Monday, November 29, 2010

Leftovers- Turkey Noodle Soup Ya'll- It's what for lunch

I apologize for the funny turkey picture, my camera is on the fritz and I haven't decided on a replacement yet.

We are all so thankful for the bounty of leftovers that Thanksgiving brings, but then you look in the fridge and say "what am I going to do with all that turkey?". Well try this turkey noodle soup that I found on my Whole Foods app. It's a great way to use the leftover turkey as well as any leftover carrots, celery and greens. And if your lucky like me you can use some homemade turkey broth too. Enjoy!

-Turkey Noodle Soup- Serves 4

1 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 t. chopped fresh thyme
3 1/2 - 4 c. low sodium chicken broth (I used 4 c. turkey broth and 2 c. water)
2 c. baby spinach (I used 2 c. chopped kale)
2 c. chopped turkey
6 oz. wide egg noodles
1 15oz can cannellini beans, drained (I used 1 1/2 c. fresh cooked great northern beans)
1 14oz can sliced carrots, drained (I used 3 medium fresh carrots, chopped)
1/2 celery, chopped (not on recipe, but wanted to add some)

1.Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add carrots and celery and cook another 5-7 minutes, until slightly softened.
2. Add thyme and stir to blend. Add broth, spinach, turkey, noodles, beans, and salt and pepper and stir well.
3. Bring to a boil, reduce heat cover and simmer about 15 minutes, or until noodles are tender.
4. Ladle into bowls and serve hot.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Leftovers- Sausage Stuffing

This is a picture of my sweet husband Bill holding a huge beautiful bunch of kale at this years Farmer's Market. He'll kill me for putting this picture on the blog but I did so because this post is about one of his favorite dishes "sausage" and kale, I usually make this dish for breakfast on the weekends. When I first posted that recipe he told me that I should make mention of it at least once a month because he thinks that if you try this dish you'll become a kale loving convert like him. So this morning while making a winter fruit salad for breakfast I had planned on making the "sausage" and kale dish as well, I looked in the fridge and realized my mother-in-law Pauline had left us some of her sausage stuffing from our Thanksgiving meal we shared on Friday. I tossed that in with the regular recipe I use for the "sausage" and kale and it was wonderful! It was extra savory and made this staple dish something a little more special. Toss some of your leftover stuffing in with some hearty winter greens (kale, collards, watercress, spinach and arugula) and you have a fun new side dish for any time of day.

Kale and Sausage Recipe (posted March 5, 2010)
Leftover Stuffing
olive oil
salt and pepper

1. Start with the sausage and kale recipe, follow the directions. Just before you start to add the kale add your leftover stuffing to the pan.
2. Follow the directions form the sausage and kale recipe until the end. Don't forget to add a squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Gravy (Psst... It's vegan and it's delicious)

When I was a kid and didn't feel good I would request mashed potatoes and gravy, they were the ultimate comfort food for me. Even now that I'm a 'grown-up' I still want this when I need a bowl of comfort. This weekend was one of those times. I ran across this recipe for mushroom gravy a while ago and I make it all the time, it's super savory and a great alternative if you don't eat meat but want a full flavored gravy. I hope you love it as much as me and maybe it will help with your Thanksgiving meal. I found this on Eating

-Portobello Gravy- 2 c. chunky gravy or 1 c. smooth gravy, serves 8

1 T. olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves (I use more), minced
1 1/2 c. chopped cleaned portobello mushrooms (I use baby bellos or baby shitakes)
2 1/4 c. vegetable broth (I use homemade broth)
3 T. tamari or reduced sodium soy sauce (I use liquid amino's)
1/4 t. dried thyme leaves
1/8 t. crumbled dried sage (I use fresh sometimes)
1 T. cornstarch
2 T. water
freshly ground pepper

1. Heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, cook, stirring often, until softened about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until they begin to release their juices, about 10 minutes.
2. Add broth, tamari or soy sauce, thyme and sage, simmer 10 minutes. Mix cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Stir into the sauce and simmer, stirring often until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes more. Season with pepper.
- If you prefer a smooth gravy, pass it through a fine sieve, discard the solids (I use a hand held blender and blend the gravy until smooth and discard nothing). Serve hot. ENJOY!

What's for Lunch? Lentil Stew

When it comes to making lunch I start by taking inventory of my kitchen. I always have lentils in my pantry as well as most the vegetables that are in this soup, carrots, celery, onions, garlic and potatoes. I also try to find a recipe that can be made in a big batch and can be portioned out for the entire week, this Lentil Stew is perfect! One thing I love about the fall and winter is being able to make big pots of soup, remember to make extra and freeze it for later. This recipe comes from one of my favorite cookbooks 'The Kind Diet' by Alicia Silverstone.
-Lentil Stew- Makes 6 servings
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. paprika
1/2 t. sea salt
1/4 t. ground cumin
1/4 t. dried oregano
1/2 t. dried basil
2 T. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 lrg onions, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 potato, cut into chunks
1/4 c. shoyu (soy sauce, I used liquid amino's)
5 c. vegetable broth (I used my own homemade broth)
3 tomatoes, cored and cut into chunks
1 1/2 c. brown lentils
1. Combine the garlic powder, paprika, salt, cumin, oregano, and basil in a small bowl. Heat the oil in a large soup pot (you'll be adding a lot of liquid later, so make sure it's a big pot) over medium heat, and add garlic, onion, celery, carrot, and potato. Stir in half the spice mixture and the shoyu. Cook, stirring frequently for 7-10 minutes or until the onions are tender.
2. Add 5 cups of water (I only added 2 c), the broth, tomatoes and lentils. (I soaked my lentils overnight, drain and then add to soup) Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat and simmer with the lid askew for 30 minutes. Add the remaining spice mixture, and cook for 20 minutes longer or until the lentils are soft. Serve warm or portion out into containers for lunch. ENJOY!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Gingerbread Waffles...Yum-O

I have this box labeled 'Random and Important' and in this box contains recipes I love, don't want to loose and that remind me of the past. I know most of these recipes by the paper, recipe card, or old envelope they are written on, so is the case with this recipe for gingerbread waffles. It's a small blue piece of lined paper, no instructions and just the ingredients. Funny.

This make me shake my head, and laugh out loud recipe has been in my recipe box for a long time. I have this reaction to this recipe because they remind me our old apartment that we lived in before we bought our house. And about the over the top way we like to eat these waffles (I'll explain later). They are warm, smell like home, and taste like fall. Topped with banana's, nuts and a drizzle of warm agave or real maple syrup they are a fun way to mix up what's for brunch on Sunday.

-Gingerbread Waffles- Makes 12 waffles (can be cut in half, that's what I do)

3c. flour (I used 3/4c. whole wheat pastry flour, 3/4c. buttermilk waffle mix, 1/2c. wheat germ,1c. cornmeal. I had to get creative okay?!)
4 t. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
2 t. ground ginger
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. salt
4 lrg. eggs
1 c. pumpkin puree (I use fresh pumpkin I roasted myself, I had some left over from a pumpkin pie I made the day before. This was a great way to use up the leftovers)
1 1/4 c. milk (I used coconut milk, NOT CANNED)
1/2 c. molasses
butter, or oil of choice (I use earth balance butter, but it just came to me to try coconut oil next time. Great idea!)

1. Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. (I like to sift my dry ingredients)
2. Mix the wet ingredients in another bowl.
3. Slowly add the dry to the wet a little at a time whisking all the ingredients together as you go. 4. Heat your waffle iron and add a LITTLE butter or oil to the iron. Using a 1/3c. measuring cup ladle the mixture onto the iron, close and let cook until done. Continue with the rest of the batter until gone. Place the cooked waffles in a 200 degree oven to keep warm until you are ready to eat.

-Regular Toppings-
Banana's, Nuts (walnuts, almonds, pecans), warm Agave or real Maple Syrup

-Naughty Toppings-
Parmigiana Regiano Cheese (Parmesan cheese), Crispy Prosciutto (crisp up in the oven at 400 degrees for 10-15 min turning once while cooking), Banana's, Nuts, and Agave or Real Maple Syrup. ALL of these go on one waffle, that's what makes it naughty. I know what your thinking, that all these ingredients together is crazy! But I'll tell you what it's a flavor extravaganza for your taste buds. Just try it. ENJOY!

P.S. I think this is a Rachael Ray recipe, hence the Yum-o in the heading.

Health Benefits of Beans/Legumes

Legumes offer a huge bang for your bite. Their benefits make them a highly sought after non animal source of protein as well as an excellent source of complex carbohydrates and fiber.

- A few benefits -
1. They are a rich source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. The high fiber content helps prevent blood sugar levels from rising to rapidly after a meal, making them an especially good choice for individuals with diabetes, insulin resistance, or hypoglycemia.
2. They have a significant amount of antioxidants, folic acid, vitamin B6, and magnesium.
3. Red kidney beans are rated the highest, just ahead of blueberries.
4. Beans are also protective against cancer. Researchers found that beans significantly reduced frequency of breast cancer in the woman who had a higher intake of common beans or lentils. Eating beans or lentils two or more times per week was associated with a 24 percent reduced risk of breast cancer according to a study by the Nurses' Health Study II.

- How to eat-
1. Make a three bean salad
2. Make into a dip for veggies
3. Make bean and rice burritos like me!
4. Add to soups and salads

Pinto Beans- Cosmo Hippie Chef Alert!

I wanted to make something yummy and fun on Saturday for the U of U vs. TCU game, it was a beautiful fall day and I had the time to put in the extra effort it takes to make homemade beans. I have been trying hard to make homemade beans a habit in my kitchen. It takes a little extra planning but the bonus is bulk beans are cheaper than the canned ones, and when you make your own there is always extra so you can freeze them for later use, AWESOME.
Well, my efforts were a huge success my husband and his buddy Charlie loved them, we made bean and wild rice burritos for the game. A few toppings like guacamole, greens, tomato's, onions, sour cream and salsa and you have the best Mexican in town! And now we have extras for another dinner this week. I hope you'll try them.

-Refried Pinto Beans with Chiles- Serves 6 (This recipe comes from of my favorite cookbooks 'Clean Food' by Terry Walters)

3 garlic cloves
1 onion, diced
2 T. grapeseed oil
4 c. cooked pinto beans
2- 4oz cans chopped green chiles (I only used one)
1 t. chili powder
1 t. cumin
1/2 t. sea salt
2 T. lime juice

1. In a saute pan or Dutch oven over medium heat, saute garlic and onion in oil until soft (about 3 min). Add beans and remaining ingredients and saute another 3-4 min. With the back of the spoon smash the beans to your desired consistency. Remove from heat and serve.
* okay little side note: I made my pinto beans fresh before I made this recipe so I reserved 1c. of the bean cooking liquid. I added this and 1/2c. water to the beans along with 2 T. olive oil and use my hand held blender and blended until smooth. I like my beans more on the creamy side.

- Legumes, Beans - Basic Cooking Instructions
1 c. dried beans of choice (yields 2 1/4c. cooked beans)
Thumb-size piece kombu (Sea vegetable that is used to infuse foods with highly alkalizing minerals, iodine and iron. Also known for it's ability to tenderize legumes and reduce their gaseous properties.)
Pinch of salt

1. Sort through dry legumes and remove any dirt chunks and pebbles.
2. Place legumes in pot with 3 c. water and soak overnight.
3. Drain, rinse, and return to pot with 3 c. fresh water.
4. Cover pot, bring to boil, skim off foam and reduce heat and simmer. Add kombu and salt.
5. Cover and cook until beans are tender (anywhere from 50 min- just over an hour). Test by removing a bean and squeeze between fingers.
6. Drain remaining liquid and store cooked legumes in a airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.