A couple of blog posts back, I mentioned the importance of making your own bread from scratch. I also mentioned how you can vary the flours to make it your own instead of using all white flour which is void of nutrition.
But, what if you are short on time and you want to still have some great tasting bread without too much fuss?
This is where flatbreads come into place. Making flatbreads are an excellent choice when you are short on time. What's also awesome about using this approach is that it can be made on a moments whim to create wonderful tasting bread.
Another cool fact is, flatbreads come from a variety of countries ranging from India, the Middle East and the Caribbean. Here is an awesome look at Afghan flatbread. (This might be a future post for me to create as this looks delish!)
Ok, back to my recipe testing....My flatbread for testing was a roti bread reminiscent of India, which traditionally is made with white flour and sometimes incorporates whole grain flours, depending on the recipe.
Because I wanted to see if I could get a decent texture and flavor using no white flour, my first attempt was using just kamut flour I made in my Vitamix by just grinding the whole kamut grain.
Kamut is an ancient grain that has a buttery, nutty taste, which is why I chose this for my first attempt. However, the end result ending up being too dense in texture and not soft enough for me although the taste was on point. So, it was back to the drawing board for a second attempt.
My second attempt, I decided I needed to lighten it up, but did not want to resort to using white flour. So, this time it included a combination of whole wheat pastry flour, organic sprouted spelt flour and my beloved kamut for its awesome flavor. What was the result? Drumroll please!
Aww success! The end result of this combination of flours is just what I was looking for. Great taste and texture that I can feel good about. Whole wheat pastry flour has great gluten structure as well as spelt and the kamut flour brings it all together to contribute to the final taste.
If you want to give this bread a try you can find it on my recipe page here:
Whole Grain Roti Bread
I hope you give this recipe a try and remember, this can be a great go to for something quick. Honestly, you are only looking at an hour from start to finish for this delicious homey bread. You can also just freeze this dough for later use by placing into a Ziploc bag.
Its also delicious to making a simple vegetarian flatbread pizza you can make with this dough. This one was made simply with Campari tomatoes crushed, a little olive oil, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, crushed red pepper and kosher salt. I then simply topped off with sliced mushrooms, yellow pepper and mozzarella cheese. So easy, but so delicious!
So, the next time you want a delicious go to, keep flatbreads in mind for easy access to be enjoyed with no major time commitment.
Eat Good! Look Good! Feel Good!
How to eat nutritiously without hitting your bank account too hard is can be ongoing challenge for families as well as individuals. From limited means to just being mindful, feeding ourselves with nutritious food has become a priority for those who want to remain healthy, despite limited income.
But, how do we do this when money is a factor? There are many tips on how to do this, but I will give you some of my suggestions and a couple of resources they may help out.
Although some of these ideas are nothing new, it bears to mention anyway as a refresher. Cooking from scratch is always the way to go to eat on a budget. Here are some food items you should always keep on hand.
Whole grains, such as brown rice, and other options such as bulgur wheat, whole grain or wheat pasta, etc.
Beans of any variety whether whole in their natural form or canned
Plant Based Milk (stockpile when items on sale)
Peanut Butter, or other nut butters
Frozen fruit fruit and veggies
Canned fruit (packed in fruit juice is the best option)
Canned vegetables (no salt added for healthier option)
Basic spices from your dollar store such as oregano, garlic & onion powders, cumin, paprika, kosher salt, sea salt and black pepper.
Economical vegetables and fruits, apples, bananas, carrots, cabbage, zucchini, cucumbers, celery, collard greens, kale, sweet potatoes, onions.
Also, check out resources that may be in your own neighborhood such as food pantries that get daily food donations from outside resources.
These suggestions that I've mentioned are very basic but is a good start.
Now with these basic options you will be able to create some basic meals to nourish your body. But, what if you need to have some easy meal ideas that address the budget issue, plus also delivers good taste?
Although, there are plenty of options on the internet , here is a free e-book called Good & Cheap by Leanne Brown you can easily access. Some exciting options are Vegetable Jambalaya, Savory Summer Cobbler & Spicy Pulled Pork. In addition, there are breakfast options as well as beverage options such as smoothies.
Good & Cheap E-Cookbook
With technology booming, we can now access food using apps on our phone. Food waste is a huge factor these days and this app is trying to reduce this issue, city by city as it becomes more popular. Its called "Too Good to Go"
This company partners with restaurants, bakeries, supermarkets and hotels. Although, not everything offered is healthy there are plenty of options available depending on where you live. Here is a link to find out more information regarding reducing food waste while also enjoying these services to keep yourself on a budget for food costs. You can download the app from the App Store or Google Play.
Too Good to Go
As you can see, you can eat healthy by doing a little research and planning ahead, but also keep things interesting for your taste buds. All of this can be done on a budget and doesn't have to be boring.
Even, if some things are more costly, you can save on other items to balance things out. In the long run you or your family will benefit from these smart habits for a lifetime.
Eat Good! Look Good! Feel Good!
Vanessa LaBranche/Chef Instructor-Culinary Educator