Sausage, Potato & Feta Empanadas

Source: Clean Eating Magazine, November/December 2011

Loved how these tasted, and how nicely they came together. I did freeze the extra and thawed them, and they were just as good the second time around!

Makes: 8 empanadas
Hands-on Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 40 mins

INGREDIENTS
1 lrg Yukon Gold Potato, peeled and cut into 6 equal pieces
7 oz raw lean turkey sausage, casing removed **
1 yellow onion diced
4 oz low-fat feta cheese, crumbled
1 lb frozen whole-wheat dough, thawed (make your own)

**I used Continental Sausage Uncured Kolbasa 12 oz.

INSTRUCTIONS
In a medium saucepan, add potato and enough cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-high and simmer for 15 minutes or until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain and transfer to a medium bowl and coarsely mash with a potato masher. Set aside.

Heat a large nonstick skillet on medium-high and mist with cooking spray. Add sausage and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon until browned, about 2 minutes. Add onion and cook,stirring frequently, until onions are translucent and edges are light golden brown, about 6 minutes. Transfer mixture to bowl with potatoes; add feta and stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper and set aside until cool.

Preheat oven to 400F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Dust a flat work surface and rolling pin with flour. Cut dough into 8 equal pieces and for each into a ball. Flatten dough balls and roll each into 1/8-inch thick circles. Transfer to baking sheet and spoon 1/3 cup turkey-potato mixture onto center of each circle, leaving a 1/2-inch border around edges. Lightly brush edges with water and fold over filling to form half-circles. Crimp edges gently with a fork to seal and lightly mist tops with cooking spray. Baked for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

MAKE-AHEAD METHOD
After sealing dough with a fork, simply place your unbaked empanadas on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and freeze until firm, about 2 hours. Transfer to re-sealable bags or containers until needed. To cook, mist tops of empanadas with cooking spray and bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet at 400F for 35 to 40 minutes, until golden brown and heated through.

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Kung Pao Chicken

Source: Classic Comfort Foods by Clean Eating Magazine.

Absolutely loved this recipe. So tasty and easy to make!

Serves: 4
Hands-on Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 20 mins

INGREDIENTS
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/4 C raw unsalted peanuts
2 green onions, thinly sliced, plus additional for garnish
2 tsp rice vinegar
2 C cooked brown rice*
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
*I only had Jasmine Rice, so I used it, but cooked it in vegetable broth.

INSTRUCTIONS
In a wok or large skillet, heat oil on medium-high. Add pepper flakes, chicken and peanuts and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Stir in 1/4 C water, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, onions and vinegar. Bring to a simmer and cook for 3 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Serve with or over top of rice, dividing evenly and garnishing with additional onion.
Dig in!

Nutritional Information
Servings: (1 C chicken and 1/2 C rice)
Calories 299
Total Fat 10 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Monounsaturated Fat 5.5 g
Carbs 26 g
Dietary Fiber 3 g
Sugars 1 g
Protein 25 g
Sodium 258 mg
Cholesterol 49 mg

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Spicy African Peanut Soup

Source: Peas and Thank You

An incredible tasty and easy soup to make. I loved using the coconut milk.

INGREDIENTS

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 sweet potato, cubed (about 1 c. total)
1 1/2 t. curry powder
1/2-3/4 t. garam masala (depending on how spicy you like it)
1 t. cumin
1 T. minced ginger
2 t. minced garlic
stevia to taste (I used a pinch of sugar)
dash of cinnamon
1 14 oz. can fire roasted tomatoes, in juice
1 can light coconut milk
2 c. vegetable stock
2 T. natural peanut butter
1/2 c. red lentils, drained and rinsed (can substitute quinoa, if desired)

Optional garnishes: cilantro, chopped peanuts, sour cream or plain yogurt (vegan, if desired)

DIRECTIONS

Combine all ingredients in a crock pot and turn to high for about an hour. This gets your crock pot good and going, then switch it to low for the next several hours.

Serve and enjoy!

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Quinoa Patties

Source: Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

Every single recipe I have made from this book has been outstanding. Each one is full of flavour and so good for you!

These patties can be used as either a snack, or main meal if paired with a salad. I paired it with Heidi’s Kale Salad.

INGREDIENTS
2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa*, at room temperature
4 large eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp fine-grain sea salt
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh chives (used green onions)
1 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Gruyere cheese
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup whole grain bread crumbs, plus more if needed
Water, if needed
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil or clarified butter
2 Tbsp Feta Cheese (my addition)

* To cook quinoa: Combine 2 cups of well-rinsed uncooked quinoa with 3 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, decrease the heat, and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until the quinoa is tender and you can see the little quinoa curlicues.

DIRECTIONS
Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the chives, onion, cheese (+ Feta if using), and garlic. Add the bread crumbs, stir, and let sit for a few minutes so the crumbs can absorb some of the moisture.

At this point, you should have a mixture you can easily form into twelve 1-inch thick patties. I err on the very moist side because it makes for a not-overly-dry patty, but you can add more bread crumbs, a bit at a time, to firm up the mixture, if need be. Conversely, a bit more beaten egg or water can be used to moisten the mixture.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat, add 6 patties, if they’ll fit with some room between each, cover, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply browned. Turn up the heat if there is no browning after 10 minutes and continue to cook until the patties are browned. Carefully flip the patties with a spatula and cook the second sides for 7 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the skillet and cool on a wire rack while you cook the remaining patties. Alternatively, the quinoa mixture keeps nicely in the refrigerator for a few days; you can cook patties to order, if you prefer.

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Kale Salad w/ Toasted Coconut & Sesame Oil

Source: Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

Ever since my friend over at Epicurean Vegan introduced my to Kale Chips, I’ve been looking for more ways to make them.

I love this recipe by Heidi (her cookbook is really great) and plan to make it again, a lot!

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
2 Tbsp shoyu, tamari, or soy sauce (I used soy)
3 1/2 lightly packed cups chopped kale, stems trimmed, large ribs removed
1 1/2 cups unsweetened large-flake coconut
2 cups cooked farro or other whole grain (optional, I served over barley)

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350°F / 180°C with two racks in the top third of the oven.

In a small bowl or jar, whisk or shake together the olive oil, sesame oil, and shoyu. Put the kale and coconut in a large bowl and toss well with about two-thirds of the olive oil mixture.

Spread the kale evenly across two baking sheets. Bake for 12 to 18 minutes, until the coconut is deeply golden brown, tossing once or twice along the way. If the kale mixture on the top baking sheet begins to get too browned, move it to the lower rack.

Remove from the oven and transfer the kale mixture to a medium bowl. Taste. If you feel it needs a bit more dressing, add some and toss. Place the farro on a serving platter and top with the tossed kale. Serve warm.

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Risotto Primavera

Source: You Can Cook by Annabel Karmel

An awesome meal. As Annabel says

This Italian classic is a super-tasty, meat-free, meal-in-bowl. It’s made with melting soft rice, summer vegetables, and Parmesan cheese.

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cooking Time: ~30 mins
Serves: 2 -4

INGREDIENTS
1 small carrot
1 small leek
1 small onion
1 small garlic clove
1 sweet potato, diced (my addition)
1 yellow squash, diced (my addition)
½ zucchini
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/4 cups risotto rice
5 cups hot vegetable broth
3/4 cup frozen peas
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra to serve
Freshly ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS
Dice the carrot, then thinly slice the leek and the onion, crush the garlic, and dice the zucchini.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the oil, then sauté the onion for 4 to 5 minutes, until it’s soft and translucent. Add the leek, carrot, and garlic, and sauté for another 2 to 3 minutes until the leek has softened.

Stir in the rice and cook for 1 minute, then stir in a ladleful of broth and cook slowly until the liquid is absorbed, stirring all the time.

Add the rest of the broth a ladleful at a time — wait until it is absorbed before adding more. Stir the rice regularly during cooking. After about 18 minutes it will be almost cooked through.

Add the diced zucchini and peas, plus more broth if necessary. Cook for another 4 minutes, or until the vegetables are cooked through. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese. Season with pepper, then serve.

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Black Pepper Tempeh

Source: Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

I had promised myself, no more cookbooks (for a while) and then I found this one, and then I bought it. :)

I’m always looking for some vegetarian meals, and I want ones that aren’t pasta. I’ve just started using tempeh and love it. It can be found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store.

Yield 4 servings

INGREDIENTS
3 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil
3 shallots, thinly sliced (I used a red onion)
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (I used 1/2)
15 small cloves garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon peeled and grated fresh ginger
3 tablespoons shoyu, tamari, or soy sauce (I used soy)
1/4 cup natural cane sugar (I used 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup)
2 tablespoons water, plus more if needed
8 ounces tempeh, sliced pencil-thin
12 ounces cauliflower, very finely chopped
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more if needed

**Next time I think I will add some mushrooms and zuccini, chopped.

DIRECTIONS
In large skillet over low heat, combine the coconut oil, shallots, red pepper flakes, garlic, and ginger. Cook slowly, taking care not to brown the ingredients and stirring occasionally, until the garlic cloves are soft throughout, about 15 minutes.

While the garlic is cooking, whisk together the shoyu, maple syrup, and water in a small bowl.

Increase the temperature under the skillet to medium-high and add the mushrooms and tempeh. Gently stir to get them coated. Add the shoyu mixture and stir again to coat. Cook for a minute or two, then add the cauliflower. Stir and cover. Cook for about 3 minutes.

Uncover, turn the heat up even more, and cook until the cauliflower and tempeh starts to brown. If you need to add more water to prevent sticking, add 1 tablespoon at a time. Remove from heat and stir in the black pepper. Taste, add more pepper if you like, and serve immediately.

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