Thursday, April 10, 2014
Hey guys - you haven't forgotten me, have you? I am sorry for being missing in action without so much as a how do you do!
An excuse? Well, I sort of have one. I fractured my foot in February and it still giving me trouble but as far as excuses go, it's not a great one since I've been off my foot and on the computer. A lot.
I suppose I haven't had much inspiration to post plant-based recipes since I haven't been preparing as many meals. However, I think I am finally on the mend and am ready to start blogging again.
What have you been cooking? Things that make you feel healthy and strong and energetic?
So, good things are coming in April - more blogs, a birthday and a giveaway on the 23rd. I'll be back again soon - I promise!!
Thursday, February 6, 2014
Hey guys, I am so sorry that I am a day late! Commit to a weekly blog post and you will watch time go by so quickly. I actually thought about this post yesterday but somehow thought I had one more whole day to write it!
This week I did not try any new Happy Herbivore but, of course, made some of my tried and trued favorites. My guys asked some guys over to watch the big game on Sunday So I made a few goodies for them. Here are my recipes from this past week:
The granola was especially yummy and my guys asked me to make more and double or triple the batch!
|Granola - HHLL, page 30|
|Classic Cornbread - HHLL, page 55|
|Add captionSpice Cake Surprise - HHLL, page 223|
|Roasted Chickpeas - HHLL, page 213|
I'll see you back here next week with more yummy Happy Herbivore recipes!
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Coming at you with week five! Let's jump right in with the pictures:
|Spaghetti and Meatless Balls — HHC, page 165|
This is my hubby loves spaghetti and meatballs. When we went meatless at home, we discovered some meatless meatballs at Publix that he liked quite a bit but they were mega expensive and not low in fat at all. He suggested we try making our own so I pulled out my handy Master Table of Contents of Happy Herbivore cookbooks (she has this available on her website) and found our recipe. We've not tried any other recipes - these are the best.
|Chocolate-Zucchini Muffins — HHC, page 45|
I just realized that this is the second recipe that does not have a picture of the finished product. That's because often we can't wait to dig in and I forget to snap a shot! These muffins are super moist and so chocolatey!
|Pumpkin Chili - HHLL, page 118|
|Pumpkin Muffin - HHLL, page 50|
This was a recipe for an individual serving and I divided it between two muffin cups. I'm really the only pumpkin lover in the house so it is the perfect recipe for just one. Open a can of pumpkin and once you've made these yummies, just put the leftover in a storage container to use again.
|Skinny Mac n’ Cheese - HHLL, page 150|
Tonight I am making Tamale Casserole, Spanish Rice and I am also hoping to make the Granola from Happy Herbivore Light and Lean. I will let you know how those turn out next week. In the meantime, you need to grab this:
Monday, January 27, 2014
I admit that I had an ulterior motive to challenging the family to not eat out in January and it wasn't just to save money (but we have definitely done that). I knew not eating out meant eating all our meals at home and a lot more cooking on my part. Eating at home meant that, for the most part, I controlled what everyone ate and would assure that I personally would stick to my goal of eating only a plant-based diet (without splurging).
I also felt that if my family went a whole month of eating only plant-based foods, that the rich foods (and meat) they had when eating out would become less-satisfying to them - and I was exactly right. We ordered pizza (vegetarian but with cheese) twice and both times different members expressed not feeling as good or feeling as satisfied.
We also went out to eat on Friday night after one son's youth meeting and the other son's basketball game. A local barbeque place that sells huge loaded potatoes has been a favorite place of ours for a long time and that's where we went. My youngest decided to stay plant-based and ordered a large salad. I ordered a plain baked potato and a side salad and, I will admit, I used regular ranch dressing on my salad. My husband and older son both chose loaded potatoes. They both expressed (even my husband) that there was just not something right about them and that they didn't satisfy like they used to.
So, even though we didn't go an entire 30 days without eating out, I would definitely call this challenge a success because of the important lessons that were learned (I may have even dropped a pound or eight). The money savings were pretty incredible as well - we were able to take care of some items that needed doing that were usually reserved for the day after payday, such as changing the oil.
I believe any time we find ourselves slipping into old habits, this challenge would be an excellent way to get us back on track. We don't have to challenge ourselves to save money or eat plant-based - just to not eat out! I have become more organized about menu planning and more diligent about preparing things ahead of time to ensure that meal times run more smoothy and that we are not caught at home without anything to eat. I can see us doing this challenge, or something similar to it, again.
Saturday, January 25, 2014
I've been trying to transition to a plant-based diet for a long time and the meal-planning has been a bit of a struggle for me. I dove into all the popular websites and bookmarked a boatload of recipes and I stressed over keeping up with them all.
I was often put off with the ingredients I was unfamiliar with and the lengthy time it would take to prepare many of the recipes. I just wanted to be able to cook simple food that my family would actually eat and be able to get it on the table in the least amount possible. There's nothing wrong with more complicated recipes but my lifestyle doesn't allow for it.
Now here is where I break into a Happy Herbivore commercial! I found what I needed in her low-fat, vegan, quick and simple recipes (not to mention her 7 week meal plans). It is what works for my family and I prepare her food on a regular basis. I find that I do not spend large amounts of time looking for new recipes to prepare. I bought all four of her books and several of her meal plans and when it is time for me to make my own menu, they're my go-to sources.
My point is this: if you are new to plant-based eating and are overwhelmed with all the options, try zeroing in on one source that interests you and get familiar with their methods, ingredients and style. See if you can see yourself adopting this for your own lifestyle. If you can, drop the big recipe search for awhile. I became more confident in my skills and the things I had learned - such as, nutritional yeast wasn't a weird ingredient after all and my family enjoyed the food I prepared with it and cookies made with beans were actually good! Now I occasionally come across a recipe that looks interesting and I will give it a try to see if I want to add it to my rotation - otherwise, I stick with a combination of Happy Herbivore recipes and a list of other family favorites I have accumulated over the years.
What's your plant-based style?
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
|Before popping them into the oven.|
|Meatloaf Bites topped with ketchup, Mashed Potatoes with|
HH Mushroom Gravy and Steamed Cabbage.
|So good and ABSOLUTELY no oil!|
My husband has fallen in love with the Pinquito Beans and out of all of Happy Herbivore's recipes, I have probably made it the most often.
I have mixed feelings about the Lentil Taco Meat and that's because of my mistake - I didn't cook the lentils long enough. I had already decided that I was going to just pulse the lentils instead of pureeing them so they didn't seem like refried beans. When I saw they were undercooked, I pulsed them more, which helped but they weren't the consistency I was going for. The verdict is: the flavor is awesome but you must make sure the lentils are cooked! :)
|Lentil Taco "Meat"|
|Taco's with homemade shells|