Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies


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This meal turned out to be very filling with the addition of the homemade polenta.  The best part was the polenta topped with the sauteed greens and mushrooms.

Polenta is just cornmeal and broth, cream, or water (or a combination of those) and whatever seasonings you wish to add.

The polenta made here was simply one cup of cornmeal, 3 cups of broth, and one cup of water.

To make the polenta, heat the water and broth in a sauce pan.  Once it comes to a boil, gradually stir in the cornmeal, just a little bit at a time to avoid clumping.  Continue stirring almost non-stop until the polenta reaches your desired consistency.  In this case the polenta was cooked until it started pulling away from the walls of the pan and clumped together in the pot.  It was thick but not tough.

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Cooking the polenta -- not done yet!

In the meantime, wash/chop your veggies for roasting.  Roasting is simple.. preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and prep any veggies you wish to roast.  In this case I used carrots, white yams, green beans, and Chinese broccoli stalks.   I reserved the greens from the broccoli for sauteeing.

Toss the veggies with a little olive oil, fresh chopped garlic, leek if desired, and any seasoning you prefer.  Here I used oregano, pepper, salt, thyme, and fresh rosemary from the garden.

Bake the veggies for 30-45 minutes, turning periodically to ensure they don’t burn.

IMG 0969 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Roasted veggies - Broccoli, potatoes, carrots, green beans

Now for the sauteed greens and mushrooms.  Chop your mushrooms, greens, and asparagus (optional but delicious).

IMG 0971 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

mmm.. asparagus

 

Heat a little oil in a pan and sautee a little diced garlic and leek for a minute.  Add the veggies and sautee until wilted and cooked through but still crunchy, 5-10 minutes.

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Sauteed greens, asparagus, and mushrooms

Serve all together on one big happy plate!

IMG 0982 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Polenta with sauteed and roasted veggies

 

or… top with curry seasoned chicken… (recipe to come):

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Polenta & veggies topped with curry-seasoned chicken

 

 

April 21, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Carrot Chips


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After making kale chips the other week I figured it might be time to try and bake more veggies into crispy treats.

I remembered reading somewhere about carrot chips.  I wasn’t sure how to slice them thin enough so I peeled them.

These are VERY easy to make, and another delicious alternative to chips or fries when served with your main course.  You can make these for a healthy snack as well!

Directions:

Peel your carrots using a peeler but avoid rotating the carrot for as long as possible to make wider sections.

Lightly grease or oil the bottom of a cookie sheet to avoid sticking.   You don’t need to toss or drizzle the carrots with oil.

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Carrot chips--peeled carrots on a cookie sheet before baking

Distribute the carrot peelings on the cookie sheet evenly, with little overlap if possible, mixing them slightly in the cookie sheet to get a little oil on them.  Alternatively you can spray the carrots with oil.  I was just trying to avoid high of an oil-to-veggie ratio.

Sprinkle a little salt on the carrots if desired

Bake at 350 for 10-25 minutes.. depending on how thick your carrot slivers are, until crispy but not burnt.

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Carrot chips baking

If you have a mandolin you can slice the carrots with that, but increase your cooking time and/or your temperature to get them crispy and cooked through.

Play with seasonings for additional flavor, but alone these are delicious!

Yum!  A few sections were crispier than others, but they still turned out well.  Next time I think I’ll try the thicker slices and see how they go.

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Carrot Chips!

 

 

April 20, 2011
Food

 
 

Fruit Chips…


I’ve always been a sucker for kitchen appliances and cooking. I love cooking shows, recipe scavenger hunts online and watching cooking clips on YouTube. So, when I saw an array of vegans and vegetarians sucking the moisture out of fruits by way of YouTube, I couldn’t wait to try it. Initially, it was the videos of raw wheat bread that got my attention. I ran out to Walmart and purchased mason jars in an effort to make my own sprouter. I was successful in creating a home made sprouter but my attempts to sprout wheat berries for my raw crackers didn’t turn out so well… my crackers tasted like grass… o_O… Don’t ask…

But… my fruit chips turned out magical. Let’s just say, that my lovely girlfriend ate ALL of the banana chips in one sitting and although she isn’t a total slobbish eater, she is far from an overly heath conscious eater.

So, I purchased a Nesco dehydrator from Bed, Bath and Beyond for about $60. I did look at the $40 Oyster dehydrator at Walmart but I opted to spend the extra $20 for 2 reasons; 1. The Nesco dehydrator has an adjustable temperature gauge so that you can change the temperature at which you dehydrate, which is great if you are a raw foodist and 2. The Nesco dehydrator comes standard with 4 trays but you can buy extra trays if you need to dehydrate more stuff at once.

And as with any new toy, I had to try it out as soon as I got home. We had 3 brown bananas sitting on the counter which were totally ready to be stored in File 13 but I figured what the hell. I sliced all three bananas up into about 1/2 thick slices and laid them out on the dehydrator tray. I sprinkled the slices with a few pinches of sea salt and turned the dehydrator on. I let it run over night and by the next morning, I had yielded banana chips. They were a little brown from the oxidation process that bananas usually encounters from the air hitting them but that had nothing to do with the taste. They were absolutely fabulous! I did read an article stating that if you dip the slices in lemon juice before you dehydrate it will allow them to keep their color without affecting the flavor. I will be sure to try this technique the next go round. I followed up my banana chips by dehydrating some pineapples and strawberries.

The process is quite simple. Gather your fruit and cut into slices to your liking, but be mindful that they will shrink so don’t cut them too small. Lay them out on your dehydrator tray and turn it on. It may take quite a few hours but the reward is well worth the wait. Try dehydrated fruit in your oatmeal, trail mix or as a stand alone snack!

photo 300x179   Fruit Chips...

April 19, 2011
Food, Kitchen Gadgets

 
 

Try it with Almond Milk


Try it with Almond milk 🙂

For years, I have struggled with my lactose intolerance 🙁 Without sharing all of the ugly details, I’ll just say that drinking milk causes some intense gastrointestinal issues.

Because I switched to almond milk, I can enjoy cereal and coffee without bloating and painful stomach issues. Almond milk doesn’t give your coffee the same creamy color as a few splashes of half and half, but it suffices as a milk substitute and it adds a sweet and nutty natural flavor to any dish. I find it much tastier than soy milk. It’s not chalky. It’s super creamy and it serves well in a variety of dishes when a recipe calls for milk or in a glass alongside a delicious sweet treat like cookies or a pastry. I also bake with it. I’ve used almond milk to make vegan alfredo sauce and ice cream.

food 300x225   Try it with Almond Milk

Try it with Almond milk! (or coconut milk!)

 

 

Do your research. Some people prefer soy milk and rice milk. I’ve heard about oat milk and hemp milk. They other night, I tried coconut milk in a recipe with a friend. If you have an allergy to dairy products and are searching for milk substitutes, these healthy alternatives might be worth the inquiry.


Drink, Food

 
 

Raw Pepper & Curry Soup


  • 1 1/2  Red and/or Yellow peppers
  • 1 Lt  Coconut water (or as much as you want depending on how creamy you like the soup. You can use regular water if you can´t get the coconut one).
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 apple
  • basil
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1/2 green onion
  • curry powder (as much as you want!)
  • salt and pepper
    Blend all ingredients until smooth and that´s  it!

    rawcurrysoup 300x225   Raw Pepper & Curry Soup

    Raw Pepper-Curry Soup

April 7, 2011
Food, Recipe