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Roasted Sweet Pepper Spread

31 Jul

This recipe turns this weeks abundance of peppers into a household favorite that can be used to compliment sandwiches or as a snack dip!



1 pound sweet peppers

4 garlic cloves, roasted or sautéed

2 teaspoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

1/2 pound feta cheese, optional (can be replaced with additional 1/8 cup olive oil)

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, if desired

1/4 cup olive oil


  1. Roast the peppers by placing them on an open gas flame, turning them frequently with tongs until all sides are charred black, 7 to 10 minutes. Place aside to cool for about 15 minutes. Peel charred material, stems, and seeds from peppers and coarsely chop.
  2. Add garlic and peppers to a food processor and process until smooth. Add feta if desired.
  3. While processor is running, add olive oil, lemon juice, basil, pepper flakes and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Process until smooth.
  4. Use immediately or cool in refrigerator for later use.

FOOD FACT: It’s best to wrap peppers in paper bags and store in the refrigerator to keep their freshness.


Fennel with Garlic, Parmesan, and Pasta

19 May

Fennel in the Fields

What a great, simple recipe! You can cook the sauce is the amount of time water takes to boil. The secret to this recipe is buying a hunk of great Parmesan and grating it yourself. Let me know what you think.

Serves 4


2 Tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
1 bulb of fennel, washed
2 more Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup of Parmesan, grated
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1 pound of pasta
salt and pepper


  1. Bring a pot of water to boil for pasta. Add salt and pasta when the water comes to a boil.
  2. Cut the green stems off of the fennel bulb. You can save green stems for making stock; otherwise compost them. You can use the fennel leaves as a garnish. Roughly chop the fennel. Set aside.
  3. Heat olive oil in medium frying pan. LIGHTLY saute garlic for 2-3 minutes. Do not let it brown. Add the chopped fennel. Saute for 4-5 minutes, until soft. Remove from heat.
  4. Toss fennel mixture with pasta. Add the cheese, lemon zest, and salt to taste. Enjoy!

Collard Greens a la Monsieur Fontaine

12 Apr

We eat this recipe in our house often because it is easy to make, truly yummy, and accompanies meals as a healthy side dish.


Whisk together all of these ingredients and set aside:

Olive oil or Sesame oil for cooking.
1 splash of soy sauce
a touch of maple syrup
Juice of 1/2 lemon lemon-totally squeezed
dash of your favorite hot sauce
1 splash of balsamic
1 splash of vegetable oil (Monsieur’s favorite is Spectrum cold pressed flax seed oil)
You can also add ginger, cilantro, garlic, and sesame seeds, if you’ve got it.


1. Wash the collards. Remove the stems, and chop into strips.

2. Heat the oil in a medium saute pan. Add the collards and cook for 2 minutes. Cook until wilted, but still bright green. Pour on the dressing. Stir well and serve. Enjoy.

Fava Bean Pita Sandwiches with Herb Sauce

5 Apr

Fava beans sauted with onion in olive oil. Photo: MGomez

1/4 cup of olive oil
1.5 lbs fava beans, in pods
1/2 onion, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon
4 pita breads, cut in half
4 lettuce leaves
4 carrots, shredded

Herb Sauce (Shake these together in a glass jar):

1 cup of plain yogurt for serving
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup cilantro (if you have it)
1 clove garlic, minced
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper to taste

1. Shell, blanch, and peel fava leaves.

2. Heat oil in a skillet, add the onion and saute on medum-low heat for 5-6 minutes. Increase heat to medium, add fava beans and cook until slightly browned (about 3 minutes). Add the lemon juice, herbs, salt and pepper. Saute for another minute, then remove from pan and stuff into pitas. Top with lettuce, carrots, and any other salad fixings. Pour yogurt sauce inside of pita. Enjoy!

Carrot Ginger Dressing

29 Mar

I first tried this dressing at a Japanese restaurant in Miami when I was a kid, and have recently perfected the recipe. I love this recipe because it easily turns green leaves into a salad. I also mix it with cooked quinoa for a snack.

Carrot Ginger Dressing. Photo: MGomez

1/4 cup minced shallots
4 carrots
2 Tablespoons lemon
2 Tablespoons of rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon ginger*
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Blend all the ingredients in a blender or food processor.

*If you’re looking for local ginger, go to the Goleta farmer’s markets on Sundays. I always find it there.

Mediterranean Winter Salad

7 Mar

This salad is an excellent way to use a ton of Fairview produce. You can add some chicken breast to this salad to make it a light meal, or serve it as a side dish.

Combine in a bowl:

1 head romaine lettuce, washed and torn into bite size pieces
1 handful of radishes, sliced thin
3/4 cup celery, sliced thin
3 stalks of garlic greens or 6 thin slices of red onion, sliced thin
1 handful black olives, quartered
1 bunch fava bean leaves, torn into pieces
1 bunch carrots, sliced thin
3 leaves of red cabbage, sliced thin
1/2 block feta cheese, crumbed

Whisk together:

Juice of 1 lemon, or 2 Tablespoons of red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon oregano
1/4 cup olive oil (use the bet quality you have)

Toss salad with dressing and serve.

Roasted Beets with Tart Pink Grapefruit Glaze

2 Mar

Roasted Beets with Tart Pink Grapefruit Glaze
Recipe adapted from The Vegetable Dishes I Can’t Live Without by Mollie Katzen

3 lbs beets
1 cup fresh squeezed pink grapefruit juice, OR LEMON JUICE
1 Tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
2 Tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons real maple syrup
1 Tablespoon cornstarch

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Trim the greens from the beets, leaving about 1 inch of the stems. Divide the beets into 2 groups, wrapping each bundle in foil, with about 3 Tablespoons of water. Roast in the center of the oven for up to 1 hour, or until the beets are tender enough to be pierced with a fork. Remove the tray from the oven, open the foil packets. Let the beets cool until you can handle them. Remove and discard the stems and rub off the skins. Cut the beets into thin slices.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the citus juice, vinegar, and maple syrup.
4. Place the cornstarch in a small saucepan and drizzle in the grapefruit mixture, whisking until all the cornstarch dissovles.
5. Place the pan overmedium heat, and heat just until te boiling point, whisking frequently. Turn the heat down and cook, stirring often, for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until thickened and glossy. Remove from the heat.
6. Drizzle the hot glaze over the hot, warm, or room temperature roasted beets, and serve right away.

Yield: 4 -5 servings