Beans, beans, beans and more beans. During the colder months I tend to enjoy a variety of beans both big and small. While canned beans might seem convenient, home cooking your own will make up for the time. When I cook beans at home I usually use my pressure cooker, it cuts the time back to about 1/4 that of boiled beans. I also cook a large batch so that I can use them throughout the week!
Polenta is made of ground corn, prepared similar to grits (if you are from the south), but much smoother in texture. Though originally from Italy, polenta has now made its way into the global market. It boasts a slightly larger amount of protein per serving than a large egg, making it an excellent main dish. Polenta also contains many vital nutrients such as vitamins A and C, phosphorus and potassium. To top it off, this gluten free grain is so versatile it can be used in some desserts.
Nutritional yeast, a powerhouse of nutrition. Low in fat and sodium, free of gluten, dairy and sugar, what else can you ask for? This small but powerful yeast is also a complete protein while also boasting B-complex vitamins! Due to its delicious cheezy flavor, nutritional yeast is commonly enjoyed as a cheese substitute. My favorite way to enjoy this superfood is to sprinkle it on popcorn along with some smoked paprika!
Spiced Pumpkin Chili
2 cups cooked black beans
1 cup cooked kidney beans
1 28 oz can organic chopped tomatoes
1 12 oz can organic crushed tomatoes
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 - 3/4 cup water
3 tbs tomato paste
1 tbs chili powder
2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cinnamon
a few shakes cayenne pepper (optional)
Tahini or greek yogurt for garnish
Add your beans and canned tomatoes to a large pot and bring them to a boil. Next, add about 1/2 cup water along with the spices and tomato paste. Lower the pot to a simmer and continue to stir until everything is throughly heated. Now, add in the pumpkin puree along with more water if needed. (At this same time I usually taste it to see if I need to add any more spices.)
Ladle into bowls and garnish with tahini or greek yogurt.
1/2 cup dry instant polenta
2 cups filtered water (or follow the instructions on the package)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp smoked sea salt
Bring the water to a boil and add in the instant polenta. Remove the pot from the heat and stir the mixture until all the liquid has been absorbed. Next add in the nutritional yeast, paprika and smoked salt, continue to stir until incorporated. Add more salt if needed and serve topped with chili!