Butter Dill Beets and Carrots

I tell you what, I wish you guys could be here now.  What a lovely evening it is!!  I’m sitting here with a fuzzy puppy at my toes, the lingering scents of dinner in the air (seared pork chops and an awesome soup I can’t wait to share with you!), and my favorite part of all…Mr. Rodgers on the other side of the couch with his new “studious” glasses on, intently writing a beautiful song with his acoustic.  It is a wonderful day.  An unexpected day off, no less…considering there is a ton of snow out there and I work at an ice cream store.  😉  My tummy is full, but with healthy things.  And you know what?  My heart is full too…with healthy things.  I am so thankful for new years.  For people that inspire me to be better, and a God that gives me strength to pursue health and peace and loves me no matter how many times I screw up.

Sigh.  I am thankful.

Anywho…on from your glimpse into the Rodgers’ lives!  I hope all of you are enjoying this start to your year as well.  I pray you are blessed with new levels of HEALTH this year.  That is the mantra in our house for the year.  And if you let me, I would love to help you bring health to your house this year too!!  So let’s get started with some root veggies with a great flavor to boot!

Beets.  I don’t have much history with them.  I was always so scared of the smell that came out of the can when my mom ate the canned ones…so I never really gave them a chance.  Then came that one time Mr. Rodgers and I juiced for a few days after watching “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.”  (Very interesting, you should check it out!!  It helped us on our journey, even though we decided to go a more protein-heavy direction.)   I drank beet juice then…and actually didn’t mind it!!  It was a different flavor, but I grew to love it.  The husband, not so much.  He was not a fan of the beet juice.

But then I made these babies.  He WAS a fan of these.  Great flavor, I tell you!  Not to mention all the benefits of beets…they are very good for detoxing (which we all need to do after the holidays, good gracious!), and house a ton of vitamins apparently!  And I don’t think I need to tell you that carrots have benefits as well…especially for your eyes.

So whether you are an avid beet lover, or are fearful of them like me…you should give them a chance.  And roasting them should definitely be that first chance.  Here’s a great way to try:

 

What you need:

  • 1 lb baby beets, or 2 bunches “normal” beets
  • 1/2 bag baby carrots (yes, I used the snack kind for ease.  You can also use 1/2 lb the bunch kind if you desire.)
  • 3 Tbsp Grassfed Butter, such as Kerrygold
  • 1 1/2 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 tsp Dill paste, or fresh chopped (Warning: I have recently discovered that the herb pastes often have Dextrose in them 😦  So use at your discretion..they are great for when you are in a hurry or don’t want your herbs to go bad before you get to them…but fresh is definitely the better alternative health wise.  Sigh.)
  • 1 tsp Minced Garlic

 

And here’s how you do it:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400*
  2. Clean, trim, and peel your beets.  Chop into pieces all about the same size…some you will halve, some into quarters, some into eighths, depending on the size.  You want to have roughly one inch wedges.
  3. Place beet wedges and carrots on foil lined baking sheet.
  4. Melt butter and add dill and garlic.  Whisk together.
  5. Dump butter mixture over veggies and toss around till everything is nice and coated.  Share the love baby!  Add some salt and pepper.
  6. Slide into your preheated oven and roast about 35 minutes, (stirring occasionally), or until the veggies are tender but a bit browned and crispy on the outside.
  7. Remove, and eat!!

Beets 1

 

Trim, clean, and peel those bad boys.  Chop into even sized wedges.

Beets 2

Look down and realize this looks bad…really bad.  I sent this pic to my mom and she got a good laugh about it.

Beets 3

Toss onto a lined baking sheet.  Add baby carrots.

Beets 4

Melt butter and add garlic and dill.  Whisk together.

Beets 5

Dump it all over.

Beets 6

Mix it allllll up. Add a little salt and pepper, naturally.

Beets 7

And roast!  About 35-40 minutes, or until starting to brown and crisp but tender inside.

Beets 8

Yeah baby.

Beets 9

And enjoy!!

 

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Deliciously Roasted Carrots

There was a short period in time when Mr. Rodgers and I had watched the documentary called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and we got all fired up to eat only vegetables.  We were going to be super veggie freaks!  In that short amount of time I went crazy on Pinterest and was searching out any veggie recipe I could find…and being ever so slightly OCD, I had to organize my Pinterest account!  So I made a board for every vegetable I could think about, and then spent hours finding pins to go in them.  Well we quickly got over the “just veggie” stage cause we really love meat, and have found that it really is pretty good for you 😉  However, I still use all those boards and pins that I found on my veggie pin binge!  But months later I was exploring those boards and realized that something seemed to be missing!!

What  could be missing?!  I had broccoli, cauliflower, artichokes, squash, bell peppers, asparagus and beans….what more could a girl need?  Then it dawned on me!  Carrots!  Why the heck don’t I have a board for carrots?!  Oh, I know why…I always immediately and exclusively think of carrots as something you eat raw.  My little Grandma Maudie would be so ashamed, because she would cook us a down home Oklahoma style feast every Sunday, and she would ALWAYS have carrots cooking in butter in her nice big cast iron skillet.  Why did it not occur to me that I could cook carrots too?

I’m so glad I had that awakening.  These carrots made me really happy.  I could barely even adapt it, because the blog where I found it already had used agave instead of sugar!!!  Two points for you, familystylefood.com!!  You have my respect.  I just cut out the fresh mint because, as I mentioned in my Quinoa Mint Zucchini Boat post…Mr. Rodgers is DEFINITELY not a fan of fresh mint.  😉

So, here’s what you need:

  • 1 bunch carrots with the green tops (baby carrots, or just long skinny ones)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Lime, Juice and Zest
  • 1 tsp Agave
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1/4 tsp Coriander
  • 1/4 tsp Paprika
  • 2 Green Onions, sliced

 

And here’s how you do it:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Trim most of the tops off of your carrots, wash them, and put them in a bowl.
  3. Whisk together the remaining ingredients (except green onions) in a bowl and dump them over the carrots.
  4. Cover a baking sheet with foil and dump on your carrots.
  5. Roast about 2o minutes until they are tender and have a little char on them.  Unless you don’t like char, but I do.  🙂
  6. Sprinkle with sliced onions.
  7. Now EAT!  This went great with our grilled chicken and fresh watermelon, and we got to eat it all on the front porch…it was perfect!!!

 

 

Pictures!!!

 

 

 

 

Cumin Carrots 2

 

Preheat your oven to 400.  Wash your carrots and trim the tops a bit!

Cumin Carrots 1

 

Whisk together everything except the green onions.  Pour over carrots (in a large bowl…or you can do it right on the pan like I did but it left me with a mess on the pan which I don’t like ;))  Toss to coat.

Roast for about 20 minutes, or until the carrots are tender and have a little bit of char!  It makes them taste yummy and look grilled!

Cumin Carrots 3

 

This is why you cover your pan in foil. 😉

Sprinkle with green onions and serve!  So yummy!!

Cumin Carrots 5

 

I think they’re kinda pretty, but maybe I’m biased 😉

Cumin Carrots 4

 

See how there is just a touch of char, but the beautiful orange color is still shining through?  Perfect!

Cumin Carrots 6

 

Welcome to our little picnic, where these tasty little carrots didn’t last long!  Perfect summer evening!!!  These nights make me so happy!  But not half as happy as this guy makes me, all this cooking and sunshine would be nothing without him…

Cumin Carrots 7

 

Heheheee.  Eating him some carrots!  Yeah!!!

 

Alright, that’s it folks!!!  Enjoy your carrots, mamma always told me they make you see better.  Maybe if you love these as much as I do and eat them lots…you’ll get X-ray vision!  SWEET!

Seared Salmon with Warm Lentil Salad

photo (1)

I never realized that healthy food can be comfort food.  Warm.  Tasty.  Fills up the tummy and makes you wanna curl up on the couch and just…be still.  That’s what this was for me!! And so very, very simple!!

This was my first experience with lentils! And I must say, I very much enjoyed it! Pleasantly surprised.  We ate leftovers for days and were happy about it!! 😉

This IS a Perfect Weight America recommended meal, so…if you are going for super health, try and get all your ingredients fresh and organic.

So, here’s what you need 🙂

  • 1 Tbsp Garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp Coconut Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 C Chicken Stock (Preferably free range!)
  • 3 Carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 Onions, chopped
  • 1 lb Lentils
  • 2 Tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 3 Sprigs Fresh Thyme, leaves stripped
  • 24 oz Wild Caught Salmon Fillets (Fresh or frozen…but fresh will taste better and probably be more moist!!) cut into 4 even pieces!

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Bring 6 Cups of water to a boil.  Add lentils and remove from heat, cover, and let sit for 20 minutes.  Set your timer and continue prep!! But don’t forget to drain them after 20 minutes!  This was so interesting to me…I had never heard of this technique…kinda like a fast-soak! Who knew?!
  3. In a nice big pot, heat up 2 Tbsps of  your coconut oil.  Saute your onions, thyme, salt and pepper for about 8 minutes.
  4. Add garlic, stir, and cook for 1 minute.
  5.  Add carrots, lentils, chicken stock, and tomato paste. Stir it all together, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until the lentils are tender.
  6. Heat a large, oven safe pan to high heat.  The original recipe says to rub the last 1 Tbsp of coconut oil on the salmon fillets.  I found that…icky and not-working-y.  So I took a couple Tbsps of coconut oil, melted it and drizzled it over one side of the fillets.  Then gave it a nice shaking of salt and pepper.
  7. Toss the fillets in the hot pan.  If you are using the melted coconut oil method, put it coated side down, then drizzle the rest of the coconut oil on the other sides of the salmon while it cooks and sprinkle salt and pepper on it! You’re going for a sear here, so just cook them about 3 minutes.  Flip them, then transfer immediately to the hot oven in the pan.  Cook 4-6 additional minutes, or until its done to whatever degree you desire 🙂  I didn’t have a big enough pan, so I had to cook my fish in shifts…I had a casserole dish heating up in the oven, so when it came time to transfer it to the oven, I set it straight into the 450 degree casserole dish while I seared the next shift.  It worked pretty good!
  8. Take out and serve with your warm lentil salad.  SOOOO warm and wonderful!

Credit to Perfectweightamerica.com for this beauty! I barely changed anything!! I hope you enjoy!