I tried yet another casserole with Mexican flavors recently. This one is centered around chunks of sweet potato and a bunch of black beans. It’s this recipe from Kim’s Cravings. I followed the directions closely except for omitting the cinnamon and using just two low-carb tortillas. It was a resounding “Seconds, please!” from both halves of Robgeleen. Considering it was topped with magnificent avocado slices, I don’t know who could resist.
July 3, 2015 by Angie
June 10, 2015 by Angie
I have been on a quest for a new breakfast. I love the blog Fat Free Vegan so I looked there for protein-packed breakfast recipes. I made a slightly altered version of her vegan zucchini frittata Tuesday night. It is potentially too labor- and dishes-intensive to be my every weekday breakfast, but, man oh man, it is phenomenal tasting. I love it so much. The seasoning is just right and the silken tofu, tahini, and soy milk make it deliciously creamy. I ate some of it right out of the oven because I couldn’t help myself!
I warmed some up for breakfast yesterday and today and still have enough to eat tomorrow morning. I could have stretched it to four meals, but I get shaded out by leftovers after the third day.
The substitutions I made were in the vegetables used. I used three green onions, a medium sized zucchini, a medium sized yellow squash, and a lot of minced garlic. I meant to include fresh spinach but totally forgot 🙁 I couldn’t figure out how to “shred” the squash so I diced them and it worked out just fine.
I followed the blender part as directed except I used a food processor because I only have an immersion blender. I also followed the pan preparation directions by spraying oil then putting a circle of parchment paper on top. I had no issues getting the frittata out of the pan. In fact, it pretty much flew out and then I couldn’t get it back in the pan without injuring it. I don’t mind because it’s just for me, but if I made this for a fancy brunch I would be sad, so beware.Hot out of the oven!
June 2, 2015 by Angie
I haven’t cooked anything new in way too long. I saw this recipe for a one-pot taco casserole in an email I got from My Fitness Pal. I changed it up a little to make it vegetarian and eliminate the need for a packet of taco seasoning. Robbie and I both really liked it and, while it took two pots, it was worth it. In the future, I think I will add more veggies, possibly a bell pepper and some fresh spinach, and garnish with avocado slices.
Two 12 oz bags of soy crumbles (I used Morningstar Farms Grillers Crumbles.)
half of a 10 oz bag of frozen corn kernels (I used less because Robbie is not a corn fan.)
One 15 oz can of black beans, drained (El Ebro is where it’s at.)
One and half cups of salsa (I used Green Mountain Gringo brand in mild.)
a yellow onion, diced
about one and half tablespoons of homemade taco seasoning: equal(ish) parts garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper flakes, dried oregano; followed by a larger amount of paprika; an even larger amount of cumin; and a very large amount of chili powder (I really winged this and it tasted awesome. If you want to measure out a big batch and store it, more power to you.)
salt and pepper to taste
about one cup of shredded reduced fat Mexican cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Heat a large pan and add a few drops of your favorite oil. I used safflower oil because it doesn’t impart a taste onto the soy crumbles the way olive oil can. Add the soy crumbles. Cook, stirring occasionally. When the crumbles are about half way through cooking, add the diced onion. Continue cooking until the crumbles are cooked through and slightly browned.
3. Add the salsa, frozen corn kernels, and homemade taco seasoning to the soy crumbles mixture. Cook for about 2 more minutes.
4. Pour the mixture into a large casserole or glass baking dish. Pour the drained black beans on top. Bake for about 20 minutes.
5. Sprinkle a layer of cheese on top and baked for another five minutes.
6. Serve with tortillas, chips, taco shells, avocado slices, cashew queso – whatever you’re into!
Robbie made adorable mini burritos with low carb tortillas!
December 7, 2014 by Angie
Eggplant parmesan is my best favorite food. After pizza. I haven’t had much success making the breaded version but I saw a recipe on the Food and Wine website that seemed doable and yummy so I tried it. I am happy to report that I pulled it off and it was really good! Robbie made the garlic bread – also phenomenal!
Grilled eggplant parmesan is best with garlic bread made by Robbie – he never skimps on the garlic.
1 large eggplant
3 tomatoes on the vine
jar of spaghetti sauce (Gia Russa Tomato Basil is preferred in our house.)
mozzarella cheese, sliced into thin chunks
shredded parmesan cheese
Right out of the oven.
1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2. Heat a grill pan over medium heat. Spray with olive oil.
3. Wash and peel the eggplant. Slice it into 1/4″ slices.
4. Slice the tomatoes into thin slices.
5. Spray the eggplant with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Place them on the grill pan in batches, flipping after about 2 minutes. Repeat with the tomato slices.
6. Arrange the grilled eggplant on the cookie sheet so that they are slightly overlapping. Top with the grilled tomato slices.
7. Spoon some of the spaghetti sauce over the tomatoes. Sprinkle the minced garlic, dried basil, dried oregano, and garlic powder to taste.
8. Strategically place chunks of mozzarella cheese for optimal cheese coverage. Sprinkle with the shredded parmesan.
9. Bake for about 15 minutes.
10. Serve with garlic bread.
Less work, fewer carbs, and almost as delicious as the original!
September 21, 2014 by Angie
It’s pumpkin season! I saw this recipe on Pinterest, I think, last year. You buy a box of spice cake mix (I used Duncan Hines, it’s vegan) and a 15-16 oz can of plain pumpkin. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place 12 adorable Halloween cupcake liners in a cupcake pan. Pour the entire box of cake mix into a large bowl. Pour the entire can of pumpkin into the bowl. Stir until there are no more lumps. Divvy the batter up amongst the 12 cupcake liners. Bake for about 20 minutes. Most of the recipes I saw called for less time but my oven is not very good so I did the toothpick test and they were ready at about 22 minutes.
A dozen pumpkiny Fall muffins in a hurry.
Robbie and I both enjoyed these. I think they could use a little more of the pumpkin spices. He suggests adding chocolate chips. It’s such a fast recipe that I probably will make them again with those changes. However, I do prefer the two more labor-intensive pumpkin treats I make several times per year, both by Isa Chandra Moskowitz: pumpkin crumb cake with cashew streusel from Veganomicon and pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World.
September 3, 2014 by Angie
You know I’m always on the lookout for more side dishes. I semi-recently borrowed the cookbook More Peas, Thank You by Sarah Matheny from the public library and was intrigued by this recipe for curry roasted sweet potatoes. I am a sweet potato fan but have only cooked them a few times. Robbie and I both liked this and would enjoy having it again – the flavors and texture were great. The only downside is that sweet potatoes are really difficult to chop into wedges! We both worked at it for longer than seems reasonable.
We ate this with Thai coconut tofu so the unphotogenic sweet potatoes appear oilier and less appealing than they were in real life.
Yields way more than Robgeleen could eat.
2 tsp curry powder
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp unsweetened soy milk
1 lb sweet potatoes
olive oil spray
1. Preheat the oven to 425 and spray a cookie sheet with olive oil.
2. Cut the sweet potatoes into large wedges.
3. In a large bowl, combine the spices, then add and combine the soy milk. Add the sweet potato wedges and stir to coat them with the spice mixture.
4. Place the sweet potato wedges on the baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, turning at least once while baking.
The curry roasted sweet potatoes roasting on a baking sheet.
June 19, 2014 by Angie
I tried a second new-to-me recipe from Appetite for Reduction this week. I made herb-roasted cauliflower with bread crumbs as our side tonight. Both of the things I made, (Robbie’s favorite) blackened tofu and the cauliflower side, are from Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s fantastic cookbook. I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it again: you really should get this book because it’s great. If you’re not going to take my advice though, you’re in luck because the recipe is online at the Humane Society of America’s site.
Robbie loves blackened tofu
Both halves of Robgeleen endorse this recipe. It’s a very tasty excuse for eating a bunch of cauliflower. Preparation and cleanup were easy as well so it’s definitely a keeper.
Herb-roasted cauliflower and bread crumbs right out of the oven
June 19, 2014 by Angie
For dinner Tuesday night I made a new favorite tofu dish from Isa Sandra Moskowitz’s book Appetite for Reduction. I marked this recipe as one I wanted to try a long, long time ago and finally got around to it this week. You should really buy the whole cookbook but, if you don’t believe me you can find the recipe here, blogged by a kind Internet person.
Masala Baked Tofu
Next time, I will cut the tofu differently for thinner triangles and also marinate it longer. I did the minimum one hour of marinating and the flavor was excellent but didn’t quite penetrate all the way to the center of the thick tofu triangles. Even with those lessons learned, the masala baked tofu was reallllllly good. I made cracklin’ cauliflower to go with it for a yummy, low-carb, Indian-ish meal.
Masala Baked Tofu with Cracklin’ Cauliflower
June 14, 2014 by Angie
I’ve been on a quest for really fantastic homemade vegetarian French onion soup. This slow cooker version I made a few weeks ago was pretty great but I thought I could do better. My friend’s mom, Maria, makes an amazingly delicious soup that I have been fortunate enough to eat. Here is my slightly altered rendition of Maria’s recipe. Let’s just say: Mission Accomplished.
Makes 4-5 servings
1-2 tbs olive oil
5 medium to large sweet onions, cut in thin rounds
64 oz of vegetarian beef stock made by dissolving 3 tbs Vegetarian Better than Bouillon No Beef Base in 2 quarts of boiling water
1/4 cup cooking sherry
3/4-1 tsp thyme, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
1 loaf of French bread
1 oz of shredded Swiss cheese per serving (or Daiya shreds to make it vegan)
1. Caramelize the onions. I used the slow cooker to do this so that I didn’t have to babysit. I put about a tablespoon of olive oil in the slow cooker, added the sliced onions, put the lid on, and cooked on low for about six and a half hours. My slow cooker cooks hot so other crocks may require eight hours of cooking. Stir every few hours, if you’re home.
2. Boil two quarts of water in a large stock pot. Stir in 3 tbs of Vegetarian Better than Bouillon No Beef Base.
3. Once the bouillon is dissolved, turn the burner down to low. Add the sherry, thyme, salt, and pepper. Transfer the caramelized onions to the stock pot. Let the soup simmer while you do the next steps.
Simmering French onion soup
4. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Shred your cheese if you haven’t already.
Two servings of French onion soup coming right up!
5. Cut slices of French bread about 3/4 inch thick. Place one or two pieces in the bottom of an oven-safe bowl for each serving.
6. After the soup has simmered for 10-15 minutes, add seasoning to taste. Ladle the soup into each bowl and top with the shredded cheese. Move the bowls to the oven (on a baking sheet to avoid a mess) and bake until the cheese is bubbly and melted.
Just out of the oven
7. Pour some wine to drink with your ridiculously good French onion soup.
OMG French onion soup
May 15, 2014 by Angie
I love French onion soup but it’s usually made with beef (or chicken or both) stock. I have had excellent vegetarian French onion soup in the past, however, so I know it’s possible. The most heavenly soup of all time was eaten by us at Le Potager du Marais, a vegetarian restaurant in Paris, on our honeymoon.
At Le Potager du Marais. Mmm, I want to live in Paris and eat this everyday.
The slow cooker version I made today is really good but I am open to trying different recipes and techniques in my quest to make the perfect French onion soup.
Tonight’s dinner: slow cooker French onion soup
Slightly adapted from Fresh from the Vegan Slow Cooker by Robin Robertson
about 2 tbsp olive oil
4 medium yellow onions, sliced thinly
5 cups of vegetable broth
1/3 cup of red wine (I used Finca Copete Malbec/Tempranillo blend.)
1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp thyme
a healthy sprinkle of garlic powder
a healthy sprinkle of dried parsley
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
a fresh loaf of French bread (Thank you, Publix Bakery!)
shredded Gruyere or (vegan) cheese of your choice
1. Pour some olive oil in the bottom of your slow cooker and turn it to low while you thinly slice four or five onions. Add the onions to the slow cooker. Cook them for about eight hours, stirring occasionally if you’re home and have that luxury.
2. When the eight hours have passed, the onions will be caramelized and delicious-smelling. Add the vegetable broth, red wine, vegan Worcestershire sauce, thyme, garlic powder, parsley, bay leaf, and some salt and pepper. Continue to cook on low for about 45 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Shred some Gruyere and cut enough 3/4 inch slices of bread to cover the tops of the soup for the number of servings you’re preparing. We each fit two in our bowls but could have done three if we were feeling ambitious/gluttonous.
4. I baked the bread slices for a few minutes alone then took them out, placed the shredded Gruyere on top, and put them back in until the cheese was melted.
5. Remove the bay leaf. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with cheesy bread slices and some extra shredded Gruyere. Add salt and pepper to taste.