Archive for the ‘vegetable’ Category

posted by on cooking for 2, healthy, quick, vegetable

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Sweet Potato & Kale

Vegetarian or not, this is something I will be making again. Go to the grocery store and head straight for the produce aisle. No meat is needed for this one at all. Versatile, quick and perfect for two. Enjoy!

What you’ll need:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, scrubbed/cleaned
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • sea salt & pepper
  • parsley, basil, whatever other seasonings you like (I added a little bit of cayenne pepper)
  • 1 small bunch of kale (I prefer organic), trimmed and cleaned.
  • ½ can of cooked beans, drained & rinsed well (I used white and red that were leftovers)
  • juice of ¼ of a lemon

images of sweet potato and kale

  1. Take a sharp knife and poke several “holes” into the potatoes. I cooked both of them together on a plate in the microwave until they were done (I don’t mess with waiting for an hour to have potatoes cook. I’m impatient. If you choose to do it, bake them at 400 degrees on a baking sheet for about an hour).
  2. Trim and clean up the kale. I do this by flipping the piece of kale over so the vein is facing up like shown in the picture. Trim the leaves from both sides of the vein, discarding the vein and throwing the leaves into a strainer.
  3. Heat up the olive oil over low-medium heat.
  4. Add your onions and cook just until soft.
  5. Add the garlic and your seasonings and cook for another minute.
  6. Add your beans and cook for a couple of minutes.
  7. Add the kale and some salt and pepper. Cover and let it cook until the kale is soft and slightly cooked down (I added a splash of water to help speed this process up). **side note: I’d steam the kale a bit next time I make this so it gets cooked down just a little bit more than it did**
  8. Take your knife and cut a slit through each potato, just long enough to have room to stuff the potato and fill each potato with the kale & bean mix.

This was the perfect combination of flavors and textures. I even had a little leftover kale & bean mix that would be good with scrambled eggs in a burrito.

posted by on cooking for 2, healthy, portions, quick, vegetable

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I am certain I’ve mentioned before that, believe it or not, my cupboards sometimes end up bare. I’m also sure I’ve brought up the fact that I always have frozen vegetables in my freezer for instances such as this AND at times can be too tired/lazy to cook.

Vegetarian friendly and satisfying sans meat, this isn’t really a recipe but more of an emergency “what can I use” type of situation.  Plus, it makes 3 very hearty servings and all ingredients can be switched out depending on what you have in your kitchen.

Don’t have rice? Try quinoa. Fresh vegetables can be used obviously but sometimes having frozen options works out better for me in cases of emergency such as this week.

Come up with an awesome combo? Let me know, leave a comment below! I would love to know what you guys use. Don’t forget to take pictures too!

Here’s what I had:

  • A cup of white rice in the fridge
  • Frozen broccoli
  • Frozen corn
  • 1 can of black beans
  • Cumin
  • Dried parsley
  • Garlic powder (or use fresh!)
  • Salt and pepper
  • A half of a lemon in the fridge (probably from a bloody mary…)
  • A little bit of olive oil

Here’s what I did:

  1. Heat up a tiny bit of olive oil in a skillet. Throw in your frozen veggies (if you’re using fresh, they won’t take as much time to cook… you want them to be slightly tender).
  2. Put a lid on it and let them thaw out and cook a bit.
  3. Cook your rice (or quinoa) according to package.
  4. Throw in the black beans and your seasonings you like (a dash of cayenne would be good) and mix!
  5. Cover and let them cook another couple of minutes until they’re slightly tender (if you’re using fresh garlic I’d mix it in now). Throw a bit of rice/quinoa in a bowl and top with the veggie mix.

Seriously… the mix of cumin, sea salt and black pepper and the mix of textures with the veggies and rice was perfect! Not bad for a girl with “nothing” in her cupboards, right? YOUR TURN!

posted by on cooking for 2, healthy, portions, quick, vegetable

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I won’t say much about this recipe other than my version has a more complex flavor than the normal ground beef and cheddar cheese version that we’re all used to. Also, since I’m pre cooking all the ingredients, it spends less time in the oven, leaving the pepper tender yet crisp. Use what you have in the fridge and your cupboards, as this is a very versatile recipe to keep. If you’re vegetarian, skip the ground turkey.

Makes 3 peppers
What you’ll need

  • 3 bell peppers
  • 1 cup instant rice
  • 1/4 cup chopped white onion
  • 1/2 can of diced tomatoes (no added salt)
  • 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed and slightly drained
  • 1/2 lb. ground turkey
  • crushed and finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • dried parsley
  • dried basil
  • parmesan cheese
  • mozzarella cheese
  • sea salt & pepper
  1. Clean and cut the tops of the peppers off. Using a paring knife, carefully remove the seeds and membrane from inside. Rinse again, sprinkle lightly with sea salt and pepper, place in a glass baking dish and set aside.
  2. Cook the cup of rice according to package and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet, cook the onions and turkey until the onions are soft and the turkey is cooked through.
  4. Add thawed spinach, tomatoes, garlic & seasonings. Mix well.
  5. Add the cooked rice and freshly shredded parm. Mix well.
  6. Stuff the peppers as full as you can. You should have enough mix for 3 medium-large sized peppers.
  7. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and bake in a 375 degree oven just until the cheese has melted (10-15 minutes).

posted by on cooking, leftovers, quick, vegetable

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Pinterest, Pinterest, Pinterest. Found this gem on you know what. Really have no other words than it was so good, what was to be leftovers ended up being a second helping! Thanks to the Buns In My Oven blog for sharing the recipe.
*my version ended up being vegetarian friendly because I only had vegan bouillon instead of chicken broth – it was just as good, if not better!*

What you’ll need:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup rice (I used regular instant rice)
  • 2 cups broth (I used Rapunzel brand Vegan Vegetable Bouillon – No Salt)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium zucchini, grated (wash and leave the peel on!)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (I finely shredded it so it would melt fully)
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder (I used a dash of garlic salt & skipped the salt below)
  • salt and pepper to your liking
  • splash of milk, if needed (mine didn’t need it)
  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat.
  2. Add rice and stir to coat. Toast, stirring it often. Mine didn’t really turn golden like her recipe calls for (perhaps I was just impatient).
  3. Pour in the broth & bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low, cover and let simmer.
  4. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the rice has soaked up most of the liquid.
  5. Remove from heat and add in the butter, zucchini, cheese & garlic. Stir until cheese is melted and everything is mixed well.
  6. Add salt & pepper to taste and milk if needed (again, I didn’t need the milk).

Zucchini

Jul
2012
17

posted by on cooking, Grilling, healthy, quick, side dish, vegetable

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Zucchini is everywhere this time of year & I love it! It’s pretty versatile (banana bread, soufflés, cake mixes…) but I prefer it one of two ways: raw or grilled with a marinade.

Here’s a simple marinade that’s great for grilling up zucchini (also, works well in the oven at about 450 degrees if you don’t have a grill/grill plate).

What you’ll need:

  • 4 zucchini’s (I try to get organic), washed well and ends chopped off (leave the skin on!)
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon pepper
  • Garlic salt
  • Basil
  1. Slice the zuc’s in half, then each half into thirds, longways.
  2. Place in any kind of container (I use a bread baking pan) and be generous with the olive oil and seasonings (get creative! a pinch of cayenne, oregano, Greek’s…).
  3. Let marinade before grilling for a few minutes.
  4. Grill skin side down until you see grill marks and zuc’s are softened.
  5. *if you’re baking, bake at 450 degrees for 8-10 minutes on a cookie sheet or until light brown and crispy on the outside. You may have to use your broiler.*

Turkey Sliders

Jun
2012
25

posted by on cooking for 2, portions, quick, vegetable

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I love sliders! I use this recipe as an opportunity to try different ingredients and use up whatever I have in my fridge/freezer. Also, another great recipe when you’re cooking for 2! Feel free to experiment and see what combos you can come up with on your own. (makes 4 sliders)

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • ½ lb. ground meat (I used turkey this time)
  • frozen spinach, thawed & drained
  • italian bread crumbs
  • seasonings like basil, garlic, onion, paprika, cumin, salt & pepper, lemon pepper (to your taste and liking)
  • provolone cheese
  • mini buns (I cheated & bought mini rolls from the freezer section)
  • mixed greens
  1. Mix up the ground meat, spinach & seasonings lightly with your hands until well mixed. Add the thawed spinach and combine until incorporated with the meat.
  2. Sprinkle the meat with bread crumbs (I add just enough to make sure the meat holds together).
  3. I place them in the freezer on a plastic cutting board until a bit firm (this is totally optional – I find that the sliders cook up better if they have a chill on them).
  4. Heat a tablespoon into a pan, add the sliders and leave alone until well browned.
  5. Flip over, let them brown up on the other side, add your cheese and let it melt.
  6. Top with mixed greens, serve & enjoy!

Cooking for 2

Jun
2012
17

posted by on cooking, cooking for 2, healthy, leftovers, portions, vegetable

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When I first started this blog I mentioned cooking for 1 or 2 people and how my favorite cookbook is based around that idea (remember?). At this point, cooking for 2 people comes naturally to me. It’s hard for me to actually think “normal” and cook for 5 or 6 people because I’ve adapted to shopping, prepping and cooking for me and the boyfriend.

This all ties in with portion control and waste too. I hear friends tell me that they’ll go ahead and cook a full recipe fully knowing most of it will go to waste, even after eating leftovers. I would love to try and convince everyone that this doesn’t have to be the case if you’re cooking for yourself or you and a significant other. Hopefully I can touch on this subject every once in a while to help you guys out – along the way, let me know if you have questions or any ideas to add!

I still really struggle with cutting down when it comes to baking & probably because I know baked goods will be gone before I can even get them off a hot baking sheet! For this post I’ll focus on cooking and start of with some tips. We’ll go into more detail later!

Meat & Poultry:
Buy meat/poultry when it’s on sale and in family sizes – when you bring it home divide it into 1/2 lbs., put in freezer bags and store for later. I generally use 1/2 pound of any kind of meat when I cook for the boyfriend and I.  Really a 1/4 lb. of meat is a little bit more than a portion so this will be plenty. Trust this Nebraska girl – I know it sounds like not enough, but it will be.

When I buy chicken breast I’ll clean them up, cut them in half and freeze them separately. When it’s time to use them, thaw them out, place between two pieces of saran wrap or place in a baggie and pound with a rolling pin until about 1″ thick. You’ll have plenty for one serving and cut down on your cooking time significantly.

Vegetables:
Visit your local farmer’s market (if you’re fortunate enough to have one around) and buy what’s in season. This one is hard for me sometimes when I see Brussels sprouts or asparagus and have to hold back because they’re not in season and are so expensive. You’ll help out your wallet if you pay attention to this. Google your local growing seasons and see what’s in now. www.cuesa.org has a good one…

Frozen vegetables are something my freezer is always stocked with. I use them in everything and love having the different options when it comes time to throw a quick 15-minute dinner together or when there’s no meat in the house, I can easily put together an awesome vegetarian meal (think stir fry with rice or noodles).
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