Healthy Recipes For A Spring Dinner Party

Eating healthy is something that we all strive to do more of here at Glitter Guide, especially during our health and wellness month. The new Greenhouse Cookbook by Emma Knight, Hana James, Deeva Green and Lee Reitelman of Greenhouse Juice Co., is just what we need for some tasty and healthy cooking inspiration. The cookbook features 100 plant-based food and drink recipes that we can’t wait to try. Below are two that are sure to be just as tasty as they are healthy. Enjoy!

Healthy Recipes For A Spring Dinner Party

Summer Ratatouille with Creamy Polenta

Serves 4 to 6

Ratatouille Ingredients

  • 3 medium tomatoes, sliced into ¼-inch rounds
  • 3 red peppers, seeds removed, sliced into 1-inch wedges
  • 5 tablespoons virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 leeks, halved lengthwise, then sliced into 1-inch-thick pieces (or 2 white onions, coarsely chopped)
  • 3 medium eggplants, sliced into ½-inch-thick rounds, then quartered
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced into ½-inch-thick rounds, then quartered
  • 2 cups canned, diced tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 to 5 basil leaves, for garnish

Polenta Ingredients

  • 5 cups filtered water, plus more if needed
  • 1½ teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 cup polenta (cornmeal)


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the tomatoes and peppers withtablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt. Add the garlic. Place the tomatoes and red peppers on the baking sheet. Roast for about 25 minutes, moving the vegetables around with a wooden spoon or spatula after 10 minutes, and again after 20 minutes, to keep them from burning.
  3. To cook the remaining vegetables, heat tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Add the leeks or onions, eggplants, zucchini and a pinch of salt. Stir, cover and let soften for about 10 minutes, adding ¼ cup water as needed to prevent them from sticking to the pan. Uncover and continue to sauté until quite soft. Stir in the diced tomatoes, bay leaves and herbes de Provence. Add the roasted tomatoes, red peppers and garlic, and simmer on low for another 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. While all the vegetables are cooking together, make the polenta. Bring 5 cups of water to a boil with 1½ teaspoons salt. Turn the heat down to low to avoid splatter. Very slowly, add the dry polenta to the boiling water, whisking as you go to keep clumps from forming. Cook without a lid for 30 to 45 minutes, whisking every few minutes. The polenta is ready when it acquires a viscous, even consistency, a bit like porridge. If it gets too thick, add ½ cup water and stir. Add tablespoon of olive oil before serving.
  5. Finish the ratatouille with the remaining to 2 tablespoons of olive oil, remaining ½ teaspoon salt (or more to taste), a few grinds of black pepper and the lemon juice. Serve on a bed of the soft, creamy polenta. Garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Healthy Recipes For A Spring Dinner Party

Pea Shoot & Asparagus Salad with Toasted Hazelnuts

Serves 4 sides or 2 as a main dish

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 bunch asparagus (around 12 spears), trimmed
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt, divided
  • ½ cup shelled fresh green peas (frozen work too, but fresh is ideal in spring or summer)
  • 2 cups loosely packed pea shoots
  • ½ cup whole hazelnuts
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Edible flowers, for serving (optional)

Vinaigrette Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • Pinch of cane sugar (optional, but it helps to make flavors pop)

Variation: Pecorino

The original version of this salad also includes sharp pecorino, sliced into ¼-inch cubes roughly equal in size and quantity to the hazelnuts. The saltiness is a perfect complement to the sweet peas or a sliced avocado is another good accompaniment. Toss either in last after the salad is dressed.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. To make the salad, start by blanching the asparagus. Prepare an ice bath by filling a bowl or casserole dish with 2 inches of very cold water and a handful of ice cubes.
  3. Fill a wide, shallow pan with enough water to cover the asparagus. Bring the water to a vigorous boil and throw your asparagus in. Blanch it until it is deep green and tender, but still crunchapproximately 1 minute for skinny spring asparagus or up to 2 minutes for fat summer asparagus. Be careful not to leave it in too long; soggy, limp asparagus is no ones idea of a good time.
  4. Remove the asparagus from the boiling water with tongs and drop it in the ice bath. Submerge the spears until you are satisfied that they are thoroughly chilled, then lay them on a double layer of paper towel. Sprinkle a good amount of salt over them, wrap them up in the paper towel, and place them in the fridge.
  5. Repeat the method above to blanch the peas (this can also be done simultaneously if you have two pans and are cool under pressure).
  6. Toast the hazelnuts on a baking sheet in the oven or in a skillet over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until fragrant and crunchy. Set a timer so you dont forget about them. Sprinkle some salt on them while theyre still hot and let them cool (you can rub off the skins if youd like, but its not necessary).
  7. To make the vinaigrette, in a small bowl, mix the olive oil, white wine vinegar and sugar (if using). Place the pea shoots in a salad bowl and toss with the vinaigrette, ensuring they are well coated. Slice your cold, crunchy asparagus into ½-inch pieces and mix them into the salad along with the peas and cooled hazelnuts. Crack black pepper on top to taste, and serve.

Excerpted from The Greenhouse Cookbook: Plant Based Eating and DIY Juicing by Emma Knight with Hana James, Deeva Green and Lee Reitelman. Photography by Elena Mari and Nathan Legiehn. Copyright © 2017 by Greenhouse Juice Company. Published by Penguin, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

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