Posts by susanb181

When my partner was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes we learned ways to manage the disease including changing our cooking and exercise habits. I'm writing my blog, "Type2 Delicious" to share with other folks in the same situation, including recipes and tips (not medical information). Enjoy!

IT’S DRIED PERSIMMON TIME!

Delicious Dried Persimmons

It’s definitely fall here in Santa Cruz- although it’s the start of winter in much of the country. Here we don’t get the glorious fall colors of my native Ohio, but we do get gloriously colored fall produce, like the Persimmons. You probably know there are at least two common varieties of this fruit—Fuyu, which can be eaten right away, and Hiyachi, which need to be completely ripe and mushy before eating or cooking in most ways (otherwise they are very astringent, due to their tannin content). However, there’s a great way to use either of these persimmon varieties, especially when not quite ripe- dried persimmons!  That’s the beauty of drying persimmons—it’s actually better when they’re firm. And the astringency somehow goes away.

It’s quite easy—just slice them, put the slices on cookie racks, bake slowly, and Voila—A yummy and healthy snack! Rick also discovered that the dried fruit can be added to hot tea- another delicious way to enjoy them.

INGREDIENTS/Supplies

Persimmons- any variety, especially when still firm; (one tip- drying persimmons takes a lot more than you think- they do dry up!)

Spray oil (your choice- I use TJ’s spray canola oil)

Baking racks- such as for cooling cookies

Cookie baking pans (optional)–you can put the baking racks on top of the cookie sheets/pans if you like, or add the baking racks directly on your standard oven racks.

TO DO ( preheat oven to 180-200 degrees F

1. Cut off stems and Slice persimmons approx. 1/4” thick

2. Spray baking racks lightly with oil

3. Lay persimmon slices on racks so that each slice is touching the rack

4. Bake for 1 1/2 —2hrs. , check if no longer sticky. If they are, bake for another 1/2 hr. (another method is to bake in 100 degree oven overnight- I discovered this by accident as the oven was still hot and I’d left the racks in overnight. I’ve had success with both methods).

Enjoy!

Sliced fresh persimmons on a green cutting surface

Sliced Fresh Persimmons

Sliced fresh persimmons on baking rack

Sliced fresh persimmons on baking rack

Rick eating a dried persimmon and holdin a tea cup with one in the tea

Rick enjoying the results

Cup of tea with dried persimmons in it

A  cup of tea with persimmons in it.

 

Health Benefits of Persimmons

 

www.type2delicious.com

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End of Summer Veggie Salad with Carrots, Avocado & Corn

Salad with Heirloom tomatoes, Avocado, Corn and Sautéed Carrots

Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes, Avocado, Corn and Sautéed Carrots

I’m still in the summer time mood as the weather is still lovely here; high 70’s, warm breezes, and blue blue skies. It makes me crave a salad using produce from my local Farmers’ Market. Stone fruits are on their way out, to my deep regret, but we still get Heirloom tomatoes and fresh corn, plus excellent avocados, a staple in our household. I also had leftover carrots that Rick had sautéed, with some herbs and a bit of cayenne pepper mix. Putting the cool tastes of the tomatoes, lettuce and avocado and the spice of the carrots tossed with a lemon, olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette resulted in a satisfying combo of sweet, tang with a bit of heat.

What is good about this recipe is it’s flexibility–you can use many kinds of produce in the salad, including leftover veggies, such as sautéed carrots, corn, or if you have grilled eggplant, squash, zucchini, or other grilled or cooked veggies, refrigerate; or marinate them in a mix of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then refrigerate, and mix with your favorite greens such as butter lettuce, arugula, romaine or spinach. Add chopped avocado, red onion, fresh herbs and your favorite dressing (mine is a simple blend of olive oil, balsamic vinegar with a squeeze or more of lemon), and your salad is ready.

If you want a heartier dish for lunch, add leftover cooked chicken or salmon, or canned tuna, and you’ve got a great meal. Serve with whole grain crackers or toast and you, your family and guests will be well satisfied!

 

INGREDIENTS (serves 2-3)

  • Lettuce– (I used butter and red leaf)
  • 1-2 Heirloom tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 small or 1/2 large avocado–chopped
  • 1/2 cup sweet corn kernels (I used 1/2 of a leftover corn on the cob)
  • leftover cooked or grilled veggies–sliced carrots, in this case
  • Vinaigrette:
  • 1/3-1/2 C. olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Balsamic vinegar
  • juice of 1/2 fresh lemon (if this is too lemony for you, reduce the amount. I love lemon!)
  • Wisk dressing ingredients together.
  • Let greens sit in refrigerator for at least 15 min before serving–without dressing. *
  • Garnish with fresh chopped herbs, chopped red onion, nuts etc. (your choice!)

* Tip: you can put oil on salad and then refrigerate, but not vinegar or lemon juice as these will cause the greens to wilt. After taking greens out of the fridge, add the dressing. Toss greens with dressing, then add veggies and garnishes–so the they don’t all sink to the bottom as they are heavier than the greens.  Also retain some of the dressing and pour over the top to serve.

Enjoy!

www.type2delicious.com

End of Summer Zucchini and Tomato Sauté

Onions, Zucchini and Tomatos in a pan

End of Summer Vegetable Saute Ingredients

Tomatoes, Zucchini, Onions in a pan

Summer Vegetable Saute

Summer Vegetable Sauté

If you’re lucky enough to have a bounty of tomatoes (my favorite!) and zucchinis, this is a tasty and very easy side dish.

I’m originally from Ohio, and we had great weather for growing tomatoes. Come September, the crop was often still abundant, and we were finally ready to do something besides eat them raw or on BLT’s. After making spaghetti sauce, and perhaps canning, this dish is one of my favorites to serve along side roast chicken and grilled fish.

Basically it’s three main ingredients; chopped onions, zucchini and tomatoes. The cooking is simple–sautéing in stages; you can put this together and serve in less than an hour. It can be cooked in advance, refrigerated and then reheated. (I suggest reheating in a pan–not microwaved.) What’s especially good about this dish is that it combines these wonderful summer vegetables and keeps their fresh tasting integrity, while the combination adds a lot of flavor.

Easy, low carb and very delicious!

INGREDIENTS (serves 3-4 with leftovers)

  • 4-6 diced zucchinis (depending on size and how many you want to make–this is easily doubled)
  • 1/2 -1 cup chopped onions
  • 4-6 tomatoes (again, or more– as many as you want to make)
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • Fresh herbs–thyme, basil, etc. (your choice–I prefer thyme)
  • salt-free seasoning/pepper to taste
  • Optional: a squeeze of lime or lemon juice

TO DO:

1. Chop onions, dice zucchini to approx. 1/2″ pieces, cut tomatoes into quarters, or smaller, depending on the tomato size..

2. Preheat a saute pan to med.high heat, add olive oil

3.  Add the onions and sauce (no cover) for approx 4-5 min. until slightly brown and soft; of course, stirring as they cook.

4. Add zucchini–sauté another 5-6 minutes, until softened (if you like them slightly crunchy, taste for firmness to your taste).

5. Add tomatoes  and sauté another 2-4 minutes, until they are softened and skins separate.

6. Mix all together with herbs and seasonings to your taste, and a few drops of lime of lemon if you like.

Very simple, very fresh tasting–your family and guests will thank you!

Enjoy!

www.type2delicious.com

Summer Squash with Secret Sauce

I posted this last year but have had an abundance of squashes, so thought it is a good idea to post again. We’re still enjoying the last of the summer. (Actually, September/October is our real summer- June, July and August are usually foggy and cool here by the ocean); except this summer which was unusually warm— say global warming anyone?

A mix of squash, onion and ketchup sautéed in pan

Delicious sautéed squash and onion dish

Sautéed squashes and onion with ketchup

German Secret Sauce

Which brings me to this recipe for your remaining summer zucchini/squash harvest – plus what’s still available at farmer’ markets. You can use any type of soft skinned winter squashes just as well. This family favorite is a great side dish for roast chicken, broiled fish or almost anything you serve.

I first enjoyed this recipe when I was visiting my mom’s cousin Erica in LA in the eighties. My mom and her cousins Hans and Erica were born in Germany- escaped here during the war. Erica was an excellent cook. This dish surprised me as I had no idea that the “sauce” was nothing but ketchup, and that ketchup is a mainstay of  German cooking!

This is a very easy to make dish with a rich, satisfying taste. It always comes out delicious. You can use any combination of squash and onions you like.  I make it for company and let them guess what is in the sauce- so far no one has figured it out!  But now you know!

German Squash with Secret Sauce

INGREDIENTS

  • 5-7 squashes- your choice (I like to vary the colors- using yellows and greens)
  • 1 large onion plus 1-2 cippolini onions if you like
  • 1-2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • Salt-free seasoning, pepper; or use salt if you can
  • Fresh chopped herbs- thyme or marjoram are my favorites for this

TO DO: (serves 3-4 or 2 with leftovers)

1. Chop onions into 1/2 “ pieces

2. Chop squashes in approximately 1/2 pieces also- they can be sliced but the way Erica made it they were chopped

3. Heat oil on med high heat in large sauté pan; add onions and sauté until just brown- 5-6 minutes

4. Add squashes to pan, and spices; sauté 3-4 more minutes uncovered- cover for about 5 more minutes til tender

5. Add 1/2 cup ketchup—sauté another 2-3 minutes; taste and add more if you like

That’s it! I’m sure you’ll be surprised at how rich tasting this is! Thanks Erica!

Serve as a side dish; and, as we usually have, a crisp green salad with a tart, lemony vinaigrette–see previous Salad posts for the vinaigrette recipe: Summer Salad with Fresh New Peas and Strawberries

Enjoy!

Summer Salad with Grilled Eggplant, Tomato and Avocado

 

Grilled Eggplant, Tomato and Avocado salad on plate

Delicious Summer Vegetable Salad

 

Fresh Vegetable Summer Salad

I’ve been traveling a lot since December 2017, mainly for family events; but been to Chile, Argentina, NYC, Japan (my daughter and family just moved there in May), Denver/Arches National Park, and LA; (Rick asked if I’m bragging or complaining!)–now finally a breather at home! (Although I must admit it was great to get to eat such different cuisines–see below for photos of two excellent meals we had). Feels so good to enjoy my house and garden! Since I’ve been gone so much, I had no time to plant my usual tomatoes or other veggies. Thank goodness we have excellent Farmer’s Markets here in Santa Cruz.

Recently we had a warm and inviting evening, (it’s often cool and foggy); we decided to grill vegetables. We had several eggplant pieces left over, but not enough for a full portion for each of us for dinner. (Actually, from now on, I’ll grill extra vegetables just to make this salad.)

I put together this simple, fresh and tasty salad, using tomatoes from the local Farmer’s Market and ripe avocado–a staple in our house. Just slice all the veggies, sprinkle lemon on the avocado, make dressing with olive oil and Balsamic vinegar, (for 2 individual salads use approx. 1/3 cup oil to 2-3 Tbsp. vinegar); chill for 1/2 hr. before serving.

If you have fresh chives, parsley, cilantro, or basil, cut pieces of your favorite on top and serve!

Easy, low carb and very delicious!

Grilled Sable Fish with Daikon spear

Grilled Sable Fish with Daikon spear –in Japan

plate of roast chicken and brown rice --

Roast chicken and brown rice — in Argentina

INGREDIENTS (makes 2 individual salads; increase the amounts as needed for more servings)

  • 8-10 pieces of leftover grilled eggplant–(you can use any grilled vegetables of your choice)
  • 1 avocado
  • ]2-3 tomatoes-again, any kind of your choice
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Dressing:
  • 1/3 cup Olive Oil
  • 2-3 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
  • Chopped herbs –your choice (I grow chives all year round so that’s what I use)
  • salt-free seasoning/pepper to taste
  • TO DO
  • 1. Whisk dressing ingredients in small bowl.
  • 2. Wash and slice tomatoes, slice avocado and sprinkle with lemon.
  • 3.  Arrange vegetables on plates
  • 4. Add dressing to each serving. Let flavors meld for about 1/2 hour.
  • 5. Serve for lunch by itself with whole grain crackers or as accompaniment for grilled fish or chicken. (See, I said this was easy!)
  • Enjoy!

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Eggplant Cheese Stacks

stacks of eggplant topped with cheese and marinara sauce

Delicious eggplant stacks!

I’m reposting this eggplant recipe as I just made it again a few nights ago. It had been awhile and I remembered how delicious and easy this is! If you’re a fan of Eggplant Parmesan, but want to lower the calories and carbs, this is for you. The key is baking and not breading the eggplant. We also use non-dairy cheeses but that’s not a carb issue. Also we love eggplant in almost any dish. This is a favorite.

This dish is easy to make; scrumptious, rich tasting and especially satisfying as a treat with good friends; to share with a good glass of chianti and a fresh green salad, such as Persimmon and Endive Salad. 

By the way, Rick is doing very well with his reduced carbs, exercise, including walks after dinner, and lots of veggies and fruits. So far no meds necessary!

Eggplant Cheese Bake (type of Eggplant Parmesan)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-2 eggplants (choose ones that are full and glossy, deep purple colored)
  • 32 oz. jar of marinara sauce (make your own from canned or fresh tomatoes, garlic and olive oil, or buy prepared – I’m a fan of Mezzetta’s sauce for this dish.)
  • 1/2 lb. cheese in slices (we use Dayna’s non-dairy Jack but if no dairy issues use mozzarella or regular Jack)
  • cheese for grating (again, goat Midnight Moon* or regular Parmesan)
  • Optional- 2-3 tsp Breadcrumbs for topping
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil

TO DO:

1. Wash and slice eggplants into 1″ rounds; preheat oven to 400.

2. In a bowl, shake eggplant slices with 1 Tbsp olive oil.

3. Lay parchment on baking sheet and lightly spray with olive oil. Arrange eggplant slices in a single layer on parchment.

4. Bake eggplant for 20 minutes until almost tender.  Remove from oven.

5. In a 9×13 casserole (I use Pyrex); spread about 1/2 cup of marinara sauce.

6. Make a stack base of eggplant in a single layer on top of the sauce, usually 6-8 slices; (depending on the size of your eggplant).

7. Top each eggplant slice (stack base) with a slice of cheese, grated cheese and a dollop of sauce. Stack  remaining slices evenly on the bases, using the same order of ingredients.

8.  Top the dish with remaining sauce, add grated cheese and, if you like, about 2-3 tsps breadcrumbs.

9. Bake for 30 minutes until bubbling and cheese is melted.

Remove from heat and let set for 10-15 minutes. Serve at least one stack per person.

* http://www.cypresscreamery.com

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Super Califragalistic Cauliflower!

Rick and I went to Birba, an excellent restaurant in Palm Springs. It’s a popular place with all outside tables and beautiful lighting, especially enjoyable on a warm night. We loved all the food, but were especially blown away by the cauliflower. It was served whole; twice cooked; boiled first and then baked with cheese. It’s actually quite simple to make and is a wow dish to serve your friends and family as a side dish; (true confession–we usually make one and eat it all ourselves).

I’ve tried to reproduce the dish we had at Birba, but have made my own variation, with more of an Indian spice flavor. You can use other spice combinations that you like, such as Italian seasoning, dill or basil. The main thing is the first steam or boil the vegetable whole, then add seasoning in an olive oil base, grate cheese on top and bake. Looks very elegant and tastes delicious!

Whole Cauliflower with topping of smoked paprika

Cauliflower with smoky paprika

Whole Cauliflower topped with grated cheese

Cauliflower topped with grated cheese

Baked whole cauliflower, topped with melted cheese

Baked cauliflower, ready to be served

 

Twice Cooked Cauliflower (serves 2-3, depending on size of cauliflower) 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Cauliflower (or make two to serve four or more)
  • 1 tsp. Turmeric
  • 1 tsp. Coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. Cumin
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 tsp. capers
  • Smoked Paprika
  • 1/3 cup grated aged goat or cow gouda, or Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • Lemon Pepper
  • Salt-free seasoning, pepper; or 1tsp. salt–your choice
  • TO DO: (Preheat oven to 400 degrees before baking) 

1. Wash and core cauliflower, but leave whole.

2. Boil cauliflower with approx. 3 inches of water, in a 4-6 quart oven proof pot, such as Calphalon, or Corning ware, until still firm, 10-12 minutes (test with knife)

3. Whisk all spice ingredients and capers in olive oil, except for Smoked Paprika.

4. Pour olive oil mixture over cauliflower, getting into crevices. (You can do this in advance–marinate the cauliflower by pouring the mixing over it and letting it sit for an hour or so before baking.)

5. Sprinkle paprika, and grate cheese on top.

6. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until brown and cheese is melted.

Serve as a side dish; and, as we usually have, a crisp green salad with a tart, lemony vinaigrette–see previous Salad posts for the vinaigrette recipe: Persimmon and Endive salad; (can be made with pears, orange/tangerine pieces or even strawberries, depending on the season).

Enjoy!

www.type2delicious.com