THE HEALTHY HAG

I COOK … I EAT … I SHARE.

Lentil & Veggie Stew April 17, 2012

It may be spring and the birds might be chirping, but I still love a hot bowl of comfort food for dinner.  Now that time is of the essence more than ever (hello raving toddler), I have to make something that is quick and delish, and who’s fooling who, I loveeeeeee a stew!!!  I have made variations of this recipe, both in my Le Crueset Dutch Oven and in my slow cooker.  Both are totally yummy.
Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 pounds fresh vegetables cut in bit-sized pieces (I used parsnips, mushrooms, carrots and zucchini)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can cooked lentils (you can use freshly cooked – about 1 1/2 cups with cooking liquid)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/3 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin or squash (canned or cooked – all water pressed out)
  • salt & black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Cook onion in a large, Dutch oven until browned, then add garlic and cook, stirring, for another minute.
  2. Add veggies, broth and spices and cook until vegetables are soft and it begins to boil.
  3. Add quinoa and cook on medium heat until tender (approx. 15 min), then add pumpkin and salt/pepper to taste and cook for 5 more min (adding a little water if too thick).
  4. Serve hot, with shredded cheddar and/or some large crusty bread with butter!

Notes:

– to use the slow cooker, but all ingredients into cooker and place on low for 6 hours.

– this freezes pretty well too.

 

The Weekly Soup – Red Lentil January 28, 2010

I live for lentils.  Okay not literally, but I get excited about lentils the way some people do about bacon.  I could add them to just about everything and be one happy camper.  Packed with flavour, protein and fiber (okay, and phosphorus, copper, thiamin and potassium, you get the point) lentils come in a variety of forms and typically are cheap cheap cheap.  Oh did I mention they are pretty darned easy to prepare too?  If you’re a lazypants, buy the canned, however you can really control the flavour and texture (and sodium!) if you buy them dried, and they’re even cheaper.  This soup is creamy, slightly sweet and hearty.  Perfect for fall, winter or a chilly summers night.  PS – it’s dairy free too!

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INGREDIENTS:
1 TBSP coconut oil (this is a great way to add more flavour, but you could use olive oil if you’re desparate)
1 cup onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp salt

2 cups red lentils
2 cans coconut milk (I use the powdered kind that you add to water – it’s handy to have, and less fatty)
4-6 cups water (enough to cover all ingredients)
1/2 cup carrot or zucchini, diced

1/2 cup celery, diced
2 cups sweet potato, diced
1 TBSP fresh ginger, minced
1 1/2 TBSP curry powder
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp pepper
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DIRECTIONS:
1. In a dutch oven or large stockpot over medium heat, sauté onion for 2 min in coconut oil, then add garlic and salt, stir, and cook for 1-2 min.
2. Add all remaining ingredients, combine and cover and bring to a boil.
3. Stir well, reduce heat to simmer, cover again, and cook on low for 30-45 min, until lentils are cooked through and creamy.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with your favourite naan or pita bread!

 

Harvest Loaf January 17, 2010

 

I love loaves… add to that something savoury and nutritious?  I’m sold.  This little gem will impress your guests, be kind to your hips, and won’t break the bank.  Try subbing in your favourite squash or whatever you happen to have on hand.  Oh, and it’s totally dairy free so it’ll knock the socks off your dairy-freer pals.  You could even make this one vegan by using egg substitute for the 2 eggs.  Impressive, I know!!!!

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INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2 cups flour

2/3 cup sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp allspice

1/4 tsp salt

2 eggs

1 cup pureed squash (I used canned organic butternut, but you could use pumpkin or even sweet potatoes!)

1/3 cup canola oil (you could use almond or any other seed oil, but I’d avoid using Olive oil)

1/2 cup raisins

handful of pumpkin seeds

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DIRECTIONS:

1) Preheat oven to 350F, and grease loaf pans.

2) In a medium bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and set aside

3) In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, squash and oil with a wooden spoon, until smooth.

4) Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, and mix to combine, then stir in raisins.

5) Pour batter into loaf pans (I used 3 mini, but you could use 1 large), sprinkle with seeds, and bake at 350F for 40 min until browned and tester stick comes out dry.

6) Allow to cool for 10 min in pans, then remove and cool on a wire rack for another 5-10 min, and serve!

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NOTE – these can be frozen and allowed to defrost at room temp.  

 

Out-of-this-world Oatmeal PB Bars July 23, 2009

I am always on the hunt for new and exciting tasty treats that are soy-free and healthy.  I’ve experimented with dozens of batches and have adjusted my good ol’ taste buds to accommodate a lot of pasty and good-for-you-but-not-good-tasting snacks.  I was hankering for something oatmealy, healthy and transportable and came up with what according to my hubster, is by far the best thing I’ve ever made.  It’ll be tough to follow up this one with something comparable, but I love a challenge.  These bars are a great way to grab a brekkie on the go or to feast upon with a cuppa java.  They’re also dairy-free so that’s another unexpected perk too!  The batch I made yesterday has been reduced to one bar in less than 24 hours – and there’s only 2 of us to blame.  YUMMERS!

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INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/8 tsp salt

1 tsp wheat bran

1 tbsp ground flax seed

1/2 cup natural-style smooth peanut butter (my absolute favourite right now is PB & Co … LOVE their stuff!)

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar or sugar in the raw

1/3 cup honey

2 eggs

2 tbsp canola oil

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup dried cranberries, raisins, dates or apricots (or any other dried fruit you like)

1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or almonds (or your favourite nut)

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DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and coat a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray (I used a bit of oil smudged about with a brush, as all the spray oils I’ve seen have soy).

2. Mix flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, wheat germ, and ground flax in a medium bowl and set aside.

3. Thoroughly mix peanut butter, sugar, and honey in a large mixing bowl until blended, then blend in egg, oil and vanilla and beat until smooth.

4. Add reserved flour mixture to wet mixture and combine, then mix in oats, dried fruit, and nuts.

5. Scrape batter into the prepared baking dish and bake fro 20-25 min until lightly browned and firm to the touch.

6. Let cool completely in the pan on a rack before cutting into bars (about 30 min minimum).

oatmeal-peanut-butter-trail-bars-af

 

BE FREE Mac n’ Cheese July 3, 2009

Yes, this is a mac’n’cheese for the rest of us … soy, gluten, AND dairy free!!!  Some of the most common allergens and food intollerences out there these days.  Sad but true.  This certainly won’t replace Auntie Marg’s creamy gooey gorgeous baked version that has everyone in a coma for a few hours after enjoying, but hey, it’s better than the alternative of nothing.  It’s a pretty tasty and easy version of a classic that will satisfy any “freer” out there.  Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/4 cup uncooked brown rice macaroni

1 1/4 cup unsweetened rice milk

1/3 cup nutritional yeast

1 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp cornstarch

1 tsp EACH onion powderand garlic powder

1/2 tsp paprika

1/4 tsp tumeric

1 tbsp tahini

Sprinking of smoked paprika for dusting (optional!!)

MAC

DIRECTIONS:

1. Cook pasta according to directions on the box (usually about 7-8 min).

2. Immediately drain and rinse with cold water, and set aside.

3. Whisk all remaining ingredients together in a medium sauce pan, and turn on heat on burner to medium.

4. Bring sauce to a near boil then turn down the heat to low – stirring occasionally, to allow sauce to thicken.

5. Remove from heat once thickened, and combine with cooked macaroni, stirring to coat completely.

6. Return to bruner, heat thoroughly and serve!

 

Fortune Cookies (Soy/Dairy-Free) May 20, 2008

Filed under: My bakery — healthyhag @ 6:16 pm
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Who knew making fortune cookies could be so easy? These can be fun for so many occasions. Just think of all the types of notes you could leave inside these: birthday wishes, cheesy romantic I love yous, funny girls-night messages … the list goes on and on. I am making these for a birthday – good times.

INGREDIENTS:

1 egg white

1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 pinch salt

1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1/4 cup white sugar

DIRECTIONS:
1) Write your fortunes on strips of paper about 4 inches long and 1/2 inch wide AND preheat your oven to 400F.

2) Grease a cookie sheet with a very thin coat of butter.

3) Mix egg white and vanilla until foamy but not stiff.

4) Sift flour, salt, and sugar, and blend into the egg white mixture.

5) Drop batter by tsp about 4 inches apart on cookie sheet, and with back of spoon, smooth batter into round shapes, making sure batter is as even as possible (do not make too many at first — these cookies have to be HOT in order to form).

6) Bake cookies for 5 min or until they look golden on the edges (the middles typically look pale).

NOTE – Prepare more cookies on another buttered cookie sheet while the first batch is baking!

7) Take cookies out of oven, and remove from sheets using wide spatula to put cookies upside down on a wooden board.

8] Quickly put a fortune in the middle of the cookie and fold the cookie in half – fold cookie in half one more time, then place folded cookies into a muffin tin to cool.

Yummers!

 

Drowning Depression Cake April 21, 2008

The concept for this cake comes from the lack of fresh ingredients that the depression era had to deal with. It’s eggless, milk-less and butterless! That said, it’s perfect now for those of you out there who are living dairy-free lives! No lactose in sight my friends! Go hug a cow.

INGREDIENTS:
1 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup mayonnaise OR 1/3 cup veg oil + 1 tbsp white vinegar
1 cup water (or less)
1 tsp vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees (175 degrees C).
2) Lightly grease or line muffin pans, or a small cake pan.
3) Mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa, and sugar into a large bowl.
4) Stir in mayonnaise (OR oil/vinegar mixture) and gradually add water and vanilla and blend until smooth.
5) Pour batter into prepared pans and bake for 30 minutes.
6) Cool, remove from pans, and frost with the below icing (or sprinke with icing sugar).

ICING:
Since this is a choclate cake, I thought why not pair it with something tried and true and oh-so-tasty: peanut butter. It worked VERY well, and it hence the “Drowning Depression Cake” was born.

2-3 tbsp of icing sugar
1 tsp oil
1 tbsp non-dairy milk (I used rice)
2 tbsp crunchy all natural peanut butter
4-5 squares extra dark chocolate (remember to use only milk free kinds); melted

Mix the icing sugar, oil, and peanut butter together till smooth and runny. Melt the chocolate, and pour directly over cooled cake. Pour peanut butter mixture over top of that and let set (best to place the cake in a deep dish). Mmmmmmm.