(1) NANCY SILVERTON'S BRAN MUFFINS
I had an unimaginably delicious bran muffin several months ago at a local coffee shop and this recipe is the closest thing I've found to it. These things are the real deal- packed with fiber and natural sugars that caramelize the toasted bran. Pretty freaking amazing. They make a great snack and are an excellent substitute for sugary butter-laden desserts. Although the recipe credit goes to Nancy (founder of La Brea Bakery), the photo and ever so slightly adapted recipe that I've been using comes from this blog post on Alexandra Cooks.
(2) COCONUT CHIA SEED PUDDING
This recipe is super straight forward and quick, and the pudding is dense with fiber and nutrients. There's 40 grams of fiber in a jar of the stuff, so although it tastes so good that you'll want to eat a giant bowl of it, please resist the temptation. What I've been doing is making a jar every week and eating a few spoonfuls in the morning and maybe a few more in the afternoon or evening if I'm feeling hungry between meals. Chia seeds absorb ten times their weight in water, which makes this pudding deceptively filling. Plus, chia seeds slow your sugar metabolism, which helps you sustain energy better throughout the day, and they're the best known natural source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are such an important (and often neglected) component of our diet. Photo and recipe credit for this quick pudding goes to Pop Sugar Fitness.
I'm making this pizza tonight. It's a household favorite. A while back I told Chris that I would only make pizza if it had vegetables on it. The problem is, the "classic" American veggie pizza with black olives, green peppers, and big chunks of raw mushrooms, does not do it for me at all. So we started to look for veggie pizza inspiration, and that's when we stumbled upon this lovely creation from Food Fanatic. It's still not the most nutritious meal- but with cauliflower, cashews, and jalapenos (FYI- I recommend you add jalapenos)- it shapes up pretty well for a pizza. And the flavor is AMAZING.
(4) MASALA TOFU SCRAMBLE
This might be my favorite of the list. I ate my fair share of tofu scrambles back when I was vegan- and most of of them were pretty mediocre at best. This scramble, however, is not messing around. It's packed with flavor and texture and the inclusion of cauliflower and kale really boosts the nutrition content and satisfaction. Although it's intended to be a breakfast dish, it also makes a great lunch or light dinner. The Minimalist Baker is credited with the lovely photo and the crafting of this copy-cat recipe of Bjjou Cafe's (Portland, OR) original. Their recipe for the masala spice blend is worth recognition on it's own- I'll be using it to season the crust of my Indian Cauliflower Pizza this evening.
This Mexican-style quiche-casserole fusion has become a classic go-to dinner in our house. Packed full of beans, corn, chilies, and greens with fluffy eggs and crispy tortillas- it is both a satisfying, nutritious meal and very, very yummy. It takes a while to cook but it comes together quickly. It keeps really well too, and makes a great lunch throughout the week. Photo and recipe credit goes to Sonja and Alex over at A Couple Cooks.
(6) MATCHA VANILLA GRANOLA
I have a little love affair with all things matcha. I love the slightly bitter, unctuous taste; plus matcha is packed with powerful antioxidants and gives a significant boost to your metabolism. So, needless to say, I was very excited to try this granola recipe from Happy Healthy Life. I cut the pepita content a little and added some almonds for variety and I substituted honey for agave syrup. I would also recommend using a lower heat (maybe 325) and baking it for a little longer (30-40 minutes).
Whenever I'm making a meal for a meat-lover or a picky eater, I make fritters. Who doesn't love fritters? Simple, satisfying, and delicious. Chris and I really love thisBroccoli Parmesan Fritter recipe from Deb over at Smitten Kitchen. This time of year we almost always have a little bit of broccoli lingering in the fridge, and this is a go-to meal for nights when we're too busy or lazy to do much cooking. Served up with some tart Greek yogurt for dipping, it's hard to beat.
(8) SPICY BLACK BEAN LENTIL CHILI
One of my new year's resolutions was to eat more beans and legumes- they're such an amazing source of protein and fiber, and very filling. This chili recipe from Half Baked Harvest is a great starting point. My recommendations: go a little lighter on the lentils and a little heavier on the beans (pintos or kidney beans are a great addition), add some fresh chilies (I used a few jalapenos), and season to taste (the only "chili powder" I have is straight up ground chilies- I'm miles away from the classic McCormick mix- what I'd recommend is a combination of garlic powder, onion powder, coriander, cumin, paprika, adobo powder, and a hint of cayenne). Also, be advised that this recipe feeds, like, a gazillion people. I'm all about having leftovers, but you could cut this recipe in half and still have plenty.
Hopefully that tide you over for a little while longer. I still want to pursue this blog, but I need to figure out how it fits in my life as a regular thing without become an obligation or obsession. I also feel like I have a moral obligation to get better at measuring things and setting timers, etc. if I'm going to keep posting "recipes" here. I'll work on it.
Happy New Year!