I posted this photo on Twitter yesterday, and had several inquiries. What is it, and what's the recipe? It's taco meat over black rice with fresh pico de gallo. It is so easy to make, and very tasty.
How to cook black rice
Measure your rice, add water, swish it around the pot, and roll the grains between your fingers. Rinse. Do this several times. The water will be dark purple.
If you've never made rice (not instant) on the stove top before, once it's rinsed, put fresh water in the pot; covering the rice. Stick your finger in the water. The distance from the rice to the top of the water should be at least up to the first knuckle. Cook the black rice on the stove top on low to low-medium heat.
Cooking time varies so keep an eye on your rice. On the stove top it takes 25 to 30 minutes. My rice pot, a Zojirushi, cooks rice in 40 minutes.
Use quinoa, brown, red or yellow rice if you'd prefer. I love white rice, but not for this dish.
Pico de gallo recipe
1 Bunch celantro
1 Large onion
8 plum tomatoes
Garlic fresh or powder to taste
Black pepper to taste
Salt to taste
2 or 3 limes to taste
As you see, I make pico de gallo on a large scale. My kids and I absolutely love it, so I make enough to get us through any leftover tacos. Even with this amount it is eaten by night's end. Nonetheless, reduce the amounts if you don't need as much.
Begin the pico de gallo as soon as you start the rice. Stripping the cilantro leaves takes time, and you don't want a bowl full of stems. Coarsely chop the cilantro once the leaves are stripped. Chop the onions and tomatoes.
Press the limes against the counter and roll them. This helps release the juice from the membranes. Cut the lime in half and use a lime press for the juice. Toss tomatoes, onions, and cilantro. Add juice, garlic, black pepper, and salt to taste.
Ground beef, ground turkey or shredded pork
2 lb. ground beef
One pack taco seasoning
1 cup of water
Once again, cut the beef in half if you don't need as much. Brown your beef. Add water and seasoning. Use the shredded pork or ground turkey if you'd rather.
Make your plate
Once everything is cooked add it to the plate. Start with the rice and beef. Add shredded cheese to taste. I used cheddar cheese, but use what you like or what's on hand. Top with pico de gallo.
Let me begin: I did not weigh the portions of the baked spaghetti squash bowl recipe. The link for the spaghetti squash nutritional data is below. Read your pasta sauce labels if you're use jarred or canned sauce.
Several years ago, I reduced the amount of pasta I eat because of gluten, and because I can't eat a single serving. Although tons of products are gluten free I still prefer to minimize certain grains.
Anyhow, I tried spaghetti squash a few years ago, but I didn't care for it. It had a much better consistency, and texture than I imagined, but I found it very boring.
However, things change, and I decided to give spaghetti squash another shot with some left over meat sauce. I purchased a small to medium spaghetti squash from my local H-Mart. It was just under $7, and made a nice meal out of it.
Spaghetti squash nutritional data
Make and bake your spaghetti squash bowl instructions
I probably should have wiped off the outside of the squash, but now that I think of it, I know I didn't. However, it didn't kill me so I'll just go with the flow.
Hot! Caliente! Chaud!
I can not express this enough, but this bad boy is HOT! when it comes out of the oven. Remove the baking pan carefully, and place the squash bowl on a plate.
Use a fork to separate the "spaghetti" from the rind. It should be tender, but still hold together well. Be careful not to splash yourself with the sauce when pulling it apart.
If you don't eat pasta sauce try topping your spaghetti squash bowl with roasted tomatoes.
There are tons of easy no-bake chocolate protein cookies, but they all add extras that I don't want to add to my cookies. Instead I do a super easy chocolate that is great for days when I need extra carbohydrates.
There is no cooking involved what-so-ever. There are only five ingredients, and a very tasty treat to add to a bland diet. Several other no-bake chocolate protein cookie recipes call for coconut chips or vanilla extract, but I want an easy, fast recipe.
Ingredients for no-bake chocolate Protein cookies: 6 to 8 cookies
Instructions: prep time five minutes
Pour oats into a mixing bowl. Mix until semi-moist. Crumble banana into mixture then mash/mix with fork. The oats will begin to stick. Add honey, and protein powder. Pour hot water in a little at a time until reaching your preferred consistency.
Depending on water, the cookies will be moist, or nearly gooey.
Spoon one cookie into Saran wrap, and form the cookie. Tie off Saran wrap and refrigerate. When it's time for a snack; take it along or eat it then.
Baked Alternative and Ingredient additions
After to speaking to a member at my gym about no-bake chocolate protein cookies he wanted to see what they would be like baked; so I did it.
***Baking instructions: Bake on 375* for eight to 10 minutes depending on size.
I like them both ways, and baking them is good if the consistency is too moist. Almond butter, peanut butter or crushed nuts are also a great addition if you don't have a nut allergy.
Please remember the macros listed are for the entire batch of cookies, and not for a single cookie. These numbers were found on www.myfitnesspal.com
With this contest prep, I changed my entire nutrition program, and feel great for it. I always eat higher amounts of food, but this time I changed my macronutrient ratios. I am eating higher carbohydrates, less fats, and moderate protein.
However, this morning I was having a problem deciding what to eat so I decided to eat my oats dry. No milk, water, coffee; nothing. Just plain.
It's not the first time I've done this, but instead I decided to throw in things that I had on hand to make a quick stove-top granola. I still ate it dry, but it was so much tastier.
Quick stove top granola ingredients
How to make quick stove top granola
Heat your skillet on low to medium heat, and spray with Pam. Add oats. and toast until brown. Then add almonds, flax seeds and apples. Sprinkle Splenda, and cinnamon to taste.
Raisins, pears, dried cranberries or blueberries also make a great addition, or drizzle honey over your granola. Add your preference of liquid if you don't want to eat it dry. Remember different foods change the macronutrient totals.
*** The photo to the left is not my granola. I was hungry and ate it before I could get a picture.
It's obvious from my photos and other websites that I am a bodybuilder. I compete in the figure division, which is softer than female bodybuilding and physique, but harder and more muscular than bikini.
Over the past few years, I haven't been able to eat broccoli or cauliflower. The sight of them make me feel a bit queasy. In it's place I eat more asparagus, but I prefer it peeled.
Ava Cowan's Chocolate French toast is a favorite among bodybuilding and figure competitors, but you do not have to be a bodybuilder to enjoy this French toast recipe.
Please remember, this is Ava Cowan's recipe. She is an IFBB Figure Pro and this recipe fits her dietary needs. If you prefer, change the French toast recipe for your own personal tastes.
I think the Chipotle-Rubbed Steak Wraps are very tasty and thought I'd share it with you. It is a South Beach diet recipe.
Are you looking for a way to add protein to you diet? If you are, check out the easiest way to eat more protein during breakfast.
How do you take your coffee? Anyone who knows me knows how much I love iced coffee, but the caloric splurge for a Frappuccino is a bit more than I want to spend.