Garlic Balsamic Glazed Tempeh

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I’ve been working on a cooking class that features plant based protein. This Garlic Balsamic Glazed Tempeh was awesome! I served it with a side of couscous which is topped with oven-roasted green beans and mushrooms. I then dressed the dish with truffle infused balsamic. I may have gone a bit overboard with balsamic. You can definitely substitute other flavors and sauces, such as barbecue or ketchup.

Now, I ask you friendly viewers, what are your favorite plant based proteins? Some of mine include marinated tempeh, tofu (scrambles and eggless salads), chickpea sloppy joes, and desserts using soft tofu as the filling.. I would love to hear some ideas from you that I could incorporate into my upcoming class!

 

Garlic Balsamic Glazed Tempeh

  • 8 oz tempeh
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4-1/3 c balsamic vinegar (start with less, unless you are really looking for that balsamic flavor)
  • 3 tsp tamari or Bragg’s Aminos
  • 1 Tbls maple syrup
  • 1 Tbls olive oil
  • pepper to taste
  1. Steam the 8 oz block of tempeh in a skillet until water is evaporated (I fill enough water in the pan to cover 1/3 to 1/2 of the block of tempeh)- this takes about 10 minutes. I like to steam my tempeh before cooking with it because it opens up the protein which helps the marinade process. Tempeh can also have a strong, fermented taste, and steaming can help soften that flavor
  2. Let the tempeh cool until you are able to handle it, then cut it into desired shapes. To make the small triangles, I cut the 8 oz square into 4 triangles. I then cut those triangles in half (width wise) and then in half lengthwise.
  3. In a bowl, whisk together garlic, vinegar, tamari, maple syrup, olive oil and pepper
  4. Add the tempeh in a pan/dish where you can lay them all flat – I fit them easily into an 8×6 Pyrex. Cover the tempeh with your marinade. Let this sit overnight, then flip them in the morning
  5. In the evening – or whenever you’re ready to bake these, preheat your oven to 350F. Cover your pan/dish with foil, bake for 15 minutes; uncover and bake for 20 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed

Oven Roasted Cauliflower

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This recipe comes from Alon Shaya, courtesy of Food52. While I did not make the whipped goat cheese that is supposed to accompany the cauliflower, I did make a sun-dried tomato sauce that I wanted to eat with a soup spoon. I simply simmered some sun-dried tomatoes in some fresh cream. Once the cream went down in size by a third, I puréed the cream and tomatoes and added some garlic, salt and pepper. You could easily make this meal vegan by using a non-dairy creamer in place of the fresh cream.

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I absolutely love the idea of roasting a whole head of cauliflower. This is such a beautiful dish that is so satisfying, you won’t be able to resist seconds.

Greek Yogurt Cheesecake Cupcakes with Balsamic Strawberries

 

I took a risk on these cupcakes a few weeks ago and it was well worth it. I tried out a new recipe just before meeting up with friends for a weekend at the beach. The downside was they needed to be kept very cool, but the upside was everyone helped eat these as soon as we arrived – so keeping them cool was never an issue. The Greek yogurt bring a healthier balance to the usually overwhelming amount of cream cheese that’s found in cheesecake. Also, the crust has a fair amount of flax which I absolutely love.

I modified the recipe from Lauren Kelly Nutrition.

Strawberry Topping

  • Sliced strawberries
  • Balsamic vinegar

Mix ingredients together and set aside.

Greek Yogurt Cheesecake Cupcakes

  • 7 graham crackers (14 halves)
  • 1/2 c ground flaxseed
  • 2 Tbls sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 c butter or coconut oil
  • 1 package of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 small container of Greek yogurt
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 c sugar

1. In a food processor, breakdown the graham crackers

2. Add cracker crumbles to a bowl, add flax, sugar and cinnamon 

3. Pour in the butter or oil

4. Press into cupcake liners. Let set in the fridge for 30 minutes

5. For the filling, combine cream cheese, yogurt, lemon, vanilla, sugar

6. Pour the filling (about 1-2 Tbls) onto the graham crust

7. Let the cupcakes set in the fridge for an hour or two. Top with strawberries

Two Wonderful Raw Meals


I have moved, yet again, hence another long hiatus with posting. I do have some good recipes though to make up for the delay!

I helped out recently with a raw catering gig and forgot how much I enjoy preparing raw food. For the catering, I made (raw) veggie burgers, falafels, crackers, and dips: ketchup, mustard, and lemon aioli. Unfortunately, it was so busy I was only able to get one shot of the food above. I had my partner (who’s never had a raw meal before) try both and he liked them! 

I used the following recipes, pretty much to a T:

Falafel and Aioli: http://uncooking101.com/site/raw-food-recipe/super-easy-falafel/

Burger: http://www.eatingvibrantly.com/raw-veggie-burgers/

Crackers: http://rawmazing.com/recipe/rosemary-almond-crackers-two-ways/

The ketchup and mustard were very easy…

Ketchup:

  • 1 c sun dried tomato, soaked in water, and reserve 1 c of this water!
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/2 c apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt

1. Blend everything in a high speed blender until you reach the desired consistency

Mustard:

  • 1 c mustard seeds, soaked in water for 6 hours
  • 1/2 to 1 c apple cider vinegar 
  • Water
  • 1/4 tsp salt

1. Blend everything in a high speed blender, add water until you reach a desired consistency 

Caramelized Balsamic Walnuts and Almonds

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While I haven’t blogged in months, it never leaves my mind. Summer has been busy with road trips and vacations to tropical islands!

I’ve been wanting to caramelize nuts lately, but wanted to do something different. I was thinking balsamic flavor would be amazing. So, why not add balsamic to some sugar? This nut mix is awesome. I plan to serve it with a beet and goat chèvre salad!

Ingredients

– 1/2 c sugar

– 2 Tbls canola oil

– 2 Tbls balsamic (I used a mix of original and garlic flavored)

– 2 c nuts

– salt and pepper, to taste

1. In a pan, heat the sugar, oil and vinegar. When this begins to bubble, add the nuts

2. Cook the nuts for several minutes. Transfer to a cookie sheet lined with parchment. Season with salt and pepper. Let cool!

To Beet or not to Beet?

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Beets: love them or loathe them?

I am a beet lover. And while I type this autocorrect keeps wanting to say beer over beet. For the record, I also love beer.

Prior to posting this meal, a few friends discouraged this beet-alicious post. They said the photo looked gross. I asked why and they said because beets are gross.

On an aside, beets are crazy hard to photograph. At least for me.

As for the meal, I think if you find different ways to cook and incorporate ingredients, you may find them to be quite appealing.

My beets were pickled so they were a little on the sweeter side. But if you use a savory cheese and maybe some greens, it can really change the flavor. I would’ve liked to use a chèvre spread but I only had Swiss cheese on hand. I was very pleased with this grilled beet and Swiss cheese!

Parmesan Fried Polenta with Roasted Broccolini

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The past few weeks have been unbelievably busy. The first week of March I was diagnosed with melanoma and 8 days later said melanoma was removed and I am officially cancer free. I was very fortunate to have caught this early and highly encourage everyone to go in for yearly skin checks! Also, wear your SPF!

Disclaimer over. Onto delicious food. The dish above was a quick and easy meal with most ingredients premade. I used a healthy pasta sauce with no added sugar or funky ingredients. I also used a premade tube of organic polenta.

To prepare the broccolini: cut the ends, if needed, and then rinse. In a bowl toss the broccolini with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast at 400F for 10-15 minutes.

To prepare the polenta: Heat some olive oil in a pan and add some thinly shaved garlic to the oil which will infuse it with flavor. Slice the polenta and sprinkle with Italian seasoning and freshly shaved Parmesan. Fry the polenta slices until light brown.

For extra texture and flavor, we also sautéed some mushrooms in olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper.

Top the polenta with pasta sauce and fresh Parmesan. Enjoy!!

 

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

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This quinoa salad is excellent. Why? It’s easy to make and is delicious. My favorite combination when making a meal.

I cooked 1 cup of quinoa then added a few capers, oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, celery, kalamata olives, basil, feta, garlic, olive oil and some zested lemon.

As you can see, I served it atop some greens, baby kale. I loved this so much, I made it again with fusilli pasta as the grain.

Enjoy!!

Rogan Josh Lentil Stew

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First post of 2016! Happy New Year to you. Honoring that New Year tradition, I wanted to focus on an ingredient that brings hope for the year ahead: lentils! These mini-“coin-like” legumes are amazing and delicious. I am glad to create a recipe that includes them.

I ran across the spice, Rogan Josh, a few years ago. It was in a meat dish, so it wasn’t really my thing, but the spice aroma smelled amazing. So, I saught it out and bought a small jar.  Rogan Josh is a Persian spice that has cinnamon, paprika, garlic, ginger, cumin, cayenne, and cardamom; very curry-esque. I absolutely love it in this lentil stew. Feel free to sub other veggies in here as desired. I stuck with carrots and sweet potato.

Ingredients

  • Coconut oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 4 carrots, peeeled, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • salt, pepper
  • 1 Tbls and 1 tsp rogan josh spice
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 can whole fat coconut milk
  • 1 can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 c red lentils
  1. Sauté the onion, carrots, garlic, salt and pepper in coconut oil for 5-10 minutes
  2. Add the diced sweet potato and rogan josh spice
  3. Add the canned tomatoes, coconut milk and lentils
  4. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and then cover. Stir frequently and add water as needed (I added about 1 cup)
  5. Cook for 45 minutes or until lentils are fully cooked
  6. Optional, top with wilted spinach