Favorite Packaged Sauces Part 1

Got your veggies? Got your protein? Are you about to cook with the same seasonings you added last week? Here are just two of my favorite packaged sauces you can find at your local grocery store.

 Favorite Sauces Part 1

I love these two sauces by Saffron Road.  I just lightly stir fry my vegetables (onions, green peppers, red peppers, broccoli, snap peas, and asparagus),  and add the sauce.  I find the Lemongrass sauce to be a little lighter on flavor and not as much sauce in proportion to the vegetables as the Tikka Masala, so I add a little vegetable stock, Thai basil and Thai Keffir Lime Leaves to give it a bit more flavor and depth.  The Tikka Masala sauce is fantastic as is and requires no additional seasonings.  Enjoy!

Lemongrass Basil Simmer Sauce with Vegetables

 Lemongrass Veggies and Tofu

Served with Roasted Tofu

Lemongrass Veggies and Tofu 2

Tikka Masala Sauce with Veggies

Tikka Masala Veggies

Tikka Masala Sauce Veggies with Lentil Brown Rice and Tofu

Tikka Masala Veggies with Tofu

Feed the wellness in you!

Peanut Tofu Rice Bowl

Peanut Tofu Rice Bowl

We survived the Blizzard of 2016!  I’m always ok for welcoming one storm during the winter so hopefully this is where it ends.  Although I prepared to be snowed in a few days I grew tired of the food items I had on hand by day 4.  I needed the ‘curfew’ to be lifted so I can get to the grocery store and be creative.

I often look for recipes that inspire me and luckily I found a winner  Not only did it inspire me but I followed it pretty much word for word in creating it except for two ingredients and some minor changes in the cooking process. This is rare for me. When I say that recipes ‘inspire’ me it is just to give me an idea about creating something from scratch.  Not this time!   I saw the picture of the prepared dish and thought that it looked good, but when I went down the list of ingredients – brown rice, shredded carrots, spinach, broccoli, chickpeas and tofu – I knew it was worth a try.  The only main ingredient I changed was used shredded red cabbage instead of spinach and I’m glad I did.  Not only does it give it more color but it adds to the texture and flavor of the dish.  I think the spinach would be bland and tone the dish down too much.   For the peanut sauce the author used light soy sauce with sesame oil, chili garlic and peanut butter.  I substituted the soy sauce with Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and didn’t use any sesame oil.  This sauce is delicious!  Sweet and spicy with a hint of peanut, I can see using this in various ways.

Do yourself a favor and make this REALLY soon!

Feed the wellness in you!

Peanut Tofu Rice Bowl

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Serving Size: 2-3

Ingredients

  • Tofu Bowl
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 cups shredded carrots
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 tbl olive oil
  • 1 tbl sesame oil
  • 1 cup chickpeas (drained and rinsed, if using canned)
  • salt/pepper
  • 16 oz extra firm cubed tofu, pressed and drained
  • Peanut sauce
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup 100% pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
  • ¼ cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cube tofu and place in a single layer on a non-stick baking sheet and cook for 25 minutes. If you aren't using a non-stick baking sheet, lightly spray with cooking spray. Remove from oven and place in a shallow bowl.
  2. Whisk together the ingredients for the sauce (soy sauce, maple syrup, chili garlic sauce, peanut butter) until creamy and smooth. Add ½ of the sauce to the tofu bowl and let marinate while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Toss the broccoli with 1 teaspoon olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast for 20 minutes until just tender.
  4. Heat sesame oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add tofu, in batches, along with the marinating sauce until crispy and golden browned, about 3-4 minutes.
  5. To assemble, divide the brown rice among 4 bowls, top each bowl with ¼ cup shredded carrots, ½ cup red cabbage, ¼th broccoli, ¼ cup garbanzo beans and a few pieces of tofu. Drizzle with remaining peanut sauce.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Alex Caspero - http://delishknowledge.com/peanut-tofu-buddha-bowl/

https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/peanut-tofu-rice-bowl/

 

Frozen and Prepared Favorites Part 2

Last month I shared a few favorite frozen and prepared foods that help me when I’m pressed for time to prepare a meal.  Here are more favorites that I recommend you keep in mind when you are rushing to the grocery store and want something quick to prepare. Stick to a single serving (although it’s tough!), add a vegetable or salad as a side dish and you’ll have a great meal.

Trader Joe’s Spinach and Kale Pie

Spinach and Kale Pie

This has all the robust flavor and flaky texture of traditional Spanikopita.  If you’re a fan of that Greek dish you would love this.  Neither one of the greens overpowers the other and they did a great job at blending them so you don’t get the toughness of the kale.  Very well done.

Trader Giotto’s Kale, Sweet Potato and Butternut Pizza

Kale, Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash PizzaTrader ‘Giotto’s’ is the Italian product line at Trader Joe’s.  Looks can be deceiving but not in the case of this frozen gem.  Not only is it a very unique combination of ingredients but it tastes like it is freshly made out of a brick oven.  The crust is perfect; great flavor and slightly crisp. The use of pureed sweet potato in place of a traditional sauce is amazing.

Trader Giotto’s Organic Pesto Pizza with Tomatoes and Broccoli

Organic Pesto Pizza with tomatoes and broccoliAnother slam dunk for a great frozen pizza!  Again, the crust is perfect and it is bursting with just the right amount of pesto flavor.  Simply done with tomatoes and broccoli, this is another one to have ‘on call’ at home!

LaPasta Pumpkin and Sage Ravioli

This is a Costco product and is made in my local area according to the package so I’m not certain whether you can get this at all Costco’s.Pumpkin and Sage Ravioli  However, I’m hopeful that Costco wouldn’t deny others of this wonderful pasta.  This cooks in 3 minutes and is such a wonderful blend of simple flavors.  The description states that the pumpkin is sweet and it really is.  It tastes more like butternut squash than it does pumpkin.  I top with a tomato sauce but I’m sure it’s great with light olive oil and garlic also.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pappardelle Marinara with Chard

pappardelle marinara with chard.jpg

In January, I received the sweetest present from a dear friend. Her family made a New Year’s resolution to embark on the spiritual gift of giving on at least a monthly basis and I was one of the first recipients. She bought me a 1-year subscription to Vegetarian Times so I continue to be inspired and to share my recipes. This occurred just a few weeks before I started this blog so it was very timely. I often read the online version and let my subscription lapse some time ago.  I received my first issue in April and  always reading  cover to cover.  The September issue features a beautiful Pappardelle with butternut squash, browned butter and chard.  It looks absolutely delish but when the magazine arrived in August with references to the fall, I wasn’t quite ready to digest the idea of anything to do with the fall.  So I tucked it away for a later date.

However, while on vacation a few weeks ago my eyes would gravitate to Pappardelle pasta if featured on a menu.  I ordered it once and upon my return home immediately sought it out in the grocery store.  Not may brands carry Pappardelle; I was able to find only one on this day.  As I stated in previous posts this summer, I am still trying to spend a limited amount of time in the kitchen during the summer months so I grabbed two bunches of Red Chard and considered whipping up a pasta in my go-to, simple marinara sauce that is featured in my post Pasta Marinara with Roasted Spring Vegetables on 6/10/2015.  Chard is filled with antioxidants and rich in biotin to keep your skin, hair and nails healthy.

I am not inserting the standard recipe template in this post because once you prepare the sauce as described in the referenced post, you’re just a few steps away from completing this dish.  After the sauce is prepared, in a separate pan you sauté 2 bunches of chopped Red Chard in olive oil with 2 tablespoons of fresh chopped garlic, 1/4 cup fresh chopped oregano, salt to taste. The Chard is cooked in no more than 10 minutes.  Prepare an 8 oz package of Pappardelle al dente and drain.  Mix the Chard with marinara; fold into the Pappardelle.  Never forget topping with fresh chopped basil with a little cheese, if you please and serve!

Feed the wellness in you!

Green Pea and Avocado Pesto Pasta

Fresh Pea and Avocado Pesto

Peas never got much love – at least not from me.  With all the other delicious vegetables and beans, peas (aka garden peas) don’t ever come to my mind to add to my meals.  However, since it’s spring and they are in season, I can’t help but to think I never gave them a fair chance.  They really deserve some credit given their many nutritional benefits.  They are sweet and starchy but are low in calories;  high in protein, fiber, antioxidants and nutrients, particularly phytonutrients known for disease prevention.    I decided to stop thinking of peas as a really cheap, bad excuse for a vegetarian option, and let them show up and show out in a recipe.

I kept this recipe fairly simple and paired the peas with some of my standards so there was no way I could fail!  Call it lazy, perhaps, but this is just ONE dish.  Rest assured I will use peas again, especially how pleased I am with the way they really ‘popped’ with every bite.  The peas along with roasted white asparagus, avocado and a little pesto were all perfect.  The peas could shine amongst everything else – they are mildly sweet, slightly crunchy – really delicious.  This recipe is all about the peas but I would be remiss if I didn’t emphasize how wonderful the use of the avocado with pesto is, leaving you no desire for cheese.  I used gemelli pasta but I would also suggest orecchiette or farfalle.

Shout out to all you seasoned, fresh garden pea lovers – I admire that you take the time to remove peas from the pea pods.  The pods are completely edible and good for you also!  They are full of folic acid, an essential B vitamin.  Frozen peas are recommended over canned peas, and of course, fresh peas are the best.  It’s your choice but use fresh or frozen for this dish to maximize the health benefits and taste.

Feed the wellness in you!

Green Pea and Avocado Pesto Pasta

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Serving Size: 4-6

This dish must be served and eaten when prepared. The avocado is continually ripening so it will not be fresh if refrigerated and warmed for another day.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup white asparagus tips
  • 1 box Gemelli Pasta
  • Vegetable stock
  • 1.5 - 2 avocados depending on the size
  • 2 tbl pesto sauce
  • 1 tbl Mrs. Dash
  • Sea salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • 1 tbl oregano
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl fresh thyme

Instructions

  1. Cook the peas in 1.5 cups of vegetable stock for 12-15 minutes. Set aside. Do not drain.
  2. Sprinkle the white asparagus tips with olive oil, dash of sea salt and Mrs. Dash. Roast the white asparagus tips until they are crisp and tender, approx. 20 minutes.
  3. Cook the pasta according to the directions and drain.
  4. In a large pot mix the pasta with the peas (and remaining vegetable broth), asparagus, sea salt to taste, black pepper, onion powder, oregano, garlic powder.
  5. In a bowl, mix the avocado with the pesto and thyme.
  6. Mix in with the pasta and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/green-pea-and-avocado-pesto-pasta/

Baked Quinoa and Swiss Chard Casserole

Baked Quinoa and Swiss Chard

I knew I was going to have a busy week last week and it would help if I cooked a meal that would last over a few days.  It needed to have both protein and vegetables, and could serve as a main or side dish.  Whole Foods had a special on all varieties of Swiss chard and I realized I hadn’t featured any recipes with this vegetable so far. The wheels started churning and back in the lab I created this baked quinoa and chard casserole.

Other than the Swiss chard, I had all the ingredients in my refrigerator and pantry.  Lately I’ve been keeping cooked quinoa handy for tossing in my salads which I highly recommend.  It’s easy to prepare and can have lots of flavor with just a few ingredients.  For this dish, the quinoa base was cooked in vegetable broth, a little sea salt, onion powder, garlic powder and fresh chives.  Swiss chard is simple to cook and has a unique flavor as all the greens do.  I sautéed it in a little olive oil with onions and peppers.  Combine it all with a few other herbs, spices and cheeses, and the casserole is ready for the oven.

Swiss chard is high in vitamins A, K, and C, which are your antioxidant and anti inflammatory vitamins. It is also rich in minerals, dietary fiber, and protein.  Quinoa is a super grain that I can’t do without, providing me with much needed protein and fiber.

Try this recipe and get a big spoonful of wellness!

Feed the wellness in you!

Baked Quinoa and Swiss Chard Casserole

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Serving Size: 6-8

Ingredients

  • 2 bunches of Swiss chard, washed and chopped
  • 2 cups Quinoa (about 6 cups cooked)
  • 4.5 cups of vegetable broth
  • 4 oz fresh chives, chopped
  • 4 sweet peppers, chopped
  • 1/2 c shitake mushrooms
  • 1/8 c red onions
  • 5 oz shredded parmesan/asiago/fontina cheese
  • 1 c egg whites
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl parsley
  • 1 tbl sage
  • Cooking spray

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook the quinoa in 4 cups of vegetable broth, chopped fresh chives, 1 tsp of sea salt. This should take approximately 15 minutes.
  3. In another pan, sautee the Swiss chard with the mushrooms, sweet peppers and red onions for about 10 minutes on medium heat.
  4. Combine the quinoa and Swiss chard in a large bowl, mix in .5 c of vegetable broth, egg whites and 2.5 oz of cheese.
  5. Add the remaining herbs and spices.
  6. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray and spread the quinoa and Swiss chard mixture in the dish.
  7. Top with remaining 2.5 oz of cheese.
  8. Cook for 20 minutes and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/baked-quinoa-and-swiss-chard-casserole/

Black Lentil and Barley Risotto with Asparagus

Black lentil and barley risotto

A few weeks ago a neighbor of mine sent me a link to a recipe for slow cooker Barley and Chickpea Risotto.  I sometimes use recipes as my inspiration to create a dish but more often than not, I think about what main ingredient I want to have in a dish and build from there.  What I liked about the barley and chickpea recipe is that it featured the barley acting as the risotto instead of Arborio rice.  I love subtle changes that make a big difference.  Barley is a wonderful whole grain with a chewy, nutty consistency; full of fiber and lots of heart healthy, cancer fighting minerals.  I had some barley in my pantry and thought about what other ingredients I had readily available to create a risotto.

I had some black lentils which I thought would be great to cook alongside the barley for many reasons.  I’ve posted about lentils before so I don’t want to be repetitive, but they are also a great fiber source as well as protein; all great for heart health, digestive health and lowering cholesterol.   Black lentils were also a good choice to pair with the barley because they can cook at the same pace and would be a great complement in flavor and texture.  Keep in mind my barley was sprouted which reduces the cooking time and retains the nutrients.  If the barley is not sprouted it can take between 60-90 minutes to prepare.

I needed some contrast to the dish for color and as I posted last week, asparagus is in season, and I am going to feature it as much as possible since I love it and it’s easy to prepare.  Along with some sweet peppers, shitake mushrooms, mild spices, all cooked in vegetable broth, this risotto is a fantastic, healthy side or main dish.  Basic risotto calls for butter and parmesan cheese; No butter needed when you use vegetable broth and I used a little parrano cheese instead of parmesan but this is optional (but SO good).  Prepare it and dig in!

Feed the wellness in you!

Black Lentil and Barley Risotto with Asparagus

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of Barley
  • 1/2 cup of Black Lentils
  • 6 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 2 tsp minced shallots
  • 5 sweet peppers
  • 1/2 cup of Shitake Mushrooms
  • 4 cups of vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp of sea salt
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup of parrano cheese, shredded
  • 2 tsp fresh dry thyme

Instructions

  1. Sautee the garlic and shallots for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the Barley, Black Lentils, 1 tsp sea salt and 3 cups of vegetable broth. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes then turn to low heat for 20 minutes.
  3. In another pan, sautee the sweet peppers and shitake mushrooms for 5-7 minutes.
  4. Add the asparagus, lemon juice and thyme. Mix well and cook for another 5 minutes.
  5. Fold the asparagus mixture into the barley and black lentils with the remaining vegetable broth. Cook on low for 5 minutes then remove from heat.
  6. Mix in 1/2 cup of the parrano cheese and serve.
  7. Sprinkle the remaining parrano cheese on top.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/black-lentil-and-barley-risotto-with-asparagus/

Spicy Sesame Stir Fry

Sesame Stir Fry

I really enjoy making a stir-fry.  It’s quick, has great spices and always engages a lot of vegetables.  In addition, it doesn’t require a lot of oil despite the ‘fry’ in ‘stir-fry’!  My featured recipe has one of my favorite vegetables, Napa Cabbage also called Chinese Cabbage.   Its ‘sibling’ is Bok Choy which is also high on my list of favorites.  The size of the Napa Cabbage can be a bit daunting, but the mild flavor and crunch is a stand out when cooked well or eaten raw.  Because of it’s size, you can get several servings out of it which is great for the price.  High in Vitamins C and A consider it stir fried alone or as the base for your salad.  The leaves are very large and are good for veggie wraps.  If you’re familiar with Kimchi, this is the cabbage that is used in that staple Korean side dish.

For this stir fry I wanted a lot of crunch that will remain even the next day.  In addition to the cabbage it has broccoli, but instead of snow peas that are often in stir fry’s I used the sweet snap pea.  The snap pea has more density and retains its crunch.  It is also sweeter than the snow pea and offers such a wonderful contrast to the ginger and spice in the dish.  With a drizzle of toasted sesame seed oil at the end, it enhances the flavor with a nice nutty finish.  I served it over Buckwheat Soba Noodles.  Lovely.

The cooking time for the dish is quick and requires you to pay attention throughout the process.  So there’s no leaving the stove to multitask!  Instead, you will cook the ingredients in a certain order to retain the desired crunch and add the herbs and spices at the right time for a great finale – a sizzling sensation.

Feed the wellness in you!

Spicy Sesame Stir Fry

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of Napa Cabbage, chopped
  • 1 cup of broccoli florets
  • 1 cup of snow peas
  • 1 cup of sliced shitake mushrooms
  • 2 tbl peanut oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 cup sliced red bell peppers
  • 2 tbl Garlic Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 c yellow onions
  • 2 Tbl sesame seed oil
  • 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbl thai basil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 c light soy sauce
  • 1-2 tbl sesame seed oil

Instructions

  1. In a wok or large frying pan, heat the peanut oil on medium heat and sautee the garlic and onions for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the broccoli, snow peas, thai basil, ginger and sautee for 10 minutes.
  3. Add your red peppers and shitake mushrooms; stir well.
  4. Add the sea salt and garlic soy sauce.
  5. Cover for 4-5 minutes. Watch it to make sure it doesn't stick.
  6. Remove the cover and add the napa cabbage.
  7. Pour the light soy sauce and red pepper flakes, stir well and cover.
  8. Leave on a low heat for 10 minutes.
  9. Drizzle the sesame seed oil on top and stir.
  10. Make sure the vegetables are crisp and tender.
  11. Remove from heat and serve!
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/spicy-sesame-stir-fry/

 

 

Lentil Ragu

Lentil Ragu

Lentils along with other legumes are a vegetarians best friend.  They accompany practically anything and can be used in a side dish, main dish, salad – they are sure to satisfy.  I love the ability to use it in numerous ways across many cuisines.  I had to think long and hard about how to introduce my creative side into a lentil dish and I know I came up with a winning introduction.  Let’s start with a few facts about the beloved lentil.

Lentils have a long shelf life, low cost, and excellent nutritional content.  They are low in sodium and cholesterol and high in beneficial nutrients such as thiamin, phosphorous, copper, vitamin C, folate, iron, manganese, and dietary fiber.

There are also a wide variety of lentils – brown, yellow, red, black, green, and French green, with just slight differences in nutritional benefits.

I call this dish Lentil Ragu because a typical meat-based Ragu is comprised of at least two different meats, generally beef and pork or veal, and sometimes a little pancetta is added to the combo.  This lentil dish features three of the most common lentils – brown, green and black.   I’m using these three together because they are sprouted lentils.    The benefits of the sprouting process results in increased vitamins and minerals being retained.  It also reduces the cooking time tremendously.  If you cannot find sprouted or choose not to use sprouted then use brown and black lentils.  They can be easily found in the grocery store, they have the same cooking time of approximately 30 minutes, and they maintain their firmness and shape after cooking.  Red lentils are easy to find but they soften quite a bit and are better utilized in a curry or soup; Green lentils maintain their firmness and shape but take longer to cook, in upwards of 45 minutes.

I love the smokiness of the fire roasted tomatoes in this dish, the sweetness of the shallots, the freshness of the basil, and the mild heat of the red pepper flakes.  And the red wine could only result in a good thing!  The richness in flavor and color it adds is beautiful.  The aroma is enticing.  I included goat cheese as optional so this would be vegan friendly but I must say that if you can add a sprinkle of goat cheese it’s  mild enough to balance the other robust flavors and adds just a touch of creaminess.  Lastly, combining the lentils with shitake mushrooms really makes this a hearty main dish or as a side dish with other proteins and vegetables.  I paired it with whole wheat spaghetti but I would also consider it over polenta.

Enjoy!

Feed the wellness in you!

Lentil Ragu

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Serving Size: 4-6

The cooking process for the sauce (without the lentils) should be long and slow because it takes time for the red wine to absorb into the sauce. Use a slow cooker for an even better result and cook for 4 hours.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of sprouted lentil trio (Try Whole Foods for the 'Accent' brand)
  • 1 small shallot, chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbl of olive oil
  • 2 tbl of tomato paste
  • 1 cup of sliced shitake mushrooms
  • 2.5 cans of fire roasted tomatoes (14.5 ounce cans)
  • 1-2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • Chopped fresh basil
  • Whole Wheat Spaghetti
  • 2 tbl of Goat cheese per serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Sautee the garlic, shallots and shitake mushrooms in olive oil for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the 2.5 cans of fire roasted tomatoes, 2 tbl of tomato paste, sea salt, red pepper flakes and cook on low heat for 10 minutes.
  3. Fold in the cup of red wine and cook on low heat for 1 1/2 hrs.
  4. Cook 1 cup of lentils in vegetable stock.
  5. Add the lentils to the other ingredients after they have fully blended at the end of the 1 1/2 hours.
  6. Turn off and let sit until ready to serve.
  7. In another pan add one serving of cooked spaghetti and blend the lentil ragu generously.
  8. Serve with a sprinkle of chopped basil on top as shown in the picture, and individually plate.
  9. The goat cheese is optional but highly recommended!
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/lentil-ragu/

Ackee and Bok Choy

Ackee and Bok Choy

It’s not scrambled eggs, tofu, nor potatoes – it is Ackee.

Although native to West Africa, Ackee is prominently known in Jamaican cuisine and is in their national dish, Ackee and Saltfish (Cod).  Prior to becoming a vegetarian I absolutely loved Ackee and Saltfish.  Whenever in Jamaica I made a point to have it for breakfast as much as I could and learned how to make it at home.  Despite my Caribbean heritage, this was not a dish made in my home growing up, but Codfish was and prepared several ways.  I grew up having it made into fritters simply known as Codfish fritters, as a hot dish known as Codfish Stew, and as a cold dish named Buljol.  All equally delicious to me.  I loved Codfish so much that when I became pregnant with my twins my first craving was for Codfish fritters and I had my mother make them and overnight them to me….regularly!

Now as a vegetarian and in my quest to prepare interesting dishes I have combined Ackee with vegetables.  Eating Ackee with vegetables is not foreign in Jamaica because Rastafarians eat ‘Ital’ which is organic, non-processed food from the earth.  This results in vegetarian and vegan meals, which includes Ackee as an ingredient.  “Ital is vital” summarizes the Rastafarian belief that pure food from the earth is the most physically and spiritually beneficial.

Ackee  is not easily available at standard grocery stores.  You may have to find a Caribbean store to purchase a can of it or if you live in a more diverse city you grocery store may have it or even Walmart .  Bok Choy is readily available and I love that this vegetable has some crunch to it when you add the stalk.  Both provide great nutritional benefits!  All the fat in Ackee is unsaturated fat which is a good  way to protect the health of your heart, according to MayoClinic.com  It also has fiber, Vitamin C, B, and Niacin.  Bok Choy is very low in calories and packed with Vitamins C, K, B, Fiber, Calcium and Iron.

Ackee and Bok Choy is delicious!  I had it with Rice and Beans, and plantain.

Ackee and Bok Choy1

You  can also have Ackee for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  How about that for versatility?

Feed the wellness in you!

Ackee and Bok Choy

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Serving Size: 4

Please find the nearest Caribbean market near you to find all of these items! Please note that if you're not familiar with the scotch bonnet pepper you may want to try half of one initially. It adds a good amount of heat but if you enjoy heat with slight sweetness, this pepper is for you.

Ingredients

  • 1 can of Ackee, drained
  • 2 bunches of Bok Choy
  • 1/2 cup green peppers, sliced
  • 1/2 cup red peppers, sliced
  • 1/4 cup scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 1 tbl minced garlic
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper, chopped
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbl All purpose seasoning with Adobo (No MSG)
  • 3-4 stems fresh thyme
  • 1 cup of grape tomatoes, chopped

Instructions

  1. Wash the Bok Choy thoroughly, drain and chop.
  2. In a large pan, saute the green peppers, red peppers, scallions, onion, minced garlic, scotch bonnet pepper for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the bok choy and saute on low heat for 15 minutes.
  4. Add the scotch bonnet and onion powder and mix well.
  5. Add the Ackee, tomato paste, all purpose seasoning and fresh thyme.
  6. Cook on low heat for 10 minutes.
  7. Add your chopped tomatoes and turn off heat.
  8. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes then serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/ackee-and-bok-choy/