Tag Archives: cooking

Meet our Featured Dietitian Anne Danahy!

AnneDanahy(1)

Anne Danahy is a registered dietitian and nutrition communications consultant from Scottsdale, Arizona, who specializes in women’s health and healthy aging. She blogs at Craving Something Healthy, where she shares (mostly) healthy recipes, nutrition tips and information to help her readers stay healthy and age well.

Part of healthy eating, she says, includes adding beans to your diet — she calls them the “ultimate anti-aging food.” Anne encourages people to add more dried beans into their diet because beans are an often-overlooked food with so many wonderful health benefits.

She says that beans have so many nutritional benefits that it’s hard to know where to begin, but she relies on beans for soluble fiber to manage blood sugar and cholesterol and promote weight loss. She loves how versatile they are — they’re the best way to boost protein, fiber, and lots of other nutrients in both savory and sweet dishes. They’re an easy way to enjoy more plant-based meals, too.

Anne often cooks Mexican or Southwestern recipes, so she always has lots of black beans on hand. She says her real favorite, though, are cannellini beans because of their milder taste and creamy texture. They’re a perfect way to add a rich creaminess to soups and stews. She has also used them in baking and to make sweet dips, such as her Loaded Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Hummus, with a healthy twist.

Check out Anne’s recipe for Roasted Radish and White Bean Salad.

photo courtesy of Anne Danahy

photo courtesy of Anne Danahy

Be sure to follow Anne on social media!
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 Red Beans and Rice!

Red beans&Rice2

Mardi Gras is early this year — Feb. 13, to be precise. Break out your beads and masks and make some red beans and rice to celebrate!

This traditional Louisiana dish was typically made on washday, which was Monday. Before there were washing machines, housewives had to do their laundry by hand. Using a ham bone from their Sunday meal, they would slow cook the beans all day while they scrubbed clothes so that dinner would be ready after a long day of laundry.

Today, washday might be another day of the week, but in some homes, red beans and rice are still the meal of choice on Mondays. Not only is this dish delicious, it is also nutritious and very economical! Our variation is not the traditional Creole recipe, but it’s still tasty.Red beans & rice 3

Red Beans and Rice

Ingredients:

1⁄2      cup uncooked rice
2         cups cooked*, drained red kidney or pink beans or one 16-oz. can, drained
1⁄4      cup chopped onion
1         tablespoon each soy sauce and sherry
1/2     teaspoon toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Instructions:

Cook rice according to package directions until tender. Add beans, onion, soy sauce and sherry; mix gently. Simmer, covered, 5 minutes or until all moisture is absorbed. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Makes 6 servings.

*For best results, soak and cook dry beans by preferred method.

 

CREAMY LARGE WHITE LIMA BEAN TORTILLA SLOW COOKER SOUP

photo courtesy of ®Healthy Grocery Girl

Recipe Courtesy of ®Healthy Grocery Girl

SOUP INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1⁄2 white onion, diced
  • 1 cup tortilla strips
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 (15-ounce) can of coconut milk
  • 4 cups of vegetable stock (or stock of choice)
  • 1 cup corn
  • 2 cups of dried Large White Lima Beans

TOPPINGS:

  • Fresh cilantro
  • A squeeze of lime-juice Crispy Tortilla Strips
  • If available and in season, slices of fresh avocado
  • Optional topping is to add corn, cooked large white lima beans and bell pepper

Instructions

  • To start you’ll want to use fresh dried beans, so always check the expiration date!
  • To prep the beans, sort and soak beans.
  • Add 2 cups of beans into a pot or bowl with 6 cups of water.
  • Soak at room temperature for six to eight hours (for example overnight) and add more water if the level gets low.
  • Drain and rinse before cooking and discard the water the beans have soaked in.
  • When it’s time to make your soup you’ll want to wash and dice your veggies.
  • Then add all the ingredients into your slow cooker and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours.
  • Using a handheld immersion blender or traditional blender, blend the soup partially, so that it’s creamy but there is still some texture from the whole ingredients.
  • Serve and add toppings and then enjoy! I love to keep this soup stored in glass mason jars in the fridge and consume within 5 – 7 days.
  • To make the crispy tortilla strips I simply slice organic tortillas into thin strips. You can use any tortillas you prefer such as organic corn tortillas or a gluten-free cassava or brown rice tortilla. I place the strips on a baking sheet and drizzle with a little bit of coconut oil and a pinch of sea salt. Then I roast in the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for just 3 – 5 minutes until crispy. Watch the tortilla strips so they do no burn!

 

 

Creamy Large White Lima Bean Tortilla Slow Cooker Soup from ®Healthy Grocery Girl!

photo courtesy of ®Healthy Grocery Girl

California Beans is delighted to be partnered with the ®Healthy Grocery Girl, Megan Roosevelt!

Megan has developed a delicious, nutritious and easy to make slow cooker soup recipe featuring California large Lima beans.  Please check out the YouTube video showing step by step how to make her delicious Creamy Large White Lima Bean Slow Cooker Soup.

photo courtesy of ®Healthy Grocery Girl

photo courtesy of ®Healthy Grocery Girl

CREAMY LARGE WHITE LIMA BEAN TORTILLA SLOW COOKER SOUP

SOUP INGREDIENTS

  1. 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  2. 1⁄2 white onion, diced
  3. 1 cup tortilla strips
  4. 1 green bell pepper, diced
  5. 1 red bell pepper, diced
  6. 2 teaspoons paprika
  7. 2 teaspoons sea salt
  8. 1 teaspoon chili powder
  9. 1 teaspoon cumin
  10. 1 (15-ounce) can of coconut milk
  11. 4 cups of vegetable stock (or stock of choice)
  12. 1 cup corn
  13. 2 cups of dried Large White Lima Beans

TOPPINGS

  1. Fresh cilantro
  2. A squeeze of lime-juice Crispy Tortilla Strips
  3. If available and in season, slices of fresh avocado
  4. Optional topping is to add corn, cooked large white lima beans and bell pepper

Instructions

  1. To start you’ll want to use fresh dried beans, so always check the expiration date!
  2. To prep the beans, sort and soak beans.
  3. Add 2 cups of beans into a pot or bowl with 6 cups of water.
  4. Soak at room temperature for six to eight hours (for example overnight) and add more water if the level gets low.
  5. Drain and rinse before cooking and discard the water the beans have soaked in.
  6. When it’s time to make your soup you’ll want to wash and dice your veggies.
  7. Then add all the ingredients into your slow cooker and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours.
  8. Using a handheld immersion blender or traditional blender, blend the soup partially, so that it’s creamy but there is still some texture from the whole ingredients.
  9. Serve and add toppings and then enjoy! I love to keep this soup stored in glass mason jars in the fridge and consume within 5 – 7 days.
  10. To make the crispy tortilla strips I simply slice organic tortillas into thin strips. You can use any tortillas you prefer such as organic corn tortillas or a gluten-free cassava or brown rice tortilla. I place the strips on a baking sheet and drizzle with a little bit of coconut oil and a pinch of sea salt. Then I roast in the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for just 3 – 5 minutes until crispy. Watch the tortilla strips so they do no burn!

By ®Healthy Grocery Girl

 

 

Meet our Featured Food Blogger, Rebecca!

Rebecca Hubbell-2017

Rebecca Hubbell’s website Sugar and Soul is geared toward inspiring millennial women, but all ages will love this website — especially if you like to cook and travel!

“We aim to inspire our readers to live exciting and happy lives with delicious recipes, entertainment ideas, and first-hand travel experiences,” Rebecca says.

Rebecca is based in Maine and has put her own spin on that state’s traditional Yankee fare. When you think of Maine, you probably think of lobsters, not baked beans. But baked beans are a classic state dish known as Bean-Hole Beans. Traditionally, they’re cooked in a cast iron pot in the ground.

Rebecca took this bean recipe and added her own twist by making it more accessible: you don’t have to cook it in the ground. You probably have heard of using Coca-Cola in a chocolate cake, so using Dr. Pepper in baked beans is a perfect fit. Try her Easy Dr. Pepper Baked Beans for a perfect side dish this winter or a summer barbecue!

photo courtesy of Sugar and Soul

photo courtesy of Sugar and Soul

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Eat Black-Eye Peas for Good Luck All Year Long!

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These little one-eyed wonders are known by different names: black-eye peas, beans, or cowpeas. Whatever you call them in your neck of the woods, and however you fix them, they are delicious!

Eating black-eye peas is a Southern New Year’s Day tradition that is supposed to grant you prosperity during the coming year; however, eating them all year long is not only good luck, but also good for you! Use them in Texas caviar, chili, or Hoppin’ John, but make sure you have them in your pantry to use often in your meals.

Black-eyed peas are nutrient dense and are high in folate, fiber, protein, potassium, magnesium, calcium, vitamin A, and B vitamins and are low in fat and calories.

Do you like stir-fry? Try Hoisin Black-Eye Chicken Stir Fry for a change of pace. This dish is economical, delicious, and your family and friends will love it!

IMG_5765Bayou Black-Eye Chicken is a combination of chicken breasts, mushrooms, and black-eyes for a delicious one-pot meal that is sure to please.

BayouChickenwithBlackeyes

Enjoy!

 

Meet our Featured Dietitian Mary Parsons!

Mary Parsons

Mary Parsons of Flavorrd is a food enthusiast and registered dietitian. Biology was her field of choice in college, but her experiments in the kitchen led her to combine her love of science and food in a master’s degree in nutrition. This Florida native is now living in San Diego and working for Healthy Dining doing nutrition analysis and consulting for restaurants. She maintains her website, flavorrd.com, in her free time.

“As an RD, I have been trained to appreciate eating from a scientific perspective,” she says. “Like all things in life, food and nutrition are infinitely complex, and there will always be something new to discover.”

She hopes her website will become a place where others who share her passion for food can come to share ideas, get inspiration, and discuss nutrition and the struggle to nourish our bodies and spirits.

Mary feels most Americans don’t eat enough fiber — and beans are an excellent source of this nutrient. Fiber is a critical fuel for friendly gut bacteria, and a diet deficient in fiber can lead to imbalances in the digestive system that can be a significant source of chronic inflammation.

She loves black beans because she grew up in Florida, so Latin cuisine is a comfort food for her. Plus, the deep color is a giveaway that they’re an especially rich source of the antioxidant anthocyanin.

Her advice for people who experience digestive symptoms when eating beans: Start with small amounts and gradually increase the proportion of legumes and other vegetables in the diet — it can take some time for the gut to adapt to changes. Also, soak dried beans before cooking to improve digestibility; oligosaccharides (which are difficult-to-digest starches associated with beans’ reputation as a “musical fruit”) leach into the soaking water, which can then be discarded before cooking with fresh water.

Mary graciously shared her recipe for Curried Chickpea Wraps with us!

photo courtesy of Mary Parsons

photo courtesy of Mary Parsons

Curried Chickpea Wraps

Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Yield: Serves 3

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 medium onion
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
salt to taste
2 cups cooked chickpeas or one 14.5 oz. can, drained and rinsed
1 Roma or other small tomato, chopped
To serve:
pita bread
plain yogurt
fresh cilantro
Instructions:
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for several minutes, stirring frequently, until it begins to brown. Add the spices and salt, and allow to cook while stirring about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add the chickpeas and tomatoes, and cook for about five more minutes. The tomato will soften, and the chickpeas will begin to crisp.

Serve the curried chickpeas on a warm pita bread, topped with yogurt and cilantro.

Be sure to follow Mary on social media!
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Baking with beans isn’t weird!

bite of cake

Does baking with beans sound weird to you? What if I told you that you can cut the fat and up the nutritional value of your baked goods without sacrificing flavor?

It’s easy to do: Just substitute pureed beans in a 1:1 ratio. Still aren’t sure about this new trick? You can get started by substituting half of your recipe’s oil or butter with pureed beans.

For best results, use black beans for chocolate recipes and white beans in other baked goods. I have substituted black beans in brownies and people were shocked to learn they have this secret ingredient in them. I now get requests for those “bean brownies”!

If you have a sweet tooth, you can make treats more nutritious by using beans to ease your guilt. I have used pureed beans in bread, pancakes, waffles, and a variety of baked items. Not only is using beans nutritious, it’s also economical!

Here are a few recipes from our website using different varieties of beans.

BlackbeanbrowniesBlack Bean Brownies

pieceofcakeDark Chocolate Cake

Photo courtesy of Nutrition Twins

Photo courtesy of Nutrition Twins

Chickpea Blondies

Bean Banana Bread 1Bean Banana Pecan Bread

Meet our Featured Food Blogger Jaclyn Bell!

JaclynBell

If you’re looking for recipes to inspire your breakfasts, dinners, and beyond, you must bookmark the Cooking Classy site! Jaclyn Bell is a young wife and mother who started her blog to share her love of good food and to perfect her photography and writing skills. This self-taught cook and photographer loves comfort food such as pizza and enchiladas. Taking a stroll through her recipe library is like looking at a beautiful cookbook — it just makes you want to get in the kitchen and start cooking! Try her 7-Layer Dip, Three Bean Salad, Black Bean Tacos with Avocado Cilantro Lime Crema, or her Bean and Bacon Soup … and that’s just to get started. This delicious Kale White Bean and Sausage Soup is perfect for autumn’s colder weather.

photo courtesy of Cooking Classy

photo courtesy of Cooking Classy

Kale White Bean and Sausage Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 12 ounces beef Polska Kielbasa Sausage, sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices (I used Hillshire Farm and really liked it)
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots (about 3)
  • 1 1/3 cups chopped yellow onion (1 medium)
  • 1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 (14.5-ounce) cans low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 6 ounces kale, thick ribs removed, chopped (about 1 1/2 bunches, or 5 ounces if using pre-cut kale)
  • 2 (14.5-ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • Shredded parmesan cheese, for serving

Check out this link for the rest of the recipe.

Be sure to follow Jaclyn on all her social media!
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Meet our Featured Dietitian Anne Mauney!

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Anne Mauney is a registered dietitian, creator of the blog Fannetastic Food, a marathoner, yogi, lover of the outdoors, and a healthy recipe creator. She has a private nutrition practice in Northern Virginia just outside of Washington, D.C., and does virtual counseling by phone — and you can be sure beans are part of the conversation! They’re her favorite form of protein because they’re accessible, affordable and delicious (not to mention full of fiber).

Anne’s all-time favorite is chickpeas; she loves them in hummus and in grain salad bowls. One of her all-time favorite lunches is greens, brown rice or quinoa, chickpeas, cucumber and pepper, and feta cheese or avocado topped with balsamic vinaigrette. It’s simple, hearty and satisfying! Anne also is a huge fan of black beans, especially in Mexican-themed food.

She suggests adding white beans to pasta to help you stay full for a longer amount of time. Another bonus: White beans are so mild that they absorb the flavor of whatever sauce they’re cooked in.

Check out her mix-and-match grain salad bowl recipe blog post for wonderful lunch ideas.

 

photo courtesy of Anne Mauney

photo courtesy of Anne Mauney

Make sure to follow Anne on social media!
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