Butternut Squash and Cannellini Beans

Butternut squash with cannellini beans

Inspired by a dish I had at a local restaurant, I made this awesome side dish with less than five ingredients! Butternut squash is such a versatile squash, lending itself to be sweet or savory with an ample dose of fiber and Vitamin B6.  Paired with Cannellini beans for even more dietary fiber and protein, you have a great low calorie combination. Topped with roasted almonds this is a very easy and nutritious side dish.

Feed the wellness in you!

Butternut Squash and Cannellini Beans

Ingredients

  • 1 lb butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 can of cannellini beans
  • 1/2 cup bell peppers (red, yellow, orange)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted almonds
  • 1/2 tbl olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbl dried parsley
  • ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Crush the almonds and place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper in the oven at 200 degrees.
  2. Sautee the bell peppers in the olive oil until softened.
  3. Add the butternut squash and sautee for 15 minutes or until cooked yet firm.
  4. Add the cannellini beans and mix well for 5 minutes
  5. Add the balsamic vinegar.
  6. Add pepper to taste.
  7. Sprinkle the parsley on top.
  8. Remove the almonds from the oven (at this point they would have been in the oven for 25-30 minutes) and sprinkle on top of the butternut squash and balsamic vinegar.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/butternut-squash-and-cannellini-beans/

Quick and Easy Chickpea Salad

Quick and Easy Chickpea salad

As Spring weather starts to grace us before it officially starts, it makes you think about lighter fare recipes and naturally salads come to mind. You can’t go wrong with an easy salad that can be paired with the protein of your choice. This is nothing fancy but it packs in nutrients and flavor.  Protein, folate, fiber, and iron in a tasty simple salad – what’s not to love?

Feed the wellness in you!

Quick and Easy Chickpea Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cans chickpeas
  • 1 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 chopped English cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground pepper

Instructions

  1. Rinse and drain chickpeas.
  2. In a bowl, combine chickpeas with all the ingredients and mix well.
  3. Best made in advance!
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quick-and-easy-chickpea-salad/

 

Quinoa and Tofu Mediterranean Bake

Quinoa and Tofu bake 4

 As I’ve stated in the past, I’m a fan of a dish that can go a long way but more importantly, never get tired of. I hadn’t made a quinoa dish in a while, so that immediately came to mind when considering a hearty meal that would give me a break from cooking every meal from scratch for a few days. This dish is a blend of simple nutritious ingredients and compliments all sources of protein. It is provides great levels of vitamins A and C, and Iron. What makes this ‘Mediterranean’, in my mind, is the addition of olives and feta. Also topped with Campari Tomatoes, it has the essence of the popular tomato used in many Italian dishes.

Most of the ingredients are cooked then blended in one pot before layering in a deep dish.

Quinoa and tofu bake 1

The quinoa mix (quinoa, spinach, roasted tomatoes, peppers, olives, feta) minus the tofu is the first layer, then top with roasted tofu.

Add another layer of the quinoa mix and repeat.  The final layer of quinoa is topped with sliced Campari tomatoes and feta.

Quinoa and Tofu bake 2

Quinoa and Tofu bake 3

Just delicious!

Feed the wellness in you!

Quinoa and Tofu Mediterranean Bake

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 8

Serving Size: 1

Calories per serving: 240

Fat per serving: 11.9

Saturated fat per serving: 3

Carbs per serving: 21.6

Protein per serving: 13.8

Fiber per serving: 3.3

Sugar per serving: 2.8

Sodium per serving: 644.3

Ingredients

  • 1 c Quinoa (3 cups cooked)
  • 2 pkgs Extra Firm Tofu (32 oz)
  • 5 oz package of Baby Spinach
  • 1 - 15.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes with Basil and Garlic
  • 3/4 cup Kalamata Olives, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped mixed bell peppers
  • 1 cup Feta cheese crumbles
  • 3 cups Vegetable stock
  • 3 Campari tomatoes

Instructions

  1. Sautee the mixed bell peppers, set aside.
  2. Cook 1 c of Quinoa in 3 cups vegetable stock
  3. After the Quinoa is cooked, while hot add the baby spinach, diced tomatoes, olives, mixed bell peppers and 3/4 cups of feta cheese. Mix well.
  4. Transfer to a deep 9x13 dish.
  5. Top with sliced Campari Tomatoes and the remaining feta cheese.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quinoa-and-tofu-mediterranean-bake/

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/

 

Butternut Squash and Lentil Soup

Butternut Squash and Lentil Soup

Another frigid week and another big pot of soup was made! This has all simple, easy to find ingredients that blend well together for a hearty meal.

Very much like my Three Bean Vegan Soup, despite the name there is so much more in this soup.  Butternut Squash and Lentil Soup ingredientsAlongside the Butternut Squash and Lentils and kale (I know everyone is saying that kale is so ‘2015’ but I still love it!), there are black beans and cannellini beans.

This is another soup that packs in the protein, vitamin c, iron and lots of vitamin a from the butternut squash.  Make some warm cornbread to go along with it and you have a satisfied mind, (warm) body and soul.

Feed the wellness in you!

Butternut Squash and Lentil Soup

Ingredients

  • 9 cups of vegetable stock (Better than Bouillon is preferred)
  • 1/2 lb Chopped Kale
  • 1 lb of diced Butternut Squash
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Cannellini Beans
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Black Beans Beans
  • 1 - 14.5 oz can Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Bring your stock to a boil and add the kale. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes.
  2. Add the butternut squash and cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Add all remaining ingredients, stir, and cook on low heat for 30 minutes.
  4. Let cool to desired temperature and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/butternut-squash-and-lentil-soup/

Three Bean Vegan Soup

3 Bean Vegan Soup

Don’t you just love a warm bowl of soup on a cold day? We experienced some morning weather in the teens early this week and I head straight to the store  with soup on my mind. I love a hearty soup that give you a variety of flavors and textures. This soup is easy to make, quickly if you are in a hurry, without sacrificing flavor.

In addition to a few other ingredients, this picture captures all the items in the soup!  3 Bean Soup Ingredients

Although I call it ‘Three Bean’ soup because of the cannellini, kidney and garbanzo beans there are so many other great things in this soup to add to your nutrition – barley, spinach, baby kale, chard – how about that for a bowl full of goodness!  This is the season for the extra Vitamin C you will get from your greens along with iron and folate; the beans  along with barley give you protein, fiber and antioxidants.

Try it whether the temps dip or not.  Warm your soul.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

3 Bean Vegan Soup

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour

Serving Size: 6-8

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c pearled barley
  • 9 cups of vegetable stock (Better than Bouillon is preferred)
  • 1 - 5 oz bag of Fresh Express Baby Kale Mix
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Chick Peas
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Cannellini Beans
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Kidney Beans
  • 1 - 14.5 oz can Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 - 14.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes with Green Peppers, Celery and Onions
  • 3 links of Light Life Chorizo chopped
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Put all ingredients except for baby kale mix in large pot.
  2. If you're in a hurry bring ingredients to boil then simmer for 30 minutes, adding baby kale mix last 5 minutes until wilted.
  3. If you're not in a hurry, let this cook on low heat for 1.5 hours adding baby kale mix in the last 5 minutes until wilted. This is even better if you prepare in a crock pot.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/three-bean-vegan-soup/

Quinoa Tabbouleh

 

Quinoa Tabboulleh

I got an email from my children’s school advising where to find their school supply list online along with other back to school information.  As much as I tried to deny it, the summer break is coming to an end. How is this possible? Where did the time go? I still have summer heavy on my mind. What’s great about DC is that it can reach the 80 degree mark in October and some pools are still open. One local pool that I go to has a fabulous brunch with several vegetarian options. One of the options is usually a traditional tabbouleh with bulgur but this past weekend they did it with quinoa. I liked the substitute.  Ironically they lessened the parsley which I don’t know if that technically makes it an entirely different dish because how can tabbouleh not have parsley?  With many more weeks of summer and the desire to eat nice cool salads,  I thought I should make tabbouleh and post a recipe.

There’s so many things that are great about tabbouleh.  I love the smell of fresh parsley and the lovely taste of the lemon and mint combined.  I was excited about trying it with quinoa.  Both bulgur and quinoa are great grains but quinoa has 50% more protein which I always need to seek extra of on a vegetarian diet.  Another thing I like about this dish is that it is easy to prepare.  Besides cooking the quinoa, everything else just gets chopped and when the quinoa is cooled just put all the ingredients together and mix well.  That’s it!

Traditional tabbouleh has way more parsley than it does grain.  Parsley is an amazing herb with almost every vitamin, lots of minerals and fiber.  Keep tabbouleh in mind at the salad bar  as an add-on ingredient to your salad.  It’s one of those items that adds great texture and flavor to salad, eliminating the need for dressing.

I hope you enjoy my take on tabbouleh.  I kept the spices light yet interesting, and used a higher ratio of lemon juice to olive oil.

Feed the wellness in you!

 

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Prep Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours, 30 minutes

It is recommended to let the tabbouleh sit for 4 hours before serving hence the long total preparation time.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/2 c fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbl garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cucumber (if you you can find one, use a whole Persian cucumber), chopped
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 bunch chopped italian parsley (1.5 cups) washed and dried thoroughly
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint washed and dried thoroughly
  • 2 chopped scallions washed and dried thoroughly
  • 1/4 tsp Allspice
  • 1/4 tsp Powdered Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves

Instructions

  1. Cook a cup of quinoa according to the package directions. Let cool then put in a large bowl.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.
  3. Let sit for 4 -6 hours or ideally overnight before serving.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/quinoa-tabbouleh/

 

Toasted Grain Pilaf

 

Toasted Grain Pilaf.jpg

I celebrated my birthday almost two weeks ago and one of my wishes was to have a ‘staycation’ – lay poolside, read a book, and relax.  Once my children are in a body of water and swimming, I don’t hear from them unless they are hungry and when they have a room number to charge to I am out of the equation.  There are only a few hotels in town that provide these options so as I was looking at hotels and their menus (always important for me to make sure they have good vegetarian options or adaptable dishes) I came across a dish named Toasted Grain and Endive Sauté.  The ingredients listed seemed to be quite tasty combined – black rice, farro, cauliflower, baby  bok choy, endive, capers, golden raisins, smoked almonds, sesame oil, lime.  I immediately jotted the ingredients down and was glad that I did since we didn’t eat at this restaurant.

When I returned home I made what I thought would be done with these ingredients as described.  I stuck closely to the ingredients listed except for the black rice which may have been a nice contrast in color for the dish.  I loved the idea of combining cauliflower, endive and bok choy.  Toasted Grain Pilaf Veggies.jpg

Because of the use of grains and the crunch of the almonds it seemed like an interesting spin on rice pilaf to me and not a sauté as the name originally implied, therefore I named my dish aptly, Toasted Grain Pilaf.

I enjoyed what I did with it and it turned out to be a hearty dish that I felt could be eaten alone or as a side dish.  I loved the use of lime and I thought of adding some cilantro and a touch of heat which gave it great flavoring.  Enjoy!

Feed the wellness in you!

 

Toasted Grain Pilaf

Yield: 3-4 servings

Ingredients

  • Vegetable Stock
  • 3/4 cup Farro
  • 2 cups roasted cauliflower
  • 2 baby bok choy, chopped
  • 1 endive, chopped
  • 2 tbl capers
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup red onions
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup smoked almonds chopped
  • Sesame Oil
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt
  • Onion Powder
  • Garlic Powder
  • 2 -3 limes
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup cilantro

Instructions

  1. Cook the farro according to the directions in 1.5 - 2 c of vegetable stock. Should be 25-30 minutes. Set aside to cool
  2. Roast the cauliflower in olive oil, dash of sea salt, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic powder. Takes approximately 30-35 minutes.
  3. Sautee the red onions and minced garlic in 2 tbl of olive oil for 3 minutes on medium heat.
  4. Add the roasted cauliflower, bok choy and endive and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  5. Fold in the farro, capers, and 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper; mix well.
  6. Squeeze the juice from the 2 -3 limes into the dish. If they are large limes, use 2.
  7. Mix in the golden raisins and 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro. Add salt to taste.
  8. Drizzle sesame seed oil on top.
  9. Sprinkle the smoked almonds on top, the remaining cilantro and serve.
https://eatlikeavegetarian.com/toasted-grain-pilaf/

In Season Wellness – Guava

Guava with a half isolated on whiteThe Guava fruit brings back many childhood memories for me,  spending time on the lovely island of St. Vincent.  With rich volcanic soil, fruits and vegetables are grown in abundance on that small agricultural island.  Guava is everywhere, literally falling off the trees. It is made into several things –  jelly,  cheese,  stew, pudding, juice, ice cream.  Low in calories, high in vitamin C and potassium, they can also be eaten plain.  What a joy it was to just walk along the beach and see Guavas in the sand that dropped from Guava trees.  We would just pick them up, go to the sea, wash it off and eat it.  That is organic food at its best!  You can eat the entire Guava from the outer skin, to the flesh and the seeds.

Guava has a higher concentration of lycopene—an antioxidant that fights prostate cancer and prevents skin damage from UV rays —than any other plant food, including tomatoes and watermelon. It contains more potassium than other fruits like banana weight per weight. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure. Guava also contains vitamins like Vitamin E, K, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, Vitamin B6 and minerals like copper, manganese and magnesium which are important for blood formation. Also due to high content of Vitamin C, guava increases body’s capacity to absorb iron. Lastly, Guava may also be the ultimate high-fiber food: There’s almost 9 grams of fiber in every cup.

Find Guava near you and dive in.

Feed the wellness in you!

Weekly Wellness Tip – Sources of Protein

Whole Grains

How do you get Protein in your diet?

I am often asked this question. There are so many ways!  Although I don’t have a large source at one time such as a chicken breast that gives you approximately 23 grams of protein,  I eat whole grains throughout the day, even found in my snacks such as the Carrot Quinoa Mini Muffins I recently posted.

Many of you are looking to incorporate more protein in your diet even though you eat meat and fish.  I get a lot of my protein from whole grains and beans.  Whole grains or foods made from them contain all the essential parts and natural nutrients of the entire grain seed in their original proportions.  Unprocessed, they provide you with lots of protein and fiber.

Studies also show that eating whole grains instead of refined grains lowers the risk of many chronic diseases.  These benefits can only be realized as part of an overall healthy lifestyle.  So, in addition to you incorporating the usual Oats or Brown Rice in your diet, consider these great sources of protein.  The amount of protein listed is based on 1 cup of cooked whole grain.

Feed the wellness in you!

  1. Amarath            9 grams
  2. Black Beans      14 grams
  3. Bulgur                6 grams
  4. Chick Peas        12 grams
  5. Farro                  8 grams
  6. Kidney Beans   14 grams
  7. Millet                 6 grams
  8. Quinoa              9 grams