Posts Tagged ‘organic’

a simple (paleo*) breakfast

some people are just not big breakfast eaters (me). half the time i have a small snack (a hard-boiled egg, a slice of pcos bread, a piece of fruit) and the other half of the time my morning coffee is enough.

today’s breakfast was small but much more gourmet than what i am used to. i had:

  • sauteed mustard greens from my csa with (organic) butter, salt, and ground black sesame
  • cut up turkey breast from trader joe’s (2-3 ounces)
  • coffee with (organic) whole milk and a little bit of nunaturals stevia (this is my standard morning coffee; i almost always make it at home)
45f22760b93f11e1b9f1123138140926 7 a simple (paleo*) breakfast

a simple (paleo*) breakfast

it was delicious.

*since the fall of 2010 i have been an off and on paleo person. i really like it. my version of paleo aligns most closely with mark sisson’s (who calls it primal). do check his blog out if you are interested in caveman nutrition. the premise for the paleo diet is that we should eat the way our paleolithic ancestors ate – lots of meats, fish, and veggies; minimal to moderate fruit (mostly berries); no grains, beans, sugar.

the other half of my “breakfast” was 5 sun salutation A’s. a great way to start your day is to do some yoga sun sals or meditate for 5 minutes before heading off to work. it will keep you calm and prepare you for the challenges of the day.

Manna Bread Review & Giveaway

This giveaway is now closed.

Winner here.

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For the last 100 or so years, we’ve had the technology to easily make shelf-stable flour from our abundant amber waves of grain. Unfortunately what happens when you start mass producing a food into a highly processed food-thing is that you get a decline in the quality of the food. Nutrient-deficient food-things line the shelves of grocery stores and the Standard American Diet (I call this the “industrial diet”) is based on these products. Perhaps this is the reason for the decline in the health of the average American and why it seems like 90% of the commercials on TV are telling me to take the latest drug that will solve my myriad health issues.

Bread has been one of the worst victims of industrialized food production. Chemicalized, preservatized, and devitalized, both bread and the flour it is made from lack the benefits that perhaps a traditional bread may have had. Sprouted bread, though, bypasses most of these issues. Sprouted grains are not stripped of nutrients, and they seem to be easier to digest (especially for those of us with IBS) than flour. I’m a fan of sprouted breads but they are so dang pricey I don’t buy them that often.

Manna Bread Review

Fortunately, Manna Organics was kind enough to send me some bread to try – they sell sprouted bread that also happens to be yeast free, organic, free of salt, free of oils, without sweeteners, and uses no leavening agents. With a list like that you might think it tastes like cardboard or dog poop, but it’s actually quite delectable. They have two types of bread – the regular Manna Bread, which comes in fun flavors like Carrot Raisin, Fruit and Nut, but also the standard flavors like Millet Rice, Multigrain, etc… They also have a new line of Bavarian Style Sourdough Breads.

I will start with my favorite, the Multigrain Sprouted Bread. It is not presliced and comes in a petite hearty loaf.

13 manna bread multigrain 500x387 Manna Bread Review & Giveaway

This manna bread is appropriately named, because it is divine. It is incredibly moist and soft. It’s dense, but not in the way that many whole grain breads are – it is not dry at all, and reminded me of the consistency of a moist, hearty, healthy muffin. So this bread is basically like an unsweetened muffin. I have only had it plain (it’s just that good) and with butter (another product I like to call manna). The ingredient list includes sprouted organic wheat kernels, organic brown rice, organic barley, organic millet, organic flax seed, organic rye kernels, organic soy beans, organic rolled oats, organic oat bran, and organic cornmeal. I loved it!

Now for the sourdough breads. The sourdough breads do have organic whole grain flour and salt added, but the sprouted Manna breads do not have either. I much preferred the regular kind but Bobby liked these better! We have very different taste buds. The other morning we had toast and eggs and used one of the sourdough breads. The sourdough breads are pre-sliced. The slices are nice and thin so you can have a couple and not be too full.

08 manna sourdough bread eggs 500x362 Manna Bread Review & Giveaway

Sourdough bread is said to be easier to digest since it is partially fermented. We tried three kinds – the Whole Rye, the Sunny Sourdough, and the Multigrain Flax (pictured above).

11 manna bread whole rye sourdough 400x299 Manna Bread Review & Giveaway10 manna sunny sourdough bread 400x320 Manna Bread Review & Giveaway09 manna multigrain flax sourdough bread 400x310 Manna Bread Review & Giveaway

If you’re looking for Manna Breads, I think they are found in the freezer section of your grocery store. Definitely check out that multigrain one. I want to try other flavors as well.

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This giveaway is now closed.

Winner here.

***

Manna Organics is also going to let one (1) lucky reader try their breads. You’ll get 4 loaves (either you pick or they will send 4 of their most popular ones). Retail value is $25. Open to USA addresses only. This contest will close next Thursday, June 16, at midnight (EST). Unless I forget to end it, in which case it will end a day or two later icon wink Manna Bread Review & Giveaway So get your entries in asap.

Here’s how to enter (leave one comment per entry please):

  • Follow Manna on Twitter: @MannaOrganics
  • Like Manna on Facebook: Manna Organics
  • Follow me on Twitter: @TheSaladGirl (leave your handle in the comments)
  • Like me on Facebook: Say Yes to Salad
  • Add me to your blogroll icon wink Manna Bread Review & Giveaway (I’m sorry again, this is shameless.)
  • Blog about the giveaway.
  • Tell me what your favorite kind of bread is!

Happy Wednesday! I am off to do the 30 Day Shred. I am super sore from yesterday in my quads. Gahhhh squats.

Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

Today’s post is my second Project Food Blog entry (see my first entry here). The challenge? “The Classics”. Each contestant must pick an ethnic classic that (s)he is unfamiliar with. We’re supposed to keep it as authentic as possible.

Ethnic food? Nothing new to me. Authentic ethnic meals? Okay, now you’re onto something. I make a lot of so-called “ethnic” dishes, but they are not usually true to the traditional recipe. I’m always modifying and Maggie-fying dishes, sometimes to the point that they are unrecognizable by the end. I always enjoy the outcome, but I will admit that I can’t follow a recipe to save my life. So this challenge is very… well, challenging for me (as it is supposed to be). The main reasons that I usually change a recipe are:

  • I don’t have all the ingredients and I make substitutions
  • I healthify recipes by reducing the amount of oil or adding extra vegetables
  • I simplify recipes to make them quick and easy

My Challenge: Yasai Yaki Soba

Japanese food is a definite favorite for me, but I rarely make traditional dishes. I use a lot of Japanese ingredients, but I don’t make a lot of Japanese dishes. I leave that up to Bobby’s mom (one of my two favorite cooks – my mom being the other one). In my googling I came across a few recipes for Yasai Yaki Soba. I had to pick it because Bobby and I have an inside joke about Yakisoba (it involves a hysterical commercial they used to play on California TV). Turns out that I had almost all the ingredients needed and I only had to run out for 2 things: the garnishes.

Yasai Yaki Soba: What does it mean?

I know there are linguists out there (Lauren and Amber Shea!) that share my passion for words, so let’s break down this recipe to see exactly what Yasai Yaki Soba is.

Yasai = vegetable. Yaki = from yaku, which means “to bake or to grill”. Yaki appears in a lot of Japanese dish names – teriyaki, sukiyaki, takoyaki, okonomiyaki. Soba = buckwheat noodles. I had a lot of trouble finding Japanese etymology resources online, so all I can offer are these definitions. (If you know of a good resource please let me know!) So this is a veggie noodle dish that is “grilled” in a wok (fried). This version happens to be macrobiotic (if organic eggs count) and vegetarian.

Yasai Yaki Soba: The Recipe & The Details

I set about setting up my ingredients.

01 soba noodles 400x296 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

02 veggies 400x265 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

The main source of panic for me for this recipe? The vegetable oil! I never use that much to stir-fry things. I got over it though; I had to follow the recipe to be authentic. That is the point of this challenge.

Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe (Serves 2)

07 yasai yaki soba 400x293 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces soba noodles (dry weight)
  • 1 green pepper, sliced and chopped
  • 1 large thinly sliced carrot (I used a mandoline)
  • 1/2 cup sliced onion
  • 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Seasoning Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine (mirin)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Yasai Sauce Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons rice wine (mirin)
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger (or 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder)

Garnish Ingredients

  • pickled ginger
  • sesame seeds (black or regular or both)

Method

  1. Cook the soba noodles according to the package (usually 4 minutes in boiling water). Immediately rinse with cool water to stop cooking. Set aside.
  2. Beat the 2 eggs and mix in the seasoning ingredients. Add the veggies (pepper, carrot, onion, garlic) and then add the noodles (gently so they don’t break).
  3. 03 veggie egg mix 400x265 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

    04 veggie egg noodles 400x265 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

  4. Heat a wok over high heat for 1-2 minutes until it’s very hot (almost smoking), then add the vegetable oil. Add the noodly veggie egg mixture and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Mix together the yasai sauce ingredients while the noodles are cooking.
  5. 05 oil pan 400x316 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

    06 cooking noodles 400x288 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

  6. Remove from heat, add the yasai sauce (while still in the wok), and mix. Divide between 2 dishes and top with the garnishes – ginger and sesame seeds.
  7. Enjoy!

08 yasai yaki soba 400x305 Yasai Yaki Soba Recipe {Project Food Blog}

Yasai Yaki Soba: What was challenging?

I had a few difficulties with this…

  1. I followed the recipes to a T – I actually went out and bought the specific garnishes that the recipe called for. And those garnishes made this dish exactly the classic dish I was hoping for! I don’t usually do this, but maybe I am missing out. The little things really do make a difference.
  2. The oil content. When I stirfry I don’t usually use this much oil. I use enough, but I never take the risk of using too much and making it soggy with fat. I used the amount it called for, but it turns out I was probably right – Bobby and I both prefer it less oily.
  3. It didn’t have as many veggies as I usually use, and I was tempted to add more in. When I make noodle-veggie dishes, I always use at least half veggies (in terms of volume). This had more noodles than veggies, but it made me appreciate the simple flavor of the soba.

So this challenge was awesome in that it made me appreciate the fact that I am actually a very good cook (Bobby loved it), I don’t have to always make uber-healthy food, and it solidified my love for true Japanese cuisine. Thanks Project Food Blog!

I will remind you how to vote for me tomorrow. I will also be back either later today or early tomorrow with my weekly roundup – I was out all day yesterday and didn’t get to it.

What’s your favorite ethnic dish?

Mine is papaya salad, duh. I would have made that except I’ve already made that lots of times.

*Note: I combined elements of 2 recipes to get this recipe. See here and here for my inspirations.

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