Archive for September, 2013

September 19, 2013

Lyfe Kitchen Vegan Whole Grain Pilaf with Sweet & Zesty Vegetable Peperonata

by ashley

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain PilafUpdate 11 Feb 2014: We have had many users point out that this has honey, which most vegans do not eat honey as it is an animal product. I have written a note to Lyfe Kitchen to inform them. Thank you very much to all of our readers who pointed this out! Sorry that it slipped past me!

I had so much energy after eating Lyfe Kitchen’s Whole Grain Pilaf, I had trouble calming down to write a post about it. What drew my eye to this in the freezer section was that it had kale. I’ve never seen a frozen meal with kale, which I love adding to as many of my dishes as possible, so I knew I had to try it. Pilaf of any kind rarely sounds interesting to me, but with the addition of kale, quinoa, red wheat berries, artichokes, zucchini, toasted almonds and many other wholesome ingredients, this is one pilaf I could get excited about. The fact that it has no animal products, making it completely vegan, is another great selling point.

Heating this dish up is not as easy as other frozen meals, but it is worth the effort. I believe they did this to preserve the flavor, as well as ensuring their packaging is as eco-friendly as possible. I have taken step-by-step photos of the process, but the instructions are also clearly marked on the package. You will need a microwave safe plate in order to make this.

Remove the package from the box, place on a microwave safe plate with the seam facing up (so it can release steam while cooking). Cook for 4 ½ minutes. Let stand for 1 minute.

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

It will look like this once it’s finished cooking.

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

Use scissors to cut along the dotted line. I thought my mini hula girl scissors would make the photo a bit more festive.

 Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

Carefully slide the entrée onto your plate and enjoy!

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

The lime juice concentrate was slightly overpowering at first, but the more I ate, the more I liked the dish. There are A LOT of ingredients in this dish and it definitely has a lot of flavor, but almost all ingredients are unprocessed foods, with “natural flavor”, potassium chloride and calcium chloride popping out as the only “processed” ingredients that I could see.

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

Lyfe Kitchen Whole Grain Pilaf

I haven’t seen any other Lyfe Kitchen entrées in my grocery store, but I will keep an eye out for more. I was most impressed by the huge jolt of energy I got after eating this. Perhaps it was coincidence or maybe the whole grains? Let me know what you think of the dish!

Advertisements
September 17, 2013

Evol Truffle Parmesan Mac & Cheese: Yes, this comes from a freezer!

by ashley

Evol Truffle Parmesan Mac & CheeseI have a love affair with mac & cheese – it’s embarrassing sometimes. I love all types, but truffle mac & cheese actually was never that enticing to me. I’ve found the cheaper truffle oils to be overpowering and just masking the natural saltiness of a good cheese. Therefore I was even more hesitant to try a frozen meal of truffle mac & cheese. I have been a fan of Evol for a while, so I thought I would at least give it a try. While it is made with wholesome ingredients, this is in no way a light meal. Of course, anyone expecting mac & cheese to be a light meal is a bit crazy. With 480 calories and 25 grams of fat, this is a hefty meal that still needs a salad on the side to be fully satisfying for me. This pairs amazingly with a spinach salad, at least.

If you are unfamiliar with Evol, they are a relatively new brand focusing on wholesome ingredients, compostable bowls and recyclable packaging. They use foods with no rBST hormones and even have gluten free options, although most of those do include meat. They have several vegetarian options that do include gluten, including many different lunch and breakfast burritos, a few different pastas and bean enchiladas. You can check out the full listing here: http://evolfoods.com/products/

The truffle mac & cheese is one of the newer offerings, and I’m quite excited about it. As soon as I opened the microwave, I knew it was going to taste good. A strong aroma of sharp parmesan cheese first wafted out, then the savory smell of black truffles. Cracking the panko breadcrumb crust makes a satisfying crunch, with the creaminess of the cheese and pasta underneath. There are so many flavor layers, it’s amazing they were able to preserve the dish so well in frozen form.

I am truly impressed with this meal – it bodes well for the future of the Evol brand. Here’s hoping for even more delicious vegetarian options!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

September 3, 2013

Baklava to Die For by Natalie

by jem614

I have a great friend who is of Moroccan and Israeli descent.  I met her through an online moms group and we’ve been friends ever since, I love her (in the purest sense of course).  She’s not only taught me the value of being an incredible host, she also taught me how to make baklava, my absolute favorite dessert.

Baklava Piece

This past weekend I invited myself over for a culinary lesson on how to make this delicate dessert and was pleasantly surprised to find out that though it is a lengthy process, it’s relatively easy.  I’m not going to give away the entire recipe because I know she’s going to start her own bakery or online blog one day and this will be in it but I’ll give you a teaser.  She looked up a recipe online but changed it to make it amazing.  There is one key ingredient that I will let you find for yourself, I won’t list it:

Here are the main ingredients:
Honey
Phyllo Dough (one package should be plenty)
Cinnamon or Pumpkin Pie Spice does amazing
Zest of lemon
Butter
Tons of Walnuts (amazing- I always thought it was pecans)
Vanilla

We first started the sauce as it needs to cool for about an hour in the fridge so it’s a little thicker.  Then, we went about layering the phyllo: 2 pieces at a time, buttering them.  After each 8 layers, we would add the nuts (nuts should be toasted for max taste and then blended to a crumble consistency).  Remember:  DO NOT ADD THE SAUCE UNTIL AFTER IT’S BAKED!  Before baking, cut diagonal/diamond pieces from the top layer only.  This way, the layers underneath also get a good crisp.

We baked it for about 30-40 minutes allowing it to get nice and brown.  Next, allow it to cool for a few minutes and finish cutting it so the syrup will be able to reach all the lower extremities.  Pour the syrup and and enjoy this decadent dessert.

We took half a pan home and it was done within two days.  We now cannot leave the house because we’re too fat but at least we’re happy!

Thank you to Natalie Abernathy for such an amazing recipe!

%d bloggers like this: