Archive for March, 2017

Taco…Wednesday?

Posted on March 30, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Everyone knows I only eat meat about once a week. I like meat, for me it’s just too expensive to buy a lot of. Most of the time, my once a week meat is eaten out, or delivered. Last week I got sushi and it was SO GOOD. This week, I had a chicken breast left over from the last time I made chicken, and decided to cook it with some veggies. It ended up being tacos because I just had my giant tortilla shells from the vegan burritos I made last week.

Protein is important for a lot of things, weight loss, muscle growth, ect. I hadn’t lost any weight in the past week and I think it was a mixture of not eating enough, and not getting enough protein. I ordered a thing of plant based protein that should be here today, but in the meantime I decided to eat the chicken. Human health is a tricky thing, it shouldn’t be, but it is. We need a good balance of a lot of things, or our bodies won’t work correctly. You can live very well on a plant based diet, but you just have to make sure that you’re getting everything that your body needs.

While I’m not a huge fan of using supplements in place of getting nutrients naturally, sometimes it’s ok. That’s why I’m going to try adding the plant based protein powder. If it doesn’t work, or if I have weird side effects, I’ll stop. When Rocky and I were together, he gave me some vitamin D tablets to help with the winter blues, but they didn’t help, so I stopped. I really do believe that the best way to get everything you need is from the food you eat. That’s why I like to eat all the veggies I do. I had a Dr once say that your body only uses what you need, then you pee the rest out. It makes sense, our bodies do know what they’re doing.

Now, back to the food. Once again this is a very simple recipe, and if you want to cut the carbs you can just eat it without the tortilla. The important part about cooking chicken is to make sure that you don’t overcook it so it gets dry. That means lower heat and patience.

Giant Chicken and Veggie Tacos

Here’s what to get from the store:

Chicken Breast
Asparagus
Zucchini
Black Beans
Chickpeas
Tortilla
Cheddar cheese
Guyere

Giant Chicken and Veggie Taco

1 chicken breast, cubed
4 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 zucchini, diced
5 spears asparagus, diced
1/4 cup chick peans
1/4 cup black beans
Salt, pepper, paprika
Lemon Juice
Tortillas
Cheddar
Guyere
Spinach

  1. In a saute pan, saute the chicken until almost cooked.
  2. Add the garlic, veggies, with seasonings until the asparagus is bright green.
  3. Add the beans and the lemon juice, just a splash.
  4. Serve in a tortilla with the spinach and cheeses, top with sriracha if you like.

Super simple. I honestly don’t even like writing recipes for something so simple, but I do understand that some people need more instruction with cooking because they’re new at that, and I’m totally fine with that.

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Hassleback, Hasslehof’s lesser known Starchy Cousin

Posted on March 30, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

I know I’ve shared my love for sweet potatoes many times. They’re great, for pretty much everything you can use white potatoes for. (I do tend to like white mashed potatoes a little more, but sweet mashed is pretty tasty.)

As with a lot of my recent recipes, I got my inspiration while walking around Aldi doing my grocery shopping. I’m not sure why I thought about making hassleback sweet potatoes, maybe it was the new bags of shredded Guyere, or the fact that I just wanted cheese, but cheese and sweet potatoes sounded like a great combination, and I was right.

Now, I’m not going to lie, I was rushed and the potato wasn’t 100% cooked through, but the flavors were still there. The nice thing about sweet potatoes is that while they are sweet, the flavor is really only brought out if you add the stuff to make it sweeter. The only seasoning I used was salt, pepper, crush garlic and olive oil. Those things brought out some of the natural flavor without making it too sweet.

While it takes some time (because sweet potatoes take FOREVER) this is a very simple recipe. And, believe it or not, even though it’s covered in cheese, it’s pretty good for you. Cheese has protein and calicum, which the human body needs, and sweet potatoes have beta carotene, vitamin C, manganese, copper, pantothenic acid and vitamin B6. Additionally, they are a good source of potassium, dietary fiber, niacin, vitamin B1, vitamin B2 and phosphorus. (I did google that info. I’m trying to make sure I get all the nutrients I need. )

Hassleback Sweet Potato with cheese and black beans

Here’s what to get from the store:

Sweet potato
Black Beans
Guyere
Cheddar
Bleu Cheese

Hassleback Sweet Potato

1 sweet potato
4 cloves garlic, smashed and diced
Cheddar, sliced
Handful shredded Guyere
Handful Bleu cheese
Black Beans
Salt, pepper
Olive Oil

  1. With a sharp knife, make slices through the potato, almost to the bottom but not through it.
  2. Cover the potato in olive oil, salt, pepper and the garlic, making sure the garlic is in the slices as well.
  3. Place the potato in a cast iron skillet or a baking pan. Bake in a 400 degree oven and cook for 30 minutes or until mostly cooked through.
  4. Take the potato out of the oven. Carefully put the sliced cheddar in each slit, put the black beans on top, then the rest of the cheese. Return to the oven and continue baking until the cheese is melted.  Use as a side dish or a main meal.

Using the work out videos is kind of weird for me. On one hand, I don’t have to go to a gym, on the other hand, I’m not 100% sure if I’m doing the moves correctly. Well, at least until the next day when a muscle group hurts. Today it’ the muscles that control rowing, I’m not sure of the name. The muscle soreness was something I missed from when I started doing yoga. Sure, I was progressing, but not much in the way of muscle strength.

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Beans, Beans the Magical Fruit

Posted on March 23, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

The more you eat them, the more you toot!

There are two things I eat pretty much every day; beans and spinach. And while they make me a little gassy (sorry coworkers, cast members and directing crew) I love them so much. My spinach salad is super easy to make and it has all the nutrients you could ever want from a plant based diet.

That being said, only eating that salad can get a little boring. Some time last week I had this idea for a burrito with beans and…? While at Aldi on Sunday, I grabbed some zucchni, and the vegan burrito was born, kind of. I can’t really call it a burrito because not only would it not close, it’s not spiced with Mexican spices. So it’s a mix between a burrito and a wrap.

I’m not actually going to write a recipe for this, because I feel it’s almost like writing a recipe for a sandwich. All I did was saute the veggies (zucchini, asparagus, and beans with some garlic) and put it in a tortilla with some seasoned brown rice (salt, pepper, and cilantro) and that BBQ sauce I made for that chicken last week. Super easy.

Vegan Burrtio Wrap with homemade BBQ Sauce

In my defense, I probably put too much filling in the burrito for it to close, but it was super delicious non the less.

We just ended week 4 of rehearsals for my show, previews start April 14, I’m stoked. I love this cast and the director and I get along really well. This is the first non burlesque show I’ve done in a while, and I”m glad I’m back. I’ve missed it so much.

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Patty Cake, Patty Cake

Posted on March 15, 2017. Filed under: Breakfast, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

If you know me, you know a few things; I eat a lot of beans,  I love animals, and I am not a morning person. Sure, I’ll get up,  if I have to, but I’d rather wake up to my own circadian rhythm. Now, not wanting to wake up for breakfast doesn’t mean  don’t like breakfast food. I happen to really like breakfast; pancakes, hash browns, eggs Benedict, you get the idea.

Now, along with not eating a lot of meat,  also don’t eat a ton of carbs. That being said, humans do need some complex carbs for their brains and bodies to work correctly. We as a society just eat way to much, and sometimes the wrong kind.

This recipe is very simple, doesn’t take too long to make, and it’s 100% vegan. I added Chia seeds to the recipe I used to add some more protein (because that is also important). The compote  I made is also very simple and vegan. Neither items are very sweet, but you can add more honey if you would like a sweeter pancake.

Vegan pancakes wth a strawberry and blueberry compote

Here’s what to get from the store:

Wheat flour
Almond Milk
Baking Soda
Chia Seeds
Strawberries
Blueberries
Coconut Oil

Vegan  Pancakes
(from Cookie + Kate)

1 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup almond milk or dairy-free milk of choice
2 tablespoons olive oil or melted coconut oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup or sugar of choice
1/4 cup chia seeds
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a 2-cup liquid measuring cup or another mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract until thoroughly blended. (If your coconut oil solidifies on contact with the cold milk, gently warm it in the microwave just until it liquifies again.)
  2. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture. Stir until combined, so only a few lumps remain (don’t over-mix or your pancakes will be tough!). If you’d like to mix in any totally optional add-ins (like chocolate chips or blueberries), gently fold them in now. Let the batter rest for 5 minutes so your pancakes will be nice and fluffy.
  3. Meanwhile, if you’ll be using an electric skillet, heat it to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, heat a heavy cast iron skillet or nonstick griddle over medium-low heat. You’re ready to start cooking your pancakes once the surface of the pan is hot enough that a drop of water sizzles on contact.
  4. If necessary, lightly oil the cooking surface with additional oil or cooking spray (I don’t oil the surface of my non-stick griddle and my pancakes turned out great).
  5. Using a ¼-cup measure, scoop the batter onto the warm skillet. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes until small bubbles form on the surface of the pancakes (you’ll know it’s ready to flip when about ½-inch of the perimeter is matte instead of glossy), and flip. Cook on the opposite sides for 1 to 2 minutes, or until golden brown.
  6. Repeat the process with the remaining batter, adding more oil as needed. You may need to adjust the heat up or down at this point. Serve the pancakes immediately or keep warm in a 200 degree Fahrenheit oven.

Strawberry and Blueberry Compote

1/4 cup blueberries
1/4 cup diced strawberries
1 cup water
Drizzle of honey
1 tbsp corn startch

  1. In a sauce pan, put the berries, water and honey. Bring to a boil and reduce to about half. Add the cornstarch, stir until thick. Keep warm until ready to serve.

Tonight we’re doing a designer run of my new show. We go into tech on April 6 (8 for the actors) and I’m so excited. I love doing this so much.

I’m in the middle week of using the Fitstar app and  have to say, it’s kicking my butt. Today my legs feel super solid and slightly in pain, which means they have room to grow. Making yourself stronger isn’t easy, but it shouldn’t be. It’s super cliche, but they’re right, no pain, no gain.

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That’s a Hot Chick

Posted on March 14, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: |

So, normally, as I’m sure you all know, I do vegetarian and vegan dishes. However, a few weeks ago I was stumped and uninspired. So what does one do when that happens? Post on Facebook and ask for suggestions! I didn’t get many, but one was a healthier soul food option.

Now, originally this was supposed to be a baked fried chicken using milled flax seed, however, since I didn’t use egg in mixture, the breading didn’t stay on. It did however, keep the chicken moist. Because we all know the worst thing is dry poultry.

This recipe is pretty simple, and even though the breading fell off for me, I’m going to write it with the breading because it did help with the moisture. Surprisingly enough, it was also pretty cheap, thanks to Aldi prices.

My goal for this recipe is to make something that feels like a BBQ meal, without actually being too terrible for you. The sauce that I made is low in sugar (I used honey) and the flavor comes from spices. The warm salad served with it is very simple with no added butter.

Baked Chicken over a warm bean salad with sweet and spicy BBQ sauce

 

Here’s what to get from the store:

Boneless Chicken Breasts
Milled Flax Seed
Whole Wheat Flour
Almond Milk
Apple cider vinegar
Tomato Paste
Sriracha
Chickpeas
Black Beans
Mini Peppers
Asparagus

Baked “Fried” Chicken

Boneless Chicken Breast
Almond Milk
Equal parts milled flax seed and Wheat Flour
Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Parsley, Oregano, Paprika

  1. Put the almond milk in one bowl, and the flours with the seasoning in another.
  2. Dip each breast in the milk, then the flour, twice each.
  3. In a preheated cast iron skillet, brown on each side, then put in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes or until cooked through.

Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce

3 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 bottle of apple cider vinegar
1 can of tomato paste
1/4 cup honey
Sriracha
Soy sauce
Dijon Mustard
Salt, pepper, paprika, dried mustard, turmeric, cumin

  1. Sauté the garlic until cooked, add the vinegar and tomato. Stir until combined.
  2. Add the honey, mustard, soy sauce and some of the spices. Warm to almost boiling. Taste to adjust seasoning. Remove from heat until ready to use.

Warm Bean Salad

1/4 cup chickpeas
1/4 cup black beans
4 stalks asparagus, diced
4 mini sweet peppers, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
Salt and pepper

  1. Sauté the garlic, then add the asparagus and peppers until the asparagus is bring green. Make sure to add salt and pepper.
  2. Add the beans, and only sauté until warmed through.

This was the first meat dish I’ve made in a long time, I don’t think I’ve even bought meat since I’ve moved. As I’ve said before, I’m not a vegetarian, not really, I just don’t eat a lot of meat. I do feel that we eat way too much meat, among other things. Balance is key, my friends.

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Perfectly Spicy and a Little bit Sweet

Posted on March 6, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Just like me. Or not. Ha.

Sometimes you have no inspiration on what to cook next, and you ask friends on Facebook for suggestions. Then you spend a crazy amount of time staring at Pinterest on your phone and get hit with a moment of brilliance. A lot of my Pinterest feed had fritters, one particularly had lentils. I then saw something with honey Sriracha tofu, and then the light bulb went off. I knew I had lentils, why not add some quinoa and beans and make a patty, then cover it with some sweet and spicy tofu?

I originally started this recipe Friday night, the quinoa and lentils were all cooked, then my manager called me into work for a few hours. So that mixture sat in my fridge until today. That actually helped because I was able to go grocery shopping so I could add some spinach to this recipe. (When don’t I add spinach, I know)

This recipe is actually pretty easy, and it doesn’t take that much time if you pre-cook the grains like I had been forced to. The one thing you will need for this is a cast iron skillet; you start the patty on the stove then move it into the oven to finish cooking it off. The nice thing about it, is that you can pre make a lot of the mix and it will stay in the fridge.

Veggie Patty with Honey Sriracha Tofu

 

Here’s what to get from the store:

Lentils
Quiona
Spinach
Tofu
Oatmeal
Chickpeas
Black Beans
Sriracha
Honey

Veggie Patties with Sweet and Spicy Tofu

1/2 cup cooked lnetils
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
4 cloves garlic
Handful of Spinach
1/4 cup Oatmeal
1/2 can chickpeas, with the liquid
1/2 can black beans, with the liquid
Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes

Handful of tofu
1/2 cup vegetable broth
Honey
Sriracha
Salt and Pepper

  1. Put the lentils, quinoa, garlic, spinach, beans and spices and blend until combed. Slowly add the oatmeal until the mixture isn’t as wet.
  2. In a pre heated cast iron pan, form the mixture into a patty and brown on both sides. Place in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes, flipping half way through.
  3. For the tofu: sauté the tofu until browned. De glaze the pan with the broth, then add the honey and sriracha. Let reduce by half. Place on top of the patty with some red onions.

Today I had my 5 rehearsal, 4th staging rehearsal with City Lit. Before tech, there’s not much for me to do besides take blocking until they’re off book. That being said, I really love every minute of it. The cast is awesome and talented and so is the director. I’m so happy I’m back to doing what I’m best at.

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