Hmm…. The second blog in a row devoted to food. Not sure if that’s a trend… But I have had quite a bit of fun searching for lowfat vegan-esque foods I like, and I have always been a creative cook. And, importantly, when I make up something lowfat/nonfat, healthy, and yuuummmy, I want to share.
The menu tonight was Rice, Beans, and Peppers with Mango and Lime. It’s pretty much nonfat and vegan and absolutely delicious.
I didn’t take a picture of the final presentation, but here are the leftovers in a bowl. Not much left over! And most of the pretty yellow and red peppers have been eaten up. Still, you get the idea. Imagine the contents served over an enchilada sized tortilla.
R’s Rice, Beans and Peppers with Mango and Lime
2 Lowfat, enchilada-sized, white corn tortillas, warmed.
Juice of one half lime
Two Anaheim peppers, roasted, seeded, and skinned
One large ripe tomato, skinned and chopped
2 large cloves garlic
1 tsp chili powder
⅔ cup chopped onion
1 cup cooked Long Grain Himalayan Red Rice (see more about this kind of rice below)
1 can (16oz) tri-color beans, pinto, black, and red
3 bell peppers, one green, one red, one yellow
2 onions, one red, one Spanish
Flax seed oil
¼ tsp chili powder
½ chopped avocado
½ cup chopped cilantro
For sauce, sauté ⅔ cup finely chopped Spanish onion, tomato and garlic until soft. Add chili powder and puree. Return to heat, add seeded, roasted, skinned, and finely chopped Anaheim peppers and lime juice. Allow to simmer. Add more water if necessary for saucing consistency.
For filling, slice onions and peppers in rounds (reserve the top and bottom sections of the peppers for the bean mixture) and fry the onions in a hot cast iron pan with a small amount of flax seed oil. Cook until onions are soft and golden, then add sliced peppers and fry a little longer, until they are cooked and edge-browned a little but still have their color and flavor. In separate saucepan, place long grain rice, allowing the rice to become a little chewy in the pan. Add beans. Chop the top and bottoms of the peppers into little squares, and add. It should look very pretty with the three colors of beans and the brightly colored peppers. Mix together and heat thoroughly.
For garnish, chop mango into small pieces and sweeten with agave nectar if needed. Add ¼ tsp of chili powder to mango and stir. Chop avocado and cilantro and serve separately.
Place a warmed tortilla on a plate. Spoon rice and bean mixture on tortilla. Pour sauce over beans and rice, then add generous amount of stir fried onion and peppers. Garnish with mango, avocado, and cilantro.
Warmed bananas in Nonfat Cottage Cheese
This is one of my favorite sweet desserts modified a little to follow the beans and rice dish. I was a little heavy handed with the cottage cheese tonight, so the picture shows a gooey-er dessert than usual.
2 bananas, cut in chunky rounds
1 cup nonfat cottage cheese (On the west coast, I like Trader Joe’s’, on the East Coast, Breakstone’s’.)
Lime segments for garnish
In a saucepan, heat bananas and cottage cheese until the cheese curds melt and become stringy. Divide into two dessert dishes. Squeeze lime juice over the top, and squeeze Agave Nectar on top of that. Add lime garnish, and serve.
A word about the rice.
I love steamed white rice, but lets face it, whole rice is better. I confess I do not like brown rice. It’s icky. I just don’t like the taste nor the texture. Simply swapping white rice for brown is a very disheartening experience. I do like wild rice, though, and some of the Lundberg Family Farms blends are good. Best of all, however, is a type of rice I discovered called Himalayan Red Rice.
A little Himalayan Red Rice I cooked up and stored in the freezer. It keeps very well, and I can freeze it in 1 cup serving sizes.
Believe it or not, this Red Rice is a treat. I love the stuff, and can honestly recommend it. I use it almost exclusively. It’s great in chili with beans to keep that dish vegan and healthy. It’s also great with curries, or simply fried up with a little tofu or chicken. It’s got a satisfying texture and the taste is nutty but not overly so. Just try it. That’s all I’m saying.