My Goodness! Greens

My Goodness! Greens

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Thursday, June 04, 2020

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There are so many reasons to enjoy salads this month. June is the official start of summer and the heat is on! Salads are so cooling and refreshing. They can be prepared as hearty meals or as light as you want them to be. We know how nutritious plant-based foods are and we are lucky to have a wide array of vegetables and fruits to choose from. The beautiful assortment in our markets and roadside stalls can inspire our creativity. Many of us may have started growing a kitchen garden since the pandemic began a few months ago. Quick crops like lettuce, radishes, beets, pak-choi, callaloo, sweet peppers, basil, parsley, scallion, just to mention a few, will fill your salad bowl in no time. The taste of home-grown is amazing and what is more, if grown organically, you'll know it's nutritious for your family and safe for the environment.

Many years ago I started my own kitchen garden; it got a little out of hand, and before I realised, it had grown into a small organic farm. Having an edible garden changed the way I thought about food, it connected me to my rural community and was the inspiration for my new cookbook, My Goodness! Greens. Today, I would like to share two recipes from the book with you.

The Woodford Salad is a fresh crunchy selection of lettuce, organic greens and herbs. This recipe began my love of greens. The leaves all have unique flavours, from sweet and tangy to fragrant and yes, even a little bit of bitter, is delicious. This mix forms the foundation for many salads to which the additions and toppings are endless. A simple citrus vinaigrette will brighten all the flavours. The Zucchini 'Pasta' with Toasted Sunflower Seed dressing recipe is all about the dressing. Make a scrumptious dressing and they will eat every leaf, even the sceptics among us will come back for seconds!

Plant-based meals are so versatile. Simply adding layers of different food groups to a bowlful of greens ensures that everyone in the family, regardless of diet preference, can be satisfied at the same table.

Please check out our tips for growing your very own organic kitchen garden, starting June 7 in the Style Observer. There has never been a better time to explore our connection with homegrown food and all that it offers our mind, body and soul!


Grow Gather Cook Create Eat deliciously!


My Goodness! Greens cookbook is available at and in stores at Craft Cottage Village Plaza, Liguanea Drug & Garden, General Food Supermarkets Kingston & Ocho Rios, Butcher Block Manor Park and Lavange Ltd.


Zucchini 'Pasta' Wheat Berries And Toasted Sunflower Seed Dressing

Serves 4-6

For the dressing
3 tsp raw, unsalted sunflower seeds, shells removed & reserve some for garnish
4 stalks scallion, roughly chopped
2 oz hemp, flaxseed or coconut oil, add more if needed, depending on the consistency required
Juice of one lemon or 2 limes
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves picked from the stem or ½ tsp dried thyme
1 tsp paprika
Sea salt & pepper to taste

Toast the sunflower seeds in a skillet, over a low flame until just lightly brown. Cool to room temperature.
Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth.
Check and adjust for salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the salad
1 yellow and 1 green zucchini, sliced into long ribbons with a vegetable peeler or mandolin or spiraliser.
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1 cup wheat berries, soaked overnight and simmered for 1 hour or until soft
1 tblsp sunflower seeds, toasted
Lemon basil leaves and blossoms for garnish

Place the zucchini spirals, cherry tomatoes and cooked wheat berries in a salad bowl.
Mix in half of the sunflower seed dressing. Toss well to thoroughly  combine.
Spoon onto plates and top with sunflower seeds.
Garnish with lemon basil and blossoms.
Serve with remaining dressing on the side.



The Woodford Salad With Citrus Vinaigrette

For the vinaigrette
4 oz citrus juice — you can use limes,
lemons, tangerines, oranges or grapefruits
8 oz extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1 tsp honey or to taste
1 garlic clove, peeled and halved
A stalk of fresh or pinch of dried herbs
— thyme, rosemary, dill, are all delicious
in this dressing
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place all the ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitted lid. Shake well to combine.
Refrigerate for a few hours to infuse the herbs in the dressing.
Strain to remove the herbs and garlic. Taste and adjust honey and salt if necessary.
Keep refrigerated and shake well before using.

For the salad
8 cups assorted green & red looseleaf, bibb and romaine lettuce
4 cups assorted salad greens — we've used Swiss chard, mustard greens, kale, tatsoi, radicchio, arugula, dandelion,spinach, purslane, moringa and young red callaloo leaves- but feel free to use whatever varieties of fresh greens you have on hand

1 cup fresh herbs, chopped — such as basil, chives, dill & parsley
A few edible blooms such as nasturtium & dill blossoms to garnish – optional

Wash and dry the lettuce, greens and herbs. Chop the herbs and set aside.

Gently tear the greens into bite-sizedpieces and place them in a large salad
Discard any tough veins and dice the tender stems for use in the salad.
Toss well to mix the leaves.
As you build the salad, toss some of the chopped herbs and distribute evenly throughout the salad.
Top with the rest of the chopped herbs and edible flowers.
Drizzle with vinaigrette just before serving.
Undressed and covered, this salad will keep well in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

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