Friday, November 30, 2007
Versatility...
I love recipes that have multiple uses! It gives me the opportunity to use them in different ways so it does not feel like I am eating the same thing over and over again. It has been pretty cold here lately and soup is always a nice way to warm the evenings up. The only problem I have with soup is that there aren't many ways to change it up when you have a lot of it to eat up. I normally freeze them for nights when we just don't feel like cooking, but this one was chunky enough to morph into a salad for lunch! I am a huge fan of salads for lunch and bigger meals for dinner. I know that is not really the right way to eat, but it is what I prefer. So, when I made this and realized that it can be put on a salad the next day, I was really happy. It has a nice fresh flavor with a little kick to it! It was a great bas recipe too. I think next time I will add some soy crumbles to it for a chili/taco salad!

Tex Mex Bean Soup

1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 1/4 cups sliced carrot
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 (16oz) package frozen corn
1 (15oz) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (14.5oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
1 (14.5oz) can fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried cilantro
dash of ground dried chili peppers
salt and pepper to taste

Spray large pot with cooking spray. Saute onion, carrot, and garlic until tender. Stir in remaining ingredients; bring to a boil. Cover and simmer on low heat for 2 hours.

1 cup = 144 calories


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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 2:01 PM   5 comments
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Done!
Yeah, we are finally done with Thanksgiving leftovers! I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was incredible. Honestly, I could not say enough good things about it. The food was great, the company was incredible and there was a great time had by all! I am still amazed at how relaxing it was with 6 kids (all under the age of 10) and 6 adults running in different directions for 4 days, but it really was. I was in the kitchen with my sister-in-law (which has always been a favorite past time), my brother-in-law and the illustrator! Everything turned out perfect and right on time...I love it when a plan comes together! Would you believe that the camera was right there in the kitchen and I did not pull it out once? I still can't believe it, but it is so true! Well, as always, the favorites for me were the sweet potatoes and the dressing. I am sure that I will be making both again soon, so I will share recipes and photos before the next holiday rolls around! I will return soon with more adventures from the non-dairy queen's kitchen!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 6:32 PM   2 comments
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Impulse Buying
I have become an impulse buyer with new products to bake or cook with. This is not a bad thing in any way, but it does tend to give me mixed results. It also gives me quite the nudge to use it when I keep pushing it aside in the fridge until the date has just about passed! Anyway, one of the last things I bought that had an expiration date on it was silken tofu. I had every intension of making "ice cream" or pudding, but I also had a container of rice alternative cream cheese that needed to be used...so I thought maybe cheesecake. My oldest son loves cheesecake (and egg nog) and I thought that if I could incorporate some good for you tofu into his cheesecake then I would be super mom, right...Well, not so much. I used this recipe for eggnog cheesecake (which the illustrator and I thought had a really good flavor), but I think I used the wrong kind of silken tofu. I think you have to use the kind that is not refrigerated. Everywhere I have looked has pointed out that you need to use the kind in the box. My local grocery store does not sell that type, so I used what I had. The flavor was very good and the pie was creamy in texture, but I was looking for a more sturdy cheesecake consistency. It was more like a cheese pie (I think due to the type of tofu I used) and I will be making this again and trying the other type of tofu in it. I like the idea of the oatmeal cookie crust, but I think I made mine too thick. I used an old school pie plate and it was not big enough for the pie. I had a lot left over. Incidentally, I baked the left overs in a bowl and I think it would have made a great "creme brulee", but I was the only one eating it and by the 5th piece...I had enough (I mean how much pie can one girl eat?). So, I will explore this again and try to use a different product. I have not stepped outside of the box for so long when it comes to baking that I have enjoyed trying out new products! It definitely makes life (at least with food) more interesting!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 9:14 AM   4 comments
Thursday, November 15, 2007
For Him
These were totally for the illustrator! They are just my go to oatmeal cookie recipe with dates and black walnuts. I love the dates, but he can have the black walnuts!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 7:00 PM   5 comments
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Oh Yummmm...Gingerbread!
The weather is definitely getting more fall like, so I moved right into it with ease next to a nice warm loaf of gingerbread! I specifically wanted a loaf, not the kind you make in a square pan. This one totally fit the bill. It filled the house with such a warm smell and totally put me in the mood for cool weather! You can find the original version here. Here is what I did...

Gingerbread Loaf
(adapted from CookingLight)

3/4
cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4
cup white whole wheat flour
2
teaspoons baking powder
1
teaspoon ground ginger
1/2
teaspoon baking soda
1/4
teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Dash of nutmeg
1
cup warm Light Plain Soy Milk (I microwaved it for 1 minute)
1/2
cup molasses (next time I will try a lighter kind)
1/4
cup canola oil
3
tablespoons apple butter
1/2
cup egg substitute
1/2
cup packed dark brown sugar
2 TBSP Splenda brown sugar blend

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, baking powder, ginger, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl.

Combine milk and next 4 ingredients (through eggs) in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk until blended. Add sugar, stirring until well blended. Make a well in center of flour mixture. Add milk mixture to flour mixture; stir just until combined. Scrape batter into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray, using a rubber spatula.

Bake the loaf at 350° for 55 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool loaf in pan on a wire rack.


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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 7:06 PM   1 comments
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Oh My...Pumpkin Pancakes!
I have really been missing these sweet fluffy piles of heaven! The illustrator and I had them for the first time years ago at IHOP. I have not eaten them in years due to them being laden with lactose (I know, the nerve of them!). So, what do you do when you neeeeeeeed pumpkin pancakes. I mean, I am not just talking about a want, we have now come to need them! You search for what looks like a good recipe and experiment. Honestly though, how can you go wrong with pumpkin, sugar, flour and pumpkin pie spice? I found this wonderful recipe here and made a few changes to suite what I had and perfection was complete! They were heaven on a plate and still light and fluffy when reheated the next day! I have to go...heaven awaits!

(I just have to say...this is my favorite color!)

(Look how they puff up!)

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes
(adapted from pinchmysalt)

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 cup soured soy milk (1 TBSP lemon juice and enough Plain Light Soy Milk to make 1 cup - let sit while you mix the remaining ingredients)
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup egg substitute
2 TBSP melted Smart Balance
1 tsp vanilla
2 TBSP Sugar In the Raw
Whipped Topping or maple syrup

In a large bowl, whisk together the first six ingredients (flour through spices). In a separate bowl, whisk together the last six ingredients (buttermilk through brown sugar).

Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and blend together with a wooden spoon until just combined. Lumps are ok, just make sure all the flour on the bottom of the bowl is mixed in. If batter seems too thick to pour, you can gently stir in a little more buttermilk.

Drop pancakes by 1/4 cup onto a medium-hot griddle. Pancakes are ready to turn when the edges start to look a little dry and you can see small bubbles forming on the surface.

Makes about 18 pancakes
57 calories each

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 4:10 PM   5 comments
Friday, November 9, 2007
Question???
Ok, so I have been trying to bake lower carb lately for the illustrator. I like the fact that Splenda is lower in calories, but I am starting to worry about so many chemicals. So, my first question is...do any of you use agave nectar and how do you use it? Can you put it in your coffee or in oatmeal? What in the world does it taste like??? Same goes for stevia...I would appreciate any input on these products!

Next subject...we have been talking a lot lately about using more organic and natural foods. I eat a lot of fruits and vegetables on a regular basis, but I have been reading about food that you should definitely eat organic. My next question is...how can people afford organic produce? It is so expensive! I would like to do better, but my budget won't give!

I have a few products that I need to use that are new to me. I figure if I write it here...it will make me use them. I vow to cook with nutritional yeast and carob chips (not at the same time), but you know what I mean. I have heard that they both have distinct flavors, so I know what I make will only be for me, but I need to try them!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 10:00 AM   6 comments
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Favorite Ingredient
There are certain ingredients that you just can't live without...roasted garlic is one for me. I love roasted garlic in almost all of my savory recipes or even by itself. There is nothing better than smearing a freshly roasted clove of garlic on a warm piece of freshly baked bread! It is one of the easiest things to do and it just makes garlic even better...if that was possible. The latest bulb of garlic that I roasted went mostly towards a creamy white bean dip/spread I made. This dip/spread was mild and creamy with a slight tang from the balsamic vinegar. I like to use this as dip or a spread or I put it on my salads instead of dressing!

White Bean Dip/Spread

1 15.8 oz can Northern Beans (rinsed and drained)
9 cloves roasted garlic
1/2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
salt and fresh ground pepper

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.

Makes 1 1/4 cups


Roasted Garlic

1 large head of garlic
salt and pepper
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Remove outer paper from garlic, but leave the head in together. Slice off the top to expose the garlic. Spray with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap in aluminum foil and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour (until soft).

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 3:59 PM   7 comments
Saturday, November 3, 2007
Serious Craving!
This is not really normal for me, but lately I have had a serious craving for biscuits! It is funny how some things just take you back to being a kid again and biscuits are definitely one for me. I have so many fond memories of my grandmother making biscuits when we would go and visit her. She had a huge wooden bowl that she would just throw flour into and then start cutting in the shortening by hand. She measured nothing. Then she would pour in the buttermilk and they were perfect every time. This, I am sure came from many years of practice! There are some things that I feel that comfortable with in the kitchen, but biscuits have never been one of them! I always envied her for being able to whip them up to perfection! I never really made biscuits all that often because they were her thing. Some things should just stay that way. Unfortunately, as time goes by, I don't see her often enough to get them. I haven't eaten biscuits for years since I found out I am lactose intolerant. So, with the holiday season on us and my memories flowing freely...I thought I would try them again. I never had much luck before because I just did not have a good alternative to butter (and you know I have to make them healthier) so, I just gave up. A couple of months ago I have started baking with Earthbalance and have had great results! So, I thought I would give in to the craving! These were perfect! The were soft and flaky on the inside with a nice crisp outside! For another step back in time...I had some with sausage (I used Publix soy sausage) and grape jelly! I remember so many mornings eating those with my sister! I will definitely be making these more often!
"Buttery" Biscuits
2 cups All Purpose Flour
1 TBSP baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup Earthbalance (I used whipped)
3/4 cup lactose free skim milk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray.

Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Cut in Earthbalance with a fork or pastry blender until it looks like course meal. Add milk and stir until combined and forms into a soft ball. Pour onto a floured surface (I used my silpat with no flour and it worked really well! Less mess and no extra calories) and form into a circle. Roll out to 3/4 inch thick and cut out with a 3 inch cutter. Place on the cookie sheet (they should be just touching for soft sides!). Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until they are lightly golden on top! Enjoy!

***carefully push remaining dough together to form more biscuits so you don't overwork it or eat it raw like the rest of my family did when I was a kid!

13 biscuits = 116 calories each

This one is for you, Tara...sausage (soysage as Tony calls it) and grape jelly...yum!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 12:03 PM   9 comments

Name:
Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen
Home: Atlanta, GA, United States
About Me: Lactose Challenged
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