Thursday, September 27, 2012

A dessert competition post on another blog inspired me to share this wonderful, light dessert recipe with you all. This on comes courtesy of my mother.

Lime Yogurt Panna Cotta

1 C full fat natural yogurt
1/4 C fresh lime juice
2 t lime zest
1 t unflavored gelain powder
1 1/4 C whipping cream, divided
1/2 C sugar
lime zest for garnish

Line a strainer with paper towel.  Place the yogurt in the strainer, place in fridge and let drain for several hours.

Combine lime juice and zest in small saucepan and sprinkle with gelatin.  Let soften for 5 min.

Add 1/4 c of whipping crem and stir until gelatin dissolves, about 5 min.  Remove from  heat.

Whisk yogurt and sugar in a bowl.  Gradually whisk in remaining 1 c whipping cream until smooth.

Whisk gelatin mixture into cream milture until combined.    Pour into 6 pretty little bowls and refrigerate at least 4 hours.  Garnish with fresh lime zest, raspberries or mango.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Zucchini Patty Sandwiches (courtesy of WholeLiving – a delicious falafel-like meal that helps me use the millions of zucchini coming out of my garden right now)

  • 1 15.5-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1 zucchini, grated (I used one and a half and added a few extra breadcrumbs)
  • 1 small red onion, grated
  • 1 egg, lightly whisked
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 whole-wheat pitas, toasted
  • 1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 8 leaves tender lettuce
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  1. Mash chickpeas in a bowl until smooth. Stir in breadcrumbs, zucchini, onion, egg, and salt. I added garlic powder and a little dash of cayenne for some heat. I also threw in a bit of white pepper. Form into eight 4-by-1/2-inch patties.
  2. Saute patties in oil until golden and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  3. Halve pitas and stuff with patties, yogurt, lettuce, and mint. I added tomatoes and avacado to mine because they were in the fridge and it was a delicious addition.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

On the menu this weekend, we had some old favorites and some new experiments. Everything was delicious! For dinner with Nora on Friday night, I made one of my family’s favorite healthy dishes, the Glory Bowl. This recipe comes from Whitewater Cooks, a wonderful cookbook full of recipes put together by the talented and creative chefs at Whitewater Ski Resort in Nelson, BC. This cookbook is full of recipes that use fresh, local ingredients and burst with flavor. The dressing on this bowl is easily my favorite dressing (and sauce for that matter). It can go on almost anything.

Glory Bowl, serves 8

The Bowl

8 cups cooked brown rice
2 cups beets,grated
2 cups carrots, grated
2 cups almonds, toasted
2 cups spinach leaves
2 cups tofu, cubed

Dressing

1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup tamari or soy sauce
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 tbsp tahini paste

Prepare brown rice and set aside. In a skillet saute tofu cubes or braise under broiler with tamari, garlic, ginger and sesame oil.
Combine nutritional yeast flakes, water, tamari, apple cider vinegar, tahini and crushed garlic in blender. Add oil in a steady stream.
Place brown rice into 8 bowls, top with beets, carrots, spinach leaves, almonds and tofu. Drizzle (or completely drench in my case) with dressing.

This is a super healthy, yet filling and very satisfying combination between a salad and a stir fry. I described it to Nora as a stir fry minus the fry. I highly recommend it!

While I was grating and sauteeing and steaming, Nora was on the other side of the kitchen whipping up our favorite no-bake vegan desert, Chocolate Avocado Pie. The first time I had this pie, I remember thinking, “Who are the crazy people wasting avocados on dessert? Let’s just make guacamole!” I’m so glad they convinced me otherwise. This recipe is sooo satisfying and surprisingly not too bad for you!

Filling:
5-6 avocados
1/2 cup coconut oil
1 tsp salt
1/2 tblsp cinnamon
1 cup agave
3/4 cup cacao powder
1 tsp vanillacrust
1 1/2 cups ground almond meal (or ground flax seed for a denser crust)
1 tblsp coconut oil
1/4 cup agave (I usually use honey, but some vegans choose not to eat honey, so check with them if you are making this pie for vegan friends!)
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 cup waterMix em both separate, pat crust in pie plate with fingers (or a fork if you care), layer pudding mix on top, chill in freezer for a bit or leave in the fridge as long as you like. It works best to mix the filling in a food processor to make it smooth!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I planted my first garden this year. It was a lot of work at first, building garden boxes (thanks Kyle!) and filling them with a good soil/compost mix that we bought from our local dump. But the planning and planting was a joy and the garden has become a wonderful addition to my daily routine: water, weed (luckily not too much – we started with clean soil!), prune and harvest. I’ll post a picture soon, but for now I’ll try to list what I’ve got: tomatoes (cherry and heirloom), peppers (bell, jalepeno, green chili), bush beans, walla walla sweet onions, brussel sprouts, carrots, beets, kale, zucchini, pumpkins and a whole herb garden full of basil, chives, parsley, lavendar and green onions. What a list! I may have been a little over-ambitious this first year.

The challenge (and the beauty) of having an incredibly productive garden (we live in zone 4 – ideal for most things except lettuce and spinach) is finding fun, new and delicious ways to use the produce. I’ve been scouring the internet for fun recipe ideas all summer and just came across this lovely vegetable soup recipe on the blog of a girl I went to high school with. Thanks for the recipe, Michelle. Check out her blog Oh, Mishka!

Simple Vegetable and Bean Soup
6 carrots
4 celery stalks
1 onion
2-4 cloves of garlic
extra virgin olive oil
2 cans of beans, drained and rinsed (I used great northern and pinto beans)
2 boxes of chicken or vegetable broth
salt and pepper
other seasonings you want to include (I used cayenne pepper and bay leaves)

Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Chop the carrots, celery, and onion. I opted to use bigger, roughly sliced pieces of vegetables to give my soup a very rustic feel. Finely dice the garlic. Once your vegetables are ready, toss them all into the pot. Add a bit of salt and pepper, then sauté them for about 5 minutes, until the onions begin to look a bit translucent.

Now add your vegetable or chicken broth and the beans. Salt and pepper as much (or as little) as you’d like. I also added a dash of cayenne pepper to mine, because I like just a hint of extra heat in soups. I also added a couple bay leaves while the soup was cooking, then removed them before serving.

Cover your pot and let the soup simmer for about an hour, or until the vegetables are cooked to your liking. Serve with a side of homemade bread and enjoy!

Michelle says you can substitute any veggies into this soup and the beans add a nice little kick of protein. Can’t wait to try this!

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