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Empty Plates

Friday, March 19, 2010

4:03PM - Ginger Spice Cookies

Today I wanted to bake, so bake I did.  Not like when Sarah wants to bake.. I only made one recipe!  It was these ginger spice cookies.  This blog is great for tips and step-by-step instructions with pictures, for anyone who’s a bit timid in the kitchen.

The cookies should have turned out like this

ginger cookies

I think I didn’t use enough shortening or something (though they’re pretty oily rich).  I don’t know if I’d bother adding more next time, as they’re still super yummy in a more puffed up state, like this

I’m thinking I should get a cookie jar sometime.

Friday, March 5, 2010

10:19PM - Healthy banana ice cream

Say what?  Yep. Healthy. And ice cream.

I just found this recipe for a one-ingredient ice cream at Our Best Bites

banana ice cream

All you do is chop up fairly ripe (like not black, but just starting to spot) bananas.  Freeze the chunks.
purée frozen banana chunks in food processor.  It may end up looking like couscous.
mush around with a spatula and it should turn into the creamy delicious texture of ice cream.  Voila!

And some toppings you can add or blend in – some of them sort of downgrade the healthy factor:

Or add some milk, and some of those ingredients (nutmeg and cinnamon was suggested) for a yummy smoothy. 

Remember that although bananas are super good for you – packed with great nutrients, and they’re filling to boot, they’re also high in sugar and dense.. so it’s not like they’re calorie free or anything.

I made this after dinner tonight and it was delicious!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

6:30PM - Lemony Shrimp with white beans and couscous

20-minute meal

I freaking LOVE this dish.  I can’t help it.  Prawns are my favourite, and they are definitely highlighted here.


Seriously healthy!

Read more...Collapse )

Sunday, April 12, 2009

9:59AM - Yammy Eggs Florentine!!

c/o Anna & CarlaCollapse )

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

12:31PM - Black Beans, Corn and Quinoa

Tried this dish and it was easy, versatile and really tasty. It travels and refrigerates well, and it can be eaten hot or cold.

You might want to rinse/soak the quinoa before getting started if you think it was processed outside of NA. Here in NA they usually include rinsing as part of processing, which gets rid of the bitter outer coating of saponin. Oh, and to maximize the flavour of the grain you could toast it too. We skipped the rinsing, the onion (didn't have one) and the toasting and it turned out great!

* 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
* 1 onion, chopped
* 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
* 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
* 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
* 1 teaspoon ground cumin
* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1 cup frozen corn kernels
* 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained or one big tin if thats all you have
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the onion and garlic, and saute until lightly browned.

2. Mix quinoa into the saucepan and cover with vegetable broth. Season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes,

3. Stir frozen corn into the saucepan, and continue to simmer about 5 minutes until heated through. Mix in the black beans and cilantro.

Fun Facts:

The Incas, who held the crop to be sacred, referred to quinoa as "chisaya mama" or "mother of all grains", and it was the Inca emperor who would traditionally sow the first seeds of the season using 'golden implements'. During the European conquest of South America quinoa was scorned by the Spanish colonists as "food for Indians," and even actively suppressed, due to its status within indigenous non-Christian ceremonies.

Quinoa has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (12%–18%), making it a healthful choice for vegetarians and vegans. Unlike wheat or rice (which are low in lysine), quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete protein source. It is a good source of dietary fiber and phosphorus and is high in magnesium and iron. Quinoa is gluten-free and considered easy to digest. Because of all these characteristics, quinoa is being considered a possible crop in NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support System for long-duration manned spaceflights.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

7:35PM - Pulled-pork tacos à la slow cooker

These were lots of yum!  Try just the pulled pork.

see the goodsCollapse )

6:30PM - Granola Bars

Anna asked if I could share my 'nola bar recipe, so here it is! :) (Good idea, Anna. This tasty goodness needs to be PASSED ON. =D)

Okay, so these are effing tasty. They're probably not the healthiest, but MAN they're good. Borderline cookie good.


3/4 cup brown sugar (or less)
2/3 cup peanut butter (or almond/cashew butter) - I use almond butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup (or pumpkin puree) - I use pumpkin
1/2 cup butter, melted (or oil) - I use oil (extra virgin olive oil, to be exact)
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 cups quick oats
1/2 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut - I leave this out (Séamus hates coconut)
1/2 cup unsalted sunflower or pumpkin seeds - I use sunflower
1/2 cup raisins, apricots (cut) - I use raisins
1/3 cup wheat germ
2 tbsp sesame seeds (or s.s. with flax) - I use both flax and sesame
1/2 cup chocolate or carob chips - I use carob

Preheat oven to 350 degrees C. Mix together in above order, press into greased cookie sheet (9” x 13”), and bake for 15 mins or until brown @ edges. Cut while warm.

(I put a piece of wax paper on the cookie sheet, with a bit of oil coating it (instead of greasing/oiling the cookie sheet directly), then use a 2nd piece of wax paper to press the mixture flat onto the cookie sheet, peeling it back off when it sticks. SO much easier than trying to use a spoon or something that the mixture sticks to.)

Monday, February 2, 2009

7:33PM - spicy yam and black bean stew!


prep time: 20 minutes
cooking time: 25 minutes

2 tbsp. sunflower oil (or any other oil variant)
1 medium onion, cubed
1 medium green pepper, cubed
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp. chili powder (i used chipotle!)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp. ground oregano
3 cups yams, peeled and cubed
1 can (14 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (14 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tbsp. tomato paste
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tbsp. whole wheat flour (im sure this could be nixed to make it celiac friendly!)
freshly ground pepper, sea salt to taste
3 green onions (optional) finely chopped for embellishment

Heat oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the onion and green pepper and cook for 3 to 5 minutes.



Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and oregano, cook for 2 minutes more. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until yams are just tender. Adjust the seasoning and sprinkle servings with chopped green onion.

(the recipe also calls for chili flakes, but i found it spicy enough without!)

loved it!

Friday, January 9, 2009

12:14PM - Nutloaf

A meatloaf alternative for vegetarians/vegans!  Or me, with my 13 allergies, with some substitutions.



Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Boil carrots for approximately 10 minutes, drain, and mash.

Saute onion in olive oil on medium low heat until softened.

Add garlic and spices and heat another few minutes.

Food process cashews until grainy in texture. Food process bread if making crumbs fresh.

Mash beans, add cashew crumbs, and bread crumbs in large bowl.

Once all veggies are done, add to bowl and mix/mash very well until combined and sticky in consistency.

Pack mixture into an oiled bread pan and bake for approximately 1 hour (times may vary).

Let cool slightly before turning out, cutting, and serving.

**Well worth the effort and spices can be adjusted/changed as necessary. Enjoy!

Serves: 5-6

Preparation time: 1 hr-11/2 hr

Friday, December 19, 2008

9:42AM - *Poke* *Prod*

Hi guys,

The Secret Santa gift exchange is this Saturday!!! Yay!!!

I thought it would be fun to do pics and posts of what we are making/bringing so we can all look forward to the treats :-)

What say all y'all?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

7:44PM - wakey wakey!

nobody has posted on here for awhile so im going to try and give empty_plates it reawakening :)

tonight i made my own variation of a wicked curry recipe.


katie curryCollapse )

Thursday, October 25, 2007

1:01PM - Google Goodness


Monday, October 15, 2007

12:49PM - Vegetarian Borscht

Borscht is such a weird looking soup. I didn't think I'd like it, but I like beets, so I realized I was probably just being silly.
It totally hit the spot on a day like today!

I was in the middle of eating this when I thought I should share ;)

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

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Thursday, August 23, 2007

7:26PM - Vegetarian Burritos!

Shauna posting to empty_plates made me realize that I finally had something to contribute!


Serves 3-4

What you'll need:


Soft flour tortillas/wraps
1 package firm tofu (crumbled -- by hand)
1 jalapeño pepper (finely chopped, and de-seeded to reduce heat if desired)
1 large can black beans
1 yellow/white onion (chopped)
2 tomatoes (chopped)
cheddar cheese (grated)
cilantro (finely chopped)
sour cream
1 avocado (chopped)
Extra virgin olive oil


Potato masher
Large pan
Serving spoon
Plates, etc

What to do:

With a bit of oil, sauté the onions and jalapeño pepper in large pan. Once the onions brown, add in the can of beans (drained & washed), and crumbled tofu. Mash the contents of the pan with the potato masher until the mix resembles a paste (but it's not necessary to blend everything completely). Set to simmer for about 5-10 minutes, or until the mixture is adequately hot/cooked.

On a flour tortilla, add a few scoops of the bean/tofu mixture, then add chopped avocado, tomatoes, cilantro and grated cheese as desired. Top with a dollop or two of sour cream and salsa. Wrap it up and serve!

Sorry no pictures :( I totally spaced when we were making it!

7:05PM - Thai Hot Pot

This was super yummy.. spicy, but mild as far as curry's go.. I don't like ones that are overly rich and creamy..

2 shallots, roughly chopped
8-10 shrimp, uncooked, peeled and de-veined (prawns = teh yum)
1 frozen lobster tail, thawed and cut into bite-sized pieces (or crab)
2 tbsp red curry paste
1/2 c. 35% cream
1/2 c. coconut milk
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 lemon, juiced

1. Sauté shallots and shrimp in a medium-sized pot until shrimp are pink and opaque (about 3 minutes)
2. Add garlic, seard off scallops and lobster meat to pot.
3. In a bowl, whisk red curry paste, cream and coconut milk together and pour into pot with seafood.  Simmer and reduce for 5min.  Finish with parsley and lemon juice.

it's yummy served over rice!

-  what I did differently:  I didn't know the difference between curry pastes.. and I hadn't written down what colour.. so I bought yellow.. it seemed good.. what's the difference?  I'd probably use a tiny bit less than this recipe calls for.
-  I added a tablespoon of lemon juice into the pot to cook with everything else.
-Next time I make it, I'm going to skip the scallops and the lobster.. it'd be great just with more prawns.
 - would still be yummy with lighter cream.. 10% or something.

Serves 4.. maybe.
Nutrients per serving: 261 cal, 19 g fat, 16 g protein, 7 g carbs, 1g fibre.. lots of vitamin A

Monday, March 26, 2007

12:22PM - Chicken Bulgogi

4 green onions in 1 inch pieces
3 garlic cloves minced
1/3 cup *reduced* sodium soy sauce
4 tsp sugar
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp sherry
2tsp fresh ginger grated
1 tsp pepper

combine the above and then add:

1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs

refrigerate for 1 to 3 hours

cover a baking sheet with foil and arrange chicken and sauce evenly over it. broil, stirring frequently until glazed dark brown and nearly all the sauce is evaporated (approx 8 minutes). Sprinkle with:

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

Put chicken in a bowl and serve the following in their own bowls so people can make their own 'parcels':

4 cups cooked rice
1 head boston lettuce, washed and seperated into leaves
.5 sliced english cucumber

For dipping mix:
1 tbsp red pepper paste or asian chilli garlic sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil

Four servings.

Thursday, March 8, 2007


really easy ginger carrot soup:

1 bunch of organic carrots (yes because they're organic, but also because one bunch of those little carrots is seriously the perfect amount for soup for two)
1 shallot, DICED!
1 chunk of ginger - i grate it in with a rasp, but i'm sure you could dice it or be creative.
1 tbs approx of frozen orange juice concentrate
1/2 litre of (organic!) veggie stock

i chop up the carrots pretty small and fry them in some oil with the ginger and shallots until they get kinda soft... they i fry them a bit more in the orange juice concentrate (if it's really frozen, mix it in a couple of tbps of hot water first) and then pour in the stock. i bring it to a boil, then take it off the heat and blend it with my hand held braun blender thing (it's saskalaura's)... but a food processor or i'm sure even a blender would work... and it's not like carrot chunks are a big deal.

add some parsnip parsley! and you're set!

* NOTE *
when i say 'organic carrots' i'm talking about the little skinny ones with the tops still on. anya thought they were the equivalent to regular thick carrots, and her soup is almost flourescent orange.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

10:14AM - More recipe action!

Hey check out my friend Miranda's new journal dedicated to vegetarian cooking!


Only one entry so far but it looks great :)

edit: the community version of that journal is arty_chokes! Add that instead maybe.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

11:51AM - Sarah's Messy Chicken Enchiladas

Completely ungenuine (?) creamy thick sauce

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 onion, chopped
1/2 pint sour cream (low fat)
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon parsley (I use the freeze dried stuff for convenience - yes its expensive, but it lasts)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce (or split with salsa)
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoon chili powder (or less or more just to taste)
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
3 clove garlic, minced
8 (10 inch) wholewheat flour tortillas
1 (12 ounce) jar taco sauce or salsa

3/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese to top


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

In a medium, non-stick skillet over medium heat, cook chicken until no longer pink and juices run clear. Either shred chicken with two forks (for good texture) or cube and return it to the skillet. Add the onion, and green pepper, sour cream, 1 cup cheddar cheese, parsley, oregano, chilli powder and ground black pepper. Heat until cheese melts. Stir in salt, tomato sauce, water, and garlic.

Roll even amounts of the mixture in the tortillas. Arrange in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Cover with taco sauce or salsa and 3/4 cup Cheddar cheese.

Bake uncovered until heated through 20 minutes or so. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

** I'm thinking you could uses this as a dip with nachos too - you'd just need to cook the onion and green pepper more.


Sandwichs of Pure Awesome

Dave made me this low fat wonder:

Grilled Tomato, Smoked Turkey and Muenster Cheese Sandwhich

Makes two

1 tablespoon red onion
3 tablespoons fat-free sour cream
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

4 teaspoons softened butter

4 slices sourdough bread
6 oz smoked turkey (or chicken)
4 (.5 inch thick) slices tomato
2 (.5 onces) slices of muenster cheese (we used a cheese beginning with 'f' though)

-Combine to first four to make a very tasty low fat sauce
-Butter both slices of bread on one side
-Spread 2 tablespoons of the sauce on the other sides of the bread
-Assemble the other bits of the sandwich (cheese last to help stick the sandwhich together)
-Put in hot skillet on medium, 3 minutes aside

These are so fucking tasty

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