The Veggie Place


With Janet Tubbs

Janet Tubbs is a leading authority on being a vegetarian and author of If You Can't Pronounce It, Don't Eat It


Q: Is it true that you can be allergic to dairy products? What can I give my son instead of milk and cheese? The doctor said he has ADHD and wants to put him on Ritalin, but I don't want him to have a drug.

A: Yes, you can be allergic to dairy products. In fact, most allergies are caused by milk, cheese and eggs. One of the main causes of ADD/ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder) is allergens. Soy products are a great source of protein for the entire family and are readily available in all health food stores and many grocery stores. Tofu, for example, is a staple in the dairy and produce sections of supermarkets. It can be found refrigerated or sealed in air-tight containers.

Children who have had dairy products removed from their diets often show rapid improvement in their attitudes, attention span and health.


Q: Have you ever tried those tiny vegetables in the gourmet section of groceries? How would I cook them?

A: I love those miniature veggies! I like to steam a combination of thin green beans, yellow squash, zucchini and baby carrots until barely tender. Put in a serving dish, give the top a spritz of olive oil, a squirt of Braggs' Liquid Aminos and a little oregano for perfect seasoning. For a truly attractive dish, add some cherry tomatoes to the dish before serving. It's pretty as a picture, delicious and very nutritious.


Q: Is it hard to make applesauce? My husband says his mother makes the best applesauce in the world and I'd like to know how to do it too.

A: The hardest part is peeling the apples and cutting them into chunks--and that's easy. Here's an old-fashioned applesauce that may remind your husband of the kind his mother makes.

Chunky Applesauce with Cinnamon

Peel, remove core, and cut 3 large apples into chunks
Put in pan with 2 cups apple juice
Add 1/8 tsp cinnamon or 1/2 cinnamon stick
Bring to boil. cover and simmer 15-20 minutes until apples are tender.
Remove and discard cinnamon stick, if used.

This is great served warm and a real treat when topped with frozen vanilla Rice Dream.


Q: Do all vegetarians do yoga? It seems like everybody I know that doesn't eat meat does yoga.

A: No, not all vegetarians do yoga. In fact, I'm not even sure that most vegetarians do yoga. But I do know that yoga and a healthy diet is a combination that's hard to beat since you're working on several levels: physical, emotional and spiritual. If you want to give yoga try, start slowly because you'll be using muscles you don't ordinarily use. A good book is "How to Use Yoga" with great illustrations that are easy to follow.


Q: I love lentils but can't find a recipe that's quick and tastes good.I know you like to make up recipes. Do you have one you'd be willing toshare using lentils?

A: Sure, although this isn't a recipe calling for precise measurements.It's more like the way I cook: a little of this and a little of that.The most enjoyable thing about creating a dish, in addition to eatingit, is that you can change the ingredients every time you make it for adifferent flavor and appearance.

VEGAN SHEPHARD PIE

Soak 1C lentils overnight and cook the next day for about 20 minutes.Drain.

While they're cooking, heat about 2 tsp olive oil in a skillet. Sauté onion until golden and fragrant. Now you can be creative. When I madethis recently, I cubed a cooked potato and browned it with the onions.You can do the same with tofu. For a chewy texture, freeze the tofu overnight and the next day squeeze out the moisture.

I mixed 1C water with 1T of pancake mix in a jar and shook until it wasblended. Why pancake mix? Because I was out of flour and didn't want the consistency or appearance of arrowroot and it worked fine.

Poured this over the onion mixture and stirred until it thickeneds lightly.

Then I added left-over zucchini, some frozen peas and sliced celery.Mushrooms and carrots would be good additions too. I added a whole bayleaf, about 1tsp of oregano, a pinch of lemon pepper, another pinch ofCeltic Salt and about 1tsp of Bragg's.

After this was gently combined, I poured it into a casserole.

The final step was an experiment but you can save money if you have time. I bought a cup of dried potato flakes with garlic. Prepare themaccording to directions (boil water, add, let stand 3 minutes).

Or, you can cook and mash your own potatoes if you have the time or the inclination.

Then spread the potatoes on top of the veggie mixture and bake at 350for about an hour or until the potatoes are golden brown.

With crusty bread and a crisp green salad, you've got a filling, nutritious and tasty dinner for a cool fall evening. And the leftoversare great.


Q: Have you ever tried those soups in a box? The ones I've seen are cornchowder, mushroom, chicken and tomato. Are they any good?

A: A neighbor recently gave me some soup she'd made and it was soterrific, I asked for the recipe. She cooks the same way I do (meaningusually a pinch of this and a shake of that) and my son, who is agourmet cook, loved it. I hope you like it too.

This recipe is so easy, I'm almost embarrassed to print it, but heregoes.

GOURMET CORN CHOWDER

Buy a box of the corn chowder soup, a leek and a red pepper.

In a pot, sauté the white part and just a little green of the leek and the red pepper until softened and smells great.

Add the box of soup and about 1/4 tsp oregano. I add Bragg's to everything so a little is added to this for more flavor.

At this point, it's a very thick soup and you can eat it the way it isor thin it with a little soy milk, which I prefer.

Serve with crackers or small pizzas, pita with humus or just crusty bread sprinkled with olive oil and garlic and you've got a wonderfully satisfying meal.


Q: When I turned vegetarian, the only thing I missed was the rich,creamy, yummy and fattening sauces. Some vegetables are so plain. Help me before I go back to milk, butter and cheese.

A: I hope this gets to you before you take that step backward! I lovethis sauce, not only because it tastes so good, but it's so easy to make.

LEMON VEGGIE SAUCE

Mix 1T cornstarch or arrowroot with 2 T water.

In pan, stir or whisk 1/2 C water, 2 T lemon juice and 2 tsp Dijonmustard.

Heat this mixture and add the cornstarch/arrowroot mixture. Stir and cook until thick. Taste and adjust amount of lemon juice or mustard, if desired.

(Note: I hope you're using distilled water for everything. Use fresh lemon juice if available and experiment with different kinds of mustardfor varying flavor. Cornstarch or arrowroot gives a clearer sauce butyou can use flour if you like.)

I often steam broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and onions together until just barely tender and use this sauce. It's a delicious and attractivedish with the bright colors of steamed veggies.

Serve with baby spinach salad with chopped artichoke hearts, black olives, celery, jicama, red or green onion and whole sweet cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle with garlic powder and other herbs that appeal toyou.

For a simple dressing, mix 1 part Bragg's to 3 parts olive oil, or useyour favorite dressing. Top with garlic flavored croutons and you'vejust made a great and colorful dinner.

THE VEGGIE PLACE CONTINUED -->

To ASK Janet.


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