Coconut

Making coconut milk at home is simple, quick and very inexpensive. Each batch costs about $1 vs. $2.50-$3.50 for store bought coconut milk in cartons. Coconut milk is delicious in smoothies, recipes, or as an alternative to cow’s milk.

This recipe uses raw shredded or flaked coconut, which is much easier than using whole coconuts; however, if you have the time and inclination, you CAN purchase whole coconuts, crack them and save the water which is naturally sweet, hydrating and uber healthy. Coconut has many health-promoting benefits including medium chain fatty acids and lauric acid.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups water
  • 1.5 – 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract – optional. Add in after all coconut has been blended and strained

                         

Instructions

  • Heat water until hot (but not boiling).
  • Add shredded coconut and water to a blender* – If all of the water won’t fit, you can add it in two batches.
  • Blend on high for several minutes until thick and creamy.
  • Pour through a mesh strainer to filter out the coconut pulp, and then squeeze through a piece of cheese cloth or nut milk bag to filter the smaller pieces of coconut.*
  • Drink immediately or store in the fridge and consume within 3-4 days.
  • Since there are no preservatives or fillers, the “cream” of the coconut milk may separate on the top if stored in the fridge. Just shake or stir before using

*For best results, it is preferable to use a high speed blender like a Blendec or Vitamix; however, if you don’t have one, go ahead and use a regular blender. You will definitely need to blend in 2 batches.

If you separated the water into two batches, put the strained coconut back into the blender with the second batch of water, blend again and then pour the second batch through a mesh strainer and finish with the cheese cloth or nut milk bag.

Enjoy!

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salmon chowder

Manhattan Salmon Chowder that adds full flavor with fewer calories and fat than New England Clam Chowder. You can easily make this recipe in a crock pot.

Serves 6

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, cut into small dice (1/4”)
1 large yellow pepper, cut into medium small dice (1/2”)
2 teaspoons Herbs de Provence (more to taste)
1/4 cup potato flour
1 quart fish broth
1 can (28 ounces) canned crushed tomatoes (not pureed tomatoes)
1 pound yellow or red boiling potatoes, cut into medium dice (1/2”)*
1 1/2 pounds salmon fillet, preferably wild
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
Salt and ground black pepper to taste

½ ripe avocado, medium diced for garnish (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or cilantro leaves

Heat oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven medium-high heat. Add onions and pepper; sauté until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Add herbs then whisk in the flour; continue to cook until incorporated, just a few seconds. Add broth, tomatoes, and potatoes and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut salmon into serving size pieces and sprinkle on both sides with paprika and a little salt and pepper. Add to soup and continue to simmer until salmon is just opaque, about 5 minutes longer. Break up salmon into large chunks, stir in parsley or cilantro, adjust seasonings, and serve.

Notes:

I used rutabaga, carrots and celery in place of the 1lb of potatoes, which lowered the carbs and upped the overall nutrient density of this recipe.

You may need to adjust your seasons depending upon the sodium in your tomatoes and fish stock. If you are watching your fat content, don’t use the avocado, even though it’s a healthy fat, it still adds additional fat grams. Just an FYI.

Please leave a comment for me and let me know how you liked this recipe.

 

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A classic chef’s salad has batonnet cuts of turkey, ham and cheese with hardboiled egg and tomato wedges as garnish. Chef’s salads can be seen on restaurant menus where there is a large lunch clientele, as it can be pre-prepared in the kitchen and brought out the customers quickly. It’s a popular summertime item and is served in most clubs, hotels and restaurants.

Chef's_Salad

Chef

Serving Size: 2

Ingredients

  • 2 oz. French Dressing
  • 1 Egg, extra large
  • 1 oz. Ham
  • 1 oz. Roast Chicken
  • 1 oz. Cheese
  • 1 head Iceberg Lettuce
  • 1 head Butter Lettuce
  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Cucumber
  • 4 sprigs Watercress

Instructions

  1. Prepare the French dressing
  2. Boil 1 pint of water and add the room temperature egg. Bring to the boil and turn off. Steep for 15 minutes, then refresh in iced water and peel
  3. Slice the ham, chicken and cheese into batonnet strips
  4. Strip peel the cucumber, cut in half and then lengthways into quarters
  5. Wash and core the tomato and cut into quarters
  6. Cut the egg into quarters
  7. Wash and drain the lettuce. Cut the iceberg lettuce into 1 inch cubes
  8. Pat dry the butter lettuce leaves and place on a plate. Top with the iceberg cubes
  9. Arrange the chicken, ham, cheese, cucumber, tomato and egg on top
  10. Place watercress on top
  11. Spoon the dressing over the salad

Notes

VARIATIONS The chef's salad can also have lobster or crab and smoked meats or cheeses, which makes for an exciting and appealing lunch item for your guests. It also means you can be price the salad higher on the menu accordingly.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/chefs-salad/

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The term comes from the French word ‘glace’, which used in reference to a sauce means glaze. As described and prepared by Escoffier, it is traditionally made by combining equal parts of a brown stock made with veal bones and sauce Espagnole, one of the 5 Mother Sauces. Sauce Espagnole is a brown sauce that has tomato purée added to it while cooking. The mixture is then simmered and reduced by half, hence the term demi-glace. This recipe is a modern variation which is much quicker to produce and still has the desired flavors.

BrownSauce

Brown Sauce

Yield: 1.65 gallons

Serving Size: 40

Ingredients

  • 7 oz. Carrots
  • 7 oz. Onions
  • 3.5 oz. Celery
  • 3.5 oz. Leek
  • 6 lb. Veal Bones
  • 1 lb. Veal Trimmings
  • 7 oz. Ham or Bacon
  • 1 lb. Tomato Paste
  • 2 cups Red Wine
  • 5 quarts Brown Stock
  • 1 oz. Cornstarch
  • 1 quart Water

Instructions

  1. Roast the bones, trimmings and bacon or ham in the oven at 350°F for ~30 minutes
  2. Fry the mirepoix and the tomato paste in a pan, then deglaze with some of the wine
  3. Place the bones into a large pot. Deglaze the roasting tray with the rest of the wine and all of the stock. Add to the pot, along with the mirepoix mixture and water and bring to the boil
  4. Simmer for 4-8 hours. Skim to remove any fat and impurities
  5. Add the remaining wine at the end of the cooking process and cook the sauce for another 30 minutes
  6. Thicken with diluted cornstarch to the required consistency
  7. Strain and label, then store appropriately

Notes

TIP - If time permits, allow the stock to solidify so the fat can be removed prior to the final stage of cooking. Paprika can be used for more intense coloring and white wine can be used instead of red wine to achieve a lighter color and flavor. If you want to use the demi-glace for a cream sauce, roast for a shorter time to achieve a lighter flavor and color.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/brown-sauce/

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Shanks are second grade cuts, which are from the toughest parts of the animal, they are generally suited to slow, moist cooking.

Braising lamb shanks is very popular because the meat becomes so tender that it should just fall off the bone.

Braised_Lamb_Shanks

Braised Lamb Shanks

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

  • 4 Lamb shanks
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1 Carrot
  • 1 Turnip
  • 0.5 Leek
  • 1 Celery Stick
  • 2 Basil Leaves
  • 1 sprig Thyme
  • 2 sprigs Parsley
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp Tomato paste
  • 3 oz. Red wine
  • 1.5 cups Beef stock

Instructions

  1. French the lamb shanks
  2. Peel and dice the onion. Peel and chop the garlic
  3. Wash, peel and rewash the carrots and turnips. Wash the leek and celery. Cut into paysanne
  4. Pick and finely slice the herbs
  5. Preheat the oven to 355°F
  6. Heat the oil in a pan. Season and seal the lamb shanks. Remove from the pan once browned
  7. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and sweat for 2 minutes.
  8. Add the paysanne and sweat. Add the tomato paste and roast.
  9. Deglaze with half the wine
  10. Add the herbs and return the lamb to the pan. Add the stock,bring to the boil and put a lid on. Cook in the oven at 355°F for ~1½ hours until tender
  11. Remove the meat and keep warm, then deglaze the pan with the remaining red wine. Strain the sauce over the meat
  12. Place onto a pre-heated plate and spoon the sauce over. Garnish as desired
http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/braised-lamb-shanks/

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A baked stuffed pork chop with a moist and well-seasoned stuffing of fruit and aromatics will satisfy any pork lover. The appropriate cut of pork is the Center Cut loin chop, due to its long and large eye, which is ideal for cutting a pocket into.

BakedStuffedPortChops

Baked Stuffed Pork Chops

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

  • 2 Loin Pork Chops (2 inch)
  • 1 Shallot
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1 Apple
  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • 1 Tbsp Raisins
  • 1 Egg
  • 0.5 cup Breadcrumbs
  • 0.5 tsp Dry Sage
  • Coarse Salt
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 Tbsp Oil

Instructions

  1. Cut a pocket approximately an inch wide in the eye of the pork chop by cutting in from the side opposite the bone. Widen the pocket inside by cutting with the knife without cutting through to the other side of the chop
  2. Peel and finely dice the shallots
  3. Peel and crush the garlic. Chop finely
  4. Wash the apple, remove the core, peel and cut into a small dice
  5. Heat the butter in a pan and sweat the shallot and garlic for 1minute. Add the diced apple, raisins, sage and breadcrumbs. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the beaten egg. Season the stuffing mixture to taste
  6. Divide the stuffing evenly and put into the pocket, then season the outside of the pork
  7. Heat a sauté pan and add the oil. Seal the pork chops on one side; turn them over and seal the other side. Remove the meat and drain off the oil. Return the chops to the pan, add some water and place a lid on top
  8. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 375°F for 15 minutes depending on thickness. Ensure that the internal temperature is 150°F or higher for service
  9. Place the chops onto pre-warmed plates and garnish with fresh herbs or glazed apples

Notes

TIP The key to this preparation is to brown the chops over medium heat then turn over and cover to cook S L O W L Y with a little liquid, to retain the moisture and prevent a tough and dry pork chop.

VARIATIONS ½ a of mushrooms (any variety or combination) can be substituted for the apples and raisins. ¼ cup of dried sweetened cherries cut into small dice can be substituted for the raisins.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/baked-stuffed-pork-chops/

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This is the classic French Rolled Omelette – as Escoffier would have prepared it! This classic omelette preparation method creates a soft, fluffy scrambled center and a firm exterior. The finished product is always formed into long oval or football shape.

You would find this item prepared at finer breakfast restaurants and hotels. This is a skill that you can demonstrate during an interview as it is fast and easy… And one skill that will set you apart from the other breakfast cook applicants!

1_Herbed Omelette

2_beating eggs

3_cooking

4_Herbed Omelette

Rolled Herbed Omelette

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

  • 6 Chives
  • 4 sprigs Parsley
  • 0.5 oz. Butter
  • 3 Eggs, extra large
  • Coarse Salt
  • Ground White Pepper
  • 0.5 tsp Water

Instructions

  1. Chop the chives and parsley
  2. Crack the eggs into a bowl and add the water and seasoning
  3. Use a fork and whisk through vigorously until no egg white is visible
  4. Heat a non-stick pan, add the butter and heat until it sizzles. Swirl the butter through the pan to ensure the whole surface is covered
  5. Pour in the egg mixture and use a fork to move it around the pan lightly scrambling the mixture
  6. Once the eggs start to set, add the herbs and stir briefly. Cook until the bottom of the omelette has set
  7. Knock the handle of the pan so the omelette can move up the side of the pan opposite the handle
  8. Fold omelette edge over towards center of omelette and put onto a warmed plate holding it at 45° angle. Use a paper towel to form into an oval or fish shape the omelette is three-fold like a business letter.

Notes

Use clarified butter for better heat control. Dab with a paper towel to remove any excess butter.

TIP - Leave out one of the whites for a firmer omelette. Remember to add a small amount of liquid, about ¼ tsp as this will create steam and lift the eggs.

VARIATIONS - A Rolled Omelette is often used for desserts with a sweet filling which is then dusted with powdered sugar and given a quick browning under a broiler. It can even be flambéed with a liqueur for a more dramatic effect while serving it to guests. For a light and fluffy dessert omelette, try folding in 2 whipped egg whites to the mixture just before cooking the eggs.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/herbed-omelette/

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The concept of a sandwich is British in origin and was created as an easy-to-eat snack for card players such as the 4th Earl of Sandwich.

The Club Sandwich is so named for being served at clubs, again where people are playing table games and want something easy to eat.

Club Sandwich

Club Sandwich

Club Sandwich

Club Sandwich

Club Sandwich

Serving Size: 2

Ingredients

  • 4 Butter Lettuce Leaves
  • 1 Tomato
  • 3 oz. Cooked Turkey Breast
  • 3 slices Bacon
  • 3 slices Sandwich Bread
  • 2 oz. Mayonnaise

Instructions

  1. Wash and drain the lettuce
  2. Wash the tomato, remove the core and cut into ¼ inch slices
  3. Trim any visible fat off the turkey breast and cut lengthways into thin slices
  4. Fry the bacon slices on both sides until lightly browned. Oil may be needed if the bacon is not fatty. Dry on a paper towel
  5. Toast the bread and spread with mayonnaise
  6. Pat the lettuce dry. Place half the lettuce leaves, tomato slices and bacon on 1 piece of toast
  7. Top with another slice of toast and layer with the remaining lettuce, tomato and the turkey
  8. Place the third slice of toast on top of this second layer with mayonnaise side down
  9. Put 4 decorative toothpicks through the sandwich, about 1 inch from the edge. Trim the sides then cut into four equal triangles and place on a plate
  10. The sandwich can be garnished with pickle spear or fresh herbs

Notes

VARIATIONS - In addition to the listed ingredients listed you can substitute turkey breast or add sliced ham, various cheeses (Cheddar, Provolone, and Swiss), flavored mayonnaise, avocados or bean sprouts. For easy cutting use a serrated knife to prevent tearing the toast.

TIP - The Club Sandwich is hugely popular and must be made well! Try to strike a balance between the crispness of the cooked items and the moistness of the mayonnaise. All the ingredients should work together to make the perfect sandwich.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/club-sandwich/

 

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Nothing can be more satisfying than a golden brown roasted chicken cooked to perfection and properly seasoned. In this preparation we will be trussing the chicken with string to keep its compact shape and allow it to cook evenly. We will be coating the bird with softened butter to give it a golden color upon roasting.

Trussed Roasted Chicken

2_mirepoix

Trussed Roasted Chicken

Trussed Roasted Chicken

Trussed Roasted Chicken

Serving Size: 2

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Carrots
  • 1 small Onion
  • 2 Celery Stalks
  • 3 lb. Whole Chicken
  • 2-3 cloves Garlic
  • Coarse salt
  • Ground White Pepper
  • 2 Tbsp Butter

Instructions

  1. Wash, peel and rewash the carrots. Wash the celery. Peel the onions
  2. Cut the vegetables into medium dice for mirepoix. Peel and chop the garlic and add to the mirepoix
  3. Preheat the oven to 425°F
  4. Rinse the chicken in cold water and pat dry the inside and outside of chicken with paper towels
  5. Season the chicken inside the crop of the neck and cavity with the salt and pepper. Put half of the mirepoix and garlic into the cavity
  6. Truss the chicken and brush the outside of the chicken all over with softened (not melted) butter
  7. Place the chicken in a roasting pan on a trivet or mirepoix and put into the oven at 425°F. Reduce heat to 375°F after 25 minutes
  8. Roast for approximately 1-1¼ hour, until the internal temperature of the breast is 160°F
  9. Remove the chicken from the roasting pan and allow to rest/sit for 15 minutes before carving. The internal temperature will continue to rise and should reach 165°F. Chicken should not be served under 165°F. As a guide you need to cook chicken for 20-30 minutes per pound
  10. Carve as desired or cut the chicken into quarters for service
http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/trussed-roasted-chicken/

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This is easy, quick, healthy and tastes GREAT! I’ve added a make ahead tip, as well as options for variety. Perfect for a midweek dinner when you think you don’t have time to cook. I’ve made this for friends – and they loved it! I bet you could even BBQ rather then cook on the stove top. I’d make the sauce separately and serve it on the side. Enjoy!

GarlicLimeChickenJPG

Low Carb Garlic Lime Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chicken broth, low-sodium
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 2 pieces chicken breast halves, boneless skinless (4-6 ounces each)
  • 1 tablespoons lime juice (see note)
  • 8 stalks asparagus
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 Pinch paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
  • * Make ahead tip:
  • Measure the seasonings and store in a small zip top bag. I keep several on hand so I don’t have to measure each time I want to make this recipe. BTW – this is also excellent on fish.
  • SEASONING
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme

Instructions

  1. Mix seasonings together in large zip-top bag. Add chicken breasts to the bag and seal. Gently massage around until all chicken is well coated with seasoning.
  2. Heat pan over medium heat; add butter and olive oil to pan. Once butter is melted, add chicken and cook on both sides until done. Remove from pan and keep warm by lightly covering with foil.
  3. To skillet, add lime juice and broth. Using a whisk, mix liquids to get browned bits off pan bottom and sides. Continue cooking until sauce has slightly thickened. Add chicken back to the pan, coating with the sauce.
  4. Serve with a side of steamed asparagus, green beans or broccoli

Notes

Note: I've made this recipe several times and it's always good. My personal preference is to use Key Lime juice – it isn't as tart. I also cheated and used just a wee bit of Wondra flour (shhhhh, don't tell Chris Powell) to thicken the sauce.

http://essentialsforhealthyliving.com/recipes/low-carb-garlic-lime-chicken/

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