THE HEALTHY HAG

I COOK … I EAT … I SHARE.

Organic White Bean Dip March 5, 2012

Filed under: Starters & Sides — healthyhag @ 5:58 pm
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Easy easy easy.  Yummy yummy yummy.  I don’t think this dip really needs much more explaining than that.

 

INGREDIENTS:

 

2-3 cups of dried white navy beans (I used organic)

1-2 tsp sea salt

1-2 tsp minced organic garlic

2 TBSP organic extra virgin olive oil

Pepper, to taste

 

DIRECTIONS:

 

1) Place dried beans in a large bowl and fill with water – sprinkle with a small dash of salt and soak overnight.

2) Drain beans and place in large pot along with 1 tsp of salt, place on high heat and bring to boil.

3) Boil beans for 1-2 hours until tender.

4) Place boiled beans in food processor along with minced garlic, olive oil and 2-3 TBSP of boiling water and combine thoroughly.

5) Taste and season accordingly – add more water from boiling pot if dip is too lumpy (should be nice and smooth but not runny).

6) Chill for an hour or more and serve with fresh veggies or your fave crusty bread.

 

NOTE – you could substitute any dried bean really, if your preference isn’t navy beans.  Add in some tahini if using chickpeas.

 

 

 

Creamy Avacado Sammy September 22, 2010

Holy shitballs… has it really been THAT long????  My apologies to the internets.  Why such a hiatus you ask?  Well, this hag is in the midst of cooking up her greatest creation ever … a wee bambino!  Yes, my hubster and I are multiplying.  So, I have been focusing on that rollercoaster ride for the past seven months.  Add in the fact that this foodie couldn’t eat at all for four months (the first trimester was brutal – total food aversions to everything!) and I have been slowly getting back to my regular eat eat eat self.

So with that, I want to share with you one of my latest obsessions: avacado.  I just can’t seem to get enough of this soft, delish fruit.  So so good for you and so utterly tasty.  It really couldn’t be easier …


Ingredients:
2 slices of your favorite bread or a pita
1-2 slices of your favourite cheese (I seem to be on a Edam and Swiss kick these days)
1 medium tomato, sliced thinly
1 avocado
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp onion, minced
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp lime juice
dash cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste



Directions:
1. Place cheese slice and tomato slices onto bread.
2. Combine avocado and olive oil in a small bowl and, using a fork, mash into a smooth paste.
3. Add all remaining ingredients to avocado and mix well.
4. Spread avocado mixture onto bread, toast and enjoy.
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Note: You can be as creative as you want here… I’ve added in sprouts, spinach and even omitted the cheese as well from time to time.  Mmmmmmmmmmmm!


 

Much Ado About Mache: Avocado, Grapefruit & Mache Salad March 24, 2010

I am having a love affair lately with MACHE.  What’s that you say?  It’s a delicat and gorgeous little leaf that is soooo good for you and so yummers that you’ll be calling it old spinster spinach’s younger, prettier, healthier little sister.  It may not be readily available in your area (also goes by Lambs Lettuce), but if you find it…GET IT!  No regrets.  Trust me.  Why all the fuss? Mache is not only a natural anti-stresser, thanks to its high vitamin B9 content (160g B9 per 100g), but it is also has natural anti-fatigue and anti-depressive properties!  Brills!

Just take a look at this 100g breakdown:

* At 160mg, it contains almost half the recommended daily amount of vitamin B9

* Dairy-free?  No problem.  Mache has almost 40g of calcium.

* Low on the iron? 2.2 mg!

* With 39 mg of vitamin C, you can skip the sugary juice in the morn and not feel bad.

* 4g fibre = happy innerds!

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INGREDIENTS:

1 tsp Dijon mustard

2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil

4-6 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 medium pink grapefruit, peeled, sectioned and de-membraned

1 medium avocado, sliced

2-3 cups mache (no stems)

Salt

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DIRECTIONS:

For the mustard dressing =

In the salad bowl, mix mustard well with oil; add juice and continue to blend until thoroughly blended (salt to taste).

For the salad =

1) Place grapfruit sections and sliced avocado in a med-large bowl, then gradually add a few handfuls of mache leaves at a time and toss gently.

2) Pour dressing over and toss gently, then serve.


 

Lentils, lentils and more lentils … oh my! March 22, 2010

I’m a lover of the lentil … have you guessed yet?  How could anyone hate these glorious little gems?  So easy to cook, so versatile, so delish, so cheap!  There are so many kinds to choose from too – keeping the boredom at bay.  So, after weeks of adding lentils to just about anything and everything (okay, I was on a bit of a bender you see), here two of my faves, that are ridiculously quick and beyond simple to compile:

QUINOA LENTIL SALAD

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup dried green lentils

1 bay leaf

1 cup quinoa

1 tsp each turmeric, salt and coriander

¾ cup raisins or cranberries

¾ cup walnuts

2 green onions, diced

¼ cup fresh parsley (or half the amount dried)

4 Tbsp lemon juice

1 Tbsp honey

1 Tbsp  white wine vinegar

¼ tsp salt

3 Tbsp olive oil

Pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

1. Add add lentils and bay leaf to 3 cups of water and cook thoroughly (read package for specific timing).

2. Meanwhile quinoa, tumeric, coriander and salt to 2 cups of water,  bring to a boil, cover and simmer, 10-12 min.

3. Once both pots are cooked, cool then mix together.

4. In a separate bowl whisk together the lemon juice, honey, vinegar, salt, oil and pepper,

5. Stir in dressing to main grains, then add chopped walnuts, cranberries, chopped green onion and minced parsley and combine thoroughly.

CURRIED LENTILS AND BEANS

INGREDIENTS:

1 medium onion

2 Tbsp veggie broth

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp ginger

½ tsp turmeric

½ tsp salt

1 cup tomatoes, diced

½ cup chickpeas (canned)

½ cup mixed beans (canned) – I used black eyed peas

1 cup cooked lentils (red cook the fastest but almost dissolve completely)

1 ½ cups water

1 cup leafy greens (I used baby spinach)

DIRECTIONS:

1. Sauté onion in oil for 3 min, then add garlic, ginger, turmeric, salt, tomatoes, broth, beans and lentils, simmering covered, until ingredients are softened and flavours are well combined (approx 5-10  min).

2. Add 1 cup greens, simmer again for 2 more minutes.

3. Serve hot over rice, naan, pr pita!

 

The Weekly Soup: Tomato Dill December 23, 2009

I went a little over zealous last week at the grocers with a sale of cherry tomatoes.  I am a sucker for a sale and when these little gems were 2 pints for $3 I just had to get some (okay more than some).  I then found myself with too many little red rubies staring at me every time I hit the kitchen. There was only so many Greek Salads I could eat in a week, so I decided to soup it.  I forgot how nicely dill and tomato go together.  This is a fresh style soup – and it can be served smooth or rustic – your choice.  Good for any time of year!!  I loved this with super crusty bread and tasted incredible the next day too.  I assume it would freeze pretty well, but mine didn’t make it that far. 

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INGREDIENTS:

1 small onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 TBSP canola or olive oil

1 tsp butter

2 medium tomatoes, sliced (or 1 pint of cherry tomatoes)

1 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp salt

Pepper to taste

1/3 cup tomato paste

2 TBSP (all-purpose) flour

1 1/4 cups cold water, divided

1/3 cup cream

1 tsp minced fresh dill (or 1/2 tsp dried)

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DIRECTIONS:

1) In a small saucepan, cook onion and garlic in oil and/or butter over low heat until translucent.

2) Add tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper, and cook over medium-high heat for 3-5 minutes, then remove from heat then stir in tomato paste.

3) In a separate small bowl, combine flour and 1/2 cup of water until smooth, stir into tomato mixture, then gradually stir in remaining water until smooth (you can add more water if you want a thinner consistency).

4) Return saucepan to heat and bring to a boil, then continue to cook and stir for 2-3 minutes longer.

5) Place a sieve over a large bowl, pour soup into sieve, and press with the back of a large spoon to remove tomato seeds and skin.  NOTE – you can skip this step if you want a more rustic or chunky soup.

6) Return puree to pan and add cream and dill, and cook over low heat just until heated through (do not boil!!!!!!!).

7) Serve HOT!

 

The Weekly Soup: All alone-ey Minestrone December 16, 2009

I found myself with a night of me me me, so what do I do?  Cook.  It was cold, wet, damp and miserable enough out that I was desperate for comfort food that would not infringe on my upcoming Christmas binging.  The result was another soup – one that was sooooo good it only lasted a day (no freezing possibilities were even a glimmer in anyone’s eye).  The best thing about this soup is its versatility.  Add or remove whatever you want or have or feel like – maybe double the batch so at least there’s a chance it may last for more than a day.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 TBSP olive or canola oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 tsp coarse salt

2 cups mushrooms, chopped

1 medium zucchini, chopped

1 pepper, chopped (red, yellow, orange will do)

1/2 can of sweet corn

1 celery stalk, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced)

4 cups good quality broth

1 can diced tomatoes (14 oz )

1 can mixed beans (19 oz)

2 TBSP tomato paste

2 tsps each of dried basil and dried parsley

1 tsp dried thyme

fresh pepper to taste

3-4 cups water

1 cup dried macaroni or shells

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DIRECTIONS:

1. Heat oil in a large stove-top pot at med-high, add chopped onion and sauté until translucent.

2. Add all remaining vegetables to the pot and sauté until well cooked and softened (about 10 min).

3. Gradually add stock, tomatoes, mixed beans, tomato paste, spices, and water (add as much as you like until you get your desired consistency – I used 3 cups).

4. Cover with lid and simmer on low heat for 20-30 minutes – stirring occasionally.

5. Meanwhile, fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil for macaroni or shells then add pasta to boiling water, and cook until al dente (just under the recommended time)

6. Add al dente pasta to soup and simmer for another 5 minutes.

7. Remove soup from heat, and serve sprinkled with fresh Parmesan and crusty bread.

 

Saucy Polenta Fingers December 10, 2009

After feeling like I hit a culinary wall of non-creativity (why is it that we always go back to the same old same old after a while??), I went a huntin’ in the great abbyss that is my pantry.  My prey?  Turned out to be a big fat zippy filled with cornmeal.  Enter… inspiration!  I’ve made both the store bought and homemade kinds before, but I wanted to jazz this lil diddy up, so I made this into fingers.  Cooled ’em, cute ’em, grilled ’em, then smothered ’em in sauce.  Outcome?  A brilliantly cheap, quick, hearty and luscious winter-time meal.  Bonus was the totally gluten-free day I had!  Woot!

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INGREDIENTS:

For the polenta –

4 cups water

3 1/2 cups of milk

2 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups cornmeal

1/2 tsp dried basil

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 tbsp butter (I used unsalted)

For the sauce –

2 tbsp olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups fresh green beans, trimmed and chopped into 1 inch pieces

2 cups diced canned tomatoes

1 tsp EACH dried parsley and dried basil

Salt and pepper to taste

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DIRECTIONS:

1. Bring water and milk to a boil in a medium pot, then turn down to a simmer – watching closely so you don’t burn the milk.

2. Add cornmeal  into pot in a slow stream, stirring, then add dried basil and salt, and continuing to whisk for about 2-3 minutes.

3. Continue to simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes more – polenta will be gloppy and stiff, but try to keep stirring so the bottom does not burn, then remove from heat.

4. Mix in Parmesan cheese and butter, then plop into a greased 9×11 baking dish and cool for at least 30 minutes until completely solid.

5. While polenta is solidifying, in a large skillet heat oil over medium heat, and saute onions until translucent, then add in garlic and cook until garlic is fragrant and slighly browned (about 1-2 minute).

6. Add canned tomatoes and dried spices (and salt and pepper to taste), simmer for 5-7 minutes, then add in diced green beans and cook until tender – about another 5 min (simmer sauce on low until ready to use).

7.  Slice soild polenta into fingers, remove fro baking dish, and grill in a grill pan until heated and slightly browned (you could also broil in the oven, turning so all sides are browned).

8. Place grilled polenta fingers on a plate, and cover with sauce – sprinkle with parmessean and serve HOT!