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CHOCOLATE BERRY PROTEIN SMOOTHIE

Here’s a clean smoothie option to get a good amount of protein, fiber, and healthy fats to start your day. I love using Garden Of Life chocolate which is a vegetable based protein powder. It’s easier on my digestive versus whey protein. But use what works best for you. Maca powder supports healthy vitality and energy. Cacao nibs are packed with tons of nutrients but it adds more depth to the chocolate. Feel free to use your favorite nut milk. Lately I’ve been using unsweetened vanilla almond milk. Always go for unsweetened!

With about 8 grams of net carbs mainly from the mixed berries (blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries), this is definitely low-carb and diabetic friendly. It gives just the right bit of sweetness to the smoothie. If you want to keep your net carbs lower, then omit the maca powder which brings your smoothie net carbs down to 5 grams.


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CHOCOLATE BERRY PROTEIN SMOOTHIE
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Instructions
  1. Place everything into a high speed blender until smooth.

SHREDDED RADICCHIO & BRUSSELS

This is a very straight forward recipe that only takes minutes to cook. It’s so simple and so good for you. Most of the meal prepping I do is literally veggie dishes so I can easily heat up and only worry about the main deal. This recipe goes great with practically anything. Bake, pan sear/fry whatever it may be your favorite fish, or chicken breast, steak and lay it on top a bed of the Shredded Radicchio & Brussels. I’ve added a small handful of it to a rough chopped salad among whatever other random goodies I have in the fridge for a quick, lazy lunch or even dinner. BUT, my absolute fav is creating a circle of this in an oiled iron skillet, leaving a 4-5inch in diameter space in the center where I crack an egg or two in the center. Place the lid on top and let cook on medium-high heat for several minutes. Cajun seasoning sprinkled on top is divine! With toast and the oozing yolk, OH MY GOODNESS!

Sooo my point is, make a big batch of this ahead of time. Use it in all sorts of things. Make your life easy. Get your veggies. Be healthier, feel healthier. And life is good. Hey, feel free to add or replace ingredients too. I love it when you guys go outside the box, after all that’s the whole point of this food blog. Creativity and options is endless. Last thing though… To make life that much easier, I buy the bags of shredded carrot but by all means feel free to save some money by using the good ole cheese grater. You can do the same with the brussels sprouts. Personally, I prefer using a very sharp knife and making thin slices to each one. The radicchio though, you’ll have to use a knife to get the shredded effect. It’s about 1/4 of a radicchio head to get a solid cup of thin slices. Okay, I’m done babbling. Go make nowwww!

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SHREDDED RADICCHIO & BRUSSELS
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Instructions
  1. In a large saute pan over medium-high heat drizzle about a tablespoon of olive oil and add everything except the lemon juice.
  2. Stir frequently for about 5-7 minutes or until the brussels sprouts turn a vibrant green.
  3. Then, squeeze the lemon juice on top, add salt and pepper. Stir for about 30 seconds and remove from heat.

FRESH TOMATO SAUCE

This is a super quick approach to making a fresh tomato sauce. I wouldn’t give it the credit of a pomodoro sauce but if you love the fresh flavors of tomatoes and basil, this is a great go-to recipe for all sorts of dishes. This will always taste better the next day just like most sauces do. Sure canned tomato sauce is great, but some companies add so much sugar and other crap in it that’s completely unnecessary. Not only that but you really can’t compare quality from fresh to canned. It’s a matter or preference and what you plan to make with the sauce.

One of my favorite quick meals to make with the sauce is slicing a smoked chicken Italian style sausage like Aidells, saute it in a large pan with some leeks and simmer the fresh tomato sauce in it. Serve over pasta. You’ll have tons for leftovers too. Feel free to add any other of your favorite fresh herbs like oregano, thyme, marjarom and rosemary. It’s that much more yummier!

 

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FRESH TOMATO SAUCE
serves well with 1lb of pasta
Servings
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Servings
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Instructions
  1. Put all ingredients into a blender and run it until everything is well combined.
  2. Pour the sauce into a pan over medium and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Add more salt to taste.

PEACH AVOCADO SALSA

There really isn’t a whole lot to be said about why everyone should try this recipe at least one time. Especially if you’re a mega lover of peaches. I mean, who doesn’t like salsa? All sorts of salsa? You could keep it safe and use mango instead if you really want to. And it’d be amazing but this is just a whole other level of epic flavor. Trust me!

It’s Spring and Summer is right around the corner. And I’ve been eye balling The Peach Truck peaches at the Nashville Farmers Market as if I’ve been starved for months. And because I waited long enough, I snagged a half bushel of them. LOL Let’s just say I’ve made a lot of things with peaches so far. And you better believe I’ll be sharing them here! If you’re in Nashville, you must check out the Nashville Farmers Market and at the very least get an awesome brown bag of peaches from The Peach Truck.

Aside from diving into this pile of amazing with tortilla chips, I pan seared on high heat really nice center cut filets of cod (halibut is even better) with sea salt and pepper then finished a few minutes in the oven. Then topped the whole thing with a pile of the Peach Avocado Salsa. There are no words. Here’s a crappy picture of it… I was too lazy enjoying the food to go grab the nice camera LOL!


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PEACH AVOCADO SALSA
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Instructions
  1. Toss everything together in a large bowl. It's best when you let it sit for at least an hour in the fridge.

BABY CARROTS & FRENCH BEANS

I’m diving straight into this one quickly. You can usually find these baby carrots packaged in a microwaveable steam bag. BUT I never steam my veggies in a microwave! This is so much better. And same goes for these French green beans also known as haricot vert. They’re the best tasting green beans in my opinion. They’re thin, crispy and can be mildly sweet. If you can find either of these sold in bulk, even better… probably cheaper too! When it comes to healthy, flavorful veggies… the key is KEEP IT SIMPLE! Spices really do go a long way. You don’t need a crap ton of butter or canned cheese! Trust me.

I have made this recipe by tossing everything together into a baking dish and roasting them for about 12-15 minutes for when I don’t want to stand in front of the stove. They’re amazing. If you don’t want thyme, use Italian seasoning, or just rosemary. Honestly, you can use whatever herbs you like, even fresh. Experiment with it. Most times I’ll make a big batch of this, use for sides or simply rough chop some of it and toss into a salad.

When it comes to cooking your veggies, I truly believe using a quality salt (NOT table salt) is what really makes the natural flavor of the veggies pop. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on salt either, just get yourself a good kosher sea salt to start with. With that said, yummy veggies ready in ten minutes. Who said healthy cooking takes forever?

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BABY CARROTS & GREEN BEANS
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Ingredients
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Instructions
  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat drizzle the olive oil and start sautéing the carrots and French beans. After a couple of minutes add the minced garlic, dried thyme, sea salt and pepper. Stir.
  2. Let sauté for a total of 10 minutes give or take, stirring often.