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David T. Cole

Quick Vegetarian Meals

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Oh, I think this will be my favorite off-topic thread - I am vegan and love to cook and bake!  My current go-to meal for when I'm in a  hurry is this quick chana masala:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Channa-Masala-Chickpea-Curry/Detail.aspx?event8=1&prop24=SR_Title&e11=chana%20masala&e8=Quick%20Search&event10=1&e7=Home%20Page&soid=sr_results_p1i6

I use a can of diced tomatoes instead of fresh because it's still winter here and the "fresh" tomatoes in our stores taste like styrofoam right now, and I usually sprinkle in some red pepper flakes to give it some heat (I'm new to Indian cooking so I am not sure what the proper spice is to make it hot).  I also usually saute all of the onion instead of adding half to the puree.

Super easy, healthy, filling, and delicious!

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I'm an omnivore, but have quite a few vegetarian recipes I use. Here's one of my favorite quick ones:

http://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/scrambled-pasta-10000000659306/index.html

I don't like green peppers, so I use red or yellow instead, but that's the only change I make. Although I think the recipe really only makes 2.5 servings, it's easy enough to double.

That recipe looks tasty, RescueMom. And I actually have cumin seeds in the pantry. I'll have to give it a try.

Edited by Gilmel
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Chana masala is my favorite dish! To make that more like the 'real' thing I'd swap the curry powder for garam masala which is relatively common these days.

Also now I want pasta. I have one recipe up ATM but it is more of a make-for-a-week's worth project.

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I’m omni as well but I am what would be termed a meat minimiser so I have a couple of stand-by vego and vegan meals that we eat all the time. The brief is quick so here is the quickest vego meal that I have.

Haloumi Salad

You will need

1 block of haloumi cheese cut into slices
1 lemon
A handful of rocket (arugula)
About half a cup of roasted capsicums (roasted red bell peppers) cut into strips
Freshly ground black or white pepper

Heat a non-stick fry plan to medium to high heat, slap in your slices of haloumi and cook till golden brown on both sides, this only takes a couple of minutes so keep your eyes on it.
Throw some arugula on a plate, top with the piping hot haloumi cheese slices, scatter the bell pepper strips, squeeze on some lemon juice, a grind of pepper and you’re good to go.

When I make it I plate it up as a stack and add a couple of olives just because it looks a little prettier. It’s deceptively simple and that’s because all the flavours work really well together and it takes less than 5 minutes to prep, cook and serve.

I can’t remember where I stole this recipe from but it's a firm fav in my house, also you can cook the haloumi on a grill if you are having a summertime vego BBQ.

Edited by Ms.Sherlock
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I'm not sure anyone else would consider this a "meal," but since I eat it for lunch at least once a week and it takes about 5 minutes to make:

Avocado Hummus

Add the following to your food processor and process until smooth:

  • I can drained white beans
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • Juice from 1/2 a lime
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

I eat it either with tortilla chips or as a sandwich base.

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You're going to LOVE IT Jellybeans! I can tell you we use ours every day to make smoothies. We use frozen spinach or kale or any sort of greens, frozen berries or peaches or other fruit, a banana, some Greek yogurt, 8oz of coconut water and that's it. I like to use the frozen spinach that comes in a bag (not the scary brick) because it lasts longer and I never worry I'll be out. My main tip is to first put in the liquid and then the berries/fruit, banana, yogurt, spinach in that order. Start at a low speed and ramp up slowly. No need to pre-cut anything, no need to add ice, no need to have fresh fruit or veggies around, seriously throw anything frozen in, this machine will crush it. You get actual SMOOTH smoothies and not chunky chewy smoothies. It's the best. 

For other recipes I'm not as much help though I've used it to make this really great jalapeno ranch dip, also to make salsa and that sort of thing. I can say the way they recommend cleaning it is always how I do it. Rinse it then fill halfway with water add a dash of soap and put the lid on then blend all that up and rinse again. It's so easy. I love it so much. 

(for those interested)

Jalapeno Ranch 

Ingredients
1 cup Greek yogurt
1/3 cups mayonnaise
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup chopped jalapeno
1/3 cup green chilies (can, add juice too)
1/3 cup cilantro leaf
1 (1 ounce) packet dry ranch dressing mix

Throw everything into the vitamix, if you like it spicy you don't even need to seed and chop the peppers. Mix it all up. Dip anything and everything in it. So good. This is very similar to the "Creamy Jalapeno" dip you can get at Chuy's in Texas which I miss a lot and have faked a recipe. I'm up north so I can't get the ingredients to make a real version. Sob. 

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Ohhh... that sounds good! I will try your tips.

I have a funny story re: cleaning. I either had too much soap, water or both- so when I cleaned mine soapy water spewed out like crazy. Lesson learned.

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This is dinner tonight.  It's best when you can get fresh produce from the farmer's market, of course.  I am lucky to have fresh-tasting corn year round - my parents have a friend who farms, and he always plants a bunch of sweet corn (Half an acre, maybe? I don't know my farm measurements very well.) for his friends - any of them can just go and pick as much as they want.  So a few of us spent a hellish 95 degree day last summer picking, shucking, prepping, blanching, and freezing a zillion bags of sweet corn that tastes virtually identical to fresh when you thaw it.

Corn Chowder

4 cobs of corn, shucked, washed, cut from the cob*
6-8 small new red skin potatoes, washed and quartered
6 green onions, chopped (both white and green parts)

Put above into large saucepan with just enough water to almost (but not quite) cover veggies.  Season with veggie bouillon, salt, and pepper.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until veggies are tender but not mushy.

Whisk 1-2 T of corn starch into 1 cup of almond milk.  Stir into veggie mixture, along with another 1-2 cups of almond milk and a few T of vegan margarine.  Cook on med-low until mixture has thickened slightly (about 10-15 minutes), stirring frequently.

About 5 minutes before serving, add a couple of cups of fresh chopped curly kale, plus salt and pepper to taste.

*You can use canned or frozen corn in a pinch, but it will be significantly better if made with fresh corn

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Edited by RescueMom
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I make my own Chipotle-style burrito bowls about once a week. I just throw some brown rice in the rice cooker and heat up a can of black beans on the stove. Then I add guacamole, salsa, cheddar cheese, and sour cream. If my boyfriend is over, he insists on sauteed green peppers and fresh tomato being added. And if you want extra protein, I sometimes sub quinoa for the rice or add a scrambled egg. It's nothing fancy, but it's super fast and easy.

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I like to make up a big batch of refried black beans for various things. I usually use canned. Dump the whole can (liquid and all) in a pan I generally use 3 cans. Anyway beans and liquid in the pan over medium with garlic, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and a little salt. Cook for 5-10 min then mash them up with a potato masher. They reheat well. I use them for bean and cheese burritos and also real Chalupas which are just a corn tortilla that's been fried flat and topped with refried beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, guacamole and whatever else sounds yummy.

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What's a good natural sweetener to use? I use honey, brown sugar, maple syrup. Are there others?

Love the posted recipes. :-)

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Agave is good too. We generally don't add sweetener to smoothies, though we do use vanilla yogurt so that's pretty sweet. If I were using plane yogurt I'd probably use honey as a sweetener, or agave because they're easier to blend in.

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Thanks! Did not think about using yogurt. Will try agave. I am new to the world of smoothies and more. My s/o had gallbladder surgery on top of pancreatitis last week and we made a 360 turn on our eating habits. Oddly enough it has been an easy change.

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This is another 5-minutes-to-make recipe that is a staple at my place - I use a little less water than it calls for and use this more as a sandwich spread than as a dip.  My current favorite way to eat it is on an onion bagel for breakfast, since I'm not a big sweets person in the morning.  It's also really good as a dip for fresh veggies, especially carrots and sugar snap peas. 

http://www.marthastewart.com/332795/white-bean-dip

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I'm not sure anyone else would consider this a "meal," but since I eat it for lunch at least once a week and it takes about 5 minutes to make:

Avocado Hummus

Aaaand I know what I'm eating pretty much forever more. :D

I'm not a vegetarian or vegan, and I'm a lousy cook, but I saw a video on YouTube where someone made chocolate-banana "ice cream" by just tossing frozen peeled bananas in a blender with some cocoa or raw chocolate chips. I just got a blender, and I've gotta say- it's very enjoyable. Not really a meal suggestion per se, but fast and tasty in a pinch. 

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I'm not a vegetarian or vegan, and I'm a lousy cook, but I saw a video on YouTube where someone made chocolate-banana "ice cream" by just tossing frozen peeled bananas in a blender with some cocoa or raw chocolate chips. I just got a blender, and I've gotta say- it's very enjoyable. Not really a meal suggestion per se, but fast and tasty in a pinch. 

I have done this many times - the first time I made it I didn't believe it would actually turn out like ice cream, but it does!  If anyone tries it, just be forewarned that it will seem like it's not working at first - the banana will kind of shatter and turn to hard frozen tiny chunks.  Then all of a sudden it's like it reaches the magic temperature and it gets the exact consistency of soft-serve ice cream.  I know lots of people who eat dairy but like this anyway because it is a healthy dessert that tastes really decadent.

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We bought the 6300 series because it has extra functions- namely three extra dials are available. Smoothies, hot soups and frozen desserts. It is ideal for me because I have MS. I can set it and walk off and it will do the job. I tend to forget... LOL.

The other functions are readily available as well. Got mine at Costco and got the dry container too. You can make corn meal out of popcorn in that one. Fun!

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My Vitamix is a 5200 that I'm pretty sure my grandmother ordered off of QVC or something and it only has the on/off switch, the high/low switch and the gear to ramp up speed. We also have the smoothie pusher downer stick (that's a technical term) and that's it. I've never thought I needed "more" but I've also never made hot soup in it (you can literally heat soup up with the power of blending, not sure if that was common knowledge) but I know my grandmother used to do that and never had problems. I would probably like the dry container and grinder at some point but you can buy them separately so I'd say first and foremost decide what you want it for. If it's mostly drinks and soups you're fine with a "lower end" model (the lowest end Vitamix is still higher than any other blender in my opinion) but if you're interested in milling your own flour and stuff maybe go for the fancier one? They're all crazy sturdy and their motors are almost the same, the pro series has .2 more horsepower, as Jellybeans said it's more about button options.

Basically I'm saying if you're not doing anything fancy I'd recommend the Classic 5200 since you can add on accessories like the grinder etc. and the difference in horsepower is negligible. Though sometimes if you can find a good deal on the 6300 line the price is around the same price depending on specials at Costco or Amazon or what have you. 

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I like to make up a big batch of refried black beans for various things. I usually use canned. Dump the whole can (liquid and all) in a pan I generally use 3 cans. Anyway beans and liquid in the pan over media with garlic, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and a little salt. Cook for 5-10 min then mash them up with a potato masher. They reheat well. I use them for bean and cheese burritos and also real Chalupas which are just a corn tortilla that's been fried flat and tipped with efries beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, guacamole and whatever else sounds yummy.

I made your beans today and they are delicious!!  I made some corn fritters that usually have black beans in them - I skipped the beans in the fritters, then topped the fritter with your beans, arugula, and avocado/lime dressing.  SO good!! 

If anyone wants the fritter recipe:

  • 1/2 c. cornmeal
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 3/4 t. salt
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/4 t. paprika
  • 1/4 t. cumin
  • 1/4 t. garlic
  • 3/4 c. non-dairy milk
  • 1.5 c. fresh or frozen (defrosted) corn
  • 1 c. black beans
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

Mix the dry ingredients together, then stir in the milk.  Fold in the corn, beans, and onions.  Spray a griddle with non-stick spray, make pancake-sized fritters out of the batter, and cook until golden brown (flipping to cook both sides, of course)

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Oh yay! I'm glad you liked them!

I also like to make a big batch of falafel (I use this Choosy Beggars recipe but I bake the patties instead of frying because it's easier. I do them at 400 for 15 min. or so. I like to brush them with a little oil so they get crispy) and I prefer them with tzatziki. Mmmm. I usually make a batch on Sunday and then bring that to work all week, they're pretty decent cold. It's a fast recipe if you've got a good food processor. Also Oikos has a cucumber dill dip you can buy that's really pretty good.

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Oh, I am going to make those falafel kabobs - and the lemon dill dip is vegan!  Yay!  I have a huge jar of tahini in my fridge because I can't find it in smaller containers, so I like finding a recipe that uses a lot of it. 

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Manuka honey is a great sweetener as well. It's pricey and a bit stronger tasting than Agave, but pretty tasty. I'm also an omnivore; so these may not be up your alley, but are go-tos for spring and summer here; maybe with a few subs like soy cheese they could work for you?

Marinated Corn Salad

Shoe peg corn

Chopped/diced tomato

Chopped/diced cucumber

Chopped/diced red onion

Ranch dressing

Mix and let marinate in the fridge. It's better the longer it marinates.

Tomato Tart (this is good with the addition of sliced onion and can be made without the pie crust)

Roll out one refrigerated pie crust into pie pan.

Coat bottom lightly with Dijon.

Placed sliced tomatoes brushed lightly with olive oil, sprinkle shredded cheese to taste (recipe calls for mozzarella; I use a mix of it and cheddar) and top with chopped fresh basil.

Repeat layers until pie pan is full.

Bake at 350/30 or until done to your liking.

ETA, just remembered reading about a vegan chocolate mousse recipe some one posted on FB. Searched for it, and came across this link. Sounds similar, and I'd like to try it:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-11379/the-best-vegan-chocolate-mousse-youll-ever-put-in-your-mouth.html

Edited by NeonJungle
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I think most of the people posting in this thread eat dairy, since a lot of the recipes posted contain dairy.

That tomato tart sounds delicious, but I'm going to wait for tomato season to make it so I have fresh-from-the-garden tomatoes!  I have made the avocado mousse before - it was good but it was really hard to get my head to be OK with the idea that I was eating a dessert made from pureed avocado. 

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Ok, so I will join in.  One of my signature dishes is called "Cowboy Caviar" - I get requested to make it anytime there is a gathering.  Food is my business, so I have a website devoted to it, but I think it would be in bad taste to link to my website, so let me just copy and paste:

Cowboy Caviar
8 servings (approximately 1/2 cup, or more, per serving)

20 minutes prep
60 minutes start to finish

1 (15.5 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15.5 oz) can white and yellow corn, drained and rinsed
3 Roma tomatoes, diced (can use canned if you HAVE to)
1/2 medium sweet onion, chopped
1/4 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1/4 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped pickled jalapeno peppers
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 cup light tasting olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3/4 cup chopped cilantro

Mix beans, tomatoes, corn, onion, red and green bell peppers, and jalapeno peppers in a large bowl. Season with garlic salt and Italian seasoning. Add oil, red wine vinegar and cilantro; toss to coat. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or more, or until ready to serve.  Great with blue corn chips.

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Oh, I think this will be my favorite off-topic thread - I am vegan and love to cook and bake!  My current go-to meal for when I'm in a  hurry is this quick chana masala:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Channa-Masala-Chickpea-Curry/Detail.aspx?event8=1&prop24=SR_Title&e11=chana%20masala&e8=Quick%20Search&event10=1&e7=Home%20Page&soid=sr_results_p1i6

I use a can of diced tomatoes instead of fresh because it's still winter here and the "fresh" tomatoes in our stores taste like styrofoam right now, and I usually sprinkle in some red pepper flakes to give it some heat (I'm new to Indian cooking so I am not sure what the proper spice is to make it hot).  I also usually saute all of the onion instead of adding half to the puree.

Super easy, healthy, filling, and delicious!

chana masala is my favorite dish! To make that more like the 'real' thing I'd swap the curry powder for garam masala which is relatively common these days.

Fellow East Indian person here, whose favorite dish (or one of) is chana masala.  While Garam Masala can be used, for a spicier kick, I use green chilies.  And to save on the tomato/flour/ginger/garlic paste..I just use ginger garlic paste; get  rid of the flour, and just grind the green chilies (one doesn't need to go to an Indian store anymore to buy them)--the really small ones, those are spicier, onions, ginger/garlic paste, and your curry powder. I don't use curry powder. just the individual spices that my mom used/still uses--turmeric, salt, red chile powder, paprika, coriander powder.

  • Heat the oil
  • add cumin seeds.
  • Add the paste you made when the seeds are a golden brown and saute until the gravy and oil split.
  • Add the chick peas and about 1/4 cup of hot water to make the gravy. I usually also add about 1 TB of tomato paste so your gravy doesn't turn watery, but remains thick.
  • Cook for about 10 minutes and then garnish with cilantro!

I sometimes add a dash of lemon juice and also garnish with raw onions.

ETA: D'OH! Forgot to add that for one can of chick peas, you only need about 2-3 TB of the ginger/garlic paste. Sorry I can't be more specific, but my mom and now me, just eyeball it. Depending how garlicy you want it! But at least 2 TB.

Edited by GHScorpiosRule
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I'm a mushroom fiend, so here are a couple of the quick recipes I use that feature mushrooms and don't include meat.

I got this one off Previously writer Stephanie's blog: stuffed portobellos
We always eat it with garlic bread, usually just the kind you can buy at the store and heat in the oven. To make this quick, I use pre-washed fresh spinach and nuke it for two minutes instead of blanching it.

This one is super fast: mushroom parmesan

And, since my husband calls me a hobbit because of my love of mushrooms, it's only fitting I got one of my recipes off a Tolkien video game fan site: mushroom pie
I use pre-made pie crust to make this one fast, and generally the amounts I use are:

  • 1 bunch of green onions
  • 1 pound of mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
Edited by Gilmel
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What's a good natural sweetener to use? I use honey, brown sugar, maple syrup. Are there others?

Love the posted recipes. :-)

I like stevia, but I like the kind that is actually just dried and powdered stevia leaves. It's a bit pricey but a little goes a long way. I also occasionally use raw local honey in the hopes that it will help my allergies.

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Ok, so I will join in.  One of my signature dishes is called "Cowboy Caviar" - I get requested to make it anytime there is a gathering.  Food is my business, so I have a website devoted to it, but I think it would be in bad taste to link to my website, so let me just copy and paste:

Cowboy Caviar

8 servings (approximately 1/2 cup, or more, per serving)

This looks delicious!  Another recipe I'm going to definitely try.  I would love to see your food-focused website - if you don't feel it is appropriate to post it in the thread, would you be willing to PM it to me?

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Well... a thread after my own heart. 

This is what I'm having for dinner tonight - Oh She Glows 15 Minute Creamy Avocado Pasta!

I make this on the regular -  Enchilada Casserole. I make it a bit easier on myself by using a can of green enchilada sauce from the grocery store and regular cheddar cheese (non-vegan). It's so good though. Seriously.

I also make Quick Burgers! once a week. These are ridiculously delicious with some BBQ sauce. 

Another quick one is Happy Herbivore Cheater Pad Thai. I buy the giant bags of frozen stir-fry vegetables from Costco and drop a cup or two into the rice noodles for the last few minutes. The longest part of this recipes is waiting for the water to boil! 

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I'm on the look out for vegetarian meals that don't take hours of prep and don't involve eggplant. :)

Here's one that I learned from me Mum. There is no recipe online, or none that I've seen and can be made in two ways: With leftover basmati rice or uncooked basmati rice:

Uncooked (in two parts):

  1. 1 cup raw uncooked basmati rice
  2. 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  3. 2 green chilis
  4. 3 or 4 curry leaves
  5. 1 cup frozen (thawed) or fresh sweet peas
  6. 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  7. 2 tsp. salt
  8. 1 T. canola cooking oil
  9. 2 tsp. mustard seeds

Part One:

  • Wash rice thoroughly and then soak for about 15 minutes with 2 cups of water. Set aside.
  • Heat oil over on low to medium setting. When oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and cook for about a couple of minutes.
  • Add curry leaves, onions, green chilies, and remaining spices; sauté until onions are golden in color. add in peas and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Add sautéed onions and peas to rice, mix thoroughly and cook, covered on medium heat for about 7 minutes. 
  • Rice is done when you little "holes" appear.

I normally add a wee bit extra water when cooking for the first time, so as not to burn the rice. Takes 10 minutes tops.

To make this recipe with leftover rice, Follow steps for Part one, and when onions and peas have been sautéed for about five minutes, just add the rice, mix thoroughly and until rice is a light yellow in color.

Voila! You're set!

You can have this as a stand alone or mix in some coriander chutney or any other chutney, actually or yogurt. I would also recommend getting some papadam (lentil crackers) which you can nuke in your microwave for about 45 seconds.

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I make this on the regular -  Enchilada Casserole. I make it a bit easier on myself by using a can of green enchilada sauce from the grocery store and regular cheddar cheese (non-vegan). It's so good though. Seriously.

I just printed this one off To make after the next time I hit the grocery store! 

I know I say I'm going to make all of these recipes and I bet you all think I'm kidding, but as I type this I'm eating the falafel with Tzatziki sauce (I used a vegan yogurt made from coconut milk) that Lisin posted above.  YUMMY!!!!!

I'm going to print off that pad thai recipe as well.  That also looks wonderful!

Edited by RescueMom
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I just printed this one off To make after the next time I hit the grocery store! 

I know I say I'm going to make all of these recipes and I bet you all think I'm kidding, but as I type this I'm eating the falafel with Tzatziki sauce (I used a vegan yogurt made from coconut milk) that Lisin posted above.  YUMMY!!!!!

I'm going to print off that pad thai recipe as well.  That also looks wonderful!

RescueMom, this freezes pretty well, too! Just make sure you leave the pasta underdone and let it cool completely on the counter. Put a layer of saran wrap and a layer of foil to seal it all up and freeze. It's so nice to make ahead (when peppers are on sale!) and then keep an extra in the freezer. I just pull it out of the freezer in the morning before work and stick it in the sink. It's defrosted enough to bake when I get home. 

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Since changing my lifestyle that included not smoking, eating organic foods and getting a lot more exercise (used to be a bookworm, lol) I've done a lot of research into nutrition, organics, paleo etc... A few of things I found out that I will share:

1. Canola oil is not a healthy oil. It is from the rapeseed which was created in a lab as in GMO. I have opted for coconut oil, certified organic olive oil, avocado oil and other organic and cold pressed oils like sunflower and sesame. 

Another great oil to use is Ghee, clarified butter. It can sit on your counter for months without in depletion of quality. The best butter to use is from grass-fed cows. To make Ghee, simply put a pound in a proper sized pot, turn fire to lowest setting and let it melt. Skim off foam and let it continue to cook until only brown scraps  remain and butter is clear. Pour into jar and let it sit on counter it sit on counter. Refrigeration is not needed. Same with coconut oil.

2. I love chocolate but the caffeine is a no-no for me because I overdid it earlier in life. However, carob is the finest substitute ever! The only difference is carob is naturally sweet so you have to use less sugar when baking. I think the ratio is to take out two tablespoons of sugar per cup but please Google that. I am not sure right now. And it depends on your particular taste. One cake I spent a lot of time on only to forget this rule was "fixed" by adding strong black coffee (decaf for me) and brushing a lot of it all over the cake. The result was stunning and delicious and super moist. It comes in powder and chips.

3. Organic products have a produce number beginning with 9 and it is usually four digits. Some items, according to trusted sources, are okay to consume that have been produced conventionally like bananas and avocados. Those product number begin with 4 and are usually four digits.

4. If you garden be careful which types of seeds/plants you use. Same with soil nutrients.

5. Corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup are horrible for the body. It is better to use sugar and limit consumption.

Here is one of my favorite recipes that has been modified to make it vegetarian:
 

Okra, Sausage and Tomatoes 

Note: You can easily use frozen or vegetables in cans as a substitute. In fact, although there is a difference in flavors and intensity, you will love them both equally. I use organic in both products...

 

  • 6 medium to large tomatoes
  • 1 package of frozen okra (chopped)
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 3 cloves peeled garlic
  • 1/2 medium brown onion
  • 1 small can tomato paste
  • 1 package of organic soy sausage of your choice
  • Pam
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Boiling water
  • Pepper, a little salt or use Slap Ya Mama Louisiana Seasoning or Andy Roo's That Stuff with No Salt

Optional:

  • 1 can or package of corn (not cream style)

Wash all your ingredients.
Use an appropriate sized skillet whether it be cast iron (my favorite) or stainless. Spray with Pam and then put in the three tablespoons of oil. Do not apply heat just yet. Wait until all your veggies are added.
Chop your tomatoes and add to the skillet.
Chop or slice the garlic, depending on your preference.
Chop onion.
Slice and then cut bell pepper into preferred sized pieces.
Along with okra, add these ingredients to the skillet and turn heat on medium.
While waiting, slice sausage into bite sized pieces. Set aside.
When the veggies begin to sizzle, start stirring with wooden spoon. Pay close attention to prevent sticking.
If you want corn ( a very good extra ingredient to add) put it in now.
Add sausage when the onions have softened.
Continue stirring until the sausage is browned.
Add the tomato paste.
Add enough water to a level that is near top of skillet.
Add seasoning to taste. It will not be necessary to add too much salt. The tomatoes and sausage are well seasoned and contain enough sodium to get away with no extra salt.
Cook until sauce is thick and not runny.
Serve this dish over hot rice. (see earlier recipe on Cooking Perfect Rice).

How to Cook Perfect Rice:

Pour some rice into a bowl. Measuring is not necessary but you can if you need a specific amount. Wash a few times until water is clear. Drain. Put rice into pot. Add 1 inch of water. Add salt to taste or none. Make sure rice is distributed evenly in pot. To measure an inch, place index finger into pot having it barely touching the surface of the rice. You should use the tip of the finger as the marker and not your fingernail.

Boil the rice until most of the water has cooked out and only large bubbles are forming. Immediately cover with a proper lid and turn the fire down to the lowest setting. Allow the rice to cook and steam until it is done. Do not stir. It is okay to occasionally check it by raising the top.

You can cook rice like this in any sized pot. I've made it in a huge soup pot to serve 30 to 50 people.

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Avocado Hummus

I made this yesterday, and bought more white beans today to make it again.

I think it could use a little more "kick," though. Any spice suggestions other than just upping the amount of cayenne?

 

Also: I was given Eat Your Vegetables for Christmas last year, and have been really enjoying a lot of the recipes (though they're not all necessarily quick) as well as some of the other tips. Recommended.

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I made this yesterday, and bought more white beans today to make it again.

I think it could use a little more "kick," though. Any spice suggestions other than just upping the amount of cayenne?

I think it would be delicious to add a little chopped fresh jalapeno.  I don't like just upping the cayenne either - I think it makes things bitter if you add too much.

One thing about this recipe - it is really important to use enough salt.  I tend to skimp a little on salt most of the time, but don't in this one.

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Just for the record, I am not vegetarian or vegan, what you could call what I do is more JERFing (just eat real food), but I tend to concentrate on veggies, only because I like them so much.  So following this thread is a natural for me. 

Kicking up meals with veggies can be a delicate matter for sure, especially when you like things hot and spicy. 

There is a spice I get from Sam's, Tone's Garlic and Herb seasoning.  Oh my, what a way to kick up foods to add zest and not just heat.  There is a bite to this seasoning, and what is wonderful is that it wont give you garlic breath, don't know how they do that, but it works.  I think it would work nicely with the Avocado Hummus.

If you do dairy, I have a FABULOUS blue cheese dip I call EVIL (it's that good), it is always in my fridge, and now that my daughter is hooked, it has to be made twice a week.  HA!

Let me know if you want me to share.

Hey Dave, we get enough recipes together, we could come up with a PTV Cookbook for fundraising.  I have written 5+ books on the subject of cooking, so I could help.

Oh and BTW, my fave hummus recipe is a can of chick peas, juice of one lemon, 1/4 cup olive oil, three cloves of garlic and season, put all in a Magic Bullet and spin, YUM!

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I made this yesterday, and bought more white beans today to make it again.

I think it could use a little more "kick," though. Any spice suggestions other than just upping the amount of cayenne?

What about some raw garlic grated in? That should give it a kick and add some nice flavor. I'd start small and go up obviously but I bet it could handle a clove. 

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I just made this for lunch with some garlic (because I had that and not any jalapeno or Tone's Garlic and Herb). Ended up just throwing in a thinly sliced small clove with everything else. It helped to give it a little more body without really any heat; I might also try jalapeno next time.

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No ethalfrida, I sure don't, in any of my hummus that I make. Personally, I don't like the taste of tahini, so I leave it out. BTW, I should have mentioned that I drain and rinse the chick peas.

Hummus is one of those things that is so versatile ... You can add almost anything and it's still good.

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If you do dairy, I have a FABULOUS blue cheese dip I call EVIL (it's that good), it is always in my fridge, and now that my daughter is hooked, it has to be made twice a week.  HA!

Let me know if you want me to share.

Hey Dave, we get enough recipes together, we could come up with a PTV Cookbook for fundraising.  I have written 5+ books on the subject of cooking, so I could help.

Oh and BTW, my fave hummus recipe is a can of chick peas, juice of one lemon, 1/4 cup olive oil, three cloves of garlic and season, put all in a Magic Bullet and spin, YUM!

I love blue cheese! What's the recipe?

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Coming up: Asparagus and Artichoke Sauté with Toasted Bread Crumbs.  But first, let me recommend the cookbook whence it came: Deborah Madison's Local Flavors: Cooking and Eating From America's Farmers' Markets.  It is not strictly vegetarian, but since it focuses on items found in most farmers' markets, it is heavily vegetarian.  I'm an omnivore for whom veggies are generally a (much-loved) side dish, and I like this book because it's important to me to supplement the staples I grow in my garden with local, seasonal produce from independent, sustainable farms ... but some of the stuff I grab because it looks or smells so good I don't actually know what to do with when I get home.  This cookbook is my go-to in such scenarios; I just look the ingredient up in the index and inevitably find several delicious recipes using that plus other ingredients in season at the same time.

Now, onto the recipe (when cooking for one or two, I cut this in half):

4 medium artichokes, trimmed and quartered
1 pound asparagus, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1/2 pound mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 bunch scallions, whites plus an inch of the greens, chopped
2 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 cup parsley leaves
2 garlic cloves
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
1/4 cup olive oil (I use less)
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup stock (or water per the recipe, but I've always used my homemade stock)
freshly grated parmesan cheese
(S&P to taste)

Simmer the artichoke quarters in 1 quart water with 2 tsp salt until tender-firm, about 6 minutes.  Remove and slice them thinly.  Cut up the rest of the vegetables as described above.  Chop the parsley, garlic and lemon zest together and set aside.

Brown the bread crumbs in 1 T of the oil in a small skillet, then set aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a wide nonstick skillet.  Add the artichokes, asparagus and zucchini.  Sauté over moderately high heat until they start to brown, then add the scallions and mushrooms.  Sauté 5 minutes more, then season to taste.

Add the wine.  Let it reduce by about half, then add the stock and simmer for a few more minutes (or until the veggies are cookied to your liking). 

Toss in the parsley/garlic/lemon zest mixture and bread crumbs, then transfer onto a serving plate.  Top with a light dusting of grated parmesan cheese.

Edited by Bastet
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Little late with posting the recipe, but here you go.  As a note, I use Tones Garlic and Herb Seasoning in this.  I think this is what makes this whole dip evil.  You can make it with just regular garlic powder, but it never tastes the same, still good, but not evil good.

Blue Cheese Dressing
8 servings (approximately 2 oz per serving)

5 minutes prep
5 minutes start to finish

1 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp dehydrated minced onion
1 tbsp Tones Garlic & Herb Seasoning (or plain garlic powder)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
4-5 oz blue cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp red wine vinegar

Combine all ingredients and stir well.  Best if you let it set for about an hour for flavors to meld.

Enjoy!

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