Thursday, February 21, 2013

5 Reasons to Try Sexy Vegetarian Thursday, in addition to my stuffed potatoes.

Hello, lovelies!

Welcome back to Sexy Vegetarian Thursday! SVT is part of my strategy to eat healthy vegetarian dinners at least twice a week, as well as vegetarian lunches as often as possible. Are you looking for a few reasons to celebrate going meat-free at least once a week with SVT? (I promise I won't even mention hormones, chemicals, nonviolence, or the environment from here on out). Ready? Check out a few of my motivating factors:
  1. Sexy Vegetarian Thursday can save you some money. Have you seen the price of even "cheap" meat lately?! Rising prices have made me think twice as I meal plan for the week. To prove my point on this one, I will keep track of the costs of meat meals vs. SVT meals for another post.
  2. Eliminating even a one meat-heavy dinner a week can help you lower your blood pressure as well as your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
  3. Removing meat as the "main" part of a dish forces you to reconsider what constitutes a filling meal, and can lead you to add more fiber as well as fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet!
  4. Trying a vegetarian meal can introduce you to new foods!
  5. SVT meals are just as easy if not easier than traditional meat dinners, and believe me when I say they are delicious!
For this week's Sexy Vegetarian Thursday adventure, I turned to my Avoca Cafe cookbook for some inspiration. Mr. J said, "Leave it to an Irish restaurant to come up with an awesome potato dish!" That sums it all up, really.

Stuffed Twice-Baked Potatoes a la Avoca Cafe

First things first: you need to wash, dry, smother-in-olive-oil, and bake 3 large baking potatoes for 1 hour at 350 degrees. Make sure you forked some holes into those bad boys.

Place the following into a medium bowl: 15 pitted black olives, chopped; 2 ounces of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped; 5 or 6 ounces of ricotta cheese; handful of basil leaves, chopped.

 After their hour of baking, remove potatoes from the oven. Cut off the tops and discard them (or snack of them. Whichever. I won't tell).

Scoop out the potatoes' innards and plop it all into the bowl of the other ingredients.

Mix well with a potato masher or whatever instrument you like. Spoon the mixture back into the "shells" of the potatoes. Prepare yourself: they will be gloriously overstuffed. Top with a bit of whatever cheese you like. We had a bit of blue cheese on hand.


 Bake the stuffed potatoes for another 15 minutes to melt the cheese and thoroughly warm the stuffing.

Sever your yummy potato.

Enjoy! xo