Please pardon my long absence. I have been busting my tail (happily!) in the kitchen for the last five days, re-working recipes, trying out new ones, and giving them to my taste testers.
Getting my feet wet in the low fat world.
I have a lot of recipes for you.
I am going to have to double up, maybe even triple up on recipes for each post. Mostly because this Friday my family and I are traveling to sunny California to celebrate Thanksgiving, and this is my last week to post Thanksgiving-friendly, weight loss friendly recipes.
I am excited! I have found that truly, low fat can be amazing. Almost too good. I am basically doing Dr. McDougall's Maximum Weight Loss Program with a few modifications (I am allowing myself to eat as much fruit as I want, and in any form.) (click here to get a brief run-down on the foods and methods).
I am also exercising 5-6 days a week, for about 45 minutes each morning. In the afternoon I go on a 30 minute walk/run with my kids, and am trying to increase my activity overall.
What I am Learning:
* I was getting quite sedentary (less that 5,000 steps a day) and my new goal is to be active (about 12,000 to 16,000 steps a day, with high intensity workouts).
* I was eating a lot of high fat foods. Nut butters, coconut milk, cashew cheeses.
*Which made me totally miss out on more nutrient dense vegetables, starches, and legumes.
*My weight is on a downward trend since eating more fruit and vegetables, as well as whole grains and legumes in their whole form.
*Started at 139 last Monday, today I weighed in at 134.
*Even if I never reach 120 pounds, what I am doing is very healthy for me.
The Main Ingredients I use in Cooking:
Whole Grains (grains in their whole form, not ground into flours)
Let's start with this Savory Breakfast Scramble.
I need to be totally honest and say, despite my admiration for tofu, and it's versatility, I can't handle the thought of eating it for breakfast, in a scramble. When I found this recipe a few weeks ago, I was so excited.
Cauliflower instead of tofu (or eggs).
Starting with a base of sauteed, chopped onions and fresh mushrooms.
(Substitute mushrooms with chopped, cooked potatoes if you prefer, or even leave mushrooms out altogether, tastes fabulous both ways.)
Plenty of spices give it lots of flavor. The Cauliflower is tender, but has just enough bite to it to satisfy.
Store-bought, baked hash browns and avocado accompany the dish, as well as salsa, or shredded Daiya cheese for the kids and hubby. They aren't in this for the weight loss.
On a bed of spinach for me! I'm increasing my raw food intake.
Savory Breakfast Scramble
Modified from Forks Over Knives -- The Cookbook
Serves 6. Or, just 2. Paul and I scarf it.
Note from Ashlee: This scramble would also make a great base for a breakfast burrito. Add Mexican rice or refried beans, some soy yogurt or daiya cheese! Wrap it up in a tortilla, and voila! Kids would love it this way. See optional sides for more serving ideas.
I love this recipe when I really feel like I need lots of vegetables, and something savory. Sweet is fun, but every once in a while, a good, savory breakfast really hits the spot!
1 medium red or yellow onion, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 medium green (or orange or yellow) bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 cups sliced mushrooms (from about 8 ounces of whole mushrooms)
1 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets, or chopped fine, gently rinsed
Salt to taste (about 1-2 teaspoons)(start with one, after adding soy sauce, add more to taste)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper (I like freshly ground)
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste, for additional heat (less for children)
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 to 2 tablespoons, low-sodium soy sauce (I added 2 tablespoons)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast, optional (I add it and it is so good!)
1 teaspoon curry (optional)
1 teaspoon cumin (optional)
Place onions, red and green peppers, and mushrooms in a medium skillet or saucepan and saute over medium-high heat for 7 to 8 minutes, or until the onions are translucent. Add water 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time to keep the vegetables from sticking to the pan.
Add the cauliflower and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the florets are tender. Meanwhile, add all the remaining ingredients and thoroughly combine. Heat through and serve warm.
Baked hash browns
Over a bed of spinach if you love greens like I do!
Thank you for your thoughtful words about the weight loss issue. You all had very valuable points, and I took each comment into careful consideration. I have decided to try this out. If anything, I believe it is good for me to be focusing more on whole foods.
Also, much thanks to whoever linked Cauliflower Bechamel on Facebook! Wow, it's received a lot of hits recently! Thank you!