One of America’s Favorites – Falafel

September 8, 2014 at 5:29 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | 4 Comments
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Falafel balls

Falafel balls

Falafel is a deep-fried ball or patty made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or both. Falafel is a traditional Middle Eastern food, usually served in a pita, which acts as a pocket, or wrapped in a flatbread known as lafa; “falafel” also frequently refers to a wrapped sandwich that is prepared in this way. The falafel balls are topped with salads, pickled vegetables, hot sauce, and drizzled with tahini-based sauces. Falafel balls may also be eaten alone as a snack or served as part of a meze (appetizers).

Falafel is a common dish eaten throughout the Middle East. The fritters are now found around the world as a replacement for meat and as a form of street food.

 

 

 
Falafel grew to become a common form of street food or fast food in the Middle East. The croquettes are regularly eaten as part of meze. During Ramadan, falafel balls are sometimes eaten as part of the iftar, the meal that breaks the daily fast after sunset. Falafel became so popular that McDonald’s for a time served a “McFalafel” in some countries. Falafel is still popular with the Copts, who cook large volumes during religious holidays. Debates over the origin of falafel have sometimes devolved into political discussions about the relationship between Arabs and Israelis. In modern times, falafel has been considered a national dish of Egypt, the Palestine, and of Israel. Resentment exists amongst many Palestinians for what they see as the appropriation of their dish by Israelis. Additionally, the Lebanese Industrialists’ Association has raised assertions of copyright infringement against Israel concerning falafel.

Falafel plays an iconic role in Israeli cuisine and is widely considered to be the national dish of the country. While falafel is not a specifically Jewish dish, it was eaten by Mizrahi Jews in their countries of origin. Later, it was adopted by early Jewish immigrants to Palestine. Due to its being entirely plant-based, it is considered parve under Jewish dietary laws and gained acceptance with Jews because it could be eaten with meat or dairy meals.

 

 

 

 

Falafel sandwich

Falafel sandwich

In North America, prior to the 1970s, falafel was found only in Middle Eastern and Jewish neighborhoods and restaurants. Today, the dish is a common and popular street food in many cities throughout North America.
Falafel has become popular among vegetarians and vegans, as an alternative to meat-laden street foods, and is now sold in packaged mixes in health-food stores. While traditionally thought of as being used to make veggie burgers, its use has expanded as more and more people have adopted it as a source of protein. In the United States, falafel’s versatility has allowed for the reformulating of recipes for meatloaf, sloppy Joes and spaghetti and meatballs into vegetarian dishes.

Today, falafel is eaten all over the world.

 

 

 
Falafel is made from fava beans or chickpeas, or a combination of the two. The use of chickpeas is predominant in most Middle Eastern countries. The dish is usually made with chickpeas in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Israel and Palestine. This version is the most popular in the West. The Egyptian variety uses fava beans.

When chickpeas are used, they are not cooked prior to use (cooking the chickpeas will cause the falafel to fall apart, requiring adding some flour to use as a binder). Instead they are soaked (sometimes with baking soda) overnight, then ground together with various ingredients such as parsley, scallions, and garlic. Spices such as cumin and coriander are often added to the beans for added flavor. Fava beans must be cooked, for medical reasons. The mixture is shaped into balls or patties. This can be done by hand or with a tool called an aleb falafel (falafel mould). The mixture is usually deep-fried, or it can be oven baked.

 

 

 

 

When not served alone, falafel is often served with unleavened bread when it is wrapped within lafa or stuffed in a hollow pita. Tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, and other garnishes can be added. Falafel is commonly accompanied by tahini.

Falafel is typically ball-shaped, but is sometimes made in other shapes, particularly donut-shaped. The inside of falafel may be green (from green herbs such as parsley or green onion), or tan.

 

 

 

Falafel balls of different sizes. Made from chickpeas.

Falafel balls of different sizes. Made from chickpeas.

When made with chickpeas, falafel is high in protein, complex carbohydrates, and fiber. Chickpeas are also low in fat and salt and contain no cholesterol. Key nutrients are calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese, vitamin C, thiamine, pantothenic acid, vitamin B, and folate. Phytochemicals include beta-carotene. Falafel is high in soluble fiber, which has been shown to be effective in lowering blood cholesterol.

 

Falafel can be baked to reduce the high fat content associated with frying. Although baking alters the texture and flavor, it is a preparation technique often recommended to people suffering from such health problems as diabetes.

 

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Turkey Pepperoni and Turkey Sausage Pita Bread Pizza

May 27, 2014 at 5:13 PM | Posted in Hormel, Jennie-O Turkey Products, pizza | Leave a comment
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Today’s Menu: Turkey Pepperoni and Turkey Sausage Pita Bread pizza

 

 

Pita Bread Pizza 004

An old friend of mine passed away late last night with lung cancer. He never had smoked but worked in bars most of his life and the doctors had said it was due to second-hand smoke. So it’s been a bit of down day. Really muggy outside today, so not much going on. For dinner tonight I made a Pizza, but just not any Pizza a Turkey Pepperoni and Turkey Sausage Pita Bread Pizza!

 

 

 
I use Joseph’s Oat Bran and Stone Ground Whole Wheat Pita Bread anytime I can, especially for my Pizza! I love using Joseph’s Pita Breads, always fresh and they’re only 60 calories, 1.5 grams fat, and 5 net carbs! A huge saving instead of calories and carbs over using normal Pizza Crust, without sacrificing taste.

 

 

 

I preheated the oven on 400 degrees. To bake the Pita Pizzas I used a large Cookie Sheet. To prepare them I brushed them with a light coat of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, the coating of Oil browns it up just right. I then baked it for 5 minutes, just to brown it up a bit. Removed them from the oven and made my Pizzas.

 

 

Pita Bread Pizza 001

For my toppings I used Jennie – O Hot Lean Turkey Breakfast Sausage, Ragu Homestyle Pizza Sauce, Hormel Turkey Pepperoni, Sliced Black and Green Olives, sliced Baby Bella Mushrooms, 2 Anchovies Fillets, Fresh Shredded Murray’s Muenster Cheese, and Fresh Shredded Murray’s Mozzarella Cheese. It took less than 10 minutes in the oven until everything heated up and the Cheese melted.Pizza is served! Everything combined makes one delicious Pizza! And the good thing is you can load these Pita Bread Pizzas up with toppings and still not have a lot of calories and carbs, my type of Pizza! For dessert later a Jello Sugar Free Double Chocolate Pudding topped with Cool Whip Free.

 

 

 

 

 

Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran and Whole Wheat Flour Pita BreadJoseph's Heart Friendly Whole Wheat Flour Pita Bread

 

Heart Friendly Pita Bread
Joseph’s provides you with a healthy, reduced carb, high protein pita bread with no cholesterol containing three healthy ingredients, Oat Bran, Whole Wheat and Plant Sterols. Plant Sterols are a natural nutrient present in small quantities in many fruits, vegetables and grains. F.D.A Guidelines state that Plant Sterols, eaten twice a day with meals for 0.8g daily total, may reduce heart disease risk in a diet low in saturated fat & cholesterol. Joseph’s Heart Friendly Pita has 0.4g per serving.
Joseph’s Oat Bran and Whole Wheat Flour Pita Bread has 1.5 grams fat, 0 cholesterol, 334 mg sodium, 10 total carbs (5g diegary fiber, 1 sugar), and 7g protien. That means each pita has a total of only 5 net carbs. The bread is made by Joseph’s Middle East Bakery, Inc. in Lawrence, Massachusetts.

 

 

https://www.josephsbakery.com/shop/specialty/heart-friendly-pita-bread.html

 

Today’s Menu: Pita Bread Chili Dogs

August 10, 2013 at 5:13 PM | Posted in Ball Park Smoked Turkey Franks, Joseph's Pita Bread, Sargento's Cheese, turkey chili | Leave a comment
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Today’s Menu: Pita Bread Chili DogsPita Bread Chili Dogs 007

 

 
Spent the day on a project I’ve been meaning to do for a while now. I refinshed a small book-case I have. The top of it had watermarks on it that had ruined the finish. For dinner I prepared Pita Bread Chili Dogs.

 

 

I’ve using Pita Bread instead of Buns lately, lower in calories, fat, and carbs. So I thought why not try a Chili and Cheese Dog. I used Ball Park Smoked White Turkey Franks, which I use whenever I eat Hot Dogs, best tasting Turkey Frank there is. You can grill them or boil them, I boiled these. Then for my Chili I used Hormel Turkey Chili with Beans and Sargento Reduced Fat Shredded Sharp Cheddar along with some French’s Yellow Mustard. While warming the Chili up I added a few shakes of Frank’s Red Hot Sauce, everythings better with Frank’s! Then for my Pita Bread I used Joseph’s Flax Oat Bran and Whole Wheat Pita Bread. I’ve been dropping a few pounds and Joseph’s helps by cutting the calories, fat, and carbs from sandwiches or anything else I would normally use a Bun for. Turned out delicious! I’ll have these again soon.

 

 

For a dessert/snack later a new product, Keebler Town House Oven Baked Pita Crackers w/ Sea Salt. I had those and dipped them in some Helluva Good Bacon and Horse Radish Sour Cream Dip. Made a nice combo, the Crackers are 70 calories and 11 carbs for 6 Crackers.

 

 

 

 

Keebler Town House Oven Baked Pita CrackersKeebler Town House Pita Crackers

Host a happy get-together with these crisp, oven-baked crackers with a rustic blend of savory herbs and spices inspired by pita crackers. They make the perfect pair with your favorite toppings and dips.
NUTRITION FACTS
Serving size 6 crackers (15g)
Calories 70 Kcal
Total Fat 2.5 g
Saturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 140 mg
Total Carbohydrate 11g
Dietary Fiber 0.25 g
Sugars 1 g
Protein 1 g
http://www.keebler.com/product-keebler-town-house-pita-crackers-sea-salt-31694.aspx

 

 

 
Helluva Good BACON HORSERADISH DIPHelluva Good Bacon Horseradish

Heluva Good!® Bacon Horseradish Dip blends flavorful bacon bits and zesty horseradish with creamy sour cream to create intense flavor that adds kick to any BBQ or get together.

Ingredients
CULTURED PASTEURIZED MILK, CREAM AND NONFAT MILK, SALT SUGAR, BACON BITS (CURED WITH WATER, SALT, SODIUM PHOSPHATE, SODIUM NITRATE, SMOKE FLAVORING, SUGAR, SODIUM ERYTHORBATE, BROWN SUGAR, SODIUM ASCORBATE, POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, DEXTROSE), TORULA YEAST (SULFITES), DEHYDRATED HORSERADISH, SILICON DIOXIDE, MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE, HYDROLYZED CORN GLUTEN, DEHYDRATED ONION, MODIFIED CORN STARCH, NATURAL FLAVORS, SPICE, DISODIUM IOSINATE, AND DISODIUM GUANYLATE, MALTODEXTRIN, CARAMEL COLOR, YEAST EXTRACT, GELATIN, POTASSIUM SORBATE (TO PRESERVE FRESHNESS), SOYBEAN OIL AND ENZYME.
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size2 Tbsp (31 g)
Amount per Serving
Calories50 Calories from Fat40
% Daily Values
Total Fat4.5g 7%
Saturated Fat 3g 14%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol20mg 6%
Sodium250mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate2g 1%
Fiber0g 0%
Sugar2g
Protein1g 3%

 
http://www.heluvagood.com/products/proddetail.aspx?id=368

 

Wrapped Pita Bread Seasoned Tilapia w/ Baked Potato

August 6, 2013 at 5:07 PM | Posted in fish, potatoes, tilapia | Leave a comment
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Today’s Menu: Wrapped Pita Bread Seasoned Tilapia w/ Baked PotatoPita Bread Tilapia 006

 

 

I had to go to my Ortho Doctor late this afternoon. I had a right hip replacement about 5 years ago and recently I’ve been some pain in the hip and back. The good part is the hip replacement looks perfect still and it seems that the pain is coming from lower back. Which hopefully can be corrected when I get new seating for my Hoveround Mobility Chair. For dinner I wanted something fairly easy to prepare and light. So I went with a Wrapped Pita Bread Seasoned Tilapia w/ Baked Potato.

 

 

I had purchased a bag of frozen Tilapia from Walmart a while back. Their not real big fillets but they are just the right size for sandwiches. i seasoned them with just a shake of Sea Salt and rolled them in Zatarain’s Lemon Pepper Seasoning Mix. I pan fried them on medium heat in Canola Oil, about 4 minutes per side. I love using the Zatarain’s Seasoning Mix, always great flavor and crust. Instead of putting the fillet on a bun I used a Joseph’s Pita Bread which I’ve been using a lot lately instead of bread. Turned out delicious!

 

 

I also had a Baked Potato that I seasoned with Sea Salt and Ground Black Pepper along with some I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. For dessert later a bowl of Del Monte No Sugar Added Peach Chunks.

 

 

 

 

 

Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita BreadJoseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread
Flax Variety Pack Now enjoy some of Joseph’s most popular products together in one package! The Flax Variety Pack allows you to enjoy three packages of our Flax Pita Bread, Mini Flax Pita Bread, and Flax Lavash.

 

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 pita (28.3g)

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 10 Calories 50

% Daily Values*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 25mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 0g
Protein 5g

 

 

http://www.josephsbakery.com/p-10289-Flax-Variety-Pack-Flax-Pita-Bread-Mini-Flax-Pita-Bread-Flax-Lavash

It’s a Wrap!

July 27, 2013 at 11:14 AM | Posted in cooking, Joseph's Pita Bread | Leave a comment
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As I had said in an earlier post I’ve been using Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread ever since I came across it in the Wraps 002Walmart Bakery. At only 50 Calories and 4 Net Carbs you can’t beat it.

 
For breakfast a Scrambled Egg and Cheese Wrap. Scrambled 1 Egg, seasoned with Sea Salt, Ground Black Pepper, a few shakes of Frank’s Red Hot Sauce, and a sprinkle of Sargento Reduced Fat Shredded Cheddar Cheese. Just put the Scrambled Egg in the Pita Bread and top with a light sprinkle of the Sargento Shredded Cheddar, one quick, easy and healthy way to start the morning.

 
Then for a lunch option, once again using the Pita Bread I just added some thin slices of Kroger Brand Private Selection Oven Roasted Rosemary Ham. This has become my favorite packaged Ham incredible taste and it’s 70 calories and 1 carb per serving. You can add a slice of Sargento Ultra Thin Swiss Cheese, only 40 calories per slice, or season it up a little with French’s Mustard or Kraft Light Mayo. No matter the topping it makes one good Ham Wrap! I’m beginning too think everything’s better in a Wrap! Did you notice the orange Taco Holders? A very useful and inexpensive kitchen item to have, especially if you eat a lot of Tacos or Wraps

 

Wraps 005

 

 
Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread

Flax Variety Pack Now enjoy some of Joseph’s most popular products together in one package! The Flax Variety Pack allows you to enjoy three packages of our Flax Pita Bread, Mini Flax Pita Bread, and Flax Lavash.

 

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 pita (28.3g)

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 10 Calories 50

% Daily Values*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 25mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 0g
Protein 5g

 

 

http://www.josephsbakery.com/p-10289-Flax-Variety-Pack-Flax-Pita-Bread-Mini-Flax-Pita-Bread-Flax-Lavash

Baked Pita Bread Pepperoni and Sausage Pizza

July 25, 2013 at 5:18 PM | Posted in Jennie-O Turkey Products, Kraft Cheese, low calorie, low carb, pizza | Leave a comment
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Today’s Menu: Baked Pita Bread Pepperoni and Sausage PizzaPita Bread Pizza 005

 

 
Went out and got the morning paper about 6:45 this morning and it was 50 degrees! 50 degrees in late July, odd weather this year. It was another gorgeous day out also, about 78 and sunny. For dinner wanted a hot but light meal so I prepared a Baked Pita Bread Pepperoni and Sausage Pizza.

 

 

I used my new favorite Pita Bread, Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita Bread. I’ve been using this for the last couple of weeks and love it. Stays very fresh, good tasting and it’s only 50 calories and 7 carbs (4 Net Carbs) per serving.

 

 

For my toppings I tried to use all items that were Turkey, Low Fat, and Reduced Fat. I used Hormel Turkey Pepperoni (70 Calories and 0 Carbs), Jennie – O Lean Ground Turkey (160 Calories and 0 Carbs), Ragu Pizza Sauce (40 Calories and 5 Carbs), Sliced Black Olives (30 Calories and 1 Carb), and Kraft 2% Mozzarella (70 Calories and 1 Carb). I also had about 3 slices of Mushrooms on there also. I spread 1 brush of Extra Virgin Olive Oil on top of the Pita Bread and then layered my toppings. I then baked it on a cookie sheet at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes, until the Cheese was melted and the toppings were heated. The Pita Bread makes one fine Pizza! The Bread browned and crisped up just right and everything was so low in calories and carbs I could have a couple of them if I wanted. Pita Bread Pizzas, gotta love them! For dessert later a Jello Sugar Free Double Chocolate Pudding topped with Cool Whip Free.

 

 

 
Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Pita BreadPita Bread Pizza 001

Flax Variety Pack Now enjoy some of Joseph’s most popular products together in one package! The Flax Variety Pack allows you to enjoy three packages of our Flax Pita Bread, Mini Flax Pita Bread, and Flax Lavash.

 

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 pita (28.3g)

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 10 Calories 50

% Daily Values*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 25mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 0g
Protein 5g

 

 

http://www.josephsbakery.com/p-10289-Flax-Variety-Pack-Flax-Pita-Bread-Mini-Flax-Pita-Bread-Flax-Lavash

Pizza Three Ways – Pepperoni, Turkey Sausage, and Ham & Pineapple

December 24, 2011 at 6:38 PM | Posted in baking, diabetes, diabetes friendly, Food, Jennie-O Turkey Products, Kraft Cheese, leftovers, mushrooms, pizza | 8 Comments
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Today’s Menu: Pizza Three Ways – Pepperoni, Turkey Sausage, and Ham & Pineapple

I had three of the  Meijer Wheat Pita Bread’s left so I used them to make three different Pizzas for everyone for dinner tonight. I made a Turkey Pepperoni, Turkey Sausage, and a Ham & Pineapple Pizza. The Pita Bread is only 80 calories and 17 carbs per serving which is half the Pita. At that the whole Pita Bread is only 160 calories. Pita Bread is agreat alternative for your Pizza Crust, being lower in calories and carbs. I used Ragu Pizza Sauce, Kraft 2% Shredded Mozzarella Cheese for all 3 Pizzas.  I brushed each Pita Bread with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and  baked them at 385 degrees for about 9 minutes.

On the Pepperoni Pizza I used Hormel Turkey Pepperoni, Mushrooms and Sliced Black Olives.
For the Turkey Sausage Pizza I used Jennie – O Italian Turkey Sausage, Sliced Black Olives, and Mushrooms. I precooked the Turkey Italian Sausage before adding it as a topping.
For the last Pizza I used Mushrooms, Sarah Lee Thin Sliced Honey Baked Ham along with Dole Pineapple Chunks.

It was unanimous I needed to make more of the Ham & Pineapple. What a great flavor combination! The hint of Salt from the Ham and Sweetness from the Pineapple makes a delicious Pizza. For dessert later a bowl of Breyer’s Carb Smart Vanilla Ice Cream topped with some Dole Pineapple Chunks that were leftover from dinner.

Wheat Pita Pizza

December 14, 2011 at 7:02 PM | Posted in baking, diabetes, diabetes friendly, Food, Jennie-O Turkey Products, Kraft Cheese, mushrooms, pizza | 7 Comments
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Today’s Menu: Wheat Pita Pizza

Pizza for dinner tonight! I love Pizza but don’t like the calories and carbs that go with it. I started using these Wheat Pita Bread from Meijer a while back. Only 80 calories and 17 carbs per serving which is half the Pita. At that the whole Pita Bread is only 160 calories! For toppings I used Jennie – 1/4 of a O Italian Turkey Sausage, 1/2 a serving (8 Slices) Hormel Turkey Pepperoni, Sliced Black Olives, Sliced Baby Bela Mushrooms, Ragu Pizza Sauce (1/2 Serving), Kraft 2% Shredded Mozzarella. I precooked the Turkey Italian Sausage before adding it as a topping. The 1/2 Pita serving doesn’t have a lot of calories or carbs but plenty of taste and very filling. After building my Pizza I baked it at 385 degrees for about 9 minutes. I made 2 of them and it was more than enogh for 3 people. For dessert/snack later a Mini Bag of Jolly Time 100 Calorie Pop Corn.

 

Asian Pork & Mushrooms w/ Brown Rice and pita Bread

October 25, 2011 at 5:07 PM | Posted in dessert, diabetes, diabetes friendly, Food, low calorie, low carb, mushrooms, pork roast, pulled pork, rice | 3 Comments
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Today’s Menu; Asian Pork & Mushrooms w/ Brown Rice and pita Bread

I used some of the leftover Asian Pork & Mushrooms for dinner. I took a Meijer Bakery Wheat Pita Bread and topped it with Uncle Ben’s Brown Rice and then topped that with the Asian Pork & Mushroom. It wasn’t anything difficult or fancy but it was delicious! The Brown Rice went great with The Asian Pork and the Pita Bread was great as it absorbed all the juice from the Asian Pork &Mushrooms. Really a great trio together! For dessert later a Jello Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding topped with Cool Whip Free.

Wheat Pita Turkey Pepperoni & Mushroom Pizza

October 22, 2011 at 12:16 PM | Posted in baking, cheese, diabetes, diabetes friendly, Food, low calorie, low carb, pizza | 8 Comments
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Lunch Today: Wheat Pita Turkey Pepperoni & Mushroom Pizza

For lunch today I had a Wheat Pita Turkey Pepperoni & Mushroom Pizza. Been a while since I had purchased any Pita Bread. So while at Meijer early this morning they were just putting out some fresh baked Wheat Pita Bread. The bakery this morning had aroma’s that was bringing the entire store to it!

I used Ragu Traditional Pizza Sauce, Fresh sliced Mushrooms, Hormel Turkey Pepperoni, and Pizza Cheese. After adding all the ingredients I baked it for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. After removing the Pizza from the oven I sprinkled just a dash or two of Ground Black Pepper to it. I’ll have to start keeping this Pita Bread in stock, everything turned out great. Added a Diet Peach Tea Snapple to wash everything down!

The serving size of the Pita is half the Pita. The calories for the Pita and toppings is 215 and only 23 carbs!

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