Today we continue the “Easy ways to eat more veggies (and fruits)” series, featuring tips on how to get move veggies into your busy lifestyle.
Find veggie alternatives for a less-healthful ingredient. Instead of serving tacos in flour tortillas, serve them in iceberg lettuce leaves or artisan lettuce “cups” (think lettuce wrap). Instead of stuffing tuna salad into a pita, serve it over a green salad. Load up that omelet with diced tomatoes, onions, and bell peppers and scale back the cheese.
Source: Tammy’s Recipes
Thanks to a loyal reader Kellye King for this Meatless Monday recipe! To reward Kellye for her loyalty she will receive this 16 oz recycled and recycable travel mug.
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Stay tuned for exciting new giveaways in 2012.
Black Bean-Quinoa Salad with Basil-Lemon Dressing
Quinoa contains more protein than any other grain. Edamame makes a tasty substitute for lima beans in this recipe. For an attractive presentation, serve the salad on a bed of baby greens or spinach.
Yield: 10 servings (serving size: 1 cup)
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa
- 3 cups organic vegetable broth (such as Swanson Certified Organic)
- 1 (14-ounce) package reduced-fat firm tofu, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 cup chopped fresh basil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (10-ounce) package frozen baby lima beans
- 4 cups chopped tomato (about 3 medium)
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions
- 1/2 cup chopped carrot
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- Combine quinoa and vegetable broth in a saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until broth is absorbed and quinoa is tender. Remove from heat.
- Place tofu on several layers of paper towels; cover with additional paper towels. Let stand 5 minutes. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add tofu; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Sauté tofu 9 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from heat; cool completely.
- Combine remaining 2 tablespoons oil, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, basil, and next 6 ingredients (through garlic) in a large bowl; stir with a whisk until blended. Stir in quinoa.
- Cook lima beans according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Cool completely. Add the lima beans, tofu, chopped tomato, green onions, chopped carrot, and black beans to quinoa mixture; stir gently to combine. Store, covered, in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Source: My Recipes.com
Here’s a tip from Allrecipes.com
Turn any recipe into a veggie one by replacing the meat with a vegetarian alternative. Looking for a new stir-fry? Convert a chicken or beef stir fry to vegetarian by substituting tofu or mycoprotein (a protein derived from mushrooms) for the meat. Love your father’s famous chili? Use textured vegetable protein (TVP) for the ground beef.
I have found this is very easy to do. On Meatless Mondays instead of ground turkey or beef I’ll used sautéed vegetables in spaghetti. My favorite substitution is grilled veggies in my quesadillas instead of meat. I like it so much I don’t even need a menu when we order at a Mexican restaurant….I always order a veggie quesadilla.
- 3 avocados – peeled, pitted, and mashed
- 1/4 cup onions, diced
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 12 (6 inch) corn tortillas
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
- jalapeno pepper sauce, to taste
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
- In a medium bowl, mix avocados, onions, and garlic salt.
- Arrange corn tortillas in a single layer on a large baking sheet, and place in the preheated oven 2 to 5 minutes, until heated through.
- Spread tortillas with the avocado mixture. Garnish with cilantro and sprinkle with jalapeno pepper sauce.
I am “learning” to eat avocados! I think this would be a good starter recipe. It gives you the basics….feel free to add lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, black beans, chiles, lime, or cheese.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
One of my favorite Valentine’s Day treats (or any day for that matter) is chocolate covered strawberries. Until I began my Meatless Monday journey I never gave much thought to what type of chocolate I used to make these delicacies. But I have learned that even non-dairy eaters can enjoy chocolate covered strawberries, by using vegan chocolate! So whether you prefer a vegan or more traditional lifestyle (try Hershey’s) you can enjoy this recipe.
Vegan Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
4 ounces (about 3/4 cup) 365 Everyday Value® Semi-Sweet Vegan Chocolate Chips
Line a plate with wax paper or parchment. Place chocolate chips in a glass bowl or measuring cup and microwave on high, 1 to 2 minutes, or until melted and very smooth, stopping to stir about every 20 seconds. One at a time, dip strawberries into melted chocolate and place on the prepared plate. Refrigerate about 10 minutes to harden. Store covered and refrigerated up to 1 day.
Source: Whole Foods Market
Photo Source: Mary’s Healthy Blog
RecycleMania trivia question: The energy saved from recycling one aluminum can is enough to run a television for how many hours?
Comment on this post with the correct answer for a chance to win a prize from the Office of Sustainability. The winner will by randomly chosen from correct answers submitted by 5 pm (EST) on February 15, 2011. (Note: Prize must be picked up in the Office of Sustainability).
This New York Times article gives a great tip for starting your “meatless” journey. Instead of making meat the star of your show/meal give it a supporting role. Start by altering your portions. Rather than buying thick porkchops try a skinnier cut or try a smaller portion of steak. Build your meal around side dishes; veggies, grains, beans salads or a fruit dessert.
Recipe of the Day: Avocado Dip
- 2 medium ripe avocados, peeled and pitted
- 1 package (8 ounces) fat-free cream cheese
- 1/3 cup plain yogurt
- 1/3 cup picante sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- Tortilla chips
- In a small bowl, mash avocados and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in the yogurt, picante sauce, lime juice, salt and garlic powder. Serve with chips. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 2-1/2 cups.
Source: NY Times.com
Recipe: Taste of Home
Food (or veggies) for thought: Did you know that about 18% of all greenhouse gas emissions are related to meat consumption?
Recipe of the day
Black Bean Burritos
- 2 (10 inch) flour tortillas
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 teaspoon minced jalapeno peppers
- 3 ounces cream cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- Wrap tortillas in foil and place in oven heated to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bake for 15 minutes or until heated through.
- Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Place onion, bell pepper, garlic and jalapenos in skillet, cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally. Pour beans into skillet, cook 3 minutes stirring.
- Cut cream cheese into cubes and add to skillet with salt. Cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally. Stir cilantro into mixture.
- Spoon mixture evenly down center of warmed tortilla and roll tortillas up. Serve immediately.
To make this recipe my own I would add cumin, tomatoes (or salsa), rice and I would substitute the cream cheese for a shredded cheese blend. What would you add?
As my Meatless Monday journey continues I find myself eating more fruits and vegetables (instead of chips and cookies). The one thing I didn’t factor in was if I was properly washing these foods.
How to Properly Wash Fruits and Vegetables
All fruits and veggies
- Do Rinse all produce under running tap water while rubbing it with your hand.
- Don’t fill the sink with water and let produce sit.
Produce with Rinds, Grooves or Waxy Skin (melons, cucumbers, winter squash, citrus and potatoes)
- Do scrub this produce with a brush.
- Rubbing these foods my remove dirt but will not remove pathogens which may be stuck to the wax (this is where the brush comes in).
- Do rinse bananas, there has not yet been a specific outbreak linked to bananas but think of how many hands may have touched your banana before you.
Leafy Bunched Vegetables (lettuce, cabbage)
- Do discard the outer layer of leaves before thoroughly rinsing the leaves in water.
- Continue to rinse the leaves until dirt is no longer visible and then spin in a veggie dryer.
- If lettuce is bagged and marked “ready to eat” according to the FDA, its safe to eat without rewashing it. Some experts disagree and urge consumers to wash all “ready to eat” veggies.
Bunched Fruit (grapes, blueberries)
- Rinse under running water in a colander (so all of your fruit doesn’t end going down the drain).
- Using a spray nozzle will give a more thorough cleaning.
One great overall tip was to NEVER taste fruit or vegetables in the store before they are washed (i.e tasting the grapes before you purchase them). The most surprising of these tips was rewashing the “ready to eat” veggies. Before reading this article I never rewashed the bagged lettuce (or washed bananas)…but I will start. What about you, do you rewash foods that are identified as “ready to eat”?
- 2 cups uncooked penne or medium tube pasta
- 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 small yellow summer squash, sliced
- 1 small zucchini, sliced
- 1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute the onion, summer squash, zucchini, mushrooms and garlic in butter until tender.
- In a bowl, whisk the flour, seasonings and cream until smooth; add to the skillet. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until thickened. Drain pasta and add to vegetable mixture. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until heated through.