Recipes

Recipes

Vegan “Tuna” Sandwich


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One of my goals for 2020, and living in my new place, is to cook more things at home. I eat out way too much for my body and my wallet to be happy with me, so over the past week and a half I have tried out a few new recipes. One of my favorites being the Vegan “Tuna” Sandwich.

Over the past few years I have been on a journey to welcome more plant based items into my life. Born and partially raised in Minnesota I am used to the “meat and potatoes” lifestyle. I crave and love red meat and could honestly eat it for every meal. However, I know that it’s bad for the environment and also bad for my body. I haven’t decided yet if I want to go completely vegan, but I am working on making majority of my meals plant based with meat added in on occasion.

I found this recipe while googling quick and easy vegan meals and it can be found here: https://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes/vegan-no-tuna-salad-sandwich/#gs.w5kdnj. A few things I will note about this recipe are that it tastes much better after it’s had some time to sit and marinate in the fridge over night, I prefer the taste of the pickles and capers to the Tahini sauce, and the mixture can be a little dry. Knowing all of this, this will be a staple in my home for a long time coming, and with my housewarming party this weekend I will be serving this.

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained; or 15 ounces of raw chickpeas (make sure to soak them before use when using raw).
  • 3 tablespoons Tahini
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon or spicy brown mustard. I added a second teaspoon because I like the taste of Dijon.
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1/4 cup diced celery, about one stalk
  • 1/4 cup diced pickle, about 2 slices, but I used 3 😉
  • 1 teaspoon capers, drained and loosely chopped
  • Health pinch each sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon roasted unsalted sunflower seeds (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place the chickpeas in a mixing bowl and mash with a fork, leaving a few beans whole. The outer shell of the chickpeas doesn’t mash very well and can get stuck in the fork, so note that you may have to stop a couple of times to clean out the fork and get the mashing momentum going.
  2. Add the Tahini, Dijon mustard, maple syrup, red onion, celery, pickle, salt and pepper, and the sunflower seeds if you are using them. Mix together and then adjust to taste. This is where I added more pickles and Dijon mustard. The next time I make it I will add in a little pickle juice to add a bit more juiciness to the mixture and more of the pickle flavor.
  3. Serve right away on your choice of bread, romaine lettuce, or butter lettuce, or let it marinate in the fridge over night. You can eat it plain, or top the sandwich with tomatoes, onions, sprouts, or anything else that sounds like it would taste good.

Enjoy!

Love always,

Jess

Fitness, My Journey, Recipes

Cross Core & Ladders


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What a fun weekend I’ve had. On Friday night I did an escape room with my sister and a dance friend at Escape Hotel Hollywood and it was an absolute blast! I highly recommend checking this place out. Then yesterday I went to the wrap party for my dance show and we got to watch the entire show from beginning to end. I am in awe at the amazing job that all of us ladies did and I can’t wait to share more with all of you once I receive photos and videos. And of course, today is Sunday Football, so it’s been a great day since my Viking’s won. Skol!

Even though Sunday is typically a rest day I spent today doing some productive things. I’ve been reading financial books, calculating different scenarios for renting or buying a place to live, and I got in a workout. For tonight’s workout I wanted to do something using my cross core and ladder, so I created a cardio based tabata workout.

On: 0:45 | Off: 0:15 | Rest: 1:30
Exercises: 10 | Sets: 3

Workout
Cross core kneeling plank {set 1: 12 | set 2: 11 | set 3: 15}
– Jump rope {set 1: 64 | set 2: 88 | set 3: 94}
 Cross core reverse lunge {set 1: 18 | set 2: 20 | set 3: 20}
– Ladder lateral side step {set 1: 8 | set 2: 9 | set 3: 9}
– Cross core bicep curl {set 1: 16 \ set 2: 16 | set 3: 16}
– Ladder cross overs {set 1: 4 | set 2: 4 | set 3: 3}
– Cross core chest press {set 1: 18 | set 2: 17 | set 3: 17}
– High knees {set 1: 62 | set 2: 57 | set 3: 62}
– Cross core knee raises {set 1: 15 | set 2: 12 | set 3: 9}
– Ladder walking plank {set 1: 3 | set 2: 3 | set 3: 3}

This workout tired me out. I was shaking during the last set and I was ready to sit back on the couch to watch football once it was over. Unfortunately I couldn’t just rest since it was my night to cook dinner. I ended up cooking a creamy tortellini from the Brown Eyed Baker and it was delicious. I paired it with garlic bread, because you can’t ever go wrong with garlic bread! This recipe was simple to make and only took 30 minutes from start to table. It would have been done sooner had I not made a rookie mistake and put the bread in the wrong oven, oops! Waiting the additional 9 minutes was worth it though because dinner was excellent and it allowed me some extra time before dinner to wash dishes. I highly recommend washing dishes while cooking since it lessens the amount of dishes you have to do after dinner :). Anyways, enjoy your Sunday evening!

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Love always,

Jess

Recipes

Chicken Enchiladas


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If you live anywhere in Ventura County you more than likely had to sit in the traffic yesterday caused by a plane crash on the 101 and an overturned truck on the 118. We are so accustomed to our free flowing drives on these sections of the freeways that when we sit in stand still traffic for 2+ hours it can throw off our entire routine. Last night was my turn to cook dinner for my family and my original plan to get home by 5:00 to start dinner obviously didn’t work out.

As I sat in the traffic I debated whether or not to pick up food instead because I honestly didn’t know when I would get home. Thankfully sitting in traffic gave me time to think about my goals and what steps I need to reach them. In order for me start living a healthier life it starts with not taking the quick way out, no matter what circumstances life throws my way. I ended up getting home around 6:00 and made chicken enchiladas. I kept the side simple by making guacamole and having some chips and salsa.

Chicken Enchiladas
recipe from my mom’s friend

Ingredients
4-5 boneless chicken breasts (I used 2 chicken cutlets since they have less fat)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 tub of sour cream
1 sm can of chopped black olives
1 sm can of chopped green chili’s
1 large can of enchilada sauce (green or red, I used green)
2 cups shredded cheese (blend of cheddar and jack)
1 bunch green onions chopped
1 sm can of sliced black olives
10-12 flour tortillas

Directions
1. Cook the chicken until done (broil, boil, bake, bbq)
2. Chop or shred the chicken and place in a large bowl (I usually cut the chicken cutlets into small pieces before I cook them so that I can cut off the fat and blood specks)
3. Combine the chicken, soup, sour cream, can of chopped olives, chili’s and 1/2 the chopped onions and mix together
4. Take a 9×13 in casserole pan and spray lightly with PAM
5. Open the flour tortillas and microwave for one minute in the original bag
6. Take one tortilla and spoon the chicken mixture into the tortilla and roll like an enchilada, then place in casserole pan. Continue until all tortillas are filled. You have to gauge the mixture so you have enough for the 10-12 tortillas and nothing left!
7. Pour the enchilada sauce over the tortillas
8. Sprinkle with cheese over the sauce and top with the sliced olives and the rest of the green onion.
9. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Guacamole

Mix together:
– 3 avocados
– 1/2 tomato, chopped
– juice from 1/2 of a lime
– garlic powder to taste
– salt to taste 

Enjoy!

Love always,

Jess

Recipes

Lemon Pasta w/Broccoli


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Ever since my birthday weekend I have found myself  eating out more and not paying attention to the food I am eating. I got lazy and stopped meal prepping for my lunches and dinners, thus eating out sometimes twice a day. Although I am getting my workouts in I can still feel the difference in my body from eating all of the processed foods. Since coming back from Costa Rica I have been focusing on getting more fruits and veggies into my diet, but these past couple of weeks have gotten away from me, so when I got off work early today the first thing I did was head to the meat market and picked up some food for meal preps. I quickly threw together a veggie pasta tonight before dance. I got the original recipe from The Food Charlatan, but made a few tweaks.

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Here is what I used and did:

Ingredients
11 oz broccoli
1/2 pound of pasta fusilli
2 hand fulls of spinach
2 tbsp butter
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 whole lemon
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

Directions

  • Bring to boil a pot of water
  • Cook the pasta until it’s about half way done
  • Add in the broccoli and continue cooking until the pasta is finished
  • Drain the pasta and return to the pot
  • Add in the spinach and stir until spinach becomes wilted
  • Meanwhile, while the spinach is wilting, melt the 2 tbsp of butter and then add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Saute until the garlic is brown.
  • Once brown, turn off the heat and squeeze in the lemon juice from the whole lemon. 
  • Pour the lemon butter sauce over the pasta and mix together.

The Food Charlatan’s recipe calls for Parmesan, but I am trying to eat as little cheese as possible, so I refrained from using it. Also, if you want a little more sauce on your pasta then make the sauce the way the Food Charlatan does. I am trying to keep my food on the lighter side and didn’t feel like it needed more than I used, but please cook according to your desires. I hope you enjoy!

Love always,

Jess

Recipes

Smoothies


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Ahhh! I can’t believe tomorrow is Thanksgiving. This year has flown by so fast and there are a few things I have left to finish before the year ends, but boy am I excited for the holidays coming up!

I know that tomorrow I will be pigging out on stuffing and mashed potatoes and gravy, so tonight for dinner I wanted to keep it simple. I also wanted something that would provide me enough nutrients and energy to get through 2 ½  hours of dance. So I made one of my fruit and kale smoothies. 

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This is what I used to blend together a 29 ounce smoothie:

14 Strawberries
14 blueberries
10 blackberries
8 raspberries
3 kale stems
8 ounces of water
1 handful of ice

These smoothies are quick and easy to make and take no more than 10 minutes, including cleanup time! They are also something super easy to prep for a week ahead of time. I normally grab 5-7 quart size baggies and then divide out the fruits and kale evenly. Grab a bag, throw it in the blender with the water and ice and a couple of minutes later you have your smoothie! 

I’m a huge strawberry fan, so I always make sure to put extra strawberries in the baggies because it makes the smoothie so much more flavorable. You can use any fruits and veggies you like, such as spinach or dandelion leaf (I struggle finding this one, but when I do find it I sang it up because it’s delicious), so experiment a little and try different things because the possibilities are endless. 

 

Now off to dance!

Love Always,

Jess