Thursday, January 3, 2013

Fennel Taco Fiesta! GF, V & BED!


Well, we’re back in the 5-1-3! Here are some things I’m excited about…that the Olympics are coming up soon!! That tomorrow is Friday! Annnnd that Nickelodeon has started playing Friends, and they still have a laugh-track!
so delicious!
Speaking of crazy…can you believe that is the 14th of June already! We’re going to be halfway through tomorrow! Where is the time going?!? Come on, June, slow it down — stay a while:)
fresh and flavorful!
So tonight for dinner, we had a fabulously fresh and delicious meal! I made Fennel, Cucumber & Dill Tacos in Homemade Quinoa Taco Shells! They were so fantastic! Refreshing, crunchy and full of flavor!
crunchy quinoa taco shells!
And they’re gluten free, Body Ecology Diet friendly, and have a Vegan option!
like my make-shift garlic taco prop? :)
Here’s what you need:
Salad:
1 cucumber, sliced in half lengthwise, de-seeded, and sliced thin on a mandolin
1 bulb of fennel, cored, and sliced thin on a mandolin
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced thin
3 green onions, sliced thin
1 avocado, diced
2 Tbsp Fresh dill, chopped
salt and pepper
Dressing:
juice of 1 1/2 lemons
1 tsp EVOO
salt and pepper
Tacos
3/4 cup of quinoa cooked in 1 1/2 cups veg stock
1/4 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg white ((Vegan option: 1 flax or chia egg))
red peppers add a wonderful sweetness!
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Cook your quinoa until it absorbs all the liquid, about 15 minutes. In the meantime, carefully prep your veggies. After you slice your red onion, soak it in ice water for about 10 minutes (this gets rid of that bitter, onion-y bite). Also, after you slice your cucumber, wrap the slices in paper towels and squeeze out the excess moisture. Combine all your veggies, dill, salt and pepper into a medium-sized bowl and toss with the dressing. Place it in the fridge. When your quinoa finishes cooking, fluff it with a fork, and then spread it out on a plate to cool. While it cools, cut 6 medium-sized rectangles out of parchment paper.
fresh out of the oven!
When your quinoa is cool, combine it in a bowl with the egg white, almond flour and salt. Mix well to combine. Divide the mixture into 3 equal portions. Put 1/3 of the mixture onto 1 piece of parchment. Put another piece of parchment on top and spread it out as thin as you can. LEAVE THE TOP PAPER ON…it will be a parchment paper sandwich! Do the same with the other 2 thirds of the mixture. Then, drape the “parchment sandwiches” over the sides of a bread tin, forming a “taco shell!”Bake for 25 minutes. Then, when you take them out of the oven, let them cool on the bread tins, and then carefully peel the parchment off! YUM! Stuff with your salad, and enjoy!
it’s great over fish too!
This salad also was fabulous on top of Lobsta Bakes‘ wild, ocean-caught cod. This delicious fish was succulent and sweet! I broiled it in 1 tsp EVOO, salt, pepper, paprika, and chili powder.
fennel gives it a beautiful anise backdrop!
This meal was just delightful! It exploded with flavor and texture – and the colors popped too! If you’ve never had fennel before, I urge you to try it! Despite it intimidating bulb exterior, it is SO fabulous — it had a wonderful anise flavor — it tastes like licorice!! And it paired fabulously with the bright lemon, and fresh dill. The bell peppers also added a fantastic sweetness, which was perfect with the quinoa’s nutty flavor!
love the red onions and buttery avocado!
Next, the textures were outrageous! The veggies were beautifully crunchy, complimented wonderfully by the creamy and luxurious avocado. It was all brought together by the crunchy quinoa shell! Delicious!
what a plate!
Finally, the colors were just fun!! The soft green cucumbers, red peppers, purple onions,  and lemony-green avocado were show-stopping against the dark quinoa. So beautiful!
yum!!
What’s your favorite summer olympic event? I love the floor routines in gymnastics, and the diving!! They’re an amazing fusion of athletics and artistry!
See ya tomorrow!
Need a mandoline? Here's the one I use...it's great because it has a hand guard:

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