Recipes: Mediterranean Dietworthy

  • Updated: March 6, 2013 - 12:46 PM
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Photo credit: Patrick Onofre. Creamy Hummus from “Kitchenability 101: The College Student’s Guide to Easy, Healthy, and Delicious Food,” by Nisa Burns.

Creamy Hummus Dip

Makes 2 cups.

Note From “Kitchenability 101: The College Student’s Guide to Easy, Healthy, and Delicious Food,” by Nisa Burns.

1 (16-oz.) can cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained

• 2 fresh garlic cloves

• 3 tbsp. lemon juice

• 1/4 c. tahini (sesame seed paste)

• 1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• Salt and black pepper to taste

• Pita bread or cut vegetables for dipping.

Directions

Combine the chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, salt and pepper in a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth.

Serve the hummus with pita bread or assorted veggies, such as carrots, celery, cucumbers, or green or red bell peppers.

Nutrition information per ¼ cup serving:

Calories 190 Fat 14 g Sodium 63 mg Saturated fat 2 g

Carbohydrates 13 g Calcium 53 mg

Protein 5 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 bread/starch, 3 fat.

White Bean Salad

Serves 6 to 8 as a starter.

Note: A beautiful salad for spring gatherings. From “American Grown,” by Michelle Obama.

• 1 c. dried small white beans, such as cannellini or Great Northern, or 1 (15-oz.) can

• 1 garlic clove

• 1 bay leaf

• 1/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• 1/2 tsp. grated lemon zest

• 1 tbsp. lemon juice

• 1/2 tsp. honey

• 1 tbsp. chopped shallot

• 1 c. snow peas or sugar snap peas

• 1/2 bunch fresh chives, chopped

• 5 mild radishes, thinly sliced

• 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil

Directions

If you’re using dried beans, first rinse them, picking out any stones, and then place them in a bowl. Cover with cold water and soak for 8 hours or overnight, then drain beans and place in a pot. Add garlic and bay leaf and enough water to cover beans by at least 1 inch. Bring to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until beans are tender, about 1 hour.

In small bowl, combine olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, honey and shallot to make vinaigrette. Whisk to combine.

When beans are done, drain well and place in medium bowl. Discard bay leaf and garlic clove. Add one third of vinaigrette to warm beans and toss; then let stand for 15 minutes, tossing occasionally. If using canned beans, rinse and drain them and then toss with vinaigrette.

In small pot of boiling water, cook snow peas for 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, place in bowl of ice water. Drain, pat dry and thinly slice.

In large salad bowl, place cooled beans, snow peas, chives, radishes and basil. Pour remaining dressing over and toss lightly. Serve immediately.

Nutrition information per each of 8 servings:

Calories 147 Fat 7 g Sodium 5 mg Saturated fat 1 g

Carbohydrates 16 g Calcium 60 mg

Protein 6 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 4 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 bread/starch, ½ lean meat, 1 fat.

Broiled Trout With Tomato and Red Onion Relish

Serves 4.

Note: From “The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook,” second edition.

• 3 c. cherry tomatoes, halved

• 1 tsp. olive oil

• 1/4 c. chopped red onion

• 1/4 c. balsamic vinegar

• 1 tsp. light molasses

• 1 tbsp. grated lemon zest

1 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper

• 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

• 4 trout fillets (5 oz. each)

Directions

Preheat boiler. Position rack 4 inches from the heat source.

Arrange the tomatoes cut side down on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Broil until skins wrinkle and begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Set aside and leave broiler on.

In nonstick frying pan, warm olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add vinegar and molasses and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until slightly reduced, about 2 minutes. Add broiled tomatoes, lemon zest, parsley, 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Remove from heat, set aside and keep warm.

Lightly coat broiler pan with olive oil cooking spray. Sprinkle thyme and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt over fillets and place on the prepared pan. Broil until fish is opaque throughout when tested with tip of a knife, about 5 minutes. Transfer to dinner plates and serve topped with warm tomato relish.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 270 Fat 11 g Saturated fat 2 g

Sodium 380 mg Carbohydrates 11 g Calcium 90 mg

Protein 31 g Cholesterol 82 mg Dietary fiber 2 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, ½ other carb, 4 lean meat.

Braised Swiss Chard and Cannellini Beans

Serves 6.

Note: Look for young, tender bright-green Swiss chard leaves with thin stalks for this Tuscan recipe, which can be served immediately after it’s made, or reheated after a few days in the refrigerator. It also freezes well. Not enough time to home-cook the beans? Buy them canned (use two or three 15-oz. cans, rinsed and drained, for this recipe). From “Lidia’s Favorite Recipes,” by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and Tanya Bastianich Manuali.

• 1/2 lb. dried cannellini beans (see Note)

1 tsp. coarse sea salt or kosher salt, or to taste, plus 1/2 teaspoon for cooking dried beans

• 2 lb. big unblemished Swiss chard leaves

• 6 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, or more to taste

• 4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced

• 1 tbsp. tomato paste

• 1/2 tsp. hot red pepper flakes, or to taste

1 c. canned Italian plum tomatoes (prefereably San Marzano), crushed by hand

Directions

Rinse the beans, and put them in a bowl with cold water to cover by at least 4 inches. Let soak in a cool place for 8 hours or overnight. Drain beans and transfer to large saucepan with fresh cold water to cover by a few inches. Bring to boil, partically covered, and cook beans about 40 minutes, until tender but not mushy. Turn off heat and stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt; let beans cool to absorb cooking liquid and seasoning. Taste, and adjust salt if needed.

Bring 6 quarts water to boil in stockpot. Meanwhile, clean Swiss chard leaves and cut off stems (save for use in a soup later, if desired). Slice leaves crosswise every 2 inches or so, into long strips. When water is boiling, drop in all sliced chard at once. Bring water back to boil and cook chard, covered, for about 15 minutes, until thoroughly tender — check piece with a thick middle vein to be sure. Drain cooked chard well in colander. Drain beans.

Heat 1/4 cup olive oil and sliced garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until garlic is sizzling, about 2 minutes. Drop tomato paste into clear spot in the pan, stir and toast it for a minute. Toast red pepper flakes in a cleared hot spot, too, then pour in crushed tomatoes and stir everything together. Bring tomatoes to boil, and spill in the beans. Stir, season with salt, and bring back to simmer, stirring occasionally. Stir in chard and bring to boil over high heat. Cook rapidly for a couple of minutes to reduce liquid, tossing beans and greens over and over. As juices thicken, drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil all over, toss it in with the vegetables, and simmer for another 2 or 3 minutes, until most of liquid has evaporated.

Serve right away, or refrigerate to reheat later.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 270 Fat 14 g Sodium 806 mg Carbohydrates 28 g Saturated fat 2 g

Calcium 107 mg Protein 10 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 8 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 1½ bread/starch, ½ lean meat, 2½ fat.

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