Rancho Cielo Chef's New Cookbook Packs in 67 Creatively Healthy Recipes
January 2, 2013
Adrienne Saldivar-Meier is an adjunct chef who helps teach at Rancho Cielo's inspiring Drummond Culinary Academy.
Last month she debuted Lettuce Be the Change Cookbook ($19.99) after Drummond's student cooks helped her develop its five dozen recipes in their kitchen.
Each item—from noodle-less radicchio lasagna to cauliflower-Mexican sausage scrambler—is designed with clever health upgrades in place. Part of the type on the 160-page hardcover reads: “Answering the call for action from America’s First Lady, one chef and one special school come together to change the way the American family eats and cooks!”
The content compensates for the cheesy title—wait, lettuce be a more forgiving species in 2013—with at least five recipes I want to cook tonight, from the pear-ricotta pancakes to the artichoke nachos to the albóndigas soup.
Rancho Cielo Executive Director Susie Brusa’s fave, inspired partly by her low-carb diet: The broccoli slaw, which she uses instead of pasta, and also puts into play with dishes like the broccoli coleslaw tuna salad. She also digs the cauliflower couscous, which supplants starches like rice.
Find info on ordering a book at www.lettucebethechange.com. Below appear a few of its most enticing recipes:
Driscoll’s Healthy Berry Breakfast Salad
Ingredients (Serves 4 to 6) 1 large head butter lettuce or your favorite greens 1 basket fresh Driscoll’s Raspberries or Strawberries 1/4 cup cooked, crumbled turkey bacon Salt and pepper to taste 1 avocado, sliced or cubed (optional)
Breakfast Salad Dressing 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil 1/4 cup fresh orange juice 1/2 tsp. fresh mint leaves, chopped (optional)
Instructions Rinse berries under cold running water and pat dry. If using strawberries, also hull and slice.
Over a medium-sized bowl, tear butter lettuce into bite-size pieces. Add berries, crumbled bacon, avocado (optional), and salt and pepper. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, orange juice, and mint (optional) and whisk.
Drizzle dressing over the salad and toss gently.
Serve alongside your favorite omelet, scramblers, or frittatas.
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Rice
Ingredients (Serves 4 to 6) 1 head Ocean Mist Farms Cauliflower 1 cup diced red bell pepper 3 chopped green onions 1/4 cup chopped parsley 2 Tbsp. salt-free garlic and herb seasoning Garlic salt to taste Cooking spray
Instructions Rinse the cauliflower under cold running water and pat dry. Cut into small pieces.
In a food processor, or using a sharp chef’s knife, finely chop the cauliflower until it is slightly larger than grains of rice. Set aside.
Over medium-high heat, spray a large sauté pan with cooking spray. Add red bell pepper, parsley, and onions; cook until tender. Spray the pan with additional cooking spray, and then add chopped cauliflower. Add seasoning and sauté uncovered until cauliflower is tender (about 15 minutes). The more time you allow the cauliflower to cook, the fluffier it will become.
Note: Cooking the cauliflower uncovered will prevent it from becoming mushy.
Additional note: Get creative with this recipe! Add chopped pineapple, Asian seasoning, and shrimp or chicken for Asian-style rice. You can also use this recipe as a base for Seafood paella—just add saffron, peas, sausage, and seafood!
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Pasta and Sauce!
Ingredients (Serves 8) 1 lb. lean ground beef 1 lb. turkey Italian sausage (bulk or out of casings) 1 12-ounce bag Mann’s Broccoli Cole Slaw 2 carrots, grated 5 garlic cloves, minced 1 large purple onion, chopped 2 8-ounce baskets of sliced mushrooms 2 cups red wine 2 cups port wine 1 Tbsp. sea salt 1 Tbsp. rosemary, chopped 1 Tbsp. fresh sage leaves, chopped 1 Tbsp. ground allspice 3 Tbsp. olive oil 8 cups good quality jarred pasta sauce
Ingredients 2 12-ounce bags Mann’s Broccoli Cole Slaw 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions Microwave one bag of broccoli cole slaw for 5 minutes. Allow to cool and then chop. Set cooled slaw aside.
In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
Immediately add carrots, onions, and garlic to the olive oil, and cook until vegetables are tender. Add meats, mushrooms, and chopped broccoli cole slaw.
After the meats are browned, add the wines. Simmer the mixture until the wine evaporates and the meats are almost dry. Add sea salt, herbs, and allspice.
When meats have started sticking to the pan, add pasta sauce and stir until sauce is hot and flavors blend.
Microwave the two remaining bags of broccoli cole slaw for five minutes each. Pour the vegetables into a pasta bowl. Spoon the sauce over the cooked broccoli cole slaw. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese.
Note: This recipe makes a large pot of sauce, so you can freeze what’s left and use it for another quick and nutritious weekday meal!