Well, another day of healthy eating. Started out the day with a green smoothie. Yum! Just add a frozen banana, handful of frozen mango chunks, handful of fresh blueberries, very large handful of raw spinach and a squeeze of agave syrup and just a little water. Blend until smooth…it’s amazing. The spinach gives it so much in the way of nutrients and such, but the only way to know it’s there is with the bright, beautiful green color. Other than that it tastes just like a regular fruit smoothie.
Here’s a tip… take any bananas that are getting overripe and you’re not going to eat, then just throw them in the freezer. Take one out when you want a thick smoothie. No ice needed. Frozen fruits are great and you can make them yourself. Just cut up, put in the freezer and viola! Fruit as needed.
But last night, I made a fun snack that I had to tell you about. I’ve been scouring Web sites and books, as well as visiting the recent raw foods meetup in town. I’ve gotten so many great ideas that I can’t wait to try them all out! Last night I sliced up a zucchini with a vegetable peeler to get long, thin ribbons. Then I added some fresh pesto (you can make and freeze that also, it’s easy). Add some ground flax seeds for texture and great Omega 3s, then mix it up and there you have it.
One afterthought… I realized that you need to eat it right away. If you want to wait, just salt the zucchini first and let it drain to get some of the moisture out first. There’s so much moisture in the zucchini that the sauce begins to get a little watery if you wait too long to eat it. Just salting it will do the trick, and add a little flavor too. Use sea salt for the best flavor. I think I’ll do that next time, but the flavor is wonderful either way and the crunchiness is so satisfying.
I’ve decided to try and eat as much “live” food as possible, meaning as many raw dishes as I can. I believe it’s so much better for you. I recently went to a raw foods meetup and it was so great. I was amazed at the dishes that were all raw. There was even a raw pumpkin pie, which I think was even better than the regular kind. The crust was made of nuts and dates, and the filling was actually butternut squash instead of pumpkin. But I dare you to tell the difference.
One of the great things about eating raw is that you don’t have to worry about meat or wheat, in most cases. Some might use soy sauce, but it’s clearly marked if it’s there. Tonight I decided to try my hand at a broccoli salad. It was awfully yummy and I wish I had made more. I think I’ll make some and let it sit overnight, which will soften up the broccoli a bit and blend the flavors. But I’m not complaining, I love the crunchy broccoli, sunflower seeds and sweet tomatoes. Since I just threw this together, the measurements are not as specific as usual. But you get the idea.
About 1 1/2 cups of broccoli florets
1/2 tsp grated raw onion
About 1 TBS sunflower seeds (mine were roasted, but you could use raw)
About 6-8 grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 1/2 tsp ground flax seeds
1-2 TBS honey mustard dressing
1 pinch of sea salt
1. Put all ingredients in a bowl and mix. It’s that simple. Add 1 TBS of dressing and mix, then add more to taste.
I like to grate the onion so that the flavor isn’t so powerful. I don’t like biting into raw onion, but the flavor is great. I just cut off the end of a sweet onion and grated it into the salad. It’s about 1/2-1 tsp. It’s up to you if you like onion or not, so decide for yourself dear chef. You can even leave it out and it will still be great.
Honey mustard dressing can be a store-bought brand or just a quick mix of honey, mustard, olive oil and salt. This time I was out of honey and used the spray-on brand of honey mustard dressing. It’s great if you just want a little dressing at a time, and low cal.
After a great visit to New Orleans, it’s nice to be home again. I made the spaghetti frittata while I was there, and it was yummy. Everyone ate it all up. There was one piece left the next morning and Daughter and I decided to share it. But we mistakenly took the cocktail sauce instead of the marinara sauce from my sister’s fridge and smothered it before noticing. Hmmm, not a great combo. But luckily there wasn’t that much left, although I hated not to eat it. I just couldn’t.
So now that we’re back, Daughter and I are making the most of the Quorn Chicken Tenders. It’s basically like the Quorn roast, but small chicken-like chunks. They are wonderful. We found them in the Whole Foods in New Orleans and ate them for lunch twice. Tonight, we decided to try a Shepard’s pie with them. What a great idea! For this one, I used cauliflower, baby zucchini and Quorn tenders, topped off with mashed potatoes of course. We had to stop ourselves from eating the whole pie, it was that good. This picture doesn’t do it justice. We took a quick shot before devouring it. But trust me, it rocks. Give it a try.
Shepard’s Pie with a Quorn Twist
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 bag of Quorn Tenders
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp dried basil
salt/pepper to taste
4-5 baby zucchini, sliced
1 cup chopped cauliflower
2 cups mashed potatoes
This one is easy and quick, but the flavors are so great.
1. Add frozen Quorn to a hot pan with olive oil. Add garlic powder, basil, pinch of salt and pepper to tenders and let them brown slightly.
2. Place zucchini and cauliflower in a separate glass bowl and microwave for about 2 minutes until tender.
3. Add veggies to the tenders in the saute pan and mix.
4. Spray a tart pan with nonstick olive oil spray. Add Quorn mixture to bottom of pan and spread out to cover.
5. Add mashed potatoes on top of Quorn mixture and spread out evenly to the edges. You can use leftover mashed potatoes, make your own, or even use pre-made. For a quick dinner, I don’t mind pre-made mashed potatoes.
6. Since everything is already cooked, you really don’t need to heat for long. If the potatoes are cold, put into a 375 degree oven for about 30 minutes. You may need to put it on broil for a few minutes to brown up the top. If the potatoes are warm, just place your pie under the broiler for about five minutes to brown up the top.
7. Let it sit for a few minutes to cool, then serve.