Sweet Potato Hash Brown Patties

Who can’t resist a bit of fried food now and then?  A big weakness of mine was hash browns (nom nom!), but with a new healthy way of living, these guys had to go.  Now while I don’t regularly eat these sweet potato patties, they are a healthier alternative to potato patties or hash browns.  Sweet potatoes are more nutrient dense than regular potatoes and these are pan-fried and not deep fried.  Not exactly guilt free (it’s still fried), but certainly less guilt!

All Finished!  Sweet Potato Patties

Sweet Potato Hash Brown Patties

Ingredients

1 Cups Coarsely Grated Sweet Potatoes

1/4 Cup Breadcrumbs

1-2 Eggs

1/4 Cup Finely Diced Onions

Sunflower Oil

Salt & Pepper

Instructions

Peel and grate your sweet potatoes.  Lightly salt and let stand for 10 minutes while you finely dice 1/4 cup of onions.  Drain excess water from the sweet potatoes and pat them dry.  Add the onions, breadcrumbs, eggs and salt & pepper to the sweet potato shreds and stir.  If you find there is still water, pat dry again or press and drain.  Your mixture should be about the consistency of a hamburger – and should stand firm when made into a patty.  Too wet?  Add some breadcrumbs.  Too dry?  Maybe another egg.  See the picture below – they should be about this texture.

Sweet Potato Patties Cooking

Shape all of the patties and put them aside.  Add the oil to a frying pan and heat.  When the oil is hot, start cooking!  Since these are healthier versions, they are NOT deep fried.  Simply fry on each side until they’re browned.

Sweet Potato Hash Browns

Sesame Broccoli Portobello Stir Fry

Broccoli CAN be tasty when you dress it up right.  This simple recipe does the trick in the healthy way.  Mushrooms are good for you, but did you know they have been shown in lab studies to lower cholesterol and mediate the effects of saturated fats?  You probably know about sesame seeds, you might not have tried black sesame seeds – and you definitely should since they’ve been shown to lower blood pressure.  Walnuts have been attributed to slowing cancer growth and improving overall health factors, like blood pressure.  And broccoli – not only does it prevent cancer it’s healthy (see nutrition info. after the recipe)!

Sesame Broccoli Portobello

Ingredients:

4 Tbs Coconut Oil

2 Tbs Sesame Oil

Raw Broccoli

Raw Mushrooms

Raw, Unsalted, Unroasted Walnuts

Black Sesame Seeds

Shallots (or white/red onion)

Instructions:

In a saucepan, heat the oil.  While it is heating, dice the shallot very small and put into the pan once the oil is hot (low-medium heat).  Don’t worry about uniformity, we’ll be browning them and caramelizing them.

When your shallots are getting started, get chopping on your mushrooms and broccoli.  Cut into 1″ pieces.  When the shallots are still white, put the broccoli in.  Keep stirring and put the mushrooms in when the shallots are translucent.  Now add the 2 Tbs of sesame oil – if it seems like there is not enough oil, you can add more sesame oil and/or add more coconut oil.  Stir for a few minutes and watch to make sure nothing is burning.  If it seems like it’s burning or the oil is smoking, turn down the flame.  When the broccoli is starting to be cooked, add the black sesame seeds to taste and stir.  The picture below could be done for some, for me I kept cooking a bit more until the mushrooms shrunk a little.

Broccoli Nutrition (1 cup)

60 calories.  No fat.  Nearly no sodium.

12 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 2 g sugars and 2 g of protein.

Vitamin A – 48% daily needs

Vitamin C – 168% daily needs

Calcium – 6% daily needs

Iron – 6% daily needs

Stir Fry TIP: Sneak in leftovers.  For a bit of protein, I diced up and added 4-day old chicken that was a bit too dry and not so tasty.  I barely noticed it, but I’m sure my body appreciated the protein!

Cauliflower Mash

Cauliflower recipes rock!  Creamy cauliflower mash is a great lower GI food than starchy potatoes.  You can use it in place of mashed potatoes and also make it with vegan creams or milks in place of regular cream.

 

I’m such a fan of cauliflower and since it can be so bland without a nice strong recipe, I just love a good cauliflower recipe:)  This one is one of my favorites.

Creamy Cauliflower Mash

Ingredients:

Butter (or olive oil)

Fresh variety of mushrooms

1 Medium onion

1 – 2 lbs of cauliflower

Herbs (I used thyme, tarragon also works well)

Instructions:

Before you cook: Steam 1 head of cauliflower or unfreeze 1 lb of cauliflower.  Drain.

1. Heat your oil in a deep frying pan or pot.  Dice your onion and add it to the oil.  Stir and reduce heat.  Chop mushrooms and add them to the pan.  Stir fry until the onions begin to brown and then stir them until they caramelize.  Reduce the heat or turn it off and add your cream or milk to taste.  In a large blender or preferably food processor, blend the mixture and slowly add liquid (cream, milk, rice starch & water – your choice).  When the mixture is the consistency in the picture, add the fresh herbs for one last blend and you’re finished!

Mashed cauliflower TIP: Unlike potatoes that are starchy, cauliflower does not get gummy when you blend it.  You can do an uber simplified version of this recipe by just steaming and then blending cauliflower with some salt & pepper.

Freezer TIP: This dish freezes great!  Just take a small 1 cup container, fill it and freeze it.  It’s nearly as delicious as fresh.

Baked Cauliflower with Lemon & Thyme

Healthy cauliflower recipe here we come! If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s short cuts. This quicker than you can blink recipe is a wonderful way to enjoy cauliflower without any messy or time consuming prep. It’s so simple!

Baked Lemon & Thyme Cauliflower

Ingredients:

1 Fresh Lemon

1 Bunch Fresh Thyme (Organic Preferred)

1 Giant Cauliflower

Olive Oil

Instructions:

Put the head of cauliflower on a large aluminum foil and douse it generously with olive oil. Slice a lemon thin and cover 2/3 of the cauliflower that is exposed. Toss in thyme here and there, sticking it to areas that are not covered by the cauliflower. Wrap up and seal completely, the bake in the oven at 360 F (180 C).  Bake until it feels soft to the touch, this can vary from 20 minutes to 45 minutes depending on the size of the cauliflower. The good news is that even if you overcook it, you can turn it into mash and it will be delicious! Because of the foil, oil & lemons, it’s very hard to burn this one.

Least attractive baking item ever!  But it’s soooo tasty:)

Old Bay Broccoli Side

I left Baltimore long ago and there are very few things I miss aside from friends, family & food.  One thing that helps is always having my Old Bay with me.  Nothing tastes like home more than Old Bay!  Maybe it’s just me, but it makes everything taste better:)

If there is one food people complain isn’t tasty, it’s broccoli.  Here is one way I’ve made broccoli drool-worthy – Old Bay.

 

Ingredients:

Steamed Broccoli

Old Bay

Real Cheese

Instructions:

Steam your broccoli. Grate cheese over the still hot broccoli.  I like Manchego cheese, but will buy what’s on sale.  Use whatever cheese you want as long as it is fresh and freshly grated!  Once the cheese is on, gently sprinkle on the magic Old Bay.  Enjoy!  The better your cheese, the better it will taste.  Don’t even try this with sliced or pre shred.

Notes: You can use frozen broccoli, but heat it slowly so you don’t cook it too much.