Thursday, December 13th

pomegranate

I am obsessed with pomegranates right now! I know, I know, a few years ago, studies came out about this awesome new ‘superfood’, its antioxidant protection, its cancer-fighting properties etc. I loved the idea of the pomegranate, but to be frank, they were too much bother to eat.
Until one day at Radha Eatery, one of my healthy food my mentors, Jill Boadway showed me an easyand fun way to get the seeds out! Click the link at the top of this post o see a 1 minute video to learn how!
Ever since I have been sprinkling them on chocolate tarts, in green salads, and recently in this beautiful, seasonal crimson salad of beets, pomegranate seeds and a simple essential dressing.
Here I am using roasted beets as the base for the salad. Pomegranate seeds bring the tartness to counter the beet’s sweetness, and some parsley to punctuate with fresh green. I have many variations of this salad using other foods to prop up the beets, like goat’s cheese or citrus fruits.
In my cooking classes, we focus on technique much more than recipes. This enables the cook to get confident within some structure  like how to compose a basic cooked salad and healthy dressing. So here is a ‘recipe’ that I use as an example.

Roasted Beet Power Salad

This salad features my favourite winter vegetable, beets! Beets are high in iron and strengthen the blood. Roasting them intensifies their sweetness, and more of the flavour and nutrients stay in the beet if you roast it rather than boiling them. After year of boiling beets, I showed this method to my Mom and she has never gone back, loving beets more than ever!

 

Ingredients

  • 3-4 medium beets , washed, tops cut off.

Optional add-ins (choose one or a couple of the following):

  • soft goat’s cheese
  • orange segments
  • grapefruit segments
  • pomegranate seeds
  • thinly sliced raw fennel bulb and chopped fennel fronds
  • sunflower sprouts or pea shoots
  • chopped herbs like parsley, cilantro, tarragon, chives or even thyme

Directions:

Roast washed whole beets in 1 inch of water and about 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, or 1/2 a lemon in a covered casserole dish.

Bake at 350F until beets are fork tender. ( about 90 mins, but depends on the beet!)

Cool slightly and peel by rubbing the skins off with your fingers or a towel (not your favourite white towel!)

Wedge or slice the beets

This salad goes as a side for almost anything, keeps for days in the fridge  if adding sprouts or cheese, add them just before serving. Everything else an be added and marinate with the salad with the dressing.

 

Essential Salad Dressing

 

The liver loves the flavour sour. Lemon stimulates the liver and is alkalizing in the body.

 

Ingredients

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/3 cup flax oil

2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp mustard

1 clove garlic, grated or minced (optional)

pinch chili flakes, cayenne or black pepper (optional)

pinch sea salt

 

Directions

Put all ingredients into a mason jar and shake it up (or blend it for a smooth dressing)

Put the lid on tightly and shake before using.

Keep in the fridge.

Make small amounts at a time and use quickly.

Use just enough dressing to cover the salad.

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