Eat Green to be Lean!
and what better way to promote the beautiful vibrant color of green foods than during St. Patty’s day?
The darker the color hue in foods, the more phytochemicals and healthy nutrients there are in that particular food. Hence why dark leafy greens like kale, collards, mustard greens and spinach have SO much more nutrition than lifeless Iceberg lettuce. Ever wonder why unhealthy foods all tend to have that lifeless, bland yellowy brown color? (think: mac n cheese, hash browns, french fries, hot dogs, rolls, etc.) Because they are LACKING vibrant nutrition. Hence why you can tell if your diet is healthy enough NOT by couting calories, but by counting the different numbers of colors you eat in a day! Fill your plate with dark purple eggplant, bright orange clementines, yellow bell peppers, red tomatoes, green leaves, dark blue plums, and bright pink apples rather than a diet of bland, brown processed foods. That is just one simple way to eat healthier, by eating the RAINBOW! Let’s start with beautiful green:
- For the Crust:
- 1 cup quinoa, soaked for @ least 8 hours, rinsed and drained
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup flax
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. sea salt
- 1 TBSP olive oil (or coconut oil)
- any other seasonings of choice: garlic, rosemary, thyme, black pepper, etc.
- Homemade Pesto:
- 2 cups basil leaves
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
- ¼ cup olive oil
- juice from ½ lemon
- ¼ cup water
- 1 large handful arugula
- 1 clove fresh garlic
- sea salt and pepper, to taste
- 3-4 TBSP vegan pesto (see above, or buy store-bought)
- 2 cups arugula (or any other green)
- 1 TBSP nutritional yeast
- handful cherry tomatoes
- 4-5 shiitake mushrooms
- black pepper & sea salt, to taste
- Add the quinoa to a pot with 1 cup of water (or at least covering the quinoa) and let soak overnight, or up to 8 hours.
- Once quinoa has soaked, drain and dry COMPLETELY.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Add the quinoa to a food processor along with the flax,1/4 cup water, baking soda, salt, and other seasonings.
- Blend until it has reached a thick batter consistency, similar to pancake batter. Add more water if needed.
- Add oil to a large nonstick baking pan.
- Spread batter evenly onto baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
- Carefully flip the crust over and bake with the underside on top for another 10 minutes.
- While crust is baking, re-use food processor and process all pesto ingredients until smooth.
- Add more water or oil if consistency is too thick.
- Set aside.
- Remove pizza crust from oven and add pesto and toppings.
- Bake with toppings for another 5 minutes or until heated through.
- Let cool and enjoy!
Oh and the pesto…..THE PESTO!
I couldn’t help but lick the last globs of pesto straight from the spoon as it is so creamy and flavorful. Perfect paired with pasta, pizza, bruschetta, topped on salads, and especially tasty with zucchini noodles!
The pictures absolutely don’t do it justice, as it was hard to get some quick shots with a lack of sunshine, but just trust me on this recipe, it is delicious and a healthier way to succumb to those pizza cravings I know we all get! Whip this up next time you want to try a new flat-bread type crust with more protein, or just try making the homemade pesto sauce, you’ll love it!
HAPPY EARLY ST. PATS! How are you all celebrating?
(see ya soon, Cam!)