Traditional Mashed Potatoes

Mashed Potatoes 1Ingredients

  • 3 Medium Size Potatoes (about 700 grams)
  • 50 grams of Butter
  • Heavy Cream or Full Fat Milk
  • Chives to Taste
  • Salt, Pepper and Nutmeg (or any other spices you might want)

I have mentioned before that since me and my bf have different tastes in food (I love healthy veggies, he does not), so I a healthy compromise for Dinner time for us, is making the same protein for both, but different side dishes. In this case, while he will have this traditional Mashed Potatoes as a side, I will have my Healthy Cauliflower Puree as a side.

Here’s how I make the traditional Full Fat Mashed Potatoes:

  • Mashed PotatoesPeal the potatoes and place them in a pot filled with water over high heat in the stove. Allow for the water to boil and the potatoes to become very, very soft. I generally think that when making mashed potatoes, there is no such a thing as “over-cooking” the potatoes, the softer they are, the easier to mash!
  • Once the potatoes are ready, rinse out the water and place them back in the pot.
  • Using an immersion blender, puree your potatoes; I actually don’t have an immersion blender so I do it manually, with a hand tool for mashing potatoes.
  • Place the mashed potatoes over medium to low heat and add the butter, the chives, salt and spices.
  • Keep mashing and mixing the potatoes, either with the immersion blender or a wooden spoon.
  • If you find the mixture to be too thick, add a tablespoon of milk or cream until you reach the desired consistency.
  • Top with more chives for decoration and it’s ready!

Enjoy!

xoxo,

Yoggi B. 

Cauliflower Puree/ Healthy “Mashed Potatoes”

Cauliflower Puree 2Ingredients

  • 1 Head of Cauliflower
  • 2 Tablespoons of Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons of Mozzarella 
  • 2 Tablespoons of Light Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Chives to taste

I must admit that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Mashed Potatoes!! So naturally, it was a Necessity to find a way to make healthy mashed potatoes! I found this recipe in the Foodnetwork.com, tried it and I loved it! As usual I twitched the recipe just a bit….

Here’s what I did:

  • Bring a pot of water to Boil
  • cauliflower pureeMeanwhile, cut the Cauliflower to get rid of the stem and keeping only the very top, the florets. Once the water is boiling Add the florets to it and allow to cook for about 6-7 mins or until tender.
  • When the cauliflower is ready, rinse it out and place it in a fat surface; take some paper towels or napkins to try and dry the florets, getting rid of as much water as possible.
  • Cut the Chives into tiny pieces.
  • Place cauliflower in a blender and add the cheeses, chives, salt and pepper, and blend until smooth, for about 2 mins. If necessary, stop the blender, move everything around with a spoon and then blend for another minute or so.
  • Cauliflower Puree 1Top the puree with some chives for decoration and its ready to serve!

It has the same texture of real Mashed potatoes and this recipe seemed to be really forgiving, for example: I didn’t have cream cheese so I used 2 “La Vache qui Rit Cheeses” (non-fat “Laughing Cow Cheese”) and I didn’t have mozzarella so I only added the parmesan and it still turned out great! I think it is a perfect and different way to eat your veggies!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

My Homemade Hummus

hummus 1Ingredients

  • 3 Cups of Chickpeas
  • ½ Cup of Water
  • ½ Cup of Lemon Juice
  • 1 tbs of Salt
  • 1 tbs of Pepper
  • 1 tbs of Cumin
  • 4 tbs of Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon of Sesame Oil

 

I love hummus!! Its another one of my favorite complex carbs…so its hard for me to only eat a sensible serving of hummus, but I try!! The original recipe called for a lot of more ingredients and a lot more olive oil! I cleaned it up a little bit without really sacrificing the outcome! I know some people love their hummus “garlicky”, if you do, go for it! I am highly intolerant to garlic, so I don’t use any…

So, Here’s how I make this cleaner version:

  • If you are using already cooked chickpeas (the ones they sell in the jar) you go straight to the next step. If not, Leave the chickpeas in a bowl covered in water overnight (for a good 8 hours more or less). Wash the chickpeas and throw out the “soaking water”; then place the chickpeas in a pot with fresh cold water in the stove over high heat. Bring the chickpeas to a boil; a “foam” may rise from the chickpeas, just scoop it out and throw it away. When the water is boiling, Lower the temperature to medium, enough so that the chickpeas are simmering, cover and allow to cook for about an hour. Once ready, rinse them out and let them cool.
  • Place the chickpeas in a blender together with the rest of the ingredients. Blend all together until reaching the desired texture, stopping to taste along the way and adjusting the spices accordingly. If the hummus is too thick, add a little more water or just one more tablespoon of olive oil. Be patient with your blender, you may need to stop and stir with a spoon and then start again until reaching the desired consistency.
  • I like my hummus smooth but thick, my BF prefers it to be smooth and thin…for him I usually add more olive oil or even Tahini, I use a tablespoon or so. Feel free to adjust the amounts based on your personal preferences!
  • Refrigerate for an hour, I find hummus is best served cold. You can use some of my Homemade Pita Bread…with Oats to go with this recipe!

hummus 2

hummus 3Enjoy it!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

Oat’s Series 9: Homemade Oatmeal Pita Bread

pita bread featuredIngredients

  •  ½ cup of Water
  • 1 ½ tbs of Dry Active Yeast
  • 1 cup of Oat Flour
  • 4 tbs of Whole-Wheat Flour
  • ½ tbs of Olive Oil
  • Salt, Pepper and Spices

 

Since I have been living in Greece, I’ve realized how addicted I am to pita bread!! and since I would love to eat it very often, I thought I would try and find a healthier version to replace the original white flour pitas.

 

So, Here’s what I did:

  • Warm up the water to a comfortable temperature; if you were to put your pinkie finger in the water it shouldn’t burn, it should feel like your are having a warm bath, more or less.
  • Place the water in a Bowl.
  • Sprinkle the yeast and cover with a kitchen cloth or plastic paper for 10 mins, allowing the mixture to sit still and the yeast to activate.
  • Once the 10 mins have passed, add the oat flour and the whole-wheat flour and mix it together. You can do this with a kitchen-aid (if you have one), with a spoon, or just use your hands like I did.
  • Knit the dough until it becomes a manageable ball, that doesn’t stick to your fingers nor to the walls of the bowl.
  • Place the ball of dough in a clean bowl previously brushed with olive oil. Place the dough in a warm place and allow to “grow” for about 1 to 2 hours.
  • Once the inactive time has passed, the dough should be doubled in size. Then, cut the dough into equal size balls; I made 8 small pitas from this dough.
  • Using a rolling pin or just with your hands, shape each of the pita breads to the desired size. I wanted my pitas to eat with some of My Homemade Hummus so I made them small and about ½ cm thick (0.2 in).
  • Once all the pitas are shaped, brush with a little bit of olive oil, sprinkle salt, pepper and oregano, and place them in a hot pan over medium-high heat (they get a crunchier texture by doing this step). If you don’t want them to be too crunchy or you want to minimize the amount of oil you are using,  only brush the pan with olive oil, add the spices directly on the pitas and then place them on the pan until they are slightly browned on each side.
  • Serve hot! If they get cold by any reason before serving, just warm them up in a hot/high heat oven for a couple of minutes on each side.

And there you have it, My healthier version of pita bread, made with Oats… Another recipe for the Oats Series!! I enjoyed these healthy pitas with some of my homemade hummus…give them a try!!

 pita bread 2pita bread 1

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

 

Sweet Potato Chips

Ingredientssweet potato chips 1

  • 1 Large Sweet Potato
  • 3 tbs of Olive Oil
  • Salt, Pepper and Spices to Taste

Preheat the oven to 200 Celsius.

This is my healthier alternative to Oven Fries, as well as my go to snack for when I cannot find Kale!

The preparation is similar to that of the Baked Kale Chips! Basically, here’s how I made it:

  • Slice the Sweet Potato into thin pieces.
  • Once all sliced, add the olive oil and mix it all together. I put them all in a large tupperware, added the olive oil, closed the lid and shook it until the oil covered all the chips. (Or, if you have a brush, and the patience, line them up in the tray and then “pain” each chip with a bit of olive oil)
  • Line up the chips in a baking tray, covered with baking paper. Season with salt and pepper and whatever other spices you prefer. I used Oregano.
  • Place the tray in the oven and bake for about 15 mins before taking the chips out and flipping them over. Place back in the oven for another 15 mins and Ready!!

Keep in mind that the thinner you cut your Chips the crunchier they will be, but the faster they may become brown in the oven. Just keep a tight eye on them while baking, they go from crunchy to burned really easily!

I love these chips’ sort of bittersweet mix of flavors! I think the sweetness of the potato with the salt and pepper creates the nicest contrast! and don’t let me get started on the beautiful, bright orange color!

There is also a more decadent version of sweet potato fries with I sometimes make as a side for dinner….I will let you know how I make those on a later post! So stay tuned!!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

Baked Kale Chips

baked kaleIngredients

  • 1 bunch of fresh Kale
  • ½ to 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Fresh Lemon Juice (Optional)

Preheat the Oven to 175 Celsius

Wash, stem and cut the kale into bite-size pieces. Place it in a bowl, add the olive oil to lightly coat the kale chips and add salt and pepper. Spread the chips across your baking tray and place in the oven for 20 mins aprox. Once 10 mins have passed, take the chips out of the oven and flip them over. Put them back in the oven for another 10 mins or until they are crispy yet still green!!

Once ready dress with some freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional) and enjoy this healthy, tasty and surprisingly fulfilling snack!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.