Thursday, June 15, 2017

So far....

Hello,

have been cutting dairy from my diet. Not completely, but enough that I could say I eat it on occasion. I still have an ice cream here and there and I cannot pass up cheese if I go out or attend an event. But I have definitely stopped buying cow milk for more than a year now. I have just switched up my yogurt to coconut yogurt (but that thing is expensive). I do not buy cheese anymore only eat it outside my house. I have butter but it is used for baking purpose or if I want to cook something and I want that  butter taste. But even that, once I am done with that small piece of butter left, I will not buy more unless needed. 
As far as dairy products, I feel I am doing good. Where I need to work hard is reducing my fruit consumption. I after reading a couple of blogs and having conversations with other people on this healthy journey, I realized that I was eating too much fruits and I needed to reduce it. So, as soon as I am done eating all the fruits I have in my fridge, I will attempt to spend a whole week with only eating fruits 2 times during that week or go cold turkey. I don't know how it will go but I want to try. I have been able to remove mil from my diet, I should be able to reduce fruits. 
I do not take sugar in my teas or things like that but we know that you can find it in a multitude of food. I just try to pay attention to the sugar I consume and one of the ways is to reduce my fruit intake. I am certain that I will see results afterward while. at the beginning, my  body will probably be in chock but it will get used to it.
Eating healthy is a muscle one need to train like everything else. I am on a journey and I can't wait to see where it leads. 

xoxo

Monday, March 13, 2017

Simple Gilt-Head Bream

Hello,


After trying different recipes to make my fish, I realized that you should never make it too complicated. Fish is a very special type of meat and when you try to do too much to it, it comes out disgusting.
For most of my fish recipes, I use a simple base of oil, salt, black pepper (any pepper) and build from there.

At the African store, I found a bag of "gilt-head (sea) bream, also known as "dorad royal" or commonly known in Kinshasa (DRC) as "mabundu". Unfortunately, it was not cleaned and I had to gut and clean it myself. It is not glamorous but I thanked my mama for showing it to me even when I did not want to.

So here is how I make my fish:



My best friends in this whole gutting process that can be very very messy.


My gilt-head before gutting. 


Here cleaned up and ready to be seasoned. I removed the head as well to make it simple 


I blended green onions, white onion, garlic, added salt, black pepper. For 4 fishes, I had one bouquet of green onions, half a white onion, a whole garlic head. You can add ginger as well. 


Mixed it all with my fish and some Mrs. Dash, Garlic & Herb Seasoning Blend salt-free. I put it in the freezer overnight and the next day, took it out of the fridge to thaw before cooking.


Forgot to show before the oven, but I added lemon juice and lemons inside and on top of the fishes. I added vegetable oil as well. Use non-stick spray so you can remove easily your fish. You can also use parchment paper. 
You do not have to bake it, you can fry it in a pan as well. 


I had it with my baked sweet potatoes ( see recipe from last week) and green beans (recipe from 3 Fois par Jour)


Bon Appétit!!!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Sweet Potatoes

Hello,

How do you make your sweet potatoes? You can bake them whole, boil them, deep fry or bake them seasoned. There are so many recipes out there and just today, I saw one on Savor Home Instagram stories of rosemary and honey sweet potatoes.

Here is how I make mine and I love how simple it is.


I used 2 large sweet potatoes and cut them in cubes. 


I seasoned them with seasoned salt, paprika, black pepper and thyme.


To make it easier, I used the vegetable oil bottle cap to measure the oil. I used 5 bottle cap of oil for this many sweet potatoes. Mix well and make sure that every single potato is coated.


Place them on parchment paper or foil ready for your oven at 350F. If using foil, it is best to use non-sick spray to make sure they do not stick to your plate before lining the sweet potatoes. I left it to bake for 45 minutes to an hour. It all depends of how your oven works. 


Et voilà!! They are ready for you. You can have them with any kind of food or as a snack.
Bon Appétit!

Monday, February 27, 2017

Cookbooks

Hello,

We have to admit that there are a TONE of cookbooks out there. Now with the no gluten, lactose intolerent, veganism and so on, one can be overwhelmed by the amount of choices offered on the market.
I love cookbooks but I have a hard time following recipes if it is not baking recipes. I tend to forget one element, remove one ingredient or add my own ingredients or just transform the whole recipe into something else. Yet, there are a couple of books I would like to have my hands on and hopefully try those beautiful pictured recipes.
Here is a list of the books I have my eyes on:



 Tia Mowry;Whole New You: How Real Food Transfomrs Your Life, for a Healthier, More Gorgeous You
I grew up watching "Sisters, Sisters" and I have somewhat followed Tia's career and when I saw she had a cooking show and a book, I wanted to get it. It says March 14, 2017 on the Amazon website. Maybe I will wait to see the reviews before purchasing it.



Chrissy Teigen; Cravings; Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat
The reviews are amazing and it seems to be a lot of hearty meal and feel good food. I really want to have this one and try the recipes out



Ayesha Curry; The Seasoned Life: Food, Family, Faith, and the Joy of Eating Well
I like following her on instagram and watching snippets of her life and her cooking. She makes cooking fun and I am just curious to see wha this book has to offer. Maybe I will visit my local "Chapters Indigo" to leaf through the book before spending money on it. 




 Mimi Ikon; Mimi's Healthy and Delicious Cookbook
I do follow Mimi Ikonn on Youtube and there are a couple of things she has cooked which were very simple that I would like to try home. I like simple and this could fit in that category.  (picture from her website)




Marilou, 3 Fois par Jour: Tome 1 et Tome 2. 
I discovered this magazine recently and I love the way it is currated. Visiting their website, I saw that they had two cookbooks out and I am really interested to see what it is all about. I know there is already a website with multiple recipies in it but to have a physical book to look at, see beautiful pictures and get inspiration from is always more exciting. I might get one of the Tomes and see if it was worth it. 
(picture from their website) 



Xoxo

Monday, February 20, 2017

White kidney beans

Hello,

I was craving a taste from my childhood. I wanted to eat beans the way my mum was making it and I had all the necessary ingredient. I remember that we would have the beans with rice and they would have different kind of meat in the bean sauce.
Sometimes, with my sister, we would eat the beans with bread instead just to make it different. Just to say that this dish is versatile. You can have it with rice, plantains, bread and be creative.

Here is how I make my beans

 These are the beans I get from the market

 I boil them with spices; I added paprika, seasoned salt and pepper. I want it to soften but not too much because I will have to cook it afterward with my tomato sauce. 

 For my tomato sauce. Not shown here is tomato paste and seasoned salt

 I cook the veggies in vegetable oil and I add my spices so it all cooks together

 I could not find my can opener so my old skills from Africa came handy. I opened it with a kitchen knife

 I added smoked pork to my tomato sauce to have that smoked flavor 

 I let the tomato sauce cook for 10 minutes and I add it to my kidney pot 


 I added the smoked pork as well and I let it all cook for a good 30 minutes. If need a little more. I want the beans to be soft and the tomatoes to cook. 

Final result!!! I had it with plantains and brown rice. I was a happy camper I would say!!

Xoxo

Monday, February 13, 2017

Cooking

Hello,

When I was younger, I never enjoyed cooking. My mum and I never saw eye to eye on the cooking subject. I had to cook on weekends and holidays. I loved to eat but the cooking part was not my thing. I did not mind baking though. It was fun and the final product was always satisfying.
But if you know African food, you would know that it takes a while to prep, even longer to make and forever to cook. Yet, my mum wanted to make sure that I was not going to be eating out of a can or frozen diners when I left the family nest. Now I understand it.
These days when I want to make an African dish that I love and cannot remember how to, she is the first person I call. I have now made more African dishes than I thought I could, thanks to my mum even miles and miles away. I still have mix feelings about cooking though.
Nowadays, I use it to relax and I like to know what goes into my food. With all this eating healthy and right, it is always better to cook your own food and it saves you some money. However, having someone else make me my favorite dish, is still way better than me getting into the kitchen.

To more meals and baking for 2017!!!!
xoxo
 Beignets or Puff Puff depending on which part of the world you're from

Fried plantains, wild rice with Pondu (cassava leaves)

Chocolate cake I made for one of my birthdays a couple years back. 

Tortellini in cream sauce with bell peppers

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Portobello Mushrooms

Hello,

I was looking for a recipe for portobello mushrooms burgers and I found one but I have a hard time following recipes so I made it my own. I wanted it to be quick and easy so here what i did.

 I washed my mushrooms and placed them on a baking tray

 I mixed olive oil +thyme+season salt+chili pepper+oregano
Here you can be as creative as you want and mix whatever you like

 I coated my mushrooms on both sides with the mix


On the side, I cut half a sweet potato I had laying around and seasoned it with paprika, season salt, chili pepper and olive oil.

I placed my sweet potatoes and mushrooms in the oven at 350 F
I have to say, make your sweet potatoes first because they take some time to cook. You might have all the veggies ready and your sweet potatoes still cooking (that is what happened to me)

 Prep any veggies you would like to cook. I had red bell pepper, onion, green onion, ginger, garlic and shallot



You want your mushrooms to cook through. There will be water coming out of it and I let it cook till a lot of that water evaporated. Still, we don't want our mushrooms to by "dry".

 As per usual, I added kale and green beans I had from the previous day into my veggie mix.

Voila, the final product. I used the mushrooms as burger buns and stuffed it with my veggie mix.
For your veggies, you want your onions and garlic to caramelize well. They give an added flavor to the whole meal. I really enjoyed it and will surely make it again.

xoxo