 (6-ounce/170 g) package fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup (4 ounces/227 g plain lowfat Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

SERVE WITH
brown basmati rice

Preparation

Warm the pot over medium-high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garam masala and cook just 30 seconds. Add the chickpeas, crushed tomatoes, and diced tomatoes. Cook until the beans are hot, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the spinach and cook until it wilts, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the yogurt and sea salt. Serve with rice and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
6-quart heavy bottom pot or Dutch oven

Recipe Notes:
You can use a diced fresh tomato in place of canned diced tomatoes.

You can also serve with brown jasmine rice or quinoa.

http://andreasrecipes.com/chickpea-curry-spinach-tomatoes/

More Fast and Healthy Dinner Recipes

Kung Pao Chicken - Andrea Meyers Vegetarian Grilled Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers - Andrea Meyers Fast Fish Tacos with Spicy Chipotle Seasoning - Andrea Meyers

More Fast and Healthy Recipes From Other Blogs

[Disclosure: I am a member of the Cooking Light Bloggers' Connection.]

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Refrigerator Asparagus Pickles http://andreasrecipes.com/refrigerator-asparagus-pickles/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=refrigerator-asparagus-pickles http://andreasrecipes.com/refrigerator-asparagus-pickles/#comments Tue, 27 May 2014 19:07:38 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13390 Our backyard asparagus comes and goes in spurts. It’s feast or famine, nothing in between, so we’ve gotten used to having a bunch on hand, or nothing at all. Actually, it works pretty well because it can be hard to make an asparagus dish with only two or three spears, right? Harvest has been a... 

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Refrigerator Asparagus Pickles - Andrea Meyers

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Our backyard asparagus comes and goes in spurts. It’s feast or famine, nothing in between, so we’ve gotten used to having a bunch on hand, or nothing at all. Actually, it works pretty well because it can be hard to make an asparagus dish with only two or three spears, right?

Harvest has been a trickle this last weeks, and I decided to wait until we had enough to make a jar of pickles. Yes, asparagus pickles, but easy, no canning required. Garlicky, not sweet, with a good amount of dill and a bit of snap. So I made these in about 30 minutes, then stuck them in the refrigerator to brine for a couple days. You can finish them in one day and eat the next, but they are better if they sit for at least two days, and they have terrific flavor if they sit for a week or more. A few of these on the side with a sandwich or on an hors d’oeuvre plate with cheese and crackers will make you feel like you’ve given yourself an expensive treat, even though they are very inexpensive to make.

Treat yourself.

Refrigerator Asparagus Pickles

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 1 quart jar

Refrigerator Asparagus Pickles

Ingredients

2 pounds (908 g) asparagus spears, trimmed 12 cm long
2 cups (480 ml) apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup (120 ml) water
1-1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon mustard seed
1-1/2 teaspoons celery seed
1 teaspoon dill weed
4 cloves garlic, peeled

Preparation

1. BRINE - In the small saucepan, stir together the apple cider vinegar, water, kosher salt, mustard seed, celery seed, and dill weed. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat and allow to cool uncovered.

2. STEAM THE ASPARAGUS - Place the steamer basket in the pot and add about 1 inch of water. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Arrange the trimmed asparagus around the basket and cover. Steam just until shiny and crisp tender, abut 1 minutes. Don't let them get soft or soggy. Remove from heat.

3. Put the garlic cloves in the wide mouth jar, and lay it on its side. Gently lay the steamed asparagus in the jar with the tips toward the top. Pack tightly to keep the asparagus from floating in the brine. Pour the brine over the asparagus and allow to rest at room temperature for a few minutes, until the asparagus is no longer hot. Screw on the lid and refrigerate for at least 1 to 2 days before eating.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
1 quart wide mouth jar with lid
small saucepan with lid
large pot with lid
steamer basket

Recipe Notes:
The steaming helps soften the asparagus spears just enough to thoroughly soak up the brine.

Refrigerator pickles will keep for up to 3 months, then they start to lose texture.

http://andreasrecipes.com/refrigerator-asparagus-pickles/

More Asparagus Recipes

Steamed Asparagus with Red Onions, Almonds, and Raisins - Andrea Meyers Asparagus Risotto - Andrea Meyers Spring Greens Salad with Asparagus, Snow Peas, Radishes, and Honey Dijon Vinaigrette - Andrea Meyers

More Asparagus Recipes From Other Blogs

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The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend in Fairfax, VA http://andreasrecipes.com/fit-foodie-5k-race-weekend-fairfax-va/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=fit-foodie-5k-race-weekend-fairfax-va http://andreasrecipes.com/fit-foodie-5k-race-weekend-fairfax-va/#comments Sat, 17 May 2014 18:10:19 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13345 After having Hockey Guy in 2002, I did what many other moms do. I bought a jogging stroller and got out for morning walks and runs to help lose the baby pudge. Baby pudge looked adorable on him, not so much on me. Then I started doing a 5K each month, and that was a... 

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The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend - Fairfax, VA - June 20-22

After having Hockey Guy in 2002, I did what many other moms do. I bought a jogging stroller and got out for morning walks and runs to help lose the baby pudge. Baby pudge looked adorable on him, not so much on me. Then I started doing a 5K each month, and that was a lot of fun. We went as a family, and I would walk/run and the little guy loved his rides (most of the time). Through two more pregnancies, this is what I did for exercise while pushing babies in single and double jogging strollers, and mixed it up with yoga at home. We walked to the grocery store, the park, around the neighborhood, the zoo, and botanic gardens.

As the boys got older and went off to school, I got stuck in a chair in front of a computer screen for many hours a day for work, and you know what happens when life takes that turn: less movement, and the pudge creeps back. It’s sneaky, and sometimes you miss it until that awful morning when your favorite jeans feel tight and you promise yourself that you won’t stress eat and you will do the treadmill or bike before sitting down to work each day. So I did, and I had mixed success, so I committed to being even more diligent about what I ate, even though I’m a good scratch cook and my diet was already pretty healthy by most people’s standards. (Except for the stress eating part.) I even started swimming laps, which I thought was pretty awesome because I am not a swimmer at all, and I wasn’t even embarrassed to be in my swim suit.

In December 2012 I got a call from my doctor—they had found something in my mammogram. It’s probably nothing, she said, but she wanted me to go see a specialist as a precaution. It was just two weeks before Christmas, my grandmother passed away a few days later, we had family coming for the holidays; things were a bit stressful. And there were so many Christmas goodies everywhere.

So the next month I went to meet the specialist, who spoke the word biopsy, and I started to get a little more worried. And a week later, after an ultrasound biopsy and a stereotactic biopsy—on my birthday, no less—I got the call I never wanted. Happy birthday, Andrea, you have invasive cancer. By this time I was so stressed I had the opposite reaction—I could barely eat anything—and pounds dropped like crazy. After surgery was done and I’d had time to recover, and we got the wonderful news that I didn’t need chemo, the stress started to fall away. I felt pretty good and started walking again, and I made a goal to get back into the pool to work my arm.

Then I started my prescribed five years of hormone treatments, and life turned upside down again.

Some women do really well on the hormone treatments and have a few tolerable side effects, but I’m not one of those women. For the last year I have fought to keep myself healthy in spite of the side effects, including but not limited to exhaustion, weight gain, taste and smell disruptions, body aches and pain, and complications with other chronic conditions. I had to adopt a cancer eating plan to help keep me from gaining weight, and I have pushed myself to walk even on days when I felt like I couldn’t go any further. And I found some wonderful walking buddies, because having a friend to chat with while exercising is an excellent motivator when my body would rather have a nap.

I’m currently on a brief break from hormone treatment, and boy did I need that. I almost feel like my old happy self, and I actually want to exercise and eat again. So I’ve been working my body almost every day for the last two months. I even managed to do a three-mile walk last week and paddled a kayak for a few hours the week before. One year ago—even three months ago—I could not have done either of those. And next month on June 21, I’m doing a 5K!

So I’m in training for The Fit Foodie 5K Race Weekend in Fairfax, VA, the first of three race weekends in 2014 sponsored by Cooking Light and Health magazines. They even invited me to be a Fit Foodie Ambassador for the event! Me! The woman who could barely walk around the block a few months ago because cancer treatment was kicking my butt. This will be my first 5K since starting my new life with cancer last year, and I’m pretty proud that I’m already walking that distance after just a couple months of regular exercise. I won’t be one of the early finishers, that’s for sure, but getting through it with my head held high will be enough for me.

The weekend is all about healthy food, exercise, and having fun. They are offering several events June 20 – 22, including the Gypsy Soul Celebrity Chef VIP on Friday night, the 5K and Love DC Chefs Experience on Saturday, plus Celebrity Sunrise Yoga or Power Systems Obstacle Course Bootcamp and brunch on Sunday. You can register for events individually, or sign up for the whole fun weekend. The theme for the weekend is “Calories Burned. Calories Earned.” Boy, can I identify with that! I will enjoy working for my meals on Saturday at the race and Sunday at yoga.

One thing that I’m very happy about is that the event is also benefitting City of Hope, a leading treatment and research center for cancer, diabetes, and other life-threatening diseases. City of Hope will receive a donation of 10% of all race entry fees from the 2014 events in Fairfax, Austin, and San Diego.

FitFoodieRun - Twitter

As one of my readers, you can take advantage of a 10% discount off your advance online registration for the race and any of the other events, just enter my discount code ANDREASRECIPES when you register. And make sure you check out the website and the photos from the inaugural event in San Diego.

You can follow The Fit Foodie Race Weekend on Facebook and Twitter. And make sure to watch for the Twitter hashtags #tweetyourfeet, #fitfoodierun, and #runeatdrink.

Hope to see you at the race!

[Disclosure: I am a member of the Cooking Light Bloggers' Connection.]

Thanks for subscribing to this blog! Copyright © 2005-2014 Andrea Meyers: making life delicious.

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Asparagus and Leek Pie http://andreasrecipes.com/asparagus-leek-pie/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=asparagus-leek-pie http://andreasrecipes.com/asparagus-leek-pie/#comments Wed, 14 May 2014 18:17:49 +0000 http://andreasrecipes.com/?p=13327 Our asparagus started coming in three weeks ago, and we’ve been out in the back yard picking almost every day. Some days only two or three spears are ready, other days we can pick more. After the long, frigid winter we had, it’s a blessing to see the garden come in and the asparagus shoots peeping... 

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Asparagus and Leek Pie - Andrea Meyers

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Our asparagus started coming in three weeks ago, and we’ve been out in the back yard picking almost every day. Some days only two or three spears are ready, other days we can pick more. After the long, frigid winter we had, it’s a blessing to see the garden come in and the asparagus shoots peeping up from under the ground.

I’ve spent a little time each day walking around the garden to see what’s coming in, what’s ready, and making notes of what didn’t survive the harsh temperatures. It’s been exciting to share photos of the spring color, and if you like to see garden photos and get updates about what we are growing, you can follow me on Instagram and Twitter.

This spring asparagus and leek pie uses fillo (aka phyllo) dough for the top and bottom crust. If you’ve never used fillo dough, don’t let that deter you because it truly is easy. Just thaw the dough and brush melted butter between the layers. You get that wonderful flaky texture that make fillo a favorite at our house, and the healthy egg and vegetable filling will make this a perfect dish for weekend breakfast or brunch.

Asparagus and Leek Pie

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Asparagus and Leek Pie

Ingredients

5 leeks, roots and green tops removed
12 stalks asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
6 large eggs
1 cup (152 g) feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
20 sheets fillo dough, room temperature (I use one roll of Athens Fillo Dough.)
8 tablespoons (113 g) unsalted butter, melted

Preparation

1. Place the oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 400° F/200° C.

2. Halve the leeks lengthwise and wash well. Soak in a bowl of cold water for about 5 minutes to float away any remaining dirt. Drain well and thinly slice. Place slices in the colander and allow to finish draining with the asparagus pieces.

3. In the medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, feta cheese, parsley, and black pepper. Stir in the drained leeks and asparagus until evenly distributed.

4. Place one piece of the fillo dough in the baking dish and brush with melted butter. Repeat with 9 more pieces of fillo. Pour in the leeks and asparagus mixture and spread to fill the dish. Place the remaining layers of fillo on top, brushing with melted butter between the layers. Tuck in the edges or trim as necessary.

5. Bake in the preheated oven until the top is golden brown and crispy and the middle is bubbly, about 30 minutes.

Equipment & Recipe Notes

Equipment:
colander
medium bowl
12x10 inch baking dish

Recipe Notes:
While working with the fillo dough, keep the unused pieces covered with plastic or a damp towel so it doesn't dry out.

http://andreasrecipes.com/asparagus-leek-pie/

More Weekend Breakfast Recipes

Whole Wheat Strawberry Rhubarb Coffee Cake Recipe - Andrea Meyers Apple Butter Bread Pudding Recipe - Andrea Meyers Whole Wheat Oatmeal and Banana Pancakes Recipe - Andrea Meyers

More Recipes From Other Blogs

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