July 2012    
<< Home    Volume 11 Issue 07

Featured Recipes


Easy Fresh Sweet Corn

I just returned from a trip to Michigan with my daughter, Heather, and my grandsons, Jaysen, Ben and Ryan.  We always do a lot of cooking while we are at my sister, Carol's, house and this year I learned a nifty trick for cooking lots of fresh sweet corn with no fuss at all.  This is perfect for use during the summer months while there is sweet corn in abundance and you'd like to keep cooking to a minimum!  You just need a medium sized clean cooler, some boiling water and the corn, of course.


Clean the ears of sweet corn and break or cut in half.  Place in a clean cooler.  Pour boiling water over the corn ears to cover them completely, close the lid to the cooler, and let rest for 30 minutes.  That's it!!  The corn is perfectly done with hardly any effort at all, and the best part is that it will stay fresh and hot in the covered cooler for up to 2 ½ hours so you can eat it when you're ready and then leave it hot and ready for a quick snack later.


Baked Beans
By Mary McDougall

I am continuously looking for a great baked bean recipe, with tasty beans and savory/sweet seasonings. I made this version for our family 4th of July party and we all liked it so much, it is going to become a new addition to our 10 day program menus.


Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  2 hours for beans, 1 hour to bake
Servings:  6-8


2 cups dried cranberry beans
6 cups water
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
½ cup brown sugar
1/3 cup prepared mustard
¼ cup molasses


Place beans and water in a large pot, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for at least 2 hours until very tender. Pour off any excess water and set aside.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


Place onions and bell peppers in a non-stick sauté pan with a small amount of water and cook and stir for about 5-10 minutes, until softened.  Combine the beans and vegetables in a covered casserole dish. Place the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.  Pour over the beans and vegetables and stir well to mix.  Cover and bake for 1 hour. Stir and let rest for a few minutes before serving.


Recipes By Tiffany Hobson

The following six recipes are contributed by Tiffany Hobson. Tiffany has been having so much fun in her kitchen over the last few months that I enjoy sharing her delicious creations with all of you. Tiffany is the executive assistant to the McDougall's.  She heads operations for all McDougall Programs, is the tour director for McDougall Adventures, and oversees the Nursing Continuing Education.  Tiffany has a BA in Rhetoric from University of California, Berkeley and is nationally certified as a Pharmacy Technician.  She has the pleasure of assisting Dr. McDougall when seeing patients.  Tiffany also helps Mary with recipe development. 


Sopa de Caldo Verde 

Traditionally made with chorizo, this hearty Portuguese soup is great without it.  You may also change a few quantities of this soup to make it a pasta dish, which is what I do when I make this for outdoor gatherings.  Both taste great warm or cold.


Preparation Time:  20 minutes
Cooking Time:  40 minutes
Servings:  6-8


6-¼ cups vegetable broth
1 large sweet onion, roughly diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 tablespoons crushed red pepper chili flakes
2-3 teaspoons paprika
4 ½ cups potatoes, chopped (Yukon, New or Fingerlings)
1 15-ounce can of white or red kidney beans
3-5 carrots, peeled and chopped
½-1 cup ditalini, cavatelli or any small pasta for soup 
OR 1 ½ cups ditalini, cavatelli or any small pasta for pasta dish
1 bunch curly kale, stemmed and chopped
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste


In a non-stick pot, sauté the onion in ¼ cup vegetable broth, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until the onion becomes translucent, about 5-7 minutes.  Add garlic, stir and cook for another 3 minutes.  Add the red pepper chili flakes and paprika and mix well.  Add the remaining ingredients, except the kale and pasta.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.  Add pasta and mix well.  Add the kale on top and place the lid back on and simmer for 8 minutes.  Mix everything up well and let sit for 2 more minutes.  For soup:  Scoop into bowls and add fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste, if desired.  For pasta:  Allow the pasta some extra time to soak up the vegetable broth.  This is great to make the night before a day outing.  Serve with fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste, if desired.


Note:  You may use Hungarian or Smoked Spanish paprika, both taste great in this dish.  If you like your food extra spicy, add more red pepper chili flakes.


Portuguese Arroz

Preparation Time:  10 minutes
Cooking Time:  45-50 minutes
Servings:  6-8


1 ½ cups yellow onion, finely chopped
4 teaspoons garlic, minced
½ - 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper chili flakes
1 bay leaf
1 ½ cups tomatoes, chopped (see Note)
2-¼ cups water
1-cup vegetable broth
3 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley leaves, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1 ½ cups long grain brown rice, uncooked
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste


In a non-stick 11 inch pan, sauté the onions with ¼ cup water and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 7 minutes.  Add the garlic, crushed red pepper chili flakes and bay leaf and cook for 1 minute, stirring well.  Add the tomatoes, mix well, and cook until they begin to soften, about 2 minutes.  Add the remaining water, vegetable broth, parsley and cilantro and stir.  Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil.  Add rice and stir well.  When the liquid returns to a boil, stir again and cover the pot with a lid and reduce heat to low.  Cook the rice undisturbed for 35 minutes.  Mix the rice well and continue to cook for another 10 minutes, or until the rice is tender.  Let the rice stand for 5 minutes.  Remove the bay leaf and fluff the rice with a fork.  Serve with fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste, if desired.


Note:  I love fresh Roma tomatoes in this recipe; however, you may use any kind of tomatoes you wish.  To cut down on the preparation time, use chopped Pomi tomatoes.  Pomi tomatoes are sold at most stores in an aseptic box and are the freshest tasting packaged tomatoes I have used.  They are a great item to always have on hand in your pantry.


Amsterdam Beans

This is a quick and easy meal that uses canned beans and jarred pasta sauce, yet tastes delicious and is very filling. This may be eaten at room temperature, heated or even cold.  Serve it plain in a bowl, or over cooked rice or other grains.


Preparation Time:  2 minutes
Cooking Time:  5-10 minutes (if eating this warmed)
Servings:  4


1 12.3-ounce jar of Tondini beans (or a 15 ounce can of your favorite white beans)
¾ -1 cup of your favorite oil-free pasta sauce 
1-3 tablespoons bouquet garni, Italian herb, or any other herb mix
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste


Mix the beans, pasta sauce and herb mix of choice together.  Serve at room temperature.  To serve heated, place ingredients in a pot and heat over medium high heat for 5 to 10 minutes.  To serve cold, place in a bowl and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the freezer, or place in the refrigerator and allow to cool for an hour or so before serving.  Serve with fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste, if desired.


Note:  To serve in a bowl only add ¾ cup of pasta sauce.  If serving over rice, use 1 cup of pasta sauce.


Kale with Blueberry Strawberry Reduction Sauce

I am always trying to think of new ways to get my friends to eat healthy.  The first time I made this, I did not tell my friends what they were about to eat.  They were in heaven; they thought I was actually serving them dessert!  


Preparation Time:  15-20 minutes
Cooking Time:  30-40 minutes
Servings:  4-6


1 cup blueberries, cleaned
1 cup strawberries, cleaned with the tops cut off and quartered
1 cup balsamic vinegar
2 bunches lacinato kale, cleaned and chopped


In a non-stick 11-inch pan over low to medium heat, add the blueberries, strawberries and balsamic vinegar.  Allow this to cook slowly, stirring occasionally.  When the sauce starts to boil stir the ingredients until the boiling stops.  The sauce will begin to boil after 1 or 2 minutes.  Continue this pattern of allowing the sauce to boil and stirring it occasionally (not frequently) until the sauce settles down.  The object is to boil down the sauce so it becomes thick, and this will happen as the fruit slowly boils into the balsamic vinegar.  The sauce will start to look "jammy" as it cooks down.  This process usually takes about 30 minutes.  You should end up with a thick layer of sauce coating the bottom of the pan.  Add the kale on top of the sauce and cover for 2 minutes.  Do not mix the kale with the sauce yet because the kale needs a chance to steam.  After 2 minutes, uncover the pan and mix the kale well with the sauce.  Turn off the heat and allow the flavors to blend together for 5 minutes, making sure all the sauce is mixed in with the kale.  Serve immediately.


Scalloped Potatoes

Growing up, I never like scalloped potatoes.  This recipe came about from a bet that there was no way I could replicate it, especially because I never ate it as a kid.  I made this a few times before being happy with the end result.  I really like this without onions, but when I made it for Mary with onions she loved it.  This is why I have listed onions as an optional item.  As for the bet with my friend, I won.


Preparation Time:  25 minutes
Cooking Time:  1 hour 30 minutes
Servings:  6


1 recipe Absolutely Fabulous No Queso Sauce (recipe below)
8 cups thinly sliced Yukon potatoes
1 yellow onion, chopped finely (optional)
1 ½ cups  unsweetened soymilk 
1-5 dashes cayenne pepper
Several shakes of paprika
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Clean potatoes and cut them into length-wise quarters. Slice thinly by hand, or use a food processor to allow technology to do the work for you.   Cover the 8 cups of sliced potatoes with cold water and set aside.


Prepare the Absolutely Fabulous No Queso Sauce.  As the sauce is blending, place the unsweetened soymilk and cayenne pepper into a saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring the contents together with a whisk.  Add the Absolutely Fabulous No Queso Sauce to the saucepan and whisk together well.  Cook and continually stir the sauce with a whisk for 5 minutes.

Drain the potatoes in a colander. Place a little bit of the sauce in a glass Pyrex baking dish and, using a rubber spatula, spread throughout the bottom.  Place 4 cups of the sliced potatoes evenly into the pan.  If using onions, spread half of the onions on top of the potatoes.  Pour 2 cups of the sauce over the potatoes (and onions) and use a rubber spatula to smooth the sauce so it covers everything.  Repeat this process to add a second layer of potatoes, onions and remaining sauce.  Sprinkle paprika over the top layer.  Bake uncovered for 1 hour 25 minutes, or until the potatoes are done.  Serve with fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste, if desired.


Absolutely Fabulous No Queso Sauce

Preparation Time:  3 minutes
Servings:  variable


¼ cup raw cashews
1 cup roasted butternut squash, mashed
¾ cup water
8 ounces pimientos
¼ cup nutritional yeast
3 tablespoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt


Place all the ingredients into a blender until completely smooth.  If you own a Vitamix, this process will take 3-4 minutes.  If you own a regular blender, this process will take 5-7 minutes.  With a regular blender you may need to strain the sauce to make sure you do not have any cashew pieces.  


Note:  Butternut squash is a winter vegetable.  To bake it, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Cut the squash in half, length-wise, and remove the seeds.  Place on top of parchment paper and bake for 35 minutes.  

You may not be able to buy it fresh during the summer months, but it can be purchased frozen in bags.  Remove from bag and place the cubes on a baking sheet on top of parchment paper.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Pour about ¼ cup of vegetable broth on top and bake for 30 to 40 minutes.  Remove cubes from baking sheet and mash them in a bowl.  You need 1 cup of mashed squash for the recipe.


The following five recipes were contributed by Veronica Grace.  They are from her upcoming e-book, Comfort Foods From Around The World.  There is more information about Veronica in the April 2012 newsletter.  Or you can visit her website at www.lowfatveganchef.com. 


Baked Butternut Squash Mac & Cheezy 

Serves 6



1 2/3 cups mashed butternut squash (about 1/2 medium squash cooked)
16 oz package elbow macaroni or spirals  (GF if desired)
1/2-3/4 cup vegetable broth 
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tsp miso paste
3 cups almond milk (unsweetened original) or soy milk
2 tbsp flour or cornstarch
3/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes 
1/4-1/2 tsp black pepper 
1/2-1 tsp smoked paprika 
1/2 tsp Herbamare or salt



2/3 cup breadcrumbs (GF if desired)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp smoked paprika



1. Peel and cube the butternut squash and boil in a large pot just until soft. Or cook in a pressure cooker at high pressure for 5-7 minutes. Drain well. (Tip, if your squash is hard to peel or cut, pop it in the microwave for 3-4 minutes to soften the skin to make it easier to cut.) Measure out 1 2/3 cup of mashed squash and set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. In a large pot, bring water to a rolling boil. Add pasta and cook until just before tender. Generally it's about 5 minutes. Drain well in a colander and rinse in cold water. Do not overcook the pasta!

4. In a large saucepan heat vegetable broth over medium heat and add the onions and garlic. Cook for 5-6 minutes until tender, adding broth when needed to prevent burning.

5. Add cooked onions and any remaining broth from pan into Vitamix or food processor, add mashed squash and miso and blend until combined. Set aside.

6. In the same large saucepan add 1 cup of the almond milk and sprinkle 1 tbsp of the flour (or cornstarch) when hot and whisk in. Add the remaining 2 cups of milk and sprinkle in another tbsp of flour (or cornstarch). Whisk together fast. (It's ok if there are a few small bits remaining.)

7. Cook for a minute or two until hot and quickly add the squash mixture and whisk in. Heat through another minute or two and then add the nutritional yeast and whisk in. Turn off heat and add remaining seasonings starting with the lower amounts. Taste test and add additional seasonings to your liking.

8. Add drained pasta to sauce pot and stir to coat. Spread out in a casserole dish. Sprinkle breadcrumbs evenly over top. Sprinkle basil, oregano and paprika over the breadcrumbs.

9. Bake for 20-30 minutes just until pasta is tender. (20 minutes if you overcooked your pasta, 30 minutes if you didn't.)


Serve with steamed broccoli or a green salad. 


Additional Tips:

You can use frozen cubed butternut squash and cook it and mash it, or use canned butternut squash. Both are sold at natural food stores. 


Smoked paprika has a much better flavor than regular paprika. McCormick makes one, or you can get it at a specialty market or Whole Foods. 


Greek Stuffed Peppers 

Serves 3-4 for entree or 6-8 as a side dish



6 large or 8 small bell peppers
1 large onion, diced
3 small zucchini, peeled and diced
3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 cup vegetable broth
3 cups cooked brown rice or cooked white rice
5 tbsp tomato paste
3/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
3/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
1/2-1 lemon, juiced
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp Herbamare or salt 



1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Cut around stem of peppers like you would cut a jack-o-lantern top, retaining the top with stem. Remove seeds carefully and wash and dry thoroughly. 

3. Place peppers in an oven safe dish and arrange upright and put tops back on. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. 

4. Meanwhile in a large pan, saute onions, carrots and zucchini in vegetable broth for 5-6 minutes. 

5. Stir in the rice and tomato paste and coat thoroughly. 

6. Add parsley, dill, lemon juice, pepper and Herbamare (or salt) and stir to combine. 

7. When peppers are ready, take out of oven and fill with stuffing. 

8. Place tops back on peppers and bake for an extra 30-40 minutes until the peppers are soft. 

9. Serve with additional wedges of lemon and dill for garnish if desired. 


Additional Tips:

Store any extra peppers in an airtight container in the fridge. These make a perfect lunch entree and can be frozen, defrosted and reheated for later as well. 


Yam Chickpea Spinach Curry 

Serves 2-3



1  15 oz can chickpeas, drained or 1 1/2 cups of cooked chickpeas 
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
1 inch of ginger, minced or pressed
1-2 cups vegetable broth as needed for cooking
2 15 oz cans of diced tomatoes
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp coriander, ground
1 tsp turmeric, ground
1/2  tsp Herbamare or salt
4-5 tsp sugar (or to taste)
1 cup of yams/sweet potatoes, peeled and diced 2" thick
2 cups of fresh spinach, packed or 1 cup frozen, drained
1/4 tsp garam masala (or to taste)



1. If using canned chickpeas, rinse before using. If you're using dried chickpeas, soak in water the night before and pressure cook with salt for about 10 minutes before using for the recipe. 

2. Saute onion, garlic and ginger in vegetable broth until translucent, about 5 minutes over medium heat. Add more vegetable broth as necessary, to keep from burning. 

3. Add diced tomatoes and seasonings except for garam masala. 

4. Add chickpeas and stir to combine and cook over medium low heat for about 15 minutes until tomatoes have broken down, the chickpeas have softened and the flavours meld, stirring occasionally. Add a little more vegetable broth or water as needed if your tomato juice is running low. 

5. In another pot, gently steam the yams just until tender so they retain their shape, about 10-15 minutes. Set aside.

6. Add the spinach to the vegetable mixture and stir to combine. Cook for another minute or two until it's wilted and heated through. 

7. Add yams and stir to combine. Be careful not to break the yams apart by over mixing. Add some garam masala to taste, as desired.

9. Serve with fresh rice.


Herbed Tofu Ranch Dip 


1 package firm silken tofu 
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp granulated onion
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast
2 tsp maple syrup or liquid sweetener
1/4 tsp Herbamare or salt
Fresh ground pepper
1 tbsp parsley, chopped
2 tbsp green/spring onions, sliced (green tops only)



1. Place ingredients (except for parsley and green onions) into blender and blend until smooth. Taste test and adjust salt and pepper if desired. Add parsley and green onions and blend on medium high until the pieces are broken up a bit. 

2. Refrigerate if desired before serving and serve with veggies or rice crackers. 


Zesty Queso Sauce

Makes about 2 cups


2/3 cup canned fire roasted tomatoes
1 cup water
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp garlic powder
5 tbsp nutritional yeast
1/8 tsp salt
Fresh ground pepper
3 tbsp all purpose flour or corn starch
1/8 tsp xanthan gum



1. Combine tomatoes, water, onion powder, paprika, garlic powder, and nutritional yeast in a blender and blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add flour or cornstarch and xanthan gum and blend again.

2. Pour mixture into a pot and heat over medium heat until the sauce thickens. 

3. Add additional spices if desired, such as diced jalapeños, chipotle or chili powder etc. 

4. Serve with chips, on enchiladas, in burritos or use as a topping for baked potatoes. 

5. Store any leftovers in a container in the fridge and use within 3-5 days. 


©2012 John D. McDougall All Rights Reserved