Tag Archives: great salad

Black Rice with Pumpkin Seed Crunch


This recipe is so up my alley, mainly because it has squash and a crunch.

I was so excited to run across it.

Hello! How perfect is this for Juice January?

Try it and let me know how you like it!

Black Rice with Pumpkin Seed Crunch
serves 2-4

You will need:
– 1 cup of black rice
– 1 small butternut, acorn, or any type of squash, peeled, seeds removed, and diced (about 2 cups)
– extra virgin olive oil
– salt + pepper
– 2 large handfuls of spinach
– 1 small red onion, sliced
– grapeseed (or other neutral high heat oil)
– salt
– 2 tablespoons of sesames seeds
– 1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds

For the sesame ginger dressing:
– 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled
– 1 small shallot
– 1 garlic clove, peeled
– 1 teaspoon of honey
– 1 tablespoon of lime juice
– 2 tablespoons of toasted sesame oil
– 1 teaspoon of tamari (OR 1/2 teaspoon of salt)
– 3-4 tablespoons of grapeseed or sunflower oil

To prepare:

*Pre-heat the oven to 350º

Cook the rice:

Place the rice into a medium sauce pan with 1 3/4 cup of water, bring to a boil, cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to sit covered for at least 10 minutes, or until you’re ready to assemble the salad.


Toast and grind the seeds + roast the squash:

Place the sesame seeds and pumpkin seeds onto a baking sheet and bake for 7-8 minutes (until light brown). Remove and turn the oven temp up to 425º (for the squash).

Then, using a mortar and pestle, grind the seeds until you have a fine crumble.

Place the squash onto a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes until soft and golden brown. Set aside, covered if you like, until you’re ready to assemble.

While the rice and squash are cooking, make your dressing (you can also do this a few hours or days in advance):

Place all of the ingredients for the dressing, except for the grapeseed oil, into a food processor. Pulse a few times to chop and incorporate, and then run the food processor continuously while you add the oil a tablespoon at a time until you have a creamy and pourable, consistency. Taste and adjust any seasoning necessary (sometimes I feel it might need a slight lime or salt adjustment).

Sauté the spinach and onions:

Heat the about 2 tablespoons of oil in a cast iron over medium heat. Add the onion, and cook for several minutes until very soft. Then add the spinach and cook for about 2 minutes until just wilted. Remove from the heat and season with a pinch or two of salt.


Place the rice, squash, and sautéed spinach into a large bowl with about half of the dressing and half of the pumpkin seed crumble and toss to combine. Plate the salad onto individual plates, and spoon some additional dressing on top and finish with an additional sprinkle of the pumpkin seed crumble.

Resource:  What’s cooking Good Looking

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what’s for supper {a heading into summer dinner party}

i know you guys love it when i post dinner suggestions. here is the menu for the dinner party i threw last weekend. it’s a great way to welcome summer with an outdoor casual dinner for friends. have them bring the wine and you bring the rest. warning you are going to need plenty of fire for this one.


  • Mussels in white wine with shallots and plenty of french bread for soaking up the goodness.
  • Filets on the grill naked dressed with spicy Charmoula
  • Deconstructed green bean salad with beets, pistachios and lemon oil
  • Roasted mini red potatoes with sea salt and olive oil
  • Grown up s’mores by the fire.

Mussels in wine

3 lbs mussels

1 small shallot diced

1 small clove of garlic minced

1/4 cup olive oil

2 cups white wine

3 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon hot pepper flakes

1 cup marinara sauce ( jarred is fine , although I freeze my homemade, perfect for this)

1 cup chopped parsley

In a large stock pot, place shallots, garlic. oil and salt saute until the shallots are translucent. Add mussels and wine and butter, cook until mussels open, discarding any mussels that have not opened.Add marinara and pepper flakes and parsley , serve with french bread.


Filets with Charmoula

Charmoula, is a great herby spicy sauce great with meat and fish, one of my go to recipes

1 cup fresh Italian parsely

1 cup fresh cilantro

2 inch piece of ginger

3 cloves of garlic

Juice of 1 lemon

1 cup of oil

salt and pepper

2 teaspoons coriander seeds

In a food processor, add all ingredients and pulse until it forms a loose smooth sauce.

* note this is best made ahead, I usually make it in the morning and leave it out all day.

Serve on the side of any meat or fish. btw it’s great with the roasted potatoes as well.


Deconstructed Salad

1 pound green beans (haricots vert)

red beets, roasted, peeled and sliced

1 cup roasted pistachios

1/2 cup cubed feta cheese

1/2 cup thinly sliced onion

2 cups small heirloom tomatoes sliced in half

2 cups watercress

1/4 cup O&CO lemon oil

1/4 cup fine balsamic vinegar

Salt and pepper.

Assemble the salad artistically on a platter ( a rectangular platter will make it easier * see photo)

assemble ahead of time and place in the fridge. pull it out right before serving and dress with oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Guests make their own combination.


Roasted red potatoes

preheat the oven to 450 degree F

1 1/2 pounds of small red potatoes

1/4 cup of olive oil

3 teaspoons of sea salt

cut potatoes in half, toss with oil and salt in a large bowl, transfer to a ceramic baking dish.

bake for 1/2 hour at 450 degrees F and then reduce the oven to 350 for another hour. Make sure to shake the pan to loosen potatoes half way through the cooking process.

Pull out of the oven and serve warm with Charmoula and grilled Filets


Grown up S’mores 


Vosges Chocolate, I like spicy pepper, bacon, and a dark choice

Ginger Snaps, I also Pinoli Cookies as an alternative to Graham Crakers.

You know what to do next…think about your days at camp, boy scouts or girl scouts.

Assemble and enjoy…




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