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Sauces and Dressings Archives | Elizabeth Borelli

Savory Pumpkin Curry Sauce

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

Makes 4 cups

Pumpkin recipes are all the rage this time of year, and with excellent reason.  Pumpkin is a nutrition powerhouse that rings with Fall flavor, sending the culinary creativity soaring.  This Savory Pumpkin Curry Sauce is a family favorite at my house, where my kids love the creamy texture and savory blend of flavors in the cozy Fall dish.

Easy to prepare, this sauce is perfect to simmer your favorite veggie blend in (see suggestions below), and serve spooned over brown rice.

In keeping with my theme of planning ahead, the recipe makes enough to freeze a batch for use whenever you need it. For best results, freeze in a glass jar, lid left slightly ajar until fully frozen to avoid breakage, for up to 2 months.

Ingredients :

  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked in just enough water to cover them, for at least 30 minutes
  • 2 large onions, peeled and cut in half
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 cups cubed cooking pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled and chopped into 1” cubes, or 1 cup cooked pumpkin (cooked or BPA-free canned)
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • 3 cups rice or your favorite plant-based milk
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or a dash of stevia
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 2 tablespoons red curry paste (available in the Asian section of most grocery stores)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger or 1-inch piece of ginger root (unpeeled is fine)

Optional for added heat :

  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper or cayenne powder

Ingredient suggestions for creating your Savory Pumpkin Curry stir fry:

  • (Steam, covered in 1” water for 12 minutes before adding sauce)
  • Sweet potato cubes (1” cubes)
  • Broccoli or cauliflower florets
  • Carrot (halfed lengthwise and cut into 1” pieces)
  • Asian eggplant (halfed lengthwise and cut into 1” pieces)

(Steam, covered in 1” water for 8-10 minutes before adding sauce)

  • Chopped onion
  • Chopped cabbage
  • Sliced mushrooms

(Steam, covered in 1” water for 5 minutes before adding sauce)

  • Diced green onions (1” cubes)
  • Diced tofu
  • Chopped basil

Add 1 inch of water to a saucepan. Add cubed pumpkin or butternut (if using) onions, garlic and cover, turn heat to medium, and cook for 5 to 8 minutes, until onions are softened and translucent. Let stand on the stove for 5 minutes longer, covered,  then remove the cover and let it cool off for at least 5 more minutes.

When you’re ready, pour the steamed veggies into a blender or food processor and add the remaining ingredients. Puree until smooth. Savory Pumpkin Curry Sauce freezes for up to 2 months, or can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Kale and Sweet Potato Salad with Ginger Miso Dressing

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

???????????????????????????????????????Kale and Sweet Potato Salad with Ginger Miso Dressing                                      6 to 8 servings

Minimalist that I am, I wasn’t remotely interested in cooking with steamer baskets until I learned this incredible recipe in a cooking class.  I love that the steamer method is low-tech, easy to learn, and fast.   At home I use a bamboo steamer, which creates an interesting and not unpleasant scent while steaming.  And believe me, this is a recipe worth steaming for!

Note:  you’ll need two stackable steamer baskets for this dish.

Ingredients:

  • 2 heads of kale, Swiss chard, or collard greens, stemmed and chopped
  • 1 large garnet sweet potato, , peeled, cut into quarters lengthwise and then into ½-inch slices
  • ½ cup scallions, chopped
  • 2 cups mung bean sprouts (or substitute with another of your favorites)
  • ¼ to ½ cup Ginger Miso Dressing

Add 6 inches of water to a large saucepan and bring it to a boil.  Place the sweet potato slices on the bottom steamer basket, and greens on the other one.  Place the sweet potato basket over the pot of water and cover; steam for 7 minutes.  Add the greens layer, cover, and steam for 5 minutes longer.  Check the sweet potato slices for doneness, and once tender, remove from heat.

Add to a bowl, toss in the scallions, and let cool for 20 minutes or longer before tossing in sprouts and adding dressing.  Serve salad at room temperature or make ahead and refrigerate, adding dressing right before serving.

Ginger Miso Dressing                                                                                             Makes ½ cup

This is the dressing flavorful enough to transform iceberg lettuce and cello tomatoes (remember those?) into delicious cuisine in certain Japanese restaurants.  Imagine how good it’ll be with fresh organic greens or mung bean sprouts.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup white or yellow miso
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons powdered ginger; or ½ to 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
  • Juice of ½ orange (approximately ¼ cup)
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon salt (to taste)

Combine all ingredients and serve.  Stays fresh in the refrigerator  for up to 10 days.

Basic Bean Dip

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

iStock_000012062508XSmall-Makes 2 cups This dip is wonderfully simple to prepare, and better yet, you can make it using any bean variety. It’s delicious served as a dip for veggies, a topping for Beany Bruschetta or as a sandwich spread. Placed in a vintage jar, it makes a thoughtful hostess gift. Double or triple the recipe and keep leftovers in the fridge for up to 1week. Ingredients:

• 1½ cups beans (white, garbanzo, and black beans are favorites, precooked)
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 2 tablespoons water
• 2 cloves garlic; or 1 teaspoon powdered or granulated garlic
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon dried sage or thyme (optional)

Add ingredients to a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Note: See the Bean Soaking and Cooking Chart bean preparation instructions.

Easy Vegan Curry Sauce

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

Makes 4 cups

This is a simplified version of the luscious curry sauces used in Indian cooking, but delicious still and perfect to prepare ahead and freeze for use when you need it. Some of the oil can be replaced with coconut milk, although it can be hard to source a non-canned (or BPA-free canned) version. Keep in mind that while the coconut oil adds flavor, it’s also high in saturated fat, so find the calorie/fat balance that works for you. I like to add some heat with cayenne pepper or chili powder, but be sure to go easy—a little goes a long way!
Easy Vegan Curry SauceThis sauce is especially delicious served over stir-fried veggies and rice or noodles.

Ingredients

•      2 large onions, peeled and coarsely chopped
•     6 cloves garlic, peeled
•     ¼ cup coconut oil
•     3 cups water
•     2 teaspoons curry powder
•     2 teaspoons ground ginger or 1-inch piece of ginger root (unpeeled is fine)
•     ½ cup raw cashews, soaked in just enough water to cover them, for at least 30 minutes

Optional for added heat :

•     1 teaspoon chili pepper or cayenne powder
•     2 tablespoons red curry paste (available in the Asian section of most grocery stores)

Add 1 inch of water to a saucepan. Add onions and garlic and cover, turn heat to medium, and cook for 5 to 8 minutes, until onions are softened and translucent. Let stand for 5 minutes longer, then pour the hot mixture into a blender or food processor and add the remaining ingredients. Puree until smooth. This sauce freezes for up to 2 months, or can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Miso Goddess Sauce

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

033Makes 1 cup

This quick and easy dressing also makes a delicious sauce for quinoa, pasta or your favorite stir fry. Truly a five minute wonder, it lends a sassy Asian-inspired twist to your meal.

Ingredients

• ¼ cup yellow miso
• ¼ cup tahini
• 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
• ½ cup orange juice (fresh is amazing, but pre-made 100% juice works too)
• 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
• ¼ – ½ tsp. salt (optional)

Blend the first 2 ingredients in your measuring cup with a fork or small whisk until smooth. Stir the remaining ingredients directly into the cup, and pour into a clean glass bottle to serve.

Christmas and Sprouting 138

About the ingredients

Tahini, miso and rice vinegar may not be things currently in your cabinet, and you may wonder if it’s worth it to buy them when you’re not sure you’ll ever use them again. So I thought I’d talk a bit about each and why I think it’s worth the investment!

All three ingredients combine health benefits with the rich flavor they bring to everything from dressings to bean dishes. They’re  versatile ingredients with staying power (as in long shelf life), so you don’t need to worry about using them right away.

Tahini, to start,  is packed with 7 grams of protein per serving, makes wonderful sauces and dressings, and lasts as long as peanut or almond butter (refrigerated). Miso is a naturally fermented seasoning high in B12 and acidophilus, a healthy gut bacteria, Use it to flavor soups, stir fries and sauces. Rice vinegar is high in amino acids, lovely on salads and in marinades.

As for the cost, I did the math so you don’t have to. It came to less than $3 to make 2 cups of Miso Goddess dressing, or about half of what you’d pay for an equivalent product in the store. So I say splurge on some new ingredients you know will help you transition from package to pantry, and enjoy the health and cost saving benefits long term.

Fresh Pesto Sauce

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

PestoMakes 1½ cups

Summer is the ultimate season many things,  garlicky pesto sauce not least among them.  Fresh basil in abundance practically begs to be blended into this bold and vibrant treat.  It needn’t be complicated either, the ingredients list is short.

This version is lower in calories than most, since I like to keep the oil to a minimum and skip the cheese.  No one will miss either one.   I suggest maki enough to last you several rounds, which you can use during the week to whip up a pasta dish, a quinoa salad or a white bean and veggie stir fry in just minutes, then freeze the remainder  in small containers for use well after the season ends.

Try spreading it on a whole-wheat baguette, top with sliced tomato, and pop in the oven at 350% for ten minutes for a mouth-watering treat!

Ingredients:

  • 4 packed cups fresh basil leaves (organic if possible)
  • 3 -4 cloves garlic
  • 1-4  cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor.  If working with a blender, you may need to stop it intermittently and push the leaves down with a spatula before starting up again, to help pulverize them.  Once all ingredients are incorporated into a thick, even consistency, turn off the blender and spoon the pesto into a serving bowl and use it within a day or two, or freeze in airtight containers (labeled and dated) for up to 2 months.