Mung Bean & Spinach Soup Recipe

My first contact with mung beans was through glass noodles. My mother often used them to stuff chicken or squid when I lived in Morocco. Glass noodles are lovely, light and low calorie but nutritionally very insubstantial. Actual mung beans, however, are a storehouse of nutrients. They’re also light on the tummy and easy to digest.

When mung beans are cooked they open up and become soft and yellow in color. The texture and taste are similar to those of yellow or red lentils. Like any lentil or bean soup recipe, you have to make liberal use of spices to define the dish. This one is seasoned with coriander, cumin and ginger, and has a bit of a kick thanks to a hint of cayenne pepper.

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Gluten-Free Pie Crust

I have baked quite a few gluten-free cakes but always made an exception when it came to pie crust and resorted to my trusted old wheat recipe. I don’t have to eat gluten-free, it is something I enjoy and do out of a desire to vary my grain intake rather than by necessity. When John’s sister went gluten-free for health reasons, I finally made the leap and created a gluten-free crust.

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Quinoa patties

My lunches have been consisting of these quinoa patties lately and I can say I have been looking forward to lunch more than ever before. Having extended my maternity leave for a few additional months, I have been exercising almost daily, and having these at the ready to enjoy right after workouts has been wonderful. They reheat really well and are filled with nutrients and deliciously aromatic thanks to a fine amount of carrots, celery and onion tucked within. They are great as is but you can also enjoy them with a melted slice of cheese on top or include shredded cheese in the mixture for extra protein.

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Buckwheat Chocolate Cake (Gluten-Free)

Buckwheat can be an acquired taste but once you get used to it, you simply love it. This cake is a great initiation to buckwheat since it is made with chocolate, and chocolate makes everything better. I’m particularly happy with this recipe because my daughter liked it. A healthy cake that passes the picky Maya test is definitely a keeper.

Do you want to experiment with buckwheat some more? Try these fruity jam buckwheat cookies, buckwheat crêpes or this hearty buckwheat flatbread.

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Saffron Yogurt Parfait + Stewed Figs

An ordinary yogurt snack can be turned into a treat worthy of royalty thanks to a hint of saffron flavor and a lovely, lovely golden hue. There is something palatial about this yogurt despite its simplicity. So, before you make it, I’d like to warn you that it may very well make you feel like a king lounging in his courtyard in front of a mosaic-tiled pool (in Speedos and Oliver Peoples sunglasses), enjoying his indulgent afternoon repast. Are you up for that?

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Roasted Carrot & Blood Orange Salad

I don’t think I’ve had blood oranges since this salad, and let me tell you, they are sweeter and redder than ever this year. And I’m afraid there are some beans to be spilled. So here goes my Sunday confession…

I ate half the oranges while cutting them for this salad. But that’s not all. I also ate half the roasted carrots before they went in the salad. The oranges were juicy and the carrots spiced and crunchy, and well…, I couldn’t resist.

Luckily there was enough left to make the salad. I added some spinach and tossed everything in a simple vinaigrette. It was fantastic with burgers. I will definitely be making it again, even after blood orange season is over. I think orange oranges with orange carrots will be pretty together as well.

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Moroccan Jam Cookie Sandwiches

Typically cut into rounds, these biscuits à la confiture can also be shaped into stars, leaves or any design imaginable. Hearts for Valentine’s Day would be oh so pretty.

The cookies themselves are sheer buttery comfort, but when filled with jam, they’re elevated to pure bliss. I remember how I loved them as a child; they were part of every holiday. Children and grown-ups alike get so excited about this beloved classic.

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Broccoli Pancakes

Good morning all! I just finished cooking these pancakes and came rushing to post them. I couldn’t wait to share them with you. My kitchen is still messy and I have to go back to bake chocolate chip cookies and clean up. I have a picnic planned for Maya and her girlfriends and am trying to get everything ready this morning.

I’ll keep this post short. Enjoy the recipe. It’s tasty and great for brunch or picnic. I hope you make it soon.



Other pancake recipes:
Moroccan Pancakes: Baghrir
Gluten-Free Quinoa Flake Pancakes
Egg-Free Brown Rice Pancakes

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Simple Lentil Stew

Last week brought the first real cold front we’ve had in Florida this year, and I loved it. I got to eat breakfast in my mom’s old wool robe, and whenever I crossed the doorstep I was exuberantly primed with my boots, sweater, fleece jacket and fluffy bright orange scarf. Cold weather is exciting as long as it doesn’t last more than a few weeks. Beyond that, I start daydreaming about picnics and carefree bike rides in shorts and a tank top.

When temperatures drop below sixty, I find few foods more satisfying than lentils. A simple stew like this one is easy to make, hearty and most importantly,very tasty. Make some and have yourself a warm bowl, or make a large batch and have many meals taken care of.

P.S. You may also like these:
Stewed Red Lentils with Cumin and Lime
Red Lentil and Sausage Soup
Lentil Salad

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Mint, Lime & Celery Juice

It’s been a busy couple of weeks, and I am finally coming up for air. Hello, World.

I wish I could say I’ve been busy cooking new dishes but I can’t. I actually haven’t been eating as much as I’ve been drinking. I’ve been replacing a few meals with freshly made juices trying to shed those stubborn last couple of post-baby pounds. The good news is I can fit into my jeans again. The bad news is they’re still tight.

There hasn’t been anything special going on but the daily chores seem to be never-ending. I could blame it on the demanding nature of caring for a newborn but the truth is I would have been busy regardless. I am good at being busy. I’ll even say that I’m skilled at it. But I’m learning to prioritize and my to-do-list is starting to look shorter and more realistic. A to-do-list will swallow you up if you let it.

When I was invited to the pre-opening party of Siro, I put everything aside and went. I thought it would be great to get out, be around adults and talk about our common interest in food. Siro is a  farm-to-table urban Italian restaurant located in Orlando’s World Center. It is a good forty-five minute drive from where I live, but it was totally worth it. The food was so fabulous and I got to meet some really amazing people. The best part was touring the kitchen! For someone who has never waitressed, let alone been in a professional kitchen, that was an exciting experience.

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