Cleansing Artichoke Soup

dish of fresh artichokes soup

I absolute LOVE this soup! It’s perfect for spring and full of great greens as well as the cleansing quality of artichokes. It’s not that complicated and easy to vary depending on your ingredients on hand. The key of course is the artichokes, leeks and potatoes.

Artichokes are members of the thistle family and we are eating the flower. They are very high in fiber, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and chromium and manganese. Artichokes contain cynarin and silymarin, which are excellent for the liver, kidneys, and stimulating bile secretion. Cynarin was actually used as a cholesterol lowering drug at one time and it can decrease cholesterol dramitically. And because artichokes are good for detoxing the liver they are great for hangovers!

Different greens work in this soup: sorrel, chard, spinach, beet greens, butter lettuce, etc.

2 medium to large artichokes
1 cup water with lemon juice added
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 leeks, sliced, white part only
4 garlic cloves
2 small red potatoes, quartered
Several leaves of greens
1 Tbsp chopped parsley
sea salt
5-6 cups water
1 cup frozen baby peas

Extra virgin olive oil
Parmigiana Cheese
Fresh ground pepper

Break off all outer leaves at the stem. Slice off the top of the remaining leaves about 2/3 of the way down. Cut the artichokes in quarters and remove the fuzzy centers with a spoon, leaving the hearts intact. Drop them into the lemon water as you work, so they do not turn dark.

Warm the olive oil in another large pan, and add leeks, artichokes, garlic, potatoes, greens and salt. Add 1/2 cup water and stew for a few minutes. Add peas and rest of ingredients and simmer partially covered for 20 minutes till artichokes are tender. Cool and blend in blender in batches. Garnish with olive oil and cheese and pepper.

Jerk Chicken (or Pork) with Pineapple/Mango Salsa

chicken+with+pineapple+salsa(photo courtesy

This is the perfect time of year to enjoy grilling outside and this is the epitomy of a refreshing, delicious summer dish. The jerk seasoning on the chicken (or pork) sets off the cool, sweet taste of the pineapple salsa perfectly. This chicken is best on the grill, but you can also make it on the stovetop as well–preferably in a cast iron skillet. Jerk seasoning is a spicy, sweet seasoning from the Caribbean. It can be found as either a wet or dry rub, but I prefer the dry rub. I make my own mix, but its generally easy to find in the store already mixed up.

2-4 lbs boneless, skinless breasts, or thighs or pork loins or pork chops
Jerk seasoning (recipe below)

Pineapple and/or mango, chopped in small chunks
1/2 red onion
2-3 cloves garlic
1 small red or green jalepeno pepper, ribs and seeds removed and minced
fresh lime juice to taste

Heat grill to medium heat, brush grates with oil to prevent sticking. Coat chicken in jerk seasoning, and grill. Turn one or two times. The jerk seasoning with will burn because there is sugar in it, so try not to let it get totally charred, but a nice bit carmelized brown is great.
Meanwhile, chop and mix up fruit salsa. Serve with a generous dollop of fruit salsa on top. Sweet potatoes round out this dinner perfectly!

Chicken Piccata with Artichoke Hearts and Capers

chicken_piccata-6-1024x682(photo courtesy

This was always one of my fast, ‘go-to’dinners–always a favorite, and very quick and easy to fix. I just kept canned or jarred artichokes on hand, capers (great in a lot of dishes) and frozen chicken breasts. Viola! A quick, yet elegant dish that satisfied everyone!

Capers actually have a long history of being used medicinally all the way back to early Greece to treat inflammatory conditions. And they have been used for gas, indigestion and bloating as well as promoting healthy liver function. Adding capers to grilled meats helps prevent the formation of cancer-causing by-products as well.

2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, or thighs
1/4 cup or so brown rice flour, optional
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp grass fed butter
4 cloves garlic minced
1 can or small jar of artichoke hearts (can be marinated or plain)
2 Tbsp of fresh lemon juice
2-3 Tbsp capers2 Tbsp white wine
Parmigiana Reggiano, grated, optional
Herbs–Rosemary, oregano, basil, etc.

Rinse chicken and dredge through flour or pour flour into a large plastic bag and shake chicken pieces in it. Add chicken to pan with olive oil and butter and brown. Add in garlic. Season with sea salt and herbs and cook chicken until done inside and golden brown. Add artichoke hearts, capers, wine and lemon juice. Simmer 10-15 minutes until liquid reduces and thickens slightly. Serve plain or over cooked quinoa, cauliflower ‘rice’ or potatoes.

Curried Sweet Potato Soup

Pumpkin, sweet potato and carrot soup with a dollop of yoghurt, in a white bowl on a blue background, with copy space above and below. More soup:-[url=]here[/url]

This soup has a rich and exotic taste that satisfies and warms your soul. Sweet potatoes contain numerous significant and surprising health benefits. The super nutrients that these root veggies contain include antioxidants, anti-inflammatory compounds, and blood sugar regulating substances. The bright orange flesh contains beta carotene, which is converted into vitamin A with the addition of some fat. Including healthy fats maximizes your body’s ability to absorb and convert beta carotene into usable vitamin A.

The phytonutrients in sweet potatoes also help with digestive tract problems and add healthy fiber. And don’t forget the power-packed spices–curry powder, coriander, cardamom, and turmeric have massive health benefits ranging from anti-aging, brain health to cancer protection and arthritis prevention.

4 cups sweet potatoes, cubed
1 medium sweet onion, chopped2 celery stalks, chopped
1/4″ fresh ginger, minced
1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp turmeric
Sea salt
Pinch of cayenne
5 cups vegetable stock
1 cup almond, flax, or coconut milk
1 Tbsp coconut oil or butter
1/2 cup roasted pumpkin seeds

Heat coconut oil or butter in large pot and saute onions and celery until tender and translucent. Add minced garlic and saute briefly. Add remaining ingredients and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 30 minutes or until sweet potatoes are tender. After soup has cooled sufficiently, place in blender and puree in batches till smooth. If too thick add more stock or water. Sprinkle with roasted pumpkin seeds.

Chimichurri Steak

beef chimichurri, Ted(Recipe and photo courtesy Chef Ted Wood)

I love the simplicity of a great chimchurri. It truly brings out the flavor of meat in so many dishes! Chimichurri is a staple of South American food, especially Argentinian dishes. This version uses fresh parsley, onion, garlic, oil, vinegar, and a little bit of chili pepper. The dominant flavor of the onion will make or break this dish, so use a sweeter onion if you can. If not, just cut back a bit.

Eating just two Tablespoons of parsley actually promotes better carbohydrate metabolism. It is also very anti-inflammatory, strengthens the immune system, fights heart disease, strokes, and atherosclerosis–not to mention bad breath! The vitamin K in parsley is also great for bones and helps the body make an important fat that protects the myelin sheaths around our nerves and nervous system.

You can also substitute fresh cilantro instead of–or in addition to the parsley, which also has huge health benefits as well.

Grass fed steak–flank, skirt steak, tri-tip, ribeye, etc.
5 large garlic cloves
1/4 to 1/2 red onion
1 cup parsley leaves
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
sea salt, red pepper flakes

Finely mince the garlic, onion and parsley. Stir in wine vinegar and olive oil, season with salt and red pepper.

Grill steak over medium high heat until medium rare. Thinly slice on diagnonal and serve with a generous amount of chimichurri sauce. Enjoy!

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Bell Peppers stuffed with Spiced Rice and Dried Fruits

Quinoa is a seed, not a grain and it is packed full of nutrients, including lots of protein. Quinoa is gluten free, and a great low glycemic vegetarian source of protein as well as being rich in manganese, magnesium, calcium, copper, iron, phosphorus, vitamin E, and B vitamins. Quinoa’s protein provides all essential amino acids, making it idea for meatless meals.

Quinoa typically comes in the white version, but there are also red and black versions. My favorite is a mixture of all three. The red and black types take slightly longer to cook but add a delicious texture and nuttier taste.

This recipe is delicious as a meatless meal or you can add ground beef or chicken or cheese, for heartier appetites. Either way, you will be sure to enjoy!

2 cups cooked quinoa
1 lb grass fed beef, chicken or turkey (optional)4 red, yellow or green pepper, sliced in half, with seeds and center removed
1 medium red onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 small zucchini, diced
1/2 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
1-2 tsp dried or fresh oregano
1-2 tsp dried or fresh basil
1 small can of organic chopped tomatoes or 3 fresh chopped tomatoes
Hot pepper flakes or dash of hot sauce
sea salt
Fresh chopped parsely
Grass fed cheese (optional)

Heat oven to 350 F. Wash peppers, removes stems and seed, and cut in half. Place in small baking dish with sides. (The idea is to have the peppers sort of packed in to help prevent them from collapsing.)

Cook meat in pan–when mostly done, add onion, garlic, zucchini, mushrooms, oregano, basil, salt and pepper flakes. If doing meatless version, just cook veggies in pan about 5-6 minutes till tender. Add tomatoes and quinoa and cook till liquid is absorbed.

Spoon mixture into peppers and bake in oven, covered in foil for about 20 minutes. Remove foil and cook for another 10 minutes or so. If adding cheese, add in the last few minutes and cook till just melted. Sprinkle with parsley and enjoy!

Asian Chicken Salad


This yummy Asian inspired salad include the delicate flavor of napa cabbage, as well as other healthy cabbages and cruciferous vegetables. Cabbage contains compounds that make it naturally fat burning, and napa boasts the highest concentration of folate. Folate is extremely important for healthy pregnancies and for infants, for red blood cells and to prevent anemia.

Cabbage is big on cancer prevention. Nearly 500 studies have looked at this family of vegetables and their outstanding cancer destroying properties. The glucosinolates are the primary ingredient with the anti-cancer benefits. These are converted into compounds that prevent a variety of cancers including: bladder cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, and prostate cancer. So eat an extra helping of this cancer fighting salad!

2-4 boneless, skinless cooked chicken breasts or thighs, sliced thinly2-3 Napa cabbage sliced thinly
1/2 cup red cabbage, sliced thinly
1 small sweet red bell pepper, sliced in thin strips
4-6 green onions, chopped or sliced in 2″ strips
2 carrots, grated or cut in matchstick slices
1/2 lb fresh snow peas, cut in thin slices on diagonal
Big handful cilantro, chopped
1-2 cups mung bean sprouts
1/2 cup slivered almonds

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar (seasoned from Trader Joe’s is great)
Juice of fresh lime
1 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup olive oil, or avocado oil
1 tsp sesame oil
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp fresh grated ginger root

Slice all veggies thinly and place in large salad bowl. Chop or shred chicken using two forks. Whisk dressing together, making sure honey is blended in well. Add chicken and almonds and pour dressing over all. Great leftovers too!

Easy Teriyaki Chicken Satay

Delicious chicken satay on skewers

Most any cut of chicken works for this–the best is chicken breasts or thighs, but this marinade also works great on many types of meat. Meat can be marinated for as little as 1-2 hours, or overnight for more flavor. Marinades not only add flavor but can prevent some of the carcinogenic compounds from forming when meat is grilled.

Marinades are fun and easy once you get a basic formula down. This one is my stand-by formula. You can always make variables of this by adding more herbs, spices, etc. All you need is an oil, flavor (soy, teriyaki, etc), an acid (lemon, lime, orange juice, balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, etc), a touch of sweetness (honey, brown sugar, molasses, maple syrup), and then seasonings (garlic, ginger, herbs, salt and pepper). The sky is the limit!

2-3 lbs of boneless skinless breasts or thighs
Bamboo skewers, soaked in water for a couple hours

1 cup gluten free soy sauce
1/2 cup water
2 Tbsp honey or brown sugar
Juice of one fresh lemon or lime
Splash of orange juice or fresh orange juice
1 Tbsp fresh ground ginger root
Fresh ground black pepper or pinch of cayenne or hot sauce like Tabasco
4 chopped fresh garlic cloves
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

If using skewers, slice chicken in smaller slices that will fit on skewers. Mix marinade ingredients in a large shallow glass dish. Place chicken in dish and be sure all pieces are covered. Thread chicken on skewers and grill over medium heat on grill or in oven on a baking sheet at 375 F for 12-18 minutes. Turn to brown all sides. Serve with satay sauce (recipe below) or grilled fresh pineapple.

Satay sauce
1/2 cup peanut butter, sunflower butter or cashew butter. Add 2 Tbsp boiling hot water and mix with a fork till well blended. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, grated ginger, and a touch of honey or sugar. Mix well.

Healthy Cobb Salad

American Cobb Salad

A healthier, more up to date version of the classic Cobb salad. Definitely heart enough for a meal in itself. You can always vary the ingredients according to what you have on hand, and the brighter and more colorful, the better!

The addition of watercress and arugula add a great taste sensation plus the added benefits of cruciferous vegetables, which they are both a part of. Watercress and arugula both contain 8X the calcium as regular iceberg lettuce. Watercress is also a stimulant, a diuretic, an expectorant, and a digestive aid. Due to its high iodine content, watercress is good for the thyroid gland as well. Good thyroid function = higher metabolism = a better fat burning lean body.

3-4 Hard boiled eggs, shelled and quartered
1 cup organic cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
6 slices of natural bacon, cooked, and chopped up
4 cups watercress, arugula, baby greens, chard, etc.
1/4 cup thin sliced radishes
1/4 cup grass fed extra sharp cheddar, crumbled-optional
1 lb. medium sized shrimp or chicken, cooked

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1-2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp dijon mustard or mustard powder
Chopped fresh herbs
1/2 tsp maple syrup

Arrange all ingredients on plate or shallow bowl. Drizzle with dressing, fresh herbs, sea salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Power Bowl with Cauliflower ‘Rice’

paleo veggie bowlI had this recipe at my favorite restaurant in Boulder, Zeal. This is my version of it. This recipe includes a delicious bone broth sauce that makes this dish heartwarming, delightful, satisfying, and oh so healthy! If you are like me and don’t plan ahead and make your own bone broth, it is showing up in stores like Whole Foods and is very tasty–and quick and easy too. Add some fresh sliced avocado for more healthy fats. Use seasonal, fresh veggies, and vary it every time you make it. Good for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

1 head of cauliflower, choppedBrussels sprouts, halved
Broccoli or cabbage
1/2 red onion, chopped in large pieces
Turnips, chopped in small pieces
Collards, kale or other greens, chopped
Zucchini or yellow squash
Tomato, chopped in large pieces
Avocado, sliced or cut in chunks
Tempeh, (cooked) chicken or beef, or halved hard boiled eggs
Bone broth–either purchased or homemade
Bacon (optional)
Sea salt and pepper

Wash and thoroughly dry cauliflower,  cut into 4 even sections.
With a food processor and the ‘S’ shaped blade, pulse into small pieces. Sauté in a large skillet over medium heat in 1 Tbsp butter and a small amount of water. Cover with a lid so the cauliflower steams and becomes more tender. Cook for a total of 5-8 minutes, then season as desired. Set aside.

Chop veggies, and place in pan with butter to brown and soften slightly (5 minutes). Add bone broth, and meat or tempeh, and cook for another few minutes until meat and veggies are tender and hot. In a large bowl, add cauliflower, and spoon cooked veggies with broth over cauliflower. Add avocado, sliced egg and bacon (if desired). Serve!




Kale Broccoli and Salmon Thai Stirfry

kale broccoli salmon stir fryKale, Broccoli and Salmon Stirfry

This is good for a quick breakfast too! (I’d omit the wine, however!) Add an egg for the protein or any kind of breakfast meat, leftover salmon or leftover meat you like.

One of my favorite go-to meals is to take any meat leftovers along with your choice of veggies you have on hand and create a strifry. It’s quick and easy.

There are no hard and fast measurements here. You can ad-lib all you want and it will still taste delightful. This is a great way to use up already cooked, leftover salmon or chicken—or you could even use beef if you have it. And just use the veggies that are available in the fridge. The important thing is the sauce—it pulls it all together.


Salmon, cod, tuna or other fish, chicken, pork or beef-or add chopped tempeh if you’d like it to be vegetarian/vegan
Broccoli, chopped in small pieces
Onion, chopped in chunks
Red bell pepper, sliced
Several leaves of kale—I used “dinosaur kale” for a more tender texture, can also use collards
Coconut oil, butter or olive oil
Peanuts or cashews, optional
1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced or grated
2-4 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1 lemon or lime
1-2 Tbsp of gluten free soy sauce
Pinch of sugar or honey
Squirt of Sriracha sauce or other hot sauce
Mix together in a small bowl.

Chop all ingredients. Cook fish or meat if necessary, slice in chunks, and set aside. In a large skillet, heat oil, and add broccoli first. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until bright green and tender-crisp. Add other ingredients, except for cilantro, and stir and cook over high heat for another few minutes. Be careful not to overcook. Add fish or meat, cilantro, and sauce ingredients, cooking and stirring for a minute or so until heated through. Sprinkle with peanuts or cashews, if you are not allergic to nuts or peanuts, like me.

Serve hot.



Quinoa Pilaf

My holiday quinoa pilaf

A friend asked me to bring a side dish, so I made up this quinoa pilaf. It was delightful, and filling enough to make a light vegetarian meal if you wanted. Quinoa has complete protein and when you combine it with nuts, seeeds and crumbled goat cheese, you have a delicious summer meal! For bigger appetites, pair with grilled chicken or fish. Enjoy!

Ingredients (no need to be exact)
2-4 cups of cooked white, red or black quinoa (or combination)
2-4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbsp butter
4 thinly sliced green onions
2 blood oranges or regular oranges, peeled, halved and sectioned
½ cup dried tart cherries, goji berries, or ½ cup dried cranberries
¼ to ½ cup slivered or sliced almonds or sunflower seeds and/or pumpkin seeds (if you are allergic to nuts)
½ cup chopped cilantro or parsley
Crumbled goat cheese (optional)
Juice from 1 orange
Juice from 1 lemon or lime
2 Tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp of honey
sea salt and pepper to taste

Cook quinoa ahead of time as directed. Cool in refrigerator. In a small pan, add chopped garlic and 1 Tbsp of butter. Cook garlic over medium heat, watching closely until a golden brown. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, add quinoa, garlic, onions, chopped oranges, dried cherries, goji berries or cranberries, almonds and parsley.

Mix juice, olive oil, honey, salt and pepper in small bowl and pour over quinoa mixture. Stir and serve. May be served at room temperature or cold. (This is a great party addition, since it can sit at room temperature for long periods without spoiling.)



Halibut with Grilled Peaches

Halibut with grilled peaches

Peaches come into season in July and here in Colorado, Palisade peaches show up in my little natural foods market, and OMG, they are absolutely delicious!! If you can get some good local peaches, I highly recommend this! For the fish I chose a hunk of fresh halibut, but any firm, mild flavored fish you can grill is great. I do recommend the halibut though…

Ingredients (No worries, you don’t have to measure!)
1 lb, more or less fresh halibut, thickly cut
Fresh peaches, especially the ‘non cling’ type, sliced thickly
Meyer lemon
Grass fed butter
Sea Salt and pepper
Cayenne pepper

Melt butter in small pan and brush over fish. Add salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat on grill for 3-5 minutes per side, dont overcook and remember fish cooks a little more even after you remove from heat. Slice peaches in thick slices, carefully removing from pit. Sprinkle with a small amount of cayenne pepper. When you flip over the fish, add peaches to grill and grill for about 2 minutes or so per side. Serve fish with meyer lemon squeezed over it (meyer lemon has a more mellow, sweeter taste than regular lemon). Top with grilled peaches and serve. Mmm-mmm!

Maya Beach Chopped Salad

Maya beach CHopped salad

I was in Belize between Christmas and New Year’s and my favorite place was Maya Beach. We stayed at a wonderful cottage at a lovely resort with a fantastic restaurant on the beach. My very favorite dish there was their “Chopped Salad”. I think I actually ordered it at least 5 times or more!! It was awesome! (Of course, sitting in an outdoor restaurant on the beach in the middle of winter didn’t hurt a bit either!)

Here is my rendition of the Maya Beach Chopped Salad:

Ingredients (No need to measure, just add in whatever amounts you want)
Roma tomatoes
Red bell pepper
English cucumber
Sweet vidalia onion
Snow peas
Black Beans
Parsley or cilantro
Fresh lemon juice
Extra virgin olive oil
Touch of honey
Sea salt and pepper

Chop all veggies
Sliver Jicama
Mix equal parts lemon juice and olive oil, add a touch of honey to taste, stir into salad.

Makes a great light vegetarian meal or side dish. Enjoy!

Garbanzo, quinoa, veggie salad

Garbanzo quinoa salad

Another delicious summer salad that doesnt really need a recipe. You can experiment with ingredients and use what you have, add some dressing and viola! A hearty salad that can be eaten as a main course, or a filling sidedish. Enjoy!

Radishes, quartered and sliced
2-4 green onions, sliced or red onion, chopped
1/2 Red or green bell pepper, chopped
1 small tomato, chopped
1/2 cucumber, chopped
1/2 avocado, chopped
Cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup or so cooked quinoa
1 can garbanzo beans

1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
juice of one lemon
tiny drizzle of honey or maple syrup (1/2 teaspoon)

Add to veggies and mix

Tomato and Kale Ragout with Black Bean Pasta

Gary Ragout with black bean pasta

I just found this black bean pasta at Trader Joe’s today and wanted to try it. Unlike regular or even gluten free pasta made of rice, the bean pasta is purely black beans. Period. I am not a fan of eating grains for many reasons, but the black beans are much healthier. Great fiber, high in protein, grain free, less starchy, low glycemic, great tasting and lots more interesting! The black bean pasta makes for a heartier pasta, so team it up with something equally hearty.

This ragout is a delicious homemade, easy sauce (no measuring) that you can throw into a pan while the pasta is cooking and dinner is ready in minutes. I added some natural Italian chicken sausage and it was satisfying and absolutely delicious!

Ingredients (can vary)
1/2 bag of black bean pasta (more or less depending on quantities)1/4 large red onion, chopped roughly
3-4 large leaves of dinosaur, baby or other kale
2-3 fresh tomatoes, chopped or 1 8oz can fire roasted tomatoes
2-4 garlic cloves, smashed with knife and chopped
1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 or 2 natural chicken sausages, sliced
Sea salt, pepper
fresh basil, oregano, rosemary, etc.

Add water to pot, boil and add pasta, cooking according to directions. Set timer so pasta is al dente, and not over done. It turns to mush if overcooked. When done, drain, stir in 1 Tbsp olive oil and set aside.
Chop onion and garlic and cook in pan with olive oil. Add chicken sausage and cook 3 minutes. Add kale, cook 2-3 minutes till tender, add tomatoes and seasoning, cook an additional 3 minutes or so. Serve over black bean pasta, adding grated Parmigiana if desired. Serves 2-4.

Chili Rubbed Steak with Radish Salsa

steak with radish salsa kalyn's kitchenphoto courtesy Kalyn Denny,

Chili Rubbed Steak with Radish Salsa

You won’t believe how good this is! Heating up the spices beforehand brings out the full fragrant sweet flavor of these super powered spices and the accompanying radish salsa is a refreshing change.

Radishes are full of nutrition, including vitamin C, folate, potassium, and trace minerals. Eating radishes can lower blood sugar, blood pressure, ease digestion, support healthy liver function, and help to prevent cancer. Radishes are a delicious, spicy, peppery snack too!

Use grass fed beef for all the great benefits of the healthy meat. Grass fed meat contains healthy fats including omega 3 fats that lower inflammation and protect your heart, and CLA which helps to burn fat.  The best cut of meat for this recipe is flank steak. Be sure not to overcook the steak. When it is done, thinly slice it on the diagonal for the most tender bites.

Steak Ingredients
2 lbs grass fed flank or skirt steak
2 tsp cumin powder
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sugar
¼ cup olive oil
Juice of one freshly squeezed lime

Directions for Steak
In a skillet, add cumin, chili, cinnamon, garlic over medium heat for 20-30 seconds, stirring until spices become very fragrant. Remove from heat immediately—spices burn easily!

In a shallow glass bowl, combine spices with extra virgin olive oil, lime juice and sugar. Add meat, turn to coat both sides, cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.

Heat grill to medium high heat and grill meat for 10-15 minutes per side, depending on thickness. Meat should be brown outside, but pink and juicy inside. Remove from heat and let sit for a few minutes, then slice thinly on diagonal and serve with a generous serving of radish salsa. Serves 4.

Salsa Ingredients
8-10 medium sized radishes, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ small red onion, minced
A handful of cilantro, chopped
2-3 Roma tomatoes, chopped
Juice of one lime
Hot pepper flakes
Sea salt

Directions for Salsa
Chop radishes and tomatoes into small pieces, mince cilantro, red onion and garlic, and mix together. Add lime juice and seasonings. Serve with steak.


Wine Country Chicken and Asparagus Salad

This recipe was adapted from a recipe from the Robert Mondavi Winery in Napa Valley. It makes a perfect meal with high quality protein, good-for-you fats, and healthy greens loaded with antioxidants and fat burning power. I used my own homegrown basil.


 I have some beautiful fresh basil growing right outside my door, and it grows like crazy so, I am going use as much fresh basil as I can!

This recipe was adapted from a recipe from the Robert Mondavi Winery in Napa Valley. It makes a perfect meal with high quality protein, good-for-you fats, and healthy greens loaded with antioxidants and fat burning power.


The dressing contains the fresh herbs, thyme and basil. Thyme and basil contain healthy volatile oils with well-documented health benefits.

The oil in thyme, ‘thymol’ was found to significantly increase the the amount of healthy fats in cell membranes and other cell structures.

When you eat omega 3 fats containing DHA (a very important part of omega 3’s), thyme helps to get those healthy fats right where your body needs them. It even protects brain cells and decreases aging.

So, thyme and omega 3 fats are a winning combination!

Thyme also contains a variety of flavonoids, including apigenin, naringenin, luteolin, and thymonin. These flavonoids increase thyme’s antioxidant power, and combined with the manganese it contains, put thyme at the top of the list of powerful antioxidants.


Basil actually contains a substance that works like anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen.

The enzyme-inhibiting effect of the eugenol in basil makes it an excellent “anti-inflammatory” food, and adds healing benefits and relief for people with inflammatory health problems like arthritis or inflammatory bowel conditions.


The really interesting thing about both basil and thyme is their ability to kill certain bacteria and fungi. Staphalococcus aureus (staph), Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli (e.coli), and Shigella sonnei are some of the bacteria that these herbs can kill.


Herbs and spices have been used to help preserve foods for thousands of years, and new research shows that both thyme and basil contain these properties.

So you see, it makes very good sense to include thyme and basil in your recipes, especially for foods that are uncooked, such as salads. Adding generous amounts of fresh thyme and basil to your next vinaigrette will not only enhance the flavor of your fresh greens, but will help ensure that your fresh produce is safe to eat. Enjoy!




3 cups chicken stock or water

2 boneless skinless free range chicken breasts

½ lb pencil thin asparagus, cut into 2” pieces

½ cup Nicoise olives, pitted

10 cherry tomatoes, quartered

2 Tbsp capers, drained and rinsed

2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh basil

¼ tsp black pepper

Parmigiana Reggiano



½ cup extra virgin olive oil

1 medium shallot minced

2 generous tsp finely chopped fresh thyme

1 Tbsp or more finely chopped fresh parsley

¼ cup fresh lemon juice (1 medium lemon)

Sea salt and pepper to taste



In a deep medium-sized saucepan bring the stock or water to a simmer. Add the whole pieces of chicken and simmer for 10-12 minutes until tender. Cool chicken in the liquid, drain and shred the chicken by tearing into long thin pieces with forks. Set aside. Cook the asparagus for 3-4 minutes until tender but crisp. Drain and cool under cold water.


Add olives, tomatoes, capers, basil and pepper to the chicken and stir to combine.

Mix the ingredients for the dressing, and add to the salad mixture. Stir gently to combine. Arrange on a bed of organic baby greens, Bibb lettuce, or romaine lettuce. Garnish with some Parmigiana Reggiano (this is the Italian version of Parmesan cheese; it’s aged and raw-which makes it easier to digest, and way tastier).  Using a vegetable peeler, shave a few thin pieces onto the salad.


This salad can be prepared up to 6 hours ahead of time and refrigerated. Add the dressing just prior to serving.  Serves 2-4, depending on appetites.

Till next time,

Stay healthy and lean!




Catherine (Cat) Ebeling RN BSN, is a back to basics diet and nutrition specialist. In addition to her advanced degree in nursing from a major medical school, she has spent the last 30 years intensely studying diet, health and nutrition. She also has a book titled “The Fat Burning Kitchen, Your 24 Hour Diet Transformation” that has sold over 60,000 copies worldwide, and has helped thousands of people transform their lives, lose weight and improve their health.   


Her mission is to help others prevent disease and live their best life ever.    

Nutrition made Easy. Simple.Smart.Nutrition.



Turkey Meatballs

turkey meatballs

I love these and you will too! A great source of healthy protein. Be sure to add a generous amount of fresh garlic to maximize the anti-aging, blood sugar-lowering, fat-burning potential nutrition in this recipe.

1 lb ground free range organic turkey or chicken
1 raw egg
1 onion, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp sea salt or so, to taste
1 slice gluten free bread, blended into crumbs in a food processor,
1⁄2 cup oatmeal, 1⁄2 cup ground flax seeds, or any combination of these
2 Tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
chopped fresh basil, oregano, parsley, thyme OR
1-2 tsp dried oregano and basil

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil on cookie sheets (with sides) or a shallow baking pan.

In a big bowl, combine all remaining ingredients. Mix with clean hands or large wooden spoon. Roll into 1 1⁄2” sized balls, and place on the baking sheet in oven. Make sure they are spread out so they are not touching, so they can brown.

Cook for about 10 minutes or so, turn (or roll) and cook another ten minutes, for a total of about 20 minutes. Done when outside is golden brown and inside is no longer pink.

Serve with your favorite organic spaghetti sauce and steamed spaghetti squash, or just eat plain alongside a salad, green beans or broccoli. even Cold or hot leftover meatballs are delicious on salad for healthy lunch–and they make a great snack too! Serves 4.


Heuvos Rancheros

heuvos rancheros

This recipe includes the added health benefits of cilantro, avocado and tomatoes, along with the blood sugar-stabilizing protein power of eggs. Cilantro aids in the digestive process by helping to stimulate digestive enzymes, and is a natural anti-inflammatory while it helps to control blood sugar.  It is also full of vitamin K, which helps to prevent bruising, excessive bleeding, protects the immune system, and aids bones and teeth. Cilantro is highly effective in removing harmful heavy metals like mercury, aluminum, and lead from the body.

Tomatoes add their own healthy dose of antioxidants, primarily lycopene, which is a know cancer-fighter, and vitamin C, as well as beta-carotene, plus manganese, and vitamin E.

The avocado is full of healthy monounsaturated fats—very effective at stabilizing blood sugar, and it turns on your body’s fat burning ability for the day. You are more satisfied–and you burn fat better all day with the addition of avocado to your breakfast!


Tortillas (optional)
1 cup garbanzo flour
½ tsp baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin or cumin seed
½ teaspoon fine ground sea salt
1 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
coconut oil for cooking

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and spices until there are no lumps at all. Add olive oil and water and allow to sit at room temperature for at least one hour.

Heat a cast iron or nonstick skillet on medium heat. Add a small amount of coconut oil, pour ¼ cup of the batter into the skillet and cook until lightly browned on one side, then flip. Repeat with the rest of the batter. You can cover these and reheat on a bare burner over low heat.

1 Tbsp of grass fed butter
1 small can mild green chili peppers, chopped
1 14 oz can refried black or pinto beans, or whole canned beans, smashed with fork
Fresh salsa (can buy premade) or chunky salsa in a jar (be sure no sugar added)
Handful of cilantro leaves, chopped
Sliced avocado or guacamole*
4 eggs
Grated raw cheese, optional
Sea salt and fresh black pepper

Prepare tortillas ahead of time. Melt butter in skillet over medium heat and fry eggs sunny side up or over easy in grass fed butter. In another small pan, add beans and green chilies and heat up until warm.

Layer tortilla, beans, and eggs; and a big spoonful of salsa, avocado or guacamole, raw cheese, and a generous amount of chopped cilantro. Serves 2-4.

*Quick Guacamole

Smash up 1 or 2 avocados in bowl. Add lemon or lime juice and a small amount of pr-made salsa. Mix. Add sea salt and black pepper to taste.

Indian Style Beef Kabobs With Cilantro Lime Sauce (great with chicken too)

These Kabobs are absolutely delicious with an interesting spicy (not too spicy) flavor you will love! And…there is a generous portion of Cilantro in it. The health benefits associated with cilantro are extensive. In fact, cilantro is so effective at lowering blood sugar…

These Kabobs are absolutely delicious with an interesting Indians-spicy (not too spicy) flavor you will love!

And…there is a generous portion of Cilantro in it. The health benefits associated with cilantro are extensive. In fact, cilantro is so effective at lowering blood sugar, it is known in some places as the “anti-diabetic plant.”

It is also known for its anti-inflammatory compounds and its cholesterol-lowering ability, as well as its ability to remove toxic metals from the body.  Cilantro is twice as effective as antibiotics against the food-borne bacteria that causes food poisoning, Salmonella.

In addition, cilantro is great for digestion, arthritis, urinary tract infections, and is rich in magnesium, iron and tons of phytonutrients, so use cilantro liberally whenever you can!

There is also curry powder in the marinade, rich in powerful antioxidants and immune enhancing properties. Enjoy!

1 bunch of fresh cilantro (2 cups cilantro leaves)
1 small red onion peeled
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 small green chili pepper trimmed and halved
1 2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
1 ¼ tsp sea salt
4 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp fresh lime juice (juice of one lime)
½ tsp curry powder
1 ½ lb rib-eye steak, cut into 24 one-inch chunks
1 medium onion, peeled
Naan bread or rice flour (gluten-free) tortillas

Place cilantro, onion, garlic, chili, ginger, lime juice, and salt with 3 tbsp of the olive oil in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process until a paste is formed. Transfer to a large bowl.

Put 2-3 tbsp of the paste in a small bowl and set aside for sauce. Stir the curry powder into the rest of the paste, add the meat, coat well. Cover and marinate at room temp for about 30 -60 or more minutes.

Cut the red onion into wedges, separate the wedges and thread beef and onion onto skewers. Brush a grill pan with the oil. Preheat grill.  Grill the kebabs for 8-10 minutes turning the skewers every 2 minutes.

Serve with the cilantro sauce, plain yogurt, and pita or tortillas. Serves 4.