Tasty Thursday – Veggie-Packed Stir Fry

The other night I was hungry and had one of those “I have nothing in the house to eat” moments. Now, don’t get me wrong – I had a lot of food in the house – and a lot of leftovers – so I decided to get creative to make a satisfying, fulfilling, protein-packed meal. This recipe is adapted from my fridge clean-out that night – I’ve doubeld the recipe to allow for 2 servings, so you can make this for yourself and a vegan friend!

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Vegan-Friendly! Veggie-Packed Stir Fry
½ block tofu, pressed/drained/pat dry
2 tsp avocado oil, or coconut oil – a spray works
salt & pepper, to taste
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp turmeric
1-2 cups broccoli, steamed and drained
1-2 cups butternut squash noodles
2 servings spaghetti/lo mein/rice noodles (cooked)
5-6 splashes coconut aminos – probably equal to 2-3 tsp
2 tsp lemon or lime juice
4 tsp sriracha
1/2 cup coconut milk

Cut tofu in half. Reserve about half (yes, half of the half) for the  “scramble” that we’ll make later – set aside.  Slice remaining tofu into thin strips – I’d say no thicker than ¼ inch. You want the strips to be thin without being transparent. Sprinkle tofu with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tsp oil or spray in a nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Add the tofu to the pan, making sure the strips do not overlap. This is the most time-consuming part of the recipe. It typically takes ~5 minutes for the tofu to get to my desired level of brown/crispiness. Flip the tofu, and cook on the other side for another ~5 minutes. This will really depend on your pan/heat source, so I suggest grabbing a glass of wine and watching the tofu so it doesn’t burn. You’ll know the tofu is done when it is golden brown and holds its shape (meaning – is not floppy). It doesn’t necessarily get pretzel-crisp, but it will have a hearty bite.

Remove fried tofu from heat and set aside. I’ll usually wipe out the pan at this point and add another spray of oil/tsp of oil and return the pan to the heat, lowering it from medium-high to medium. Crumble the remaining tofu into the pan. If your tofu has a lot of leftover moisture in it, it may stick together at first – but the water will ultimately cook out and you’ll be able to break it up in the pan, so don’t worry if that happens. Add salt and pepper, 1 tsp onion powder, and at 1 tsp turmeric. Cook until slightly browned. The turmeric adds a nice flavor and also helps the tofu look like scrambled eggs!

When scramble is done, add the steamed broccoli, butternut squash noodles, and spaghetti to the pan. Just for clarity: the butternut squash noodles are raw – I found mine in the produce section in Publix. The spaghetti/noodles are already cooked (I always cook up multiple servings of pasta at the beginning of the week – I’m impatient and hate waiting for water to boil).  Pour in the coconut milk, and stir the mixture around. Add coconut aminos (watch this – if you add too much, the dish will be too salty – you can always add more later), lemon or lime juice, and sriracha. Stir until everything is heated through and the flavor has coated all the noodles. Don’t be afraid to experiment with flavors/spices! Swap out sriracha for sweet chili; add garlic; sprinkle in some chili flakes if you like heat. Whatever you do, the last step of the recipe is the same – divide noodle/vegetable mixture into two dishes and top each with a portion of crispy tofu.

Enjoy!

Your fitmiss in progress –
Jennie

 

Tasty Thursday – Portion Fix Bean Dip

When following programs like 21 Day Fix, Hammer & Chisel, and Shift Shop, carbs – the yellow container, for all of my fellow portion fix lovers – are in relative short supply. For my weight and goals, I would usually have 3-4 yellow containers (servings) to eat per day. During Body Beast, we are eating more carbs to facilitate muscle growth – nine servings per day for my calorie bracket!

Brainstorming ideas for how to eat 9 yellow containers of carbs per day left me feeling a little lost. When I eat processed carbs like bread, pasta, or tortillas in excess, I get bloated very quickly. I get bored eating oatmeal. I dislike rice. I can only drink so much nut milk per day! Then, I watched my husband open up a container of hummus…and the lightbulb went off.

Now, I know what you’re about to say. “But Jennie, hummus is a blue container food!” And yes, you would be correct. However, hummus is a blue container food because traditionally it is made with tahini – sesame seed butter – and lots of oil to create a creamy, shelf-stable product. The good news is that you can easily create a bean dip that tastes just like your favorite hummus, as long as you have a can opener, a blender/food processor, and some creativity!

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21 Day Fix Approved Bean Dip (Hummus)
Ingredients
1 (15oz) can garbanzo/chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 (15oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained (this is optional! You can use any kind of canned beans you want – black beans, white beans, pink beans, pinto beans, kidney beans would all work. You could also just use 2 cans of chickpeas if you prefer the taste)
1 tsp garlic (I always have a container of chopped garlic in my fridge, but you can use 1/2 to 1 tsp garlic powder instead)
1 tsp Himalayan pink salt
1-2 tsp black pepper
1-2 tsp cayenne pepper (this is optional, but if you like spicy food I recommend it)
1/2 – 1 tsp onion powder
1/2 cup water, divided in half
1-2 tsp avocado oil (or olive oil – this is optional)

Directions
Quick Note: due to the volume of the beans, you may need to prepare this recipe in two batches. I used a Ninja blender with the food processor attachment and needed to split the beans in half to process them properly. If you have a big food processor, you may only need to do one batch.
1. Place half of the garbanzo beans and half of the black beans into the bowl of your food processor along with the spices listed above. This is a great time to experiment with different flavors/different proportions of spices – or you can measure the spices out exactly to create 2 batches of identical hummus.
2. If you’re curious, I used the “Mix Dough” setting on my Ninja blender to process the beans. After the first cycle, the beans on the bottom of my bowl were well blended but there were still whole beans at the top.
3.  If you have a yellow container, it’s a handy 1/4 cup measurement. Fill the yellow container with water and add half to the food processor to start (you can always add more later). The water will help mix everything together and move the beans at the top down towards the blades. If your bean dip is still not 100% smooth, you can either decide to keep it a little chunky (not going to lie, I like it that way!) or add the rest of the water in the yellow container to smooth it out. You should only need 1/4 cup of water per batch, but use your judgment if you have to.
4. Optional: add 1-2 tsp of avocado oil and pulse a few times to blend. Avocado oil is a healthy fat. Do not be scared of eating healthy fats – your body needs them, and they actually help promote healthy skin, hair and nails! Plus, each batch of hummus makes 4-5 servings. 1-2 tsp divided among 4-5 servings is not enough to worry about.
5. Transfer your bean dip into a separate container.
6. If you needed to make this hummus in 2 batches, now is the time to repeat steps 1-5!

Now that you’re hummus is ready to eat, measure out a serving. If you’re following a Beachbody program that uses the 21 Day Fix/Portion Fix containers, 1 yellow container = 1 serving of hummus. If you don’t have the Portion Fix containers (but want some!) click here or reach out to me. In a pinch, you can measure out 1/4 cup as a serving.

BONUS: If you are following a vegetarian/vegan meal plan, 1 serving of this hummus would actually count as 1 red container (protein), NOT a yellow!

My favorite way to eat this dip is with baby carrots and cut up bell peppers. I even dip cherry tomatoes into it! It’s an easy way to add some more veggies (green containers) to you diet, and the crunch helps you forget all about chips and pretzels.