Thursday, February 29, 2024

Frozen Vegetables Make Tasty Side Dishes

a wide skillet with broccoli and green beans, vegan

I always keep frozen vegetables on hand to make quick, healthy, and easy side dishes. 
Truthfully, I can enjoy a bowl of  low fat healthy veggies within 7 minutes from start to finish. 

So, no more excuses for not cooking veggies! 

Frozen vegetables are a great way to make sure you eat vegetables daily. 

I also freeze fresh ginger to grate in the skillet of vegetables. 

Ginger, Natural Remedies, Spice
Keep fresh garlic frozen in the freezer ( don't peel it). To use it, simply grate it with the peel.

Freshly grated ginger tastes great with sautéed broccoli. 

I keep fresh organic ginger in the freezer in small baggies. It stays fresh for about 6 months. 

I wash and dry it whole (just the way it comes) before freezing it. 

Then I simply grate it frozen into the pan as needed and return the unused ginger to the baggy and back to the freezer.  The flavor is amazing. 

This simple, healthy, easy side dish was sooooo delicious that I felt I needed to share it. 

 I cooked up a bag of organic broccoli and some organic green beans (bought at a reasonable price at Costco). 

Recipe: Quick Frozen Broccoli and Green Beans With Ginger : 
I used a wide skillet. I poured in the bag of broccoli into the skillet and then added about a large handful of frozen green beans, 1/2 cup of water and grated freshly ginger on top, salt and garlic powder. Cook uncovered on a medium flame for about 5 minutes! (adding 1/4 cup of water while cooking if water evaporates)

Why I keep frozen vegetables in the freezer?
  • Most frozen vegetables are frozen as soon as they are harvested, thus they retain the greatest amount of nutrients. 
  • Fresh vegetables such as broccoli are shipped for a few days and then sit in the supermarket often for a few days or more. By the time we eat it, the nutritional value may have deteriorated. 
  • My time schedule and lifestyle is unpredictable. I often buy fresh vegetables with great intentions, only to find out that we ate out or I just didn't cook them and they went bad!
  • If I buy frozen, they can stay in the freezer for months. 
  • I don't need to clean them and chop them, therefore I am more likely to actually make them.

sugar snap peas in a bowl covered in sesame seedsNot 
Recipe for sugar snap peas and ginger with sesame seeds 

Not Mushy 
If you cook frozen broccoli or frozen green beans in a skillet with just 1/2 cup of water to start for about 4 minutes uncovered,  they stay firm and bright green.

Green Bean, Food, Green, Healthy

My favorite frozen vegetables: 
  • Organic broccoli- Costco sells a large bag with 4 individual sized bags inside 
  • Organic cauliflower rice- Costco for large bags with 4 individual bags or Trader Joe's for one 12 ounce bag.  
  • Organic edamame - Whole Foods one bag
  • Organic cauliflower-One bag at Whole Foods 
  • Organic sweet peppers (red and green) one bag at Whole Foods which I use added to other vegetable dishes or for soup recipes.
  • Organic peas - One bag at Whole Foods 
  • Frozen organic artichoke quarters- One bag Trader Joe's
  • Frozen Baby Brussels Sprouts (for Baby Brussels Sprout Soup)-I buy a bag from Hanover brand at most supermarkets and use them in stir-fry (with broth not oil) or soup.
Plain Cauliflower Rice (Heated in skillet with 1/2 cup of water, salt, pepper, and garlic powder).
Can beused it in place of rice! Try my cauliflower rice fiesta recipe that follows.

Cauliflower Rice Fiesta Recipe Link

brussels sprouts soup

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Roasted Carrot Appetizer With Cumin Seeds and Tahini Maple Dip

I am truly excited about this roasted carrot appetizer recipe and you should be too! Why? Because it is not only absolutely easy to make, it is absolutely crazy delicious. 

If you are a reader of my blog, you will know that the last week I made a delicious dip (link)with tahini, maple syrup, and lemon juice. 

a wooden table topped with a bowl of food and spoons

Yesterday I was shopping in Costco and I noticed an interesting bag of little bag of multi colored carrots. They were from Guatemala and were hand picked and shaped. They looked so cute, I decided to buy them and make them for an appetizer for the dinner party I was having. 

fried food on black plate

At first, I thought I would serve them as a vegetable side dish drizzled with the tahini sauce which would have been great ! 

But then I realized that they would also make an amazing appetizer as well, and I needed an appetizer for a party I was giving. (I forgot to take a good photo) 

All of my guests raved about the carrot appetizer. These beautiful looking roasted carrots with cumin seeds were the BIG hit!

I served the roasted carrots as an appetizer along with my maple tahini sauce for dipping which totally enhanced the flavors of the carrots! 

1 bag of cocktail carrots (as seen above)
1/2 cup of acquafaba (the liquid from cooking chickpeas or from canned chickpeas- I use it in place of olive oil) 
2 tablespoon of cumin seeds 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Cover a large cookie sheet with parchment paper 
Wash and dry the carrots 
Brush carrots with acquafaba ( If you use oil, spray with olive oil spray) 
Sprinkle on the cumin seeds and salt
Place in the oven and roast for  20 -25 minutes until carrots are soft.
Remove from oven. 

My Notes: 
  • For a side dish, arrange carrots in a serving dish and drizzle with the tahini maple syrup sauce. 
  • For an appetizer, arrange the carrots on a flat serving dish and put the tahini maple syrup dip in a small bowl for a dip.

Friday, February 16, 2024

Green Cay Nature Center and Wetlands-Our Adventure

We visited Green Cay Wetlands in Boyton Beach, (Florida) with our dear friends Fay and Howie who rented a place in Boynton Beach. The incredible area overlooks 100 acres of wetlands and hosts a one and a half mile elevated boardwalk that takes you directly into the wetlands. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Gorgeous Valentine Roses

Free From above of elegant bouquet of fresh red roses in hand of crop unrecognizable crop person in stylish coat on sunny day Stock Photo

Happy Valentines Day and what says " I Love You" better than red roses?

I live in a high rise condo building with over 600 units. The building is home to a diverse population of people including families with children, senior citizens, and singles with a variety of backgrounds and cultures. 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Mardi Gras and Recipes- Plant-Based and Gluten Free

Free Colorful Masks and a Mardi Gras Poster Stock Photo

Mardi Gras is a festive carnival celebration that takes place in the French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana prior to the start of lent.
Food is a big part of the celebration and is unique to the area. See my plant-based recipes below.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

12 of My Favorite Chickpea Recipes

Chickpeas Snack photo and picture

Chickpeas are a great source of plant-based protein and are filling and delicious. They happen to be my favorite legume, and I like to use them in many of my recipes.

 I started publishing my blog over 12 years ago, so many of my recipes may have been seen and forgotten or never seen by my current readers. 

I decided to rummage through some of my older chickpea recipes and re-share them in one post.

Chickpeas are used in recipes from countries all over the world. They are versatile, inexpensive, low in fat, high in protein and fiber and are satisfying. 

Do you like chickpeas? Do you use them? 
Are you concerned with eating less animal protein ? Do you try to make more plant-based meals? 

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Nori Seaweed Wraps

Nori is the type of seaweed that comes in flat dry sheets in packages. It is perfect for making wraps, eating toasted, adding to soup or salads. It has been a staple in Asian cultures for hundreds of years, and it is the seaweed that is used to make sushi. 

green and blue ceramic bowl
Nori is one of the mildest and tastiest seaweeds. 

Saturday, February 3, 2024

13 Healthy Plant-Based Super Bowl Snack Ideas

Super Bowl time is almost here, and you can be a super hero by eating and serving healthy plant based snacks and appetizers while watching the game this year. Take a look at some of my easy healthy recipes, and see if any of these appetizers/snacks appeal to you. 

Apple Nachos (link to recipe) with a chocolate date sauce.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

In My Kitchen - February

Welcome to my February post for " In My Kitchen". I join Sherry at Sherry's Pickings Blog (link) where you can view mine and other blogger's posts to see what's happening in everyone's kitchen each month. 

This month I've discovered nori which is the seaweed used to make sushi. I actually did not make sushi, but I have enjoyed using the seaweed in various ways such as making low fat, low calorie wraps. I'll be sharing that post this soon.

gimMe Sushi Nori 100% Organic Roasted Seaweed 50 Sheets in Resealable Container, 50 Count (Pack of 1)

I bought two new matching bowls for my kitchen last month. You can't tell from the photo but they are two different sizes. 

This is the smaller bowl. I have not decided what to use it for yet.

glass bowl with gold metal holders

This bowl is the larger bowl and I keep fruit in it. I changed the look of my kitchen a little from modern white bowls to dressier glass bowls for fruit. 

My actual winter Florida kitchen is not spacious enough to be an eat in kitchen, so directly outside of the kitchen is a dinette area where 
we eat. 

On our visit to see family in Israel this past May, I picked up this cheerful key holder. It's been in the box for months, and I finally decided to hang it in my kitchen. Shalom means hello, good bye, or peace!

We had company one day and I put out stuffed grape leaves as an appetizer.

I also served stuffed baby portobello mushrooms with spinach and tofu filling. I have not posted the recipe yet. 

If you read my previous post for toasted croutons, you may have seen this meal I made for my husband of chopped tomatoes, yellow rice, and toasted tofu in the air-fryer! He seasoned it with lemon juice and a few drops of sesame oil. I seasoned my plate with lemon and za'atar (no oil)

This is a large melamine carrot plate that sits on my counter and holds fruit. I like to put oranges in it. I sometimes use it as a serving piece when I host a brunch.

 That's all that new for this month's post. 

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Toasted Tofu Croutons

Have you tried tofu? This is a simple quick air-fryer recipe for tofu that's crispy and tasty. (You could also make it in the oven).

Free Food in Pink Ceramic Bowl Stock Photo

Tofu can be eaten in a variety of ways. Most recently, I've been obsessed with making tofu croutons in the air-fryer.

Saturday, January 27, 2024

10 Favorite Plant-Based Asian Recipes- Gluten free

                                  Asian Soup in 10 Minutes  (Recipe Link)

I am quite a fan of Asian food. Are you?  It works very well with a vegan diet. For those looking to increase the amount of low fat plant-based foods to their diet, here are 10 of my favorite delicious and easy ideas. 

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Carrot Soup With Cilantro and Ginger

Soup Carrot photo and picture
Are you a cilantro lover or hater? This easy carrot soup is for cilantro lovers because it does contain a noticeable amount of this tasty herb. The soup is simple to make, full of protective health giving antioxidants, and delicious. (you can substitute parsley for the cilantro).

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Thick Lentil Soup and Vegetables

Lentil Soup in Gray Ceramic Bowl

Soup is always welcome in our home, especially in the winter. 
This thick plant-based lentil soup contains two kinds of lentils: 
red and brown.

Free Brown Beans in Black Ceramic Bowl Stock Photo

It requires very little prep (10-15 minutes?) and has a wonderful flavor. The best part for me is that it is made with water, not broth. This means I can keep the sodium content much lower

Free Chana Pulses photo and picture

Have you ever read how much sodium is in a cup of commercially prepared chicken or vegetable broth? 
So much that it's scary... 

I make soup in the Instant Pot, but this can easily be made in a soup pot on the stove top as well. 

The flavor in this soup comes from the vegetables and spices. 
It makes its own broth.

Free Carrot Sliced photo and picture

It's a quick easy to make comfort food that will warm you up on a cold winter night.

Free Spinach Plant photo and picture

Healthy too!!!- with protein, vitamins, minerals, fiber! It is so easy to enjoy a hearty plant-based, gluten-free soup!

Lentil Soup

Author of the Blog: Judee Algazi
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 11 minutes in IP (does not count heat up time)
Serves: 8 bowls

1/2 cup of brown lentils
1 and 1/2 cups of red lentil 
3 carrots, diced 
1 medium zucchini, diced
a large handful of baby spinach 
1 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder 
1/2 jar of chunky salsa 
9 cups of water
2 bay leaves (remove before eating the soup)
optional: 1 medium potato diced (I didn't this time)
salt and pepper 

Add lentils to the insert liner of the Instant Pot. Wash well and drain. Add carrots, zucchini, spinach, cumin, garlic powder, salsa, water and bay leaves. Secure lid, make sure the IP is sealed, and set to pressure cook for 11 minutes - When done, allow to sit for 10 minutes and then release steam according to the manufacturer's directions. When all steam is released, carefully remove the lid and serve. Taste and add salt and Pepper to taste.

My Notes: 
1. Convert this recipe into a stew by adding 2 cups of cooked chickpeas after cooking.
2. This soup will continue to thicken everyday on its own because the red lentils absorb the liquid. Just add a cup of water or broth before reheating if necessary. 

Thursday, January 18, 2024

Air-fried Eggplant - Easy and Tasty

eggplant, tahini, roll ups, vegan

Do you like eggplant? 
If you are looking for something a little different, these seasoned eggplant roll ups are moist, tender, tasty, and easy to make. They are a wonderful side dish especially topped with delicious Middle Eastern sauce. 

Sunday, January 14, 2024

The Plant-Based Diabetes Cookbook Review

The Plant-Based Diabetes Cookbook Review

Plant-based eating is becoming popular and for a good reason. 
Why? The answer is very simple. The typical American diet, better known in some circles as the standard American diet (the SAD diet), may be contributing to the poor health of many individuals and the wide spread increase of diabetes in our nation. 

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Baked Spaghetti Squash with Salsa and Mushrooms

baked spaghetti squash with salsa

I purchased a spaghetti squash over a month ago. It was in the back of my pantry, and I had forgotten about it. Surprisingly, it was still good when I cooked it today. 

I really do like spaghetti squash, but it is one of those vegetables that isn't always available and needs time to cook. 
It's easier than you think...

Monday, January 1, 2024


Sherry at Sherry's Picking hosts a monthly share called IN MY KITCHEN where anyone can participate.

This is what's IN MY KITCHEN right now for January. 

I have a few fresh herbs in my kitchen because I wanted to make a quinoa tabouleh salad for New Year's Eve for a dinner party.