Fat

Will April Showers Bring May Flowers ? // Pineapple Tofu Stir Fry

2.5 fats, 1 fruit, 2 grains, 3 proteins, 2 vegetables20140401-202525.jpg

Happy April! I’m so excited to share this recipe with you guys; it’s juicy, tangy, naturally sweet and salty.

But let me back track a little. Over the winter I bought a 4 lb bag of frozen pineapple chunks from Costco. I’m almost at the end, but still have a little left. I like to eat them right from the freezer, but decided to switch things up and incorporate them into my stir fry. Do you have any pineapple recipes to share for the last of my bag?

20140401-202532.jpgFun Fast Facts:

  • Pineapple has very good anti inflammatory benefits because of its enzyme bromelain.
  • Pineapple grows as a result of of many flowers whose flowerets have joined around the core.
  • Hawaii is the world’s largest producer of pineapple.
  • Traditionally, pineapple was used as a diuretic and a labor inducer.

20140401-202541.jpg

For stir fry:

1 cup brown rice, cooked [2 grains, 1 protein]

1 tsp coconut oil [1 fat]

3/4 cup fresh or frozen greens (I used a broccoli, edamame, green bean mix) [1.5 vegetable]

4 oz. tofu [1 protein, 1/2 fat]

1/3 red bell pepper [1/2 vegetable]

1/2 small onion

~ 1/2 cup chopped pineapple [1 fruit]

1/4 cup egg whites (opt.) [1 protein]

6 cashews [1 fat]

For sauce: 

2 tbsp pineapple juice*

2.5 tsp rice vinegar

2 tsp tamari (or soy sauce)

1 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp cornstarch

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp minced garlic

>> Combine all ingredients for the sauce, except cornstarch, in a dish. Dry tofu with a paper towel and dice it into a bowl. Cover with 2 tbsp. of sauce and set aside to marinade about 5-10 mins. Add cornstarch to the remaining sauce and mix until smooth. Heat skillet with coconut oil and sauté onions. Add the tofu until it has browned. Add vegetables and cook 2 minutes. Add the brown rice and egg whites. Cook an additional 2 minutes and serve. Garnish with scallions, cilantro, and cashews.

*To get pineapple juice, I simple microwaved the frozen pineapple chunks for about 30 seconds.

 

Advertisements

Orange Glazed Brussel Sprouts and Carrots with Crispy Tofu

2.5 fats, 1 fruit, 1 protein, 2 vegetables20140330-162708.jpg

 

I spent the afternoon today doing some crafting. I took an old jar and glued crushed sea shells onto it. I can’t wait to put a candle inside and see if it creates a disco ball effect- haha!
20140330-192333.jpg

For lunch I made this orange goodness! I have never boiled brussels sprouts before, but I love it! I adapted this recipe from Better Homes and Gardens.
20140330-162717.jpg

Apparently there are detoxifying effects in brussels sprouts. Studies show compounds in these leafy greens can activate cancer-fighting enzymes. As with most vegetables and fruits there are a lot of health benefits that brussels sprouts provide. These can be found here.  
20140330-162722.jpg

1 orange (or 1 clementine + 1/4 cup orange juice) [1 fruit]

4 oz tofu [1 protein, 1/2 fat]

1 1/2 cups brussels sprouts, cut in half [1.5 vegetables]

1/2 cup carrots, chopped [1/2 vegetables]

1 tsp cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tsp olive oil [1 fat]

6 almonds, chopped [1 fat]

>> Bring water to a boil in a pot. Add brussels sprouts and carrots and cook about 10 minutes, or until soft. Heat skillet with olive oil. Dry the tofu in a paper towel and add to the hot skillet. Chop the orange/clementine into small pieces and mash it in a pot to get all of the juices out. (Alt. use 1/3 cup orange juice if you don’t want the orange pieces in your dish) Add the cornstarch, sugar, nutmeg, and salt to the orange. Once the vegetables are cooked, and the tofu is crispy, add everything to the pot with the orange glaze. Let it thicken on low heat for a few minutes, and serve over rice. Top with almonds.

Coconut Quinoa with Ginger Pears

[2 fat, 1 fruit, 1 grain, 2 protein]
20140330-162552.jpg

I’ve had a pear sitting in the freezer for over a month now. It just stares at me and I’m getting annoyed looking at it. This morning I ended the torture!20140330-162608.jpg

Pears are high in fiber and antioxidants. Just one pear has about half of your daily need of flavonols. Flavonols are plant pigments that protect the cells from oxygen damage, prevent excess inflammation, and help protect blood vessels from leakage or breakage. You can read more about the anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-cancer properties of pears here.
20140330-162613.jpg

 

1/2 cup cooked quinoa [1 grain, 1 protein]

3/4 cup milk (dairy or non-dairy)

3 tbsp egg whites, or 1 egg [1 protein]

1/4 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1-2 tsp sugar

1/2 pear [1 fruit]

2 tbsp coconut shreds [1 fat]

4 walnut halves, chopped [1 fat]

>>Bring the milk to a boil. Add the cooked quinoa and lower heat to a simmer. Add the ginger, vanilla, and sugar. Let everything cook, uncovered, for about 20 minutes or until most of the milk has been absorbed. Add the pears, walnuts, and egg whites. Let it thicken, and then top with coconut shreds.

African Peanut Butter Sweet Potato and Black Bean Stew

1 fat, 2 grain, 1.5 protein, 1 vegetable20140327-204503.jpg

I wanted to test out a recipe from a country (…or continent) I’ve never been to before. I chose Africa. Of course, Africa is huge so you can only imagine the range in cuisine. Central, East, South, and many other regions have their own signature dishes depending on the climate and environment.

I’ve only tried African cuisine once before at an Ethiopian restaurant in Boston and I wasn’t impressed. I was caught off guard by the fact everyones orders came served on the same dish. Plus I was forced to sit on a wooden stump. Granted, this was probably ten years ago and I was young, confused, and uncomfortable.

That being said, I’m so happy I tried this! The spices blend wonderfully; I will definitely be testing more African recipes. Maybe I’ll even make my own Injera (African flatbread)!
20140327-204514.jpg

This recipe was adapted from Vegangela

1/2 cup black beans [1 grain, 1 protein]

1/2 cup diced tomatoes (canned) [1 vegetable]

1/2 large (or 1 small) sweet potato, cubed [1 grain]

2 tbsp PB2 (or 1 tbsp peanut butter) [1/2 protein]

1/2 small onion, largely chopped

1/2 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp coconut oil [1 fat]

1/4 tsp chili powder

dash of cinnamon, cayenne pepper

1/4 cup water

>>Saute onion and sweet potato in a skillet. Add remaining ingredients and let simmer for a couple of minutes. Serve with rice.

 

Peanut Butter and Jelly …. and Cottage Cheese Toast

1 fat, 1 grain, 2 protein20140327-204549.jpg

I love peanut butter and jelly, and I love cottage cheese. Once I started making my toast like this, I was hooked. As I showed you with this nut butter banana toast, revamping kids meals is my favorite. Here is the before:

 

Replace the simple carbs, high sugars, and high sodium levels to get:
20140327-204557.jpg1 slice bread (I used this Ezekiel bread)

1/4 cup cottage cheese

1 tbsp nut butter (I used almond butter)

1/2 tbsp your favorite jam

>>Toast the bread. Top with nut butter. Mix jam into cottage cheese, or add them in separate layers.

 

The Best Nut Butter Banana Toast

 1.5 fat, 1 fruit, 1 grain, 2 protein20140324-155018.jpg

One thing I love to do is make “grown up” alternatives to the typical kids menu. (Check out this chocolate milk turned into an “adult cocoa blend“- haha!). Today I decided to revamp another classic: PB&Banana Sandwiches. Here’s what your average PB&B looks like:

Throw out the simple carbohydrates (white bread) and the unnatural ‘peanut butter’ (filled with hydrogenated oils aka trans fats and added sugar). Swap them out with these sophisticated alternatives:
20140324-155024.jpg

1 piece of bread (I used Ezekiel Sprouted Whole Grain Bread) [1 grain, 1 protein]

1/2 large banana [1 fruit]

1 tbsp almond butter [1 protein, 1 fat]

3 almonds, chopped [1/2 fat]

>>Toast the bread and top with 1 tbsp almond butter. Take 1/4 of a banana and mash it onto your toast. Top toast with another 1/4 banana, sliced. Chop 3 almonds and sprinkle on top. Add cinnamon, agave or honey.

What’s your favorite “kid’s” sandwich?

 

 

Sweet Potato Quinoa with ‘Cheezy’ Broccolini

2 fats, 3 grains, 1 protein, 1 vegetable20140324-154750.jpg

WOW I can’t even describe how surprised I was with this dish. It’s sweet, salty, nutty and so good I licked my bowl clean!
20140324-154757.jpg

I used broccolini instead of broccoli which absorbed more flavor and gave perfect bite size crunches. The stems resemble asparagus in shape, but have the taste and sweetness of broccoli. If you must, you can use broccoli but be sure to slice the stems to achieve a similar texture.

What’s broccolini you ask? ….

20140324-154802.jpg

Broccolini is sometimes mistaken for “baby broccoli”, but it’s actually a cross between broccoli and chinese broccoli. Nutritionally speaking, broccolini and broccoli are very similar and considered to be superfoods. They are high in vitamins K and C and well known for their cancer preventing properties. Research has specifically identified broccoli with decreased risk in the following types of cancer: prostate, colon, breast, bladder, and ovarian. Click here to read more about the specific health benefits of broccoli.20140324-154808.jpgSweet Potato Quinoa:

1/4 cup dry quinoa [2 grains, 1 protein]

1/2 sweet potato [1 grain]

1/2 tsp chili powder

pinch of salt

‘Cheezy’ Broccolini:

1 tbsp nutritional yeast

1/2 tbsp tamari (or soy sauce)

1 tsp olive oil [1 fat]

1 cup broccolini, chopped [1 vegetable]

Top with:

1 tbsp (~6) almonds, chopped [1 fat]

>> Quinoa: Set your quinoa to cook with the chili powder and salt. With a knife, poke holes in the sweet potato and microwave for about 2-3 mins, until soft. Once cooled a little, peel and mash with some hot water. Mix the mashed sweet potato with the quinoa once it’s cooked.

>>Broccolini: In a skillet, saute broccolini in oil. Mix in the tamari and nutritional yeast, and set aside. This entire process should take about 3-5 minutes as you still want the broccolini to be little crisp.

Serve the broccolini with quinoa and top with 1 tbsp chopped almonds.