Saturday, February 17, 2018

Fava Bean and Potato Soup (No Added Fat)

I enjoy fava beans but don't find it easy to remove the skins when I cook them. I was recently in a Lebanese restaurant, Neomonde, and found split fava beans, both large and, what I bought, small. I found an appealing sounding fava bean recipe, which inspired me for a soup I made with four times as much water as beans. Here is what I did.


Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups dry small split fava beans, rinsed, soaked overnight, and rinsed again (it ended up being about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 8 cups water (the recipe I referred to used a 1:4 ratio to water, but it wasn't clear if they soaked the beans, so I decided to go with between 6-10 cups and used 7 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups (about half of a large 28 ounce can) canned chopped or diced tomatoes
  • 3 1/4 cups Yukon Gold potatoes cut into approximately 1/2" cubes (4 medium potatoes)
  • 1 1/2 cups (about 3 medium) carrots cut into large 3/4" chunks
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely (1/8") minced
  • 1/4 t turmeric
  • 1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 t cumin seed
  • 1 t fennel seed
  • 4 scallions cut into 1/2" lengths
  • 1/2 t salt
Process
  1. I put the beans, water, tomato, potato, garlic, turmeric, black pepper, cumin seed, and fennel seed into my Instant Pot pressure cooker and cooked for 10m.
  2. After the cooking was done, I waited a few minutes and gently released pressure, then mixed in the scallions and salt.
I served the soup with whole grain toast, lightly topped with an olive tapenade, then with tomato. I also served fire-roasted corn.

Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Waterless Chickpeas with Russet Potato Skins, Sweet Potato (No Added Fat)

My daughter was feeling a little bit sick yesterday so is eating just a little. She wanted mashed potatoes and didn't want the skins, so I had Russet potato skins with a bit of potato on them, and had the idea of making some sort of dish for my wife and me that incorporated the potato skins. I also had made sweet potato while pressure steaming the potato (for 20 minutes in my Instant Pot pressure cooker).

I made a waterless dish; I didn't plan ahead to have beans ready, so used the one can of chickpeas I had on hand. I put into a large Saladmaster stock pan these ingredients in this order: onion, garlic, potato skins, chickpeas, and frozen spinach. I cooked waterlessly - i.e., I covered the pan and heated it on medium high until the vapor release started jiggling, then I reduced the heat to low till the jiggle stopped. I let it cook for about 20 minutes.
Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Zucchini and Tempeh, Edamame, Baked Potato (No Added Fat)

For Valentine's dinner today, it was just my wife and me, and I decided to cook with zucchini again. I sauteed in a cast iron pan some onion, garlic, zucchini, and tempeh then, once browned, put in a stock pan with spinach and marinara, and simmered on low, covered for 5-6 minutes. I served with shelled edamame (cooked waterlessly) and baked potato (that I had pressure steamed in my Instant Pot pressure cooker.
Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

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Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Zucchini and Vegan Sausage with Vegan "Mozzarella"

I made a simple dish by cooking in a small stock pan onion, garlic, Field Roast brand smoked apple sage sausage, and zucchini; after a few minutes, I added kale and spinach and continued cooking for a few more minutes. I then added marinara with basil and simmered, uncovered, for about 5 minutes. I served with
a little of the Miyoko's Creamery "mozzarella" cheese I had recently bought.
Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

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Monday, February 12, 2018

Udon Noodles with Toasted Black Sesame Seed, Seitan, and Vegetables (No Added Fat)

My daughter picked out a recipe from Ruby Roth's The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids, soba noodles with toasted sesame seeds. I didn't have soba but did have udon noodles on hand, and made a simple dish inspired by her recipe by:

  • boiling udon noodles for 8m,
  • sauteeing over low heat for 3-4 minutes or so black sesame seeds on a dry cast iron pan (being careful not to burn the seeds), and
  • using a small Saladmaster stock pan to cook waterlessly (I covered the pan and heated it on medium high until the vapor release started jiggling, then I reduced the heat to low till the jiggle stopped) for about 15m onion, broccoli, and seitan.
I drained the noodles and rinsed them with cold water, then returned them to the pan and mixed in some coconut aminos (or soy sauce). I served, topped with toasted sesame seeds and the vegetable-seitan mix.

Results

Dinner came out surprisingly well! I wanted to have a flavorful broth for the noodles and wish I had had more time to come up with some sort of broth, but the noodles themselves were tasty, further enhanced by the coconut aminos.

Ideas for the future

I should cook more often with udon noodles; I don't think that I've used them for about 4 years. The heirloom wheat in these (I used Koyo brand organic udon noodles) gave this particular brand of noodles a nice, rich flavor. It seems like it hasn't been since late 2009 that I have cooked with soba noodles and, though I don't think I liked them as much, I should try again.

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Friday, February 09, 2018

Eggplant with Vegan Mozzarella Cheese

We're vegan and occasionally eat some vegan cheese (rarely for my wife who never liked cheese and once in a while for me as it tends to be high in fat and processed). I do like Miyoko's Kitchen (I met Miyoko at a conference where I was also presenting) products and recently found their vegan version of mozzarella, and thought I'd make an eggplant dish with this. Here is what I did.


Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 cups onion cut into 3/8" cubes
  • 4 cups eggplant cut into 1/2" cubes (about 2/3 of a medium eggplant)
  • 1 clove garlic, finely (1/8") minced - 15m 5m more
  • 1 1/4 ounces marinara sauce
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/2 t freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 t dried oregano
  • 3-4 ounces of vegan "mozzarella cheese" cut into small chunks as per chef's preference (mine were approximately 1/2" chunks)
Process
  1. I put, in this order, the onion and then the eggplant into a large Saladmaster stock pan. I cooked waterlessly - i.e., I covered the pan and heated it on medium high until the vapor release started jiggling, then I reduced the heat to low till the jiggle stopped. I let it cook for about 15 minutes.
  2. The eggplant was already nicely cooked and soft. I added the garlic and re-covered the pan for another 2 or 3 minutes.
  3. I mixed in the marinara sauce and mixed.
  4. I let the pan continue on low heat, but now uncovered, for just a few minutes till the sauce was nice and hot, stirring occasionally.
  5. I mixed in the salt, pepper, and oregano, then plated, along with baby lima beans and slices of Korean watermelon radish.
  6. I tossed the cheese pieces atop the main course and served.
Results

My whole family quite liked the cheese with its mild flavor. It went great with the eggplant. I wish that I had olives or at least capers, as they would have nicely contributed to the main dish.

In the Food for Life classes that I teach, we recommend that, as a rough rule of thumb, no course have more than about 3g of fat. I was a little high, but not greatly so. The 8 ounce packet of cheese has 56g of fat. I used a bit less than half divided among three plates, so each plate had about 9g of fat from the cheese. It was a bit decadent, but given that the other dishes were no added fat, not so bad.

Ideas for the future

I could have gotten away with a bit less cheese, though the main course was quite good as I served it. Olives or capers would definitely have been good. I should explore some caponata preparation that includes vinegar. I'd like to make a Margherita pizza sometime soon, especially if I can find large fresh leaves of basil.

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Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Potato with Lima Beans (No Added Fat)

I fed my daughter while we were out shopping so was free to use ingredients that she doesn't like for my wife and me, such as asparagus, zucchini, ginger, and jalapeno. Here is what I made for my wife and me.


Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup onion (I used a combination of onion and shallot) cut into 3/8" cubes
  • 1 medium Russet potato, cut into 3/8" cubes (it was probably 2 cups)
  • 1 cup frozen chopped spinach
  • 3/4 cup frozen baby lima beans
  • 1t chopped (approx. 1/4" cubes) jalapeno
  • 1T chopped (approx. 1/4") ginger
  • 4T salsa
  • 1T fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 t jerk seasoning
  • 1/4 t garlic powder
Process
  1. I put, in this order, the onion, potato, spinach, lima beans, jalapeno, and ginger into a large Saladmaster stock pan. I cooked waterlessly - i.e., I covered the pan and heated it on medium high until the vapor release started jiggling, then I reduced the heat to low till the jiggle stopped. I let it cook for about 20 minutes.
  2. I then mixed in the salsa, rubbing away any build up at the bottom of the pan, and let the ingredients continue to cook just for another minute.
  3. I turned the heat off and mixed in the lemon juice, salt, jerk seasoning, and garlic powder.
I served with some sauteed (in a cast iron pan with no oil) asparagus, zucchini, and onion, as well as tomato slices.
Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

Red Split Lentil Dhal with Okra (No Added Fat)

I decided to make a red split lentil dhal with okra. Red split lentils cook in a 1 to 2 or 2.5 part ratio of lentils to water over 13-18 minutes; I went with 1:2 for 15 minutes. Here is what I did.

Ingredients
  • 1 cup red split lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen chopped okra
  • 1/4 t turmeric
  • 1/4 cup shallot (medium shallot) cut into 3/8" cubes
  • 1 cup corn kernels (I used frozen roasted corn)
  • 1/4 cumin seeds
  • 1/4 t salt (I used kala namak)
  • 2T fresh lemon juice (I used Meyer lemon juice)
Process
  1. I put the lentils, water, okra, and turmeric into my Instant Pot pressure cooker and cooked for 15m.
  2. After the cooking was done, I waited a few minutes and gently released pressure, then mixed in the shallot, corn, cumin seeds, salt, black pepper, and lemon juice, and served with tomato slices and brown rice.
Results

Pending

Ideas for the future

Pending

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Friday, February 02, 2018

Seitan with Potatoes (No Added Fat)

I thought that I'd make a dish with seitan and had the idea of combining potato into the main course. I thought I'd chop potato into small cubes and pressure cook, then mix in seitan and frozen peas. I ended up also mixing in mushroom; both peas and mushroom were frozen, so I cooked for another "zero minutes" (i.e., just let the cooker get up to pressure and then stop) at low pressure. Here is what I did.


Ingredients
  • 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 3/8" cubes (about 3 cups)
  • 1 clove garlic, finely (1/8") diced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 8 ounces of seitan (I used strips but any cut would be fine, according to diner's preferences)
  • 3 cups (about 4 ounces frozen) mushroom slices or pieces
  • 1 cup peas
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8-1/4 t (as per preference) oregano or jerk seasoning (I used jerk seasoning)
Process
  1. I put the potato, garlic, and water into my Instant Pot pressure cooker and cooked for 2m.
  2. After the cooking was done, I waited a few minutes and gently released pressure, then mixed in the seitan, mushroom, and peas; the water was a bit low so I added another few tablespoons water (the potato even at just 2 minutes was nicely cooked!).
  3. I cooked for "zero minutes" at low pressure. 
  4. When I was ready to serve, I opened the pot slowly, and added salt, pepper, and jerk seasoning, and served, along with brown rice and corn.

Results

Dinner was good! The potato could have been cooked for less time and ended up being not the consistency of mashed potatoes, but still quite soft. It was all tasty and went well together.

Ideas for the future

I bet I could add all the ingredients at once, frozen and fresh, and cook for 1 or 2 minutes under pressure. What a fast way to an easy, tasty, and nutritious meal! Carrots would have been nice in this dish, and sauteeing mushroom and adding at the end instead of cooking with the other ingredients might be a nice difference.

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