The Beyond Burger

If you haven’t heard of the Beyond Burger, I highly recommend you take a look. I am a fan of most veggie burgers, but this one is so similar to a beef burger, it’s unbelievable. I’ve purchased these at the Whole Foods in Minneapolis. They typically run $5-$6 for two patties. I have cooked the patties on the stovetop and on the grill.

Here is a breakdown of the nutritional facts found on Beyond Meat’s website:

IMG_5519

 

And here is how they look from package to grill (pictured left next to actual beef burgers):

7DC1349D-39C9-42A1-8A4C-89A5E4126DD2

I hope you are able to give these a try! And if mock meats aren’t your thing, I have a few recipes for really tasty bean burgers!

Advertisements

Grilling Meatless Burgers

I’ve tried a lot of great meatless meats in my day, and I must say, the Herbivorous Butcher in Minneapolis has a burger that will make anyone say, “wow!”

I was able to grill these burgers, which was a huge plus. When I make bean/legume based burgers, they aren’t always grill friendly. You can tell there are some hearty ingredients keeping it all together.

img_4405

I topped my burgers with their dill havarti cheese.

Processed with Snapseed.

I am so lucky to live in a state with a vegan butcher shop! They do offer shipping of some of their products, so if you aren’t within driving range, there is still hope!

Thanksgiving Dinner!

img_4376

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year – specifically for sharing food and being thankful.

This meal is made of a Field Roast Celebration Roast which I put in a casserole dish and surrounded it with a veggie mix (potatoes, green beans, carrots, mushrooms, and onion which were coated in oil and seasoned with salt and pepper). I covered this, cooked it at 350F and occasionally added veg broth to help with the cooking of the veggies.

The mushroom gravy is from Simply Organic. I added some sautéed mushrooms which were browned in olive oil and garlic; and deglazed with red wine.

The stuffing is from Arrowhead Mills – I added sautéed celery and onion to this.

I kept it very simple this year folks! What are you serving up for your Thanksgiving meal(s)?

Catching Up Over Couscous

I visited the World Market last week and forgot how fun that store is. I was the classic retail therapy shopper, entering the store needing nothing in particular and leaving with an armful of “must-haves.” One of the items I found was this Israeli couscous:

  
I enjoyed the concept and it was a nice change of pace, veering away from boring rice. Some things to be mindful of, it’s a little plain. Although, at 5mg of sodium, I can’t blame it. To add more flavor, I incorporated mushrooms (shiitake) that were sautéed in oil and garlic, along with sautéed kale and an herbed goat chèvre. You can easily keep this vegan by leaving the chèvre out. 

I would definitely buy this dish again. It made more (in my mind) than 2 servings and by adding greens and other veggies, you can definitely squeeze a few meals out of this tiny box!

  
 

Ready Made Dinners

IMG_1508

I’m sure most of you can relate, there are some nights where food is the last thing on your mind. While I try and steer clear of frozen meals, sometimes, it’s a must. This meal exceeded my expectations. I found a sweet and spicy ‘chicken’ at Target and paired it with fresh green beans (with a brown butter sauce, topped with toasted almonds) and Trader Joe’s Quinoa Pilaf which had a subtle curry undertone.

We all need meals like this from time to time and I feel these products were great at getting the job done!!

Red Quinoa Salad with Spiced Roasted Squash, Black Beans, Maple Toasted Pepitas and a Chipotle Dressing

This post is half recipe, half product review. I must admit, I was never a fan of mayo or miracle whip growing up. However, after transitioning to a plant based diet, I fell in love with Vegenaise (a vegan version of miracle whip). Recently a new company, Just Mayo, released a vegan mayo. We brought some into the deli and I played around with it, but wasn’t in love with it. Two new products from Just Mayo happened to catch my eye – Chipotle and Garlic infused. I am a fan of spice, so I gave the Chipotle a try. Turns out, it’s pretty great. I had it on a veggie sandwich yesterday and today I made a fabulous quinoa salad. The flavored mayos are definitely versatile and can be utilized in different ways. It would be fun making a pasta salad or mashed chickpea (faux chicken) salad as well!!

IMG_1465.JPG

Ingredients

– 1/2 kabocha squash, seeded, peeled and diced
– Arizona spice mix from Penzey’s
– 2 c cooked quinoa
– 1 c cooked black beans
– a handful of maple toasted pepitas (recipe follows)
– 2 Tbls Maple Syrup
– 1 Tbls melted coconut oil
– Cayenne
– Cinnamon
– salt
– olive oil
– Just Mayo Chipotle style
– Apple cider vinegar

1. First, preheat the oven to 400F. Coat the squash in olive oil and toss with Arizona spice mix and salt. Roast until soft
2. Next, make the dressing by mixing together Just Mayo chipotle, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, chipotle, olive oil and salt
3. For the pepitas, I only use a handful – but I make a large batch because they’re fun to snack on and always disappear quickly. I toss 2 c of raw pepitas with maple syrup, olive oil, cayenne, cinnamon and salt. I roast at 400F for a few minutes then set outside to cool
4. Assemble the salad by adding quinoa, beans, squash, pepitas and dressing. Salt and pepper to taste

Product Review: Neat Burger Mix

20140705-203326-74006103.jpg

We received a few new products to sample at the store and I was given this meat substitute mix by Neat to test out. I have not tried many dry burger mixes before so I don’t have much to compare this to. However, I still was very disappointed with this product.

The mixture can be made into crumbles or patties. I made mine into patties. It can also be made vegetarian (with egg) or vegan (with egg replacer). I did the latter and used flax egg.

The spices that were used seemed to compete with each other and I wasn’t really sure what type of flavor profile they were striving for. I think with some innovation, the mix could be used as an add-in to a veggie burger recipe. For example, if a veggie burger recipe calls for bread crumbs, perhaps using some of this blend? I just feel that the mix on its own is lacking. Those are my two cents!

Product Review: Spirit Creek Farm’s Curtido

20140602-161509-58509638.jpg

Last year, I had no idea what curtido was. Now, I can’t seem to get enough of the stuff! The vinegar infused, fermented slaw-like mixture is addictive and delicious. My favorite brand is Spirit Creek Farm from Spirit Creek, WI.

I have incorporated this into sandwiches and veggie burgers/brats. I also enjoy eating it salad style with chopped avocado and spinach.

There are many health benefits from incorporating fermented foods into your diet. The blog site “Nourishing Days” has a great article that states, “The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels. These beneficial organisms produce numerous helpful enzymes as well as antibiotic and anti carcinogenic substances. Their main by-product, lactic acid, not only keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation but also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine.”

Definitely check out your local co-op to see if they carry this amazing product. And if cabbabge, carrots and onion aren’t your favored vegetables of choice, Spirit Creek Farm also makes a variety of other delicious fermented veggies!

Product Review: Vegan Greek Yogurt

SONY DSC

I will admit, I had a weakness for Greek yogurt. I couldn’t be happier when So Delicious started making a Greek inspired yogurt line. I’ve tried the vanilla and plain and the vanilla is by far the best. It is thick and tangy just like the dairy Greek yogurt. If you have the chance, definitely stock up on these. They are a perfect late night treat or a great morning meal.

 

Product Review: Plant Fusion Protein Shakes

I started working for a wonderful business up in Walker, MN called The Green Scene. It’s a quaint and cozy shop, plump full of wonderful organic, vegan, gluten free, locally made, natural and green products. I love that in a town of under 1,000, I can get some fresh hummus, vegan deli goods, dairy free ice cream and cheese, and I even stumbled upon a plant protein powder. I’ve been training for a half marathon and enjoy starting my morning with a protein drink. I am really pleased with the Plant Fusion brand. It was a trial run and I will definitely be going back for more!

To make my drink, I added 1 frozen banana, 1 packet of chocolate Plant Fusion powder and 12 oz of water. Next time I may use almond milk to make it richer.

SONY DSCSONY DSC