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Recipe: Chicken Sausage with Tomatoes and Arugula (GF)

This dish is a little “one-pot wonder” that I’ve been making quite a bit lately. I absolutely love it when I can put a whole bunch of things into a pan, set it in the oven and forget about it for a while. This is just such a dish – very little work, yet it has great flavor!

Most of the time, I use chicken sausage, although it can certainly be made with pork sausage, as well. The tomatoes and onions caramelize in the oven and the addition of the arugula at the end provides a fresh, peppery pop of flavor.

I usually serve it over brown rice or with roasted new potatoes. It’s hearty, filling, easy and healthy. And if you’re cooking for a crowd, you can be sure that this meal will not require you to fuss over the stove all evening.

Buon Appetit!

Karen

Chicken Sausage with Tomatoes and Arugula

6 chicken sausage links

1 lb. grape tomatoes

1 onion, cut in half and then sliced

6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped

3 Tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil

3 Tbsp. White wine

1 Tbsp. Dried Italian Seasoning

2 cups of baby arugula

½ can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Ground black pepper, to taste

 

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. In a roasting pan or oven-safe skillet (I love using my ScanPan), place sausage, tomatoes, onion, garlic, olive oil, wine, and Italian seasoning.

Roast for 15 minutes, then turn sausages. Continue roasting for another 15-20 minutes, or until sausages are nicely browned and cooked through.

Remove pan from oven and stir in arugula. Allow the mixture to sit for 1 minute (arugula will wilt slightly), then add cannellini beans and black pepper, to taste.

Serves 2-3.

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Recipe: Roasted Fennel with Almonds (GF)

Recently on the blog, I interviewed Holistic Health Coach, Jen Klainberg (you can listen in here LINK) and one of the many things we discussed was the importance of eating seasonally. Jen ran through a number of foods that are in season and she mentioned one veggie that I absolutely love but rarely make: fennel. I’m not sure why I don’t make fennel more…it’s wonderful and pairs nicely with red meat, poultry and fish, alike. Not to mention the fact that fennel is SUPER healthy, full of nutrients and antioxidants.

I decided to roast fennel, as it mellows its licorice-like flavor, then began experimenting with ingredients to jazz it up a bit. This combination of fennel, sliced almonds and Parmesan was outrageous!

Happy Spring and Buon Appetit!

Karen

Roasted Fennel with Almonds and Parmesan

2 medium fennel bulbs (remove tough outer layers and cut through the root into wedges. Reserve the fronds.)

2 Tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil

¼ c. Grated Parmesan cheese

¼ c. Slivered almonds

Pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On a baking sheet, toss the fennel with the olive oil. Roast for approximately 10-12 minutes per side.. Top with Parmesan cheese, almonds and freshly ground black pepper. Cut the fennel fronds and garnish the platter with them. Drizzle with additional olive oil, if desired.

Serves 4.

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Recipe: Smoked Salmon Bites

Do you love smoked salmon with cream cheese on a bagel as much as I do? Or better yet, how about the smoked salmon platter served in certain restaurants, where they serve the salmon on toast points with cucumber, chopped onion and capers? It’s a treat that I rarely have these days, as I try to limit gluten and dairy as much as possible, which is why I was thrilled to develop this appetizer. It has the incredible flavors of those dishes without the bread and the thick layer of cream cheese.

These Smoked Salmon Bites are perfect as an appetizer. They’re a convenient little finger food – no assembly or utensils required by guests – yet have BIG flavor. There’s no cooking necessary…you merely assemble the ingredients. And they happen to look beautiful all lined up on the platter (I’m very visual, so I love an interesting presentation…especially when it comes to party food!).

I used goat cheese instead of cream cheese. For one thing, goat’s milk is much more easily digested than cow’s milk and isn’t nearly as heavy or clogging for the system. In addition, goat cheese adds a slight tang that’s lovely when paired with the flavors of the mild cucumber, salty capers and bright, fresh dill.

Here’s the recipe. I hope that you enjoy them as much as I do.

Buon Appetit!

Karen

Smoked Salmon Bites

½ pound wild, smoked salmon (sliced)

1 4-ounce log of goat cheese

1 cucumber, peeled and cut into 1” julienned slices

⅓ c. chopped fresh dill

⅓ c. capers

Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

Spread the slices of smoked salmon on the counter or cutting board. Cut each slice in half (vertically).

Spoon a dollop of goat cheese into the center and lay a cucumber slice on top of it. Add a couple of capers and a sprinkling of fresh dill. Gently roll each salmon slice so that it envelops the filling. Repeat with remaining salmon slices and line them up on a plate or serving platter.

Once the entire platter has been assembled, scatter the remaining dill and capers over top and finish with a sprinkling of cracked black pepper.

Serves 8.

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Recipe: Watercress Mushroom Soup

A dear friend celebrated her birthday recently and a group of us took her to a lovely, fairly new Long Island restaurant, Gatsby’s Landing. Several of us got this fantastic soup as an appetizer and I came home determined to recreate it.

The watercress has a fresh, slightly peppery flavor. When it’s combined with the mushrooms and the soup is puréed, the result is a bright and creamy soup that’s perfect for spring.

It’s a winning combination – super healthy (as watercress is one of the most antioxidant rich green veggies) and super flavorful. I hope you’ll give it a try.

Buon Appetit!

Karen

Watercress-Mushroom Soup

3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

10 ounces of fresh mushrooms, chopped

1 large onion, diced

1 large bunch (or 2 small bunches) of watercress, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

16 ounces of water

1 tsp. salt

Black pepper, to taste

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the olive oil and heat until oil is shimmering. Add the mushrooms and onion and sauté about 5 minutes. Add the chopped watercress and garlic and sauté for another 10 minutes. Stir in water and simmer for approximately 10 minutes.

Let soup cool slightly, then purée, using a blender, immersion blender or food processor. Return the soup to the saucepan and add salt and pepper, to taste.

Serves 4-6.

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Recipe: Asian Style Bok Choy (GF)

If there’s one thing that I’m always looking to eat more of, it’s green vegetables. And this Asian Style Bok Choy is a delicious way to do it!

The health benefits of green, leafy veggies are well documented and pretty astounding. A diet that includes plenty of leafy greens helps to reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and a host of other chronic diseases and conditions.

This is due to the fact that leafy greens are low in fat, high in fiber, rich in folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin K, minerals (such as, potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium) and photochemicals (like lutein, beta carotene and many others).

This bok choy recipe packs a nutritional punch with an Asian kick, as it’s made with garlic, ginger, sesame and soy. I especially like to serve it alongside fish or chicken for a light and healthy meal.

Enjoy!

Asian Style Bok Choy

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced

Pinch of red pepper flakes

4-6 bunches of baby bok choy, cut in half or quartered (depending on how big they are)

1 Tbsp. Soy sauce (if you do not eat soy, you may substitute coconut aminos)

1 Tbsp. Water

Toasted sesame oil for drizzling

1 Tbsp. sesame seeds (black or white), optional

In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat, until it shimmers. Add garlic ginger and red pepper and give them a quick stir to combine (about 30 seconds).

Add bok choy and turn until coated with oil on all sides. Add soy sauce and water, cover the pan and stan for about 2 minutes.

Uncover the pan and continue to cook for approximately 3 minutes, until the liquid is mostly evaporated and the stalks can be pierced with a knife.

Drizzle a bit of sesame oil over top and, if desired, garnish with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.

Serves 4-6.

DID YOU GET YOUR GIFT YET ?  CLICK HERE to Grab your (FREE) guide –

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It contains my best healthy living tips, recipes and other resources to help you live your most Wellegant life. Enjoy!


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Recipe: Flourless Pancake with Fresh Berries (GF)

Have I got a breakfast idea for you! This is, hands down, my favorite breakfast. Because it involves two steps, it’s not something I tend to make during the week (on workdays, I prefer one step – for example, ovenight oats). On weekends, however, it is a treat that can be pulled together in under 15 minutes, yet feels like something you’d find on a fancy brunch menu! And the best part is that this decadence is gluten free and very low in sugar (the only sugar comes from the fruit and, if desired, a tiny drizzle of pure maple sugar or honey).

Lately I’ve been topping my pancake with a combination of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries.  However, I’ve tried many other toppings – sliced bananas and pecans, fresh peaches, stewed apples, figs, etc. – and it’s always turned out beautifully. The key is to use a blender to whip up the batter, as it produces a frothy, souffle-like texture.

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