This rich and spicy dessert soup is sure to help you break out of the winter doldrums. Originating in Asia, the tiny bird’s eye chili pepper (also called Thai chili) packs a serious punch, so make sure to use only one. You can also try using serrano chili pepper for the recipe.
Easy on the taste buds, coconut whipped cream is a fun alternative to the dairy version. Adding some cornstarch or arrowroot powder helps it keep its form after whipping. When placed on the warm soup, the cream slowly melts into a stunning presentation.
3 cups (750 mL) unsweetened almond milk
1 cinnamon stick
1 vanilla bean, sliced in half
6 oz (170 g) dark chocolate, finely chopped
1 bird’s eye chili pepper, seeded and minced
1 tsp (5 mL) instant espresso powder (optional)
1 - 14 oz (400 mL) can full-fat coconut milk
1 Tbsp (15 mL) cornstarch or arrowroot powder
1 Tbsp (15 mL) honey
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
1/4 tsp (1 mL) nutmeg
In medium-sized saucepan, combine almond milk, cinnamon, vanilla bean, chocolate, chili pepper, and espresso powder, if using. Warm over medium-low heat until chocolate has melted, stirring often. Turn off heat and let steep for about 45 minutes.
To make whipped coconut cream, place unopened can of full-fat coconut milk in fridge for at least 4 hours. Open can without shaking it, and pour out only the thick cream that has risen to the top into large bowl. Using hand-held electric mixer or stand mixer, beat cream with cornstarch until the consistency of whipped cream. Scrape down sides with spatula and beat in honey, vanilla extract, and nutmeg. Keep covered in refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Strain soup to remove solids, and rewarm over medium-low heat.
Place soup in serving bowls, and top with a dollop of coconut whipped cream.
Each serving contains: 264 calories; 3 g protein; 21 g total fat (13 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 18 g total carbohydrates (10 g sugars, 4 g fibre); 97 mg sodium
from "Red Hot Chili Peppers", alive #365, March 2013
Crunchy, with sharp and satisfying flavour, this hearty salad is a great accompaniment to tacos (including the ones in the next recipe). Cabbage is high in fibre and vitamins C and K. Higher consumption of cruciferous vegetables such as radishes and cabbage is linked to lower rates of cancer. Make ahead Unlike a typical green salad, this one can stand up to an hour or two in the fridge, so if you want to make it ahead of time, go for it. The cabbage will soften up and some water will be released; just drain any excess before serving.
These taco-inspired lettuce wraps are full of vibrant flavour tempered by subtle heat, all topped off with a zingy tomatillo salsa. Shredding the chicken helps to make a small quantity of chicken feed a crowd, and the texture pairs well with the light wrapper. The bright salsa features heart-healthy tomatillos, which contain phytochemicals called withanolides, which studies have found can help inhibit cancer cell growth. Quick shred If you have a kitchen mixer with a paddle attachment, you can use it to quickly and easily shred chicken for taco lettuce wraps. After chicken has rested, add it to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Reserve any pan juices that may have accumulated in the baking dish. Turn mixer on to a low-to-medium speed and process the chicken for 30 seconds to 1 minute, so that chicken is just separated, being careful not to overprocess. Add in cooking juices and mix through with spoon. To shred chicken by hand, use two forks to gently pull meat apart before combining with pan juices.
This rich bean dip is delicious warm or cold. It’s also a good source of protein, iron, and potassium. A single serving of this dip will help Dad get 19 percent of the recommended daily value of dietary fibre. Dried pasilla peppers impart a smoky, earthy fruitiness balanced with mild spice from a hint of hot paprika and cayenne. And those canned tomatoes add a nice hit of lycopene to an already healthy dish. Epazote (Eh-pah-zo-tay) Epazote has a history of use as a medicinal herb throughout Latin America and is a frequent ingredient in bean dishes because of its antiflatulent properties as well as its pleasant aromatic taste. Its flavour has no direct comparison but is reminiscent of oregano, tarragon, or licorice. There is a pungency to the scent, which some have described as having notes of kerosene, but it imparts a pleasing, earthy, and herbal quality to dishes. Dried epazote added to beans can help reduce their gas-causing properties. Epazote contains saponins, which can be toxic in copious quantities, so sparing use is recommended. Look out for it at specialty culinary stores. If you can’t find it, try cilantro, fennel, or oregano.
Lime juice and ginger add a tropical whiff to this French-Japanese mashup, where seaweed tendrils and Dijon mustard bring out the umami flavours in mushrooms and eggplant. The ingredients might seem to be strange bedfellows, but they work. The result is somewhere between a quiche and a soufflé, with a gluten-free eggplant crust featuring punchy mustard and citrus. This makes for a hearty vegetarian main for brunch, lunch, or dinner with a side salad, or a filling side dish. Fresh or dried If you don’t have fresh thyme and parsley, use 1 tsp (5 mL) dried thyme (divided) and 1 Tbsp (15 mL) dried parsley. The flavours won’t be as pungent, but a little flavour is better than none.