nutribullets

Here’s the story behind one of our favorite new purchases – the NutriBullet! Check out some of the delicious, healthy concoctions we create with this awesome kitchen gadget:

Last year, Jenna was introduced to yummy desserts made in a Vitamix by her vegan, gourmet-cooking friend Jeannette. So, Ellen thought – ‘what a great gift for Jenna!’, but when she pulled the Vitamix up on Amazon, she was amazed at the price – $400+!

Ellen decided to give Jenna a NutriBullet for Chanukah instead ($99), suggesting to her that it would be a good “trial” to see if she wanted to make the big investment in a Vitamix. Now, a year later, Ellen has a NutriBullet too and both of us are daily users – we’ve become smoothie-loving women! Also, Jenna has quite the reputation at grad school for bringing amazingly delicious raw vegan desserts to social gatherings!

Jenna’s Breakfast Smoothie Ingredients: Greens, kiwi, cucumber, chia seeds, ginger, coconut water
Ellen’s Breakfast Smoothie Ingredients: Greens (kale, spinach or lettuce), peeled apple cut up, ½ banana, almond milk and one scoop of PlantFusion protein mix (vanilla)

Jenna’s Favorite NutriBullet Dessert: Caramel Mocha Bars from Rawsome Vegan Baking

Crust: 1 cup raw almonds, 1 cup pitted dates
Caramel: 1/2 cup raw cashew butter,1/2 cup coconut oil, 1 cup pitted dates, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Mocha layer: 1/3 cup coconut oil, 1-2 TBSP cacao powder, 1-2 TBSP finely ground coffee beans (optional), 1/4 cup preferred sweetener

To make crust: Pulse the almonds into flour in your food processor, then add the dates and process until it all begins to stick together. Press into the bottom of a baking pan and refrigerate until you add the next layers.

To make both the caramel and mocha layers: Just blend the ingredients in each list until smooth. Spread the caramel onto your crust, followed by the mocha layer. Refrigerate until completely set, probably overnight. Slice, bit, feel the caffeine!

 

 

Veggetti

This little $10 kitchen gadget will lead you to simple, healthy and delicious dishes. The Veggetti certainly has us hooked (or spiraled, rather)! We love it because the spirals of zucchini, sweet potato or carrot are a healthy and tasty alternative to pasta. You can mix the veggie noodles (thick or thin) with pasta sauce or pesto and twirl them on your fork just like spaghetti  – but without all the carbs and the calories!

Here’s a Pesto Recipe to go with your Veggetti-made vegetable pasta (1 lb.):

3/4 cup fresh basil leaves

1/4 cup pine nuts

1 clove garlic, peeled

1 T. grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Veggetti with pesto

Our culinary skills have certainly improved and evolved over time! For the past few years, we have both adopted healthier diets: mostly vegetarian with  an occasional fish or chicken dish thrown in. Oh, and Jenna doesn’t eat foods with gluten (wheat, barley and rye) due to some stomach issues.  Between Jenna’s weekly Shabbat dinners for friends and Ellen’s large holiday feasts, we have experimented with several vegetarian and gluten-free dishes that the whole family enjoys. Here are some recipes we like:

Quinoa Salad

 Ingredients:

1-1/2 c. quinoa

3, c. water

1 pkg. frozen shelled edamame

½ c. roasted pine nuts

Red and yellow pepper, diced

½ c. dried cranberries

Small red onion, chopped

Dressing:

½ c. olive oil

½ c. white wine vinegar

2 T. Dijon mustard

2-3 T. sugar

1 tsp. salt

 

Mint-Lemon Lentils with Spinach

Ingredients:

2 garlic cloves, chopped

3 c. low-sodium vegetable broth

1 c. red lentils

3 medium red-skinned potatoes or 1 large sweet potato, cut into ½-inch dice (2-3 cups)

6-12 oz. baby spinach leaves

Zest of 1 lemon or lime

1/8 to ¼ t. cayenne

¼ c. fresh mint, chopped

Black pepper

  1. Cook garlic for 1 minute in a saucepan over medium heat, adding a little vegetable broth or water as necessary.
  2. Add 3 c. vegetable broth, lentils, and potatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the lentils are tender.
  3. Add spinach, lemon zest, lemon juice, and cayenne.  Cover and simmer until spinach wilts, about 2 minutes
  4. Stir in mint and black pepper to taste.

 

Spiced Chickpea and Zucchini Saute

Ingredients:

2 T. canola oil

1 large onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 t. ground coriander

1 t. ground cumin

8 plum tomatoes, chopped

2 cans (15 1/2 oz. each) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces

Coarse salt and ground pepper

Directions:

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium.  Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 5-8 minutes.  Add garlic, coriander and cumin; cook, stirring, until fragrant 1- 2 minutes.

Add tomatoes, chickpeas, zucchini and 1/2 cup water; season with salt and pepper.

Cover skillet; simmer mixture over medium-high heat, stirring until zucchini is tender, 10-12 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper and serve.

 

Vegetable Chili

2 T. olive oil

2 onions, coarsely hopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 d bell pepper, halved and cut into square

2 small zucchini, halved and cut into chunks

1 T. chili powder

1 T. ground cumin

2 cans (14 oz. each) peeled tomatoes, coarsely chopped, juice reserved

1 can (15.5 oz.) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (15.5 oz.) chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1/4 t. sale and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 c. hopped flat-leaf parsley

1/2 c. chopped cilantro leaves

2 T. lemon juice

Heat oil in 4 qt. Dutch oven over medium eat.  Add onions, garlic and peppers and cook for 5 minutes.  Add zucchini and cook for 3 minutes.

Add chili powder and cumin and stir for a minute to combine, then add chopped tomatoes with their juice, kidney beans, and chickpeas.  Season to taste with salt and plenty of pepper.

Cover and cook over low heat or 8-10 minutes or until zucchini is tender.  Stir in parsley cilantro and lemon juice and serve.