Blooming Health

Plant Yourself in a Healthy Lifestyle… And BLOOM!

Tag: Mexican food

Meat and Greet

by kerryabdow

Hello, Blooming Healthers!

It’s “Friend” here, doing a stint as a guest blogger.  Kathy asked me to blog about the vegan dinner I made recently… just in time for Meatless Monday!

I found this recipe via Brandon…

…a talented, young raw vegan (super)chef I met while working at Living Light Culinary Institute in Northern California.  I’m very sad he never wore this outfit when he was in school…!  Anyway, he has a fun raw foods blog – – but this particular recipe is from VegNews.  It’s suuuuuuper easy to make, and amazingly delicious!  I, unlike Kathy, am not a vegetarian, but I’ve played one on tv I love to experiment with vegetarian and vegan recipes.  And between being surrounded by raw foodists for a year, and now Kathy, and Taryn from Phyto Foods, my appreciation continues to grow.

This recipe is for vegan “meat”, and, because I’m not a fan of soy or wheat gluten, I found this recipe especially intriguing.  Kathy, her fun husband and I are all big fans of spicy/Mexican/wrapped food, so I decided to make burritos.  Well, I intended on making burritos… more on that later…!

Soy-Free Vegan Ground Beef

Makes 4 cups

What You Need:

1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed, washed and dried, and broken into florets
2 cups raw walnut halves
1 medium tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil  (I totally forgot to add the oil when mixing, so drizzled about half on the top after it was already in the oven… seemed fine…??  I figured the nuts were fatty enough, but…)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder  (I used cayenne instead because it was in the cabinet…)
1/2 teaspoon mild chili powder
1 teaspoon liquid smoke  (I ended up not using this…)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons Bragg’s Liquid Aminos

If you are making burritos, you’ll also need:

Your favorite tortillas – (I love Rudi’s Whole Spelt, but used Ezekiel Sprouted Grain this time, because Whole Foods was out of the Rudi’s!  I recommend not shopping at Whole Foods right when they open on Monday mornings, because they aren’t fully stocked.  #TipOfTheDay),   
Shredded vegan cheddar cheese – (I used rice cheese, and it didn’t melt the greatest… would use Daiya in the future…)
Fresh tomato and yellow onion, chopped
Avocado, sliced
505 green chile, or your favorite salsa
Romaine lettuce, chopped

What You Do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a parchment-lined cookie sheet.

In a food processor, process cauliflower, walnuts, and tomato until completely minced. (I started the nuts and cauliflower first, and when they were about 3/4 processed, I added the tomatoes… no mush, no fuss!)

Transfer mixture to a large bowl and add remaining ingredients. Using clean hands, knead mixture thoroughly until crumbles are well coated with seasonings.

Turn mixture onto cookie sheet and spread out evenly. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour 15 minutes, stirring after 30 minutes and then every 15 to 20 minutes after that, until the crumbles are dry and browned. Serve warm or store in refrigerator for up to 3 days, or in freezer for longer.

Assembling “burritos”:

Place tortillas on cookie sheet, spread a thin layer of “beef” on each and sprinkle with cheese.  Broil until cheese melts and remove from oven.

Place one tortilla on each plate, top with your favorite ingredients and… olé!

Because I used the sprouted grain tortillas, they were too crunchy to actually roll into a burrito, so we just *carefully* folded them in half and ate them like giant tacos!  Still toooooooooootally delicious, just not exaaaaactly what I had in mind.  BUT improvising is part of being a good cook, right?  Right!

The same night, Kathy whipped up a Peach Crumble!

And when I say whipped it up, I mean it took her about five minutes!  And it was deeeeeeeeeeelicious!  I don’t know how she does it, but she does it.  All.  The.  Time.  She’s a natural!  She used peaches fresh off a friend’s tree…

… and used oatmeal in the crumble mix.  Maaaaaaaaybe she will share that topping recipe just in time for apple season…!

Thanks to Kathy for letting me take over her forum for a post and I hope you try this recipe next time you want to experiment with vegan beef!  Vegan beef… Veef?  Hmmm…!  This recipe makes a lot, and you can throw the mix in casseroles, or, if you’re not vegan, in scrambled eggs… maybe on pizza?  I’m sure you can change the spices to suit whatever cuisine suits your fancy.  I promise you that I am not a great cook, and I found this amazingly easy!   Try it, you’ll like it!

Well, I’m off like a prom dress, people!  Happy and Healthy Meatless Monday!  Arrrrrrrrrrrrrriba!

Peter Piper Picked a Peck of…

by kerryabdow

… Poblano peppers…

…and I made… Chile Rellenos!


It’s no secret that I am a fan of Mexican food…. I mean, c’mon… what’s not to love?!  Spicy, flavorful, colorful… it’s fantastic!  What’s not always fantastic is the lard and the frying and the over-cheesing (yes, you CAN over-cheese… but only in some countries…!).  Chile rellenos have always been one of my fuh-fuh-faaaavorite Mexi chow options, but, because they aren’t the healthiest thing on earth, I decided to search for an option that would work better with my lifestyle.  Aaaaaaannnnnddddddd… Here it is!  Introducing the new star of my Mexican food world – Grilled Chile Relleno!  Gluten-free, super-flavorful and much lower in fat than it’s more recognizable cousin, it’s the find of the summer!  Or… at least the week.  🙂  I got this recipe from a blog –  I’m not gluten-free, but I like to experiment with these types of recipes.  And, as I said… this one is a winner!


6 large Poblano peppers or Anaheim chiles (As you know, I used Poblanos.)
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into ½ inch dice
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup frozen corn kernels or 2 fresh corn on the cob, kernels cut off  (I used frozen this time.)
1 (15 ounce) can of black beans, drained and rinsed

1½ teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon dried oregano  *Instead of dried oregano, I tossed in 1/4 c. fresh cilantro to the mix before stuffing the peppers.
1 teaspoon chili powder – more or less depending on taste (I would use more next time!)
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ cups shredded Queso Quesadilla (Mexican melting cheese) or Monterey Jack – use divided  (I used Colby-Jack and it worked great, too…)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place peppers over a hot grill, gas burner or under a broiler and char all over, about 10 minutes. Turn regularly to ensure the peppers are completely blackened. When done place peppers in a large mixing bowl and cover with foil and let them set for about 20 minutes until cool enough to handle. When cooled peel the skin off the peppers.  (I let the peppers cool too much and it was almost impossible to get the skin off, so I had to put them back in the oven.  Let them get really charred, and get them in that bowl quickly so it creates some steam!  Full steam ahead!)

While peppers are cooling, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Sautee onions until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add diced sweet potato and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Add garlic, corn, beans, ground cumin, *dried oregano, chili powder, salt and pepper and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Take off heat and pour into a large mixing bowl.

Reserve about six tablespoons of cheese for topping the stuffed peppers and add the rest to the vegetable mixture. Stir to mix.

Take cooled, peeled peppers and make a slit along the side of each one lengthwise, making sure you do not cut the peppers in half. Scoop out the seeds and veins with a small spoon. Scoop 1/6th of the mixture into each pepper. Place peppers in a lasagna pan or similar baking dish and top each with about 1 tablespoon of the reserved cheese. Bake for 10 – 15 minutes or until the filling is heated through and the cheese is melted.

And… one more time because they are so beautiful…  taaaaadaaaaaaaaaaa!


Pretty awesome, right?!  I served each chile with fresh cilantro, avocado, and, on the side, a fresh green salad with citrus vinaigrette.  Totally delicious dinner!  And easy!

We had some leftovers, so I had one the next day and… it was even better because the flavors really melded!  When I make them again – which will be soon – I will make them a day or two before we plan on eating them.  Also, I would like them to be a little spicier, so I might add more chile powder or maybe even experiment with adding some jalapeños to the mixture… What would you do to make them spicier?

We all need some spice in our life, right?!  Go get it!

See you soon,  mi amigas and amigos!  Adios!