I’m gonna let you on to a little secret. There’s a little sumthin’ sumthin’ I can’t go a day without. Well, a few things actually, but today I’m going to focus on just one. Yogurt. Chobani Greek yogurt, to be exact. Whether it’s one of their all-natural fruit-flavored cups like blueberry, strawberry, or peach, or plain yogurt with fresh fruit mixed in, not a day goes by that I don’t get my mid-morning protein fix with a luscious bowl of creamy Chobani yogurt. In fact, my Chobani moment is something I always look forward to.
Why Chobani Greek yogurt, exactly? Well, I just hinted at a couple of my reasons. First of all, protein! Each 6-ounce serving of nonfat fruit-flavored Chobani has 14 grams of protein – that’s a heck of lot more than the other leading light and fat-free yogurt brands (and the Chobani plain nonfat yogurt has even more protein per serving.) Secondly, those “other leading light and fat-free yogurt brands” are often full of artificial ingredients and fillers, while Chobani is completely natural. There are just a few ingredients, I can read them all, and none of them make me wonder, “what’s that doing in my yogurt?” Finally, Chobani is a great value. The 6-ounce cups are often on sale for $1 each, though I usually buy in bulk at the wholesale club for each cheaper. The clubs also have a great deal on the tubs of Chobani nonfat plain yogurt, so whenever our weekly meal plan includes a recipe that uses yogurt, I buy that instead of the cups. I also buy some fresh berries to add to the plain yogurt for my morning snack.
Just what kind of recipes do I like to make with plain nonfat Greek yogurt? Tons! My Haddock with Feta-Yogurt Sauce and Avocado-Baked Mahi are just a couple of our favorites.
And it’s no secret that yogurt is quite common in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern savory cuisine. In fact, when we traveled to Greece this summer, it’s safe to say we ate yogurt every day – and not just for breakfast. Plain yogurt is sometimes used for a tangy condiment like sour cream, to balance out spicy flavors, but it’s often mixed with garlic or fresh herbs to add an extra punch of flavor to meats and vegetables.
When the opportunity arose to work with Chobani as their featured blogger this week, I wanted to highlight a dish from a cuisine that traditionally uses plenty of yogurt but is less familiar to most Americans, and that is Afghan cuisine.
Afghan restaurants seem to me few and far between, and the dishes have not made their way into mainstream American fare like other Middle Eastern specialties such as hummus, falafel, and tabbouleh. This is a disappoint to me, since the food at the Afghan restaurant I’ve visited is well worth an hour drive (yep, that’s how far away it is!) Because I wish you could all have a taste of Afghan food, I decided to make some myself. I also wanted to share it with my husband, who has not had the good fortune to visit this particular restaurant with me (both times have been with other family and friends.) Here’s a hidden entry option – just to see who’s actually reading and who’s just here for the free stuff! Leave a comment telling me whether you’ve tried Afghan food and what you think of it! Or just tell me about your favorite ethnic food
Mantwo are a type of Afghan ravioli filled with a spiced beef mixture and topped with a garlicky yogurt sauce, yellow lentils, and more of the beef filling. The combination, which is flavored with cumin, coriander, and a little crushed red pepper, might not seem intuitive, but it actually works quite well. Just ask my husband, who couldn’t wait to eat the leftovers for lunch the next day (that’s always a sign of a good meal, right?) The recipe is a bit time-consuming, though not difficult at all, and won’t require any hard-to-find ingredients. I even went all out and purchased actual, real, all-natural beef instead of my usual turkey replacement, and it was completely worth it – as was every moment spent putting together this unique and delicious dish for you.
If you’ve read this far, I thank you, because I know your time is precious. But today, I promise you’ve made a good decision, because there’s a giveaway involved. Chobani is giving one of you a chance to win free yogurt, and if you can read just a little bit more, you’ll find out exactly how.
3/4 cup (6oz) plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint leaves
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
salt, to taste
1lb ground beef, 90% lean
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 carrot, grated and finely chopped
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup water
32 wonton wrappers
1 tablespoon tomato paste
pinch of crushed red pepper
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup (90gm) dried yellow split peas
pinch of crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups water
Stir together the yogurt, mint and garlic. Set aside in refrigerator.
In a large skillet, cook the beef and onions over medium high heat, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon, until browned. Drain fat. Stir in the grated carrots, salt, pepper, 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander, and 1/2 teaspoon cumin. Add 1 cup water, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes, uncovered, until water evaporates. Allow beef mixture to cool.
Place yellow split peas, crushed red pepper, 1 teaspoon coriander, 1/4 teaspoon cumin, chicken broth, and 1 1/2 cups water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer partially covered over medium-low heat, for about 45 minutes, or until lentils are cooked down into a thick, slurry-like mixture.
Meanwhile, place one wonton wrapper on a flat surface, and spoon 1 heaping teaspoon of the beef mixture into the center. Wet fingertip with water and trace around the edge of the wrapper to moisten. Place a second wrapper on top, pressing to seal the two together, and folding the edges upward and in to form a round dumpling. Repeat with remaining wonton wrappers. Place all of the wontons in a steamer basket or bamboo steamer set over simmering water, and steam for 40 minutes.
To the remaining beef mixture in the skillet, add the tomato paste, crushed red pepper, and 1/4 cup water. Simmer over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, until liquid is evaporated.
To serve, divide the ravioli among four plates. Top with the yogurt sauce. Spoon some of the pea mixture and the ground beef on top of the ravioli, and garnish with fresh mint.
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat: 9.0 g
Cholesterol: 82.8 mg
Sodium: 510.7 mg
Total Carbs: 55.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 8.8 g
Protein: 35.2 g
The giveaway will run until Monday, February 14th at 12am (in other words, Sunday night!) A winner will be chosen at random and posted on Monday.
The winner will receive a case of Chobani’s newest flavors: Black Cherry, Lemon, and Mango.
To enter, simply leave a comment* on this post. If you like, talk to me about yogurt. Have you tried Chobani? What is your favorite flavor of yogurt? Do you have a favorite recipe using yogurt?
For additional entries, do any or all of the following, and leave a separate comment to let me know about each one:
– “Like” Cara’s Cravings on Facebook (or let me know that you already do!)
– “Like” Chobani on Facebook
– Mention this giveaway on Facebook, with a link to this post.
– Tweet the following: “Visit @carascravings for a chance to win new @chobani flavors! http://bit.ly/ifkJkS”
*Please make sure I have an easy way to reach you from your comments – like an email address or blog URL!