Saturday, May 10, 2008

Grain Free Sweet Potato Almond Butter Bread

A few weeks ago Simply…Gluten Free posted a recipe for grain free muffins, and then grain free zucchini bread. Then I was bopping around and I found Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried’s recipe for sweet potato pitas. My boyfriend and I are both trying to cut carbs and I thought the idea of a grain free bread-type product sounded really interesting.

I’ve been wanting to try to grain-free peanut butter banana muffins, but I’m still not sure if I’m really allergic to them, and I’m not ready to try just yet, I was looking for an alternative fruit. The grain-free zucchini bread looked great until I ran the nutrition: with the almond butter and almond meal it ended up being pretty high calorie and fat. A comment on the muffin post made me think of pumpkin, but since it’s not pumpkin season, that was out. After seeing the sweet potato pitas, a plan began to form in my mind.

When I was at Trader Joe’s, deliberating in the nut aisle, I opted for almond butter because no one else in my house will use it and contaminate the rest of the jar with bread knives and such. With these recipes all open in my Firefox tabs and with my previous meringue research in mind, I created this Grain Free Sweet Potato Almond Butter Bread.

4 eggs- separated
1tsp cream of tartar
¾ creamy almond butter
2 small sweet potatoes, steamed and skinned
1 Tbsp agave syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1 Tbsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
2 Tbsp NutriBiotic rice protein powder (optional)*

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Prepare a loaf pan with greased parchment paper or wax paper.

In a large mixing bowl beat egg whites and cream of tartar with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form

In a second bowl beat the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Add almond butter, sliced sweet potato, agave syrup, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix until well blended.

Take a spoonful of egg whites and mix into sweet potato mixture. Mix sweet potato mixture into the egg whites and fold in well, until there are no white streaks.

Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, until slightly brown on the sides and puffy on top. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and paper and let cool on a rack.

So far everybody in my house has liked it, and they’re a hard crowd to please when it comes to trying new foods. And it’s a really pretty color!

*I added this to add a little extra nutrition.

†A special thanks to Simply…Gluten Free and Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried. You ladies are great!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Tilapia on a Whim

Last weekend, while watching TV, my boyfriend asked me what tilapia was. He had read in his Flex magazine that some professional body builder was helping to train another and he recommended eating lots of tilapia. So naturally, my boyfriend wants to try tilapia too.

I did a little web research and learned that tilapia is not only on the “safe” list, it’s low calorie, high in protein and low in fat compared to, say, sea bass or tuna.

Never one to turn down a challenge I decided to give it a shot. I thought about what would be fairly fool proof, in terms of my boyfriend trying new foods: nothing fancy or spicy, and what ingredients I already had at home: the end of a bottle of white wine from my last seafood project.

On the way home I stopped at the local grocery, grabbed what looked good and threw this together.

2 fillets Tilapia
1 medium Vidalia or yellow Onion, sliced
2 cloves Garlic, sliced
1 Tomato, diced
3 sprigs fresh Rosemary, partially chopped
White Whine
Olive Oil
Salt and Fresh Pepper

Wash the tilapia and lay on a plate. Sprinkle salt, fresh ground pepper and chopped rosemary over fish. Clean and slice garlic and onions. Sautee garlic, onions and rosemary with salt and pepper until onions are translucent. Push onions to sides of pan, lay tilapia fillets in pan to sear on one side. After 3 minutes flip fillets and cover with onions. Add diced tomato and enough white wine to cover bottom of pan. Cover and cooked until fish is cooked through, about 7 minutes.

We had this with brown rice. I started the rice before I started to prepare the fish and they were done at just about the same time.

My boyfriend really liked it, the only thing that slipped my mind in the mad-dash for groceries was the lemon, luckily we always have limes in the refrigerator. I expect I’ll be making tilapia in ever more creative ways in the future.