Tahini is made of hulled, lightly roasted sesame seeds ground to a smooth paste, and has been used for centuries as an essential ingredient in many Middle Eastern recipes such as hummus and baba ghannouj. It provides a creamy base for lemon tahini dressing, a recipe I see fairly often but which varies widely from restaurant to restaurant. This version is not only one of my favorites in flavor but is incredibly healthy and simple to make. If raw tahini is used, this can be a completely raw salad dressing.
Rutabagas, also called "swedes" in Europe, or "yellow turnips", are believed to have evolved from a cross between a wild cabbage and a turnip sometime before the 17th century. They became popular in Scandinavia, especially Sweden, due to their ability to thrive in colder climates. In Ireland they were carved with faces for Halloween, and this tradition was brought over to America where, in the absence of rutabagas, Jack-O-Lanterns were carved into pumpkins. Rutabagas were cultivated in America starting in the late 19th century.
Not only are these miraculous seeds useful to replace eggs in baked goods due to their binding properties, but are the most concentrated source of omega-3 fatty acids. They are an abundant source of many other important nutrients, such as B vitamins, manganese, magnesium, fiber, and contain plenty of antioxidants. Nutritionists recommend eating 2-3 teaspoons of flaxseeds daily, though they must be ground for the nutrients to be bioavailable (usually I eat mine on oatmeal or cereal). Flaxseed oil supplements are also available, but they lack the fiber and nutrients of real flaxseeds and are much more expensive.
2 tbs balsamic
1/4 cup red win
2 tbs minced garlic
1/2 cup wter
2 tbs olibe oil
1 tso groung tosemary
2 tsp brown mustard
1/2 tsp salt
4 oz shiitake mushrooms, sliced
Puree all ingredients but mushrooms, until smooth. Marinate mushrooms overnight. Preheat broiler to highest setting. Place mushrooms and a couple spoonfuls of the marinade into a thin roasting pan, and broil 8 minutes or so.
3/4 lb carrots (1 large bunch), diced
1/2 cup brazilnuts, macadamia, or cashew nuts
2 tbs maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup coconut milk or almond milk
Sautee carrots until browned, cover, and cook until very soft and sweet. Puree all ingredients until smooth, adding salt and syrup to taste. Thin with almond milk if needed.
Preheat the oven to 400F.
Prick the eggplant with a fork and place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake for about 40 minutes or until it collapses on itself. Slice it open to cool, and remove the skin of the eggplant with your hands.
Meanwhile, toast the sesame seeds in a saucepan or skillet over medium-high heat, shaking often, until slightly darkened, fragrant, and smoking slightly. Place the seeds, eggplant flesh, lemon juice, oil, water, salt, and cumin in a blender, and blend until smooth. Add garlic and chickpeas and blend, adding water a tablespoon at a time if it is too thick.
Garnish with olive oil, paprika, pine nuts, and/or chopped herbs such as parsley or basil.