Breakfast - Rice Cereal, Rice Milk, and Frozen Blueberries
I rarely have processed cereal for breakfast, but every once in a while I get a craving. Also, this is an easy breakfast to carry when I travel, and I had some left over. For some reason I can't find this cereal on the Enjoy Life website anymore, so here it is on the Amazon site.
Lunch - Stuffed Squash
I cut a kabocha squash in half, scooped out the seeds, put a tiny bit of oil in the bottom of a pyrex baking dish, and roasted the squash halves skin side up.
For the stuffing I combined the following ingredients:
-two small red onions, chopped
-one bag of frozen spinach
-one cup of orange lentils
-yellow and red curry powder, to taste
-1/2 cup golden raisins
I brought all the ingredients to a boil, and then simmered until the lentils were done.
Dinner - Salmon and Salad
I thawed some frozen salmon. I put lemon wedges on top of the fish and baked it. I put the fish on top of a salad made with arugula, cucumbers, avocado, and my new favourite poppy seed dressing.
Hello! I just wanted to give everyone a reminder about the Environmental Working Group Clean Fifteen and Dirty Dozen. Produce has become a lot more expensive in the last few months, so it's helpful to be reminded that local, seasonal produce is best for your health and your wallet. Also, this guide lets you know which fruits and vegetables are most important to buy organic (based on how easily they absorb pesticides).
Breakfast - Brussells Sprouts and Avocado
I made this breakfast with frozen Brussells sprouts. First thing in the morning, I dump a bag of the sprouts into my pyrex baking dish with a bit of avocado oil and bake it at about 375 degrees, stirring once. It usually takes 30-40 minutes. As you can see, I added pine nuts and avocado.
Lunch - Mom's Soup
I don't know exactly what was in this soup, but my Mom has a knack for making them delicious! She made this soup with fresh veggies, frozen veggies, leftover roast beef, and fresh herbs (I'm pretty sure she used dill in this soup). Soup is a great way to use up all the vegetables sitting in your fridge!
Dinner - Rice and Beans
This dish was really easy, and quite delicious!
-four small red onions, peeled and chopped
-one red pepper, chopped
-two roasted red peppers (from a jar), chopped
-one bunch of cilantro, chopped
-four tbsp. lime juice
-chimichurri seasoning, to taste (you could easily substitute another mexican seasoning)
-brown rice, cooked with the seasoning
-chopped chicken (from a previously roasted chicken)
-can of black beans, drained and rinsed
I started by combing one part brown rice with two parts water, and the seasoning mix, bringing it to a boil, and then leaving it to simmer until the water was absorbed and the rice was soft. I sauteed the onions with some avocado oil in my cast iron frying pan until they were soft, then added the peppers and continued to saute until the onion had started to caramelize and the peppers were soft. When everything was done I just mixed everything together in a large dish!
Breakfast - Rutabaga Fries
This is a really cheap and delicious breakfast! What is the difference between a rutabaga and a turnip? A rutabaga is a hybrid of a cabbage and a turnip, and is sometimes called a yellow turnip (or so Wikipedia tells me).
I combine the following to make my own seasoning mix:
7tbsp. mild paprika
one tbsp. smoked paprika
1 1/2 tsp. ground ancho chile pepper
one tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp. ground black pepper
I cut the waxy peel of the rutabaga, cut it into fry-sized shapes, put it in my large glass pyrex lasagna pan, pour a few tablespoons of avocado oil on top, add a few tbsp. of the seasoning mix, and then mix it up with my hands. I bake it at about 400 degrees until the rutabaga is soft and browned.
Lunch - Chicken Salad
This is my favourite thing to do to finish off a roasted chicken! I combine it with chopped organic apple (one of the dirty dozen), sliced organic celery (also one of the dirty dozen), Renee's Poppy Seed Dressing (I'm just finishing up some bottles I bought on sale before I switch over to my yummier version), chopped chicken, and black pepper.
Dinner - Baked Falafel, Fried Zucchini, Cucumber Parsley Salad, and Tahini Dressing
I used this recipe for the falafels, which turned out okay. Not great, but okay. I find frying them so frustrating (they never stick together or cook through), so I'll probably just stick with baking them now.
I fried the zucchini in avocado oil. Please note zucchini is the newest genetically modified crop, so you're probably getting a good dose of trouble when you regularly eat zucchini from Mexico.
I mixed up chopped cucumber, rinsed and chopped parsley, white wine vinegar (it was the kind I had on hand), and salt to make the salad.
The recipe for the tahini dressing is here, except this time I made it in my Magic Bullet, which was infinitely easier! You can pick up tahini in the ethnic sections of grocery stores like Freshco in North Bay.
All in all, this dinner was delicious!
Treat - Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
I used the Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix. I've discovered a secret with these mixes, which I've shared before on this blog...you can just leave out the eggs! They taste just as good and stick together just as well without the eggs.
I like this mix because is a hypoallergenic combo of rice, potato, sorghum, and tapioca flours; and it is dairy free. I follow the recipe on the package, except I add a little of extra water, replace the butter with Earth Balance Soy Free Buttery Spread, and leave out the eggs.
I was inspired by this post to create the chart (just below) suggesting how you might eat home-cooked food all week long while only preparing one meal a day. I'm not in love with this dietician's food choices, but I do love the general concepts. There are three key concepts that go into eating with this kind of a meal plan:
1) It's a better choice not to snack. I KNOW, this runs contrary to what we've been told for years about how eating very regularly balances our hormones, helps with weight management, and keeps insulin in check! Think of it this way. Our digestive tract is a complicated system. In anticipation of food, our liver and gallbladder secrete bile, our stomach secretes acid, and our pancreas secretes digestive enzymes. All these secretions work, together with the food, in a complicated symphony of muscle contractions and chemicals reactions that help us do everything from absorb nutrients to maintain a good pH balance. This complicated system does not like sneak attacks, especially with poor snack choices.
2) The more frequently we eat a particular food, the more likely we can be to develop an allergy and/or sensitivity to it. I've written more about this concept here. This chart arranges it so that you get a break from any particular foodl for two days.
3) The things we eat for snacks are often not as healthful as the things we eat as meals.
If all of this information raises a lot of questions for you, it might be time to visit your naturopathic doctor to talk about digestion!
Happy holidays everyone! I hope there are some good food New Year's resolutions in the works for some of you! I've got some exercise resolutions I'm formulating for myself :)
Breakfast - Stuffed Peppers
I tend to err on the side of cooking without a recipe, and this breakfast is the perfect example of how it doesn't always work out perfectly, but it's still ok. I cut the peppers in half and put them in this ceramic baking dish coated with a very small amount of avocado oil. I mixed up:
Lunch - Greens Bowl
I rarely crave and/or eat fresh greens in the colder months, but every once in a while I get a craving for arugula. This was one of those days, so I made this greens bowl, which was quite filling and satisfying.
steamed peas (from frozen)
fried zucchini (in avocado oil)
half of an avocado
balsamic dressing (from last week)
Dinner - Fried Fish and Steamed Broccoli
I almost always buy frozen fish, I find it is fresher and cheaper. I used to live in Seattle, and because of this I firmly believe that a fish counter shouldn't actually smell like fish (because it means some of the fish is no longer fresh). I will also admit that on more than one occasion I have asked the person working behind the fish counter to let me smell the fish before I buy it, and I always get a strange look!
For this dish, I thawed some tilapia, dredged it in arrowroot flour, and then fried it in my ceramic frying pan in a little bit of avocado oil. I steamed an entire (small) head of broccoli, and ate it all in one sitting. I topped the broccoli with the balsamic dressing that I made last week.
One of the things I never seem to get around to is making my own dressings. As you've seen in this post, a friend gave me a salad dressing recipe jar, and I've been loving the dressings I've been making with it. So, I finally got inspired to dig out some other dressing recipes I'd been sitting on for years. I don't know why I waited so long! This dressing is infinitely more delicious than the Renee's Poppy Seed Dressing I've been eating regularly for years!
So, here's the recipe for the dressing pictured above. It only took me about two minutes to make.
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 of an onion, roughly chopped
1 cup of olive oil
4 tsp poppy seeds
I threw everything but the poppy seeds into my magic bullet and blended it until it was smooth, and then I added the seeds.
I just finished teaching a cooking class, and I found that people asked about where I picked up various items just as often as they asked about how to cook them. I decided to give you a run-down on where I shop, and why.
Parker's Your Independent Grocer:
Bins and Bins has a fantastic selection for specialized diets, though The Bulk Barn works hard at it too.
Breakfast - Radishes and Toast
If you think you don't like radishes, then you haven't had them fried! [I prefer avocado oil] The bread is the Little Northern Bakehouse Seeds and Grains loaf (available at Bins and Bins) .
Lunch - Beans and Rice with Lime-Cilantro Dressing
-3/4 cup of olive oil
-1/3 cup lime juice
-1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
-1/2 cup (packed) roughly chopped cilantro
(you can add chiles or hot sauce)
I mix this dressing in my Magic Bullet before serving, but that isn't necessary.
I started my rice, and then added chopped red pepper to the top of the pot about 15 minutes before it was done. I rinsed and drained a can of black beans, and added them to the pot when the rice was done. Another easy, one-pot meal!
Dinner - Salmon Pasta
can of salmon (packed in water), drained
1/2 cup of Daiya mozzarella-style shreds
one package of arugula
one small red onion, minced
1/3 cup of olive oil
one tbsp. dried dill
ground black pepper, to taste
This is another one-pot meal. Well, one pot and a big bowl. I prepared the rice noodles by boiling the water first, adding the noodles, bringing the water to a boil again, turning it down just enough so it didn't boil over, and stirring frequently at the beginning of the cooking process and then very infrequently towards the end of the cooking process. Once the noodles were done, I drained them and dumped them into a bowl with the rest of ingredients. I stirred it and that's it (and it was delicious)!
I got a salad dressing bottle that includes the recipes on the side for my birthday. I finally broke it out to make this balsamic vinaigrette, which was delicious! Even though I know I can do the same thing with a plain old mason jar, it really is more fun in the fancy bottle!
Welcome to another week of 'What I Eat!" I know this has been done a million times, but I was inspired to show everyone what a typical grocery shopping trip looks like for me. I wanted to call your attention to a few things:
Breakfast - Rice Porridge
-1 1/2 cups red rice
-one can of coconut milk
-that same can filled with water
-1/2 cup of golden raisins
-two apples, cored and chopped
-2 tsp. ground cinnamon
Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker. Stir thoroughly and then cook on low setting for six hours. I always make this right before I go to bed, so that it is ready and waiting for me for breakfast!
Lunch - Quesadillas
-brown rice tortillas
-washed and thinly sliced greens (I used chard)
-black beans, mushed up with a fork or potato masher (I used canned beans, rinsed)
-Daiya mozzarella style shreds
I make these in my cast iron frying pan. I put a bit of avocado oil in the bottom of the pan. Then I layer in one tortilla, some black beans, the greens, the shreds, and then a second tortilla. I cook it at a medium heat until one side has started to brown, and then flip it over to brown the other side. I served this with avocado. It makes a great lunch!
Dinner - Rainbow Trout, Red Kabocha Squash, and Steamed Broccoli
For those of you who have been reading my blog for a few years, you know I get really excited every year (around this time) when Red Kabocha squash hits the grocery store shelves! I love it! It tastes absolutely delicious, and you can eat the skin! I prepare it by slicing the top and bottom off, slicing anything off the skin I don't want to eat, scooping out the seeds, and then roasting it cut side down in a glass or ceramic baking dish at 375 degrees Fahrenheit until it gets soft (approximately 40 minutes). You can season it as you wish, but I find it so delicious I prefer to eat it plain. I roasted the rainbow trout on my cast iron cookie sheet at the same time.
Welcome to another week of 'What I Eat!' I've got lots of produce from locals fairs and markets in this post. I also have an abundance of avocado, I was trying to make it through a bag of them before they went bad. I hope everyone else is enjoying the beautiful local vegetables that are available now!
Breakfast - Fried Potatoes
I had an unusual craving for lettuce for breakfast, which almost never happens. If I'm craving something healthy, I always try to honour the craving. I put fried potatoes (from Powassan) and diced avocado on a bed of lettuce. I would be lying if I didn't admit that I added some ketchup to this dish. It seemed a bit strange with the lettuce, but it was still very good.
Lunch - Chicken Salad
I picked up some delicious golden beets at a local farmers' market. I steamed them the night before, which made it easy to rub the skins off the next morning when they had cooled. I added diced avocado and cold chicken. This salad was so flavourful, I only added salt, pepper, and olive oil.
Dinner - Chili
I have an intolerance of kidney beans, as do many of my patients when I test their antibody levels, so this chili was made with different kinds of beans (no one noticed). I have to admit, I threw this chili together at a friend's, and then thought to take a picture of it later (and try to remember all the quantities). It was really yummy!
-three yellow onions, peeled and chopped
-six large cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
-two medium-sized zucchini, diced
-one cup of red or yellow bell pepper, chopped
-one can of black beans, drained and rinsed
-one can of white navy beans, drained and rinsed
-two cans of pureed tomato
(I meant to add chopped celery, but I forgot)
-approximately one tbsp. ancho chile pepper
-approximately two tbsp. ground cumin
-approximately two tbsp. apple cider vinegar
-sea salt to taste
-In a large pot, brown the onions and garlic at a medium-high heat in a bit of oil, adding the ground beef partway through
-once the meat is done, add the tomato, pepper, and zucchini, and cook, covered, at a medium heat
-once the vegetables are soft, add the beans and spices and keep warm until ready to serve
I got these carrots from at a local fair. I thought the different colours were beautiful. I boiled them, seasoned them, and then froze the extra. I haven't frozen carrots before, I'll let you know how they turn out.
Breakfast - Toast and a Peach
Breakfast of Champions! This is a new (to me) bread being brought in by Bins and Bins here in North Bay. It is fantastic because it is free of gluten, eggs, and dairy! It comes from a bakery in British Columbia called Little Northern Bakehouse, and I picked up the cinnamon & raisin loaf. When I have toast, I eat it with this Earth Balance Buttery Spread.
I also managed to find Ontario peaches still available at Metro, so I'm really enjoying what is sure to be the last of the season!
Lunch - Cauliflower Pasta
This lunch was leftovers from a previous day's dinner. It was a very simple dish I threw together quickly for unexpected company, and it turned out to be quite tasty!
I chopped up and steamed a head of cauliflower. I boiled about half a package of rice noodles, rinsing and draining them when they were soft. I cut up some chicken into smaller pieces and fried it. I made a sauce out of olive oil, mustard, and honey. It was approximately two parts olive oil, one part mustard, and one part honey. You can mix it to suit your tastes. People really love this honey-mustard sauce! I often get the compliment 'this tastes exactly like McDonald's!' I just mixed up the sauce and then dumped into a large bowl with the rest of the ingredients.
* A reminder about cooking rice pasta. Stir it lots in the beginning and very little towards the end of the cooking process. Make sure to rinse it thoroughly, and know it makes terrible leftovers. If you follow these instructions, most people won't even know they're eating gluten-free noodles!
Dinner - Beef and Kale
I picked up some of what I call Dinosaur Kale at the North Bay Farmers' Market. I love dino kale! It is packed with flavour, you just have to make sure to cook it well in order for it to be enjoyable to eat. I fried a few cloves of chopped garlic in avocado oil, and then added the kale and enough water to steam it (and then have the water reduce/evaporate away by the time the kale was done). I usually accomplish this by adding a few tablespoons of water a few times while it cooks. It takes a bit of practice, but I find it a handy way to cook vegetables. I added a bit of balsamic vinegar when it was done.
The beef is from Aspen Ridge, which is certified humane (available from Sobey's). I've run out of my Dalew Farms cow share, and I'm just waiting until the fall order comes in.
Dessert - Apple Sauce
I combined sliced apples, chopped rhubarb, and cinnamon in a saucepan with a bit of water. I brought it to a boil, and then simmered it until everything had become mushy. I add maple syrup before serving. Delicious!
Now is the time to buy local produce and store it for the winter. If you're not yet ready to can or ferment, freezing is a great option too. These Ontario summer squash went straight into my freezer.
Walmart has a new (at least new to me) line of gluten-free products. They're heavy on the eggs, dairy, and corn, so I haven't tasted them, but they're certainly affordable!
Experiment - Collard Wraps
I read this blog post about collard wraps and I got really excited about making them! It's hard to find gluten-free tortilla wraps that don't break apart as soon as you try to roll them. For some reason, it took me a little while to find some collard greens in our local grocery stores. After I did, I followed the instructions and made the wraps pictured above. I filled them with a mixture of black beans, rice, fresh peach, and mexican seasonings. I'm disappointed to say that I thought they were terrible. I have to work hard to appreciate raw kale, and I REALLY don't like raw collard greens! However, others seem to enjoy them, and they are easy to prepare, so maybe you'll like it better than me?
Breakfast - Roasted Potatoes and Peach
I found these roasted potatoes in the freezer section when I was shopping for a camping trip, but I'll admit I now keep them in the freezer at home for when I'm feeling lazy. They're super fast and easy to prepare for any meal!
Dinner - Chicken Salad
Made with chopped organic apple, chopped organic celery, roasted chicken, and Renee's Poppy Seed Dressing. Easy, filling, and delicious!
Dinner - Fish and Chips
I ate this wonderful meal at the Kitchener Borealis Grill and Bar, which I highly recommend! Borealis is a beautiful restaurant, with friendly staff, and a serious dedication to serving local food. I wish I lived closer!
Breakfast - Salmon Cakes on Spicy Carrots with Fried Sweet Potatoes and Fruit Salad
Fruit Salad - made with fresh blueberries, peaches, and strawberries mixed with a small amount of dried mint and maple syrup.
Sweet Potatoes - I peeled and cubed a large sweet potato, boiled it until it was soft, and then put it in my cast iron frying pan with some meat drippings at a medium-high heat until the cubes (well, technically rectangles) had slightly browned, stirring very occasionally.
Salmon Cakes - I mashed together (with a potato masher) a drained can of salmon, sliced green onions, a few tablespoons of arrowroot flower, a few teaspoons of water, a bit of salt, and about a tablespoon of avocado oil. Once I had mashed this mixture enough that it was a uniform texture and sticky, I formed it into patties, and fried it in my cast iron frying pan with avocado oil at a medium-high heat until each side had browned.
Carrots - I modified my own recipe by taking out the dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds, and adding in currants. I also was less lazy this time and shredded the carrot!
Lunch - Cabbage and Apple Dish
Cut up a half a head of green cabbage. Slice two apples and mix them with the cabbage. Put in a pan (I use cast iron) and add about six tablespoons of water at the bottom of the pan. Cook at a high heat until the cabbage is soft and the water has evaporated (you might need to add more water). Add a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and cayenne pepper to taste. Sprinkle pine nuts on top. This dish makes surprisingly good leftovers.
I rinsed and chopped greens from local gardens (chard, arugula, and green onions). I put a little bit of avocado oil in the bottom of my cast iron frying pan and then layered a brown rice tortilla, the greens, and vegan cheese shreds (topped with another tortilla). I fried it at a medium high heat until brown, flipped it, and did the same. So delicious!!
Dinner - Cauliflower Curry
[please forgive the terribly out of focus picture]
I make this dish a lot, and I'm going to give you the basic formula.
I used a base of minced ginger, minced garlic,and finely chopped onions. I fry this base in avocado oil until it starts to lightly brown and become aromatic. The, I add pieces of vegetables, including cauliflower, zucchini, squash, and bell peppers, mixed with a few teaspoons of curry powder. In this dish, I used curry powder from my favourite spice company. I mix this up, and let it cook a bit, getting the vegetables covered in the curry powder. Then, I add canned coconut milk, sometimes diluted with a bit of water or rice milk if it is quite thick, and golden raisins. Sometimes I add chicken. I finish cooking the vegetables in the coconut milk, avoiding bringing it to a full boil (it changes the flavour). That's it!
What I Eat
I want to give you an idea of how to eat healthfully on a restricted diet, without a lot of work, by showing you how I eat! I eat strictly gluten-free. You'll find A LOT of veggies in this blog! I eat both fish and meat a few times a week (local and/or humane, whenever possible), and dairy when I'm visiting family and friends, or eating out. I hope you find this blog inspiring and interesting!