Deconstructed lentil burrito bowl (vegan)

Snagged this great recipe for Mexican Style Beluga Lentils from The Witchy Kitchen (great recipes on this blog by the way). The only change I made was that I added double the paprika because it was the last bit in the little can so I just dumped out the whole thing. Oh yeah, and I didn’t add onion powder because I didn’t have any. I used Tapatio for the hot sauce.

1 Cup Beluga Lentils (Rinsed)img_0002
3 3/4-4 Cups Water
1 Tsp. Red Wine Vinegar
1 Vegetable Bouillon
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tsp. Cumin
3/4 Tsp. Paprika
1/8 Tsp. Onion Powder
1/8 Tsp. Garlic Powder
Black Pepper and Hot Sauce to taste*
Place water, lentils, bay leaf, and bouillon in a sauté pan and bring to a boil. Stir. Allow to boil hard for about 45 seconds to a minute. Turn the heat down to where it will keep the lentils at a low simmer and place a lid on the pan at an angle, so that steam can escape. Allow to simmer on low heat, stirring intermittently, for about 20-25 minutes.* Once the lentils start to look plump and done, add the vinegar, dry spices, pepper, and hot sauce. Mix and remove from the heat.
* I couldn’t get this part right so there ended up being a lot of liquid left once the lentils were cooked. What I did to fix this was drain the lentils into a bowl to collect the cooking liquid. I added a little bit of the liquid at the end to loosen everything up and to make sure the spices were mixed in well.
The corn salsa is my “recipe.” It has no heat because I didn’t have any peppers to add but it became friends with the lentils straight away and they’ve been inseparable ever since. It was an un-recipe really because I was cleaning out the fridge and was using up stuff I had in the freezer and what not. So here it is:
1 bag of frozen corn
1 small onion (or half a large one) chopped to the same size as the corn
I huge handful of cilantro* chopped
1 tsp cumin
The juice of one lime (or 2 key limes)
Salt & Pepper to taste
*I usually take the stems of the cilantro leaves and then chop it until I have about a handful of just the chopped leaves. Sure it’s more work but who wants to eat stems?
**If the pepper fairy were to visit me and I had peppers to add, I would chop and add a poblano pepper
Add all the ingredients, stir until well mixed, taste it and see what else you want to add. Maybe more cilantro? Maybe more salt? You decide. Keep tasting and don’t worry I won’t tell anyone you used the same spoon over and over.
Overall thoughts: I really liked the lentil recipe and mos def am making them again. Have to admit I was pretty impressed with my corn un-recipe, too. Deconstructed looks prettier but I ended up mixing everything up in the end anyway.

Delicata squash and carrot soup

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I had these 2 delicata squash that I needed to use because they were getting old. I was home all day so I roasted them in the oven following the instructions on the sticker that was on it.

To roast the squash: cut lengthwise and put cut side down with a couple tablespoons of water in a baking dish. Cover and roast at 375 degrees for about 35 minutes.

Recipe for the soup follows:
2 delicata squash roasted and removed from skin with spoon
24 baby carrots boiled until very soft
2 cloves garlic peeled and boiled withe carrots
Half inch size of fresh ginger peeled and also boiled with the carrots
Everything went into the blender even the boiling water. Seasoned with salt and pepper to taste. Added some soy milk -about half a cup- to get things moving and voila!

Oh! I also put about a teaspoon of curry powder in the blender, too.

For the love of zucchini!

zucchini

Check out this really great article and recipe ideas that use zucchini.
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2013/09/08/magazine/bittman-zucchini-recipes.html?smid=fb-nytimes&WT.z_sma=MG_ZA_20130904&_r=0

Zucchini is super cheap right now and can be used in so many different ways. My personal faves are grilled (simply seasoned with salt, pepper, and olive oil), as fries (especially from Zinburger – yum!), and grated and turned into pancakes. I have yet to use them as noodles but it is on my list of things to try out. How do people get them all curly and noodle-y? I’ll figure it out. Probably some cool kitchen tool is all I need.

Gotta start somewhere

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I’ve been away for a while and I have missed my blog world. I have been busy buying a house, starting school again, and just dealing with life in general. No excuse, though. I kept telling myself that I would compose some fabulous post with lots of pictures and tips when I did return but never got around to it. So here I am eating breakfast when it occurred to me, “what better time than now?” This has for a lot of things lately – buying a house, getting a Masters degree, and interviewing for that promotion at work (which I didn’t get). There really is no better time than now to live our lives one day at a time. There is no better time than now to let go, love people, and eat good food.

Good morning!

Lovely spinach salad with cannellini beans

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The thing about getting back to my normal diet of rabbit food and beans is that I am always hungry! It sucks! I put a half cup of rinse and drained cannellini beans on top of my salad so I’m hoping it hold me over at least until after the gym.

Either way, I am already feeling lighter and that’s what I really want.

The recipe is as follows:
Two three handfuls of baby spinach (romaine would have been good, too)
One tomato
One carrot
Handful of fresh flat leaf (Italian) parsley
Half cup of cannellini (aka white kidney) beans
For the dressing:
Juice of half a lemon
1 tsp Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Ground cumin

I tossed all except for the beans in a large bowl and tossed. Then I piled the beans on top. That’s it!

I did a calculation using myfitnesspal.com and this huge salad is only 210 calories! Not bad! With the calories that low, guess who’s having a homemade chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich later?

Getting back into the routine

538405_10200211875682033_121956455_nOk, it’s day 2 of the new year and I’m starting out on a good note. It was a vegan dinner tonight made with a no-recipe recipe because they were almost all leftovers! Yes! On the right side of my plate, I have leftover couscous from the lunch I made on Saturday (see previous post). After I stuffed those acorn squash, I had a bunch leftover and I couldn’t let it go to waste. In the middle are some lovely green beans that I bought at Sprouts yesterday. I steamed them in the microwave (about 5 minutes) then melted some Earth Balance over the top and added salt and pepper. Then, on the left, are leftover Brussels sprouts and potatoes from our New Years Eve dinner at Union Public House. It was hearty and satisfying and delicious and I am feeling good about myself right now! After eating these Brussels sprouts tonight, it reminded me how much I absolutely love them. I am going to have to get some to make more this week.