Roasted Cauliflower and Carrot Ziti

Cauliflower is the new ? Help me complete that sentence would you? 🙂  Start out with a blank canvas and the sky’s the limit on the variety of dishes you can cook with cauliflower.  I’ve riced cauliflower, made a pizza base, curried it, steamed it, made many vegetarian dishes with it, but had never cooked it with pasta.  Of course it defeats the purpose of adding pasta to a low-carb dish, but believe me on this one, it was absolutely amazing, probably a ton of calories in it too, but hey, one’s allowed to stray off the path sometimes eh?

One of its high nutritional aspects is the elevated daily value of vitamin C it produces in one sitting.  It’s also a good source of vitamin K, magnesium and fibre to name a few.  I liked roasting the cauliflower and carrots on high heat in the oven before adding it to the dish.  It gives it a nice caramelized finish.  You can use any kind of cheese instead of fontina mentioned in the recipe.  I had a sharp cheddar, but I’m sure fontina would take it up to a whole new level.

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Vegetable Lasagne

I don’t typically make lasagne anymore as much as I used to.  I can’t explain why, I guess it’s just that I don’t like eating leftover lasagne for days as it would easily take my husband and I at least 3 days to finish that amount of lasagne.  But I did change my mind after eating this particular one.  I decided that this one could even be served when one is entertaining, it is that good.  Could the white wine have enhanced the flavors I wonder? 🙂

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Red Lentil (vegan), one pot curry

There’s just so many lentil recipes out there, there are also many varieties of lentils that line the shelves at the supermarket.  I don’t know anyone who has an aversion to lentils do you?  Red lentils in particular cook in no time and in under 20 minutes,  you’ve got comfort in a bowl.  Lentils are also inexpensive and a nutritional powerhouse offering plenty of essential nutrients that is beneficial to your health.

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Dum Aloo (Indian Potato Curry)

After trying this popular Indian potato curry in a creamy and delicious spiced yogurt gravy, I wondered why I had never tried preparing this dish at home….well that’s not until last week.  It is known to be popular in the Kashmiri region.  Knowing how much my husband loves potatoes, I knew this would be a treat for his taste buds.  The authentic way of cooking Dum Aloo is to cook it under pressure.  The edges are sealed with a dough to ensure that no steam escapes, but naturally I took a short cut 🙂

 

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Baked Sweet potato with a Mexican twist

Nothing quite like a sweet potato to bring some wonderful flavors to your palette.  The regular potato makes us shudder  at the thought of all those carbs.  But not so with the humble sweet potato.  This root has a slightly lower carb rate than the regular potato.  Sweet potatoes contain almost twice as much fiber than the regular potato.  Did you also know that sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin A and a good source of potassium?  A medium sweet potato has at least 28% more potassium than a banana.

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Healthy Cauliflower Rice Pilaf

So what’s all the buzz about using cauliflower in low-carb dishes instead of rice or potatoes?  I’ve even seen pizza bases formed with grated cauliflower.  Cauliflower can shine in many forms as I’ve recently discovered, so I set out to find out for myself.  From my kitchen today, I’m bringing you a pilaf chock full of nutrients and flavor, but yes you guessed it, it’s made from cauliflower florets.   I’ve seen the method and have come across many recipes, but I decided to add my own spin to it and make it spicy and wholesome with some Indian flavors.

A rainbow of colors, a perfect matrimony of flavors!  I served the riced cauliflower pilaf with Grilled Goan Chicken Cafreal, and a salad.

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Tri-color organic Quinoa with roasted vegetables

Need a quick side dish that is healthy and moist?  Look no further, this tri-colored quinoa can be served up with a main course or just as a side.  Best of all, it is vegetarian and gluten-free.   You’ll find the bold, beautiful colors of this dish both satisfying to your senses as well as your waistline.  I don’t have a recipe per se, but I will attempt to itemize the ingredients used and the assembly of the grain bowl.  All I can say is that it packed a mean flavor punch for sure.

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Farfalle with White Eggplants and baby portobello mushrooms

The end of summer is fast approaching, (technically Autumn is officially here, but it still feels like summer).   As we herald in the Fall season, we must come to terms with the inevitable fact that the garden is slowly but surely getting ready for its deep slumber.  To give you an idea, this year’s yield was chock full of veggies with beets, white eggplants, garlic, onions, various colored tomatoes, carrots, okra, peppers, swiss chard, zucchini, squash and pumpkins to name a few.  I’ve already harvested fresh herbs for the winter.  There are various methods of doing this, everyone does it in a different way.  I like to freeze some of my herbs that I chop up and place in an ice cube tray.  I then add either olive oil or stock and freeze the cubes.  I pop them into a ziploc bag, date them and enjoy them through the winter months.

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Zucchini boats with sprouted tri color quinoa and corn

Those of you who have been following Safari of the Mind this past summer will know that I’ve been inundated with fresh vegetables from the garden where I volunteer at.  We have about 6 raised beds with an assortment of vegetables.  There’s nothing quite so satisfying than picking your own fresh produce that you’ve toiled so hard at.

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Chocolate Beet Cake with chocolate ganache

I’m presenting another recipe today using some of the fresh produce in the garden.  A moist Chocolate cake with beets. This is a wonderful cake with the intense, rich, deep-dark flavor of chocolate!I must confess when I first heard of it, I couldn’t imagine beets in a cake, but you’ve got to believe me on this one.  The beets make this cake moist without really overpowering the  taste.  Think beet cake is strange?  Think again.  Much like carrot cakes and zucchini breads, this beet cake fulfills all that and more.

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Swiss Chard, Beet Greens and Ricotta gluten-free muffins

Here I am, back again sharing why I’ve been so busy in my kitchen lately.  All the produce that the garden is generating at an alarming rate has to be turned into something nutritious, flavorful and freezable (Is that a word)?  So today I will be presenting these yummy gluten-free muffins.  I’ve used swiss chard here, in addition to the green tops of the beets that I had saved in the refrigerator.  The vivid and striking colors, texture and taste were just amazing!  Being gluten-free, you know the lack of carbs should definitely be an asset on the waistline, so don’t hesitate to reach out for seconds.  Eat these muffins for breakfast, lunch or dinner with a side salad or just a snack.

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