Healthy Foods for House Guests

Good morning and happy Monday! If you are here for the first time by way of my interview posted on Dr. Fuhrman’s blog on Friday, then welcome, I am so happy you are here. My goal with this blog is to inspire you to make health-promoting, delicious food and to be inspired by you as well. I try to post at least one original recipe a week and I do other fun activities, too, like giveaways, recipe link-up parties, photo food journals and general ramblings about my adventures as a healthy vegan.

As I mentioned in Friday’s post, I had some friends visiting this weekend and I spent some time in the kitchen making food for us. My friends have a one-year old baby and so eating at restaurants is not really a good option for now. I love making food for other people, though, so I enjoyed cooking up some meals for us at home.

Dinner on Friday was an old favorite with my Curried Tempeh Tacos. The ingredients were simple including crumbled tempeh, beans, peppers, onions, mushrooms and onions:

Ingredients for Curried Tempeh Tacos

The vegetables got water-sauteed in a giant skillet:

Veggies cooking for Curried Tempeh Tacos

I had some toppings ready including no-salt salsa, chopped cilantro, red onion and my World’s Easiest Guacamole (not pictured):

Extras ready for tacos.

I served everything on some sprouted corn tortillas and it was a delicious meal (followed by a batch of Tahini-Cherry Ice Cream for dessert):

Curried Tempeh Tacos with all the fixins'

We even had enough taco mix for Saturday night leftovers. Not everything I create in the kitchen is a winner, though. I have my fair share of flops and the worst ones are not even edible. This weekend I had a moderate cookie failure when I tried to make my own version of chickpea cookies inspired by Yoga by Candace (her version looks amazing, by the way). I started with making some date paste by blending up water-softened dates in the food processor:

Date paste made in the food processor

I mixed the date paste with mashed chickpeas, flax seed, chia seed, chopped almonds, raisins, shredded coconut and cinnamon, but they ended up having the texture of a bean burger:

Chickpea cookie "burgers"

I baked the heck out of them, trying to get them to taste like a cookie, but they just ended up being really dense and, although not bad-tasting, just not that great.

Chickpea cookie failure.

Darn! Back to the drawing board on those, but I was happy with how the date paste turned out and I will definitely be making that again in the future for baked goods.

Yesterday morning, I made a huge batch of Energizing Green Smoothie for my friends, including a giant bag of kale. My friend Valerie decided to feed some to the baby:

Valerie feeding her baby some green smoothie.

Despite his expression, he definitely liked it, he kept “asking” for more with a series of grunts and finger-pointing:

Green smoothie mustache.

Finally, this weekend, I got started on the process of making my own protein powder out of sprouted lentils and peas. I got the idea from blog reader Paul B. who was kind enough to advise me on how to go about doing this. First, I sprouted the legumes and laid them on a baking sheet to dehydrate:

Sprouted pea and lentils for homemade protein powder.

After a good twelve hours in the dehydrator, they were crunchy and so I pulverized them in the Vitamix into this powder:

Homemade Protein Powder

I haven’t tried it yet, I plan to use it in a green smoothie tomorrow morning, but it definitely has a bean-y odor to it. I can see now why commercial protein powders are often made with sweeteners or flavors. Thank you, Paul, for the inspiration! As I mentioned in this post, I don’t use protein powders that often, but I think every now and again they can come in handy. I’ll let you know how this one tastes in a smoothie.

I hope you have a great day. I’ll be back here on Wednesday with a new post and don’t forget to “like” my page on Facebook in the meantime. As soon as I reach 2,000 likes (current count: 1,851), I’ll be giving away some cool prizes to celebrate. :)

Comments

  1. says

    GIRL! You sprouted! YAY! I posted a little bit about sprouting my Power House Protein Blend today, too! I also started some Radish Sprouts over the weekend! Sounds like you had a fun time! The power looks awesome a neat way to do that! All the food looks amazing, too! Fun! Fun!

  2. Lori B says

    The tacos look so YUMMY! I’ve not ever had tempeh. I might have to try it. Did you just sautee it along with the veggies? Any tips or brands of tempeh that you recommend? I’m going to try the guac too!

    I’ll be interested to hear how the protein powder turns out. I have a couple of vegan brands, but I don’t LOVE them and only use them from time to time.

    • says

      Hi Lori! The tacos were admittedly quite yummy. :) Yes, to cook the tempeh, I just added it the veggies at the very end to heat it up. It is like tofu in that it doesn’t necessarily need to cook, but just to get hot. I don’t have a favorite brand of tempeh, I just buy whatever I can find.

  3. says

    Your food always look better than mine. I am glad the baby enjoyed the food. It is best to get them started as young as possible so that they can grow accustom to a plant-based diet.

  4. Jeanne says

    Hi Carrie!
    The food looks yummy and the baby looks like an “angel”! I have never tried tempeh, so I bought some this morning and will try it tomorrow. I have made so many of your delicious recipes.

    I read the interview on Disease Proof and was curious about how long it took you to lose that amount of weight? I started at the same weight in September 2012 and I’m down to 124, still have a ways to go.

    I also tried Jason’s toothpaste from Vitacost that was on your list. It took me a few days to get used to it but I feel it does a good job.

    Thank you for inspiring me!
    Hugs,
    Jeanne

    • says

      Hi Jeanne! Let me know what you think of the tempeh, I hope you like it. I love it and could eat it straight out of the package. My husband is neutral on it, he doesn’t think it has much flavor.

      In regards to my weight loss, it took me about 2 years to reach my goal weight. I took baby steps and changed my habits little by little as I learned more and got comfortable with the changes. I also have had some emotional eating issues that have come up from my past and so it’s taken some time to sort through those (I’m still working on that). I think for many of us, eating is so much more than food on the plate, it is tied to comfort and security. So, changing my habits was an emotional journey as well for me.

      Thanks for the questions! :)

  5. says

    Wow that’s so cool that you made your own protein powder!
    Those curried tempeh tacos look delicious =) I will for sure be trying those out soon.
    I have company coming to stay with us for a week… I wish I could make them tempeh tacos and smoothies. They will not even try “healthy” food :( We’re going to be making separate meals for a week. Ah well.

  6. Paul B says

    Carrie,

    Let me know how it works. Definitely dilute it and keep the amount per smoothie reasonable… say 1/3 to 1/2 a cup. If taken straight with water, it does leave an aftertaste…. though not as much as from a protein powder… and it’s a whole food. Best.

    Paul “Angry Face” B

  7. Jessica says

    I just read your interview on Dr. Fuhrman’s blog. I have been reading your blog only for a couple of weeks now…and I am shocked. You’re over 35??? I thought you were early 20′s based on your pics! You look amazing. I guess that’s what good nutrition does!

    • says

      Thanks, Jessica!!! :) Truth be told, I’ve always looked young for my age, but I definitely think that healthy eating and exercise plays a big part in how I look and feel. Thank you for the kind words.

  8. says

    Very interesting to see you make your own protein powder. I can’t sprout most of the year as it’s too cold in my house and my sprouts just went rotten, and a dehydrator is on my wish list. I wonder what other foods you could use to make protein powder. It’s a question I’m always being asked so it’s good to see a homemade powder being made. My baby also loves my green smoothies. She’s becoming very fussy lately and is refusing most of her normal healthy food so I’m very relieved she’s still getting in her goodness without realising it.

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