Stewed Yellow Squash and Tomatoes

Stewed Yellow Squash and Tomatoes

This is a nice LID side dish, especially during the summer months when squash is fresh and abundant. You can use zucchini instead of yellow squash or a combination of both. You can also use fresh tomatoes instead of canned. You will just need to add a bit of water to the skillet with them so the veggies can finish stewing.

Stewed Squash and Tomatoes

Stewed Yellow Squash and Tomatoes

1/4 cup olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 medium yellow squash, cut into bite-size chunks
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 14.5 ounce can no salt added diced tomatoes, with juices
kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the squash and season with kosher salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the squash is just tender (but not mushy), about 10 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook one minute longer. Next, add the diced tomatoes and their juices. Lower the heat slightly and continue to cook, stirring often, until most of the liquid has cooked out and the squash has reached the desired tenderness, approximately 5 minutes. Season to taste with more kosher salt and pepper.

Beef Fajitas (LID)

Sliced Beef Fajitas

A quick and simple marinade and the use of a cast iron skillet makes beef fajitas an easy weekday LID meal that the whole family will enjoy.

Check to make sure the skirt steak doesn’t have a salt solution (or is pre-marinated) added to it. This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled.

Beef Fajitas

Beef Fajitas

1 pound skirt steak (or flank steak)
2 fresh limes (get ones with thin, smooth rind so they are extra juicy)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste)

1 large onion, ends removed, peeled, halved and cut into slivers
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips (or do a combination of different colored peppers)

LID-safe corn tortillas, warmed

Condiments of your choice:

salsa or pico de gallo
homemade LID-safe guacamole or avocado cream
fresh cilantro, chopped
fresh jalapenos, sliced (or throw whole jalapenos in with the onions and bell peppers and then slice)

Combine the juice from the two limes with the cumin and kosher salt. Add the skirt steak, turning once or twice to coat the meat. Let sit 10 minutes.

Heat a large cast iron skillet over high heat. Once hot, remove the skirt steak from the cumin-lime juice marinade and add to the pan. Cook for 3 – 5 minutes on each side, or until desired doneness. Remove from the skillet and let rest on a cutting board.

Add the onion and bell pepper to the hot skillet (no need to clean out the skillet, the veggies will pick up the flavors from the steak). Cook, stirring often, until the veggies are slightly tender and browned in areas. Reduce heat to low and keep warm.

Fajita Veggies

Cut the skirt steak against the grain into somewhat thick (about 1/2-inch) slices. At this point, I like to throw the steak back into the pan with the veggies and toss to combine, but you don’t have to.

Assemble the fajitas. Place some steak and veggies into a warmed corn tortilla. Top with the condiments of your choice. I like mine with avocado cream and fresh pico de gallo.

Corn Salsa (LID)

Corn Salsa sm

Corn Salsa

It won’t be long before I will have to start LID again. I will have another whole body scan in March. Last year was much easier than the year before because I prepared better. It’s not to early to start compiling recipes.

This colorful salsa, eaten with tortilla chips is a tasty snack while on LID (or any other time, really). It is also a nice addition to tacos, fajitas, or rice bowls. It can even be eaten on its own as a salad of sorts. It keeps well in the fridge for a week or so.

Poblano  chiles (fresh or roasted) can be substituted for the bell pepper and jalapenos.

Corn Salsa

1 pound frozen corn
1/2 large onion, small dice (red onion looks pretty with corn)
1/2 green bell pepper, small dice (you could also use red bell peppers)
2 jalapenos, or to taste, minced
handful fresh cilantro, chopped
juice of 1/2 lime
kosher salt, to taste

Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add the frozen corn and cook, stirring often, until heated through and starting to char. Cooking it this way really brings out the sweetness of the corn. Let the corn cool completely.

Once the corn is cooled, add the remaining ingredients and mix to combine. Taste and add more lime juice or kosher salt, if needed.

Spiced and Roasted Kombocha Squash (LID)

Spiced and Roasted Kombocha Squash 2

I bought a kombocha squash in November. I used it along with some acorn and butternut squashes to decorate for Thanksgiving. I didn’t want it to go to waste, so I made this dish. Roasting brings out the sweetness of kombocha squash. I think it tastes like a combination of pumpkin and sweet potato. Other types of winter squashes (for example, acorn, butternut, or pumpkin) may be used in this recipe instead of kombocha.

This recipe is suitable for LID. Make sure to use a salt-free chili powder and kosher salt.  Penzey’s chili powder does not contain salt.

Kombocha Squash

There is an element of danger preparing the kombocha squash. It isn’t the easiest thing to cut. Be super careful and try not to chop off a finger.:) This video may be helpful.

Halved Kombocha Squash

Spiced and Roasted Kombocha Squash

1 kombocha squash
2 tablespoons olive oil (or oil of your choice)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt-free chili powder (I use Penzey’s)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 400º F.

Using a large, sharp knife, cut the kombocha squash in half, by cutting down through the top. I find it easier to cut right next to the stem, instead of trying to cut through the stem. Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds and pulp and discard. Slice off the stem and bottom ends of each piece and then cut each half in half again. Using a peeler, remove the skin from all of the pieces. Cut each quarter into slices. I got about 8 slices per quarter. Place the sliced squash in a large bowl.

Sliced Kombocha Squash

Drizzle the squash with the olive oil and then add the brown sugar and spices. Toss with tongs until the squash is coated with the sugar and spices.

Spiced Kombocha Squash

Spread out evenly on a baking sheet. You may want to line your baking sheet with foil or parchment paper to ease the clean up process. Roast the squash for 20 minutes or until tender.

Samosa Soup (LID)

Samosa Soup

I like Indian food. Samosas, Indian pastries filled with savory ingredients, are a favorite of mine. I have made Samosas filled with spiced potatoes and green peas on numerous occasions. They are a bit time-consuming to make so I do not make them often. I took ingredients found in Samosa filling and turned them into a delicious and easy soup.  This soup is quick enough to make on a weeknight. It is sure to bring a little spice to LID.

Samosa Soup

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tablespoon salt-free curry powder (store-bought or homemade – recipe at bottom)
dash cayenne pepper (optional)
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 cup dried green split peas, picked over and rinsed
8 cups salt-free vegetable broth (I use Rapunzel bouillon cubes and water)
1/2 cup frozen green peas
kosher salt, to taste
1/4 fresh cilantro, chopped

Heat the canola oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and sauté until soft. Add the garlic, ginger, and jalapenos, and saute one minute more. Add the curry powder, cayenne (if using), green split peas, and vegetable broth. Cook 10 minutes. Add the diced potatoes and continue to cook until the green split peas and potatoes are tender, about 20 more minutes. Add the frozen green pea and cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Take off the heat, add the cilantro, and serve.

Quick and Easy Salt-Free Madras Curry Powder

3 tablespoons ground turmeric
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Combine all of the spices and store in a glass Mason jar.

Mexican Lentil Soup (LID)

Mexican Lentil Soup

I love this time of the year, when summer is changing over to fall. The days are starting to get cooler and the air is a little crisper. The air conditioner is not running non-stop and there is a little chill in the air when you wake up in the morning. It’s a perfect time for soup and this one is wonderful. It is a flavorful and filling soup that comes in at around 76 calories per 1 cup serving.

Soups are perfect to have while on LID. You can make big batches and freeze individual servings. It helps so much to have food prepared ahead of time.

Mexican Lentil Soup

Mexican Lentil Soup

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
14.5 ounce can no salt added diced tomatoes (I like to use petite diced)
1/2 cup dried lentils, picked over and rinsed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
7 cups LID-safe vegetable broth (I use Rapunzel vegetable bouillon)
1 medium zucchini, diced
kosher salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

In a soup pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, and carrots. Cook until the vegetables are tender. Add the minced garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Add the jalapeno, diced tomatoes and their juices, dried lentils, cumin, coriander, and vegetable broth. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook until the lentils are tender, 10 to 20 minutes. Season the soup with kosher salt and pepper. Stir in the chopped cilantro and serve.

Peach and Blueberry Crumble (LID)

Peach and Blueberry Crumble

Fruit crumbles are perfect desserts for LID. They can be made with a variety of fruits. I love the combination of peaches and blueberries.

Peach and Blueberry Crumble

4 peaches
1/2 cup blueberries
2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
1/2 cup oats
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sliced almonds
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 – 3 tablespoons coconut oil (can substitute canola oil)

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Cut the peaches in half and remove the pit. Slice or chop the peaches and place in a small baking dish. Add the blueberries to the peaches and sprinkle with the sugar (you can skip the sugar or adjust the amount to suit your taste) and gently stir to combine.

In a bowl, combine the oats, flour, sliced almonds, and brown sugar. Work the coconut oil into the mixture with a fork, pastry cutter, or your hands. Spread evenly over the fruit in the baking dish. Bake at 350° for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the crumble is golden brown and the fruit is bubbly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Baba Ganoush (LID)

Baba Ganoush

I’ve gotten sooo many eggplants in my CSA boxes over the past several weeks. I’ve been struggling with ways to prepare them. After hearing about my eggplant dilemma, my friend, Donna, directed me to this recipe for Baba Ganoush. I am a big fan of Mediterranean food, but surprisingly, had never had Baba Ganoush. I simplified the recipe a bit and it turned out well. It’s great as a spread or as a dip. I ate it with sweet mini peppers. Yum yum.

Tahini is essential for this recipe. I used Whole Food’s 365 brand tahini. It contains salt, but doesn’t appear to be iodized. From my research, I have concluded that in the United States iodized salt must be labeled as such and that if “salt” is listed in the ingredients list, it’s just plain salt. If you are unsure, you can always call the manufacturer. The phone number is usually on the product. Every product that I have called about has not contained iodized salt and several reps told me that iodized salt must be labeled as such. It is a topic I definitely want to continue to research and find a source (a written law, perhaps) that states how salt must be listed. It’s on my to-do list.

Baba Ganoush

1 large Italian eggplant
1/4 tahini (check labels for salt)
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
pinch ground cumin
kosher salt, to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil

Preheat the oven to 375° F.

Using a fork, pierce the eggplants all over. Place the eggplants on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 1 hour, turning half-way through cooking. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Cut off the ends of the eggplants and discard. Peel off the skin. Use a spoon to scrape off any flesh left on the backside of the peel. Place the eggplant flesh in a large bowl. Using a fork, mash the eggplant.

Add the 1/4 cup tahini, garlic, 1/4 cup lemon juice, and cumin and mix well. Season with kosher salt, then taste and add more tahini and/or lemon juice, if needed.

Spread into a serving dish and drizzle with the olive oil. Serve with pita bread.

Avocado “Cream” (LID)

Avocado "Cream"

Avocado “Cream” is a great way to get the creaminess and lushious fat that normally come from dairy (cheese, cream, sour cream, etc…) while on LID. It freezes well, so buy avocados when you find them on sale and freeze some Avocado “Cream” in individual portions. Use in place of sour cream while on LID.  It goes well with the taquitos and as a dip for Fritos.

Avocado “Cream”

avocados
fresh lemon juice (about 1 tablespoon per avocado)
kosher salt

Cut the avocado(s) in half lengthwise. Remove the seed and scoop the flesh out of the skin with a spoon. Place the avocado flesh In a small food processor and blend with fresh lemon juice (about 1 tablespoon per avocado) and kosher salt (to taste) until smooth.

Roasted Ratatouille (LID)

Roasted Ratatouille

Onions, squash, and Japanese eggplant were just a few of the vegetables I got in my CSA box this week. They were delicious when combined with bell pepper and tomato, tossed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and then roasted. There is no denying that this combination of veggies is a winner. It’s comfort food and perfect for LID.

This recipe can easily be doubled. Use a second baking sheet to avoid overcrowding the veggies.

When dicing the vegetables, try to keep all the pieces about the same size so they will cook evenly.

This recipe makes about 2 side dish-sized servings.

Roasted Ratatouille

1 onion, diced
1 zucchini, diced
1 yellow squash, diced
1 bell pepper (your choice of color), cored and diced
1 Japanese eggplant, diced (no need to peel)
1 tomato, diced (or a couple handfuls of cherry tomatoes, halved)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Toss the diced veggies with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Season with kosher salt and pepper. Spread on the prepared baking sheet.

Roasted Ratatouille 2

Roast in the oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until well-browned, turning half way through cooking.

Roasted Ratatouille 3

Serve warm.

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