Whole Wheat Veggie Naan Wraps

I’m baaaaaaack!

After a fantastic year abroad in Switzerland and a few months of a blogging hiatus, I’m officially back in the cooking game – and back in Texas! Today, I thought I might share an absolutely fantastic recipe crafted by one of my former flatmates! Say hello to Whole Wheat Vegetarian Naan Wraps!

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I’m a huge fan of these bad boys. Chock-full of protein and antioxidants, these are pretty easy to make and perfect for a summer lunch!

To start, the dough requires a little tender loving care but the result is well worth it. After combining all the ingredients found below, allow it to rise for about two hours. When ready, pinch off a medium sized bit and roll out until fairly flat, like so:

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After this, grill it in a pan with a bit of olive oil until browned. When finish, top with the veggies (and legumes) of your choice! Personally, I enjoy a bit of cooked black or red beans, spinach, tomato, and avocado but the choice is yours!

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Whole Wheat Veggie Naan Wraps

Ingredients

  • 3 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 packet instant yeast
  • ½ tbsp white sugar
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup warm milk
  • ¾ plain yogurt

Directions (from http://www.monsoonspice.com)

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm milk and keep aside for 10 minutes until it becomes bubbly and frothy.
  2. Next sift wheat flour along with sugar, baking powder and salt. Make a small well in the centre and slowly add yogurt, oil, and milk/yeast . Add little warm water if needed and kneading till you get soft pliable dough.
  3. Cover this dough with plastic wrap and keep it in a warm place for 1½ to 2 hours till the dough rises and doubles its original quantity.
  4. Punch down this raised dough to release air and divide it into equal, lemon sized balls.
  5. Heat griddle on medium heat. Roll a dough ball in little wheat flour and flatten it. With a rolling pin, roll it into a ¼ inch thick oval.
  6. Flip the naan and sprinkle little water and gently place it on the griddle.
  7. When you see bubbles forming on the surface of naan in few seconds time flip the naan until cooked evenly

 

 

 

Pumpkin-Chèvre Mac n’ Cheese.

The other night, my good friend and food connoisseur Kacey send me a little texto with a gorgeous piece of salmon next to a heaping bowl of God sent tortellini pasta. During this time I was slacking off  dutifully doing some knaster inheritance procedure problems for math class (ie equally dividing up the goods from a dead person to their kids. good stuff that is). As I began drooling all over my textbook, I realized it had been a long while since I made any sort of pasta type dish. While pasta can occasionally be a challenge for me with the whole gluten sensitivity thing, HEB has these adorable little Quinoa elbow pasta shells that I really just couldn’t resist buying. And everyone knows that elbow pasta= mac n’ cheese. So, after rummaging around in my pantry, I came up with a delightful little dish that may sound quite chic and gourmet but, in reality, is quite simple and totally healthy: Pumpkin-Chèvre Mac n’ Cheese. 

Personally, I am a goat cheese fiend. Reason #1- It’s incredibly easy to digest for lactose intolerants such as myself, due not to the lactose content but rather that the fat molecules are much smaller and fewer in goat cheese, making them much more digestible than your run of the mill gouda or brie. Who knew right?! Reason #2- I love its creamy texture and sweet taste. Now, there are many people in the world don’t enjoy the taste of goat cheese. That’s okay! Feel free to substitute it with mozzarella, american, or anything else you might prefer.

Additionally, pumpkin is one of my favorite things in the whole world. It not only makes this dish quite creamy but adds an extra bit of sweetness that contrasts incredibly well with the spices used. Really, the whole thing it’s similar to a flavor explosion and subsequent flavor metamorphosis in your mouth- from the sweetness of the pumpkin and cheese to that zing of pepper and orango and finally to a hint of salt from the pasta, this mac n’ cheese takes comfort food to a new, healthier level.

Pumpkin-Chèvre Mac n’ Cheese [Gluten-Free]

Yield- 1 serving (double or triple as needed!)

Ingredients

1/2 cup quinoa elbow pasta shells

2 teaspoons pumpkin puree

1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons chèvre goat cheese

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons low-fat milk

salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and bay leaf

Directions

In a small pot, bring pasta to boil with 1 cup of water and a pinch of salt. Allow to cook for 6-10 minutes until soft. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine milk, pumpkin puree, and 1 tablespoon of goat cheese over low heat, stirring constantly. Add a pinch of salt, pepper, dried oregano, and dried basil to taste. Bring to low-medium heat, add pasta, and cook for about 3 minutes. Garnish with 2 teaspoons goat cheese, a pinch pepper, one bay leaf, and serve!

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie with Lentils and Smashed Potatoes

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

I’m currently celebrating all the way from Salt Lake City, Utah where my spring break consists of blissfully skiing, book reading, and lots of coffee drinking on the mountain. While I spent the former half of this day relaxing, I whipped up some Vegan Shepherd’s Pie to fuel up the Irish way before hitting the slopes this afternoon. Which turned into a blizzard.

Giving up meat for lent has, in fact, been pretty interesting. It’s really called for some creative, out-of-the-box cooking strategies and recipe modifications. All in all, it’s been a positive experience thus far and the barbecue dreams haven’t been too overwhelming.

This recipe in particular replaces meat with savory cooked lentils and tomato soup. It’s actually quite similar to the meatballs and mashed potatoes recipe posted a while back, minus the meat of course. I can’t wait to return to Ireland have have this dish once again when meat makes a grand entrance back into my diet. However, for the time being, this version makes for a soothingly delicious meal perfect for snowy afternoons and St. Paddy’s Days.

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie with Lentils and Smashed Potatoes
Yields: 2-4 Servings

Ingredients
1-2 medium red skinned potatoes
3/4 cup cooked lentils
2/3 cup Imagine tomato soup
2-3 tablespoons spinach, minced
2-3 tablespoons carrots, thinly chopped
1-2 teaspoons non dairy milk
dash of salt, pepper, thyme, and rosemary

Directions:
1. Chop potatoes into quarters. Season with salt, pepper, thyme, and rosemary.
2. Roast potatoes in the oven at 425 for 20-30 minutes or until fork tender. Set aside.
3. Meanwhile, combine lentils, tomato soup, chopped carrots and spinach in a small glass baking dish.
4. Peel cooked potatoes and smash with a fork. Add milk as needed until fluffy.
5. Top the lentil mixture with smashed potatoes. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes until hot. Broil for about 1 minute to brown potatoes and serve.

Mediterranean Pizza Pie

I don’t always make pizza, but when I do, I prefer it Mediterranean style.

I gave up meat for Lent. Which I initially thought wasn’t going to be too big of a deal until, well, I started craving Dicky’s barbecue and juicy T-Bone steak like any other true Texan. The cool thing about pizza though, is that it makes up in awesomeness where it lacks in meat. Especially this pizza, co-created by some lovely friends who have creative culinary skills… and a very helpful pizza stone.

Traveling to the Italian roots of my pal, Emily Villani, we topped a whole-wheat crust with tomato basil sauce, grilled eggplant, roma tomatoes, spinach, and feta cheese. The subtleness of the crust, in particular, is a great vehicle for all the veggies to really explode with flavor. We decided not to go with olives with this particular batch, (and used olive oil in the crust because we knew it had to be in there somehow!) but they would also be a great addition on this culinary voyage.

Big thanks to Emily, Kacey, Katie, Megan, and Taylor for pizza night! I would call it a grand success!

P.S. And if you just happend to have some leftover pizza dough, there’s no shame in putting together a small dessert pizza just for kicks.

Mediterranean Pizza Pie
Serves: 4-6 people            Prep Time: 15 minutes          Cook Time: 10-15 minutes
Ingredients: 
1 medium eggplant
2 roma tomatoes
1 cup of spinach, chopped
1/2 cup tomato basil pizza sauce
1 large whole wheat pizza dough (see below for the recipe)
1 cup of feta cheese, divided
Directions:
1. Slice eggplant into thin disks. Grill or saute until slightly tender. Set aside to cool
2. Dice tomatoes, spinach, and cooled eggplant.
3. Roll out pizza dough about 1/4 of an inch thick. Liberally spread sauce over dough and top with 1/2 cup of feta cheese, tomato, eggplant, and spinach. Sprinkle top with remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.
4. Bake at 425 degrees F for 10-15 minutes until crust is nice and browned. Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve! 
Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
Yield: One large pizza or two small pizzas
Ingredients:
3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/3 cup warm water
1 packet yeast (1/4th oz)
1.5 tsp sea salt
Directions: 
1. In a small, combine the warm water and yeast and set aside. In a medium bowl, mix together flour and salt.
2. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add yeast mixture. Stir in olive oil and mix until combined.
3. Place dough on a well floured surface and knead for about 8 minutes.
4. When the dough is soft and elastic, wrap it with plastic wrap and allow it to rise in the refrigerator for one hour or until ready for use. (Bakes at 425 for about 10-15 minutes)