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Archive for the ‘Beans’ Category

Hello hello!

School is going well, but busy. I just had my first exam of the new semester this week – whew! But I am so happy to finally be delving into the “meat” of the nutrition courses! This semester I am taking Methods in Nutrition Education, Energy Nutrients, Nutrition of the Life Cycle and Management in Dietetics; all of which are interesting in their own ways. Energy Nutrients is going to be toughest one because it is nutrition, chemistry and biology all coming together to talk about metabolism. Nutrition of the Life Cycle is the most interesting as we cover so much and get to do some case studies and “pretend” to be dietitians. I also started a new job at the local VA hospital as a diet aide. (I did the same thing previously, just at a different hospital, and for less money.) Three weeks in and all is well there too. Keeps me out of trouble, right?

And I am *trying* to be a good chairperson for our local support group. I have so many things I want to do with and for the group, but they all take time. Which is in short supply these days. And so I am working to improve my time management skills.

So, to honor that, I’ve been cooking, just nothing fancy. This is one of those easy and quick, no-recipe meals. An old friend of mine made this for me many years ago when I came to visit her (Hi, Jessi!). I’ve probably changed her recipe unknowingly over the years, but in spirit it is still her recipe.

Oh, and if you have some extra zucchini lying around from your overflowing garden, here’s another recipe to use up a couple of them!

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Italian Chickpea and Pasta Skillet

Adapted from Jessica’s recipe, as remembered by me

8 oz pasta, cooked

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 medium carrots, sliced thinly into rounds

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 small zucchini, halved and sliced

1 Tbsp oregano

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed well

1 can diced tomatoes, or 2 cups of fresh, chopped tomatoes

1/2 tsp salt, or to taste

Parmesan cheese, grated, to taste, (or nutritional yeast for vegan)

Cook the pasta according to the directions. (Tonight, for the first time, I tried Trader Joe’s Organic Brown Rice and Quinoa fusilli pasta. It was pretty good but be careful, it overcooks quick. I set the time for 6 minutes and it was already past al dente.)

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium.Add onions and carrots and cook until the carrots begin to soften. (It will depend on how thinly they were sliced.) Add garlic and zucchini and cook until zucchini begins to soften. Stir in oregano. Then add the chickpeas and tomatoes. Add 1/4 cup water and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Stir in salt to taste.

Serve over the pasta with grated Parmesan cheese.

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I ended up with the flu this past week. First time in more than 12 years. But it got me. I made these the day that I was starting to get sick, but I was still in denial. I was SURE I was just getting a bad cold. Nope. But luckily I didn’t lose my appetite while I was sick. And these leftovers called my name all week in the frig. I had to make a deal with the hubby to split the last of them, we both loved them so much.

We enjoyed these topped with a dab of sour cream, chopped avocado and my homemade tomatillo salsa with its tangy taste, which is a nice complement to the other sweet and savory elements.

Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Kale Tacos | Beyond Rice and Tofu

Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Kale Tacos

1 pound of sweet potatoes, 1/4″ dice

2 tsp oil, divided

2-1/2 tsp cumin, divided

2-1/2 tsp chile powder, divided

3/4 tsp salt, divided

1 onion, chopped

2 cups cooked black beans

3 cups kale, torn

Corn tortillas

Sour cream (omit for vegan or dairy-free)

Avocado, chopped

Tomatillo Salsa (Salsa Verde)

Preheat oven to 450*. Line a baking sheet with foil. In a bowl, toss the potatoes with 1 tsp oil, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp chile powder and 1/2 tsp salt. Arrange potatoes on baking sheet. Roast for about 10-15 minutes, depending on how small you cut them, turning once.

In a large skillet, heat the remaining 1 tsp oil over medium-high heat. Saute onion until tender. Add remaining 1-1/2 tsp cumin, 1-1/2 tsp chili powder and stir, cook for 1 minute. Mix in black beans. Add kale and 1/4 cup of water and stir well. Cook until kale is wilted down. Add roasted sweet potato and cook until potato is heated through again. Stir in remaining 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste. Add more cumin and/or chili powder as desired.

Heat a skillet or griddle on medium heat. Add a drizzle of oil and allow to heat through. Lightly fry corn tortillas in oil on both sides.

Assemble tacos with sweet potato mixture, sour cream, chopped avocado and tomatillo salsa in corn tortillas.

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We had more comfort food this week since my tummy is still trying to get back to ‘normal’ after being sick last week. Some people have trouble with beans, but luckily, we do not. We find them very comforting, especially in a delicious soup that has simmered on the stove, filling the house with a delicious fragrance!

And now we live in a state, New Mexico, where one of the major agricultural products is beans – pinto beans! In the fall here, you can find pinto beans and Anasazi beans at the farmer’s markets. When I went to make this recipe, I found that I didn’t have enough pinto beans to make this, but I did have some Anasazi beans so I used some of those too. They cook very similarly and have a similar flavor profile, so I knew they would work together.

Pinto Bean Soup

Adapted from Cooking Light

3 cups dried pinto beans, (or Anasazi beans, or a mix)

2 tbsp oil

3 cups finely diced onion

6 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp dried oregano

8 cups water

2 bay leaves

2 tsp salt

Avocado, chopped

Lay out your beans on a rimmed baking sheet and look for small stones, random grains of wheat (yes, I have found them!), or shriveled beans and discard them. Rinse beans and place in a large pot. Cover with water to 2 inches above level of beans and bring to a boil. Cook 5 minutes and then remove from heat. Let stand one hour. Drain beans.

In the same (dry) pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion and saute until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute for another minute or until it becomes fragrant. Add paprika and cumin and stir until fragrant, being careful not burn the spices. Stir in oregano, beans, water and bay leaves. Bring to a boil. Then cover, reduce heat and simmer for 1-1/2 hours or until beans are tender.

Discard bay leaves. Stir in salt. Taste and add more if desired. Top with chopped avocado and serve with corn muffins.

This recipe is cross-posted over at Pennywise Platter at The Nourishing Gourmet.

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This past week was a bit of a rough one. Still trying to figure out what hit me. I woke up in the wee hours of Wednesday morning horribly sick. Nothing would stay put. I wasn’t able to eat anything all day, I only drank some Gatorade and a few sips of coconut water. (I was not a fan of the coconut water, even though I know it is better for you than the sugar, artificial flavors and colors of Gatorade. But my nose was being super sensitive and the smell of the coconut water was off-putting.)

For three days, I was only able to eat some Yehuda GF Matzo, Gatorade and water. Luckily I love the matzo and they tasted especially good since they remind me a bit of Saltines, which was “sick food” when I was young. At one point, I attempted some gluten free Chicken Noodle Soup, but even it wasn’t welcomed by my tummy.

After a few days, as I finally began to get better, I knew I needed to get something else into me besides matzo! So I made us some soup for dinner. (I added some chicken to mine (I am not vegetarian), for an extra boost.) It was tasty all around. And quick, to boot.

Chicken (or not) and Rice Soup

Original by Renee

Serves 4-6

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, diced finely

2-3 stalks celery, sliced thin

2-3 carrots, sliced thinly

3-4 cloves garlic, minced

6 cups vegetable broth

2 tsp dried oregano

1 cup cooked brown rice *

1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

1 chicken breast, cooked and diced, if desired *

1/2 tsp each salt and pepper, or to taste, it will depend on your choice of broth

In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrot and cook until almost soft and onion is becoming translucent. Stir in garlic and cook till fragrant. Stir in broth and oregano. Bring to a boil. Simmer for 5-10 minutes. Then stir in the cooked rice and beans. Heat through. Turn off heat and add salt and pepper to taste.

Notes:

* I keep pre-cooked rice on hand for occasions such as these. You can find it in vacuum-sealed plastic packaging, microwaveable bowls or frozen. Very handy, especially when I forget to plug in the rice cooker.

* Since I was making this soup for both of us, I left out the chicken and added the beans for some staying power for my husband. Then I cooked up a chicken breast separately and diced part of it to add to my individual serving bowl. If your tummy isn’t a fan of beans, leave them out. Ours do just fine with them.

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I am always on the look-out for a new way to make quinoa. I love it so much that I even have a separate category in my bookmarks for quinoa. I love how easy quinoa is to make, and how nutritious it is. So of course, when I saw this recipe from Cookin’ Canuck, inspiration struck again.

We have eaten this salad three times in the past three weeks. Once here at home, just for us, then once for a potluck at work, and then for our monthly celiac support group potluck meeting. It has gotten rave reviews from all!

Lemon Chickpea Quinoa Salad

Inspired by and adapted from Cookin’ Canuck

2 cups water

1 cup quinoa *

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1-1/2 cups tomato, chopped *

2 oz feta cheese, crumbled

1 avocado, diced *

Dressing:

5 Tbsp lemon juice

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tsp honey

1-1/2 tsp dried oregano

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

Cook quinoa in water according to directions. Cool. Combine with other salad ingredients, except the avocado. Whisk together dressing ingredients. Gently stir in dressing. Top with avocado.

Notes:

* I buy Bob’s Red Mill quinoa from Costco in the large bags. It says that it has been rinsed already. Some quinoa will need to be rinsed to remove the saponin from the surface of the grains, check the box or bag.

* At this time of year I can usually find tasty cherry tomatoes.

* It is best to not mix in the avocado unless you know you will be eating it all since the avocado turns brown after a bit.

* I think this salad tastes best at room temperature.

Do you love quinoa as much as I do? If so, be sure to check out my other quinoa recipes, especially one of my most-viewed and most commented-on recipes – Sweet Potato, Quinoa and  Black Bean Burgers.

This recipe is cross-posted over at Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays. Check it out for more inspiration!

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Originally I came up with this recipe for New Year’s Day but I think it would be a great anytime appetizer. And well, there is a big appetizer “holiday” coming up, you know. It’s called the Super Bowl! And it’s only two weeks away.

We don’t “celebrate” the Super Bowl but I think this would be a great addition to anyone’s lineup this year. And of course this makes a great New Year’s Day “good luck” dish too, since it contains black-eyed peas. (Which is how this recipe originally came about, I was looking for a new way to eat our New Year’s Day black-eyed peas.) I think pinto beans would also be great and even more “New Mexican”!

New Mexican Bean Dip

Inspired by Pioneer Woman

1 – 14 oz can of black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed *

1 small onion, diced

1/4 cup roasted and diced green chile

1/4 cup sour cream

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese

chopped tomato and cilantro for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place beans in a mixing bowl and mash lightly with a fork. Stir in the onion and green chile. Add sour cream, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper and cheese. Mix well. Spread into 8″ square baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly and beginning to brown on top. Top with chopped tomato and cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips.

Notes:

* Any kind of beans would work; pinto beans would be especially New Mexican!

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Here is a tasty meal to help you with eating more vegetables in the New Year! First up, spinach!

Chickpea and Spinach Curry

inspired by others, long ago…(not sure where or who)

1 Tbsp oil

1 large onion, chopped

1-1/2 Tbsp ginger, grated

1 Tbsp Thai red curry paste (more or less)

1-1/2 tsp sugar (optional)

1-14 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed well

1-14 oz can diced tomatoes, not drained

6 cups fresh spinach, torn if large

1/4 – 1/2 cup water, (depending on how juicy your tomatoes are)

1/2 tsp salt

plain yogurt

rice, if desired

In a large skillet, heat the oil. Add the onions and saute until soft. Stir in the ginger and saute for another minute or so. Stir in the curry paste and sugar until the onions are coated with the paste and there are few lumps, about 2-3 minutes. Add the chickpeas and tomatoes and let it simmer for a minute or two. Stir in the spinach and water and cook until spinach is wilted, stirring occasionally. Stir in salt, taste and add more if desired. Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt, over brown rice.

This recipe is cross-posted over at Simply Sugar and Gluten Free’s Slightly Indulgent Tuesday. Click on over and check out the other recipes!

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Still feeling like you indulged too much over the recent holiday? Here’s a healthy, hearty chili to offset some of those feelings of guilt.

Chili with Smoked Gouda-Squash Pupusas

Three Bean Chipotle Butternut Chili

Olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbsp chili powder

1 Tbsp cumin

2 tsp dried oregano

1 cab diced tomatoes

8 oz can tomato sauce

2 cups (or more) vegetable broth

12 oz butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped into chunks, pre-cooked slightly *

3 cans of beans, drained and rinsed well *

1-1/2 Tbsp chipotle pepper in adobo puree, add more or less as desired, check ingredients *

1/2 – 1 tsp salt

Heat 1 Tbsp or so of olive oil in a large soup pot. When hot, add onion and saute for about 3 minutes. Add bell pepper and saute until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.  Add garlic and saute for one additional minute. Stir in chili powder, cumin and oregano and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently so that spices do not burn.

Stir in diced tomatoes and sauce. Add broth and squash. Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until squash is tender (when pierced easily with a fork). Stir in beans and chipotle puree. Add more broth if needed, to get to desired consistency. Simmer for 10 minutes more or until beans are heated through. Stir in salt to taste. Serve topped with chopped avocado, cheese, green onions or sour cream.

Notes:

* This time I used pre-cut butternut squash from Trader Joe’s and I pre-cooked it for a few minutes in the microwave.

* Use any variety of beans. I used black beans, pinto beans and kidney beans.

* Be sure to check the label of your chipotle peppers in adobo, not all brands are gluten free. When I open a new can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, I throw the contents of the whole can in the blender and blend it into a puree. I store the remainder in the  freezer to use later.

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Looking for something to have ready for your little ghouls and goblins tomorrow night? Something hearty to soak up all that sugar?

And do you avoid making bean soups because of how long it takes to cook beans? I used to, or I would only make soups to which I added canned beans. But not anymore. I have become friends with my pressure cooker, thanks to cookbook author Lorna Sass. I’ve had one of her cookbooks now for a year or two and I am finally starting to feel comfortable improvising with my pressure cooker. Recently I had a pair of poblano peppers lingering in the crisper drawer and I had spotted the new crop of New Mexico pinto beans at the farmer’s markets. Thus a new recipe was formed.

The recipe does require pre-soaking the beans, but it isn’t hard. I typically will soak my beans during the day, while I am at work, when I am planning to prepare such a soup in the evening. I like to place the beans and water in my big batter bowl since it has a lid.

Pinto-Poblano Stew

Adapted from Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure by Lorna Sass

Serves 6

1-1/2 cups pinto beans (or Anasazi beans), soaked overnight or at least 8 hours

1 tbsp oil

1 tsp whole cumin seeds

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 large onion, chopped

2 poblano peppers, seeded and chopped

2 cups frozen roasted corn*

1-1/2 tsp dried oregano

4 cups hot water

———————-

1-15oz. can diced tomatoes

Juice of one lime, about 2 tbsp

Salt and pepper, start with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper, add more to taste

Place your tea kettle on to boil the 4 cups of water. Heat the oil in your pressure cooker over medium-high heat. When the oil is rippling and hot, add the cumin seeds. They will begin to pop and turn darker brown. Add the garlic and stir constantly until the garlic begins to become fragrant. Add the onion and pepper and stir well. Add the beans, corn, oregano and water.

Lock the cooker’s lid in place and bring it to high pressure. Then lower the heat just enough to maintain high pressure and cook for 6 minutes (more if you live at high altitude like myself). You can either allow the pressure to come down on its own, or if you’re impatient like me, use a quick-release method and remove the lid carefully. Taste your beans and make sure they are tender. If not, you can cook them a bit longer on the stove without the lid or bringing to pressure.

Stir in the diced tomatoes. Then use an immersion blender to puree a portion of the soup to your desired consistency. Stir in the lime juice, salt and pepper and taste. You’ll probably want more salt.

Top with chopped cilantro, chopped avocado, chopped tomatoes, cheese, whatever you fancy. Serve with warm corn tortillas or corn muffins.

Notes:

* I like to use Trader Joe’s frozen Roasted Corn for a little extra flavor.

This post is linked up to Gluten Free Wednesdays and Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays. Check out the links for more inspiration!

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Over the past month, I’ve been making a lot of dishes using the produce coming out of our garden and what I’ve found at the farmer’s markets. One of my favorite summer meals is pasta with a bunch of fresh vegetables. Below I present you with two variations on a theme, both of which are deliciously simple.

I intended on getting this post up for Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free since the theme was “Dishes so Simple, No Recipe Required” but alas, I procrastinated and didn’t get it up. Regardless, go over to GF Easily and check out the other un-recipes.

Balsamic Vegetable Pasta

Quick Summer Pasta

Original by Renee

No measurements here, just go with what feels and tastes(!) right.

Gluten Free Pasta, my favorite brand is Tinkyada (which is also sold cheaper as Trader Joe’s house brand of brown rice pasta).

Chopped heirloom tomatoes (Yay for Green Zebras – the birds don’t try to eat them since they’re green, and leave half-eaten, beautiful red toms hanging on the vine)

Chickpeas, cooked/canned, drained and rinsed

Feta cheese, crumbled – I had picked up some lovely marinated goat feta from Sweetwoods Dairy at the farmer’s market

A drizzle of olive oil

Fresh basil – lots of it!

Sea Salt and Fresh Pepper

Cook pasta and drain. Toss with remaining ingredients.

Balsamic Vegetable Pasta

Original by Renee

Again, no measurements but I wanted more vegetables than pasta in this one.

Gluten Free Pasta – see above

Onion, halved and thinly sliced, either red or white will work

Balsamic vinegar

Chickpeas, canned/cooked, rinsed and drained

Heirloom tomatoes, chopped – lots of them!

Feta or goat cheese, crumbled

Olive oil

Basil – lots of it!

Sea Salt and Fresh Pepper

Cook pasta (gluten free pasta needs a lot of water to move around in!). Drain and rinse.

In a large skillet, heat a bit of olive oil. Add in the sliced onion and cook over medium heat. Turn down and let the onions start to carmelize a bit and then drizzle some balsamic vinegar over them. Add in the chickpeas and let them heat through, stirring occasionally, and adding a bit more balsamic if you want.

Toss onions and chickpeas into a  large bowl. Add in the tomatoes, basil and feta, toss gently. Add in pasta (I wanted more veggies, less pasta in this version). Drizzle with a bit of olive oil and add salt and pepper (and/or more vinegar) to taste.

Notes:

* Sometimes I also saute a red sweet bell pepper with the onions.

* Kalamata olives and/or toasted pine nuts are a nice addition.

* Parmesan cheese instead of feta or goat cheese works too. So many variations!

* Mix it up to fit your taste buds!

What’s your favorite quick summer pasta combination?

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