Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Being Vegan is horrible.

There! I said it!

I was SO on that band wagon. And we really did give it the old college try (whatever that means). But we sort of had an epiphany and decided that perhaps we would just eat healthy, but like normal people. Brilliant. I know.

I still believe in being conscious about what we buy and consume. I also believe that meat is DELICIOUS. Also delicious? Cheese. CHEESE! And life is actually really horrible and depressing without meat and cheese.

But if you really want to wallow in sorrow then try eating raw for 2 minutes. Worst. Ever.

So folks. We admitted defeat. And let me tell you, normal yet healthy food has never tasted so good.

If eating Vegan and occasionally Raw did anything for me...it was make me realize for the first time ever that cooking normal yet healthy food at home is DELICIOUS. Never before have I been so utterly happy cooking and eating at home. So there you go. I guess Veganism does work! As soon as you quit.

Since we have been eating at home more we have come across some real winner dinners (rhyming!). I always like getting tried and true recipes from friends and family because I know it will most likely taste good. I especially like getting recipes from people I know because it means that I don't have to sort through recipes in cook books.  I am absolutely horrible at picking recipes out of cook books.  Those books lie you guys. They are like People Magazine. A bunch of pretty pictures and lies. I have never managed to successfully make a recipe that I found in a cook book.  I think the gorgeous photos set you up for failure.

Am I rambling?

Alright, so on to some seriously yum din din options for anyone who is interested...

Buffalo Chicken Enchiladas


I found this recipe on Pinterest and tried it out for dinner last night (we had B's family over for din din). The verdict? A.MAZ.ING. Everyone loved them and they were super easy.

For B's allergies I made an extra pan with corn tortillas instead of flour. We cooked them on the stove for a few seconds and they stayed rolled perfectly.





makes 8 enchiladas

8 large whole wheat tortillas (my favorite are La Tortilla Factory!) *I used Tortilla Factory and they were amazing. I will NEVER buy another brand again!*
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
28 ounce can red enchilada sauce
1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce (+ more depending on your taste buds)
1 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
4 ounces gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
5 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with non-stick spray. Pour enchilada sauce in a bowl and begin by whisking in 1/4 cup buffalo wing sauce. Taste and adjust according to your desired level of heat – I added in 1/2 cup total. Set aside.

Add shredded chicken to a bowl with 2 green onions and 1/2 cup monterey jack cheese. Pour in about a 1/2 cup of enchilada/buffalo sauce mixture and mix thoroughly. Stir until mixture comes together.

Pour a drizzle of enchilada/buffalo sauce in the bottom of the baking dish. Take each tortilla and fill it with a few heaping tablespoons of the chicken mixture. Roll each up and set it in the baking dish, seam side down. Pour another 1/2 cup or more of enchilada/buffalo sauce on top of tortillas and add remaining monterey jack cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Immediately after taking enchiladas out of the oven, add crumbled gorgonzola on top. Garnish with the remaining onions and cilantro and serve. Store the remaining sauce in the fridge for 1-2 weeks, and use if reheating enchiladas.

Thai Peanut Noodles

from Our Best Bites 
My amazing friend Kalie made these for a lunch we had a few weeks back. SO good. This will definitely be a regular staple for us from now on.

Due to B's allergies I substituted Sun Butter (made with sunflower seeds) for the Peanut Butter and it tasted exactly the same. Also, I made him some gluten-free noodles but I had mine with regular, straight up, linguine.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1/2 c. chicken broth
2 T. creamy peanut butter (use natural for no trans fat)
1-2 t. Sriracha chili sauce (optional, for heat)
1 1/2 T. honey
3 T. soy sauce
1/2 t. ground ginger
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 chicken breasts, cooked and diced (optional)
8 oz. Udon or linguine noodles, cooked and drained (whole wheat noodles work great)
chopped green onions, for garnish
chopped cilantro, for garnish
2 limes, quartered, for garnish
chopped peanuts, for garnish

Mix broth, peanut butter, chili sauce (if using), honey, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk until smooth and remove from heat. Sauce will thicken as it cools. To serve, toss noodles with sauce and stir in chicken, if desired. Divide into four bowls. Garnish with onions, cilantro, peanuts, and 2 lime quarters each.


Classic Shepherds Pie
from Weight Watchers  - Trust me. It's DELICIOUS

For B's allergies I cut out the flour and used corn starch instead...no noticeable difference that I could see. Just make sure that if you are subbing corn starch for flour that you look up the equivalents online.


















2 large uncooked potato(es), peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup(s) fat-free sour cream
1 Tbsp reduced-calorie margarine
1/8 tsp table salt, or to taste
2 tsp olive oil
1 cup(s) (chopped) uncooked onion(s), chopped
2 medium uncooked carrot(s), diced
2 rib(s) (medium) uncooked celery, diced
1 pound(s) uncooked ground turkey breast
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp rosemary, fresh, chopped (or 1 tsp dried)
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 cup(s) canned chicken broth, or beef broth
*I also add a can of corn, a can of green beans and a can of chopped tomatoes
 *I also shred a little cheddar on top of the potato's before baking

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

Place potatoes in a large saucepan and pour in enough water to cover potatoes. Set pan over high heat and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium and simmer 10 minutes, until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain potatoes, transfer to a large bowl and add sour cream and margarine; mash until smooth, season to taste with salt and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrots and celery; cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add turkey and cook until browned, breaking up the meat as it cooks, about 5 minutes. Add flour, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper; stir to coat. Add broth and bring to a simmer; simmer until mixture thickens, about 3 minutes.

Transfer turkey mixture to a 9-inch, deep-dish pie plate. Spread mashed potatoes over top and using the back of a spoon, make decorative swirls over the top. Bake until potatoes are golden, about 30 minutes. Slice into 6 pieces and serve.

Roasted Tilapia, Potatoes, and Lemons
from Real Simple Magazine


We have been making this and loving it for years. So super easy and really good.



















1 pd. baby potatoes (about 12), halved
1 lemon, thinly sliced
8 sprigs fresh thyme
2 tablespoons plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
4 6-ounce skinless tilapia fillets
1/2 teaspoon paprika
*I add some cherry tomatoes, halved

Heat oven to 400degrees F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the potatoes, lemon, thyme, 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper; arrange in a single layer. Roast, tossing once, until the potatoes begin to soften, about 20 minutes.

Toss the olives with the potato mixture; nestle the fish in the potato mixture. Drizzle the fist with the remaining teaspoon of olive oil and season with paprika and 1/4 teaspoon each slat and pepper. Continue to roast until the potatoes are golden brown and crisp and the fish is opaque throughout, 12-15 minutes more.

6 comments:

Kate said...

super duper awesome. thanks for the recipes :)

Ty and Meg said...

Glad you are off the boring vegan thing. If you want recipes we should chat. I have lots. All super fast and easy. I am excited to try those enchiladas.

e said...

You are a strong, strong woman. Those all look delicious!

kalie said...

I love you. You are funny. Have I said that already today? Thanks for posting the yumminess!

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