Friday, May 28, 2010

2 Min With Dr. Oz, 5 Ways to Improve Your Health

Dr. Oz talks about the importance of sleep, eating 'real' food,
optimal (not average) blood pressure, walking,
 and having a purpose in your life bigger than yourself....

Dr. Mehmet C. Oz, MD is vice-chair and professor of surgery at Columbia University. 
He directs the Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program
 at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. His research interests include heart replacement surgery,
 minimally invasive cardiac surgery, complementary medicine and healthcare policy. 
He has authored over 400 original publications, book chapters and medical books
 and has received several patents.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mediterranean Salad and Brown Rice

This Mediterranean Salad is a classic horiatiki/Greek salad gone wild.....Greek feta cheese, tomatoes, cucumber, red or gold bell peppers, Italian parsley, red onion, and Kalamata* olives from your favorite small producer are supplemented with carrots, purple cabbage, asparagus, mushrooms, avocado, romaine. and fresh flat leaf parsley, basil, and oregano ...most any vegetable can be added, this is what was on hand for this particular Mediterranean Salad.

Red onions and mushrooms may be marinated for an hour to mellow the onion.

To 3TB of Red Wine vinegar add 1tsp of honey, 1 tsp of dried oregano, 2 TB chopped fresh oregano, 1 minced clove of garlic, and 2 TB olive oil....add 3-4 sliced crimini mushrooms, and 1/4 thinly sliced red onion....allow to rest for one hour.
The marinade will be used as the dressing, and added to the final salad

Slice or chop tomatoes, cucumber, and vegetables available, toss with marinaded onions and mushrooms,
crumble in 2 oz of feta cheese, toss, and drizzle with marinade.

Serve with warm brown rice, pita bread or your favorite baguette

Salads are the time to be creative, go a little wild with your ingredient selection! No two salads should ever be exactly the same....
Just be sure to taste as you go along

Slideshow: Top Cancer-Fighting Foods

EZ Glazed Nuts

Glazed, candied, and honeyed nuts are a delicious and ultra healthy pantry staple. A perfect way to dress up a salad, awesome added to yogurt, mix with cooked grains, especiaaly toasted rolled oats for instant gourmet Om Granola, or as a fab stand alone snack.
Pricey, and often made with corn syrup, when purchased commercially, but ultra EZ to make yourself.
Glazed nuts can be made with multiple ingredients, and multiple steps.
Shown here are glazed nuts at their quickest, simplest, and only slightly sweet.

Begin by toasting nuts on low heat for aprox 5 minutes.

Any combination of nuts and seeds can be used.

Shown: chopped almonds, walnuts,
pecans, and poppy seed

Remove toasted nuts from saute pan.
Add 1 TB of sugar per cup of nuts.
Allow sugar to melt,
aprox 4 minutes on low to medium heat

Sea salt can be added at this stage, as well as citrus zest (shown), fresh ginger zest (shown), ground Cinnamon, Vanilla bean or extract, , cardamom, or any herb, spice or extract.

When sugar is melted,
add 1TB of honey and 2TB of water,
cook 1 minute

Add nuts to bubbling sugar/honey syrup,
turn off heat,
and stir to coat nuts thoroughly.

Allow to cool, and store in a covered container.
Glass canning jars or perfect, but last weeks pasta sauce jar works equally well.

All nuts shown here are available at the Resnik family owned and operated for over 50 years,   
Somis Nut House.
An excellent source of nuts, dried fruit and edible seeds...
mail order is available, but a day trip is more fun, and it's only about 90 minutes from Los Angeles
4475 Los Angeles Ave.  
Somis CA 93066 
Phone: (805)386-1211            Toll Free: (800)266-6887

Slow food Nation

Early Morning Fave, Challah French Toast

Day old Challah makes incredible french toast or bread pudding, but most any good quality, day old bread will work. Whole grain breads are good for you and are much yummier than some may think. Depending on your sin level for the week, use butter, but if you've been bad go for the smart balance spread, it's actually very good and it's all I use when I cook for myself.

Saute pan or griddle on medium heat.
Preheat oven to 200.
Whisk 3 eggs with 1 cup(ish) organic half and half, a pinch of sea salt, 2TB honey warmed in the micro, and 1 tsp vanilla. Nutmeg and a little citrus zest is a nice addition.
Dip sliced challah into egg mix and allow to rest for 30 sec to 1 minute, place on griddle 2 minutes and don't mess with it, just allow it to cook, after 2 min turn toast and allow to cook 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, place in oven and continue with remaining bread

Monday, May 24, 2010

Serving Suggestions for the Roasted Veggies in the Fridge

serve with brown rice. shown: curry roasted cauliflower and ginger carrots

And the perfect use of all those yummy farmers market veggies broiled and roasted a few days ago..brushed with a little Balsamic vinegar and olive oil, placed under the broiler with a slice of provolone and served on a grilled La Boulangerie baguette

La Boulangerie's  excellent breads are available at the Friday farmers market at the Bank of America Plaza in downtown Los Angeles

Breakfast of Yogis

Yogurt, fruit, nuts and toasted rolled oats or barley is fast, filling and good for you on multiple levels. Skip the yogurts with fruit added, in order to add the fruit they are also adding preservatives and other things you really don't need, mixing up your own yogurt is sooo easy, try it once and you will never go back to the pre-mixed nonsense.

BTW: yogurt is the breakfast of American Yogis. India's traditional breakfast is more likely to be a delicious, and ultra nutritious, dahl

Below are all the ingredients you need for a fabulous yogurt, and all available at Ralph's, and the farmers markets for the best fruit and nuts.

Friday, May 21, 2010

7th and Fig Farmers Market Roasted Veggies (and a Sirloin)

Cauliflower coated with curry and a splash of olive oil before roasting

The only thing better than this is the leftovers! Delicious salads and sandwiches are a promise when last nights  roasted veggies are added to farmers market fresh mixed greens, or snuggled between slices of your favorite artisanal bread, such as or La Brea . Roasted veggies are one of those dishes that is even better the next day! Boulangerie

Quick Herb Rubbed Boneless Beef Top Loin Roast

A simple dry rub of fresh herbs... thyme, sage and rosemary, sea salt, fresh cracked pepper and a splash of olive oil to hold it together, applied to roast 6 hours before roasting. Roast is removed from refrigeration 90 minutes before roasting, spuds, carrots and onions accompany the roast in a well preheated 450 oven for 15 minutes, temp is reduced to 350 for remaining cooking time of 30 minutes-ish...use your trusty meat thermometer for best results.
For more on roast beast technique click here

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Katsuya at L.A. Live

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Make Ahead Beans, Peas and Lentils

Pink lentils,  shown above, cook in only 10 minutes, and are beautiful summer salad when gently tossed with nastursiams, marigolds and rose petals, and lightly dressed with a drizzle of hazelnut or almond oil and lemon juice

Lentils are an excellent source of protein, ultra easy to cook, 
and are delicious warmed up and dressed with fresh herbs or curry, 
or as a simple but perfect compliment to cooked whole grains such as brown rice...
..for the more carnivorous appetite serve lentils with grilled salmon or a broiled lamb kabob

Lentils come in a variety of colors and sizes,
they have an affinity for rice partly
due to the similar cooking times.
Shown here is a green unpeeled lentil available at
your local market with a cooking time of 30 minutes.

Herbs and spices to play up your lentils include, but are not limited to:
bay leaf, black pepper, black or green cardamom, cilantro, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, curry pwder, fresh ginger, mint, parsley, oregano, thyme, and turmeric

 Turtle beans, aka black beans are ultra easy, cooking in just 2-3 hours they are the perfect bean for Mexican inspired meals. Cook with one or two carrots, a little chopped onion and during the last hour of cooking add generous dash of cumin and sea salt. Serve hot with fresh salsa and a cooked whole grain (shown with brown Basmati rice ), and/or fresh hot corn tortillas with shredded beans pair well with beef, pork or chicken

Herbs and spices for black beans: assorted frsh/dried or ground chile peppers, bay leaf, cilantro, coriander, cumin, epazote, garlic, ginger, oregano, parsley, savory, thyme

The mighty mung bean may not be pretty, but it's amazingly yummy and gentle to even the most
sensitive tummys.  
Shown here are split mung beans cooked with curry.  
Also available whole, these require a longer cooking time, 
and the whole mung (or moong) bean 
can also be sprouted  for your next stir fry calling for bean sprouts. 

Mung beans luv ginger, cumin, cilantro, and whole or ground coriander
btw: Mung beans are really a pea 

Dried black eyed peas cook in 90 minutes with nothing more than a little sea salt.

Black eyed peas luv the following herbs and spices: bay leaf, cayenne, chile peppers, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, ginger, and turmeric.

Cooked black eyed peas are delicious straight from the fridge 
topped with avocado and roasted tomato, as shown, or warm up the peas and serve with any whole grain. For the more carnivorous appetite, serve the peas as a side to meat, black eyed peas pair especially well with pork.  

Why cook your own beans? Variety, flavor, choice of organic,  much less sodium, and for some the number one reason,  the dreaded 'gas'...home cooked beans are not nearly as gassy as store bought canned. 

 Cooked beans, peas and lentils can be stored 3-5 days in the refrigerator.

Storage containers shown are heavy glass by Pyrex. Glass containers are superior to the various plastic containers available as you have no worries about chemicals from the plastic leaching into the food. Pyrex glass containers are also very convenient, going from refrigerator to the oven or microwave with equal ease. 

Friday, May 14, 2010

EZ Ahi Tuna Poki-tini

Dice sashimi grade Ahi, chop red or green onion, avocado, cilantro and tomatoes,
mince ginger, and garlic, combine in glass bowl and drizzle with soy or ponzu flavored soy sauce, and fresh lime juice.
....allow to marinate for 15 minutes before serving

Ultra Quick Farfalle Pasta with Fresh Tomato, Basil and Parm

Fresh pasta sauce: gently saute 3 or 4 chopped tomatoes,
2 or 3 cloves of garlic in a TB of olive oil for 10 minutes
while pasta is cooking.
Finish sauce with a dash of red pepper flakes,
1 Tb of butter, sea salt 
and a 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil.

Can you have pasta if you are trying to lose weight?   Yes!
In Italy pasta is seldom a main dish, it is intended as a side dish, and this explains why Italians do not have the weight issues the US has.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Chill Out Mediterranean Style with Enlightened Salad Ingredients

A well made salad does not need the bottled,  high in fat, calories, sodium, high fructose corn syrup, and preservative loaded dressings from Kraft...this is a sample of ingredients for a fab salad, the only limit is your imagination. A thoughtful blend of crisp and soft, crunchy and creamy, dry and  juicy, sweet and savory,  bitter and sour, and gently held together with a splash of olive oil and a double splash of complimentary vinegar, makes store bought salad dressings completely unnecessary.

Using a colorful mix of raw, cooked, semi-cooked, and pickled veggies, fruits, cooked and/or sprouted grains, beans and/or peas, nuts, and cheese provides a an exciting, never boring way to eat fresh and healthy.
All of the above mentioned ingredients can be cleaned, chopped, sprouted, pickled and/or cooked two or three days ahead and stored separately in the refrigerator. Ingredients may be used for a quick salad, heated and served with cooked whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, wheat berry, or barley, or add some of these fab, and prepared ahead ingredients to a simmering broth for an instant and delectable soup.

Composing a beautiful meal of the tastes your body is craving is ultra easy and delicious with a little advance preparation. This is one of the secrets of optimum health, having delicious and good for you options ready to go when hunger strikes.

Veggies from downtown Los Angeles 7th and Figueroa Farmers Market, every Thursday from 10-3

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Traditional Sunday Dinner, Roast Rib Of Beef

Roast Beast is simple, easy and absolutely delicious to any carnivore with these simple steps.
The most important step with any recipe or cooking instructions (or any instructions for that matter), is to read through them two or three times

Purchase USDA Prime if possible, found at your better meat markets such as Huntington Meat Market *(323- 938-5383),  
and if you have no other choice- Costco. 
 Much of the beef available at Huntington Meats is from Harris Ranch,
Buying from Dan and Jim at Huntington Meats gives you an excellent excuse to go to the Farmers Market
an authentic L.A. experience, this is the original farmers market started during the depression by two young, savvy guys trying to make a difference....and they did! Farmers markets can be found all over the U.S thanks to Roger Dahlhjelm and Fred Beck.
Or buy direct, the natural** healthier choice from the top chefs choice, Niman Ranch  or Snake River Farms.
Purchase USDA Choice if necessary, available at Ralph's or any good supermarket.
 Downtown Los Angeles Ralph's at 645 West 9th St,  has an excellent meat department, and this location also carries USDA Prime Beef. 

A full prime rib roast consists of 7 ribs, and will weigh an easy 15 pounds. 
We are using a two rib roast here weighing just over 4 pounds it will need a little less than one hour in the oven. 

Remove roast from refrigeration allow to come to room temperature, one hour per pound is about right.
pat dry with paper towels.
Preheat oven 450
....if you do not have an oven thermometer go get one now, available at any decent grocery store....
skip the convection oven, an old school oven is best and reduces the risk of drying out the roast.
Apply 2 TB of butter to cut ends of roast, and a dry rub of fresh thyme, rosemary, fresh cracked pepper, and possibly a few whole garlic cloves for the pan.  
What about the salt? No salt, none, skip the salt for a truly juicy roast.
Place roast in a heavy roasting pan fat side up, ribs down, the ribs will act as a natural rack.
Insert meat thermometer in thickest part of roast not touching bone.

Place roast in 450 preheated oven
 don't open the oven door or feel the need to mess with the roast, trust your (excellent, high quality) meat thermometer to let you know when it's done. Do Not rely on the timer, trust your thermometer, and only the thermometer.

Roast at 450 for 15 minutes, reduce to 350 for remaining roasting time.
1/2 to 3/4 of the way through the estimated cooking time begin checking the meat thermometer, quickly baste the roast with the pan drippings while you are in there.....
Cooking time: Allow 12 minutes per pound for rare,  15 minutes for medium,  
and well done roast beef should simply not be done. 
Prime meats cook slightly faster than choice

When thermometer reaches 120 it's done, remove roast from oven,
yes, I said remove from oven...take it out! I promise you the roast will continue to cook while out of the oven, ultimately reaching a temp of  about 130 resulting in a perfect rare to medium rare  roast beast. 

Carefully remove roast from roasting pan to a serving dish, cover loosely with tin foil and  allow to rest for 20 minutes or even an hour.                             
Allowing meat to rest after cooking is critical, this step  allows the meat to finish cooking and guarantees juicer meats as well as a insuring rested and relaxed chef..

*Dan Vance's Huntington Meats (butcher shop) on 3rd in Los Angeles is not to be confused with the Huntington Meats ( meat packers, processors) of Montebelo. 
Huntington Meat Packers of Montebello experienced a massive beef recall for E. coli at the beginning of the year. Contamination and the necessary recalls are becoming more, and more common with the massive, commercialized meat packing plants...

** all Natural:
  • Humanely Raised on Sustainable U.S. Farms and Ranches
  • Never Given Antibiotics - Ever
  • Never Given Any Added Hormones - Ever
  • Fed All Vegetarian Feeds

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Roasted Root Vegetables and a Rump Roast for Fido

Potatoes, parsnips, rutabaga, carrots, turnips, and mushrooms...drizzled with olive oil, thyme, sea salt and cracked pepper.  Roast at 450 for 1 hour

Italian Sausage Ragu, aka: Guy Food

Serve with polenta and a simple salad

On the second day split and broil a french loaf with the ends removed, top with reheated ragu, a slice of provolone and/or mozzarella, place under broiler until cheese is melted.

Roast Pork Loin with Blackberry Merlot Reduction

What could be simpler than a pork loin marinated overnight in Merlot spiked with rosemary and garlic, and roasted or grilled the next evening with a salad of Romaine, tomatoes, avocado, carrot, and a bit of blue cheese tossed together while it's cooking?

A fab dinner, and lunch the next day, for delicious and healthy weight loss.

Tasting is an absolute in cooking, and this combo demands it...Merlot does not always pair well with Bleu cheese, it really depends on the Merlot and the cheese...taste it!

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, 
no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own (taste)reason 
and your own common  sense.   -Buddha

Pork loin from downtown Los Angeles Ralph's at 645 West 9th St.