Baked Stuffed Zebra Eggplant

Final

One Medium sized Zebra Eggplant
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Zebra eggplants have no seeds and are not bitter. They are common in most major supermarkets and do not cost more than dark purple ones.  I use them because there is no need for any sort of extra prep.

Ingredients:
1 Tbsp. of olive oil
4 Oz of turkey bacon (Applegate Farms) sliced thinly (optional)
1/2 cup of onion diced
2 cups (about) chopped eggplant
1 & 1/2 cups (about) chopped mushrooms
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
crushed red pepper to taste
1 tsps. of Italian seasoning – blends of dried herbs are good to have in the pantry because you will use it more than if  you just have a random jar of marjoram- that you forget about.  My brand has thyme, marjoram, onion, rosemary, basil, savory & sage- all in one blend.  I use it often, is organic,  and has no other fillers.
1 14- 15oz can of diced tomatoes – do not drain
3 Tbsp. of plain panko
1/4 Cup each of  grated/shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheese –shred it yourself- don’t use the prepackaged stuff.

Directions:
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
Slice eggplant in half and score like this:
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leave a 1/4 inch around the skin for stuffing.  Use a small spoon or knife and remove the eggplant similar to an avocado but try not to go through to the skin

Add 1 Tbsp. of olive oil to a large skillet and heat on medium high heat
Add bacon and let get brown
Add onion through Italian seasoning
Turn heat down to medium/medium low and mix together let cook for about 5-7  mins.
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Add the liquid from the diced tomatoes and let simmer for 5 mins.
Taste it!  Add salt and ground pepper to taste.
Put the eggplant shells/skins on a baking sheet and fill with cooked mixture
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Top with diced tomatoes
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Add breadcrumbs and cheese

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Bake for 15- 20 mins.  until top is browned
Final

This can be frozen (cut in half crosswise) in a plastic/glass container and put inside a freezer bag. photo (3)

Good for about 6 months frozen. Reheat in a microwave for 3-4 mins or reheat frozen in an oven safe dish, uncovered @ 350 for 20 mins.

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Pumpkin Granola

Pumpkin Granola

Pumpkin Granola

Here is an example of a whole food snack that has zero chemicals or preservatives.  

Store in airtight container at room temp for 1 week OR freeze for up to 3 months in individual sandwich bags (inside a large freezer bag) for a grab and go snack or add to plain (read- less sugar) yogurt. 

WET INGREDIENTS:
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup raw or organic honey
1 Tsp. pumpkin pie spice blend
2 Tbsps. brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

DRY INGREDIENTS:
3 cups old fashion oats
3/4 cups slivered almonds
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
2 Tbsps.flax seeds
2 Tbsps. wheat germ
Dash of salt
1 cup dried fruit I used cranberries, mango and blueberries —ADD AFTER BAKING

DIRECTIONS:
1) Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees
2) Mix dry and wet ingredients separately then combine the two
3)  Bake @ 325 degrees for 25-30 mins. in a single layer on a large baking sheet or sheet pan
4) Let cool and mix in dried fruit.

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Sausage Bean and Escarole Soup

Sausage Bean and Escarole Soup

Sausage Bean and Escarole Soup

No preservatives or chemicals here… This recipe can be frozen in a large freezer safe container or individual containers inside a freezer bag for on the go lunches for work or a quick reheat after a long day. 

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Ingredients:
3 pounds ground Italian sausage (casings removed)
I used 2 pounds sweet & 1 pound hot
1 large Vidalia onion, chopped
4 large carrots,  chopped
2 Tbs minced garlic
3 Tbs of dried Italian seasoning
2 quarts (two 32oz boxes)  no salt or low sodium chicken stock
2  15oz cans of any beans you like – I used one can of red kidney & one can of white cannellini beans
2 medium heads of escarole I used escarole instead of kale because it maintains color and texture more than kale in both the cooking and freezing process. You can sub kale, collared greens, mustard greens, rainbow chard, or even a bok choy though.  cut into large slices

Directions:
1)     Brown sausage on med high heat in a large heavy pot about 15 mins. Add onion & carrots cook another 10 mins.
2)     Add garlic and Italian seasoning
3)     Add beans: 1 can drained, and 1 can entirely
4)     Add chicken stock  and if needed, add some water to just cover everything
5)     Bring to a simmer (not boil) on med low heat covered for 15 mins.
6)     Uncover, add escarole and let simmer uncovered for additional 10 mins.
7)     Salt & pepper to taste
8)     Serve with grated parmesan

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