Category Archives: fruits and vegetables

Recipe of the Week

Baby Avocados with Orange and Olives

Baby Avocados with Orange and Olives

Between 1934 and 1935 Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas spent 7 months traveling through the United States. In Toklas’s “Food in the United States” chapter she refers to the trip as, “an experience and adventure, which nothing that might follow would ever equal.”

Of California she wrote, “California was unequalled. Sun and a fertile soil breed generosity and gentleness, amiability and appreciation. It was abundantly satisfying. In Pasadena amongst olive and orange groves we saw our first avocado trees and their fruit offered for salt stacked in great pyramids, almost as common as tomatoes would be later in the season.”

2 oranges
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup parsley, minced
1 tablespoon thyme
3 tablespoons chopped olives
salt and white pepper
6 to 8 baby Hass avocados
3 tablespoons olive oil

Zest the oranges into a small bowl, making sure to stop when you start to see the white pith.

Supreme the oranges. Cut off each end of the orange and set upright on a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, slice off the pith, following the contours of the fruit, moving from top to bottom, cutting as little of the flesh away as possible. Repeat with the other orange.

Roughly chop the orange flesh and add it to the bowl with the zest. Add the garlic, parsley, thyme, and olives and season generously with salt and white pepper. Toss to combine.

Halve the avocados lengthwise, remove the pits, and fill each cavity with about 1 tablespoons of orange mixture. Arrange them on a platter, drizzle generously with olive oil, and serve.

Serves 6 to 8

Tuna, Avocado and Grapefruit Salad

tuna salad

Tuna, Avocado and Grapefruit Salad

When I don’t feel like making lunch, this is what I make. Perfect with simple saltine crackers.

1 can tuna in water, drained
3 tablespoons jalapeño juice (my favorite brand is San Marcos)
3 pickled jalapeños, chopped
juice of 1 lime, or to taste
1 avocado, cubed
1 grapefruit, supremes diced
handful chopped lettuce
sea salt and pepper

Place all of the ingredients in a bowl. Toss and serve.

Serves 1 to 2

 

Apple, Celery Salad with Dates and Pomegranate Seeds

apple celery salad

Apple, Celery Salad with Dates and Pomegranate Seeds

A golden apple was thrown into the wedding banquet of Peleus and Thetis by Eris, the goddess of discord, because she had not been invited. The apple had for the fairest written on it. Hera, Athena and Aphrodite all claimed it but when Paris, the prince of Troy, awarded it to Aphrodite who promised him the love of Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world who just happened to be married, it began a chain of events that led to the Trojan War. The apple appears throughout history connected to love and sex.

Hades fell head over heels over Persephone, and she was tricked into eating pomegranate seeds so she’d have to spend a portion of each year as his queen in the underworld. A deceitful maneuver, yet some would see an element of dark romance in the story. Some say that a pomegranate was the original forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden.

¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
3 apples, cored, halved and thinly sliced
8 ribs celery, cut into half moons
6 dates, pitted, coarsely chopped
seeds of one pomegranate

Whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Set aside.

Thinly slice the apples and place in the bowl with the vinaigrette. Add the celery and chopped dates and toss well. Lastly, gently toss in the pomegranate seeds.

Serves 4

Sweet Potato, Corn and Quinoa Salad

sweet-potato-quinoa

Sweet Potato, Corn and Quinoa Salad

Native to the Andes, the Incas considered quinoa sacred and referred to it as the “mother of all grains.” The Spanish colonists suppressed its cultivation due to its status within indigenous religious ceremonies and forced them to grow wheat instead. Sweet potatoes have consumed in Peru since the 9th century BC.

The life force of the Americas, there is evidence that maize (corn) has been domesticated in Mexico for over 10,000 years. Green beans are also native to Mexico.

2 ½ cups cooked quinoa
2 sweet potatoes, about 1 pound
2 ears corn, husked
½ pound green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
salt and pepper
¼ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
5 scallions, minced
¼ cup minced parsley and cilantro

Cook 1 cup dry quinoa according to package directions. Set aside.

Peel the sweet potato and dice it into ½-inch pieces. Cook it in boiling salted water to cover until tender, about 15 minutes. (Make sure you salt the water generously!) Drain and set aside.

While the potatoes are cooking, bring a separate pan of salted water to a boil and blanche the corn and green beans for about 3 minutes. Drain and add to the potatoes. Mix in the quinoa.

Whisk the oil, vinegar and herbs together in a small bowl. Add to the potato mixture and toss. Taste, adjust the seasoning, and serve

Serves 4 to 6