Friday, August 7, 2009

Avoiding the Stove

Well, the weather around here seems to be flirting with Summer rather than actually diving headlong into it's passionate embrace, and I doubt that we're going to get anything similar to the scorching days that we were experiencing a couple years ago! Back then (don't I sound like it was 30 years ago instead of 3?) we were worried about our crops and grass all dying due to drought, and farms all over Canada were worried about the threats of fires sweeping through the desert-like brush and sapped forests. Now, we're still concerned about (and experiencing) our crops dying, but now it's because the cold, rainy weather is making mould grow on our tomato, bean and pea vines and rotting away the potato roots that usually are producing madly by now. Even the peppers and Romano beans we have out back (which you usually can't kill even with an axe) have been under-performing: we're heading into the second week of August and have only one harvest load to speak of, which was mostly rhubarb! We are being promised some warm, sunny days in the coming week or so, so fingers are crossed by all us gardeners!

The rare days where it does seem to become the Summer of my childhood, the last thing I know I want to be doing is hovering over the stove and oven while the sun is slowly settling into a comfortable, twilight evening. If I can make a good meal in a short time frame with a minimum of cooking, preferably something I can take out to our patio and enjoy al fresco, I will do it! I spend about 10 months and 2 weeks out of the year nursing stew-like concoctions hot off the stove, it's time to shake things up while I can!

As a bonus, now that I have my new toy, I can even cap things off with a nice, big bowl of me-friendly (for lack of a better term, because really calling things I can safely eat "dairy-egg-fat-nut-alcohol-caffeine-wheat-free low-sugar" is a bit of a mouthful!) ice "dream" that I adapted from a recipe I picked up from Lindsay at Happy Herbivore - and I will share it soon, I promise!

This meal is just one of those perfect ones - minimal or no stovetop required, only a microwave, and the whole thing is a great way to embrace the gifts of the Summer season provided that you have a productive season. A squeeze of lime along with just a dash of taco-inspired spice brings out all the flavour in the red onion and cherry tomatoes too.

Tasty Taco Filling
Serves 1
6 oz cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
2/3 cup Yves' Veggie Soy Crumbles
juice of 1/2 lime
1/2 tsp sugar (or substitute)
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp chili powder (use chipotle powder if you want it really hot)
1 pinch each salt, black pepper, paprika, oregano, garlic powder

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium, microwave-safe bowl, tossing well.
  2. Microwave for 2 minutes on HI, stirring halfway through.
  3. Serve on warmed tortillas.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 162.8
Total Fat: 1.6 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 511.6 mg
Total Carbs: 21.1 g
Dietary Fiber: 6.6 g
Protein: 20.4 g


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