Whole Foods’ Vegetarian Grape Leaves
Lunch today was a SUCCESS. Remember my raving about the vegetarian grapes leaves from Whole Foods the other day? Wellll….today I discovered you can just buy a straight-up container of just grape leaves! SCORE. I ate around 3-4 of these today for lunch, with a bowl of Corn Poblano soup, also from WF. Luscious.
Also, last time I mentioned that the grape leaves were seasoned with unknown seasonings – well, evidently, those seasonings are Parsley, Allspice, salt, and pepper. Until I researched it online (if Wikipedia counts as “research”), I thought Allspice was a mixture of spices. Not so. According to Wikipedia, Allspice, “..is the dried fruit of the Pimenta dioica plant. The fruit is picked when it is green and unripe and, traditionally, dried in the sun. When dry, the fruits are brown and resemble large brown peppercorns.” Further more, ” The name ‘allspice’ was coined as early as 1621 by the English, who thought it combined the flavour of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.” There’s your history lesson for the day, kids.
Makeover Beef Stroganoff
For dinner, I used a recipe from the August/Sept ’10 issue of Healthy Cooking, of which I wasn’t a huge fan. I won’t go into too many details, since I wouldn’t really recommend this recipe, at least as it is written. The name of the recipe is Makeover Beef Stroganoff. Step #1 was to cook lightly floured, thin strips of a top round steak in EVOO. I think I should have cranked the heat to quickly sear the meat, because it never really seared on the outside, and later produced a gummy texture on the outside, from the flour.
After the meat was cooked, I set it aside and sauteed baby bella ‘shroomies, onion and garlic in the steak drippings (of which there were very little..).
Next I poured in half a can of reduced-sodium beef broth, which was mixed with about a tablespoon of corn starch. Also added a bunch of freshly ground black pepper to every layer of this dish.
I let the mushrooom and broth mixture come to a boil and thicken, and then stirred in the beef and 1/2. reduced fat sour cream. This mixture was served over cooked No-Yolk egg noodles (my first time trying the no-yolks – I’m sad to say they are not as good as regular, but I do appreciate that they are cholesterol-free). I just really couldn’t get into this dish. The meat texture was not pleasant and as much as I love mushrooms, onions, and garlic, I just didn’t want to eat this. I only had a few bites. Tom ate up his plate though. I’d probably rate this recipe 5 out of 10 stars. Bleh. Looks much better than it tasted.
Luckily I had this tasty baby greens salad with a fat-free balsamic dressing with dinner.
Dinner, Take #2:
Since dinner clearly didn’t satisfy my hunger, a couple hours later I cooked up a frozen Morningstar black bean burger and served it on a defrosted Onion bun (defrosted really well in the microwave, followed by a few minutes in the toaster oven), with pepper jack cheese and lots of odd toppings like sweet relish, jalapenos, tomato, red onion, honey mustard, and a light smear of Miracle Whip. Legit!
♪♫ Currently listening to: No Leaf Clover – Metallica.