Day 11/15: Curried Protein

Hello Hello!

I am the worst at my own 15 day challenge…

What I can I do? I have a full-time job, and a second job at a martial arts gym where I train as well. On top of that I just started the Insanity work out. Insanity is a pretty good way to describe it.. and my life at the moment.. not in general but at this moment. I’ve been in a relationship with someone for 3 years.. and the learning curves of this is endless in which it also turns into a full-time job. But he makes me smile so that’s okay. Anyways.. sorry for the odd rant. Let’s move on..

My cousin text me that she made spaghetti and soy protein meatballs. Half of the sauce was made of beets. She dared me to try so I accepted.. except I forgot to buy beets 😦

SO… I went in another direction.

I was feeling some homemade Indian comfort food.. never quite like my mom’s so I gave it a try.

I thought of making curries meatballs on quinoa.. but I wasn’t able to accomplish all that this evening having spent some time jumping around like a crazy person to Shaun T’s Insanity. So intense.

Here’s what I used:

  • 1 package vegan protein
  • 2/3 cup peas
  • 1 tbsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 small tomato (sliced into wedges)
  • 1 pinch paprika
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped onions
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Start by heating oil in a skillet and briefly frying the onions, garlic and ginger.

Add protein and vegetable stock. Cook for five minutes. Slowly add remaining ingredients (spices, last).

Cook for 10 minutes.

Serve on brown rice or quinoa.

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Yum yum yum

You know what ELSE is surprisingly delicious *take a shot*

Kale

+

Mango

+

Blueberries

+

Vanilla Protein Powder

=

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Peace in ❤

Day 10/15: Saturday Cheat Day

I have been absent.. yes.. but I am back! Longest.. 15 day challenge.. ever.

Having openly admitted that I am proud to present another of my very own creations. As you know, I give myself one day a week to treat myself with the lesser healthy things.. this is actually a lighter version of my cheat day.. only because I used real butter.. but everything else is gluten safe and super easy to make as a vegan treat. To be quite honest, eating all natural sans animal by-products have improved my moods and energy impeccably. I’m so happy I’ve taken a chance on this sort of lifestyle… 6 days may turn into all 7 days of the week very soon.

Coming up with a name for this was a bit tricky and as I brainstormed I thought of: Almond butter delight… Pumpkin Nut Cake… Chocopump, pump pump it up .. okay that was weak sauce. No I’m not on drugs but I am tired as eff. Although you’d think with the amount of food I’m making that I’m a huge pothead.. quite the contrary.. my body is a temple ;).

The reason why I’m so tired this Sunday night is because I visited my bestie in Port Hope and slept over. When I don’t sleep in my own bed I don’t get good sleeps.. which makes Nidhi super cranky… and she rants talking in third person.

Having said all that I was so excited to see her that I made this for her. So I finally decided to name it *drum roll*

Best Friend Cake

Just because a lot of heart was put into it 🙂

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I made this ALL on a whim. As per usual.. it was unplanned but I decided to use no online references.. I made this blindly… and surprisingly… it was deeelicous *take a shot*

Try it out.. so easy!

Logistics….

Crust:

  • 3/4 cup ground almonds
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp egg replacer + 4 tsp water (= two whole eggs)
  • 1/4 melted cup butter/vegan butter
  • 1 tbsp flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon powder

Icing:

  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup melted unsweetened dark chocolate
  • 1/3 cup date puree
  • 4 packets stevia (or 1 tbsp sugar)
  • 1/2 natural almond or peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

PH oven to 375*F

In a bowl, bind all crust ingredients together starting with dry mixes (almond powder and brown sugar) adding melted butter last.

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Put into dutch oven or lightly greased pan and bake for 10-15 minutes

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In a bowl, mix all icing ingredients together leaving almond butter for last. Whip until mix is smooth. Taste to make sure it is not too bitter.. it took a bit to figure out the measurements as the pumpkin made it a bit tricky – but SO worth it.

Once the crust is finished baking, let cool for an hour and refrigerate icing. During this hour I suggest watching an episode of Big Rich Atlanta.

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When the crust is cooled and you’re done vomiting over Queen Bitch Ashley’s birthday drama (because you were laughing too hard, of course), spread over icing and make sure it sits at least 1″ thick on top.

SO easy.. we ate half of the cake last night.. I always love seeing people enjoy the food I come up with.

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Enjoy!

Goodnight – peace in ❤

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My stage 2 clinger kitty keeping me company again.. d’aww my kitty bear

Day 8/15: Sundried Tomato Avocado Spring Rolls

Hello, hello!

Before I start… is it just me or does word press ALWAYS mess up the formatting in the publishing process… everything is everywhere and spaced out strangely once I see the final product and I’m all like “BAH!!!”

Moving on…..

As I write this I wish I had an entire plate of these.. these were SO good.

I got the idea from Om Girl’s Guide:

http://omgirlsguide.com/2013/04/21/collard-wraps-with-sun-dried-tomato-pate/

I love her posts so I thought I’d try it myself in a way that’s slightly different as I lacked some materials. I was also craving sushi so I figured, why not turn into a hand roll? Behold:

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I’m trying to eat the screen…

Anyways, you can find her version (which is probably better) at the link provided, or if you’d like to try mine which isn’t so bad ;), follow directions below.

What you need:

Sundried tomato pate ingredients..

  • 1/3 cup hummus (I made mine from scratch – chick peas + olive oil + garlic clove + boiled crushed peppers + dry basil = delicious, easy peasy hummus)
  • 1/4 cup sundried tomato
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (optional)
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (follow package instructions to make sure they are blanched before used.. all you have to do is boil them in water for 2 minutes)

– – – – – – – –

  • 1 avocado
  • boston lettuce
  • vegannaise/mayo
  • wasabi powder
  • any other fillings you’d like
  • 1 cup brown rice

To make the pate start by blending all pate ingredients in a food processor. Try and smooth out any chunks as best as you can. Set aside in a bowl.

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The vegannaise is so excited!!

Lay out lettuce leaves one at a time (whatever size leaf you’d prefer) and spread mayo over leaf; sprinkle wasabi powder over.

Next, you will lay out rice over top and flatten nicely. After that you may add the pate and then stick a couple of slivers of avocado in the centre. And just ‘Roll it, roll it, roll, roll it, WHAT!?’ 

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Make sure it’s nicely ‘swaddled’ so it doesn’t fall apart.

Repeat this process with how many ever you desire and refrigerate. You can eat it fresh – you’ll be tempted – but allowing it to cool will help bind the ingredients so that it doesn’t fall apart.

Bon a pâtit and let me know what you think!

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Jack Attack was hanging onto my leg for the entire time I was making these rolls.

Peace in ❤

Day 7/15: Nut-Free Chocolate Granola

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These were GOOD! Is it okay to blow my own horn? Giggity.

My cousin has a severe nut allergy and I’ve using nuts in virtually EVERYTHING in this blog so I have dedicated this specific recipe for him because he’s the best… and if he doesn’t read it… he’s alright, no the best but alright.

I won’t lie to you.. I planned this recipe out well in my head but it kinda snowballed in the practical part of it. I wanted to use so many different things and had different ideas. I wanted to achieve a crumbly-sort of crust that is binded with rice crispies (got the idea from Sue. She made awesome ice cream pie made of rice crispies.. delicious). 

This wasn’t well planned out and I thought for once I don’t want to type “how to make..” in google and just figure it out all on my own. This was pretty much my entire evening which is why the post didn’t go up last night. I’ll put up another tonight – I’ve cooked plenty of material for the next couple of posts :D.

Anyways what it all came down to was chucking ingredients in a food processor then SH-BAM!!!!! (I want you to hear Lori from Cougar Town.. if you haven’t heard of Cougar Town GET YOUR LIFE TOGETHER AND YOUTUBE IT THEN PROCEED TO THANK ME FOR CHANGING YOUR LIFE AND I WILL ACCEPT YOUR THANKS BY LETTING YOU BAKE ME COOKIES MADE OF SMARTIES BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT WATCHING COUGAR TOWN FEELS LIKE…. EATING COOKIES WITH SMARTIES IN THEM :D)

Now that the inevitable awkward tangent is out of the way… let’s me some vegan, nut/gluten-free granola treats.

YES it’ll be good… *magic word* SURPRISINGLY… take a shot!

What you need:

Icing

  • 1 avocado
  • 3/4 melted chocolate
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 pkg stevia (optional)
  • 1 tbsp flaxseeds (if this is an allergen, obviously avoid it.. it’s not an essential ingredient)
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Blend all ingredients and set aside in the refridgerator

Granola/Crust

  • 3/4 cups rice crispies
  • 3/4 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 chia seeds (if you have)
  • 1 cup date syrup (1 cup dates in hot water over night… blend with a pinch of vanilla extract and your good to go)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

1. Blend ALL dry ingredients (except for chocolate chips) and blend in a food processor with date syrup.

          An option that I didn’t think of trying was binding all ingredients except for chocolate chips and rice crispies and then add those after. It doesn’t matter.. it’s good regardless 🙂

2. Add chocolate chips and flatten dough mixure into pan.

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You can either spread icing on top and enjoy a raw treat, or bake the entire tray(I did half an half) and bake into granola bars. You can do anything you want :).

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I personally enjoyed the raw dough the most.

If you’re not crazy about the avocado mixture, buy some Betty Crocker and call it a day 😉

Try it out and let me know how it goes 😀

Blog ya tonight!

 

Day 6: Apple Cranberry Treats!

Good afternoon!! (or evening, possibly)

I’m doing my happy dance because this is my first very own recipe that isn’t a knock off of someone else’s work! It’s inspired,but its my own :). Weeeeeee! Introducing my version of red velvet cakes made of cranberries and apples

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It was a tasty treat that wasn’t too sweet and full of natural goodness. The base of this recipe can be used as a granola bar, a fruity brownie or a frozen treat.

I have two versions of this – one that is nut-free (made with oats and rice crispies) and one that is nut-full.

Unfortunately I have only attempted the nut-full version so far. I will tackle the nut-free one tomorrow – and as promised to my broseph, it will be chocolately.

What you need:

1/2 cup almonds

1/2 cup walnuts

1 cup oats

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup flax seeds

1/4 cup chia seeds

1/2 package cranberries

1 apple (diced into tiny chunks)

1 tbsp cinammon

2 tbsp brown sugar (optional)

3 packages stevia (optional)

1 frozen banana (ice cream topping)

Commence!

PH oven 375*

Start by cooking cranberries (throw a sliver of lemon to allow some flavour to soak

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Drain (save drained water), set aside cranberries.

Cook apple pieces in cranberry juice with cinnamon and brown sugar (if using). Cook for ten minutes until soft and liquid becomes thick, almost completely evaporated

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In a food processor, grind oats, almonds, walnuts, chia/flax seeds, vanilla extract and stevia.  Grind until fine and pour into bowl.

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In this step I threw the cranberries and apples in the food processor along with “dough” mixture but then decided it would have been best to bind them together without the processor, allowing the cranberry chunks to be thicker for taste and not pureed. Because it’s pureed is what gave the treats the “red velvet” look… It’s up to you.

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Mix apples/cranberries into dry mix and mix until everything binds well. Transfer to baking pan, flatten and bake for 30 minutes (broil if you want it to be a hard texture). If you’re intending on them being granola bars, cut them into squares/rectangles beforehand.

In the mean while, if you’re making cold treats, make some banana ice cream:

https://cookiingmonster.wordpress.com/2013/04/10/homemade-banana-ice-cream-whaaaaaaaat/

Use this is a topper for the cakes and it tastes delicious. 2 options:

Top the ice cream onto the cakes and freeze (or enjoy fresh.. equally yum)

OR

Serve cakes warm and have the ice cream along side :D…. fine comfort food.

If you don’t have a vegan preference… I recommend using a cream cheese based icing.. I’m drooling at the thought.

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I hope you try it out and let me know how it is!

Till tomorrow, with some nut-free goodies.

Peace in ❤

A Quick Note: Monday’s Medley

Picture quality is poor.. mainly because I was eager to devour this sexy bowl of awesomesauce.

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It was so yummy and wholesome I couldn’t help to post a quickie.

Since stir fry master Matty J is here we cooked just another stir fry. As per usual it was delish so I’m saying “BLOG!!”

The basics:

Boil half a cup of quinoa – don’t let it cook too much where it binds together.

While deep frying tofu (optional) in light seasoning; in a separate skillet toss any vegetables you want, some sliced potatoes, and black beans.

Stir in 1 cup of vegetable stock for taste

toss in tofu (after letting a paper towel soak the oil), diced pineapple and quinoa.

Mix in whatever sauce of your choice and feast.

I love me some Monday Medley.

Good night and till tomorrow – I pwomise ❤

Day 5: Mexican Style Tofu

Well my “one recipe a day” rule didn’t last for very long!

Not only have I been busy with work and training; I’ve just been excessively tired last week and anything I made didn’t feel blog worthy.

This one seems very simple and hardly blog worthy either but it’s so versitile and can be used in many different ways.

It’s “ground” mexican meatless. I couldn’t find protein at the grocery store which was odd so I bought tofu. Looking back, I should have brough home firm tofu so I could have achieved the texture I wanted but it’s a learning experience :). I also would have made the tofu chunks smaller but it was 9 at night – I’m not a machine!!!!

Anyways, for this recipe I used:

  • 1/2 bar tofu – shredded of finely cut into tiny squares
  • 1 tsp all-puspose/mexican seasoning
  • 1/4 cup marinara sauce (spicy)
  • 2 tsp frank’s red hot
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped bepper (bell pepper.. heheh)
  • 1/4 cup green onion
  • 1/2 cup black beans
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil (any oil may be used.. i just felt  fancy…)

Start by fying the tofu and garlic in seasoning in a saucepan in oil, cook for 10 minutes on medium-high (add onions 5 minutes in)

Slowly add all other raw ingredients and cook for another 10 minutes, add beans last.

Add marinara and Frank’s sauce and after  2 minutes – finit!

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It’s so simple and you can put it over kale, turning it into a taco salad, sprinkle some cheese on top. Or you can put it in an actual taco… which is awesome too.

I put it over brown rice and it tasted like mexican style rice with tofu. It was delicious and filled me up unlike the other meals I’ve been making.  I’m getting the hang of being a vegan so i’m getting better at finding meals that are as natural as possible and filling for the tummy and the soul. I’m really feeling the emotional differences of this diet. It makes you feel happier and grounded :).

Anyways… I’ve just finished baking an apple/cranberry granola base that I will post about if not tonight; tomorrow. Half of it is reserved as a granola bar, the other half is a surprise 😉

Till the next bloggity…

peace in ❤

Day 4/15: Tahini Stir Fry

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Is it stir fry Tuesday? I think so! Actually it is Wednesday, but Matt and I made this yesterday. Yes, I’m a day behind on blogs – but I’m staying true to the “one recipe a day” rule!

This was a simple and delicious recipe. The only thing planned was the tahini sauce. I basically collected whatever sesame seeds I could find and emptied the house’s supply to produce all but …. one cup.

I was unsure of how the tahini sauce would turn out because it called for dates which made me a bit skeptical but.. wait for it..

It was surprisingly delicious *take a shot*

You can make your own tahini paste by frying a cup of sesame seeds with a couple of teaspoons of olive oil for ten minutes and then blend in a food processor till smooth. Store paste in the fridge.

Then to create the sauce:

2 medjool dates

1 garlic clove

2 tsp ginger

1 tsp tamari or soy sauce (tamari is gluten free)

**blend!!!

That is the most “complex” part of this recipe so I won’t even go through any steps. It’s a stir fry – all you need is a fun sauce to mix it up a little.

Our recipe contained brown rice, carrots, onions and bell peppers.

After it was all cooked we poured in the tahini.

It added a rich, creamy taste and was completely satisfying.

I definitely suggest you try tahini sauce in your stir fry – it won’t disappoint!

We paired with the corn bread for a little side and sprinkled Frank’s Red Hot Sauce over for that added kick.

Why?

Say it with me…

“I put that shit on everything.”

Hope you all had a happy hump day; until tomorrow.

Peace in ❤

Day 3/15: Sundried Tomato and Cheddar Corn Cake

Good evening lovelies!

This evenings recipe was a bit of a risk-taker…

I got the idea from one of my new favourite websites by the Gluten-Free Vegan:

http://www.theglutenfreevegan.com/2013/03/jalapeno-cheddar-corn-muffins-vegan-gluten-free/

The original recipe was corn muffins with cheddar and jalapeno but I decided to switch it up with sundried tomato and cheddar. Also, I lacked the resources for muffin-making so this was a CAKE!

I won’t lie to you… I was internally freaking out over this recipe because I’ve always been a little unsure corn-based baked goods… that is GLUTEN-FREE..and VEGAN.. and mixes SPICE with SWEET… I don’t really know what I was thinking. When I see weird things I feel like I need to pursue them. Basically how Matt and I got together.. *zing!*

Guess what? It turned out surprisingly well!

Is there a trend as to how much I say that? Can this now be officially a drinking game?

Drink to how many times Nidhi says “It turned out surprisingly well!”

1/3 through my last posts and you’re HAMMERED.

What is my life about….

So without further adieu.. my spin off recipe that is effing SURPRISINGLY delicious *drink*..  here’s what you need!

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour blend or 1 cup regular flour (conversion ratio is 1:1)
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 slivers chopped sundried tomoto
  • Vegan or real cheddar
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond or soy milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ cup pureed pumpkin
  • ⅓ cup grapeseed oil
  • crushed pepper flakes (optional)

PH oven to 400*F

In a bowl, mix together all dry ingredients. Add sundried tomato last and make sure each slice is coated nicely.

In another small bowl, add milk and apple cider vinegar – let sit for five minutes.

In another bowl (yes, another), combine pumpkin puree and grapeseed oil then add milk mixture. Blend well.

Add wet and dry ingredients and whisk thoroughly. Scrape edges to ensure no flour/powders are lingering – don’t want a surprise mouthful of flour in your bite. yuck!

Fold in cheese shreds.

If using a muffin tray, grease and divide batter evenly into each socket (I don’t know what else to call it)

If using a regular pan, make sure it’s at least 2″ deep… grease and pour in mixture.

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Bake for 20-22 minutes. If you’re using a pan, bake an extra 5 minutes.

Serve warm.

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Yummmm.

I don’t have many pictures.. My iPhone doesn’t do much justice. Tomorrow’s will only have one pic but I promise to be more creative with the pictures from Day 5 and on.

Have a good night!

Peace in ❤

Day 2 of 15: Quinoa Burgers

It’s 11:30 p.m so this post will be brief.. besides it didn’t take much to make this.

This was an off-the-fly idea as I was trying to figure out todays lunch. I was aiming for something in high protein and to fill my wee belly for the lunch hour as my hunger seems to prolong during the day and slow down in the evening (which is good I suppose).

Since I’ve been making so many fun things with quinoa I thought to myself, ‘Why not make it a patty..’ It seems to be this superfood that can be incorporated into anything. I LOVE it.

I didn’t take many pictures because it wasn’t all that “aesthetically pleasing” but I will of course illustrate what I did to make this quinoa burger bomb diggity

My recipe yields 3 burgers:

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 minced garlic glove
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup dark cooked beans/lentils
  • 2 tbsp minced onion

Instructions:

PH oven to 400*F

In a bowl, combine all ingredients.

Take a mashing device of some sort (I can’t remember the name.. whatever, you enjoy my choice of words) and mash until mixture binds well together.

Roll into patties on a greased pan and bake for 30 minutes until crispy on the outside.

It will be soft on the inside but this is good to keep the moisture locked in so that the patty isn’t dry.

The simple garnishes create a great combination of spices and definitely satisfies.

Throw it in a pita, bun, anything you’d like with whatever garnish you please. I recommend using President’s Choice Sweet Chilli Mustard. SO good.

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Diverse and delicious.

If you have any more blog ideas for me – shoot em by me and I’ll be excited to try it out!

Anyways, I have a day job so leave me alone and let me sleep.

Sweet dreams!

Peace in ❤