Easy Peasy Baked Tortilla Chips

Baked tortilla chips are hard to find in these parts. I can go to a fancy schmancy grocery store that shall remain nameless and find a few brands, but they are generally quite expensive. However, something Icanfind readily available and at a very reasonable price are corn tortillas. I’m lucky in that I live in an area that has a lot of markets that cater to the local Latin community. These markets make their own corn tortillas and you can buy a giant bag of 88 tortillas for as little as $2.50 when they are on sale. That’s $0.03 a tortilla!

As much as I love tortillas, I certainly can’t eat 88 of them before they start to go stale. Usually I will buy the big bag when it’s on sale and then freeze the tortillas. That way, whenever I have some sort of tortilla need, they are ready to go – just defrost for a bit and voila.

I use the tortillas for tacos, enchiladas, and of course, my very own baked torilla chips. These are super easy and low fat, and you can customize the seasonings to whatever suits your fancy. Lately I’ve been keeping it simple with some lime juice and sea salt.

Sure, you might not live in an area with $0.03 tortillas, but I’m willing to bet that they’re not that much more expensive, and they are probably a whole lot cheaper than the fancy schmancy grocery store baked tortilla chips.

Baked Corn Tortilla Chips

  • Corn tortillas (each tortilla is going to make 4 chips, so figure out how many chips you want to determine the number of tortillas)
  • Sea salt
  • Lime juice

1. Heat oven to 450F. Cut your tortillas into quaters (see picture above).

2. Arrange tortilla triangles in a single layer on a baking sheet. I don’t use oil with these and I have never had a problem with sticking.

3. Squeeze fresh lime juice over the triangles and sprinkle with a bit of sea salt. If lime and salt aren’t your thing, use whatever seasonings you want.

4. Bake for 7 minutes or so. Edges should be starting to brown. They will firm up a bit once they are out of the oven, so keep that in mind. If they still need a few minutes, put them back in the oven. Whatever you do, keep a close eye on them. They go from undercooked to waaay overcooked very quickly!

5. Dip in salsa and enjoy! You can also use these to make nachos, or any other tortilla chip scenario.

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Recipe: Sweet Potato Chickpea Stew

I love butternut squash. It’s my second most-favorite squash, right after kabocha (and yes, I have a rank-ordered my squash preference). When I saw a recipe for butternut squash and chickpea stew floating around Pinterest, I was intrigued.

There was just one hitch. It’s April. Sure, you can find a few winter squash here and there in the stores, but for the most part they are of poor quality and outrageously expensive. Then one day I had some cooked chickpeas I needed to use up and I remembered this recipe. I thought of the perfect butternut stand-in: sweet potatoes! While butternut squash might not be readily available this time of year, I can easily get sweet potatoes all year round.

This recipe is simple and quick to come together. Essentially I turned this:

Into this:

I served this on a bed of rice, but I can see it going really well with quinoa as well.

Sweet Potato Chickpea Stew
(adapted from The Perfect Pantry)

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, diced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 15oz. can of chickpeas, or 2 c. cooked
  • chopped parsley, for garnish

1. In a pot, saute the onion until soft (about 5 minutes or so) in either water or broth. Add in garlic and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Add in spices. Stir well and cook for 1 minute. If things start to stick add in a splash of water or broth.

2. Add in sweet potatoes, diced tomatoes, vegetable broth, and chickpeas. Cover the pot, bring to a boil, and simmer for 30 minutes or so, until sweet potatoes are tender. Taste and add salt if desired.

3. I served this over rice, but any grain will do. Garnish with fresh parsley.

 

 

WIAW

I’ve been meaning to do a What I Ate Wednesday (WIAW) post for an embarrassing number of weeks. The thing is, I’d forget about it and neglect to photograph my food. I’d see other bloggers post their WIAW eats and then it would dawn on me that I had forgotten to take part, again.

Well that ends today! Here is what went in my tummy yesterday.

I woke up nice and early and had a pre-run banana and coffee:

I ran 5.25 miles (53:28). I didn’t have much in me for speed, so I just went with the flow and kept things at a moderate effort.

On my way home there were some pull-up bars alongside the running trail. I’m nowhere near strong enough to do a real pull-up, so I stopped and busted out five negatives (where you jump up and lower yourself down sloooowly).

Once I returned home, I cranked out ZWOW #13…yikes tabata intervals are tough! I quickly foam rolled and stretched, but by this point my mind was focused on one thing…FOOD! I made what is possibly the most unphotogenic green smoothie ever (protein powder, powdered greens, banana, frozen mixed fruit, and almond milk):

I swear it tasted MUCH better than it looks.

Later on for lunch I had a gigantic spinach salad with crumbled baked falafel that was leftover from dinner the previous night, cucumber, tomato, carrot, and a tahini dressing. It was pretty good.

And an apple for dessert:

My apple was kind of bruised and misshapen, but it still tasted just fine.

Later in the afternoon I wanted a snack, so I took some leftover salad veggies as well as a few tofu wedges and dipped them in a nutritional yeast-based dip.

For dinner, I made a sweet potato and chickpea stew…I’ll probably be posting the recipe tomorrow. It was super good!

So there you have it, my first official WIAW post.

Recipe: Curried Mung Bean Soup

I’m a bit of a pantry hoarder. I try not to be, I really do, but then I see some bean or spice that I don’t already have and I’ll think about all of the things I could do with it.

Somehow a big jar of mung beans ended up in my pantry. I’m not sure why I picked these up. The only thing I knew to do with mung beans is to sprout them, and I’m actually not a fan of sprouted mung beans (I much prefer lentil or chickpea sprouts).

And so my jar of mung beans sat in the pantry for well over a year. Finally, I decided that they were taking up precious pantry real estate and that they would be turned into soup. This is how I typically make curried lentil soup, but the mung beans worked well. Feel free to use either.

Curried Mung Bean Soup

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 rib of celery, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 serrano, minced
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 cup dried mung beans
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

1. In a thin laryer of water, saute the onion, celery, and carrot until they are just starting to get soft. Add in the garlic and serrano. If mixture starts to stick, add some more water.

2. Add in spices and the tomato paste. Stir constantly and let the spices cook for a few minutes. The vegetables in step #1 should be coated with the spice/tomato paste mixture.

3. Add in mung beans and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, cover, and lower to a simmer. Let cook for 45 min., or until mung beans are cooked.

4. I like my soups to be thick and blended, so I used an immersion blender to blend approximately half of the soup. If you don’t have an immersion blender, just add half of the soup to a regular blender, blend, and then add it  back to the pot. Feel free to skip this step, it’s a texture-preference.

5. Taste the soup and add salt to taste. Add in lemon juice and garam masala.

Taking the plunge: Making chickpea cookie dough dip

Last year it seemed the recipe for Chocolate Covered Katie’s cookie dough dip went viral. At first glance the recipe sounds awesome – I like dip, and I like cookie dough. But then you go on to read the recipe and you realize that the primary ingredient is chickpeas.

Now I love chickpeas a lot. But in cookie dough? I had horrible flashbacks to the black bean brownies I tried 3 years ago that scared me for life regarding legumes in baked treats.

Lately it seems that this dip has been making a resurgence in popularity – I’ve seen it popping up all over Pinterest. I re-visted the recipe and realized that there were over 800 comments on her post! My interest was piqued.

Finally one day a major sweet tooth craving hit me. I didn’t really want something super sugary, so I figured the time had come to make the infamous ‘cookie dough hummus.’ I didn’t have any chocolate on hand, so I whipped up some 3 ingredient chocolate (coconut oil, stevia, and cocoa) which works great if you like very dark, bitter tasting chocolate.

I threw the ingredients into my food processor and hoped for the best. With trepidation, I took a spoon and went to taste the dip….it was great! I had pretty low expectations but I was blown away.

In the recipe preamble, Katie tells a story of how she brought this dip to a party and most people couldn’t tell it was a healthier dessert. I’m not sure I would go that far…it does have a bit of a chickpea taste and I can see where it wouldn’t really pass mustard with someone who was expecting a really decadent dessert. That being said, if you are used to ‘healthier’ desserts this is definitely tasty.

My only regret is that I was stubborn and waited so long to give this dip a try!

*Note: following Katie’s suggestion, I did use a bit of brown sugar in the dip, but she does give some suggestions for making the dip completely sugar-free.

Rest Day

Today is a much-needed rest day for my tired legs.

I started the day with a bowl of oatmeal with strawberries, banana, pb, flax, and almond milk. Oh, and a giant cup of coffee, too. What would my morning be without a giant cup of coffee?

I puttered around on the internet for awhile, checking blogs and Facebook and Twitter and all of that stuff that is basically a giant time suck. I called my Mom to say hello and catch up since we haven’t spoken for a month. Yes, I know, bad daughter. But in my defense we email each other a LOT.

For lunch I devoured a giant salad. This had mixed greens, tempeh bacon, cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, flax, and an agave-mustard dressing. It would have been awesome with avocado, but I’m cheap and I don’t buy avocados unless they are on some sort of super sale. I was going for a BLT salad kind of a thing, but with tempeh bacon.

Next on the agenda – go to FedEx to run some errands and later I have a date with this guy:

Geez, by the looks of that picture maybe I should vacuum, too. Hope everyone else had/is having a nice weekend!

TGIF

Hurrah the weekend is here! I didn’t have to work today. It surprises me that in the U.S. Good Friday isn’t an automatic holiday…it always was back home in Canada. So when I hear about people working and stores being open normal hours it always throws me.

Anyway, moving on. Today was a strength/cross training day. I woke up and had a banana and a cup of coffee.

I went to the gym and did two ZWOW workouts. It was my first time doing ZWOW #11 which looks like this:

AMRAP – 10 minutes:
10 mule kicks
10 sumo push-ups
20 side jump lunges
Score: 4.2 rounds

I rested for 5 minutes or so, and then re-did ZWOW #10:

AMRAP – 10 minutes:
100 high knee jumps
20 reptile burpees
20 kettlebell jumps
Score: 2.1 rounds (down from my previous score of 2.5, ugh!)

I had some pretty bad DOMS in my quads, so I hopped on the elliptical for an easy 15 minutes and then made sure to stretch out.

Immediately afterward I had some protein iced coffee. I am cheap, and so I keep leftover coffee in the fridge in a jar until I figure out a use for it. Today I mixed it with vanilla protein powder and it was delicious!

A little bit later I had lunch, which consisted of leftover spinach-lentil dahl:

An orange:

And some leftover homemade chocolate.

I then went to Trader Joe’s and got stocked up on a few goodies (bananas, almond milk, cocoa, brown sugar, ketchup, dried fruit, lettuce, tomato, celery, tomato sauce, tofu, and a bunch of other stuff that found its way into my cart…you know how it is).

Next on the agenda: make hummus, sandwich bread, and marinate some tempeh bacon. Hope everyone is enjoying their Friday so far!

Recipe: Rice-less Sushi

Last week I had a sushi craving. The problem was that A) I’m lazy, and didn’t want to actually make sushi rice, and B) I don’t really want to be scarfing down white rice all that often. So what did I do? I turned this:

Into this:

I recently saw a picture of rice-less sushi using napa cabbage and bok choy, but would it work with the regular ol’ green cabbage I had in my fridge? You bet it did.

Was it as good as regular rice-filled sushi? Don’t be silly, of course not. But it was tasty and definitely satisfied my craving.

Rice-less Sushi

  • Nori sheets
  • Whatever veggies you are using for your filling (I used carrot and cucumber cut into matchsticks…but use your imagination!)
  • Half of a green cabbage, shredded

1. First things first, lightly steam your cabbage. I put my shredded cabbage into a skillet with a thin layer of water and covered with a lid. I let it steam for around 5 minutes.

2. The ‘sushi’ will be easiest to roll while the cabbage is still warm. Take your nori sheet and lay it down on a sushi mat. Place the steamed cabbage on the lower one third portion. Lay your other veggies on top.

3. Roll up your sushi. If you are looking for tutorials on how to do this, there are a ton on Google and Youtube. It’s really not that hard once you get the hang of it.

4. Slice the sushi into 6 pieces. My end pieces always look kind of ugly, but whatever, they still taste good.

5. I served mine with soy sauce, sriracha, and sesame seeds. Other options include wasabi, pickled ginger, or whatever else your heart desires.

Yum! This isn’t overly filling since it is just veggies, but it made a great afternoon snack.

Recipe: Carrot Fries

I recently bought a HUGE bag of carrots for $3. It seemed like a good idea at the time. But after this sack of carrots had been sitting in my fridge for what seemed like forever, I knew I needed to think of ways to use them up. I like eating carrot sticks as much as the next person, but unless I turned into a rabbit that wasn’t going to use up all of these carrots.

Carrot cake? Nah, I don’t really need to be scarfing down cake. Carrot muffins? Meh. Then one day my friend was telling me that she had made parsnip fries. If you could make fries out of parsnip, then why not carrot? I decided to give it a whirl.

Afterward, I realized I wasn’t the first person to come up with this ingenious idea…a quick Google turns up quite a few other recipes. Oh well, here’s my version. Super easy to throw together.

Carrot Fries

  • 4 large-ish carrots, washed and peeled and cut into match sticks
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • seasonings (I used salt, pepper, and thyme)

1. Preheat oven to 400F. Prepare you carrots by slicing them into match sticks.

2. Place carrot fries on a cookie sheet. Toss with olive oil and seasonings.

3. Bake for 20 minutes. Flip with a spatula, then return to the oven for another 20 minutes.

Recipe: Whole Wheat, Low Fat, Vegan Bran Muffins

I have another recipe to share with you today.

Sounds like the most boring muffin ever, right? I know, I know. But they’re actually quite good. If you are looking for a dessert-like muffin that’s super sweet, look elsewhere. But if you are looking for a healthy, hearty muffin, you’ve come to the right place.

My husband eats one of theseevery morningfor breakfast. If I was going to be making him a breakfast muffin, I wanted it to be low fat, whole wheat, and low in sugar. Luckily he doesn’t have a very big sweet tooth, so he doesn’t mind that they’re low on sugar. They’re not going to win awards for the prettiest looking muffins, but they’re still darn tasty:

This recipe is very forgiving. Play around with different additions. Shredded carrot, mashed banana, nuts, I think these could all be delicious variations.

Whole Wheat, Low Fat, Vegan Bran Muffins

Makes 12 large-ish muffins

  • 3 c wheat bran
  • 2 c non-dairy milk (soy, almond, rice, whatever floats your boat)
  • 2/3 c unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 c molasses
  • 3 tsp ground flax seed
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.5 c whole wheat flour
  • 1.5 c raisins

1. Preheat your oven to 350 F.

2. Mix wheat bran and milk in a bowl. Let sit for 15-20 minutes. You want it to get really mushy and gross.

3. Add in applesauce, molasses, and flax. Mix. Add in baking soda, baking powder, salt, and flour. Mix until all flour is moistened. Fold in raisins. This will be very thick…more like cookie dough than muffin batter:

4. Pour into muffin pans. I use silicone, so I don’t have to grease them. If you are using metal, than either grease of use muffin liners.

5. Bake for 30 minutes. To see if they are done, insert toothpick. It should come out clean. If not, put them back in the oven for a minute or two.

6. Let cool, then eat! These freeze really well. I wrap them individually in plastic wrap, then throw them in a freezer bag. My husband just takes one out in the morning and takes it to work.