I’ve been around and, believe it or not, I’ve been cooking some, but I haven’t had time to sit down and blog. I have been taking pictures and thinking of you guys, though!
1) I made a huge Italian dinner for 9 people – my mother’s sauce recipe from scratch. Blog post on that coming 🙂
2) My husband bought groceries before leaving town and after he left, I discovered a box of veggies titled “Mix Soup” (as in Soup Mix). I wasn’t sure why he bought it since we don’t make or eat soup much – perhaps just to give me veggies to cook. But I took it as a challenge and made healthy veggie soup from scratch.
“Soup Mix” – zucchini, carrots, cilantro, dill
Sodium-free bouillon (Broth has such high sodium! Salt it yourself, dudes.)
1 tbsp wheat flour
1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp onion powder
1 clove garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Dice garlic. Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil and add garlic, onion powder and cumin. When garlic softens, add vegetables and saute until brown. Boil 2 cups of water and add 2 packets of sodium-free bouillon (or heat 2 cups of broth). When it boils, add veggies and lower heat to a simmer. Cover and cook 10-12 minutes, adding flour or cornstarch halfway through to thicken.
3) I also made Tofu and Potato Hash Browns tonight – delicious! I am a big fan of Nava Atlas, as you should be if you enjoy really good vegetarian and vegan food that’s easy to make. I added the fresh spinach that she suggests, and you could also add vegan or lowfat cheese if you like. Or pesto!
Well, I’d love to stick around, but I’ve got some eating to do! 😉 More to come soon. Leave a comment and let me know what you’re cooking.
It’s been a while. I haven’t been cooking. I’ve been content to let the Husband do it while I handle dishes. Today, however, I’m going to make my Saag Paneer hack (with tofu instead of cheese), since I have been craving it.
On another note, Pinterest is the most awesome thing ever except for the fact that it makes me hungry. Here’s a roundup of the latest pins I found:
Note: I only pin recipes that look simple and have few ingredients. I can’t deal with a recipe that’s going to require me to go out and buy 10 things.
My friend Jess and I have started this tradition where she comes over to my place and we try new recipes. A couple of months ago, she started chatting me up about a site called Simple Green Smoothies. When she found a Ninja blender/food and drink maker on sale for almost half-price, she alerted me, for which I will forever be grateful!
My husband and I, proudly, have actually persevered with all New Year’s resolutions on fitness. We go to the gym 3-5 times a week and we are eating so clean, you would barely believe it. And now – juices and green smoothies. Yum.
My Favorite Green Smoothie (variation on Jessica’s recipe and this one)
- 1 cup of unsweetened soymilk (or 1/2 cup soymilk, 1/2 cup water, if I don’t want it too filling)
- 1 banana
- 2 handfuls of spinach (a lot! like 3 or 4 cups – it shrinks)
- 1 spoon of unsalted peanut butter
It is super good. You don’t taste spinach at all, only banana and peanut butter. Tonight I made it minus peanut butter plus Greek honey yogurt.
I also made my husband juice: beet + ginger + blueberry + apple.
You have to try it – so good.
Happy New Year! It strikes me as sad that I have had this blog for 2 years and am only on Dish #30. New Year’s resolution: Step it up!
I got several thoughtful Christmas gifts to help me do this. I give you the apron collection:
Thank you to Mom for the Etsy retro polka dot sweetheart apron, and to Hasitha for the fabulous Anthropologie apron with rolling pin and pie dish!
And now, my newest recipe. I follow @onegreenplanet on Twitter and happened to find this recipe in my feed one day:
Spicy Curry (Cauliflower) Rice with Kale
It looked and sounded fabulous, so today I tried it. As usual, I made some substitutions – no paprika and peas instead of kale. I don’t have a food processor (or a juicer, for that matter), but my new Ninja gets me by (gift to myself).
I also made some quinoa and sliced up a little avocado. As you can see from the photo, I started with each ingredient separate, but I soon mixed them all together to make a quinoa bowl. De-li-cious!! The avocado gives it so much flavor that you don’t need salty, fatty additions.
A friend recently told me that she wants to try a vegan challenge. Her husband is skeptical that it can be done. Indeed, I was too before my husband and I tried it and loved it. This is great timing because I had planned to try and eat vegan again in the new year to be a bit healthier and “cleaner.” I told her I would help her out by checking through my old recipes, favorite blogs, etc.
Here are the recipes and posts in the vegan category for an easy refresher: Vegan
I would like to highlight the ones that I found particularly delicious:
Her inquiry has inspired a whole host of blog posts, coming your way soon 😉
It’s better to make things from scratch. I wholeheartedly agree with this. However, sometimes you just gotta take the easy way out. And I am being easier on myself in this regard.
I just made a batch of 16 pumpkin muffins. I used a mix from Trader Joe’s containing good ingredients that I can pronounce. I added good ingredients to the mix. And now I have breakfast for God knows how long.
I truly believe in eating real food and getting away from packaged, processed stuff. But cooking at home is hard. With a job, or kids, or whatever particular life you have… it’s HARD. And while cooking and baking from scratch is ideal, sometimes cutting corners is necessary. I’d rather eat a muffin I made at home with a mix than one from a chain bakery or supermarket, because you never really know what’s in those.
So go easy on yourself, and eat up!
We have been traveling on and off for 2 weeks, which means we’ve spent very little time at home and virtually no time eating home-cooked food. One restaurant after another can get you down for a while. This weekend, I’ve come down with a bit of something (no doubt the exhaustion) and the husband is not feeling well either, which means we are staying IN! Which means some homemade goodness.
Here are some things I’ve got in the queue to consider:
Lots of hearty winter food, it seems 🙂 I need to do a better job of cooking from scratch but since I haven’t been cooking at all for so long, I want to ease back into it. I really want to make my kitchen my own. It’s hard to do with a small kitchenette in a Manhattan apartment, but that’s my goal.
I also need an apron. Tell Santa Claus.
After having a great quinoa side dish at Vspot in Brooklyn, I decided I wanted to start making it myself. I bought it from Trader Joe’s and let it sit in the cupboard until I could find a recipe that looked tasty but easy and wouldn’t require me to buy tons of ingredients. Today, I was finally able to make my first quinoa dish – “Quinoa with Latin Flavors” from Fitness Magazine.
I didn’t have all of the ingredients on hand, but I’m not one to fret over that. (My mother-in-law can make an amazing curry with a jar of pasta sauce if we don’t have tomatoes. It’s called improvising!) I left out the cilantro and green chiles, substituted olive oil for canola, and instead of chicken or vegetable broth, I dissolved a vegetable bouillon cube into boiling water.
This was actually a really easy dish to make. The longest part was letting it simmer for 20 minutes, during which you can walk away and do other things.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year and a half since I started my cooking journey and this blog. I would like to have more recipes and dishes to show for it by now, but it can be difficult to lead a busy life and make time for cooking at the same time. Living in New York City, where restaurants, take-out places and delivery abound, makes it even harder. After a long day at work, I can buy a delicious $2.50 falafel sandwich from across the street, or I can spend 2 hours in the kitchen… hmmm.
But, as I wrote here before, I do see the value in cooking and eating at home, from so many angles. It’s less expensive. It’s better for your health. It gives you a feeling of accomplishment. It can bring couples together to prepare and eat a meal together instead of watching TV and stuffing your faces from Chinese food cartons. It’s a beautiful thing that connects me to the history of women everywhere – great grandmothers who prided themselves on nourishing their families with the fruit of their labors.
This weekend I’ve been reading Chapter 8 of my friend Kate’s classic book, The Hip Girl’s Guide to Homemaking. Chapter 8 is entitled, “Cooking at Home: Step Away from the Takeout Menu” 🙂 I highly recommend the book and especially this chapter to those of you out there who want to conquer your fear of the kitchen. (Exciting news: Kate is currently working on book 2, The Hip Girls’ Guide to the Kitchen. Yes!)
Kate, even all the way from Austin you are guilting me into doing the right thing! 😉 My husband and I try to eat a mostly plant-based diet, so we tend to buy a lot of vegetables. Sadly, we get lazy and many of them go bad. (I know I’m not the only one guilty of this.) So I just took stock of my fridge and made a list of the newly purchased ingredients I can make use of. Internet/Pinterest… do your magic!
What recipes do you want to try? Have you tried any lately with success? Share, share!
I’ve been reading up on Alkaline diets recently. Some people say that it’s a crock, but my stomach has not gotten along with acidic foods for years so it makes perfect sense to me. During a recent rather severe bout, I started reading up. The belief is that your body suffers from having a PH imbalance, so you need the right combination of alkaline (80%) and acidic (20%) foods. Can you guess which foods are acidic and therefore not good for you? That’s right – coffee, chocolate, meat, dairy, and everything else remotely tasty! 🙂 The Alkaline Sisters (great name) have put together a food chart for us: Alkaline Foods Chart
My doctor has been trying to get me off coffee for a long time with little success. Did you know that coffee, as well as alcohol and cigarettes, burn in your stomach for 48 hours? I didn’t either.
I’m only sharing this as part of my culinary journey, and you can expect some alkaline recipes coming soon. Fortunately, it fits rather well with my vegan lifestyle except that I love Indian food (spicy), coffee, chocolate, wine and desserts. So… going to have to figure that part out.
This is an awesome video that lays it all out for you: