Sunday, February 10, 2013

Greek Inspired Scrambled Tofu with Bacon


I am not a big fan of eggs like I used to be. 

Just a few months ago, I used to frequent the deli in the morning and get scrambled eggs all the time. Who knew that my stomach would turn at the mere smell of them? 

Nowadays, if I have eggs, it is mostly hard-boiled.  But sometimes a girl wants to have one of those scrambled egg or omelet dishes. And then I discovered that I could scramble tofu and use them as a substitute. So that is exactly what I did when I made my Greek Inspired Scrambled Tofu with Bacon.

The egg version of it was delicious. I used to have it with a croissant when I was eating bread at the time. Now that I do not and don’t miss it at all, I do without and simply enjoy the scrambled concoction that consists of tofu, spinach, feta cheese and bacon.  Yummy! Here is the recipe:

 

Greek Inspired Scrambled Tofu with Bacon

Serving Size 1

Calories per Serving 255
 
Cooking Time 15 Minutes

Fat 19 G

Sodium 792 g

Protein 15 g

Cholesterol 35 mg

 

Ingredients

1/5 of Soft Organic Tofu

2 Slices of Bacon

1 Cup Organic Baby Spinach

¼ Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese

1 Tbsp Butter

 

Instructions

1.    Take the feta and spinach and mix them together in a bowl

2.    Take bacon and place them on a microwaveable safe plate or bowl and place them in the microwave for 2 minutes and 10 seconds. (2 Minutes if you like them less crispy or 2 minutes and 15 seconds for crispier).

3.    Add butter to a medium sized pan and place over medium fire to melt.

4.    When butter has melted, add spinach and tofu and mix occasionally to prevent from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

5.    After about five minutes, sprinkle feta and bacon slices broken into small pieces over tofu and leave on fire for a few minutes more. 

6.    Your breakfast is then ready to be eaten. Best eaten warm.

7.    Pairs well with a nice cup of hot brewed tea.

I never thought I would enjoy tofu as much until now.  I have grown accustomed to cooking it in different fashions; even to the point of using them to make smoothies.  But to be able to have my scrambled breakfast meal again makes a difference. Funny thing is it looks like eggs if you simply peak at it but it is not eggs at all. It's tofutilicious. Food just got a whole lot better.

Carrot Parmesan


So you go into a pizza shop and you see on the menu Chicken Parmesan and the alternative for non-meat eaters is usually eggplant parmesan, but why no other vegetable?

Okay, I admit that eggplant might be tasty with pasta but I think other vegetables would be just the same.  This is why I decided to try it.   I used carrots.  My carrot parmesan was quick to make and came out pretty tasty.  Here is the recipe:
 
Carrot Parmesan

Serving size 2

Calories per serving 80

Sodium 232 mg

Cholesterol 10 mg

Protein 5.5 g

Cooking time 15 minutes

 

Ingredients

2/3 Cup Frozen Small Crinkle Sliced Carrots

¼ Cup Organic Parmesan Shredded Cheese

¼ Cup Crushed Tomatoes with Basil

1/3 Cup water

Instructions

1.    In a small pan, add water and carrots. Leave it over a medium fire until the carrots have defrosted and the carrots are soft

2.    Sprinkle parmesan cheese over carrots and allow to melt

3.    Cover carrots and the cheese with the crushed tomatoes and just allow to get warm

4.    Your dish is now ready to be served

I didn’t have it with pasta or in a sandwich like many chicken or eggplant parmesan dishes are served, though I have tested carrots with spaghetti before and it was not a bad combination. I kept my Carrot parmesan as the main dish and instead had other vegetable dishes to keep it more on the healthier side. My sides included garlic sautéed potatoes and steamed vegetables. 
The whole entire concoction was great. A light meal for dinner that also had a fair share of protein, fat and low sodium count; healthy and delicious. Try it for yourself!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Slow Cooker Quinoa Shrimp chili


I’m all into this cooking with quinoa bit now and one of the things on my to-do list all the time is to find a new and exciting way to cook it; which is why I was tempted to make a dish with it using my slow cooker.

I have experimented different quinoa recipes.  I heard so many people talking about snacks or foods for the big game. Then I heard someone say that one of their menu items was going to be chili. I have always wanted to make chili but a vegetarian version of it. That’s when I decided to make Quinoa chili for the big game; not a vegetarian chili though, a pescatarian one.

I am so used to adding black beans to my quinoa that it seems like second nature. Who knew adding that plus a few more items to it, including shrimp would make it so delicious? I know what you are thinking, shrimp in a chili dish. Sounds a little odd but it came out excellent; so good that I will be making this dish more often.  Here is the recipe!


Slow Cooker Quinoa Shrimp chili
 
 

Serving Size 4

Calories per Serving 441

Cooking Time 4-5 hours in the slow cooker

Ingredients

1 Cup Quinoa
1 Medium Tomato
¼ Cup of Crushed Tomato Canned
 ½ Onion
1 Garlic Clove
1 Can Sweet or Creamed Corn
½ Can of Black Beans
½ cup chopped Green Pepper
1 Cup White Cooked Shrimp – Peeled
1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
1 Tsp Cumin
1 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
½ Tsp Black Pepper corn
¼ Tsp Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
2 ½ Cups Water
1 Cup of Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (Separate by ¼ Cups Each)

 

Instructions

1.    In the Slow Cooker Dish, Add Quinoa, Black Beans, Green Pepper, Tomatoes, Crushed Tomatoes,  Corn, Onion, Garlic, Red Pepper Flakes, Salt, Pepper Corn, Cayenne Pepper, Cumin and Water.

2.    Put the Slow Cooker on High and cover to allow to cook.
 
 

3.    In about two hours, take shrimp, place it in a mortar and mash them up until they are in small broken little pieces and add them to the slow cooker.

4.    Stir to make sure that the quinoa or beans are not sticking to the bottom of the dish.

5.    In about two to three hours later, your quinoa is ready to be served.

6.    For each serving, take ¼ cup of the cheddar cheese and sprinkle over each serving of chili while it is hot to ensure that it will melt nicely over your meal.
 



Slow Cooker Quinoa Shrimp Chili is a complete meal in one plate. I got a little greedy though and had mine with Garlic Mashed Cauliflower and Zucchini chips; not because it needed a side but because I knew I was going to need something to be able to stomach the 109 yards goal taken by the Ravens'  Jacoby Jones immediately after one of the best ever halftime shows featuring Beyonce, that helped the Ravens later take home the title.

Either way it was a healthy dish and one that I thought was worth sharing. Best eaten when hot! Great dish for cold days because it is hot and spicy. If you decide to try it, I hope you enjoy it.  

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Snack Ideas for the Big Game or for Anytime

I was listening to the news today and on it, they said that the number one thing that Americans snack on today is yogurt and the number two is bars and listening to that made me think; what are we going be snacking on while watching the big game?

 
 
 
Okay, I have to admit that I am not the biggest football fan.  I haven’t sat back to watch even one game this entire season, but I will sit down to watch the National Anthem, the commercials and the half time show. I guess you can say that I will be watching most of the game then.

Just because it is an opportunity to snack does not mean it has to be an unhealthy one.  There are so many things that we can snack on to keep things a little bit healthier but also tasty.  How about some apples? 

As a snack an apple is pretty good. Maybe you are concerned about the sugar content.  I saw in the store the other day apples sold in small packs.  I guess you would call that what a serving of fruit should be as opposed to eating the whole fruit.  Not so bad if you take those apples and dip it in one of those single serving pouches of peanut butter. 
Alright, maybe my taste is not the same as yours but nonetheless, a snack is a snack.  So here are some healthy snack ideas that you might find enjoyable and perhaps may even try.
 
·         Sliced Apples, Bananas or Celery with Peanut Butter
 

·         Crackers with Canned Tuna Fish in Water

·         Sliced Carrots with Cottage Cheese

·         Healthy Pop Kettle Corn Popcorn from Jolly Time

o   One serving of this yummy popcorn equates to 1 cup and is 25 calories. Even if you got a little hungry and decided to dig into the entire bag which serves about 3 ½ people, you’d still be dipping into a snack that is less than 100 calories. Not bad.

·         Oikos Blueberry Yogurt with ¼ cup of Kind Maple Walnut Clusters or granola

·         Strawberries with dark chocolate dipping sauce and Sutter Home Moscato

·         Homemade Zucchini Chips  

o   Slice the Zucchini into rings, dip into milk and place into a batter of parmesan cheese and panko and place over an oven dish coated with 1 tbsp of olive oil.  Cook in the oven at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes.
 

·         Stuffed Mushrooms with Spinach, Goat Cheese and Shrimp
 
 


·         Special K Sour Cream and Onion Chips           

o   Chips always seem an appropriate snack and sometimes it is hard to stick to the suggested serving sizes noted on the box sometimes, which also indicate how much calories we will be eating per serving. Unlike a serving of Pringles which is 15 chips or Wise Crunchy Cheese Doodles which is a 1/2 cup, a serving of Special K chips is like 27 chips and they taste pretty good.  You get more chips per serving and they are healthy (low sodium, sugar content, calories from fat). If you are a lover of chips, these might work with your appetite.

·         Toasted Almonds
 
 

o   Take your almonds, whether shelled or sliced, put them in a baking pan and place them in the oven at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes. You can entice them with your favorite flavorings like honey or agave to make them honey roasted, cinnamon to make them cinnamon toasted or whatever is appealing to your taste.

·         Coconut Shrimp scampi


·         Corn Souffle


These are just a few suggestions.  I guess you can tell that a girl loves to eat.  But snacking does not have to always be the traditional buffalo wings for it to be good.  Why not try something else? These ideas have been tried and have proven to be really great. Hopefully you will like at least one idea.
 
 

Nonetheless, enjoy the game, the National Anthem, the Halftime Show and the funny commercials that come along with it, happy snacking and may the best team win!!!

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