Roasted Asparagus with Tomatoes and Garlic

Roasted Asparagus with Tomatoes and Garlic

Happy days are here again- it’s just about SUMMER TIME BABY!

What a crazy few weeks I have going on. I just got back on Monday from a quick 48-hour trip to Atlanta to visit my grandmother with Paul- what a relaxing and lovely way to spend the holiday weekend. Atlanta is such an awesome place to visit- people are just nicer there, ya know? Plus, it doesn’t hurt when your Argentine grandmother makes you 4 dozen empanadas to chow down on just because she loves you so much. YUM.

Tomorrow, I’m heading to Chicago for another long weekend, to visit one of my best friends from college. I’ll be back on Monday, but we’ve already planned most of our trip around which amazing restaurants we’re going to eat at. Any recommendations? 🙂

And oh yeah, the weekend after that, I’ll be SPEAKING at the BlogHer Food ’13 conference in Austin, TX! I can’t freakin wait, but I’m also super nervous. If any of you are going to BlogHer Food next week, please say hi (and don’t boo at my workshop!).

But for this very moment, I’m home in Jersey City and couldn’t be happier.

Roasted Asparagus with Tomatoes and Garlic

Once again, we’re on our farmer’s market flow- one of the best things about Jersey City is the abundance of farmer’s markets and local produce. I saw these locally grown fat asparagus (asparagi?) and knew I had to have them for my very own! Along with some fresh Jersey tomatoes and a healthy dose of garlic, this makes a perfect side dish for your next barbecue.

Roasted Asparagus with Tomatoes and Garlic
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Ingredients
  • 1 bunch asparagus (8-10 stalks)
  • 3 fat cloves of garlic, sliced thinly into chips
  • 1 large tomato, sliced into rounds
  • olive oil (about 2-3 tbsp)
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • fresh lemon juice (for serving)

Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Rinse and clean your asparagus. Using your fingers, snap off the tough ends on each stalk- the asparagus will break naturally where those tough parts end.
  3. In an oven-proof dish, add the asparagus and coat with the olive oil. Rest a few tomato slices and the garlic on top, and season liberally with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until asparagus is tender when pierced with a fork. If desired, squeeze fresh lemon over top for serving. Enjoy!

Roasted Asparagus with Tomatoes and Garlic

This is an awesome side dish to any summertime entree- or perfect as a light snack on it’s own! I made a big batch and have been snacking on it throughout the week. Yum!

Happy Eating 🙂
mally

Lentil Salad

Lentil Salad

Happy Friday! How’s everyone’s resolutions coming along so far- we’re a week and a half in to 2013… is everyone still going to the gym every day and really watching what they eat?

…No? Maybe?

Well, I’m excited to share this recipe with you because not only is it delicious and filling, it’s also pretty healthy. It also features a fairly new ingredient for me: Lentils.

Lentils are a great source of fiber, and are known to help lower cholesterol. They are also low in calories and a good source of vitamins and minerals. You can read more about the nutritional benefits of lentils here at WHFoods.

Sure, that all sounds wonderful, but if these little grains don’t taste good, who’s going to eat them?

Well, that’s the great thing about lentils – they absorb pretty much any flavor you throw at them, and are pretty darn good just on their own. I decided to throw them together with a bunch of fresh vegetables and a very simple dressing, and created a crunchy, flavorful side dish that doubled as lunch for me the next day.

Lentil Salad

Lentil Salad
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Ingredients
  • 1 cup lentils, rinsed and picked over to remove any dirt or small pebbles
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 large lacinato kale leaves, stems removed and cut into ½” pieces
  • ⅓ cup frozen corn (if doing the Standard Process Cleanse, omit)
  • 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Instructions
  1. Add water, lentils and bay leaf to a medium pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, bring heat to low and let cook, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes, until lentils are tender. Remove bay leaf and strain the lentils to remove any excess water. Add the salt and stir.
  2. Add bell pepper, kale leaves, corn and broccoli and stir, allowing the vegetables to absorb some of the heat from the cooked lentils. Add oil and vinegar, and stir to incorporate.

In related news, I am actually starting a cleanse starting next Monday, called the Standard Process Cleanse. Don’t worry, it’s not one of those crazy juice fads… it’s more focused on incorporating more whole foods and vegetables into your diet, and flushing the toxins from your body. I am working with my friend and nutritionist, Rebecca Meyerson of Simply Healthy Living, during the 21-day process. You bet I am going to turn to this salad quite a bit during that time! So fair warning, over the next few weeks, you are going to see a lot more healthy recipes from me as I go through the cleanse process and make more vegetable-centric meals and snacks.

I also wanted to share two  e-books that my childhood neighbor and family friend, Mike Angarola, wrote that are chockfull of delicious Italian recipes, in memory of his grandmother, Gracie. Mike used to own an amazing Italian specialty shop in my hometown of Nyack, Gracie’s Ravioli, and he really knows his stuff. You can also check out his blog at Gracie’s Italian Wine Review. Check out his e-books, here:

   

Happy Eating 🙂
mally