Main Dishes

Layered Frittata with Leeks, Swiss Chard, and Tomatoes

Layered Frittata with Leeks, Swiss Chard, and Tomatoes

Frittatas, or baked omelets, are a delicious staple of Italian cuisine. Unfortunately, many people avoid them because they believe eggs raise cholesterol. That just ain’t so. A huge study of 100,000 people proved that to be a myth, and the American Heart Association now says that eggs can be part of a healthful diet, as long as other sources of dietary cholesterol aren’t excessive. Aside from being an excellent source of protein, eggs also support brain health. In this delicious frittata, the eggs frame a whirlwind of flavorful ingredients with all the colors of the Italian flag: Swiss chard, cherry tomatoes, and Parmesan cheese. 

Orange Pistachio Quinoa

Orange Pistachio Quinoa

Quinoa is its own little ecosystem, containing all of the essential amino acids that we must obtain through the diet. Put another way, quinoa brings some good nutrients to the table that the body needs to begin repairing itself. Its mild taste makes it a perfect backdrop for this nicely layered crunchy/chewy portable dish, in which olive oil, citrus, vitamin-rich pistachios, and raisins dance delightfully on the taste buds, and herbs (mint, cumin, and coriander) provide a huge hit of taste and anticancer nutrients.

Roasted Ginger Salmon

Roasted Ginger Salmon

All I can say is get out your camera, cause when you make this dish, you’re going to want to take a picture of it before you serve it. It’s just that pretty, with the peach of the salmon, the ruby red jewels of the pomegranate seeds, the vibrant green of the parsley. The taste is no less sensational, the citrus and herbs playing wonderfully off the salmon’s healthy blend of omega-3 rich fats. This one will energize all your senses.

Grilled Chicken with Za’atar

Grilled Chicken with Za’atar

Can you say “za’atar?” Sure you can. In fact, if you lived in the Middle East, you’d be invoking the name of this herb-and-spice mix nearly every day. Za’atar has long had a reputation as a brain enhancer, and science may be providing a clue; researchers wrote that, in low concentrations, the carvacrol found in oregano and thyme may increase feelings of well-being. Chicken is particularly rich in brain-enhancing nutrients. This recipe makes about half a cup of za’atar, which is a lot more than you need for the chicken; store the extra in a jar and use to sprinkle on top of vegetables, dips, salad dressings, fish, eggs, or anything you would like to add a touch of the exotic.

Middle Eastern Chickpea Burgers

Middle Eastern Chickpea Burgers

These chickpea burgers are similar to a Middle Eastern falafel. This isn’t like the Americanized version of falafel that resembles carnival food deep-fried in some unhealthy oil. That’s a culinary crime, because falafel done right is so delicious and nutritious. It’s all in the blend. Here the secret ingredient is basmati rice, which holds the chickpea mixture together and creates a complete protein. I love the mini-burger concept; the whole wheat bun is like putting falafel in a top hat and tails, perfect for folks who like the taste of beans when they’re broken down and combined with heady herbs and spices. Gently pan-seared or baked, these burgers are bountiful bites of health.