Pineapple Cantaloupe Salsa Fresca

Summer is here and this colorful and tasty salsa is perfect for entertaining or family activities. The sweet melon and acidity of the pineapple and lime juice complement each other beautifully. This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, fat free and Paleo.

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Pineapple Cantaloupe Salsa Fresca

Yield: 6 servings
1 organic pineapple finely diced
1 medium Tuscan or regular organic cantaloupe finely diced
1 red onion finely diced
1 red bell pepper finely diced
2 serrano chilies finely diced
½ bunch of cilantro finely diced
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon lime juice
Optional: 1 tablespoon sugar

Cut melon and pineapple and dice into ¼ inch pieces or smaller. Do the same for the onion, cilantro, serrano chilies and red bell pepper. Add salt, lime juice and sugar (optional). Mix thoroughly, chill and serve

©2016 Aron Bradley


Mushrooms and Asparagus Stir Fry

As always, I encourage you to use garden or organic vegetables whenever possible. This is a great meatless entree, colorful and flavorful but doesn’t mask the taste of each veggie. Aside from the knife work, this is super easy and quick to prepare and is gluten-free, vegan, nightshade free, diabetic friendly, heart healthy and loaded with nutrition.

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Mushrooms and Asparagus Stir Fry

Yield: 2-3 servings

3 rainbow carrots, 1: yellow, orange, purple
3 cups snow pea pods
8 shitake mushrooms
8 Crimini mushrooms
½ yellow or white onion julienne
7 asparagus spears
5-6 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons Bragg’s liquid amino or gluten-free tamari sauce
2 teaspoons sugar coconut or white sugar
1-2 teaspoons arrowroot powder

Cut hard bottoms off the asparagus and slice into 2 inch lengths. Remove snow pea spine strings but leave whole. Cut carrots in half lengthwise then diagonal slices. Remove stems from shiitakes and cut caps in half. Slice each Crimini mushroom into 3 slices, julienne the onion and chop the garlic. Tip: Place all of these into a large bowl. Heat oil in a wok or large sauté pan, pour in veggies, Bragg’s, or tamari and sugar and stir fry till a bit of liquid forms at the bottom of the pan (about 3-4 minutes). Sprinkle in arrowroot powder to thicken sauce, cook another 30 seconds stirring constantly then portion and serve.

©2016 Aron Bradley

‘Sweet’ Potato Salad

I have recently been diagnosed with a sensitivity to anything in the nightshade family: Tomato, Tomatillo, Eggplant, Potato (excluding sweet potato) Peppers (includes hot and sweet varieties as well as spices like paprika, chili powder, cayenne, and Tabasco) Pimento, Goji berry,  Tamarillo, Cape gooseberry/ground cherry, Pepino, Garden huckleberry. Rather sad since I love all of them but I get chronic soft tissue inflammation so avoiding them keeps me pain free This is a very traditional potato egg salad but using sweet potatoes (white yams) instead. The taste is fabulous and a bit sweeter without adding any sweet relish or sugar. Lacto Ovo Vegetarian, Nightshade-free.

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‘Sweet’ Potato Salad

Yield: 4-6 servings

2 medium white yams (sweet potatoes) peeled and diced
6 cage-free fresh eggs hard cooked and diced
1 cup mayonnaise
4 ribs celery small diced
½ a large yellow onion small diced
1 medium dill pickle small diced
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper or to taste

Steam peeled and diced sweet potatoes till tender then spread on a cookie sheet and chill. Place the chilled sweet potatoes in a large bowl, mix in the remaining ingredients, portion and serve.

©2016 Aron Bradley

Strawberry & Pear Chicken Salad

Summer is almost here and entree salads are great lunch or dinner offerings for the season. This recipe is super easy and quick to prepare, and is very fresh and satisfying. The sweetness of the strawberries compliments the crisp pears and cucumbers , and the creamy honey balsamic dressing completes the flavor profile of this yummy chicken salad.

This recipe is gluten-free, heart healthy, diabetic friendly and nightshade-free.

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Strawberry & Pear Chicken Salad

Yield: 2 generous servings

4 cups non GMO spring mix or your favorite salad mix
4 organic strawberries (sliced lengthwise 4 slices per berry)
½ an English cucumber sliced
½ an organic pear cut into thin wedges
6 oz. natural broiled or grilled chicken breast cut into strips

Creamy Honey Balsamic Dressing:
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
¼ teaspoon sea salt

Mix dressing in a small bowl and set aside. Divide salad mix onto 2 plates, add cucumbers, strawberries, pear slices and chicken as pictured. Drizzle half the dressing on each salad. Serve.

©2016 Aron Bradley

Pesto Chicken & Pasta (Gluten-Free)

This is a quick-to-fix dish with ground chicken, mushrooms, zucchini and pesto served over gluten-free (or regular) pasta. I used organic corn/quinoa rotini pasta but any pasta you prefer would work well with this dish. You could also use diced chicken thigh meat instead of ground if you prefer. Gluten-free, heart healthy and very tasty.

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Pesto Chicken & Pasta Gluten-Free

Yield: 3-4 servings

½ lb. uncooked gluten-free pasta

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 lb. ground chicken
½ cup basil pesto
1 zucchini halved and sliced
½ yellow onion
6 oz. Crimini mushrooms sliced
2 teaspoons salt
fresh cracked black pepper to taste
3-4 oz. shaved or shredded Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta in salted water till tender. While pasta is cooking, Sauté chicken, onions, mushrooms, zucchini and seasonings in olive oil till chicken is cooked through (165°F).
Stir in pesto. Portion over cooked GF pasta and garnish with Parmesan cheese. Serve

©2016 Aron Bradley

Very Yammy Veggie Patties

This is the second veggie fritter recipe on this blog and a very tasty vegan side or main.The white yam adds a sweetness complimenting the zucchini, carrots and cabbage. The Besan (garbanzo flour) is now easier to find in the specialty flour section of most supermarkets. So, as usual please use organic produce if you can. This recipe is: vegan, gluten-free, heart healthy, diabetic friendly, and high fiber.

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Very Yammy Veggie Patties

Yield: 6 servings

1 large white yam peeled
1 medium zucchini (green or yellow)
1 large or 2 small carrots
¼ head of cabbage
1 cup baby kale
¼ large yellow onion
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
2 teaspoons curry powder
2 teaspoons salt

2 cups garbanzo flour
1 tablespoon coconut oil

Fine shred all veggies in a food processor or using a mandoline. Place in a large bowl and mix in salt, curry powder and granulated garlic. Let rest for 10 minutes. Drain off the most of the liquid and mix in the garbanzo flour. Form patties with your hands and sauté with the coconut oil at medium heat till brown on each side. Place on a paper towel to drain and serve.

©2016 Aron Bradley

Walnut Falafel

I love the middle eastern vegetarian falafel traditionally made with chickpeas or fava beans or both in combination, but I am often disappointed by dry mixes, food truck or restaurant fried versions which are often greasy and gritty textured with little flavor. This comes from frying and using ground dried beans. I know this is the usual method but it leaves me flat.This recipe is moist and yummy  and the walnuts are a plus for nutrition and texture. You can make this gluten-free by eliminating the pita and form larger patties and serve with a salad. This recipe is vegetarian, heart healthy and diabetic friendly.

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Walnut Falafel

Yield: 6-8 servings

1 can drained garbanzo beans or cooked, dry
2 eggs
1 cup shelled walnuts
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon sesame tahini
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 teaspoons coconut sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Fresh cracked pepper, to taste

Combine the above ingredients minus the coconut oil in a food processor. Form falafel filling into small balls and flatten them. Cook at medium heat till golden brown on both sides. Use with your choice of pitas and filling. Pictured: Cabbage slaw and baby kale with diced Roma tomatoes and plain non-fat Greek yogurt with harissa paste as a dressing. Or, a more traditional cucumber, red onion, tomato and tzatziki if you like. The choices are limitless.

©2016 Aron Bradley

Honey Dijon Butterflied Lamb

Spring has sprung and two of my favorite things are here…Grass fed spring lamb and asparagus. Butterflying a lamb leg is easy with a boneless leg but not too difficult with a bone in leg. Find the bone and slice into the meat on top of the bone lengthwise to reveal it. Work your boning knife all around it cutting as close to the bone as possible. After you have removed it, slice into the thicker parts of the leg and spread the meat apart. Your goal is to make the meat all about the same thickness for even (and reduced) cooking time. Apply the marinade to both sides and roast (fat side up). This recipe is so tasty and cuts cooking time in half over a rolled and tied or bone in roast. Gluten-free

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Honey Dijon Butterflied Lamb

Yield: 5-8 servings

1 small grass fed spring leg of lamb

1/3 cup Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons kosher salt
4-5 minced garlic cloves
2 tablespoons real maple syrup
Fresh cracked black pepper to taste

Butterfly a lamb leg so it is evenly thick all across. Slather both sides with the marinade and roast at 375° till the thickest part reaches 140-145°. Let rest 20 minutes and slice across the grain and serve.

©2016 Aron Bradley

Prime Rib Roast

There is nothing like a grass fed prime rib roast for an elegant meal. The cost prohibits this treat from appearing on our table more than a few times a year but it is worth the wait. I prefer a simple prep, dotted with cloves of garlic, with root veg, baby potatoes and onion and a side veg. Simple but satisfying.Gluten-free.

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Prime Rib Roast

Yield: 4 servings

1-3-4 lb. grass fed boneless prime rib roast
4 carrots or parsnips peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
2-3 lbs. baby red, fingerling or Yukon potatoes
1 onion cut into eight pieces
6-8 garlic cloves
Handful of fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon of your favorite steak rub
Drizzle of olive oil

Preheat oven to 425°.Coat the rub all sides of the roast. Using a chef’s knife to slit pockets, stuff the slits every few inches with the cloves of garlic. Add carrots, potatoes and onions to the roasting pan. Cover the roast with sprigs of rosemary, sprinkle some rub on the veggies and drizzle all with about a tablespoon or so of olive oil. Roast for 5-10 minutes to brown then turn down the oven temp to 300° and cook till internal temp at the thickest part of the roast reaches 125-130°F. Remove from oven and let the roast rest for at leat 15 minutes before carving. Serve with the roasted root veggies and your favorite side. (Asparagus pictured).

©2016 Aron Bradley

Shrimp Pho

Pho (pronounced fuh not foe), is a very popular rice noodle soup from Vietnam usually served with beef strips, brisket, tendon and even meatballs as the protein. Chicken is also used with a different broth. My version utilizes shrimp as the protein which is not traditional but my tasty alternative. This recipe is low-fat and gluten-free if a gluten free hoisin sauce is used. If you can’t find one replace hoisin with a teaspoon of 5 spice, a 1/2 teaspoon salt and a tablespoon of sugar.

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Shrimp Pho

Yield: 4 servings

8 cups water
¼ cup fish sauce
1 tablespoon lemon grass paste or ½ stalk of fresh sliced
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 kaffir lime leaves
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cardamom
Prawn shells from cleaning the prawns

1 lb. 26-30 prawns wild caught, U.S.
1 lb. package of rice noodles
2 teaspoons coconut oil or red palm oil

Mung bean sprouts
Sliced red jalapeno
Fresh cilantro
Thai or Italian basil leaves
Lime wedges

Prepare broth after peeling and deveining prawns (so you can use the shells). Bring broth to a boil and reduce to a simmer for about 20 minutes. While broth is simmering prepare rice noodles with salted boiling water. Don’t overcook. Drain and rinse with cold water and portion into large serving bowls. Sauté prawns 1 minute or till just cooked in heated coconut or red palm oil with a pinch of salt. Strain broth and portion into bowls with noodles. Add shrimp. Add desired garnishes or arrange on a plate so each diner can help themselves. Serve immediately.

©2016 Aron Bradley