FB Note Transfer #2 ( see previous post My Sister’s Sloppy Joes. AKA: “Sloppy Dawgs” (or: Mansandwich? What’s that?))
February 25th, 2011
Every week we have a meat free meal,much to the chagrin of my mostly native Texan husband, who is “starving” an hour after we eat. Sigh. I don’t know why. I honestly think he just likes meat, and would like to see me do away with meatless meals altogether. If a steak is chocolate then he is Willy Wonka!!
Let’s face it, we could all use a break from eating animal flesh. When you admit what it is, it’s tough to think about consuming it. I don’t talk about it often. In fact I ban my kids from speaking of its origins while at the table. I choose to do the weekly meatless meal, not because I am a radical PETA member, or even a veg head at all, but because I need to eat as healthfully as possible. Meat free meals tend to be quite healthy. I guess if you pile a veggie plate with cheeze whiz and sour cream, it’s not, but with moderation and quality ingredients selection, you can almost always count on meat free meals being fairly healthy.
I didn’t grow up ever having meatless meals. I am from the midwest, so meat (and lots and lots of starch…can we say corn and potatoes?!) is the mainstay of most dinners. We ate salad, but it was always the bags of iceberg lettuce with tiny bits of carrots, instead of the dark green leafy salad I have come to love today. I have grown to realize that meatless meals can be just as yummy and good for you if done right. Sometimes I actually find myself craving a big bowl of dal makani, roasted veggie marinara over whole wheat noodles, or a black bean burger. Good food is good food.
I REALLY don’t get how my sweet hub was hungry an hour after this meal. Maybe his portion size wasn’t big enough! This meal really satisfied the rest of us (even the 17 month old had 3rds!). I love the veggie purees, because unlike bland canned soup, it adds not only depth of flavor, but a boost of vitamins you just don’t get in the super processed “just add water”, high salt content canned soup. Next time, I think I will add some cheese tortellini to it. I think that would not only up the carb on the meal (and have my hub doing cartwheels around the house,out of sheer satisfaction), but it would be delicious as well!
The “grilled cheese”I changed up from the original recipe. It called for sliced bread that you slather with the bean puree. I chose to double the recipe of the bean puree and spread it on a halved loaf of french bread. Perfecto! It’s like a super protein infused french bread pizza! This is not your mama’s 1980s grilled cheese! Way better than the wonder bread/one slice american cheese version!
I hope you try this. It’s gonna replace Campbell’s and Kraft in this house for sure!
Adapted from “Double Delicious”
by Jessica Seinfeld.
Hearty Tomato soup and Protien Packed “Grilled” Cheese
2Tbls Olive oil
2-3 stalkes celery..chopped in a processor
1small onion…chopped in a processor
3 cloves garlic
1 28 oz can Whole tomatos w/ juice pureed in a blender
1 can sweet potatos pureed in a blender (if using fresh yield about 1 cup and add water til smooth)
1small steamed head of broccoli florets pureed in a blender.. (slowly add water til smooth–don’t over do the water!)
4c beef broth
1 bay leaf (I used 1 tsp marjoram as I ran out of bay)
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 oz cream cheese cubed..softened
warm oil in soup pot over med high
add celery,onion and garlic..cook till soft–6-8min
add tomatoes,sweet potato and broc purees,broth,bay and pepper
bring to boil. reduce heat to a slow simmer and cook about 10 min til
it starts to thicken
turn off heat
add cream cheese
blend w/ a hand mixer or stick blender til smooth.
(I doubled the bean spread recipe)
1 cup low sodium black beans (she used white)
drained and rinsed
2 Tbls lemon juice
1/4Cup ricotta cheese
1Tbls olive oil
1/2 clove garlic minced
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 loaf french bread–halved
1/2 c mozzarella cheese
blend all the bean spread ingredients in a blender til smooth
split the bread spread both sides w/ butter
place under broiler a few minutes til a lil crispy but not quite browned
spread w/ bean mixture
sprinkle w/ cheese
place in oven about 5-7 min or until cheese melts and edges are crispy and golden
We dipped our cheezy beany bread in our soup!
It warms the heart,soul and body,and pleases the tasty buddies!!
mmm mmm good is right!
I know this isn’t the best picture, but this is before I ever had a smartphone! I made the best effort with my dumb flip phone. haha