FOOD fit for a Rockstar

Deena Kamm's recipe book and always evolving food philosophy
Browsing Uncategorized

Cauliflower “Rissoto”… a healthy Italian makeover: Day 75 of my 90 Day Food Journey

March20

Well, It’s been a loooong journey… but it’s still going. To say that I am busy right now is an understatement. I WISH WISH WISH I had more time to post everyday. Mostly because it helps stay me focused on what I’m eating and how my body and mind are changing for the better, but life happens while you’re making other plans, right? I have so many things I want to talk about, and about 10 draft posts waiting to be written, but I’m going to put up a quick post about a fantastically healthy dish my husband made the other night… Because at the end of the day – I hope to remember, inspire, and share our healthy food choices. So here it is…

Cauliflower “Risotto”

deliciously created by ForkandBeans.com

This dish is vegan, grain and gluten-free.  Good start.  Zeke made it pretty close to the original recipe and I loved it.  BUT I have made a few changes to this recipe as I think I would have loved it even MORE if it had these tweaks.  My changes are in bold in case you want to omit them and try it the Forks and Beans OG way.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 medium head of Lightly Steamed cauliflower, chopped in a food processor (or your VITAMIX!)
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1 can white beans, rinsed and drained, divided (I prefer Great Northern Beans) we used Garbanzo/Chick Peas
  • 1/2 c. vegetable broth
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tb sundried tomatoes (we used Oven Roasted Tomatoes now on sale by the jar at Costco – thank you Costco – I will always love you)
  • 1 Tb capers (I love capers like they are candy – I added about 1/4 cup to my plate  – I may have an olive problem)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried
  • toasted pinenuts, optional

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium-sized pot, heat 1 Tb olive oil on medium heat until warmed. Place the shallots, garlic, and thyme inside and saute for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant and translucent.
  2. Place 1/2 the can of beans and vegetable broth into the pot and simmer for 5 minutes!
  3. With an immersion blender (or if you do not have one, use a regular blender or your Vitamix!), gently blend all of the contents together in the pot until creamy and smooth.
  4. Add grated cauliflower, sun-dried tomatoes, remainder beans, and spinach. Cover with a lid and allow to heat through for a good 5 to 15 minutes. Waiting to throw the spinach in until 5 min before you’re ready to serve.
  5. Add the capers before you serve and garnish with toasted pine-nuts.

The main thing I want to stress about this dish is that if the cauliflower is raw it really doesn’t feel like Risotto.  It’s still GREAT, but I don’t think it should be called Risotto because then your brain in disappointed.  If the cauliflower was lightly steamed before chopping and THEN steamed longer at the end I am confident that it would be truly a perfect Faux Risotto.

 

This dish is very similar in flavors and texture to an amazing NON-vegan dish I have made many times in the past By Giada De Laurentiis: Veronica’s Veggie Meatloaf with Checca Sauce.
Giada’s has cheese – a LOT of cheese, and also takes a long time to make. It’s very prep heavy. I have made it for many people many times and everyone loves it, but I don’t make it that often anymore, because there’s no time for all that prep AND I am no longer eating cheese. Details, details. Honestly, I have missed this dish, but NO LONGER!! Because the Cauliflower Risotto gives me the exact same Italian fix and comfort food feelings that I need and crave!! I am so excited about this. Thanks to my husband for continuing on the hunt with me for great new healthy, vegan food we can easily make at home.
Try this!! You will be amazed. I promise. I was.

The journey is NOT over yet…. Stay with me!

D-

Husband Rating 4 stars:gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-star stars : “It’s a pretty good replacement for Risotto”
Kid Rating 2 smiley faces: “Thumbs up Papa! this is so yummy! Mommy, can I have a banana? ”

…Humpty Dumpty had a great RECIPE! Day 36 of my Food Journey

February9

My son subscribes to the Humpty Dumpty magazine for kids. Very cute little publication. It comes out 6 times a year. Always has a silly little healthy snack recipe in the back that you can make with your kids. Most of the time they are just too ridiculous to indulge in, but this last issue of Humpty Dumpty magazine there was not one but TWO great recipe ideas in there!! Way to do it Humpty!
So one of the recipes was called Superfood Fudge by Mom blogger Sarah of Frugal by Choice, Cheap by Necessity. Now let me warn you about this “fudge” it is in no way going to look like, taste like or resemble fudge.  I’m not sure why she called it that except for that she’s a mom and her kids may have fallen for it so good for her! And hey, it’s a magazine for 5 year olds, so you can’t really complain about the culinary intent behind it. My son and I made it two days ago and at first I was disappointed with the result, but then something magical happened and it’s now my most favorite snack ever in the whole world!!! Thank you Mom Blogger, Sarah! You’re changing lives over here in Bend, Oregon.

Here’s how you make it – I of course changed it a little bit to make it vegan and less sugary:

Heat 1 cup peanut butter with 1 cup Brown Rice Syrup stirring constantly over medium heat until combined and creamy.
toast 1/2 cup sesame seeds in a skillet
add the sesame seeds to the pot of peanut butter mix along with:
1/2 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
12 pitted, chopped dates
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
combine all the ingredients above and spread evenly into a greased 9×9 pan. I didn’t do this because for some reason I STILL don’t have a 9×9 baking dish even though I need one at least once a week. I put parchment paper down on a cookie sheet and spread out the mixture as evenly as I could then put it in the refrigerator. It is VERY difficult to work with after you add everything in. It takes some muscle so don’t be worried if it seems too tough or thick. After it cools off and hardens up it’s also a bit tricky to cut. I cut mine into squares and now they are out on my counter top on my covered cake plate that I use for all our household snacks.
Super Food Fudge Bars
They are so healthy and yummy! London has been asking for them everyday. This is one of those things that I have no problem giving him as a snack. He can have them for breakfast lunch and dinner if he wants (he doesn’t) because they are really pretty healthy indeed. I also have been eating them nonstop – I pretend it’s fudge.  It’s not.

Try them out. You might love them like I do.
And as always Let me know how it goes and what you think…
D-

Let’s get down, dirty, and RAW – Day 11 of my journey into food

January15

So, here’s to a much needed break from my Accounting discovery today that I am not factoring in the entire landed cost of my not landed products for 2013 even though I decided to account for them as actually landed before 2014… ugh. My accountant is going to LOVE this one.

But let’s talk about something fun for everyone!  I came across this video the other day and was very intrigued.  Actually, I was totally inspired!! Here’s the link to it:

http://www.realfarmacy.com/70-year-old-looks-30-reveals-fountain-of-youth/

This woman, Annette Larkin, is like 2000 years old and she looks 15!!!  I’m sure genetics, good hydration, and amazing body products play a part – but not THAT much of a part! Annette’s secret is – drum roll – she eats totally Raw and has for decades.  Her husband eats a conventional American Sh** diet (of course I’m extrapolating from his description) and frankly, it shows. Sorry hubby – you’re cute, but you don’t look 15 or even particularly healthy.  Annette is totally vegan – grows her own food – and eats all her food raw.  Super impressive in this Super Size Me society.  Based on her video, I love her and I want to be her friend, but since that’s probably not going to happen I’m just going to let her inspire me instead.  Maybe you should too!

Honestly, every time I tell someone I’m vegan (even though I do occasionally cheat with my second true love, cheeeese) they immediately ask me how I get protein.  They tell me how they could never stop eating meat.  They tell me how they have to have it or they don’t feel good.  Hooey.  That’s right – Hooey!  I’ve never met a vegan who feels like they can’t get enough protein.  Even my husband, who has been weight lifting religiously for close to a year now, has learned from tons and tons of vegan body builders that you don’t need animal protein to build muscle.  It’s just not the IMMENSE requirement everyone makes it out to be.  Will you look like Former Governor Schwarzenegger if you are a vegan body builder? Most likely not.  Would you really want to?  Are there any body builders reading this right now?

Now if you love meat and don’t have a problem eating dead animals – fine. (laying it on thick now) Whatever.  Eat those poor sweet innocent helpless things. (Even thicker)  But if you’re curious about how you might feel better or how you might stop being sick or how you might be able to actually survive and be healthy without it… there really is nothing stopping you from cutting meat (and dairy) out of your diet here and there – maybe for a month – maybe for a week… Don’t let common misconceptions fool you into thinking it’s going to hurt you!  I mean – look at Mrs. Annette!  She’s happy as a meadow lark (as my grandpa used to say.)  Nothing is stopping her from doing anything she wants to do… except maybe take up hunting as a sport.  I also found out that she has her own website: www.annettelarkin.com.  She’s a 15 year old grandma who’s totally in touch with technology and the future.  She better be because she’s probably going to live to see a lot more of it!

And now for a list of things that are considered meat – (there’s a lot of confusion about this for some reason)

  • Beef, Pork, Chicken, Fish, Shellfish, Bears, Mice, Orangutangs… Anything with a heartbeat, pulse, blood, eyes, mouth, etc.

And now here ‘s a list of things that are considered dairy – (even more confusion)

  • Cheese, Milk, Eggs, sour-cream, cottage cheese… anything that is made from and animal, or the product of an animal (see above)

Note: If you are a strict Vegan you also don’t eat Honey.  I say F-that – and just don’t eat honey at all unless it’s local and unprocessed and unfiltered!  Also – eat it in moderation because it’s not health food. I don’t feel like eating honey is hurting bees, but I respect that others don’t eat honey because it is a bee byproduct.  I also hate how commercial bees are raised. Oh wow – surprise surprise! I have strong feelings about what’s going on with the bees right now – but I suppose that’s another post.

Now, if you please, take some advice from Annette and get out your vita-vega-mixey thing and don’t cook tonight!  Maybe you’ll enjoy being young again.

D-

 

 

More science to back up healthy habits –

November14

Please stop using your microwaves… It’s really not that hard. Just unplug it and throw it away.
http://usahitman.com/microwave-test/

Plant dead in 10 days when only given water that was microwaved… links to colon cancer…  permanent brain damage… killing breast milk nutrients…

ugh. It’s all so depressing.  Just don’t do it – please.

D-

So much new (and dissapointing) information!

May22

I’ve been way away from the blog lately. WAY away. Mostly because I’ve been busy with our little company http://www.aviatorcameragear.com/ and conquering the world of travel film-making accessories with my husband. Not exactly health food – but paying the bills.

Fortunately I HAVE still been able to keep up on my food research for the health of my family. Today I read about another disturbing misnomer – Organic products made with non organic ingredients. Ugh. When will it end? Please read to keep yourself updated too – every little bit helps.
http://www.greencradle.com/organic-mattress-furniture-a/286.htm

I will be posting more stuff like this soon. I have a list of articles and info that I have discovered over the last few months, I just need 3 more assistants before I can get to posting anything in a timely manner.

Until then…
Eat healthy and feed your family REAL FOOD!!
Cheers,
Deena

SUCH a downer – but facts are facts…

November9

A note about my eating habits, and the eating habits I teach my son.

As a vegan/vegetarian I am signed up with every activist group you can imagine.  I LIKE every “Animal Rights” page on Facebook, I even get mail from non-for profit groups almost weekly.  So I see A LOT of awful stuff.  It keeps me feeling good about my decision not to partake in the animal industry in any way.  Animals should not be an industry of any kind.  That is my belief, and  live it with action.

Here is a video that is EXTREMELY difficult to watch.  I couldn’t watch more than a minute of it. I wanted to share it because it’s real.  Of course you don’t have to watch it, but I think it’s important to know what you support and where your money goes.  When you buy meat, milk, eggs, shoes, couches, belts, etc… YOU are supporting what you will see in this video.  YOU are the reason it continues. I know it’s not pleasant.  But it’s true. If we all stopped supporting it, and demanded responsible, humane practices from the people whom we choose to give our money to, things would change.  Money talks.   These animals have no voice, but they are real, feeling thinking, living beings. Do SOMETHING… because they can’t.

I promise, one of these days I will have some extra time to post some recipes.  It’s been madness in our house lately.  I am missing my food blog…

Soon!

D-

Savory Beer Batter Crepes… Newport Market Foddie Contest Entry!

June17

Well – I did it… I entered a Foodie Contest.  I’m not sure why or what I expect to get from this, but it was fun and I think overall it came out pretty good (the video that is.  The recipe came out amazing!  Seriously.) So here is the 5 minute video and the recipe that I made up to enter with.  This is one of the best dishes I have ever concocted.  So give it a try!!  (and while the contest is running you can vote for my entry once a day – see link above.)

This is a multi step meal.  You can replace or skip almost any of these steps and I think it will still be pretty good.  But it might not be a fantastical work of art.  Here is the recipe step by step:

  1. Beer Batter Crepes
  2. Mushroom Paste/Sauce/Gravyish thing
  3. Beer Soaked Tofu
  4. Sauteed Veggies
  5. Garnish

Step 1- Beer Batter Crepes:

1 Cup Unbleached All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Soymilk
1/2 Cup Beer (I used Deschutes Brewery’s Mirror Pond Pale Ale brewed right here in my hometown, Bend Oregon! Don’t drink the rest just yet – you will need more later.)
1/4 Cup Melted Earth Balance
1 Tsp Coconut Palm sugar
2 Tbsp Pure Maple Syrup
1/4 Tsp Salt

Mix all Ingredients together on med-high in a mixer or mix it GOOOOOD by hand with a whisk. Refrigerate for at least an hour, while prepping the filling. If it stays in there for more than a few hours you will most likely need to think it out with some soymilk.

Step 2 – Beer Soaked Tofu:
1 package of Firm or Extra Firm Sprouted Tofu (Regular Tofu will work, but it’s not very good for you and they taste the same. Choose Sprouted… always!)
1/4 Cup Olive Oil (I didn’t measure so this is a guess. Do what looks good to you)
1 Tsp Garlic Powder (again – I never measure so you be the judge on what smells good to you.)
1 Tsp Onion Powder (guessing still)
1 Tsp Salt (you see where I’m going with this?)
1 Tsp Dried Thyme
1/4 Cup leftover Beer from bottle used for Crepe batter

Cut tofu into 1/4 inch (or so) fillets. Drain them by putting a kitchen towel on a cookie sheet, place all tofu slices on towel. Put another towel on top of the tofu and then another cookie sheet on top of that. Then put something very heavy on top of the cookie sheet-tofu sandwich and let it absorb the moister for about 15-20 minutes. Longer if you are still prepping other things.
Dice tofu into 1/2 inch pieces (the size is not critical – don’t stress about this.) Whisk all ingredients except beer in a bowl. Add tofu and pour beer on top of tofu then gently mix to coat tofu as evenly as possible. Set aside until ready to cook… about 15 minutes or more.

Step 3 – Mushroom Sauce:

1/2 8oz container of Crimini Mushrooms – sliced
1 Medium Yellow Onion – Diced
3 Cloves of Garlic – chopped
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme removed from stem
3 Tbsp Earth Balance Butter
Salt to taste

Saute mushrooms and onion in a skillet on Medium until translucent (and the kitchen smells awesome.  that’s usually when I know it’s ready.) Add garlic and thyme cooking about another 5 minutes. Blend in a food processor adding about 1/2 of Soymilk to thin. If it still seems to thick continue to add hot water until the mixture is smooth or at a texture that looks like a thin paste or thick gravy. Set aside.

Sautee tofu and all its marinade in the skillet until the tofu is browned and slightly crispy – about 10-15 minutes. Remove from skillet. Set aside.

Step 4 – Sauteed Veggies:
1 Zucchini – chopped
1 Large Shallot – sliced thin
Remaining 4 oz of mushrooms cut into quarters
4-5 Cups (one tub or package is fine) Spinach – reserving small leaves for garnish.
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Saute mushrooms and shallots in skillet on med heat for about 5 minutes then add zucchini. When zucchini skin is soft add spinach leaves and cover with lid if you have one. Let spinach wilt slightly and remove from heat. Gently mix all veggies together until spinach is completely wilted. Remove from skillet. Set aside.

Step 5 – Cook , fill and garnish Crepes:
Heat a large frying pan on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Spray cooking spray to coat bottom of pan and then ladle approx 1/4 cup batter into pan and swirl to coat entire pan with batter. Cook until top appears dry – about 3-4 minuets. Gently flip with a large spatula and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until it looks slightly browned.
Put Crepe on a plate and using a tablespoon spread one large spoonful of mushroom sauce evenly around the middle of the crepe. Add veggie mixture and tofu mixture careful not to overfill. Roll Crepe on plate until the seam side is down. Garnish with fresh thyme removed from stem and reserved baby spinach leaves.  Serve!

Healthy Side Note:
This entire dish is Vegan and if I never told you that you would never know notice the difference.  Unless, of course you couldn’t understand how it could be the best savory crepe you ever had. There IS a beautiful culinary world out there that does not require animals, and I think this dish falls into that category.  Don’t you?

Enjoy!
D-

Husband Rating 4.5 star:gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-star“Infinitely better than pancakes and beer separately.”
Kid Rating: NO smiley faces –  “I do NOT like this at all and I’m not going to eat it.” (Pretty sure he just wasn’t actually hungry – but that meant more for us!)

The Quickest, Easiest, and Healthiest BURGER you can make from The Quickest, Easiest, and Healthiest LEFTOVERS!

June8

If you saw and subsequently tried my previous post about a basic Macro Meal… you inevitably made too much. Don’t feel bad – this is a common problem with such a basic meal.  You think there’ s NO WAY in Bend that food is going to fill you up so quickly and for so long… so you overdid it.  You threw in 3 carrots instead of one.  The entire bunch of Kale instead of a few leaves and then you excitedly made 2 cups of rice because it’s so cheap – what’s the difference? Right?  Face it – you got overzealous and were feeling really good about the prospect of feeling really good.  I know how it goes…  I am always SO gung ho because we love that meal so much, and it makes us feel SO happy and healthy and wise…. then the next day… the day after that… and the dreaded day after that… I can’t bear the idea of opening the fridge to see what’s in there to eat, let alone eating leftovers AGAIN!!!! So before you let that “kids are starving all over the world” guilt kick in and then hover shamefully over the sink shoving perfectly good food down the garbage disposal, try this one out!

Deena’s “Macro Burger” in 10 easy steps.

1.)  Get out your Food Processor.
2.)  Throw everything in there – beans, rice, veggies, tofu, temphe… all of it.
3.)  Pulse.
4.)  Add olive oil if the mixture is too dry or bread crumbs if it’s too wet (you’re looking for burger consistency somewhere in the middle)
5.)  Mold it into small patties that will fit perfectly onto your whole grain organic bun (preferably one without added sugars) or toast.
6.)  Fry in a skillet with a little Safflower or Sunflower oil – An Iron skillet works great for these and there’s no worry about how long to cook them – just cook until it looks good to you and you think it’s burger worthy.  Everything is already fully cooked so you really can’t screw this part up!

  
7.)  Add whatever you would normally have with burgers ie: sauteed mushrooms and onions, avocado, tomatoes, lettuce, condiments, sauces, WHATEVER!
8.)  Don’t tell you’re family it’s leftovers.
9.)  Enjoy
10.)  (This is my favorite and most ironic part)  FREEZE the leftovers!!! The leftover burger leftovers reheat great anytime you need a quick meal!!  I often put them in my sons lunch the next day – he thinks it’s fun times.

London would not sit still for this picture. But this WAS his second burger and he was all hopped up on health.

 

Now you are the star of the kitchen and your family just ate the healthiest burger you can possibly ever have. Win win win win win! It’s like being in Vegas without the cigarette smoke.  Right?
As always I can’t stress enough – don’t be afraid… I figured this out by just throwing stuff in and giving it a literal whirl. They are slightly different burgers every time because you’ll never have the exact same ingredients twice, but they always work and they are always good.

Try it out and tell me how it goes!
D-

Husband Rating 5 star:gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-stargold-star“Can I pour my Agave BBQ Sauce all over it?  Then yes, 5 stars.”
Kid Rating 5 smiley faces  “Mommy – can you make them look like Chicken Nuggets?”  He has no idea what that actually means.

Updates and Amendments

April17

Because I cook every single day – from scratch – things change a lot.  When I can tell people “oh, the recipe is already on my website” I feel so happy.  But THEN, I realize what they just ate is probably NOT actually on my website because I am constantly reading, researching, experimenting, changing my ingredients, and altering my mental “That’s OK” list.  So in an effort to update everything at once here are some of my new favorite healthy replacements and unhealthy findings.

GOOD NEWS!!!!

COCONUT PALM SUGAR – it’s pricey, but you really shouldn’t be cooking things with so much sugar that you need CHEAP shity sugar anyway.  So when you DO need sugar this is a GREAT replacement and it’s low glycemic and not too heavily processed.  It’s very new to the market so there isn’t any real information as to long term health downsides, but so far, it’s working great for us and the only things we know about it are positive.  I use it as an exact replacement for sugar.  Period.  It has a rich full flavor so it also doubles perfectly as a blend of Brown and White sugar.  It burns a little faster than white sugar, so be careful if you are cooking it on the stove (I use it for caramel corn – amazing!) It’s also dark (a sign of minimal processing –  a very good thing!) so it messes with colors of pretty baked goods, but not the flavor.  I frequently grind it up in a coffee grinder or with a stone mortar and pestle to get a more powdery texture when I need it.  Can’t say enough about it – I just wish it was a bit more popular so that the price would come down.  Even in bulk – it’s steep.  Still not as healthy as Maple Syrup (B Grade – ORGANIC ONLY!!) but Maple is so expensive per ounce that this is actually more cost effective.

COCONUT OIL – No surprise here that this is a GREAT oil to cook with, but recently I read a book called “The Anti-Inflammation Diet” which clearly and simply broke down the bad news about oils.  Coconut Oil has no bad news.  It’s just good for you.  I’ve been replacing all my baking oils (especially Canola) and frying oils with this.  It is one of few oils that won’t deteriorate at a high heat point.  I suck at explaining technical stuff  but THIS is a good place to read about the oils you are using. And if you are interested in an Anti-Inflammation diet (it will eliminate all allergies, food reactions, skin issues, etc…) I highly recommend this simple little book.  It’s short ans sweet and gets right to the point.

YOUR COFFEE GRINDER!!! I recently discovered that you can use a coffee grinder to make flour.  It’s easy and cheaper than buying specialty flours like Quinoa, Oat,  Balrey flour, etc…  I rarely use white flour in anything anymore.  I like to mix at least two flours in any given recipe.  Whatever I have in the house is what I use.  It almost never changes the recipe and ALWAYS ups the nutritional value of what you are eating.  My son now eats Quinoa almost everyday because I grind it up and put it in pancakes, cookies, breads, etc… I also recently discovered that our Omgea Juicer has a grinder attachment!!  What??  Life just got a little bit better for the Kamm’s.  I LOVE making my own flours.  I even hooked my Mom on it who now is also grinding flours for her loaf breads that she makes weekly.  TRY IT!!!  Don’t be scared to buy whole grains from the bulk bin and mix it up when you are cooking.  IT’S JUST FOOD!!!  If you don’t like it you can try again next time.  And I also recommend that you don’t grind much more than you need for what you are cooking because the second you grind nuts, seeds and grains they immediately start losing their nutrients.  Get the most out the food you cook whenever possible.  We eat TOO MUCH dead food.  It’s killing us and depresses me terribly – so do it for me. Get Grinding… (by the way – you already know this but coffee is one of THE singular most unhealthy things you can drink and put in your body.  WHY it’s our nations drink of choice to “get us going” is maddening.  It is slowly contributing to the demise of your health, in every way.  So trade the beans for grains and watch how your whole body thanks you!)

APPLESAUCE – Really?  Applesauce?  So I stopped eating eggs a long time ago, but I never tried any other egg replacer except “Ener-G Egg Replacer” which works okay – it got me through.  But then my friend Madelyn (who feeds her family very much like I do) told me to try applesauce to replace eggs in baking.  My god – it works like a charm in everything!!  So much so that I can not understand why eggs are even IN recipes.  We are so accustomed to what we learned in childhood that we don’t even bother to think there could possibly be an alternative (at least I was).  Of course it can’t make a quiche or a souffle, but it makes one hell of a waffle and muffin!!  I now have applesauce in the fridge like I used to have eggs.  I ALWAYS have an open jar of (organic, no sugar added, plain old nothing but apples in it) Applesauce in my fridge and I use it constantly when I cook.  I also now know there are tons of great vegan replacements for almost every egg application.  Thanks to Madelyn, who might read more than I do about food.  Be brave – go to the library and get a book on vegan cooking or Google it and try something new – break out of your “shell!” (yes I did say it.)

BAD NEWS. :^(

STOP USING CANOLA OIL!!! – It’s thinning your blood and making you sick!  It’s made from a poisonous plant and is highly processed to be “edible” but it’s toxic!  It’s on the market because of our lovely culture that accepts currency in exchange for a FDA stamp of approval.  It’s no secret just kept very quiet – read all about it here: www.diabetesincontrol.com/ and there’s more here: www.breathing.com and I’m sure if you want more info after those two sites you can Google away, or go to the library.  The Anita-Inflammation Diet book I mentioned and linked to above did a great job of breaking it down as well.  I was using Canola Oil all the time – I will never use it again.  There are SO many good oils out there – why use a bad one??

AGAVE – This is one of those news worthy findings that I still prefer not to believe.  I love Agave.  I was using it in everything for a while.  BUT it turns out it’s one of those really not so good for you foods that is being marketed as “Natural” “Low Glycemic” and worst of all “Raw.”  After doing a ton of research I found that not only is Agave NEVER raw, it is also highly refined and processed in very high heat.  What does this mean to you?  It basically has the same effect on your stomach, liver, kidneys, etc… that sugar has.  Because it is so highly refined and processed at such a high heat, anything that your stomach would normally have to filter out, before sending it to your stomach lining to dispurt to your digestive track, isn’t there.  SO it passes through the lining at a very fast rate which in turns taxes your liver and kidney from overload and causes your whole body to get thrown out of whack which throws off your hormones and causes a slew of bad things to happen.  Very much like sugar if not exactly like sugar. I retell things fuzy so here’s more info: www.foodrenegade.com  Boo Hoo – I miss Agave and because I had so much of it in my pantry before I stopped using it – I still have a ton, and I refuse to offer it to someone who I know likes it because I can’t be a party to that system.  I use it every once in a while still when I know it’s the perfect flavor for something.  But I use it sparingly and knowing that it’s bad, and I NEVER give it to my kid anymore.  I have basically replaced it with Coconut Palm Sugar, Maple Syrup and Brown Rice Syrup.  But I miss it – it was cheap and easy to find organic and tasted pretty good.  Oh well – live and learn.

I hope some this info makes you re-think  your options and maybe gives you more!!!  I’ll try to stay on top of my changes.  I know most of you reply and respond via Facebook, but feel free to post any info you have about this stuff or anything else in the comments.  I am always open to new info when it comes to my family and friend’s and the world’s health and food!!

D-

ps – I have about 10 new recipes in the pipeline – I just don’t have time to get them up!  Too much music going on here in Bend!  No time to write.  Millet Skillet Stack, Yum Bowl, Vegan Calzones, Pumpkin Butter Cookies, Caramel-Corn… so many yummy dishes! Coming soon!

 

Healthy lesson #30 – Soy Sauce is evil, but Ginger Teriyaki Temphe is a superhero!

October1

Back in 2008 when my husband and I quit eating things like meat, sugar, soy sauce, and chemicals we lost one of our favorite and unhealthy dishes… Chinese Teriyaki Chicken.  Boo Hoo.  My husband has been complaining about that one dish ever since saying he misses it more than anything else (only because we still occasionally eat pizza)

Tonight I got somewhat of a wild hair up the old proverbial butt and decided to make a vegan, healthy-ish, version of it for him.  To my surprise it was super easy and delicious.  I have no idea why I waited almost 4 years to make it this way??  But then – many things about food and pre-programming don’t make sense.  I just assumed I couldn’t do it so that was that.  Well… them days are gone.  here’s how it went down.

Here is a great article about the differences between Soy Sauce, Tamari, and Shoyu.  But in a nut shell, Soy Sauce is like the Velveeta of cheese, where as Tamari and Shoyu are like artisan $40/lb cheese.  Well, something like that.

1 package of Temphe
marinade in teriyaki sauce as follows:
1 cup Shoyu or Tamari (please don’t use soy sauce!! Gross!  Disgusting!  Bad for YOU!!!  Yuk.)
1/2 cup sesame oil
1/2 cup of coconut Sugar (my new favorite thing to put in everything)
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1 teaspoon Garlic powder

Cut up Temphe into bite size chunks. Mix all marinade ingredients together adding more of whatever you like to taste (and smell) let sit in bowl marinading while you prep everything else for your meal (whatever that is) stirring occasionally to keep everything well coated. about 10 minutes before you are ready to plate and serve dinner, throw all the Temphe and marinade into either an iron skillet or saute pan. It’s going to get sticky and make a mess, so iron skillet is my first healthy choice. (We never non stick – that’s another post. They are super dangerous. Throw yours out!!) Using tongs, try to make sure all the Temphe is spread evenly throughout the pan and nothing is piled up. Cook over Medium-high heat for about 4 minutes then stir around to brown and caramelize more sides. You won’t be able to get all the sides cooked evenly – it’s just too much work and you won’t have the time, so relax and do the best you can. Cook until they look sticky, caramelized and brown. Then serve and wait for the praising to be sung! 

Lordy Lordy – these are delicious bites of what taste like VERY naughty food, yet they are reasonably good for you. No large amount of Teriyaki sauce is going to be GOOD for you, but in moderation this alternative IS a much healthier version and works well with the Temphe making it EXTREMELY healthier for you thanks to the lack of animal proteins and the added fermentation from the Temphe. (Happy stomachs = happy brains = happy you.)

Enjoy!

D-

Husband Rating 5 star:gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-stargold-star “I could eat this dish every night of the week for the rest of my life and never get sick of it… and I will!”
Kid Rating 5 smiley faces “Yum! I love temphe!” (for the record: he doesn’t “love” temphe)

« Older Entries