Say hello again to your local farmers' market (finally!) as you shop this week for fresh, seasonal ingredients. These three dishes are light and healthy, but also incredibly filling and delicious. Lighten up the week with Mediterranean Quinoa Salad and Meyer Lemon Spaghetti, and enjoy a bowl of steaming chicken tortilla soup on these last few still-chilly spring nights. You can make any of these meals a little more substantial by adding more protein, such as shrimp, chicken, or tofu. And if I were you, I would make friends with a neighbor with a lemon tree; you're sure to become addicted to this spaghetti!

Grocery list
1.5 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 large red onion
1 jalapeno pepper
5 cloves garlic
1 poblano pepper
Ground cumin
Chili powder
2 quarts chicken broth
One 4-oz. can diced green chiles
1 can hominy
Two 15-oz. cans black beans
One 14-oz. can fire-roasted diced tomatoes (or Rotel tomatoes and chiles)
1 package corn tortillas
2 limes
1 bag shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Fresh cilantro
Dry quinoa
Cherry tomatoes
1 cucumber
1 jar sliced kalamata olives
Feta cheese
1 lemon
Dried oregano
8 oz. linguine pasta
2 large Meyer lemons (available at Whole Foods and some local grocery stores; if you can't find Meyers, use regular lemons)
1 bunch asparagus
1 jar chopped sun-dried tomatoes
Parmesan cheese
1 bunch fresh parsley


Chicken Tortilla Soup
This yummy soup is appropriate year-round, and is just as healthy as it is delicious.

Serves 6 to 8

1.5 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large red onion, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced (seeds included)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 poblano pepper
2 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. salt
8 cups chicken broth (2 quarts)
One 4-oz. can diced green chiles
1 cup hominy
Two 15-oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed
One 14-oz. can fire-roasted diced tomatoes (or Rotel tomatoes and chiles)
4 corn tortillas, cut into strips
Juice of 2 limes
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese for serving
Chopped cilantro for serving

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add chicken breasts and simmer for about 20 minutes, until breasts are cooked through. Drain and set chicken breasts aside to cool. Once cool, chop into cube-size pieces.

2. While chicken is cooking, roast poblano pepper over a burner on a gas-range stove or under the broiler. You want the pepper to be very dark and charred—almost black. Set aside on a plate to cool, then dice.

3. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven or very large pot. Once hot, add the diced onion and jalapeno and cook for 5 minutes, until soft. Add garlic and diced poblano pepper and cook for another minute. Add chili powder and cumin and mix until well combined.

4. Pour in chicken stock and add diced tomatoes, hominy, black beans, green chiles, diced cooked chicken, and salt. Bring to a boil.

5. Finally, add tortilla strips and lime juice and cook until tortillas soften. Serve with chopped cilantro and shredded cheese on the side.


Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
A light, refreshing salad that is surprisingly filling!

Serves 4

1 cup dry quinoa
2 cups water
2 cups sliced cherry tomatoes
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup sliced kalamata olives
3/4 cup feta cheese
1 1/2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 tsp. dry oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

1. Combine water and quinoa in a medium-size pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and let cook for about 15 minutes, or until the quinoa has absorbed all the water. Fluff with a fork and set aside to cool.

2. In a large bowl, combine sliced tomatoes, olives, and cucumber. Add quinoa and spices and mix well. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice on top and add feta cheese.

3. Toss everything together. Serve immediately or store in the fridge until serving.


Meyer Lemon Spaghetti With Asparagus
A perfect springtime pasta dish that will fill you up without weighing you down!

Serves 4

8 oz. linguine pasta
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes (depending on how spicy you like it!)
Juice of 2 large Meyer lemons to equal about 1/2 cup
1 bunch asparagus, sliced
1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
Pinch of salt and pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh parsley for serving

1. Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until done. Remove noodles with a slotted spoon, reserving boiling water. Blanch asparagus in water for 30 seconds, until bright green. Drain and reserve 1/2 cup of cooking liquid.

2. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, and sauté for 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Add pasta, sun-dried tomatoes, and asparagus and toss everything together. Pour in lemon juice along with additional cooking water if the dish seems too dry. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Add Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley.