Black bean burgers to warm my black heart

* This Post somehow never had the publish button pushed. Little over a year later I realize the fall I took was the kick I needed to change everything about my life.  From the work, relationships and most importantly how I view myself.  It’s been amazing. I’m so thankful now for the box that took me out.  This burger has been in our menu rotation since.  I still try to eat less meat but I won’t pretend I’m vegan or vegetarian. I’m just trying to feed my body the best way I can.

August 2017    I’ve been in a funk due to an injury I got when my elbow less than gently kissed a title floor with all my weight pressing down on this union. The result was messed up tendon that a month later has me feeling a bit changed forever. Silly I know but let’s be honestly, if you know me I was on the road to change anyhow, it had been creeping in ever so slowly.

My injury left me unable to brush my hair or do anything that required much movement of my arm. I went from being right handed to left handed with issues. Life would go on but not being able to cook left me wishing I had just lost my arm.

It’s funny when something so stupid takes you out of your normal routine and forces you to deal with some emotions and crap building up in your life. Just with the frustration alone I have gone through a week of sleeping, a week of being super pissed off about it all, a week of feeling down right depressed. In between I have found new ways to express myself in ways I have always done with cooking. I have also learned that a right handed girl can learn to be left handed when there is coffee and make up involved.

It’s been a really interesting journey down a path I never saw coming. I am not fully grateful for it yet as my little black heart is still processing some stuff that I would have never seen before in my life but I know, like all things, there is a reason and being shook up is always good.

After nearly watching nearly every Netflix documentary on food and the effects it has not he environment, and looking a bit deeper at my own health , I deduced it was time to eat way less meat. Not to mention our reduced income sorta called for it. I also had to look for recipes that were easy for a one armed woman to make. Or at least easy enough to do very little with my healing arm.

The following black bean burger recipe was just the thing. To my shock my son, who is a give me meat or give me death, kinda of guy loved these. When i made them a second time and he got excited, I knew we had a winner.

Black bean burgers. Makes 4 patties

2 14 oz cans of black beans drained and rinsed

1/2 cup of uncooked oatmeal

1 small red or green  bell pepper chopped

1 shallot chopped

cumin to taste

corriander to taste

chili powder to taste

salt and pepper to taste

1 egg or vegan egg substitute

What you do:

Set aside 1/2 cup of black beans.  Take remaining beans and mash in a large bowl.  Add in remaining ingredients and whole black beans you set aside.   Mix well.

Form into four patties place on a plate and put in fridge untill ready to cook  I have made these ahead of time like night before I plan on cooking them

In a heated skillet place a tablespoon or two of avocado oil and heat till warm   Add patties and cook about 4-5 mins a side   You could grill them too

Serve on a toasted bun or lettuce wrap with fresh avocado and sprouts

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The simple things; Citrus Avocado & Salmon salad.

  • I love fresh simple easy meals.  I love complicated meals too. You know the kind that take a day of cooking on a lazy Sunday afternoon. But as the days get longer and warmer cooking simple fresh meals seems almost more rewarding than an afternoon of slow cooking.

Recently one of my meals looked like this. A simple crab salad served on a crissont with baked organic sweet potato chips and a glass of rose grapefruit  wine. Nothing fancy or hard to make but I think honestly it was just the atmosphere that night. Peaceful, slow,  and relaxed. I could have been easy to toss things on paper plates and eat standing in the kitchen that night. But I made sure to take time to make things pretty. Just like I would enjoy if I had gone out to eat on a Friday night. image

 

 

A few nights later my husband and I shared in getting dinner cooked up. We had gone out and picked out the salmon together and had a nice visit with our fish monger. Enjoyed a day together and then working on our own projects and then came together to cook and enjoy the evening.  While the meal was light, I felt more full as I tucked into my salad and enjoyed the conversation with my husband and two sons. It’s nice to reconnect like this. My tummy was full but so was my heart and soul.

That’s what mealtime should be about. A time to sit, relax , reconnect and catch your breath. Feed your body but also your soul. For some that’s beautiful plates, candles, . It might be having family gathered around the table. Stop and think what a really good meal means to you. From the food and drink to the atmosphere.

So here’s the simple salad my husband I cooked up. You can have dinner on the table in less than 30 mins.

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Citrus Avocado & Salmon Salad

  • Baby spinach
  • Avocado
  • Grapefruit
  • Lime
  • Lemon
  • Green Onions
  • Salmon fillet
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar (optional)
  1. Wash the baby spinach.  Chop the green onion. Take the skin off the grapefruit and segment it into a bowl.  Cut lemon and lime into wedges.
  2. Slice the avocado into slices and then squeeze lime wedges over the avocado to keep from browning and give it extra flavor.
  3. Season salmon with a little salt and pepper and cook on either cedar plank that has been soaked or cooked on a well oiled grill untill done.
  4. To plate up the dish place baby spinach on a plate, then grapefruit, avocado and top with piece of the salmon fillet. Sprinkle on green onion.  Dress the salad with juice from the lemon wedges. Or you can use a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil.

 

 

Blink and you can make  gluten free pasta!

It was a couple of years ago when I decided one warm humid day to try to make pasta from scratch. My best friend and “Italian sister” told it was not the best day to try this. I went ahead anyway. That’s what I do.  I made the sauce from fresh tomatoes and even baked my own bread. Needless today I spent most of the day in the kitchen to cook a meal my family ate up in moments. It was good and I did enjoying making pasta from scratch. Just seemed like so much work for it to be gone in 15 mins. Oh well, I learned I could make pasta. 

While I did my 10 Day Kick Sugar Challenge, I wanted pasta. But I was giving up flour and I wasn’t looking to eat rice pasta or quinoa pasta or any other gluteen free pasta. Just wasn’t sounding good. Spaghetti squash isn’t in season so that was out.  Then I remember thinking I saw someone make noodles out of zucchini. Which lately I am addicted to.  

How easy was it? To easy. All you need is a freshly washed zucchini and a carrot/potato peeler.  Then you simply cut the ends of the zucchini off, take the peeler and peel off ribbons untill you get to the seeds. Turn the zucchini and peel again untill you reach the seeds. Repeat untill you have peeled all your zucchini.  

  
To cook the  “noodles”,  I just heated some olive oil in a pan and cooked untill they were slightly softened. Top with your sauce and your set. I used these recently in my favorite Leeks & chorizo pasta dish. It worked perfect! My guys even liked it so much there was nothing left. 

Looking for a sugar free pasta sauce? You can find mine by clicking here.

So give it a try in your favorite pasta dish.  

Untill next time!

Shelly