The Dish: Healthy recipes from chef Ellie Krieger

The Dish: Chef Ellie Krieger

Award-winning author and TV host Ellie Krieger always loved good food. She went on to study it, earning degrees in nutrition from Columbia and Cornell. At the same time, she also pursued a career as a Wilhelmina fashion model. Learning to find balance and wellness helped inspire her life's mission - helping people enjoy great food in a healthy way. Krieger's seventh cookbook, aimed at busy home chefs, is out next week. It's called "Whole in One: Complete, Healthy Meals in a Single Pot, Sheet Pan, or Skillet."

Here are some of Krieger's signature dishes:

Butternut squash soup with tahini and crispy chickpeas

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
71/2 cups butternut squash, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes (about 2 pounds)
1 cup canned no-salt-added
chickpeas, drained and rinsed
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoons
ground turmeric
Pinch of cayenne pepper
5 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons tahini
1/2 cup packaged crispy chickpea snacks
(plain or lightly salted)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

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Butternut squash soup

Instructions:

1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 4 minutes; add the garlic and cook for 30 sec- onds more. Stir in the squash, chickpeas, salt, cumin, black pepper, turmeric, and cayenne.
2. Add the broth and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low and simmer, cov- ered, until the squash is very tender, about 20 minutes.
3. Use an immersion blender to puree until smooth. (Alternatively, allow to cool slightly, then puree it in several batches in a regular blender.) Stir in the honey
4. Place the tahini in a bowl and stir in 2 table- spoons of cold water. Add more water by the teaspoon until the tahini is loose enough to be drizzled. Serve the soup drizzled with the tahini, garnished with the crispy chickpeas and parsley. 

The soup will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for 3 months.


Falafel burger 

Ingredients:

1/2 cup lightly packed fresh cilantro leaves 
1/2 cup lightly packed fresh parsley leaves 
1/4 small onion, coarsely chopped 
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped 
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander 
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 

1 (15-ounce) can no- salt-added chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and patted dry 
3 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour 
1/2 teaspoon baking powder 
21/2 tablespoons olive oil 

1.  Prepare the falafel burgers: Place the cilantro, parsley, onion, garlic, cumin, salt, coriander, and red pepper flakes in the small bowl of a food processor. Process until all the ingredi- ents are finely minced. Add the chickpeas to the processor and pulse until everything is well incorporated but the mixture is still coarse and grainy, stopping to scrape down the bowl as needed. Sprinkle in the flour and baking pow- der and stir to combine. Shape the mixture into four flat patties about 3 inches in diameter each. Put the patties on a plate, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 2 days ahead.

2. Prepare the sauce: Stir together the tahini and lemon juice, then stir in about  2 tablespoons  of water, adding them one at a time, until the sauce is the consistency of pancake batter. (The mixture will seize up at first, but don't worry—it will become smooth again as you add the water.)

3. To cook the falafel burgers, heat 11/2 table- spoons of the oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place the patties into the pan, lower the heat to medium, and cook until browned and crisped on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the patties, add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet, and cook the other side for 2 to 3 minutes. 

4. Serve the burgers with a mound of the salad, drizzled with the tahini sauce and with the pita alongside, if using. 
The tahini sauce and the salad will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator, stored in separate airtight containers. 

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Greek-style chicken with potatoes, peppers, olives and feta

Ingredients:

1 lemon
2 teaspoons dried oregano, divided, plus more to taste
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

4 pieces bone-in chicken breast
(about 12 ounces each)
1 pound baby new potatoes, halved
2 large red bell peppers, seeded and cut lengthwise into
8 wedges each
1/3 cup kalamata olives
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese 

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Finely zest the lemon. Combine the lemon zest, 1 teaspoon of the oregano, the garlic, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, 1/8 teaspoon of the black pepper, and 1 ta- blespoon of the oil in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the chicken and under- neath the skin

2. Place the potatoes and peppers on a sheet pan. Drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, squeeze about a tablespoon of lemon juice on top, sprinkle with the remain- ing teaspoon of oregano, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper, and toss to coat. Distribute the vegetables around the pan, then nestle the chicken pieces on the pan among the vegetables.

3. Cook until the chicken is cooked through with an internal temperature of 165°F and the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. If the chicken is cooked before the vegetables are done, transfer it to a plate, cover with foil to keep warm, and allow the vegetables to cook a bit more.

4. Serve sprinkled with the olives, feta cheese, the remainder of the lemon juice, and more oregano to taste. The chicken and vegetables will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

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Russian salad plate

Ingredients:

4 medium-size carrots (about 31/2 ounces each), peeled, trimmed, and halved crosswise
4 large eggs
4 medium-size beets (about 4 ounces each), scrubbed, unpeeled
4 medium-size waxy potatoes, such as new red (about 5 ounces each), scrubbed, unpeeled
1 cup sauerkraut, drained
1 cup diced dill pickles
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white vinegar, plus more to taste
Salt
12 Gem lettuce leaves or 8 romaine lettuce leaves
1/3 cup dill fronds

1. Place the carrots in a 3- to 4-quart pot and fill the pot about half full with cold water. Bring to a boil. Gently add the eggs to the pot, using a slotted spoon. Lower the heat to medium- low and simmer for 10 minutes, then use a slotted spoon to transfer the carrots and eggs to an ice water bath, leaving the water in the pot at a boil. Let cool until they have cooled completely, then transfer them to a dish

2. Put the beets and potatoes into the boiling water in the pot, adding more water to cover the vegetables, if needed. Return to a boil, then simmer, partially covered, until the veg- etables can be pierced with a skewer or par- ing knife, about 25 minutes for the potatoes and 35 minutes for the beets. (They are best cooked until slightly underdone, since they will continue to cook as they cool.) Drain and place in the refrigerator to cool.

3. Use your finger and/or a paring knife to re- move the peel from the beets, then dice and set them aside. Then, peel the potato, the same way, and dice it. Dice the carrots. Peel the eggs and quarter them. Place the potatoes, carrots, sauerkraut, pickles, red onion, oil, and vinegar in a large bowl and toss to combine. Stir in the beets. Add salt and additional vin- egar to taste, depending on the saltiness and tang of the pickles and kraut. The salad may be made ahead to this point and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

4. Serve sprinkled with the olives, feta cheese, the remainder of the lemon juice, and more oregano to taste. The chicken and vegetables will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. The eggs and quarter them. Place the potatoes, carrots, sauerkraut, pickles, red onion, oil, and vinegar in a large bowl and toss to combine. Stir in the beets. Add salt and additional vin- egar to taste, depending on the saltiness and tang of the pickles and kraut. The salad may be made ahead to this point and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Chocolate chip sheet cake

Ingredients:

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

2 cups cold water
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2/3 cup canola or other neutral-tasting oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Directly on a sheet pan, whisk together the pastry flour, all- purpose flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.

2. Combine the cold water and vinegar in a small bowl or pitcher.

3. Make a well in the middle of the flour mix- ture and pour the oil and vanilla into the well. Sprinkle the vinegar mixture over the top of the flour mixture and then stir well to blend all the ingredients. Stir in the chocolate chips, distributing them evenly around the pan. Wipe the rim of the pan, then place in the oven.

4. Bake until set and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and place the cake on a wire rack to cool in the pan. Once cool, sprinkle with confectioners' sugar and cut into squares. The cake will keep in an airtight con- tainer in the refrigerator for up to a week.