Tag Archives: vegetarian

Yigandes Plaki (Bean Stew Greek Style)

Healthy Bean Stew with Vegetables, Greek Style!

My friend threw a pot luck dinner party in Greek theme and I found this recipe which is really healthy, lowGi, vegetarian and delicious – perfect for cold winter evenings as a main dish. I modified this recipe and added olives, eggplant and roasted red peppers to bring the sweet flavours of the Mediterranean area. I also used three kinds of dried beans since I couldn’t find broad beans (works great) – this recipe is great with different textures with the combination of the beans and vegetables. I hope you will enjoy this recipe as much as everyone in the party did, great for left over as the flavour is actually better the 2nd day.

 Prep time 20 min                              cooking time 2 hrs                           serves 8 (side dish)

Chef’s note: I used 3 kinds of beans in this recipe (kidney beans, pinto beans and navy beans). Soak dry beans with plenty of water over night or at least 8 hours and cook beans for 5 minutes and drain, and recook for no bloating or gas. IMG_5143

Ingredients

3 cups of dry beans soaked overnight or soaked 8 hours (see instruction above)

1 tsp extra light olive oil

2 small yellow onions chopped

2 medium carrots, chopped

2 celery stocks, chopped

4 gloves of garlic, chopped

2 large bay leafs

1 large cinnamon stick

1 cup vegetable stock

1 large Italian eggplant (they are firmer)

1 can of salt reduced tomatoes and its liquid

3 tbsp tomato paste

1 cup olives (unpitted olives)

2 whole roasted red peppers, chopped

2 tbsp chopped thyme

2 tbsp chopped parsley

1 tsp ground black pepper

Salt for taste

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large dutch oven in medium heat and sauté the onion until translucent and add carrots, celery for few minutes. Add garlic, bay leaf and cinnamon stick and sauté few minutes.
  2. Add beans and mix well and add stock and cover and cook for 45 minutes
  3. Add chopped tomato & its liquid, tomato paste, black pepper and mix well and cook another 30 minutes
  4. Add eggplants, red pepper, olives and mix well and add ½ cup of water if needed. Cover and cook until beans and eggplant are tender over or 30 minutes,
  5. Fold in thyme, sparsely and cook another 5 minutes and adjust taste with salt if required
  6. Serve a main dish with a side salad or as a side dish with warmed pita bread!

Nutritional Analysis: 1 serving (based on 1 cup): Calories 169; Carb 28 g; Fibre 8 g; Fat 3 g; Sugar 7g, Protein 9 g; Sodium 304 mg;  Potassium 717 mg

Please follow and like us:

Spicy Quinoa Pilaf

Quinoa Pilaf

I love working with Quinoa – it’s a versatile starch, carbohydrate (actually a seed, not a grain) grown in Central and South America and has high protein compound compared to other whole grains. I also say it’s a chameleon where it takes flavours from other ingredients that you incorporate so it tastes great. I say this with whole lot of love especially for South Asian food since it acts just like rice, taking on flavours but it has better nutritional value than rice.

IMG_4193 IMG_4194

 

 

 

 

 

This is a simple recipe that can be prepared with little preparation – like I said earlier its very healthy and has protein, carbohydrate and good source of fibre. This is a low-GI food where it’s a great alternative to rice, pasta or potatoes and suitable for Celiac, Diabetes, CVD, Vegan and Vegetarian diet and tastes delicious!

IMG_4198

Prep time: 25 min            Cooking time: 25 min                      Serves 5 people (as a side dish)

Ingredients:

1 tsp canola oil

1 bay leaf

1 small cinnamon stick

3 gloves

1 green cardamom, pounded

1 small onion chopped

1 tsp curry powder (mixture of coriander, turmeric, cumin, black pepper, and chili powder)

1 cup mixed vegetables

1 cup quinoa (soaked, washed and drained)

2 cups water

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly chopped coriander

2 tbsp toasted almonds

Method:

1. Heat oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add bay leaf and cinnamon stick and fry 30 seconds. Add onion and fry until the onions are soft and add cloves & cardamom

2. Add curry powder mixture and fry for 2 minutes (it will burn so move it around quickly). Add mixed vegetables and mix well

3. Add quinoa and coat it well with onions and vegetables. Add 2 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Adjust the taste with salt and add coriander and lower the temperature to simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes or until the all the water has been absorbed. Tuff off the stove and let it stand for another 10 minutes. Fluff with fork and sprinkle almonds and chopped coriander and serve warm.

Nutrients per serving (1/2 cup): Calories: 121; Carbohydrates: 17g; Protein: 6g; Fibre: 3g;  Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 0mg;  Sodium: 350 mg

Please follow and like us:

Flavours of Tuscany

Tuscan Kale Lentil Soup

When I was in Tuscany, Italy in the fall of 2007 kale was sold in many colours (black or purple) in the markets. Many restaurants served kale soup with lentils which was hardy and delicious with unsalted Tuscan bread. Many households make variations of this recipe with cooked ham or pancetta or low salt bacon as you want more flavour and less salt. I was able to acquire this recipe from a local restaurant.

 

 

 

 

 

This is a delicious soup that you can enjoy in the cold months of fall and winter and it’s healthy. It makes use of kale which is high in vitamin A and C and also makes good use of lentils which has a good balance of low GI carbohydrate, vegetable protein and fibre and its gluten free. This soup is suitable for people with diabetes, celiac and CVD (cardiovascular disease). It’s a perfect meal in a bowl since it has all the food groups and great for cold days.*For Vegetarian or vegan diet you can skip the pancetta

Tuscan Kale Lentil Soup

Tuscan Kale Lentil Soup

Tuscan Kale Lentil Soup

Prep time 10 min                       cooking time 50 min                       Serves 8 people (1 cup)

Ingredients

1 tbsp (15 ml) canola oil

4 slices (100 g) pancetta (or low salt bacon or cooked ham)

1 cup (250 ml) chopped onion

1 cup (250 ml) chopped celery

1 cup (250 ml) chopped carrots

1 cup (250 ml) chopped fennel (optional)*

1 tbsp (15 ml) chopped garlic

2 large bay leafs

1 large cinnamon stick

1 cup (250 ml) dry lentils, washed and soaked over night

4 cups (1 L) low salt vegetable stock

2 large bunch kale, washed and chopped into ribbons

1 can of salt reduced canned tomatoes chopped with its liquid

2 tbsp (30 ml) tomato paste (low salt)

2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh rosemary (or 1 tbsp (15 ml) dried rosemary)

½ tsp (2.5 ml) chilli flakes (desired amount, optional)*

½ tsp (2.5 ml) ground black pepper

2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh thyme (or 1 tbsp (15 ml) dried thyme)

1 tbsp (15 ml) balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh Italian parsley

Salt to taste (may not need it since we have tomato paste and vegetable stock)

Low fat parmesan – for sprinkling on top

Method

1. Heat oil in a large stock pot and add pancetta (bacon or ham) and sweat them; add onions and sauté then add carrots, celery and fennel,  garlic and sauté then add bay leafs and cinnamon

2. Add washed lentils, kale and add stock and bring to a boil

3. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, rosemary, thyme, chilli flakes, ground pepper and cook in low heat for 45 minutes or until the lentils are cooked (don’t overcook the lentils)

4. Add vinegar, parsley and cook for another 10 min and adjust taste.

5. Serve soup in bowls and sprinkle with parmesan

Nutritional Value for 1 cup (250 ml): Calories 147g; Carbohydrates 21g; Fibre 6g; Sugar 4g; Protein 9g; Fat 4g; Cholesterol 4g; Sodium 320mg; Vitamin A 80%, Vitamin C 130%; Calcium 15%; Iron 15%

 

Please follow and like us: