Busy Busy Busy!

November 10, 2011

Oh man.  Another busy day.  One of those days where you don’t get the chance to sit down, breathe and compile/organize your thoughts and notes until you get home . And even then, you still have work to do!  Like yesterday though, I just can’t bring myself to complain.  Challenging and pushing myself more is something I’m really trying to embrace.  Which means I’ll have to figure out how to balance a busier schedule with my already busy schedule.  🙂  Gotta love a challenge.

So tonight for dinner I promised you a Quesadilla recipe.  I wanted to come up with a ‘dilla that wasn’t too bad for  me, vegetarian and mostly (if not all), vegan (i’m a little unsure of the tortillas – note:  when the ingredients are foreign to even a lab rat – time to change brands…) and of course, tasty.  I also wanted to challenge myself to not look up a “vegetarian” Quesadilla recipe online.  I knew for a base I’d start with the Tofu and spinach mix I made for my veggie lasagna, since I didn’t want to add any cheese to mine.  From there I thought about what I wanted for my dinner.

Protein.  I added tofu and beans, check.  Mexican Flavors: I added the beans, some diced onion, salsa, cumin, garlic powder and corn.  I always think corn goes well with the flavors of salsa, so I added that too.  Crunch:  I decided to add some slivered almonds, because I wanted something to crunch when I bit in and nuts are healthy for you. Good deal.  I also added flax seed, because my obsession continues.

And So….step into my kitchen, won’t you?

Katie’s Veggie(vegan?) ‘Dillas

Small handful(I know, i’m super technical) of frozen spinach, thaw and drain.  Try to get most of the water out of the spinach.  Remember frozen spinach has A LOT.

Tofu 1/2-1 block (I used Lite Tofu and a whole block)

Oil of choice ( I used Truffle oil because it fascinates me. just a drizzle will do)

Flax seed (about 1-Tbsp)

Corn (1 small can, drained)

Black eyed peas (1 can, drained and rinsed)

Almonds (I used slivered, probably a scant 1/4 cup)

Salsa of choice

Spices: Salt, pepper, red pepper, red chili flakes, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano

Onion (about 1/4 white onion, chopped)

Tortillas (I used 2 medium)

Earth balance

To Make:  In a food processor (could probably use a blender too), pulse together spinach, oil and tofu.  Add together spices to preferred taste.  (I’d say I used anywhere from 0.5-1 tsp of everything). Next I added the flax seeds, about 1/2  of the black eyed peas and the almonds to the mix and pulsed them together so that there were still a few chunks so I could keep the crunch factor.  At this point I transferred my mix to a bowl and stirred in the onion, salsa, corn and the last of the black eyed peas.  This is the easiest place to taste test and see if you want any more of one particular flavor.  I really enjoyed the onion and salsa combo, so I went a little heavier on my salsa.  In the end, I’d have to almost call it a tofu and spinach guac.

Assembly: To make the ‘dillas, I chose to bake them.  I spread some earth balance on both sides of the top tortilla and one side of the bottom tortilla.  I added the mix to the “buttered” side of the bottom tortilla.  Be careful here not to add TOO much, it’ll squeeze out the sides  when you try to eat it later 😉 , then put the top tortilla down.  Baked on a greased tray, I did 350F for about 10-15 minutes (I cooked a chicken and cheese one for Brandon, so I just waited until his was melty).

I served it with some chips, salsa and some more of my tofu guac on the side.

So…?  I have to say.   I really enjoyed this mix for the tofu.  It honestly reminded me of a guacamole.  Without the salsa added, even Brandon thought it was a good healthy sub for spinach artichoke dip.  Hmmmmm – Another recipe idea, perhaps!?  I think its kind of cool that one mix can take on so many different personalities, ricotta for lasagna, guacamole for some chips/quesadillas, and a spinach artichokey dip for more dipping.  I like that the beans that weren’t mashed up helped to give it some texture.  Next time  for the quesadilla though, I’ll probably add some vegetarian pepperoni or chicken (for some reason, I really want to add pepperoni to this recipe…) to give it just a little more substance.  But I definitely will be serving this dip with maybe a nice crusty baguette next time I have people over.  And NOT tell them its tofu, our secret 🙂

I know I also promised a lifting regiment tonight, but I have too much work to even THINK about lifting tonight 😦  I’m going to try and fit in some pushups and maybe some wall sits (? Is this what they’re called?).  I got a run in this morning, but I was a little bummed with it – I had such INSANE side cramps that I had to slow down to a walk at some points.  I really want to take some time (when I have it) and really read up on why side stitches happen and try and prevent them.  A topic for a later post.  And so, now i’m going to sit down, have a cup of tea and get.to.work.

but first! 

What am I grateful for today?

Today, I am grateful for: weekend plans to see two of my FAVORITE people after a long week.

I am grateful for:  Phone calls, even when they’re only for a 5 minute conversation.

I am grateful for:  My food processor

I am grateful for:  Having a job to be busy at.  These days, that’s not a guarantee for anyone.

Have a great Thursday everyone! Tomorrow’s Friday and That means BAGELS AND RED EYES! YAY!.

p.s.  go check out savory simple (www.savorysimple.net) for a fun little giveaway contest!  Don’t forget to check out her recipes too!


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