Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category
We eat a lot of mushrooms these days. They add a meaty umami flavor to vegetarian dishes and everyone in my family finds them delicious, including my toddler. Not surprisingly they’re also nutritious - this post from well-known Dr. Fuhrman discusses how mushrooms have cancer prevention properties.
Try this delicious one-dish vegetarian casserole as an easy way to get lots of veggies, whole grains and mushrooms into your diet:
Broccoli, Mushroom and Farro Casserole with Cheddar
From No Plan Meal Plan 12/10/12
Total Prep Time: 45 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
1 small onion or 2 shallots, minced
1 head broccoli, broken into small florets, or 1 lb frozen
1 lb mushrooms, roughly chopped or sliced
1 cup farro, rinsed (can sub another grain, such as rice or quinoa)
For full recipe, click here
I stopped eating a lot of bread when I started studying nutrition and realized how it makes me feel. It’s an occasional treat, and sometimes necessity, but it’s certainly not something I typically go out of my way to make. But with this hot, hot summer starting up, I’m not much feeling like my steaming bowl of oatmeal in the morning. I want something easy and more importantly, cool.
This desire led me to this awesome recipe, which I adapted slightly from Peter Reinhart’s awesome Whole Grain Breads book. This is 100% Sprouted Spelt Bread. Sprouted bread is incredibly nutritionally for a few reasons. First, sprouting the grains makes many vitamins and nutrients more bio-accessible – vitamins A, B-complex, C, and multiple minerals. In addition, it makes both the carbohydrates more digestible and partially breaks down the gluten, making that more digestible as well. With a mild gluten intolerance, I can eat it and feel just great.
The resulting bread is dense, chewy, incredibly flavorful thanks to the sprouting step, and probably only takes about 30 minutes of actual hands-on time. Now, that 30 minutes is spread out over about 1 1/2-2 days, but the steps are very easy and quickly become second-nature.
Here’s what you need:
2 1/2 cups raw spelt berries (you can sub wheat berries)
1-2 tablespoons raw honey
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 cup water
1 bread loaf pan
a big bowl
non-stick spray or a little oil to grease the pan
Here’s what you do, along with total elapsed time with each step (this is not the hands-on time, which is much less):
1) 8-24 hours: Rinse the spelt berries in cool or cold water. Then cover them with several inches of water and let them soak at room temperature for 8-24 hours.
2) 12-16 hours: Drain and rinse the berries, then place them back in the bowl and cover. You want the berries to be damp but not sitting in water, as these are the required conditions for sprouting. Don’t let the berries dry out completely – rinse them and add them back into the bowl as needed. Many recommend rinsing them every 4 hours, but I’ve successfully sprouted the berries by rinsing them around dinnertime, again before bed, and then they’ve been done in the morning. You’ll know they’ve sprouted when you see a small white tail emerging from one end of the seed. The berries will also have a pleasant sour-dough like smell to them.
3) 5 minutes: Once the berries have sprouted, rinse them, then you can use them right away or store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you’re ready to make the bread you need to process them into a dough. Place the berries in a food processor (I have also ground them in my omega juicer) and process into a fine pulp. After a minute or two add the water, honey, yeast, and salt. Process as long as you can without heating up the mixture. At some point the dough will form a ball and just whirl around the food processor – you’re done at this point.
4) 2 minutes: Take the dough out of processor and knead it with wet hands, on a slightly wet surface (just sprinkle with water), until the dough feels elastic and dough-like. It’s going to be very sticky, and that’s ok.
5) 60 minutes: Place it in a large oiled bowl and cover with a kitchen towel and let it rest on the counter on in an unheated oven for about an hour. It will expand by about 1 1/2 times.
6) 60 minutes: Grease your loaf pan and transfer the dough to the pan. Spray the top of the bread with a little non-stick spray, or brush it with oil or butter. Cover it again and let it rise for another 45-60 minutes.
7) 60 minutes: Heat your oven to 425 degrees, then pop in the bread. Immediately reduce the heat to 350 degrees. Bake the bread for 45 minutes, until it’s cooked through (200 degrees F). Remove the bread from the pan (it should come out easily, otherwise continue to bake for 5 minutes), and place on a cooling rack. Once cool, eat it or store in an airtight container or plastic bag.
As you can see, all you really need is about a day and a half of time to soak/sprout the berries, then a 3-hour timeframe when you can pop into the kitchen a few times, for 3-5 minutes at a time. It seems like a lot of steps at first, but once you go through it you’ll see how easy it is. The resulting loaf, admitedly, isn’t much to look at. I thought I did something wrong the first time I baked it, because it was so dense and almost seemed to shrink a little in the oven. But then I tasted it, and honestly, it takes better than any other whole grain bread I know of, and it’s incredibly moist. The sprouting process seems to give the grains an almost sour-dough like flavor. It’s delicious warm with a little butter. And you can’t beat the nutritional cred with a stick. Give it a try and Eat Happy!
Side note: if you want a fluffier loaf, you can add 1/2 cup vital wheat gluten to the mixing step. I have never done this as I don’t want the extra gluten. But the original recipe states that this additional will make the loaf rise higher and be significantly lighter and fluffier.
Another great whole-grain waffle recipe, and they’re easy to make gluten-free. I am completely obsessed with rhubarb and this recipe is a great excuse to eat a lot of the tasty Strawberry-Rhubarb compote. Filling and great for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Whole-Grain Waffles with Greek Yogurt and Strawberry-Rhubarb Compote
(Adapted from Power Waffles with Yogurt, Bananas and Almonds)
1½ cups buckwheat flour (or sub other whole grain flour)
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup all-purpose flour (can sub GF flour or whole wheat pastry flour)
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tablespoons honey
2 ½ cups whole milk (can sub non-dairy milk)
1 tsp dry yeast (regular or quick-rise is fine)
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
4 eggs, eggs and yolks separated
¼ cup melted and cooled butter or sub high-heat vegetable oil (canola or grapeseed)
2 cups plain Greek yogurt (I prefer whole-fat)
1 recipe Strawberry Rhubarb compote, recipe below
- The night before making waffles, whisk together the flours, oats and cinnamon in a large bowl. Heat the milk to luke-warm (105-110 degrees) – it should not be hot – and stir in the honey until it dissolves. Add the yeast and let it sit for about 5 minutes – the yeast should “bloom” by becoming puffy. After 5 minutes mix the milk mixture into the flours and let them sit overnight in the fridge.
- Day-of: Pre-heat the waffle maker and start preparing the Strawberry-Rhubarb compote if you haven’t already.
- Make the waffles: Stir together melted butter, egg yolks, and baking powder. Stir the egg yolk mixture into the rest of the batter. Then beat the egg whites until they’re bright white, light and fluffy (3-5 minutes). Ripples should form on the top surface of the egg whites as you beat them. Use a spatula to gently fold the egg whites into the waffle batter. This will lighten the batter and make light and fluffy waffles. Cook the waffles in your waffle maker per instructions (mine used 1 cup of batter per waffle).
- Serve the waffles topped with the compote and plain yogurt.
1 bunch rhubarb, sliced thin (about 3-4 cups)
1 quart strawberries, stems removed and quartered (can sub frozen)
½ cup sugar or sub 1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup water
Combine all ingredients in a small-medium saucepan. Cover with a lid and place over medium heat until the mixture comes to a simmer and the fruit and rhubarb has let off enough water to be mostly liquid (about 5-7 minutes). Then let the mixture simmer uncovered for another 10-15 minutes (taste it and see if you like the consistency – it will continue to reduce the longer you cook it. It will also thicken slightly as it cools). Adjust sweetness to taste – exact amount of sweetener needed will depend on the amount of natural sugars in the strawberries.
Crepes are a near-perfect food: simple, versatile, and easy to adapt to different dietary restrictions/preferences. I make mine with a variety of whole grain flours (usually buckwheat and brown rice), and then fill them with a variety of vegetable fillings. But honestly they’re just as good with simple PB&J. One of my favorite things about making crepes is that they store so well in the fridge for about 3 days, so I make them on the weekends and can enjoy the perfect quick breakfast or snack through the first half of the week.
For the crepe and fillings recipes, click here.
Upgrate your dinner and give your immune system a boost by preparing homemade chicken stock. Why bother?
- It’s cheaper than buying chicken and stock separately
- It tastes way better
- Really does provide tons of minerals and boost your immune system
- Helps you avoid excess salt and junk like msg in canned stocks
- It’s really not that hard: your total time investment will probably be 20 minutes: the time it takes to fill a pot with water, turn on the stove, and then strain and pour liquid into jars.
Read detailed instructions and more on the health benefits here.
No Plan Meal Plan helps you eat healthy and tasty meals with less time and stress. It includes 4 recipes per week with shopping list and weekly planner. Because I can always use great recipe ideas, email me your favorite fast and healthy recipe and get entered to win a free 3-month subscription! Email me at email@example.com
Buckwheat pancakes are awesome. Real ones, that is. Most buckwheat pancakes and pancake mixes you find are about 2/3 refined white flour, so the buckwheat you’re getting is pretty minimal. This is a shame, since buckwheat is incredibly good for you. I have a tricky stomach, and I know for certain that buckwheat leaves me feeling awesome. (It has no relation to wheat whatsoever, by the way. Technically, it’s a seed). So if you’re up for some real buckwheat pancakes, try these out. The ratio of buckwheat to white flour is flipped, so you’ll get 2x the goodness, plus I add rolled oats.
1 cup buckwheat flour
1/4 cup regular flour (I use gluten free, you can use brown rice flour, oat flour, etc)
1/2 cup rolled oats – not instant
1/2 cup whole milk
1 cup apple cider
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 very ripe banana, mashed up with a fork
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Butter for frying
1) Combine the milk, apple cider, banana, oats and buckwheat flour. Let them sit and soak while you prepare the other ingredients and heat your pan.
2) Combine all other dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together. Heat a large fry pan with a tablespoon of butter over medium heat.
3) Separate the eggs: put the yolks in with the milk/cider combo, and put the whites in a mixing bowl – you’re going to beat them to soft peaks using a hand mixer. When you have them at soft peaks, so they’re light and fluffy, set them aside temporarily and combine the other milk/cider/buckwheat/oats with the other dry ingredients. When those are combined, fold in the egg whites so that the batter is light. If you don’t have time, or don’t feel like separating the eggs and beating the white, you can skip this step. But it does lead to a lighter, fluffier pancake.
4) Cook the pancakes as usual, waiting until you see bubbles form at the top of the cake before flipping them. Add a little butter to the pan here and there to keep them flipping easily. Enjoy with real maple syrup, or just about anything!
I’m super pumped, because my new dinner planning newsletter, No Plan Meal Plan has finally launched. Check it out! There are so many ways this can help you with your dinner-time routine; maybe you want to spend less time planning and be extra-efficient, perhaps you’re looking for fresh new dinner ideas, or maybe you’ve been wanting to eat healthier and reap the benefits of a cleaner diet, but aren’t quiet sure how to get started. NPMP will help you in all of these aspects.
For once I’m encouraging you to put less time and energy into dinner! Go on, check it out! Don’t take my word for it, read the great reviews here.
In honor of Cinqo de Mayo, why not whip up a little guacamole for the weekend? (Who cares if it’s not the 5th anymore, it’ll be just as delicious.) Guacamole is easy, even better when you make it at home vs. restaurants, and really quite fantastic for you.
Avocado (did you know it’s colloquially known as the alligator pear?) can increase your absorption of carotenoid antioxidants by 200-400%, is high in anti-inflammatory fats, and is a great source of vitamin K, folate, potassium, B6, vit C, and potassium. So eat up. Don’t worry about the fat. Do find a high-quality organic corn chip to eat it with (organic = no atrazine or GMO corn).
Ripe avocados (they should be a little soft if lighly pressed with your thumb)
Limes – about 1/2 lime per avocado
Salt, pepper, dash of hot sauce
Optional: minced onion, garlic, cilantro or parsley
Wash the avocados, then remove seed by slicing length-wise around the seed, gripping with both hands, twisting the halves apart, then inserting a knife into the seed and twisting the knife to pop out the seed. If you’re confused, watch this. Scoop the flesh out with a spoon, and mash in a bowl with the other ingredients, to taste. Super delicious with organic corn chips, veggies, on a taco, etc etc.