Monday, June 29, 2009

Dessert and Dahl recipe

Lime Cardamom Vanilla Cake

I've been creating decadent desserts at work this and decided today (my day off) to make a healthier version for the kids and I to enjoy. I ground spelt berries for the flour, used chia, soymilk and vinegar and replaced half of the sugar with stevia. It turned out really well. Blueberries were delicious on the side (and only 2 bucks a pint).

It's kind of funny that I am doing the pastry for this job. In the past desserts and baking were not my favorite thing to do.. I guess I just love being able to create and doing the desserts is allowing me to be creative, so I'm really enjoying it now.

Tofu Scramble

Super simple, filled with chard and broccoli and spiced with cumin, coriander and chili, this mexican breakfast was delicious. Blueberries, spinach, broccoli and chard coupled with tofu and organic blue corn chips pleased everyone, even my X who stopped by to pick of our son. Sometimes, tofu scramble is the perfect meal.


I've been eating this all week. Simple, spicy and oh so good for you.

3 T coconut oil
1 t black mustard seeds
1 T cumin seeds (or powder)
1 T coriander
2 T curry powder
1/2 t turmeric
1/4 t cinnamon
4 T freshly chopped ginger
1 large onion, diced
10 cloves garlic, pressed
2 serrano chilies, diced
pinch salt/pepper
1 lb red lentils
4-6 cups veg stock
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
juice of 1-2 limes
Siracha to taste
1 T toasted sesame oil
Braggs and pepper to taste

In a heavy bottomed pan over medium high heat add the coconut oil, mustard seeds and spices. When the seeds pop add the ginger, onion, garlic and chilie along with a pinch of salt/pepper. Saute for several minutes or until the onions are transcluscent. Next, add the lentils and stock. Bring to a boil for several minutes, turn heat down to med-low, cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Take off heat, stir in cilantro, lime juice and sesame oil. Add braggs (or salt or soy sauce) and black pepper to taste.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

I'm still alive and photography business

Chipotle White Bean Avocado Spread

I am so behind in the blog world. One of these days I'll figure out how to integrate everything into my life!

Work is going well. We are getting busy and I just love the atmosphere of the wine bar. I'm also thrilled that I am incorporating more vegan food into the menu. I am doing the desserts as well as all of the food. (I am the only person doing all the food prep, execution and service for 36 seats.) I introduced a chocolate espresso torte that is vegan (if you leave off the whipped cream) and that makes me happy. The owner of the place made me promise that I would not tell any of the customers it was tofu based. HAHA! I get a cheap thrill every time I see someone take a bite.

Bok Choy and Tofu Stir Fry

We are still eating very simply at home. I'm doing what I always do; cooking once to eat twice or three times and freezing leftovers. This bok choy stir fry was delicious and very spicy. Lately, I've been craving carbs big time. I think I need whole grains to sustain my long days. I notice I feel much more alert mentally when I make sure to get enough carbs in my diet.

It's interesting, because I am really listening to what my body needs. Last month it was tons of salads and smoothies, now I'm craving heavier whole grains. I have been eating a pretty big sandwich late at night though when I get off work and I don't think that's good for me. Tonight I think I'll make a green smoothie with chia seeds to drink on the way home instead. It's not good to eat a lot at midnight.

I made a Trader Joes trip and stocked up on brown rice pasta. I just love it. $1.99 for a pound of organic brown rice pasta. You can't beat that. I topped the pasta with some of my simple marinara and dry fried tofu and served it over baby spinach.

Spicy Noodles!

Another staple in my fridge. My kids love them and they are good hot or cold. I used my low fat goddess dressing mixed with lots or ginger and siracha for this. I made big batches of the dressing and freeze it in 2 cup portions.

Sesame Ginger Glazed Tempeh

More Bok Choy Stir Fry

Watermelon 'Feta' Salad

Old pic (several of these pics are old pics actually).. I made a batch of tofu feta to have around and it was delicious in this salad. I also mixed in some of my low fat balsamic vinaigrette.

Finally, I have decided to start a small photography business. I started a blog to showcase some of my stuff (literally just started it so it's not completely set up..).. I'm really excited about doing this. I am going to offer services to families and food photography for restaurants.

Check out my blog so far!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

$3.33 a day: Generosity

More big salads. I've been enjoying chard in salad and smoothies lately. I just can't get enough of it.  I pretty much prep a large amount of greens so I can grab them for quick meals. 

I splurged on some FYH cheese and it was so good! These were just simple tostadas with my red chile sauce and super hot green salsa. So good. We were sitting down to eat and my son said, "Mom, you never take pics of your food anymore," so I snapped this after we started eating.

I also made an amazing lasagna (no photo..sorry) with sauce and veggies from the freezer. I used whole wheat noodles, eggplant, spinach, mushrooms and my "ricotta" that was made from whole soybeans and infused with garlic, olive oil and basil. It froze beautifully. The FYH worked well in the lasagna as well. Pricey, yes.. but so worth it. 

Finally, I have to say thank you to Catherine. A while back she blogged about Red Zinger tea and I mentioned how I loved it and couldn't find it around here. She sent me a package not only with red zinger, but two other lovely teas and a pound of this amazing coffee! Peace Coffee... totally organic, fair trade and locally roasted... It is DELICIOUS! Thanks Catherine!!! 

I was also shocked and in awe to receive a pound of delicious DeansBeans coffee from some very nice annonymouse person! Brew it forward indeed. Thank you thank you thank you! I have been enjoying fabulous coffee again!! 

I made some oatmeal cookies and breakfast bars for the kids and myself to snack on.. They were delicious. 

My son Andrew graduates from high school Friday. I am in shock. 

I'm still very behind on blogs. I've been reading most of them through bloglines and not commenting much... I will get caught up one of these days.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

$3.33 a day: June Stats and Weight Loss

I've pretty much been super boring when it comes to food lately. I tend to get a bit burnt out when I am cooking for work and my home cooking gets super simple. Also, my kids haven't been here much because I have been working until midnight or so every night.  This was a collard wrap filled with tofu, sauerkraut and homemade 1000 island (made from my soybean mayo). Depending on my hunger level I have either a huge salad or a big bowl of soup before work.

Spring Split Pea, Quinoa and Cabbage spiced with Chipotle

I made a HUGE pot of this soup. I used 2 lbs of split peas and an entire head of cabbage. It was spiced with tarragon, thyme and rosemary and of course, spiced up with chipotle peppers. I froze a bunch in 2 cup portions. For some reason, I don't get sick of this soup. 

Just look at these radishes! They are fresh from the garden (not mine unfortunately!)..  I came home and ate almost the whole bunch. Better than chips any day. I used the greens along with some beautiful chard for my salad yesterday. That salad also had cherry tomatoes, a whole avocado and wasabi sesame ginger salad dressing. 

So, along with the bean and grain soups and salads, I've been drinking around 1-2 qts of green smoothies a day and eating melons. 

I am FINALLY LOSING WEIGHT! I know it's because I'm working again and my job is very physical. My prep area is downstairs and my service area is upstairs, so I am up and down stairs all day long and on my feet between 8-10 hours a a day. 

I lost 13 lbs last month! Happy Happy Joy Joy!

Now onto the budget stats:

I spent the entire $100 last month. I will post my shopping list and the prices in my next post. I have my receipts, but haven't typed them out.  I bought a lot more produce than usual and have been eating a whole avocado a day myself.  Since the kids haven't been here as much (which totally sucks. Fortunately, when school is out they will be here again all the time.. I miss them).. I splurged on lots of produce. 

Finally, it is my sons 16th Birthday today! My baby is growing up. Happy Birthday Turin!