Super Foods for the Superbowl!

January 26, 2011 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, What's New, snacks

Snacky-crunchy pumpkin seeds

Sweet & savory pumpkin seeds

Oh so fresh salsa and snacky crunchy pumpkin seeds!

In the peak of summer when ingredients were coming off the vine, I taped a Bloom with Barb test pilot with Mary Ann Wasil Nilan, Founder of The Get in Touch Foundation.

What does this have to do with the Superbowl? Well, we went “bloomin’ in the kitchen” with healthy and yum snacks that are fresh, easy and delicious (and in the summer many ingredients can be found locally). PERFECT to please a crowd any time of year and for your Superbowl night of snacking!

Video: See these recipes prepared below in my Bloomin in the Kitchen segment.

7 Spice Sweet & Savory Pumpkin Seeds

2 cups raw unsalted pumpkin seeds (peppitas)
2 tablespoons agave nectar, maple syrup or honey
1/2 teaspoon each: allspice, chili powder, cinnamon, ground corriander, cumin, nutmeg and sea salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup raisins, or dried and juice-sweetened cranberries or cherries

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Mix agave, syrup or honey and spices in a bowl and set aside. Spread 1 1/2 cups pumpkin seeds on parchment lined cookie sheet and bake in oven for 20 minutes. Add seeds to the bowl and stir spices to coat. Return pumpkin seeds to the oven on the cookie sheet and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Break into clusters and toss with raisins, cranberries or cherries and remainder of the raw pumpkin seeds.

Oh so fresh salsa!

Oh so fresh salsa!

Garden Fresh Salsa

2 cups grape or plum tomatoes, chopped
1 tomatillo, chopped
1 jalepeno pepper, minced
1 red pepper, chopped
1/2 red onion, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 - 3 cloves garlic, minced
juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon chill powder or more to taste
sea salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, toss all ingredients and serve with a variety of chips (blue tortilla, multi-grain and rice chips). Best if ingredients marinate before serving.

BLOOMIN In the KITCHEN: Arugula Apple Fennel Salad

January 2, 2011 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, What's New, salad

img_2703A colorful salad with a refreshing twist!

My friend Liz makes a wonderful fennel salad with currants, red onions and granny smith’s. Looking for an exciting new salad to serve over the holidays, I borrowed her idea and switched juice sweetened cranberries for currants and added arugula for a burst of color and flavor.

I love the contrast of tart and sweet, the crunch of the fennel and apples and how “clean” the flavors blend. With a splash of lemon juice and olive oil, it’s loaded with everything I look for in a great dish: fresh, healthy, organic and yummy!

3 fennel bulbs ~ cut into julienne
4 granny smith apples ~ peeled, cored and sliced
2 cups arugula ~ torn into small pieces
1/2 cup juice sweetened cranberries
1 large red onion ~ sliced into thin rings
Vinegarette to taste: Juice of 1 lemon and approx. 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (ratio: 1 part lemon juice to 2 parts olive oil)
Sea salt & pepper to taste

In a large bowl, toss all ingredients and refrigerate until ready to serve (up to 2 hours).

*Organic ingredients really “cleans” up this dish

Blog: Cleaning up Holiday Recipes

Not Your Usual Bowl of Oatmeal

November 30, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, What's New, breakfast

img_2646Superfoods jazz up morning breakfast. You can even go gluten-free!

Since I’m not much of a microwave fan these days, even I had doubts if I could make a warm yummy breakfast in a flash. But I’m happy to report that in less than 4 minutes, I whipped up creamy oatmeal with gluten-free oats.

Laced with maple syrup from the farmer’s market, raw walnuts, fresh pomegranate seeds and topped off with a dollop of ghee (clarified butter skimmed of milk solids), this was one satisfying superfood breakfast on the go that is a far cry from the goop I ate as a kid.

1/3 cup oats (gluten free can be found in most natural food stores)
1 cup water, milk, rice or almond milk
1 Tbsp chopped walnuts (roasted or raw)
1 Tbsp pomegranate seeds
Pinch of sal
t

Combine oats, water or milk and salt in a saucepan and stir over medium heat until desired consistency or follow cooking instructions on the oatmeal box. Ladle into bowl and top with nuts, pomegranate seeds and syrup.

Serves 1

Grow Your Gusto!

October 27, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloom Talk

screen-shot-2011-01-25-at-20220-pmBe bold and brave to open up to new possibilities and LOVE life!

Guest: Dale Allen, creator of her one woman show In Our Right Minds: A Celebration of Women, the Sacred Feminine and the Right Brain
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LISTEN on Bloom Talk
Podcast: Recorded Feb 11, 2011 (41 min edited)

Not feeling creative? In a rut? Not sure how to get energized? Well, get ready for the energy of a Cape Canaveral lift-off when Dale Allen joins me on Bloom Talk. We’ll ask the question, “If not now, when?” and toss out ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

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We’ll also talk with Louise, a vivacious tap dancing senior who is growing her gusto. “I was a daughter, student, wife, mother and then I became a widow. Even though I was very content and very happy with life, now I lost some of those roles. I had to find more and that’s when I found ME!”

From Bloomin’ in the Kitchen with Dale to exploring our soul’s purpose, we cover the bases and our dreams, passions and gifts. “Everyone has a gift and it starts with what makes you happy, what makes you feel alive. Start small ~ something you can access right now and that will lead you to the next thing and the next. You can’t look outside, you have to look within.”

More of Dale on Barb’s Bloom with Barb test pilot. Don’t miss Dale’s song and dance routine (with a little help from Barb) about reaching for dreams and finally getting off of Someday Isle a/k/a/ Someday I’ll.

Guest Website: www.inourrightminds.com
Who’s Blooming?
Louise’s Story
Bloomin’ in the Kitchen Recipe:
Creamy No-Cream Butternut Soup

Wake-Up Carrot Juice

img_2131Refreshing way to start the day!

Paired with the sweetness of apple and pear, carrots come alive and so will you. Ginger gives this juice its added zing so you can get up and go!

3 carrots
1 pear
1 apple
1 piece ginger (thumb size)
mint leave
s

Place all ingredients in a juicer and extract juices into a pitcher. Stir and pour into glasses. Top off with mint leaves. Serves 2

Apple Butter Pulled-Pork

August 24, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, main meals

I wanted something easy to make the day before a summer barbecueimg_2178, but don’t like to using processed BBQ sauce.

Lisa, my recipe-trading friend from “forever,” suggested this slow cooked pulled pork recipe using apple butter. For a bit more sweet you can add some apricot preserves but try and find fruit butters and preserves with low or no added refined sugar. The apple butter I used here was organic and the pork “butt” was farm raised. But pork tenderloins work just as well.

3 lbs pork butt or pork tenderloins
1 1/2 cups water
1 medium onion, chopped
3-4 cloves minced garlic
2 cups apple butter
2 cups peeled, cored and sliced apples
salt & pepper to taste

Put all ingredients, except apple butter and apples, in a slow cooker for 8 to 10 hours. After two hours add the apple butter. Add the apple slices for the last hour of cooking. When fully cooked, pork should pull apart very easily and will have absorbed the liquids.

Serves 4 to 6 as sandwiches or over “dirty” brown rice. Can be made one day in advance, reheated and served. If not using a slow cooker, cover and bake at 300 degrees.

Good Start Rice (or Quinoa) Pudding Breakfast

August 12, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen

img_2190 Great way to make leftover grains disappear. Guests love my breakfast pudding as a yummy, healthy start to the day!

Use quinoa for extra protein. I love almond milk for a creamy non-dairy treat!

2 cups cooked basmati rice or quinoa
1/2 cup milk or rice, soy, or almond milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
pinch of sea salt
1/4 cup plus extra maple syrup
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup raisins or blueberries
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Toasted unsweetened coconut

Cook your grain of choice, rice or quinoa, according to package directions - I usually use leftovers from the night before. In a medium skillet on medium heat, add grain and toss with milk, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt until much of the milk is absorbed. Add maple syrup, walnuts, raisins or berries. Toss to heat until liquid is fully absorbed being careful not to scorch. Remove from heat and add in vanilla.

Place in individual bowls. Drizzle with additional maple syrup if desired and sprinkle with toasted coconut. I add extra fruit on top, such as raspberries, peaches, pitted cherries, and serve in a pool of warm milk. Serves two.

Olive-Basil Hummus

img_1754Not your run of the mill hummus and something to snack on anytime!

1 15 oz can organic garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
2 tablespoons Tahini (ground sesame butter)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus more to drizzle
Juice of 1/2 small lemon
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon cumin
8 kalamata olives (pitted)
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil
sea salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)

Drain juice from chickpeas and reserve. Place ingredients except olives and basil in food processor. Process until smooth throughout. Add reserved chick pea liquid a little at a time if the mixture is too dry and chunky. Add olives and basil and pulse until desired consistency. Serve with healthy chips and extra virgin olive oil drizzled on top.

Barb’s Healthy Link Pics:
Olives
Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans
Basil
Cumin

Arugula & Beet Salad

April 7, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, salad

img_1531 Bored of the same ole’ salad. Color it up with red and golden beets and add punch with fresh spring arugula!

2 red beets
2 golden beets
extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch arugula
1/2 cup pine nuts
crumbled goat cheese
sea salt & freshly ground pepper
1 recipe Lemon Dijon salad dressing (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Trim tops and bottoms off of beets and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt to taste. Wrap beets separately with foil and roast in the oven for approximately 1 hour or until a knife is easily inserted through the center. Let cool. Peel skin off of beets and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices. Place pine nuts on a cookie sheet and roast in the oven for approximately 7 to 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Let cool. In a bowl, toss arugula with the salad dressing and salt and pepper to taste. Place individual portions of arugula on separate salad plates and top with beet slices, alternating golden and red beets. Drizzle a small amount of the salad dressing on the beets to lightly coat. Sprinkle pine nuts and crumbled goat cheese on top to taste, reserving the same amounts for the other salad plates. Serves 2 to 4.

RECIPE: Lemon Dijon Salad Dressing

Asian Spiced Scallops & Kale Salad

March 3, 2010 by Barb Scala  
Filed under Bloomin in the Kitchen, What's New, salad

img_1499

Leafy greens and scallops go Asian in this zesty dish!

Great lighter dinner or a lovely lunch. Or serve the scallops as the main attraction over rice and have the kale salad on the side. Either way, you’ll enjoy the healthy benefits of a dark leafy green this spring and scallops which are local to my coastal community.

Scallops:

1 lb. sea scallops
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-3 teaspoons Asian spice mix (or make your own by combining 1 teaspoon each of curry powder, cumin, tumeric, garlic powder, cinnamon, allspice, star anise, nutmeg plus 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, sea salt & black pepper)

Kale salad:

1 bunch kale
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup wheat free soy sauce
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt & pepper to taste

Rinse the scallops. Combine the Asian spice mix, lemon juice and 1/4 cup olive oil in a bowl. Add the scallops and marinate for 1/2 hour.

Wash and dry the kale. Cut tough veins from each leaf and chop the kale in 1 to 2 inch strips. Combine the lemon juice, soy sauce and olive oil in a jar and shake vigorously till combined. In a bowl, toss the kale with the lemon-soy dressing till each leaf is coated. Refrigerate till ready to serve (salad can stay up to several hours in the fridge as the leaves soak up the dressing without wilting).

Remove the scallops from the marinade but reserve juices. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a cast iron skillet or heavy pan over moderate high heat, being careful not to allow the oil to get too hot and smoke. Sear the scallops on both sides till cooked throughout (approx. 2-4 minutes each side depending on size and heat temp) but do not overcook which makes them tough and rubbery. Remove the scallops from the pan.  Add the marinade to the pan and quickly heat juices till syrupy.

Toss the kale salad with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Plate each dish by pooling some sauce on the plate, add a bed of the kale salad  and place 4 to 5 scallops on top or serve separately.

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