Tag Archives: Vegan

My Lebanese Craving Satisfied!

I love international cuisine. I really do. And lately all I’ve been doing is craving Lebanese cuisine. But not just the normal stuff you would find in a restaurant, no. What I have been craving is the vast amounts of food my sisters mother-in-law makes. My sister married a Lebanese man, so if we ever visit his mom, we get to enjoy true authentic Lebanese food. And enough to last just about a week if you eat in moderation.

Although I do not have the right touch to make all the food that she tends to make, and nor do I have enough bowls to house all these dishes, I just made enough for mom and I.

Yes, my mom has come from South Africa to visit! She is staying by my place for about ten days before she flies off to Canada to see my sister and then probably to enjoy real Lebanese cuisine! – Lucky her!

I ended up making a simple dish of Falafels in a Pita with Tabbouleh and a Tahini Sauce drizzled over top.

Falafel Pitas with Tabbouleh

See, not that much. But it was very delicious!

 Now, you can always make the falafels from scratch, but I am a lazy person and just bought them from the “vegetarian section” of my grocery store. I got the recipe from here, but of course tweaked it some.

Ingredients:

  • Tabbouleh
  • 1 cup vegetable stock 
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more for seasoning
  • 2 Tablespoons cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch coriander, finely chopped
  • ¼ English cucumber, finely chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon finely chopped mint leaves
  • ½ cup finely chopped cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Tahini Sauce
  • ¾  cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup tahini paste
  • 1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, crushed/chopped
  • 1 tsp kosher salt cracked pepper
  • ¼ cup lemon juice

Instructions:

  1. In a medium saucepan,  add quinoa and vegetable broth and bring to a boil then allow to simmer for 15-20 minutes (or until water is absorbed in quinoa)

  2. Allow to cool and begin mixing chopped herbs with tomatoes and pepper in a bowl. Mix with lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper. 

  3. Add somewhat cooled quinoa to the herb mixture and set aside. 

  4. In a bowl (or food processor) mix tahini, greek yoghurt, and lemon juice together. Chop cilantro and garlic and add to yoghurt mixture and allow flavours to blend with liquid. Add salt and pepper to taste and place bowl in fridge until ready to use.

  5. Pop pitas in toaster and fry falafels in frying pan until cooked and begin to form pitas when ready. 

  6. Then enjoy!

Falafel Pitas with TabboulehMom and I quite enjoyed our meal! Sure it wasn’t what my brother-in-laws mom would make, but it is pretty good for my amateur cooking skills!

With mom being here, we have gone shopping as a group (with my sister as well), we have already gone out for dinner with a friend of the family, and we have taken a nice stroll in a park in the city.

While in the park we even found a neat part with huts and tepees! So of course mom had to take photos of me “living” in these such houses.

Het HuttenbosHet HuttenbosTypes of Birds in the HaagsebosYesterday was truly a lovely day to enjoy good weather and better company.

If you all make this, I hope you truly enjoy it!

 As they say in Lebanon:  Bil hana
Or in English, enjoy your meal!

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What’s Your Lazy Day Go-To Meal?

Recently I realized that my “lazy day” food tends to fall under the same thing, but it constantly has a twist! Sometimes it has beans in it, sometimes peas, sometimes fresh tomatoes, sometimes ground veggie crumbles, and sometimes just plain ole tomato sauce.

Can you guess what my lazy day food is?

Well it is pasta of course!

And today I added this amazing stuff I saw at my health food store.

Ground "Beef" from the Vegetarian Butchers

It is Ground “Beef” from the Vegetarian Butchers! How amazing is that!? And on that green circular sticker it says that this stuff won the award for the best tasting vegetarian beef in 2012, that is how good this stuff is!

Cooking my Ground "Beef"

I ended up cooking it all but only using a half of that slab of “ground beef”. It was rather fulfilling even with only a half of that used.

Bolognese Sauce on Multicolored Spaghetti

That was my complete meal. I never just warm up a jar of pasta sauce, I always make my own from scratch. If you are also interested in making your own sauce just look below to my recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped thinly
  • ½ cup (125g) ground “beef” 
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups (390g) chopped tomato in juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • a pinch of red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Microwave ground “beef” for  about a minute to allow frozen meat to thaw out. Break in half and place one half in fridge and the other on a frying pan with one tablespoon of olive oil. 

  2. Begin chopping onion and garlic and set aside. Keep eye on meat to keep from burning. Once cooked remove meat from pan and place on plate or in a bowl. 

  3. Add chopped onion and garlic to hot frying pan with second tablespoon of olive oil. Fry until fragrant then add meat back into pan. Cook for about two minutes. Then add tomatoes in juice to meat mixture. 

  4. Add spices to the sauce to add flavour. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer to combine flavours. If sauce becomes too dry add a couple tablespoons of water to mixture. 

  5. Serve immediately over any sort of pasta you’ve cooked and enjoy!

Ground "beef" pasta sauce

This was a fantastic meal and I cannot wait to make something else with this ground “beef” from the Vegetarian Butchers.

Where you’re from do they have meat like this? From a Vegetarische Slagerij? Or do you only get Vegetarian Meat Crumbles from your basic grocery store?

If you are ever in the Netherlands and you happen to be a vegetarian, I do suggest you take a visit to Den Haag and go to the Vegetarische Slager.  Although according to the website (which I just visited) they are located everywhere it would seem. SO you wouldn’t have to only visit The Hague, but you could go pretty much anywhere. Awesome!

Well you definitely should and enjoy it! I know I am!

While my lazy day go-to meal is pasta, I know others tend to go for take-out pizza, McDonald’s, soup, porridge, etc. So what is yours since you now know mine!

Eet smakelijk!

Refining a Favourite Eggplant Meal

Let’s all just be a little lazy and just have ice cream for dinner? God I wish I could! But my body would hate me. Hate me more than it already does for cooking in this heat.

A little tip for someone house hunting – do NOT rent an apartment on the top floor which is without an air conditioning unit! Also take into consideration of where the sun rises and sets. If there is no air conditioning unit and you are on the side of the building where the sun sets, you will most likely die. Lord knows I have today.

Last night I decided to sleep with the window open, thinking that that would cool my room down. It didn’t. I woke up suffocating in the heat. I had plans to leave the apartment today too, but I couldn’t manage to do so because of the heat.

So I stayed in, dying. I realized though that this heat either makes you not want to eat at all or it makes you want to eat easy things. Like junk food.

Well I made something healthy for dinner, though I regret it now after feeling the temperature from the frying pan.

Anyway, before I gave up meat this was one of my favourites. I remember having lived in the Caribbean and being at a fellow Canadians house and enjoying this meal my mom had made. So I decided to try it myself. But with a twist.

Eggplant Parmesan

Do you know what this is? It is a very neatly plated meal of Eggplant Parmesan.

I don’t think anyone can truly succeed in making it look so attractive unless they work at a Michelin star restaurant.

 Eggplant Parmesan Quinoa Risotto

Well this was my meal. Eggplant Parmesan Quinoa Risotto. I got the recipe from here.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1  eggplant, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • sprinkle of salt and pepper
  • 1 cup (240ml) dry quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups (500ml) vegetable stock
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (sauvignon blanc commonly used)
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1/4 cup (57g) grated parmesan cheese + extra for serving
  • 1/2 cup (113g) thinly sliced basil + extra for serving

Instructions:

  1. First, saute the eggplant. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add eggplant and saute, stirring occasionally, until browned all over. Add garlic, along with a sprinkle of salt and pepper, and saute until garlic is fragrant, about 1 more minute. Scoop eggplant into a bowl and set aside.

  2. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa. Bring quinoa and vegetable stock to a boil in a small pot. Simmer until quinoa is tender and chewy, about 20 minutes. 

  3. In the same saute pan you used for the eggplant, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and chopped tomatoes, reserving a handful for garnish. Simmer until the wine is syrupy, about 3 minutes. Stir in cooked quinoa and eggplant.

  4. Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese and basil. Serve immediately, with additional chopped tomatoes, parmesan, basil, and salt and pepper.

Eggplant Parmesan Quinoa RisottoThis was different from my normal favourite. I am not too sure if I liked it or not. Probably not if I am unsure, but I would still love to hear if you all liked it!

Oh and the wine I used was a South African one as my entire immediate family is in SA right now.

Albert Heijn Droog Wijn

I’ve been thinking about something totally unrelated to my meal. Why do women either gain or lose weight when heart broken or breaking up with their partners? I remember how both Arnold Schwarzenegger’s and Tiger Woods’ wives lost an incredible amount of weight upon going through the divorce. While when women break up with their partners they too either lose or gain weight. I know I am gaining now.

I am no longer stressing on what I’ve been trying to fix and not succeeding, but still I am gaining. My internal strength has lessened with the giving up of my one-sided relationship. And I am someone who has always been able to say no to chocolate, yet now all I crave is it. What is going on here!?

I need to get back on my healthy train! And fast! Any advice?

Anyway, happy eating!

L

Warm Weather Food and a Restaurant Outing

How do you gear up for summer? Do you buy a bathing suit you know you are going to rock on the beach? Do you go to tanning salons to get that nice bronzed glow or do you buy tanning cream to brown your skin gradually? Or are you like me and make meals which are suitable for those fabulous days when you sit outside in your back patio roasting something on the barbecue?

Well obviously I am all about the last option as I am a food lover. Although I can say that I am guilty for having bought a bathing suit not too long ago. Alas I truly gear up for great weather with even better food.

For this evenings meal I made shish kebobs! Is there not a greater meal to have in the summer?

Tofu Shish-Kabob's with Baked Corn on the Cob and a Side Salad

Although I do not own a barbecue, or have a balcony to actually house a barbecue, I do have a microwave oven which can cook shish kebabs like a barbecue!

Preparing Summer Supper

What can you use to make these delicious things? Well you can use whatever vegetable or meat suits you! I personally made it strictly vegetarian… vegan even!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (150g) button mushrooms, stems removed
  • 1 cup (150g) cherry tomatoes
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 package pre-marinated tofu, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • pinch of salt and paprika powder to taste
  • 1 cob of corn, halved
  • 2 teaspoons margarine

Instructions:

  1. Line cookie sheet with tin foil and preheat oven to 450ᵒF (220ᵒC). Begin to chop vegetables as instructed.

  2. Open package of pre-marinated tofu and cut into appropriate pieces. Insert saté stick (skewer) into tofu and chopped vegetables. Place on cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and paprika powder.

  3. Take cob of corn and cut in half. Smear margarine over each half of the cob and place in sheet of tin foil. Sprinkle you choice of herbs or spices and place on cookie sheet.

  4. Place sheet into oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. When finished remove from oven and prepare side salad of choice.

  5. Enjoy!

Summer Supper

This was the perfect meal for me. Especially with that tofu! If you haven’t tried pre-marinated tofu before, you should! If you don’t need to buy pre-marinated tofu as you have managed to figure out a way to marinate your own tofu, please teach me!

The tofu I used was from a brand called Taifun which seems to be a German company. The taste I went for was basil infused tofu.

Right after I made and had this divine meal I went back to sipping on some green tea and overdosing on vitamin C.

Somewhere between last nights dinner gathering and this morning, I seem to have contracted some sort of virus which itches my throat to the point where I am trying to withhold a bunch of coughing. I hate colds. However the dinner gathering last night was great!

If you are ever in the Netherlands – the Hague to be exact, you should go to this fabulous restaurant where the meals are a flat rate of €17.50. Here is the meal that I had yesterday:

Amuse: Smoked haddock over a slice of quiche with some spicy tomato sauce
Amuse: Smoked haddock over a slice of quiche with some spicy tomato sauce
Starter: Cream of Asparagus soup which was Silver Serviced (waiter poured it into your bowl)
Starter: Cream of Asparagus soup which was Silver Serviced (waiter poured it into your bowl)

 

Dinner: Baked Hake with Broccoli, Tomatoes, and Olives on a bed of Garlic Mash
Dinner: Baked Hake with Broccoli, Tomatoes, and Olives on a bed of Garlic Mash
Dessert: Selection of Assorted Desserts - Flan, Raspberry Mousse, Profiterole with Vanilla Ice Cream, and a Dollop of Chocolate Mousse
Dessert: Selection of Assorted Desserts – Flan, Raspberry Mousse, Profiterole with Vanilla Ice Cream, and a Dollop of Chocolate Mousse

If that meal does not strike you as delicious then you are crazy! The restaurant is called In Den Ooyevaer. Beware that link may be in Dutch so you may need to translate!

Have you noticed a trend? I seem to be trying to get more tourism in the Netherlands with my most recent posts! But these places that I go to seem to be so great. So please come and visit this country!

If you do not do so, at least try and enjoy my recipe of the evening!

Eet smakelijk!

Sweet Potato Chili without the Chili Powder

Good evening (or afternoon) everyone! Hope you’ve had a lovely day.

It has been super hot here. Although according to yahoo weather (the weather app on my apple devices) it was only 21ᵒC, while right now it is 19ᵒC. If I am honest, that isn’t hot at all. Especially since I was raised almost on the equator so I’ve seen my fair share of hot days.

Today I’ve been cleaning my apartment thoroughly as the last couple of days I’ve been neglecting any cleanly activities. In a couple of hours an old friend is coming over for dinner and to spend the night. So I’ve decided to cook her a homemade meal. Now usually that would be an easy feat except she’s got a whole array of allergies. So I have to make something without cane sugar (which is usually in normal sugar), citrus, cow’s dairy products, and a few other things which I do not cook with often (like coffee or aspartame). Oh and to top that off, she is a vegetarian.

Good thing I cook mostly healthy foods without cow’s dairy products and keep it predominately vegetarian! This should be easy!

Cooking my Meal

So there aren’t any final photos of the meal as it is still simmering away in my cauldron-like pot.

But I can tell you that this is a Sweet Potato and Lentil chili. Totally vegetarian and set for eating.

I got the recipe from here. But like always, there are a few tweaks!

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 shallots, diced
  • 1 bell peppers, diced
  • 3 small sweet potatoes, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups canned lentils
  • ½ teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions:

  • Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add onion and bell peppers, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 3-5 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes begin to soften, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, lentils, and spices and salt and pepper.

  • Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until thickened, about 30 minutes.

  • Serve immediately.

UPDATE: Complete photo of Chili with Parmesan on top
UPDATE: Complete photo of Chili with Parmesan on top

Really straight forward, eh?

Now, can someone tell me what caraway seeds are usually used for? I went to the grocery store looking for cumin but couldn’t find it! Weird right? In Dutch cumin is komijn which is easy, but my grocery store does NOT have it. I’ve looked at this store a few times even and every time I can’t find cumin. What is wrong with you Albert Heijn!

Anyway I’ve tasted this as I have cooked it and it tastes great, even with this said ingredient called caraway. Hopefully my friend also likes it! If not… there’s always take out!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a wonderful evening!

P.S. here is a picture of the heavy looking sky as the day ends.

Smoggy Den Haag

It looks lighter now, but during the actual day when the sun is high above the city, the sky looks so heavy! Like smog, except we don’t have a lot of pollution here. This heaviness is definitely why it is so hot though!

Hope you aren’t feeling that heavy!

L

Nothing Says Friday Like a Glass of Sangria with a Good Meal

Romantic dinner for one? Don’t mind if I do!

Cauliflower Fried Rice with Sangria and Tulips!

While usually I would prefer having someone with me like my boyfriend or best friend, but when you live alone you dine alone. But just because you dine alone do you have to cook lazily because you haven’t got anyone to impress! I personally love to plate my meals as best as I can just to see what I am capable of.

And because I have bad memories of the first time I tried to plate something.

–          It was my first time in a professional kitchen with my class and we made vanilla bavarois with raspberries. Everyone else in my class had such an elegantly looking plate while mine looked…. Like shit. The teacher even pointed me out from the crowd and mocked me.

Since that time, all I’ve wanted to do was make my food presentable.

Cauliflower Fried RiceNow although my plate doesn’t look the best, I am pretty sure the meal looks grand! I got the recipe from here.

Ingredients
  • 1 small head of cauliflower
  • ½ cup brown rice
  • ½ cup frozen peas, thawed (or fresh)
  • ½ cup frozen organic corn, thawed (or fresh)
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 sweet pointed pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 2-3 tablespoons of soy sauce (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Cook brown rice as instructed on box (for me that was 8 minutes in boiling water).

  2. Remove outer leaves of cauliflower. Soak and rinse cauliflower. Drain and dry. Grate the head of cauliflower over the course side of a large grater. This should yield about 2½ cups of rice like cauliflower.

  3. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan. Add the onions, sweet pepper, and garlic and cook until onions are translucent. (approx. 3 minutes)

  4. Add the riced cauliflower and soy sauce and cook for three minutes. Add the cooked brown rice, corn, peas and sesame oil and cook for another 2 or 3 minutes.

  5. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve with a leafy green or green beans.

If you’re wondering – my green of choice was broccoletti! I just blanched it in boiling water for 2 minutes and then ran it under cold water rather than ice.

At my apartment I do not have any circular forms to create perfect circles for a dish (such as rice) so I just used my spatula to smooth out the edges of my nicely formed circle on my plate. That is why there was a bit of yellow on the plate.

Cauliflower Fried RiceThis was a delicious meal which looked both appetizing and tasted it. Best of all it was incredibly easy! The hardest part would have been grating the cauliflower and that in itself is simple.

So this meal is a 10/10! You should definitely try it. And if you’re not doing so already, follow the OrdinaryVegan! I follow her on Facebook and that is how I got this recipe. There are many delicious recipes to find on here.

If you do make this, then enjoy!

Green Ombré Trifle Cakes for a Festive St. Patrick’s Day!

It is almost St. Patrick’s Day! The perfect time to color everything you love to eat green. And as much of you would know – I love green food!

What do you have planned for this time of year? Green cookies, cakes, smoothies, icing? I made mini trifles!

Green Ombré Trifle CupcakesThese cute little mason jars were made for my mom and her friends for their last game of Bridge. Apparently my moms three friends loved both the presentation AND the actual taste of the cupcakes. So I am pretty sure I did well for their last get together before mom moves to South Africa!

The recipe I got from here and the idea I got from here.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups (240 ml) non-dairy milk (soy, almond, rice)
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 ½ cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup (150 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (250 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tins Betty Crocker Buttercream Icing

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit (175C).

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the non-dairy milk and vinegar. Let stand for about 5 minutes.

  3. Add the sugar, oil, and vanilla extract, and whisk together until the mixture becomes frothy.

  4. Sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together until the flour mixture disappears.

  6. Divide the batter evenly in 3 bowls and add green food coloring to each until one bowl has light green batter, the other is a medium green, and the last is a dark green.

  7. Now divide the colorful batter amongst several cupcake cups (I was able to make 24 cupcakes) and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

  8. Cool the cupcake tin on wire racks for about 15 minutes. Then remove cupcakes from tin and allow to cool further (to make cupcakes cool thoroughly, rip cupcakes in half and keep on wire rack) 

  9. Wash and dry your mason jars and place darkest cupcakes at the base of the mason jar and layer with icing. Place medium colored green cupcake half in the middle and top with icing, then top the jar with the light green cupcake chunks with a dollop of green icing. 

  10. Seal lid and deliver to rightful person. 

Green Ombré Cupcakes

Best part about these cupcakes are that they are vegan while the Betty Crocker icing is vegetarian! Yay Betty Crocker!Dark Green Cupcake Base

Green Ombré Trifle CakeNot everyone celebrates St. Patrick’s Day in the Netherlands and as my moms friends are all Dutch I decided to just draw a funky four leaf clover on the front with a simple message to enjoy. They definitely loved it!

So if you’re a fan of St. Patrick’s Day but do not like to drink enough alcohol to need a liver transplant (as if one day of drinking can truly do that), then this is definitely something to think about. Plus your children can enjoy the green cupcakes as well!

As they say in Ireland: Bain sult as do bhéile

(Enjoy your meal in English)

 

 

Following Culinary Trends with Healthy Eating

I never thought I would conform to the “in” trends, but I have noticed that I am doing just that. I am currently in the process of building a hypothetical business for my final year studying International Business and Hospitality and have to determine whether my business will be on or off trend. I looked up the top five culinary trends of last year and the forecasted trends for this year.

Here are last years culinary trends:

  1. Healthier meal choices
  2. Smaller portions
  3. Local, artisan food
  4. Asian inspired comfort food
  5. Salted fruit

And here are the forecasted trends:

  1. Locally sourced meats and seafood’s
  2. Locally grown produce
  3. Environmentally sustainable
  4. Healthful kids’ meals
  5. Gluten free

Now my hypothetical business will be completely off trend as it is going to be a desserterie, alas my personal culinary needs and desires are completely on trend. I aspire to be healthier and somewhat gluten free. So really I am conforming to fit in, aren’t I?

In my moment of being healthy and gluten free I made a delicious polenta dish with sautéed spinach. Super easy, filling, and most of all super delicious.

Polenta topped with Sautéed Spinach and MushroomsIngredients:

  • ¾ cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 cups water
  • ¾ cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ – ½ cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 ½ cup spinach
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1)    Pour water and milk into a saucepan and slowly whisk in cornmeal. Put on a high heat and wait to boil then cover with lid and turn heat to a low and allow cornmeal to simmer for about 10-15 minutes or until thick.

2)    Pour 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a hot frying pan. Add onions and garlic and fry until translucent. Mix in mushrooms and second tablespoon of olive oil (if needed) and fry mushrooms until soft. Next add spinach and sauté until wilted.

3)    Scoop polenta on a bowl plate and place sautéed spinach over top. You can add additional salt and pepper onto the polenta or add it to the spinach. Remember not to overdo it! Enjoy!

Ready to Eat!This was pretty damn easy to make. Only downfall is that the polenta doesn’t come out of the saucepan like jello in a bowl. It coats the entire pan like crazy. I hate cleaning that.

Other than that, it is still super tasty. And only one bowl of it made me full. Although I’ve been eating well today. All healthy, and filling. The correct portions have made me full.

But you should definitely make this! And you can add some butter to your polenta before you plate it. I hear that is better.

At any rate – eet smakelijk!

No More Monsters

Do you ever wonder where all the monsters go from under your bed and in your closet? Well I can tell you where all mine go! If they haven’t run away in fear then they end up in my blender! This morning I made a delicious green Monster Smoothie.

Green Monster Smoothie

It was the perfect thing to start the day! Plus now I know all the monsters are gone from this house! Best of both worlds!

I don’t think these ingredients make the actual Monster Smoothie I’ve seen on Pinterest, but this still has a protein packed vegetable, lots of sweet and healthy fruits, and some seeds to add to the power.

These are the ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cup of Kale
  • 1 banana, chopped
  • 7 strawberries, sliced (you could use more! Mine just didn’t look all too attractive)
  • 1/3 cup of cantaloupe
  • ½ cup of almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend away!

  2. Blend until smooth and enjoy!

Healthy Green Smoothie

This was a super delicious smoothie. Even though there is a lot of kale in it, all I really could taste was cantaloupe. I feel like it’s been forever since I’ve had cantaloupe. It really hasn’t because you can buy mixed melon in a container at the grocery store, but it has been a while since I’ve had half a melon that I had to scoop out bits.

It feels like I am preparing for summer! Although it is quite a distance from the current time, but one can hope!

If you’re a fan of smoothies then I suggest you make one that is beautiful and green. You can use spinach or kale as your base green vegetable and any sort of fruit. You can add nuts or seeds of your choice and to make it better for you keep it simple with soy or almond milk. Learn more at at the GreenMonsterMovement.

If you do go green with this beaut, I hope you enjoy it and feel the boost and buzz that no other drink can actually give you. Best of all: your skin improves from this!

So I really hope you make this and enjoy it!

Happy Sunday!

Calming the Excitement with a Fruity Smoothie

Drama. You would prefer not to be in it but you really can’t live without it. Does anyone feel that way? I know I do. I’m like a young teenager who loves hearing about happenings with others while I also love to see drama, but if it comes to me, y’all can really bud out!

It unfortunately cannot be one way or the other. It goes two ways. Especially when you’re a person who loves to talk, whether it be about happenings around you or within your life. Yeah, that is totally me. I guess that is why my parents called me “Talk-a-lot” as a child, because they knew I’d become a talk-a-holic.

Well speaking of drama and lots of chatter, there is something big going down in my neighbourhood. Big enough to bring in hoards of police officers to prevent something horrible from happening. There were at least twenty people standing on the corner of our block (which is in front of our neighbours as we live in a duplex), my mom, friend, and I were glancing out the window and noticed groups of police officers walking the twenty-some people away.

If that is happening then there is obviously something happening, but it is all too interesting as well! I feel like we live in Beverly Hills where all the drama goes down. Hollywood, move on over, the real drama is had right here!

Anyway, as this was happening I decided to make myself a healthy and hearty smoothie. We had already had dinner, but I was just so turned off by it that I had to make myself something else that could both fill me up and act as the sweet thing I’ve been craving for all day long. Smoothie it was!

Now while dinner was a complete bust, this post dinner snack/meal was delicious. Best of all it was my favourite food color of green. I am seriously obsessed with green dishes.

Green Smoothie packed with Fruits I just mixed a bunch of fruit together to make this healthy smoothie. Here is what I used:

  • ¼ cup pineapple, chopped
  • ¼cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/8 cup mango
  • 1 banana, chopped
  • ½ cup spinach, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons flaxseeds
  • ¼ cup dried oats 
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients in blender until smooth (place spinach first and add fruit afterwards)

  2. Pour into glass and enjoy!

Initial Fruit

 

 

Here in the blender you can see the mango, strawberries, and banana (while underneath is the piña) – I should have put the spinach in first but I wasn’t sure whether I’d add spinach or not until the very end.

Flaxseed MixHere you can see the flaxseed mix that I used in this smoothie.

It came out perfectly. I loved it. Mom wasn’t too keen, but she doesn’t like smoothies. I really haven’t a clue how she could be turned off by such lovely creations, but she is.

Tropical Smoothie with SpinachI love that color! Especially with the fact that you can see the little red and green bits in it. Its like Christmas for smoothies!

Anyway, here was dinner that I wasn’t all too keen on:

Cauliflower, Chickpea, and Spinach CurryThis curry can be found here. I made everything as I should, following the recipe exactly, until I noticed the flavour lacked some. I then added an additional 2 teaspoons of Garam Masala, a half a teaspoon of chili powder, a teaspoon of cumin powder, and some additional dried coriander leaves. Worst of all, I added more salt than I’d care to admit. Although with this dish I also made brown basmati rice.

Have you ever heard of brown basmati? I know I haven’t! It still smells of popcorn while being made, but it is purely brown! Sounds just up my alley.

I hope you make a smoothie sometime this week, make it colorful and delicious!

Buen provecho!