2009 New Food Trends with Chef Jill Houk

New Food Trends for 2009

Our favorite chef, Jill Houk, takes time out from her busy schedule at Centered Chef Food Studio of Chicago to teach us about healthy food trends, share a few recipes and answer your questions. Join us on TRB.

5) Flexitarianism–a lot of listeners realize that eating vegetarian is healthier, cheaper and better for the planet. But what if you really don’t want to give up meat? (Or are cooking for a family that refuses to go vegetarian.) Try flexitarianism! It’s a way to drastically reduce your intake of meat and increase your vegetable consumption. Many flexitarians consider this the best way to “have their cake and eat it too.” We’ll talk about simple ways to reduce meat, and will provide simple vegetarian recipes.

4) Curtailing wastefulness. In past years, you may not have thought twice about throwing away leftovers. Now you see them as an integral part to your family’s bottom line. We’ll cover how to store food properly and how to turn yesterday’s dinner into today’s lunch. We’ll also touch on preserving, the age-old art that’s making a serious comeback.

3) Low inflammation foods. A whole host of diseases, from cancer to heart disease to arthritis, are now being attributed to inflammation in the body. We’ll talk about what’s involved in a low-inflammation diet, and give some low-inflammation recipes.

2) Simplicity. Gone are the days (at least temporarily) of exotic ingredients and overly complicated cooking techniques. Restaurant cooks, as well as home cooks, are finding that comfort food is a huge hit. Listen in to find out what homestyle dishes are the hottest and how you can fix them for yourself.

1) Cooking at home. This is the #1 food trend and it’s tied directly to the economy. Learn which basic techniques you should know and what staples to always have on hand.

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RECIPES:

Low Inflammation Foods

Mushroom Pâté
Makes 8 servings.

Ingredients
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, caps only, thinly sliced
3/4 pound button mushrooms, stems and caps, thinly sliced
1 to 1 ½ teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 to 2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Accompaniments
Rice crackers
Crudite

Method
Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When warm, add garlic and cook, stirring, 30 seconds.

Add shiitake mushrooms and button mushrooms. Sprinkle with a little salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat until mushrooms are cooked through and all their liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes.

Place mushroom mixture into the bowl of a food processor. Run food processor until mushrooms form a smooth paste. Add 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon salt, and black pepper and run food processor 15-20 seconds to mix. Taste and adjust flavor with more lemon juice and more salt, if necessary.

Cool completely. Serve on crackers and toast points, garnished with chopped parsley.

Curtailing Wastefulness

Greek Chicken Salad
Makes 8 servings

Ingredients
16 cups shredded romaine lettuce
3 cups cherry tomatoes
1 large red onion, thinly-sliced
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
2 cups leftover chicken meat, cut into ½-inch cubes
½ cup crumbled feta
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
2 whole-wheat pitas (optional)

Method
Place lettuce in a large serving bowl and top with tomatoes, onion, cucumber, cooked chicken, and feta.

Whisk lemon juice, oil and in another bowl. Season with salt and pepper. When ready to serve, drizzle over salad, divide among 8 plates.

Serve with pita wedges, if desired

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