5/21/18

Vegan Eggplant, Chickpea & Tomato With Israeli Cous Cous Meal Prep


Let me tell you about a vegan dish that's full of flavor, color, nutrients, and is perfect for meal prep for the week.

Vegan Eggplant, Chickpea & Tomato With Israeli Cous Cous Meal Prep

Ingredients for 4-6 servings

1 tablespoon olive oil, more if needed
1 medium sized Italian eggplant, diced into 1/4" pieces
1 small onion, diced
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 cans chickpeas, drained {I used home cooked chickpeas}
1/3 cup halved Kalamata olives
salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste
2 cups cooked Israeli cous cous
fresh basil

Directions
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add eggplant and onions and saute on medium heat until the eggplant is tender. Add more oil if needed.
2. Add canned tomatoes and their juices, chickpeas, and olives. Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, and bring the mixture to a hard simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Add cooked cous cous. Mix to combine.
4. Serve topped with fresh basil. 

5/16/18

Summer Chicken Soup. Meal Prep In A Pressure Cooker.


Let's talk about soup: I love it. Whether it's a bowl of cold summer borsch or a steaming bowl of split pea soup, soup provides nourishment, is great for leftovers, and can be eaten for any meal of the day. Yes, I occasionally eat soup for breakfast.

Over the weekend, I made a version of Pinch of Yum's Instant Pot Summer Soup and am so happy with the results. 

Let me tell you about this Summer Chicken Soup


The base of the recipe is a combination of chicken broth and crushed tomatoes. I used crushed tomatoes with basil to increase the flavor.

There's no need to saute carrots and celery before adding them to the pressure cooker. To make things easier, I did not even peel the carrots.

You can use whichever spices you like the most. In addition to onion powder and salt, I seasoned the soup generously with sumac, which intensified the deep red color of the soup.

I did not have farro, so used brown rice.

As far as the chicken goes, I actually used 2 large chicken breasts with the bones. They were less expensive and provided even more flavor to the soup. Plus, you shred the chicken and can easily discard the bones before serving the soup.

Originally I thought about using frozen corn, but am so glad I ended up incorporating fresh corn because it added a nice texture to the soup.

I topped my bowl of Summer Chicken Soup with strained yogurt, fresh cilantro and Parmesan.

Note that the brown rice (or whichever grain you use) will expand in the soup as it sits in the refrigerator. Not to worry: add a bit more chicken broth when reheating the soup.

Tell me what's the latest soup you ate!

5/14/18

Meatless Monday: Three Bean Salad & Breasts: The Owner's Manual


Oh hi! It's another Monday.

A few weeks ago my friends from Meatless Monday offered to send me a copy of Dr. Kristi Funk's Breasts: The Owner's Manual book and another one to give away to my readers.

Readers...are you out there? I'm hosting a giveaway on my instagram only, so head over there for a chance to win the book!

I've not read the book yet, but one of the things Kristi advocates is reducing meat, and so over the weekend I made Kristi's Three Beans Walk Into A Salad...recipe and will be having leftovers for lunch. This recipe is incredibly easy, can be customized with addition of other ingredients you like, and will be perfect for a picnic!

Reprinted with permission from Dr. Kristi Funk and Chrissy Roth, Certified Plant-Based Nutritionist

Three Beans Walk into a Salad… 
Serves 6
Ingredients:

  • 1 can black beans (rinsed well)
  • 1 can kidney beans (rinsed well)
  • 1 can chickpeas (rinsed well, save chickpea liquid)
  • 1 avocado cut into half inch cubes
  • 2 Persian cucumbers chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1 tsp fresh oregano (preferred) or 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 to 3 T of red wine vinegar
  • 1-2 T chickpea liquid
  • Salt and pepper to taste
 
Directions:
Combine beans, veggies and avocado and toss gently. Add oregano, then toss, add chickpea liquid, then red wine vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.

Tip: Chill the beans before making this if you are planning to eat it right away. Or you can make it (minus the avocado), chill for an hour, then add the avocado right before serving.


NOTES: I added one diced yellow pepper, a quarter of a chopped onion, and fresh basil. I chose not to add oregano because it's not my favorite.

I was surprised I did not miss having olive oil in this salad.

Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of the book, but am not compensated for this post.

5/7/18

Skinnytaste Easy Bagels With Everything But The Bagel


How about an everything bagel for breakfast? Guess what? You can make your own!

Yesterday my friends Sylvie and Jazmin came over for brunch (with Sylvie's adorable daughter), and I decided to finally make Gina's (aka Skinnytaste) Easy Bagels after seeing them on her instagram countless times.

I admit I was a bit scared. What if they would not turn out well? Oh, I remembered, I had wholewheat bread with seeds and nuts in the freezer: I could use that instead.

No need! The bagel dough, consisting of flour, Greek yogurt, baking powder, and salt, came together super easy. I doubled the recipe and made 8 bagels.

Unlike Gina, I used full fat Greek yogurt in the dough and a whole egg to make the egg wash. I egg-washed the bagels only on the top and sprinkled them generously with Trader Joe's Everything But The Bagel. The bagels took longer to bake than the recipe suggested, but rose nicely and smelled and looked incredible!

I highly recommend halving and toasting the bagels before slathering each half with scallion cream cheese, and adding layers of smoked salmon, cucumbers and tomatoes.

These were much lighter and delicate than the bagels you'd find in your grocery store or coffee shop. They were also smaller, but perfectly sized for not feeling stuffed.



Brunch menu:
bagels with scallion cream cheese, smoked salmon, cucumbers and tomatoes

roasted red skinned potatoes and onions

Jazmin's salad with peppers, goat cheese, red onion, avocado, and a dreamy balsamic and lime dressing

Sylvie's rose and watermelon (which we did not have time to eat, and I'm very happy to have kept)



5/2/18

Chicken Salad With Mango, Cucumber & Radishes


Looking for a fun way to use leftover chicken breasts? Don't want to turn on your stove? Well, then you must make my Chicken Salad With Mango, Cucumber & Radishes.

The photo above is before I added mayonnaise. Of course if you don't love mayonnaise, you can leave it out and use olive oil and lemon juice instead or maybe yogurt, but I LOVE mayo and use it all the time.

Chicken Salad With Mango, Cucumber & Radishes
Ingredients for 1-2 servings 

1 cooked chicken breast, cubed
1 mango, peeled, and diced
1 Persian cucumber, diced
3 radishes, diced
1 avocado, diced
salt & pepper to taste
mayonnaise (as much or as little as you want)

Directions
1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl.