June 16, 2016

Cool, Green Summer

We find balance in summer weather by eating foods that are bitter (cooling, moist), such as: unsweetened cocoa, olives, dandelion, kale, celery, and amaranth leaves. It is also important to take time to rest, sit in the shade, breathe deeply, and absorb the green color that surrounds us.

These are the healing properties of summer herbs:

Basil –anti-bacterial, digestive, and aromatic, this member of the mint family stimulates growth of white blood cells and protects against unwanted bacterial growth.

Cilantro – the leaf of the coriander plant stimulates the secretion of insulin and helps lower levels of total and LDL (the "bad" cholesterol), while actually increasing levels of HDL (the "good" cholesterol). Cilantro’s volatile oils have antimicrobial properties.

Parsley – purifying, anti-dandruff, digestive, and tonic, parsley is also rich in Vitamin C to decrease inflammation, beta carotene to help prevent infection and strengthen immunity, and folic acid (B vitamin) to support cardiovascular health.

Velvety Green Soup

You will need:

2 teaspoons olive oil
2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 large yellow onion, peeled and sliced
2 large zucchini, sliced
1 bunch chard, chopped
1 pound fresh or frozen peas
3 cups water and 1 vegetable bouillon cube
1 teaspoon each: salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch fresh basil

In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the shallots and onions.
Cook, covered, until they are soft and translucent, about 10 minutes.
Add zucchini and sauté for 5 more minutes.

Add the chard and peas.
Add the water and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.

Add the basil.
Remove from heat and purée with an immersion blender.

Chop the rosemary and use as garnish.
Serve with cooked quinoa. This soup is excellent chilled, too!

Herbed Pesto

You will need:
2 cups fresh basil
½ cup fresh cilantro
½ cup fresh parsley¼ cup pumpkin OR sunflower seeds1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil

Place basil, seeds, lemon juice, and olive oil in a food processor.

Make a coarse pesto and set aside.
This is delicious over kohlrabi potato salad - recipe here.

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