Fresh - Donal Skehan and Roots - Stephanie Pedersen

Today, I have two great books to share with you both from Sterling/Sterling Epicure - publishers of books geared toward feeding our need to be entertained, inspired and to create. After you read about these titles, be sure to head over to our contest page to enter a giveaway to win one of three sets of these cookbooks. 
First up we have, Fresh: Simple, Delicious Recipes to Make You Feel Energized! by Donal Skehan which delivers healthy, fresh recipes that are as nourishing and energizing as they are delicious. Television and YouTube sensation, Skehan, believes in maximizing health and energy through the enjoyment of flavorful, nutrient-packed food.

This is another one of those books that is incredibly beautiful and if you didn't check out the cover you wouldn't know that the recipes are geared toward healthy eating. Nutty Chicken Satay Salad, Thai Minced Chicken Salad, Rosemary Beef with Horseradish Sauce and Fennel Salad, Sticky Toffee Pudding with Roasted Figs and so many other recipes that will make eating thoughtfully totally delicious. The Sticky Sesame and Sriracha Chicken with Chopped Salad is on my menu this week. I'll come back and share a photo. 

Special thanks to the publisher and author for sharing this recipe for Mini Quinoa, Pea and Zucchini Cakes.

Mini Quinoa, Pea and Zucchini Cakes

These light but zesty cakes can be used in salads, wraps, and lunchboxes, so it is a good idea to make up two batches, as they freeze extremely well. I serve them with a vibrant, minty salsa verde, a classic Italian sauce that complements the zucchini and peas. Serve it with a lightly dressed arugula salad and it makes a light lunch or a robust appetizer.

Serves 6

1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 zucchini, coarsely grated
3½ oz frozen peas, defrosted
6 tbsp pumpkin seeds
3 tbsp flax seeds
1 x 14-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Zest and juice of ½ lemon
3 scallions, finely sliced
7 oz cooked quinoa
Small handful of basil, chopped
Small handful of mint, chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the salsa verde

6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for dressing the salad
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
|2 garlic cloves
3 anchovy filets
1 tbsp capers, drained and rinsed
Handful of flat-leaf parsley
Large handful of mint leaves
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper 

To serve

3 large handfuls of arugula
½ lemon

1. Preheat the oven to 400˚F (350°F fan).

2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat and fry the garlic and onion for 4-5 minutes, or until softened. Add the zucchini and fry for a further 5 minutes until softened. Just before the zucchini are cooked, add the peas and stir through. Set the cooked vegetables aside to cool completely in a large mixing bowl.

3. In a food processor blend together the pumpkin seeds and flax seeds until they are finely ground. Add the chickpeas, lemon zest and juice, and blend again until smooth.

4. Transfer the mixture to the cooked vegetables in the bowl, along with the scallions, cooked quinoa, basil, and mint. Season with salt and pepper and mix until all the ingredients are evenly combined. If the mixture looks too dry, loosen with 1-2 tablespoons of cold water.

5. Using your hands, form the mixture into golf ball-sized balls and then press into ¼-in-thick patties. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown.

6. Blend all the ingredients for the salsa verde in a food processor until smooth. Transfer to small individual serving dishes.

7. Dress the arugula with a squeeze of lemon juice, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and some salt and pepper; toss to coat. Serve the mini cakes with the salsa verde and dressed arugula.

Reprinted with permission from Fresh ©2017 by Donal Skehan, Sterling Epicure. Photography by Donal Skehan.

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Next we have, Roots (Superfoods for Life series): The Complete Guide to the Underground Superfood by Stephanie Pedersen which shares 75 delicious and nutritious recipes for root vegetables. From the humble potato to beets, carrots, and yucca, root vegetables are packed with nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants. Plus, they're easy to prepare, readily available, inexpensive, and a treat to eat. Pedersen's latest book in Sterling's Superfood for Life series shows how to transform these nutritional powerhouses into tasty snacks, treats, smoothies, juices, meals, and desserts, as well as beauty products. It provides the latest research on these vegetables' health benefits, along with helpful sidebars, interesting trivia, FAQs, and eight pages of beautiful color food photography. Featured roots include: beets, burdock, carrots, yucca, celeriac, jicama, parsnips, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, salsify, sweet potatoes, sunchokes, turnips and more. 

Rutabaga Fries, Sweet Potato and Black Bean Breakfast Wraps, and Warm Root Salad are a few of the recipes in this collection that can help us be more creative with our menus. I am a huge fan of root vegetables and find myself doing the same old thing - roasting turnips, parsnips, carrots etc. I look forward to experimenting with Stephanie's recipes and also appreciate that she includes purchasing guidelines and nutritional information. 

Thanks again to our publisher and author for sharing this Carrot Cake Muffin recipe with our readers. 

Carrot Cake Muffins


Muffins and root veggies are longtime friends. Make this recipe as written with grated carrots, or try sweet potatoes, parsnips, beets, or a combination of the three. Also feel free to substitute a cup of carrot, sweet potato, or parsnip puree for the applesauce. Enjoy!

Note: This recipe makes about 18 muffins; you can purchase 18-cup muffin tins.

2 cups spelt or white wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
3 large carrots, shredded (about 2 cups)
1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 cup thick applesauce (or pureed sweet potato, pumpkin puree, or mashed banana)
¼ cup maple syrup, amber or dark
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1⁄4 cup liquid coconut oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Prepare a muffin tin with paper cups. Set aside.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, carrots, and walnuts until well mixed. Set aside.

4. In a small mixing bowl, combine the applesauce, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, and coconut oil. Stir until smooth.

5. Add the applesauce mixture to the flour mixture and stir only to combine. A few unblended lumps of flour are fine. Too much mixing makes a tough muffin!

6. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin cups, filling the cups about halfway.

7. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops begin to crack and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

8. Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a baking rack.

Reprinted with permission from Roots  © 2017 by Stephanie Pedersen, Sterling. Photography by Bill Milne.

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  • lgroom  on  6/12/2017 at 5:14 PM

    Jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes) grow wild on my family's farm so I'll have to try any of the sunchoke salad recipes.

  • jr0717  on  6/12/2017 at 10:53 PM

    The Root Buddha Bowl sounds like the perfect meal after a long day...a hug in a bowl. Definitely a must try - though both books look wonderful!

  • dbielick  on  6/13/2017 at 7:03 AM

    Carrot cake waffles

  • Nasus  on  6/13/2017 at 11:42 AM

    Looking for new ways to use sweet potatoes and other root vegetables, so would use Roots first.

  • Siegal  on  6/13/2017 at 1:30 PM

    I want to make the carrot cake waffles in roots also!

  • lebarron2001  on  6/14/2017 at 10:40 AM

    Carrot Cake Muffins

  • PennyG  on  6/16/2017 at 5:42 PM

    Zaatar Quinoa Poached Eggs sounds interesting. Mr. PennyG loves poached eggs - this sounds like a good way to change them up!

  • cocecitycook  on  6/17/2017 at 6:32 AM

    Carrot cake waffles, yummmm!

  • RSW  on  6/18/2017 at 2:44 PM

    Carrot cake waffles

  • JenJoLa  on  6/19/2017 at 9:24 PM

    The Carrot falafel balls in Roots sound delicious.

  • abihamm  on  6/27/2017 at 5:46 PM

    Roast chicken and root vegetables with mustard-rosemary sauce

  • Teruska  on  6/28/2017 at 7:43 AM

    Roasted sweet potato salad with chipotle vinaigrette to go with one of the chicken dishes.

  • eggplantolive  on  7/1/2017 at 5:22 PM

    mega beet burgers

  • motherofpearl81  on  7/5/2017 at 8:40 AM

    I am most excited about the Roots book. I would be so very grateful to win!

  • bonita7878  on  7/7/2017 at 4:40 PM

    The Roots has quite a lot of juice and smoothie recipes but, I would go for the Turnip latkes ~ yummmm

  • annieski  on  7/9/2017 at 6:50 AM

    Roots! I have sweet potatoes growing in the garden.....

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