Delicious and healthy recipes, cooking tips, international cuisine, and anything related to food and the culinary arts...

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Yuca Root - A Great Alternative to a Potato

Potatoes make for a great side dish but what happens when you are tired of potatoes or simply crave for something new? What else can you include in your meal as a side dish that will be different yet tasty? Well, you can try yuca root.

yuca root

Yuca root is a great alternative to a potato. It is brown in color and has a starchy flavor that is pleasant and not too strong. It will liven up your dishes and will satisfy your hunger any day. You can eat yuca root as a side dish to go along with your favorite prepared meats, fish fillets or sausages or you can eat it by itself with steamed vegetables or vegetable salads.

There are different ways that you can prepare yuca root. You can boil it, bake it, roast it, or boil it and then mash it. So far I have only eaten yuca root boiled or mashed. I plan on baking and roasting it the next time I buy it. I may even try frying yuca root. If potatoes can be fried than I am sure yuca root can be fried as well. It will be a fun experiment making fried yuca root and I am looking forward to doing it. 

Boiled Yuca Root

Mashed Yuca Root
With Portobello Mushrooms and Onions

If you want to know how to cook yuca root and are looking for some yuca root recipes just follow the link below.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sandwiches Instead of a Pizza

I love a good slice of pizza but I prefer to eat a delicious sandwich instead. I make my sandwich on German pumpernickel rye bread with pesto sauce that I buy from Trader Joes, slices of fresh salami from the Russian store, slices of Kumato tomatoes sprinkled with olive oil and dried basil, and shredded cheese on top. 

I love Parmesan or cheddar cheese but I usually use whatever cheese I happen to have on hand as I don't have a store near me to go out and buy the cheese I want. Sometimes, if I don't have pesto I use Hellmann's mayonnaise that has olive oil in it. Some other ingredients that I may add to the sandwich are sprouts (alfalfa, broccoli, etc.) or sweet pea shoots. I may even substitute the pesto or mayonnaise with baba ganoush or avocados and/or salami with slices of mortadella (that I slightly fry in a skillet) or roasted turkey breast. It all depends on what I feel like eating at the moment and what ingredients I have on hand. 

When I am done preparing the sandwich I pop it into the microwave for about a minute so the cheese has a chance to melt. Once done I take out the sandwich and am ready to enjoy it. Before I do that though I take out some mixed olives and perhaps slices of avocado or a slightly hard boiled egg to go along with the sandwich. 

This sandwich tastes mouthwatering and to me it is way better than stuffing myself with a slice of pizza no matter how good it is. 

Sandwich with salami, tomato and melted cheese
with slices of avocado and a hard boiled egg

Sandwich with baba ganoush, salami and alfalfa
sprouts with orange grape tomatoes

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Tri-Color Carrot Salad

I have recently discovered maroon and yellow carrots. After giving both of these carrots a try I can say that maroon carrots are my favorite out of the two, though the yellow carrots are not bad at all. I have to say that I prefer maroon carrots to the regular orange ones. 

Now I am no expert here but it seems to me like maroon carrots are a hybrid of orange carrots and beets. Maroon carrots are the color of beets and the inside is partly orange just like a regular orange carrot. I also seem to taste a slight beet flavor, but maybe that's just me. 

Since I love carrots I decided to mix these three types of carrots together and create a carrot salad. I washed and peeled one of each type of carrot and shredded it using a food processor. It is much faster than using a manual shredder. Then I added some salt, Hellmann's mayonnaise, and grated Parmesan cheese. I mixed everything and sprinkled with some dried parsley. The salad was so delicious that I ate a huge bowl! 

It's definitely something different. I think I prefer this salad to the carrot salad with raisins that I make. The individual flavor of each of the different types of carrots really blends well together for a rich, tasty flavor. 

Give this tri-color carrot salad a try sometime if you are able to find yellow and maroon carrots anywhere. I have discovered that those types of carrots are rare to find in supermarkets or fruit and vegetable stores :(. I got both of these at a local farmer's market. If you have those in your area they are your best bet for finding these types of carrots. 

Now I haven't tried this yet but I am thinking of adding sweet pea shoots to this salad. I've made them with just orange carrots before and the taste was very good. Of course I didn't use mayonnaise in that salad but I think it doesn't matter. Sweet pea shoots can only add to the flavor of the dish.

tri-color carrot salad

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Avocados - Health Benefits and Recipes

Avocados are not just delicious but they are also healthy and beneficial for our bodies. It is a great idea to include avocados in our diet. That is what I do. 

I always eat avocados and I never get tired of them. Sometimes I eat avocados on the side to go along with sandwiches or the main entrees. Sometimes, I use them in salads, or better yet in omelets. Omelets taste that much better with avocados in them and so do salads for that matter.

There are different avocados out there. I prefer the Hass avocados but I've consumed other brands like it and they weren't bad at all. I have been tempted to try the Florida avocados for quite a while now but have never actually done it yet. Those are huge and are always hard as a rock. Probably that is why I've never tried them. But I should. I'll buy one the next time I am at the supermarket.

To find out about the health benefits of avocados along with recipes and recipe ideas click here. Enjoy!