Food writer extraordinaire Dave Lieberman of Food Network’s “Eat This with Dave Lieberman” has put out a new book with co-author Anahad O’Connor called “The 10 Things You Need to Eat.” Let’s get your biggest question out of the way right now: The 10 foods are tomatoes, avocados, beets, spinach, quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah), lentils, cabbage, nuts, berries and “super fish,” or certain varieties of highly nutritious fish.
It doesn’t surprise me that any of those foods are on the list. Many have been touted for their health benefits for years. What gives Lieberman and O’Connor’s book added value are the wonderful informational tidbits, the fun illustrations that begin each section, and the recipes, which inject new life into the usual application of these ingredients without being too difficult or weird.
Examples of some tips I had never heard: Drinking green tea with fish eliminates the risk of mercury poisoning, British explorer Capt. James Cook stocked cabbage on all his ships, and lentils get their name because they are shaped like lenses.
It was apparently too hard for the authors to really limit themselves to 10 super foods, because throughout the book they give “honorable mention” to other ingredients, such as pomegranates, turmeric and red wine. And then they share a recipe using those additional foods with the original 10 (think spicy tomato, red onion and pomegranate jam).
If you know someone who is trying to eat healthier but is looking for new ways to cook these natural wonders, this might be the book for them. Let’s look at a recipe for grilled fish with tangy spinach, cilantro and caper puree. Have a great weekend!
Grilled Fish with Tangy Spinach, Cilantro and Caper Puree
For the fish:
2 lbs. meaty fish, such as mahi mahi or salmon, cut into 6 large fillets
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup canola oil
For the sauce:
5 oz. baby spinach, microwave-blanched
1 bunch cilantro, tough stems removed
2 Tbsp. drained capers, plus more for garnish
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar or fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
Lemon wedge for serving
1. Preheat grill or grill pan to high heat (you shouldn’t be able to comfortably hold your hand a couple of inches from the grill for more than 6 or 7 seconds).
2. Season the fish generously with salt and pepper. Rub all over with the oil. Grill until the fish is white and cooked through, a few minutes per side. Set aside to rest briefly.
3. Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a blender and blend until smooth.
4. Place fillets on a large serving platter. Drizzle with the sauce, sprinkle with a handful of drained capers and serve with the lemon wedge.