Msfitz’s “Mungcake” – a vegan and gluten free savoury pancake

Dairy free, Korean, Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian

The Mung Bean

Mung beans are very nutritious. They are an excellent source of protein and dietary fiber, and also contain vitamins A, C and E, folacin, phosphorous, magnesium, iron and calcium.  They are also easier to digest and quicker to cook than most other legumes so great if you have difficulty digesting beans to eat these instead.

Other health benefits of mung beans include:

  • Cleansing and detoxifying – mung beans are known as a cleansing legume especially when soaked and / or sprouted
  • Improving digestion – the fiber improves bowel function and cleanses your intestines
  • Reduced cholesterol, risk of coronary disease, high blood pressure – eating legumes have a strong correlation with healthy cholesterol levels

Would you like to try a recipe incorporating this delicious legume?

Making yourself a Mungcake 

1. Mix 1 cup brown rice and 2 cups mung beans, and soak in water overnight. (To save time, if you have other items you’re soaking, do them all at once!) Soaking makes the ingredients easier to digest since we will not really “cook” them.

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2. Drain and rinse the brown rice and mung beans a few times, then blend in a food processor. I use my Vitamix blender, which works fantastically. Add a little bit of water (~0.5 cup to 1 cup) depending on how well the blend is being created.

3. Heat a non-stick frying pan at medium. Put a spoonful of the rice / bean batter and spread it out to be flat.

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4. When the mixture is getting formed, flip over.

 

Here’s your finished product. What is really tasty is adding things that you love, like chopped veggies, etc to this mixture. I added toasted sesame seeds I made before. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

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Easy blueberry raspberry bran muffins

Recipes, Snacks

These super easy, hearty wheat bran muffins are a special treat at my father in law’s! I’ve modified them to be lactose-free.

They freeze really well, so could be made in batches and taken in to work throughout your busy week.

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Ingredients

2 cups whole wheat or all purpose flour
2 cups bran
1/2 cup wheat germ
2 cups brown sugar
1.5 tsp salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 flax eggs
1 cup soy milk
1 cup oil
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup cranberries
1 cup blueberries

Instructions
1. Mix all dry ingredients

2. Blend in all the wet ingredients

3. Add the berries

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4.Place into muffin tins and bake at 375 F for about 20-25 minutes. Voila!

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Celebrate St.Paddy’s Day with a Vegan Stout Cupcake

Recipes, Snacks

It is one thing to have an excessive amount of anything, especially alcohol – but special occasions every once in awhile are always welcome for celebration.

I think this is justifying some things… but did you know stout beer actually contains antioxidants and iron? Plus it has fewer calories than other types of beer, like lagers.

Try out this Chocolate Stout Cupcake to commemorate your St.Paddy’s Day!

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Chocolate Stout Cupcake

Cake:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup vegetable butter
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 3/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 flax eggs (1 tablespoon ground flax to 3 tablespoons of water)
2/3 cup soy yogurt
1 cup stout beer (such as Guinness)

Chocolate Stout Frosting
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
4 tbsp stout beer (or soy milk*)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 cups confectioners’ sugar

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Put in your cupcake liners in your cupcake tray.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
3. In a medium microwave-safe bowl, melt vegetable butter. Add cocoa powder and whisk until smooth.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, vegetable oil and flax eggs. Add cocoa-butter mixture and whisk until well-incorporated.
5. Stir in half of the flour mixture, followed by the yogurt and stout beer (beer may foam; keep stirring it in!). Stir in remaining flour mixture, stirring only until no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
6. Pour into your cupcake liners and spread into an even layer.
7. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean.
8. Allow cake to cool completely then top with your stout frosting.

9. For the frosting – beat all ingredients together until well combined, adding more confectioners’ sugar if necessary to thicken frosting to a smooth, spreadable consistency. After spreading the frosting on, put a dash of cocoa on top too if you’d like. You’re ready to celebrate!

Happy St.Paddy’s Day!

Brewskidaddle

Brown rice kimbap or “Korean sushi”

Dinner, Korean, Lunch, Recipes, Snacks

Ever been in a food coma? When your body ingests (1) too much food and (2) foods high on the glycemic index, your body releases insulin, triggering a chain reaction of chemicals including melatonin that make you very sleepy… mid day!

Combat such a situation with homemade kimbap made with brown rice – essentially for us Koreans this is a picnic or snack food, and very much resembles sushi. It’s sort of like a “Korean Sushi”. Try out something new this weekend!

Brown rice kimbap or “Korean Sushi”

The below makes about 12 rolls of kimbap. Each ingredient that goes in to the dish takes a bit of time to make, so I generally make a lot, and freeze the ingredients for use later on. I would set aside about 2-3 hours to make the separate ingredients and roll the kimbap.

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Ingredients

  • Bamboo rolling mat
  • White vinegar
  • 6 cups uncooked rice (1/3 white sticky rice, 1/3 brown sweet rice, 1/3 black wild rice)
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Sesame oil
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 7-8 carrots
  • Dozen eggs
  • Pickled Korean radish (bright yellow)
  • Your choice of protein (I used imitation crab meat, but you could use flaked tuna, etc…)
  • Flat seaweed

Instructions

1. Make your individual ingredients.

  • Carrots – Wash, then chop up the carrots into small pieces. Sautee in a non-stick frying pan with no oil for about 10-15 minutes on medium heat, until they are soft.
  • Cucumbers – De-seed the cucumbers, and cut them into thin, length-wise strips. You can keep the seeds, but they don’t go in the kimbap (they will make them very soggy, something you probably don’t want).
  • Eggs – Beat 6 eggs at a time in a bowl, and pour in a non-stick frying pan. When it’s quite formed, flip it over, making sure it’s cooked all the way through. Cut into thin strips after they’ve cooled a bit.
  • Rice – Take 3-4 cups of the cooked rice in a large bowl, and add in 2-3 tablespoons of white vinegar.  Mix in a tablespoon of toasted sesame seeds.

2. Create your workstation – lay out all of the ingredients on a table.

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3. Take about 1-1.5 cups of rice with a spoon, and carefully spread it throughout the seaweed. Arrange all of the ingredients close to the base of the roll, leaving a bit of rice protruding where you will start rolling.

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4. Begin rolling, pressing down firmly! About halfway through rolling, you could do the remainder with your hands, then reinforce the kimbap with the bamboo roll at the end.

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5. With a thin brush (or you could use your hands too though this gets messy), apply a thin layer of sesame oil to the rolls. It will taste delicious, and prevent them from sticking to each other and breaking. This step is optional.

6. Repeat, repeat, repeat until your ingredients are gone.

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Try it out, let me know how it goes! If you have variations / recommendations please send them through!

Part 4 – Healthy Recipe #4 for your busy week

Dairy free, Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian

Welcome to part 4 of healthy, cost-conscious, portable recipe series. Here’s another delicious, healthy snack to munch on – also great for post-workout snacking! If you are allergic to peanuts, try another type of nut butter such as cashew, almond, etc!

PB Granola Oat Bar 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon, ground
  • 2 cups oats
  • 1/4cup pumpkin seeds (or other toppings you enjoy, I sometimes also top with dark chocolate)
  • 1/4 cup raisins

Instructions

1. Set the oven to 325F.

2. Lightly oil an 8×8 pan with oil (pick your type), making sure you get all of the sides too.

3. In a microwave safe bowl, add honey, coconut oil and peanut butter. Microwave for 30-50 seconds, stir until mixture gets runny and peanut butter completely melted in. Mix in vanilla extract to the wet ingredients.

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4. In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients including the oats, cinnamon and raisins.

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5. Pour the wet mixture in with the dry, and mix together.

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6. Pour mixture into prepared pan and press down with a spatula or other apparatus you see fit, and bake in the oven for 20 -25 minutes until lightly brown.

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7. The finished result should look like this! Once you take the bars out of the oven, press down again and let it cool.

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8. Cut the oat bars into 16 slices and enjoy! Each bar is approximately 150 calories.

Part 3 – Healthy recipe #3 for your work week

Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian

Welcome to part 3 of healthy, cost-conscious, portable recipes to try out. This week, here’s a delicious, healthy snack to munch on.

Salt & Vinegar Chickpeas

Ingredients

  • Chickpeas (2.5 cups canned or 1 cup dry)
  • 1 cup of white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil

Instructions

1. If the chickpeas are unsoaked, take the dry chickpeas and soak for 8 hours.

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2. Boil the chickpeas with 1/2 cup of white vinegar until chickpeas are soft (10-15 minutes). To accelerate the process, I’ve used a pressure cooker instead.

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3. Strain the chickpeas.

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4. Mix the olive oil, remaining white vinegar and salt together in a bowl.

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5. Spread the chickpeas on a cookie sheet, and pour the mixture over them. Bake in the oven at 350F for 20 minutes. You may hear some of the chickpeas “pop”, these will be crisp!

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Here’s the finished result! Take them in little ziploc or snack bags. These are high in protein, low in fat and will tide your hunger pangs over.

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Korean Red Bean Rice Cake (Gluten Free!)

Korean, Recipes, Snacks

I’ve tried out a recipe today that’s been around in our family and Korean traditions – especially with the freshly growing Mugwort plant in the backyard as one of the bases! Enjoy!

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Health Benefits of the Main Ingredients

Did you know – Red beans have such a super-concentrated store of antioxidants than even other antioxidant powerhouses like blueberries? Also, unlike meat, beans are naturally low in fat and cholesterol-free. The soluable fiber found in red beans also helps lower your blood cholesterol levels by helping to push cholesterol through your digestive tract before your body can absorb it. Red beans are also packed with protein, with about 15g of protein per cup!

The energy breakdown of red beans per 1 cup: 225 calories, 0.9g fat, 4mg sodium, 40.4g carbohydrates (of which 13.1g is fiber), 15.3g protein, 29% of your daily iron intake

The Mugwort plant (see wiki) is used a lot in Oriental cooking as a herbal ingredient and flavouring agent. Per 100g, it packs 5.2g protein!

Recipe

Step 1:
Make red bean paste

  1. In a steam cooker, place 1 cup of washed red beans and 4 cups of water and heat it over high heat for 10 minutes.
  2. Lower the heat to low medium and simmer for 50 minutes.
  3. Check if the beans are cooked fully. Remove extra water from the beans and crush them with a wooden spoon.
  4. Add honey as needed to sweeten.

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Step 2:
Make mugwart plant mix (for cake dough). You could just add water to mugwart plant mix powder at an Asian food mart as well, or use another plant like spinach!

  1. Cut mugwart plant, and grind using a food processor
  2. Add 2 parts warm water to 1 part mugwart plant mix

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Step 3:
Make rice cake dough. You could get the brown rice powder at the store – but it’s much cheaper to make it on your own.

  1. Put in 2 cups of brown rice with 4 cups of water overnight.
  2. Drain the next day, and grind in a food processor to a find powder.
  3. Put aside a bit of the powder in a plastic bag.
  4. Mix the rice cake dough with the mugwart plant mix by hand, until the dough is workable with your hands. Add more powder as needed from the plastic bag if it’s too soggy, add more water if too dry

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Step 4:
In a double broiler, start boiling water.

Step 5:

  1. Roll a small ball of dough about 1 inch in diameter.
  2. Push the middle of the dough in, working in the dough until you carve out a hole to place the red bean stuffing into.
  3. Take a spoon to scoop up the red bean and place in the center.
  4. Close it up slowly working up from the corners. (Make sure to press it or the red bean will leak out when you steam)
  5. Once the water’s boiling put the rice cakes in for ~10 minutes.
  6. Remove the rice cakes and place them on the cooling rack.

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The rice cakes freeze really well, and could be microwaved afterwards for a snack anytime!

Delicious healthy no whey vegan granola bars

Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian

As promised to many of my friends that have asked for this recipe, here it is below! I personally think the last batch made with black beans actually taste much better so I’d recommend it over the red bean (though the red bean packs more protein).

Ingredients:

  • 1-pound can of red or black beans, drained and rinsed (or 1.5 cups cooked beans)
  • ¼ cup of ground flax seed mixed with ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup agave nectar (or honey if not vegan)
  • ¼ cup banana
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1.5 cups of oats
  • 1 cup cocoa or vegan protein powder
  • 1 cup chopped nuts / whatever stir-ins you’d like

Combine beans, ground flax with water, agave nectar/honey, banana, cinnamon and salt in a bowl, and blend until smooth with a hand blender. You could always throw this all into a blender as well but I found the hand blender less messy with fewer bowls used!

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Add the oats and dry base ingredients and combine with spatula.  Add your choice of stir-ins (I used dried cherries in mine) and combine.  If the consistency isn’t spreadable (too dry), add 1/4 cup of water; (too runny), add an additional 1/4 cup of the cocoa or protein powder.

Grease a 13×9 pan with baking spray or rub with 1 tablespoon oil, then spread this mixture into the pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes, wait until they’ve cooled down and cut! I found these could freeze quite well so they’ll keep well if you’d like to batch bake. Here’s what it looked like on the cooling rack.

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Rough nutritional value according to MyFitnessPal’s database, cutting into 16 pieces (per serving):

Calories: 109

Total fat: 1.1g

Sodium: 83g

Potassium: 87g

Carbs: 21g

Protein: 4 (I didn’t put protein powder in mine)