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I was having a conversation with a wise woman once. We were talking about nutrition, good food, bad food, etc. She became frustrated by all my mention of macro/micronutrients, minerals, antioxidants, polyunsaturated fats, and amino acids. She then shared her perspectve: “If I wanna figure out wether something’s good for me or not, I just imagine smooshing it into my face. If I think that would feel nice then it’s probably good for me.” – J. Balfe

So we experimented…

:::View Photos:::

Hello everyone!

Today we made the most delicious foods! We had beans and sofrito, rice, bok-choy and tostones (flattened and fried plantains). I made a lot of the tostones and they’re soooooo delicious. It was a cuban style lunch and now I wish I could have it every lunch.

But before lunch we had a discussion lead by Avital and ended up playing this game where everyone got an envelope with money, a grocery list and a family member who needed a certain food (whether it be because of dietary restrictions or personal taste). We had to go around to all the adults different stores and buy the food or get a ‘job’ if we needed more money to pay for our food.  At one of the stores you’d have to pay bus money to get there too, which made everything harder. Overall, I think it was my favorite exercise we did. It was the most entertaining and easiest to learn from because it was more hands on.

I also learned that growers of bananas are grossly underpaid. Not cool.

Then after lunch we talked about using food as medicine and looked at, and tried, a bunch of tinctures. I had to run before we got to finish that lesson which I’m sad about because I wanted to learn more about herbalism.

Can’t wait for tomorrow!

~Ab

today for lunch, we made… thug nug/snuggle thug tacos. get ready.

INGREDIENTS:

soft tacos (we used either corn, whole wheat, or amaranth/flax tortillas)

avocado

greens (chard, kale, spinach, beet greens, dandelion greens– whatever you wanna use!)

cilantro

lime lime and more lime

chopped scallions

for the THUG NUGS:

tempeh (fermented soy protein)

soy sauce/tamari

sriracha chili sauce (or some sort of hot sauce)

nutritional yeast

other options to add:

kimchi

miso paste

optional:

a touch of molasses/honey/maple syrup

ginger

gluten-free THUG NUGS:

substitute cocuonut oil for soy sauce!

for the GUACAMOLE:

ripe ripe ripe avocado

diced raw garlic

diced red onion

plenty of salt, peppa, lime/lemon

METHOD:

get all your taco toppings prepped: chop the scallions and cilantro and put in separate bowls.

either slice the avocado or make guacamole! (mix all ingredients together. pretty simple!)

slice limes into squeezable sections and put in a separate bowl

*

make the greens- because the tacos are incredibly flavorful full of lots of different mouth sensations, it’s nice to make the greens pretty simple. you can either steam them or sautée them. today, we sauteéd them with a touch of ghee and garlic, salt and pepper.

*

make the thug nugs!

chop tempeh blocks into little bite sized squares (avital says the length of your fingernail)

put the blocks into a bowl or container

pour soy sauce/tamari over tempeh (don’t drench them but be liberal)– here’s where the coconut oil comes in if yer gluten-free

scoop of chili sauce for spice

spoonful or honey/molasses/maple syrup if you’re using it

SHAKE IT UP! use a bowl/container with a top if possible so you can really coat the tempeh and get errything mixed up.

once you’ve shaken it, shake some nutritional yeast all over the marinated tempeh. it acts as a sort of batter for frying and also has such a yummy, salty, almost parmesan-cheesy flavor (nut’l. yeast is an AWESOME substitute for parmesan cheese and is delicious over soups, greens, and popcorn, too!)

shake again.

get a pan hot with ghee, butter, or olive oil. fry those nugs up! give ’em time- it’s worth the wait to get the nugs nice and crispy on all four sides. while you cook them, you can put a top on the pan for a bit, but keep an eye on them. flip them after 3-4 minutes or once they’re nice  and brown.

put thug nugs on a serving plate.

*

heat up the tortillas either in a dry pan or right on your burner- careful! they can burn quick.

ok. time to make yer darn tacos.

using all the prepped ingredients, scoop, squeeze, lather, sprinkle! (ex: i like to put guacamole/avocado/miso on the bottom, then a layer of greens, then 3-4 snuggle thugs, then kimchi, cilantro and scallions over the top as a garnish. then LIMEEE LIKE WOAHHH)

do it how YOU like it!

***IMPORTANT: ONCE THE THUG NUGS ARE IN THE TACO, THEY BECOME SNUGGLE THUGS***

we love these tacos. you can do pretty much whatever you like with them. no avocados? cook up some lentils as a base! add raw shaved beets, sauteéd mushrooms, fresh diced tomato… 🙂

Today, lunch was on the farm. Brittany was a wonderful host. She also has a wonderful home.  We picked fresh herbs and greens to supplement our salad, including edible flowers (beautiful and yummy!)

SALAD:

:

lettuces (whatever you can get your hands on– romaine, green leaf, red leaf, arugula– using raw bok choi or baby kale is real nice too although we didn’t have that today)

herbs (fun options for exuberant flavas are: parsely, dill, cilantro, nasturtium, etc!)

raw shaved beets (raw shaved carrots, zucchini are fun too!)

wash. dry. chop. shaved beets can be grated with a cheese grater or with a julienne- no need to peel!

mix up in a big bowl.

SALAD DRESSING:

olive oil

apple cider vinegar

rice vinegar

diced garlic

lemon/lime

spicy brown mustard/horseradish

chopped parsely

touch o’ honey

(we didn’t have miso paste, but it is AWESOME in dressing as it creates a nice consistency and a little bit goes a long way!)

either shake all ingredients up in jar with a lid or food process! we didn’t use any sort of official measurements, but do taste before you dress!

dress the salad and toss it up!

QUINOA:

the quinoa was a big hit today. i will let someone who actually made it give the details! avital?  abbye?

GRILLED VEGGIES:

ingredients:

zucchini

summer squash

red and white onions

olive oil

rice vinegar

garlic

METHOD:

leave onions whole or cut in half (after peeling off skin)

chop squash and zucchini in half vertically (this makes them thinner and so they cook quicker)

dice da garlic. toss it in the olive oil. pour in rice vinegar. taste it. we all got different preferences. do what you like. using your hands or a pastry brush (ooo fancy! but helpful if you got it!) lightly coat  the zucchini and squash with the mixture. we grilled them outside, which got them nice and smoky and lightly charred. if you don’t have a grill or it’s winter, roasting is another great option! (in the winter, it’s nice to use root veggies like carrots, potatoes, beets. you can also roast whole cloves of garlic and then squirt them over the veggies or bread when they come out of the oven)

Brittany made pork meatballs from her pigs on the farm!

we also tried some fancy jamón ibérico from provisions (an awesome wine/cheese store at which avital works). jamón ibérico is a type of cured ham  from Spain. i clearly don’t know much about it. anyone care to elaborate?

After learning about proteins, fats, and carbohydrates in the morning, we cooked ’em!

RICE:

ingredients:

green peppers

onions

turmeric

paprika

salt

peppa

olive oil

short grain brown rice

METHOD:

we got the oil nice and hot. we sauteéd the onion and green pepper in the oil, softening it and bringing out the flavor. turmeric, paprika (some shakes- these spices are flavorful but not too overpowering).

we threw in da rice, toasting it for a minute so our now flavored oil penetrated the rice. rice is good with a 2:1 ratio (aka one cup rice, 2 cups water/broth). made sure it didn’t burn by constantly stirring. threw in the water. stirred, let boil, then turned the heat down so it could simmer. (brown rice can take up to 50 minutes to cook, but if you soak it in water the day before you cook it, it actually cooks much faster and we can get more nutrients from it).

Keeping an eye on it, we tried it, salted, peppered, spiced a bit more. boom. yum rice. if your rice is done taste/texture-wise, but there’s still water in the pot, take the top off! water evaporates!

COLLLLLLARDS:

garlic

salt

pepper

lime

olive oil

collard greens duh

METHOD:

we washed the collards and separated the stems from the leaves. (you can do this by either slicing down either side of the stem with a knife or just pulling the leaves off with your hands. we separated the stems from the leaves because the stems take a bit longer to cook. we chopped the stems up into bite sized pieces, as well as the leaves.

We got some olive oil hot in a pan and put diced garlic it. careful to keep an eye on hot garlic! it burns easily and a lot of people don’t like the taste of burnt garlic. after sauteéing the oil with the garlic, we put the stems in first. we let ’em cook for a  couple minutes, then added the leaves. we didn’t want to use too much oil as it can make the greens soggy and a little heavy tasting, so we sped up the cooking process by putting some tap water in the pan and putting the top on (essentially steaming it a bit). steaming greens also helps to keep more nutrients in the greens and in our bodddiiess. we tasted the greens, making sure they were nice and cooked through for taste but not soggy. like the rice, if the greens are done cooking but there’s still water in the pan, take the top off! it’ll evaporate. lime, salt, pepper. simple, smooth, light.

lentils:

JONNNAAHHHHH?!?!?

delicious. please tell us.

after lunch, we realized that we had made a completely vegan meal that was satisfying and diverse in flava-flav and texture and color!

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