In the Kitchen

A bouquet of Anne's favorite herbs... parsley, lovage, mint balm, lavender, rosemary and basil, among others.

A bouquet of Anne’s favorite herbs…





Anne has some classic recipes she’ll be sharing here in the days ahead, as well as exploring the many benefits of cooking with fresh herbs through the seasons.

Pictured above… In the vase are yerba buena, mint, rosemary, tarragon, mother of thyme, lovage, sorrel, rose geranium, summer savory and lavender. On the cutting board are tarragon, basil, sweet knotted marjoram, mint, lavender, Italian parsley and silver thyme. The arrangement is complete with nasturtiums and calendula, lovely edible flowers.

For starters, try Anne’s amazing Ratatouille, from her delightful collection of recipes, “Prairie Grass Cooks.”

1 large eggplant
6 small or 3 medium zucchini
1 medium onion
3 large tomatoes
2 large green pepper
2 T fresh basil, torn
4 cloves garlic, chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Peel eggplant and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Put into a large bowl and sprinkle liberally with salt. Let stand for half an hour. Rinse eggplant under cold water and pat dry with paper towels.

Wash zucchini and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Dice onion. Peel tomatoes by pouring boiling water over them and allowing them to stand for 30 seconds; plunge into cold water and the skins should be easily removed. Cut tomatoes into wedges. Cut peppers into strips.

Saute each vegetable lightly one at a time in hot oil. Combine all vegetables in a casserole dish and add basil and garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.

Can you guess what these Brain-Healthy ingredients are?

This is a combination of oven roasted sweet potato and celery root “chips,” drizzled lightly with extra virgin olive oil, sprinkled with black sea salt and topped with curls of lemon zest. The taste: Heavenly! Imagine what else you could chip.  Have some fun and try rutabgas, parsnips, beets . . .

Want Color Too?

Try smoked-cooked salmon with lovage (recipe on page 104 of Take Charge of Parkinson’s). Resting in a pool of roasted red pepper sauce  is a Yukon Gold/ sweet potato patty with sour cherries accompanied by cauliflower in turmeric vinaigrette and roasted tomato slices with fresh chives.

Recipe for roasting a red pepper is on page 94 of Take Charge. To make a sauce of one roasted and peeled red pepper:

Set up food processor with the blade attachment. Remove the seeds and stem of red pepper and add pepper with a pinch of salt and a tsp of lemon juice to food processor. Puree pepper and with the motor running, slowly add 4 T olive oil. Taste.

Inspiring Spring Rolls

Smoke-roasted salmon, Walla Walla sweet onions, apple slices, pickled ginger, spinach, cucumber slices, roasted red pepper strips and cilentro (recipe on page 110 of Take Charge).

Try Spring-Rolling with Nori

One evening not long ago, Mike and I were enjoying leftover halibut. “Can’t waste that commodity,” I told him, as I displayed the creation. Two bites later he made an assessment of our seemingly endless enjoyment of food. “You’d think,” he said, “that we lived to eat, rather than eat to live.”  I stared at him wondering why he’d just made that discovery.

Bistro Salad with Halibut

It’s simple: Halibut is unparalleled. The halibut in this photo was oven-roasted the night before and barely warmed up (in the oven) for this salad. It is nestled closely to a simple salad viniagrette (page 134 of Take Charge), a bouquet of asparagus in a pool of raspberry viniagrette (page 141 of Take Charge), a mini-salad of cannellini beans with olive oil and lemon juice, olives and cucumbers. Oh my! I could have added lemon zest, couldn’t I?


Here’s a couple of great “rescuers” from pp. 90-92 in Take Charge of Parkinson’s Disease.

When I travel, I carry a good fat-grind pepper mill, fresh lemons and a zester. Why? Because

you can rescue almost any mediocre ingredients with a grind of fresh pepper (also good for your heart)

and one scraping of fresh lemon zest. It’s true! Here’s a sample of my pepper grinder collection.

That great big one, Mike gave me for my 45th birthday. Little over-sized for a picnic basket but for

everyday use, it is fantastic.

It is the 4th of July and our garden has been producing salad material for 6 weeks (sometimes twice a day): lettuces–red leaf, spicy Asian, arugula, kale, a row of mixed greens;  herbs–dill, cilentro,sweet marjoram, fennel, tarragon,  chives,and eatable flowers–calendula and bee borage. The nasturtiums just starting popping yesterday. There’s lots more to come.

Make a simple vinaigrette by mixing 1 T. red wine vinegar, 3 T olive oil, some chopped garlic,a pinch of salt in bottom of salad bowl. Add washed and dried lettuce to top of dressing. Don’t toss until ready to serve so nothing wilts. Heavenly!