loaded kale salad.

loadedkalesalad.jpg
Sometimes you just need a good kale salad to reset yourself. This one did it for me! I think I’ll add some avocado next time! I love using kale in salads because you can add the dressing and it still says pretty crunchy in the fridge for leftovers – in fact, it even tastes better to me, the longer it sits!

1 cup cooked quinoa
Kale!
Julienned carrots
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup or so of fresh parsley leaves
1/2 cup or so of sun dried tomatoes
1/2 cup sunflower seeds or pepitas
2 T hemp hearts

Tofu cubes – pressed and tossed in soy sauce and nutritonal yeast and then either baked or air fryed

Vinaigarette
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tspn dijon mustard
1 large clove garlic, minced
2 T Olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tspn maple syrup

mix all together in jar and set aside.

Mix all ingredients together and then toss well with dressing. Add some avocado! Enjoy!

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butternut squash lasagna + vegan parmesan.

butsquash

  • Ricotta Mixture:
  • 1 package tofu, water pressed out
  • 1/4 cup vegan parmasan cheese (recipe below) or nutritional yeast
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • salt and pepperWhite Sauce:
  • 2 Tbl vegan Margarine, such as Earth Balance
  • 3 C Almond Milk
  • 2 Tbl vegan Parmesan Cheese
  • ¼ C All-Purpose FlourFilling:
  • 1 Tbl Vegetable Oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 3 C Butternut Squash (or Kabocha Squash) – I mixed the two
  • 1 C fresh Spinach
  • whole wheat lasagna noodles

    VEGAN PARMESAN

  • 3/4 cup raw cashews
  • 3 T nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 tspn sea salt
  • 3/4 tspn garlic powderAdd ingredients to high speed blender and puree until fine like parm cheese
Instructions
  1. dice your butternut squash – Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and Roast 425 degrees for about 45 minutes.  when its done and cooled, whip with electric beaters to get this nice and fluffy. season with salt and pepper.
  2. In a saucepan over medium heat, add 2 Tbl of margarine until melted and whisk in the flour. Add the almond milk all at once, whisking until smooth. Add the parmesan whisk occasionally until thickened, about 15 minutes. Set aside, keeping warm.
  3. Make the ricotta: In a bowl, crumble the tofu and add the parm, garlic, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Boil your pasta noodles.
  5. Steam the spinach. Set aside.
  6. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  7. To assemble, place some of the white sauce on the bottom of an 8×8 pan and one sheet of the pasta.
  8. Layer with squash, tofu ricotta, spinach, white sauce and parm.  repeat two more times, ending with noodles and topping with remainder of sauce and parm.
  9. Cover with foil and bake for 40-45 minutes or until cooked and bubbly.

salt + vinegar potatoes.

potatoes

Salty. Tangy. Potatoes. Sign me up!
I cooked these in my air fryer, but you bake/broil them instead.

Slice yukon gold or finerling potatoes in 1/4 inch slices. Place in saucepan and cover with vinegar. boil for about 10 minutes until start to get soft. Preheat oven to 400 degrees or place in air fryer. Toss with a little bit of olive oil and toss with salt. Bake in the air fryer at 370 for about 15 minutes (tossing occasionally); or bake in over for about 15 min, flip and then bake about 10 min more. For crispier potatoes, broil for a few minutes.

homeade naan bread.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

I made some indian food (cauliflower tiki masala from Isa’s new cookbook…YUM), and I couldnt find any naan at the grocery store, SO I made my own! It was pretty easy. I started the dough right before I started prepping the rest of dinner. It takes 40 minutes to rise, so I was able to get everything prepped and in the oven, just in time to start making the naan while everything baked. I was pretty impressed at how these turned out too. Totally made the meal!

Found the recipe here.

  1. Combine warm water and yeast in a bowl. Let stand for 5 minutes until foamy.
  2. Add salt and flour. Mix thoroughly. Knead dough on a floured workspace about 20 times and form into a tight ball. Put dough in a well oiled bowl and cover with a damp towel.
  3. Put in a warm place to rise for 30-45 minutes. Dough won’t rise much, but it doesn’t need to.
  4. Turn dough out onto a floured workspace. Divide dough into 8 pieces and roll out with a rolling pin to about 1/8″ thick.
  5. Grill naan pieces on a grill or electric griddle. In a pinch, a frying pan sprayed with some nonstick cooking spray will work. Grill for 1-2 minutes on each side.
  6. This recipe yields a very soft, chewy naan.

tamale bake.

tamalebake
I made this tamale bake tonight, and it was great. I topped it with some guacamole! I love this recipe – i will definitely make this sauce again and play around with different fillings. I think adding some seitan chorizo would be great!
  • Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • handful of cilantro, washed
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. honey or agave
  • 1 tsp. unsweetened chocolate powder
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • Filling
  • 2 c. butternut squash, cubed and roasted ahead of time
  • 3 stalks of kale
  • 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp. oil, separated
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 c. shredded daiya cheddar cheese
  • Topping
  • 1 c. P.A.N. pre-cooked white or yellow corn meal  ( i found mine at a mexican grocer)
  • 1 1/4 c. warm water
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • Garnish
  • avocados
  • cilantro
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Make enchilada sauce. In a high-powered blender or food processor, add all enchilada ingredients. Blitz until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Make the filling. . De-stem the kale and chop into small, edible pieces. Drain and rinse black beans. Preheat oven to 375°. Into a skillet warmed on medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add in the butternut squash and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Salt to taste. Add in 1/3 cup of the enchilada sauce. Cover and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until just barely ready. Just warm it up. Add in the kale, black beans, and additional tablespoon of oil. Cook for another 3 minutes. Salt to taste. Remove from heat. Stir in 2/3 cup more of enchilada sauce with 1/4 cup of cheese (more if you like things cheesy). Use the skillet as your baking pan, or place in an 8″ x 10″ pan (or something similar in size).
  3. Make the topping. Add the pre-cooked white or yellow corn meal to a bowl. Stir in the warm water a kosher salt. Crumble evenly over the pan and press out until flat. Top with remaining enchilada sauce. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and avocados. Serve.

cashew seitan.

cashewseitan

 

This dish is easy, ready in about 20 minutes, and is loaded with flavor and easy to customize to your liking. The original recipe called for chicken, but I swapped it for some upton’s seitan, and I love the texture. You could swap for tofu too, I imagine, but I needed a change of pace. Below is my take on the recipe:

  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 package uptons seitan
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 heaping cups broccoli florets
  • 1 cup red bell peppers, diced small
  • 1 cup shelled frozen edamame
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
  • 1/2 cup unsalted dry-roasted whole cashews
  • 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Asian chili garlic sauce, or to taste
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 to 1 cup green onions, sliced into thin rounds (from about 3 or 4 green onions)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. To a gallon-sized ziptop bag, add the cornstarch, salt, pepper, seitan, seal, and shake to coat seitan evenly.
  2. To a large skillet, add the oil, and seitan, and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes over medium-high heat, flipping and stirring so all sides cook evenly.
  3. Add the broccoli, bell peppers, edamame, garlic, and stir to combine. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender.. While vegetables cook, make the sauce.
  4. To a medium bowl add the soy sauce, maple syrup, rice wine vinegar, chili-garlic sauce, ginger, and whisk to combine; set aside.
  5. Add the cashews to the skillet and stir to combine.
  6. Add the sauce and stir to combine. Allow sauce to simmer over medium-low heat for 1 to 2 minutes.
  7. Add the green onions, stir to combine, and serve immediately.

butternut squash stuffed shells.

STUFFEDSHELLS.jpgButternut squash. I want to use it, but don’t always know how. Pasta. The possibilities are endless. I absolutely love this meal – I was able to prepare the filling items over the weekend, making it a pretty quick meal to throw together during the week. Will be making this again and again! These came out creamy, garlick-y and sweet. Super delicious!

Here is the original recipe.

  • 1½ cups cubed butternut squash
  • extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 16 jumbo shells
cashew cream
  • 1 cup raw cashews (soak ahead of time if you dont have a vitamix)
  • 3/4 cup fresh water
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 3½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
filling
  • 4 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup crumbled firm tofu
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 cup cashew cream (from the recipe above)
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil and a few pinches of salt and pepper. Roast until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes.
  2. Make the cashew cream: Blend together the drained raw cashews, fresh water, garlic, lemon juice, and generous pinches of salt and pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  3. Make the filling: In a medium skillet, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat. Add the spinach in increments, along with a pinch of salt, and sauté until all the spinach is incorporated and wilted. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Squeeze out any excess liquid and chop. In a medium bowl, combine the the spinach with the crumbled tofu, oregano, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, and 1 cup of cashew cream. Season generously with salt and pepper, to taste.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the shells and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Drain.
  5. Assemble the shells. Spread ¼ cup of the reserved cashew cream on the bottom of an 11×7-inch baking dish. Fill each shell with some of the filling and a few cubes of butternut squash, and place into the baking dish. Drizzle a little olive oil over the shells and bake for 15 minutes, or until browned on top and heated through. Remove from the oven and serve with the remaining cashew cream.

 

 

 

skillet pasta sauce.

skilletpasta
One thing that seems to do well in my garden is tomatoes. And this year, like year’s past, I got alot of them.  In the past,  I’ve roasted them, made sauce in the crockpot,  and even added them to salsa.  This time I made a skillet pasta sauce and it turned out really delicious!

1/4 cup cashews
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
Dried pasta noodles
1 tspn olive oil
1 small onion, diced
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 Tablespoons nutrtional yeast
2-3 cups diced fresh tomatoes
3-4 handfuls spinach
3/4 cup packed fresh basil, finely chopped
2-3 tablespoons tomato paste
salt/pepper

1. Place cashews and almond milk in vitamix and mix until smooth. If you dont have a vitamix, you will probalby need to cover your cashews with water and soak for a few hours; drain them and then put in blender with almond milk. set aside.

2. Prepare your pasta. While that is happening heat a wok with 1 tspn oil.

3. Add onion and garlic to wok, saute about 5-10 minutes.  Add tomatoes and continue to cook for about 10 minutes or so. Add spinach and cook until wilted.

4. Stir in the cashew cream, nutritional yeast, basil tomato paste, salt and pepper and cook for about 5-10 more minutes.

5. Add drained, cooked pasta to the wok and stir to combine the pasta with the sauce. Cook for a few more minutes, or until heated through. Season with more salt and pepper and add more basil if desired.

blackened tofu tacos.

tofutacos

Tacos! Who doesn’t love them?! We sure do, and we made this recipe twice now. The avocado crema is divine.

1 package extra firm tofu, pressed
2 tablespoons smoked paprika
1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons conrstarch
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
corn tortillas

Cabbage Slaw
1/2 head red cabbage, thinly sliced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
salt

Avocado-Lime Crema

1 avocado
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
2 garlic cloves
juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
pepper

Instructions

  1. P the oven to 400°F. Begin preparing the slaw by combining the cabbage with the vinegar and salt in a large bowl. Massage it with your hands for a few minutes then set it aside to marinate.
  2. Once the tofu has been pressed, dice it into 1-inch cubes and then transfer to the baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes on each side until it’s light golden brown.
  3. Meanwhile mix together the spices (paprika to pepper) in a large bowl. Using your hands, lightly coat the tofu with one tablespoon of oil and then transfer it to the bowl with the spices. Coat each piece evenly then sprinkle the starch on top. Mix with your hands or a spoon until each piece is coated with the starch as well.
  4. Warm the remaining 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat and then saute the tofu on for about 5 minutes on each side. Depending on the size of your skillet, you might have to do this part in two steps, using one tablespoon of oil at a time.
  5. Allow the tofu to sit in the skillet on warm then prepare the avocado crema by placing all of the ingredients in a food processor and blending until smooth.
  6. Warm the tortillas (I usually microwave them for 15-20 seconds) then place tofu inside. Top with cabbage and avocado cream and serve immediately.
  7. Tofu and cabbage can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. The avocado crema can be stored for up to 2 days.orginal recipe found here.

curry.

curry
you guys, I MADE A CURRY! and it tasted good!!!

I have the hardest time with curries, every so often i get the urge to make one and its just so bland, so I’ve pretty much given up on it. But something inspired me to try it again. After looking at a few recipes on the internet, I got the basis down and decided to go my own way and just make something up.

Feel free to use whatever vegetables are in season or you have on hand.

I package tofu, pressed and drained
Coconut oil
1 medium onion
Large chunk of fresh ginger
4-5 garlic cloves
1 can coconut milk (i used light)
2 1/2 tpsn madras curry powder
salt
Green beans
brocolli
red bell pepper
kale/and or spinach (i used both because I had a little of both on hand)

cashews, lightly roasted or pan fried
Cilantro
1/2 lime
Rice or quinoa, or grain of your choice

First – Prep your tofu. Set your oven to 400 degrees; cut into 1 inch cubes, put on baking sheet and bake 10 minutes. flip over and bake 10 minutes more. set aside.

Finely chop your onion, garlic and ginger Using about 2T coconut oil, sautee them in a large pan or saucepot. Once onions start to soften, add the curry powder and a 1-2 T water to deglaze the pan so nothing burns. Add the bell pepper and green beans and saute for a few minutes. pour in the coconut milk and add the tofu and let simmer for about 3-5 minutes. Add about 1/2 tspn or so of salt to help bring the flavors out in the vegetables. Add the brocolli and greens and cook for a few minutes more, until your vegetables reach your desired firmness. Squeeze the juice of half a lime over the curry. Let stand for a few minutes to let the flavors meld.

Spoon on top of some rice, and top with cilantro and cashews.  I sprinkled some simply asia ginger and garlic seasoning on top of mine.

Definitely adjust the seasonings to your liking, and feel free to customize with any you might think are good. This is a great recipe to start with and build on to make better and better each time.