Friday, May 19, 2017

Mexican Style Pinto Beans


We made Tostadas with Mexican Style Pinto Beans as the base.  One Tostada consisted of Mexican Pinto Beans layered with tangy slaw and avocado, the other had a layer of vegan chorizo, melted vegan cheese and avocado.   The beans took the Tostadas to another level!

Mexican Style Pinto Beans

1            pound pinto beans, soaked overnight in cool water (or for at least 6 hrs)
1            tablespoon
1/2         white onion, diced
3            large cloves garlic, minced
1            pinch each sea salt and black pepper, plus more to taste
1            vegetable bullion or 1 cup vegetable broth
1            tablespoon ground cumin
1            tablespoon chili powder
1            jalapeno chile, finely chopped (optional)

Add pinto beans to a large pot and cover with cool water.  Soak for at least 6 hours or overnight uncovered at room temperature.  Once beans are soaked, drain and set aside.

Heat your large pot over medium heat.  Once hot, add olive oil, diced onion and garlic, and season with healthy pinch each salt and pepper.  Stir to coat and sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until onion is soft and translucent.

Next, add drained beans and bouillon cube and cover with water about 2 inches over the top, as the beans will expand while cooking.  If using vegetable broth in place of a bouillon cube, add vegetable broth first, and then water so you don’t add too much liquid.

Add jalapeño (if using), stir and bring to low boil.  Then reduce heat to low or medium-low and simmer for 400-45 minutes, or until beans are tender.

Once the beans are tender and cooked through add remaining seasons:  Salt, pepper, cumin, and chili powder.  Stir to coat and cook on low for 10 more minutes to let the flavors meld.


To make refried beans

Add 1/2 cup finely chopped onion and cook 2-3 minutes, until browned.
Add 2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic and cook 30 seconds.
Add 2 cups cooked beans and 1/3 to 1/2 bean liquid to skillet.
Mash beans and liquid coarsely with back of wooden spoon or potato masher.

Cook 1-2 minutes more, until heated through, adding more bean liquid or water if needed.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Creamy Tomato Soup


This recipe requires soaking Cashews for at least three hours.


Creamy Tomato Soup
Serves 4-6
Food52 Vegan by Gena Hamshaw

3/4         cup cashew pieces, soaked in water for at least 3 hours and drained
1/2         cup soy or nut milk
1/2         cup vegetable broth
3            tablespoon nutritional yeast
2            tablespoons olive oil
1            white or yellow onion, coarsely chopped
4            garlic cloves, chopped
2            14.5 cans crushed or diced tomatoes or 1 28. oz. can
            (I used one can of fire roasted tomatoes – turned out pretty spicy
1/4         cup tomato paste
1            teaspoon dried oregano
1/2         teaspoon dried thyme
              Pinch of red pepper (if using fire roasted tomatoes, I’d skip this)
              Salt to taste
1/4       
 cup chopped fresh basil

Put the cashews, vegan milk, broth and nutritional yeast in a blender or food processor and process until completely smooth (which may take a few minutes), stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the blender jar.

Heat the olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté until tender and translucent, about 8 minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté until very fragrant, 2 or 3 minutes.

Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, thyme, pepper flakes and the blended cashew mixture.  Decrease the heat to maintain a simmer.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through and thickening slightly.

Using an immersion blender (or regular blender and working in batches), blend until smooth and creamy, then season with salt to taste.  Just before serving, stir in the basil.



Saturday, May 13, 2017

Drunken Noodles


I looked up several recipes for Drunken Noodles and took a little from each.  You can make this dish with fried tofu as well but I decided to just do broccoli and add some
salty cashews to the mix.

Drunken Noodles
Serves 2

6            ounces dried flat rice noodles (the Pad Thai sort)

Sauce
1            tablespoon Golden Mountain Seasoning Sauce(replaces oyster sauce)
              optional
1            teaspoon sesame oil
4            tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4         vegetable broth
1/4         cup tamari or soy sauce
4            tablespoons brown sugar
2            teaspoons peeled and finely grated ginger
1-2         cloves garlic minced
1            lime
              red pepper flakes ( I used 1/2-1 teaspoon)
              hot sauce (optional)
              handful of chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
              handful of salted cashews (optional)

              broccoli  or fried tofu or both!

Cook the rice noodles in hot water for 8 minutes or following the package instructions then drain and refresh under cold running tap.  Since we will stir-fry the noodles, you can under cook a bit.

Whisk Drunken Noodle sauce together and season to taste.  Pour sauce over cold noodles and let sit while you heat up for wok or pan.  Add a bit of oil to pan, add cut up broccoli to pan and sauté, once soft, add noodles with sauce. 

Give it all a good sautéing until sauce becomes a bit sticky and all the broccoli is coated.  Add salted cashews to the serving bowls.


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

BBQ Tofu Sandwiches



I think it's worth it to make some home made coleslaw to add to the sandwich.  I just bought shredded cabbage, added vegan mayo, vinegar, sugar and green onion to my mixture.

BBQ Tofu Sandwiches
4 sandwiches

1            package (16 ounces) extra-firm tofu
1/4         cup ketchup
2            tablespoons Dijon Mustard
2            tablespoons soy sauce
1            tablespoon molasses
1            tablespoon grated, peeled fresh ginger
1/8         teaspoon cayenne pepper
2            garlic cloves, crushed with garlic press or finely minced
2            teaspoons sesame seeds
8            slices whole-grain or sprouted bread, toasted

            Top with tomato, lettuce or coleslaw

Drain tofu; wrap in clean dish towel. Place wrapped tofu in pie plate; top with a dinner plate.  Place 1-2 heavy cans on top of late to weight down tofu to extract excess water; set aside about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat broiler.  Coat rack in broiling pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In small bowl, combine ketchup, mustard, soy sauce, molasses, ginger, cayenne, and garlic, stirring until blended.

Remove plate and cans, unwrap tofu, and discard water in pie plate.  Place tofu on cutting board with a shorter side facing you.  Cut tofu lengthwise into 8 slices.

Put tofu slices on broiler pan or prepared baking pan, brush with BBQ sauce.  Place in broiler about 5 inches from source of heat and broil tofu until BBQ sauce looks dry, about 3-5 minutes.  With metal spatula, turn slices over; brush with remaining ketchup mixture and sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Broil tofu 3 minutes longer.

To serve, place 2 tofu slices on 1 slice of toasted bread.  Add coleslaw or other fixings.  If only making four sandwiches, add another layer of two pieces of tofu.


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Spanish Quinoa with Olives


Spanish Quinoa with Olives
Food Network Magazine

Sauté 1 chopped onion and 2 minced garlic cloves in olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat, 5 minutes.

Stir in 1 cup quinoa, 1 teaspoon tomato paste and 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric.

Add 1 & 1/2 cups water and 1 teaspoon kosher salt; bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to low; cover and simmer until tender, 15 minutes.

Stir in 1/4 cup each pimiento-stuffed olives and chopped cilantro.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Latkes with Celery and Herbs



The key to making these little potato cakes is to diligently wring out the potatoes to remove as much water as possible!!  A big salad would make a delicious accompaniment.

Latkes with Celery and Herbs
Food Network Mag. Adapted

3           large russet potatoes (about 1 & 1/2 pounds), peeled
1           onion
1           clove garlic, finely grated
             Kosher salt
1/2        teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
             Freshly ground pepper
1/4        cup finely chopped celery
1/4        cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1           egg replacer (I used ground Flax – combine 1 T. ground flax with 3 T. water,
                                      stir well, place in fridge to set for 15 minutes)
1/4       cup all-purpose four
            peanut oil for frying
            Applesauce or vegan sour cream for serving

Grate the potatoes and onion on the large holes of a box grater into a colander; add the garlic and 1 1/2 teaspoon salt and toss.  Let sit 5  minutes, the wrap in a clean kitchen towel and wring out as much liquid as possible.  ***I did not wring out as much as I should have which led to soggy cakes – so wring, wring and wring!

Add the nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon pepper an all but about 1 tablespoon each of the chopped celery and parsley to the bowl.  Add the egg replacer and flour and stir until combined.  Form 1/4 cupfuls of the potato mixture into balls, then flatten between your palms to make tin 2-inch patties, transfer to a plate.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line a baking sheet with paper towels.  Heat about 1/4 inch of peanut oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; working in batches, add the latkes and fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes per side.  Remove to the prepared baking sheet to drain, then transfer to the oven to keep warm while you cook the next batch. 


Season with salt and top with the reserved celery and parsley.  Serve with the applesauce and vegan sour cream. 

Monday, April 24, 2017

Vegetable-Couscous Salad



Vegetable-Couscous Salad
Serves 6-8

1            cup Israeli Couscous (it’s bigger than regular but I used regular)
3            tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil for sautéing.
freshly ground pepper
1/2         red onion, chopped
2            red bell peppers
1            medium zucchini, medium diced
1/2         teaspoon cumin
1            15-oz. chickpeas, drained and rinsed
3/4         cup green goddess dressing ( I found a vegan dressing recipe on-line,
                                                but any vegan dressing will work)


Cook couscous according to package.

In large sauté pan, heat oil and add diced red onion, cook a few minutes then add red bell peppers, zucchini and cumin.  Cook until vegetables are tender but not too soft. 


Transfer cooked couscous to large bowl, add cooked veggies, drained chickpeas and dressing of your choice.  Season with salt and pepper.  Eat warm or cold.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Pepper Pasta


The original recipe calls for roasting the peppers but I prefer to sauté them on the stove top.  I like to keep them a bit Al Dente.   I kind of played around with the ingredient measurements as I went along and found I liked it a bit spicier than I normally would.  The sweetness of the peppers go nicely with a little kick of red pepper.

Pepper Pasta

2            peppers, one red and one orange, long slices
1/2         yellow onion, sliced in half circles
3            small garlic cloves, minced
1            14 oz. can diced tomatoes
1/4-1/2   cup reserved pasta water
1/4          cup vegan parmesan cheese (home made)
1-2          tablespoons tomato paste
               red chili flakes – how ever spicy you like it
               salt and pepper to taste
1/2          cup fresh basil, cut in small pieces, added at end of cooking
               olive oil for sauting
12           ounces noodles of your choice

Add  olive oil to large sauté pan.  Over medium heat, add sliced yellow onion.
Saute until soft, add minced garlic for a minute then add pepper slices.  Saute
until peppers start to soften. 

Add diced tomatoes, vegan parmesan cheese, tomato paste and red pepper flakes to taste. 

Add some of the pasta water to create a nice sauce.  Once pasta is cooked, add to
Sauté pan, check seasoning and add Basil off the heat.  Serve drizzled with olive oil.


Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Fruit and Nut Granola


The nice thing about Granola is that you can get as creative as you want.  Add your favorite nuts, seeds and dried fruits -- maybe even a little dried coconut.  We kept a big batch in a glass container and used as a snack or on top of some vegan ice-cream.

Fruit and Nut Granola
Adapted from Mary McCartney cookbook
Makes approx. 1 and 1/2 pounds

5              cups rolled oats, preferably old-fashioned (not instant) oats
            ***Muesli from Trader Joe’s (has seeds and fruit and nuts)
10            brazil nuts, roughly chopped (I used Pecans left somewhat big)
1/2            cup sunflower seeds, roughly chopped
1/2            cup pumpkin seeds, roughly chopped (or any other seeds)
8               dried apricots, chopped
1/2            cup raisins
1/3            cup dried cranberries

Syrup:

3              tablespoons sunflower or cooking oil
5 & 1/2    tablespoons maple syrup
5 & 1/2    tablespoons Agave

Preheat the oven to 300F.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In large mixing bowl, combine the oats, brazil (or Pecan) nuts, sunflower, and pumpkin seeds,  Set this aside while you make the syrup.

To make the syrup, pour the oil, maple syrup and Agave into a small saucepan and heat gently until warm but not bubbling, stirring well until all the ingredients are mixed together.  Do not let bubble or burn. 

Drizzle the syrup over the oats, nuts, and seeds and mix together so that all the Ingredients are lightly coated.

Spread the mixture evenly over the 2 baking sheets, as that is about 1/2 “ deep.  Bake for 30-20 minutes, taking it out of the oven 2 times during baking to stir the granola and then return it to continue baking.  When it’s ready it should be evenly golden brown.

Take the granola out of the oven and mix in the apricots, raisins, and cranberries.

Set the granola aside to cool completely, then store in an airtight container and keep in a cool dry place until needed (will keep 2-3 weeks stored like this)


Thursday, April 6, 2017

Parsnip Soup with Coriander and Parsley



This is a nice, light springtime soup that can be served as a starter or a full on meal with a chunk of your favorite bakery bread.  I added a touch of Turmeric to add extra color.

Parsnip Soup with Coriander and Parsley
Adapted Food Network Magazine recipe, Alex G.

2            tablespoons unsalted vegan butter
1            onion, thinly sliced
1            teaspoon coriander seeds
1            cup fresh parsley, leaves chopped and tender stems reserved
Kosher salt
6            medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1” pieces
2            medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1” pieces
2            cloves garlic, minced
1/2         cup orange juice
1            tablespoon molasses
1            cup vegan milk (replaces cream in original recipe- can use soy creamer )
1            tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
olive oil for drizzling

Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the vegan butter, onion, coriander seeds, parsley stems and a generous pinch of salt.  Cook , stirring , until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add the parsnips, carrots and garlic, season with salt and cook, stirring until slightly softened, 5-8 minutes.

Add 7 cups water, the orange juice and molasses to the pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 25-30 minutes.

Stir in the vegan milk into the soup and return to a simmer.  Working in batches, transfer to a blender and puree until smooth; thin with water if the soup is too thick.  Stir in the ginger and chopped parsley leaves and season with salt.  Serve drizzled with the olive oil


Saturday, April 1, 2017

Vegan Flourless Chocolate Cake with Blueberries


Vegan Flourless Chocolate Cake with Blueberries

1 and1/4            cup defrosted, frozen blueberries made into a puree
3/4                     cup cacao powder  (health food store/whole foods)
1/2                     cup sugar
1                        tablespoon baking powder
1                        teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4                     cup unsweetened shredded coconut (for topping)
                          handful of slightly defrosted frozen blueberries (for topping)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Puree defrosted blueberries.

Stir together the cacao powder, sugar, and baking powder in a mixing bowl.

Add the blueberry puree and vanilla.  Whisk until everything is combined and no
Lumps of cacao remain.

Spread evenly into a 6” pan lined with parchment paper.

Bake for 25 minutes at 350F.

Let the cake cool for at least 20 minutes before removing from the pan.  It is very delicate when warm, so to be sure it comes out cleanly, you can chill the cake first.

Top with coconut.  Serve warm or cold.

Cacao:  


http://www.onegreenplanet.org/vegan-food/cacao-vs-cocoa-what-you-need-to-know/

Thursday, March 30, 2017

No Yeast Dinner Rolls



I had a need for last minute dinner rolls that didn't require yeast and found this recipe on the web.
Many people in the comment section thought it was too salty, but we liked it but also added some garlic salt, dill and vegan parmesan to the mix.  I also topped it with a little melted vegan butter and home made vegan parmesan and brushed it on about 2 minutes before the end of cooking.

http://www.justapinch.com/recipes/mommas-easy-no-yeast-dinner-rolls.html

Monday, March 27, 2017

Vegan Parmesan Cheese



This is my favorite recipe for vegan parmesan cheese and only requires 4 ingredients.  This stuff is so good and can be added to soups, pastas and my favorite, POPCORN!  Visit her blog and look around, she has many great recipes as well as a cookbook worth ordering.


Vegan Parmesan Cheese
Minimalist Baker
makes one cup

3/4       cup raw cashews
3          tablespoons nutritional yeast (can be found at health food store or Whole Foods)
3/4       teaspoon sea salt
1/4       teaspoon garlic powder

Add all ingredients to a food processor and mix/pulse until a fine meal is achieved.  Store in refrigerator to keep fresh.  Lasts for several weeks - but good luck keeping it that long.

http://minimalistbaker.com/how-to-make-vegan-parmesan-cheese/


Thursday, March 23, 2017

Asian Tofu and Squash Salad



Asian Tofu and Squash Salad
Adapted Food Network Recipe

1            14-oz  pkg. extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 3/4” cubes
3            tablespoons rice vinegar
2            tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1            tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1/4         cup olive or vegetable oil plus 2 tablespoons for cooking squash
8            ounces mushroom, sliced (I used raw – recipe says to bake w/squash)
4            cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1            5-ounce package mixed Asian Greens(I used Romaine/spinach)
2            cups snow peas, trimmed and halved (I used radishes instead)
1/2         cup coarsely chopped salted roasted cashews

Put a baking sheet in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees.  Put the tofu cubes on a clean kitchen towels in a single layer; let drain and pat dry.  Make the dressing:  Whisk the rice vinegar, soy sauce, ginger and 1/4 cup oil in a large bowl.  Set aside. 

Toss the mushrooms (unless using raw) and squash with the remaining 2 tablespoons  oil, a pinch of slat and few grinds of pepper in a separate large bowl; spread the vegetables on the top hot baking sheet.  Pat the tofu dry and add to the same bowl along with 3 tablespoons of the dressing; toss, then spread on the bottom hot baking sheet.  Roast, switching the baking sheets and tossing the vegetables and tofu halfway through,  until the squash is tender and the tofu is golden, 18-20 minutes.  ****Next time I will spray tofu baking sheet with non-stick because tofu stuck a bit to pan.

Add the greens, snow peas/radishes, and cashews to the bowl with the remaining dressing; toss.  Divide among  bowls, top with the roasted vegetables and tofu.


Monday, March 20, 2017

Barbecue Jackfruit and Pineapple Quesadillas

The original recipe listed BBQ chicken and I thought BBDQ Jackfruit would be a great replacement and super healthy.  Since it takes a little bit of time to prepare the Jackfruit, I made it a day before making the Quesadillas.  If you have extra Jackfruit, just put it in a bun with some pickles and lunch is served.


Barbecue Jackfruit and Pineapple Quesadillas
Adapted Ree Drummond recipe

1/2       pineapple (I would not recommend defrosted frozen pineapple)
            salt and pepper to taste
            prepared Jackfruit (Recommend preparing day before)
            (I make with canned Jackfruit in Brine – Not Syrup)
                     http://www.moreveganblog.com/2014/06/28/bbq-pulled-jackfruit/

            extra BBQ if desired but should have enough on the premade Jackfruit
            vegan butter for frying
8          small flour or corn tortillas
1          jalapeno, sliced
            shredded vegan cheese
            Cilantro for topping
            Vegan sour cream for topping
            Salsa for topping

Cut the pineapple into 8 wedges and cut off the hard core and the outer skin.
If grilling:  Thread the pieces of pineapple onto wooden skewers and grill over medium-high heat, turning once or twice during the grilling process.

Heat the pre-made Jackfruit in a skillet.

Now assemble the quesadillas.  On top of 1 tortilla, place some BBQ Jackfruit, some pineapple chunks and some sliced jalapeno. 

Drizzle additional BBQ sauce, if needed.  Sprinkle with vegan cheddar cheese.

Heat 1 tablespoon vegan butter in a large skillet.  Top the quesadilla with the second tortilla.  Brown on one side, then carefully flip the quesadilla and brown the other side.  Make sure all the vegan cheese is melted.  Repeat to make the rest of the quesadillas.  Then serve with vegan sour, salsa and cilantro.


Saturday, March 11, 2017

Broccoli Almond Sweet-and-Sour Tofu

We love ordering Asian take-out food but sometimes it's nice to just stay inside, enjoy our kitchen and make our own. Here's a pretty simple recipe -- make sure your tofu is nice and crispy!

Broccoli Almond Sweet-and-Sour Tofu
Vegan Yum Yum cookbook by Lauren Ulm


1            tub extra firm tofu, pressed
2            teaspoons Ener-G egg replacer plus 4 teaspoons water, mixed
1/4         cup cornstarch or arrowroot
1/4         cup peanut or canola oil
1/2         cup sliced almonds  (I used more)
1-2         cups steamed broccoli
            sesame seeds for garnish

Sweet-and-Sour Sauce

3 & 1/2  tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
1/4         cup plus 1 tablespoon water
2            tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sugar
2            tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
2            teaspoons ketchup
1            teaspoon molasses
1/4         teaspoon ginger powder
1/2         teaspoon salt
            pinch Cayenne pepper (not in recipe)
1 & 1/2     tablespoons cornstarch plus 2 tablespoons water, mixed.

Slice the tofu into triangles or small cubes. Smaller is better for this recipe, since smaller pieces won’t have a tendency to break up when you toss them, and they have a bigger surface-area-to volume ratio.

Toss the tofu with the egg replacer/water mixture until coated.  Then toss in cornstarch until each piece is coated and dry, adding more cornstarch if needed.

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok.

While the oil is heating, make the sweet-and-sour sauce.  In a small saucepan, mix rice vinegar, water, sugar, tamari, ketchup, molasses, ginger powder, and salt and whisk over medium heat until the sugar and salt is dissolved.  Add the cornstarch/water mixture and whisk until the sauce thickens.  If you leave the sauce unattended now, it will thicken and burn, so keep an eye on it.  When thick, turn off the heat and set aside.

Place the tofu in the hot oil, being careful not to burn yourself.  You don’t want the tofu to be crowded or the pieces will stock to each other, so fry it in batches if needed.   Fry for 3-5 minutes until golden on the bottom, then gently turn and brown the other side.  Right before you’re going to take the tofu out, add the almonds.  Let them fry in the oil for 30 second – no longer.  They should barely change color.

Drain the oil from the tofu and almonds and place in a large bowl.  Pour the sauce on top and gently toss to completely coat.  The sauce should be thick and sticky; it shouldn’t pool at the bottom of the bowl.

Serve immediately with fresh steamed broccoli, adding sesame seeds on top.  (Alternatively, add the broccoli in with the tofu before tossing with the sweet-and-sour sauce – this is what I did).


Monday, March 6, 2017

German Apple Cake


German Apple Cake
The Joy of Vegan Baking CB by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau

3            apples, peeled and cut into slices
1/2         cup nondairy butter
1/2         cup granulated sugar
1/2         cup unsweetened applesauce
2            tablespoons nondairy milk
1 & 1/2   unbleached all-purpose flour
1 & 1/2   teaspoons baking powder

Topping

1/4            cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
1/2            teaspoon cinnamon
1/2            teaspoon ground ginger

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9” spring form pan.

To make the cake, cook the apples in a little bit of water on the stove or in microwave until they’re just a little soft but not mushy.  If using micro, no longer than 1 & 1/2 minutes.)  Set aside

With an electric hand mixer or by hand using a wooden spoon, cream together the butter, and sugar.  Add the applesauce and non dairy milk.  Finally, add the flour and baking powder, and stir until just combined.

Add the batter to the prepared pan, and arrange the apple slices in a circle on top of the cake.

To make the topping, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and ginger, and sprinkle over the apples, covering the top of the cake.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes before unmolding from the cake pan.


****To make this cake completely fat-free, use 1 cup applesauce and eliminate the non dairy butter.