Thursday, August 7, 2014
I wanted the pancakes to be plant based, gluten free and vegan. Thus my recipe experimentation began.. after two separate rounds, I found I liked the pancakes better the next day, rather than hot off the stove, so the banana has time to set.
Initially I topped my pancakes with peanut butter, bananas, chocolate chips, and drizzle of maple syrup! During the week I added other fruit on top of the peanut butter to mix it up: Strawberries and Bananas one day, and Nectarines and Bananas another day!
Oatmeal Banana Pancake Recipe:
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2 tablespoons flax meal
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon agave syrup
1 ripe banana
3 cups almond milk
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
Dash of Cinnamon
1. Grind oats into oat flour in the Vitamix - start on low then blend on high until oats become flour
2. Transfer oat flour into a large mixing bowl
3. Pour almond milk, banana, agave syrup, vanilla extract, and chia seeds into the Vitamix and blend on high until smooth
4. Mix flax seed meal and baking powder into the oat flour before adding in the liquid banana almond milk mixture
5. Stir oat flour and banana almond milk together until you get the proper pancake batter consistency, the batter will be a bit sticky)
6. Ladle onto a hot griddle on medium heat, lightly oiled with coconut oil, wait until bubbles appear and flip - remove when done! (These pancakes are a bit thick and will require a little more time than regular pancakes to cook all the way through.)
This recipe will make about a dozen medium sized pancakes, great for sharing or storing for a quick breakfast during the week, they kept me full all the way till lunch.
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
My family Easter dinner was a potluck this year, and I was very excited to be able to bring a healthy contribution to my family dinner! I don't normally think of myself as having many dietary restrictions as, when I cook for myself, I just cook the things I like to eat, aka lots of fruit and veggies; but when thinking about something to bring to the potluck and trying to come up with a healthy option everyone would like, I became a bit stumped. What could I bring that was gluten free, meat free, and dairy free? When you search Pinterest for potluck ideas, everything is laden with carbs, meat and cheese, not my idea of a healthy meal... So two days later while out for Thai food I ordered fresh spring rolls, and thought, oh wow, I'd love to be able to make these for the potluck! After doing a bit of research and deciding what ingredients I wanted to use, I went shopping found the necessary items required, and set to work! Spring rolls are surprisingly easy to make, and quite fun!
Spring roll skin
1 large cucumber
Purple cabbage - finely shaved/chopped
Spinach - de-stemmed
Cilantro also de-stemmed
Thai sweet chile sauce , peanut sauce and hoisin sauce for dipping the spring rolls in
A close up look at the hard spring roll skin!
1. Chop and julienne your ingredients to go inside the spring rolls
A. Halve the cucumber when slicing and remove the inside seeds
B. make sure all ingredients will fit evenly inside the middle of the spring rolls
2. To soften the spring roll skin to be able to roll it, you will need to submerge it in warm water for 20-30 seconds
3. Once the skin is soft, don't leave in the water too long or it will become difficult to work with, remove it from the water and lay it out flat. I choose to lay down parchment paper to keep it from sticking to my cutting board.
4. Place your ingredients in the middle top of the skin wrap, making sure be aware which ingredients will be shown on the outside of the wrap when it is rolled
5. Fold the outside edges of the skin on top of the ingredients
6. Once the outside edges have been folded over, begin rolling from the top, pulling tight as you roll
7. The spring roll skin will stick to itself and form a tight roll after you finish rolling it, completing the process.
8. Slice diagonally across to eat and enjoy a variety of dipping sauces
Our family Easter dinner table was so bright and colorful this year, a testament to my family's new and improved healthy eating habits! We definitely ate a rainbow of healthy fruits and vegetables this year!
Friday, April 11, 2014
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
I have been thinking about making this cauliflower quinoa fried 'rice' all week! Mentally checking off that the necessary ingredients were stocked, salivating over the impending deliciousness to come during spin class this afternoon, and finally enjoying the end result!
Fried Rice is something I usually only get when I'm out for Chinese food or at those Japanese Hibachi restaurants. Generally it's something of special treat or indulgence, but this is a healthy recipe I could eat all day long! The best part, is that it's actually good for you, it's full of healthy nutrients and protein, via the quinoa, as well as as many veggies as you want to throw in! I used what I like, but feel free to just use this as a jumping off point and add whatever veggies you like! The more ways you can incorporate vegetables into your diet the healthier you will be! I love that the 'rice' portion of this meal is actually a vegetable and protein filled grain, not a starchy white carbohydrate!
This is definitely a feel good meal!
1 small Cauliflower (riced)
3 cups cooked Quinoa, I used tri-color
1/2 Yellow Onion
2 stalks Green Onion
3 cloves Garlic
2 cups Mushrooms, roughly chopped
Large handful Broccoli, roughly chopped
I cup carrots, diced
2 large Eggs
1 TBSP fresh Ginger
Cilantro for added flavor
Sesame oil, a few splashes, probably 3-4 TBSP
Soy sauce, a couple swirls, yes I'm making up my own cooking terms.. Going to need a glossary to keep track
Siracha sauce, if desired!
A. Cook the quinoa, I used my leftovers from the previous night, which made the process much quicker!
1. Mince the garlic, ginger, chop the onions, and sauté them in a large pan with a tbsp of sesame oil
2. As the onions start to appear translucent, add in the chopped mushrooms, carrots and broccoli to begin to cook along with a splash of soy sauce
3. Meanwhile roughly chop the cauliflower, and add 2 cups worth at a time into the Vitamix blender on the lowest speed, and using the dowel, push the cauliflower into the blades to 'rice' it. Once all the cauliflower has been finely grated into rice size pieces, you can transfer it and the cooked quinoa into a large sauce pan or wok
4. Add the eggs to the veggie mixture and allow them to cook thoroughly
5. As the 'Rice' aka cauliflower and quinoa combination is heating up, add a tbsp or two of the sesame oil and a swirl of soy sauce to the pan
6. Once the veggie mixture and eggs are completely cooked, transfer them into the pot or wok with the 'Rice' and stir together, add in cilantro and Siracha if desired!
7. Allow ingredients to heat for a few more minutes until pipping hot
8. Serve and enjoy!
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Finally we are getting some much needed rain here in California, which means I wanted to stay inside tonight and create this warm hearty yet healthy pasta. I have been sorely missing pasta in my life as I have stopped eating wheat due to the immediate negative impact it has on my waist line and health. But with my new amazing GEFU Spiralizer I can turn zucchini into linguine like noodles that taste like, and have a similar texture to, regular pasta! It's revolutionary! I can't even explain how much I love this little kitchen gadget! I have been using it almost every night, making up for the years with out pasta. Finally Italian food is back on the menu!!
Zucchini Noodle Marinara Sauce Pasta (serves two)
2 medium zucchini -spiralized
1 cup yellow onion - diced
2 cloves of garlic - minced
3 large tomatoes- diced
3 cups fresh spinach
2 cups mushrooms -sliced and roughly cut
3 tbsp dried tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp oregano
2 tbsp tomato paste
Heavy splash of balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Chop onions and mince garlic and place them into a medium sauce pan with the olive oil over low-medium heat
2. Chop and then add the mushrooms to the pan after 5 minutes of sautéing the onions and garlic
3. Add in the basil, oregano, and balsamic vinegar to the mushroom, onion and garlic mixture
4. Chop tomatoes and add them to the sauce pan along with the dried tomatoes and tomato paste and allow them to simmer over medium heat for 5-10 minutes
5. Remove the end of the zucchini and place it into the spiralizer and begin to twist the zucchini clockwise to make the zucchini noodles
6. Once the zucchini has been spiralized, add it into the sauce mixture and allow noodles to soften over low heat
7. Add in the fresh spinach and allow it to wilt and become part of the sauce
8. Remove pasta from heat and season it with salt and pepper to taste
9. Enjoy your delicious pasta guilt free, knowing you cooked yourself a healthy meal chock full of veggies!
Friday, February 7, 2014
I generally try to venture outside my comfort zone with at least one item each farmers market trip. Which is how I ended up with a butternut squash sitting in my produce bowl for 3 weeks, before I finally got around to actually cooking it. I had previously tried roasting it for a butternut squash risotto, but found removing the skin to be a slow process when hot, and hard to peel before it was cooked (it broke my peeler..), so I was a little wary of this particular squash variety. But for this savory soup, I decided to just leave the skin on when I blended it, and due to my Vitamix, a high powered blender, it magically disappeared into my soup. This creamy and slightly sweet soup was filling and scrumptious, perfect for a chilly winter evening! Sorry for not posting a picture of the finished soup, my camera died mid way through..
1 Butternut Squash
1 large Sweet Potato
1/2 head of Cauliflower
3 Green Onion Stalks
4 cloves of Garlic
32oz Vegtable Broth
1 can Light Coconut Milk
2 tbsp Coconut oil
Olive oil cooking spray
1 tsp Parsley
1/2 tsp Thyme
A. Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees
1. Wash the butternut squash, before cutting it in half, remove the seeds and then slice into 1/2 inch thick slices.
2. Cut sweet potato into half inch rounds
3. Spray both lightly with olive oil cooking spray and sprinkle salt and pepper before placing into the oven to roast for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
4. Chop onion, mince garlic, roughly chop cauliflower add to pan with coconut oil
5. Saute for 10 minutes on medium heat, stiring often
6. Add in the Thyme and Parsley and vegetable broth
7. Simmer for 10 minutes
8. Remove the butternut squash and sweet potato from the over and place into the blender with your broth mixture
9. Puree until smooth
10. Add the thick mixture back into the pan and slowly stir in the coconut milk until you have reached your desired consistancy.
11. Serve when hot and enjoy!