Friday, August 29, 2014

Datil Pepper Relish

We grew Datil peppers for the first time this year. They are native to North Florida (especially the St. Augustine area). These peppers are considered to be on the same scoville heat level as the habanero. I must say they are HOT. I found this recipe online while trying to figure out something to do with such a hot pepper.  This is the BOMB. We eat it on everything. It's sweet and heat all mixed together. 

I followed the recipe exactly as it appeared on the web site below. But, I doubled everything and cooked it about 2 hours. Basically you want to reduce it by about half. I put the hot relish in clean jars, inverted the jars for about 5 minutes to make sure they would seal and then flipped them upright. Every jar sealed and is in the pantry. I did not water bath this recipe.  If you love some heat you have to make this. I also have Christmas Light peppers, these little gems are hot as hell, I'm thinking of making this same recipe with them.

This is the recipe as it appears on the guys website. I doubled it ...maybe used even more than 1 cup of the peppers.
Click this image for a larger version
The pic of ingredients for a single batch:

I doubled everything:
This is 2 pints cider vinegar, 2 pints ketchup, 6 tbsp sugar and 2 teaspoons salt coming to boil while I prepare the veggies.

This is the seeded datil peppers and the onions after they have taken a spin in the food processor. 

Process the bell peppers the same way. Add the bell peppers to the simmering sauce.

Give everything a good stir and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat and simmer uncovered, for about 2 hours until reduced by half. Stirring occasionally.

Have clean canning jars handy and kitchen towels.

Fill jars leaving a little head space. Flip the jars upside down for about 5 minutes. This helps insure that the seal.

Don't over tighten the screw on lids. After 5 minutes turn the jars right side up and let cool completely. You should hear pops as the jars seal. If a jar doesn't seal (you'll be able to push the center of the lid and it will go down and then pop back up.) put it in the frig. Otherwise these will keep for months in the pantry.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Chicken & Broccoli Rice Bowl

I ripped this recipe out of my Cooking Light March issue and made it vegan. I didn't have basil at the time so I totally omitted it. This was a flavorful dish that was quick to make and will become one of my go to's. I'm posting this over at the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck, come on over see what else is cooking. Serve with vegan spring rolls for complete satisfying meal.
  • 1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice 
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime rind
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, divided 
  • 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 package Beyone Meat Chicken Strips, cut into 1-inch pieces 
  • 2 tablespoons Bragg's liquid aminos, divided
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 cups broccoli florets 
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces 
  • 1/2 small sweet onion, chopped
  • 2/3 cup no-chicken chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons dry roasted peanuts, chopped 

Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Fluff rice. Stir in lime rind.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons canola oil and sesame oil to pan; swirl to coat. Combine chicken strips, 1 tablespoon Bragg's, garlic, ginger, and crushed red pepper in a bowl; toss to coat. Add chicken mixture to pan; cook 6 minutes or until chicken begins to brown, stirring frequently.

Remove chicken from pan. Add remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons canola oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add broccoli and bell pepper to pan; cook 3 minutes or until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally.

Combine remaining 1 tablespoon Bragg's, chicken broth, and cornstarch in a bowl.

Add chicken mixture and broth mixture to pan. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes or until sauce begins to thicken, stirring occasionally.

Spoon 1/2 cup rice mixture into each of 4 bowls; top each serving with about 1 1/2 cups chicken mixture. Sprinkle evenly with chopped peanuts.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Creamy Skillet Lasagna

You'll love this creamy, fast pasta dish. Seriously, ONE pan only. No kidding. One pan, makes clean up so easy and fast and it's truly satisfying. I'm sure most everyone has these ingredients in their pantry, substitute out what you don't have for what you do have. I found this over at Pick Fresh Foods and knew I wanted to veg-anise it.
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 package Gardein ground beef (or your favorite vegan ground beef
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 12 oz penne pasta
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 oz Daiya chive and onion cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup Daiya shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced

In a large skillet sauté onions in olive oil until soft.

Add garlic and sauté until fragrant.

Add ground beef and cook until hot.

Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and balsamic vinegar. Stir to combine with browned meat.

Add seasonings and pasta. Cover with water and gently stir to submerge noodles.

Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to a medium low. Simmer for 20 minutes or until pasta is tender.

Uncover and stir in cream cheese. Top with mozzarella cheese. With burner off, let stand for a few minutes to melt cheese.

Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve.

Serve with a side salad and/or bread and nice glass of vino! Enjoy!!!

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.