Monday, May 26, 2014

Lemon Mint Quinoa

Since today is a holiday, I finally have a moment to blog! It's been a busy and exciting week for me, and it will continue to be busy and exciting for me for the rest of summer. Evenings still include ballet, and on Monday I started my summer internship at an engineering firm in NYC. I'm learning a lot and adventure around the area during my lunch break. While I walk, I eat my lunch, and had a thought-provoking encounter. I was making my way through Bryant Park eating this from a little container when the leader of some yoga or tai-chi group approached me and told me to sit down and eat and that walking with food was bad. After doing my research, I've found that especially in places including Japan, Brazil, Quebec, Italy, it is bad etiquette to eat while walking, or even in a place not designated for consuming food. Japan seems to be the most displeased by this, so if you are headed there, take note! Anyways, since I'm in New York, I think I will continue exploring/walking/eating simultaneously...

For 1 serving:
Ingredients: 1/4 cup dry quinoa, 1/2 cup water, dash of marjoram, small handful fresh mint leaves, 1/4 lemon, dash of salt and pepper, 1/2 diced bell pepper

1. Rinse quinoa with water and then put in saucepan with 1/2 cup water

2. add the herbs (marjoram, mint leaves, salt, pepper) and diced bell pepper to the saucepan

3. Cook on medium to high heat until the quinoa absorbs all of the water (should take 15 minutes)

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Treats from Drury Lane

The spirit of the muffin man is unmistakeable in our house these days… a large batch of healthy breakfast muffins for my dad are baked in our kitchen on a weekly basis, and here I am trying to make my own version. I guess this could count as a summer-version of a chemistry lab. It's tough to figure out how to get a muffin-like consistency without common ingredients, and these didn't come out the way I expected them to. Still, they're unique. They have a gooey center and a chewy outside, plus they're blue on the inside. I named them: Gooey Center Blueberry Banana Muffins.

Makes 10 small-medium muffins:
Ingredients: 2 ripe bananas, 1 cup oats, tbsp cinnamon, 2 eggs, 1 cup blueberries, 1 tbsp olive oil, tbsp flax seeds, 1/6 tsp baking soda, [tbsp sugar if you must….]

1. Preheat oven to 375F

2. Add 1/2 cup boiling water to 1 cup oats and stir in a large mixing bowl

3. Mash bananas and beat eggs in separate bowls

4. Add the mashed banana and beat eggs to the mixing bowl and stir it all

5. Add in tbsp cinnamon, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/6 tsp baking soda [and a little sugar if you can't live without it] and mix!

6. Pour into muffin tins and sprinkle cinnamon on top

7. Bake in oven for about an hour- check after 30 minutes and periodically keep checking until the top is crisp, and the inside is gooey but cooked.

Hawaiian Grill Salad

Between my "summer" beginning, my brother traveling to Hawaii, Mother's Day weekend, and nice weather, the idea to grill some seafood, and pineapple came to mind. However, I'm not great at barbecuing- my experience goes up to cooking bananas and marshmallows at campfires (and there is a possibility that some may have caught on fire)… So, since I can't barbecue and my dad is a master, he grilled skewers with shrimp, pineapple, and red bell pepper. I merely set out a bowl of lettuce and threw in what he grilled!

For a large salad (but alter depending on how much you want)
Ingredients: 3 cups romaine lettuce, about 10 shrimps, 3/4 cup pineapple chunks, 1 bell pepper cut to chunks, 1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1. Arrange the chunks of pineapple, shrimp, and bell pepper on skewers

2. Grill on barbecue until the shrimp is ready (a few minutes on each side)

3. Take chunks off the skewer and add to salad bowl with 2 cups lettuce

Friday, May 9, 2014

Not Tomato Sauce

One thing that I never realized how much I would miss with this diet is tomato sauce! So versatile and yummy, it is great on pasta, homemade pizza, over cooked veggies, and in special dishes.

I used some fresh purple basil from our garden!
I challenged myself to reproduce the flavor of tomato sauce with what I can eat, and to my surprise it worked out well! Check out my "Not Pizza" recipe which uses this "Not Tomato Sauce!"

To make 1.5 cups:
Ingredients: 2 cups chopped bell pepper, 1 diced lemon, 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, tsp olive oil, herbs/seasoning (pinch of each and fresh if you have): oregano, paprika, red pepper flakes, basil, tarragon, thyme, marjoram, basil, salt, peppercorn, 1/2 cup water

1. Add all ingredients into blender and blend!

2. Pour into saucepan and cook on low to medium heat for 30-60 minutes depending on the consistency desired

3. Store in the fridge

Not Pizza

Not Pizza, 2014 style
The last time I remember eating pizza (or some version of it) with actual tomatoes and wheat, was in the summer of 2010. This was a few years before being diagnosed with wheat allergy and fructose malabsorption, but back then I was already dairy free. It was at surfing camp in Herzliya, Israel, and for lunch that day we each made a mini pizza with dough we made, tomato sauce, olives, and cheese (no cheese for me). This was actually pretty healthy- no grease and pretty natural. I remember having a hard time explaining to my friends [in Hebrew] that I couldn't have milk, so I would not be having cheese on my pizza. The counselors were confused as well, and wouldn't call my creation "pizza," so I gave in and called it "not pizza." I even found some pictures from camp on Facebook (I'm wearing a black rash guard):

(Summer 2010 Herzliya, Israel)
Definitely gave us some energy (I'm on the right)!

Now that I can't have wheat or tomatoes, I should call this recipe not not not pizza, but for simplicity I'll just leave it at "not pizza." Check out my "Not Tomato Sauce" recipe to help make this delicious "Not Pizza!"

To make 4 small slices:
2 Slices tolerated bread, topping of choice (I used olives and peppers), 3 tbsp "Not Tomato Sauce", tsp olive oil

1. Cut each piece of bread in half and lay on aluminum foil

2. Drizzle tsp olive oil over the pieces

3. Spread 3/4 tbsp of sauce on each mini piece

4. Put topping as you wish

5. Put in a convection or toaster oven until bread is crisp- I put it in on 350F for about 4 minutes in a convection oven

6. ENJOY!!!

7. Go surfing?!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Pina Kale-Ada

A few weeks ago in the school cafeteria, there was no fruit except for pineapple, and I needed
something sweet, so I looked up the fructose content (seemed okay to have a few bites) and got some. It's been a very, very long time since I've had pineapple, and when I tried it, it was so delicious, so I had a little more. Turns out that my body can handle the fructose-glucose ratio in a little bit of pineapple, but my mouth could not! There was a tingling sensation in my mouth, which then turned into a giant burn, which made it hard to eat and talk.

I was worried that this was another allergy, so I did some research and found out that the plant protease enzyme, bromelain (which breaks down proteins), causes the burn. So, if you haven't had pineapple in a while and would like to preserve your taste buds, don't have more than a few pieces, and make sure that it's ripe! This recipe has just the right amount!

Ingredients: 1/2 cup RIPE pineapple, 1 cup kale, 2 tsp sesame seeds, 1/2 cup ice

1. Pour all ingredients into a high speed blender with some water

2. Blend!

Sushi Core

It's been over a week since I've posted, and I owe that to final exam culture...
Before I give you my recipe, I've got to give a recap...
The desk across from me at library
Check out that kettle!

At Lehigh, finals week = students residing in the library 24/7. This includes pillows, blankets, crying, coffee, coffee brewing machines in laptop outlets, hot water kettles in laptop outlets, moving out of dorms to move into library, etc.

So I came home for a little to study in a more relaxed environment. My study guides came with me to ballet class uptown, the Great Lawn at Central Park (and they got to see Belvedere Castle), and then witnessed the creation of this "sushi core" in my kitchen at home. My study guides are definitely less stressed out here. They also had a great time sightseeing and getting culture. Not to mention, I had fun, too.
study guides in hallway at ballet
May flowers...

belvedere castle

Makes about 5:
Ingredients: 10 small nori seaweed sheets, 1 red bell pepper, 1 avocado, tsp sesame seeds, 5 sheets rice paper

1. Slice 1 red bell pepper into strips and 1 avocado into wedges

2. Put sheet of rice paper under warm water and add 2 sheets nori onto it. Then add some avocado and pepper and wrap it up.

3. Continue making rolls until there's no more avocado and pepper