Meadowood Garden Beet Salad

Meadowood Garden Beet Salad

As you know,  I love food and travel, so I am really excited about this new book! Admired for its long tradition of gracious hospitality inspired by local cuisine and culture, Relais & Châteaux presents “The Art of Entertaining,” its first book dedicated to sharing the secrets to crafting outstanding parties and events nuanced to replicate unforgettable experiences at home.  Set for an October 2016 release from Rizzoli New York, the compilation brings to life 17 seasonal parties from Relais & Châteaux members across North America. Each chapter is designed to celebrate the senses in a unique environment with exquisite food and cocktail recipes, creative décor and the thoughtful, creative touches for which Relais & Châteaux is renowned.

Cover_Art of Entertaining

In this gorgeous new book, some of North America’s most renowned chefs and innkeepers share their thoughts, recipes and secrets for successful entertaining at home to inspire readers.

With 85 Relais & Châteaux properties located throughout the U.S., Mexico, Caribbean and Canada, the opportunities to share entertaining tips, tricks and expertise are endless. The themes featured within this first book are hinged on delicious gourmet recipes that can be easily executed. You’ll also new ideas for tablescapes and décor from the beautiful backdrop of the legendary Relais & Châteaux venues.

This Meadowood Garden Beet Salad is one of Meadowood’s favorite dishes during the summer harvest season. The beets can be small heirloom varietals of all colors and stripes (literally). Chef Alejandro Ayala recommends taking some artistic license with the presentation; he cuts the beets into various shapes as well as paper-thin cross sections. The salad is at once both bright and earthy, and the pistachio “soil” is an unexpected, at-home, twist.

Banana Honey Muffins

Banana Honey MuffinsIf you’re wondering what to do with leftover bananas, these Banana Honey Muffins are for you. At my house, we go through bananas like monkeys, but my neighborhood grocery store often packages overripe bananas and marks them way down. I typically freeze them for smoothies or smoothie bowls, or often make my famous One Bowl Banana Bread recipe (which is made with nonfat Greek yogurt). My husband found a recipe for Honey Banana Muffins so he and my daughter made these yesterday. They are not too sweet, light and fluffy, and they make a wonderful morning or afternoon snack or light breakfast idea with a cup of coffee. My husband likes them drizzled with honey over the top 🙂

Bananas are naturally fat and cholesterol free. Bananas well known for their high potassium content, with over 400 mg potassium in a single medium-size banana (this is great for muscle function and providing a healthy balance of fluids in the body). Bananas are also easy to digest and a good source of vitamin C, fiber and B6 vitamins.  Did you know you can use mashed bananas as a substitute for some or all of the butter or oil when making cookies or some baked goods? This recipe is going to be a keeper when school starts, so enjoy!

Banana Honey Muffins

Healthy Breakfast Popsicles

healthy breakfast popsicles

We make smoothies and smoothie bowls almost every single day. My daughter, Leigh, turned one of our favorite simple and healthy smoothie recipes into popsicles to create these Healthy Breakfast Popsicles. All you need is five simple ingredients including the chocolate flavored Dynamic Fruit & Greens which is a blend of organic vegetable such as kale, kelp, Chlorella and turmeric that adds antioxidants as well as an amazing chocolate flavor (if you’re a Lifetime Fitness member, they sell it at the facility).

When frozen, remove from the popsicle molds and sprinkle with additional oats and chia seeds. Trust me, you’ll love these!

Kale Guacamole

Kale Guacamole

I had a great time last weekend at Lake Austin Spa Resort where I was teaching smoothie bowl classes promoting my latest cookbook 200 Best Smoothie Bowls. I also had the amazing opportunity to workout, take a mediation for clarity class, try hydrobikes and experience amazing spa treatments and of course, food. The food at this Texas spa is out of this world with so many clever, creative and healthy combinations. The first night they had “Kale Guacamole” on their menu for an appetizer. They didn’t have the recipe, but I came home and recreated it tonight. My husband said, “It tastes just it.” This recipe is classic guacamole recipe with kale added. Why did I not think of that?

Alison Lewis

Homemade Pesto

Homemade Pesto

As you might have seen from my last post, I am up to my ears in fresh herbs (which is such a good thing)! I have been making this Homemade Pesto recipe lately on a weekly basis to go over pasta, served alongside grilled chicken or shrimp or as a topping to fresh salmon. This recipe is so easy to make—my fifteen year-old, Zachary made this batch for me. Toss fresh basil, garlic, Parmesan, olive oil, salt and a touch of a fresh lemon juice in a blender or food processor. It’s that easy!

Similar to cilantro, basil if filled with many health benefits including helping to rid of acne, help replenish iron and more. Basil is a good source of vitamin A and can help with cardiovascular health. Basil is also an anti-inflammatory food so it can also help individuals with inflammatory health problems such as rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel conditions. Try this recipe and enjoy fresh basil all summer long.

DIY Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

I am really into making homemade fresh salad dressings this summer. When I was out of town last month in Cabo, I came home and my husband had planted various hanging fresh herb baskets in our backyard. Needless to say I was beyond excited, and this DIY Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette recipe will be the first of many recipes including fresh herbs in the coming months. This vinaigrette can be drizzled over salads, fish tacos, seafood, pork and chicken. We served it last night over a big mixed salad with grilled shrimp, and it was divine! If you want to grow your own cilantro this summer, it’s super easy. It just needs good sunlight and water almost every day.

fresh cilantro

Fresh cilantro is very low in calories, and its green leaves contain  antioxidants, vitamins, and dietary fiber, which may help reduce the “bad” cholesterol levels in the blood. It’s also high in potassium, calcium, folate, Vitamin A and Vitamin C. It’s also said to be a detoxifying food.

 

Skillet Blueberry Crisp

Skillet Blueberry Cobbler

Blueberries are at their peak season right now with most grocery stores selling them buy one get one free. I made this Skillet Blueberry Crisp on Sunday night, which only takes 10 minutes of preparation time. It’s so easy, healthy and tastes fantastic! My husband said this blueberry crisp was so good that it did not even need vanilla ice cream (or frozen yogurt to top it off). If you have some on hand and want that cold and warm temperature combination, feel free to add it. I used my 61/2-inch cast-iron skillet, but if you only have the larger one, you can double the recipe. Blueberries are also healthy for you. In only 80 calories per cup and virtually no fat, blueberries offer many nutritional benefits. They are packed with Vitamin C and are a good source of manganese (which is important in bone health). Blueberries have antioxidants that can improve vision and promote quicker adjustment of the eyes to darkness. They can also improve memory and reduce the risk of infections. They have high levels of compounds that help widen arteries and can help blood flow. Blueberries are also a good source of fiber, and they have phytonutrients that protect cells from damage. This recipe is great to serve to kick off summer, and it will be awesome to serve on Memorial Day and Fathers’s Day too!

5 Healthy Dinner Recipes

Greek-Style-Pork

May is a wonderful time of year for grilling and cooking fresh, flavorful heathy dinner recipes. This Greek style pork recipe can be made in a flash—it takes only 26 minutes to prepare! I love using boneless pork loin chops because they cook quickly, are low in calories and fat, and pair with a myriad of flavors, toppings and accompaniments. The recipe for Greek Style Pork Chops can be found on SC Johnson. I am so lucky to be one of their content bloggers, and I wanted to share with you 5 healthy dinner recipes that are easy, fantastic, family-approved and delicious.

Skillet-Lasagna

Skillet Lasagna on SC Johnson

In this recipe, I used oven-ready noodles so no boiling is needed. Make sure to break them into pieces so when you layer the lasagna, they are close together but do not have to touch. My son, Zachary said this is one of his favorite lasagna recipes.

salmon asparagus foil packets

Salmon Asparagus Foil Packets on SC Johnson

There are several ways to cook this recipe. Personally, I love to cook on the outdoor grill, but you can also cook indoors in your oven. Feel free to substitute any of your favorite vegetables or herbs and to sprinkle a tablespoon of shredded Parmesan or crumbled feta cheese over the top to make this recipe your own.

Caprese Panini

Pesto Caprese Panini on SC Johnson

These easy Panini sandwiches that are simple to prepare and full of flavor. Serve on ciabatta bread, an Italian white bread that is now more commonly found in your grocery store’s bakery.

Salmon Kale Pasta

Salmon Kale Pasta on SC Johnson

Prepared with fresh kale, tomatoes, chives and basil, this recipe incorporates fresh ingredients to flavor this simple dish.

Quinoa Bowl with Almonds and Raspberries

Quinoa Bowl with Almonds and Raspberries

Quinoa for breakfast? Yes, have your tried it? Breakfast Bowls are so hot right now, and this Quinoa Bowl with Almonds and Raspberries is one of my favorites! This gluten free breakfast option is filled with fiber, protein and healthy vitamin and minerals. This recipe is great to make and serve when you and your kids are tired of cereal and oatmeal or want something unique, delicious and different. Feel free to make the quinoa the night before, and breakfast will be ready in the morning. Warm up the cooked quinoa and add your favorite milk and toppings. If you’re looking for a other fabulous breakfast bowl recipes try my Quinoa with Apples and Cranberries

quinoa with apples and cranberries

Chia Yogurt Breakfast Bowl from A Zesty BiteChia-Yogurt-Breakfast-Bowl-2

Savory Pesto Quinoa Bowl from Simple Quinoa

pesto-quinoa-breakfast-bowls-4