One of the things I love most about food blogging is the possibility to create and share recipes with all of you. I won’t lie, it can be a very frustrating and time consuming task, with multiple trips to the grocery store to get the same items and tweaking ingredients down to the last 1/4 teaspoon. But even though I’ve had my fair share of epic fails, when I nail a recipe and get the smile of approval from my husband and my toddler, it makes it all worth it.
Food blogging for me is also about sharing more then just my passion for good food, it’s about sharing my passion for nutrition or should I say, nourishment, as a whole. For me, it’s all about how to feed you and your family so you can thrive. I read a lot (and I mean a lot!) of food blogs. Some have entire posts dedicated to explaining the posted recipe. And that’s great, I love reading those blogs, but I tend to always go back to the ones that bring me a little something more, that give me some added knowledge along the way. And that’s what this food blog is all about. Me, sharing with you, the knowledge I’ve gained over the years along with some delicious family tested and approved recipes that will have you crowned Queen/King of the Kitchen.
So I hope you guys are enjoying this blog and if there’s a topic you would like me to cover or some questions you have about this lifestyle or anything else that’s on your mind, leave me a comment, I’d love to know!
Now on to this recipe… and some B-12 info!
This root vegetable casserole gets it’s cheezy flavour from the nutritional yeast in the sauce. Now don’t worry, nutritional yeast won’t have you balloon up like a rising bread. It’s deactivated yeast that grows from fungi, so it can’t be used in baking, but it can be used in cooking to add a cheezy, nutty and even creamy taste to a dish.
It is often found in vegan dishes, like this one, for the taste and nutrition it provides. Nutritional yeast is of particular interest to vegans and vegetarians because of it’s nutrient makeup. According to Dr. Axe, it’s a source of complete protein and vitamins, in particular B-complex vitamins, including the very important B-12 which is a vitamin vegans need to supplement their diet with as it is not found in the plant kingdom. A very important side note here: nutritional yeast contains B-12 because it has been fortified. According to Diane Vukovic over at Plenteousveg.com, yeast, like plants, does not make vitamin B12. Only bacteria can produce B12. Theoretically, nutritional yeast could contain bacteria and thus have natural B12. However, nutritional yeast is grown in conditions in which bacteria is not allowed to grow. So vegans shouldn’t rely solely on nutritional yeast to meet their recommended daily B-12 intake and should read the labels of their nutritional yeast brand carefully to make sure it has been fortified with B-12.
As a quick reminder, the RDA for B-12 is 2.4 mcg daily though many experts agree it ranges more in the 4mcg. I personally make sure I take around 4mcg a day.
That being said, nutritional yeast contains other great nutrients like folates, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, selenium and zinc. It’s low in sodium and fat, gluten-free, and doesn’t contain any added sugars or preservatives. It also preserves immune functions, holds antiviral and antibacterial properties, helps improve digestion and contains beneficial protein and thiamine. It definitely deserves to be tagged a Superfood!
And did I mention it gives dishes a great cheezy taste! Cheese is one of those foods I enjoyed the taste of back in the days but knowing what I know now, eating it is definitely not an option anymore…
This dish is also full of other good for you ingredients that are high in protein and nutrients like brown rice, brown lentils, carrots, parsnips, celery, onion, garlic and pea mylk. Pea mylk is my new “mylk” obsession because of its creamy taste and its high protein content.
Now I’ll be honest with you, this dish does take a bit of time to cook, but it’s inactive time, so while it gently simmers and bakes, you can sit down and read a book or my blog (of course!), set the table, help the kids with their homework…what ever you need to do for 1 hour.
I hope you guys enjoy this recipe and don’t forget to let me know what topic you would like me to cover next!
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 medium carrots, shredded (should give about 1 1/2 cup)
- 1 medium parsnip, shredded (should give about 2 cups)
- 1 Cup brown rice
- 1/3 Cup brown lentils, uncooked
- 2 tsp italian herb mix
- 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 2 Cups of water
- 1 Cup mylk (I used pea mylk)
- 1/3 Cup nutritional yeast
- 1/2 Tbs corn startch
- 1 Tbs water
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt
- In a large pot, melt the coconut oil over medium high heat.
- Add the diced onion and minced garlic and cook for 2 mins.
- Add the shredded carrots and parsnips and cook for another 3 mins.
- Add the Italian spices, salt and pepper and stir.
- Add the rice and lentils and stir to combine.
- Add the water and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Cover and reduce the heat to low.
- Let simmer for 30-35 mins. It’s ok if the rice is still a little al dente.
- Preheat the oven at 350.
- While the rice and vegetables simmer, prepare the cheezy sauce.
- Add the mylk, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard and garlic powder to a saucepan and whisk.
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
- In a small bowl, dissolve the corn startch in the water and add to the sauce.
- Allow to simmer for 5 mins while whisking a few times.
- Set aside.
- Once the rice and vegetables are cooked, pour into an oven safe dish.
- Pour the cheezy sauce over it and mix around.
- Pop in the oven for 30 mins.
- Allow to cool 5 mins before serving.