Vegetarian Recipes

I‘ve been trying to eat more veggie based dishes – initially fueled by a paper my daughter wrote for school. It started with some research from that Food, Inc. book – and as we dug into the issue more and more, I wanted to do better too. It’s not a change that can happen overnight – so my goals are simple – try to limit our meat-based meals to once, maybe twice a week. Buy organic when possible. Buy local when possible. I’m not going to be die-hard about any of this – but I figure any small effort will help. And as we do more and more, we’ll become more “green.”

I am of course also trying to lose weight – so when I found a bunch of diet vegetarian recipes on eatingwell.com – I was really happy. Here are a few from there and a few other places I’ve found:

Acorn Squash stuffed with Chard and White Beans.
This was really tasty – but rather than just filling the acorn squash, I’ll probably scoop it out – mix it with the “stuffing” – and then either serve inside the acorn squash shells for appearance – or just serve in bowls. I personally liked to have it all mashed together.

Chickpea Stew
I love chickpeas – but unfortunately my kids do not. So this is one I’ll make when I’m just serving myself and Sam. It was really good though.

Quinoa and Black Beans
I really love quinoa – mixed with the black beans in this dish is a nice alternative to rice and beans.

Roasted Red Pepper Stuffed with Kale and Rice
I actually substituted quinoa in this dish and it was really good. I also wasn’t so thrilled with the whol red pepper stuff thing – same as the acorn squash dish… I know it “looks” prettier that way – but I’d rather have everything sliced up nice and easier to eat.

Roasted Vegetables Galette with Olives
Ok this one was really good – and I did not expect to like it nearly as much as I did. Looking at the ingredient list I was expecting not to like it all actually. It’s not like I often eat parsnips and beets. But the mixture was great and tucked in the bread like that it was really good. I will probably use less goat cheese next time. For starters, I think that will help the calorie count of the dish – but also my daughter was not a fan of the cheese.

Chiles Rellenos
There’s a restaurant in our town that makes the best Chiles Rellenos I’ve ever had. In an effort to try and save money, diet, etc. I was determined to make this at home. They have you frying the chiles in this recipe, but I’ve been trying to use less and less oil to see if I can still have these taste ok. Maybe I’ll try just using PAM and a tiny bit of oil. The recipe takes a little practice, and I have to watch how much cheese I put in the peppers (Also I found BIG Pasilla peppers to work the best) – but this can be a decent diet dish if modified a bit. I dare say my Chiles Rellenos give the restaurant in town a run for their money!

And now for a bonus recipe… I made a big batch of gazpacho to have for lunches. This recipe comes from a coworker of mine from like 14 years ago. I have no idea where she got it:

“Regina’s Gazpacho”

Ingredients:
1 Garlic Clove
4 cups V8
2 or 3 Tblsp Olive Oil (Min 2 – if it’s still not the right taste, add the third. I think you can get away with just the two though and save the calories)
2 Tblsp Lemon Juice
1 Tblsp Lime Juice
3 Tsp Sugar (I used splenda)
black pepper
1 or 2 big cucumbers (I love cucumbers so I use lots)
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup scallions
1-1/2 red peppers diced
Cilantro
Oregano
Tobasco
1 or 2 tomatoes peeled and seeded (Again, I love tomatoes, so I add the second one)

I actually just dumped it all together in a bowl and put it in the fridge. But here are the specific directions if you’re not as lazy as me:

Cut garlic in 1/2 and rub bottom and sides of bowl. Add V8, olive oil, lemon juice, lime juice, splenda and pepper. Beat and chill for 1 hour. Beat again, then add remaining ingredients.

I’m not sure why you’d beat and chill and then mix… when you dump it all together it’s just as good.

I have a bowl of this with 1/4 of an avocado. Depending on how many calories I have available for the day, I may also throw in a few tortilla chips with it. I’m also planning on throwing a few black beans in there today to add some protein.

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