Monday, March 24, 2014

Black Bean and Chicken-Free Enchiladas

My local grocery store has started carrying Beyond Meat chicken strips. I decided last night that I would use this recipe from Epicurean Vegan. We really liked the Beyond Meat strips, the flavor and texture is really great, I'll be buying these again. I cubed the strips to make the enchiladas easier to eat.  I used cheddar instead of pepper-jack, added black olives and garnished with shredded lettuce, avocado, scallions and pickled jalapenos. These were delicious and I'm sure we'll make them again. I think they would be equally delicious with a red enchilada sauce.
  • 1 package (9-oz) Beyond meat vegan chicken strips, defrosted 
  • 1 (15-oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  •  1 can Rotel (tomatoes with diced green chilies), drained
  •  1 16-oz jar green enchilada sauce (salsa verde)
  •  1 cup Tofutti sour cream
  •  4-oz Tofutti cream cheese
  •  1/4 cup unsweet almond milk
  •  1/2 cup vegan cheddar shreds (I used Daiya)
  •  Garnish: shredded lettuce, avocado cubes, sliced scallions, pickled jalapenos
  •  6 flour (soft-taco size) tortillas (I had extra filling left over but only had room for 6 enchiladas in my dish)

Preheat oven to 375. In a large bowl whisk together the sour cream, cream cheese, cheese and milk.

Stir in the Rotel, black beans and chicken strips.

Scoop the chicken mixture evenly (I used a 1/2 cup scoop for each one) into 6  flour tortillas and roll up. To roll turn in the sides slightly the turn in the bottom and roll.

Cover the bottom of your dish with a layer of salsa verde. Place enchiladas seam side down into a 7×11 baking dish.

Cover with the salsa verde.

Top with sliced black olives.

Cover with foil and bake for 35-40 minutes. (Make sure the foil isn’t touching the tortillas too much, because it will stick to them). Enjoy with garnishes of your choice!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Chicken Chili Stew

I made this stew last week during our last (and I do hope it's the last) cold spell. I am certain Spring is here in Central Florida, the azaleas are in full bloom, the dog woods are leafing and starting to bloom and the birds are singing the "I know it's Spring time song".  I know that many of you are still experiencing cold weather, this will warm you up from the inside out. Delicious flavors and a little heat makes this a make-again.
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 small jalapeno, seeds removed and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 4 cups no-chicken broth
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 2 cups salsa verde, store bought
  • 1 package (I actually made my own) chicken flavor seitan
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  •  1 avocado, diced, for garnish
  • Sour cream, vegan of course, for garnish

Heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, and jalapeno and sauté until soft, about 4 minutes. Add chili powder and season with salt.

Stir in the no-chicken broth, sweet potato, and salsa verde, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sweet potato is just tender, about 10-12 minutes.

Stir in the seitan and beans. Reduce heat to moderately low and simmer, covered, 10 minutes. 

Stir in cilantro at the end of cooking.

Ladle into soup bowls and top with some diced avocado and a dollop of sour cream.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Southern Collard Greens

I grew up a Southern girl and have been eating collard greens, turnip greens and mustard greens as far back as I can remember. This recipe is modified from several but mostly one I found on the trusty FoodNetwork. Before we went vegan I'd cook my greens with ham hocks to aid in the flavor so I was on the hunt for a dish that didn't rely on animal products but plant products for added flavor. These were delicious, I also added 4 turnips that were in the frig near the end of the cooking time.
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon vegan margarine
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 pound collard greens, chopped
  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 4 turnips, peeled and diced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a large pot over medium heat, heat oil and butter. Saute the onions until slightly softened, about 2 minutes.
Add the red pepper flakes and garlic, cook another minute. 
Add collard greens and cook another minute. 
Add the vegetable stock, cover and bring to a simmer. Cook about 20  minutes and then add the turnips. Continue cooking until greens and turnips are tender, about 20 additional minutes. 
Add salt and pepper to taste.
We ate these with a baked sweet potato and Gardein's Turkey Cutlets. Enjoy!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Hot and Sour Soup

More soup to stay warm, I can't believe the weather teased us with near 80 temps and then BAM, back to coldness. I know I shouldn't compain because I am in Florida and so many people in the Northern U.S. are truly struggling with dangerously cold temps. But dang.. I live in Florida.. come on already, be spring. Ok, enough of my rant, I love Hot and Sour Soup and all the restaurants I know use egg (and sometimes meat) in their versions. I found this in an old Cooking Light magazine (original recipe here) and made a few changes as well as making it vegan. Oh my gosh, can you say delicious!!!!
  • 1 (14-ounce) package firm water-packed tofu, drained
  • 4 cups no-chicken chicken broth  
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Bragg's (liquid aminos)
  • 1 tablespoon peeled fresh ginger,  finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 ounces baby bella mushrooms, sliced  
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup canned sliced bamboo shoots, drained and cut into julienne strips
  • 1/2 cup thinly diagonally sliced green onion tops

Place tofu on several layers of paper towels. Cover tofu with several more layers of paper towels; top with a cast-iron skillet or other heavy pan. Let stand 30 minutes. Discard paper towels. Cut tofu into 1-inch cubes.

To a large soup pot add broth and next 6 ingredients (through garlic); bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

Combine remaining 1/4 cup water and cornstarch in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth.

Stir cornstarch mixture, tofu, mushrooms and bamboo shoots into broth mixture; bring to a boil.

 Cook 3-4 minute, stirring occasionally; remove from heat.

Sprinkle with green onions. I also like to buy the crispy noodles in the Asian section of the market for garnish.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Apple Crisp

We don't eat a lot of sweets. That's why you don't see a lot of recipes blogged here and most of the sweets I cook today are from other vegan bloggers that have done all the hard work, so I can't repost those. This crisp is a recipe I found on the FoodNetwork from Alex Guarnaschelli -- I made it vegan which was very easy since the butter was the only animal product in the dish. I also used 1/2 the amount of apples but the full amount of topping. Here's my version:
  • About 3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 stick Earth Balance, cut into cubes, plus 1 tablespoon for baking dish
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put the apples on a flat surface. Cut the cheeks from the apple, to remove the core. Cut into fairly thin, but not too thin, slices. 
Put them in a bowl and add the lemon zest and juice and the orange zest and juice. Toss to coat the apples, then add the molasses, 1/2 teaspoon salt, the cinnamon, ginger, and the nutmeg. Toss to blend.

In another bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt. Add the butter to the bowl and break it up with your fingers integrating the flour with the butter. 

Butter the bottom and sides of a square baking dish (I used a 9x9) with the remaining tablespoon of butter. 
Add the apples.

Top apples with the butter-flour mixture. 
Put the dish in the center of the oven and bake until the apples are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife. The topping should be golden brown as well, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool a few minutes before serving.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Italian Vegetable Soup

We're still getting great veggies from the CSA and are trying ways to use them up. Here is another soup that will help you clean out the frig. It's very flavorful and filling and you can add or subtract based on what you have on hand.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 large carrots, diced
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 3 large stalks celery, diced
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup oil-cured sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon smoky paprika
  • 1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and then sliced
  • 1 bunch rainbow chard, chopped
  • 1 small fennel bulb, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add onion and garlic and saute until golden.

Add the carrots, potatoes, celery, fennel and broth.

Add all of the tomato products, zucchini, chard and paprika. Simmer about 20 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

Stir in the chard and cook about 10 minutes. Add parsley just before serving. If the soup gets too thick add  a small amount of water.