Tag Archives: Food for the Brain

Boost your energy with some beets

Loosing steam???  Did you know…. Beets are high in natural nitrates.  Nitrates assist our body’s blood vessels in expansion which allows our blood vessels to enjoy more oxygen, more nutrients, and more energy.   

 

Boost your energy with this beet risotto recipe!

 

 

Ingredients:
3/4 pound beets (1 bunch small), roasted
6-7 cups chicken or vegetable stock, as needed
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
Salt/ ground pepper
1/4 to 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 425.  Wrap beets in aluminum foil and place in oven safe pan.  Bake 40-60 min. until beets are easily pierced with a fork.  Set aside and allow to cool.  When cool peel, and dice.
2. Pour stock into a saucepan and bring to a low simmer.
3. Saute onion in large saucepan, until onion begins to soften, about 3 minutes.�
4. Add the rice and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the grains of rice are separate and beginning to crackle, about 3 minutes.
5. Stir in the wine and cook over medium heat until just about evaporated.  Stir in a ladleful  of the simmering stock and cook, stirring often, until liquid is just about absorbed. Add another ladleful or two of the stock and continue to cook in this fashion, not too fast and not too slowly, for apx. 10 minutes.
6. Stir in the diced beets and additional stock until rice is just barely covered.  Stir mixture continuously for another 10 to 15 minutes. Taste a bit of the rice. Is it cooked through? It should taste chewy but not hard in the middle. If the rice is still hard in the middle, you  add another ladleful of stock stirring for another 5 minutes or so, repeating if necessary until rice reaches desired consistency.
7. Add ground pepper and salt to taste.  Stir in another half cup of stock, Parmesan, 1/2 cup frozen peas, and the parsley.

The “Somewhat-Healthy” Chicken Cheese Steak

All semester long we have been offering healthy recipes for your eating pleasure.  However, I’ll be the first to admit that every now and again you just have to splurge and satisfy those unhealthy food cravings :)   Next time the fried/greasy/fast food craving comes your way, try this make at home, and somewhat healthy, chicken cheese steak recipe. 

Ingredients:
1 lb thin sliced chicken breasts
1 onion, sliced
3 slices of White American/Provolone/Swiss Cheese

Directions
:
1. Saute onions in skillet until begin to soften.   Mushrooms and/or peppers are great additions too, just slice and saute along with onions.
2. Salt and Pepper chicken and add to skillet.  *There is no need to add additional oil to the skillet; chicken has enough natural oils to prevent the meat from sticking to the skillet.  Stir constantly, breaking up chicken as it cooks through.
3. When chicken is cooked top with cheese slices.  When cheese begins to melt, stir mixture and spoon into prepared hoagie rolls.  Hopefully this will curb your fast food craving.  ENJOY!

 

Lemony Baked Greek Tilapia

The semester is more than halfway through, YAY!!!  But “Oh dear lord, how are you ever going to remember everything that has been covered?”  Of course, hard work and diligent studying; but, eating fish might help too!  Did you know that fish consumption has been linked with decreased levels of mental decline.  This Greek inspired tilapia is quick and easy to make and full of lots of flavor.

 

Ingredients:
1/2 T. Parsley, chopped
1 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 T. lemon olive oil
1/4 c. onions, diced
Parmesan or Feta cheese/panko, optional

 

Directions:
1. Salt and Pepper fish.  Place in a prepared baking dish
2. Saute onions and garlic until onion is soft
3. Top fish with sauteed onions, parley.  Try topping with cheese or panko crumbs if in the mood for some extra crunch. Drizzle olive oil on top of fish – Bake @400, 10-15 minutes until fish flakes apart

Cran-Almond Chicken

Research shows that a daily run, a diet rich in almonds and other healthful foods, and a stimulating environment may help keep aging brain cells in shape.  While I cannot help you with the run, here is a simple and tasty recipe for Cran-Almond Chicken that is sure to impress.

Ingredients
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 shallots
1 leek
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray. Place chicken in dish; bake 20 minutes. While chicken bakes, chop shallots coarsely; slice bulb and lower leaves of leeks finely (1/2 cup). Place butter in small bowl to soften.
2. Combine vinegar, syrup, nutmeg, shallots, and leeks in small saucepan and bring to a boil on medium-high.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 10 minutes or until liquid is thickened and has reduced by about one-half.
4. Stir remaining ingredients into butter until blended to make topping.
5. Remove chicken from oven. Pour hot maple sauce evenly over chicken; sprinkle with cranberry topping. Bake 5–10 more minutes or until chicken is cooked through and topping begins to brown.

This is actually a Publix Aprons Recipe.  I would encourage you to check out Publix recipes as the ones which I have tried are very tasty and always quick and easy to make. 

Mango Gazpacho

SURPRISE...SURPRISE, law school demands an exorbant amount of reading.  So, what can you do to keep your eyes healthy?  Who knew it could be as simple as enjoying a mango from time-to-time.  That’s right-one cup of sliced mangoes supplies 25 percent of the needed daily value of vitamin A, which promotes good eyesight and prevents night blindness and dry eyes!  So get over to the market and get ahold of some of the season’s last mangos and enjoy this tasty mango gazpacho. 

Trust me…if you use a knife, you can master this recipe!

Ingredients:
3-1/3 cups, 1/4 inch diced mangoes
3-1/3 cups, mango orange juice
3 T + 1 tsp. olive oil
1-3/4 seedless cucumbers, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1-3/4 small red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1-3/4 small onion, cut into 1/4 inch dice
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1-3/4 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1/4 c. + 1 T. fresh lime juice
3 T + 1 tsp. fresh parsley/basil/cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Process mangoes, orange juice, and oil in a blender or food processor until pureed.   Transfer to a medium bowl, process remaining ingredients until broken into small pieces.  Combine all ingredients and season with salt and pepper.

2 Refridgerate until ready to serve.  When serving try topping it off with some mango yogurt.

Lebanese Eggplant

Ingredients:
1 lg eggplant
1 tsp. salt/pepper
3 T oil
1 T butter
1 c. onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 c. peeled tomatoes, chopped
1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp. thyme
1/2 c. soft white bread crumbs
1 c. grated mozzarella/parmesean cheese

Directions:
1. Peel eggplant and cut into 1″ slices – sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Broil eggplant splices for apx. 5 minutes/side, or until eggplant begins to soften.
2. Emmerse tomatoes in boiling water until skin splinters.  When tomatoes cool, peel off skin and chop, reserving any juices.
3. Heat oil and butter in skillet.  Saute onion and garlic until onion is tender, apx. 5-10 minutes.  Add tomatoes and continue to saute until mixture begins to thicken.  Stir in thyme, parsley, and fresh breadcrumbs.
4. Mound tomato mixture on top of sliced eggplant, top with cheese, and bake @350, until cheese melted.

Basil-Peach Chicken

Basil-Peach Chicken

Ingredients:
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
12 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
1 cup reduced-sodium fat-free chicken broth
1 T. balsamic vinegar
4 large peaches, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (about 2 cups)
Garnish: fresh basil leaves

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Brown chicken in hot oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat 2 min/side or until browned. Remove chicken from skillet, reserving drippings in skillet.
3. Reduce heat to medium. Add shallot to hot drippings in skillet, and sauté 3 minutes or until tender. Add ginger and garlic; sauté 45 to 60 seconds or until fragrant. Add basil, chicken broth, and peaches. Return chicken to skillet, and turn to coat.
4. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until chicken is done.  Deglaze skillet with balsamic vinegar. 

Enjoy chicken atop some quinoa-veggie rice pilaf.