Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Fun With Tofurky

Even though I stopped eating meat, I NEVER thought I would eat Tofurky. It just sounded too weird. But one day, I decided to try it out. I do not make a habit of eating fake meats, because I don't think it is good to consume them regularly,  but I figured - I like to be adventurous with food, so I would give it a try. I got myself the Tofurky Italian Sausage. 

On the package was the sausage sliced up and served over pasta and sauce, so I decided to give that a try (see my picture above). It surprisingly came out well! I served it with some steamed kale and cauliflower and it went really well together. The sausages were a little spicy, but other than that, I actually liked it. I suggest following the instructions on the package about how to prepare the sausage. Here is my easy recipe for the sauce:

3 Tofurky sausages, sliced on the diagonal in chunks
olive oil
1 yellow onion, half moon sliced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 yellow crookneck squash, half moon sliced
1 jar of Eden Organic Spaghetti Sauce
sea salt
  1. Saute the Tofurky in some olive oil in a pan for a few minutes on medium heat on each side, then set aside on a plate.
  2. Saute onions and garlic for 4 minutes. Then toss in the squash, and saute. Let cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Pour the spaghetti sauce over the cooking vegetables and add the cooked sausage. Bring to a simmer and cover.
  4. Let sauce, vegetables and sausage cook for 12 minutes, then taste and add salt as needed.
  5. Serve over brown rice spaghetti or your favorite pasta. Maybe add some extra fun to your meal by serving with some garlic bread...
Check out and try Tofurky to give yourself some variety. Just be sure to read the ingredients on the packaging to make sure you don't buy anything with sugar/cane juice.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Paper Out of Poo

Mr. Ellie Pooh - with a name like that for a paper company, you've gotta be intrigued. Well, the name is pretty self explanatory. This company makes cute and functional paper from elephant poo. I first heard about this company years ago at Green Festival. Their concept is brilliant. Elephants in Sri Lanka were being killed by people, so the people who started Mr. Ellie Pooh decided to help the people of Sri Lanka see elephants as an asset instead of a threat. They started taking elephant dung and turning it into beautiful paper, made of 50% fiber from elephant dung and 50% post consumer paper. 

Mr. Ellie Pooh paper is handmade, acid free and all natural. It comes in various colors, sized, as memo books and pads, as greeting cards or stationary. I have a bunch of the cute heart shaped papers- perfect for writing small notes or for crafts.

The best thing about this paper is that every time you use it, you can feel good knowing that you are helping to save the elephants in Sri Lanka.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Strengthening Fish Soup

I recently got knocked out with a bad case of food poisoning - I think I am over eating fried food at restaurants... Even though it was a painful and uncomfortable experience, it was also an opportunity to put what I have learned about healing and food to the test. With some advice from my expert macrobiotic chefs and friends, I was able to regain my strength and my ability to eat real foods again.

One dish that I decided to make to help me regain my strength was Fish Soup. Not only did this soup help me to feel stronger, it also tasted delicious! Here is the recipe. And just remember, if you are ever feeling weak - fish, root vegetables, stronger seasonings and cooking foods for a longer amount of time is a great way to go.

Strengthening Fish Soup

toasted sesame oil
1 onion, sliced in half moons
2-3 carrots, kinpira (matchstick) cut
burdock root or other root vegetable, kinpira (matchstick) cut - optional
sea salt
4 cups of water
2 stamp sized pieces of kombu seaweed, soaked in water for a few minutes
5 pieces of cod fish
barley or brown rice miso paste
4 stalks of scallions, in 2 inch slices

  1. Heat your pot to medium low and saute onions in a small amount of sesame oil. Occasionally stir the onions and let them cook for about 4 minutes.
  2. Add in carrots and other (optional) vegetables. Stir and let cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Turn the flame down to low, sprinkle vegetables with a little sea salt and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally for 25 minutes.
  4. Pour 4 cups of water over the vegetables in the pot. Add in the kombu and turn the heat to high. Bring to boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Add in pieces of cod and cover. Let cook for 4 minutes or until the cod is tender.
  6. Add in scallions and dissolve miso. Taste the broth and add more miso to taste.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hearty, Warming Meals With the Right Cookware

In the kitchen, cold weather means it's time for hearty, rich soups, stews and roasting. A great way to do this and help your body keep you warm is by using heavier cookware. It is definitely time to bust out the cast iron skillets, pressure cookers and ceramic coated cast iron pots.

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to cook with Le Creuset ceramic coated cast iron pots. It was heavenly. My food came out evenly and well cooked, and just plain delicious. The reason why is because the pots are heavier in weight than regular stainless steel, making food hearty and more strengthening. The pots also conduct and retain heat very well and are durable and efficient. I bought my mom one of these pots last year and she LOVES it. I recommend using these pots for making stews or overnight oats with dried apricot compote. Basically, I think these pots are best for making warm comfort foods.

Check out the collection of Le Creuset:

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Tame Your Flame for Perfect Rice

Does your rice to come out perfectly light, fluffy and evenly cooked every time? If not, here is an easy and inexpensive way to prevent grains from sticking to the bottom of your pot or burning. A flame tamer (aka flame deflector/simmer ring) is a great way to tame the heat on your gas or electric stove. It creates an even distribution of heat, so that whatever you cook comes out just right, every time! 

The flame tamer can be used for cooking pretty much anything, stove top. I use it every time I cook any whole grains and sometimes I use it to cook beans or when I want something to cook slowly for a long period of time. It is a pretty inexpensive kitchen tool and you will definitely get your money's worth. You can get your hands on one at your local kitchen store or order online. Amazon has it HERE for $4.99.