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“So Earth-Friendly, Even a Vegan Will Eat It” Veggie Chili

14 Jan

vegan chili edited

Friends, as you know, I’m a fan of experimenting with vegetarian and vegan food. (Baking, more baking, pasta dishes, etc. )While I can’t say I’d go vegan for life (being engaged to a semi-carnivore makes that a bit complicated — love you, THT!), I’ve been working on incorporating a vegetarian diet more regularly into my life for the last 6 months or so. (See, this is what happens when you take a “blogging hiatus,” GKG. No one knows about these adventures! she said to herself…)

The verdict?

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Micro-Whaaat? Microwaved Egg, Tomato and Kale Wraps

11 Jul

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Friends, you know how much GKG loves eggs as the basis of any meal. Protein + healthy fat + all in a neat little package? What’s not to love? I’ve made these hard-boiled egg snacks, these Italian-style baked eggs for supper, and even these other variations on egg-based meals.

But here’s an unexpected cookery equation for you: One Budding Chef+ One Standard Microwave + one serving of eggs = an unexpected match made in culinary heaven.

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Summertime Suppers: Tomato-Zucchini Pasta with Ricotta and Herbs

9 Jul

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Summertime pasta? Yes, please!

In the summer months, I’m always looking for easy, fresh recipes that don’t require any of the following:

  1. Lots of sweat, blood & tears in the kitchen
  2. Lots of hard-to-find ingredients
  3. Lots of clean-up.

[Come to think of it I’m looking for recipes like that all the time.]

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A-Tisket, A-Tasket, A … Fish Packet?

8 Jul
Image sourced from www.you-made-that.com. Beautiful supper!

Image sourced from www.you-made-that.com. All together now: “Fishy Fish-ayyy!”

Sometimes, I kill even myself with these puns.

Hello, lovely GKG readers! After letting my 1st Blogiversary fly by a few weeks ago (eeeeeeeoooops … that’s me, your neighborhood friendly GKG, riding the strugglebus), I’m formally recommitting myself to the blogging world. Readers, I love you all terribly, and I’m now back with a vengeance.

Now, onto the cookery!

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Hangry No More: 4 Delicious, Healthy Snacks For the Workplace

13 May

Ever gotten to that 3:00 pm point in your work day (or 9:30 am … or 11:00 am … or 2:00 pm … we’re not picky here at GKG with our noshiness) and felt like this?

hangry collage… [Raises hand].

But how to stave off the “hanger” … ? Here’s the best way I know:

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Not Yo Mama’s Tofu: Marinated Tofu Stir-Fry

2 May

While I’ve tried my hand at tofu scrambles before, and I’ve also whipped up stir-fry dishes out the wazoo (where did that expression come from, anyway? If someone can enlighten me, 10 “Whose Line”-style bonus points to you!), I had yet to try my hand at a tofu stir-fry … until earlier this week! Here’s to trying something new, right?

Well … some of us still had questions. Namely, a certain meat-loving someone. 🙂

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Viva Italia: Italian-Style Baked Eggs

15 Apr

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Weeknight suppers got you down? Sick of PB&J? (Hard to imagine, but it does happen.) Looking for something lean, vegetarian-friendly and easy to prep? GKG’s got your back — try these Italian-Style Baked Eggs for a simple, subtly flavored dinner that’ll leave you satisfied without dirtying too many pots or resorting to that jar of Jiff.

The method? Bake the eggs in the oven!

Surprise: Baking the eggs in the oven is an almost foolproof method for whipping up something delicious. I first picked up on this idea from Gwyneth Paltrow’s My Father’s Daughter, and this tip also appears all over Pinterest when you search for brunch recipes and easy egg dishes. On Pinterest, there are all kinds of baked egg dishes like these:

Yup, drooling on the keyboard.

Yup, drooling on the keyboard.

For my budding chef-friendly recipe, the directions couldn’t be simpler. And, frankly, the result couldn’t be more satisfying. The best part, though, is that once you’re comfortable with the method — which shouldn’t take more than your first try — you can mix, match and adapt ingredients and recipes to fit your tastes. Here’s to many an egg-friendly meal.

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March “Make-It-From-Scratch” Madness: Almond Cranberry Granola Bars

11 Mar

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Hi everyone! After a week’s vacation (to lovely Las Vegas, Nevada — post pending! It involves Celine Dion, drinks on the 64th floor, and taking a cab through the In-N-Out burger drive-through. This one’s gonna be epic, kids.), I’m back and ready to mangia with you! Here’s to my March Blogging Resolution: To recreate my favorite goodies and childhood dishes from scratch, with a healthy twist.

Today’s nominee? Granola Bars! I love a good, chewy, nutty granola bar as much as the next semi-healthy home cook. They’re great for mid-afternoon snacks to stave off my “hangry” episodes. (“Hangry” = hungry + angry. It ain’t pretty, folks.)

But I’ve noticed that a lot of commercial granola bars have … a LOT of sugar. Like, 20% of your daily value — whoa! And while I’m not jumping on the “Oh my gosh, not sugar: Isn’t it POISON???” bandwagon / train / other vehicle of transportation, I’m still aiming cut my consumption of the sweet stuff.

… which is why, on Pinterest and elsewhere, I’ve been hunting for homemade granola bar recipes. Why not try it? The worst that could happen might be … some really sticky granola. Oh well. There are worse tragedies in the world. (Like if Cool Ranch Doritos didn’t exist. Or lemons. *Shudder*)

These Almond Cranberry Granola Bars get their sweetness from honey, while the dried cranberries and chopped almonds add substance and a fruity tang. Yum! Enjoy them as much as I did — THT and I consumed that entire plate within about 48 hours.

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Almond Cranberry Granola Bars — adapted from Andie Mitchel’s recipe at www.canyoustayfordinner.com. (Check out her blog — so inspiring and delicious!)

You’ll need:

  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats (not instant)
  • 1 cup chopped or sliced almonds
  • 1 cup Rice Krispies or brown rice cereal
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped (you can also blend raisins and cranberries.)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (kosher or table are both fine)

Here’s what you do:

  • Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a 13″×9″ baking pan with foil and spray liberally with Pam or other cooking spray.
  • Toss the oats on a baking sheet and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring once or twice, until browned. Remove the oats and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Stir in almonds, Rice Krispies & dried fruit. Reduce the oven temperature to 300° F.

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  • Combine the butter, honey, brown sugar, vanilla extract and salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook and stir for about 1 minute, then pour over the toasted oatmeal mixture. Mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon.

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  • Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Press the mixture firmly and evenly into the pan; you may need to wet your fingers slightly with water. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the bars appear to be golden brown. Cool for about 2 hours before cutting into individual bars.

Mmm! So chewy and good! Enjoy these bad boys, as hopefully the first of several March “Make-It-From-Scratch” Madness recipes and dishes. Have all y’all ever made your own granola or granola bars? How’d they turn out?

Pinterest Challenge: Homemade Almond Butter

25 Feb

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Back again with a new Pinterest Challenge! This time, I’m joining forces with the lovely Sherry Petersik and Katie Bower, who are co-hosting their quarterly Pinterest Challenge on both of their respective blogs.

The challenge? To stop pinning and start doing / cooking / baking / crafting — or, in their case, to make / decorate some aspect of their homes, since they both write DIY / decorating-based blogs.

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When Is a Cookie Not a Cookie? Vegan Baking, Part Two

20 Feb

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A recent conversation between The History Teacher and myself:

Me: Hi boyfriend. Want to try a dairy-free, sugar-free, egg-free cookie?

THT: Let me get this straight. If it looks like a cookie, but has nothing in common with a cookie … then, I think it ceases to be a cookie.

Ha! If he only knew. 🙂

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