WOW! Have I really been gone that long!
I have. That's what two little ones and a full class load will do to you ;)
Some of you may already know I'm currently taking part in the Daniel Fast .
Here's a link on the premise of the fast. http://www.daniel-fast.com/about.html.
I am doing it as an act of obedience and discipline for God. I have been in a phase where I have been enjoying whatever I want whenever I want it - not just with food, but with all things. I wanted to regroup and balance, so that I could have a more Christ-centered focus - a new dependence and appreciation for Him and the great gifts He provides!
It's basically a 21 day fast that allows you only fruits (any form- not fried/sweetened), vegetables (any form - not fried), whole grains and water.
No sweeteners of any kind (no sugar, honey, splenda, etc) No dairy, or animal byproducts (no butter, chicken broth etc.) No meat. No processed foods. No chemicals.
I've been on this fast for one week, and wanted to share some of my recipes. I'm not sure they are 100% perfect, but I promise I'm doing my best to adhere to the guidelines.
Hope these are helpful to someone!
Here's a rundown of what we've done for dinners. We've been enjoying the variety of tastes. It is a challenge though finding things to fix without milk, cheese, sugar....these things we so often rely on - even without realizing it.
We've also eaten a TON of salsa. It's good on almost anything! We have had fun preparing this food together during my vacation. It's been a challenge, but we've enjoyed being creative with our meals. We've also been using a lot of our Co-op food - which is always a big plus!
Sunday: Whole wheat pasta with pesto, olive oil, artichoke hearts and mixed veggies. (Tomatoes, zucchini, onion)
- Make sure your pesto is parmesan free - Clint had to do a lot of searching to find one.
- This meal could have been better. ;)
Monday: Vegetarian Chili
- One can of mild rotel
- One can of diced tomatoes or 1 tomato diced
- One can of dark red kidney beans
- One can of pinto beans
- 1 small Onion- chopped
- Black Olives 1 small can (chopped in or on top)
- Chili Seasoning
- Vinegar, salt, pepper to taste
- We also had some fritos
Tuesday: Mexican Casserole
- Lightly grease baking dish with olive oil
- Line with Corn tortillas (I think my base was 6 corn tortillas
- Layer in 1 can of pinto beans
- Diced tomatoes
- Mild rotel or Enchilada Sauce
- 1 can of Black Beans
- 1 small can black olives
- 1 can Corn
- Cover with 4 corn tortillas, then repeat using remainder of ingredients
- So you now have 2 layers
- Each time you put everything down, then use the juice from the Mild Rotel (when not doing this I use Enchilada sauce) and pour it over the layer - it will soak in and make things tasty.
- After second layer placed, cover with corn tortillas (4 approx) and pour remaining Mild Rotel (mostly juice) on top.
- Bake at 350 for about 30-40 min - just to warm everything up.
- Slice and top with salsa - enjoy!
- Really good with cheese and sour cream - but those aren't on the fast! ;)
- We also ate some multigrain tortilla chips
Wednesday: Flatbread Spinach/Boca Gyro & Hummus
- We used some ground Boca "meat" for this - it's a soy & bean fake meat
- Just put some of this in a skillet with Frozen Chopped spinach & a little olive oil - meditteranean seasoning if you have it
- Salt/Pepper to taste
- Line the flatbread with a thin layer of hummus
- Add Spinach/Boca mixture (& black olives if you like them) on top
- Fold in half and enjoy!
- The kids really gobbled this up too! Theirs had feta and
Thursday: Whole Wheat Flatbread Pizza Margharita and Steamed Artichokes
- Prepare Flatbread Crust (I'll include recipe below)
- Roll flat - thinly as possible and bake on pizza stone
- Bake at 400 for about 4 minutes - then remove crust
- Top pizza with thin layer of pasta sauce, thinly sliced tomatoes, and fresh basil
- Place pizza back in oven for 12-15 minutes - until crust is crispy and lightly browned
- Remove from oven, slice & enjoy!
- We added cheese & crumbled bacon to the kids. Very popular.
- We steamed some artichokes & ate them dipped in a "true french vinagrette" with no sugar and no preservatives - another good Clint find
Friday: Boca Burgers and Baked Sweet Potato Fries
- Boca Burgers - prepared on skillet - with flat bread
- Sweet potatoes cut into wedges, brushed with olive oil/steak seasoning
- Bake sweet potatoes in thin layer on baking sheet for approx. 45min/1hr until lightly crisped - turning occasionally.
Saturday: Potato Rosti topped with avocados and salsa
"The Vegetarian Cookbook"
- 2lb potatoes, unpeeled ( I used 4)
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
- - - We added
1 minced red bell pepper
1 minced red onion
Bring a large pan of water to aboil, add the otatoes, and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and let cool completely. Cover and let chill in the refrigerator at least 30min.
Peel and coarsely grate the potatoes. (we used a food processor for the grating)
- then add chopped pepper and onion
Add 1/2 of olive oil to skillet and add potato hash mixture - spreading out evenly over bottom of pan, cook 12 minutes - medium heat.
Cover the skillet with a large plate and carefully invert the skillet and plate together to flip the potato cake over onto the plate. Use remaining olive oil. Carefully slide the potato cake back into the skillet browned side up - to brown the other side. After approx 12 minutes remove, slice and enjoy!
- We topped ours with avocados and salsa! Delicious!
Sunday: Whole Wheat Mexican Tostadas
- whole wheat tortillas
- Cook black beans and mash to make fake "refried black beans"
- Layer Tortilla with thin layer of black bean mash
- Diced tomatoes
- Shredded lettuce
- Black olives if you like them
- Top with Salsa & enjoy!
- We were so full that we couldn't even eat dinner!
Monday Baked Butternut Squash
Halve Butternut S quash length-wise, then scoop out/discard seeds and strings.
Place squash cut side up in shallow pan with 1 inch of water
Bake for 1hr on 350 until outer shell starts to brown.
Mix 1/2 cup Orange Juice with 1-2 Tblsp Lime Juice. Spoon liquid over squash, allowing it to pool in the "cup" of the squash that's hollowed out.
Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper
Place back in oven & bake another 15-minutes on 350
Remove & enjoy - while it's still warm!
- We had to reheat ours in the microwave, because I let it cool too long. Oops!
- The liquid should kind of pool in the cup of the squash, and you can scrape out some squash and dip it in. I think I'll try this with a cream-based soup when I can use dairy again! ;)
- I thought it was okay - for something kind of sweet - and we used co-op food. Double bonus - but it was NOT my husband's favorite! He didn't care for it much.
(He also doesn't like sweet potatoes very much though, and I'm a huge fan!)
Quick Whole-wheat Flatbread Dough (Makes 2 pizzas or 4-6 flatbread thins)
2 1/2 c. flour
2 2/4 tsp baking powder (if using baking soda use half & omit salt)
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp oil
3/4 to 1 c. water
Mix dry ingredients. Add 3/4 c. water & oil . Stir until it forms a ball. If dough is stiff, add more water.
Dough should be soft, not sticky. Knead on floured surface for 3-4 min. Roll into ball, cover & let rest 5-6min.
For pizzas, I split this into 2 balls, and lightly brushed them with olive oil, then rolled very thin. Our entire family would have been fine with 1 1/2 pizzas. I made a second batch and froze the other two after coating them in oil - to make them easier to get out of the ziploc freezer bag.
Bake these at 400deg for approx.15 min if making flatbread. Bake until they reach desired crispiness.
Here's a link to a more involved (softer) flatbread recipe (haven't tried yet) - it looks really good & is on my list to give a try, but the bread has to rest for a day or so, so it has to be prepared in advance.
For lunches, we've primarily been eating leftovers. For snacks we've been eating a lot of hummus, triscuits and corn chips/salsa, pecans, almonds, cashews, etc.
I've been eating a lot of apples, and one night we mixed unsweetened organic peanut butter with unsweetened cocoa powder to dip our apples in. Pretty tasty! (Gross without the apple though).
We've also been eating LARA BARS - http://www.larabarstore.com/detail/LAR+45315 Many of them contain fruits and nuts only - with no sugar & they are delicious. Great for a quick snack when you're out and about. I've been eating them for breakfast some days.
- They are available at most grocery stores
With the help of my mother-in-law, I also made my own bars: Here's the recipe for those.
1 bag of pecans (could also use almonds)
1/2 small bag of unsweetened coconut
Blend in food processor until finely chopped, then add
1 small bag of unsweetened chopped dates
1 bag unsweetened dried apricots
Blend in food processor until dough-like substance forms.
Remove and place in lightly oiled (olive oil) baking dish (I had to use 2)
Use wax-paper to press the dough into flat sheet
Bake at 350 10-20min until top is slightly firm to touch, but not dried out.
Remove dish and cut into rectangles, then place dish back in over for 5-10min
Remove dish and let bars cool.
I wrapped each one in wax paper, then put them in containers in the fridge for a quick grab and go snack. Pretty tasty!
Here's a link to the OKC co-op http://urbanorganicsokc.wordpress.com/
This has forced me to take a look at several areas of my life and make healthy changes that are more Christ-centered. Meal preparation and planning has taken more time, but it's given me rich time with my family. I've also been reading God's word more often as I take my dependence off of my familiar crutches.
Hope this helps someone. ;)