Vegetarian Skillet

I have been mulling over what to eat for breakfast for quite some time now. By quite some time, I don’t mean since I woke up this morning. I mean for a few weeks now, ever since I signed up for Sarah Adler’s health blog updates and the first thing she told me was that eating whole wheat bread isn’t actually all that healthy. Actually, I think I subconsciously knew that already, but her tip made me look into the whole issue of grains. This website I found explains the issue in a very straight-forward manner, and the whole dilemma FINALLY made sense to me. I was getting so confused- some people said eating wheat was okay, but it had to be 100% whole wheat, but Sarah suggested that only things from the earth contain true fiber.

So anyway, I have no idea what to eat for breakfast anymore because I usually eat cereal, bagels, or muffins- all big no-no’s. I never really ate breakfast until I started working, and I think this was because as a therapist I cannot sit and snack at my desk throughout the day, so I really need to make sure to eat a healthy breakfast to keep me going. After a while, I noticed that I would get hungry within an hour and a half of eating such a breakfast, and even though bagels/muffins would be more carbs I would get hungry faster eating those items than I would eating a Greek yogurt and a banana. I used to think that maybe I just worked harder those days and burned off all those calories being on my feet, but I never put two and two together until now. My blood sugar was probably peaking and then crashing, leading me to stuff a packet of graham crackers into my mouth while typing notes mid-morning, repeating the cycle- I then scarfed down my lunch with ease even though I just had a bunch of sugary crackers.

This brings up a whole new dilemma, reminding me why sometimes ignorance is bliss. I now had to figure out what to eat for breakfast that contains a lot of protein and some carbs to keep me going, but that which won’t contribute to celiac disease or cause my blood sugar levels to go haywire. This is very difficult for a lacto-vegetarian (a vegetarian who eats dairy but doesn’t eat eggs.)

I thought back to all the yummy things I’ve eaten at vegan-friendly brunch places- I say vegan-friendly because otherwise there is no point for me to go to the restaurant if all I can eat is the buttermilk biscuits without egg which I could’ve made at home. I remembered a tofu scramble I had once and copied a recipe I found at home, but that didn’t turn out well- I used way too much cumin and turmeric to make it look like real scrambled eggs, and Pathik just couldn’t stomach something looking that similar to scrambled eggs.

I decided to get creative and make my own recipe for a vegetarian skillet, including potatoes because I LOVE potatoes at any breakfast place- I know they add carbs but they are of the earth and I didn’t use too much. I do need some carbs to burn off especially if I’m working out. This recipe has 3 out of 4 necessary components of a balanced meal according to My Plate- vegetables, dairy, and protein. Eat with a side of fruit and you have a balanced meal! I’m happy I created something from everything I had at home rather than finding a recipe or going out to buy additional ingredients to follow some recipe. I heard once that the true art of cooking is not creating fancy, overwhelming concoctions from special ingredients, but it is making tasty dishes from what you already have at home.

The Recipe

Vegetarian skillet : serves two ; Portion size: approx 1 cup (or almost all of a rectangular Pyrex lunch container)


1/2 cup each of chopped green and red bell peppers, in square peices

1/2 medium sized potato, peeled and chopped into squares

1/2 box of Nasoya extra firm tofu, chopped into squares

1/2 large onion, chopped into squares

2-3 large finely diced garlic cloves

salt and black/crushed red pepper to taste


1. Roast potato on high heat in skilled with approx 1/2 tsp of olive oil

2. In same skillet or separate, roast tofu with 1/2 tsp olive oil

3. In separate pan or brushing aside tofu/potatoes in same pan once both are well cooked and browned, sautee the other ingredients in spices mentioned for approximately 1-2 minutes only, don’t want the vegetables to get mushy.

4. Mix everything together, adjust spices

5. Serve with shredded cheddar cheese sprinkled on top and melted (by the dish’s own heat or via oven/microwave)

Take for lunch (as we ended up doing because we woke up late that day) or eat for breakfast- you won’t feel hungry afterwards unless you don’t make enough 🙂


2 thoughts on “Vegetarian Skillet

  1. Bhumi,
    I received a linkedin notice from you sometime ago. After clicking the link I came to your blog and discovered that you are having problems with breakfast selection.

    Eat DAL AND SABJI at breakfast.
    ROTI AND SABJI at night

    That’s what I do.
    How are you? It was nice to hear from you.

    • Hi Dr. Maitra! Thanks for the tip. I’m doing really well! Occupational therapy-wise a lot of stuff has happened in the last few months which I’m planning on writing about soon. Otherwise I moved to Indianapolis, really miss Chicago. How are you doing?

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