Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

This is an extra-long post because I am posting all of the things I've eaten before my wisdom teeth surgery, which is in two days! This blueberry cobbler smoothie will probably be perfect after I get my teeth out too, even though I made this last week. This smoothie is super easy, lemony and delicious! I've been using a lot of my local blueberries as much as possible lately, which I'm storing in the freezer.

I made Kara's delicious vegan omelette last week, which I stuffed with a smoky balsamic mushroom and spinach filling. I love how ridiculously filling these vegan omelettes are and they only have a few ingredients, minus the fillings! It kept me full for more than a few hours. For the filling: I just sauteed some thinly sliced cremini mushrooms in a pan with some olive oil until lightly browned. Then I added a heavy splash of balsamic vinegar and a few drops of liquid smoke, then stirred in some chopped spinach, until everything is soft and flavorful!

Probably my favorite recipe I've tested for the cookbook: spicy almond butter noodles with edamame, ribbons of cucumber and carrots, steamed broccoli and peanuts.

Another delicious blueberry smoothie! This one has vegan yogurt and GF rolled oats for some extra sustenance. 

I made some very flavorful deviled eggs as a snack last week using sriracha, hard-boiled egg yolks, some vegan mayo and leftover homemade garam masala hummus. I then topped each one with a Thai basil leaf. These were amazing!

I LOVE trying new variations on Caesar dressings, and this one from Veganomicon is incredible because it's made with silken tofu and finely processed almonds. The best part of this salad was definitely the roasted garlic croutons, which I made GF by using Udi's GF whole-grain bread. I also added chopped cucumbers, chickpeas and a sprinkling of nutritional yeast to make one delicious and filling salad!

A mushroom, green onion and thyme omelette I made for breakfast!

I made a very quick and filling smoothie at work: one green superfood chocolate packet, 3 frozen bananas, a heaping spoonful of peanut butter and a few splashes of hot water. I loved this chocolate superfood packet and I can't wait to try the other flavors!

I haven't had a samosa in years, so these samosa-stuffed baked potatoes were a great substitute (since I can't have the pastry dough)! They didn't take too long to make, but I certainly wouldn't cook them on a week day. The flavors of the samosa filling were absolutely delicious and very authentic! I'd recommend this for anyone who loves samosas, but doesn't want to go through the process of making samosas. This recipe originally comes from Veganomicon

I recently snagged some local okra from a produce stand, so I finally broke down and made these okra fritters again! I made them GF by using Bob's all-purpose GF flour and added some Cajun seasoning in order to add a little more flavor. I made these years ago, and they are still delicious and very easy to make! I topped mine with some vegan mayo and a few more sprinkles of Cajun seasoning.

I haven't made banana bread in a while, but this summer squash banana-oat loaf with an almond streusel really caught my eye! I have never used summer squash (except zucchini) in desserts. I used local two-tone summer squash. Of course, I also love that this recipe is already gluten and dairy-free, so no substitutions needed! I also can't believe I've never baked anything with a streusel topping before this! This loaf was super easy to make and very lightly sweetened, which I really love. 

I made another wonderful recipe from Veganomicon this morning, which was this corn and edamame sesame salad. It took only ten minutes to make and is a great lunch served with some rice crackers! I love anything that is flavored strongly with sesame, and anything with edamame!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

One of my favorite dishes I've recipe tested so far: pasta e fagioli "stew" (original recipes calls for groats!).

I can't quit this granola (minus the orange juice). I've been snacking on it all week, even though I made a batch for my Dad (originally). If you've never tried making your own granola, the time is now! Store-bought GF granola without refined sugars, dairy-based fats, etc. is expensive and really not worth the money. A while ago, I bought a case of GF rolled oats, so I am never out of them and I never have an excuse to not make my own granola/oatmeal. The flavors of this granola are vibrant with orange zest, crunchy with nuts and large coconut flakes, and sweet with raisins (subbed in for currants).

Another recipe I tested: almond butter cocoa! My favorite part was using the leftover cocoa to make a "vegan Frosty" with a frozen banana.

Every year in July, since I was a kid, we get blueberries from a farm somewhere in Kernersville. They are the best blueberries around and I can't wait for them every summer. I felt lazy on the prospect of making a pie, so I made this super easy blueberry coconut crumble for breakfast this weekend. It was so simple, delicious, and tasted just like blueberry pie. And I'm sure it would be even better with some vegan vanilla ice cream!

I'm finding myself using leftovers in more creative/useful ways lately. Mike had some leftover crushed tomatoes from a can, so I made a very "improvised" version of shakshuka. I used fresh garden banana peppers as the base, crushed tomatoes with basil, eggs, and the herbs sprinkled on top are thyme, oregano and rosemary. It was a hearty, delicious breakfast!

So I started a new job last week, which is very exciting, and I'm having a great time working. One of my goals after everything was finalized was to make homemade snacks for work each week. I keep kicking myself for buying store-bought hummus, because it just never tastes as good as homemade. I hate buying larabars too because they're a waste of money. So these were my snacks from week 1: the easiest chipotle hummus recipe, chopped cucumbers, carrots and celery, and hard-boiled eggs. I will definitely be making this hummus recipe again!

There is nothing quite like having an easy stir-fry for dinner. This one has cabbage, red bell pepper, tofu, ginger, and a few more delicious things to make a delicious weeknight meal. I added Thai basil on top, because it goes well with any stir-fry, and served it with quinoa. I really loved how the ginger and garlic cooked with the red cabbage, along with the soy sauce. And of course, don't forget the sriracha!

Work snacks week 2: garam masala hummus and 3-ingredient energy bites. I made these last night in about 10 minutes, so all I have to do today is chop some vegetables. The hummus came together beautifully, and I love the gradients of the toasted sesame seeds on top! Garam masala is probably one of my favorite spices, so I loved using it in this hummus. I was also feeling a little lazy and didn't want to purchase dates just to make fake larabars. So I settled for the 3-ingredient energy bites instead, which only have: coconut, peanuts and vegan chocolate chips. They took less than 5 minutes to make and they are delicious!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

I'm not sure how it's taken me this long to stuff a vegetable. If I remember correctly, I've never made stuffed vegetables. How strange is that? Well this taco tempeh stuffed zucchini was a great place to start and it was incredible! It has everything I love about tacos without the corn tortilla shells, which is great because GF tortillas don't taste that great. The best part is that you can eat the zucchini boat too! This makes a great meal paired with cilantro lime rice, which I make by just adding some salt, vegan butter, lime juice & minced cilantro to cooked rice.

Afraid of making spring rolls? Too hot outside to cook? Check out my recipe for fresh herb & tofu spring rolls!

These are both recipes for my recipe testing position so I'll be brief, but it was delicious! This is an oven baked tempeh sandwich with avocado, tomato & vegan mayo along with Mexican tomato soup. These were both super tasty and easy to make, plus I was able to freeze leftover tomato soup (always a plus)!

Mac & cheese is my #1 comfort food, which is funny considering I almost never ate it before I was diagnosed. But now I love it, and like everything else, I love different variations on it! This is a simple spicy vegan mac & cheese with NO cashews or blending of any kind, which automatically makes it a winner in my book! It also uses pantry items only, so you can be sure that you probably always have ingredients to make this on hand! I added some cooked green peas for color but I'm sure any vegetables would be great (especially broccoli).

This is a recipe I wrote down sometime last year, but never got around to making it. But last week, these cumin chickpea fritters with parsley chutney were calling my name. They take a little more effort than most fritters because of the amount of prep, but they are totally worth it. I love toasted cumin seeds, and paired with this vibrant and zesty parsley chutney, it's a true match made in heaven. I will also say that you should at least try this chutney recipe. It's quick and goes well on everything. I put leftover chutney on some grilled salmon from the Fourth and it was amazing! The flavor is so bright and fresh that it would probably also do well on eggs, cooked potatoes, or stirred into rice with some vegan butter.

There's always a big salad planned when we visit Mike's parents! This has a bunch of ingredients but it's basically lots of lettuce, garden vegetables and peppers, fresh chopped herbs and some balsamic vinegar. We also threw in some chopped sprite melon, which was actually a very nice addition!

This is why I really have to stop buying sorbet and ice cream: this cantaloupe sorbet only has TWO ingredients. That's right, just cantaloupe and vegan organic cane sugar. Not to mention all you do is chop the melon, blend it with sugar, then pop it in your ice cream maker, and that's that! I'm on day three of it being in the freezer and it still tastes great. If you're feeling boozy: scoop some of this sorbet into a bowl and mix in a shot of Campari. Trust me.

I've been trying to figure out pantry meals that I can make easily, since school is coming back soon. These Cajun chickpea cakes with smoky Cajun mayo are a great option for any weeknight. There isn't a lot of prep time and I pretty much always have the ingredients for them on hand, minus chickpeas. I even made the homemade poultry seasoning to give it even more flavor (totally worth it). The result is an incredibly flavorful, spicy cake that has a lovely, creamy sauce on top. I highly recommend these. Sometimes I forget how great of a source Happy Herbivore is for healthy, quick meals! This originally comes from her second book.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Pantry Fried Rice

There are two things I always have on hand, no matter what: eggs (or any type of protein) and short grain brown rice (or any grain). When you take these two things and add vegetables, soy sauce, and other ingredients, you can create a delicious meal in less than 10 minutes! You can change the ingredients based on what you have or your preferences, just make sure you cook the longest cooking vegetables (like carrots + squash) in the pan before the shortest cooking vegetables (like garlic + green onions). You can also easily make this vegan by subbing crumbled tofu or edamame for the eggs!

Pantry Fried Rice
  • 2 eggs (for vegan: 1/2 C finely crumbled tofu or 1 C thawed edamame)
  • 2 C cold, cooked brown rice (or quinoa, millet, white rice, or jasmine rice)
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 green onions, thinly sliced (or leave it out, if not on hand)
  • 1-1.5 C vegetables (I used leftover steamed kale but feel free to use whatever you have and chop it small! See note above about cooking times)
  • 1 TBS GF soy sauce
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • splash of rice vinegar
  • sriracha for serving
  • additional add-ins: fresh herbs like Thai basil or cilantro, toasted sesame seeds, thinly sliced carrots, finely chopped steamed broccoli, finely minced ginger
  1. Preheat a skillet on medium heat. Add sesame oil and rice (I also added the kale here now to get it crispy and warm; add your long cooking vegetables now). Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes, until starting to warm and crisp up. 
  2. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs together in a small bowl until smooth with a fork (for vegan, just crumble your tofu finely or thaw the edamame). 
  3. Now add the garlic and green onions (if using; add other short cooking vegetables). Stir to combine and cook 1-2 minutes, until the green onions and garlic starts to brown lightly. Drizzle in the soy sauce and vinegar, and stir to combine. 
  4. If using the eggs, make a well in the center of the rice and add them in. Let cook for about 1 minute or more, until starting to set on the bottom. Stir into the rest of the rice (for vegan, simply stir in the tofu and edamame, until browning).
  5. Stir and flip the rice occasionally until the rice and eggs become lighly browned, about 3 minutes or more, until the eggs are cooked to your desired consistency. Serve with plenty of sriracha!