Thursday, October 31, 2019

Bloody Eyeball Fruit Salad

Bloody Eyeball Fruit Salad

Happy Halloween! 👁 👁
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These are supposed to look like pairs of bloody eyeballs.

I got this idea from Pinterest and thought it was perfect to use up the strawberries and blueberries I had in my freezer. Although I think people use berry jelly or jam for the blood and that looks more "bloody" in my opinion.

I used a can of lychee.  It comes already peeled and seeded, preserved in a light syrup of water, sugar, and citric acid. The can had 17 lychee, enough to make eight pairs of eyes.  I ate the extra one.

I stuffed each lychee with a blueberry then got started with the "blood". I initially tried mashing it with a wooden mortar and pestle.  The consistency was like a slush.  I continued with the rest of the strawberries, but found it difficult to smash in the same manner as it had defrosted further.

I put the un-smashed strawberries into my blender and made a puree.  This was sufficient and I was okay with the way it looked.  I did not add any additional sweetener to the puree since the lychee was already sweet from the syrup.

Ingredients:
1 can Lychee
16 Blueberries (more or less depending on how many lychee are in the can)
1 cup Strawberries

Instructions:
1) Drain lychee
2) Stuff each lychee with a blueberry
3) Puree strawberries in blender
4) Pour strawberry puree over "eyeballs"

IG post of this video: Bloody Eyeball Fruit Salad

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Veggie Skull Platter




The inspiration for this platter came from a post I saw on Pinterest while browsing through Halloween themed food.

The original post was made on a blog by Kristi who is a vegan mom.  Her websites are https://www.therightonmom.com/ and mommyonthemoney.com.

I have to say that I am not a vegan and don’t intend to become one in the future. But I like to view vegan and vegetarian content for inspiration to keep vegetables exciting. I recently wrote a post  about why I try to eat more vegetables.  You can read it here: Inspiration

I went to the grocery store to purchase a variety of vegetables for my platter.  The most important thing was the cauliflower, which is the star of the platter. I got a head of cauliflower, baby carrots, broccoli, tomatoes, and peppers.

I rinsed all the vegetables and got them ready to assemble.  I needed to see the picture again and did an internet search for "skull vegetable platter".  I found out that Kristi actually had step-by-step instructions on how to put the cauliflower skull together. Wonderful! But she used two heads of cauliflower and I only bought one.  So I winged it!

Here is the link to Kristi's page for the Halloween Veggie Platter - Cauliflower Skull tutorial with step-by-step pictures and instructions: https://www.therightonmom.com/2013/10/halloween-veggie-platter-cauliflower.html

Kristi's original looks amazing! My version doesn't compare.  Thank you for the great idea!

IG post of the video for my version: Veggie Skull Platter

Pictured above and below are my version.


Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Cucumber Avocado Tomato Salad



Cucumber Avocado Tomato Salad

I first tried this salad at a cooking class that I took in Puerto Rico.  I don't know if it's necessarily a Puerto Rican salad or if our instructor just put some things together that were in season.

I booked the cooking class through Airbnb. It was hosted by a woman named Nivea, who met us at the local market called Plaza del Mercado de Santurce.

She gave us some history of how this market became the meeting place for the people of the area, provided an extensive explanation of the different fruits and vegetables, and treated us to some frozen Puerto Rican limber treats. 

She took us back to her apartment, where she showed us how to make this fresh cucumber, avocado, tomato salad, chicken with beans and pumpkin stew, and tostones with a mayo ketchup pique sauce. Everything was delicious. 

Nivea served dessert, which was espresso and preserved sweetened papaya with a fresh local goat cheese crumble. The cheese was yummy, but the papaya was way to sweet for my taste.

Overall, I would recommend this tour. We had a great time and it was an authentic experience.

If you're interested, here's the link to the class I took: Farmer's Market & Cooking With Nivea 

Ingredients:
2 Cups of Tomatoes
1 Cucumber
1 Avocado
Olive Oil (to taste)
Ground Pepper (to taste)
Salt (to taste)
2 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley

Instructions:
1) Chop tomatoes, cucumber, and avocado into bite size pieces. Toss.
2) Add olive oil, ground pepper, salt to taste. Toss.
3) Chop Parsley and toss. Toss.
4) Serve.

IG post of this video: Cucumber Avocado Tomato Salad

Monday, October 28, 2019

Dehydrated Flaxmeal Crackers

Dehydrated Flaxmeal Crackers

Both of my parents and all of my grandparents have high blood pressure.  It is hereditary and I have this issue myself.  Before trying medication, I asked my doctor, who is a Naturopathic physician, to recommended things that I could change with my diet and lifestyle.  I used to smoke cigarettes and quit so that was one less thing to worry about.  

Amongst other things, my doctor recommended that I have a couple tablespoons worth of flax meal daily as it helps regulate blood pressure.  I was told that having the meal is better than the whole seeds. This allows your body to better absorb the nutrients.

A couple of ways to have flaxmeal are to sprinkle it over your food or put it in your smoothie.  I wasn't drinking many smoothies, so that didn't work for me.  I tried sprinkling it over my food, but that made it feel like I was eating saw dust.

That's when I thought of crackers.  This idea is not new.  It has been around for a long time.  So when I did an internet search, it returned many different versions.  I liked this one the best.

You can also modify this recipe by adding other seeds such as chia, substituting nutritional yeast for the Parmesan or adding in some additional spices. Create a variation that suits you.

Ingredients:
1 cup Flaxmeal
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons Garlic powder
1 dash of Dried parsley
1/2 cup Water

Instructions:
1) Mix dry ingredients well
2) Add water and mix well
3) Set a sheet of plastic wrap on your workspace
4) Place a few spoonfuls of mixture on the plastic wrap and cover with another sheet of plastic wrap.  This helps when transferring the cracker mix to your dehydrator. Work in small batches, it's easier to manage.
5) Dehydrate at 115 degrees for about 18 hours or until dry and crispy.

IG: @abundanceofvegetables
IG post of this video: Dehydrated Flaxmeal Crackers

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Air Fried Ranch Panko Chicken Tenders

This is my most popular cooking video to date. As I am typing, my post of this video on my Instagram account is at 3,438 views.

Air Fried Ranch Panko Chicken Tenders

Ingredients:
Chicken tenders
Ranch dressing
Panko (japanese breadcrumbs)
Avocado oil spray

Instructions:
1) Defrost the desired amount of chicken tenderloins.
2) Toss chicken in ranch dressing.
3) Pour panko into a pan.
4) Roll ranch coated chicken in panko.
5) Arrange panko rolled chicken into air fryer pan, making sure not to overlap for even cooking.
6) Cook at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

IG: @abundanceofvegetables
IG post of this video: Air Fried Ranch Panko Chicken Tenders

My Inspiration for Abundance of Vegetables


I enjoy food and being creative with it. I am NOT a cooking professional. I do it for fun and love sharing my joy for it.

I started my focus on eating an abundance of vegetables in mid 2019 after a recommendation by my doctor, who is a Naturopathic physician.

I had an alarming cholesterol rate over 200 points. My Dr. recommended that I eat an abundance of vegetables with a little bit of protein, avoid processed foods, gluten, dairy and alcohol. I didn't completely follow the rules, but I did make a conscious effort to increase my vegetable intake. A month later, my cholesterol was normal.

I have taken the following hands-on cooking classes:

So much fun! I love!

Update - December 2019: My cholesterol is elevated again. 😐👊  Perhaps this is due to all the holiday gorging and drinking, etc.  I need to try harder, I know.

Update - February 2020: My cholesterol is back to normal.  I have been taking a red rice yeast supplement. 

Update - September 2020: My overall cholesterol is good at 176.  The ideal level is less than 200 points. However, my triglycerides are elevated.  I don’t normally eat a lot of sweets or fruits and had issues with this before. My doctor thinks it’s because it’s hereditary and prescribed a high quality fish oil supplement to assist me with this.

Update - October 2020: My overall cholesterol is excellent at 169.  Additionally, my triglycerides, HDL, LDL , and non-HDL are all in check and in healthy ranges.  Fuck yah!  I've had a horrible October, but at least I have some good news now here. 👌

IG: @abundanceofvegetables 

YouTube: /UCEdRMqDpfpZPYDKemywASew?view_as=subscriber 

Monday, October 7, 2019

Brussels Sprouts with Seaweed and Jalapeno Aioli

Brussels Sprouts with Seaweed and Jalapeno Aioli

I recently dined at an Italian restaurant in Honolulu called Vino.  One of the dishes we tried was the Brussels Sprouts. The sprouts were tender on the inside with a crispy outside, tossed in a konbu aioli with pistachio nuts and garnished with pickled red jalapenos. Delicious!

You can view Vino's menu at the link here: https://vinohawaii.com/

It inspired me to try making a seaweed aioli with roasted seaweed snacks because I have those at home for snacks.  I trimmed, boiled, and airfried the sprouts with some olive oil.   

I overcooked the Brussels sprouts 😒The flavor was good, but I boiled them a little too long before throwing them in the airfryer. So the texture was too soft.

🥬 🌊
Ingredients:
Brussels sprouts
Olive oil
Mayonnaise
Seaweed snacks
Jalapeño

Vino's dish was way better, of course. I had never thought to put seaweed with Brussels sprouts beforehand. The red, pickled jalapeño in Vino’s dish also added a wonderful pop of color and flavor.


IG: @abundanceofvegetables
IG post of this video: Brussels Sprouts with Seaweed