Happy Memorial Day everyone! It is beautiful and sunny out, so I thought something sweet, cool, and slightly tropical would be great for Pantry Essentials and Recipe Monday!
If you’ve looked through some of my older posts, you know I am a huge fan of Chia Seeds (see recipe for Sprouted Chia Drink or Green Protein Oatmeal). Chia seeds are a good source of Omega-3, antioxidants, protein, and fiber, these seeds have a ton of great health benefits, including; anti-inflammatory properties, detoxification, weight loss, energy, brain power, and more (see a complete list here)
If you’re looking to add a bag of chia seeds to your pantry, I order mine online in bulk from AZ Chia. They have good quality seeds at very reasonable prices. You can also buy Chia Seeds in bulk at your local health food store.
Raw Blueberry and Macadmia Nut Yogurt Parfait with Sprouted Chia Seeds, Goji Berries, and Peaches:
1 TBSP Chia Seeds
1/2 Cup Macadamia Nuts
1/3 Cup Water
3 Dates (take the pits out)
1/2 Cup Frozen Blueberries
1 Ripe Peach
1 TBSP Goji Berries
Place the Chia Seeds in a bowl and cover them with a thin layer of water. Let them sit while you are prepping (at least 20 minutes).
Let the Macadmia Nuts and Dates soak in water for about 15 minutes. I like to give them a little pre-soak to make it easier on my awful blender.
Drain the nuts and dates and place them in the blender. Add 1/3 cup of water and the 1/2 cup of frozen blueberries. Blend until you get a thick, even paste. If it is too watery, add a couple of nuts, or if it gets too thick, add a splash of water.
Pour out the paste in to a bowl and stir in the sprouted chia seeds. They will add a gel-like texture.
Cut up the peach and place in the bowl, and then top it off with the goji berries!
(Note: when the blueberries melt it will thin out your yogurt, so eat quickly after making!)
Welcome to the first post of an upcoming weekly tradition: Pantry Essentials + Recipe Mondays (aka PERM), where I’ll post every Monday about an item I love and give you a recipe to try out as well.
I realized there were so many delicious things I love, and so many ways to prepare them, that why not share them all!
I’m also open to any companies sending me free samples (I mean, who doesn’t love free samples?), and I will always let you know what delectables I have discovered on my own versus what has been provided.
Let’s start it off with another one of my impulse buys at Whole Foods (yes, I found this on my own): Grama’s Sweet Chilli Sauce. This sauce is fantastic. I use it in stir-frys, as a dipping sauce, and even on salads. It gives dishes that extra pizazz.
Tofu Stir Fry with Lentils & Sweet Chilli Sauce:
4 oz Firm Tofu (cut in to 1/2 inch thick squares)
1/2 C Broccoli Florets
1/3 C Frozen & Shelled Edamame
1/2 C Precooked Lentils
1 Clove Garlic (minced)
1.5 TBSP Olive Oil
2 TBSP Water
2 TBSP Grama’s Sweet Chilli Sauce
Heat the olive oil over med-high heat. Once the oil is hot, place the tofu in the skillet. Let it fry on each side for 3 minutes or until golden brown. Add the garlic, mix it around, and cook for another minute.
Add the broccoli and edamame, and about 2 TBSP water and cover with a lid (the water will steam the vegetables as it is sauteing at the same time!). Let it cook for 4 minutes.
Uncover, add the lentils and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add to your plate, cover with sauce to taste (I suggest about 2 TBSP).
Simply make quinoa the night before: boil 2 parts water, and add 1 part quinoa in. Reduce to simmer, and let it cook for 10-15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed. (Note: most quinoa must be rinsed before cooking!).
Let it cool completely (I usually let it chill in the fridge over night), and then add it to the yogurt in a 3 parts yogurt: 2 parts quinoa. A good starting ratio is 1 C yogurt with 2/3 C cold quinoa.
So I’m a little late for St. Pattys Day, but this oatmeal tastes great and keeps you full longer. And who said green was just for smoothies?
Spirulina Powder, which is what turns the oatmeal green, is a microalgae, and is extremely nutrient dense and high-protein (for 1 TBSP, it is only 20 calories and 4g of protein!). It is also very high in antioxidants, boosts energy, high in iron and Vitamin B-12, C, and E. It helps your immune system, cleanses your liver, kidneys, and blood. Read more about health benefits here.
I buy my spirulina in powder form from Nutrex-Hawaii. It goes great in smoothies! Nutrex-Hawaii also has an assortment of Spirulin in mulitvitamins and tablets.
1 Packet Stevia or Truvia (if you don’t like plant sweeteners then use Agave to taste)
Start by heating up 1/2 C of “milk” on medium to high heat. After a minute or two, throw in the oats, cinnamon, and chia seed and let them simmer for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the egg whites or soft tofu. Stir vigorously for about 20 seconds to make sure it is evenly mixed with the oatmeal. Eggs will cause the oatmeal to thicken, so add the other 1/4 cup of milk (you can add more or less depending on your desired consistency). Let it cook for another 3 minutes.
Take it off the heat and let it cool for a minute or two. Then add the flax seed, spirulina, and stevia.
I’m a huuuuge fan of juicing. Lucky for me, my roommate has a fancy Bellevue Juicer.
Juicing is probably one of the best things you can do for yourself, with lots nutrients, the juice form helps quick absorption and digestion. And I always feel energized after I have my morning juice!
Make sure you buy organic!
3 Carrots (ends cut off)
1/6 of a Pineapple
1/4 Grapefruit (peeled)
3 Romaine Leaves
Make sure you rinse off your veggies before!
Pineapple just makes juicing so much yummier!
Don’t worry about cutting the center piece out of the pineapple. Even though we don’t tend to eat it since it is somewhat tough, the juicer can handle it and you get a few extra drops of pineapple in your drink.
I am a huge fan of the pre-cooked and marinated Tofu from Wildwood. I tend to eat half a pack when I’m on the run and looking for a snack, but their flavored tofu also goes great in a variety of dishes. I made this stir fry the other day, and then again for lunch today. It seriously tastes like heaven.
If you haven’t heard of Sriracha, it looks like this. My friend Carlie introduced me to this magical spicy sauce, and I use it on almost every stir fry I make. It is pretty strong, so go slow. You can always add more!
If you haven’t heard of nutritional yeast, it is a flaky yellow powder and adds a cheesy texture. It looks like this and you can find it in the bulk sections of most health food stores, or in big containers at Whole Foods. Nutritional yeast is a great gluten-free source of protein and b-vitamins.