Spaghetti Squash Baby Cakes

I can’t remember what it was I did the last few days to warrant not posting. Oh, I remember. At one point I was worried because I was experiencing a “twinge” in the arch of my right foot. I usually run about 7 miles every other day. I wear Saucony Kinarva 4s. I’ve had them for a while and they’ve treated me right up until now. I don’t know what went wrong. Maybe my form was off one day and then threw everything else out of whack? I just can’t bear to part with them just yet so I put in some inserts that I had. I don’t know what changed but my run last night was great. My pinky toes are starting to poke a hole on the sides of my shoes, but I just can’t bear to part with them just yet. They’ve been with me through my weight loss journey. They’re like an old friend. Sadly, I think I’m going to have to retire them soon though. Sigh.

Last night before the run, we had spaghetti squash baby cakes from My New Roots. I thought this recipe was perfect because I had two squashes in the pantry that needed to be used up soon. However, I didn’t follow her recipe to the ‘t’. I tweaked it a bit, so this is my adaptation of her wonderful recipe.

Of course you roast your spaghetti squash first. While that was roasting, I put everything into my food processor to grind up.

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You grind up some oats, garlic, salt and pepper, and sage. This is where I had to improvise. Her recipe calls for 12 sage leaves. I didn’t have sage leaves and I totally forgot to put it on my shopping list. So, I added 2 teaspoons of ground sage instead. It might have been due to the garlic cloves, but the smell from this concoction was lovely!

Once your squash is done, you’ll scrape it out as usual, but this time you’ll put it in a sieve to squish out any excess water.

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I found that there wasn’t much moisture to squish out. The only thing that came out was the olive oil that I drizzled on top of the squash.

Anyways, when you’re done squishing, you put it in a bowl along with the oat mixture (which does include one green onion. See recipe), one mixed egg, and cheese. You can probably substitute a flax seed egg here or another egg substitute. In hindsight, I probably should’ve done this. Flax seeds are on my no-no list and I really should try to reintroduce them into my diet again. For the cheese, I used 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast as she suggests. I think I added just a teeny tiny bit more just for good measure. Then, make sure you mix everything well.

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You’ll form them into little patties and then fry or bake them. I opted to fry them since I had fries going in the oven. I also had to roll them into balls with one had. While I was trying to open the container that had the nutritional yeast, somehow I managed to scrape a chunk of skin off the knuckle of my right thumb. So, rolling these with one hand was quite interesting and took some concentration since I had to do it with my left hand.

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They don’t take long to cook at all. I ended up with 8 patties. She says in her recipe that it yields 15-20 small patties. I wasn’t close to that number. The Hubs had 3, the little one had 1.5, and I had 3.5. What can I say? I was running last night, so I needed extra.

This was the final product. As you can see I didn’t add the sage leaves like she did.

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I was full on this and wasn’t hungry after my 7 mile run. The little one enjoyed his so much he had to have a little bit more. The Hubs liked it as well. I did forget to add salt while I was mixing everything together, so I will suggest that you not forget this step. If you’re not wheat-free you can probably have these in a bun or wrap. I’m definitely going to have to make these again. If there were any leftovers, I’m sure these would be excellent the next day too.

Y’all enjoy your Friday. I may or may not post tomorrow. I’m not sure what to do for dinner since we’re going to a friend’s birthday party tonight. Either way, enjoy your weekend!!

So, How Do You Feel Full?

I apologize for the silence over the weekend. We finally got a chance to pain the dining room and the living room. It’s the only free weekend we have before the in-laws arrive, and I wanted it done before they get here. After months of trying to decide on a color, it’s done. PHEW!!

Now, in my last post I gave a brief overview of my experience of becoming a vegan. Now I’ll go into how to feel full while being on a plant-based/vegan diet. No doubt you’ll get the question: “but where will your protein come from?” and “will you eat salads all the time?” Yes, you will eat salads but they’ll leave you feeling full. You won’t get hungry 30 minutes later, they won’t be loaded down with cheese (unless you want vegan cheese), bacon bits, croutons (unless you want to), or with an unhealthy dressing. And yes, your protein will come from plants and not meat, but you’ll see get your protein, you’ll feel full, and the protein source will be a healthy source.

This is an example of what my daily meals look like. I won’t include dinner because that usually varies every night. However, our dinners do have beans or other sources of protein. Sometimes I’ll have leftovers for lunch too:

Breakfast: oatmeal with cinnamon and agave syrup and my much needed coffee.

Lunch: salad with qunioa, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, salt and pepper

Oatmeal has 6 grams of protein in 1 cup of cooked oatmeal. I usually have half a cup but that works for me. I find that I’m satisfied until lunch. My lunch on the other hand is SUPER packed with protein. The quinoa, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, and walnuts are all packed with protein. Whenever I have this salad I’m satisfied all the way until dinner.

The key with salads is to add protein and not just leafy greens. That’s where most people go wrong. They don’t add protein and end up being hungry after they’ve had it. You can’t just have the leafy greens and dressing. Oh! Speaking of dressing. You should try a healthier alternative to the store-bought ones. You can make a simple dressing with balsamic vinegar and olive oil, or try lemon juice with olive oil. There are PLENY of recipes online and Pintrest if you look.

If you follow a good plant-based/vegan diet, then you probably have no problems meeting your protein needs. But for those of us who are interested in going vegan, newly vegan, or just want to learn more, to find out how much protein you need, multiply your weight by 0.4 to find out how many grams you need. (Vegan For Her: The Woman’s Guide To Being Healthy And Fit On A Plant-Based Diet.)i  I’m 136lbs, so if I want to find out how many grams of protein I need, this is how I figure it out: 136 x 0.4 = 54.4 grams. Simple huh? By the time I have lunch, I think my protein needs are half way there for the day.

So, where can you get protein? It’s surprisingly easy to get your protein needs met when you know where to get it.

  • Peanut butter
  • Any soy product like tempeh and tofu
  • Plant/nut milks: soy milk has a higher protein content compared to almond milk.
  • Beans! They’re loaded with protein, calcium, potassium, and magnesium.
  • Tahini – tahini is a nut butter made from sesame seeds. It’s similar to peanut butter but healthier
  • Nuts – almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, etc.
  • Peas

There are so many places you can get protein and have a delicious meal. After you’ve learned how easy it is to get your protein, you won’t be so concerned about it and it’ll become second nature to you. You won’t even have to think about it, you’ll automatically start to add protein-rich foods in your diet/recipes.

There are so many resources out there too, but you have to be careful of which sites you look at. Make sure they’re reputable. There are different formulas for finding the optimal amount of daily intake for protein. Find which one works for you or consult your physician. Here are a few good sources that I can think of off the top of my head for you:

Please keep in mind that I am not a nutritionist nor a doctor. I am a regular person sharing her experiences with being a vegan. I also trying to pass along the knowledge that I’ve learned and hope I can help someone. If I can help one person then I’ve done my job.

I hope you enjoy your Tuesday!

Want To Be A Vegan?

I won’t go into ethics in this post. I’ll only discuss the vegan diet and I promise I’ll try not to preach to you. Please don’t take my words for gospel as I’m not a nutritionist. However, I am just a regular person just like you who changed her diet.

Before I became a vegan, protein was a concern for me just like it is with just about every non-vegan in society. Usually as soon as you announce that you’re going to be a vegan, the first question you’ll get is: “where will you get your protein?” That’s probably because society, or I should say the food industry, has led us to believe that you can only get protein from animal products: eggs, beef, pork, and/or chicken. Another question that you’ll probably encounter is: “are you going to eat salads all the time?” I’ll go more in-depth about salads later on. But suffice it to say, you won’t be living on salads alone. There are SO many different and yummy and nutritious vegan recipes out there. Believe me. I made a believer out of my Husband who loves his bacon and anything meat.

So, lets start off with your decision to become vegan. I’ll admit that one of the main things that convinced me to go vegan was because I was trying to shed the last of my baby weight. Then I watched some documentaries like Forks Over KnivesEarthlingsand Food Inc. I’ll tell you, the first and last one were eye openers but it was really Earthlings that got me. I believe I cried during some of it.

I decided to go vegan in May 2014 just before my son’s christening, and I think it threw my mother-in-law for a loop. We were traveling to Scotland for the christening and my mother-in-law was going to do all of the cooking and for A LOT of people too. So, in order to try to make things easier, I said instead of cooking three different types of meals, I told her to just cook what she would serve my sister-in-law. My sister-in-law is a long-time vegetarian. I did, however, slip A LOT while we were there. The Hubs and I like to say Scotland and the South are very similar in cooking. Both the Scots and Southerners love everything deep-fried and meat. It was kind of like a one last hoorah with the meat.

When we got back, I started with the 22 Days Nutrition diet. I read somewhere that Beyonce and Jay-Z did it, so I thought why not? The Hubs was out of town so I didn’t have to worry about pleasing him. I only did the dinners and I lost 8lbs in one week. I was amazed at how much and how quickly I lost the weight. Of course I was running with a stroller every other day as well. The dinners were pretty good and I saw the different things and different combinations I could have. So, I looked for vegan recipes online and Pintrest.

I shed the weight easily and I felt SO good. I couldn’t remember the last time I felt that good. Plus, my indoor plumbing was working like it’s never worked before! One of the things that really surprised me was that I was eating a vegan diet and I was maintaining my run. I did struggle with balancing the exercise and vegan diet at first because I was learning where my protein was coming from. Now I’m running 7 miles every other day, I’m full after each meal, and that’s all on a vegan diet.

The Hubs is an avid bicycler (is that the correct term), and he made the comment the other day that he’s shed a lot of weight and that he’s cycling a longer distance than before. All I could say was “see it is possible to be a vegan athlete.”

It’s actually kind of easy once you realize all of the great offerings there are out there. There’s a vegan substitute for just about everything. Just don’t go crazy stocking your pantry with all of the different substitutes all at once, or you’ll blow your grocery budget. Be wise with the vegan meats if you choose to eat them. Just because you eat a vegan diet doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily lose weight. It is possible to be a vegan and still have a spare tire.

Look at the nutrition label of vegan meats. They’re not all that healthy, so maybe having them once in a while is ok but not every day. I used to have a sandwich with vegan deli meat every day and I was wondering why it was so hard to shed some weight even though I was eating vegan.

When you do go vegan, make sure you’re getting the nutrients your body needs. As a vegan there are some nutrients you can’t get from a plant-based diet like vitamin B12. I take a daily supplement for vegans because I want to make sure I’m getting everything I need. Here’s an excerpt about B12 from Vegan For Her: The Woman’s Guide To Being Healthy And Fit On A Plant-Based Diet

Low intakes of this nutrient may raise risk for depression, memory loss, and heart disease. An acute deficiency causes anemia and can do permanent damage to nerves. Plant foods don’t contain vitamin B12 so vegans need to get it from either supplements or fortified foods. While you may see claims on the internet that fermented foods and sea vegetables provide vitamin B12, what they actually contain is a compound that looks like B12 but doesn’t have any vitamin activity. A daily supplement of 25 micrograms of vitamin B12 is the fastest and easiest way to cover your needs.

When I first went vegan, I thought I would miss meats. We consumed A LOT of chicken an burgers were always a weekend thing. I was definitely going to miss my mayo. I LOVE my mayo, but thankfully there’s a vegan substitute for this! Looking back, I didn’t miss the meat too much. Every now and then when I smell bacon I’ll get whinny and nostalgic. Sometimes I get a craving for a Big Mac and I have no idea why. Or I’ll get a craving for a bucket of KFC chicken and that one really baffles me because I got sick the last time I had KFC.

If you’re wanting to go vegan but you’re a bit intimidated, how about trying vegetarian first? You won’t be eating any meat but you’ll still get to have milk and eggs. Once you’ve stabilized there maybe try slowly going vegan. You’re already half way there, so why not go all the way?

These are just a few quick suggestions off the top of my head. You don’t have to take my word/suggestions at all. If you find some other suggestions that are better for you, then follow your instinct.

If you want to be a vegan, I’d suggest doing a slow transition. It’s a HUGE change and going vegan straight away is going to be a shock to you. You need time to adjust. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Maybe try going vegetarian first, as a slow transition, and then go vegan.
  • Do a few days of vegan dishes and then slowly work your way up to every day.
  • Switch out your cow’s milk for a nut milk. Personally I don’t like the flavored ones (not to mention all the extra sugar), if you do then by all means go ahead.
  • Try a vegan butter like Earth Balance. Take it from me, a Southern girl who LOVES salt, mayonnaise, and butter. Earth Balance’s butter is the closest thing to dairy butter.
  • If you like baking, use an egg replacer like flax seeds (which adds more nutrition). You can substitute one egg for 1 Tbsp of ground flaxseed and 3 Tbsp of water. Let the mix sit and you’ll see it start to gel.
  • There are great vegan meat substitutes out there. There’s a GREAT sausage by Field Roast that is excellent. If you have Celiac’s or any kind of wheat allergy you probably can’t have any meat substitutes as one of the ingredients is wheat and/or gluten.

Tomorrow I’ll into how to be satiated after every meal. You’ll have salads but you won’t get hungry 15 or 30 minutes after you’ve had one, and it won’t be loaded down with bacon bits and unhealthy ranch or blue cheese dressing. You can have really belt busting, satisfying vegan meals and you won’t go hungry.

Whenever I have meat, as a compromise for the Hubs and little one, I noticed how sluggish I’ll get and my plumbing gets clogged. You’ll feel better on a plant-based/vegan diet, you won’t have to worry about draining fat off of anything in a little bitty jar and you won’t have to worry about putting it somewhere discreet and won’t have to worry about forgetting to throw it out. Plus, have you noticed lately that there’s all kinds of meat recalls because of listeria and the bird flu? If you don’t know what listeria is, it’s a bacteria that comes from feces. I won’t go into details about a slaughter house but just the though of having poop on my food doesn’t sit well with me.

Like I said, I’ll go more in-depth about food tomorrow. I’m going grab the little one since he’s not going to nap this afternoon. So, we’re going to go out and enjoy the beautiful weather.

I hope you all enjoy your Friday!

Four Corners Lentil Soup

Last night was just full of lentil goodness from My New Roots cookbook. The other night I cooked with green lentils, but last night it was with red lentils. I’m not a nutritionist but I have a deep interest in nutrition. It’s amazing how you get interested in something when you’re suddenly effected with something.

For instance, I was diagnosed with leaky gut syndrome and having an allergy to wheat. I was never really interested in nutrition for myself, but definitely for the little one, until I got “sick.” I was forced to find plant sources for protein because of one of the medications I had to take needed to be taken with a protein meal. Before, I wasn’t too concerned. That, in turn, got me interested in what nutrients were offered in which plants. I also needed to know this since I try to maintain a vegan diet.

But back to the recipe, I never really knew the difference between the different types of lentils. As in yesterday’s post, I just know that green lentils maintain their shape/texture and take about 45 minutes to cook. Apparently they’re really good to use in salads too (I must try this at some point). Red lentils take about 20 minutes to cook and they get mushy. That’s about all I know about the two. But Sarah Britton is a holistic nutritionist and certified nutritional practitioner, so I think it’s safe to say she knows what she’s talking about.

In the cookbook, she has a blurb about red lentils:

Red lentils have a velvety texture and a delicate flavor–perfect for purees and soups because they tend to fall apart when cooked. I often add blended red lentils to soups or stews to make them creamy without the cream! They are low in calories, virtually fat-free, but very filling because of their high fiber content. In addition to providing the body with slow-burning complex carbohydrates, lentils can increase your energy by replenishing your iron stores. This is a particularly good feature for women, who are more at risk for iron deficiency–especially because, unlike red meat, another source of iron, lentils are not rich in fat and calories.

Interesting huh? I will tell you that in this recipe, she uses lemons. Vitamin C helps your body absorb iron. So that’s probably why lemons are added other than the fact that they lend a wonderful taste to the soup.

I had some leeks in the fridge that needed to be used, and thankfully this recipe says you can use onions or leeks. So I chopped up those and some garlic cloves. You cook those and then add some more ingredients. She does say you can use a can of tomatoes or five fresh ones. I only had three. They’ve been sitting in the fridge for a while and needed to be used soon or they’d go bad. They were big enough to count as five tomatoes, so that’s what I used.

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You let it simmer for a while and then you’re ready to serve. I can’t get over how quick and easy Sarah Britton’s soups are. I love soups but sometimes I just don’t have time to make them because I have a little person to attend to. With Britton’s soups, I can put on an episode of Toopy & Binoo (yes I know it’s bad to have the TV serve as a babysitter), and get supper done in an hour. Sometimes the little one will come over and asked to be picked up so he can see what I’m doing and then ask for a taste, but the easiness and speed you can cook her soups are fabulous!

So, when everything was done, you serve your soup. I had no need to add any extra salt or anything. The lemons totally made the dish.

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The little one wasn’t a huge fan but I think that’s because of the tartness the lemons added. There is a remedy for that. She has a suggestion, but I won’t tell you what it is exactly because you’ll just have to buy her cookbook. The Hubs liked his and I actually got mad because he froze all of the leftovers and didn’t leave me any for lunch today. I was looking forward to having some. Oh well. I am DEFINITELY going to be making this soup again. I can just imagine how it would be on a cold day. You have to try this soup!

Enjoy your day! We’re going to have summer corn and shrimp soup tonight. Yes, another soup.

Roasted Cauliflower with Lebanese Lentils and An Apology

Hello everyone. I’m still alive. I took a mini break with the blog to recharge my batteries. I usually post while the little one is napping. He usually naps anywhere from 1.5hrs to 2hrs. When I finish my blog post an hour has gone and then I get a little bit of time to myself before he wakes up. So all last week while he was napping, I caught up on some TV shows, I read a book with a cup of coffee in the sun, and basically paid attention to myself. I haven’t done that in a while.

I think as a new (or fairly new) mom, there’s a danger in losing yourself because there’s a little person who demands your complete attention. You don’t have time to think about anything other than the little person that you’ve created. He’s 1.5 years old but he still demands my attention. When he doesn’t get it he pulls on my pants or just gets right in my face. It might be a little annoying at the time or for a split second, but then you have to think this little person wants your attention and loves you. You’re his whole world. So, that 1.5hrs – 2hrs time slot becomes very precious to me. There were so many other external factors going on last week that I just needed to step back and concentrate on myself. I apologize for neglecting you all last week. I am sorry, but I am now fully charged and ready to go and will keep bringing you posts.

Sunday night we had roasted cauliflower with Lebanese lentils from My New Roots. The original recipe is called Roasted Cauliflower with Lebanese Lentils and Kaniwa. I didn’t have kaniwa nor did I know what it was. She does say you can use quinoa instead, but I didn’t see that part until later. In her cookbook, there’s a little blurb about it:

Kaniwa is similar to quinoa and amaranth, a grain-like seed very high in protein and minerals. Because kaniwa is such a small seed, what we eat is mostly bran, which is very high in fiber and iron. The flavor of kaniwa is nutty and slightly sweet. It is delicious as a warm breakfast porridge and cold in a grain salad too.

I thought the dish would be filling without it and it was. You slice up a cauliflower and roast it for about half an hour. I think I roasted mine for 25 minutes.

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While the cauliflower was roasting I let my lentils cook. While those were cooking, I went back outside to play with the little one and the Hubs with the sidewalk chalk. Actually, I think the grown ups played with the sidewalk chalk and the little one just played with the rocks that are in our flower bed out front.

When the lentils and cauliflower were done cooking you start to toast the spices in a pan. The aroma was just…WOW! I’m still fairly new to this toasting-the-spices-before-you-cook technique. I mentioned this to the Hubs, and he’s like “yeah, it’s supposed to wake them up.” Well! After you toast the spices, you throw in a sliced onion to caramelize.

The recipe calls for green lentils. There are different types of lentils. I’ve only cooked with green and red, but I think there’s a brown one out there too. The red lentils take about 20 minutes to cook and tend to get mushy after they’re done. Green lentils take a bit longer to cook (about 45 minutes) and maintain their shape and texture. If you’re used to cooking with red lentils, you’ll probably think the green lentils are undercooked when you lift the lid of your pot and taste them but they’re not.

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I won’t tell you about the final steps because you’ll have to go out and get her cookbook. It truly is amazing. She recently did a book tour in Canada but only did a few stops. If you’re reading this, Sarah Britton, please please please stop by Edmonton on your next book tour.

The sauce you make for the lentils is SOOOOOOOO yummy! I think that’s the reason why the little one ate all of his dish. The Hubs liked it and I even had some for lunch the next day.

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This dish is so yummy that I will be making this again. I think I might even make it for the in-laws for when they’re here. It’s a super healthy dish, it’s packed with all kinds of flavors, it’s easy, and the little one ate it all. This recipe is under her Autumn section (she divides her cookbook into seasons), but I truly believe this is something you can make and enjoy any time of the year.

Coconut Curry with Rice

I’ve recently discovered Amy Chaplin’s site via My New Roots. I was looking for recipes on My New Roots when she said she used Amy Chaplin’s site when she first started cooking. I love My New Roots, so I figured if she likes it, then I have to try it. I’ve tried a few recipes from Amy Chaplin and so far it’s good. She has a cookbook out called At Home In The Whole Food Kitchen. I’ve seen it in the bookstore but wanted to try some recipes from her site before I actually buy the book.

The coconut curry with brown jasmine rice recipe was easy to make. She actually makes her own coconut milk! I didn’t have time so I opted to use canned coconut milk. I only used one can and that wasn’t enough. I mean it was enough for our purposes but next time I’ll use two cans.

Here’s my adaptation of the recipe.

You start out with lemongrass. Lemongrass is like a woody stalk. It doesn’t smell like a lemon but more like citronella, in my opinion.

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Under the entry “Coconut & Lemon” from the Flavor Thesaurus, it says:

Coconut gets a refreshingly citric lift from lemongrass. Even if it lacks the sharp acidity of lemon, the vivid citrus-floral character of lemongrass lightens the weighty fattiness of coconut. The lemoniness comes from citral, a combination of two compounds that exists at a low level in the essential oil of lemon and dominates that of lemongrass.

Interesting, huh?

I chopped up the lemongrass and let it simmer in the coconut milk on the stove for as long as the rice was cooking. I didn’t have jasmine rice on hand so I used what we did have and that ended up being basmati rice. Don’t forget to rinse your rice before you cook it!

Once my rice was done cooking, I strained out the lemongrass from the coconut milk. You saute the onions and garlic and throw everything else in along with the coconut milk. I cooked the vegetables until they were tender. I didn’t have turnips or squash. I had half a head of cauliflower leftover from the other day and everything else. That was plenty enough for us. Then you mix in some turmeric and arrowroot or cornstarch to thicken up the sauce a bit. This is the point where I realized I should’ve got two cans of coconut milk instead of one.

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I was finished with everything within an hour, and that included extra simmering time to make sure the vegetables were tender enough. The dish was good and easy to make. I’ll definitely make this again but with two cans of coconut milk. You can try making your own coconut milk, like she does in the recipe, but I just don’t have the time to do it. You serve this over rice and it’s excellent. It’s even good for lunch the next day!

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I should’ve made this recipe today. This comforting curry would be perfect for today as there is about a good eight inches of snow outside. Yes, it’s May but that’s spring in Alberta for ya. It still doesn’t stop me from sighing and thinking “all the flowers back home are already out and were out since March!” Sigh.

Enjoy your hump day!

White Velvet Soup

I found this recipe from My New Roots via Green Kitchen Stories and thought it would be a perfect way for me to reintroduce lima beans. All the other ingredients are ok and I just wanted to reintroduce one thing. Besides, I was curious how cauliflower and lima beans would be in a soup recipe.

In the South, we know lima beans as butter beans. I never really liked them too much as a kid but my Dad did. In fact, my Dad likes any kind of beans but I think pinto beans are his favorite. We never sat too close to him when he did have some beans. I think I remember my Mom kicking him out of the bed a few times because it got so bad. Ah childhood memories.

But butter beans (lima beans) are surprisingly nutrient packed as well. They’re full of something called molybdenum. I don’t know about you but I’ve never heard of molybdenum before. According to World’s Healthiest Foods:

Lima beans are an excellent source of the trace mineral, molybdenum, an integral component of the enzyme sulfite oxidase, which is responsible for detoxifying sulfites. Sulfites are a type of preservative commonly added to prepared foods like delicatessen salads and salad bars. Persons who are sensitive to sulfites in these foods may experience rapid heartbeat, headache or disorientation if sulfites are unwittingly consumed. If you have ever reacted to sulfites, it may be because your molybdenum stores are insufficient to detoxify them.

Ah cauliflower, sometimes I don’t like you and sometimes I do. I can take or leave this vegetable but for something that looks so benign, it’s packed with nutrients. Just have a look at this chart from World’s Healthiest Foods. You can see it’s packed full of vitamins C and K, and vitamin K is an anti-inflammatory nutrient. You can read more about the benefits of cauliflower on the site. Even with all the nutrients it doesn’t stop me from loving it or going out of my way to cook with it.

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When I looked up cauliflower in my Cook’s Wisdom book, I ran across something that I thought was funny. This was the first sentence under the entry for cauliflower:

Mark Twain once described cauliflower as “cabbage with a college education.”

So you start out with a cauliflower and chop it up into bite-size florets and put them on a baking sheet. Chop up an onion and put a few garlic cloves on there as well. You’ll drizzle olive oil on them and sprinkle with salt. Roast them at 400F for 30-40 minutes. I did a happy medium and roasted mine for 35 minutes.

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One of the reasons why I don’t like cooking with cauliflower too much is because it’s messy! As soon as you slice into it the little bitty florets break off and get everywhere. This is what my counter top looked like.

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While the vegetables are roasting, you can kick your feet up for a while. This recipe is really easy to make. Once the vegetables have roasted, you’ll put them in a blender. We have a Vitamix and every single time I pull it or the food processor out, the little one starts to cry. He hates the noise of both of them. Well, he hates the food processor more than the Vitamix. So, when the vegetables were cool enough to touch, I let him put them into the Vitamix. He did end up stuffing a few pieces of cauliflower in his mouth to eat. He tried eating a few onion rings but quickly spat those out.

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You’ll add the lima beans, water, vegetable broth, and lemon juice. Make sure everything is blended and smooth. I left a few chunky pieces in ours because we like chunky soup around here. I did end up pouring this into a pot to warm up again on the stove. She does say that if it’s not warm enough, you can do that. When the soup is at your desired temperature, serve it with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of smoked paprika. Trust me. The smoked paprika totally makes the soup.

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This soup was perfect and it took no time at all! I was a bit worried because I didn’t read through the recipe, surprise surprise, and thought it would take longer than it did. I was outside playing with the little one all afternoon. He was busy stuffing dandelion flowers in the rain gutter. So I got started on supper a little bit after 4 and finished by 5pm…even with the warming up in a pot! If it’s a weekday and you want a super easy soup, this recipe is you.

I hope you all enjoy your Tuesday! Today is election day in Alberta and I’m curious to see who gets to be Premiere.