I was commenting a few days ago on the difference in how you feel just after eating some thing good vs something good [for you]. Post-cheese plate, I feel like “mmmmmmm… that was good, I feel satisfied and full and now I want some more wine and a nap” vs post-’hippie bowl’, I feel like “mmmmmmm… that was good, I’m so good, I make good choices and I’m healthy. I should go running in a bit and then in the morning I’ll make green drink.” OK, maybe slightly exaggerated, sometimes I have a drink after eating healthy. Balance!
My point though, is that I spend too much money at Portland’s many amazing veg-friendly restaurants, like Prasad, and the newly-opened Canteen, on their “hippie bowls” — rice, beans, greens, seeds and Japanese ingredients I don’t know the names of, and magical dressings. So this week, I decided to take matters into my own hands and make my own! Here’s what I came up with.
I must preface this recipe with saying that you can make this recipe the easy, quick way or the slightly healthier –do it [all] yourself — long way, your pick.
Serves 2 (or just you and lunch tomorrow, yay!)
Do you have a favorite hippie bowl recipe? Do share!
Week 2 of Cook at Home month has me revisiting some old recipes, including Tofu Stirfry Wraps. I originally adapted this recipe to be veg-friendly about five years ago, and as much for my Beastie Boys title tribute, I have yet to buy a wok. My food pictures, however, have improved in the last five years thanks to my kitchen iPhone photography.
This recipe is based on an Everyday Food recipe for Chicken Stir-fry wraps, but I use tofu instead. I really like the freshness of this recipe, with the bell pepper, onion and ginger combo giving it a lot of flavor.
- 1 package firm or extra firm tofu, cube
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar (optional)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch, mixed with 1 tablespoon water
- 6 to 8 Butter lettuce leaves, (about 1 head, also called Boston or Bibb lettuce)
I’ve been considering going vegan for a while (and #67 on my 101 Things in 1001 Days list is: Go vegan for 1 month). So I decided to go vegan for a week instead. Being vegan isn’t that much of a change for me since I’m already a vegetarian, but it’s slightly more inconvenient. The main reason for trying vegan for a week is to detox and be healthier. My focus is more on whole foods and eating a lot of vegetables versus just eating non-dairy items. Just like with vegetarianism, not eating meat doesn’t mean you’re eating healthier. I know plenty of fat vegetarians.
I started the week out with a meal plan and using Gyminee to track my calories and nutritional intake, so I make sure to eat enough.
Breakfast: Oatmeal, raisins, grapefruit, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: Dave’s Killer bread peanut butter and banana sandwich, carrots, Kettle chips
Dinner: Vegan chili with tortilla chips
Verdict: I missed having yogurt for breakfast, but overall today was pretty typical.
Breakfast: Bob’s Red Mill Old Country Style Muesli, applesauce, almonds, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: Bay Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant: Mango Curry
Dinner: Asian Lettuce Wraps (butter lettuce, mango, scallions, bean thread noodles) with Chai Pow Yu instead of beef
Verdict: Today was the perfect vegan day! I didn’t feel like I had to worry about getting enough calories
Breakfast: Bob’s Red Mill Old Country Style Muesli, soy milk, Dave’s Killer bread, peanut butter, honey, almonds, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: leftover lettuce wrap ingredients mixed into a salad
Dinner: Ya Hala Lebanese Restaurant‘s Mezza Plate: hummus, baba ghanoush, tabouli, pita bread, stuffed grape leaves, fried cauliflower, falafels
Verdict: I think I actually ate too many calories today!
Breakfast: Banana muffins (with applesauce substituted for eggs), honey, pear, apple, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: Chips and guacamole
Dinner: Sweet & Sour Stirfry (pineapple, bell peppers, broccoli) with Chai Pow Yu instead of pork, rice, vegan cupcake
Verdict: I ate a lot of food today, but I’m starting to feel like I’m foraging for food. I guess I really just felt like snacking or a dessert, so I bought a vegan cupcake at New Seasons deli.
Breakfast: Mother’s Day breakfast at Bar Carlo: Vegan Skillet of potatoes, avocado mushrooms etc and coffee with soy milk
Snack: frozen yogurt (we’ll discuss this later)
Dinner: Brazilian Black Beans, rice, beets, chips, guacamole
Verdict: I accidentally ate a frozen yogurt at IKEA today. It wasn’t even a temptation thing, I just completely forgot that I was going vegan this week. And I’d been there for hours, and I was tired and hungry… oops!
Breakfast: Sweetened Wheatfuls, soy milk, banana, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: black beans, rice
Dinner: pita pockets, hummus, baba ghanoush, tomato, cucumber, apple juice
Verdict: I felt like I was foraging again today. I’m a little tired of eating a massive plate of rice, beans or vegetables and then being hungry again a few hours later.
Breakfast: Dave’s Killer Bread, peanut butter, banana, applesauce, coffee with soy milk
Lunch: black beans, rice, pita bread, hummus, baba ghanoush, apple juice
Snack: Starbucks Soy Chai Latte
Dinner: Lentil Soup
Verdict: I was a little annoyed to find out that Starbucks charges you 40 cents extra to have soy instead of milk in a chai. Lame!
Overall, vegan week has been fairly easy, except for my amnesia day when I bought a frozen yogurt for $1 at IKEA. Personally, I’ll stay a vegetarian (or pescatarian) because it’s much easier for me to stay healthy. Being vegan takes a little more work in planning meals and going out, but the main thing is the calorie counting. I hate feeling like I’m not getting enough to eat, and dairy is a much simpler protein source. Plus, I love cheese!
Hooray for bow tie pasta! I decided to combine several recipes that had ingredients that interested me.
Farfalle (Bow Tie) Pasta and Peas
4 oz (2 servings) Farfalle pasta
1/2 tablespoon of olive oil
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 -2 tablespoons soy milk
1/2 package (5 oz) of frozen peas (thawed)
1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice
1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese, plus more as a topping (optional)
1. Cook pasta according to pasta instructions (usually 8-10 minutes).
2. While the pasta is cooking, warm olive oil in a skillet, adding the chopped shallots. After 4 minutes add the soy milk and peas. Simmer 3 minutes on medium heat. Add lemon juice.
3. Combine pasta and sauce, add Parmesan cheese (optional). Salt if needed.
Vegan – Use vegan pasta noodles, skip the Parmesan cheese.
Ingredient List: farfalle pasta, olive oil, shallots, soymilk, frozen peas, lemon juice, Parmesan cheese (optional), salt.
Cook book: Adapted from ideas in Everyday Food: Great Food Fast
Prep Time: 20 min. Well, it took me an hour! It was worth it though. Wow, these are really good. They make great leftovers too. The sweet potato gives it a really interesting taste, and I love the lime sour cream dip. I’d never thought to put jalapeno chiles and lime juice in sour cream.
Healthy – These patties are pretty healthy because they’re broiled in the oven, instead of fried.
Vegan – Leave out the egg. Substitute dairy sour cream for tofu sour cream.
Ingredient List: black beans, olive oil, scallions (green onions), garlic cloves, jalapeno chiles, cumin, salt, sweet potato, egg, breadcrumbs, sour cream, lime juice.
Cook book: Everyday Food: Great Food Fast