Vegan Diaries – Green Bean and Mushroom Stir Fry

 

green bean stir fry

A good stir fry is an easy meal. Grab what’s in the fridge and toss it in a pan! Green beans are great in a stir fry. The trick is to make sure they are steamed for a few minutes before they hit the pan. They stay crisp and soak up flavor.

 

 

Ingredients

  • green beans 1/2 lb
  • onion roughly chopped
  • shitake mushrooms 1 c sliced
  • fresh garlic minced 2 cloves
  • fresh ginger 1 T
  • scallions chopped 3 stalks
  • sesame oil 2 T
  • soy sauce (or Tamari) 2 T
  • veggie stock 1/4 c
  • water 2 T
  • juice from one lemon

Preparation 

  1. Steam green beans for 2 minutes (you can also blanch them if steaming isn’t for you).
  2. Set green beans aside.
  3. Begin to saute the onions and garlic in a pan with the oil stir for two minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms, ginger and saute for three more minutes.
  5. Add the stock and soy sauce. Cook for three minutes until the liquid reduces by half.
  6. Add the green beans and scallions.
  7. Add water (if necessary).
  8. Add lemon juice.
  9. Cook for two more minutes and serve!
I had mine with a salad and carrot ginger dressing (my all time fave dressing, seriously. If I were 6 years old, I’d marry it)
That said, serving this over brown rice or quinoa would be tasty too.
Try a veggie stir-fry for friday instead of ordering take-out. It’s cheaper, tastier and better for you!

What’s in your favorite stir fry? 

Namaste y’all!!!

 

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Food Yoga- Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup

roasted tomatos

“Only the pure in heart can make soup.”

– Ludwig Van Beethoven

This soup looks creamy and it has a creamy flavor without adding milk. I think if you wanted an even heartier flavor you could add orecchiette pasta. Those pasta cups would gently cradle this roasted flavor goodness.

Go for it!! Make soup!

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 pounds Roma tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Salt and pepper, to taste, for seasoning tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Dash of red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup freshly chopped basil
  • 1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spread the tomatoes on a baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast for about 45 minutes.
2. In a large stockpot, heat the other 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add the canned tomatoes, fresh basil, and vegetable broth. Stir in the oven roasted tomatoes. Cook for about 30 minutes over medium-low heat.

3. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup in the stockpot, or transfer soup to a food processor or blender to blend. The soup should be smooth, with a few tomato chunks. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve warm.

Note-be careful when transferring the soup to a blender or food processor. You may want to wait until it is at room temperature to blend. Blend the soup until it’s more smooth than it is, but not to a silky purée (You want to keep some of the chunky tomato flavor).

 Soup. Soup. Soup.
Namaste y’all.
Felicity's perfect tomato soup

Food Yoga- Mushroom Ragout

mushroom ragout acorn squash


Official Meatless Monday Blogger

I’ve been afflicted with a cooking malaise for the last few months. Actually more doldrums than malaise. Sort of like Milo in the Phantom Tollbooth.

But this morning, a remedy.

I woke from a sound slumber and was monkeying around online. Tea in hand, I was looking for interesting reads about yoga and health, yoga and sleep…you get the idea. Boom down the rabbit hole. Anyway- I was checking out the New York Times Wellness Blog and found stumbled upon this delicious recipe for a mushroom ragout.

This came at the right time for a few reasons:

  1. I’m looking for find recipes that can be dressed up and down.
  2. Inspiration keeps things exciting and extends to more than the kitchen

This recipe is meant to be kept in the fridge and used for a few things, but beware. They are so good it’s hard not to heap spoonfuls in your mouth.

I had mine with acorn squash- just perfect. Tomorrow? Maybe they’ll be tossed with some green veggies.

Anything is possible.

Namaste y’all.

1 ounce (about 1 cup) dried mushrooms, preferably porcinis

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 shallots or 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pound white or cremini mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and quartered or sliced 1/2 inch thick

1 pound wild mushrooms, trimmed and brushed clean, or oyster mushrooms, trimmed and torn into pieces if very large

Salt to taste

2 teaspoons all-purpose flour

1/2 cup dry white wine such as sauvignon blanc or pinot grigio

2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

Freshly ground pepper

2 to 4 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

1. Place the dried mushrooms in a pyrex measuring cup or a bowl and pour on 2 cups boiling water. Let soak 30 minutes, while you prepare the other ingredients. Place a strainer over a bowl, line it with cheesecloth or paper towels, and drain the mushrooms. Squeeze the mushrooms over the strainer and rinse until they are free of sand. Chop coarsely.

2. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy skillet or a wide saucepan and add the shallots or onion. Cook, stirring often, until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic, stir together for about 30 seconds, until fragrant, then add the fresh mushrooms, rosemary and thyme, and turn up the heat slightly. Cook until the mushrooms begin to sweat, then add a generous pinch of salt. Stir for about 5 minutes over medium-high heat as the mushrooms continue to soften and sweat. Add the flour and continue to cook the mushrooms, stirring, until they have softened a little more and you can no longer see the flour, about 2 minutes. Add the reconstituted dried mushrooms and the wine and turn the heat to high. Cook, stirring, until the liquid boils down and glazes the mushrooms, about 5 minutes. Stir in the dried mushroom soaking liquid, bring to a simmer, add salt to taste, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring often, until the mushrooms are thoroughly tender and fragrant and the surrounding broth is thick, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in some freshly ground pepper and the parsley, taste and adjust salt.

Vegetarian Shepard’s Pie

I’ve been playing with healthier updates of comfort food classics. There’s nothing like a warm meal when a nip is in the air. The smell of hearty stews and sage laced with sage lifts me on my toes like a cartoon character and spins me around, partner that with something like mashed potatoes and I’m in heaven. Since foods like that aren’t in my life anymore I re-imagined some meals I love with a twist!!

I must confess this is vegan and not vegetarian. I haven’t found a great substitute for egg whites- but if you know of any, please share them in the comments!!!

For the filling

  • lentils – 1 cup
  • mushrooms – chopped (optional but extra step, for even deeper flavor chop up a few dried mushrooms and soak them)
  • balsamic vinegar 1/4 cup
  • onions – 1/2 cup sautéed
  • garlic – 2 cloves minced
  • veggie stock – 2 and 1/4 cups
  • sage – 1/2 teaspoon
  • thyme – 1/2 teaspoon
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the topping 

  • sweet potatoes – 3 peeled cubed
  • egg whites – 4
  • cardamom – 1/4 teaspoon
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper

Preparation

  1. Spray sweet potatoes with olive oil spray and bake in a 350° oven until they are tender about 30 minutes
  2. While the potatoes are baking start the lentils. Heat the stock with the lentils in pot. When the stock boils reduce to a simmer and cook lentils uncovered for 30 minutes.
  3. In a separate pan heat olive oil over medium heat to sauté onions, garlic and spices. Cook for five minutes before adding the mushrooms balsamic and 1/4 cup of veggie stock.
  4. Cook for another 20 minutes until the liquid is reduced.
  5. Add lentils to the mushroom mixture. Mix and turn off heat.
  6. Spray a lasagna pan with non-stick spray.
  7. Transfer mixture into pan.

Preparation (Topping)

  1. Whip egg whites until the have stiff peaks.
  2. In a separate bowl use a mixer (or food processor) to whip sweet potatoes and cardamom.
  3. Fold egg whites into sweet potatoes.
  4. Evenly spread sweet potato mixture on top of filling.
  5. Bake in a 375° oven for 35-45 minutes.
  6. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.
Fresh out of the oven!!!

Namaste y’all!!!

Vegan Diaries – Roasted Cauliflower White Pumpkin and Leek Soup

Roasted-Cauliflower

I have such a feeling of gratitude over how I get to eat. The past few weeks opened my eyes. It may be what kept me from acting like a damn fool in the grocery store. Though I did pick up some dark chocolate, because I could. And some Pumpkin Ale. It’s fall, had to.

With Autumn on my mind I went to my local Shop-Rite. I many have mentioned but they have a local produce section. It’s not huge, but the prices are good, food is fresh and I’m supporting local farms. Hat trick. Not to mention the reduction of my carbon footprint. Extra 3 points. I know, I mixed my scoring comparisons. It’s all good.

Anyway- I left with:

  • Cauliflower
  • Leeks
  • Mini White Pumpkins (2)
  • Garlic

At home I pulled out

  • Olive oil
  • Veggie stock 3 cups
  • 2 fingerling potatoes

Preparation

  1. I cut the head of cauliflower in half. I’m saving the other half for tomorrow (chickpeas, eggplant and cauliflower curry- say what?!)
  2. I gave it a rough chop and then got to work on the leeks. I only used the light green and white part.
  3. I moved onto the potatoes. You could leave these out, I was looking for a creamier texture. It was a comfort food kind of day.
  4. After peeling three cloves of garlic I put the veggies in a roasting pan. I tossed them with a tablespoon of olive oil and some sea salt and pepper.
  5. The veggies roast for 30 minutes at 425°
  6. I transferred the mixture into a dutch oven (or you can use a soup pot of big pot)
  7. I added another tablespoon of olive oil and sautéed the mixture for about two minutes.
  8. In went the stock and I brought the mixture to a simmer for 20 minutes. (I added another 1/2 cup of broth- but water would do fine- it just looked like it would be too thick)
  9. Then- very carefully I transferred the soup to my blender. I don’t have a vitamix- but my blender still got the soup smooth.

It was all I hoped for. Creamy (without the dairy reprucussions- lactose intolerant), hearty and smoky because I added a pinch of smoked chipotle pepper on top.

Yum. Yum. Yum.

In other weird Wednesday news. I found this strange fact about soup (check the vid below). Enjoy.

Namaste y’all.

photo-12

Brussels Sprouts With Quinoa – Food Yoga

Derailed. My list is dust in the wind. That’s life though, right? Best laid plans and all that? Right now I have work to do and a hunger to quell.

Pish- no worries. In 20 minutes you too can prepare a tasty and nutritious meal for your family. This also allows you to play whatever music you want during dinner (see Annette Bening).

Ingredients

  • Brussels sprouts
  • Quinoa
  • Onion
  • Garlic cloves
  • Fresh oregano
  • Lime juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Gently pulse everything (except the lime juice) in your food processor.

  1. Prepare quinoa according to package directions.
  2. Heat 2 T olive oil in a dutch oven oven or pan
  3. Add sprouts mixture
  4. Add lime juice
  5. Gently saute for 2 minutes
  6. Fold in quinoa
  7. Gently saute for 3 minutes
  8. Remove from heat
  9. Slice cherry tomatoes
  10. All done!!!

Namaste y’all!!!

Vegan Diaries – 21 Meals 35 Bucks (Days 2 and 3)

photo-5

The quality of food definitely matters.

 

 

 

Day 2

Breakfast

  • Apples and hummus

Lunch

  • Soup and a half serving of the kale with chickpeas

Dinner

  • Salad with sautéed green beans and quinoa

I seasoned the green beans with a splash of lemon juice, salt, pepper, and rosemary. This was DELISH and be in regular rotation. Fresh green beans would be very tasty, but the frozen ones from Trader Joe’s worked and are just what you need to cook dinner in a flash. All told this took under 20 minutes. At 1.11 per serving you can’t beat it.

 

Day 3

Breakfast

  • Banana

Lunch

  • Soup with leftover green beans and quinoa

Dinner

  • Burrito with groundless beef, greens, black beans and quinoa (leftover from day 2)

photo-6

 

Stay tuned for Days 4 and 5 as well as a end of week recap.

 

Namaste y’all.

Vegan Diaries – Pizza Treats

I feel like the toughest part of a diet that is 80% plant based is creating tasty snacks or appetizers. Let’s face it, there’s only so much crudite a person can eat. I mean how many carrots sticks and cucumber slices can you serve before getting an eye roll (my everlasting love of cucumbers not withstanding).

People operate with the best of intentions, right? That extends to healthy eating. If options were out there, we would snatch them up like a lion chasing its prey.

Well Simba, the search is over. Mama’s got a little something I think you’ll enjoy!

These treats are great for movie night or a slumber party. They’re gluten-free low and fat and really delicious. And at 21 calories each you’re not breaking the calorie bank. The only thing you’ll likely need to buy is cauliflower so on top of all that, it’s economical too!!!

I know the good times are rollin’.

Let’s get down.

Ingredients (makes 12)

  • 2 c cauliflower
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 c Tofutti Better Than Ricotta (I actually can’t believe how good this is…)
  • 1 T oregano (I went very heavy with the spices, you can adjust but I feel the spices give it that pizza taste)
  • 1T red pepper flakes
  • 1 T garlic powder
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1 oz Vegan Parmesan shredded
  • 1 T olive oil
  • Non-stick spray for muffin tin (or muffin wrappers)
  • Pasta sauce or pizza sauce for dipping

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 425
  2. In the food processor, chop the cauliflower and garlic until it’s the consistency of rice
  3. Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven or pot
  4. Saute the cauliflower and add the spices
  5. Cook for 4-5 minutes
  6. Transfer mixture to bowl
  7. Fold in ricotta
  8. Chill mixture in frig for 1 hour
  9. Use muffin wrappers in tin
  10. Mixture should be packed down into tin so they don’t fall apart
  11. Cook for 30-40 minutes (check at 25 minutes)
  12. Cauliflower should be brown and crispy
  13. Make sure muffin tin cools or appetizers will break apart
  14. Serve with pizza sauce!

These much more decadent than they should!

Namaste y’all!!

Vegan Diaries- Ratatouille

inspired recipes, vegan, meatless monday, middle eastern eggplant, grilling, stews,

 

 

inspired recipes, discover inspiration, inspired recipes, natural hair eating, inspired living, ratatouille, vegan, meatless monday
Stult’s Farm in Plainsboro, NJ. New Jersey is the Garden State!

 

My trip to Stult’s farm in Plainsboro, NJ was fruitful indeed. This family owned farm has been around since 1912 and they only sell what they grow. In addition, there are a ton of items you can pick yourself. Strawberry picking as a kid seemed like such an adventure!

 

I bought:

  • Middle Eastern zucchini
  • Eggplant
  • Peppers
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes (Jersey tomatoes are THE BEST)
  • Basil
  • Corn

 

My haul in tow, I got home and looked at my goodies and decided to pass on my orginal plan and go with making Ratatouille instead!!!

 

Oh the deliciousness that awaits!  Ratatouille originated in Nice, France. It comes from the verb ‘toiller’ which means to toss. It started out as a peasant dish made by farmers in the summer. True Ratatouille only had tomatoes, zucchini, green and red bell peppers, onions and garlic. A bit later eggplant was added in.

 

I like the rustic aspect of this dish mostly because it means that everything doesn’t have to be perfect. At least that’s how I interpret ‘rustic’. This dish does take some work, but boy is it worth it. It’s perfect for a casual dinner with friends or a Sunday meal. The leftovers make an easy Meatless Monday lunch!

 

Ingredients

  • 1 eggplant
  • 2 summer squash or zucchini
  • 3 tomatoes roughly diced and seeded
  • 2 peppers roughly chopped (I used red and yellow)
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 onion roughly chopped
  • 3 springs fresh oregano removed from stem and chopped
  • 1 c mushrooms roughly chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 c olive oil
  • 1/4 red wine
  • 3/4 c vegetable broth or water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preparation
 
  1. Cut the eggplant and zucchini lengthwise sprinkle with salt/pepper and grill 4-5 minutes per side
  2. Simultaneously, in a large dutch oven saute onions, peppers, garlic, oregano, mushrooms and corn
  3. Turn down the heat on dutch oven when the onions become translucent
  4. Roughly chop the eggplant and zucchini and add to mixture in dutch oven
  5. Add tomatoes, broth and wine.
  6. Simmer for 15-20 minutes
  7. Garnish with fresh basil
Serve hot!
 
You can serve over quinoa, rice or couscous. A crusty 7 grain bread would also be lip smackingly perfect.

 

 

inspired recipes, vegan, meatless monday, middle eastern eggplant, grilling, stews,
This is before liquid and tomatoes were added. I know, someone needs to bust out the bigger dutch oven.

 

Enjoy… And for a little dinner music I included Kool & the Gang’s Summer Madness…

 

Be cool Jack.

 

Namaste y’all.