Here's the Dish

healthy ANDI licious

Mighty Matcha Morning Smoothie January 26, 2013

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Mighty Matcha Morning Smoothie
with banana & almond 

Ingredients

-1 large sliced frozen banana (peel, slice into 3-4 pieces, & freeze the night before)
-3/4 tsp matcha green tea powder
-1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
-1 tsp soaked chia seeds (optional)
-5-6 slices raw, rinsed white mushrooms (just under 1/4 cup)
-1 tsp chopped frozen spinach (optional)

Method

Blend until smooth. Enjoy creamy & cold.

The consistency will change dramatically if you use a fresh unfrozen banana. I very highly recommend using a frozen one for this recipe to achieve the creamy texture. Buy a bunch of bananas, allow them to ripen (they should have “freckles” and smell sweet), peel them, break them into 2-3 inch pieces and freeze them for a creamy, delicious smoothie starter. I usually use about 1/2 to 3/4 of a banana in a given smoothie but in this recipe you’ll need the whole fruit since it is the star of the smoothie (along with the matcha of course).

Chia seeds can be a fun smoothie addition bringing extra nourishing protein & fiber. Just be sure to soak them overnight in water so they won’t be too crunchy and affect the smoothie’s texture. I just added a teaspoon of the soaked seeds here (so a portion of that teaspoon was water). I soak about 2 Tbsp. and keep this to use throughout the week in a sealed glass container in the fridge.

 

Spiced Up Split Pea January 19, 2012

Picante Split Pea Soup topped with Ancho Chile Pepper and Daiya Vegan Cheddar Shreds

Picante Split Pea
with tomatillo & jalepeño

This is not your ordinary split pea soup. Adjust the heat to your desire by adding more or less of the hot peppers. Heat it up by the mug-full to satisfy your hungry. A mild soup get’s a little kick of savory flavor with the addition of some salsa verde. I used Trader Joe’s Salsa Verde with tomatillos and jalepeños here and have also made it using Trader Joe’s organic Tomatillo & Rosted Yellow Chili Salsa. Both were delicious and kept the soup quite mild.

Ingredients
Approximately 8 servings

-1 lb dried green split peas
-1 large yellow onion (chopped)
-1 12oz jar Salsa Verde
-4 green tea bags
-2 small organic yukon gold potatoes
-Approx. 8 cups water
-1 tsp or more Ancho Chile Pepper to taste (or Cayenne)
-3 gloves garlic (minced)
Daiya Vegan Cheddar Shreds (topping
Methods
Total time Approx 1 hour, Active Time Approx 30 minutes

1) Add 8 cups water to large pot and boil on stove top. Turn off stove once water has reached boil. Add 4-5 green tea bags and allow to brew for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, rinse split peas and potatoes and begin to chop onion and garlic.

2) Remove tea bags, add rinsed split peas and cubed organic potatoes (about 3/4 cup cubed potatoes). Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium high heat and allow to simmer for 4o minutes. After 25 minutes add remaining ingredients: chopped onion, garlic, salsa verde, and chile powder to taste. Skim off the foam while cooking.

3) When split peas and potatoes become soft, turn off stove. Using an immersion (hand) blender, blend ingredients until smooth. Serve hot topped with a dash of chile pepper and a pinch of Daiya cheddar shreds.

Store in the fridge for up to a week or stash some in the freezer for up to 6 months. Nutrition Highlights: High fiber, high protein.

 

The Best Black Bean Soup January 10, 2012

Simple ingredients. Simply delicious.

The Best Black Bean Soup
with zesty salsa & avocado

They say black is slimming. When it comes to black beans these high-fiber, high-protein, low-calorie legumes can certainly do a body good. It won’t matter however, when you taste your first spoonful of this simple, natural combination of flavors you won’t need any further convincing.

Ingredients
Makes 8 Servings

-1/2 lb dried black beans
-4-5 green tea bags
-1 cup of your favorite salsa
-1 bunch fresh cilantro
-1 large yellow onion, chopped
-2 tbsp olive oil
-1/2 ripe avocado
– 2 tsp cumin powder
-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
-juice of 1 lime
-1/4 cup oat bran (optional)
Topping
daiya deliciously dairy free mozzarella style shreds
-Baked blue corn chips
-1/2 ripe avocado (divide into slices)

Methods
1. Overnight: Rinse dried beans and soak overnight (or for at least 4 hours) in large saucepan.

The next day...After soak, drain most of the excess water. You will lose some water-soluble nutrients in the water but you will also lose some of the raffinose (type of sugar found in beans) that causes the discomfort known to give beans their nickname as “the musical fruit.” The majority of the nutrient quality will remain and your guests will thank you for this measure.

2. In a separate pot, bring 3 cups water to a boil. Once the boil is reached, turn off the burner and add 4-5 green tea bags. Cover pot with lid and allow to steep until very strong (for at least 15 minutes- but leaving the brew longer is even better).

3. In a large pot, combine brewed green tea (remove tea bags) and beans and add water until beans are totally covered. Bring beans to a boil and reduce to a simmer, cooking for approximately 1 hour until beans are soft.

4. Chop onion and add to large saucepan with 2 tbsp olive oil on medium high heat. Stir frequently until onions brown to a caramelized state (but do not become black and burnt).

5. When beans are soft, reduce heat to low and stir in cilantro leaves from one bunch, caramelized onions, 1 cup salsa, cumin, cayenne pepper, oat bran (optional), lime juice and 1/2 ripe avocado. Using an immersion (hand) blender, blend ingredients until smooth.

Serve hot. Delicious topped with baked corn chips, daiya dairy-free “cheese” shreds, and a few small avocado slices. Keeps well in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for months. Freezer tip: If freezing, use containers that will hold only a few portions each for easy future dining.

Nutrition Highlights: This 100% vegan dish is packed with nutrients and extremely filling despite its low-fat, low-calorie profile. Black beans are an excellent source of several vitamins and minerals including folate, iron, and magnesium. The green tea is high in antioxidants which help protect cells against damage (including both heart damage and wrinkles). This soup is an ideal dish for helping to lower cholesterol; The beans and oat bran are very high in soluble fiber- the type of fiber that can bind to cholesterol carrying molecules in the blood and help remove these molecules. The avocado, which adds a delicious creaminess to the soup body, is high in monounsaturated fat- the “heart-healthy” type of fat that helps to raise HDL levels and lower LDL levels.