Friday, May 8, 2015

Mexican Taco Casserole

I wanted to make this and have the post ready for Cinco de Mayo, but it didn't happen. Sorry.  But you are going to want to add this to your dinner rotation. It's pretty quick, simple and delivers on flavor. I added a half of a package of Chorizo because it was in the frig, but it you don't have it just stick with the ground beefless crumbles. The leftovers reheat well in the microwave or in a small casserole. This easily makes 10 servings. You can cut the recipe in half if needed.

  • 1 package Gardein Beefless Ground
  • 1/2 package Tofurky chorizo style crumbles
  • 1 can Rotel tomatoes, divided
  • 2 cans of vegetarian re-fried beans
  • 1 teaspoon Chipotle Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 medium sweet yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3-4 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup black olives, sliced
  • 1-1/2 cup Daiya cheddar cheese shreds
  • 8 6" flour tortillas, chopped into bite sized pieces

Preheat oven to 400 and spray the inside of a 9x13 casserole. Then, in a large skillet cook the onion 5-6 minutes until soft.

Add the beefless ground, chorizo and stir well. Add the chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder and 1/2 the can of  Rotel tomatoes to the beef and onion mixture and stir well.

In a separate medium pan add the re-fried beans and sour cream. Stir well and cook over medium heat until heated all the way through.

Start layering the ingredients in your casserole dish: 1/2 of the beans;

then 1/2 of your meat mixture;

then add 1/2 of the tortillas;

top with and 1/2 of your cheese.

Repeat these layers.

Top the casserole with the olives, green onions and the remainder of the Rotel tomatoes.

Bake in the 400° oven for about 20-25 minutes or until your cheese is melted and the casserole is bubbling a little bit.

Serve with sour cream and sliced pickled jalapenos.
Enjoy!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Chick'n Tacos

We decided to try some different types of tacos, you know, not your normal beef taco. I've been playing around with this recipe for the last week and I'm here to tell ya' it's delicious. It's kind of different, but it's amazing, we've been eating variations of this for the last two weeks and this is what I've settled on.


  • Tartar Sauce (recipe below)
  • 1 package Gardein Chick'n strips
  • Shredded cabbage mixed with some chopped cilantro
  • Sliced Avocado
  • Mango Datil Pepper Jelly (use what ever hot & sweet jelly or sauce you have)
  • Flour Tortillas (I used burrito size, it's all I had, but prefer the smaller taco size)

Tartar Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons dill relish
  • 1/2 cup Just Mayo
  • 1/2 of a large shallot, minced
  • juice from 1/2 of  a lime
  • a couple of dashes hot sauce
  • kosher salt to taste
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.

Tacos

Cook chick'n strips in a non-stick skillet until brown on both sides.
While the chick'n is cooking shred, cut, slice, etc (prep) all other ingredients


Heat the flour tortilla in the microwave for about 12-13 seconds. Place on a flat surface.

Add a generous smear of  tartar sauce.

Top with 3 chick'n strips (or two if using smaller tortillas)

Cover with a generous amount of cabbage and cilantro mixture.

Add sliced avocado

Cover with your hot and sweet jelly (I had homemade Mango Datil Pepper Jelly)

If using larger tortillas, roll it up like a burrito to keep all of the yumminess on the inside. If you have small taco sized tortillas, just fold in half. There is no way to get a good picture of this.

Enjoy! No good pic here either.

I served these with chips and salsa.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Taco Salad

I made the Ranch Dressing (my last post) to use on my "clean out the frig" Taco Salad. I didn't get a pic of the ingredients that went into this salad because I wasn't sure what was going in. I usually clean out the frig on Saturday morning. I knew there was some  good things in there that could be turned into this salad:  taco meat mixed with refried black beans, an avocado, an ear of corn that had been grilled, etc. Here is what those humble leftovers transformed into - Taco Salad 
  • Chopped Romaine for two large salads
  • Taco meat mixed with refried black beans
  • corn sliced off the cob (1/2 ear per salad)
  • 1 avocado, chopped (1/2 per salad)
  • 1 tomato, chopped (1/2 per salad)
  • 10 black olives, halved (5 olives per salad)
  • Daiya cheddar shreds
  • Tostido chips for crunch
  • Salsa
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Chia Seeds, Hemp Seeds, etc
Put lettuce on the plates:

Top with taco meat/refried bean combo

Add corn that has been cut off the cob

Add the chopped avocado

Next comes the chopped tomato

Then the black olives

I top all of this Daiya shreds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, salsa and the ranch dressing. (I bet pickled jalapeno slices would have been a good addition.) Use your imagination. Finally add some crunch by using some type of tortilla chips or corn chips.
Enjoy!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Ranch Dressing

I wanted to make a vegan Ranch Dressing to go over a thrown together Taco Salad (check back this week for that recipe). I scoured the web and most of the recipes I found used a silken tofu for the base. I'm sure they are delicious, but I didn't have any and just kept looking around. I based this recipe on a few that used vegan mayo. Make this a hour or so in advance so it can sit in the frig and get all flavorful.
  • 1 cup Just Mayo
  • 1/2 cup SoyMilk
  • 2 tablespoons Tofutti Sour Cream
  • 1 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons poultry seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

In a medium sized bowl mix together all ingredients. Stir really well.

Pour into mason jar and refrigerate until ready to use. Enjoy!
I'll be posting a "Clean out the Frig Taco Salad" later this week that I poured this dressing all over.
UMmmmmmm

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Chick'n Enchilada Pasta

Don't you love a dish that taste amazing and cooks in only one pot! This is that dish. Ingredients go in at slightly different times and in under 30 minutes you have one amazing dinner and 1 dirty pot. And yes, under 30 minutes. So get all your ingredients out in advance and get ready for this tasty dish.
  • 1 (10 ounce) Ro-tel diced tomatoes and green chilis, not drained
  • 1 (10 ounce) mild red enchilada sauce (or homemadea0
  • 2 cups pasta (I used a shell shape)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup whole kernel corn (if using frozen you don't have to thaw it first)
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 package Gardein Chick'n Strips (don't use the seasoning packet if it came with one), slightly thawed and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 package low-sodium taco seasoning
  • 3/4 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • Garnishes: sliced green onions, extra cheese, sour cream, cilantro, pickled jalapenos

In a large skillet over high heat, combine the Ro-tel tomatoes, enchilada sauce, pasta, and the water.

While waiting for the mixture to boil, drain and rinse the black beans, cut the bell pepper and chicken pieces into large diced pieces. As soon as the pasta mixture starts to boil add the beans, corn, pepper, taco seasoning and chick'n to the skillet.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the pasta is tender and cooked through.

Add in the cheese, stir, and add in any additional toppings. (I chopped up cilantro and some green onions).

Let sit til cheese melts. Give it one more stir.

Now add whatever garnishes you want to your plate.

Enjoy!!


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Mushroom Alfredo Penne Bake

As you know I am a fan of casseroles, soups and one-pot wonders. This hearty, vegan casserole is simply amazing. If you like mushrooms I can't stress how much you need to make this dish. This is based on a recipe I found online that used chicken broth and several dairy products. Serve with garlic bread and/or a side side an amazing meal.
  • 1 lb. whole wheat penne pasta
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 6-7 cups of florets)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth, divided
  • 3/4 cups regular soy-milk
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 24 ounces fresh, sliced mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine, divided
  • 1 block seitan, ground (you could also use a vegan ground beef product: Gardein, Beyond Meat, etc.)
  • 1 cup Daiya Swiss, shredded

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the pasta for 5 minutes - it should still be a little firm. Drain, toss with a drizzle of oil, and set aside.

While the pasta is cooking, grind the seitan in your food processor.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the cauliflower, and cook for 5 minutes until tender-crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked cauliflower to a blender with 2 cups broth, soy-milk, oil, salt, and garlic. Puree until very smooth. You might need to do this in batches.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat the 3 tablespoons butter in a very large skillet. Add the mushrooms and saute until golden brown.

Toss the cooked pasta, cauliflower sauce, and mushrooms together in a huge bowl. Add the remaining cup of broth to help the consistency stay saucy.

Transfer to a deep 9x13 baking dish.

Sprinkle with cheese and bake uncovered at 400 for 10-15 minutes. 

Serve with bread, salad and wine!
Enjoy!!