Category Archives: Uncategorized

Roasted Fennel, Garlic Scape, and Sweet Onion Dip

What do you do when you have a handful of uneaten CSA vegetables and another delivery coming the next day? Roast them up and make them into a dip! At least that’s what I did the other night. I had one fennel bulb, a handful of garlic scapes, and three small sweet red onions. I also had half a dozen farm-fresh eggs to use. I decided to roast the vegetables and make a pesto with them, but in the end it came out more like a dip. A very tasty dip that was used to top the eggs and spread on some leftover challah bread.

roasted fennel recipe

I don’t have a very measured recipe for the dip since I was adding ingredients as I went along, but here’s basically what I did:

Roasted Fennel, Garlic Scape, and Sweet Onion Dip
Serves 4

Ingredients:
  • 1 fennel bulb, cut into chunks
  • 4 garlic scapes
  • 3 small sweet red onions, cut into chunks
  • olive oil (about 1/3 cup plus more for roasting)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Parmesan cheese, grated, to taste (I used about 1/4-1/3 cup)
Directions: 
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Toss the fennel, garlic scapes, and onions in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Lay on a foil-lined baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes until soft. 
  2. Let vegetables cool slightly and then transfer to a food processor. Pulse for about 30 seconds to 1 minute until big chunks have broken down. Add in the cheese and continue pulsing until combined. Drizzle olive oil slowly and pulse, stopping to scrape the sides, until you get to desired consistency. You may want to add more cheese as you go. Flavor with salt and pepper. 
What do you do with leftover vegetables? 
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Strawberry, Lemon, and Basil Soda

By Megan Kian

With the warmer weather approaching I thought I would share a recipe for do-it-yourself homemade soda that I discovered in the most recent issue of Bon Appetit magazine. It can be hard to find a refreshing, yet low calorie drink other than water or diet soda. Next time you’re outside enjoying the warm weather, reach for this homemade strawberry, lemon, and basil soda instead.

Strawberry, Lemon, and Basil Soda
Serves 1

Ingredients: 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon raw sugar
  • 6 fresh basil leaves
  • 5 small strawberries cut into smaller pieces (reserve 1 slice of strawberry as a garnish)
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • ¾ cup soda water
Directions: 
  1. Combine all the ingredients, except for the soda water, in a tall glass.
  2. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, muddle the ingredients until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Add ice cubes and soda water and stir until chilled.
  4. Strain the soda into a glass filled with ice cubes.
  5. Add the strawberry (I also left in some basil leaves) for garnish. And there you have it, homemade soda!

bon appetit magazine nonalcoholic drinks
Nutrition Facts (per serving): 56 calories, 15 g carbohydrates, 13 g sugar, 233 mg sodium

Have you ever made homemade soda?

Disclaimer: The Nutritioulicious staff was not paid to promote this recipe. All opinions are our own.

The Slow Food Movement

By Megan Kian

In our fast paced society we tend to forget to take time for ourselves and slow down to enjoy what is around us. Especially when it comes to food, many people want the fastest, most convenient meal available (whether or not it is the healthiest).

A semi-recent movement (it first began in 1986) called the Slow Food Movement was born to counteract the loss of tradition and the progression towards fast food. The Slow Food movement began in Italy and has now become a global movement with over 100,000 members worldwide.

slow food movement

Slow Food gives people a chance to celebrate traditional food and food practices and promotes people’s interest in the food they eat. Being part of the Slow Food Movement also makes people aware of the effect the food they eat has on themselves and the rest of the world. Slow Food’s vision is to make sure that everyone has access to healthy food that is sustainable and maintains tradition. Slow Food is a great way to celebrate nutritious and delicious food around the world!

Learn more about the Slow Food Movement and how you can get involved.

American Dietetic Association Conference Recap

Last week I was at the American Dietetic Association Food and Nutrition Conference & Expo (FNCE) in Boston. Over 10,000 dietitians from around the country got together to learn, network, and check out the latest food products. If you were following me on Twitter, you probably saw many posts from my 4 days away, and if you didn’t, check out #FNCE to see what everyone was tweeting.

Here is a (very) brief rundown of the highlights of my trip:

  • Tweetups. I had the opportunity to have dinner with some of my Twitter friends in person, including Emma, Janel, Corinne, Robyn, Jill, and Deanna (and more!). It was so much fun to meet these great dietitians who I already felt like I knew!
  • Going green. One of the best sessions I attended was the Green Revolution presented by Kate Geagan and Jackie Newgent. These women are so passionate about the topic and it really came through in their presentation, including a cooking demo. Among other things, I learned from Kate that dairy and beef are the two most important food categories to eat organic, and Jackie taught us some great ways to be eco-friendly when cooking. I especially loved Jackie’s green cuisine terminology like “microroasting” and “lid cooking.”
  • Food, glorious food. It took me 3 days to get through the entire food expo and check out new (and old) food favorites. There were many “nutrition bars” featured, including new flavors of Lara and Cliff bars; people were going nuts for pistachios, almonds, and my friends at the walnut booth; avocados were hot, especially red velvet avocado cupcakes!; and “gluten-free” and “natural” are two buzz words that you can plan on seeing more of in the next year.
  • Kids Eat Right. The ADA and the ADA Foundation announced their new initiative, Kids Eat Right, at the conference. The primary goal of the campaign is to prevent childhood obesity and promote healthy eating in kids and teens.

Have you ever been to a food conference?

Best Potato Chip I Ever Had

A few weeks ago, I was invited to tour the Frito Lay plant in Killingly, CT (full discolsure: I am a media spokesperson for Frito Lay). It was the first time I had ever seen how chips were made, and it was quite an experience. If you’ve ever looked at the back of the bag of Lay’s Classic Potato Chips or Tostitos Corn Chips you would see that there are only 3 simple ingredients in these chips: Potatoes or corn, vegetable oil (corn, sunflower, canola, or soybean oil), and salt. Whether you believe this or not, I can tell you with 100% certainty that is all there is — there are no other ingredients in these chips, just these 3 natural ones.

Here are some other interesting facts I learned and saw with my own eyes:

  • The potatoes come from local farms and are used within 24 hours.
  • There are 3 registered dietitians on staff and they work with chefs in the culinary center to help make healthier products using natural ingredients.
  • A 10 ounce bag of Lay’s Original Potato Chips is made using 4.5 medium potatoes, 7 teaspoons oil, and 0.7 teaspoon salt.
  • In 2003, Frito Lay was the first major food company to remove trans fats from their snacks.

Here are some cool pictures from the tour:

Frito Lay potato chip tour

Unloading potatoes at the plant

Frito Lay potato chips

Potato chips hot off the press - the best I've ever had!

Frito Lay corn chips

The ingredients used to make corn chips; the roller is used to cut out corn chips in the right size and shape

Frito Lay has worked hard (and continues) to make healthier snack products, and they want consumers and health professionals to be educated about their products. They have created many websites for this purpose, including:

Check them out — maybe you’ll learn something new about snack foods!

Avocado League Recipe Contest

I’ve talked about avocados a few times in the past — especially that they are an excellent source of healthy mono- and polyunsaturated fat, make a great replacement for cheese on sandwiches, and add flavor and a creamy texture to sandwiches, salads, and soups. Avocados also contribute nearly 20 vitamins and minerals and only 50 calories per 3 slices (1 oz). Not bad huh?! Despite all these benefits, many people don’t know how to use avocados in cooking. If you’re one of those people, it’s your lucky day.

Avocado League Big Hit Recipe ContestLast week, the Mexican Hass Avocado Importers Association (MHAIA) announced that the Avocado League is back for its second season. The Avocado League celebrates women and their love for avocados and baseball. An All-Star roster of women from around the country (including pro softball player Jennie Finch) have been chosen to create recipes featuring avocados that best embody the spirit, flavor, and passion of their hometown. Eight recipes are in the running to be named the BIG HIT and earn the title of Avocado League MVP. It’s up to you to vote for your favorite! You have until October 27, 2010 to vote for the Avocado League BIG HIT.

If you’re already an all-star cook, you can get in on the game too! During the voting period (September 28-October 27) you can submit your own avocado recipe. One “wild card” recipe will be selected every week to be featured on the BIG HIT site and the winning chef will receive a $100 gift card.

Also, this Thursday, October 7th, from 2-3 pm ET, join the Big Hit Twitter party to talk about avocados, fall activities, and more! All you have to do is tweet @AmazingAvocado with the hashtag #BigHit.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy avocados?

Disclosure: I am a media spokesperson for Avocados from Mexico.

Wonderful Ways to Use Watermelon

I love watermelon. Ever since I was a little kid it has been one of my favorite fruits. For me, summertime is not complete without a good dose of watermelon – and this summer I am definitely getting mine!

Watermelon grows in many shapes and sizes – and baby watermelons are becoming extremely popular. When I was in Israel, we drove by many watermelon fields. Here you can see a watermelon ready for harvest:

growing watermelon in fields

Nutritionally, watermelon is a star. Since it is more than 90% water, it’s low in calories, which means you can eat a lot without worrying about your weight! More importantly, watermelon is a great source of some important antioxidants: vitamin C, beta-carotene, and lycopene – all of which help protect the heart, prevent inflammation, and reduce the risk of cancer.

Nutrition Facts for 1 cup of watermelon: 46 calories, 1 g protein, 0 g fat, 11 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber

Another great thing about watermelon is that there are so many ways to enjoy it. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Watermelon, tomato, feta, and basil salad — or skewers (like these seasonal skewers I made last summer)
  • Watermelon salsa — watermelon, cilantro, red onion, and lime juice (recipe to come! You can read about it in last week’s guest post by my husband Andy)
  • Watermelon sorbet – so easy and refreshing!
  • Watermelon box ceviche — I had this delicious dish in Israel. A fish ceviche was put in a watermelon box and topped with feta. It was amazing!
    watermelon with ceviche ceviche in watermelon
  • Watermelon drinks — watermelon juice or watermelon cucumber coolers are delish!watermelon nutrition
  • By itself! Here is what a serving of watermelon was at the King David Hotel in Israel (while I love watermelon, that’s a lot for anyone to eat alone!!)

How do you enjoy watermelon?