Fresh herbs can make any meal feel like you have just eaten at a 5-star restaurant. They impart a special quality to a dish. Excess salt and chemicals like MSG, can easily be substituted with herbs for delicious flavor. Since fresh herbs can be pricey in the grocery store, I grow my own. In the winter, they sit on my windowsill. During the warmer months, I take them out to plant in my garden. In my kitchen garden you will find chives, dill, cilantro, basil, oregano, mint, parsley, rosemary and thyme. This week I am going to feature dishes that use fresh herbs from my garden.
Also, as I mentioned in last week’s MENU PLAN, I will also be featuring dishes that contain the micro-nutrient that will be featured in this week’s InCYST’s Nutrition 101 Blog Post. To learn more about Vitamin B3, otherwise known as Niacin, be sure to visit inCYST and then try some of my recipe suggestions that all feature ingredients that contain Niacin.
MEATLESS MONDAY Quinoa Tabbouleh and Hummus I always serve this over a bed of leafy greens with pita triangles. My kids love to make their own “sandwiches” off of their plates. Parsley and mint are picked fresh from the garden and the carrots, chickpeas, leafy greens and quinoa all high in niacin.
TUESDAY Grilled Chili-Lime Chicken with Strawberry Avocado Salsa with Grilled Sweet Potato and Scallion Salad I will be using cilantro and parsley tonight from my garden. The chicken, sweet potatoes and avocado all contain Niacin. I will only make half of the dressing that the recipe calls for in the sweet potato salad as recommended by reviewers.
WEDNESDAY Caprese Wraps with Chicken What is not to love about a classic mozzarella, basil and tomato salad as a wrap? Since I try to avoid gluten, I will either use brown rice wraps or just serve as a salad over leafy greens and increase the amount of dressing. I find it strange that the recipe calls for white vinegar because this dish is always made with balsamic vinegar which I will use instead. The basil will come from my garden (and possibly add some chives) The chicken and tomatoes are high in Niacin.
THURSDAY Grilled Pork Chops with Garlic Lime Sauce with Black Bean and Tomato Quinoa I may substitute brown rice for the quinoa since it was on the menu earlier in the week. The cilantro will come from the garden. Pork, black beans, brown rice and tomatoes are all high in Niacin.
FRIDAY Salmon with Lemon Capers and Rosemary with Grilled Asparagus , Summer Squash and Portobello Mushrooms– I will pick some fresh rosemary, as well as a mix of herbs for the veggies. The asparagus, squash and mushrooms will be marinated for a few hours in some vinaigrette dressing with some fresh herbs. Then I will grill until just soft. If you don’t care for veggies, I bet you will like them grilled this way! The salmon, mushrooms and asparagus are all high in Niacin.