Friday, June 21, 2013

Recipe ReDux: Seasonal Seeds

It's the 21st so you know what that means - another Recipe ReDux post! I was pretty jazzed when I read this month's theme. It's all about using seeds to pump up the flavor, texture and nutrition profile of a dish. I love seeds, and since finding out they have such a great nutritional value (even better for you than nuts), I feel like I've been using them all over the place lately.

Salad is quite the obvious one for this girl. If you've been reading for a while, you know I eat big salads multiple times a week, and a girl needs a little crunch on her greens. Raw or toasted sunflower seeds make a perfect topper.

I've also been making my own trail mix lately by buying raw nuts in bulk at Trader Joe's, then making up a batch at home. This way I can control the oil, salt and sugar content, and I can use organic nuts and fruits without it costing a fortune.

I love adding pumpkin seeds to my mixes since they add a great saltiness and texture. My usual mix includes:

- 1 part walnuts or pecans
- 1 part almonds
- 1 part macadamia nuts or brazil nuts
- 1 part pumpkin seeds

If the nuts are raw, I'll often toast them dry in the oven or on the stove at a low heat until they become fragrant. Let them cool before adding them to a bowl and tossing them with the pumpkin seeds and any fruit. For fruit, I choose dried, unsulfured organic fruits with no added sugar (I find them in the health food aisle or at TJ's):

- 1 part dried cranberries
- 1 part golden raisins

This is such a great snack. I keep huge Tupperware containers of it in the cabinet so we can grab handfuls when needed, or take little snack bags of it to work so I have something crunchy and satisfying to nibble on when the afternoon tiredness and snack urges set in.

I also eat a fair amount of stir frys, and have been incorporating black and white sesame seeds for a little extra texture and nutrition value - and because they look pretty. I keep a jar of each in my spice drawer, and just sprinkle a pinch on top of my veggie bowls before serving.

But my favorite new way to use seeds has to be in my Sunflower Seed Pesto. I adored this pesto as it had such a unique flavor. I like to use it on zucchini noodles, but obviously it would go well on any kind of pasta or even as a spread for crostini.

Speaking of, maybe I'll make a batch of this goodness for dinner tonight.

And with that, I'm off to drop Riker off at his last day of daycare for the summer and get this work day started. Happy Friday!


  1. Looks fabulous! We were on the same page with pesto-- one of my favorite ways to transform nuts and seeds.

  2. Love the crunchy snack you have on hand. Great idea to have it ready when you want something crunchy. Thanks for the ideas.

  3. Great great idea to use this yumminess on zucchini noodles...perfect for summer. I'm pinning now. Never think of sunflower seeds in pesto.

  4. Love the idea of sunflower seed pesto! That will be on my menu soon!

  5. Great minds appear to think alike and I need to get me some sesame seeds pronto! This looks so so good :)

  6. I love anything pesto... the sunflower seeds sound great and different!