Friday, April 30, 2010

Blueberry Corn Powerhouse Muffins

These muffins are like little powerhouses!  They are loaded with omega 3's & 6's, fiber, protein - you  name it!  I used white cornmeal, but feel free to use yellow cornmeal.  They're not overly sweet, so you can increase the agave nectar to your liking.

You'll Need:

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white or yellow cornmeal
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
1 scoop chia seeds (I used the scoop that comes with the seeds - approx. 2 tbsp.)
1 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1 cup vanilla almond milk (or any non-dairy milk)
1/4 cup raw agave nectar (add more if you want a sweeter muffin)
1/4 cup oil (I used grapeseed oil)
1 cup frozen blueberries
2 tbsp. shredded coconut (optional)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 tbsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.  Mix together wet ingredients besides the blueberries and add to dry.  Stir until well combined and then fold in blueberries gently.  You can spray a muffin tin with non-stick spray or use paper liners.  The muffins stuck a little to the liners once done, but if you put them in the fridge for awhile the liners came off easily.   Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean once inserted.  Enjoy!  :)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mock Tuna Salad

Okay, this was really good!  You can really add whatever you like to this recipe...

Just start out with 1 15 oz. can of chick peas, rinsed, drained & mashed.  Then add what you usually put in your tuna salad.  I used chopped celery, lots of red onion, grapeseed oil vegenaise, small piece of a chopped garlic dill pickle and a 1/2 tbsp. of nutritional yeast.  This was really good!  I think the red onion really made the sandwich!  It hit the spot because I *really* miss tuna salad!

Mujaddra (Lentils & Rice w/ Caramelized Onions)

So simple, yet so good!

You'll need:
1 cup of rice (I used long grain brown rice)
1 cup of lentils
4 cups of water
2 large onions, sliced thin
oil (I used grapeseed oil)
sea salt

Rinse rice, sort through lentils for any debris and rinse well.  Place water, rice and lentils in pot and bring to boil.  *I seasoned the water with a little garlic powder - optional.  Once water boils, cover pot and simmer until all water has evaporated and rice/lentils are tender. (approx. 1 hour)

While the lentils/rice are cooking, heat oil in large pan and begin to caramelize the onions.  This will take a little while.  You can keep them on a low flame and stir occassionally until they are a nice brown color.  The onions make the whole dish.  You can make more onions if you'd like; I feel the dish could have used more than just the two.

Once the onions are nice and golden and the rice/lentils are done - mix the onions into the rice and lentils.  Season with sea salt.  Enjoy!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Vegan Nachos!

Oh My!  These were delicious!!!!!!  My husband had two plates and was about to dive into the bowl of nacho cheeze sauce!!  LOL  

On my plate were low fat corn tortilla chips that I warmed in the oven, pinto beans, black olives, artichoke hearts, salsa and the amazing nacho cheeze sauce. I had planned on putting some avocado as well, but they were still too hard to use. Definitely make this sauce - you will not be disappointed!!

I got the recipe from here:   Lots of vegan recipes on the site that I want to try out!

1/4 cup raw cashews
1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (cashew, soy, or hemp) *I used light soy milk
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or olive oil
2 ounces roasted red bell peppers
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon Herbamare or sea salt

Place all ingredients into a blender fitted with a sharp blade or a Vita-Mix. Blend until super creamy. Pour into a small saucepan and whisk over medium heat until thickened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly before pouring using. The sauce will thicken as it cools. Pour over a plate of corn chips and top with your favorite toppings. Serve immediately. You could also stir into the sauce a can of diced green chiles if desired (the original recipe calls for this).

**Note: To roast red bell peppers, place them into a baking dish or onto a cookie sheet. Roast in a preheated oven on "broil" until the skin is charred, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven and place into a bowl, cover with a plate, and let cool. Once cooled, the skin slides off easily and you can cut them in half and remove the seeds and stem. *One very small pepper is about 2 ounces, which is what is needed for this recipe.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Roasted Chick Peas

I'm sitting here at work eating my snack of roasted chick peas and one of my clients come in asking me what the heck was on my plate! LOL  I told her what it was and she was so excited to go home and make them.  Such an easy thing to make and packs so much protein/fiber! :)  I figured I'd take a quick picture and share it here with you all! :)
My husband hates chick peas, but absolutely loved these!  You can add whatever seasonings you like, but this is what I did:

1 19 oz. can of chick peas, rinsed and drained
1 1/2  tbsp. grapeseed oil
1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp. tamari
onion & garlic powder/Hungarian paprika (sprinkling of each)

Mix well and put ingredients on baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes - stir occasionally so they don't burn.  Enjoy!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Tuna-Free Casserole

This was from "American Vegan Kitchen" cookbook and was delicious!! In red is what I did differently from the recipe. It looks more difficult than it is... prepare the pasta in advance and even the roasted chick peas - then it will take up a lot less time. 5 stars from me!

(More pictures below)

2 tbsp. olive oil
3 tbsp. soy sauce, divided *I used tamari
1 tbsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. All-American Spice Blend (see below) or other spice blend *I used garlic powder/onion powder and Hungarian paprika - just a sprinkling of each
1 tsp. smoked paprika *I left out
1/2 tsp. white pepper *I left out
1 tsp. salt, divided
1 1/2 cups cooked or 1 - 15 oz. can chick peas, drained & rinsed
2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup raw cashews
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 artichoke hearts, packed in water, drained and chopped
8 oz. vegan ribbon-style noodles *I used elbows
2 tbsp. vegan margarine
1/2 cup chopped leek, white part only
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
5 oz. sliced cremini mushrooms
1/2 cup dry sherry or dry white wine *I used mirin
1 tsp. dried tarragon *I left out
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. all-purpose flour *I used whole wheat
1/2 cup cooked peas
Black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced *I added this in
1 shallot, diced *I added this in

Crumb Topping
1 cup fresh bread crumbs *I used whole wheat
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. olive oil *I used grapeseed oil
*next time I would add in another tsp. of Dijon mustard

*Spice Blend:
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tbsp. cayenne
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 tbsp. smoked paprika
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried mustard
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1/8 tsp. ground cloves

1. Combine all ingredients in a small skillet over medium heat. Stirring constantly, toast for 2 minutes, or until fragrant.
2. Remove from the heat and allow to cook completely. Store in an airtight container.

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly oil a 2 1/2 quart casserole and set aside.

2. In a shallow baking pan, combine the oil, 1 tbsp. of the soy sauce, the vinegar, spice blend, paprika, white pepper, 1/2 tsp. of the salt, and the chick peas. Toss to coat, then roast for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the oven and set aside.

3. In a blender, combine the broth and cashews and blend until smooth, at least 3 minutes. Add the mustard and artichoke hearts, and blend until smooth. Set aside.

4. Cook the noodles in a large pot of salted boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes, until al dente. Drain and set aside.

5. Heat the margarine in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the leek, bell pepper, mushrooms, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the mushrooms release their liquid. Add the sherry and the remaining 2 tbsp. soy sauce. Cook for 5 minutes, then stir in the tarragon, thyme, and parlsey. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetable mixture and stir to coat. Add the reserved cashew mixture, reserved chick pea mixture, peas, and pepper to taste. Stir to mix well and heat through.

6. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl combine the noodles, and the reserved chick pea/vegetable mixture. Mix well. Taste and adjust the seasonings and transfer to the prepared casserole dish. Set aside.

7. In a small bowl, combine the topping ingredients and mix well. Spring the crumb mixture over the casserole and cover tighly with foil. Bake 30 minutes, then remove the foil and broil on low until the crumbs are browned and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve hot.
Before Bread Crumbs:
Right Out of the Oven:

Super Easy Black Bean Soup

Really quick, hearty soup that you can add whatever you like to! 
Veggies all chopped up
Here's what I used:

3 carrots, diced
3 celery stalks (leaves included), diced
2 large potatoes (I like the waxy kind - unpeeled), diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, diced
1 shallot, diced
2 - 19 oz. cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
5 cups of vegetable stock (low sodium preferred)
sea salt/pepper to taste
grapeseed or extra vrigin olive oil

Saute' vegetables in oil until they get soft.  Mix in beans and cook for 10 minutes; add in stock and cook an additional 15 minutes.  Using an immersion blender (or regular blender) puree half the soup until it's nice and thick. Cook another 5-10 minutes.  Enjoy!

Banana Nut Spelt Pancakes

Listed below is the original recipe for "Pancakes" from "Vegan with a Vengeance" and in red is what I did differently:
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour *I used organic spelt flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 t bsp. canola oil (or any mild oil) *I used grapeseed oil
1/3 cup water
1 - 1 1/4 cup non-dairy milk *I used low fat soy milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
1 mashed banana
chopped walnuts

Sift dry ingredients together in a bowl - set aside. Mix wet ingredients together and add to dry; Stir in walnuts and mix batter until just combined - don't over mix. (Batter will still be lumpy)

Grease skillet and heat on med-high for 2 minutes. Flip pancakes over when you see little bubbles forming in the batter. This made 6 pancakes for me - and 1 pancake was very filling! :)

Friday, April 16, 2010


Well, my sweet kitten Pumpkin (pictured above!) is getting spayed today.  Would love positive vibes that all will go smoothly; I'm a worried mama today! :(   

I love you Pump! <3

Chick Pea Cutlets with Mushroom Gravy

Recipe from Veganomicon... absolutely Delicious!!!!!   I made mushroom gravy to put on top - I doubled the cutlet  recipe to make sure I had leftovers! :)

1 cup cooked chickpeas

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup vital wheat gluten

1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs (I used matzo meal)

1/4 cup vegetable broth or water

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 cloves garlic, pressed or grated with a Microplane grater

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika

1/4 teaspoon dried rubbed sage

Olive oil for pan frying


In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas together with the oil until no chickpeas are left. Add the remaining ingredients and knead together for about 3 minutes, until strings of gluten have formed.

Preheat a large heavy-bottomed nonstick or cast iron skillet over medium heat. Meanwhile, divide the cutlet dough into 4 equal pieces. To form cutlets, knead each piece in your hand for a few moments and then flatten and stretch each one into a roughly 6 by 4 inch rectangular cutlet shape. The easiest way to do this is to form a rectangle shape in your hands and then place the cutlets on a clean surface to flatten and stretch them.

Add a moderately thin layer of olive oil to the bottom of the pan. Place the cutlets in the pan and cook on each side for 6 to 7 minutes. Add more oil, if needed, when you flip the cutlets. They’re ready when lightly browned and firm to the touch.

**Just in case you were wondering, you can also bake these too! Baking these patties gives them a toothsome chewy texture and firm bite. Preheat oven to 375°F, and lightly oil baking sheet. Brush both sides of each patty with olive oil, place on baking sheet, and bake for 20 minutes. Flip patties and bake another 8 to 10 minutes until firm and golden brown

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Pasta with Hazelnuts

Recipe from Christina Pirello (Cooking the Whole Foods Way).  This was absolutely delicious!

You'll need:

1 head garlic, roasted

1 onion, diced

1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 cup hazelnuts, toasted

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar *reduced - see below

1 lb. pasta

sea salt, to taste

chopped fresh parsley, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take a head of garlic and slice off 1/4" from top; drizzle a little olive oil and some sea salt - wrap in aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour. Put the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes until they are toasted/lightly browned. Once they are done and cooled put them on a hand towel and rub the skins off. (Not all of them will come off) Place nuts in a food processor and finely grind.

*Balsamic vinegar - Take 1/2 cup vinegar and put in small sauce pan over low heat. Let simmer uncovered until reduced by half.

Make pasta and set aside when cooked.

In a large pot saute' onion in 1 tbsp. olive oil until soft and translucent. Add mashed pulp from roasted garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil and cook for 5 minutes with a little sea salt. Take off heat and add in the balsamic vinegar reduction and all but 1/4 cup of the ground hazelnuts. Save the 1/4 cup for garnish on top. Add pasta to pot and mix together. Stir in parsley if using.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Vegetable Nut Loaf

I don't remember where I got this recipe from, but it was really good!
1 cup chopped red onion

3 leeks, chopped fine

1 cup finely chopped mushrooms

3 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 cup gluten flour

2/3 cup chopped Brazil nuts (or any nuts) *I toasted them first in a dry pan

2 tablespoons wheat germ

2 cans chick peas

1 1/2 cups veggie stock

2 tablespoons Braggs liquid aminos or soy sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

Saute' the vegetables and garlic until tender. Place in a mixing bowl with the gluten flour, nuts and wheat germ.

Blend the rest of ingredients together until smooth. Add to mixing bowl. Mix well.

Spoon into an 8" x 8" baking dish lined with baking parchment paper or sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes at 350 degrees or until browned on top.

Black Bean Sweet Potato Burgers

Black Bean Sweet Potato Burgers

2 cans black beans - rinsed & drained

1 large sweet potato

1 large onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup kasha (or quinoa - any grain) optional

bread crumbs (enough to hold mixture together)

sea salt, garlic powder, pepper to taste

Makes 8 burgers

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Saute' onion and garlic until translucent. In a large bowl mash the black beans; cook potato (I microwaved it) and take skin off and add to the black beans.- mash them together.

Add onions, garlic and seasoning; mix well. Add grain if using any. (I used kasha). Taste and adjust salt, etc. Then add bread crumbs - add enough so the mixture holds together.

Spray a baking pan w/ cooking spray. Form burgers and spray top w/ cooking spray (I used olive oil spray). Bake until burgers are brown. Really good w/ vegenaise! :)

Baked Acorn Squash with Pine Nuts

I got the recipe from

You'll Need:

2 small acorn squash, about 2 pounds total weight

3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

8 cloves garlic, halved

1 tablespoon pine nuts

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 400 F. Coat a shallow baking dish with cooking spray.

Cut the squash crosswise into rings 1/2-inch thick, leaving the peel intact. Scrape the seeds out of the center of each ring and discard. Place the rings in the prepared baking dish in a single layer, allowing them to overlap slightly. Brush with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the olive oil, and sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon of the salt. Bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the garlic and pine nuts with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil. Sprinkle the garlic and pine nuts evenly over the squash rings and continue baking until the squash is tender and the pine nuts are lightly browned, about 10 to 15 minutes longer.

Season the squash rings with the remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and the pepper. Serve immediately.

Dr. Cow Tree Nut Cheese

I finally ordered some of this yummy cheeze... (very expensive cheeze, btw!).... and it definitely helped with my cheese craving.   They are only 2.6 oz. each!

I got the cashew one and the cashew-brazil one.  The cashew one is definitely my favorite... very tangy and cheese-like - the brazil one was tangy too, not as much though and much drier.  I won't be buying that one again.  There are other ones to try - like the macadamia one, which is next on my list! :)

Cashew one:

Cashew-Brazil one