Tag Archives: cabbage

Spiced Cabbage Soup with Lentils and Sweet Potato

7 Jan

Happy New Year! I’m not the greatest at making (or keeping) New Years resolutions, but most years I have vague aspirations to engage in some sort of healthier behaviour. This year, I’m motivated to do more batch cooking so that I’m not left scrambling to buy my lunch or pull together a last minute dinner after a busy day.

Thanks to having an extra-long weekend with not just one but TWO days to recover from New Year’s Eve, I was able to kick-start my pseudo-resolution with a simple yet flavourful cabbage soup from the new Oh She Glows Every Day cookbook. The cookbook was a Christmas present stolen from me (then lent to me) by my oh-so-generous brother, so I plan to churn out as many dishes from it as I possibly can before he asks for it back.

dsc_0661-2

If you’re groaning at the thought of another watery, bland cabbage soup, take note: this one’s anything but. It has lentils for added protein and fibre, sweet potato (because every soup can use a little sweet potato), and a 9-spice mix containing both sweet and smoked paprika. It’s simple to prepare but full of flavour. And perfect for the horribly cold weather that we’ve been hit with this week. For an easy make-ahead lunch, pair it with whole grain bread or crackers.

dsc_0675-2

Metabolism-Revving Spicy Cabbage Soup
(from Oh She Glows Every Day cookbook)

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large sweet onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons 9-Spice Mix, or more to taste (recipe below)
1 pound (1/4 large head) green cabbage, cored and finely shredded (about 5 cups)
14-oz (398mL) can diced tomatoes, with juices
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1/2 cup uncooked red lentils
1 sweet potato, chopped into 1/2-inch (1 cm) cubes
1/2 tsp to 1 tsp fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

  1. In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 5-6 minutes, until the onion is softened. Stir in 2 tablespoons 9-Spice Mix and cook for a minute or so, until fragrant.
  2. Add the cabbage and diced tomatoes with their juices. Simmer over medium to high heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broth, red lentils, and sweet potato. Stir. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the lentils and sweet potato are tender.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste, or add more 9-Spice Mix. Serve with a dollop of Cashew Sour Cream, if using (for a non-vegan option, use plain yogurt or sour cream). The soup keeps in the fridge for a week, and freezes well for 1-2 months.

Makes 4 large servings. Per serving: 278 kcal, 5 g fat, 47 g carbohydrate, 14 g fibre, 11 g protein, 596 mg sodium

————————————————————————–

9-Spice Mix (makes approximately 2 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried minced onion
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoons dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

Advertisements

The Salad that Keeps on Giving

22 Oct

Salad has never tasted so good.  After being away at a conference for five days, my body craved fibre and a plethora of colourful veggies when I arrived back home.  Conference food can be notorious for large quantities of nutrient-devoid food.  A typical day was as such: wake, eat breakfast, sit, snack, sit, eat lunch, sit, snack, sit, go out for dinner, bed.  The positive of having so much food provided is the considerable cost savings. The con?  Most snacks are carb-heavy, full of sugar, and hard to resist.  Cake at 10am? Sure! Danish for breakfast? Why not.

And now my saviour: the ultimate salad to “cure” me of a week of poor nutrition.  I first spotted this Asian Kale and Tofu Salad on Pinterest over a year ago.  Why it took me so long to finally make it remains a mystery but I sure won’t wait another year before making it again.  There are a few things you should know about this salad…

DSC_1004

DSC_1010

  1. It yields more than one can possibly eat in a week.  And I can eat a lot of salad.  Share it with someone or halve the recipe if you’re solo.
  2. Kale salad can be an acquired taste.  It holds its shape even when dressed, but the crunch can be too much for some.  If you’re weary, use half the recommended amount of the kale and substitute the other half with spinach (add shortly before serving to prevent it from getting soggy).
  3. The ratio of kale to other vegetables was too high for my liking.  Feel free to add more bell pepper, carrot, cucumber, or all of the above.

Below is the original recipe from Clean Eating magazine.  Keep in mind that the recipe serves FAR more than 4 (even 8 servings would be an underestimate!) despite what is written.

DSC_1013

Asian Kale & Tofu Salad
(from Clean Eating magazine)

“Can’t find pressed tofu? Press it yourself with our easy three-step method! Simply wrap firm tofu in a clean dish towel and transfer to a plate. Place another plate over tofu and top with one or two heavy cans. Let sit for 1 to 8 hours.”

Olive oil cooking spray
14 oz firm pressed tofu, sliced into 1/2-inch cubes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup 100% orange juice
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce or tamari
1 tbsp raw honey
1 tbsp peeled and grated fresh ginger
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp ground flaxseed
12-1/2 cups chopped kale (about 16 oz)
2 small field-grown cucumbers, diced
2 carrots, peeled and shredded
2 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 cups shredded red cabbage
1/2 cup shelled edamame, cooked
4 tsp sesame seeds

  1. Preheat oven to 500ºF. Mist a ceramic 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Add tofu and set aside.
  2. In a blender, blend garlic, vinegar, orange juice, lime juice, soy sauce, honey, ginger and sesame oil until smooth, about 1 minute. Remove ¼ cup mixture and pour over top of tofu. Toss to combine and spread evenly in dish. Bake, turning 3 to 4 times, until golden and crisp, 25 to 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, to remaining mixture in blender, add flaxseed and process until smooth, about 10 seconds.
  4. In a large bowl, add kale and pour vinegar-flaxseed mixture over top. With your hands, massage kale to coat thoroughly until wilted, 3 to 4 minutes. Add cucumbers, carrots, scallions, bell pepper, cabbage and edamame and toss to combine. Add tofu and toss to combine. To serve, top with sesame seeds.

Serves “4” as per original recipe.  Per ENORMOUS serving: 341 calories, 10 g fat (1 g saturated), 46 g carbohydrate, 11 g fibre, 22 g protein, 374 mg sodium

Brilliantly Bright Borscht

10 Feb

My job has serious perks.  As a food lover, it hardly feels like work to sample an array of vegan products that I may eventually recommend to my patients or feast on a spread of Mardi Gras-themed dishes that may make their way onto the cafeteria’s menu.  Lucky for me, I had the pleasure of doing both this week.   Events like these are side projects that our dietetic interns are involved with over the course of their training.  As a former intern not too long ago, shopping for interesting food products and perusing the web for recipes was a nice break from the clinical work, case studies, and research projects.

In the fall, an Ontario borscht was sampled at an event that I was unable to attend.  It received such rave reviews that the recipe was sent out to all of the dietitians.  Earlier this week, I stumbled across it in my inbox so I made it my mission to cook up a pot this weekend.

Borscht

Never having made borscht before, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  The colour is stunning (never wear white when cooking or eating borscht) and the flavour was more complex than I anticipated.  Beets can be overpowering but subtle potato and cabbage flavours shone through.  It’s a shame that I couldn’t taste all of the different vegetables in this dish (there were a lot!) but I was reassured by knowing that I was getting all of their nutrients.  Best of all was the texture.  In this particular recipe, the cabbage retained a bit of crunch and provided nice contrast to the rest of the softer vegetables.

I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s lunch, since I read that borscht is supposed to taste better the next day.

Borscht2

Ontario Borscht
(from Foodland Ontario)

Since it’s the middle of winter, I wasn’t able to use nearly as much Ontario produce as the recipe calls for.  This is the perfect autumn dish, when everything is in season.

2 tbsp (25 mL) butter
6 Ontario Beets, peeled and shredded
4 Ontario Leeks, chopped
2 cups (500 mL) sliced Ontario Mushrooms
2 Ontario Carrots, shredded
2 cloves Ontario Garlic, minced
1 Ontario Onion, chopped
1 Ontario White Turnip, peeled and shredded
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 Ontario Potato, peeled and chopped
2 bay leaves
7 cups (1.75 L) beef or vegetable broth
2 tbsp (25 mL) tomato paste
2 cups (500 mL) shredded Ontario Cabbage
1 can (19 oz/540 mL) white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3 tbsp (50 mL) red wine vinegar – I used 4 tbsp
1 tsp (5 mL) granulated sugar
Salt and pepper
Sour cream and snipped chives or green onion tops

  1. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add beets, leeks, mushrooms, carrots, garlic, onion, white turnip, celery, potato and bay leaves; cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.
  2. Stir in broth and tomato paste. Bring to simmer and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Stir in cabbage and beans; cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Season with vinegar, sugar, and salt and pepper to taste, adding more vinegar and sugar if needed (there should be a nice sweet and sour balance).  Discard bay leaves. Place dollop of sour cream and sprinkle of chives on each serving.

Makes 8 to 10 servings. Per serving (based on 10 servings): 157 kcal, 3 g fat, 25 g CHO, 7 g protein.

Nutritious and Delicious Kale Slaw with Red Cabbage, Carrot, and Apple

14 Nov

In the summer, I discovered that raw kale is far superior to cooked kale.  If left to marinate long enough, raw kale goes from being “grassy” (in the wise words of E) to fairly neutral in taste.  Best of all, it’s a sturdy green that keeps its texture days after being dressed.

The most recent addition to my cookbook collection, the Moosewood Collectives, is full of tasty, nutritious, and hearty recipes.  I’m itching to try each and every one of them… if only there were more hours in the day.  Last week, I came across a delicious sounding recipe for a “Raw Slaw.”  Kale, red cabbage, carrot, and apple.  It sounded easy enough, plus it was another way to lessen my apple stockpile.  The recipe also called for the addition of fresh thyme, which I was hesitant to purchase.  Not because I don’t like thyme (in fact, I love it– the smell reminds me of my Mom’s old garden), but simply because I knew the leftover thyme would sit in my fridge and spoil.  As it turns out, the thyme was a nice addition but does not make the salad.  Feel free to include it or omit it as you see fit.

All in all, this salad was deeeeeeeeelicious!  So delicious that I made it not once but TWICE last week.  Partially because I now have a massive head of red cabbage in the fridge that needs to be used up.  Rotkraut anyone?

Kale Slaw with Red Cabbage, Carrot, and Apple

 

Our Favorite Raw Slaw (from Moosewood Restaurant: Cooking for Health)

3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1-1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme
dash of cayenne pepper
3 cups shredded kale, ribs removed
1 cup shredded red cabbage
1-1/2 cups grated carrots
1 cup grated apples

  1. In a cup, whisk together oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, thyme, and cayenne.  Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the kale, cabbage, carrot, and apple.  Add the marinade, stir well, and let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Makes 6 servings.  Per 1 cup serving: 92 kcal, 7 g fat, 1 g fibre, 212 mg sodium

 

Healthy Oktoberfest Eats: Rotkraut

24 Oct

October is almost over and the German beer festival known as Oktoberfest has long been over.  So yes, this post is a little bit tardy.

In any case, I had my very own Oktoberfest correspondent this year and I thought it would be fun to transform a traditional Oktoberfest eat into something a little healthier.  When I asked Erin (who has been living in Munich for the past 6 weeks) about authentic Oktoberfest cuisine, she explained that the two most popular foods are sausages and pretzels.  I’m not big on sausages (tofusausage anyone?) and I was far too lazy to attempt a whole wheat pretzel.  Instead, I did some searching and decided I would try my hand at Rotkraut, also known as “red cabbage.”

Erin in her dirndl during Oktoberfest in Munich

The idea to make rotkraut came from my sister, who had purchased the jarred variety a few weeks prior.  In the three days that I stayed with her, I ended up devouring about half of the jar (sorry Jen).  Rotkraut is kind of like sauerkraut but purple-y red in colour and not fermented.  Sort of sweet, sort of sour.

The dish required very few ingredients and was pretty easy to make.  It would have been really easy if not for the apples, which were cut into thin julienne strips.  I had a hand cramp from cutting apples that persisted for the rest of the day (I need to learn proper knife skills!), but it meant having an easy side-dish for a week with no dishes to wash.  Well worth it, I’d say.

Red Cabbage Wedge

Itsy bitsy strips of apple...

One of the best things about this dish is the colour the cabbage takes on once cooked– a vibrant purple that contrasts beautifully with everything else on your plate.  The taste was a bit different from the jarred variety.  It was not as sour, and more aromatic due to the addition of cloves.  Since cabbage is so healthy, inexpensive, and shelf-stable, I may not wait until next “Oktober” to make this dish again.

Rotkraut

Rotkraut, aka German Red Cabbage

 

German Red Cabbage (adapted from Foodnetwork.ca)

1 head red cabbage
2 medium onions
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 bay leaves
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup vegetable stock
4 medium-sized tart apples, thinly julienned
Salt and pepper, to taste

  1. Discard outer leaves of cabbage.  Rinse.  Cut into quarters.  Discard core and coarsely shred by slicing somewhat thinly.
  2. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet.  Add onions and saute until tender.  Add all ingredients but the apple and simmer over medium-low heat for 30 minutes.
  3. Stir in apple and cover skillet halfway with lid.  Continue to cook for 30 minutes or until tender.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Best eaten warm, but can be served cold.

Makes 8 generous servings. Per serving: 130 kcal, 4 g fibre, 2 g fat