All Posts tagged Dairy Free

Refreshing Minty Green Smoothie

Refreshing Minty Green Smoothie

This smoothie is refreshing and light, and a great way to start the day!

Ingredients:

  • handful of spinach
  • 5-6 mint leaves
  • 3 tbsp raw whole flax seed
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2-3 strawberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 1/2 cup water (for creamier version, replace 1/2 cup of water with milk of choice)
  • couple ice cubes

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender or NutriBullet, blend until smooth.

What’s your favorite green smoothie recipe? Share it by sending me a tweet or posting it on my Facebook page!

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Coconut Lentil Curry by Chef Susan Pachikara of Cardamom Kitchen

Coconut Lentil Curry by Chef Susan Pachikara of Cardamom Kitchen

This month I welcome Chef Susan Pachikara of Cardamom Kitchen who shares her recipe for Coconut Lentil Curry. Trust me when I say this recipe is AMAZING (and EASY to make!)

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

1 cup masoor dhal (red lentils)
½ cup diced onions
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 cups water
1¼ teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon ground cumin
10 to 15 fresh curry leaves (optional)
¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
2 cups coconut milk
2 teaspoons canola oil
1/8 teaspoon brown or black mustard seeds
1 dried red chili, torn in half

INSTRUCTIONS

Place the dhal in a medium size saucepan. Rinse it several times and drain.

Add ¼ cup onions, garlic, water, salt, cayenne, cumin, curry leaves, and turmeric to the saucepan. Bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until the dhal softens and expands, about 15 minutes. If foam forms on the surface, skim it off with a spoon.

Reduce heat to low and stir in coconut milk. Cook for 2 minutes.

Place the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds. When they start to pop, immediately add the remaining ¼ cup onions and dried red chili and stir. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook until the onions begin to brown.

Swirl the seasoned onions into the dhal.

 Want to learn more from Susan about Indian cuisine? Sign up for her Culinary Tour of Devon Avenue! 

About Chef Susan:

Through cooking classes and culinary tours of Devon Avenue, Chef Susan offers home cooks and food lovers a portal to the authentic flavors of India. Her classes feature hands-on instruction for individuals or groups who want to bring the flavors of India home. Come discover the wonders of cardamom and curry leaves. Leave your passport behind. See www.cardamomkitchen.blogspot.com for a sample of Susan’s favorite family recipes.  To schedule a cooking class or culinary tour, contact Chef Susan at cardamomkitchen@gmail.com.

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Polenta Casserole with Chicken Sausage & Fried Eggs

Polenta Casserole with Chicken Sausage & Fried Eggs

Polenta Casserole with Chicken Sausage & Fried Eggs

This recipe will be a crowd pleaser at any weekend brunch! Packed with protein, it will also satisfy your appetite. Craving breakfast for dinner? This is a perfect option too for mixing up your evening routine.  Serves 6 people.

Ingredients

  • Cooked 1 batch of polenta (use Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Corn Poletna for GF option)
  • 1 lb ground  chicken sausage (spicy if you prefer)
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 pepper (green, yellow or red), diced
  • 1 bunch greens (kale, chard or spinach)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 2-3 cups extra water (to make consistency of grits, so less dry than recipe calls for)
  • 6 eggs
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200° Fahrenheit
  2. Cook the polenta per the instructions on the package. Have 2-3 cups of water on hand to add as they cook – you’ll want it to be a little soupy in consistency.
  3. As the polenta is simmering, prepare the chicken sausage in a sauté pan. Once cooked through, spoon into a 15 x 10 glass casserole dish and add the tomatoes. Place into the oven to keep warm.
  4. Continue to stir the polenta. Add water every few minutes to keep them from thickening.
  5. Next, sauté the onions, green peppers and greens (add a little butter if necessary) until onions are soft and greens are tender. Add to the casserole dish and return to oven.
  6. Once polenta is ready, remove casserole dish from the oven and combine with other ingredients. Mix all ingredients together well.
  7. On a griddle or in a large sauté pan, cook 6-8 eggs to over easy (if you don’t like runny yolks, cook longer.)
  8. Spoon the polenta mixture into individual bowls. Top each bowl with one egg.
  9. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt and black pepper to taste and enjoy!

Looking to incorporate more healthy recipes like this into your  food routine? Not sure how to get started? Contact me to schedule an introductory health coaching session and we’ll create your next steps!

 

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It’s Summer Time! Let’s make some REAL pasta (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free)

It’s Summer Time! Let’s make some REAL pasta (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free)

After a cool start to the season, it’s finally feeling hot and humid – a sure sign that the Chicago summer has arrived!  I’m enjoying the tastes of the season though missing last summer when I worked on an urban farm (on Uncommon Ground’s rooftop in Edgewater). Life doesn’t get much better when your office is a garden! Whole Foods

Working on the farm provided constant motivation to eat seasonally, and one of my favorite summertime foods is zucchini! As a gluten-free girl who’s also focused on avoiding processed and packaged foods as often as possible, I love using zucchini to make NOODLES!

Making zucchini noodles takes little time…just a few minutes for prep and sautéing and you’re done! An added bonus – you’ll feel good about choosing a healthy whole-food alternative to the starchy packaged noodles you usually prepare when craving pasta.

Though zucchini noodles obviously don’t taste exactly like wheat or brown rice pasta, I promise you’ll be pleasantly surprised by their texture. Use them as you would regular pasta — you can add your favorite pasta dish ingredients – chicken, pine nuts and other veggies – then top with pesto or marinara sauce. Pasta night will still be pasta night, just slightly different. But hey…different is FUN!

Want to give zucchini noodles a shot? Check out this great how-to video by Jennifer Connor Fitness. (And by the way, if you’re craving pesto but need a dairy-free version, try this recipe by Danielle Walker of Against All Grain)

 

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Cilantro Pesto for Two (Gluten, Dairy and Nut Free)

Cilantro Pesto for Two (Gluten, Dairy and Nut Free)

This pesto is a nice alternative to basil pesto and tastes great on top of chicken and brown rice. Tastes great with a side of black beans too! Great for summer – it’s light and fresh with a citrusy undertone. For those of you avoiding pesto because of the nuts, this recipe calls for sunflower seeds instead! Free of dairy, gluten and nuts. Enjoy

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup (shelled) sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1 lime
  • sea salt (to taste)

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in food processor. Pulse until ingredients are well combined and to your preferred texture. (I prefer a less creamy pesto, so keep the processing to only a few seconds).

Looking to incorporate more healthy recipes like this into your  food routine? Not sure how to get started? Contact me to schedule an introductory health coaching session and we’ll create your next steps!

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Gluten-Free Lemon Blueberry Chia Seed Pancakes

Gluten-Free Lemon Blueberry Chia Seed Pancakes

My gluten-free lemon blueberry chia seed pancakes are a great weekend treat for your pancake-loving family. In addition to being gluten-free, the batter is dairy and sugar/sweetener-free too. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt.
  2. Separate the egg whites into a small bowl, then combine the egg yolks, 3/4 cup coconut milk and olive oil into another bowl.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until they begin to foam, then fold them into the other liquid ingredients and continue whisking until well combined.
  4. Stir in the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients until smooth. The batter should be slightly runny. If too thick, add remaining 1/4 c coconut milk.
  5. Stir in berries, chia seeds and lemon zest.
  6. Spoon out 1/4 c measurements of batter and pour onto hot non-stick griddle or pan (medium heat is sufficient). Flip when sides start to brown.
  7. Enjoy with a little pure maple syrup.

 

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Mariano’s Market is Gluten-Free and Organic-friendly!

Mariano’s Market is Gluten-Free and Organic-friendly!

Large mainstream grocery stores can be overwhelming to those of us who need to shop for allgery-friendly products like gluten-free or dairy-free foods. And, if you’re focused on organics, it’s often difficult to find a range of options to keep you satisfied. Today my neighborhood – Ravenswood – celebrated the grand opening of the new Mariano’s, located at Lawrence Ave. and Ravenswood, conveniently located right next to the Ravenswood Metra stop. Being that I fit into all three of the above food categories – gluten-free, dairy-free and organic – and help my clients transform their diets to include healthier foods and allergy-free options, I wanted to check out this new store to see what it has to offer. I especially wanted to see if I could rely on this store for my gluten-free and dairy-free staples.

My verdict?  This store is a great addition to the neighborhood, even for those of us who have special dietary requirements. The proof? See my finds below. And what’s more – the employees were friendly, willing to help and well-informed – all great things for those of us with specific grocery needs.

Here are my top Mariano’s Finds!

Lots of Organic Produce!

Organic Kale

Organic Produce

Organic Produce

A Dedicated Wheat & Gluten-Free Section

GF Grocery

Dairy-Free Yogurt 

Diary Free Yogurt

Almond Milk

Almond Milk

Gluten-Free, Organic and Vegan Food Markers (These are part of Mariano’s Wellness program, Health KeyTM)

Organic Olive Oil

Gluten Free and Vegan Food

 Organic Coffee!

Organic Coffee

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PB&J and Banana Smoothie

This gluten-free and dairy-free smoothie is refreshing and loaded with goodness. It’s great for kids who love peanut butter and jelly, and moms who’d rather pass on the processed bread and jam.  You can use fresh or frozen berries. If you choose fresh, you may want to add a little ice to cool it off a bit. You may opt to add more greens…don’t worry, your kids won’t even know they’re there!

1/4 cup frozen or fresh berries (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries)
1/2 cup greens (kale or spinach)
1/2 banana
3 tbsp whole flax seed
1 tbsp natural almond or peanut butter
1 1/2 cups filtered water
Optional: replace 1/2 cup of water with plain organic milk (non-dairy works too) to make it creamier.

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a blender and enjoy your gluten free breakfast! Great as a snack too!

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Dairy Free Banana Milkshake

Enjoy this dairy-free milkshake as an alternative to your fast-food go-to shake.  It’s a great treat for the kids too. Play around with the ingredients too – add cocoa when you feel like a chocolate treat!

1 13.5 oz can light coconut milk
1 banana
3 tbsp almond butter
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
6 pitted and finely chopped dates
Handful of ice
Optional: 1/4 c of your favorite berries for a fruiter shake

Combine all ingredients in a blender and enjoy! Serves 2.

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