Friday, March 20, 2009

morning delishousness

I made an incredibly yummy and very healthy breakfast the other morning that was approved by one and all, and it was so simple to make.

Amaranth Breakfast Cereal

2 cups Apple juice
1 cup Water
1 cup Amaranth seed/grain
Maple syrup or Honey
Apple slices
Banana slices

Bring apple juice & water to a boil in a pot. Add amaranth, and cook approx 20 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Serve in bowls with a squirt of honey or maple syrup to sweeten and fruit on top.

Amaranth is an ancient grain that has been cultivated for nearly 8,000 years. It was a very important food for the Incas and Aztecs, and today is gaining popularity in North America. I didn't know much about it at all until I spied it in the bulk food store next to my beloved quinoa and brought some home. Now that I've tried it, I'm in love, and I can't wait to plant some in the garden this spring.

Amaranth provides a complete protein and is rich in iron, magnesium, copper, phosphorus and manganese, and a good source of dietary fibre. In a word, awesome.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

messy goodness

It's March Break, and for once I am home in the early evening with enough time to cook a really great meal. So what do I make? Quick and easy Sloppy Joes, of course! And man, are they ever delicious. It took me about 20 minutes to make this meal, prep time and all.

Sloppy Joes

1 1/2 cups Dry TVP
1 cup Vegetable broth
1 Onion, chopped
2 Green peppers, diced
3 Tbsp Olive oil
2 1/2 cups Tomato sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp Chili powder
1 tsp Salt
Black pepper to taste
1 Tbsp Soy sauce
1 Tbsp Mustard
1 Tbsp Sugar (I used organic cane sugar)

Soak the TVP in the vegetable broth until all liquid has been absorbed (this is a great time to chop your onion & peppers). Saute the onion and green pepper in olive oil. Add remaining ingredients and simmer until thoroughly hot. Serve on burger buns.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

dairy intolerant

Our son is dairy intolerant to the point of horrible vomiting and diarrhea. Unfortunately, he loves dairy products. We don't drink milk, but until recently he was eating cheese and yogurt on a fairly regular basis. We added cheese to a lot of things - his pasta sauce, sandwiches, rice, scrambled eggs, you name it.

So now I'm on a quest to find great vegan recipes. As I find winners that have my son asking for more, I'll be sure to share. Stay tuned!

Friday, January 23, 2009

give your slow-cooker some lovin

We're in the middle of a deep-freeze here, and the frigid temperatures are leaving me craving hot, hearty meals. I tried out a new soup in my slow-cooker yesterday, and was quite satisfied with the results. My son and partner loved it, too, and we've got enough left over (after several helpings each) to feed us two more dinners, or several lunches.

Slow-Cooker Tomato & Barley Soup

5 diced tomatoes
30 oz vegetable broth
1 cup barley
Tofurkey "sausages", diced
3 cups chopped spinach

Throw the first four ingredients in the pot. Cook on medium for six hours. Add the chopped spinach one hour before serving.

* I diverged from the recipe slightly and added garlic, onion, cumin, corriander, sea salt and pepper, all to taste.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

creative in the kitchen

It's lunch time. The kids are antsy, the fridge is near empty, and it's too cold to bother doing a quick trip to the grocery store. What's a momma to do?

Times like this call for a little improvisation! The pantry currently houses TVP nuggets, bread crumbs, sea weed, and little else. There's cornstarch in the freezer and vegetable broth & leftovers in the fridge. A little creative thinking, and I've got nuggets!

Momma's Yummy Nuggets

You will need:

TVP nuggets
Vegetable broth
Bread crumbs
Sea weed (dry)
Sea salt

What to do:

Soak the TVP nuggets in vegetable broth. TVP nuggets are flavourless and hard, as they soak they will take on the texture of chicken and absorb the flavour of whatever they are soaking in.

In a mixing bowl, combine one spoonful of corn starch with four spoonfuls of bread crumbs. With a mortar and pestle (or a coffee grinder), grind a spoonful of sea weed to about the same size as your bread crumbs - smaller than flakes, but not a powder. Add the ground sea weed and sea salt to taste to the bread crumbs and cornstarch. Mix evenly.

When your TVP nuggets are soft and moist, coat them with your bread crumb mixture. Bake the nuggets in the oven at 400 until golden, and VOILA! Yummy nuggets :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

momma's power oatmeal

Now that the weather is cold, my son and I have been enjoying warm bowls of power oatmeal to start our days. This delicious oatmeal is my own little creation. It's very nutritious and filling, and one of my son's favourite things to eat.

Momma's Power Oatmeal

You will need:

Almond milk
Organic quick-rolled oats
Organic Quinoa
Flax seeds
Hemp seed hearts
Premium 100% Maple syrup
Fresh or frozen berries (we like strawberries, blueberries, black berries and raspberries)


Bring a ratio of half water, half almond milk to a boil on the stove. How much you use will depend on how many people you are feeding with your oatmeal. I always just eyeball it and have never bothered measuring.

In a coffee grinder, grind several spoonfuls of quinoa to a fine powder. Stir the powder into your boiling water & almond milk.

After a minute or two, add your oats. Stir frequently.

In the coffee grinder, grind a spoonful or two of flax seeds to a meal. (Flax seed is best when freshly ground - it loses it's nutritional value the longer it sits after being ground.) Add the ground flax seed to the oatmeal. Again, how much you will use depends on how much oatmeal you want to make.

Add hemp seed hearts. Stir well.

Add as much or as little maple syrup and cinnamon as you would like. My son enjoys lots of each.

Add your fresh or frozen berries to the mix. We tend to use frozen berries, because they are cheaper and they keep for as long as they are in the freezer. I toss a few handfuls into the oatmeal, cook until completely thawed & nice and hot, and enjoy!

There you have it - Momma's power oatmeal! This is a favourite in our house when the weather is frosty cold.

slow-cooker chana masala (chick pea curry)

Last week I made all of our dinners in the slow-cooker. It worked out so well, I think I may make a habit of doing it. My particular favourite of the recipes I tried was the slow-cooker chana masala, or chick pea curry.

Slow-cooker Chana Masala

You will need:

1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
1 inch ginger, peeled and grated OR 1 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp turmeric
Salt to taste
1 cup dried chick peas (or 1 15 oz can)*
12 oz diced tomatoes
1/2 tsp garam masala

* I recommend using dried chick peas whenever possible. They are much healthier than canned chick peas, which lose a lot of their nutritional value during processing and have an incredible amount of salt added to them.


Soak dried chick peas overnight. Drain the soaking water and boil the chick peas in fresh water on the stove until they are soft. (I like to do a large amount at once, so that I have plenty of chick peas available throughout the week for other recipes, snacks, etc. You can put your extra chick peas in a container in the fridge.)

Sautee the onion, garlic, and ginger in the olive oil.

Add all ingredients to the slow-cooker. Cook for 6-9 hours on low.