Monday, April 03, 2006

Black Bean Soup

I invented this recipe myself a couple of years ago because I couldn't find one that I really liked. It had to be incredibly healthy and it had to use ingredients easy to keep around. I'm not wild about cilantro and I don't like handling hot peppers. This one fits the bill.

A tip about fresh ginger: It is unrelated to powdered and is well worth keeping around. But I would hardly ever use it! I can hear that mumble from here! Cut it in half, bag it securely, and huck it in your fridge freezer door. When a recipe calls for fresh ginger, grate a little off. Don't worry about the peel; you won't get enough of it in to care about it. It grates like a charm, even frozen. I have a little micro-plane that I use for ginger and fresh garlic as well as for orange or lemon zest.

On to the recipe: just chuck it all in a big pot and simmer till done. (makes about 6 cups)

1 pint canned tomatoes
1 pint black beans
1 carrot, grated
1/2 onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced (or grated, of course...)
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
8 drops tobasco
salt to taste
Add water if needed for desired thickness.

This works out to about 115 calories per cup, but not a single calorie is wasted. In the world of the GI Diet, everything in it is a Green Light Food. Green light means--as in traffic--go ahead. (Yellow is caution and Red is *don't go there*.)

The basic idea of the GI Diet is that the guy has rated foods by the Glycemic Index--how fast the food will burn up in your system. I've been following it pretty completely for the past three weeks (but keeping my very Red Light morning mocha!). A couple of the ingredients in my morning shake are Yellow Light, but I decided to keep them anyway because they are both fruit. Keeping my fruit and veggie count high is important in my new little world.

Oh, you want my breakfast recipe too? Kay, here we go.

1/2 cup of old-fashioned rolled oats cooked in 1 cup of water with a sprinkle of salt.

The shake consists of 1 banana, 1/2 cup crushed pineapple, 3 ounces tofu, and enough skim milk to come to the 2 cup line. Blend. I pour some of this over my oatmeal and drink the rest. I have gotten used to the not-overly-sweet aspect of it, but even the unsweetened pineapple adds a reasonable bit of sweetness to it.

This breakfast holds me up for four hours, no problem.

I'd like to hear from you if you find these recipes/tips tasty or interesting. I'm not sure why I'm posting them right now, but it seems somebody out there may be looking for a healthy eating tip or two.

I'd sure recommend giving the GI Diet a try. For the first time in my life I am losing weight (six pounds-ish to date over three weeks). I'm also doing a Curves workout three times a week and doing the forty minute walk/run the other four mornings. I'm feeling healthier and stronger and my shoulder and neck don't seem to be reacting too negatively (nothing that doesn't simmer back down, anyway.)


fiorinda said...

I was thinking about your diet yesterday, wondering if you had started. The soup sounds good. I may to try it!


Jean said...

Yes! Thanks for posting this. It looks good, and I'm looking forward to trying it.