Thursday, August 21, 2014

Chicken Scaloppine with Peperonata

I ripped this recipe out of my May issue of Cooking Light and figured it would be fairly easy to make vegan and delicious. I was correct on both counts. I love Gardein products and their Chick'n Scallopini made this a breeze to whip up.
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips 
  • 1 large yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips
  • 1 cup vertically sliced yellow onion 5
  • 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (I had black garlic balsamic vinegar)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 package  Gardein chick'n scallopini
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add bell peppers; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add onion and garlic; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add tomatoes; cook 1 minute or until tomatoes wilt. Remove from heat; stir in basil, vinegar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Remove pepper mixture to a bowl and set aside.

While pepper mixture cooks, sprinkle chicken evenly with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and black pepper. Dredge in flour; shake off excess.

Melt Earth Balance in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 2 minutes on each side or until golden and done.

Serve chicken with bell pepper mixture. I sauteed zucchini and yellow squash in a little oil with lots of garlic and made Couscous as sides. UMMM good.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Baked Chimichangas

I haven't had a Chimichanga in years. I try not to eat fried food and I know they just aren't good for you. And, now that we follow a vegan diet I don't know where I'd find a vegan chimichanga - fried or otherwise. I found this recipe over at The Curry Carrot and decided to make these vegan. Good call on my part, they are delicous! I used some leftover crock-pot re-fried beans I had left over in the frig.The only thing I'd do different is bake these on a cookie sheet slightly separated so that they can get nice and crunchy all around.
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing on the tortillas
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • One 4-ounce can green chiles, drained
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 1/2 cups refried beans 
  • Tortillas (I used taco size  and only made four so I could put them in the toaster oven and not turn on the big oven. I used the leftover filling later in the week and made more.)
  • Garnishes: shredded lettuce, cheese, sour cream, salsa, pickled jalapenos, black olives, avocado, etc.

In a saute pan over medium heat, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Spray a baking pan with cooking spray; set aside. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent, about 4-5 minutes.

Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the green chiles, black beans, chili powder, cumin, and lime juice, stirring until combined.  Cook until the beans are heated through, about 3-4 minutes.

Place about 2 tablespoons of the refried beans on a tortilla.

Once heated through add about 2 tablespoons of the black bean mixture to the top of the refried beans.

Top with whatever garnishes you might want inside the chimichangas-I used a small amount of cheese on each one.  Fold in the ends of each tortilla and roll up the chimichanga.  Place each chimichanga, seam side down, into the prepared baking dish.

Spray each chimichanga with olive oil.

Bake the chimichangas until heated through and lightly browned, about 20-25 minutes or so.  *Watch your chimichangas carefully.  As oven temperatures can vary significantly, the browning time may be dependent on your oven.  Use your own judgment here.

Top each chimichanga with the garnishes of your own choosing, and enjoy.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Happy Blogiversary.....4 years

I can't believe it but four years ago yesterday I started this little blog. It's not thousands of hits a day or even in a year. But I love doing this:  cooking, posting, sharing the vegan food we love. My daughter's birthday was yesterday and the day flew by and then it dawned on me today it's been my blogiversary. Wow. I don't have a new recipe to post today. So I decided to revisit last nights birthday dinner. I made Chorizo & Sweet Potato Enchiladas 

and served them with Crock-pot Refried Beans.

And even though this was not served last night you cannot beat this carrot cake!!!! And so Happy Birthday to Anna and to Glo's Kitchen.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Lemon Bars

I found this recipe on the web and wanted to veganize it. These had a delicious tart lemon flavor. I didn't sprinkle the powdered sugar over them as a topping as they suggest. I also forgot to take a pic when I cut them. But, these are delicious and I'll definitely be making them again. You can find this recipe and many more over at the Virtual Vegan Pot Luck.
For the crust:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup (1 stick) Earth Balance margarine (vegan), softened
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar

For the filling:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 flaxseed eggs (1 flaxseed egg is 1 Tablespoon flaxmeal mixed with 3 tablespoons warm water)
  • Additional powdered sugar for topping, if desired

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a medium bowl, mix the flour, Earth Balance and powdered sugar until well combined. 

Press into an ungreased 8x8x2-in. or 9x9x2-in. baking pan, building up the edges about half an inch.

Bake the crust for 20 minutes.

Beat the filling ingredients with an electric mixer on HIGH speed for about 3 minutes or until the mixture is light and fluffy. Pour the mixture over the hot crust.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until no indentation remains when the center is lightly touched. Cool in the pan on a wire rack. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired. Cut into 1½-2-in. bars.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Unstuffed Cabbage

I remember when my Mom used to make stuffed cabbage rolls for dinner. I loved them, but they were time consuming and of course I no longer eat meat. I saw this recipe over at Laaloosh and decided it would be fast and also easy to make vegan. I had some leftover sauerkraut from our Reuben sandwiches last weekend and leftover rice from last nights stir-fry. So this was a really simple dish to make and a great way to use up some stuff in the frig. I used about a cup of leftover rice, but I'll include the directions for starting from scratch. I love the sweet and sour tastes of this dish.

  • 1 package Gardein beefless ground
  • 1 medium head of cabbage, cored and chopped (not too small but bite sized pieces - mine wasn't small enough)
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup sauerkraut
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup uncooked brown rice (I used a cup or so of leftover cooked rice)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 cup beef-less beef broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Cook rice according to package directions. Set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add cabbage and let cook for about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add in garlic and onion, and cook until just softened a bit, about 2 minutes.

Add the beefless ground. Cook until everything is warmed through.

Stir in diced tomatoes, sauerkraut, tomato paste, broth, vinegar, sugar, thyme and paprika. Lower heat to medium and let simmer for about 10 minutes.

Add in rice and cabbage and mix well to combine.

Season with additional salt and pepper as desired and let simmer another 5 minutes to heat up.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

White Bean Stew with Kielbasa & Kale

Yes, soup when it's hot outside. Sometimes I just can't help it. I love soup. I saw a beautiful bunch of kale at the store the other day and brought it home. Then I had to decide what I wanted to do with it. I had everything needed to make this quick stove top soup. Feel free to use any white beans you have (if you have time and dried beans they would be awesome.) You could also throw all the ingredients except for the kielbasa in the crockpot. I like to cook vegan sausages in a skillet to get a little brown and texture to them and just add a few slices to each bowl of soup. I even keep them separate when I store the leftovers. Just toss the sausage coins in a container/baggie and then when you reheat add them at the beginning. I find that they lose their texture if they are stored in a soupy dish. Head over to the Virtual Vegan Potluck to check out my recipe and many others.

  • 1 can great northern beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can navy beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
  • 6 cups no-chicken chicken stock
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes including the juice
  • 1 package Tofurky Spinach Pesto sausage, cut into coins or half-moon slices
  • 1/2 bunch or about 4 cups fresh kale, coarsely chopped

Sweat the onions and garlic in 1/4 cup water until tenter in a large soup pot.

Add all the other soup ingredients EXCEPT for the sausage to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, brown the sausage in a small amount of oil in a nonstick skillet.

To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and top with the browned sausage.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Crispy Chick'n Sandwiches

What's not to love about a sandwich? I mean the entire meal between two slices of a bread that is either soft, or firm, toasted or not. Ummmm - I love Gardein products and had just bought a fresh pineapple from the grocery and decided to grill the pineapple and make a sandwich for lunch. Below is how it all came together:
  • 1 package Gardein Crispy Chick'n Fillets (I only used 2 fillets)
  • 2 Pretzel Rolls (or bread/bun of your choice)
  • 1 pineapple, peeled and sliced into 1/2 thick slices, cored
  • 1 red onion, sliced (not pictured)
  • Sriracha
  • Vegenaise

Mix 2 parts Vegenaise with 1 part Sriracha-- stir well, set aside.

Heat the grill, once ready grill the pineapple slices and 2 slices of red onion (1 slice per sandwich)

 Cook chicken fillets according to package directions

Spread the mayo/sriracha mixture on each side of buns.

Add a slice of grilled pineapple.

Top with chicken fillet. (You can add another smear of sauce if you have some leftover.)

Top with grilled onion slice.

Add the top bun, and enjoy!!