Monday, March 25, 2024

Crispy Tofu with Stir-Fry Veggies and Rice


Serving Size - 4   Prep Time - 30 minutes    Cook Time - about 25 minutes.

About The Recipe

Crispy Tofu and stir-fried Veggies served with Red Rice.

What is tofu?

Tofu is a soy-based food prepared by coagulating soy milk and pressing the curds into solid white blocks of varying softness: silken, soft, firm, and extra or super firm. It is also known as “bean Curd.” Tofu is low in calories while containing a relatively large amount of protein. It’s high in iron and can have a high calcium or magnesium content depending on the coagulants. It’s a good source of plant-based protein that can be used in various ways. It’s a great addition to vegetarian and vegan recipes. 


1 package of extra firm tofu Rice (Red, Brown, or White)

Seasoned Flour (see below for ingredients) 1 cup of rice – follow package instructions

Stir-Fried Veggies

1 ½ cups of Broccoli florets

1 ½ cups of Cauliflower florets

1 cup of chopped carrots

1 small package of snow peas

1 cup of chopped portabella mushrooms

1 cup of chopped oyster mushrooms

1 jalapeno pepper diced and seeds removed

1 red serrano pepper diced and seeds removed

½ cup diced scallions

½ cup diced onions

Seasoned Flour 

½ cup of all-purpose flour

¼ cup of cornstarch

2 teaspoons of salt

2 teaspoons of pepper

2 teaspoons of garlic powder

Other pantry staples – Vegetable Oil for frying, Soy Sauce, Fish Sauce, and Toasted Sesame Oil

Wok or large fry pan
Medium saucepan for rice
Ziploc gallon-size plastic bag for seasoned flour

1. Prep Tofu – place the blocked tofu between heavy-duty paper towels to remove the excess water. Use something heavy to place on the tofu.  Let stand for about 15 minutes.  Then, cut into ½-inch thick cubes. 

2. Prep seasoned flour: Add flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper, and garlic powder to a large plastic bag. Shake the bag to blend all the ingredients. Add cubed tofu and shake well. Place tofu on a tray and set aside.

3. Prepare Rice according to package instructions.

4. In a wok or large frying pan, about ½ cup of vegetable oil over medium-high heat.  Add tofu in small batches and fry until golden brown.  Drain tofu on paper towels and set aside.

5. Using the same wok or fry pan, remove all but about a tablespoon of the vegetable oil and add a tablespoon of fish sauce and toasted sesame oil.  Once your pan has reached medium-high heat, add mushrooms and onions first, stir-fry for about 1 minute, then add the balance of the vegetables.  Add 2 tablespoons of soy sauce and stir-fry vegetables for 2 – 3 minutes.  Then, turn the heat off and add scallions, jalapeno, and serrano peppers. If you want spicy stir-fry veggies, use them as a garnish at the end of the dish.

6. Serve Crisp Tofu, Veggies, and rice of your choice in a bowl or plate.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Eating Lean and Clean - Roasted Root Veggies

Roasted Root Veggies served with Zucchini, Garlic Cashew Soup

Roasted Root Vegetable Medley

Cooking smart for a healthy heart is what it’s all about. Your family will love this low-fat side dish full of beautiful flavors. If you love my Spicy Roasted Sweet Potatoes, you will also love this dish. Carrots, Yellow and Red Beets, Sweet Potatoes, and onions roasted together will make your taste buds sing.

Servings: 6 – 8

Prep Time: 15

Cook Time: 45 minutes @ 425 degrees

Method of cooking: Oven Roasted


  • 2 medium size sweet potatoes
  • 2 medium Yellow Beets
  • 2 medium Beets
  • 4 medium carrots
  • 2 small white onions
  • ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

·         2 tablespoons agave nectar (substitute for agave nectar is “Pure Maple Syrup”)

·         1 tablespoon of fresh squeezed lime juice

·         4 cloves garlic (minced)

·         1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger

·         1 teaspoon cinnamon

·         1 teaspoon chili powder

·         1 teaspoon nutmeg

·         ½ teaspoon allspice

·         2 tablespoons fresh parsley (chopped for garnish)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees and prepare a large baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Prep veggies: Peel and clean veggies, then cut them into 1” (inch) chunks. All veggies should be cut the same size for cooking.

Combine olive oil, agave nectar, lime juice, garlic, fresh ginger, and spices in a large bowl. Add the vegetable medley, toss, and coat well.

Place seasoned veggies on a baking pan and spread them into a single layer to roast evenly.  

Roast the veggies in the oven, occasionally stirring, for about 40 - 45 minutes or until golden brown, tender, and caramelized. Remove from the oven and season with salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Place in a serving dish and garnish with fresh parsley.  

Zucchini Garlic Cashew Soup

Raw Cashews
Olive Oil
Vegetable Broth
Fresh Herbs - Basil, Mint and Parsley

 Ingredients - makes two servings

2 ounces Raw Cashews

2 medium zucchini, cut into chunks

2 cups of water

4 garlic cloves

Himalayan salt or Bragg Liquid Aminos (to taste; this is optional)

Herbal seasoning blends or fresh herbs, like basil or dill (to taste; optional)

In a medium saucepan, add cashews, zucchini, and garlic cloves into salted water and bring to a boil.  Then reduce heat and let simmer for about 5 minutes or until zucchini is tender.

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.  Serve and garnish. Enjoy!


Monday, March 4, 2024

Eating Lean and Clean - Fresh Fruit Salads

 Choose fruit that you love, and that is in season. Add honey, maple syrup, and any type of yogurt you love.

Eating Clean and Lean 

As most of you know, I am a Type II Diabetic.  I love cooking with fresh ingredients as much as I can.   For 2024, I will need to make some severe changes to how I eat and must lose weight to get my diabetes managed and under control.  

For 2024, I have set a goal to lose weight and take better care of myself.  So, what is my plan for “Eating Clean and Lean for 2024”?

No one can pinpoint the one thing that causes weight gain; for most people, a variety of factors are to blame, including genetics, family history, eating and exercise habits, and lifestyle choices that influence everything from how much sleep we get to how stressed we feel.  Fortunately, diet is one of the factors that I can control.  In addition, there is great debate about the best dietary changes to make.

Should I eat less fat?  Eat fewer Calories?  Or eat less food?  I have concluded that my approach would be better than doing nothing. 

Eating clean and lean for me is:

1. Eat more whole grains

2. Eat more vegetables and fruits

3. Focus on lean proteins and healthy fats

4. Cut back on Sugar

5. Eat reasonable portion sizes

6. Cut down on processed foods

7. Drink more water

My most significant item is “processed /prepared food products” with many ingredients that will not allow me to control add sugars, salts, Trans, and saturated fats. 

Also, most important along with eating clean and lean is exercise.  I aim to start with at least 30 – 45 minutes daily exercise.

CW’ Cafe Today – Cooking from the Pantry – Lean and Clean for 2024

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Eating Lean and Clean - Veggie Dishes

Curry Cauliflower with Lemon Pepper Kale

My love for Cauliflower and Kale has grown so much. This combination will complement any lean protein that you serve.

 Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Curry Powder
Fresh Herbs

Curry Cauliflower

1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 to 1 tsp curry powder
1 medium head cauliflower, stems removed
1/4 tsp Himalayan or sea salt (to taste; optional


Preheat oven to 400 degrees; heat oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Add curry powder, stirring constantly, for 15 to 30 seconds or until fragrant, taking care not to burn. Remove from heat.

Combine cauliflower and curry powder in a glass baking dish. Add salt if desired; mix well. Bake, stirring gently 2-3 times, for 20-to 25 minutes or until cauliflower is tender.

Kale - Servings 2 - Prep time: 10  - Cook Time: 8 minutes

1 pound of Kale, washed center stalks removed, and chopped
1 tbsp Lemon Pepper Seasoning
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
1 tbsp lemon zest
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste


Bring a cup of water in a medium saucepan over high heat to a rolling boil.

Add Kale, cover it, and steam it for about 3-5 minutes or until it is tender and bright green. Remove from heat; let stand for about 2-3 minutes.

Drain Kale and place in a large bowl. Add lemon pepper seasoning, lemon juice, and olive oil. Toss gently, season with salt and pepper to taste, and garnish with lemon zest.