My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Sunday, October 3, 2010

what's cookin'?

Thought I'd let you guys know what I'm eating this week... I haven't made any salads this week, other than some awesome coleslaw I'll tell you about in a minute. I do plan to make another batch of my 3bean salad - the one I use a ton of cilantro in - but I haven't yet.

The big thing on Austin's menu is the turkey veggie meatloaf... he loves that stuff. Today I used:
1 package of ground turkey (it's 1.2 pounds, I think)
1 can of chickpeas - mushed
1 big beautiful banana pepper diced to smithereens...
(I did all my veggies in my tiny food processor so they were all diced beyond recognition which is key when you're trying to hide veggies from a teenager)
1/2 a red onion diced
1/2 a honeycrisp apple (they're huge, sturdy and sweet) diced
about a cup of carrots diced
2 cloves of russian (spicy) garlic diced
1/4 cup ground flax

It made two loaves... about 16 slices... 2 weight watchers points per slice... and per Austin's request they are individually wrapped so he can either reheat one at a time or eat them cold. He actually likes them cold.

I also used my tiny food processor (which I LOVE!) to make my first ever batch of hummus. I had wanted to make my own hummus for awhile but never could find tahini - the key ingredient in hummus. Then my wise nutrition consultant (aka my sister out law, Candice) gave me the tip of looking with the peanut butter... I thought it was exotic so it would be with the international foods. Nope. It was right there with the peanut butter. A can of tahini was about $4 - pricey, yes, but you only use about 1 tablespoon of it in two cups of hummus so it will go a long way. The already prepared hummus is $3-$5 per container... so by making my own hummus I can have better control over the ingredients and save a lot of money. This makes me feel soooo empowered! I love hummus and go through at least one container a week. It's a great protein and a great way to get in fresh veggies such as carrots and cauliflower.

There are a thousand hummus recipes out there but I kept it super simple for my first try. I drained MOST of a can of chickpeas, reserving about 1/2 cup of the liquid. I put the chickpeas in the food processor with a little lemon juice, three cloves of roasted garlic and 1 tablespoon of tahini... blended it to smithereens (that is a real measurement, isn't it?) and then added in a little of the reserved liquid until it came to the right smooth consistency.

Now that I have the basic process down, I plan to try black bean hummus... edamame hummus... etc, etc. I can see myself making a nice bean spread for wraps... and being able to make hearty, healthy stuff during the winter will be nice. Remember... I live in a fairly remote area. During the summer, we have bountiful, affordable fresh produce. During the winter... our choices are slim and the quality poor. It's important for me to be able to use frozen and canned veggies and still get good nutrition from it.

Still with me?

I also used the food processor to make cole slaw... basic: cabbage, radish, pepper, carrots... with a dressing of 1 tablespoon mayo and 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar with celery seed. I'm doing oven fried fish tomorrow so it will go nice with that.

Tonight for dinner I baked okra (yes, you can bake okra - just slice it in half and spritz it with PAM) cabbage, butternut squash, sweet potatoes and apples. It was really good... all of it... filling, and Austin even ate it. I had lots of squash, sweet potatoes and apples left over so I mashed them up together. Again, that will make a nice side dish during the week.

I've got more corn on the cob, more okra, more fresh peppers, organic collards from the farm that I think will become a stir fry... lots of good stuff to eat. I found figs at the store yesterday and today I found pomegranates, which are terribly out of season, I can't imagine how far those pomegranates traveled to get here... they aren't very juicy but they're still yummy.

I think my next cooking experiment will be to make my own black bean burgers...

Anyways... that's what's on the menu for this week. Almost time for me to settle in for the night. I haven't folded laundry yet but I did get it all washed... the kitchen is clean... I vacuumed the living room. AND... I shaved my legs. A semi-productive weekend.