Monday, November 9, 2009

Meatless Mondays

As far as I can remember, back to when I was a little girl, we were always vegetarian on Mondays.  Monday is Lord Shiva's Day and worshippers of Lord Shiva abstain from eating meat, fish or eggs on that day. My mother is a true believer in Lord Shiva and she was blessed (?) with me on Mahashivratri, which is Lord Shiva's birthday!

Growing up, if it was Monday, it meant dahl rice (lentil soup with basmati rice) and potato tikis (similar to latkes)!

When I first came across "Meatless Mondays," I was curious about the site and read more about it - http://www.meatlessmonday.com/
Meatless Mondays is a non-profit initiative in association with John Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health.

I encourage you to become meatless on Mondays for improving your own health and the health of the planet. Byran Walsh's article in the Times mentions that "The meal plan of the average American family accounts for 2.8 tons of CO2 emitted annually, compared with 2.2 tons for driving."

It's not hard to be vegetarian, and to be meatless for one day is really quite easy.  Actually, last night I played back on my DVR a show of Dr. Oz which showed how a meat-loving cowboy became vegan and lost approx. 30 lbs and improved his health.  Here was a man who ate steak and bacon and now he's eating hummus and veggie burgers - just in 28 days he transformed his diet, health and himself for the better! From the show, I understand he has quite a following - he has inspired many.  Why don't you try and have something healthy and veggie today?

For a start, here's a quick and simple gluten-free recipe for Asparagus Quesadillas.

10        Asparagus Spears (cooked - steamed/sauteed/frozen
             if frozen, warm and season)
2           Corn Tortillas
1/2 cup  Rice Shreds (Gluten/Soy/Lactose-free Cheese*)
1T         Coconut/Olive Oil
1/2t     Chilies/Red Pepper Flakes
Salt       Sea Salt or Herbamare for more flavor
1t          Dill/Basil (Whichever is your fav!)
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*Please note that the Rice Shreds do contain casein.

Directions:

Warm asparagus (if using leftovers) along with tortilla to save time esp. if you are starving. (See below.)
When asparagus seems warm, place in center of tortilla.
Sprinkle Rice Shreds, chilies/red pepper (optional), salt and any herbs, i.e., dill, basil. Fold the tortilla in half with spatula. Press with back of spatula a couple of times.  Cook for 2 minutes or until cheese starts to melt and looks bubbly. Simple and easy -  you can substitute with most frozen veggies or other vegetable leftovers - just warm them first with some seasoning.
Remove and cut into quarters with pizza cutter or knife. You can add some zesty sauce on top (try one of the San-J Sauces) if you would like a little extra kick!



I used leftover asparagus that I had sauteed in a vegetable broth with a clove of garlic for 3 minutes (the night before).

ENJOY!


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