It’s cold out and about 2 inches of snow. I feel like nesting. So, I decided to make a feast, but a healthy one.
Like most Americans, I am disgusted by my sheer girth. I need to lose weight and clearly exercise is key. Funny enough, that’s the one thing I don’t seem to manage to fit in. Even if I tried to fit it in today, trust me, the snow plus me equals a disaster! I am quite confident that I would end up in the emergency room with a concussion. So, I decided to prepare a healthful meal!
I decided to make a zucchini bread, but not just a regular one, but one packed with carrots and parsnips too. I wanted to keep the fat content low, as well as the sugar. The result was a nice soft, yet dense quick bread that was not only flavorful but filled with nutrients.
While that was baking, I decided a pot of vegetable bean stew was a good idea. Again, I tried to keep the fat down. I did not add any meat or dairy or rice. But I wanted to do something to it that would make it over the top in healthy! I decided to add my favorite quinoa and some morel mushrooms.
I do have a sweet tooth, but I was also feeling like I was omitting fruit and nuts. I assembled a blackberry-almond tart!
Of course, portion sizes are key, and another problem I have, but in moderation, you too could have a winter feast!
Zucchini, Carrot and Parsnip Quick Bread
- 3 ounces zucchini, shredded
- 3 ounces carrot, grated
- 3 ounces parsnips, grated
- 1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 cup agave nectar
- 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- Mix grated vegetables together in a small bowl.
- Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Beat the eggs in a bowl. Add the agave nectar and applesauce and mix thoroughly.
- Gently fold in the grated vegetables.
- Stir in the dry ingredients.
- Pour into a prepared loaf pan.
- Bake in a preheated 325 oven for one hour.
- Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove from the pan and continue cooling on a wire rack.
Yields: 12 slices
Vegetable Bean Stew
- 1 red onion, minced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 green bell pepper, minced
- 2 stalks celery, minced
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 15 ounces canned tomatoes
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels
- 14 ounces canned kidney beans
- 14 ounces canned black beans
- 14 ounces canned cannelini beans
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1/3 cup quinoa (or rice)
- 1/4 cup morels, chopped (or other mushroom)
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- In a large stock pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Then add the onion, garlic, bell pepper, celery and carrot. Saute for about 10 minutes, until the vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the canned tomatoes and frozen corn. Drain and rinse the beans. Add them to the stock pot.
- Add the stock, turn heat to high and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat, and add the quinoa, mushrooms and spices. Simmer for 20 minutes.
Yields: 8 bowls
Tip: Freeze in individual containers for a quick meal in the future.
- 2 pie crust (9 inch)
- 10 ounces blackberry jam
- 7 ounces almond paste
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup almonds
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Using two 9-inch pie pans, line each with pie crust.
- Spread 1/2 jar of jam on the bottom of each pie crust.
- Grate the almond paste in a bowl. Beat the butter into the almond paste until smooth. Add the eggs and beat well.
- Fold in the sugar and flour.
- Pour half the batter over the jam in one pie pan, and the rest in the other. Carefully, spread to the sides, without making the jam show through the batter.
- Take the ends of the pie crust and gently fold over on top of the almond mixture, and scatter the almonds on top.
- Bake for 30 minutes.
- Allow to cool completely before serving.
Yields: 16 servings
Serve with a low-fat whipped cream.
© 2011 Jennifer A. Wickes All Rights Reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced without written consent from the author.