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  1. Sweet Potato Bisque

    October 13, 2013 by Janice

    This is a smooth and satisfying bisque that will long be remembered. The blend of both sweet and savory flavors is in perfect harmony with one another like a symphony dancing across your tastebuds. Healthy never tasted so warm and wonderful.

    Today would have been my mother’s 87th birthday, I’m posting this recipe in her memory and look forward to the time when I will see her and my father again on the other side. I hope she understood how much I cared about her, I love you mom.

    THE TWIST

    Sweet Potatoes high fiber content helps create a feeling of satiety for hours yet is very low in calories. This makes them excellent for digestion and they are soothing to the stomach and intestines too. Their beta-carotene content is vey high, rivaling that of carrots. This makes sweet potatoes perfect for fighting some chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and more. The beta-carotene in sweet potatoes will also help achieve clear skin with a healthy glow. Eating a meal with some oil along with the sweet potatoes helps to unlock the full benefit of the beta-carotene. The coconut oil in the bisque provides the necessary oil to reap the full benefit of the sweet potatoes. Don’t be fooled by the word “sweet” in the name, they are clearly beneficial for diabetics. They have proven themselves to be effective in regulating blood sugar levels by helping maintain proper secretion of insulin.

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    SWEET POTATO BISQUE

    5 large sweet potatoes
    1 large red onion, sliced
    1 T coconut oil
    4 to 5 garlic cloves, minced
    1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced
    1 t Himalayan sea salt
    1/2 t freshly ground black pepper
    1 1/2 cups chardonnay white wine
    2 T red miso
    1 can (13.66 oz.) coconut milk
    6 cups vegetable broth
    1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice

    Wrap the sweet potatoes in foil and bake at 375°F for approximately 45 to 50 minutes or until cooked all the way through. Remove from oven, unwrap and allow to cool enough to easily peel the skin away and discard. Slice the sweet potatoes in large chunks and set aside. Combine the sliced onion and coconut oil in a large pot and sauté on medium heat, season with 1/8 teaspoon of Himalayan sea salt. Stir constantly until caramelized and a deep golden brown color. Remove from pot and set aside. Turn the heat to medium-low and add the garlic, chipotle pepper, Himalayan sea salt and black pepper to the pot and stir to lightly toast the garlic for about 1 minute. Add the chardonnay white wine and heat to a simmer. Stir in the red miso and allow the flavors to blend. Add the chopped sweet potatoes, coconut milk and vegetable broth. Blend everything together with a hand held or stick blender right in the pot. Heat through. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Taste to adjust flavors if necessary. Serve in bowls garnished with the caramelized onions on top.  ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

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  2. Peaches with Cucumbers over Quinoa

    August 16, 2013 by Janice

    Many years ago my father planted a small peach tree along the driveway of his and mom’s home in St. George, Utah. He cared for it and after a time, from year to year, it began to produce a few peaches. Dad passed away about 4 years ago and mom left the peach tree to fend for itself and this year it produced bunches of peaches! I had the chance to pick some fresh organic peaches right off that tree! The peaches were so incredibly sweet and delicious. Now that the home is being sold, I’m grateful I had one last chance to eat a few peaches from my father’s sweet little peach tree. Here is a wonderful way to eat this fresh fruit in a beautiful combination that will keep you coming back for more!

    THE TWIST

    Quinoa  (pronounced keen-wah) is unique in that it is the only plant based source of complete protein. “Complete” means that it contains all of the essential amino acids that are crucial to human function and health. Quinoa is a good source of magnesium which helps relax the blood vessels which in turn improves cardiovascular health, improves blood pressure and may provide relief for migraine headache sufferers. Quinoa contains manganese and copper both of which are needed to protect oxidative damage to cells and guard cells from damage caused by free radicals. Quinoa is high in fiber which can positively affect the condition of the gall bladder, the colon, protect against asthma and several cancers. The fiber, the minerals and other nutrients in quinoa can help regulate cholesterol, reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, protect against stroke, obesity and many other degenerative diseases. Quinoa is thought to be a “good bacteria” for the gut, the intestines and the colon.

    Cucumbers are about 95% water, keeping the body hydrated while helping eliminate toxins. Cucumbers contain phytochemicals which kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath. Due to the low calorie and high water content, cucumber is an ideal diet food for people who are looking for weight loss. They help cure diabetes, reduce cholesterol and control blood pressure. They are also good for promoting joint health and relieving gout and arthritis pain.

    Peaches are a rich source of beta carotene that improves vision health by increasing blood circulation. They are a great source of vitamin C which is good for the skin and supports immune function. Peaches contain a high amount of fiber as well as  potassium.  They may reduce the risk of getting an ulcer, and help support digestive function. The antioxidants in peaches help reduce inflammation and work against cancer. The lutein in peaches may help prevent macular degeneration, an eye disease that causes blindness.

    The walnuts contribute protein and they contain significant amounts of omega 3 fatty acids as well as manganese, copper, phosphorus, iron calcium and other minerals.  Plus, the antioxidant activity in walnuts is extremely potent which provides the body protection against damaging free radicals.

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    PEACHES WITH CUCUMBERS OVER QUINOA

    2 cups quinoa
    4 cups water
    1 t Himalayan sea salt
    1 lg. English cucumber, diced
    1 cup chopped walnuts
    4 lg. peaches, pitted and chopped
    juice of 1/2 lemon
    1/3 cup chopped basil leaves, about 25-30 leaves
    Balsamic vinegar
    Fresh ground black pepper
    Peach slices and basil leaves for garnishing

    Place the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly under running water. Combine the quinoa, water and Himalayan sea salt in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer for 15 minutes until cooked through. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Set aside. In a large bowl combine the diced cucumber and chopped walnuts. Toss the chopped peaches with the lemon juice and add to the cucumber mixture. Mix in the chopped basil leaves. Lay quinoa on individual serving dishes or a large platter and layer the peach cucumber mixture over the top. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar as desired and freshly ground black pepper. Garnish with sliced peaches and basil leaves. Serves 6. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

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  3. Naturally Flavored Water

    July 19, 2013 by Janice

    I’m dedicating this recipe to my mother who watched me put these glasses of fruit and water together. It was the only time she participated while I created something new to post at The Kitchen Twist. Shortly after taking this picture she suffered a massive stroke that turned her world upside down. I love you mom.

    THE TWIST

    During the heat of the summer when you know you need to drink more water it can be tempting to turn to more flavorful but less healthy options. Here are some simple strategies to make drinking plenty of water a little more exciting.

    Fruits and vegetables added to water increase the vitamin and mineral content as well as the antioxidants making it a delightfully nutritious way to hydrate. I especially like knowing that I can create my own vitamin water less expensively than commercially made flavored waters and also feel confident about the exact ingredients in my beverage. And remember the water itself is preventing dehydration. Being fully hydrated flushes out toxins, reduces cramps and headaches and can reduce cravings for unhealthy food while at the same time it increases the metabolism. Water revitalizes your body the way water revitalizes a wilting flower making you feel refreshed and energetic.

    If you want a little sweetness to your water add some drops of liquid stevia or stir in a small amount of stevia powder.
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    NATURALLY FLAVORED WATER

    Choose any combination in desired amounts for single servings or for an entire pitcher full!

    Watermelon, cubed
    Lemon slices
    Mint leaves

    Orange slices
    Vanilla bean, sliced open longways

    Pineapple cubes
    Mango slices

    Papaya cubes
    Lime slices

    Blackberries, slightly crushed
    Basil leaves

    Pear slices
    Ginger root, peeled, sliced in rounds
    Orange slices

    Honeydew melon cubes
    Lime slices
    Mint leaves

    Add whichever combination of wonderful goodness you’ve chosen to your desired container and add water. Allow to steep for a while (about 4 hours) and serve to enjoy naturally flavored water. Add liquid stevia drops, or stir in stevia powder for sweetness if desired. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

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  4. Tropical Green Smoothie

    June 19, 2013 by Janice

    I drink so many smoothies, this one is very easy to create as well as delicious and so nutritious too!

    THE TWIST

    Kale is an incredible  nutritional powerhouse and is becoming more and more commonly used among cooks. It is low in calories, high in fiber and is a complete protein. Kale has more iron than beef and is packed with cancer fighting phyto-chemicals and antioxidants. The amazing combination of the tropical fruits and greens makes this a great smoothie to alleviate minor aches and muscle pains, clear headaches, detoxify, build the immune system, nourish the body with micronutrients, promote beautiful hair and skin and much more. At the same time it is working to support your better health it also tastes delicious!

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    Tropical Green Smoothie

    3 cups kale leaves
    1 banana, peeled
    3 cups chopped pineapple
    1 mango, pitted and peeled
    Juice of 1 large lime
    Juice of 1 lemon
    1/2 cucumber, cubed, unpeeled
    Coconut water (up to 16 oz.)
    1 t stevia powder

    Combine all ingredients in a Blendtec blender and whirl on high until well blended and juicy. Enjoy! Serves 2 to 4. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

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  5. Portobello Mushroom Burritos

    May 15, 2013 by Janice

    These are simply incredibly satisfying. My son Joshua and his wife Ashley make these regularly and just rave about how delicious they taste. They have asked me on occasion to post this recipe, so this is for them! Make a big pan of these and enjoy the leftovers too!

    THE TWIST

    A portobello belongs to the crimini family of mushrooms. What separates this from other criminis is its large stature. Portobellos are allowed to grow as large as 4 or more inches in diameter. These mushrooms are commonly marinated, then broiled or baked. A portobello has multiple bright spots when it comes to nutrient value. This makes them a welcome addition to any diet plan. Portobellos have a balance of protein and carbs, and they are low in fat. A 100-gram grilled serving contains just over 3 grams of protein, about 4 1/2 grams of carbs and just over a 1/2 gram of total fat. The recommended intake of protein is 46 grams a day for women and 56 grams a day for men. Both men and women should strive for at least 130 grams of carbs daily. Portobello mushrooms have a moderately high amount of fiber. A 100-gram serving contains just over 2 grams. Fiber is a key substance for controlling cholesterol and blood-sugar levels. It also has a filling effect on the body, which is beneficial for weight maintenance. Portobellos take up a lot of space, but they do not contain many calories. This makes them low energy-density foods. A 100-gram serving contains just under 30 calories. Eating these kinds of foods will spare you calories and help you lose weight. Potassium is an important electrolyte mineral needed for muscle contractions, protein synthesis, nerve function and acid-alkaline balance. Portobello mushrooms have moderate amounts of potassium. A 100-gram serving contains 437 milligrams. The B vitamins help with red blood cell formation, energy production and nervous system function. Portobello mushrooms contain moderate amounts of both niacin and folate. Having portobellos with whole grains, and leafy green vegetables will boost the B vitamin content.

    http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/portobello-mushroom-nutritional-value-1753.html

    PORTOBELLO MUSHROOM BURRITOS

    1 red bell pepper, sliced
    2 jalapeños, minced
    I large onion, sliced
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    3 to 4 portobello mushrooms, sliced
    1/4 t Himalayan sea salt
    1 can (16 oz.) black beans, drained
    1 cup cooked quinoa
    1/2 cup chopped cilantro
    1 T ground cumin
    1 t ground coriander
    Vegan Cheese sauce (recipe follows)
    12 to 18 whole wheat tortillas
    1 jar (16 oz.) salsa (I use Arriba brand)
    Pico de gallo with avocado (recipe follows)

    Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet or pan with foil and lightly coat with coconut oil. I a large and deep skillet set on medium-high heat, sauté pepper and onion until beginning to brown. Add the garlic, mushrooms and salt and stir constantly for 3 to 5 minutes then remove from heat. Add the beans, quinoa, cilantro, cumin and coriander and stir into the mixture. Place a few tablespoons of the vegetable mixture on each tortilla and add a tablespoon or so of vegan cheese sauce. Fold in the ends of each tortilla and roll the opposite ends together placing seam side down on the foil lined baking sheet. Cover the burritos with the salsa and bake 20 minutes. Serve garnished with the pico de gallo with avocado. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

    Vegan Cheese Sauce

    1 cup raw cashews
    2 cups water
    1 cup nutritional yeast
    1/4 cup arrowroot powder
    1 T carrot powder
    1 t beet powder
    1 t paprika
    1/2 t turmeric
    1/2 t kelp powder
    1/2 t Himalayan sea salt
    1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
    1 can (4 oz.) chopped green chiles

    Combine all the ingredients except the green chiles in a blendtec blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a skillet set over medium-low heat, add the green chile peppers and while stirring it will thicken to a nice cheesy consistency. Use in Portobello Mushroom Burritos. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

    Pico de Gallo with Avocado

    2 Roma tomatoes, diced small
    4 green onions, finely chopped
    1 cup finely chopped cilantro
    1 avocado, diced
    Juice of 1 large lime

    Combine all ingredients together in a small bowl. Use to garnish the Portobello Mushroom Burritos. ©Janice Moreland http://thekitchentwist.com

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