Coconuts for Easy Veggie Coconut Curry!

Coconuts for Easy Veggie Coconut Curry

A few weeks ago, after returning from an amazing tropical vacation in Belize with the Hubby and Fam, I decided to whip up this tropical dish to help keep that vacation high alive! I love all types of ethnic foods and different spices. However, please note, because some people get confused:  Just because something has spices, that does NOT mean it is spicy! This dish is loaded with healthy veggies and best of all, you can really make this dish your own by adding or subtracting the veggies that you like.  I loaded up this dish with tons of veggies, and because of that, I happened to have leftovers for days! So definitely note that this makes A LOT OF FOOD.

I adapted this dish from an AMAZING food blog called, The Minimalist Baker. Her dish looked so delicious, but I wanted to add noddles and more vegetables. But do check out her recipe if you want something more minimalist…hehe.

Coconuts for Easy Veggie Coconut Curry at speckledyellow.com

Now, the serving size is normally for 4, but because I added so many veggies and noodles, I would say this could easily serve 6 people.

Ingredients

1 Tbsp coconut or olive oil
1 Bell Pepper
1 small head of Broccoli, diced
1/2 Small Green Cabbage, chopped
1 8oz can of Sliced Bamboo Shoots
2 Large Carrots, diced
1 Tiny Yellow Onion, diced
4 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 Tbsp curry powder
pinch cayenne powder
2 cans coconut milk
1 cup veggie stock
1 package of rice vermicelli noodles
sea salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Heat a very large pot, saucepan, or wok over medium heat with 1 Tbsp coconut or olive oil. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, carrot, broccoli, cabbage, and red pepper. Cook, stirring often until softened 10-15 minutes. Add the bamboo shoots and cook for another 5 minutes.

2. Add in the curry powder, cayenne powder, veggie stock, coconut milk and some salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and then reduce the heat a bit and continue cooking for 10-15 minutes. Taste and season more if needed!

3. While the curry is cooking, follow the directions on the back of package to cook the rice vermicelli noodles. (Most say to cover with hot water and let stand for 10-15 min).

4. You have two options for serving:
a. Serve the curry over the vermicelli noodles.
b. Mix the vermicelli noodles into the curry so they really take on all the spices and curry flavor! This is my favorite option. I    recommend mixing the noodles in with the curry and letting them sit and soak up all the flavors for a few moments before serving!

Coconuts for Easy Veggie Coconut Curry at speckledyellow.com

Coconuts for Easy Veggie Coconut Curry

Recipe adapted from the Minimalist Baker

Wild Rice Pilaf with Dried Cranberries and Pecans

IMG_5068

This is a perfect side dish to pair with any meal, lunch or dinner! I am not gonna lie, I ate this by itself for breakfast a few times because it’s just that good! The flavors are perfect for a Fall and Winter pallet, especially if you need a side dish for a Holiday dinner! This is super quick and easy and you can see below that I paired it with my Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Dijon Chicken for a delightful dinner! This rice pilaf dish as yummy dried cranberries in it, and I am a big supporter of dried fruit in anything and everything, so any chance I get to add some, I will!

IMG_5076 Ingredients
* 4 cups chicken or veggie stock
* 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter or vegan butter
* 1 Tablespoon grapeseed oil
* 23 large shallots, minced
* 2 cups wild rice or 2 cups short-grain brown rice and wild rice mixture (I use Lundberg Wild Blend Rice, picture below)
* 1/2 cup cranberries
* 1 bay leaf
* 2 fresh thyme sprigs or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
* 1/2 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon pepper

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Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Add the stock to a pot and simmer over medium-low heat.
3. In an over safe casserole or dutch oven melt the butter with the oil. Add the shallots and sauté until translucent about 2-3 minutes.
4. Then, stir in the stock, dried cranberries, bay leaf, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper.
5. Bring to a simmer, stir and cover.
6. Next, transfer the casserole or dutch oven to the oven and bake until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender about 40-45 minutes.
7. Make sure to remove the bay leaf and thyme springs, if used, when the dish has finished cooking and prior to eating.
8. stir in the pecans and serve!

Original Recipe from Williams-Sonoma.com

Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Dijon Chicken

Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Dijon Chicken

This chicken dish it the ULTIMATE, MOST AMAZING chicken you will ever eat in your life!!!!! I made this pretty much every day for a week straight and then I shared the recipe with all of my friends. It is also a great dish if you are hosting a dinner party or having a friend or two over for dinner! I have also chopped up the chicken and put it on top of salad for a delicious chicken salad lunch recipe.

The dijon mustard keeps the chicken moist and adds delectable flavor, while the pecans and bread crumbs create a crispy crunch. Sometimes I feel like I am eating a healthier version of chicken fingers!  I paired this with my Wild Rice Pilaf With Dried Cranberries and Pecans which I will be posting next!

Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Dijon Chicken

Ingredients
* 1 cup pecans, toasted
* 1/2 cup bread crumbs (make your own or purchase already made. I used gluten-free crumbs)
* 1 teaspoon dried basil
* 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts or one pack (if the chicken breasts are large, I like to cut them in half to create a cutlet)
* 1/4 cup honey mustard
* 1 Tablespoon of olive oil
* salt and pepper to taste

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Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Mango Salsa and Peanut Sauce

Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Mango Salsa and Peanut Sauce

I can officially announce that this dish is a slice of tofu heaven! The past week, I kept seeing pictures of chicken lettuce wraps and then of course I started dreaming of chicken lettuce wraps. The delicious crunch of the lettuce and sweetness of the sauce; I just could not stop envisioning taking a massive delectable bite out of something sooo good but at the same time low carb!  However, I had tofu and no chicken at home. Well not to worry, I found this recipe from an adorable blog called, Cookie + Kate. It incorporates everything you could possible want in a healthy meal and  I give this a million thumbs up!

Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Mango Salsa and Peanut Sauce

Though I have to admit it, I made this during the summer when mangos were in peek season and oh so delicious. But even though it is Fall, we can still have an occasional burst of some summery food to remind us that summer will come again…..not for a while, but it will someday return! For now, this is a great light meal to have, especially if you have a tropical vacation coming up sometime soon!

Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Mango Salsa and Peanut Sauce

INGREDIENTS

Crispy Baked Tofu
* 1 (15 ounce) block of organic extra-firm tofu
* 1 Tablespoon olive oil
* 1 Tablespoon reduced-sodium tamari sauce
* 2 teaspoons arrowroot starch or cornstarch

Peanut Sauce
* 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
* 2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
* 2 Tablespoons reduced-sodium tamari sauce
* 2 Tablespoons honey or agave nectar or maple syrup
* 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
* 1/2 lime, juiced
* 2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced

Mango Salsa
* 2 ripe mangos, diced
* 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
* 1/3 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
* 1/2 lime, juiced
* (optional 1 jalapeño, minced)

EVERYTHING ELSE
* Large head of lettuce or even a head of green cabbage
* Optional: peanuts
Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Mango Salsa and Peanut Sauce

Click below for the recipe instructions and more pictures!  Continue reading

Broiled Asian Chicken Skewers with Peanut Ginger Sauce

Broiled Asian Chicken Skewers with Peanut Ginger Sauce

Broiled Asian Chicken Skewers with Peanut Ginger Sauce

I love anything Asian and most things chicken. When you put the two together, it’s just a taste of delicious bliss! I am always looking for quick meals and since this one is cooked in the broiler, the cook time just whizzes by in a jiffy. I can also quickly marinade the chicken in the morning or the day before, and then pop it into the oven later to be ready in no time.

Next time we host a small party, I am gonna be breaking out these chicken skewers! You can also place them on the BBQ to mix things up a lil.

Now I paired this with a delicious side of my Simple Shaved Brussels Sprouts Side Salad (recipe to come soon!!!!) and some wild rice. I loved mixing everything on my plate together, so I ended up mixing the rice and shaved brussel sprouts together and put some of the Peanut Ginger Dipping Sauce on them and it was seriously GOOD!

Ingredients:

*12 ounces boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch slices or pieces
*bamboo skewers (to prevent from burning, soak wooden bamboo skewers in water for 30 min before threading the chicken)

Soy-Ginger Chicken Marinade
2 Tbsp reduced-sodium Tamari Soy Sauce (I use organic and gluten free)
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp finely minced ginger
1 tsp honey

Peanut Ginger Dipping Sauce
1/4 cup smooth peanut butter (I use Justin’s all natural peanut butter and it’s PERFECT!)
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp reduced sodium Tamari Soy Sauce (I used organic and gluten free)
1/2 tsp finely minced ginger
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 Tbsp water, or as needed according to the consistency that you desire!

 

Click below for DIRECTIONS and some more pics! Continue reading

Spicy Baked Marinated Tofu with Cabbage-Veggie Stir Fry

Spicy Baked Marinated Tofu with Cabbage-Veggie Stir Fry

This is by far one of the best tofu dishes I have ever had!!! It has the perfect amount of spice and flavor to satisfy your belly, and I love how the cabbage-veggie stir fry creates a mix of vibrant colors! Also, fast fact, WebMD says that cabbage helps with stomach pain, morning sickness (calling all you pregnant ladies), and it’s also used to prevent weak bones and cancer! It’s one of the lowest calorie veggies and is packed with antioxidants and vitamins A and K!!!! Also, this dish is HUSBAND APPROVED!

*Notes: Tofu needs to be marinated for 30-40 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees f.Spicy Baked Marinated Tofu with Cabbage-Veggie Stir Fry

 

Ingredients…

Baked Tofu
1 block extra firm tofu
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons hot sauce
1 Tablespoon low sodium tamari sauce (or low sodium soy sauce)
2 large garlic cloves minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon white cooking wine
a dash of salt and pepper

Cabbage Veggie Stir Fry
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cups green cabbage chopped
2 cups red cabbage chopped
2 small/medium sized carrots sliced
1 red bell pepper chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 heaping teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/8 heaping teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoon low sodium tamari sauce (or soy sauce)

*Heaping means: a little more than what’s listed*

Garnish
toasted sesame seeds

 

TOFU Directions……

*Make sure to preheat oven to 350 degrees f

1. Open the tofu package and using paper towels and your hands gently press on the tofu and let excess water out. Do this until most of the water is gone. Slice the tofu into small rectangular shapes.

2. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, hot sauce, tamari (or soy sauce), minced garlic, sesame oil, white cooking wine, and a dash of salt and pepper. Mix until blended.

3. Dip each piece of tofu into the liquid mixture to coat each side. Then set the tofu aside in a separate bowl, adding any remaining mixture, and marinate for 30-60 minutes in the refrigerator.

4. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray (I use nonstick olive oil spray), then spread the tofu out evenly.

5. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-40 minutes (cooking time depends on how thin or thick the pieces are. If they are cut thicker I would leave them longer in the oven and vice versa!)

6. Flip ’em over and cook the other side for 15-20 mins.

7. Place on top of the veggie mixture and sprinkle on some toasted sesame seeds!

Cabbage Veggie Stir Fry Directions….

1. Place all of the chopped veggies in a large bowl.

2. Mix the olive oil, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, rice vinagr, and tamari sauce (or soy sauce) in a small bowl.

3. Add the small sauce mixture to the large veggie bowl and stir until the veggies are coated evenly.

4. Use a deep frying pan or stir fry pan and stir fry the veggie mixture on medium to medium/high heat until the carrots are semi-soft around 15/20 minutes.

5. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve alone with the tofu or over rice or noodles!

Spicy Baked Marinated Tofu with Cabbage-Veggie Stir Fry Spicy Baked Marinated Tofu with Cabbage-Veggie Stir Fry

Recipe adapted from Divine Healthy Food (all vegan) . A must check out with delicious recipes!!!!!!

2-Minute Humus Veggie Wrap

2-Minute Humus Veggie WrapSo simple, easy, and fast! This wrap has become my go-to for a healthy quick lunch, and my staple meal for beach days, picnics in the park, or hanging by the pool! I almost always have these ingredients in my house and when I pack it to go and wrap it with tin foil, it never gets soggy! The raisins give the wrap an amazing added flavor, which is my favorite part! This is a must try.

It is also a HUGE hit with kids!!!! Last summer after bringing a few wraps to the beach, my friend’s 2 and 5 year-old daughters split one of the wraps. They loved it so much that my friend asked for the recipe and now makes them all the time!

 

Ingredients…

1/4 carrot
1/4 organic cucumber
1 small handful of raisins
humus
1 tortilla wrap (I love using a spinach wrap like Maria and Ricardo’s Spinach Tortillas from Whole Foods)

*note: Only a small amount of carrot and cucumber are needed for each wrap but I eat the rest or make extra wraps!

See below for directions and more pictures! 

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