Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Chickpea, Feta, Mint, Chili Salad

I bought an organic mint plant at the grocery store the other day! And was so jazzed because A. Mint is my favourite herb and B. It was a total steal at 1.99!

Since I'm on a budget with my groceries, I've been scouting out deals and found chickpeas on sale for 99 cents a can, I'm like yeah I'll take a few of those.

I'm a major follower of everything Jamie Oliver, so when I googled chickpea salad and one of his blogger's recipes came up, I was in! If you know Jamie Oliver well you know he almost always includes a chili of some sort in his dishes, and this one was no exception! They also did a cool thing of warming up the chickpeas so that the dressing would infuse more into it, I thought it made a big difference!







1 can of chickpeas (460g)
10 cherry tomatoes chopped
half a cucumber, cubed
1/2 garlic clove, minced
2 tbsp red onion, chopped
2 tsp chopped red chill (or I used 1 tbsp of chili-garlic paste)
1 lemon, juiced
3 tbsp olive oil
Salt and Pepper, to taste
1 tbsp honey
Fresh mint, chopped
Feta cheese, crumbled

Heat up chickpeas in a skillet with a few tbsp of reserved liquid, cook just until heated through. Mash 1/5 of chickpeas and then dump everything in a mixing bowl.

Combine lemon juice, oil, salt, pepper, honey, chill and garlic (or garlic-chili paste) in a small bowl. Chop veggies and add to chickpeas, then add in dressing and toss to coat. Let sit in fridge to marinate for at least 2 hours.

Chop ribbons of fresh mint (about 10-12 leaves) and sprinkle over salad, crumble feta on top and serve!

*I added 1/2 a clove of garlic as well as substituted the chili for garlic-chili paste, I also added honey because I just find adding some sort of sweetness to salads makes it so much better and it goes well with the chili and mint, I also added cucumbers!!*

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Roasted Broccoli! Guest Post from Chris Wimmer (Health Smart Living)

Hey Everyone! We have a special guest writer for this week, Chris Wimmer from HealthSmartLiving.com. He's sharing one of his favourite recipes for roasted broccoli. His blog has a myriad of recipes that all look so unique a well as healthy! Some stand outs we spotted were: Buffalo Chicken Quinoa and Kale Fried Rice! There is also extensive info about how to juice and grow your own hydroponic veggies! So cool!

So welcome, Chris!


Broccoli…This is my great food challenge and would guess others share this challenge with me. While I know broccoli is packed with v itamins and fibre, I still have bad memories of getting a big head of broccoli on my plate as a kid. These memories have made me hesitate to ever try cooking it at home. However, as an adult I've learned a few simple recipes that make broccoli not only tolerate but actually delicious. Today I'm sharing a super simple yet tasty Roasted Broccoli recipe.


Why I love this dish. Pre-cutting the broccoli into bite sized chunks makes it super easy to eat (or scarf) . Sawing through bit chunks of veggies is a turn off for me. The small pieces of broccoli also gives you more spaces for the toasted panko/parmesan to stick and work its roasting magic.


We are going to our annual summer visit to my parents next and I can't wait to show my mom that I will finally eat broccoli.





Roast Broccoli Recipe

Ingredients
1 pound broccoli; trimmed into bite sized florets
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions
Preheat oven to 425 degrees
Put broccoli, olive oil, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Set aside for later.
Spread bread crumbs on a cookie sheet and toast at 425 degrees of 2 minutes. remove bread crumbs and add to mixing bowl.
Spread broccoli mixture across the cookie sheet and roast for 8 to 19 minutes.
Remove from oven, move to serving dish, and mix in 1/2 cup parmesan cheese.


Chris Wimmer is from HealthSmartLiving.com where he blogs about cooking and juicing as ways to improve your health.

Thanks so much Chris for the cheesy and delicious looking broccoli recipe! We're always looking for ways to amp up our cruciferous vegetables and this looks like a perfect way to do it!!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Black Tea Banana Cake with Blackberries

Have you guys ever infused tea into your cake batter?! Well get your tea bags out, now is the time! This cake totally blew me away, the flavour was rich and sophisticated and went extremely well with the blackberries. The key is to use really good quality tea bags so it actually tastes like the flavour of tea and not just pure bitterness.

The way we infused the tea was through almond milk. Just heat up almond milk like you would water, but take it off the heat right before it starts to boil, and steep a tea bag in it for 2-3 minutes.

You'll notice that there's not much sweetness in this cake, we found you don't need much sweetener because of the bananas and the tea is the highlight anyways.

I attempted to drizzle dark chocolate over top but left it on the stove for too long and burnt it! Nothing is sadder than a pot of burnt chocolate.

Berries!

Almost chocolate

Yeah...no chocolate




2 bananas, mashed
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup spelt flour
stevia, to taste
1/4 cup honey
1 egg
1/2 cup almond milk infused with black tea bag
1/2 cup blackberries

Combine flour, baking powder and baking soda. Set aside. In separate bowl, mix together mashed bananas, honey, egg and almond milk. Gradually stir into flour mixture. Add in melted coconut oil and frozen blackberries. Pour into a parchment lined loaf pan. Bake at 350F for 1 hour.

This cake reminds me of The B Book by Dr. Seuss. Does anyone remember this one?


Friday, June 20, 2014

Curried Quinoa Salad via Amy Castle!

Hey everyone!

Jenn and I would like to share with you a new go to salad of ours! We follow food vlogger, Amy Castle (What's Amy Eating) and absolutely love every single recipe she creates and you can't forget those Trader Joe hauls (still waiting for a Canadian TJ's!) ;).

We love quinoa and its versatility. It's a great replacement for rice and other grains. I haven't tried curry with quinoa (besides in Quinoa Croquette form) and we were curious about the combination in a salad. So here is Amy's curried quinoa salad (with a few modifications from us!)





1 cup quinoa (cooked)

Dressing:
3 tbsp greek yogurt
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp curry powder (use more if you don't have the good quality kind)
1 clove garlic minced
1/2 tbsp grated ginger

Salad:
1 granny smith apple, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 mini cucumbers chopped
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup feta cheese crumbled
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Cook quinoa, then chill in fridge until ready to use. Combine ingredients for dressing, Amy blends everything in a food processor, but we just whipped it around with a fork and it worked pretty well! Combine quinoa rest of salad ingredients. Pour dressing into rest of salad, toss until coated. We added pumpkin seeds for crunch, and cilantro for an extra hint of flavour and freshness.

This salad is honestly so so good! I was especially a fan of the addition of the raisins and chopped apple, it's sweet, savoury, salty, fresh, creamy and has a nice zing!

This is definitely going into our salad rotation (yes we have a salad rotation).