Friday, March 25, 2011


Dear Jon,

This post is for you.  And for the rest of you, Jon is my friend who refuses to eat anything green.  Absurd, right?!

I'm sure you heard your parents say "Eat your veggies!" way too many times growing up.  It's difficult sometimes to take a liking to vegetables you absolutely hated as a kid.  I swore off brussel sprouts when I was 7.  I had only known them to be steamed and served with Japanese mayonnaise. Eww, right?  My mom and dad loved it (sorry mom and dad if you're reading this).  
Then one day, about 5 years ago, I was at a restaurant and someone ordered roasted brussel sprouts.  My world became a happier place knowing that this poor vegetable that I had shunned for most of my life, was actually, not horrible at all!  It has become, to my surprise, one of my favorite vegetables. The lesson here is that it's all about the preparation.

You'd think now I'd post a Roasted Brussel Sprout recipe.  I'll save that for another day.  Today, I'm going to try to convince all the veggie haters to be more open about incorporating otherwise unappetizing vegetables into their diet.  

I ordered a chopped salad at the Chateau Marmont (free valet during lunch with validation) the other day and found the pieces of steamed cauliflower in my salad to be super delicious.  Immediately after lunch, I went to the grocery store and loaded up on vegetables, blue cheese, and chicken.  And going to the market on a full stomach will save you money.  I was surprised at how many items I was able to walk past and not throw in my basket!  

For lunch the next day, I was pleased with the extremely healthy and colorful salad I made.  Yes, it took some time preparing each vegetable, but you can steam a batch of veggies, then keep them in your refrigerator to throw on other salads you might make later in the week.  And thank you, Elena, for posting the Balsamic Dressing you make at home.  I made it and it was amazing; refreshing and the perfect blend of sweet and savory.  I've reposted your recipe below so everyone can enjoy it!

Ingredients to cook:

2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts - Season chicken breasts with olive oil (a generous amount to keep chicken moist), salt, pepper, and garlic (optional).  Place on foil lined baking dish and place in a 400 degree F oven for 10 minutes.  Using tongs, very carefully turn chicken over, then continue to roast for 15 more minutes.  Take out of oven and test for doneness.  Depending on the thickness of your chicken breasts, you may need to roast for 5 more minutes.

Broccoli - steam for 30 seconds, then immediately transfer to an ice bath to prevent further cooking.

Cauliflower - steam for 3 minutes, transfer to ice bath.

Green Beans - steam for 2 minutes or so, ice bath.

Beets - I bought the Trader Joe's brand pre-roasted beets.  But you can roast raw beets in the oven for an hour at 400 degrees F.

Baby Carrots - I tossed the raw carrots in olive oil, salt, pepper and a little rosemary, threw them on a baking sheet in the oven at 400 degrees F for about 5-6 minutes.

The rest of the vegetables can be eaten raw: cherry tomatoes, avocados, green apples, butter lettuce w/ radicchio.  

I chopped all of the vegetables into bite sized pieces and tossed them in Elena's Balsamic Dressing:

3 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar 
2 tsp Dijon Mustard 
2 tsp grated Ruby Red Grapefruit peel (I used 2 Tbsp Orange Juice because I   didn't have any grapefruits or oranges)
2 tsp grated Orange peel 
1 tsp Honey 
1/3 Cup Olive Oil

After plating the salad, I sprinkled some raw walnut pieces and blue cheese crumbles, then topped with diced roasted chicken.  Clean, colorful and full of texture and flavor.  Bon appetit!



  1. Maya,

    I'm so insulted! I do eat green things! Like: olives soaked in gin, green Jello, mint jelly with Lamb chops, and St Patricks Day beer!


  2. I take that slanderous statement back. You've proven me wrong and I'm sorry! I'm happy to know that you enjoy a wide variety of greens. And I, too, am a fan of brussel sprouts, butter lettuce and broccoli rabe.

  3. Aw shucks! I'm so honored to have made it in the blog! Thanks girls!

  4. We appreciate you sharing your recipes for all of us to enjoy! thank YOU.