Wednesday, October 24, 2012

{ WHOLE FOODS and GLUTEN FREE }

Back in April, I finally made the commitment to myself to start eating (even) better, to get back on track exercising, and to lose all of my leftover baby weight. Inspired by my sisters, I made a checklist and set some goals. What it turned into for me was eating a primarily whole foods diet, avoiding processed foods, including processed grains (whole wheat bread, etc.), added oils, and sugar. I realized after a few weeks of doing this that it also meant my diet was essentially gluten free. (I did eat some wheat berries in a salad and for breakfast once.)

I've had so many people say it's close to impossible to eat vegan and gluten free. Now I can say I've done it, and I'm having a lot of fun with it. (And I've lost 20 lbs and have almost met my end goals.)

At the beginning, I took some pictures of some of the fun meal conversions I did to replace processed grains with whole foods. I thought I'd share:
Mike found me a great deal on a spiral cutter. I made a lot of zucchini noodles.

When my family had roasted garlic brocolli pizza, I had all the toppings with zucchini noodles. Delicious!!
Beanburgers with all the fixings on lettuce. Amazing!

I replaced the noodles in this frog-eye salad with millet. So good!

This zucchini lasagna was out of this world! I actually liked it better than with whole wheat lasagna noodles. I sliced the zucchini ahead of time and salted it to make it sweat. Then rinsed and dried, so it didn't turn to mush in the lasagna. Loved it! (It's this recipe, with tofu ricotta instead of the tofu and toffuti cream cheese.)

This was one of my very favorites: barbecue pizza toppings over brown rice.
Alfredo and peas over zucchini noodles.
When my family had pancakes, hashbrowns, and field roast sausage, I subbed in pan seared mushrooms.
My portion of mac and cheez had cauliflower instead of whole wheat noodles.


I stopped taking pictures after the first few weeks, but I've had a lot of fun getting creative with my whole foods.

Here are some other recipes that work great:

I've learned not only is it possible to be vegan and gluten free, but I actually enjoy more variety than before. I guess my point is, if you're scared of a vegan diet because you also have a gluten intolerance (or soy, or really any other food), it's possible and can be fun to get what you need eating a whole foods, plant based diet.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

{ MEXICAN CHOWDER }

This is my adaptation of this Forks Over Knives recipe. Easy and delicious!

3/4 c. sweet onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 T. chili powder
1/2 t. paprika
1/2 t. cumin

2 c. water
1/3 c. almonds
1/4 c. nutritional yeast
2 T. ketchup
1 T. miso
1/2 t. salt
juice from 1/2 lime

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 can corn, drained and rinsed (or 1 1/2 c. frozen corn)

Garnishes:
chopped cilantro
green onions
corn chips
lime wedges
pepper
avocado

  • Saute onions and garlic until translucent.
  • Add red bell pepper and spices and saute a few more minutes.
  • Meanwhile, blend water through lime juice until very smooth.
  • Pour sauce over onions and peppers.
  • Add beans and corn and stir to combine.
  • Heat through.
  • Serve with any or all of the garnishes.

{ ROASTED CAULIFLOWER }

I got this from Vegan Dad. I like this so much, I eat an entire head of cauliflower for lunch!

1 cauliflower, cut into large pieces
1/4 t. turmeric
1/4 t. cumin
1/4 t. coriander
1/4 t. chili powder
1/4 t. garam masala (recipe below)
1/4 t. salt
1/8 t. cinnamon
1/16 t. pepper
juice from 1/4 lemon

  • Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Put cauliflower in a large bowl.
  • Combine spices in small bowl and sprinkle over cauliflower. Toss to coat. (I put the lid on the bowl and shake it.)
  • Spread out on baking sheet.
  • Loosely cover with a piece of foil. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes.
  • Remove foil and bake for another 15 minutes.
  • Drizzle lemon juice and serve.
{ GARAM MASALA }

1 T. cumin
1/2 T. coriander
1/2 T. cardamom
1/2 T. pepper
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. cloves
1/2 t. nutmeg

{ SMASHED POTATOES }

These potatoes are amazingly good!!! And so easy! I think Christine found them on pinterest? There's not really a recipe, per se, but we all like them enough that we've made shakers of the spice mix.

red, purple, fingerling, or other fun potatoes

smashed potato seasoning:
2x paprika
1x salt
1x garlic powder
1x onion powder
1/2 to 1x pepper

  • Cut potatoes into fingerling sized pieces (little smaller than a golf ball).
  • Boil or steam potatoes until tender. You can steam them in a pressure cooker: low pressure, 5 minutes, quick release.
  • Drain potatoes and spread onto sprayed cookie sheet.
  • Smash potatoes with potato masher.
  • Coat generously with seasoning mix.
  • Broil on top rack for 10-20 minutes, depending on your oven.
  • Flip potatoes and broil for another 5-15 minutes. We like them really crispy and sometimes take out the crispy ones and leave the rest in for more time.

{ TOFU FETA CHEEZ }

Mom found this somewhere (?) and uses it in a delicious tomato salad I hope to post soon. We also love it on crackers!

1 pkg firm or extra firm tofu (refrigerated kind), pressed
1/2 c. water
1/3 c. mellow miso
1 1/2 T. white wine vinegar
1 1/2 T. lemon juice
3/4 t. salt
1/2 t. garlic powder

For Salad:

  • Cube pressed tofu.
  • Blend other ingredients.
  • Marinate tofu in sauce at least 8 hours before adding to salad.
For Crackers:
  • Process miso, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and garlic powder until smooth.
  • Crumble pressed tofu into processor.
  • Pulse, slowly adding water, until desired consistancy. I like a small cottage cheese consistancy.
  • Allow to marinate in fridge for at least 8 hours. I like it best after 3 or 4 days.