Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Three common problems solved

I haven’t blogged for a while because I’ve been real busy and I’ve also been creating some new dishes.  Variety is the spice of life.  So I decided to take on some food items that I really thought needed some fine-tuning.  

Singapore noodles with some crispy tofu

Non genetically  modified  (GMO) tofu is very healthy (soy in its natural form, not processed). I’ve only eaten tofu in one restaurant where I like the tofu’s consistency (5 spice tofu at P.F. Chang’s).  In other places it tends to be mushy.  Some people like to bake tofu to get the watery consistency out (after it’s drained)-I’ve done this and it works well.  But I’ve been looking for another flavor.
Last night I finally got it to the consistency and flavor I want.
I got it to have the texture of Indian paneer (without dairy) .  It was the first time that Jordan cleared out all the tofu in his Chinese dish.

 First, it needs to be drained well.  I buy the extra firm, non genetically modified Nasoya brand.  I’ve struggled to find the best draining technique (without having things topple over).  I’ve finally found an effective way to drain it too. I’ll write up the technique (simple) soon.
I also pan fry it with a little corn starch sprinkled and some turmeric-this gives it that crispy texture.  It also gives it the perfect consistency and flavor.  And it’s a lot like pan fried Indian paneer (which I used to make from scratch before my non dairy days)

Can taste great, but it’s unhealthy.  I don’t want to feed my child nitrites, fillers, fat and all kinds of food like ingredients that really aren’t food.  Yes,  an occasional bratwurst won’t kill you.  But why not eliminate the bad ingredients completely?
I recently found a new brand of sausages at Whole Foods (see photo).  They make knockwurst, bratwurst, etc.  There is no dairy (more commonly lactic acid starter derived from dairy) and no nitrites, fillers, etc.  My son loves meat, so I have to consciously feed him the best meat I can find prepared in a tasty way. 
There are two methods I use to make this bratwurst.

  1.        During the winter months, I make it indoors.  I parboil it (more for flavor) in New Glarus Bock beer. Then grill it inside.
  2.        During the summer months, I grill it outside
I serve it with Hungarian style cabbage. 

Home made pizza with no dairy


Commercial pizza tends to be high in sodium and fat.  Of course for us, no dairy, so that leaves out all pizzas from restaurants (at least around my area….I’m sure there are vegan pizzas in some unique restaurants but not in my neighborhood).  Schools often have pizza parties so I always have to send a pizza for my son so he doesn’t feel bad when he smells the pizza.
If I have no time to make a fresh one, the quick solution is a Tofurky pizza (they are really good).  But these pizzas tend to serve just one.

The other alternative, especially for travel (cold pizza is good too) is a homemade pizza.....completely homemade.  Given economies of scale, we make two and save some.  These pizzas can be customized.  I use generous portions of Daiya cheese (that melts like cheese), sauce, Applegate (no nitrite) pepperoni (or not), garlic,  basil, etc.  If I don’t have time, I use organic pasta sauce. The pizzas are baked in special pizza pans with the small holes on the bottom for maximum crispiness. 

I'll be posting more.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Looks and smells like a real creamy strawberry smoothie….

It tastes at least as good as it looks

...and it is.

I’ve been seeing all kinds of great photos of smoothies recently, including the ones from some famous fast foods.  The photos do look good.  But we all know that the fast food smoothie is most likely artificial.

Since I am staying away from dairy for health reasons…and my son has to, I’ve tried to find a good blend of alternatives to dairy.

In my case, I found the best mix to be a blend of Silk Soy and So Delicious coconut milk.  These two alternatives are very creamy.  I also used a cup of So Delicious non flavored yogurt.

To boost nutrients, I also added wheat germ.  While wheat germ may not sound appealing, it is a good way to pack nutrients into the drink.  I also added 1 tsp. of Acacia honey.  This is so simple and can be customized to your taste and available fruits.  The amazing color is real….not artificial.

1.25 cups blend of silk soy/so delicious coconut milk
2 heaping tsp. wheat germ (optional)
1 tsp. honey
1 container of So Delicious plain yogurt (coconut based)
one container of strawberries (or mix with other fruits) trimmed and quartered
 9 ice cubes

Even my son liked it and he is very hard to please. To me this tastes so much better than its dairy counterpart.  And of course if you are allergic to dairy (as my son), there is no sacrifice in the texture or flavor.

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Contents are protected by the U.S. Copyright act and may not be duplicated or redistributed.  All contents are owned by BlogToTheNextOne ©2011