Tag Archives: high fiber

Quarantine Cuisine Day #28 – Jambalaya

Another day of “improv in the kitchen,” I wanted jambalaya yet had no andouille sausage. But I have plenty of Jimmy Dean’s fully cooked turkey sausage patties. I chopped the sausage and substituted it in my jambalaya recipe. It worked!

I scaled down my original recipe for today.

Pressure cooker jambalaya

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Quarantine Cuisine Day #27 – Oatmeal

Today we’re out of milk. The skim milk is gone, the unsweetened almond milk is gone, the evaporated milk is gone … we’ve even used the shelf-stable cartons of milk we typically stock for hurricane preparedness. No cold cereal today for breakfast.

Oatmeal to the rescue! Grocery stores frequently have oatmeal on sale as a BOGO (buy-one-get-one free), so we had two boxes of Quaker Old Fashion Oatmeal in the pantry. With a pressure cooker, perfect oatmeal is easy. Here’s how I cook it.

RECIPE

Oatmeal for two

Ingredients: 2/3 cups oats, 2 cups water, 1/4 tsp. Salt (or to taste), 1 1/2 tsp butter, and 1 cup water for the pressure cooker.

Directions: Pour 1 cup water into the pressure cooker pot. Add trivet. In a separate bowl or pot (any vessel that fits inside the cooker for pot-in-pot cooking), combine all other ingredients. Seal pressure cooker, set for 10 minutes, cook, and allow pressure to drop on its own. Do not vent manually. Carefully open the pressure cooker, remove the inner pot or bowl using potholders or mittens, and stir oatmeal vigorously. Serve immediately.

My husband eats his oatmeal with a Tablespoon of honey stirred in. I like to add cinnamon and stevia. There are endless possibilities to flavor oatmeal.

If you want larger servings (Ours are approximately 100 calories per serving , not including toppings), simply increase the amounts of oatmeal and water while maintaining the 1/3 cup oats/1 cup liquid ratio.

We will enjoy oatmeal again soon. It’s a hearty and satisfying breakfast.

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Hasty Tasty White Bean Chili

Looking for an easy post-holiday meal using leftover turkey or chicken? My friend Linda Young introduced me to a recipe on the can of Bush’s White Chili Beans called White Chicken Chili. I made a few changes and liked the result so here’s how I made a hastytasty chili from leftover turkey.

Thanks to Bush’s Beans for the original recipe and delicious White Chili Beans.

RECIPE

Hasty Tasty White Bean Chili

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups diced cooked turkey
  • One yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tsp. Canola, safflower, or any neutral tasting oil
  • 3 cans Bush’s White Chili Beans
  • 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes and green chilies
  • 1 pint turkey or chicken broth (can, carton, or homemade)
  • 1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt to taste
  • (Optional) fresh cilantro
  • (Optional) grated cheese and/or sour cream for toppings

Directions:

  1. In a 4 quart pan, sauté the onions in the oil over medium heat.
  2. While onions sauté, purée the contents of one of the cans of Bush’s White Chili Beans.
  3. Add broth to the sautéed onions and deglaze the pot.
  4. Add puréed beans, Rotel, cream of chicken soup, 2 cans beans, and the cooked turkey.
  5. Cover and simmer over low heat 15 minutes.
  6. Add garlic powder and salt.
  7. Serve topped with your choice of toppings. I like fresh chopped cilantro and tortilla chips.

This recipe is easily adapted to slow cooking or pressure cooking.

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Zesty Pinto Beans

We often eat beans. We like them, they’re good for us, and they are inexpensive. Today’s pintos (made in my Instant Pot) are made zesty with the addition of hot Hatch Chilies.

We discovered Hatch Chilies in Texas one summer. Although next to impossible to find fresh in my area, Hatch Chilies in cans are usually found in my pantry.

Here’s my recipe:

Zesty Pintos

RECIPE

Zesty Pinto Beans

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup Dried Pinto Beans
  2. 1 cup Chopped Onion
  3. 1/2 cup Diced Sweet Pepper
  4. 1/2 cup Hatch Chilies (we like hot, but choose your heat level)
  5. 1 clove garlic, minced
  6. Water or Broth
  7. Salt and Pepper to Taste

Directions:

  1. Soak beans overnight or do a 1-hour Quick Soak in a Pressure Cooker.*
  2. Rinse beans and set aside. Wipe the pressure cooker dry and preheat (Sauté Mode).
  3. When pot is hot, add 1 Tbsp. oil. Allow oil to heat.
  4. Sauté chopped onions for 2 minutes before adding peppers.
  5. Sauté peppers 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat (or hit Cancel).
  6. Stir in garlic.
  7. Add presoaked beans. Add liquid just to cover beans. Set cooker for 30 minutes.
  8. Seal and bring to pressure. After cooking, allow pressure to drop on its own.
  9. Open cooker, stir, and serve.

*For the 1-hour Quick Presoak, place beans in a pressure cooker. Add water to completely cover the beans. Add 1 Tbsp salt. Pressure cook for one minute, cancel, and then allow beans to soak undisturbed for one hour. Rinse and drain before cooking.

.

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Perfect Carrots

Carrots are a root vegetable. Carrots are nutritious, delicious, and inexpensive (even the organic ones). They typically are colored orange and contain carotenes (B, A, Z), lutein, and zeaxanthin. Carrots are rich in fiber, too.

If you think carrots are tasteless, perhaps you’ve been served carrots boiled to death in water. My mother-in-law says my carrots are the best, better than any restaurant. What’s earned me such high praise? Want to know my secret? 

Two rules: One, buy good carrots. Pass up those baby cut carrots and buy whole organic carrots. (Bunny Love is available where I shop, and they are organic) Second, don’t let your carrots touch water while cooking

Three methods I use to cook carrots, depending on time restraints: One, I steam over low heat in my waterless cookware (KitchenCraft, 360 Cookware by Americraft, or similar brands). No water. Just gentle, slow cooking. Takes about twenty minutes. Two, pressure cook for four minutes under pressure in a basket above the water. Do not submerge carrots in water! Water leaches out flavor and nutrients. Occasionally, I stir-fry carrots with other vegetables in very little oil in a hot skillet.

Preparing carrots takes only a little time. Peel or scrub, depending on your preference. I let appearance be my guide. If the peels look fairly clean, I scrub them with a vegetable brush and leave them on. If not, I peel. 

Slice in similar size pieces for even cooking. I like cutting diagonally but any slice style works. The smaller the size, the shorter the cooking time. 

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BBQ Beef & Beans

Here’s an easy, nutritious way to stretch a buck: BBQ Beef and Beans. I modified the recipe I got from my friend Chef Gary. If you take a little help from the grocery store (canned beans, rinsed and drained, and jarred barbecue sauce of your choice), you need only ten minutes to get this into the slow cooker. This is one of my favorites to take to a potluck dinner.

RECIPE

HASTY TASTY BBQ BEEF AND BEANS

I use the stainless steel Gourmet Slo-cooker by Americraft so everything is done in one pot. If you use a crockery slow cooker, you will need a skillet to brown your meat and onions.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound chuck, cubed
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 4 cans beans (your choice of type. I like variety so I mix 4 kinds of beans)
  • 12 ounces prepared barbecue sauce (avoid varieties containing high fructose corn syrup)
  • nonstick cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Spray skillet or pan with nonstick cooking spray. Salt and pepper the cubed chuck, add it to the skillet, cover, and brown over low heat.
  2. Open canned beans and drain, rinsing with cold water. Set aside.
  3. Add chopped onion to the browned chuck. Adjust heat to medium. Do not cover. Cook until all liquid has evaporated (about two minutes).
  4. In slow cooker pan or Crock-pot, add meat and onions. Slowly stir in the rinsed beans.
  5. Add barbecue sauce. Stir to combine. Cover and cook over low heat for at least four hours. Use lowest possible setting because all the food is cooked. Your only concern is infusing flavor.
  6. Serve warm.

Yield: 5 pints

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Enjoy either as a side or main dish. Remember, beans are a great source of fiber and nutrition yet without the saturated fat of meat.

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Hasty Tasty Mushroom Pasta Florentine

This recipe originated as part of my research for the romance novel I’m currently writing, Return to Drake Springs. The hero is on a tight budget but wants to impress the heroine by cooking her dinner. While shopping, I bought only sale items (the lengths we writers go in the name of research!) at my local supermarket, which included bags of fresh, ready-to-eat spinach and boxes of pasta (Both Buy-One-Get-One free), and a discount on fresh baby portabella mushrooms and red bell peppers. The result of my experiment is Mushroom Pasta Florentine.

This recipe is a hearty and delicious meal for meat free Monday or any day. Whole grain pasta bumps up the protein, and the spinach and mushrooms give two servings of vegetables per meal. It’s affordable, too. This has become one of our household’s favorite meals. A writer never knows where research will lead. ☺

Mushroom Pasta Florentine with Whole Wheat Pasta

Mushroom Pasta Florentine with Whole Wheat Pasta

RECIPE

 

Hasty Tasty Mushroom Pasta Florentine

Serves Two

Ingredients:

Pasta:

  • 4 oz. dried thin spaghetti, whole grain or whole wheat
  • Water
  • Salt

Topping:

  • 1 package fresh spinach leaves, washed and ready to eat
  • 8 oz. crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, cleaned and quartered
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • ½ tsp. grated fresh nutmeg

Sauce:

  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh herbs (i.e. Rosemary, thyme, basil, parsley)
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot, bring 4 – 5 quarts water to a boil. Add salt and pasta. Cook to al dente (follow instructions on the package).
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Add spinach.
  3. Cook spinach until it wilts and leaves room to add mushrooms and red bell pepper.
  4. Using tongs, toss cooked mushrooms, spinach, and pepper with nutmeg and garlic. Cook another two minutes and remove from heat.
  5. In a large shallow bowl, pour extra virgin olive oil, garlic, and herbs.
  6. Drain pasta and immediately add it to the bowl. Use tongs to toss hot pasta with the oil, garlic, and herbs until pasta is coated and fragrant.
  7. Add the spinach-mushroom mixture. Toss with the pasta.
  8. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and serve.

Recipe can be doubled.

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