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Ask a Local Chef: Best Healthy Recipes For The New Year

Phillip Frankland Lee cropped - The Gadarene Swine
(Credit: The Gadarene Swine)

(Credit: The Gadarene Swine

Chef Phillip Frankland Lee, has been featured on many top chef lists, and has been at the helm at many of LA's top restaurants. You may have also spotted him on "Top Chef", "Chopped," "Guy's Grocery Games" and "Cutthroat Kitchen." For the new year, Lee gives us some ideas for great healthy recipes.

Kale Chips - The Gadarene Swine
(Credit: The Gadarene Swine)

Kale Chips

  • ½ cup white distilled vinegar
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 head purple kale
  • 1 cup toasted and ground pistachios (pistachio dust)


  1. Mix the vinegar, lemon juice, salt, sugar and cayenne. Let sit.
  2. Pick the leaves from the kale, and submerge in marinade for 5 minutes. Arrange on baking tray or dehydrator tray. Sprinkle toasted pistachio dust on the top.
  3. Dehydrate on 135F for 4-6 hours until crispy, or bake in oven at 200F for about 20 minutes until crisp and dry.
Tomato Parsley Onion - The Gadarene Swine
(Credit: The Gadarene Swine)

Tomato Parsley Onion Salad

  • 4 ears fresh yellow corn
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tomatoes, divided
  • 1 red onion
  • Olive oil, for drizzling
  • Sugar, to taste
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • Fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 white onion
  • Dressing
  • Olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • White distilled vinegar
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Sea salt


  1. For the corn pudding, grate the corn on a cheese grater all the way down to the cob, making sure to keep any juice. Transfer to a small pot. Season with salt, and cook down until the liquid has evaporated.
  2. Slice one tomato medium thin. Shave the red onion medium thin, and run the onion under hot water for 5 minutes to take out the bitterness. Lay the vegetables on dehydrator racks or baking sheets, and season with olive oil, salt and sugar.
  3. Pick most of the parsley leaves from the stems, saving a few for plating. Lay them on a dehydrator rack or baking sheet, and season with olive oil, salt and lemon juice. Dehydrate on 135F for 4-6 hours, or bake in the oven at 200F for 20 minutes until crispy.
  4. To plate, lay down a generous amount of the corn pudding on the plate. Roughly chop the remaining tomato, shave 2 rings of white onion and gather the remaining parsley leaves. Put them in a mixing bowl, and season with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, white vinegar, lemon juice and sea salt. Arrange the seasoned vegetables on the top of the corn pudding, and garnish the dish with the dried tomato and red onion chips.
tomato oil - The Gadarene Swine
(Credit: The Gadarene Swine)

Roasted Tomato Oil

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup salt
  • 2 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 pound cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • ⅛ cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup reduced balsamic vinegar
  • 1 ounce chopped chives
  • 1 ounce fresh torn basil
  • Bread, for serving


  1. In large mixing bowl, mix ¼ cup olive oil with salt and sugar, mixing until its the texture of
    powdery snow. Once combined, add cherry tomatoes, and transfer everything to a baking pan. Cover with foil, and bake at 350F for roughly 30 minutes. Check the pan after 30 minutes to see if the salt mixture has melted and the tomatoes have begun to blister. If the salt has not melted or the tomatoes have not blistered, return to the oven and check again periodically until done.
  2. Allow tomatoes to cool in the liquid. Once cool, strain the liquid. Save the "tomato syrup" as a sweetener for other dishes, or to add to your fresh lemonade.
  3. Transfer the cooked and cooled tomatoes to a blender and begin to puree. Slowly start adding your canola and lemon juice, alternating between the two, and finish with the remaining olive oil. Once you achieve the texture of a mayonnaise, transfer to a bowl.
  4. Garnish with chopped chives, torn basil and reduced balsamic vinegar. Serve with bread on crudite on the side.
Chrystal Baker is a private cook, recipe developer and freelance food and events contributor for CBS
Los Angeles
. She maintains The Duo Dishes, a food blog that features dishes influenced by family tradition, regional fare and worldly flavors. She also shares travel stories and links to published work via a personal blog, Any and Everywhere. You can follow her trail on Instagram and Twitter for more.
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