Sunday, May 22, 2011

Celebrating Clean Food 7 Ways

Seven weeks and counting! Yes - that's right, seven weeks of clean eating ... and to celebrate my radical change of diet and my awesome commitment to being good to myself, here are some of my favourite dishes (so far).  These are in no particular order, and I invite you to celebrate and salivate... and, well, maybe get inspired to try experimenting with a few of these yourself. Basically I made these dishes up based on what I am and what I'm not eating these days. And I'm basically not eating wheat, carbs, dairy ('cept yogurt and goats milk products) sugar - or any sweeteners, no fruit, vinegars, or anything fermented. And also no black tea or coffee. What are the yeses? Veggies and lots of 'em. Lean meats and fish. Some legumes. Brown rice and quinoa. Call it my own personal Cooking Challenge.

First up - eggplant lasagne. OMG.
1. This is made without pasta using super thinly-sliced eggplant (I use a mandoline) done 3 ways - brushed with olive oil and grilled,  dipped in eggwash and breaded with brown rice flour and sauteed, and sauteed in a plain eggwash. A fab trio - I was experimenting with all three. You could just use any one method, although for simplicity - grilled.  I used crumbled tofu with lots of garlic, shallots and fresh basil mixed with an egg as a replacement for the ricotta, and added a layer of fresh basil leaves. It is topped with grated goat mozarella. The sauce came from an organic sugar free brand that I jazzed up with ground sundried tomtoes, pine nuts, basil and garlic. In the background: romaine lettuces awaiting grilling. To be topped with homemade ceasar salad dressing and capers. This salad is almost famous.

Double-Double Garlic Choy Tofu
2. I use sauteed garlic, garlic stems or scapes (and brown 'em up for extra zing!) along with baby sui-choy and baby bok choy in this easy dish. Perfect for  a busy weeknight. The secret is to use sesame oil for the sauteeing and add a splash of Braggs at the end. You can also add asparagus or green beans for extra veg.

Quinoa, sundried tomatoes & goat feta side or salad
3. I am ardently attached to quinoa - this is just one of the many ways I love it. You can cook this up warm as a main or side dish and serve the leftovers up the next day as a salad. (What am I saying? Assuming there are any leftovers!)

Chili with greek yogurt and cilantro topping.
 4. What can you say about chili? Handy, versatile, freezes beautifully, loved by most. Keep it clean. In this version I used organic ingredients and only sugar free tomatoes, tomatoe paste and beans. My cleanse includes lean beef, and you can also use ground turkey or crumbled tofu.

Radicchio Rolls and Italian Chicken
 5. This was a knockout meal. Radicchio rolls are made just like cabbage rolls. My clean version is stuffed with cooked brown rice, fried onions and smoked tofu. Topped with home-made olive oil mayonnaise and baked.  The Italian Chicken is an adaptation of John Bishop's Terracotta Chicken recipe. Chicken thighs are dredged with a brown rice/arrowroot flour mixture, browned and then baked in a tomatoe sauce (see Eggplant Lasgagne) topped with goat mozarella and garnished with fresh basil.
Sauteed Red Snapper with Yellow Lentil Stew and Carmelized Onions
6. Another mouthwatering combo. The lentil stew is one of my hubby's specialties - and also freezes beautifully. It is made with yellow lentils, organic chicken broth and lots of lemon. The carmelized onions are are beautiful sweet, zingy counterpoint and the cilantro a great match to the fresh, comforting stew. The snapper is dredged in seasoned arrowroot flour and pan-fried in olive oil and butter. (Yes, I can have butter...*smack*)

Pepper + Goat Cheese Stuffed Omelette, Red Tomatoe Salad, Smoked Tofu
7. Brunch anyone? This special Sunday meal was inspired by the local Farmer's Market. Fresh eggs and bountiful hothouse peppers were the basis for the omelette, with vine-ripened baby red tomatoes and basil as a sparkling side. Smoked tofu added a little extra protein and that Sunday brunch taste.  Yum.

And as an added bonus, here are a couple of my favourite "foodcessories":

Fresh tomatoe, red onions, basil, olive oil. Is there more? Oh yes, fresh pepper!

Olives - any kind, all kinds. As a side or baked in almost any kind of mediterranean main. And homemade mayo, aioli, dressing...this one is a garlic/dijon base. You can put this stuff on almost any salad, veg or meat. Great as a dip, too. 
So, happy clean cooking. After seven weeks I'm convinced I can serve up creative, delicious, satisfying meals that are healthy, organic and free of fillers. And how do I feel? Amazingly good. And virtuous. Really, really virtuous.

Here are a couple of my inspirations:

Have fun!

1 comment:

  1. W O W !!!!!!!!!

    Can I come over for dinner?

    Honestly though, Vicki, you are inspiring with your cooking. All of that food looks and sounds delicious. Also, I would like to acknowledge your dedication to your cleanse. I bet your body has a mini celebration everytime you eat. Out with the candida, in with wellness.