Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Enchilada Casserole

I added zucchini to this to make it lighter plus figured it would be too much food for me and my friend Caleb will eat anything with zucchini in it.

Enchilada Casserole
1 lb hamburger
1 onion diced
1 green pepper diced
¼ poblano pepper minced
1 Tbsp oil (only if you use lean ground beef otherwise you can omit)
1 can salsa verde
Cilantro, cayenne pepper, chili powder to taste.  [I used ~1 tsp cayenne, ½ Tbsp chili powder, and ½ teaspoon cilantro (there is some cilantro in salsa verde)
1 can black beans or 2 cups (I always soak and cook dry beans to reduce the sodium levels)
2 zucchini diced
16 corn tortillas
12 oz cheddar cheese shredded

Preheat oven to 350°. Brown the hamburger and then add oil and onions and peppers and sauté until tender on medium heat. Turn heat to low. Add salsa verde, black beans, and zucchini. Cover and allow to simmer for ten minutes.
Assemble casserole as follows (in a 9 x 13 pan): one layer meat and bean mixture, 1/3 of the cheese, eight tortillas laid flat over mixture, meat, cheese, tortillas, meat, and cheese. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Shell Free Tacos

Recently I was at a family barbecue, and no surprise, no one had allowed for concessions to be made for my allergies. My sister had told me of an event she had been to where they used lettuce wrapped around their hamburgers to replace buns. My family had bought iceberg lettuce and I was able to use that with great success and had three hamburgers this way (in my defense they were tiny patties).

Then this week I decided I would have tacos wrapped in lettuce. I don't normally buy iceberg, since it has the same nutritional value of water, and decided I would use Romaine lettuce instead. I just tried it at lunch today and it was a fail, so I just had taco salad instead.

Shell Free Tacos (or you can just make the taco mix and eat on shells as there are a few wheat and soy free shells available)

Two Yellow Peppers, chopped
Two Green Peppers, chopped
One medium Onion, chopped
1lb ground meat (I used turkey)
1 Tbsp. oil
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (opt)
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cilantro
one chipolata pepper (opt)
salt and pepper
Lettuce (Iceberg for Shell Free)
Toppings: tomatoes, olives, salsa, sour cream

I brown my meat while sauteing with the peppers and onions because it cuts down on the amount of oil I have to use. If this make you squeamish, brown the meat and set aside and then saute the vegetables in the oil and add the meat back to the pepper and onion mix. Add the seasoning (cayenne, cumin, chili powder, cilantro, chipolta, salt adn pepper) and turn the heat on low and allow to simmer for 8-10 minutes while occasionally stirring to mix the seasonings and allowing the chipolata to add flavor to the whole mix.

Serve on lettuce or in taco shells.

This made about six servings for me.

Monday, February 13, 2012

The journey begins

I became a dedicated clean eater four years ago and started losing weight like crazy. Then I added a lot of athletic training and my weight loss stopped. I had stopped eating meat, for the most part, in order to save money. I looked into the vegan protein method of eating a grain with a legume and decided to give it a go. I started making salads with wheat berries and beans every week. Then I started getting sick and staying sick. I knew it was something I was eating, but I wasn't sure what. My allergist at the time had refused to test me for food allergies before and I knew she wouldn't change her mind. A friend was seeing a different allergist and he had tested her for the top eight food allergy culprits. I switched over, went through testing, and BAMM, I discovered that I was allergic to wheat (minor) and soy (major). For the previous eight years I had thought I was lactose intollerant and had avoided ice cream like the plague. Now I discovered that I only presented these symptoms when I ate ice cream with soy in it. I made up for lost time and gained 20 pounds in three weeks. Yikes! I have been trying to follow the allergy free cookbooks, but very few follow the clean eating rules, so I have decided to start creating my own recipes.