My Food Style

Food Decoded: The Unseen Beet


The beet lies quietly ignored between the Swiss chard and parsnips as millions of Americans stroll through the produce section oblivious to this gloriously sweet vegetable. However, the distain by the world comes as a  great surprise to me.  According to my webpage statistics, over 70 countries visit, totaling over 60,000 page views and I was astounded to notice that all of the recipes and blogs containing beets have been entirely disregarded. Seventeen people have visited such content, leaving me no choice but to decode the poor vegetable. I must raise the beet from its apparent ruin and set it upon its rightful pedestal, so you may notice its sweetness.

Beets where first cultivated in the late….blah…blah….blah. Either your mother tried to shove beets down your throat, or you yourself have tried the same. If beets had their own drawer in the refrigerator, they would bunk with the brussel sprouts, and sit below the baking soda. If you were to purchase beets and actually try to eat them, you would notice first, their splendid red flesh. The interior of the beet is loaded with sugar. So much so, that by 1880, 50% of the worlds sugar was derived from beets. As a chef that means one thing…roast them! Anything containing sugar is highly desired, and even better, its sugar is natural. Simply roasting beets at a high temperature will extract their sugar, creating a caramel on the surface and forever changing your culinary experience. Try our roasted beet recipe found in the recipe section.

Raw beet juice is loaded with antioxidants and contains many vitamins and minerals, making it one of the most nutritious vegetables available. Beet juice aids with digestion, cardiovascular health, stress, stamina, skin problems, cholesterol, etc. I do not expect you to ask for beet juice while dining out, but incorporating the juice when cooking is effortless. Try our red pasta sauce found in our recipe section.

Substitute beet greens in any recipe that requires spinach, kale, or collard greens. However, beet greens are high in oxalic acid, which is said to interfere with calcium metabolism, so the greens, should not be consumed in large quantities by osteoporosis sufferers. If you are free of osteoporosis and would like to dine on the luscious greens, I encourage you to try our sautéed beet greens found in our recipe section.

There is no reason why so many should avoid beets at the market. If anything, beets should be nestled between avocados and ice cream, and stored in the refrigerator drawer labeled amazing! I trust this information and encouragement will go a long way in my quest to decode the dreaded beet for you. Therefore, the next time you visit the grocery store, extend your arms and seize the beautiful beet from its pedestal. Your belly will thank me.


More Soup For You!

I am excited for all that comes with the Super Bowl. However, the most entertaining element of Super Bowl Sunday is the commercials. Thirty-second clips packed with innuendos and humor used to disguise the reality that everything’s designed to ruin your waistline, especially all the dense soup commercials. I counted five separate companies advertising five separate incentives to eating their product, such as: daily servings of vegetables, a quarter pound of beef, low sodium, vitamins, and the worst, protein. Soup has lost its purpose and is rarely bubbling on our stovetops. If you ask me I would say soup has lost its raison d’être (reason).

When I was a young, soup was no more than Campbell’s chicken noodle. Was there anything better than those soft noodles caressed so delicately by the sodium enriched chicken base? I confess I loved every spoonful of that heart attack brew.  With a few extra turns of the soupspoon, you could scrape all the fat solidified on the edges of the can and watch as it liquefied in the microwave. Are you disgusted yet? Real soup is meant to warm your soul, fill your belly, and leave you feeling satisfied. To pull off such an experience the ingredients must be fresh, and the cooking process must require more energy than pressing the microwaves quick start button.

Our recipe for Chicken Noodle Soup is the perfect way to enjoy the treats of the past without having to worry about the future. Simply browse our recipe section and enjoy!


No More Naked Greens: Interstitial Cystitis Safe Salad Dressings

Early in my career, I spent too many hours working my way up the ranks, creating thousands of beautiful salad arrangements, snickering every time a chef whispered, “Make love to the salad Daniel, and be gentle with their leaves.” As a result, for years now I have avoided the salad dressing topic with those of you who have Interstitial Cystitis. I have avoided it like the plague. To me building salads and baking cookies had very little in common. You wouldn't have caught me dipping my fingers into a bowl of salad, or licking a spoonful of dressing. Nevertheless, I knew this moment would arrive.

The hard reality is that all salads rely on their salad dressings, and salad dressings rely on their ingredients to produce a crisp or creamy compliment to whatever salad green it is married with. In vinaigrettes the acid cuts the fat, and in creamy dressings the fats mellow the acids. In addition, the acids present in salad dressings prolong the shelf life of the product. All of the salad dressings we know of ride on the coat tails of acids.

Before we continue we must acknowledge a few things.

1. The maximum shelf life of an acid-free salad dressing is 5 days if refrigerated.

2. We cannot re-create Blue Cheese, Red Wine Vinaigrette, or Thousand Island. Reasons being, their main ingredients consist of blue cheese, ketchup, and of course red wine vinegar. All of which cause IC flares.

3. You will have to try your hand in homemade mayonnaise. Trust me; almost every salad dressing contains mayonnaise.

If your browse through the recipe section you can enjoy our many salad dressings. Some of our dressings include: honey, asian, ranch and ricotta dressings.
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