Veggiesgiving, yay!

Hello all! I’m still here, alive and cooking! (sorry) Turns out I’m not so good a the blog upkeep, but these Thanksgiving dishes were just too yummy not to share, and of course I have to post something for my biggest cooking day of the year! Here are some of the highlights.

Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping (thanks Susan!)

Spelt Stuffing with Tempeh Sausage Crumbles

Green Bean Casserole (thanks to Susan again, but left out the french fried onions)

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My plate!

Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving!

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Dilled Spaghetti Alfredo

A spontaneous weeknight dish that was super satisfying and comforting. We wanted spaghetti but were at a loss for what kind of sauce to use. But thanks to the versatility of nuts, voila a delicious creamy sauce with a little herby kick!  And everyone knows about the powers of quinoa. I always opt for quinoa noodles if I have the chance, for all the added nutritional benefits.  The ingredient list is a little long, but most was all stuff I had lying around in my cupboards and which every vegetarian probably has on hand.

Vegan Dilled Spaghetti Alfredo (makes about 4 servings)

For the sauce (makes about 3 cups):

  • 1/4 cup raw walnuts
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1/4 cup dill
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 3 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp tamari soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • salt, black pepper, paprika, and a pinch of nutmeg

Process everything up until creamy.

For the pasta, you’ll need:

  • 4 oz of quinoa spaghetti
  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 green pepper, thinly sliced
  • tempeh crumbles (I know I use these in like every recipe but they’re so good!)
  • 2 plum tomatoes, deseeded and diced
  • 1/4 cup of daiya mozzarella cheese
  • olive oil
  • a splash of white wine (for deglazing)
Start by cooking the onions in some olive oil over medium heat until they start to get soft and translucent. Add the green pepper and cook another 5 minutes. Add a splash of wine to deglaze and let it cook uncovered another 2 minutes. Add the onions and peppers to the tempeh crumbles and cook another minute. Toss all the remaining ingredients together with the spaghetti and about 1/2 of the sauce (more if you like it saucier!) Warm over low heat until the cheese melts. Sprinkle some sauce on top and serve!

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.

Tempeh Dijon Stir fry

I’m back! I was hoping that my first post after my vacation in Guatemala would be inspired by some awesome dish I had while traveling, but I soon found out that the food there was nothing really to write home about. Even though I totally fell in love with the country and had an amazing time, I know now no one goes there for the food! So I was really eager to get back into my regular but yummy poor vegan diet.

I know most of my posts have tempeh, but it’s pretty much a staple in my diet, and I love it, so I’m always trying to find new things to do with it and different ways to season it. And one of my other favorite things is mustard, so this is a n0-brainer. Tempeh soaks up any flavor really well so you can do anything with it! This is adapted from a Delicious TV recipe I made a while back and absolutely love.

 

  • 1 cup loosely chopped chopped bok choy
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 8oz package of tempeh, cut into strips
  • 1 cup white mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 tsp siracha red chili paste
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • pinch of sea salt
  • olive oil spray

To make the marinade, in mixing bowl, whisk white wine, water, mustard, and garlic together.

In a nonstick pan, spray coat of olive oil. Add onion and salt and caramelize over med-low heat, covered, until it starts to brown, stirring so it doesn’t burn (about 5-7 minutes). Add red wine to deglaze the pan and cook 3 more minutes. Add mushrooms and cook another 3-5 minutes until they’re soft. Add chili paste and bok choy and cook another 3-minutes, adding water if it becomes too dry.

While the vegetables are cooking, spray coat of olive oil in another pan and brown tempeh strips on both sides (until golden). Add marinade, cover and let simmer until it starts to evaporate, spooning some of liquid over tempeh occasionally (about 5 min). Be careful not to let all the liquid evaporate so you still have some left over for the vegetables.

Add the veggies to the tempeh and mix everything together over low heat for a couple more minutes until the rest of the marinade cooks down.

Serve over brown rice or quinoa.