Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Spiralize it!!!

I'm pretty obsessed with pasta but on my "get that summer body ready" journey, over indulging in carbs are a big no-no. To help inspirie me to eat healthier I've been following a bunch of healthy Instagram pages. I keep seeing posts for zucchini noodles. Yes, noodles made from raw zucchini... Covered in bolognese! (Can I get a hell yea!??) After about 15 posts I had to know how it works. I went on Amazon and ordered myself a cheep spiralizer and two days later it was time to cook!

This little gadget fits in your hand and has one end for fine noodles and another for a little bit thicker ones. All I had to do was trim the end of the zucchini and push it into one end of the spiralizer. With a little squeezing and turning, noodle like strands of zucchini started to fall onto my cutting board. 

I have to admit, this process took a little effort and you end up with little numbs of zucchini that won't fit through the spinner but the way I see it... More calories burned and extra squash for the sauce! This is great for quick meals using any long skinny veggie like yellow squash and carrot. There is another version of the spiralizer that stands on a table top and had a handle so you can spin anything from beets to apples. I'm sersiousy debating on upgrading already. I can't stop thinking of all the things I could turn to noodles!! 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Gluten Free Polena Cakes with Sausage and Veggies

Need a quick, easy and healthy dinner idea? I have you covered. All you need on hand is a pre-cooked tube of polenta from Trader Joe's (or any other grocery store...but we all know I only shop one place) and some veggies. This meal is great to make at the end of the week when you don't want your produce to go to waste!

2 tbsp olive oil
1 tube of precooked polenta
1 lb sausage, ground (or links with casing removed)
1 red pepper, diced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 onion, diced small 
1 cup mushrooms, diced
2 handfuls of fresh spinach
Garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Balsamic glaze

1) In a sauté pan over medium high heat add sausage and cook until fully browned, about 8-10 minutes. Make sure sausage breaks into small piece as you cook. 
2) Prepare polenta for cooking by slicing into thin discs, about 1/4" in thickness. Place one tablespoon of oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Season each side of polenta cake with salt, pepper and garlic then add polenta, in layer, to the heated pan. Cook until heated through, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from pan and set aside. 
3) In the same pan used for polenta, add remaining tablespoon of the oil and all veggies. Cook until tender and spinach has wilted. Season with salt and pepper. 
4) To compile the dish, plate two to three pieces of polenta then top with sausage then finally top with veggie mixture and a little balsamic glaze!


Monday, April 13, 2015

Restaurant Review: The Wren

Nothing beats a good brunch. All I need is a cup of coffee, a mimosa and a good meal and I am a happy girl. I've been brunching all over the city the last few months but this meal was one of my faves: Kale and Warm Mushroom Salad from The Wren. It was incredible. Kale topped with warm pickled shiitake mushrooms, crispy bacon and soft boiled egg topped with a buttermilk dill dressing. So frickin' delicious. I think I might have eaten the whole bowl in less than 10 minutes.

I would highly recommend The Wren to everyone - gluten free or not. They served two toast-to-share options: one was avocado and hard boiled egg and the other bacon and ricotta. Both looked bangin! And coffee is served via French press which always tastes better in my opinion. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Gluten Free Un-Stuffed Portabella

I LOVE a quick and easy dinner on weeknights. I really don't mind a few hours of meal prep on Sunday but if dinner takes me more than 30 minutes to make during the week, I'll probably end up eating eggs. This gem of a recipe has become a go-to for me: Un-Stuffed Porabella Mushrooms. I call them un-stuffed because I never bother to scrape out the inside and ALWAYS overfill them with veggies. To beef up the meal I'll add chickpeas or white beans as well but wasn't in the mood this time. ;)

2 tbsp olive oil
1 large portabella mushroom
1 cup kale
1/3 red pepper, diced
1/2 zucchini, diced small
1/4 onion, diced small
salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan for garnish

1) In a saute pan over medium high heat, add one tablespoon of olive oil and portabella cap. Cook mushroom until slightly softened about four to six minutes, flipping on occasion to fully cook.
2) Once mushroom is cooked, set aside and add remaining tablespoon of oil to pan. Cook onion, pepper, kale and zucchini until tender then place on top of mushroom cap. Season with salt, pepper and parm then enjoy!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Fastest Spaghetti Squash Ever

2014 was a year of food discovery for me. I became hooked on butternut squash, chia seeds, almond milk  and spaghetti squash. Obviously, I knew about all of these foods prior to last year but never bothered to try them.

Spaghetti squash was the last thing I marked off my list. I was craving my fave bolognese sauce but didn't want to pair it with heavy pasta. I was at Whole Foods and picked up one of the biggest ones they had... having no idea how much spaghetti the squash would produce. If you don't know already, it is a TON of spaghetti squash.

After some searching I learned you could pop these things right in the microwave instead of letting them roast for an hour. 12 minutes to perfectly cooked squash? Sign me up!  I started by poking holes all over the entire surface of the squash using a fork. I set it on a plate and microwaved it on high for 6 minutes then flipped it and cooked for another 6 minutes. That's it! After it cooled a bit, I cut it in half and let it continue to cool until I could comfortably handle it. To get the squash in spaghetti form all you have to do is remove the seeds the scrape the sides starting from the top moving forward with a fork. Little shreds of noodle-like squash separate themselves from the skin then voila! You have your guilt (and gluten) free spaghetti base for your dish! 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Gluten Free French Toast

My all time favorite meal...the meal I would request on my last day on Earth is my moms French Toast. It's seriously the best ever!!! Since having Celiac, she had made some great gluten free toast for me so when she visited in the winter I wanted to return the favor... Well kind of.

She was late to the game in discovering she carries the same gluten allergy so I was pumped to stock my cupboards with gluten free treats for us. I grabbed my fave chips, crackers, bread and tried Udy's gfree bagels. 

We made bagels on her first morning in town. She has had them before and tried to warn me that one bagel was too much to eat... She was right. I was stuffed! So the next morning I decided to turn the super fluffy, overly filling bagels into French toast.

I cut one and a half bagels in to big chunks, soaked them in a mix of egg and milk with sugar and cinnamon then tossed them in a preheated greeased sauté pan. After a few minutes and tossed of the pan it was perfect. Next, I sauted one apple in butter for some sweetness then served it with the French toast. We topped the toast with a little maple syrup and powdered sugar. It was perfect!! Sweet, gooey goodness! I would highly recommend this over using regular gluten free bread!

Shaky camera work... my apologies!!