Much Ado About Mache: Avocado, Grapefruit & Mache Salad March 24, 2010

I am having a love affair lately with MACHE.  What’s that you say?  It’s a delicat and gorgeous little leaf that is soooo good for you and so yummers that you’ll be calling it old spinster spinach’s younger, prettier, healthier little sister.  It may not be readily available in your area (also goes by Lambs Lettuce), but if you find it…GET IT!  No regrets.  Trust me.  Why all the fuss? Mache is not only a natural anti-stresser, thanks to its high vitamin B9 content (160g B9 per 100g), but it is also has natural anti-fatigue and anti-depressive properties!  Brills!

Just take a look at this 100g breakdown:

* At 160mg, it contains almost half the recommended daily amount of vitamin B9

* Dairy-free?  No problem.  Mache has almost 40g of calcium.

* Low on the iron? 2.2 mg!

* With 39 mg of vitamin C, you can skip the sugary juice in the morn and not feel bad.

* 4g fibre = happy innerds!



1 tsp Dijon mustard

2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil

4-6 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 medium pink grapefruit, peeled, sectioned and de-membraned

1 medium avocado, sliced

2-3 cups mache (no stems)




For the mustard dressing =

In the salad bowl, mix mustard well with oil; add juice and continue to blend until thoroughly blended (salt to taste).

For the salad =

1) Place grapfruit sections and sliced avocado in a med-large bowl, then gradually add a few handfuls of mache leaves at a time and toss gently.

2) Pour dressing over and toss gently, then serve.


Black Bean Burgers with Fried Eggs and Avocado-creme June 18, 2009

Brunch just got better … here’s a Tex-Mex-influenced addition to your breakfast table (or dinner table for that matter).  You can even make everything a day in advance and just reheat (well, except for the fried eggs), assemble, and serve!  Don’t forget to put out the hot sauce too, for an extra kick.



Black bean cakes:
1/4 cup finely ground cornmeal
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 large egg
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
4 tsp hot sauce
4 tsp salt
1/4 cup oil (canola or vegetable work best)

1 avocado, cut in half lengthwise, peel and pit removed
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup sour cream
2 TBSP lime juice

6 fried eggs





Black bean cakes:

1. Heat oven to 300°F and arrange rack in the middle, then place cornmeal in a shallow dish and set aside

2. Place beans, garlic, egg, breadcrumbs, cilantro, onion, hot sauce, and salt in food processor, pulse about 15 times until incorporated and beans are broken down (but some whole beans remain).

3. Form 6 patties and dust each patty on both sides with cornmeal, and
place on baking sheet or plate.

4. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes, then place 3 patties in pan and fry until golden (about 3 to 5 minutes per side – but watch out they don’t burn!).

5. Transfer fried patties on baking sheet and place in oven to keep warm (and then repeat with remaining patties).


* Place all ingredients into food processor and process until smooth, then season with salt.


Put it all together:
* Place bean cakes on serving plates and top each with a fried egg and 2 TBSP of avocado-creme!!



Tomato-Corn-Basil Soup September 25, 2008

This is a great soup for end of summer or the beginning of fall, when you can still get wonderful fresh corn and tomatoes.  Frozen and canned substitutes still work amazingly well, and will more than suffice if you’re in a pinch in mid winter.  Serve with slices of avocado and some crispy toasts, and you’ll be adding this meal to your regular rotation in no time.

1 c finely chopped onion
2 tbps extra-virgin olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
4-5 large tomatoes, skinned and chopped finely, OR 28 ounces canned, crushed tomatoes
1 c purified water
3 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from the cob), OR 1 pound frozen sweet corn
Salt and pepper to taste
1 c finely chopped fresh basil (use fresh – avoid dry if you can)

1) Sauté onions in the olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat until they begin to brown, then add garlic and sauté for a minute, stirring constantly.

2) Add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until they release their juice, then cover and continue cooking about 5 min.

3) Add water and corn and cook until the corn is soft (about 5 min), then season to taste with salt and pepper.

4) Stir in basil, combine well, remove from heat, and serve immediately.

Top with fresh a small slice of fresh avacado, a dollop of sour cream and a basil leaf to impress yourself and your guests!


“Couldn’t Be Easier” Avocado Salad March 13, 2008

This salad has 4 main ingredients, and makes one hellova healthy start to any meal. It is so quick and easy and tasty, and is rich in vitamins and creamy avocado goodness.

1 large head romaine lettuce
1 large tomato chopped
1 small red bell pepper, cut very thinly
1/2 medium avocado, cut into chunks
2 TBSP coarsely chopped walnuts (optional)

2 TBSP lemon juice
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
extra virgin olive oil, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste

1) Chop romaine leaves into bite size portions, and rinse in cold water (or spin lettuce dry, if you have a salad spinner).
2) Place all salad ingredients into a bowl.
3) In a separate small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper and toss with salad greens (sprinkle with chopped walnuts, if you wish).