Tomato Quinoa-Bean Squares

Today I’m writing to you about a culinary triumph and a baking disaster.

Disaster first. Those who follow this blog may recall that I planned to experiment with my gluten-free angel food cake recipe to bring down the carb and calorie count. Well, experiment I did, substituting erythritol for some of the sugar. Erythritol is granular like sugar, has no calories or aftertaste, and is very low on the glycemic index.

sadfaceSo what happened? The erythritol (1) melted and created a messy, black residue on the bottom of the oven that had to be scraped off, (2) sealed the tube section to the rest of the pan so tightly that the spouse had to pry it loose with a knife—good-by pan, and (3) resulted in a very crumbly, nowhere near as delicious, version of the real thing.

The cake did rise and stay that way, but…sigh. Upwards and onwards…

Now the triumph—A tasty, filling, low-cal, vegetarian bake!

IMGP1980

This dish is packed with protein via the beans, quinoa, and cheese. As well, the quinoa can  help you fill your daily whole grain quota, which is not always easy to do on a gluten-free diet.

This is also a great way to get rid of quinoa leftovers. In fact, it was the cooked red quinoa hanging around in my fridge that got this dish off the ground along with some recipe-surfing on the Internet.

And what’s more, it is flexible.

  • Not quite enough quinoa? Not to worry.
  • Want to add more beans? Go ahead.
  • Prefer tomato paste to pizza sauce? Do your own thing and throw in some basil and oregano.
  • Like it hot? Go for it.

But most of all, enjoy!

Continue reading

Advertisements

Happy Thanksgiving and Check It Out! (5)

First, to my American readers, may you have a wonderful holiday with lots of terrific food and great company!

For those of you dieters who aren’t American and for those you dieters who will have to return to real life tomorrow, here are  interesting recipes that focus on vegetables and beans plus an article about our food preferences.

The Carnivore’s Guide to Vegetables by cookbook writer, Marc Bittman. Bittman is great at providing a recipe and then showing different ways to alter to suit you, family preferences, what’s in your fridge and so on. Here are four recipes, each with variations.

40 Magnificent Mushroom Recipesat the Wise Bread web site, is a compilation of recipes and great ideas for using mushrooms—for example, Vegan Mushroom Risotto, Mushroom Paté, and Mushroom Tikka Masala. Yum!

Beans, beans, and beans! Martha Rose Shulman at the New York Time has two great-looking bean recipes: Three-Bean Soup and Rainbow Quinoa Salad With Fava Beans and Herbs. I haven’t had a chance to try them, but her recipes are always good and reliable.

Finding New Tricks To Get More Satisfaction Out Of Low-Fat Foods, an article from NPR that reports on an interesting study about the thickness and creaminess of foods and how they affect our taste buds and appetite.

 

You, Protein, and Amino Acids

This is what an amino acid can look like.

In March, I posted an article called “What’s an Incomplete Protein?” This article was also posted on the Fooducate blog where it came in for some criticism, and rightly so.

People wondered about my explanation of microbiology and, after I read their comments, so did I! Fooducate asked me to rewrite, and this is the result, adapted for this blog.

The article had come about because I had questions “niggling” at me. I eat very little meat but lots of beans and whole grains. Here’s what I thought was true: Beans are an incomplete protein that needed to be completed to provide a protein that my body could use.

My questions were: What exactly is an incomplete protein? And what do I have to do to make sure it becomes complete? As my commenters and further research showed me, these questions were outdated and simplistic.

But let’s start at the beginning.

Continue reading

Introducing The Bean Bake Blog

As promised, I will no longer be deluging you with bean bake recipes. However, my fascination with them continues. So many foods; so many bean-bake possibilities.

Hence The Bean Bake Blog now is happily ensconced in its own little corner of the blogosphere, and I’m in the process of copying all the recipes from here to there.

And I’ll let you know when I post something new there since this dish fits the criteria of this blog as a gluten-free, dairy-free, diet food.

And, if you’re interested, I’m abandoning ship on the kiwi bean bakes. I recently learned that kiwi and pineapple can’t be used in jello because they contain an enzyme that breaks down the protein in gelatin (thanks to friend Becky, daughter Lisa, and ever-helpful Google for this cooking tip).

I think this is also happening with the protein in the eggs, and that’s why the bakes don’t set properly even when I add foods such as avocado, banana, and cauliflower which usually help stabilize the bakes.

Yes, you read that correctly. My last kiwi try was with cauliflower! Lovely taste actually.

The spouse and I are off to the Caribbean for two weeks. There he can engage in his favourite pastime—scuba-diving, while I engage in mine—sloth. If I meet any interesting foods, I’ll let you know.