Archive for ‘Green Leafy / Yellow Vegetables’

April 5, 2012

Creamy Sweet Potato Curry Soup

A nice variety of winter vegetables mixed with grains! It’s a complete meal in a bowl!

Ingredients
1 yellow pepper, seeded and cut into large chunks
1 sweet potato cut into large pieces
1 parsnip, peeled and chopped
1/2 a turnip, chopped
1/4 cup quinoa
1/4 cup barley
3 cups broth
1/2 red onion
1 TBSP curry powder
1/4 cup cream cheese salt and pepper
1 TBSP dijon mustard

Combine first 9 ingredients into a pressure cooker, turn on high and lock lid. Once lid locks into place turn heat down to medium and allow to simmer away for 30 minutes until everything is nice and soft.

Add final ingredients and combine with an immersion blender or in a regular one. Check seasonings and adjust salt and pepper if necessary.

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February 24, 2012

Lettuce Wraps

This is a quick and light lunch that has loads of fibre and veggies!

Ingredients

1/2 red onion
1 TBSP olive oil
1 can black beans – salt free, rinsed
1/2 cup salsa
1 tomato diced
1 cup frozen corn
2 TSP each garlic powder and chili powder
Pepper
** Any other left over cooked veg you happen to have … this particular one had squash and cabbage in there too!
Large lettuce leaves
Cooked rice
Shredded cheese

In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Saute red onion until tender and add beans, salsa, tomato, garlic powder and chili powder and corn. Cook until heated through. Add pepper to taste.

To assemble, take a lettuce leaf, a couple spoonfuls of rice and bean mixture and top with cheese.

December 15, 2011

Pasta With Avocado Sauce

Avocados, in addition to being super tasty are one of those foods that help to control blood pressure and manage cholesterol levels. For many women this becomes an issue when pregnant, so why not help the situation out naturally!?! They also do wonders for your hair, and their soft creamy texture makes a wonderful pasta sauce without adding heavy cream.

Ingredients
1 zucchini, diced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 TBSP garlic powder
1 – 2 ripe avocados, mashed
Pasta, cooked via package directions, drained with a little cooking water reserved
Grated cheese if desired

Heat a skillet over medium high heat, add first 8 ingredients and cook until mushrooms and zucchini are soft. Add avocados and reserved cooking water from the pasta. Stir until creamy, add more water or olive oil if you prefer a lighter consistency. Add pasta to skillet, turn off heat, and toss to coat. Grate a little cheese over the top for an added boost of calcium!

Enjoy!

December 9, 2011

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Quinoa is truly a super food with so many amazing health benefits it deserves a post all its own. It is the only complete protein that is not from an animal source and has many antioxidants. Tabbouleh is a middle eastern side dish that is light and flavourful and traditionally made with bulger. Using quinoa pumps up the healthiness of this dish, but feel free to substitute for bulger if you want a more traditional tabbouleh.

Ingredients
2 cups water
1 cup quinoa
1 pinch salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 tomatoes, diced
1 cucumber, diced
2 bunches green onions, diced
2 carrots, grated
1 cup fresh parsley, chopped

 

In a saucepan bring water to a boil.  Add quinoa and a pinch of salt. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.  Allow to cool to room temperature; fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine olive oil, sea salt, lemon juice, tomatoes, cucumber, green onions, carrots and parsley.  Stir in cooled quinoa.

** Recipe and picture courtesy of Syneva B on AllRecipes.com

 

November 25, 2011

Michael Smith’s Beef Stew

This is a great article that Chef Michael Smith (one of my all time favourite chefs) wrote in the Globe and Mail in 2008 and I thought I would share it with you here. It is getting to be that time of year when everyone is feeling a bit more generous, and counting their blessings. A reminder to be thankful and pass good fortune forward.

When I make this recipe at home, I use only 1 lb of stewing beef and instead add 1/2 cup of Quinoa into the mix for a plant based protein. He also adds 1/2 a bottle of red wine, which I have omitted.

 

The holidays are not quite over, and chances are you’re still talking about the table full of friends and the menu full of flavours you enjoyed over the past week. Your fridge is full and you’ll probably have three good meals today.

Count your blessings, because some of your neighbours are not so fortunate.

In every community across Canada there are hungry families. Kids who eat everything put in front of them because they know they don’t have the luxury of choice. Parents slowly starving themselves so their kids can have a bit more on their plates. Senior citizens subsisting on little more than crackers and water.

Imagine not knowing where your next meal is coming from. Imagine mastering the ever-changing schedule of which food bank is open on which day. Imagine having no food options at all. Now imagine doing something about it.

For several years, I have been the national spokesman for the Children’s Emergency Foundation. This experience has taught me a lot. Canada’s food-based charities are in trouble. A perfect storm of rising demand, feeble government support, a faltering economy and diminishing donations have combined to weaken the stance of those among us on the front lines of poverty every day. Our food banks need our help.

Please don’t feel guilty about your own success, but take a moment to consider what you can do to help in your community. A cash donation is a great place to start. Then find out what your local food bank needs. Maybe you can drop off a bag of extra groceries every week. Maybe you can spend one day a month helping out in the kitchen of a meal centre or serving tables. Maybe you can head for your nearest food bank or homeless shelter and help them cook up a batch of hearty beef stew. Because the true spirit of the holidays is quietly celebrating the bounty in your life and sharing it with those who need it more than you do.

Old-Fashion Beef Stew

2 pounds or so of stew beef
A sprinkle or two of sea salt and freshly ground pepper
A splash of vegetable oil
A few carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
A few stalks of celery, roughly chopped
A few potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
A few parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
A few onions, peeled and roughly chopped
1 turnip, peeled and roughly chopped
28-ounce can of whole tomatoes
3 or 4 cups of homemade or canned beef stock or water
A few bay leaves
A few sprigs of fresh rosemary
Another sprinkle or two of salt and pepper

Preheat a large, thick-bottomed pot over medium-high heat.

Pat the beef dry with a clean towel, then cut it into large cubes and season it.

Add a splash of oil to the pot – enough to cover the bottom with a thin film – then toss in enough meat to form a single sizzling layer.

Sear the meat on every side until it is evenly browned. Be patient when you’re browning the meat; it takes a little time but it’s worth every minute. The caramelized flavours are the secret to a rich, hearty stew.

As the pieces brown, remove them from the pan, adding more oil and meat as needed. Once the meat is done, discard the remaining oil – but keep all the browned bits in the pan. They’ll add lots of flavour to the stew.

Put all the meat back into the pot and add half of the vegetables (reserve the other half). Add the tomatoes and enough wine and beef stock to just barely cover the works. Add the bay leaves and rosemary, and bring the pot to a simmer. Continue cooking until the meat is almost tender, about an hour, then add the remaining vegetables. Adding the vegetables in two batches allows the first to dissolve into the stew and the second to retain their shape, colour and texture. Continue simmering until the meat and veggies are tender, another 30 minutes or so. When the stew is tender, taste it and season as you like.

September 16, 2011

Lemon Dill Green Beans

According to Google today is Albert Szent-Gyorgyi’s birthday. Who is that you might ask? Well he is the man who discovered Vitamin C and to celebrate here is a recipe for Lemon Dill Green Beans!

Ingredients
1lb green beans, trimmed
3 TSP chopped fresh dill
1 TBSP minced spring onion (green onion)
1 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
1 TBSP lemon juice
1 TBSP mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Steam green beans 5-7 minutes until tender but still crisp.

Mix all other ingredients in a large bowl. Add green beans when finished cooking and allow to sit for 10 minutes to absorb flavours. Serve and enjoy!

August 25, 2011

Zucchini Pancakes

This is a great dish for you or your baby! Easy to make and it adds a veggie kick to an otherwise carb rich dish.

Ingredients
2 small zucchini
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 eggs
4 TBSP milk
Olive oil

Grate the zucchini and set aside.

With a whisk, combine the eggs and the flour, slowly adding the milk as you do so. You should be left with a smooth batter. Stir in the zucchini.

Heat a drizzle of oil in a frying pan. Add the batter, (one tablespoon at a time if making finger food sized pancakes for your little one, a small ladle full if for yourself) and cook for 2 mins until the edges start to dry. Lift carefully with a spatula and check the undersides – they should be golden brown. Turn the pancakes over and cook for a further 2 mins.

Enjoy!

August 10, 2011

Tamales

These great little Mexican rolls really adapt themselves to any flavours you want to add. Start with this base then try one of the suggested flavour combos below!

Ingredients
1 cup masa harina (a type of corn flour. I found it at my regular grocery store so not to worry)
3/4 cup vegetable broth
1/8 cup olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper
Stuffing of your choice
Banana leaves or corn husks (you can buy dried ones that you need to soak for 10 minutes prior to using, or I just used my fresh corn husks after shucking my corn for dinner)

Mix the masa harina, broth, oil, salt and pepper together to form a cookie dough like texture paste. If needed add more liquid or masa harina until you have the proper consistency.

Make your flavoured filling – come up with one of your own or try one of the suggestions below!

Place two husks or leaves on top of each other with narrow ends going in opposite directions. Add 2 TBSP of the masa harina mixture and press down until it’s flat. Add 1 TBSP of filling and wrap in the corn husks like you would a burrito. Tie the ends with string or a strip of the husk.

Place in a steamer basket over boiling water for 25-30 minutes until the dough is solid but not hard. Unroll and enjoy!

Topping suggestions
– diced zucchini with cumin, olive oil and cilantro
– spicy salsa
– cooked squash or sweet potato with cinnamon

There are so many ideas for flavourings! What kind are you going to try?

July 19, 2011

Spicy Black Bean Lettuce Wraps

I love the ease of a wrap. Tasty and good for you, without having to cook and heat you up even more than you are already! But have you ever seen the sodium levels on some of these tortilla wraps?! It’s pretty high. So as a substitute, sometimes I like to use large lettuce leaves. Romaine or bibb lettuce works well, but really as long as its large enough for filling, any lettuce will do. And hey, it helps you get even more veggies in your diet!

Ingredients
1 can low sodium black beans, rinsed
1 can low sodium canned diced tomatoes, or two fresh ones diced
1 handful fresh basil, finely chopped
1 TBSP cayenne pepper, or to taste if you don’t love spicy food
1/2 TSP garlic powder
Salt and Pepper to taste
Juice and zest of one half a lemon
2 TBSP olive oil
Lettuce as wraps

Mix all ingredients, minus lettuce in a bowl. Allow to sit for 1 hour in fridge. Serve in wrap form!

July 11, 2011

Grilled Corn And Black Bean Tacos

These tacos are served cold, so they are super easy to put together ahead of time for a quick dinner, or make a great lunch the next day. Feel free to grill the corn the night before when you are BBQ or just used cooked corn from frozen or salt free corn from the can.

Ingredients
2 cups grilled corn, cut off the cob into kernels
1 cup black beans
1 avocado, cubed
1 lime
1 TSP cumin, ground
2 TBSP olive oil

Mix all ingredients together and allow to sit in refrigerator for at least an hour for the flavours to meld. Serve with taco shells, salsa, cheese and lettuce.