Thursday, July 29, 2010

Non-dairy eats!

Well since I started the challenge, I have taken out dairy in my diet. I have certainly doubted the benefit can refraining from some yummy cheese, yogurt and milk smoothies, I mean I practically have at least 2 or more dairy products a day! It was not easy, wait erase that, it was HARD to stay away from yogurt and cheese, but I definitely now feel and see the difference it made. No dairy has given me a no bloat, and more leaner belly area! (Don't worry, I will soon update you on how I did on this challenge on the next post).

But how about those creamy dishes we enjoy that requires milk and cheese in the ingredients? I found those dishes like a creamy pasta in alfredo sauce smothered in shredded parmigiano 

or the classic Paula Deen recipe of Chicken Georgia that has heaping amounts of cheese ssssoooooo hard to resist. 

So, naturally, I had to figure out how to have those creamy dishes the more healthier, non-dairy way. I love experimenting in the kitchen and these two dishes totally hit the spot when it comes to the creamy hearty food craving of mine. 

Coconut Ginger Chicken


3 Chicken breasts fat trimmed and cut into strips
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 chopped spanish onion
1 ginger sliced very thinly
1 zucchini cut in big cubes
3 or 4 green thai chilli peppers
1 bunch of cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon of Fish sauce
1 cup of Light coconut milk
1 cup of chicken broth

Obviously the star ingredient here is the coconut milk. I used this brand

But seriously, what makes this is the fish sauce... it stinks and it is strong but this stuff gives great flavour. You can definitely add it a little at a time, to your taste.

Here goes:

In a medium high heat wok or skillet, saute onions, garlic and ginger until onions are translucent. *It may be difficult to get super thin slices of ginger but get it thin as you can so the ginger flavour won't be too overpowering.*

Add the chicken and saute until it gets some golden brown bits and it's opaque.

Stir in the chicken broth and coconut milk. Let it simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add in the zucchini, chilli peppers and cilantro and simmer until the zucchini is easy to pierce with a  fork.

Mix in a few dashes of fish sauce to taste or 1 tablespoon if you are brave like me :)

Serve over cooked brown rice and enjoy!

I love love love the brothy creamy goodness in combination with the slightly crunchy mild flavour of the thin ginger slices. This is surely an experimental dish upgraded to the weekly dinner rotation!

And for those of you who can't live without some creamy pasta, here's a recipe you won't believe...

Creamy Shrimp Rotinni


1 bag of frozen easy peel shrimp, thawed and peeled
1/2 chopped onion
3 cloves of chopped garlic
1 celery stalk diced
1 zucchini diced
1 orange bell pepper diced
1 red bell pepper diced
1 bunch of flat leaf parsley chopped
1 teaspoon of paprika
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 to 2 cups of soy milk
1 cup of chicken broth
1/2 lemon juice and zest
1 tablespoon of flour
1 box of whole wheat rotinni pasta cooked according to package directions
Salt and pepper to taste

Whew, seems like a lot of ingredients to prep but I swear it's all worth it!

Sear the shrimp in medium high heat pan with olive oil. Once the shrimp has turned pink and opaque, or the tail has curled, take it out of the pan. Set aside.

Add a tiny bit more olive oil and saute the onions, garlic and celery until translucent in the same pan.

Add in the zucchini and the bell peppers and saute until tender.

Sprinkle the paprika and cayenne pepper and mix it all together with the veggies.

Pour in the soy milk and broth and scrape any bits in the bottom of the pan. Let it boil then turn down the heat to simmer for 5 minutes.

Sprinkle in the flour to thicken the sauce and mix. Add in as much as two teaspoons of flour for desired creaminess. If it becomes too thick it coats a wooden spoon, you can stir in a little more soy milk.

Add the lemon juice, zest and parsley and stir to bring the sauce together.

Finally, mix the cooked rotinni in the sauce.

And there you go! A creamy dairy-less pasta to satisfy our cravings...

If you try any of these recipes, don't hesitate to give me a shout! My recipe writing skills aren't in the professional level yet, so ask away if anything confuses you. 

And of course, I would love to know if you have any delicious non-dairy recipes you have up your sleeve!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Word Wednesdays

I must confess that I get carried away in scripture sometimes. I try to link it to other passages, find deeper meanings. I have always been smart and top 3 of my class so I automatically assume that "I get it".....
But I must confess that my wisdom has been a weakness to me as I have been looking too far beyond the main point and missing the point all together.


In AA we have a slogan called "KISS" 

Keep It Simple Stupid! 

In this point in my life being a Christian is about Life. Not the life on earth but eternal life. Have you felt that evrything this life on earth is absolutly worthless compared to eternal life?

This is very simple but very serious.

I pray,

Forgive me of my sins as they are many. help us forgive others. may His peace, love, grace, and strength be in us as we are weak without Him. May we rely on His wisdom and not our own. May the spirit guide and convict us to walk in eternal life.

Love you in Jesus Christ God bless


Sunday, July 18, 2010

and You are 2...

It was only 2 years ago when you were this tiny

And when you turned ONE, we thought boy, you have grown so big!

Last Tuesday, you turned TWO... and we said we won't throw you a big party but our mini one was a blast.

You were playing like a big girl keeping up with your big buddy Ali, who came to celebrate your big day with you.

And oh my, what's this? A big red bike for a birthday gift! Oh our baby has grown...

Mommy of course just had to whip something up for the big birthday backyard dinner... 

Which you devoured no problem...

And what's a birthday without a cake?

You felt special when we sang "Happy Birthday To YOU"... but you needed some help with blowing the candles part...

But mostly, you just couldn't wait to dig in...

You might be walking, talking and acting like a little kid but you still our little baby even though you're not so little anymore....

We LOVE you our DD...


Mommy and Daddy

Saturday, July 10, 2010


My DD's almost 2! She'll be turning TWO this tuesday coming, and instead of a birthday party that I oh so carefully planned...

We decided to give ourselves a break from hectic party arrangements and go to zoo instead. My DD loves animals: from her collection of stuffed ones to our kitties and her Nana's puppy. She can pretty much name a common animal (along with what sound it makes) once she sees it. 

So this morning, myself, hubby, DD and her Nana took a 20 minute trip to the Toronto Zoo.

First stop was Polar Bears! We came just right on feeding and meet the zookeeper time.

This was was keeping cool doing a backstroke...

and I this one was trying to get a tan :p

while this one was being smart and got a good spot right in front of the zookeeper who fed them fish.

Boy was it hot under the sun!!! Thank God, the heat wave broke the day before...

Then, we went through the Indo-Malayan section of the zoo, where I saw animals more familiar to me (being born in the Philippines and all). Lots of icky lizards and humongous snakes here, which I didn't take pictures of because I don't particularly like them.

But these cute little and not-so-little Orangutans are adorable! 

DD liked their habitat because it was a huge jungle gym full of fun stuff and toys.

I had to take a pic of this because DD has a thing for frogs like her Grandpa.

This tiger was fast asleep... while the other ones were hiding behind rocks :(

They had to separate the girl and boy animals this year because they don't want them to mate.

We walked on this really cool boardwalk going up and around a hill with exhibits and habitats around us.

Apparently I have a habitat of my own... Yes, my real first name is Savannah.

Peacocks gone wild! This particular one walked in front of me right after I took this picture of DD and her Nana...

Don't worry I didn't get pecked on.

This elephant was totally showboating... too bad the three huge elephants scared my poor DD away.

My DD was holding on tight to my hubby with her eyes closed :(

But she got into a better mood riding this hippo...

The real thing was enormous!

I really felt like I was in Africa in this heat.

My hubby thought it would be fun to jump over the equator with my DD. Then, what do you know, the rest of the people behind us did the same after.

This is actually a hollow tree on the ground. 

Which animal does not belong? I'm guessing the goose, lol.

Monkey butt!!! LOL!

This poor boy giraffe is separated from his girlfriends :(

We were getting too hot and tired so we hopped on the train that took us through the whole Zoo!

While on the tour, my DD decided she wanted to go to the water park to cool off.

I had to run after her the whole time! I'm counting it as my workout for the day.

She liked marching around...

But mostly running through and around the sprinklers...

Man this place was packed.

Soon we left to get some popsicles and headed to the Kid's Zoo exhibit. It was mostly petting zoo kind of animals in there. No pictures were taken because all four of us were to busy licking Triple Rockets.

I wanted my DD to ride on the Animal Carousel with me...

Too bad she passed out! But even in all her tiredness she won't let go of her little Lion cub souvenir.

There was so much more that we did not see! The stingray exhibit, the aquarium, the euro-asia and australian exhibits... I guess a second trip is in order :)

Thanks Toronto Zoo for the great pre-birthday outing... My DD surely had a blast!!!

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