Flavorful Greens for Any Dish

Greens on Grains

Ingredients:

  • My favorite greens – baby spinach, baby kale, and baby chard.  – I often buy Earthbound Organic Power Greens
  • No-salt seasoning (full of flavor without added salt)
  • Sea salt – optional (add a bit if needed, but you control the amount this way)
  • Bragg’s liquid aminos – It’s a soy sauce alternative, and it adds this great umami flavor to your dishes.

Directions:

  1. Start with 1/4 cup of water instead of oil and add to the pan. These greens will wilt easily.
  2. Add the greens to the pan along with the dehydrated vegetable mix and seasonings
  3. Continue stirring until nicely wilted and most of the water has evaporated.
  4. And as a finishing touch, I like to add Bragg’s liquid aminos.

Now pile on those greens inside of your vegetable bowls and on top of grains. Yum, yummy!

Chickpea Salad/Bowl with Tahini Dressing

chickpea bowl

This is the chickpea salad that I’ve had a few times this week. Sometimes with rice and sometimes just the chickpeas, salad greens, and dressing. I also made it a warm bowl by using chickpeas, veggie balls (IKEA), basmati rice, and collard greens. (I’ll have to add a photo of the bowl with collard greens later this week.)

So you can make it a cold salad or a warm bowl is what I’m hinting at.

Ingredients:
Chickpeas (cooked/seasoned)
Veggie Balls (Or even more chickpea falafel balls.)
Greens (Cold for a salad or cooked for a bowl.)
Rice

Optional add-ins: olives or dried beets (as shown in the photo)

Directions:
1. Place all ingredients in a bowl and serve with this Savory Tahini Dressing.

Cabbage, Potatoes, and Mushrooms

potatoes and cabbage and mushrooms_small

This recipe can be eaten at any time of the day. Today I had it for breakfast. The ingredients are simple and it’s easy to prepare, especially if you have leftover cooked potatoes. This makes about 2 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 – 3 medium golden potatoes
  • 1/4 onion (or 4 green onions), thinly sliced
  • 1/4 of a head of cabbage
  • 5 – 6 white or baby Bella mushrooms (or any mushrooms which you prefer)
  • 2 TBS fresh parsley

Directions:

Option 1: (Already cooked potatoes such as those cubed/sliced/hashed and oven-baked.)

  1. Stir-steam onions and mushrooms for about 2 minutes. (If using green onions, use the bottom harder parts first and reserve the green tops for serving.)
  2. Add the cabbage. Stir-steam until it begins to wilt.
  3. Add in the cooked potatoes and heat until warmed.
  4. Serve with fresh parsley (and chopped green onion tops, if using them) and additional seasonings such as salt/pepper.

Option 2: (If you do not have cooked potatoes.)

  1. Stir-steam onions and mushrooms for about 2 minutes. (If using green onions, use the bottom harder parts first and reserve the green tops for serving.)
  2. Add cubed/sliced potatoes and about 1/4 cup of water.
  3. Allow the potatoes to cook slowly until they are soft but still firm.
  4. Add the cabbage. Stir-steam until it begins to wilt.
  5. Serve with fresh parsley (and chopped green onion tops, if using them) and additional seasonings such as salt/pepper.

Notes:

  • You could also cook all the vegetables and then add a side of already cooked hash browns so that they can be served crispy.

Greens, Beans, Onions, and Mushrooms (G-Bombs Part I)

Hi everyone! We have started another “Immunity Series” on the Podcast. For the next few weeks, we will be focusing on G-BOMBS as defined by Dr. Joel Fuhrman. ”G-BOMBS” is an acronym that you can use to remember the best anti-cancer, health-promoting foods on the planet. G-Bombs are Greens, Beans, Onions, Mushrooms, Berries, and Seeds. These are the foods that you should eat every day, making up a significant proportion of your diet. They are extremely effective at preventing chronic disease, including cancer, and promoting health and longevity.

Listen to “PODCAST EPISODE 11 – IMMUNITY – ‘G’ IN G-BOMBS“.

Do you like kale? Well, here is a recipe that I think you will enjoy that includes 4 of these foods that you should be eating daily: Greens (kale), beans, onions, and mushrooms.

I chose kale greens for this recipe because they are quick to cook and actually only require wilting. This way you can have a dish prepared in no time.

Servings: About 4 when served as a side dish

Ingredients:

  • 1 to 1-1/2 bunch of Kale greens
  • 15 oz of black beans, rinsed (or your favorite) – That’s about 1 can or use any you already have in the freezer.
  • 1/2 onion (red or yellow, preferably a sweeter onion)
  • 1 cup of chopped mushrooms of your choice (feel free to mix mushroom varieties)
  • 2 to 4 small garlic cloves
  • Any dried vegetable soup mix that includes vegetables such as onions, herbs, and carrots (see notes below).
  • Water to steam the veggies (or you can use a veggie broth)
  • Salt/Pepper

Directions: (Choose a non-stick pan with a ceramic coating for extra safety. If you want to use a stainless-steel pan, make sure that it has a heavy bottom. A heavy stainless steel wok works well.)

  1. Wash greens thoroughly if not already clean. No need to dry. Set them aside.
  2. Add about 1/4 cup of water/broth to the pan and immediately add the onions and mushrooms. Continue to cook until the onions are translucent, stirring, and adding water/broth (1 to 2 TBS) as necessary. 
  3. When onions are translucent, add the garlic and the vegetable soup mix and cook for about another minute. Again adding water/broth as necessary to rehydrate the dried vegetable soup mix. You may choose to cover the vegetables at this point to allow all the water/broth to soak in, especially if the dry vegetables are still hard. 
  4. Next, add the beans and water/liquid of your choice until the beans are thoroughly heated. (If using a can, it’s especially important to rinse the beans before adding them to this dish.)
  5. Lastly, add the kale to the pan and stir, adding water/broth if necessary until they are wilted to your desired tenderness. You could also cover at this point for a bit to allow the kale to wilt even quicker.
  6. Uncover, taste, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve over rice or quinoa or use to stuff a baked potato! YUMMY!

Notes: The Dried Soup Vegetable Mix is one that I get from my local “Texas” store,  H-E-B. The soup mix doesn’t have many spices added to it other than the dried vegetables and herbs, yet you can definitely use one that has added spices. Just be careful that if your soup mix contains salt, it’s likely that you will not need to add any additional salt.

Greens Beans Onions Mushrooms

 

Black Bean Stuffed Sweet Potato

Black Bean Stuffed Sweet Potato

This recipe is an example of how you can quickly assemble a satisfying meal in 15 minutes or less. If you like “Tex-Mex”, you are going to enjoy this vegan, plant-based recipe. (A video for this recipe is below.)

Black Bean Stuffed Sweet Potato Recipe:
(Feel free to use other varieties of the ingredients listed below for onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and even the beans)

Pre-prepared:  2 Oven-baked Sweet Potatoes (or use the microwave to cook the sweet potatoes in less than 10 minutes)

Toppings To cook:
1/4 cup of chopped red onions
1/8 cup of chopped yellow bell peppers
3/4 – 1 cup baby Bella mushrooms
1 – 2 cups of black beans (pre-cooked or canned)

Additional Toppings:
Cashew Cilantro Cream Sauce
Chopped avocado
Chopped cilantro
Sriracha sauce  (At home we use this brand that is preservative-free. You can likely find it at your local grocery store.)

Directions:

  1. Add onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms to a pan over medium heat. Add 1-2 TBS of water or broth to begin the cooking process. Continue adding a little water or broth as needed to prevent the vegetables from sticking. Cook until slightly caramelized.
  2. Add the black beans to the pan with the veggies and allow them to heat up.

To Serve:

  1. Cut each baked potato in half length-wise.
  2. Add vegetable toppings
  3. Add any additional toppings that you would like.

Note: I have also added wilted Kale to this recipe. If you like Kale, you will like the addition of it in the recipe also.

 

Tex-Mex Bowl

As you may already know, I live in Texas. Houston has been my home for my entire life. (Actually now I live in Pearland, but if I just drive for 5 minutes I’m back in the Houston areas.) Therefore, it should be no surprise that my favorite dishes are “Tex-Mex” combinations which include lots of beans, rice, salsa, guacamole, corn, grilled onions, etc. Yeah, I know, you might be thinking…”What about the cheese?” Well I don’t eat cheese anymore, (gasp), and I don’t miss it one bit.

This is my chance to add a little nutrition/health info…so I’m going to do just that.

I grew up eating cheese and many dairy products (ever heard of Borden milk and Blue Bell ice cream?) I never imagined my life without cheese/dairy. But about a decade ago, when my allergies had become unbearable…I decided to test the theory that perhaps the milk and cheeses were causing most of my issues…and that was exactly the case.

But, since that’s the only change that I made during that time and the fact that I haven’t been bothered by seasonal allergies since then….well one thing is for sure – the milk and the cheeses didn’t agree with my body. I had these issues since a small child and they disappeared  when I took milk and cheeses out of my diet. The relief that I now experience makes up for any losses I initially felt when I gave up dairy.

For you – Do you battle seasonal allergies? If so,  I suggest that you try changing your diet by removing dairy from your diet. You will know in a matter of weeks whether it’s had a positive affect.

I won’t try to explain the science behind it all. Just some basic principles. I talk about this more in the online courses and in some of the nutrition blog posts too. Here is the recipe:

Buddha Bowl using Leftovers

I think I have been creating these all along prior to the term “Buddha Bowl” becoming popular. This is my second “go to” option when trying to determine what to eat next. My first is plant-based Tex-Mex meals. (I live in Texas y’all!)

The Buddha Bowl I prepared today uses quinoa as the base! I love quinoa for so many reasons and healthy ones too. It’s gluten-free and high in protein (a concern for some when embarking on a plant-based eating plan). I had roasted sweet potatoes using my favorite recipe. I had a bunch of colorful Swiss chard that I needed to prepare and hummus (which I practically keep on hand at all times). So I threw all of these “leftovers” together and created a very satisfying lunch.

Preparation Notes:

Quinoa
pre-soak 1 – 2 hours for better nutrient absorption

Sweet Potatoes
Diced and seasoned with cumin, turmeric, salt, paprika, chili powder, garlic (sprinkled on as you like). Toss with a little coconut oil (barely oil them) and bake 350 – 400 degrees Farenheit
Swiss Chard
Saute green onions and bell peppers in water until soft. Add tomatoes and Swiss chard until wilted. Squeeze fresh lemon juice on top

Hummus
Seasonings: cumin, lemon juice, tahini, roasted red peppers, salt/pepper and sometimes olives
Hey, here are some ingredient ideas for a Tex-Mex Budha Bowl!
  • Mexican “brown” rice
  • Black or pinto beans
  • Fresh spinach, kale or romaine lettuces
  • Roasted corn
  • Salsa or Pico de gallo
  • Lemon/Lime Juice
  • Avocado (or guacamole)
  • Cilantro
  • Green onions
  • Not-so cheese (a Vitamix recipe)

Apple Breakfast Bowl

For almost 2 months this has been my daily breakfast. Additionally, I either have a glass of fresh green juice or I use a green powder mixed with water. It’s hydrating, sweet and satisfying. It only requires a little preparation. To make the mornings easier, you can mix all the ingredients the night before, except for the apples (because they oxidize quickly and you want them to be as fresh as possible).
Apple Breakfast Bowl
Ingredients:
  • 1 large apple, chopped into bite-size pieces (like a Fuji, or two smaller ones) – about 300g
  • Carrots, shredded (about two medium size) – 130 g
  • Celery (1 to 2 stalks) – 50 grams
  • Chia Seeds – 2 TBS, preferably soaked in water
  • 1 TBS Nut Butter (I prefer almond butter)
  • 1 Date, chopped (or an equivalent amount of raisins)
  • Cinnamon – 1/2 tsp
  • Ginger, powder – 1/8 tsp (or juice of 1 small knob pressed using garlic press)
  • Shredded Coconut, unsweetened – 3 TBS
Directions:
  1. Mix all ingredients together and enjoy.
Options:
  1. If you need more calories, add more apple, dates (66 calories each) or nut butter (100 calories per TBS).
  2. If you don’t have nut butter, you can simply sprinkle the breakfast with chopped nuts
  3. Add coconut water (or coconut cream – more calories) to make it easier to mix in the nut butter.
  4. When I’m really in a hurry or I am traveling, I simply use my favorite Larabar in place of the nuts/nut butter, dates and coconut.

Calories and nutrients calculated using http://www.caloriecount.com/

Vegan Chili

Today I made chili for the family and I will use it to top some potato hash browns. Remember to add whatever additional “chili” toppings you like (while sticking to your healthy diet, of course).

I needed something to eat and chili sounded great. But for now, I’m focusing on not eating as much meat and I definitely cannot have the potato hash browns while on the GAPS and SCD Diets. So here is the recipe I created for myself today.

Mushroom and Lentil Chili over Cauliflower Hash Browns

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups mushrooms* (I like portabello)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onions*
  • 1/4 cup chopped yellow, orange, or red bell peppers (or combination)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder*
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp granulated garlic powder* (or 1 clove fresh garlic)
  • 1 – 2 tsp favorite chili powder*
  • 1 – 2 TBS tomato paste (or substitute 1/4 – 1/2 cup tomato sauce or puree for GAPS/SCD diets)
  • 1/2 cup lentils (brown or green works best, red tends to get mushy when cooked)
  • 1/4 cup diced carrots
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 TBS olive oil for grilling the onions*

*High FODMAP food – remove from ingredients to achieve a Low FODMAP recipe.
Onions can also be cooked in a non-stick pan with a little water instead of using oil.

Directions:

Mushroom and Vegetable Mixture
  1. Cook lentils according to directions, adding carrots. Usually 1 part lentils to 2 parts water. Add a dash of salt and bay leaf for added flavor.
  2. Put olive oil into a heavy bottom pan and grill the onions until translucent
  3. Add mushrooms and bell peppers (plus fresh garlic, if using) and stir for a couple of minutes
  4. Add water, tomato paste, onion powder, granulated garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper to taste, simmer for about 5 minutes. You might have to add more water if too dry.
  5. Add mushroom mixture to lentils and simmer about 5 additional minutes to allow flavors to blend.
  6. Serve over cauliflower hash browns.

Notes:

  • Try adjusting (or adding to) any of the seasonings to best suite your personal tastes. 
  • The mushroom mix should create a tasty “savory” sauce if cooked long enough before adding to lentils (see ‘Mushroom and Vegetable Mixture’ photo above). 

Zucchini Noodles and Spaghetti Sauce

I cannot seem to get enough of zucchini noodles.

Today I had zucchini noodles and sauce.

Here is the recipe:  I made the sauce in the Vitamix.  I made just a few changes from the “Fresh Tomato Sauce” recipe in the Vitamix Whole Food Recipes Book. This recipe is for one serving.

Step 1.  Place the following ingredients into the Vitamix:

  • 3 Roma tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/4 small red onion
  • 1/2 small carrot
  • 1 TBS tomato paste
  • 1/2 garlic clove
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp RAW honey
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • dash of pepper
  • dash of smoked paprika (to spice it up a bit, optional)
Step 2.  Process on high speed for about 3 minutes.
Step 3.  Pour into saucepan ans simmer for 30 – 40 minutes.
Step 4. When sauce is just about done, use Spiralizer to make noodles using 2 small to medium size zucchinis.
Step 5.  Pour sauce over noodles and add fresh basil and parsley.

It was a good serving size.  It looked like a lot, but it tasted so good that I finished the plate and found the serving size to be just right.

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