Portobello stuffed with Hummus, Caramelized Onion, and Swiss Cheese

mushroom

I fully believe that learning how to cook is one of the most empowering journeys that one can embark on. I have gone from frozen meals to this – a restaurant worthy dish. And, the best part is, this particular recipe is super easy.

Step one: Make or buy your hummus. I make mine, it’s different every time. This time, I soaked dry beans overnight, strain and rinse in the morning, then simmered them for an hour or two, until they were very soft. I reserve some of the liquid and puree the chickpeas while they are still piping hot. I added roasted garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cumin and olive oil.

Step two: Caramelize the onion. In a cast iron skillet, I melted 2 Tbls of butter and thinly sliced my onion. Slowly cook your onions, this whole process took me about 30 minutes. Towards the end, I added a splash of white wine, just because. Make sure to salt/pepper this as well.

Step three: While onion is cooking, pre-heat oven to 400F and prep the mushroom. Remove the stem and clean the mushroom however you see fit. Sometimes I rinse them if they’re really dirty, otherwise I use a clean, damp cloth. Once clean, season with salt and pepper and put a good layer of hummus inside the cap.

Step four: Add the onion mixture to the portobello. I used about half the onion mix. Cook for 10 minutes.

Step five: Wilt the kale, use the same pan you sautéed the onion and cook until just soft.

Step six: For the balsamic reduction, I used the same pan, again. I used about 1/2c balsamic which reduced to 1-2 tsp. Keep it at a simmer and watch it so it doesn’t burn.

Step seven: Add the cheese (if desired) to the mushroom, cook for another 10 minutes.

Step eight: Plate! Kale-Mushroom-Balsamic.

Enjoy!

Advertisements

Chinese 5-Spice Quinoa and Cabbage Salad

20140602-162947-59387956.jpg

Nothing makes me happier than when I create a recipe from my own creative devices. Such was the case with this Chinese 5-Spice Quinoa and Cabbage Salad. We had an abundance of cabbage on hand, so I decided to start there. I sautéed it with some onion, garlic and ginger, adding the red pepper at the end. The only challenge was perfecting the dressing. I’ve come pretty close to doing this, but seem to still be tweaking it since I am terrible at writing measurements down. So, be aware that the recipe for the dressing is a complete guesstimate. Feel free to play around with it before adding it to the salad. (PS this makes a very large amount…)

Ingredients
– 3 c cooked quinoa
– 1 large head of green cabbage, chopped
– 1 onion, chopped
– 1 red pepper, diced
– 1 clove garlic, minced
– 1″ ginger, minced
– salt and pepper
– 1 c olive oil
– 2 Tbls sesame oil
– 2 Tbls rice vinegar
– 1 Tbls Chinese 5-spice
– 2 tsp red pepper flakes (more to taste)
– 2 tsp tamari
– 2 tsp agave

1. Saute the onion in oil, once soft, add the cabbage. After the cabbage cooks down, add the red pepper, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper and 2 tsp Chinese 5-spice. Cook for 5-10 minutes, remove from heat and add to the quinoa
2. For the dressing, whisk together the oils, vinegar, 2 tsp Chinese 5-spice, red pepper flakes, tamari and agave. Taste….and alter as needed. Pour over the quinoa cabbage salad. Chill or serve warm

Mock Chicken Salad

20140602-154909-56949924.jpg

We received our first shipment of seitan for the season and needless to say, I was eager to get home and create something for the deli. Meat-salads are pretty popular at the store so I made a mock chicken salad.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the devilish sounding faux meat, it’s a great option. And I’m not particularly fond of most alternative meats. Seitan originates from Japan and is said to have a texture similar to duck. In fact, it is often referred to as ‘mock duck.’

The recipe is very simple and if you don’t have a food processor, feel free to go for a chunkier texture by chopping the seitan. And while this salad goes great on a sandwich, it would also be a lovely protein for a pasta salad.

Ingredients
– 1 package of chicken style seitan (I used the Westsoy brand)
– 1 Tbls onion, diced
– 1/3 c vegenaise
– 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
– 1 carrot, grated
– 1 stalk of celery, chopped
– salt and pepper to taste

1. In a food processor, combine the seitan, onion, vegenaise and apple cider vinegar. Pulse until you have a desired consistency
2. Transfer the salad mixture to a bowl, stir in the celery and carrot. Add seasoning to your liking

Chickpea Rissoles

20131225-120642.jpg

These chickpea rissoles made for the perfect appetizer. They are very similar to chickpea fritters or falafel patties. Next time, I would play with the spices and maybe add some cayenne for a touch of heat. Feel free to get creative with the dipping sauce as well. I decided to use fresh salsa that my parents make every summer. You could make a nice tzatziki or a cumin parsley sour cream dip.

Ingredients

– 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
– 1 large onion, diced
– Olive oil
– 2 cloves of garlic, minced
– 3 Tbls fresh parsley, chopped
– 1/4 c cake flour
– 1 egg, beaten
– 1 Tbls cumin

1. Pureé the chickpeas in a food processor until smooth
2. Sauté the onion in oil until soft
3. Add the garlic, parsley and cumin. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and add to the chickpea blend
4. Now, combine the flour and egg with the chickpea blend. Form patties and fry in oil over a medium-high heat. Once they are browned, remove from the skillet and set patties on a platter lined with paper towel
5. Serve immediately

20131225-121440.jpg

Tempeh Salad Lettuce Wraps

SONY DSC

Lettuce wraps are the best of both worlds. You don’t have the heavy gluten weighing you down and it’s just enough greens without it being all about a salad. The recipe for these wraps are simple and easy. I had it ready in under 30 minutes. It makes for a great picnic treat or a quick lunch on the go.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pkg of tempeh, cubed
  • 1/2 c vegan mayo
  • 2 tsp mustard
  • 2 tsp bragg’s aminos
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 pickle, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  1. Steam the tempeh for 15 minutes
  2. While the tempeh is steaming, prep your dressing
  3. After the tempeh has steamed, cool it in the fridge for at least 10 minutes
  4. Mix everything together, season to taste, and add to your favorite bread, greens or have it on its own!

SONY DSC

Quick and Easy Vegan Granola Bars

I consume a lot of granola bars. My weekly intake can get rather spendy, so I’ve been on a mission to find a superb granola recipe. The recipe from Food52 is good, but way too sweet for me. Not sure what I can do about that…I do love the texture and consistency though. I just wish there was a way to limit the sweetener and still have the bars keep their form. It’s definitely a great bar to try out as it was simple and didn’t require an insane amount of ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 c rolled or quick oats
  • 1 c raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 1/2 c raisins
  • 2/3 c peanut butter
  • 1/2 to 2/3 c agave
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt

1.  Combine oats, seeds and raisins, set aside

SONY DSC

2.  Combine agave and peanut butter in a small dish. Once creamy enough, add to oat mixture. Stir well. Press into a lined pan

SONY DSC

3.  Cover with some foil, press again very well, then let sit in the fridge for at least 4 hours (mine sat overnight)

SONY DSC

Italian Tempeh with Garlic Broccoli and Rotini Pasta

I made a pasta dish last week for my boyfriend which I felt was a huge flop. I’ve been wanting to redeem myself and was finally able to with this meal. I am pretty happy with it. Next time I would steam the tempeh before simmering in the sauce. Depending on my audience, I’d also spice it up a bit with some red pepper flakes. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 3/4 box whole wheat rotini noodles
  • 1 pkg tempeh, cubed
  • 2 Tbls tomato paste
  • 2 Tbls tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 c vegetable broth
  • 5 cloves of garlic, divided
  • 2 small heads of broccoli, cut into florets
  1. Start on the tempeh by steaming it for 10-15 minutes. Transfer tempeh to a dry skillet
  2. Whisk paste, tamari, seasoning, red wine vinegar, broth and 2 cloves of garlic. Add to tempeh. Bring to a simmer, cover and reduce heat to low. Let cook for about 8-10 minutes
  3. While tempeh is simmering, start on your broccoli. Saute 3 cloves of minced garlic. Once fragrant add the broccoli and 1/2 c water or vegetable broth. Cover and steam until bright green and tender
  4. Next you can start working on the pasta. Get some water boiling and cook until noodles are soft
  5. After the tempeh has simmered, transfer to a bowl and mash half of the cubes. Wipe the skillet clean and add a little oil. Return mashed/cubed tempeh mixture to pan. Cook for about 5 minutes
  6. Drain the pasta and add to the tempeh. Serve with broccoli and extra sauce

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Cinnamon Cayenne Almonds

My efforts at making almonds last week failed miserably. I decided to follow a recipe for my second attempt and I think I found a winner (and a new blog to follow!) The recipe is from Lukas Volger’s Veggie Madness. I modified it slightly (different spices and a wee bit less agave). You must try this out!

First, toast 1 cup almonds for 20-30 minutes on a low-medium heat

almonds

Then, add 1 tsp canola oil, cook on a medium-high heat for a few minutes.

Next, add 2 Tbls of agave, after a minute or two turn the heat off and add in your spices. I chose cinnamon and cayenne. Mix everything together until well incorporated.

Transfer to a lined/greased cookie sheet. Let cool and enjoy!

599106_10152641437540241_349033894_n

Tofu, Black Bean, and Roasted Corn Tacos

I’ve chosen to initiate a new food club on the snowiest day of 2013. Oh well. Adds to the excitement, I suppose. The dish I made has been in my queue forever. It couldn’t be easier. Seriously, a 4 year-old could make this. I found the recipe on Whole Foods website. I modified a few things. Enjoy!

Tofu, Black Bean, and Roasted Corn Tacos

  • 1 package extra-firm tofu, drained
  • 1/2  tsp chili powder (I used Penzey’s Arizona spice, somehow I didn’t have a drop of chili powder on hand, whoops)
  • 1/2  tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2  tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2  tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2  tsp salt
  • Enough lime juice to make a paste, about 1-2 tsps
  • olive oil
  • 3  cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3  green onions, hopped
  • 1  can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 12  corn tortillas, warmed

Directions

  1. Combine spices and lime juice, crumble in tofu, use your hands to get the spice slurry all over the tofu. The longer you can let it marinate, the better
  2. Saute the garlic and most of the green onion until fragrant

SONY DSC

3.  Add the tofu mixture. Cook for about 10 minutes

SONY DSC

 

4.  Add the frozen fire roasted corn to the heating tofu mixture. Cook for several minutes. Then add the black beans and remaining green onion. Cook until there is no liquid left in the pan (which accumulates from tofu/marinade/frozen corn/rinsed beans)

SONY DSC

5.  Serve over tacos and top with whatever you desire!

 

 

Spicy Cauliflower Bites

I wanted to make something semi-healthy for the game tonight and found this perfect recipe on Keepin’ it Kind. I didn’t make the pizza, just the “wings,” or bites. It turned out great! If you don’t like spice, I’d either reduce the amount of sriracha, use another hot sauce brand, or omit all together for a sweet cauliflower bite. I may consider skipping the breading next time I make this. There’s nothing wrong with it, I just typically prefer foods unbreaded.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 1 c soy milk
  • 1 c chickpea flour
  • sprinkling of garlic powder
  • sprinkling of smoked paprika
  • 3/4 c  barbecue sauce (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 1/4 c Sriracha sauce (or other hot sauce)
  • 1 Tbls cornstarch
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 450 F and coat a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray
  • Whisk soy milk and chickpea flour together.  Dredge cauliflower pieces into flour mixture and place in the casserole dish.  Sprinkle with garlic and smoked paprika. Bake for about 20 minutes

SONY DSC

  • For the sauce, mix together the barbecue, Sriracha, cornstarch, salt and pepper
  • Once cooked, toss cauliflower with the sauce mix and bake for an additional 5 to 8 minutes

SONY DSC