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!

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