Sunday, August 28, 2011

Fancy Schmancy Beets



Cheesy Beet Dip
I had two golden beets left over and a bunch of cheeses in the fridge.  I wanted to have something savory to snack on hanging around in the fridge.  More importantly, I just spent a couple of hours cooking in the kitchen and did not want to stay much longer!  The mini food processor came out and the result was amazing.  Cool and creamy flavors from the cheese melded well with the beet and a touch of fresh oregano.  If you do not like oregano leave it out and it will still be scrumptious.  Mmmmm.....My hubby loved it too!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Golden Beets

I am super happy about discovering golden beets.  For some reason they do not bother me as much as red ones do.  Wonder why.  I did find out that red beets give our body vitamins A and C, calcium, iron, and fiber.  Now, I know I can not be the only one curious about whether our bodies change every seven years or not.  Would it not be great to think that some part of our body is just going through a phase?  What would I want to change?  Definitely some bad habits such as the streak of perfectionism that often pushes me to think and care too much about what I do.  Primary though would be the late nights where I try to wrestle my neurons from firing nonstop about random nonsense.  
The fact of the matter is that many cells do change, but the blanket statement that we we get "new" bodies every 7 years has yet to be solidified with scientific evidence.  Different cells change at different times and contrary to what used to viewed as fact, we do not only have the neurons we are born with.  There is evidence that we can re-train our brains to quiet circuitry signaling depression for example. So don't give up on breaking habits that make you feel like shit!  An excellent book on the matter is "Train your mind, change your brain" if you care to read more. 


Golden Beet and Zucchini Fritters
I'll admit it took 3 tries to get this recipe right.  The zucchini is very moist and I do not know how it is that flour works in this recipe for anyone. The bread crumbs bind perfectly - no flour needed! The beets contain pectin which substitutes well for egg.  The result is a crispy, warm cheesy and slightly sweet fritter.  Cool golden beet on top is the perfect contrast.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Shades of Purple Eggplant


     Eggplants are one of the very attractive vegetables alongside beets.  For the first time I tried the long skinny kind and they are delicious.  To my surprise they were quite sweet and not so bitter like the larger ones.  I do not recall eggplants in the family gardens as a kid and am not sure why.  One things for sure, they will find a place in my kitchen, if not the garden.  
     Eggplants are actually a fruit and are in season now.  They are valuable for many antioxidant properties that are said to be anti-cancer and preventative of high cholesterol.  Fiber and some other vitamins are an added bonus.  An interesting factoid is that eggplants contain nicotine.  That's right, the nasty stuff from cigarettes!  They (unlike cancer sticks) do not need to come with the warning that they pose a risk to your health, however.  You would have to eat 20lbs of eggplant to get the same amount of nicotine you would from one cigarette.


Chickpeas, Zucchini, Feta and Garlic & Basil scented Eggplant  
     This turned out to be a very nice vegetarian dinner.  My husband usually prefers meat but said he would have no problem if I made this for dinner again.  It was really easy and most suited for a lazy summer day, though I have a feeling I will be looking it up when in need of a quick weeknight meal. 

Beautiful Beets

    
     Where do beets come from? Can I come up with some good recipes with this ingredient? Beets are not just amazing in their deep rich purple or golden hue, but they emit a sweet refreshing flavor burst in your mouth.  Their firm texture stands up well in a simple salad of beets and goat cheese, which is absolutely delicious if you have not yet had it.  Turns out beets date back to ancient times - before Christ to be exact!  Its magenta stems and heart shaped leaves make me wonder why I never thought they could be related to chard.