Saturday, September 27, 2008

Cheezy Cauliflower and Portobello Mushroom Steaks

I have a really good recipe for "cheese sauce" that I recently used in a batch of enchiladas. It gave me the idea for how to use the head of cauliflower I bought at the grocery store. To start, I chopped the cauliflower into bite-size pieces and spread them in a 9x13 baking dish. For the sauce, mix thoroughly 1/2 cup flour (I used spelt), 1/2 cup nutritional yeast, 1 teaspoon salt (I eliminated this and the flavor was still great), 1 teaspoon garlic powder, and 2 cups of water. In a medium saucepan, heat on medium heat until bubbly and thick. Remove from heat and add 1 teaspoon mustard and 4 Tablespoons margarine (I used Earth Balance Buttery Spread). When it was all mixed together, I poured it over the cauliflower in the baking dish. I then mixed 1/2 cup bread crumbs, a few shakes of sesame Parmesan cheese, and a tablespoon of Earth Balance. After mixing these three ingredients together, I sprinkled it on top of the cauliflower and baked it for about 35 minutes at 350. John washed and cut the stem off the portobello mushrooms, then brushed them with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sliced fresh garlic on top. We added these to the oven and baked along with the cauliflower.

Chickpea and Veggie Salad

John and I started with the idea of a salad on a bed of chickpeas bit it quickly turned into a stir fry. First, we sauteed garlic in a little olive oil and added basil, oregano, and salt and pepper. We added a can of organic chickpeas and cooked them until soft and slightly browned. Then, we added a little of almost every veggie we had in the fridge including red onion, asparagus, green beans, red bell pepper, and tomato. John sliced a perfectly ripe avocado for on top and, on the side, we boiled a few ears of corn on the cob. It was a really tasty meal, excellent leftovers, and left a little room for Coconut Bliss later in the evening!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Quinoa and Chickpeas with Portobello Mushrooms

I haven't posted for a while because we have been out of town quite a bit and eating out even more! This weekend we went to Portland for a concert and had dinner at a restaurant called Nutshell. It was tapas style, all vegetarian, and all but 2 options vegan. The menu consisted of all whole foods, nothing processed (no tofu, seitan, etc). It reminded me of my original goal in becoming a vegan, to avoid a diet based on soy products. Lately, soy has been in just about everything I have eaten or cooked, sometimes multiple things in one meal.
Tonight's dinner was soy free, and full of many random (delicious) flavors.
My birthday was a few weeks ago and a lady I work with gave me a beautiful box of veggies and fruits from her garden. I boiled the green beans and two tablespoons dill for about 5 minutes. They were very thick and hearty beans so they didn't get overly soft in that time. Normally I would only cook thin beans for 3-4 minutes.
I have been slightly obsessed with artichoke hearts lately! I have made them following this recipe in the past (minus the snowpeas). It turns out awesome every time. And finally, I rinsed a cup of quinoa (really important! It takes a bitter layer off) and sautéed it in a tablespoon of Earth Balance buttery spread, until slightly browned. Add two cups of water and simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender (not mushy, sticky, or dry). To this, I added a can of garbanzo beans and a splash of olive oil and lemon. To top the grains, I sautéed a sliced portobello mushroom in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and lots of pepper.
It was a very satisfying, wholesome meal!