Saturday, July 16, 2011

Veggie Chili for the cold days of Monterey!

I am terrible sorry that it's 98-115 degrees back home, but to tell you the truth it's always a bit chilly here in our lovely coastal town of Monterey, CA which is why we get to eat chili year round! It's nomnominess is so versatile I could write out 7 recipes now and probably not stop there however today I am feeling a quick and easy meal with some good ole sweet corn bread :) see it even made you smile.

Ingredients for 6 servings (leftovers are best yummy!)
1 medium onion,chop to your preference
4 gloves of garlic, pressed or minced
2 medium carrots or 4 small carrots, chopped to preference (we just slice them or dice them)
2-4 medium tomatoes depending on how much you like tomatoes
30 oz bag of precooked black beans (lower sodium if you cook them right) or 2 15oz cans of organic low     sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
A pinch of cayenne pepper, chili powder, or chili seasoning (*most seasonings are sodium venus fly traps so reading labels iS KEY!) I use the cayenne pepper and chili powder together and a dash of smoked paprika
1 tbsp fresh or freeze dried organic parsley, chopped

Sauté onions and garlic in 1 tbsp of EVOO or Grapeseed Oil on medium heat just until you can smell the garlic. Then add carrots, tomatoes, beans, parsley, and then season with a few pinches of spices. Cook on medium for 15-25 minutes until carrots are tender and EAT!

THIS simple recipe is super quick and chunky and can be eaten with cornbread, on rustic hearty bread or on top of Quinoa or a Potato, Idaho or Sweet!! YUM!

Health facts of Quinoa via Whole Foods: Not only is quinoa high in protein, but the protein it supplies is complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids. Not only is quinoa's amino acid profile well balanced, making it a good choice for vegans concerned about adequate protein intake, but quinoa is especially well-endowed with the amino acid lysine, which is essential for tissue growth and repair. In addition to protein, quinoa features a host of other health-building nutrients. Because quinoa is a very good source of manganese as well as a good source of magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus, this "grain" may be especially valuable for persons with migraine headaches, diabetes and atherosclerosis.

Friday, July 15, 2011

healthier mashed potflowers/caulitoes

Forgive the amateur photos but you'll be able to tell when my camera/phone got an upgrade in upcoming posts. I found this idea about a year ago & have modified it SEVERAL ways (see I use uppercase when needed ). These pictures are currently the Feta Mashed Potatoes. Sometimes I change up the cheeses or add chopped turkey bacon via Trader Joe's (no additives or preservatives!) but the feta ones are our favorite because we do not add salt except from the feta & milk. Mrs. Dash and other salt free seasonings like Trader Joe's 21 seasonings are what we use to give it any extra 'ummph' if needed!

step 1. Make dinner plans. if you decide mashed potatoes is what you want, try this hidden veggie trick!
step 2. Use fresh or frozen, preferably local & organic, cauliflower (as much or as little as you want) and boil with  potatoes (as much or as little as you want) until all are tender. Here I used water, but since these were taken I use low sodium chicken broth to boil them in for a little extra nomnomnommmm :)

step 3. use fresh garlic & chop or mince or grate to your families desired texture
step 4: Add feta, seasonings, pepper, garlic, & organic milk (as desired). Here I made a hearty side with organic turkey bacon from Trader Joe's & it was served with Broiled Talapia & fresh green beans & salad! (so that's actually 3 veggies, a starch, and 2 proteins!,right?)
step 5. Using a potato masher or food processor, once again, COMPLETELY based on what your family eats, mash or blend to consistency and voilĂ  a hidden veggie in a delish side dish! 

Health Fact: Cauliflower and other cruciferous vegetables contain glucosinolates and thiocyanates which increase the activity of enzymes that eliminate carcinogens and decrease the activity of enzymes that activate cancer-causing agents. This makes cauliflower a great cancer-fighting food!

I also have this AMAZING baked version I found on Spark Recipes.. of course I'll the link! I've made it twice and once with a little extra paprika for a kick! Don't forget try to use your logic of how to make it healthier! I use organic cream cheese and depending on which brand has the lowest sodium & fat, etc.. I use that one. I also try to get fresh cheeses not pre-shredded & if I'm really feeling spunky a little Greek Yogurt Plain on top (tastes JUST like sour cream but SO MUCH BETTER FOR YOU!) 
because I'm lazy, a link to SOME healthy benefits of Greek Yogurt (now I use GY in replacement of sour cream. If you take a big bite thinking it's like regular yogurt you're going to be sadly disappointed! If you're interested in GY for a permanent switch we eat Chobani's flavors with low, natural sugars!)

Hope this inspires some GREAT dinners to go with a hidden veggie trick or a cheesy mash! 

long time no see, blog, log in or even care.

so hello me. the only one who really needs this blog. i got a new email, forgot this log in, & just spent 30 mins trying to remember it because yes. i really do have crapola i'd love to share, just never do. unless you're the handful of folks i send emails to! all this being said...the more i read other people's blogs and the more i keep my hidden posts on the blackboard in my head then i erase when i realize i forgot what i wanted to share and start all over with a blank slate. literally.

since my last log in, 10 months ago, i've gone home to tx to visit family, twice. i've gotten involved with a parents place playschool and gotten pregnant. i am currently 22 weeks and counting...the answer to my question of how i forgot my password. being this dumbfounded all the time makes me wonder how the duggard mother of 19 can survive let alone remember all her kids names. i know there were lots of things i had on my plate to discuss over the past few months but let's just start with that clean blank slate i was talking about... to be continued next, more delicious post!