Simple Flavourful Broccoli + Quinoa

This is one of those simple dishes that you don't think will amount to much, but it does.  Little (or big) bites of flavour.  Mmmm..  Good for a Friday evening.

Adapted from Healthy Happy Life.

Cook 1 cup quinoa with 1 1/2 cups water, and stir in 1 tsp garlic powder, 2 tbsp nooch, and 1 tsp smoked paprika.  Keep warm. 
Preheat the oven to 450, and mix together 6 cups broccoli florets, 2.5 tbsp soy sauce, 2.5 tbsp mirin, 2 tbsp maple syrup, 1/3 cup nooch, and pepper.  Bake for 12 minutes, until broccoli is cooked.
Serve broccoli over quinoa, and top with chopped avocado.


Rich, Flavourful Soup

Yes.  It's hot.  So?  I like soup....  Adapted from Dinners and Dreams

The veggies were 1 GINORMOUS onion, an equal amount of chopped carrots, and a large bell pepper.  And 5 garlic cloves.  The soup also got tomato sauce, soaked peruano beans, diced tomatoes, brown rice, cumin, paprika, chili powder, oregano, nutmeg, cinnamon, agave, and vegan beef bullion.  And water.  Lots of water... all simmered until the beans were cooked.




This was super good.  Yes, a bit time consuming to make, but this was realllllly good.  No pictures tonight - return in two days and I will have them! 

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

First, soak 1 cup peruano beans (or plain white beans), and then cook them.
Tomato sauce: roughly chop 1 onion, 2 carrots, and 4 cloves garlic.  Saute until tender with a bay leaf, then add 2 cups white wine, 12 oz tomato paste, thyme, vegan beef bullion, and 2 tbsp mirin.  Get all of this stirred in, then remove the bay leaf and blend everything until slightly chunky (an immersion blender works well here, if you have one.) - there should be no whole pieces left, but the sauce should not be completely smooth.  Add in 1 cup water, 1/2 cup TVP, 1 tsp vegetable bullion, the beans, and 1 cup frozen peas.  Let this simmer, and the TVP soak up the extra liquid.
White sauce: 1 cup of this alfredo sauce, 1/2 cup soy milk mixed with 2 tbsp corn starch, a bit of nutmeg, 1 tbsp nooch, garlic powder, and hazlenut flavoured syrup (syrup is optional but adds depth of flavour).  Let this simmer.
Cook up some lasagna noodles - I used 7, because I was using up a box of noodles with this recipe.

Finally, heat the oven to 400.  Spread a thin layer of the white sauce over the bottom of a casserole dish coated with nonstick spray. Add 2 noodles, and then a bunch of the tomato sauce.  Repeat layers 2 more times.  You should use up all your sauce, but the dish will be veeery full.  Bake for 45 minutes, then turn off the heat and bake for 15 more minutes.  Finally, it's done... pure bliss, I tell you.


Quickie Lunch Wrap

I've been having these all week, but I have FINALLY reached the perfect combination...

The tofu was cut into thin slabs, marinated in maple syrup, paprika, and vegetarian chicken bullion, then grilled on the panini press.  It was wrapped with shredded iceburg lettuce, avacado, and tofu mayo in a whole wheat wrap.  So simple, so good!

I have to say that iceburg lettuce gets such a bad rep - I've started using it recently, and I l-o-v-e it!  Plus, less of it is wasted than other types of lettuce, and it's faster to prepare.  :)
And yes, those are store bought veggie chips.  What?  I like them...


Black Bean, Sweet Potato, Rice Soup

This one was much better than I thought it would be.  Exceeds expectations!  Adapted from I Eat Food

Veggies were chopped leeks, carrots, lots of garlic, red bell pepper, cabbage, and sweet potato.  The soup also got tomato sauce and diced tomatoes, brown rice... let's see, the seasonings were ground fennel, smoked paprika, veggie bullion, liquid smoke... I believe that was all.  Obviously, I added fake meat - leftover corned setian, in fact.  There's still a LOT left... I'll be eating it for a week, at the rate I'm going!  Which might not be such a bad thing, after all...

Mexican Pasta Casserole

It's FRIDAYYYY!  And this casserole really hit the spot - nice and filling.. and super yum.

Adapted from Oh She Glows

Sauteed chopped red bell pepper and red onion were mixed with whole wheat spiral pasta and black beans.  Then 8 oz tomato sauce, 1/3 cup salsa, and 1/2 cup of this alfredo sauce were added.  Seasonings were paprika, jerk seasoning, cumin, sumac, and chili powder.  All of this was mixed in a casserole dish and baked at 350 for 30 minutes.  Top with avocado.


Corned "Beef" Stew plus Setian

Yay St. Patrick's Day!

First up, the stew is adapted from Vegan Appetite... I made the seasoning mix down at the bottom of the page, omitting the yellow mustard seeds and subbing nutmeg for the cardamom.  Then I used Vegan Dad's fabulous sausage recipe for the setian, adding in 2 tbsp of the seasoning mix, and using mirin in place of the oil; the dough was shaped into 3 large patties and wrapped in foil, then steamed for 40 minutes.  The stew was 2 chopped leeks, lots of carrots, and about 3 cups chopped green cabbage all sauteed together.  I added 3 cups tomato sauce, 2 tbsp vegetable bouillon, 5 chopped red potatoes, 1 scant cup beer, 1 tbsp caraway seeds and 1 tbsp tamari.  It was rounded off with 2 tbsp of the seasoning blend and 2 cups soaked white beans.  I added a corn starch slurry to thicken, and served it with the setian.

Super flavourful!

Beer, Onion, and Setian Sausage Pasta

It's raining... hard... so this dish seems appropriate...

First up was the setian.  I used this recipe from Vegan Dad, cutting out the oil.  After I mixed up the dough, I just flattened it into large patties and steamed it like that, as opposed to rolling it into sausages.
The setian was cubed and set aside.  Then I proceeded with WTHDAVEA's Carbonnades a la Flamande, and modified a wee bit.  I sliced up 1 laaarge onion and sauteed that for 10 minutes until it was soft.  Then I added 1 1/2 cups beer, 1 tbsp soy sauce, 2 tbsp herbs de provence, 1 tbsp red wive vinegar, and 1 tsp veggie bullion.  That was simmered until the beer was fairly reduced, then I added a corn starch slurry and cooked it for 15 more minutes, covered, until it was thick. 
The sauce and setian were served over pasta.


Irish Casserole

Yeah, ok, so maybe I'm not ready for summer yet... it's getting warm, but not too much for this casserole!  This is epic comfort food... adapted from Vegan Dad.

Small dice 2 yukon potatoes, and boil them until tender.  Heat a kettle, and saute 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots, 4 slices shallots, and 4 large cloves chopped garlic.  Add in 1 cup beer and 1 tbsp soy sauce. Lightly boil for 10 minutes or so, until the liquid is mostly reduced.  Stir together 1 tbsp flour and 1/3 cup nondairy milk, and add to the veggies.  Add in cooked potatoes, 2 cup cooked chickpeas, 1 tbsp ground sage, 1 tbsp thyme, 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1/2 tbsp ground fennel, and a few shakes of liquid smoke.  Mix everything well, then remove from heat and add 1/4 cup chopped parsley.  Pour into a casserole dish.  Thinly slice 1 yukon gold (as thin as possible, a mandoline would be useful), and spread the slices over the casserole like a lid.  Bake at 400 for 30 minutes, until potatoes are tender.


Summer's Here!

Yup, it's hot.  And I decided the time was ripe to make this crispy tofu salad with avocado and pepitas from WTHDAVEA, with a few changes, obviously.  Wow... that's all I have to say.  Just the right combination of crunchy, flavour, hot, and cold...

The base was shredded iceburg lettuce.  Add-ins were avocado, pepitas, and salad dressing (tofu mayo, orange juice, tarragon).
The tofu was pressed, then sliced into thin strips.  It was then marinated in 1/4 cup beer (for St. Patrick's Day), 2 tbsp alfredo sauce, 1 tbsp soy sauce, sugar, cumin, and garlic powder.  The tofu was then coated in corn meal and baked at 375 for 30 minutes, until nice and crisp.


Thursday Night Pizza!

Who doesn't loooove pizza?  Healthy, veggieful pizza?  Heavily adapted from Mommy's Kitchen.

For the crust I made 1 batch of whole wheat pizza crust by I Eat Food.  Basically, you mix together 5 1/2 cups whole wheat flour, 2 tsp salt, 1 1/2 tsp yeast, 3 tbsp applesauce, 1 1/2 tbsp agave, and 1 3/4 cup water.  Mix until everything sticks together and starts pulling away from the side of the container, adding water or flour as needed.  Then let it sit for 5 minutes, knead for 5 more minutes, and then let it rise for a couple hours.  At this point you can use it immediately, or freeze it for long term storage.  I divided it into 10 balls for 10 pizzas, and froze 9 of them.

The pizza was vegan alfredo sauce (recipe), broccoli, mushrooms, onions, and "cheese".  The veggies were grilled on the panini press, and then the crust was cooked on the press as well.  The pizza was then spread with sauce, topped with veggies, and sprinkled with "cheese", and then grilled on the press for a few minutes.


Spinach, Broccoli, and Quinoa Salad

Mm... this was yummy!  I didn't expect it to turn out all that great, but it was...

Adapted from HHL.

Boil 1 cup water, add 3/4 cup quinoa, cover and simmer for 25 minutes.
De-stem and finely tear 1/2 bunch spinach.  Mix with cooked quinoa to partially wilt.
Saute 1 small head broccoli and 2 cloves minced garlic, and add to the quinoa.
Other stuff to add: 1/2 cup parsley, chopped; 1/4 cup nooch; 2 tbsp lemon juice; 1/3 cup tofu mayo (partially cooked silken tofu blended with lemon juice); 1/4 cup orange juice.

Serve warm, cold, or room temp, topped with chopped blood oranges and avocado.

OMG Ok, so I found blood oranges for a decent price at Target the other day, so I decided to get one... this is where it went!  They taste like a cross between a grapefruit and an orange, and have a lovely deep red colour.  Mmmmm...


Spicy Roasted Veggie and Bean Stew

1) This stew is spicy... you might want to wear gloves or something while chopping the peppers, because my fingers are still burning after8 hours...
2) It's a complicated, time consuming recipe.  But it tastes really flavourful!

Adapted from HHL.

Soak 1 lb dried kidney beans and 1/2 lb dried pinto beans.  Soak 2 small, hot dried chilies in warm water until they are saturated and soft, and then finely chop the chilies, reserving the water.
Chop 1-2 large carrots, 1 super small red onion, 1 large red bell pepper, and 1/4 cup parsley.  Put all of these on a baking sheet, and then drizzle them with 1 tbsp cider vinegar, pepper, 1/2 tsp dried ginger, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 2 tsp nooch, 1/2 tbsp mirin, and a bit of agave.  Roast for 30 minutes at 400.

In a large soup kettle, saute 1 super small chopped onion, 1 1/2 cups carrots, 3/4 cup bell pepper, minced garlic, 2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp ginger, 2 tsp nooch, and 2 tbsp maple syrup.  Add in 1/2 bunch destemmed and torn spinach.  Then this mixture goes in the oven for 20 minutes.

Finally, the soup assembly:  All the roasted veggies, the beans, and the chilies go in the soup kettle.  Add to it 3 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes, 8 oz tomato sauce, 6 oz tomato paste, 2 tbsp chili powder, 2 tbsp agave, 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder, 2 tbsp veggie bullion, the chili water, and additional water to cover the beans.  If your kettle is not exploding at this point I'm jealous because I need a kettle that size...

Reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook for several hours, until the beans are tender.

Serve with fake meat - I used "beef".

Stir Fry

Again.  Yeah, I know.  But it was yummy!...

Two slabs of tofu were pressed and marinated in 2/3 cup orange juice, then cooked on the panini press. 
The leftover marinade was mixed with cornstarch, a bit of soy sauce, a bit of garlic powder, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, vegetarian chicken bullion, and chili powder.  The veggies were onion, broccoli, grated ginger, and bell pepper.  Served over brown rice and topped with peanuts.

The key here is to allow the sauce to thicken for a few minutes after adding it...


Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Pretzel Sandwiches

Yeah, yeah.  I know, these are a DESSERT... they aren't healthy at all.  I will be the first to admit that.  but one needs to eat dessert once a week... at least, I do ;).  I have a large bowl of vegan ice cream smothered in toppings, so sometimes it seems like I really have two desserts - ice cream, and vegan chocolates.  Anyhoo, I made these thingies last night and put a few on my ice cream.  And they are A-mazing.  A-mazing!   A nice combination of pretzel, chocolate, and peanut flavour - plus they're pretty sweet.

I apologize for adding another dessert to the giant realm of vegan desserts... But, seeing as this has been the first sweet thing I have made in years, and it was super yummy, I figured I might as well post it.

Just sayin', these take about 45 minutes - 1 hour of actual work, and then they dry for about 1 - 2 hours... they actually dried while I ate dinner, so I can't say to be precise.  Then I bagged them up and froze them for later.  And, although I made about 50 sandwiches, I wouldn't be surprised if they only last a few weeks - M has a weakness for that type of thing...

Adapted from 17 And Baking.

So, first you mix together 1 cup peanut butter (crunchy or creamy... I used crunchy because that's what we had, but all the recipes that I saw called for creamy... *shrugs*), a scant 2/3 cup powdered sugar, a scant 3/4 cup brown sugar, a smidgen of coconut extract (all the recipes I saw called for vanilla extract, but I don't have any so I was like "well, coconut works too"), and about 1 tbsp soy milk.  Then ball up about 1 - 2 tsp of this mixture and sandwich it between two pretzels.  The pretzels can be the traditional twists, or the checkerboard ones - I used the checkerboard, but all the recipes I saw used twists.  After you finish making the sandwiches, melt 1 - 1 1/2 cups vegan chocolate chips in the microwave - the key here is to go low and slow.  Note: most dark chocolate = vegan chocolate.  Just check the ingredients.  After the chocolate is melted, dunk the pretzels in, lay them on wax paper, and let them solidify. 

And then eat them... but sparingly, my friends.  Do not overindulge - these are NOT healthy by any means.


Orange Tofu, Orange Sweet Potatoes

Continuing with the orange juice theme...  Tonight's dinner was pretty orangey.  The tofu was pretty good, and I ended up eating it with my fingers... which was fun.  I liked the slightly burnt taste, as well.  The sweet potatoes were better than I had thought possible - the orange juice turned, rather unexpectedly, into a glaze, which was oh so good.  Inspired by HHL and A Veggie Venture.

The tofu was cut into slabs, pressed, and marinated in orange juice with a bit of pepper for 30 minutes.  It was sprinkled with nooch and grilled on the panini press for 7 minutes, then served.
The sweet potato was peeled and cut into rounds.  about 1/2 - 3/4 cup orange juice was brought to a boil in a Dutch oven, and the sweet potatoes were added.  The were boiled for about 20 minutes, uncovered, until tender and the juice reduced to a glaze.  The heat was reduced, and then they were sprinkled with cinnamon and brown sugar.

Warm Quinoa, Red Kidney Bean, and Veggie Salad

You know, quinoa and avacados are amazing.
You know, I have lots of orange juice to use up - I bought some for recipes, and I don't drink just juice.  So I'm putting it in everything...

Adapted from Oh She Glows.

The salad was 1 cup dried quinoa cooked with 1 1/2 cups water, cooked red kidney beans, and red bell pepper, carrots, and onion cooked on the panini press.  The dressing was a bit of lime juice, lots of orange juice, 3/4 cup each cilantro and parsley, cumin, garlic powder, mirin, and cooking sherry.  All of this was mixed together and served lukewarm, topped with chopped avacado.

Lenti Soup

Another soup.  Can't get enough, can I?  Adapted from Kalyn's Kitchen.

The veggies were carrots and onion.  I soaked up some brown lentils and black beans for the soup.  Other stuff: jerk seasoning, vegetarian chicken bullion, 1 tbsp ground fennel, 1 tbsp thyme, 1 tbsp sage, brown rice, and about 1 cup diced roasted red bell pepper.


Orange Stir Fry

Yay!  More stir frys... because I like them and they make me feel better.  This one was actually the first decent tasting orange stir fry that I have ever made - I could really taste the orange, and the sauce was super yummy.

Adapted from here.

Veggies were red bell pepper, onion, carrot, broccoli, grated ginger, and peas.  I also added deep fried tofu from the Asian Market.  The sauce was 2 tbsp soy sauce, 3/4 cup orange juice, a bit of rice vinegar, 3 tbsp brown sugar, and 2 tbsp corn starch.  The key is to add the sauce about 3 minutes before you are ready to serve so it has a chance to get really thick. 

Served over brown rice, eaten with chopsticks.

Another Tofu-Avacado Sandwich

Um... I'm loving avacados... they're pretty good!  I never knew what I was missing out on...

Sandwich adapted from here.

The sandwich was whole wheat bread, tofu mayo (partially cooked silken tofu blended with lemon juice), avacado, tofu, and bell pepper and onion.

The tofu was cut into slabs and marinated in soy sauce, liquid smoke, chili powder, and maple syrup.  It was then grilled with the bell pepper and onion on the panini press.


Kind-of Soy Milk Quiche

I really have NO CLUE what this is... it's really odd.  However, it tastes good, so I figured I had better post it!  

I have to say, the night I baked it, Wednesday, it came out really watery.  Like soup in a crust.  So I was like Okaaaay... and stuck it in the fridge, hoping it would firm up, and ate leftovers that night.  Thursday, I saw it was solid, and then decided to heat it up for dinner.. and it kind of liquified again.  But once I tasted it, the liquification of the quiche was alright by me, because it tasted marvelous!  Tonight, Friday, I had it again, and decided to try it cold so it wouldn't be liquidy.  Mistake - after one bite, it went in the microwave.  So, I like it hot and soupy... yes, this is an odd quiche type thingy.  But, like I said, the taste is good, so that makes up for everything.  Adapted from here.

(The picture is of the cold quiche... it totally deflates.  Trust me.)

To make the Spinach and Soy Milk Liquidy Quichey Thingy... de-stem, tear, and wilt 1 bunch of spinach.  Saute 1 small, finely chopped onion and 3 cloves garlic.  Add in 3 cups soy/almond milk, 1/2 cup at a time - add 2 tbsp corn starch to the first half cup.  Add the next half cup when the liquid has thickened slightly.  Once all the milk is added, add 1/3 cup nooch, Spike seasoning, and Italian seasoning.  Pour into pie crust, top with cheese and paprika, and bake for 25 minutes at 375F.

For the pie crust: spray your pie plate, then in the pie plate mix 1/2 cup each sesame seeds, oatmeal, and whole wheat flour.  Add applesauce to hold the dy stuff together - I think I use about 1/2 cup.  Mix all this together in the pie plate, and shape to form the crust.  Bake for 12 minutes at 350, until firm.