“Chicken” Guacamole Chard Wraps

I don’t usually cook with fake meat substitutes a lot but on one of my recent Chinatown dim sum lunch trips (at my favorite vegan kosher dim sum place!) I discovered this vegetarian market with tons of weird products that I’m just too curious to ignore. So my first purchase was some “chicken legs,” which I marinated and baked. But if you don’t have a Chinese vegetarian market near you, this would also work with seitan or tempeh.

“Chicken” Guacamole Chard Wraps (makes about 6 wraps servings)

For the guacamole:

  • 1 small hass avocado
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 plum tomato, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Mix everything up until you reach the right consistency

For the marinade, you’ll need:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • 1/8 tsp anise seed
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • a pinch of crushed red pepper

Brush the marinade on your “chicken” and bake or brown in a saucepan until crispy. Cut the tough spines out of your chard leaves, add a dollop of guacamole and some chicken strips, roll it up, and pierce with a skewer or toothpick. Hooray for finger food!

Red Bean Quinoa Salad


The horrible heat wave that hit the east coast finally broke today with some rain, so I could finally stand to go back into the kitchen and in front of the stove! And because I’ll use any excuse to use my pressure cooker, here’s a little salad I whipped up.

I made a big batch of red beans to last me for lunch for the rest of the week, so I only used about half in the salad. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you should get one! I’m so wary of eating canned beans (because of the whole BPA in the aluminum lining thing) but sometimes it’s so tedious to think ahead and soak the dry beans overnight. So having a pressure cooker solves that, and is one of the things I think a busy cash-strapped vegan should have (since dry beans are way cheaper too.) If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can use canned beans (Eden Foods doesn’t use BPA in their cans) or soak the beans overnight and cook in a regular saucepan for about 1 -1 1/2 hours.

This was also the first time I’ve ever cooked corn from scratch, and it was surprisingly easy. Plus you get to use words like “shuck.” You can also just use frozen or canned corn, but fresh and local is so much better!

For the beans in a pressure cooker:

  • 16 oz bag of small red kidney beans
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves crushed garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 vegetable bouillon cubes
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • sprinkle of black pepper
  • sprinkle of crushed red pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 7 cups of water
In the pot over medium heat, add the oil and sweat the onion with a sprinkle of salt until it starts to become translucent (about 4 minutes). Add the green pepper and cook another 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 2 minutes.
Add the rest of the ingredients and bring up to high pressure. Cook on high for about 30 minutes and release the pressure. Let cool uncovered for about 10 minutes. Makes about 5 cups of beans.
For the rest of the salad:
  • 2 ears of corn, husks removed and dropped in boiling water for about 4 minutes, kernels removed (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups of cooked red beans
  • 1 1/2 avocados, sliced
  • 1 tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • salt, black pepper, and red pepper to taste
Toss everything together in a bowl and refrigerate for about 20 minutes before serving. Makes about 5-6 servings.