January 2013
Volume 12 Issue 1

By Heather McDougall, McDougall Program Director and Mother to 3 boys; ages 4, 6 and 9. All of these recipes have been adapted from past newsletter recipes. I have modified them all a bit to suit my family’s taste. You can do the same for yours. Next month, I will be doing my favorite snacks and desserts along with a few more kid friendly meals.

The vegetables in the filling are really just a suggestion. Use whatever you and your family like.  Add rice and red bell peppers, or sautéed broccoli and mushrooms. The possibilities are endless. We usually have this with baked tortilla chips and guacamole and salsa.

Preparation Time:  40 minutes
Cooking Time:  45 minutes
Servings: 6-8

2   8 ounce cans tomato sauce
3  cups water
4 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons chili powder
½  teaspoon onion powder
¼  teaspoon garlic powder

Place all ingredients for the sauce in a saucepan.   Mix well with a whisk until well combined.  Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Taste and add more chili powder if desired.  Set aside.

10 whole wheat or 16 corn tortillas
4 cups mashed pinto beans
1 cup chopped green onions
1 ½  cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
1  2.25 ounce can sliced ripe olives, drained
1-2 tablespoons chopped green chilies (optional)

Optional Toppings:
Diced onion

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
To assemble casserole:
Place the beans in a large bowl.  Add the onions, corn, olives and green chilies (if you wish).  Mix gently until well combined.
Place 1½ cups of the sauce in the bottom of a large non-stick oblong baking dish.  Take 1 tortilla at a time and spread a line of the bean mixture down the center of the tortilla.  Roll up and place seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas, placing them snugly next to each other.  Pour the rest of the sauce over the rolled up tortillas, spreading it out evenly. Cover with parchment paper, then cover with aluminum foil, crimping the edges over the baking dish.  Bake for 45 minutes.  Remove from oven and let rest for about 5 minutes before cutting.  Serve with additional toppings, if desired.

My mom has been making a version of this lasagna for years. It is now a favorite of my boys. If you want to make this without soy, replace the tofu with 2 cups blanched almonds, soaked and drained and leave out the non-dairy cheese. I serve this with My Caesar Salad from The Starch Solution and a loaf of warm French bread with roasted garlic.

Preparation Time:  40 minutes
Cooking Time:  60 minutes
Resting Time:  10 minutes
Servings:  6-8

Prepare the ricotta before assembling the lasagna. 
Tofu Ricotta:
1  12.3 ounce package silken tofu
1 pound fresh water-packed firm tofu
2 teaspoons minced garlic
¼ cup nutritional yeast
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon parsley flakes
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ cup soy milk

Combine all of the above ingredients in a food processor and process until fairly smooth.  Refrigerate until ready to use.
1 recipe Ricotta
1-2 bags fresh, washed spinach, lightly steamed
8 ounces no-boil lasagna noodles
7 cups fat-free pasta sauce
12 ounces non-dairy mozzarella cheese, grated (optional)
¼ cup soy parmesan cheese or Parma

Place the ricotta into a large bowl.  Set aside.

Prepare the spinach next.  Use at least 1 bag, 2 if you really like spinach.  Steam the fresh spinach just until slightly wilted (about a minute or two), drain well, then either mix the spinach into the tofu ricotta or layer the spinach over the tofu ricotta in 2 batches before sprinkling with the grated non-dairy cheese.  (See assembly directions below.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place 1 cup of the pasta sauce in the bottom of the baking dish and smooth over the bottom.  Place 1 layer of the noodles over the sauce.  Then add half of the ricotta mixture and smooth out.  Sprinkle half of the non-dairy cheese over that (if using), then spread 2 cups more of the sauce over the cheese.  Add another layer of noodles, the rest of the tofu mixture, the remaining cheese (if using), 2 cups more of the sauce, and the rest of the noodles.  Spoon the remaining 2 cups of sauce over the noodles (make sure you cover all the edges), sprinkle some soy parmesan or Parma over the top.   Cover with parchment paper and then cover with foil.  Bake for 60 minutes.  Remove from oven and let rest for 30 minutes before cutting. 
Hints:  This may be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated before baking.  Add about 15 minutes to the baking time. 

This is another great meal because if I don’t have one ingredient, I know there’s an easy substitute in my fridge. This soup has changed over the years. Below is my current version. I serve with warm bread and a simple salad or sautéed broccolini with a squeeze of lemon and a sprinkle of sea salt.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time:  30 minutes
Servings:  6-8

4 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, sliced
1 stalk celery, diced
2-15 ounce can white cannellini or navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 can fire roasted red tomatoes
2 cups chopped kale
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper to taste

Add ¼ cup broth and saute onion, carrot and celery on medium-high heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Add remaining broth and water to large saucepan. Add beans and tomatoes. Simmer for about 20 minutes.  With a bean masher or a hand held blender push through the soup to create a thicker consistency, about 10 mashes or blends. Add the kale and cook for about 5 minutes more. Remove from heat and add lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

This gravy literally takes minutes to put together. Sometimes my boys eat just a bowl of mashed potatoes and gravy for a snack. For dinner, we serve this meal with sautéed broccolini or green beans.

Preparation Time:  5 minutes
Cooking Time:  10 minutes
Servings:  makes 2 cups

2 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons tahini
¼ cup brown rice flour
freshly ground black pepper

Place all the ingredients, except the pepper, in a small saucepan.  Stir well to mix.  Cook over medium–low heat, stirring occasionally until smooth and thick.  Season with freshly ground black pepper to taste.  Serve at once.

Hint: This may be made ahead and refrigerated.  It will thicken slightly more when refrigerated.  To reheat, place in a saucepan, add a small amount of water, whisk to combine and then heat slowly, stirring occasionally, until hot.

This is an excellent, firm loaf to serve with mashed potatoes and gravy.  The leftovers also make a great sandwich filling.

Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  45 to 60 minutes
Servings:  6-8

30 ounces water-packed firm tofu
1  2/3 cups quick oats
¾ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
½ cup ketchup or barbecue sauce
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Drain the tofu well and mash finely, using a bean/potato masher and your fingers.  Place in a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients.  Mix well, again using your fingers.  Turn the mixture into either a square baking pan or a loaf pan.  (If you don’t have a non-stick pan you will need to lightly oil the pan first.) Bake the square pan for 45 minutes or the loaf pan for 60 minutes, until the top and edges are golden brown. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes.  Loosen sides and invert over a platter to remove from baking pan.
Hints:  The quick cooking oats work best in this recipe.  To make bread crumbs, process 1 slice of bread in a food processor.  (Do this when you have extra older bread and store the crumbs in a sealed bag in the freezer.)  Serve with a sauce or gravy to pour over the loaf-or serve plain with a barbecue sauce on the side.  Vegetarian Worcestershire sauce is available in most natural food stores.  Low sodium soy sauce is also available in most supermarkets for those of you who are trying to reduce your salt intake.


Preparation Time:  10 minutes
Cooking Time:  20 minutes
Servings:  makes 2 cups

4 large Yukon Gold potatoes
2 cloves garlic
¼ cup unsweetened soy milk
Several twists freshly ground white pepper
Dash sea salt

Peel potatoes and chop into chunks.  Place in a stainless pan with water to cover.  Add 2 whole cloves of peeled garlic.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 15 minutes until potatoes are tender.  Drain.  Mash in pan using electric beaters or use a hand masher, adding the remaining ingredients as necessary to get a smooth consistency and delicious flavor. 

I make a double-batch of this dough and put it in the freezer. This way, I always have it on hand. You can make this dough any size you want. My boys like to make their own pizzas, so I give them personal-sized dough balls and they roll it out and add their own toppings.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Length of Rise: 18-24 hours
Rolling time: 30 minutes

7 cups all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour (or a combination of the two)
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 – 4 teaspoons salt
3 cups water, plus more if dough is too dry

In a stand mixer with dough hook, add flour, yeast and salt and mix on low speed until combined. Slowly add water until combined, then knead with dough hook for 2 more minutes, or until dough starts to pull away from bowl and form a big ball on hook. If the mixture seems too dry, add a bit more water. Sometimes I need to do this, other times I do not. Not sure why.
Put this mixture in a large clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap or silicone cover (I cover it with a towel too, not sure if that makes any difference, but it makes me feel better.) and place in a draft free area for 18-24 hours.
The next day, turn mixture out onto a floured work surface. Shape into a long oval shape and cut into 6 even sections, or 3 if you like your pizza thicker. Next, take each section and fold the ends towards the middle, flip over, shape into a ball and place on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Do this with all pieces. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and a towel and let sit for one hour. If you don’t want to use the dough right away, simply place in plastic baggies and place in the freezer.
After one hour, take each ball and roll out on a floured surface until it is the thickness you like your pizza. I like to use a large wooden pizza spatula with parchment paper on it, then a sprinkling of cornmeal, then crust. Next, I put all of the toppings on and bake on a preheated pizza stone in my BBQ as high as it will go, for about 8 minutes.
Some of our favorite pizzas:
Mexican: refried beans, black olives, onions topped with lettuce, tomatoes and salsa after cooking
Thai: peanut sauce, red peppers, baked tofu, onions topped with cilantro and/or greens after cooking
Veggie: tomato sauce, red peppers, mushrooms, black and green olives, onions, pepperoncinis
Greek: hummus, kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, red onions

I think this is my favorite thing to eat – cooked red and white quinoa, Marinated Tofu, steamed kale and broccoli with Thai Peanut Sauce and Sriracha sauce. I make a large serving of quinoa, steam some kale and broccoli, and then make the tofu and sauces listed below. To serve, I start with a layer of quinoa, top with some of the kale and broccoli, add some marinated tofu and top it all off with either one or both of the sauces. My boys don’t like quinoa, so I make them rice. I serve this with a simple cucumber salad topped with a little rice vinegar and agave dressing or the Thai Noodle Salad found in The Starch Solution.

Be sure to use extra firm tofu in this recipe or the tofu will tend to fall apart. 

Preparation Time:  5 minutes
Resting Time:  30 minutes
Cooking Time:  10 minutes
Servings:  Variable

20 ounces extra firm tofu
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons light miso
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon agave nectar
2 teaspoons mirin

Drain the tofu and cut into small cubes.

Place the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until smooth.  Pour over the tofu and toss to coat well.  Let rest for at least 30 minutes, mixing occasionally to make sure the tofu is well covered with the marinade.

Turn the tofu and the marinade into a large non-stick sauté pan.  Dry fry for about 10 minutes, turning occasionally with a spatula to make sure the cubes are well browned on all sides. 


Preparation Time:  5 minutes
Cooking Time:  5 minutes
Servings:  Makes 1½ cups

¾ cup water
½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
¼ cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon mirin
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons cornstarch

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and whisk until smooth.  Bring to a boil while stirring and cook and stir until thickened.  Serve warm over grains and vegetables. 

This is a higher-fat choice because of the peanut butter. However, I have recently discovered PB2, by Bell Plantation. This stuff is amazing! It’s basically powdered peanut butter, with 85% of the fat removed. You mix it with water and use as you would regular peanut butter. You can’t tell the difference.

Preparation Time:  5 minutes
Cooking Time:  5 minutes
Servings:  Makes ¾ cup

½ cup almond milk
¼ cup peanut butter
1 tablespoon soy sauce
½ tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon lime juice
1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce
1/8 teaspoon coconut extract
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until smooth.  Pour into a saucepan and heat through before serving.  Serve warm over grains and/or vegetables.

I like to serve this pasta dish with the Sloppy Lentil Joes below and a big bowl of steamed greens – usually various types of kale from my garden.

Preparation Time:  30 minutes
Cooking time:  11-12 minutes
Servings:  6-8

2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups walnut pieces
1/3 cup packed fresh parsley
1/3 cup packed fresh cilantro
3 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons chopped fresh garlic
¼ teaspoon salt (optional)
freshly ground pepper to taste
16 ounces uncooked spiral pasta
3 cups broccoli florets
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes

Place the broth, walnuts, parsley, cilantro, lemon juice, garlic, and chili paste into a blender jar.  Process for several minutes until very smooth.  Add pepper to taste and optional salt.  Set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add pasta and cook for about 5 minutes.  Add broccoli to the water and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes.  Remove from heat and drain.  Place in a large bowl.  Pour the sauce over and toss to mix.  Add the tomatoes and mix again.  May be served warm, at room temperature, or chilled.
Hints:  If you don’t like cilantro, try this with just the parsley.


This is a quick and easy meal that also reheats well for lunch the next day or two.  Serve this stuffed into a bun and eat with your hands, or ladle it over the buns open-face style and eat with a fork. I like to make fresh bread in my bread machine and ladle the Sloppy Joes over the bread.

Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  1 hour
Servings:  8-10

3 1/3 cups water
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 ½ cups dried brown lentils
1  15 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons prepared mustard
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
freshly ground black pepper 

Place 1/3 cup of the water in a large pot.  Add the onions and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally until onions soften slightly, about 5 minutes.  Add the chili powder and mix in well.  Add the remaining water, the lentils, tomatoes, and the rest of the seasonings.  Mix well, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook over low heat for 55 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Serve on whole wheat buns, or fresh baked bread, with trimmings of your choice.

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Dr. McDougall's Health and Medical Center
P.O. Box 14039, Santa Rosa, CA 95402