October 26, 2012

Recipes for the Weekend: Kale, Goats Cheese and Dill Frittata + Beetroot Leaf salad

Good health and happiness is about so much more than just eating the right foods, exercising and having a holiday once a year to keep stress at bay. This article in the New Yorker, about the people of Ikaria (one of the 'Blue Zones' populations where people live measurably longer) explains it well. A long healthy life involves the interplay of many factors... being part of a community, finding purpose, laughter, good food, time to relax and enjoy life. What struck me the most, what I feel most lacking in modern society, is the importance of social structure and community. If you make an awesome lunch full of goodness but eat it in a rush, at work, by yourself staring at the computer, you're probably not going to really get the most out of food or the experience. It's a good reminder for me. Sharing a meal is one of the simplest and oldest ways of bringing people together to celebrate, to laugh, to cry. 

Grab a couple of treasured friends, head to the place you enjoy food shopping, select the freshest ingredients and cook with love and music. Make as much mess as you like and enjoy the feast in good company with plenty of laughter. I made these recipes with fresh ingredients from the local farmers markets, and enjoyed them with loved ones.  

Wishing you a wonderful weekend. 

Beet Leaf Salad Recipe

I have only just starting using beetroot leaves in food recipes. I have juiced them a few times before but that's the extent of it. Your local organic co-op, grocer or farmer's markets are probably your best bet at finding young, not too tough leaves. Beetroots often don't come with their leaves still intact at supermarkets. This is a throw it all in recipe, without measurements. Go wild.


1 bunch young beetroot leaves 
1 grated raw beetroot
a handful of cherry tomatoes
macadamia nuts
sunflower seeds
extra virgin olive oil and lemon for dressing
salt and pepper to taste

Cut beetroot leaves from beetroots, soak and rinse well in water. Heat a dash of your preferred oil to cook with (avoid vegetable blends of oil- they're not good for you, try to stick with butter, olive oil and coconut oil) in pan sauté the garlic and beetroot leaves until they soften, about 5 minutes. Set aside. Wash and scrub beetroot, use a peeler to peel off the outside layer. Then grate away. Grab another pan and dry roast your seeds and nuts until they slightly brown, you don't want them to burn, a few minutes at most. Dry roasting really brings out the flavours of seeds and nuts. Mix all ingredients in a salad bowl, dress with olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper. 

A beautiful mixture of warm beetroot leaves with fresh, raw ingredients for an energising lunchtime salad.


Kale, Goats Cheese and Dill Frittata Recipe 

I'm a little obsessed with greens and frittata's are a new favourite. For best results  de-stem the kale and sauté. 


1 large bunch of kale 
1 zucchini, sliced finely
6 eggs
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped finely
1 garlic clove
goats chèvre or feta to your taste
fresh dill to your taste
salt and pepper to taste

Heat your oven to 200C. To de-stem your kale hold the stem and strip the leaf. Tear the leaves into bite-size pieces. Rinse well in water and drain well.

Heat the olive oil in a medium sized pan, add onion and cook until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add sliced zucchini and kale and sauté for  about 5 minutes, the kale will be nice and soft. Stir in the garlic, and sauté for a bit being careful not to burn, about 30 seconds. Transfer the greens to a greased quiche dish. Size of the dish? Not sure, just use whatever you have around the home. Set aside.

In a bowl beat together the eggs, dill, goats cheese and salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture over the greens, mix gently to distribute ingredients evenly. Pop it in the oven and bake until golden brown and firm, about 20 minutes. It's ready to serve. Best served hot or warm with a crisp green salad. (Any leftovers can be covered in the fridge for a fews days ready for hungry hands to grab when the urge hits).

Serves 4

(Recipe adapted from this recipe I stumbled upon)

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