Tag Archives: health

Crispy Latin Chickpeas

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I love an easy healthy snack that’s not only packed with flavor and crunchy, but has no added fat and provides health benefits!  To this end, I have perfected my oven roasted chickpea (aka garbanzo bean) recipe.

Chickpeas are good for you! They’re loaded with insoluble fiber and promote a healthy digestive system, and studies have shown that they provide more appetite satiety when compared gram for gram with other sources of fiber.  1 cup can provide you with 85% of your daily recommended antioxidants. Garbanzos can even help regulate blood sugar!  These and many more health benefits are detailed on one of my favorite sources for nutrition information, World’s Healthiest Foods.

As I mentioned, these chickpeas are super easy to prepare!  First, rinse well and drain your beans.  If you’re using beans you’ve cooked yourself (instead of canned) and they’re completely dry on the surface, go ahead and give them a rinse.  Since we’re not using oil, we need a little moisture for the seasoning to adhere properly!

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While your beans drain, grab a zip top bag – gallon or sandwich size is fine.  Add all of your spices to the bag.

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Add your damp (but not dripping!) chickpeas to the bag and shake, shake, shake!  When the beans are evenly coated,  dump them onto your favorite baking sheet and distribute evenly.

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Bake at 375° for about 25 minutes, depending on desired crispness.  Serve warm or cooled!

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Crispy Latin Chickpeas

1 15 oz can garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas) or about 1 cup precooked garbanzos
3/8 t salt
1/4 t cumin
1/4 t smoked paprika
1/4 t cilantro
1/8 t garlic powder

Rinse beans well and drain.  Combine seasoning in a zip top bag, then add drained (but still damp) beans to same bag.  Shake until beans are evenly coated, then spread evenly on ungreased baking sheet (with edges to keep beans from rolling off!) Bake at 375° for 25 minutes,  stirring half way through for even crisping.  This will produce chickpeas with a light crisp on the outside but a fluffy inside.  If you like less crisp, cook 10 minutes less.  If you prefer more crunch, cook 10 minutes more.   Eat warm or cooled! 

Great success!

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I feel well on my way to succeeding at this whole vegan thing.  I have now successfully made rice and beans, and they both even taste good!

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I’m not sure why rice and beans were the big things holding me back.  I guess I was concerned that I’d feel hungry all the time if I couldn’t make “filler” for my dishes.  A big part of it, too, is that my husband is between jobs right now and only working 12 hours per week. This severely limits the grocery budget.

Everything we buy right now is a “How many times will this item feed us and leave us satisfied?” debate.  Snack foods are out. Hearty whole grain cereals are in (though occasionally hubby sneaks something amazing like chocolate peanut butter puffs), along with lots of potatoes, canned tuna, pb&j… I had been taking frozen burritos to work for lunch for weeks months, just because they were so cheap.  I had lunch for a week for under $3.  So when it came time to eat healthier, I knew I had to stick to the same money-saving principles… which meant probably dried beans and rice as a portion of many meals.

Last year, we had purchased a Community Supported Agriculture share, which was bringing us a box fresh vegetables from April through December.   We had paid all at once and didnt have to spend another dime on produce for the rest of the year. Now that the CSA season is over, we’re left having to buy our produce from the grocery store, which is not exactly in our budget.  The good news is I can spend the $3 from my burritos on cabbage and mushrooms!  Haha

Back to my point… I can make beans and rice!  Last night I added some dried cilantro, cumin, salt, pepper, garlic, lime juice, and chilli powder along with a cup of mixed rice, beans, and rinsed and drained canned diced tomatoes for supper.  Not too shabby!  I also baked some potatoes and had a small potato with coconut oil and garlic salt.  Not my typical potato with cheese, butter, and bacon, but still pretty good!

This morning I had some dry oatmeal with a little honey and almond milk – ate it like cereal.  I had done this in the past with a bunch of sugar instead of honey.  I’ll admit I didn’t like the honey.  I think I still have some raw sugar in the pantry. If not, I may eat it unsweetened the next time.

The point is I’m making it work.  We’re hopeful that my husband will have a job soon (he has a couple of interviews coming up)! I’ll be able to get much more variety in my diet.  And as I go, I’m sure I’ll find more things at the grocery store that are healthy, inexpensive replacements for things we already purchase… replacements that we will both like!

Do you have some inexpensive yummy vegan ideas? Feel free to share them below!

Breakdown of a Smoothie – Health benefits of it all

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So today I made my very first attempt ever at making a smoothie.  While I found a few things I should have changed, I did do some research while I drank it about the benefits of each component I put in.  So I’d like to share some of my findings, but not my recipe.  Believe me, you’d understand why.  Flavor:  good.  Consistency:  bad.  Anyhow, on to my findings…

Strawberries

  • best fruit source of vitamin C
  • contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory powers
  •  help with cardiovascular health and help prevent cardiovascular disease
  • can decrease risk of Type II Diabetes
  • phytonutrients ellagic acid and ellagitannins have been shown to prevent breast, cervical, colon, and esophageal cancer  (wow, right?!)
  • improve cognitive abilities and motor skills

Pears

  •  anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powers
  • lower the risk of Type II Diabetes and Heart Disease
  • cinnamic acids lower risk of cancer, particularly stomach and esophageal
  • low acid and easy to digest
  • low allergy risk to those that may be sensitive to some fruits

Raw Honey

  • anti-viral
  • anti-bacterial
  • anti-fungal
  • antioxidant
  • builds up the immune system
  • lessens allergies
  • stabilizes blood pressure
  • helps balance blood sugar levels
  • promotes good bacteria growth in intestines
  • soothes and heals skin injuries
  • calms and aids in sleep
  • cough suppressant, and can help with upper respiratory infections, asthma, etc
  • tastes amazing!

Almond Milk

  • low calories
  • glow glycemic, better for diabetics/preventing diabetes
  • high calcium, vitamin d, vitamin a, vitamin b
  • great alternative for those that have a dairy allergy

Plain Lowfat Organic Yogurt

  • boosts immunity
  • lowers bad cholesterol
  • increases loss of fat
  • helps prevent and heal arthritis
  • helps prevent ulcers
  • lowers risk of colorectal cancer
  • can freshen breath and reduce plaque

Oatmeal

  • lowers cholesterol
  • antioxidants
  • lowers risk of cardiovascular disease
  • boosts immune system
  • stabilizes blood sugar
  • lowers risk of Type II Diabetes
  • fiber helps prevent breast cancer
  • lowers risk of childhood asthma

Bee Pollen

  • reduces allergies (this is so true for me!)
  • reduces digestive issues
  • prevents anemia
  • helps with arthritis
  • helps with skin conditions like acne (my dry skin has improved!)
  • aids with depression (also true for me!)
  • boosts energy level (true!)
  • prevents/reduces hemorrhoids
  • boosts immune system

Ice… well, I won’t bother with explaining the benefits of frozen water.  🙂

There you have it.  Lots of info on what I had for breakfast/lunch.  It’s really intriguing to sit down and look at why you should eat what you eat.  Real food has so many healing properties, I find it ridiculous that all of these fake, packaged, frozen, fast food meals are pushed on us… but that’s a discussion for another day.

I hope you enjoyed learning as much about my breakfast as I did!  For more detailed information, please visit my sources:  http://www.whfoods.comhttp://www.draxe.com/the-many-health-benefits-of-raw-honey/http://www.naturalnews.com/035493_raw_honey_health_benefits_antibacterial.htmlhttp://www.3fatchicks.com/6-health-benefits-of-almond-milk/http://www.naturalnews.com/027165_pollen_bee_health.htmlhttp://www.benefits-of-honey.com/bee-pollen-health-benefits.html

 

Today’s Menu: Red Pepper Hummus with Bell Peppers

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I’ve been looking into the health benefits of what I’m eating while I eat it lately.  I’ve been astounded at what I’ve learned!  I’ll share in a minute what I’ve learned about hummus (chickpeas, really).  First I have to share how great this hummus tastes!  I found it at Aldi last week.  It’s their Grandessa brand Red Pepper Hummus.  This will find its way into my shopping cart every time I’m there from now on!

Now for the wonders of the chickpeas, aka garbanzo beans, in hummus:

  1. full of protein
  2. high fiber content helps lower cholesterol and prevent colon problems including colon cancer
  3. studies show that people that regularly eat chickpeas feel more satisfied and eat less
  4. help control blood sugar and insulin secretion
  5. contain antioxidants including concentrated amounts of phytonutrients
  6. full of manganese

(much information found from whfoods.org)

I’ll get into health benefits of bell peppers next time 🙂