Between attending classes, studying for classes, biking to classes, and thinking about classes, Marnina and I have had very little time to think about cooking. In the meantime, we are still alive and have not starved–a true accomplishment Ever since we moved to Brookline, Massachusetts, we have been invited over to new friends’ houses for meals more times than we can count. We have enjoyed several dozen types of challah’s (apple-pomegranate challah anyone???), and we have brought in the Jewish New Year with plenty of honey-infused food (carrot-japanese yam-apricot tzimmes anyone???). We actually made that tzimmes (we are very proud of it!), but for the most part, we have been thoroughly enjoying other people’s cooking since we moved here.
Archive for the ‘cumin’ Category
As noted many times before, we love spice (remember our Tandoori Cauliflower blogpost?) Whenever something tastes bland, we usually add some hot chili sauce known as sriracha, or we add some kind of spice to impart more heat. Many dishes that we are served at other people’s houses or in restaurants are too mild for our taste, which is one reason we enjoy Indian food. The generous use of spices ignites our tastebuds, and those first few bites are heaven. For these reasons, we were extremely excited when we were approached by Arora Creations, one of the top of the line retailers of authentic Indian Spices Blends. They were kind enough to send us a sampling of their line-up of organic spice blends. All of their blends are made from 100% pure spices, and they are vegetarian, gluten-free, sugar free, kosher, nut-free, contain no MSG and are non-irradiated. Many Indian packaged spice blends are very salty, so the low sodium content and absence of MSG was very appealing. These inexpensive Indian spice blend packets allow you to create unique homemade Indian dishes with relative ease. (more…)
We recently returned home from our global travels, and in many ways our trip was a gastronomic tour of Turkish and Israeli cuisine. We tried our best to sample as many mezes, main dishes, desserts, and other foods that we could fit into our stomachs within a 3-week time span. We were able to stay relatively svelte and fit thanks to walking an average of 8 miles each day. Our goal during the trip was to try all the authentic cultural foods that these two countries offer, and of course, to stay healthy. At times, Marnina was forced to expand her diet either because: 1) a Crohn’s-friendly dish was not available; 2) the language barrier caused confusion that led to Marnina biting into a food stuffed with seeds; or 3) she could not resist the temptation of ordering an authentic dish that contained some form of food that might upset her GI tract. However, thanks to proper plannning (over-the-counter medications, antibiotics, flushable wipes), Marnina was prepared for the worst. Luckily, neither of us got sick from the food and water in either country. It turns out that the water is unsafe to drink in Turkey (even for natives) so bottled water was incredibly cheap. (more…)
When limited to a restrictive diet, one must get creative with the foods that can be tolerated…digestively speaking. Eggs and most vegetables (cooked of course!) are usually tolerated by the average person with IBD. But despite the numerous ways of incorporating eggs as a main ingredient, the available dishes are not limitless. There are only so many times you can eat plain eggs, an omelet or a quiche. Eggs are extremely versatile, and so we wanted to reincarnate eggs as more than just a breakfast food. For this blogpost we want to focus on frittatas. A healthier alternative to a quiche, a frittata omits a pastry crust (high in saturated fats) and milk usually replaces cream. The frittata filling is also less custard-like, and has more of the consistency of a hardened omelet.
On a recent visit to our local supermarket, Marnina and I came to the conclusion that we were spending too much money for subpar produce and seafood. For months we had been bemoaning the produce and fish section of the supermarket (as well as the entire store in general), but for some reason we could not muster up the courage to switch our allegiance to a new supermarket. Every now and then we would supplement our shopping trips with some tastier-looking food stores such as Harris Teeter or Whole Foods, but we would do the bulk of our shopping at the less-than-appetizing local grocery store. We thought we were getting a better deal on our produce and other foods, but in reality, we were paying slightly lower prices for mediocre (and sometimes rotten) food. (more…)
In the IBD Guide to Eating Out, we mentioned that typical Indian restaurants in the U.S. serve many dishes that are oily, creamy, and incorporate lots of fat (and sodium as well). In general, individuals with IBD need to be conscientious of the amount of fats/oils in their food, and must also be aware of the amount of spices used. IBDers should know, however, that almost any recipe can be modified to fit their dietary preferences. There is always an IBD-friendly version of a dish. Here, we present you with an alternative to the Indian dish Palak Paneer (farmer’s cheese in a thick curry sauce based on pureed spinach) called Palak Tofu, a vegan twist to the normal recipe. It tastes very similar to Palak Paneer, but is healthier, less oily, and more protein rich. The dish is basically tofu cooked in curried spinach, a very healthy dish that goes well with some rice or naan. You will love the green color, and your house will smell like an Indian restaurant for hours afterward….what could be better?? (more…)
Before we enter into the world of spices, we want to give you a “SKEWER IBD” update. We have run about 45 miles so far and are less then $75 away from raising $4,000. We will be mailing a copy of The Foul Bowel to the winner of our blog giveaway, Allison Finn. Congratulations Allison!! Our fundraising isn’t over yet though. We still need your help and donations to really “stick a fork” in IBD. Please consider donating today (click here). We are currently the 3rd top fundraiser on our team! Thank you to those who have donated so far!! Also, as you may or may not know, the Jewish holiday Purim (ready more about it here) begins tomorrow night. We will be rocking some pretty awesome I Be a fooDie costumes that you won’t want to miss. Stay tuned for pictures (and to see us make a fool of ourselves…)
Now, back to SPICES! We love spice. When we cook we often do not use measuring instruments to measure out spices. Instead, we add spices almost by the handful to the point where the spice aroma lingers for hours afterward. We used to just double the prescribed amount of spice in a recipe, but now we just go by instinct and smell. I have been able to convince Marnina that spices can replace unhealthy ingredients, such as salt and sugar. For example, I literally dump cinnamon into my cream of brown rice every morning because cinnamon has a sweet and warm taste that can replace sugar or any sugar derivative. We mostly omit broth and seasoning mixes from our soups because of the high sodium content and replace them with extra spices. Some of our favorite ground spices are curry, coriander, ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and cumin, all of which happen to be spices featured in Indian cuisine. We have recently started using fresh ginger and garlic, and have noticed that the flavors provided by these fresh spices are more intense than the ground versions.