Thursday, March 06, 2014

Sometimes It Isn't Pretty

So it's been 4 days now on just fruits and vegetables (with one break on Tuesday when Rik grabbed me a 6" vege sub from my favorite deli because he didn't get my text that said "No thanks"), and I find myself in need of something chocolaty this afternoon.  As soon as work is finished, I go in the kitchen to create what, in my head, has been percolating for about an hour and sounds like it might be awesome and still meet my "all natural" requirements for this week: a type of whole food brownie: almonds, date syrup, a little vanilla and almond extract, some almond flour to hold it together...maybe sweeten just a little bit more with some agave nectar...

After making a colossal mess in the kitchen with the Cuisinart, it's in the oven baking and OMG does it smell good...that sweet, chocolate essence permeating the house.  I pull it out of the oven and let it cool a few minutes before the big taste...and WOW does it suck.  

(Notice, however, that it didn't stop me from eating a good hunk of the corner!)  Creating something delicious doesn't always happen on the first try. This turned out more like a bland vaguely chocolate bread with nuts.  And, in writing this, I realize what I did wrong, so I'll have to try it again some other day.  

Thankfully, dinner's new recipe turned out pretty dang good.  Like most cooks, I get stuck in a rut when it comes to spices.  For beans, I typically go to cumin and chili powder of different varieties.  For tomato-based things, it's usually oregano or basil, for red meat it's generally get the idea.  And when in doubt, it's garlic salt all the way as it's a rare occurrence that one can have too much garlic in anything!  I boiled some black beans the other day so they were a blank canvas just waiting for something new.  Here's what transpired, and it's WAY tastier.  And you can make it in about 15 minutes!  

Hot Black Bean Confetti 

1 can Low-sodium black beans, drained well
2 Roma tomatoes
1 small clove of garlic (or 1 tsp of the canned minced)
1/2 c. Chopped red/yellow/or green pepper
1/4 c. Chopped onion
1/2 c. Frozen corn
1/4 c. Shredded zucchini
Garlic salt, black pepper, and sea salt to taste
  • Drain the beans well and rinse them.  Add them to a medium sized saucepan on low 
  • Chop 1 of the Roma tomatoes into small pieces and add to the beans.
  • Add in the rest of the vegetables.  
  • Take the other Roma tomato and cut into pieces and place it along with the clove of fresh garlic in a blender until liquefied.  Add this to your bean mixture.  
  • Season well with your salt, pepper, and garlic salt
  • Simmer on low for 10 minutes or so until it's heated through.  
I wrote the recipe using canned beans to save you time though I used the ones I'd cooked from dry.  Again, feel free to throw in any vegetable variation you want!  Most of the reason for the vegetables in this dish were because they needed to get used in something before they got old!  You can also throw in some cooked ground hamburger or turkey burger and this is good too.  Improvise, improvise, improvise


Here are the stats:
Calories:        385
Protein:          25.3 g
Time Spent:  15 minutes!