Wednesday, April 15, 2015

One Pan Mexican Quinoa

You know what's great about Damn Delicious' One Pan Mexican Quinoa , other than how it tastes? I don't have to adjust a thing to make it safe for Patrick. It's completely dairy free and vegan.

Patrick ate it up but my little one, not so much. He's not a spicy guy and this does have jalapeño in it. 

I dice them pretty small and cook them for awhile with the garlic, which really cuts the heat. This is a super quick meal as well. Other than the jalapeño, I did no chopping (I use jarred minced garlic.) So I put it all in the pan and cover it up and let it cook for 25 minutes. Super easy! 

Made a salad and a lemon vinaigrette and dinner was on the table. Hope you try it and enjoy!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Pasta with Pesto Cream Sauce

The Pasta with Pesto Cream Sauce turned out fantastic! Sometimes when I substitute so much the finished product just doesn't work, but this time it definitely did. 
To start I didn't make the pesto as suggested. I used Amore's pesto paste since its dairy free. 
Cream and butter are no nos for us so I used plain unsweetened soy milk and Earths Balance buttery sticks.
And I had some mini heirloom tomatoes to use up so I chopped them up instead of two whole tomatoes.
It turned out really well! After eating it I wish I'd put some pine nuts on top for some extra protein, but it was very tasty!

Meal planning

Do y'all meal plan? I'm pretty compulsive about it. If I don't I spend too much time trying to figure out dinner, running to the store to buy things I don't have, and basically being stressed about something I normally enjoy doing (cooking) and time I look forward to (dinner with my family.)

I like to figure out what my week looks like first. I go through my personal calendar  and write that on a weekly print out for the fridge. I add the kids activities and any family plans we have. This gives me a good idea of what types of dinners I need for each day (hands off crock pot meals for busy nights, kid only meals for date nights, or more labor intensive/time consuming meals for days with nothing else going on.)

Then I start the actual meal planning. I use the app PepperPlate because it's easy for me. I used to use cookbooks and recipes cut out of magazines, but PepperPlate keeps it all in one spot and everything easy to find.

 I usually do all this on Monday. Then I shop on Tuesday. So I start my planning with Tuesday, which is usually an easy day but I had to do taxes yesterday and didn't get my planning done so I'm running a bit late and will shop late, so I'm making an easy meal tonight. That's the way it goes sometimes (most of the time)so "the plan" is flexible. Tonight we are having Pasta with Pesto cream sauce from The Pioneer Woman. 

I'm changing the recipe a bit of course. I'm using Amore pesto paste instead of making the pesto.

 It's vegan so I don't have to worry about the cheese in regular pesto, since our oldest is allergic to milk. Then I'll swap the heavy cream with unsweetened soy milk, the butter with Earths Balance, and the grated Parmesan with nutritional yeast. 

As I figure out each day I make my shopping list. PepperPlate will make one for you from the recipe but I'm a list person and still write mine by hand mostly. I also put reminders on the weekly planner/calender such as taking meat out of the freezer or soaking beans. Forgetting those things can ruin the best plans!

Here's the rest of our week with the links if you want an easy plan. I'll post my dairy free changes as I make the recipe. 
Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Rhubarb BBQ sauce, broccoli, roasted potatoes 
Crock pot Chicken with black beans and Cream cheese

I hope you enjoy the meals and that the plan simplifies your life a bit!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Gardein Beef and Broccoli

Yesterday was a Monday in all senses of the word! On days like that I make something really simple. No need to complicate life more than it already is. Last night I went to the freezer for inspiration for a quick dinner. I had Gardein "beef less tips" and frozen broccoli. Voila! Beef and Broccoli!

Ok, so if you've never tried Gardein products you should give them a whirl. They are very good and of course super easy. They are a tad bit pricey. In my area they cost about $4.99 a bag. A bag is supposed to have 2.5 servings. I try and stretch that a bit, so last night I cut the beef less tips in half. They are large anyway, too large for my children, and it just makes the bag serve two adults and two small children in my household. So here's the simplest Monday night dinner going:

Marinade (from back of Gardein bag):
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cane sugar
1/4 tsp white pepper (I used black pepper bc I didn't have white, don't sweat it, it was still yummy!)
1 Tbsp canola oil (I used a Mediterranean oil mixture, use what you have)

Mix together and let that sit on the beef less tips for about ten minutes. 

While that's marinating I chopped the broccoli into smaller pieces and I sliced some red onion and some red bell pepper. I had these in my fridge, if you have other veggies use those, zucchini, green beans, snap peas would all work great! 

Add 1 Tbsp oil to a large frying pan. Add onions and beef less tips,with marinade, and let them brown a bit. Add broccoli and another vegetable you are using. Let them warm through but don't cook long enough to get soggy. 

I served it over rice and even the kiddos thought it was pretty yummy! 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Tofu chocolate pudding

I've resisted making this for a long time for some reason. Tonight I was looking through so recipes and came across it again. I had all the ingredients on hand so I decided to make it. I'm so glad I did because it was supper yummy! It is very rich so I wasn't sure what the boys would say but Patrick loved it. Charlie not so much but he ate a bit. So here's the recipe.

1 pkg silken tofu
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate

Put all this in the blender and blend until combined.

How easy is that?!?
My only suggestions are to use the larger plastic tub package of silken tofu, not the one in the box. It will help with the richness. Of course if you want it rich use the smaller box. I used Ghirdelli semi-sweet chips. The package does say "may contain milk" but I've been using them with no problem for quite awhile.

So that's it! It really is great. Almost like a mouse. I think next time I make it I'll put some dairy free whipped cream and a strawberry on top. Yummmm!

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

It's been FOREVER!

It's been soooo long since I've posted anything. As always, life's been crazy. The Army moved us up to Fort Drum, which is in Watertown, NY, pretty much Canada, and we've just been getting settled in and figuring everything out. A lot of the things that needed to get figured out had to do with Pat's allergies. He started preschool in September. He had been in a two day a week school in Kansas but this is everyday and it's public school so, with that, comes rules about allergies and lots of them.
We've also had to figure out where we can buy all the different foods we need. We have been pleasantly surprised to find everything we Need and want. We have to do a bit more running around but if we can get it that's ok.
I am going to start posting more regularly, hopefully. My plan is to post my meal plan for the week on Sunday nights with notes on where the recipes are from. Each night I'll post a picture of the meal and whatever nondairy switches I made. So that's the plan. I'm really going to try to stick to it. Talk more Sunday! :)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Dairy free cheesecake

It's been awhile since I've had time to sit down and write about what I've been making. We are just finding out where we'll be moving this summer and there is a ton of stuff to figure out and learn and that has been consuming most of my time, but more on that later. There is always time for dessert, right? Of course, so last night we made a cheesecake.

Cheesecake is an all time favorite in our family so I've been looking for a good substitute for awhile. I recently bought The Happy Herbivore, by Lindsay S. Nixon and she has a great recipe for cheesecake, and many other things too! You can find the recipe here on Lindsay Nixon's website. Ours turned out pretty good.

The texture is spot on. The taste is very good but not really "cheesecakey." More of an almond custard flavor. Next time around I think we might flavor it differently, and I think it would be delicious. It is a great substitute and a good starting point to make something really tasty. Even if it wasn't exactly as we expected, everyone cleaned their plates except Patrick who, when he heard cake, was expecting something with frosting and candles so he was pretty disappointed. Not so disappointed that he didn't eat most of it though.