Valentine’s Day also coincides with February’s heart health awareness! So, you can be rest assured that the following recipes are tasty, healthy, sexy, and they will be sure to make your lover’s heart skip a beat, in a good way. 😉 …and no one will judge if you have dessert FIRST!
The following is a suggested meal planned with all things red, so I hope they make your heart happy and your Valentine’s Day HOT!
Tomato Basil Soup (emulsion blender suggested)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can ground peeled tomatoes
5 cups vegetable stock
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic (crushed)
Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 10 minutes. Don’t overcook garlic. Next, add the tomatoes and the stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until soup is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the basil. Place the pot of soup directly in sink, and using an emulsion blender, blend until smooth. Drizzle with olive oil and serve hot.
Heart Beet Salad (heart-shaped cookie cutter needed)
3 large beets, scrubbed, not peeled
1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp. EVOO
3-4 fresh basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
1 head romaine lettuce, washed and dried
1 handful baby spinach leaves, washed and dried
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 tart apple, peeled, cored and chopped
2 oranges (preferably blood oranges)
1/3 cup raw walnuts, chopped
Preheat oven to 450. Wrap the beets in foil or parchment paper and place on the oven rack. Roast the beets until they are tender; about 60-75 min. Set aside and let cool completely.
Prepare dressing: whisk together the balsamic vinegar, EVOO, and basil leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
When beets have cooled, use the back of a paring knife to peel off the skins. Lay each beet on its side and cut into 1/4 in slices. Use the cookie cutter to make heart-shaped cutouts. You can juice the scraps or use them to snack on another day, if you’d like!
Cut or tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces, then place the lettuce, spinach, celery and apple into a large bowl. Cut the orange in half and score as you would a grapefruit, then spoon out the orange segments into the bowl. Squeeze the remaining orange juice into your dressing and whisk to combine.
To serve immediately, toss the salad with the dressing, then arrange on plates topped with the heart beets and walnuts.
*Recipe borrowed from the book Vegan Lunchbox
Please be Mine Penne with Coconut Vodka Sauce
1 box penne shaped quinoa pasta (cook according to directions on box)
Coconut Vodka Sauce
1/2 cup unrefined, virgin coconut oil, melted
1 large onion, finely minced
1 cup vodka
2 28-oz. cans diced organic tomatoes
1 14-oz. can of full fat (not light) coconut milk
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Heat coconut oil in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Saute onions until softened and golden. De-glaze with the vodka, stir well, and let cook for 10 minutes. Add in canned tomatoes, juice and all, stir and bring the mixture up to a rapid bubble. Reduce the heat to medium-low to keep the sauce at a steady, low simmer, and cook for an additional 30 minutes. Pour in coconut milk and cook for 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer half of the sauce to a blender and puree, or use your emulsion blender until it reaches your desired consistency. Best left a little chunky.
Serve over penne pasta warm. Can add fresh basil or red pepper flakes to garnish.
*Coconut Vodka Sauce recipe borrow from Bittersweet (blog page)
Cheeky Cherry Chocolate Mousse
1 cup fresh organic cherries (or frozen)
¼ cup dates, loosely chopped
¾ cup young coconut meat (you can get coconuts from your favorite health food store or most Asian markets carry them, and you can also Youtube how to cut them open and get the meat out)
½ cup young coconut water
2 tablespoons raw cacao powder
In a blender or food processor, blend all the ingredients together, except the cherries. Once smooth, add the cherries and pulse briefly, but keep a bit chunky. Dish into bowls garnish and with cacao nibs. Serve immediately.
Wishing you all a very happy Valentine’s Day from Healing Thru Food!
If you are interested in health or nutrition coaching and want to enjoy recipes such as these on a daily basis, contact me to get started at firstname.lastname@example.org or (323)905-4483!