Saturday, January 24, 2015

Blended Family Lo Mein

My husband, son and I are a blended family.  I am not talking about previously married, divorced and remarried kind of family, we are a food blended family.  My husband and 15 year old son are "meat and potato" kind of guys!  My son, Zeke, is an all American boy; football, wrestling, working out, dirt bike riding, shooting team, you get the picture, and he wants his protein rich meat to eat, every night.  I, on the other hand, am a plant based mama, and proud of it!

Since I do the cooking in the family, they eat what I serve, and they are usually okay with it.  Sometimes they make little comments, then they try it and are stupefied at how good it actually tastes!  I want supper time to be easy.  I work a full time job and making two meals every night, one for them and one for me, is not in the cards.  To ease this period of my day (life) I have made meat friendly meals into plant based friendly meals also.  I can cook once and feed everyone!

I love Lo Mein.  I love Chinese.  I love noodles.  Here is a simple recipe that can be made to please everyone, meat eaters, and vegetarians alike.

Recipe:

8 ounces whole grain spaghetti
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cups fresh sliced mushrooms
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup each, red and green bell peppers
1 onion, chopped
2 gloves garlic, minced
2 cups sugar snap peas
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup vegetable broth
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4  teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4  teaspoon curry powder

1 pound chicken, boneless and skinless, cut up for stir fry
8 ounces firm tofu, pressed and cut into cubes

Cook spaghetti according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.  
Cook chicken and tofu separately, set aside.
Heat oil in a large wok or sauté pan.  Stir fry the mushrooms, carrots, peppers, onion, and garlic until tender.  Stir in sugar snap peas and green onion, cook one minute.  Mix cornstarch and vegetable broth in a small bowl and add to stir fry.  Stir in hoisin sauce, soy sauce, cayenne pepper and curry powder.  Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.

Place the cooked spaghetti on a plate, add chicken to the meat eater plates then pour vegetables and sauce over the meat and noodles.  Toss.  Add sliced almonds if desired.

Place the cooked spaghetti on a plate, add the browned tofu, pour vegetables and sauce of the tofu and noodles.  Toss.  Add sliced almonds if desired.

If you have any left overs, store the noodles, vegetables and sauce together, tofu and meat separate.  Left overs are always better the next day!

I have been plant based for over a year, and love it.  I have people ask me all the time, "do you cook separate meals"  "I bet it takes you forever to figure out what you're going to make"  "isn't your grocery bill high".  The answer is no.  I take the time to plan, I make sure that the foods are nutrient dense for all of us, and I make everyone HAPPY!  **I do make the guys go meatless on Meatless Monday's and a couple more times during the week**

I have learned that it is okay to be different.  To eat what I like and not give into the pressures of people around me.  I feel the healthiest eating this way, and I want people to understand how they too can be healthy!  I hope one day, that my family will see that eating their fruits and vegetables was a benefit to them!







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