Ricotta and Spinach Frittata; Black Bean, Tomato, and Cucumber Salad

By Ira,

This frittata is very creamy and easy to make. You first cook the onion, then add spinach, pour the eggs on top, add the ricotta in dollops and finish cooking it in the oven. You can put together the salad while the frittata is cooking.

Ricotta and Spinach Frittata 

Serves 4 – adapted from Clean Eating magazine

  • 8 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, grapeseed oil, or coconut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 bag baby spinach (about 4 cups)
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch ground nutmeg
  • 2/3 cup ricotta cheese

Preheat oven to 375F.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Set it aside.

In a 10-inch nonstick oven proof skillet over medium heat, add the oil, then the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes.

Add the garlic, and stir for 30 seconds.

Add the spinach in batches, and stir until each batch wilts down. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread the spinach and onion mixture evenly across the skillet,

then pour the egg mixture evenly on top.

Add the ricotta in tablespoon dollops across the frittata. Let it set on the bottom for about 3 minutes, then transfer it to the oven and

cook for about 8 to 12 minutes or until eggs are firm.

Black Bean, Tomato, and Cucumber Salad

  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large cucumber, or 2 small ones, diced
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • salt

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients together and stir gently. Taste for salt and add accordingly.

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Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing; Spicy Shrimp

By Ira

You can make this salad the day before. It’s very satisfying because of the chickpeas and feta, and it has a bright flavor because of the lemon, cilantro, and mint. The spicy shrimp is a nice addition and very easy to make.

You can start by marinading the shrimp, then making the salad, and finally cooking the shrimp.

Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing

Serves 5-6 – Adapted from Clean Eating magazine

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 15oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 large tomato, or 2 plum tomatoes, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint
  • 6 oz crumbled feta cheese

In a small bowl, add the olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, salt, and pepper. Whisk and set aside.

In a large bowl, add the rest of the ingredients, then add the dressing, and gently stir to combine. Taste to check the seasonings and add extra salt accordingly. You can serve it immediately, or refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Spicy Shrimp

Serves 4

  • 24 uncooked shrimp, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha sauce
  • salt and pepper

You can halve this recipe, or use just 18 shrimp where you can still use the same amount of marinade like I did.

If the shrimp is frozen, defrost it according to package directions, and dry it with a paper towel.

In a medium bowl, combine the grapeseed oil, garlic cloves, lemon juice, sriracha sauce, salt, and pepper.

Add the shrimp and let it marinade for 15 to 30 minutes.

In a large skillet over medium heat, add the shrimp one at a time without the marinade.

Cook on one side for 2-3 minutes, turn each one, and cook on the other side until pink.

Green Lentils with Roasted Beets and Carrots, Swiss Chard “Salad”

by Jennifer

The beets and carrots can be roasting, the lentils can be cooking, and the chard can be blanched and cooled all during the same time period;  this dinner can be ready in about 40 minutes, barring interruptions, of course!  The lentils are delicious warm or at room temperature.  One of my kids was sick today so while we hung out at home I decided to make some Semolina Bread to go with dinner, which turned out to be a huge hit with the kids (who says jam with bread can’t go with lentils?).  Serves 4.

Green Lentils with Roasted Beets and Carrots – adapted from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone

  • 3/4 – 1 lb beets, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and cubed
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup French green lentils
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 parsley sprigs plus 1/3 cup chopped parsley
  • grated zest from two lemons

For vinaigrette:

  • 2 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 5 TBS extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Toss beets and carrots with 2 tsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and roast

until tender, about 35 minutes.

Place lentils, onion, bay leaf and parsley sprigs in a medium pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer, cooking the lentils until tender, about 25 minutes.

Drain lentils and discard the bay leaf and parsley sprigs.  Combine lemon juice and shallot and let it sit for 15 minutes;  whisk in olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

In a large bowl combine roasted beets and carrots, lentils and onions, chopped parsley, lemon zest, and vinaigrette, stirring gently to combine.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Swiss Chard “Salad”

  • 1 lb Swiss chard
  • 2 TBS pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/2 TBS extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Remove stems and ribs from chard and

thinly slice the leaves.  Blanch chard by cooking it in the boiling water for 20 seconds,

then drain and run under cool water to stop the cooking process.  Squeeze chard dry.

In a small bowl toss the chard with the oil, then the vinegar, seasoning with pepper and adding the pine nuts.

Swiss Chard with Cannellini Beans, Saffron and Tomatoes

by Jennifer

Serve this recipe, adapted from one in Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, with garlic toast on the side.  The chard seems to melt into the other ingredients for a homey and delicious meal.  Serves 3 – 4.

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced, divided
  • large pinch saffron
  • 2 bunches swiss chard, leaves and some of stems, sliced
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 15 oz can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • freshly grated Parmesan or Parmigiano-Reggiano

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add onions, basil, and saffron, and cook, stirring occasionally,

until onions are tender and golden, about 5 – 7 minutes.

Add swiss chard and cook, covered, over medium-low heat, tossing mixture occasionally,

until both chard leaves and stems are tender, about 10 minutes.

Stir in beans and tomatoes to warm them, then sprinkle with cheese and serve.

Chickpea Saute with Greek Yogurt

by Jennifer

This recipe, from Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook Plenty, is fantastic.

Swiss chard is one of my favorite vegetables, and this could be my new favorite way to eat it.  I made a few changes:  I used more Swiss chard than he called for, as I had a plethora from our CSA, I did not have caraway seeds nor did I feel inspired to buy them, and I doubled up on the mint and cilantro.  Serves 4, with challah on the side.

  • about 1 lb Swiss chard
  • 1/3 cup olive oil, plus 1 TBS, plus extra for drizzling
  • 4 medium carrots, diced
  • 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 large garlic clove, chopped
  • 2 TBS chopped fresh mint
  • 2 TBS chopped cilantro
  • juice of 1/2 – 1 lemon, depending on how juicy it is
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt

Separate the stems from the chard leaves but don’t throw them away.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, then cook the stems for 3 minutes, add the leaves and cook for another 2 minutes, then drain.

Rinse chard with cold water, then squeeze dry and chop roughly.

Heat 1/3 cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

Add chickpeas and chard and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for another 5 – 6 minutes.

Add garlic, mint, cilantro, lemon juice, salt and pepper, stirring well, then remove from the heat.

In a bowl, stir together yogurt, 1 TBS olive oil, salt and pepper.  To serve, divide saute among 4 plates, top with yogurt mixture, then drizzle with olive oil.

Spring Vegetable Stew with Garlic Bread

by Jennifer

This recipe comes from the Chicago Tribune, at least 8 years old as that’s when we moved from Chicago to Massachusetts.  I’ve adapted it a bit, but it’s still easy to put together and delicious.  You can serve it over rice or pasta, or with garlic bread (see below).

  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 5 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp fennel seeds
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bunch asparagus, sliced diagonally into roughly 1” pieces
  • 14 oz. can artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 25 – 26 oz. canned/boxed chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 15 oz. can small white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Parmesan for serving

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.

Add shallots, scallions and fennel seeds and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.

Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add asparagus and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute.

Add artichoke hearts, broth, tomatoes and beans and cook over low heat until

asparagus is crisp-tender, about 12 minutes.  Stir in salt and pepper, and serve with a generous sprinkling of cheese.

For Garlic Bread:

  • 1 baguette, sliced diagonally
  • Garlic Oil (heat 1/3 – 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil over low heat with 3 – 4 cloves garlic, chopped, for about 5 minutes;  keeps in fridge for a couple weeks)
  • Dried oregano
  • Sea salt

Preheat broiler.

Brush bread slices with Garlic Oil, sprinkle with dried oregano and salt, then broil until crisp and the edges are golden, about 2 minutes.

Chickpea and Potato Hash with Cucumber, Tomato and Yogurt Salad

by Jennifer

This dinner was quick and tasty;  I adapted the hash from Eating Well.  Serve with warm pita bread or whole grain flatbread, if desired.

Chickpea and Potato Hash – Serves 4 – 6.

  • 6 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
  • 5 oz. fresh baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 TBS fresh chopped ginger
  • 1 1/2 TBS curry powder
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 6 large eggs

In a large bowl toss together the frozen hash browns, spinach, onion, ginger, curry powder and salt.

Heat the oil in a 12” skillet over medium-high heat;  add the potato mixture and let cook, in one layer, for 5 minutes.

Stir in chickpeas through the top layers, then make 6 indentations for the eggs.

Crack eggs into the indentations, lower heat to medium and cover the skillet;

cook for 5 – 10 minutes, or until whites are set and yolks are the way you like them.

Cucumber, Tomato and Yogurt Salad – Serves 4.

  • 1 English cucumber, quartered lengthwise, then chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped (slice in half crosswise, squeeze out seeds, then chop)
  • 1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup fresh chopped mint
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl;  chill until ready to serve.