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Sarah Lawrence

I Eat Fast Food

Will you believe me when I tell you that I eat fast food?  It’s true!  In fact, I encourage it!  This month I am going to tell you all about it, so stay tuned and check back for all the details.... So, here's my confession:  I love Fast Food!  My fast food is ready in a few minutes and it’s processed… in my vitamix! Pull out your blender or food processor and join me in the kitchen!  Today’s recipe is quick, easy and can’t be beat!... Lemony Summer Soup Talk about a summer dream: Light and lemony, cool and refreshing, quick and clean (because there is no peeling involved!)… it makes mealtime on a hot summer day a real breeze! Because summer veggies are abundant, this recipe is easy to multiply to feed a crowd.  As always, I encourage you to play with your food and flavors and make them your own.  What tastes great to me may not to you, so use my recipe as a springboard if you need to or use it as written if you like the idea! [caption id="attachment_580" align="alignright" width="300"]Lemony Summer Soup Lemony Summer Soup[/caption] You can eat the whole batch for under 200 calories while packing in about 7.5 grams of protein, 11 grams of fiber and tons of nutrients!  Check it out --    Here’s the nutritional lowdown:  Live Enzymes -- You are using raw food power and your body will benefit from live enzyme action as well as unadulterated nutrients.  B Vitamins -- The B-vitamins folate, B6, B1, B2, B3, and choline Vitamins A, C and K – Vitamin C is highest in the Lemon, but Tomato and squash are respectable sources as well! Blood Sugar Stabilizers – Zinc, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, Pectin; Fiber (1.5 g per cup of squash) Anti-Oxidants -- lutein and zeaxanthin are in the squash skins, so buy organic and leave the skins on.  The tomato is rich in lycopene, which is implicated in heart and bone health.  The Avocado helps boost the absorption of the lycopene while adding a beautiful creaminess to the soup! Fiber – about 11 grams of fiber in the recipe as written   Kid tip: When introducing new flavors or new foods to children, try presenting things in tiny vessels. I use tasting cups, shot glasses, and amuse bouche spoons to plate the new option on the side of a familiar meal. I say something like, “Since this is a new recipe, I can only spare a taste for each of you. Let me know what you think!” When it goes over well, I pull from the stash and offer a bit more. When it doesn’t, I take notes and engage my kids in the creation process. It’s a win either way! [caption id="attachment_581" align="alignleft" width="300"] Tasting cups for Kids[/caption] Lemony Summer Soup  1 cup yellow squash 1 cup zucchini 1 yellow tomato ¼ of an organic lemon, peel and all ½ clove garlic ½ cup or about ½ of an avocado, pitted and peeled ½ tsp Himalayan Salt basil, thyme or oregano - fresh or dried, optional garnish Cut veg into chunks.  Puree everything in Vitamix or other blender until smooth.  Add a little cool water to thin if desired.   References: National Research Council. "7 Dietary, Functional, and Total Fiber." Dietary Reference Intakes for Energy, Carbohydrate, Fiber, Fat, Fatty Acids, Cholesterol, Protein, and Amino Acids (Macronutrients). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2005. P357. Print.

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creativecalligraphy

30 Minute Garden Tomato Sauce

If your garden is also at the height of tomato glory then this recipe is for you. I feel like typing, set it and forget it, because this guy is so easy. Basically your only prep work is washing your veggies and maybe cutting some in half so they fit in the pot! This is the kind of sauce that can handle a myriad of additions.  Great way to utilize leftover veg purees or bits that you might save for stock.  I added in 1/2 cup of leftover carrot puree and 1/2 cup of leftover spinach puree.  A handful of sundried tomatoes finished this off for me, but the sauce is bright and lovely just as it is.  The bottom line is that you can and should make this your own with what you have available. Enjoy!
30 Minute Garden Tomato Sauce 2 lbs tomato, whole 4 cloves garlic, unpeeled 1 onion, whole (if the skin is in great condition), peeled (if the skin is compromised) 2 celery stalk, halved or leftover celery ends Reserve: 1 lb zucchini or summer squash, diced Note: If you are serving your sauce over pasta, set up a 2nd pot with water for your noodles now.  Your water will be boiling in 10-15 minutes and you can drop the pasta in time to be ready for the sauce.  (You can thank me for tip this later.) [caption id="attachment_435" align="alignleft" width="240" caption="Right out of the gateNearing the finish line"]Right out of the gate[/caption]
Now: Add all ingredients into a stock pot with 5-6 cups water.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat just after the pot boils and simmer for 20 minutes.  Turn the heat to low, use a slotted spoon to rescue the garlic and onion (if you dropped the onion with skin on, otherwise it will go with the other veggies); put these on your cutting board for a minute to cool.  In the meantime, transfer the veggies to your blender and whiz them until chunky or go further for a smooth sauce.  [caption id="attachment_437" align="alignleft" width="240" caption="Softened Garlic"]Softened Garlic[/caption] Now, press on the garlic cloves and let the soft garlic squish out.  Add this to the blender.  Do the same thing with the onion, if you left the skin on… it’s pretty cool how it works the same way!  Add this to the blender too and whiz for a minute to blend everything.
 
 
 
 
Add your diced zucchini or squash to the pot and cover with the puree.  Bring the pot back to a simmer for 10 minutes.  If you are serving your sauce with pasta, now is the time to drop it into the water. Serve. Optional add in’s: a few carrots ½ cup leftover carrot soup ½ cup pureed greens ½ cup sundried tomatoes (you can toss these in at blending time if you have a Vitamix, otherwise let them soften with the other veggies while the pot is simmering.) This is how I enjoyed the sauce.  Post and let me know what you serve it with! [caption id="attachment_438" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Portobella caps with 30 Minute Sauce over greens"]Portobella caps with 30 Minute Sauce over greens[/caption]

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creativecalligraphy

Quick Chickpea Portobello Ragout

Quick Chickpea Portobello Ragout (Serves 4 as a main dish with salad or 8 as an app) ~ ready in about 15 minutes ~ Quick Chickpea Portobello Ragout Warm or cold, this ragout is scrumptious.  My 5 year old requested that I make this for dinner every night from now on! LOL!  What I love it that this comes together in a flash with a rich flavor that works just as well on top of greens as it does over polenta.  Chill it down and you’ve got a great topper for bruschetta using your GF bread of choice or try chilled polenta squares or even cucumber cups! Leftovers make a good vegan wrap filling because the sauce gets thicker as it chills.  YUM, yum and yum… You can go with some pantry shortcuts if needed --- sub canned or boxed fire roasted tomatoes and canned chickpeas for fresh.  If you make these subs, omit the salt until you can give everything a taste so you don’t end up with an overly salty dish. 3 jumbo Portobello caps, diced, about 2 cups 1 onion, diced, about 1 cup 4 cloves garlic, minced 3 small zucchini, diced, about 2 cups pinch of salt and several grinds of pepper ½ cup dry white wine 3 gorgeous tomatoes, diced, about 2 cups 2 cups cooked chickpeas 1 Tbsp veg broth powder + 2 cups water or 2 cups veg broth 2 Tbsp tapioca starch + ¼ cup cold water 4 -6 cups raw baby spinach or kale  Grab your wooden spoon and get ready for some quick work! Toss your mushrooms, onion, garlic and zucchini into a hot sauté pan and stir, stir, stir!  We’re not using any oil in this recipe, so we need to rely on the heat to draw some liquid out of the zucchini pretty quickly.  As things start to sear, throw in a pinch of salt to coax the liquid out of the veg and keep stirring until that garlic is fragrant.  We’re about 5 minutes in at this point and I need you to pour in the wine and deglaze the pan by using the edge of a wooden spoon to scrape the bits off the bottom of the pan. Add your tomatoes, chickpeas and broth/broth powder + water.  Stir to combine.  Cover and let this simmer for 8 minutes.  While the ragout is simmering pull out your bowls and divide the greens among them.  If you’re using kale, tear it into bite size pieces so it’s easy to eat with the veg.  Reluctant to try kale?  Before putting it into the bowls, give the torn pieces a really thorough massage with about a tsp of olive oil, a sprinkle of salt and pepper and a clove of crushed garlic.  Something magical happens to kale when you give it a good rub.  I can’t guarantee you’ll love it right out of the gate, but I can say that this preparation got me eating more kale in the beginning!  Maybe it will work for you too. Let’s get back to business… Uncover the ragout and bump up the heat a bit.  Pour in the tapioca starch slurry and stir.  The heat will get the sauce bubbling and things will thicken up quickly.  If your ragout gets too stiff, add ½ cup of water and stir to loosen it up.  Otherwise, turn off the heat and you’re set to plate.   Scoop 1 cup portions on top of the greens you’ve already plated.  You’re good to go!

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