Kale Mango Green Smoothie

Two of the newest fads in the food world is kale and green smoothies. Unlike many other food fads, these are ones I can get behind. I want to share with all of you a recipe I learned earlier this year for a Kale (Or Spinach) Green Smoothie.

Kale is a great dark green vegetable that provides vitamin A and K. The high fibre content in kale gives it a really interesting texture that I liken to collard greens. What I love most about kale salads is that unlike lettuce or other salad mixes, the dressing won’t wilt it down in just a couple of hours. It stays vibrantly crisp even after cooking it down in soups.

kale-by-b2

I had this smoothie while I was doing my Stage at Royal Victoria College – a McGill residence. They make this smoothie in their dining hall. I immediately told my supervisor, family and friends that I had just drank the best smoothie I’d ever had in my life. A couple of months later, I taught a basic nutrition class at two elementary schools and the kids loved it! They said “ew” and “gross” as they watched me pour all the kale into the blender but soon after, they oo-ed and ah-ed and proceeded to ask me for the recipe to give to mom and dad at home to make for them. I was really pleased with the outcome.

I love kale and spinach. However, I realize that not everyone does. BUT I can assure you that this smoothie may likely change you and your children’s minds about these dark and nutritious vegetables.

So follow this recipe and have a taste. It’s the closest I’ve gotten to the smoothie I had at RVC.

Kale Smoothie 2

Kale Mango Soy Smoothie (it’s Vegan!)

Makes 4-5 cups

  • 2 cup vanilla soy milk
  • 1 cup no-added sugar orange juice or apple juice (or even just regular milk or water!)
  • 1 banana
  • 1.5 – 2 cups of kale (or spinach!!) – or more
  • 1 cup of frozen mangos

Directions

Add it all into the blender – I usually go with the exact order I listed (liquids first!). The recipe is approximate, and feel free to have fun with it. Add a lot of kale and spinach! If you like your smoothie thicker – add more frozen mango.

The secret is, the vanilla soy milk. It adds a nutty and sweet flavour to the smoothie that milk or regular soy milk just doesn’t. Try it with other smoothies too! This is great for those who are lactose-intolerant or have dairy allergies.

As the weather in Montreal is getting nicer, try this and let it become a summer staple.

D the Intern

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Black Bean Brownies

Cooking time: 25 minutes Makes 16 squares

image
Ingredients
1 can of black beans drained and rinsed
3 eggs
1/3 cup canola oil
2 TBSP vanilla extract (the real stuff)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1.5 Tsp baking powder
1/2 cup chocolate chips (if desired)

Cooking Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Put all ingredients in a food processor (except chocolate chips) and mix until smooth
Feed chocolate chips through the top chute with quick on and off pulses
Poor mixture into a well greased 8″ x 8″ pan

Dirty Nutrition

According to the great Wikipedia, an aphrodisiac is a substance, such as food and drink, that increases sexual desire.   However, it’s never been scientifically proven that such a link exists.  Anecdotally, there are those folks who swear certain foods increase the libido.  I am certain my second son was conceived due to a delectable cheesecake eaten at a popular restaurant 😉

Chocolate has the reputation for being a prominent aphrodisiac.  Painting your lover with chocolate will probably do more for enhancing the experience than relying on any chemical in the food to spark an erotic response.  No food can magically make a person horny.  Even the most reputably known aphrodisiac, the oyster, has never been proven to make sex better.  Oysters are high in amino acids which in turn make dopamine which is a happy hormone.  Oysters do resemble a certain part of the female anatomy and that can be titallating.  

Fruit can be very erotic.  All you have to do is slice an apple lengthwise to find out why.  Many fruits have a suggestive shape like strawberries, mangos, kiwis and bananas. Bet you never thought about fruit like that before!

A beautiful bountiful bowl of lush fruit can be very appealing before and after love making.  Imagine blind folding your lover and feeding them luscious fruit dipped in, what else, chocolate.  After a satisfying romp why not recharge and replenish with a healthy bowl of fruit.

Wine and other types of alcohol are known to get people in the mood.  A little dulling of senses has led to many a one night stand.  Be aware that alcohol is a known depressant and it dehydrates the body both of which can dampen the mood quickly.  If you are going hot and heavy, keep a bottle of water nearby.  Sex is considered exercise!

Since sex is a physical activity, treat is as such.  Have a light meal before the fun and  replenish with milk!  Milk is a very popular post workout drink.  It’s got carbs and protein, a perfect refueling combo. If you went extra hard go with the chocolate milk 😉

Weekend Tips from Diane

Howdy from Ohio!

1. Dress up your salads

Making salads interesting is a great way to start liking salads. Growing up, I hated eating greens and vegetables; it wasn’t until CEGEP that I fell in love with them. Having a wide variety of ingredients and a tasty dressing really makes a big difference. The downside is that adding cheese, pita chips or a thick dressing also adds calories. Try mixing lettuces and spinach with thin slices of apple, pear or mango, or even blueberries. Always incorporate a crunch from crushed up pita chips, toasted pine nuts, sunflower seeds or almonds. Even though these more tasty, filling and flamboyant salads are more caloric, they also contain a lot of fibre, vitamins and minerals that you wouldn’t get otherwise.

My miso salad dressing will be posted soon, it’s amazing, just ask my roommates who always ask me to make it for them.

 2. Shop with your kids!

For all you parents out there, think about involving your kids when you go grocery shopping and when you cook. Living on campus has made me realize that young people nowadays are lacking general cooking and grocery knowledge; whether it’s how to pick good produce, price or being able to try new things. Encouraging them to be part of the meal-planning and prepareation will help your kids get interested in nutritious and fresh foods in a world where fast food is everywhere, including their schools.

 3. Uninterrupted Sleep

Letting our bodies rest is not only important in maintaining overall health but also crucial to controlling body weight. Our body needs adequate rest in order to metabolize all the energy we get from our food in the form of calories. If you’re looking to lose weight, make sure you get a good night’s sleep! One tip I have for improving one’s quality of sleep is to keep all clocks far away from the bed and out of sight. A lot of us wake up throughout the night and check how much (or how little) time we have left to rest. What’s great about not knowing the time is that we can fall back asleep not worried and anxious and get a sound night of zzzzzzz’s.

With humidity and a smile,

– D the Intern

Aside

Knead Dough to Make Dough

If you read my last post you know I caught the Kitchenaid on fire making challah.  I want to make more challah.  Freshly baked challah smells heavenly.  I tried making it by hand the week after I killed the appliance.  The recipe called for 7 cups of flour but it was so sticky I kept adding more flour and ended up with at least 14 cups.  It was hard to knead by hand and the texture from the cooked bread showed it. 

I really want another mixer machine. I once had a bread machine.  The idea was you had to dumb all the ingredients into the machine drum and presto ernesto after a few hour you had bread.  All I had was a weird tasting funny shaped loaf with a mixer piece baked into it. Feh

I don’t want a bread maker.  I can put the dough in the oven myself.  I need a mixer.  A machine that will let me effortlessly create challah, birthday cakes, banana bread, cookies, cheesecake and brownies.  All to be eaten in moderation of course!

The machine I want needs to hold 14 cups of flour.  This way I can make many loaves of challah at once and freeze the rest of the dough for the next 2 weeks.  The way I see it, with a 6 quart bowl I could make bread every 3 weeks.

Here’s the problem, these machines are sooooo expensive.  Like $500 expensive.  It just seems like an awful lot of dough to make dough.  The machine that burned was a Walmart Kitchenaid basic model that my lovely German friend left me when she moved back (something about a plug issue).  It’s more reasonably priced at around $250 but I don’t think it was meant for mixing dough. Not enough power and I am not dumb enough to try that again.

I saw the machine of my dreams at a friend’s home.  Here it is.  Drool…..  The beauty of the this one is the machine mixes from the bottom not the top.  Less messy and easier to make bread dough.  It all also has an 800 watt motor. Wow!

What do you think?

Spicy Moroccan Seafood Couscous

Sorry to all my readers for I’m sure, worrying you all into thinking something bad has happened to me and I got kidnapped on my way home or I got hit by a car while crossing the street. Oh wait, that’s just you, Mom. But to the rest of you! I’m just busy with exams and drowning in stress, and the craziness of stress-filled roommates.

Tonight, decided to take a night off (um… again), and made this from the Jamie Oliver Revolution cookbook. Spicy Moroccan Seafood Couscous. It has cinnamon in it and wow, it smelled sooo good, I’d make it just to smell it! As for the taste, I guess you’ll have to make it and find out! 🙂

I used one of my roommate’s camera and the quality is amazing!!

you’re supposed to use fresh basil though.

Here’s the excerpt from the book! (p.26)

Ingredients

1 cup quick-cook couscous
olive oil
2 lemons
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves of garlic
1 fresh red chile
a bunch of fresh basil
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
½ tsp ground cinnamon
2 – 6-oz white fish fillets
½ pound large shrimp, raw peeled
1 14-oz can of diced tomatoes (OR I think I will try to use fresh tomatoes next time to keep the sodium content at a low)
2 handfuls of fresh or frozen peas, fava beans or green beans (or use a mixture)

*if your sauce ends up being really watery, you might want to add a tiny amount of cornstarch mixed with water, to thicken it up just a little bit.

Directions

Put the couscous into a bowl and add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Halve the lemons and squeeze in the juice from two of the halves. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Pour in just enough boiling water to cover the couscous, then cover the bowl with a plate or plastic wrap. Let the couscous soak up the water for 10 minutes.

Put a large saucepan on medium heat. Peel and finely slice your garlic. Finely slice your chile. Pick the basil leaves off the stalks. Put the smaller ones to one side and roughly chop the larger ones. Add a couple of lugs of olive oil to the hot pan. Add the garlic, chile, basil, cumin seeds and cinnamon. Give it all a stir and put the fish fillets on top. Scatter over the shrimp. Add the canned tomatoes and the peas and beans. Squeeze in the juice from the two remaining lemon halves (**Note: I found that two lemon halves are bordering on overwhelming, so I recommend just using one half). Put a lid on the pan. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for about 8 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

By the time the fish is cooked, the couscous should have sucked up all the water and be ready to serve. Spoon the couscous into a large serving bowl and give it a stir with a fork to help it fluff up. Top with the fish, vegetables and juices from the pan, sprinkle with the reserved basil leaves, and tuck in!

couscous

this is the page from the book portraying the different steps! (I forgot to take my own)

yum.

mine wins because it’s real.

Hope you all enjoy!! 🙂

🙂 🙂 🙂

– D the Intern

Easy & Fast Delicious Zucchini Enchiladas

Yes, zucchinis. Again.

And I didn’t even like zucchini’s 3 months ago. I realized that if you shred it, the texture isn’t really that bad! And it tastes pretty good! My mom just made zucchini dumplings from scratch and they’re also very good.

Moving on, a few days ago, I was on Pinterest and saw a recipe for zucchini enchiladas. As a high schooler, I used to love cafeteria enchiladas. My girlfriends and I always got excited when we saw the menu while standing in that narrow line that led to the doors of the kitchen.

Cheesy Zucchini Enchiladas
Adapted from skinnytaste.com

Gina’s Weight Watcher Recipes
Servings: 4 • Serving Size: 1 large enchilada (it’s pretty filling, you’d be surprised)
Calories: 258.7 • Fat: 13.5 g • Protein: 22 g • Carb: 30.2 g • Fiber: 16.9 g 

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 medium scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 medium zucchinis (I used part of my giant one), grated (not peeled!)
  • fresh ground pepper (I took out the salt here too because it barely makes a difference with the cheese there)
  • 1 1/2 cups grated cheese (I used cheddar, the original recipe called for mexican blend)
  • 4 large tortillas (I used a bunch of small ones and one small one was actually enough for me)
  • chopped scallions (optional but come on.)
  • chopped cilantro (optional but come on. it’s cilantro, baby)

Enchilada sauce:

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tbsp chipotle chilis(optional for more heat) (I skipped because my mom doesn’t take spicy very well)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce (looked for sauce in jars! If you have paste, you can use that too and water it down and use whatever herbs and spices you see fit)
  • 1/4 tsp chipotle chili powder (to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp dry basil or oregano
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or chicken broth
  • pepper to taste (I omit the salt completely because the tomato sauce/paste usually has a considerable amount – remember try looking at the nutritional info on the side of the cans, sometimes off-brand labels put much less salt in their product!)

For the enchilada sauce: in a medium saucepan, add oil and sauté garlic. Add chili powder, cumin, broth, tomato sauce and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Set aside until ready to use.

Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Saute the ingredients together, adding the zucchini last after the garlic and scallions have browned and you can smell it! Add the cheese only once you’ve taken the pan off the heat after sauteing the zucchini for a few minutes, this way, the cheese won’t burn and will only melt with the zucchini. Pat a little onto the tortilla, wrap it, sauce it, grate some more cheese and bake it for 15 to 20 minutes until the cheese has melted. Serve with cilantro and scallions!

Enjoy! It’s surprisingly reallyyyy tasty! My mom liked it so much, I made a second batch the next day!

– D the Intern