Sunday, June 13, 2010

Thrive is Moving

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Millet Polenta with Spinach & Aged Gouda

Recently, I was craving something savory and satisfying yet healthy. I love polenta but so many people are sensitive to corn that I wanted to find a good substitute which was gluten free. This recipe is the answer.

Millet, although considered by many a humble grain, is actually a seed and a nutritional champion. It shares the spotlight with buckwheat & quinoa as being one of the few alkaline forming "grains". Millet does not feed candida, is a good source of fiber, and is a fantastic source of magnesium which helps with migraine headaches, constipation and supports heart health.

For a vegan version of this recipe, omit the gouda and mix in two tablespoons of nutritional yeast flakes after the millet is finished cooking. Bon Appetite!

1 1/2 cups millet*
3 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 cup neutral flavor coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cups chopped fresh spinach
1/2 cup shredded aged gouda

Cook millet with salt, oil, garlic and red pepper flakes in 3 cups water over medium-low heat for approximately 55 minutes, covered, until the consistency of a soft porridge. Stir often.

Remove from heat. Stir in fresh spinach and shredded gouda. Spread millet mixture into a 9-inch ceramic quiche pan and cool completely. Cut into 8 wedges & serve.

*Make sure to soak millet for 8-10 hours and rinse before cooking to remove the phytic acid which can make millet hard to digest and can bind to minerals in the system.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Italian Spring Tabbouleh

As spring is beginning to peek through the final days of our brisk Montana winter, fantasies of light, cleansing salads come into the forefront. Even though it is a little early season-wise for tomatoes and cucumbers, one can find a good, local hydroponic heirloom tomato in this neck of the woods with a bit of persistence. And fresh basil to boot.

For those of you unfamiliar with quinoa, think Peruvian superfood. An excellent source of vegetarian protein, this grain is difficult to match. Quinoa makes a fantastic substitute for couscous or cracked wheat, which is shown in the recipe below. Enjoy!

3 cups cooked quinoa*

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt

1/8 cup white balsamic vinegar or lemon juice

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

2 heirloom tomatoes, medium chop

1 English cucumber, medium chop

Combine olive oil, garlic, salt, basil, and balsamic vinegar or lemon juice. Add cooked quinoa, tomatoes, and cucumber. Toss gently and serve.

* rinse quinoa before cooking to remove any bitter oils present.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tunisian Winter Pumpkin Soup with Whole Grain Spelt Soda Bread

  • As the days turn blustery and chill, I could not resist adding this warming recipe to our collection. There is something about a spicy, pureed soup with fall vegetables which I find especially inspiring at this time of the year. For those of you who need a more mild version, where the spice is concerned, omit the red pepper flakes.
I have included a spelt soda bread recipe as well, the perfect compliment to a steaming bowl of soup. Spelt is a wonderful, heirloom grain related to wheat. This grain is usually well tolerated by those who have a sensitivity to standard wheat.

  • Tunisian Winter Pumpkin Soup

    2 cups onions, chopped
    3 cloves of garlic, crushed
    2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    ½ cup carrots, peeled and sliced
    ½ cup sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced
    1 ½ tsp salt
    2 ½ cups water or light vegetable stock
    1 cup Roma tomatoes, chopped
    1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
    1 tsp ground cumin
    ½ tsp ground nutmeg
    ½ tsp ground cinnamon
    2 tsp paprika
    1 ¾ cups pumpkin, cooked

    • 1/2 cup full fat yogurt, preferably Greek.
    • 1 tsp garlic, minced or pressed
    • 4 tsp ground coriander
    • ¼ tsp ground cayenne
    • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
    • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, minced
    • tsp salt

    In a soup pot, sauté the onions in the oil until they become translucent, about 10 minutes.

    Stir in the garlic, carrots, sweet potatoes, both types of tomatoes, salt and continue to sauté for about 5 minutes.

    Add the water or stock, cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon, and paprika. Cover the pot and bring to a boil; then reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the pumpkin.

    In a blender, pureé the soup until smooth.

    To make the swirl, combine all ingredients.

    Ladle the soup into bowls and top each with some spice swirl.

    Whole Grain Spelt Soda Bread

    2 T extra virgin coconut oil

    2 cups whole grain spelt flour

    2 tsp baking soda

    2 tsp baking powder (non-aluminum)

    1 tsp sea, Himalayan, or Celtic salt

    2 tsp caraway seeds, optional

    1 cup buttermilk

    Preheat oven to 425°F. Oil & flour a loaf pan and set aside. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a medium mixing bowl. Add caraway seeds. Mix in buttermilk until dough pulls together. Transfer to loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool on a rack for 15 minutes before slicing.

    Friday, May 22, 2009

    Nutrition Notes: Health Benefits of Natural Sea Salt

    Confusion abounds concerning salt and the different varieties. Common table salt and processed iodized salt are a far cry from salt in its natural state. Standard table salt is highly refined and chemically treated with aluminosilicate of sodium or yellow prussiate of soda as well as various bleach compounds. Chemical additives such as calcium phosphate and magnesium carbonate are also sometimes blended in to prevent clumping. These processes create a substance which the human body cannot properly assimilate causing problems with edema (water retention). This form of salt will no longer combine with human body fluids and contains only two trace minerals.  Table salt is almost pure sodium chloride along with chemical additives and is completely stripped of essential minerals. This type of salt has been said to cause stroke, high blood pressure, heart attack, kidney disease, and heart failure.

    In comparison, natural, unrefined sea salt is made from either evaporated sea water such as Celtic Sea Salt or, as in the case of Himalayan & Redmond salt, mined from ancient ocean beds. Celtic Sea Salt is harvested off the pristine coast of Brittany, France and contains several trace minerals. Himalayan Salt contains 94 trace elements and is mined from the protected mountains of the Himalaya. Redmond Salt contains over 50 trace minerals and is found in ancient salt deposits deep within the earth in Utah. 

    Sea salt helps to balance blood sugar levels, maintain healthy energy levels, and supports proper brain cell function. In addition, this natural salt encourages a strong immune system and resistance to disease as well as helping to regulate sleep and relieve allergies through a natural antihistamine action.

    In cooking circles, good quality salt is a must. Each natural sea salt has its own color, flavor & character suited to a variety of cooking styles. Celtic, Himalayan, & Redmond salt all have a range of mild sweetness, quite different from the harsh, pronounced flavor of standard table salt. Please note: it is recommended to use natural & unrefined salt at the end of cooking to ensure the delicate flavor & nutrient profile remains intact. 

    A few resources for further information:

    Water & Salt, The Essence of Life
    Barbara Hendel, MD and Peter Ferreira

    Hunger for Salt
    Derek A. Denton

    Sea Salt's Hidden Powers
    Jacques De Langre

    Tuesday, March 10, 2009

    Spicy Tomato & Sweet Potato Bisque

    I first tasted a version of this soup at Whole Foods in the San Francisco Bay Area. It quickly became a favorite, especially in the cool of winter. This bisque also does quite well as a refreshing chilled version during those hot summer months. This is a surprisingly creamy, yet healthy, tomato soup which is simple to prepare. The sweet potatoes add a a bit of balance to the acidity of the tomatoes while also lending a wonderful smoothness. Sweet potatoes have a lower glycemic rating than standard potatoes, an added bonus for those of you watching your carbohydrate intake. Remember, sweet potatoes are white fleshed, while yams are orange. Both work equally well in this recipe. For an added twist, substitute 4 heads of roasted garlic for the onions and add a 1/2 a cup of soft goat cheese before pureeing. Next, stir in 1/8 cup shredded fresh basil. Enjoy!


    1 yellow onion, chopped
    4 sweet potatoes, or yams, peeled & roughly chopped
    1 32 oz. can whole tomatoes
    3 vegetable bouillon cubes (or 8 cups vegetable broth. omit water below)
    8 cups water
    4 tbsp olive oil
    1 tsp Celtic sea salt (or Himalayan pink salt)
    2 tsp ground black pepper
    1 tsp Cayenne pepper

    Saute onion in olive oil over medium heat until golden, approximately 2 minutes. Add sweet potatoes, tomatoes, bouillon cubes, water & salt. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to simmer for 30 minutes or until sweet potatoes are tender. Puree with immersion blender until smooth. Add more water to desired consistency, if needed. Season with black pepper and cayenne.

    Monday, January 26, 2009

    Last Days in San Miguel de Allende

    Thrive meal delivery will be closing in San Miguel de Allende on  January 29th, 2009. We will be offering a special menu on Monday, January 26th-Wednesday, January 28th. The Thrive website will continue to offer healthy living tips as well as a new vegetarian recipe section so please check back often or subscribe. Thank you for all you support over the last eight months and we hope 2009 continues to be filled with health & happiness. 

    Thursday, January 15, 2009

    Nutrition Notes: Tomatoes

    Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, lycopene, and vitamin A. Cooking tomatoes and adding a bit of extra virgin olive oil helps to boost the bioavailability of lycopene, a powerful, fat soluble antioxidant. Researchers believe lycopene helps to protect against prostate cancer, cardiovascular disease as well as preventing sunburn and wrinkles.

    Wednesday, December 17, 2008

    Closed Days in December & January

    Thrive will be closed on the following days:

    Thursday, December 18th through Saturday, December 20th

    Thursday, December 25th

    Thursday, January 1st

    Wishing you a wonderful holiday season &  festive New Year.

    Friday, December 12, 2008

    New VIP Club Member Discounts

    Thrive Gourmet Green Cuisine is pleased to announce that we are now listed with the VIP Club of San Miguel. For VIP Club members, we offer a 10% discount on minimum orders of  $500 pesos. Please visit: for information on membership benefits.