Monday, July 28, 2008

Lettuce Wraps

I got this off the Nick Jr site.

1 head iceberg lettuce (we used romaine)
1 pkg firm tofu cut into 1/2" cubes (I think mine were smaller cubes, but IME tofu needs to be in small amounts so it absorbs more flavor)
1 can (8oz) drained chopped water chestnuts
2 Tbsp canola oil (I used olive oil)
2 scallions, sliced (I used onion & probably more then they called for)
1 garlic clove, minced (I use the refrigerated minced garlic & was "generous" in my measuring of 1 clove LOL)
1 16 oz bag shredded broccoli, carrots & red cabbage (ok, this was silly to me, if you read the recipe, it tells you to only use half the bag, so why not just say so here! As it was, the bag I found at my grocery store was 10oz, so I used the whole 10oz bag)
1 tsp fresh grated ginger (I used powder)
Lettuce Wrap Cooking Sauce - you can see the recipe they used here. I used 2 Tbsp Braggs (like soy sauce only healthier), 4 Tbsp water & 2 tsp arrowroot powder (like cornstarch only healthier)

Saute garlic, onions, tofu, and ginger in oil for 1-2 minutes. Add water chestnuts & veggies & toss w/ cooking sauce. Cook 1-2 minutes, stirring. Remove from heat & let cool (I think next time I'll do this as a make ahead recipe & let it sit in the fridge for awhile, rather then just letting it cool for a few minutes while I prep the lettuce).

Wash lettuce leaves. Serve filling in a bowl with a platter of whole lettuce leaves, let each person wrap their own. Serve with purchased dipping sauces if desired. (I didn't get any dipping sauces, but I think dh would've liked this better w/ the spicy mustard like they have at chinese restaurants, so I'm hoping to find that to have for him next time we eat it).

My girls LOVED this! DH only tolerated it, so it's likely to be something we have on days he's not around though as mentioned above, he may be more accepting of it if I have the hot mustard sauce. He also suggested serving it with rice either as a side or mixed in. I think I may just mix brown rice into the vegetable mixture next time.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Cream Soup Substitute

Here's a recipe I found online to use instead of cream of whatever soup in recipes (not sure if it's any cheaper, but it's healthier):

4 T butter
4 T whole wheat flour
1 c broth
1/3 c milk
In small saucepan melt butter over med heat. Add flour and stir till bubbly. Slowly add broth and milk, stirring constantly. Cook till thickened.

This is the equivalent of one can of cream of xxxx soup.

I don't know how this would work as a soup, but this was easy to do, and worked well to replace a can of cream of chicken soup in a recipe I made this weekend.


I'm not sure if DH will like this, but my parents, the girls & I all did. I had generic V-8 so used it instead of tomato juice & used dry TVP, so just guessed at how much to make. I only baked it for an hour, covered w/ foil for the first half hour & didn't stir it while it was baking (because I didn't read it closely enough, but I don't think it mattered). I also added some garlic powder. This tastes alot like the vegeburgers my mom makes but throwing it in the oven is much easier than forming into patties & frying :) I'll definitely be making this again. The original recipe said it freezes well, so if dh decides he doesn't like it, I'll make it & freeze it in smaller portions for when the girls & I are eating a meal w/o him.

Adapted from the Living on a Dime newsletter:

1 1/2 lb hamburger (or TVP)
2 slices bread
3/4 c milk
3/8 c tomato juice
1 egg
1/4 c chopped onion (or onion powder to taste)
salt to taste
Mix together & pour into 9x13 pan. Bake at 300 for 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hrs, till done. Stir frequently. Serve on buns w/ pickles & mustard, like sloppy joes.