Spring into Kindness!

By guest blogger Alicia Silverstone

I’m so excited that the paperback edition of The Kind Diet is now available! Since the original edition came out, I’ve received many success stories on my website, TheKindLife.com from readers who tell me how a kinder diet has turned their health and their lives around. It’s truly inspiring, so I’m thrilled that The Kind Diet is even more accessible now.

This spring, I encourage everyone to begin (or continue) their kind journeys by eating fruits and veggies that are in season. One of my personal favorites is the artichoke, so I’m sharing one of my most popular artichoke recipes below. You can find this one and more like it in The Kind Diet and on TheKindLife.com.

Artichoke, Mushroom, and Leek Crostini with Pesto

Ingredients:


3 Tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons mirin
2 teaspoons shoyu
Salt
3–4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 cups thinly sliced leek
2 cups button mushrooms

Artichoke Spread
1 can whole, water-packed artichoke hearts, drained
1 Tablespoon olive oil
½–1 teaspoon umeboshi vinegar

Pesto
1 cup fresh basil leaves
¾ cup raw pine nuts
¼ cup lemon juice
1–2 Tablespoons umeboshi vinegar
¼ cup olive oil

Crostini
4–6 thick slices whole grain baguette

Olive oil, to taste
Finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

2. Combine the oil, vinegar, mirin, shoyu, and 2 pinches of salt in a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, leek, and mushrooms. Cover the pan and when you hear sizzling, gently shake the skillet, holding the lid in place. Reduce the heat to low and braise until the leek is quite tender and deeply browned, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the lid and allow any remaining liquid to cook off. Remove from heat and stir gently to combine.

3. Blend the artichoke hearts, olive oil, and umeboshi vinegar in a food processor until smooth. Remove from the food processor and set aside.

4. Blend the basil, pine nuts, lemon juice, umeboshi vinegar, and oil in the food processor until smooth. Adjust seasonings to taste.

5. Brush the bread lightly with oil on both sides. Arrange the bread on a baking sheet and sprinkle lightly with salt. Bake until the bread is lightly browned and crispy at the edges.

6. Spread the artichoke mixture on the bread, mound the leek mixture generously on top, and finish with a dollop of pesto and a sprinkle of parsley.

Serve and enjoy!

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