Thursday, July 2, 2015

Lemon Orzo with Tofu

I cut the tofu into round circles for presentation but also fried up the scraps so nothing was wasted.  You can use any seasoning you would like on the tofu, I used cajun and have used Old Bay in the past.

Lemon Orzo with Tofu
Food Network Mag. Adapted

1          cup orzo, cooked according to pkg.
5          tablespoons vegan butter
            grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
            freshly ground pepper
1          pkg. firm tofu, cut into circles or squares (use extra pieces as well)
2          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
            Cajun or Old Bay seasoning (to coat and fry tofu)
2          cloves garlic, minced
1/2       cup dry white wine
2          tablespoons capers, drained
2          tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2          cups greens, baby arugula or anything else on hand
1          cup cherry tomatoes, halved – I used diced red pepper

Bring a medium saucepan of salted water to a boil.  Add the orzo and cook as the label directs.  Reserve 1/4 cup cooking water, then drain.  Transfer the orzo to a large bowl and add 2 tablespoons vegan butter, the lemon zest, half of the lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of the reserved pasta cooking water.  Season with salt and pepper; toss, adding more pasta cooking water as needed to loosen.  Cover to keep warm.

Pat the tofu dry then cut into little rounds or squares.  Coat in Cajun or Old Bay seasoning.  Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add the tofu and cook until browned, turning once.  Transfer to a plate; cover to keep warm.

Add the garlic to the skillet.  Cook, stirring until golden, about 10 seconds.  Add the wine, 1/4 cup water and the remaining lemon juice.  Cook until reduced by half, about 3 minutes.   Add the capers and the remaining 3 tablespoons vegan butter; swirl to melt.  Stir in the parsley.

Add the greens, red pepper/tomatoes to the orzo, toss.  Serve with the tofu and pan sauce.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup

We enjoy soup all year round, especially this cool summer.  It's nice to have a big pot in the fridge for quick lunch or suppers.

Roasted Root Vegetable Soup
The Ultimate Book of Vegan Cooking CB Adapted

1            small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
1            sweet potato, peeled and cubed
2            parsnips, cubed
1            leek, diced
1/2         onion, diced
3            bay leaves
1            teaspoon each thyme and rosemary  
5            cups vegetable stock
1            cup vegan milk

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Pour the olive oil into a large mixing bowl.

Add the prepared vegetables to the bowl and toss thoroughly with a spoon until they are all coated in the oil.

Spread out the vegetables in a single layer on one large or two small baking sheets.
Tuck the bay leaves among the vegetables.

Roast the vegetables for 50 minutes or until tender, turning them occasionally to make sure they brown evenly.

Remove from the oven, discard the bay leaves and transfer the vegetables to a large pan.

Pour the stock into the pan and bring slowly to a boil.  Add herbs, reduce heat, season to taste, then simmer gently for about 10 minutes. 

Add cup of vegan milk, transfer the soup to a food processor or blender, or us a hand blender if you prefer, and process for a few minutes until thick and smooth.

Return soup to the pan and heat it through for a minute or two.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add a swirl of vegan sour cream for presentation.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Bulgur Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

This can be eaten warm or cold, it's a great for a snack or lunch.

Bulgur Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

1          small package bulgur (Trader Joe’s has 10-Bulgur Instant Mix)
            various veggies (radishes, onion, asparagus)
            fried chickpeas that I had left over in fridge
            salad dressing of your choice

Mustard Vinaigrette

Whisk 1/4 cup white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and a few grinds of pepper in a bowl.  Slowly drizzle in 2/3 cup olive oil, whisking constantly, until thick and smooth.  Add more salt and pepper to taste.

(Makes about 1 cup)

Make as much Bulgur as you like, and cook according to package. 
I cut up radishes and green onions and added cut up grilled asparagus.

Add salad dressing and serve warm or cold.  The bulgur really soaks up the dressing so you may want to dress twice.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Pesto Pasta with Zucchini and Asparagus

I love buying a big Basil plant in the summer then become overwhelmed by it's growth so I always make a batch of Pesto. If you don't feel like pasta, just use the pesto over mixed grilled veggies either way is delicious.

Pesto Pasta with Zucchini and Asparagus

12          oz. Bowtie Pasta
1            large zucchini, peeled and diced
1            bunch Asparagus, cut into pieces

Nonna’s Italian Kitchen by Bryanna Clark Grogan
Yields about 1 & 1/2 cups

4            cups packed fresh basil leaves
1/3         cup soy parmesan
1/2         cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4         cup lightly toasted pine nuts, chopped walnuts or almonds (I used walnuts)
2-4         cloves garlic
1            teaspoon salt
              optional  1/2 tablespoon lemon juice, to preserve the color

Place everything in a food processor and process until a paste forms.  Place the paste in small containers.  The less air the pesto is exposed to, the better.  Cover the pesto with a thin film of olive oil. 

Saute the zucchini and asparagus in a lightly oiled pan until tender.  Add a pinch of salt and pepper.  In a large pot, cook the bowtie pasta and reserve a cup of the pasta water to add to sauce – if needed.

Drain the noodles, add to the vegetables and coat with pesto sauce.  I added almost a cup of pasta water to make it extra creamy.  Season to taste.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Greek Salad

There are many ways to make a greek salad.  Some places add chickpeas, some places, like Canada don't include beets - go figure.  Anyway, you can add what you like, below is a list of my favorites.

Greek Salad

Romaine Lettuce
English cucumber, cut into bite-size pieces
Red onion, thinly sliced
Kalamata olives, sliced
Beets, sliced
Firm Tofu, lightly fried

1/4            cup extra-virgin olive oil
3            tablespoons red wine vinegar
1            teaspoon dried oregano, crushed in palm of your hand

Make up your salad with the above ingredients – add as much or little as you like.

Drain and pat dry the tofu.  Cut into 1/4” thick slices.  Salt and pepper both sides then pan dry until browned.  The tofu takes the place of feta.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Fried Chickpeas

These are good for snackin' or to throw on a salad.

Fried Chickpeas

2            teaspoons smoked paprika
1            teaspoon cayenne pepper
6            tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2            15-oz. cans chickpeas, rinsed, drained, patted very dry
              Kosher salt
2            teaspoons finely grated lime zest

Combine paprika and cayenne in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat oil in a 12” skillet over medium-high heat.  Working in 2 batches, add chickpeas to skillet and sauté, stirring frequently, until golden and crispy, 15-20 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer chickpeas to paper towels to drain briefly.  Place in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle paprika mixture over; toss to coat.  Season to taste with salt.  Toss with lime zest and serve.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Perfectly Layered Burritos

Perfectly Layered Burritos

No measurements just a list of what we used in our burritos.

Refried beans in salsa, with cut up green onions added - heated (from Trader Joe’s)
Brown Rice, cooked
Saute’d vegetables (Red Onion, Red Pepper, Garlic)
Avacodo Mashed with garlic and onion powder
Vegan Sour Cream
Sweet hot sauce

The article gives the steps to layering a burrito:

1.  Gather your ingredients and prep.  Cook your rice, fry your veggies, heat your beans, mix your guac and chop your tomatoes and lettuce (if using).

2.  Spread your heated Refried Beans down the center first.

3.  Add rice.  Adding this next helps the rice bind to the bean spread.

4. Add protein if using (tofu, tempeh, whole beans)

5.  Place Fejita Vegetables on next. 

6.  Add guacamole or smashed avocados with seasoning.

7.  Sprinkle with vegan cheese, if using  (we didn’t)

8.  Add salsa and lettuce (if usinging)

9.  Add vegan sour cream or just put on top of rolled burrito.

10.  Roll them up!