Last Thursday was ‘Class 2’ in the cooking series I am teaching with the Wake Forest University Translational Science Institute. The group is qualifying families who are getting locally grown vegetables (a CSA box) at no cost with a goal to increase vegetable intake.
My job is to help them figure out what to do with the veggies they get each week! It’s actually a lot of fun. In case you missed the last recipes, here are 5 Simple Steps to Make Soup With Whatever Veggies You Have!
This class included Roasted Vegetables, Salmon Cakes and the class favorite (much to my surprise!)…. Yogurt Dill Sauce!
How to Roast Vegetables
Just about any vegetables can be roasted in the oven. I’m not sure how I didn’t discover this until about 4 years ago, but it has really helped me enjoy some of the veggies from my farmer. Especially when I get tired of soups, stir frys and salads! Roasting creates a wonderful flavor for the veggies as it caramelizes the natural sugars and combines with the oil and herbs that have been added. Yum!
Remember – our goals for cancer prevention and healthy survivorship are 4-5 cups of fruits + vegetables daily. Roasted veggies are so good, you’ll eat at least 1 cup at a time!
Here’s your ‘How To’ guide to roasting any vegetables.
Choose 4 cups of veggies (one or more of any combination – broccoli, Red Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Onions, Beets, Peppers, Eggplant, Zucchini, Squash, Acorn Squash)
2-3 tsp of one or more spices (such as Chili powder, Rosemary, Cumin, Garlic cloves, Grill seasoning, Curry powder, Chinese 5 spice, Tarragon, Italian seasoning, Sage, Parsley, Cinnamon)
1 T oil (canola oil, peanut oil or olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
2. Remove any rough skin and cut veggies into like size pieces. Smaller pieces cook faster.
3. Place in a bowl and toss with oil, making sure the pieces are coated on all sides.
4. Season with salt, pepper and herbs.
5. Bake in non-stick pan, or on a foiled pan, until veggies are soft (about 30 – 40 minutes)
Sweet potatoes: Chinese 5 spice, cinnamon
Red potatoes: garlic, rosemary
Eggplant: garlic, Italian seasoning
Carrots: grill seasoning, parsley
Acorn squash: cinnamon, chili powder
Recipe and suggested combinations from the NC Cooperative Extension.
The recipe for these salmon cakes came from Nutrition Action. They have lots of great recipes and a really wonderful newsletter. It’s well worth the money for a subscription. I give them out for gifts regularly!
The only problem we had with these cakes is that some of them fell apart easily. I’m not sure if it was our technique, or the lack of egg in the recipe. They tasted fine all broken up, but it can be frustrating! I would probably try adding an egg next time. Here they are, just before we pan fried them!
- 1 – 14.75 oz. can no-salt-added salmon, drained
- ½ cup diced red onion
- 2 Tbs. lemon juice
- 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach, thawed
- ¼ cup low-fat sour cream
- 2 Tbs. dijon mustard
- ½ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
- 2 Tbs. canola oil
- In a large bowl, mix the onion, lemon juice, spinach, sour cream, mustard, and bread crumbs.
- Add the salmon and mix to combine. Form into 3-inch cakes that are ½-inch thick.
- In a large non-stick sauté pan, heat 1 Tbs. of the oil over medium heat. Sauté half the cakes until lightly browned, 1-2 minutes per side. Heat the remaining 1 Tbs. of oil and sauté the remaining cakes.
- Serves 4.
Yogurt Dill Sauce Takes the Class Favorite Award!
The funny thing is that I had decided I wasn’t going to do the sauce at this class, since the recipe called for a food processor. However, the organizers of the program had purchased the items, so we decided to make it by hand. Wow – I’m glad we did. I can’t believe how much people liked it. They even ate their roasted veggies with the sauce!
You’ve gotta try it, so here you go. (FYI – the recipe for this one is also from Nutrition Action. They should win a culinary award for it!)
Dill-Yogurt Sauce: Combine 6 oz. of fat-free plain Greek yogurt with 1 cup of fresh dill sprigs, 1 Tbs. of lemon juice, 1 Tbs. of dijon mustard, 1 small shallot, and ¼ tsp. of salt in a food processor. Process until smooth.
OR… skip the food processor and just chop up the shallot (we actually used onion) really really small. Mix!
One of the class facilitators said we need to get this recipe out ASAP as it will make a dent in the Ranch sales in this country. Ha! With the sauce base of Greek yogurt, it’s much higher in protein and calcium and lower in fat than ranch. And I might add, much tastier too!
Let me know what you think,