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Hearty Soup with Garbanzo Beans, Quinoa Pasta, Lemon, Garlic and Mint

Dec 1, 2011

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This is one of my favorite rustic and hearty vegan soups, rich in proteins and dietary fiber. As I mentioned in a previous recipe (see Quinoa Salad), quinoa is a grain full of protein and vitamins. When combined with garbanzo beans, this soup makes a very satisfying and nutritious meal. continue reading…

Cream of Buckwheat with Dried Fruits and Nuts – A Healthy Vegan Breakfast that is Gluten and Sugar-free

Nov 10, 2011

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Breakfast is the most important meal of the day according to nutritionists. It is ideal to start your day with a healthy meal that’s both delicious and full of nutrients. Cream of buckwheat, sun-dried fruit, nuts and the addition of cinnamon and turmeric make this tasty recipe rich with minerals, vitamins and all kinds of nutrients that will boost your immune system and give you the energy you need to start your day. It can be stored in the fridge for up to three days. continue reading…

Vegan Mashed Potatoes with Lemon Zest

Nov 22, 2010

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Traditionally made mashed potatoes usually rely on copious amounts of cream and butter to give them their luxurious taste. For a much healthier version, I use extra virgin olive and/or grape seed oil and amplify the flavor with crushed garlic, fresh herbs and lemon zest. Lemon juice and lemon zest brighten any dish you add them to. continue reading…

Cranberry Sauce with Pistachios and Pomegranate

Nov 17, 2010

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Thanksgiving is the time for cranberries in the United States and Canada. They are harvested in the fall months and bags of the bright red berries appear in the market just in time for holiday menus. The Native Americans were the first to use this festive red berry as food and probably introduced it to the English settlers who incorporated cranberries into their traditional Thanksgiving menu. Cranberries are one of Nature’s “super fruits” and are packed with vitamins and minerals. Rich in phytochemicals, they are a good source of polyphenol antioxidants. continue reading…

Baked White Beans with Vegetables

Sep 24, 2010

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This nutritious dish is both vegan and gluten-free. The beans in this recipe are a type pulse or edible legume. There are over an astonishing 4,000 varieties of beans in the US alone. Archaeological records show that beans were one of the earliest cultivated plants; they continue to provide an important source of protein and fiber for cultures in all areas of the globe today. Since the second millennium BC, a large-seeded broad bean has been grown all around the Mediterranean region and still remains a favorite today. continue reading…

Filet of Beef on a Bed of Eggplant-Yogurt Sauce

Aug 20, 2010

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It is believed that nomadic tribes living in Central Asia during Neolithic times accidentally discovered yogurt when the milk they stored in animal skins was spontaneously fermented by wild bacteria in the air. Not only did the new product have a good tangy taste, but more importantly, it allowed them to store the milk longer during their travels. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans and “cultures” all over the Mediterranean and Asia all knew about the healthful benefits of yogurt. continue reading…

Flourless Chocolate Almond Cake

Jul 23, 2010

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I never tire of baking with almonds. They fill the kitchen with such an enticing aroma and deliver a delicate flavor to whatever I make. Almonds are also packed with nutrients. They are an excellent source of vitamin E, manganese and are rich in monounsaturated fat, one of the “good” fats responsible for lowering your LDL cholesterol. They have been proven to reduce your risk of heart disease and improve your complexion. continue reading…

Gluten-free Baking – The Birth of a New Cookie Line

Jul 2, 2010

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My interest in gluten-free baking was piqued a few years ago when some new friends over for dinner lamented the fact that there was little they could eat due to their gluten intolerance. They especially missed sharing cookies and cakes with others after dinner and on special occasions. I did some research on celiac disease; it is a lifelong, genetically determined autoimmune disorder that affects the digestive process of the small intestine. When a person who has celiac disease eats gluten (the common name for a protein found in specific grains like wheat, rye and barley), the individual’s immune system responds by attacking the small intestine and inhibiting the absorption of important nutrients into the body. continue reading…

Baked Stuffed Eggplant

Jun 18, 2010

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There are many variations of this popular gluten-free and vegan dish from countries all over the Mediterranean region but most of them start by deep-frying the eggplants in an astonishing amount of olive oil. Eggplants are like sponges and soak up most of that oil. To make the dish much lighter, I blanch the eggplants instead in salted water before stuffing and baking them. The resulting dish is still full of flavor but uses much less oil and so it is even healthier. Try to find small, long (about 5 or 6 inches) purple eggplants (not the globe variety) with the stems attached if possible. The stems make great “handles” and give a more natural look to the eggplants when served. continue reading…

Lentils and Brown Rice with Caramelized Leeks

Jun 11, 2010

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Lentils originated in the Near East and were already a favorite food source by Neolithic times. They were one of the first domesticated crops cultivated as people started to settle down thousands of years ago and remain a popular staple in many parts of Europe, the Middle East and India today. Lentils are the curved, lens-shaped seeds from a small bushy plant in the legume family; in fact they give us our word for the optical lens. Many cultures prize the lentil for its excellent nutritional value; it is low in fat but delivers a high level of protein and dietary fiber, iron, folate, vitamin B1 and other minerals. Combined with rice, lentils provide a complete and inexpensive protein meal. continue reading…

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