Friday, September 14, 2012

Curried Lentil Salad

I really like Curried Chicken Salad, and this recipe is a spin on that using lentils.  It's still hearty and filling, but a nice option for a "Meatless Monday".

-2 cups lentils, cooked and cooled (just cook according to package, usually boil for about 20 mins)
-1 medium apple, finely diced
-1/2 onion, finely diced
-2 bunches grapes (green, red, or purple), halved
-big handful of craisins
-mayonaise, and/or plain yogurt, about 3/4 cups, or just enough to evenly coat
-curry powder (just add to taste, I like it strong so I usually add a bunch)

Other add-in ideas:
-chopped walnuts
-you could even add chicken along with the lentils
-raisins in place of, or in addition to, craisins

Directions: Just combine all the ingredients, and allow to chill for just a bit so flavors settle/mix.  You can serve on top of greens as a salad, sandwiched in bread, or in a tortilla.  Last night we did ours in a wheat tortilla with greens, served with some potato chips :)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Fruited Spinach Salad

Tyson's company is doing another "bake-off", but this time it's more of a "cook-off" I guess because it's a side-dish contest.  Since I tied for First in the dessert competition, I have some high expectations placed on me!  The main dish is burgers, so I wanted to do something light and summery, and plus, Tyson requested this salad!  He asked what it's called, and I said, I guess "Fruited Spinach Salad".  The salad kind of adapts to the season, so since berries are still in season, I used a lot of that this time, but just use whatever you like and that is available.  Here's the details:

Ingredients:-bag of baby spinach, micro-greens, and/or arugala (I usually do a blend of spinach and arugala)
-mixed seasonal fruit: this time I did raspberries, thinly sliced strawberries, and thinly sliced nectarines....I just add enough so there's a good balance between green and the fruits (in the Fall, using apples and/or pears is good)
-two handfuls of dried cranberries (dried cherries or apricots are excellent, too)
-handful of sunflower seeds
-2 avocados, diced
-I cup crumbled Feta

Other options: add diced walnuts or almonds, add diced chicken, a little onion, any other fruits you think would be good

-equal parts balsamic, olive oil, and honey---I place the ingredients in a jar, nuke for about 10 secs., and then put lid on jar and shake.

Rinse and prep your fruits and greens.  Then place in a large bowl.  Add the dried fruit and seeds, and lightly toss the mixture.  Sprinkle the avocado and feta on top.  Prep dressing and drizzle on top.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Yummy Way to Start the Day, pt. 2

There's only a few things I like to eat in the morning (the rest of the day is no problem!), so when I find something I like, it's a staple.  One of my favorite breakfasts, especially in summer, is fresh fruit drizzled with nut butter.  It sounds a little strange, but once you try it, you'll be hooked!

To make:
Just place in a bowl bite size bits of your favorite fruits.  I usually prefer a combination of banana and berries.  Grapes are good, too.  I don't know if citrus fruits would be the best, but anything you have is good...peaches, apples, whatever. 

Then you just scoop a little nut butter and drizzle on sometimes the nut butter is clumpy, so you just have to kinda stir to get it softer.  Any nut butter works.  My favorite is Hazelnut Butter, but I've only found this in Oregon and Germany, so here in AZ, I stick with Almond Butter or Peanut Butter.
***For extra energy I sometimes add some ground flax meal on top.

This is a yummy, nutritious meal, and soon to be a favorite!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

BBQ Tofu Sandwich

Tyson and I started eating less meat about a year ago, as we simply can't afford to buy organic meat all the time.  Plus I read "Fast Food Nation" and some other books I shouldn't have...

So to supplement, I started venturing into the world of tofu.  The taste is not bad, as it really just takes on the flavor of whatever you're cooking with, however the texture takes some getting used to.  Tofu Stirfry is a great way to start intoducing it, but I could only handle so much stir-fry!

So here's a recipe I kind of created:

1 pkg. extra firm tofu, water drained, sliced into 1/2 inch slices
1 c. BBQ sauce of your choice
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 sweet potato, sliced into 1/4 inch slices and roasted (takes about 20 mins at 375)
1 avocado, sliced
cheese of your choice, sliced
****All the toppings are just my suggestions, but you can vary/omit whatever

equal parts mustard and mayo and a tablespoon of poppyseeds


Cover slices in BBQ sauce and let rest for about 15 minutes.

Heat a non-stick pan with a little oil, and place tofu slices on at medium heat.  Cook each side about 5 minutes.

While tofu is cooking, put some sauce on the buns, and then layer the toppings.  Once tofu is done, add that to your topping-full buns, and then eat!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Oil Experiment

As I was searching for all my green-clean recipes, I kept coming across the "Oil Cleansing Method".  I was kinda curious about this, as it seems counterintuitive.  But after seeing how well the olive oil furniture polish works at not only shining but cleaning furniture, I thought there may be something to this.  You can do searches for more info, but basically the idea is that the oil dissolves the dirt and excess oil on your skin, thus cleansing you, while not stripping and drying out your skin.

Here's what you do:

Combine olive oil with castor oil in a 1:4 ratio (1 part olive, 4 parts castor).  Pour a dime-sized amount on your palm, and massage onto your face for about 10 seconds.  Then take a warm, damp cloth and massage the oil off.  You will feel a little "oily" but it's only because you're not stripping your skin like a normal cleanser would

You can stop your process here, but I also use witch-hazel as a toner, and then apply a moisturizer (I use Cetaphil cream).

Tyson and I have been using this Oil Face Wash for about two months now, and I'll be honest, we were both skeptical of it.  BUT, it works really well.  My skin doesn't feel dried out, and it does a great job of removing dirt and even make-up.

Best of all, the oils are completely organic and natural so they are better for you and the environment.  Also, a little goes a long way, so it's very cost-effective.  The bottle of Castor oil I purchased was about $9, and we are probably 1/4 into it after 2-plus months.  (and I usually have a Costco size olive oil, so just used a little of that, probably $1 worth)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Healthy-ish Oatmeal Cran-Apple Cookies

This is a recipe I've somewhat modified that I got from a Women's Health issue back in college.  It's always a hit wherever I take it.

-1/4 c. applesauce
-1/4 c. coconut oil (could also use canola/veg)
-1 c. brown sugar
-1 egg (can even just use the white)
-1/4 c. almond milk (or regular or coconut or soy)
-2 tsp. vanilla
-3 c. old-fashioned oats
-1 c. whole wheat flour
-1 tsp. cinnamon
-1/4 t. nutmeg
-1/4 t. baking soda
-1 c. dried cranberries
-1 medium size apple, skin removed and diced


Oven to 350. 

Combine applesauce, oil and sugar.  Add egg, milk, vanilla.  Stir in oats, flour, spices, and soda.  Then add cranberries and apple.

Drop onto non-stick pan, and bake about 12-15 minutes.

Optional icing to drizzle on top:
Soften 3 tablespoons cream cheese.  Add 1 cup powdered sugar and about 2 tsp. milk.  Blend.  Add more milk if it's too thick, more sugar if it's too runny.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Raspberry Cream Cheese French Toast

-half a loaf of French bread, cut/torn into cubes (mine were about 1")
-2 cups frozen raspberries
-4 T. cream cheese
-4 eggs
-3egg whites
-1/2 c. milk
-1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350; grease 8" square pan.  Place bread chunks in bottom of pan, and sprinkle the berries over.  Put little dollops of the cream cheese throughout.  Beat the eggs, whites, milk, and vanilla.  Then pour over the bread and berries to coat well.  Bake for about 20-25 mins.

****You can also make this the night before and just kinda stir everything around in the morning as the egss mixture will settle at the bottom.