DINOSAUR EGG

NO-SPIRALIZER RAW GREEN NOODLES 
Serves 2
I’m very excited to share this recipe with you because perhaps among my readers there’s someone in the position I was a few months back when I saw a recipe that called for a spiral peeler that I didn’t own to make zucchini noodles, and was quickly discouraged.
A couple of weeks later, I decided to experiment with a hand peeler and peeled long thin zucchini sheets.

I carefully piled them up one on top of the other and ran my knife vertically to cut thick noodles, much like fettuccine. I was pleased and very excited with the result but I still craved thin noodles that you could twirl around as you would spaghetti.
So the second time around, I used the technique one would employ when ‘chiffonading’ basil, for example. I stacked up my zucchini sheets, rolled them up and gently but firmly cut longer and thinner strips than before.

Eureka! These resembled the spaghetti-like noodles I craved to begin with! Thinner noodles helped the zucchini to soak in the flavors of my sauces a lot better.
Do not get discouraged if you don’t nail it the first time around. You should know that this a process that gets easier and easier over time and is worth learning. It’s also a very impressive and fresh dish that never disappoints.

4 thin zucchinis2 tomatoes, cubed2 tablespoons of fresh basil pesto

Cut off the ends of your zucchinis. Using a hand peeler, peel thin yet wide zucchini strips and set aside. Stack your zucchini sheets, only 5-10 at a time, depending on how much you can handle. Always start with very little and with more experience and confidence work your way up.
Roll them lengthwise and with a sharp knife, begin slicing the roll perpendicularly, creating fine, thin strips. You want to be very gentle here as it is very easy for the crunchy, raw zucchini strips to just snap.
Dress your noodles with the pesto, top with fresh tomatoes and enjoy immediately.
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NO-SPIRALIZER RAW GREEN NOODLES

Serves 2

I’m very excited to share this recipe with you because perhaps among my readers there’s someone in the position I was a few months back when I saw a recipe that called for a spiral peeler that I didn’t own to make zucchini noodles, and was quickly discouraged.

A couple of weeks later, I decided to experiment with a hand peeler and peeled long thin zucchini sheets.

I carefully piled them up one on top of the other and ran my knife vertically to cut thick noodles, much like fettuccine. I was pleased and very excited with the result but I still craved thin noodles that you could twirl around as you would spaghetti.

So the second time around, I used the technique one would employ when ‘chiffonading’ basil, for example. I stacked up my zucchini sheets, rolled them up and gently but firmly cut longer and thinner strips than before.

Eureka! These resembled the spaghetti-like noodles I craved to begin with! Thinner noodles helped the zucchini to soak in the flavors of my sauces a lot better.

Do not get discouraged if you don’t nail it the first time around. You should know that this a process that gets easier and easier over time and is worth learning. It’s also a very impressive and fresh dish that never disappoints.

4 thin zucchinis
2 tomatoes, cubed
2 tablespoons of fresh basil pesto

Cut off the ends of your zucchinis. Using a hand peeler, peel thin yet wide zucchini strips and set aside. Stack your zucchini sheets, only 5-10 at a time, depending on how much you can handle. Always start with very little and with more experience and confidence work your way up.

Roll them lengthwise and with a sharp knife, begin slicing the roll perpendicularly, creating fine, thin strips. You want to be very gentle here as it is very easy for the crunchy, raw zucchini strips to just snap.

Dress your noodles with the pesto, top with fresh tomatoes and enjoy immediately.

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FRESH BASIL PESTO
Makes about 1 cup
I don’t know if this happens to you, but every time I get basil in my hands, I can’t use it up fast enough. I add it to salads, sandwiches, soups, you name it, and I still have half of a sad wilting bunch at the end of the week. One day I had enough of throwing away rotting herbs and welcomed home-made pesto into my life. This pesto recipe is flavorful and wonderfully imprecise. It keeps for a couple of days when refrigerated and for long periods of time when frozen or canned.
After making my own pesto a couple of times, I noticed some things that I’d like to share:
First of all, I made a decision to avoid food processors or hand blenders at all cost. As convenient as they are, blended pesto lacked the texture I looked for. I realized chopping all the ingredients by hand prevents them from becoming a homogenized emulsion and allows each ingredient to stand on its own and flavors are highlighted in a way they wouldn’t had they been blended into a runny paste.
Second, the addition of Parmesan cheese isn’t really necessary. It really isn’t. As long as you have a handful of the freshest ingredients you can find, trust me, you won’t miss the dairy.
Last, chopping the ingredients is not as dreadful of a process as most might think. Whenever I make it, I set up a chopping station, get a good playlist going and run my knife through fresh basil leaves for approximately twenty minutes and actually enjoy it. The smell of crushed fresh herbs is absolutely intoxicating and the end result? delicious!
Always remember that whatever you decide to use to chop has to be very, very sharp or your basil will darken. As I’ve said before in other posts, this is a good basic recipe that stands great alone but you can always customize to personal taste and build on it by experimenting with your favorite ingredients.

1 bunch basil, leaves only, washed and dried3-4 garlic cloves roughly 1/2 cup of raw pine nutsa few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

Start by chopping the garlic along with one quarter of your basil leaves. Once this is loosely chopped add another quarter of your basil and chop some more. Add the rest of your basil gradually until it is finely minced. Now, add about half of your pine nuts and chop them to bits. Add the rest, and chop. You want to chop it all very, very finely. Finally, transfer your mixture into a bowl and drizzle with a bit of olive oil, not much, just a few tablespoons.
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FRESH BASIL PESTO

Makes about 1 cup

I don’t know if this happens to you, but every time I get basil in my hands, I can’t use it up fast enough. I add it to salads, sandwiches, soups, you name it, and I still have half of a sad wilting bunch at the end of the week. One day I had enough of throwing away rotting herbs and welcomed home-made pesto into my life. This pesto recipe is flavorful and wonderfully imprecise. It keeps for a couple of days when refrigerated and for long periods of time when frozen or canned.

After making my own pesto a couple of times, I noticed some things that I’d like to share:

First of all, I made a decision to avoid food processors or hand blenders at all cost. As convenient as they are, blended pesto lacked the texture I looked for. I realized chopping all the ingredients by hand prevents them from becoming a homogenized emulsion and allows each ingredient to stand on its own and flavors are highlighted in a way they wouldn’t had they been blended into a runny paste.

Second, the addition of Parmesan cheese isn’t really necessary. It really isn’t. As long as you have a handful of the freshest ingredients you can find, trust me, you won’t miss the dairy.

Last, chopping the ingredients is not as dreadful of a process as most might think. Whenever I make it, I set up a chopping station, get a good playlist going and run my knife through fresh basil leaves for approximately twenty minutes and actually enjoy it. The smell of crushed fresh herbs is absolutely intoxicating and the end result? delicious!

Always remember that whatever you decide to use to chop has to be very, very sharp or your basil will darken. As I’ve said before in other posts, this is a good basic recipe that stands great alone but you can always customize to personal taste and build on it by experimenting with your favorite ingredients.

1 bunch basil, leaves only, washed and dried
3-4 garlic cloves
roughly 1/2 cup of raw pine nuts
a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

Start by chopping the garlic along with one quarter of your basil leaves. Once this is loosely chopped add another quarter of your basil and chop some more. Add the rest of your basil gradually until it is finely minced. Now, add about half of your pine nuts and chop them to bits. Add the rest, and chop. You want to chop it all very, very finely. Finally, transfer your mixture into a bowl and drizzle with a bit of olive oil, not much, just a few tablespoons.

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CRISPY EGGPLANT WHEELS
Serves 2
This recipe is one of my favorites. It’s filling, easy and can be adapted in many ways to suit your taste. The measurements are approximate as they may vary depending on the size of your eggplant.

1/4 cup whole wheat flour1/4 cup organic soy milk1 tablespoon Dijon mustard1/2 cup dried italian breadcrumbs1/4 cup cornmeal1 medium eggplantsalt and pepper, to tastemarinara sauce, to taste

Preheat oven to 375°F.
Next, set up a breading station: 
In the first dish, add the flour and season with salt and pepper.
In the second dish, combine soy milk and Dijon mustard. 
In the third dish combine the bread crumbs and cornmeal, season with salt and pepper.
Slice the eggplant into 1/2-3/4-inch slices. Dredge them in flour, then dip them in the soy milk mustard mixture, in the bread crumbs. Place your breaded eggplant wheel on a non-stick baking tray or a regular baking tray lined with parchment paper. Repeat to bread the remaining eggplant slices. Bake in oven until crispy, 10-15 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness and size of your wheels. For extra-crispy wheels, broil for a minute or two on each side.
Serve immediately and top with marinara sauce.
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CRISPY EGGPLANT WHEELS

Serves 2

This recipe is one of my favorites. It’s filling, easy and can be adapted in many ways to suit your taste. The measurements are approximate as they may vary depending on the size of your eggplant.

1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup organic soy milk
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup dried italian breadcrumbs
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 medium eggplant
salt and pepper, to taste
marinara sauce, to taste

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Next, set up a breading station: 

In the first dish, add the flour and season with salt and pepper.

In the second dish, combine soy milk and Dijon mustard. 

In the third dish combine the bread crumbs and cornmeal, season with salt and pepper.

Slice the eggplant into 1/2-3/4-inch slices. Dredge them in flour, then dip them in the soy milk mustard mixture, in the bread crumbs. Place your breaded eggplant wheel on a non-stick baking tray or a regular baking tray lined with parchment paper. Repeat to bread the remaining eggplant slices. Bake in oven until crispy, 10-15 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness and size of your wheels. For extra-crispy wheels, broil for a minute or two on each side.

Serve immediately and top with marinara sauce.

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SIMPLE MARINARA SAUCE
Makes 1 quart
I once read that there are as many recipes for tomato sauce as there are Italian grandmothers. This proved to be true the first time I attempted to make my very own tomato sauce, I found myself lost in a sea of long-simmering, heavy and meaty sauce recipes that often included a lengthy list of unnecessary ingredients. Now I am happy to say I have finally found a recipe that works for me, a simple and quick sauce that is light, comforting and has the most vibrant red color. It also happens to be extremely easy to put together and lends itself to many variations. I recommend preparing a large batch when you have a couple of minutes to spare and freezing it in meal sized portions, so it will be as convenient to use as jarred commercial sauces. 

1 28 oz can organic crushed tomatoes1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil1 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs3 cloves garlic, finely choppedzest of one lemon

Combine the olive oil, red pepper flakes, italian seasoning, sea salt and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat, saute for a minute or so until everything is fragrant, without browning the garlic. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and simmer for about five minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the lemon zest and remove from heat.
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SIMPLE MARINARA SAUCE

Makes 1 quart

I once read that there are as many recipes for tomato sauce as there are Italian grandmothers. This proved to be true the first time I attempted to make my very own tomato sauce, I found myself lost in a sea of long-simmering, heavy and meaty sauce recipes that often included a lengthy list of unnecessary ingredients. Now I am happy to say I have finally found a recipe that works for me, a simple and quick sauce that is light, comforting and has the most vibrant red color. It also happens to be extremely easy to put together and lends itself to many variations. I recommend preparing a large batch when you have a couple of minutes to spare and freezing it in meal sized portions, so it will be as convenient to use as jarred commercial sauces. 

1 28 oz can organic crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
zest of one lemon

Combine the olive oil, red pepper flakes, italian seasoning, sea salt and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat, saute for a minute or so until everything is fragrant, without browning the garlic. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and simmer for about five minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the lemon zest and remove from heat.

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