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Throw everything in the pan curry

30 Aug

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I am a firm believer that great things come from one pan. I will throw everything i have in the fridge in a pan and serve it up about once a week or every two weeks.
This time I also used up a can of pigeon peas that I bought for the first time. I’ve never eaten them before so I didn’t know how I would like them. Turns out they were the perfect thing for my vegetable curry.
I cooked onion, garlic, pigeon peas, tomato, carrot, and mushroom in one pan and added a couple scoops of curry powder and soy milk. Simmered for 10 minutes and devoured! I will be buying more pigeon peas next time I go shopping! Next time I’ll use a little less curry powder and I think this meal will be perfect. It’s great for leftovers too!
What do you add to your curry?
Or what’s your favorite one pot meal?
-Kerri

Frizzled Cabbage and Smashed Bean Club

29 Aug

I recently received a massage head of cabbage in my CSA and wanted to make something interesting with it. After requesting help from my facebook friends, I decided on the following recipe. Unfortunately, I got nervous with using 8 tablespoons of butter, so I tweaked it a bit. Still delicious, but not quite “frizzled.” If you would like to try the true frizzled version, click the link below. Otherwise, try out this sauteed “frizzled” cabbage alternative:

Frizzled Cabbage

(Adapted from Food.com)

1 head of cabbage

2 tablespoons of vegan butter

Salt

Pepper

1.Core and very thinly slice the cabbage.

2. Melt the butter in a large skillet (I use non-stick) over medium heat.

3. When it is bubbling, add the cabbage.

4. Salt and pepper the cabbage.

5. Stir occasionally and cook until mostly wilted, about 10 minutes.

6. Turn the heat down to medium-low and let cook, stirring frequently, until cabbage is starting to caramelize (brown), about 10 minutes.

7. Do not let burn.

Read more at: http://www.food.com/recipe/frizzled-cabbage-83524?oc=linkback

For lunch today, I followed another one of the Happy Herbivore’s meal plan recipes: Smashed White Bean and Avocado Club. Definitely one of my favorites!

~Kate

Lentil Soup, lots and lots of lentil soup

28 Aug

I’ve been wanting to cook lentils for a while now. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten the before this year. They always looked weird and un appetizing to me. Some lovely Indian dal changed me mind. I’m still too intimidated to cook Indian food at home, so i made lentil soup. This recipe is simple and tastes great! It came out more like a stew, perfect with a piece of toast. It tastes way better than it looks, trust me 🙂 

Simple Lentil Soup:

1 lb green lentils

1 large potato

1 large tomato

3 large carrots

1 med onion

6 leaves of kale

5 cloves of garlic

2 tbs oil

1 quart vegetable stock

2 cups water

salt and pepper

 

In a blender, pulse garlic, onion, carrots, and kale. This cuts down on the chop time.

 

Heat oil in large soup pot.

Add vegetables from blender to pot.

 

Add salt and pepper. (A good large pinch)

Chop potato into small pieces and add to pot, stir occasionally, cook for 5 minutes.

Rinse lentils with cold water.

Add Vegetable stock to pot. (I poured the stock into the blender and then into the pot so I could get every last little piece of the green vegetable mix out of the blender.

Add extra water (I added 2 cups and it came out pretty much like stew, add more water of veg. stock for a thin broth)

Cover pot and let cook for 30 minutes.

taste test lentils, continue to cook until lentils are soft but not mushy.

Serve with toasted crusty bread.

Enjoy. Makes enough for sharing and the freezer 🙂 

Recipe: Chickpea Salad!

26 Aug

I recently was at the store and ran across a pre-made Chickpea Salad that was vegan. It tasted great, but I figured I could easily make my own version at home. I copied the ingredients and with the help of a few online recipes, I pieced together what turned out to be an amazing salad!

Kate’s Chickpea Salad

1 can of chickpeas, rinsed

1/2 green pepper, diced

1/2 red pepper, diced

1/2 onion, diced

1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes

1-2 cloves garlic (or the equivalent in garlic powder)

1 handful of fresh cilantro, chopped

2 tablespoons of olive oil

4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt

Pepper

1. Saute onions and peppers over medium heat for about 4-6 minutes. Onions should be slightly translucent. You can skip this step if you prefer raw veggies.

2. In a large bowl, combine veggies, garlic, chickpeas, and cilantro.

3. In a small bowl, combine vinegar, olive oil and lemon juice. Mix and pour over salad.

4. Season with salt and pepper.

5. Refrigerate before serving so all the flavors can combine.

I also wanted to share one of the most exciting items I have received from my CSA: MELON!

A little sweet and a little savory

23 Aug

I recently subscribed to the Happy Herbivore’s 7 day meal plan with the hopes of losing a few pounds. One of the recipes I have already fallen in love with: Peanut Butter Cup Quinoa. It’s my new favorite way to start the day!

 

For dinner, I made corn fajitas. I sauteed some black beans with onion, cumin, salt, and black pepper. In a separate frying pan, I sauteed peppers and onions. I layered the beans and peppers on top of a corn tortilla with salsa and guacamole. Delicious!

 

~Kate

Restaurant Review: Susty’s Vegan Cafe, Northwood, NH *****

20 Aug

This is hands-down my favorite restaurant. I first tried Susty’s in September 2011, shortly after I moved into the area. I was excited because, being lactose intolerant, I could eat anything on the menu. Little did I know that it would become my favorite restaurant. I am there usually once a week and the owner and staff now know me by name.

Yesterday, my mom came to visit and it is a ritual that we go and grab food at Susty’s. Since I have already tried everything on their menu, I love to order their specials. Yesterday, it was a Grilled Harvest Plate with Tofu and Fingerling Potatoes. My mom chose the Chili Con Corn Soup and then we split a slice of Chocolate-Chocolate Cake. The food was AMAZING, as always! If you are ever in the area, I highly recommend stopping here.

Obviously, it goes without saying that Susty’s gets 5 stars in my book 🙂

Grilled Zucchini, Sugar Snap Peas, Swiss Chard, Fingerling Potatoes with a Cheeze sauce, and Grilled Tofu and Tomatoes.

Chili Con Corn with Organic, Local Wheat Bread

Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Kate’s Cookout Goodies

19 Aug

I attended a super fun cookout yesterday and made sure there were plenty of vegan options for me that others could try out. I made this Lemon Cilantro Avocado Pasta Salad and received many compliments. The recipe can found here.

I also made a large bowl of Kale Chips. Believe it or not, those went faster than the pasta salad! Toward the end of the night, they weren’t as crisp, which was disappointing. I’m not sure if it was the humidity or if they were under-cooked.

I made sure to bring a couple of vegan veggie burgers for myself and made a vegan dip using Tastefully Simple’s Fiesta Party Dip Mix, Vegan Sour Cream, and Vegan Mayonnaise. Delicious!

~Kate

Vegan Cooking Marathon

12 Aug

I went a little crazy in the kitchen today… here are a few pictures of some of the delicious vegan dishes I made.

Hawaiian Teriyaki Chickpeas

(A variation of this Happy Herbivore recipe can be found here)

 

These chickpeas were unbelievably good! This will definitely be one of my new favorite meals. I served them over rice and Pineapple Mango Salsa. Here’s the recipe:

Easy Pineapple Mango Salsa

Chop equal parts pineapple and mango.

Add freshly chopped cilantro and fresh lime juice.

My next attempt was a bit of a flop. The Happy Herbivore has a vegan brownie recipe in her cookbook that I have been wanting to try. The author notes that this recipe is by far her most popular. I don’t know if I did something wrong or if my taste buds disagree with the rest of the vegans out there. Oh well! If you are interested in trying the recipe, here it is.

After the brownie debacle, I tried making Quinoa Mac ‘N Cheese. Once again, I used the Happy Herbivore Cheese Sauce recipe, which can be found on her website. Replace the noodles with quinoa and your have a delicious, healthy meal!

Finally, with much thanks to my Grill Master Husband, Tim, I had an amazing grilled dinner of vegetable kebabs and Gardein’s BBQ Skewers. The veggies were fabulous. The skewers were ok. I had never had them before, not sure if I would get them again. I think Gardein’s chick’n products are better than the beef ones.

Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend!

~Kate

Great Meat Alternatives

12 Aug

I have already introduced you to Gardein’s Crispy Mandarin Chick’n, but Gardein’s meat-less burgers are also great. Unfortunately, I have only been able to find one place in a 25 mile radius that sells them. Market Basket offers a great alternative by Meredith Farms. The vegan veggie burgers are quite yummy and reasonably priced!

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If you like sausage, I recommend Field Roast. I love sauteing this with onions and peppers and putting it over quinoa with some homemade spicy marinara. YUM!

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And finally, my friend, Meghan, a former vegan, recommended Boca Chick’n Burgers. Unbelievably good! I like the Spicy ones the best, but keep in mind, they are REALLYspicy 🙂 The originals are also excellent.

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~Kate

Crazy Cool Tofu Ricotta in Eggplant and Pepper Lasagna

11 Aug

 

Tofu Ricotta Eggplant and Bell Pepper Lasagna

I have been getting a lot of eggplant in my CSA  for the past couple of weeks, so I have been experimenting with different ways to cook it. I wanted to make these little eggplant bites I saw on Pinterest but my eggplant was too short to roll up, so I decided to take the same flavors and present them in lasagna instead.

I layered slices of eggplant with garlicky tomato sauce and the most amazing homemade vegan ricotta. This tofu ricotta is so good that I almost ate all of it right out of the blender. Mike hates tofu and loves dairy and even he was impressed with the flavor! When Mike likes it, you know it’s a success.

Michael doesn’t like eggplant very much, so I decided to make half the pan eggplant layers and the other half layers of fresh bell peppers. Truth be told; we both ended up eating off of each other’s plates that night. I love this dish and I think it will become a new staple in my home. I think you could use several different veggies for this recipe. I can’t wait to try it with zucchini or portabella mushrooms.

 

Ingredients:

2/3 block of extra-firm tofu

juice from half a lemon (or lime, because I never seem to have lemons when I need them)

1 tablespoon basil

3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
(2 for ricotta and 1 to sprinkle on top)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

2 cups tomato sauce

1 small eggplant

1 bell paper

3 plumb tomatoes (optional)

2 slices of toasted crusty bread, cubed. (will make bread crumbs. 3tbs for the ricotta, and 3tbls to sprinkle on the top)

You will need a food processor. I use my Ninja;  everything always comes out perfectly when I use the Ninja.

Directions:

Thinly slice the eggplant (length-wise) and over with salt on both sides to draw out excess water.

Slice up bell pepper.

Make breadcrumbs. I had two slices of Panera’s country loaf that were a bit stale, you can use any crusty bread, or just use whatever breadcrumb you have.

Cut bread into cubes so it will fit in the food processer and toast in toaster oven. Set 3 tablespoons of breadcrumbs aside to sprinkle on top later.

Combine the tofu, citrus, salt, basil, nutritional yeast, and olive oil with the 3 tablespoons of breadcrumbs in the blender.

Rinse the salt off of the eggplant and pat dry with paper towel.

Spread some tomato sauce on the bottom of a baking pan.

Place the veggies in a single layer on pan.

Spread ricotta on top of the veggies the best you can. It helps to use your fingers here.

Repeat to make at least two veggie layers. Top off with remaining tomato sauce.

Sprinkle the top with remaining breadcrumbs and a small amount of nutritional yeast.

Slice plumb tomatoes and place on top

Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes, until bubbly and golden brown on the top.

Let sit for a few minutes before serving.

Serves 4.

-Kerri