Last week, we tried four awesome dishes selected from submissions in the “More Taste, Less Waste” Recipe Contest, hosted by the James Beard Foundation. We adapted each recipe with ingredients we had on hand in the Oats Everyday kitchen.
As we perused the entries, Chef Jessica Armstrong’s Carrot Ginger Oat Cakes with Blueberry Yogurt Filling immediately caught our eye. They reminded us of whoopie pies, but with a healthy twist.
We knew we’d be using blueberries in a couple of the other dishes, so to shake things up, we made a quick and classic cream-cheese frosting in place of the blueberry yogurt filling. The cakes turned out soft and sweet, with a gentle bite from the ginger and a great texture from the oats, Carrot Ginger Oat Cakes with Cream Cheese Filling didn’t last long with our hungry crew.
After devouring the carrot cakes, we moved on to our second recipe. Chef JC Gibbs’ Oat Empanadas recipe inspired our Oat Empanadas with Chard and Goat Cheese. The star of the dish was the buttery, soft oat empanada dough. We added turmeric to the dough in place of annatto. For the filling, we replaced the kale filling with sautéed chard and carrots. We also took a little artistic license and snuck in tangy goat cheese and a handful of dried cranberries for a touch of sweetness.
Have you heard the saying, “You can’t make friends with salad”? We’re pretty sure Chef Matthew Carter makes plenty of friends with his delightful Grilled Harvest Salad. Chef Carter’s recipe inspired our own Grilled Kale Salad with Sesame-Ginger Granola. Grilled kale and nectarines added an interesting, charred taste to the salad and really brought out the sweetness of the fruit.
To finish our salad, we tossed in some blueberries and topped it with a fresh-carrot vinaigrette and a savory sesame-ginger granola. If you’ve never put granola on a salad before, what are you waiting for? It adds crunch and contrast, not to mention a little extra fiber!
For our final dish, of course we chose one using oat tortillas! It was a lot of fun combining Chef Pete Dressen’s flavorful Superfood Taco filling with our Oat Tortilla recipe. The blueberry/quinoa base and pear/grapefruit salsa took these tacos to the next level. Counting the oats, these tacos contained FIVE superfoods! (Oats, kale, quinoa, blueberries and avocado.)
Cooking up the “More Taste, Less Waste” recipes was a great culinary adventure. We discovered a few new, exciting flavor combinations, and the experience really cemented what we’ve been saying all along – oats are a delicious, versatile ingredient that can be used in countless dishes to improve nutrition and create truly enjoyable healthy foods. All you need to do? Just add oats. Everyday.