Hearts of Palm Ceviche

Serves 3.

Note: “I used to love fresh fish ceviche but have stopped eating it because of sustainability and health concerns about eating fish,” writes Dan Buettner in “The Blue Zones Kitchen.” “But this recipe brings all of the cool citrus flavor and texture of the traditional ceviche that I used to eat, with none of the health or environmental risks.” Use fresh, canned or jarred hearts of palm. If heat-averse, substitute sweet or mild peppers for habaneros.

• 1 c. hearts of palm, sliced into small rounds (see Note)

• 1 small sweet onion (such as Vidalia), quartered and sliced

• 2 small sweet red peppers, cut into 1/4-in. dice

• 1/4 small habanero pepper, seeded and minced

• 1 tbsp. freshly chopped cilantro

• Freshly squeezed juice of 1 to 2 limes

• 1 tsp. salt

• Freshly ground pepper to taste, optional


In a large bowl, combine hearts of palm, onion, red peppers, habanero pepper and cilantro. Drizzle with lime juice and add salt. Season with pepper, if desired, and serve immediately. Enjoy alone or with popcorn, plantain chips or tortilla chips.


Cornmeal Waffles

Makes 8 waffles.

Note: “These waffles have a complex texture and a complex taste, minus the complex cooking experience,” writes Dan Buettner in “The Blue Zones Kitchen.”

• 1 c. whole wheat or all-purpose flour, or a combination of both

• 1/2. c. cornmeal (use blue cornmeal for a striking presentation)

• 1/2 tsp. baking soda

• 1/8 tsp. salt

• 2 tbsp. sugar

• 2 tbsp. oil

• 1/4 c. applesauce

• 1 1/4 c. almond milk

• 2 tbsp. diced roasted green chiles, optional

• Maple syrup and blackberries for serving

• Cooking spray


In a large bowl, combine whole wheat flour (or all-purpose flour, or a combination of both), cornmeal, baking soda, salt and sugar. Stir in oil, applesauce, almond milk and roasted green chiles (optional) until thoroughly combined.

Preheat waffle iron and spray with oil. Pour batter into preheated waffle iron and cook until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Serve with maple syrup and blackberries.

Sweet Potato-Black Bean Burgers

Makes 4 servings.

Note: “This burger is a longevity powerhouse,” writes Dan Buettner in “The Blue Zones Kitchen.” “Loaded with beans, greens, sweet potatoes and pepitas, it’s the perfect example of a Blue Zones-inspired twist on a classic American comfort food.” To pickle onions, submerge them in white vinegar with a generous pinch of salt for at least 6 hours. From “The Blue Zones Kitchen.”

For patties:

• 1 1/2 c. rolled oats

• 1 c. peeled, mashed and cooked sweet potato

• 1 c. mashed cooked (or canned) black beans

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• 2 tsp. onion powder

• 1 tsp. ground cumin

• 1 tsp. smoked paprika

• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 1/2 tsp. chipotle powder, optional

• Oil for cooking

For sauce:

• 1/4 c. toasted pepitas (raw pumpkin seeds)

• 1/4 c. good-quality salsa verde

For burgers:

• 1 avocado, sliced

• 4 whole-wheat buns

• 1/2 c. loosely packed sliced kale

• Thinly sliced raw onion, raw or pickled


To prepare patties: Pulse raw oats in a food processor until coarsely ground, and reserve.

In a large bowl, combine sweet potato, black beans, salt, onion powder, cumin, paprika, pepper and chipotle pepper (optional), then incorporate the ground oats. Let mixture sit for 5 minutes to allow flavors to marry, then form mixture into 4 patties.

In a skillet, heat a thin layer of oil over medium heat. Add the patties and fry on both sides until crisped, about 4 minutes per side.

To prepare sauce: In a food processor or blender, purée pepitas and salsa verde, and reserve.

To prepare burgers: Mash the avocado and spread into the bottom of each of the 4 buns. Add patties and top each patty with pepita sauce, kale and red onion, then add the tops of the buns.