Friday, May 06, 2011

Day 4: Veggie burritos

  Day 4 was, without a doubt, the best so far for me. I'm not thinking about coffee quite so much, plus, I enjoyed some pretty good meals. Last night's dinner was veggie burritos. Even though we don't celebrate Cinco de Mayo, I decided to go with that theme anyway for dinner. In lieu of a margarita, I have my ice cold water with lime slices.
The burritos were pretty easy to make (whole wheat tortillas are allowed on the fast). I first made my salsa, which was really more like a pico de gallo. I chopped up a couple of tomatoes, added some diced white onion, cilantro, fresh jalapeno, kosher salt and squeezed the juice of one lime over the whole thing and let it sit while I chopped and cooked up the rest.

This photo shows only half of what was cooked.

For the burrito filling, I chopped up a peeled sweet potato and used a trick I learned from another recipe to cook it. I put the potatoes and a little water in a microwave-safe bowl, covered it in saran wrap and microwaved it for about 5 minutes. That makes it soft enough to sautee, but not mushy. While that was microwaving, I started the rest on the stove top.I put a little olive oil in a pan and let that heat up before adding chopped garlic, 2 chopped bell peppers (all I had was orange and yellow, which did nothing for the color but added to the "sweet" taste), and half of a large white onion. I seasoned it with salt, pepper and ancho chili powder (all I had on hand).
Once the potatoes finished cooking, I added them, plus the water, to the pan and added a bit more salt because I'd forgotten to salt the water. After about 2 minutes, I added a can of black beans, which I'd drained, and about two cups of chopped baby spinach. I added about a pinch of salt and some cumin; not sure how much, I'm pretty liberal with it. All in all,  a pretty satisfying meal. I was stuffed!
1/2 chopped onion
2 tomatoes
1 jalapeno (I only used half, feel free to use the whole thing. Take out the seeds for less heat.)
Kosher salt
Burrito filling:
1 medium sweet potato
1/2 onion
2 bell peppers (any color)
2 cups of baby spinach, chopped
1 cup black beans, drained
Kosher salt (to taste)
Black pepper (to taste)
About a tbsp Ancho chili powder
Tbsp of cumin

The finished product

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Day 3: bean curry and brown rice

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Siggghhh ..... that's the sound of a satisfying and filling meal at the end of a day pretty much marked by hunger. Don't get me wrong, my fruit and nut salad, was pretty good, and my stuffed peppers hit the spot at lunch, but despite all my planning, I've yet to feel full while on this fast. Until now.

This recipe came from the Daniel Fast site, and we had big bowls of it for dinner (my husband had some for lunch). One thing I would do differently is to spice it up a bit more. But it's full of beans -- lentils, garbanzo and kidney. I actually used cannellini beans (white kidney beans) because I was out of the regular kind. And I still have enough lentils leftover to throw into another curry or make soup with. This also turned out a bit "tomatoey" for me, so I'd probably add a bit of veggie stock. One tip though: All vegetable stocks aren't made only of vegetables! I had to look through all the brands before I found two that did not contain sugar! The one I got, Kitchen Basics, was $2.50 or so, and the other kind was an organic brand that cost nearly $5. It's amazing what has sugar in it. This fast is really opening my eyes to how many chemicals we put into our bodies without even knowing it.

Later on tonight, I'll cut up the rest of the veggies for tomorrow night's stir-fry and figure out what to cook for breakfast, which is so far, the most difficult part of this fast so far! But for now, I will relish not hearing my stomach growl; for a while, anyway.

Daniel fast Day 2: stuffed peppers

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As part of our church's fitness ministry, we are embarking on a weeklong Daniel Fast. I've been waiting in anticipation for the fast so I could test out some new vegetarian recipes that Jamil wouldn't ordinarily eat. For those unfamiliar with the Daniel Fast, it is a spiritual-based partial fast, which limits you to a vegan diet with a few more restrictions; the only beverage you can drink is water, no bread that contains yeast or other leavening agents and no sweeteners. So Sunday, I made my menus, my shopping lists and I filled my cart with fast-friendly stuff.

I think we can call Monday a success. I made this delicious sweet potato chili with tortilla chips on the side. The chips weren't so good, but the chili was great, which is why I have no photo -- it was all gone before I could take one! The hubby took it to the church to share, and although he said they were a bit apprehensive at first, they enjoyed it.

For the peppers, pictured above, I loosely followed this recipe, swapping veggie broth for chicken, leaving out the cheese and forgoing the basil sauce because of the creme fraich it calls for, though I think with some practice, I can do it with tofu. I failed at my attempt to make a flat bread; I ate it, but DH called it "horrible." I will try again tonight though.

Yesterday was a bit tough; I think that having a pretty filling breakfast is going to be key on this thing. The first day, we had oatmeal, which held me pretty well, along with my snacks. But yesterday's smoothie was nothing. I was starving by the time I hit my chair at work. This morning, I had some of the huge fruit salad I made Sunday (kiwi, strawberries, bananas, pineapple) and added some pecans.

One thing I have learned so far is that preparation is key; as easy as it is so say I will "pray about it" when hunger pangs hit, I think that God gave us the good sense to plan ahead. When I knew I would be out to eat Monday, i visited the restaurant's website to pick out some suitable choices before I even got there. And I took some juicy grapes and my bottle of water to last night's sorority meeting to stave off the temptation of meatballs and chicken nuggets.

Anyway, I will definitely make sure I "get in the scripture" before this weekend; I'm not sure how the Daniel Fast will mix with our family trip to Myrtle Beach this weekend!