OMELETTE AUX FINES HERBES

2 large eggs
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon
1/2 tablespoon minced fresh chives
1/2 tablespoon minced fresh chervil or parsley
1 teaspoon unsalted butter


Crack the eggs into a medium bowl and season with salt and pepper. Whisk the eggs well using a fork. Add the tarragon, chives and chevril and whisk some more.

Heat a medium frying pan over medium heat until hot. Melt the butter until it sizzles. Add the eggs and spread them evenly by lightly twirling the pan. Cook until the omelet is set, browned at the edges and all (or most) liquid is gone, about 1 minute. Using a spatula fold the omelet over in half and transfer to a plate.

Serves 1

MUNG BEAN & SPINACH SOUP

1 large onion
1 large tomato
2 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
Sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
6.5 cups vegetable broth (or a mix of broth and water)
1 cup green mung beans, preferably pre-soaked
2 cups chopped spinach or other edible green
3 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon


Process the onion, tomato and garlic in a food processor until minced. Transfer to a soup pot.

Stir in the ginger, coriander, cumin, turmeric, cayenne, salt, pepper. Cook for 2 to 4 minutes until fragrant. Add the vegetable broth/water. Bring to a boil.

Lower the heat to medium-low. Add the mung beans, cover and simmer for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the beans are open and soft, and the soup is thicker.

Remove from the heat. Incorporate the spinach, olive oil and lemon juice. Stir and let sit 10 minutes to allow the spinach to wilt and the soup to cool down a bit. Serve the soup by itself or with warm cooked rice or flatbread.

Serves 4

EASY CUMIN-LIME STEWED RED LENTILS

1 ½ cups red lentils
4 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons grated red onion
1 ½ tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Chopped cilantro leaves for garnish, optional


Place the lentils, vegetable broth, olive oil and salt in a medium pot over medium heat. Cover with a lid and cook 15 to 18 minutes, until the broth is almost evaporated and the lentils soft.

Remove from the heat. Stir in the grated onion, lime juice and cumin.

Serve warm garnished with chopped cilantro leaves.

Serves 3 to 4

Cumin lime red lentils

GREEN & BLACK OLIVE BEAN DIP

½ cup pitted black and green olives
¼ cup sundried tomatoes
½ cup water
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (or 1.5 cups home cooked beans)
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup finely chopped scallions


Place the olives, sundried tomatoes and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer 5 to 10 minutes.

Transfer the olives, sundried tomatoes and their cooking water into the bowl of a food processor. Add the cannellini beans, garlic and vinegar and pulse until very smooth. With the motor still running, pour in the olive oil and process until fully incorporated. Taste and season with pepper. Transfer the puree to a serving bowl. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

Garnish with chopped scallions. Enjoy with bread, chips or vegetables.

COLD CUCUMBER & DILL YOGURT SOUP

1 pound cucumbers, peeled and finely diced
1 medium bunch dill, minced
½ cup raisins, chopped
½ cup pistachios, chopped
Sea salt and ground black pepper
1 cup plain yogurt
½ cup cold water


Place the cucumbers, dill, raisins and pistachios in a large mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss. Stir the yogurt and cold water well in a separate bowl and add to the cucumber mixture. Toss well to combine. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Garnish with extra pistachios, if you wish.

Serves 4

 

ESPRESSO MASCARPONE-STUFFED DATES

12 Medjool dates, pitted
8 ounces mascarpone cheese
1 teaspoon agave syrup
3 teaspoons espresso or strong coffee
2 tablespoons shaved chocolate


Delicately clean the dates with a damp paper towel.

In a medium bowl, combine the mascarpone, agave syrup and espresso.

Stuff each date with about a tablespoon of the coffee flavored mascarpone.

Top with shaved chocolate.

SAFFRON YOGURT PARFAIT WITH STEWED FIGS

Yogurt
15 saffron threads, crushed
2 tablespoons very hot milk or water
¾ cup Greek-style yogurt
1 ½ tablespoons maple syrup, plus more for drizzling
Optional toppings: fruit, sliced almonds, pistachios, pumpkin seeds…

Stewed Figs
¼ cup water
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon lemon juice
½ cup dried Turkish figs


Place the crushed saffron and hot milk in a bowl. Let steep for 10 minutes. Add the yogurt and maple syrup and stir well until the ingredients are combined into a homogeneously yellow and creamy mixture

To make the stewed figs, bring the water, honey and lemon juice to a boil in a small saucepan. Add the figs and cook over medium-low heat until soft and plump, 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the softness of the figs. Let the figs cool. Cut them in half lengthwise.

Top the yogurt with cooked figs. Finish off with a drizzle of maple syrup and crushed nuts.

Serves 1

BUTTERNUT SQUASH, DATE AND TAHINI DIP

1/3 cup butternut squash purée (substitute pumpkin)

4 large ripe Medjool dates, pitted and chopped

2 tablespoons tahini

1 tablespoon water, or more if needed


Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and process them until smooth and creamy. Serve cold or at room temperature with fruits or vegetables.

Makes about 1/2 cup

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