Archive of ‘Dinner’ category

Southwest Sweet Potato Stew

Close up resized

So I am now on my third batch of this stew. I have eaten this for lunch nearly every day for the past month- with a few exceptions here and there. Every time I heat it up in the microwave at work, people say, “Wow. That’s smells delicious! What is that?!” Literally, Every. Single. Time. And the funny thing is, this was a recipe that I threw together on Sunday night as I was rushing to make lunch for the week ahead. I hardly had anything in the house except Thanksgiving-esque remainders like onions and sweet potatoes. I emptied my pantry and found quinoa, tomato paste, a can of coconut milk. At the time, I was becoming tired of the holiday leftovers and wanted something completely different. And thus this smoky Southwest stew was born! (more…)

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“Boneless” Cauliflower Hot Wings

Framed fork

Boness Wings 1

When I attend cocktail parties, my favorite part is (no, not the cocktails or the good company), the hors d’œuvres!….The small mouthfuls that burst with flavor when you bite into them. I’m talking about those finger foods that are packed with so much flavor so as to satisfy with just a taste. Sadly, these little pieces of heaven are likely to be dripping with grease and packed with an unfavorable amount of saturated fat. Why? Because fat has flavor, and fat tastes good….cheese is fat…bacon is fat. Keep enjoying these and our buns will be…well….generously proportioned. Don’t get me wrong, fat can also be very healthy in the unsaturated form, such as olive oil, avocados, and nuts. Unfortunately, animal fat is just not very healthy. Predominately of the saturated variety, animal fat may be heart stoppingly delicious, and simply heart stopping. So let’s find ways to still enjoy our fats and our fun without near death experiences.

With that, I present to you “Boneless” Cauliflower Hot Wings. These suckers are so good you will never remember you are eating a vegetable! With a crispy crust and a creamy, yet crunchy interior they are to die for. I do dip these in a blue cheese dressing, and yes this is high in saturated fat – but c’mon we just knocked off like a million calories by using cauliflower – so live a little, will ya.

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We start by trimming the cauliflower into small pieces and dipping them in a seasoned batter before baking them. I had on hand a few samples of an all purpose gluten-free flour that I was interested in testing out, so I used this- but regular whole wheat flour works great as well.

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Once the cauliflower pieces are coated in the batter, bake for 15 minutes. Remove them from the oven and coat with the hot sauce mixture (cayenne pepper sauce, I like Frank’s Red Hot, and a dollop of coconut oil). Return these little jewels to the toasty oven to cook for an additional 12-14 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. If they aren’t crisping up enough, place them under the broiler for 3-4 minutes.

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I like extra sauce, so I prefer to drizzle additional hot sauce over the “hot wings” when they are fresh out of the oven. Serve with your favorite blue cheese dressing and celery sticks, and enjoy!!

Framed fork

“Boneless” Cauliflower Hot Wings

Ingredients

    Wings
  • 1 Head Cauliflower
  • Batter
  • 1 Cup All Purpose Gluten-Free or Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
  • ¼ Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • Sauce
  • ½ Cup Cayenne Pepper Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Coconut or Olive oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Trim and cut cauliflower into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Mix together batter ingredients
  4. Add cauliflower pieces to batter and coat evenly
  5. Spread onto baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes
  6. Remove from oven and coat with sauce mixture. Bake for an additional 12-14 minutes
  7. If “wings” aren’t crispy enough, place under the broiler for an additional 3-4 minutes
  8. Coat with extra sauce if you so choose. Serve with celery and blue cheese dressing. Enjoy!
http://tastefulwisdom.com/boneless-cauliflower-hot-wings/

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Sweet and Spicy Greens

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A new spin on greens…super flavorful, tangy, spicy greens that will tantalize your taste buds. This dish will make you forget you’re eating healthy, let alone collard greens. These greens are so tasty, even my husband will eat them! The secret is adding layers of flavor by way of garlic, ginger, soy sauce and vinegar. They get a serious kick from chili flakes (if you aren’t a fan of spice, then simply back off a little on the red pepper flakes), and a mild sweetness from luscious honey. 20140402-230010.jpg

This dish is pretty simple, even for a weeknight. Much of the bold flavoring comes from a generous amount of immune-boosting garlic and ginger. First, sauté garlic, ginger, and chili flakes until tender. Add the greens and allow to cook until thoroughly wilted. Then add the additional flavoring ingredients: soy, apple cider vinegar, sesame oil, and honey. Cook on medium-high heat allowing liquid to evaporate, while stirring occasionally.

Add a sweet kick to your meal, while getting the goodness of these cruciferous greens. I had mine on a bed of brown rice with a perfectly cooked poached egg. It was absolutely fabulous! Poached egg on top

SIDEBAR: I have to admit that I very recently learned how to make a perfectly poached egg from the Chew’s Clinton Kelly. The Chew is one of my absolute favorite shows. I hoard them on my DVR and usually watch while I’m cooking away in the kitchen. Btw I would totally recommend it to anyone interested in daytime cooking hilarity. Anywho, Clinton revealed the most ridiculously simple method to poaching eggs: Bring a pot of water to boil. Once it boils remove from heat, add egg, and set timer for 6 minutes. Remove the egg after 6 minutes, and voila! You have yourself a perfect little egg. You’re welcome.

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Feel free to adjust the heat level of these greens to your liking. The amount of chili flakes in the recipe is for very spicy greens. You may want to halve or quarter the pepper if you are not as fond of the heat. You can remove the chili altogether to create sweet and sour collards. They too will be a smash hit!

Sweet and Spicy Greens

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Collard Greens, Washed and Roughly Chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 6-8 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1- Two Inch Section Ginger, Minced
  • 1 Heaping Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro, Torn
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce or Tamari (Gluten-Free)
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider or Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Honey
  • 1 Tablespoon Sesame Oil

Instructions

  1. Sauté garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes in olive oil on medium heat until cooked through.
  2. Add collards and allow to wilt until tender, about 5 minutes, while stirring regularly.
  3. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the remaining ingredients. Stir as to not to burn the greens but allow to caramelize.
  4. When most of the liquid has evaporated from the pan, the greens are done. Enjoy!
http://tastefulwisdom.com/sweet-and-spicy-greens-part-two-collards-three-ways/

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Mediterranean Stuffed Collard Greens

Finished Product 1

Finished Product 1 The lack of enthusiasm generated from my last post on collard greens made me wonder if it is due to the true unfamiliarity that many have with these large leaves. Being the ever-persistent little bugger that I am, I decided not to throw in the towel in hopes that all will instantly see the magic in collards. I will educate you on the versatility and deliciousness that these greens have to offer. This post kicks off the first of a three part recipe series on collard greens.

I decided to start off with Mediterranean Stuffed Collard Greens because the focus is not necessary on the green itself. The focus is on the delicious filling and rich tomato sauce that smothers each bundle of love. As with most of my more involved recipes, each step is unbelievably simple. So although it may seem like the recipe is complicated, just take it step by step, and you will be amazed with how simple it truly is. Like stuffed grape leaves or stuffed cabbage, these are a labor of love, so take your time and enjoy the process.

Begin with the sauce. Often canned tomatoes have a very acidic “edge” to them, almost bitter really. It is quite common for a chef to add a teaspoon or two of sugar to balance that acidic bite. However, I recommend adding one whole chopped carrot to the sauce at the start. This adds a natural sweetness as well as a nutrient kick, without being detectable by taste. You can process the carrots in the food processor if you don’t want them to be seen by the naked eye. Trust me, no one will ever know. I just roughly chopped these, as I like the chunkiness. A truly delicious sauce needs the most important ingredient: TIME. So let this sauce simmer for at least an hour, and if you aren’t busy, let it go longer.

Sauce Ingredients

The filling is very simple. With brown rice, mushrooms, and beans, it is hearty enough to skip the meat. However, ground turkey or chicken breast and lean ground beef would do well in here. I would just recommend adding some of the tomato sauce to the filling to keep it from getting too dry.

Filling Ingredients

The collards should be washed and blanched for 2-3 minutes in a pot of boiling water. I recommend leaving the stems on, as they become much easier to fish out.

Collards Unwashed

Blanching collards

Once they are cooled, cut the stems out and overlap the cut ends to ensure a sturdy wrap for our filling. Add 3-4 tablespoons of the filling and roll up like a burrito, first folding up the bottom, then folding in the two sides, and finally completing the rollup. I like to have extra leaves to allow for error. If a leaf tears as you are rolling, just insert the whole thing into another leaf. A double leaved rollup is even better!

Placing filling

Place each little soldier in an orderly fashion in a baking dish.

Rolled Collards

Cover with sauce, then foil, and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Rolled collards top view

Topped with sauce

Mediterranean Stuffed Collard Greens

Yield: 8 Stuffed Leaves

Ingredients

    Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 4 Cloves Fresh Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Medium Onion, Chopped
  • 1 Large Carrot, Chopped or Minced
  • 1- 28oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano
  • Handful of Fresh Basil Leaves
  • Filling
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 3 Cloves Fresh Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Can Cannellini Beans, Drained and Rinsed
  • 2 Cups Cooked Brown Rice
  • 6 Large Button or Crimini (Baby Bella) Mushrooms, Chopped
  • ¼ Teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon Pepper
  • 12 Intact Collard Greens, Washed

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
  2. For the Sauce:
  3. Saute garlic, onion, and carrot in olive oil until tender. Add tomatoes, basil, and spices.
  4. Simmer for a minimum of one hour.
  5. For the filling:
  6. Saute the garlic and mushrooms until tender.
  7. Add the rice, beans, salt and pepper, and sauté until flavors have combined and all ingredients are heated through. Set aside.
  8. Preparing the Collards:
  9. Bring a large pot of water up to a boil. Place the collards in the boiling water for 2-3 minutes, just until they are bright green and pliable.
  10. After removing from water, allow the leaves to cool slightly. Remove the stems from the center by carving them away with a knife.
  11. Completing the Rollups:
  12. Overlap the trimmed ends of the leaf to create a smooth and sturdy wrap. Add 3-4 tablespoons of the filling and roll up like a burrito, first folding up the bottom, then folding in the two sides, and finally completing the rollup.
  13. If the leaf tears halfway through the process, simply insert it into another leaf, allowing for a double-leaved rollup.
  14. Align rollups side by side in a square baking sheet and cover with all of the tomato sauce. Wrap the top with foil and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Notes

*If the tomato sauce is still too acidic, you may want to add 1 tablespoon if honey to round out the flavor.

**These stuffed collard greens are delicious served hot or at room temperature. Drizzle with a thin stream of extra virgin olive oil if you so desire, and enjoy!

http://tastefulwisdom.com/collards-3-ways-part-one-mediterranean-stuffed-collard-greens/
Finished product 2

 

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Asian No Rice “Fried Rice”

Cover Picture

Cover Picture

  This is a smart dish that will absolutely blow you away with both its complex flavor and nutrient profile. By substituting cauliflower for actual rice, you not only lighten up the dish but you add cancer-fighting phytonutrients. With a somewhat mild flavor and soft texture after cooking, cauliflower is the ultimate substitute for rice. I promise, you will be AMAZED! …and never miss the rice! So I will admit, there are quite a few steps to this recipe, but the end product is beyond worth it – hang in there! Each step is major easiness so there is no way to really mess this one up. This is a perfect bring your own lunch (BYOL) recipe that should last you almost the whole work week. So a little legwork on the weekend will totally pay off. Not to mention the fact that you will be the talk of the break room with your super snazzy and smart fare. You could literally call this “BOTTOMLESS Asian No Rice Fried Rice” as you can eat all you want and only gain health (alright and a little extra sodium but who will really eat the entire recipe- I guess if you really want to, cut back on the soy sauce)! My point is this is a fabulous light dish that won’t assist in packing on the pounds, but will provide nourishment at a cellular level. It is also a vegan recipe, but feel free to serve with a lean protein such as salmon or chicken breast, or keep it veg and add some marinated tofu. Serve warm or cold, as a side or a main, for lunch or dinner, just try it. For the recipe in its entirety, please see below. Begin by making the Asian sauce with garlic, ginger, soy sauce, cilantro, sesame oil, apple cider vinegar, and honey. Then add this to your raw cauliflower that has been pulsed in the food processor.

Mise en place Cauliflower Sauce IMG_3032

 

Spread “rice” in one even layer onto a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, then broil for 3-5 minutes more. This softens the cauliflower, cooks the garlic and ginger, and adds a bit of crispness that is sinful.

 

Cauliflower Spread on baking sheet

While the “rice” is cooking in the oven, sauté shredded cabbage, onions, and carrots until tender. Carrot, onion, cabbage sautee

Mix the veggies with the rice, fresh cilantro, and roasted cashews and serve!

Finished product close up 2

Asian No Rice “Fried Rice”

Ingredients

    Sauce:
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce or Gluten-Free Tamari, Divided
  • 1 Tablespoon Sesame Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider or Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Honey
  • 2 Tablespoons Garlic, Finely Chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Ginger, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Cilantro, Finely Chopped
  • 3 Scallions, Chopped
  • Rice:
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive or Coconut Oil
  • 1Tablespoon Soy sauce
  • 1 Head of Cauliflower, Core Removed and Roughly Chopped
  • ½ Head Green or Savoy Cabbage, Thinly Sliced or Shredded
  • 2 Large Carrots, Thinly Sliced or Shredded
  • 1 Large Onion, Thinly Sliced
  • ½ Cup Fresh Cilantro, Torn
  • ½ Cup Roasted Cashews, Chopped

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Wisk together all liquid ingredients for the sauce, then stir in garlic, ginger, chopped cilantro and scallions. Set aside.
  3. In batches, pulse cauliflower until it resembles grains of rice. Be careful to not over process as the cauliflower will eventually turn to a puree.
  4. Pour sauce over cauliflower rice and mix.
  5. Spread in one even layer onto baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, then broil for an additional 3-5 minutes- or until golden brown with some dark, crispy bits.
  6. While the cauliflower is cooking in the oven, sauté cabbage, onions, and carrots in oil with soy sauce on medium-high heat, until tender.
  7. Mix cauliflower with sauté mixture, cilantro, and cashews. Serve and enjoy!
http://tastefulwisdom.com/asian-rice-fried-rice/

 

   

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