Category Archives: Soups/Stews/Chilis

Millet 4 Ways

This week millet was on the menu in several different ways. Millet is a gluten free whole grain and is comprised of 15% protein. In addition to protein, millet is high in fiber, magnesium and phosphorus.  It is a versatile grain that can be used similarly to rice. Here is how we enjoyed millet this week:

Creamy Millet Porridge

Creamy Millet Porridge

I told my kids I made oatmeal when they asked, “What’s for breakfast?”  Sometimes a new name will throw them off and they’ll decide they don’t like it right then and there.  I took the safe route.  They gobbled this up and had seconds!

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups millet, rinsed and drained
  • 1 1/2 cups non dairy milk (I used Rice Milk)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 over-ripe banana, smashed
  • 1 cup strawberries sliced
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup (optional)
  • Additional 1/4-1/2 cup non dairy milk

Directions

  1. Combine milk, water, smashed banana and millet in a pot.  Bring to a boil.
  2. Turn down heat to med-low and simmer 15-20 minutes or until millet is soft, stirring frequently.
  3. Using an immersion blender, puree until about 1/2 of the mixture is smooth (or until your preferred consistency).
  4. Turn off heat.  Add maple syrup and strawberries and mix until blended.  Add the additional 1/4-1/2 cup milk to get the creamy porridge consistency.
  5. Drizzle with a touch more maple syrup when serving, if desired.

Creamy Millet Corn Chowder with Greens

Corn Chowder Best

I was halfway into this recipe yesterday when I realized I never went to the farm down the road to get the fresh sweet corn I had planned on getting.  Oops!  Frozen corn kernels it was!  Although this was yummy, it would have been so much better with fresh from the farm corn!  I added lots of smoked paprika too because I just love that stuff!

Tofu Chickpea Stir-fry w/ Millet

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I love anything with a tahini sauce and this did not disappoint.  If you are used to your stir-frys over rice or noodles, give millet a try for a change.  It really soaks up the sauce.  My picky daughter and my son didn’t care for this, but my other daughter really liked it, as did my hubby (which happily surprised me!  He even ate leftovers the next night….wow!)

Smoky Millet Pinto Bean Patties

SmokyMillet&PintoBeanPatties

This was our favorite recipe with millet this week.  This kids devoured these patties two at a time!  

Makes 10-12 patties

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of a small red onion
  • 4 scallions
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups pinto beans (or 1 can)
  • 1 1/2 cups millet, cooked
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • pinch of cayenne
  • a few shakes of liquid smoke
  • 1/4-1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp flaxmeal
  • 6 tbsp warm water

Directions

  1. Whisk the flax meal and warm water in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor combine red onion, scallions, carrots, celery, pinto beans, millet, thyme, parsley, smoked paprika, cayenne, and liquid smoke.  Pulse until combined and fairly smooth, but leaving a few pieces chunkier.  Turn out into a mixing bowl.
  3. Re-whisk the flax and water mixture.  It should be thick and egg-like consistency now.  Add to your bean/millet mixture and mix thoroughly.
  4. Add 1/4-1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs, depending on the consistency of the mixture.  You want it to hold together like a burger, so get it there with your hands.  If it feels too wet, add a little more bread crumbs.
  5. Fry these up on the stove top in a skillet over medium heat.  I have an awesome non-stick skillet that requires NO oil for browning.  You may need 1 tsp or so of oil if your pan is not as awesome.  Cook 4-5 minutes per side.

M liked these with BBQ sauce, C and K ate them with ketchup.  I made a mix of Vegenaise, ketchup and mustard.  You won’t miss the meat on a plate like this!

Smoky Millet Pinto Bean Patties Plate

And, yes, I’m trying some new editing tools for my pictures.  As much as I love photography, I usually still shoot in Auto.  I am hoping to learn a lot more in the near future and improve the pictures on this blog!!  I love that stacked picture of the millet patties.  What do you think?

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Lentils!

This week’s ingredient was lentils because I use them ALL THE TIME.  I love them and they are so versatile.  Lentils are part of the legume family and are high in B vitamins (especially folate), fiber, iron and protein (18g in 1 cup). Lentils can help to stabilize blood sugar, lower cholesterol, increase energy and keep you feeling full.

I often use lentils in place of ground meat when “veganizing” a recipe.  They are great in sloppy joes, tacos, burritos, bolognese, burgers, salads, soups, etc.

Here are a few ways we ate our lentils this week:

Red Lentil Cauliflower Burgers

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These held together really well!  I did end up having to add a bit more chickpea flour, but ultimately, it worked out great.

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Delicious and the kids ate them up too!

Lentil Grape Salad

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I have been making this salad since long before I decided to eat plant based.  It is one of my favorites for potlucks, BBQs or just a big crowd.  The original recipe calls for honey and feta cheese.  You can sub agave or raw sugar for the honey and just leave out the feta.  If you are a salt person (I am not), you may want to add some extra salt to make up for the lack of feta.  Maybe use salted roasted walnuts instead of raw…or maybe add some olives (no idea if that would work,  I despise olives, but they would definitely add that salty flavor).

Massor Dal Tadka (Pink Lentil Stew)

Masoor Dal Tadka

I love lentil soups and stews of all kinds.  I actually wasn’t sure about this one going in.  I usually would chop my garlic very fine…not generally a big fan of bigger garlic slices.  And I was worried about the spice level.  I did use a jalapeno instead of  a Serrano because I have an abundance of them in my garden.  I LOVED this!  I wish I would have doubled the recipe because I ate the whole thing (myself) in one day.  The garlic melts right into the soup and you can’t taste any bits of it or the cumin seeds (another worry I had).  It all just blended so nicely and the seasoning was perfect, not spicy.

Cheeze Lentil Rice Bake

Sadly, I did not photograph this one.  I’ve made it at least 5 times now over the past year and I have not one picture.  Wha?  But, just trust me, you will love this.  My kids all love it too!  In fact, recently, I’ve been doubling the recipe cause we end up eating all the whole thing in one sitting.

In other news:  I am super excited that I have been accepted as a recipe tester for Vegan Richa.  She is a vegan food blogger and working on a new Indian cookbook.  Obviously, I can’t share any recipes with you, but I may post up some pics every now and then about what I’ve been testing.  I’ve already made a few very tasty dishes!!  FYI:  two of the recipes I made this week with lentils were from her blog and I didn’t do that on purpose; I had them on the menu before I even knew of the recipe testing opportunity.  I just really like her food!

Cauliflower Coconut Masala

I have always loved cauliflower.  It’s my favorite on a veggie tray just straight up raw.  I remember my mom making cauliflower when I was growing up.  She would boil it until tender, drain it and toss it with butter and breadcrumbs.   When served we would drizzle it with apple cider vinegar.  Sounds weird, but it’s soooo good.  Just this past January, I found myself in Nashville, TN, enjoying a cauliflower “steak” as my main course.  It was honestly one of the best things I’ve ever eaten.  Ever since, I have been looking for ways to make cauliflower my main dish.  I was super excited when I came across this recipe on Pinterest the other day.  It was last night’s dinner and although my 5 year old wasn’t convinced of it’s awesomeness, the rest of us were.

Cauliflower Coconut Masala (click for link to recipe)

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I served it with jasmine rice and sweet green peas.  Side note: I had no idea how much C (one of my 2yr olds) loved peas until last night.  I throw peas in a lot of dishes I make, but this was maybe the first time I put them on her dish as a side all by themselves.  She had 3 generous helpings and continued to ask for more.  Note taken…more peas for dinner!  I kind of stirred everything together in my bowl.  It was delicious!

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This is a very hearty meal.  It will fill you up with not a lot of calories.  The sauce was a little spicy, but sweet at the same time.  So yum!  Even hubby liked it.

Did you know?

Cauliflower is very high in Vitamin C, Vitamin K, folate and fiber.  It has ani-immflamotory properties and lots of antioxidents.  And an entire medium size head of cauliflower weighs in at less than 150 calories!!  Image

Eat up and enjoy!!

Smoky Lentil Quinoa Soup

I promised you a yummy soup recipe last week and here it is!  I LOVE the smoky flavor from the smoked sweet paprika – I think it totally makes this soup what it is.  Other than the smoked paprika, I think you probably have all of the ingredients in your pantry to go make this today!  Really easy!  It’s super high in protein from the lentils and the quinoa and it’s loaded with vitamins and minerals as well.  A hearty soup with not a lot of calories.

Smoky Lentil and Quinoa Soup  (click for link to recipe)

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This is going down as one of my all time favorite soups.  I know it doesn’t look like much, but I just can’t stop eating it.  Sooo delicious!  Thank you to The Simple Veganista for such a delicious dish.  She equates this recipe to the Trader Joe’s soup, Lentils with Ancient Grains, and I agree.  I also love love love that soup from Trader Joe’s, but am so happy to have a homemade version I can make myself.

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I hope you make this soup yourself.  Hopefully, it will keep you warm during the next snowstorm!  Enjoy!

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Butternut Squash Corn Chowder and Coconut Banana Bread

I absolutely love soup and when the temperature outside is -14 (not including windchill) there is nothing I would rather eat.  I was craving soup so badly the other day around lunch time that I happily waited until about 2p to eat lunch just so I could whip up at batch. This soup satisfied all of my cravings; it was so good!!  I purposely made a big batch so I could enjoy it for several days.  I think I might have enough for one serving left and I can’t wait for lunchtime today!

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Please excuse the poor photo.  It was an afterthought after I’d already eaten half of the bowl.  I promise it tastes so much better than it looks!

Butternut Squash Corn Chowder

  • 16oz bag of organic frozen corn (I’m sure fresh corn would be even more amazing in this!)
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large sweet onion, diced
  • 2 small potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 can navy beans (or other white bean), drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

In large stockpot over medium high heat, saute diced onion in olive oil until translucent.  Add diced squash, potatoes and corn and saute 3-4 minutes.  Add vegetable stock and seasonings and increase heat to high.  Once mixture comes to a boil, lower heat to medium and cook uncovered for about 12-15 minutes until squash and potatoes are tender.  Add half of the can of beans and simmer a few more minutes.  Turn off heat and with a handheld immersion blender, puree soup until about 3/4 of the pot is pureed (or to the consistency of your liking…I wanted it fairly smooth).  Add in the remaining half can of beans and stir to heat through.  I wanted some whole beans left in the end, thus why I added these at the end, but you can certainly add them all at once if you want it smoother.

Enjoy!

On to the next yummy recipe!

I had some bananas sitting on the counter that were brown and spotty yesterday.  I usually slice these up and freeze them for smoothies or “ice cream,” but  I already have some of those in my freezer, so decided to bake something instead.  I found this delicious looking recipe on Pinterest and it sounded so good!

Eggless Banana Coconut Cream Loaf  Image

The batter was quite thick and I thought this bread was going to turn out really dense, but it is surprisingly moist and light.  Neither the banana nor the coconut overwhelm and it was the perfect after dinner treat with a cup of green tea once the kiddos were all asleep!

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On tap for dinner tonight are Pumpkin Enchiladas, a recipe from My Whole Food Life.  They sound so yummy.  I hope they turn out  great.  I’ll be sure to let you know.

Happy New Year! A lucky meal of Black Eyed Peas, Greens and Cornbread!

I love ringing in the new year with some of the foods considered to be lucky if eaten on this day.  See THIS article for 10 different lucky foods and the reasoning behind them.  We had two lucky food for lunch as I made fettucine (long noodles for longevity) with lentil bolognese (lentils for wealth because they resemble coins).  I’ll post this recipe tomorrow as I forgot to take a picture this afternoon.  Luckily, I made a HUGE batch and have tons of leftovers, so I’ll try to remember to snap a pic tomorrow because it was really good!

Tonight’s meal was Creole Black Eyed Peas courtesy of Susan Voisin at Fat Free Vegan, Sauteed Garlic Greens courtesy of Clean Food by Terry Walters and Maple Cornbread courtesy of The Kind Life by Alicia Silverstone.

I  couldn’t find a link to the Sauteed Garlic Greens, so here it is.  But definitely go check out Terry Walters website/blog or her cookbooks…she and her recipes are AWESOME!  Greens are considered lucky because their color and texture resemble paper money.  Who couldn’t use a little more wealth, right?

Sauteed Garlic Greens from Clean Food by Terry Walters

2 bunches dark leafy greens (kale, collards, mustard greens, dandelion greens or chard…or a combo of any of these)

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tbsp mirin

Sea salt or ume plum vinegar

Remove dry stalk ends from greens and chop leaves into bite-sized pieces.  In Dutch oven or skillet over medium-low heat, saute garlic in 1 tbsp olive oil for 2-3 minutes until soft.  Add greens and mirin and saute 1 minute.  Increase heat to medium, add water as needed to prevent sticking, cover and cook until greens break down.  Remove from heat and toss with remaining tbsp olive oil.  Season to taste with salt or a few dashes of vinegar and serve.  Serves 6.

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I had planned to use a mixture of kale and red swiss chard, but ended up using collard greens because I found a huge bag of pre-washed and chopped collards at Walmart and I just couldn’t resist the convenience of that.  I finished my greens with a few dashes of balsamic vinegar instead of salt or ume plum vinegar.

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I have posted about Alicia Silverstone’s cornbread recipe before and I’m telling you it’s the best I’ve ever eaten.  You must try this recipe.  Cornbread’s golden color resembles gold and therefore considered lucky.

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This is the second time I’ve made this Black Eye Pea recipe from Fat Free Vegan.  This could be served over rice, which is how the rest of my family ate it.  I opted for the straight up version.  It was a hit the first time and it did not disappoint this time around either.  We all cleaned our plates.  Black eyed peas are considered good luck because of their penny-like appearance and abundance.

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Thanks to everyone who has stopped by to read my little blog in the last 6 months!  I hope you all had a fun New Year’s Eve and a great start to your New Year.  Here’s to health, wealth and good times in 2014!

Lentil and Brown Rice Stew

Sometimes the simplest recipes turn out to be the best.  This one is crazy easy and very inexpensive (especially if you use homemade veggie broth), however, the nutritional content is sky high.

Yesterday after M got home from school, I bundled up all three kids and we went out to play in the snow while this stew simmered away on the stove.  It was the perfect meal to warm us up and fill our bellies after all those snowball fights!

My picky littlest eater refused to even take a bite, but her twin sister ate THREE bowls and M ate 2 bowls.  I myself went back for seconds as well.  We still have quite a bit leftover too, which I LOVE…made for a qiuck lunch today.

Lentils are incredibly healthy, providing high amounts of fiber, B vitamins, iron and protein.  All that and only 230 calories per cup.  Learn more about the health benefits of lentils HERE.

Brown Rice is another super food that will help keep you feeling full and looking trim.  Learn more about the health benefits of brown rice HERE.

Lentil and Brown Rice Stew

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Along with the brown rice and lentils, this stew is loaded with onions, carrots and celery.  Super healthy, super delicious!  A perfect winter meal.

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