The Secret to Avoid Snacking This Winter

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Winter. The time of year where shorter days and the elusive sun make it difficult to stay strong regarding motivation. It can be tough getting out of bed on these cold mornings and working out in the early hours of your day is certainly not something that sounds attractive when your bed is just so much warmer than the surrounding air. Colder weather encourages us to snack and eat more, meaning that winter could be a time of year when you put on a little weight.

But it doesn’t have to be this way, if you plan your meals and choose dishes that will warm you up, balance you in a nutritional sense and keep you full for longer, you can get through the winter and festive period without making a huge dent in your fitness plan.

 

Golden Trio Chipotle Soup

vegan, makes 6-7 cups

  • 2 cups butternut squash cubes, loosely packed
  • 1 1/2 cups sweet potato, mashed or puree (roasted or canned)
  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (homemade or canned – unsweetened)
  • 1 Tbsp roasted garlic (freshly chopped or powder could be substituted)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • a few dashes of nutmeg
  • 3/4 tsp chipotle powder (or to taste for heat preferences)
  • 1 tsp salt (I used pink salt) – use as a guide, always salt to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups soy milk, plain or unsweetened (or substitute another non-dairy milk – almond would work well)
  • 1 tsp maple or agave syrup
  • 2-3 tsp coconut oil (virgin, organic) OR a splash of coconut milk (optional)
  • fine black pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar note: you can use canned pumpkin and sweet potato – but please use real squash cubes for best flavor – (organic)

note: you can use canned pumpkin and sweet potato – but please use real squash cubes for best flavor – (organic, BPA-free cans – I like Farmer’s Market brand, or brands in the box packaging.)

Coconut Tofu Cube “Soup Croutons.”

  • 2 cups tofu cubes, extra firm
  • 1 Tbsp organic virgin coconut oil, (use unrefined for more coconut flavor)
  • 1/2 tsp chili salt (I use Penzey’s 4S seasoned salt)
  • 1-2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • black pepper + cayenne to tasty Garnish: cinnamon + cayenne spices + chopped flat leaf parsley
  • garnish: cinnamon + cayenne spices + chopped flat leaf parsley optional accent:
  • Optional accent: citrus! Add a squeeze of orange or a pinch of orange zest – this gives a twist to the flavor and another tone that I love.

Directions:

First start your tofu. You will want to press out as much water as possible with a paper towel, then slice the block into cubes. Heat a skillet and add the coconut oil to the pan. When the oil is hot, add in the pressed tofu and a swift sprinkling of your salt /chili spice, nutritional yeast, pepper and optional cayenne over the top. Allow to cook about 2 minutes on each side, about 7 minutes total over high heat. The tofu does not have to be perfect because you will be reheating it when you serve the soup! Transfer your cubes to a plate and place them in the fridge. Yes, the refrigerator.You want to have time to roast your sweet potato – it is best to do this beforehand since it can take a good 30-50 minutes to bake in a 400-degree oven.

You want to have time to roast your sweet potato – it is best to do this beforehand since it can take a good 30-50 minutes to roast in a 400-degree oven.Gather your squash cubes, pumpkin, and sweet potato purees. Add the pumpkin and sweet potato to a blender (Vitamix or high speed works best.) Then add in all the remaining ingredients – except the non-dairy milk and turn the blender on the lowest setting. Slowly pour in the non-dairy milk until the purees thin out.

Gather your squash cubes, pumpkin, and sweet potato purees. Add the pumpkin and sweet potato to a blender (Vitamix or high speed works best.) Then add in all the remaining ingredients – except the non-dairy milk and turn the blender on the lowest setting. Slowly pour in the non-dairy milk until the purees thin out.Bring a large pot of water to boil and add in the butternut squash cubes. Boil until the cubes are tender. Drain the cubes – reserving about 1/4 cup of the boiling water. Add the boiled squash water to your blender – as well as the drained cubes. You may need to do this process in batches if your blender is on the small side.

Bring a large pot of water to boil and add in the butternut squash cubes. Boil until the cubes are tender. Drain the cubes – reserving about 1/4 cup of the boiling water. Add the boiled squash water to your blender – as well as the drained cubes. You may need to do this process in batches if your blender is on the small side.Blend on low and slowly mix until the squash cubes are silky smooth with the rest of the ingredients. Do a taste test and adjust spices, salt, and sweetener as desired. You can also add in more non-dairy milk to thin out the soup. My soup was on the thick side. You could also use veggie broth to thin if desired.

Blend on low and slowly mix until the squash cubes are silky smooth with the rest of the ingredients. Do a taste test and adjust spices, salt, and sweetener as desired. You can also add in more non-dairy milk to thin out the soup. My soup was on the thick side. You could also use veggie broth to thin if desired.You can either heat your soup bowl-for-bowl in the microwave (if only serving yourself) or simmer the soup in a soup pot on the stove until hot and ready to serve. The leftover soup can be stored in the fridge.

You can either heat your soup bowl-for-bowl in the microwave (if only serving yourself) or simmer the soup in a soup pot on the stove until hot and ready to serve. The leftover soup can be stored in the fridge.Back to those tofu cubes! Heat a saute pan on the stove over high heat – dry pan – nothing in it. Pull your chilled cubes and add a few to the pan – as many as you can handle to let them still breathe with some spacing between them. The coconut oil that infused the cubes should make the pan sizzle but still be a dry pan. Allow the cubes to heat until they are browned and crispy on each side. Flip as needed. They should already be well-seasoned – but add additional salt or spices if desired.

Back to those tofu cubes! Heat a saute pan on the stove over high heat – dry pan – nothing in it. Pull your chilled cubes and add a few to the pan – as many as you can handle to let them still breathe with some spacing between them. The coconut oil that infused the cubes should make the pan sizzle but still be a dry pan. Allow the cubes to heat until they are browned and crispy on each side. Flip as needed. They should already be well-seasoned – but add additional salt or spices if desired.Server soup with chopped parsley, spices and cubes over the top. Some sprouted grain toast on the side.

Serve soup with chopped parsley, spices and cubes over the top. Some sprouted grain toast on the side.

Recipe link: http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/2012/09/golden-trio-chipotle-fall-soup-with.html

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