Pumpkin pie for breakfast?

I still remember that time when I used to have a chocolate croissant and coffee for breakfast. I was starving by lunch time after that. It never really filled me up. Now my breakfasts are different – they are high in protein, gluten free and very different every day. But the most important thing is that they fill me up – it is like a fuel which you put in the car and which keep your car going till the next “gas station” on full speed and not just dragging there.
I have variety of grains for breakfast like those described in so many other my posts

20110826-111116.jpg

Mix of wholegrain brown rice, corn, sorghum and buckwheat. 1/4 cup of uncooked cereal contains 4 g of dietary fiber and 4 g of protein. I buy them from Organic Supermarket of course. they are so cooled in my blog as Mighty Cereal – just love them.

Also I had a Big Day for organizing kitchen cupboards yesterday and I realized that I have a whole huge packet of Garbanzo and Fava Beans Flour. Hmm… Just thinking now what shall I use it for… Other then Socca of course.

There is still some few items I got recently from – what a surprise a LuLu hypermarket in Barsha – Lucuma Powder and Hemp Seeds. Both of this items I wanted to get for a long time and could not find them anywhere in Dubai. So how surprised I was to find them in LuLu?!?

New addition to the family of Super Foods in my pantry:

20110826-112037.jpg

More about Lukuma . It has a sweet taste, great for avocado ice cream and rich in B vitamins.
More on Hemp Seeds hemp seeds reach in Omega 3, Omega 6; packed with essential amino acids, easy to digest; gluten free and cholesterol free. Just one word – super foods! Great to kiss in to cerela or sprinkle over the salads.

And down the line, my today’s breakfast – Famous Fro-Yo. All healthy goodies all over the world love it and having it hundred different ways! Mine is always different, but today is Pumpkin Pie Fro-Yo

20110826-113308.jpg

Fro Yo is basically a mix of cold yogurt with protein powder and thinned out with a splash of milk or milk alternative of your choice. Today I mixed goat yogurt with 1/2 portion of Raw Organic Brown Rice Protein Powder, added 1 tbsp of almond butter, 2 tbsp of sesame seeds paste and thinned it out with goat milk. To make into pumpkin pie – just added 2 tbsp of home made pumpkin pure, 1 tsp of chia seeds (for omegas) and spiced it up with Pumpkin Spice Mix. I topped it up with some dry mulberries and dash of Yakon Syrup.

20110826-113849.jpg

Tastes just like Pumpkin pie filling or the frozen yogurt with pumpkin pie flavor but way healthier! And of course sugar free and gluten free -)

Hope you also have healthy breakfast on the Weekend day.
I am of to make egg tacos for late breakfast for Mr.R – who’s weekend breakfast always merged with my lunch -))) ahhh… The kNight and Day story continues -)))

Have a great weekend,

Elena

Advertisements

Sick leave

I cut my finger filly bad recently. Was rushing to separate slices of frozen corn bread for snack and the knife went right through my finger. The cut was really dip and doctor even recommended to stitch it. I preferred to let it heal naturally though and just being very careful with it now.
Down line: no rush when you have a knife in your hand.
Since I am cut of of cooking for a couple of days – keeping it simple and nutritional.

Mighty Cereal Breakfast – my fav lately – mix of organic brown rice, millet and corn.

20110825-075950.jpg

I boil little less then 1/2 cup of this cereal in 1,5 cups of water for 10 minutes, add 2 tbsp of sesame seeds paste, Raw Organic Protein, and mix in the following: chia seeds or hemp seeds for omegas, goji berries or other berries for antioxidant, Lucuma or Maca or Yacon syrup or stevia powder for sweetness. That is all all tastes very good, plenty of whole grains and protein.

For lunch I made Salmon with spicy Lentil salad.

20110825-081144.jpg

Seasoned salmon – 200 gr. Fillet – with salt and pepper and some turmeric. Grilled in the oven for 15 minutes. Boiled French lentils for 20 minutes, added chopped red onion and coriander. Dressed it with lemon-walnut oil and Garam Masala dressing.
Really good lunch and really great for one person.

Fr dinner we headed to the Mexican Restaurant on Jumeirah and I was hugely disappointed to discover that they have not prepared Tamale for that day, so we ended up sharing beef corn taco with guacamole and salsa. I even purchased some of their home made corn tortillas and brought them home with me for a quick fix later.

I miss yoga and did simple stretches and few poses just to keep my muscles stretched, sincei and not going for the classes lately (no to put any pressure on the cut finger).

Hope everyone is healthy,

Elena.

Moroccan Harira

To continue my post on ramadan – recipe of Moroccan Harira. I adjusted it to my diet preferences. For example, some cooks adding noodles to it – I could not do that since they r not gluten free, so I opted for only rice. And I. The end soup most of the time being thickened by flour – I could substitute it for some gluten free starches but decided to fully omit it since the soup boils on the stove for a couple of hours – the stock becomes really thick by itself.

20110824-083144.jpg

I cook it in 6 quart pressure cooker to speed up the process, but also can be done without with extended time.

Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil and 1 tbsp of butter in the pressure cooker. Add 300 gr of lamb (pieces and bones) and brown the meat all over.
In meantime in food processor mice 1 kg seeded and skinned tomatoes with 1-2 celery sticks (optional but give nice flavor to the stock) and 1 medium onion. Add this mixture to meat. Finely chop parsley and coriander to make 1 cup in total. Add to soup. Add pre soaked over night chickpeas – approximately 1,5 cups and add 3 cups of water. Season with 1 tbsp of salt, and 1/2 tsp of white pepper and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Now, add the res of the spices: 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp saffron threads, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp Moroccan coloring (not available in UAE as long as I know, so if you dod not have it just increase turmeric to 1 tsp.), 1/2 tsp of paprika. Also you can add some dried chilly if you like it spicy – I don’t – since it is Iftar meal is best to keep it not spicy.
Mix all of it, close the lid of pressure cooker and bring to maximum temperature, reduce the heat and cook for 40 minutes. Remove from heat, let the pressure drop, open lid and keep it simmering on law heat. Mix 3 tbsp of tomato paste with water and 2 tbsp of lemon juice and add to soup. Add 1/4 cup of brown lentils and add water to come to the maximum possible of pressure cooker. Let simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes or cook under pressure for 15 minutes. when lentils almost done – add 2 tbsp of white rice and cook for 15 minutes until rice is done. Make sure not to overcook your soup – lentils should be always in soup – it should not reach the point of mashy texture.
Serve Harira with a lemon wedge on the side and fresh bread – like “Msamen” or any other fresh bread.

Sahten!

Elena

Ramadan Kareem – Ramadan Generous, in deed!

There is just something in Moroccan dishes what hugely attracts my appetite. The spices, the combination of sweet and spicy, which creates this irresistible flavor.
I discovered for myself Moroccan cousin at it’s very best last year during Ramadan. That time I was going to the house of one woman, very good friend of my in-laws. This woman (I will redder to her as A.) has a very big heart and every Ramadan she is making her cooks to prepare fresh daily meals and give it to poor.
It was amazing experience for me to be part of it!
Every day there was a full on cooking happening in her kitchen. The cooks and servants (who were also fasting) were waking up early and starting cooking up to Iftar. Daily meals included:

Freshly made from the scratch Moroccan Harira – hearty soup with chickpeas, lentils and lamb. Huge three pans were steaming on the specially installed stoves from early morning:

20110823-092139.jpg

Moroccan bread “Msammen” – was also prepared fresh on daily basis

20110823-092338.jpg

from this amount of dough:

20110823-092418.jpg

And that was not all! There was also Moroccan Pancakes made of semolina and served with warm butter and honey mixture:

20110823-092537.jpg

Before every single Iftar poor people were gathering close to the gates and waiting for their tern to get a set of those three course meals. Majority of those poor people do not have meat ever since it is too expensive to afford.
In meanwhile we were putting in plastic containers servings of bread and pancakes and pouring steaming hot Harira with pieces of best quality farmed lamb into their thermoses. By the beginning of evening prayer – all the food would be gone and then finally the cooks could rest and have their Iftar and rest a bit, since the same cooking pattern would begin the next morning.

It was an amazing experience and this is all what real Ramadan meaning is.
Ramadan Kareem!

kNight & Day

Breakfast for the loved one..

You know, there is always bad and good about waking up early. I am a morning person, and now I am proud of it! I had a time in my life when I used to think that it is so bad to wake up early and then fall asleep around midnight. My hubby is complete opposite of me – he is totally Owl. Night is his time! His metabolism is raving after sunset! He loves to eat at night, he loves to play his PS3 games all night long, watch TV or just read news. His words: “I feel that if I sleep all night – I am wasting my time”. So I used to think that I am a terrible “time waster”, since my body is just simply shutting down at night. So I was fighting it and over and over. It did not do any good of course: I felt very tired during the day, was not getting enough sleep, was hungry all time (since my body was trying to compensate lack of sleep) and after all my body stil was getting that sneak picked day of the week when was falling asleep at 10 pm and waking up at 7 or so.
Now, I accepted it! I love my mornings and love to see early sun and hear birds in a quite garden praise the house. I love to feel myself rested and wake up with a smile. I perfectly set routine – sleep at 12.30 am and wake up at 8 am. I am at my most productiveness in the morning hours.
Now I enjoy mornings having enough time to get myself ready, make a wholesome breakfast, love my yoga in the morning – it charging my metabolism for store day!
How we manage with Mr.? Well it is very fair trade, I would say, he likes me being responsible for his awakening every morning, he likes to have his fresh cup of cappuccino waiting for him on the table. And me, I like him to come with me to the bedroom at my sleeping time and hug me till I fall asleep, I like to make breakfast for him and I love to see him being happy about his last night achievements in his PS3 game. Tis is how it works and we are both happy !

Now, would love to share with you this morning breakfast my loved one Mr. R, it is just a simple pancake, but smells like a apple pie. Inspired and Recipe adapted from Eat Learn Discover , who obviously adapted it from here

20110822-125412.jpg

Spread some butter over two medium pie pans, added dices of 1 apple (skinned) and sprinkled with some cinnamon and sugar. Beat 2 eggs with 2 tbsp of brown sugar, added 1 tsp of cinnamon and 1/2 cup of all purpose flour mixed with 1/8 tsp of baking powder. Poured bater over apples and placed few cubes of butter on top. Baked in preheated to 190C oven for 20 minutes. before serving it – i drizzled some Organic Maple syrup and decorated with whipped cream (Mr. R loves both of them).

I assumed I could make this recipe more up to my diet, but it was breakfast for Mr.R and he loves “real food”. He finished it all and said he loved it.

20110822-010011.jpg

I had fro-Yo for breakfast with raw macadamia nuts and snacked on gluten free corn bread from Organic Store (just craving corn lately).

Are you night or morning person? And your loved one? And how do you manage with it?

Socca Al-Arabia and a little more

Hello,

How is the week going? Mine is full of cooking so far. I made beautiful lunch the other day – all what my cravings were asking for. Thinking of the post of a fellow blogger regarding cravings i decided to incorporate all of them and at one in a wholesome protein rich food and as a package gluten free.

While sun is shining in Dubai, you do not really feel eating heavy loaded meals. We do not require here heavy loaded meals to keep our bodies warm, like some people need in northern countries. But our bodies still require good dose of protein and healthy fats to be injected regular. So here is the challenge comes to place – how to create protein reach food omitting huge amounts of meat or protein powders (even though my relationship with protein powder is beyond believe – do not feel that breakfast can be more fulfilling without it). But, even though – natural sources are all there too, so why not to stock up from your nearest grocery and make it into meal!

I was running late that day. After yoga I had to go for a quick grocery sopping and reached home by around 1 pm. Lunch had to be done in minutes.

Here is the 1 Hour – 3 Course – Wholesome Meal:

Salad- Sprouted Beans Salad (adapted from http://sumanjsingh.wordpress.com/ )

20110821-095828.jpg

I diced carrot, tomato, onion and cucumber, mixed with mixed sprouted beans and chopped coriander and parsley. Mixed 1 Tbsp of olive oil and juice of 1 lemon, seasoned it with Garam Masala and pureed over the salad, mixed it well and let it stand in the fridge while was preparing the rest of the dishes.

Starter – Chicken Livers in Pomegranate Molases (typical arabic “Mezze”)

20110821-100047.jpg

I soaked chicken liver (about 250 gr) in room temperature water for 1/2 hour. Then dried it up with paper towel and kept aside. Chopped onions into quarter rings. Heated some olive oil in the pan and dried them for 4 minutes on law heat so they will just become very soft and transparent. Added 1 minced clove of garlic and chicken livers. Stir died on low heat until livers became very pale and cooked through. Discarded extra fat and oil from the pan and return to fire. Added 2 Tbsp of Pomegranate Molasses, 1 Tbsp of lemon juice and 1/4-1/2 cups of water. Made it come to light simmer and waited till sauce got thicker up to our liking. Removed from fire and covered with foil to keep it warm.

Main – Socca (“Farinata”) Al-Arabia

20110821-100245.jpg

I discovered this lovely gluten free bread like goodness via website of two beautiful twins, girls who became one of my inspirations to change my lifestyle and eat healthy – this is their website Pure2Raw and all about Socca. Now there is a story of my relationship with Socca.

I made it first time 6 month ago during my annual vacation in Russia. That time i was not so much into healthy eating habits and did not know how easy it is to find Chickpea flour in Dubai. So, back in Russia, i suddenly found Green Pea Flour and was happy to give it a try. It was delicious even though completely not authentic. With time passed I found out that chickpea flour is sold in every grocery in dubai and called “Gram Flour” – so it was my pleasure to follow authentic recipe. i also found out there are millions of way to top it too 😉 so i got creative and felt like i just had to make it with Arabic Twist – it really is reminding me of taste of “Falafel” but just does not take such an effort of making it 😉

I mixed 1 cup of Garbazo Bean Flour with 1 cup of water and 1/8 tsp of salt, 1 tsp (or more) of ground cumin and Arabic Twist #1 – 1/2 tsp of “Baharat” (arabic All-Spice Mix) in the morning before yoga and kept it at room temperature. When i came back i checked the dough and added just 1 or 2 Tbsp of water more to thin it out. Preheated oven to 200 C. Added 4 Tbsp of Olive oil into 10 inch round pie pan (yeah, it is a shame, but i do not have that fancy cast iron pans). Sprinkled fresh rosemary leaves on top of the oil and placed it in the oven for 5 mins till oil becomes bubbly but not smoking. Took it out and pour the batter evenly spreading it around the pan. Returned back to oven and baked for 20-30 minutes, until it became nicely browned with crispy edges.

Took it out from the pan and cut in to portions.

20110821-100406.jpg

Now the Arabic Twist # 2 – this is very popular sauce saved with Falafel, fish or Kofta Dishes! Mixed 2 tsp of Tahineh with 2 Tbsp of lemon juice (i like it zesty 😉 and added some water to thin it out. Spread evenly on top of my socca.

20110821-100504.jpg

Diced some Tomatoes and placed them on top.

And, Arabic Twist #3 – sprinkled some Sumac (Arab’s fave – zesty spice added to salads, onions, spinach and on top of Tomato slices).

20110821-100601.jpg

It was so good, so light, so wholesome and completely Sugar Free and Gluten Free! Is in’t it perfect combination?

20110821-100708.jpg

So here it was – lunch of three dishes, ready in just one hour and all under the dietary guidelines. and so tasty too!

Tasted and approved by Mr. R (not big fan of healthy eating, i would tell you)

Hope you will try it out at home and enjoy it as much as We Did.

Feeling like short in time to cook too? What are your quick fix lunch ideas?

Of the diet – little rare indulgence

Hello friends!
How is the beginning of the week going? Well here it all the same – pluses of jobless life 😉
Yesterday was the first day when Mr. R came back from his short trip to Kuwait. He actually brought me a wonderful gift (which I really begged him to bring though) – cheesecake! I know kinda weird to ask him to bring it from Kuwait, considering that you can buy one here on every corner. But THIS cheesecake is VERY special one…. It is in a JAR.
So cute:

20110820-050302.jpg
Perfect layer of gluten and sugar -)))

20110820-050343.jpg
I indulged into half of mine in the morning -)) and mr.R finished his all -)))

20110820-050444.jpg

It was totally of the diet but totally worth it -) I took so many pictures and enjoyed empty jars more then actual eating -)) very cute idea to serve cheesecake -)

Interested to know: Do you have little rare indulgences? If yes then which ones?

Cheers, have a great week ahead. Left to work on socca post -))

Elena