Tag: olive oil

Lentil Tabbouli

Lentil Tabbouli

This lentil tabbouli salad is the perfect autumn spin off of the classic Middle Eastern salad famous for its delicious combination of parsley, mint, and wheat burgul soaked in lemon and olive oil. I substituted the traditional wheat bulgur grain for a gluten-free and protein […]

Brussels Sprout and Farro Salad

Brussels Sprout and Farro Salad

If you have been following along, I have been preparing, eating, and posting a lot of salads lately. I am loving our shift to a more plant based diet, but I just cannot do leafy salads everyday! I need salads with texture, crunch, flavors, protein, […]

Veggie Tuna Salad

Veggie Tuna Salad

This is a refreshing and filling veggie tuna salad that you can eat on its own right out of the bowl, or you can wrap it into a flat bread for a quick and easy sandwich, or melt some provolone cheese over it to make a warm and toasty tuna melt! Yum!

tuna saladThis tuna salad is so easy to make with fresh ingredients and lots of flavor. We load up on veggies that give this a nice crunch. The recipe is an inspiration based on a green bean tuna salad recipe written by the fabulous Giada de Laurentiss and made for me by a more fabulous friend:) I made this at home with some of my fresh and favorite veggies: red bell peppers, green beans, asparagus, tomatoes, and parsley . I omitted red potatoes to reduce the carbs and cooking steps, used fresh crunchy green beans, and added some kick with chopped fennel instead of celery. This was awesome.

Oh and I use plenty of fresh squeezed lemons, almost 1 whole lemon per can of tuna. In my book, the more lemon the better. But it is possible to add too much lemon so don’t get carried away!

I use “Wild Planet” tuna, which is a brand I love because it is sustainably caught (pole and troll), non GMO, no liquids or fillers are added (as is with the common Chicken of the Sea and other major brands), and it is stored in BPA free cans. There are also many other wonderful healthful varieties stored in olive oil. You want to avoid the kinds stored in water, because many of the heart healthy omega 3 fats are lost and nutrients are not retained as well (neither is the taste actually). I use about 5 6 oz cans in the recipe which is enough to feed at least 5 adults; the volume is tripled with all the fresh chopped vegetable ingredients we add!

chopped veggies
parsley, tomatoes, scallions, and garlic

Tuna salad veggies; in this variation I included chopped asparagus!
Tuna salad veggies; in this variation I included chopped asparagus!

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If you let your kids dice and stir this salad with you, they are always more likely to eat what they make. They always love the bright colors in the salad too.

green bean tuna salad

red bell pepper
red bell pepper and diced fennel
tomatoes and garlic
layers of flavor with tomatoes and garlic

Veggie Tuna Salad
A fresh and delicous tuna salad that is heart healthy and easy to make in no time!
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 4-5 6 oz cans of tuna, packed in olive oil
  2. 2 red bell peppers, diced
  3. 1 bunch of parsley, finely chopped
  4. 1/2 cup fresh fennel, diced
  5. 1 cup of fresh green beans, trimmed and chopped into 2 inch pieces
  6. 1 cup tomatoes, diced
For the dressing
  1. 3/4-1 c fresh squeezed lemon juice, to taste
  2. 1 tsp salt
  3. 1/4 tsp black pepper
  4. 1/2 tsp cumin
  5. 1/2 c olive oil
  6. 2 tbsp fresh garlic, minced
Instructions
  1. Toss all the chopped ingredients with the tuna in a large bowl.
  2. Stir the dressing together and pour all over the tuna salad.
  3. Serve in wraps, on toast, on crackers, or eat it as it is as a healthy and filling salad!
Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis
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The BEST Ful Mudammas (stewed fava beans) from scratch

The BEST Ful Mudammas (stewed fava beans) from scratch

Ful mudammas (pronounced f-ool, rhyming with pool or tool, but why would I spell it like that, or foul?!)  is a vegetarian dish that is a staple food item in Egypt. It is the national dish of Egypt. You cannot go to Egypt without trying ful at […]

Avocado Pesto Pasta Salad

Avocado Pesto Pasta Salad

I love pesto. And I love avocados. This dish combines these two loves into a flavorful and fresh pasta salad!  I’m a proponent of creative cooking, and using ingredients you have on hand to create delicious meals. Its a survival skill that comes in handy when […]

Hummus

Hummus

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This Middle Eastern staple has made its way all around the world and is a huge hit! This perfectly flavored chickpea puree provides fiber, protein, and healthy omega 3 fats that are filling, satisfying, and perfectly low in calories. Chickpeas are quite high in fiber, protein, folic acid, magnesium , and zinc and are great for reducing cholesterol and blood sugar.  Hummus makes an excellent spread in sandwiches or a dip for veggies, which makes it a filling snack but lower in fat than mayo, ranch dressings, and other less healthy options.  No wonder this dip is so popular! I love my hummus extra lemony and garlicky, and that’s the beauty of making this easy dish at home- you can add as much or as little flavor as you want. You can vary the flavor, color, and texture by including preferred vegetables such as parsley, beets, roasted red peppers, carrots, or my favorite:  cilantro with jalapeƱo! Hummus is traditionally prepared with tahini paste, which is basically sesame seed butter. 

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As with all of my recipes, I do not use any canned products here, and try to keep everything as natural and homemade as possible. Nothing is more satisfying than enjoying something perfectly concocted in your kitchen and knowing exactly everything that is inside.

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I start with 1/2 cup of dried garbanzo beans or chickpeas. These should be sorted for stones or dirt and washed. Many people need to soak the beans overnight before boiling the next day, but if you use a pressure cooker like I do, no need for that hassle! Simple toss the chickpeas into your pressure cooker, cover with water, add a quarter of an onion, and cook on high pressure for 1 hour. Do not add salt in the pressure cooker as it inhibits cooking. Once the peas are cooked, its as simple as pureeing the little gems with tahini paste in your blender with your favorite spices and flavors! The basics that I must include are salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice. Its important to reserve some of the water the chickpeas cooked in or have fresh water on hand to thin out the hummus as needed. I forgot about the water at first and had a very THICK dip to start with (it happens!). But no worries,  this is something you can vary depending on how thick or thin your prefer your hummus to be. This dish is really fool proof! When in doubt, start with a little and add more as needed šŸ™‚ I make my hummus in a flash with my trusty Vitamix blender, which does require at least 1/4 cup of water in order to pull all the ingredients downward into its funnel of fury shredding every ingredient into a silky smooth dip!

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Hummus
Serves 4
A delicious and healthy chickpea puree dip with sesame paste, lemon and garlic
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 c dried chickpeas (AKA garbanzo beans)
  2. 3/4 c water
  3. 1 small onion, quartered
  4. 1 tsp salt
  5. 1/4 tsp pepper
  6. 1/4 tsp cumin
  7. 1/4 tsp paprika
  8. Juice of 2 lemons
  9. 4-6 cloves of garlic
  10. 1 tbsp olive oil + 1 tsp for drizzling
  11. 2 tbsp of tahini paste (sesame seed butter)
  12. parsley for garnish
Instructions
  1. Sort the chick peas for dirt, stones, or old pieces and wash well. Place chickpeas into pressure cooker and cover with water, about 1 inch above the peas. Add 1 quarter of an onion and cook over high pressure for 1 hour. Do not add salt until after the beans cook. Once done cooking, allow the pressure to release naturally.
  2. Strain the chickpeas and reserve some of the liquid for thinning out the puree (or you could use fresh water).
  3. Pour 1/4 c water or cooking liquid from the chickpeas to a Vitamix blender or food processor. Reserve some whole chickpeas for garnish and add the rest into the blender.
  4. Add Tahini paste, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, and garlic cloves. Pulse to combine all ingredients, then puree on high until the mixture is smooth. If using a Vitamix, it is helpful to use the patented push stick to move everything downward into the blades. Add more water if needed to thin it out. Add the olive oil at the end and pulse again until well combined. Taste and add more lemon or garlic to your preference. I usually have at least 6 garlic cloves in mine because we love the taste!
  5. Spoon the hummus onto a serving platter, carve lines into the top with a fork or butter knife and drizzle olive oil on top. The oil will settle into the lines. Sprinkle paprika, chopped parsley, and arrange the reserved whole chickpeas in the center to garnish.
  6. Serve with cucumbers, or any favorite veggies, pita bread, crackers, or spread onto sandwiches!
Notes
  1. While the chickpeas are cooking, roast a red pepper in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees and add to the blender to make roasted red pepper hummus. Or you could add 1/4 cup cilantro leaves and half a jalapeƱo pepper to make a zesty, spicy green hummus!
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