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Bringing Home the Bakin'

bake my cake and eat it, too

Tag Archives: vegetarian

The weather today has been nothing short of gloomy.  With harsh thunderstorms last night, the temperature today has tapered off drastically, and grey clouds have been hanging in the sky ever since.  In an attempt to bring some color to the lifeless conditions outside, I did what I do best: cook up something colorful.  This salad is so delicious, and definitely packs a substantial crunch.

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Thai Crunch Salad – Jennifer Segal of Once Upon a Chef

Ingredients

For the Thai Peanut Dressing

  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, from one lime
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2-1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1-inch square piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves

For the Salad

  • 4 cups chopped Napa cabbage or shredded coleslaw mix (I like to toss in a little shredded red cabbage for color)
  • 1 cup prepared shredded carrots
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 small English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup cooked and shelled edamame
  • 2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  1. For the dressing, combine all of the ingredients except for the cilantro in a blender and process until completely smooth. Add the cilantro and blend for a few seconds until the cilantro is finely chopped. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  2. For the salad, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and toss to combine. If serving right away, drizzle the peanut dressing over top and toss; otherwise, serve the dressing on the side so the salad doesn’t get soggy.

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Earlier this year I suffered a cooking “accident” — doesn’t sound so unexpected, being that I’m an avid cook and baker.  However, I did not slice my finger while meticulously chopping vegetables, or burn myself while taking a delicious batch of cookies out of the oven; instead, I cut my hand open while trying to separate two frozen veggie burgers.  It was pretty disastrous, but I definitely learned my lesson about handling sharp knives (so much so, that I shied away from cutting anything for several weeks…).  Now that my hand is totally healed and I’ve regained confidence in the kitchen, I’m back to chopping.  This recipe provided a great opportunity to hone my knife skills, as there is a TON of chopping.  It sort of takes a while to make, if you’re a timid chopper like myself, but prep time aside, this salad is DELICIOUS and lasts for 4-5 days in the refrigerator (totally worth it…).  I follow the recipe pretty much to the letter, however I have experimented with adding chopped fresh jalapeno, and if you like a little kick, I DEFINITELY recommend that addition.   IMG_6497 Superfood Black Bean & Quinoa Salad Recipe – Elizabeth Rider Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (1 cup dry quinoa yields about 2 cups cooked)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (*I prefer to use less, closer to 1/3 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed, grated or finely chopped
  • Juice of one lime (about 2 tablespoons) — DON’T SKIMP ON THIS
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional for heat)
  • 1 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained well
  • 1 red bell pepper, quarter inch chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 6 green onions, root removed, white and part of the greens chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 handful of cilantro, rough chopped (about 1/3 cup)

Directions: Prepare the quinoa. While the quinoa is cooking, whisk the olive oil, cumin, garlic, lime, salt and cayenne (if using) together in the bottom of a large bowl to let the flavors marry while you chop the veggies. Rinse and drain the black beans, then chop the veggies; the key is to make the peppers and onions about the same size as the beans. Add the cooked quinoa, beans and veggies to the bowl and gently fold it all together with the dressing. The quinoa can be warm, room temp, or cold when you make the dish. Regardless, I suggest letting it chill in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes to let the flavors come together. It tastes best served room temperature or chilled. 

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I suppose it’s old news at this point, but one of my favorite celebrity couples, Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, has split — or “consciously uncoupled” in the famous words of Gwyneth, herself.  Shortly after I heard the news, I began bookmarking countless GOOP recipes, and stumbled upon these Cannellini Bean and Quinoa Burgers.  Like Gwyneth’s relationship with Chris, I’ve been trying to split from meat, eating a plant-based diet whenever possible.

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These Cannellini Bean and Quinoa Burgers are a perfect “meatless monday” option — they’re easy, delicious, and totally satisfying.  I opted to serve mine with some sliced avocado on top, and I highly recommend that pairing. Enjoy!

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Cannellini Bean + Quinoa Burgers – Goop

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups (or small can) cooked cannellini beans
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/4 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • healthy handful of parsley, chopped
  • olive oil
  • salt + pepper

Instructions:

1. Place a large frying pan over medium high heat and drizzle with olive oil (about 2 tablespoons). Add shallots and cook for a minute until they begin to soften. Add garlic, fennel and cumin and cook for another minute until the herbs are aromatic and the garlic softens. Remove from heat and cool.

2. Place the beans, quinoa and breadcrumbs in a large mixing bowl. Add the parsley and cooled shallot mixture and set the pan aside but don’t clean (you’ll use this later to fry the patties). Combine everything together with your hands, mashing the beans so that the mixture turns into a paste. (If it’s feeling a little wet, add more breadcrumbs.) Season with salt and pepper.

3. When combined, form the mixture into small patties, about the size of your palm and about an inch thick.

4. Place your frying pan back on the stove over medium high heat and add a drizzle of olive oil to coat. Cook the patties in batches for about 3 minutes on each side until nice and golden brown. Remove from pan and immediately season with salt and a drizzle of lemon. Serve with lettuce, tomato, red onion, Veganaise and/or whatever else you like.

 

 

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This variation of tabbouleh incorporates complete proteins quinoa and farro, so it is not only a perfect summer side dish, but also this tabbouleh can serve as a satisfying meal for vegans and vegetarians.  I served my salad over a few romaine leaves for some added crunch!

ML Tabbouleh — Cafe ML (Bloomfield Hills, MI)

Ingredients for tabbouleh:

  • ½ cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup farro
  • 1 English cucumber, small diced
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, small diced
  • ¼ cup Spanish onion, small diced
  • ¼ cup flat leaf parsley; rinsed and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons minced chives

Directions for tabbouleh:

Bring quinoa, pinch of salt, and 1 cup to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes until quinoa is tender. Remove from heat and let covered quinoa rest for 5 minutes; fluff with fork and cool on baking tray. In a medium saucepan, cover farro with water. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes until farro is tender. Cool on baking tray.

Ingredients for lemon vinaigrette:

  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoons minced shallot

Directions for lemon vinaigrette:

For the vinaigrette, place shallot, garlic, champagne vinegar, and lemon juice in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Season vinaigrette with salt and fresh cracked black pepper. In a large bowl, combine the cool farro, quinoa, cucumber, tomato, onion, flat leaf parsley, and chive. Mix well. Season with salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Dress the salad with lemon vinaigrette to taste.

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My mom and I are constantly searching for new recipes, and coincidentally, we both sought out the same side salad last week.  I took that as a sign that it would be delicious, and I was right — this salad is not only delicious, but also it’s a beautiful, colorful addition to any plate (and it’s perfect for fall, as the colors of the salad mimic the colors of the changing fall leaves)!

Beet and Pomegranate Salad – LA Times

serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 3 to 4 medium beets
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate concentrate or molasses
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 to 3 small, dried red chile peppers, crushed
  • Coarse sea salt
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4 cup lightly flavored olive oil

Directions:

1. Cook the beets in a covered medium saucepan of boiling water until tender, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool, peel and cut into very small dice. Place in a medium bowl.

2. Add the pomegranate concentrate, lemon juice, peppers, one-eighth teaspoon sea salt, or to taste, and combine. Set aside for about 15 minutes.

3. Toss the beets with the cilantro leaves and pomegranate seeds, drizzle with olive oil and serve.

Each serving: 118 calories; 1 gram protein; 9 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 9 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat;0 cholesterol; 24 mg. sodium.

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The second night of cooking helped me to appreciate the difficulty of cooking for a large group.  There was a slight mishap (I forgot to double the recipes), so needless to say, some people had to go out to dinner and missed out on this FABULOUS meal.  Don’t worry, though, all three of these dishes will make their way into my repertoire, so they will taste them soon. Stay tuned for the rest of the week’s meals!

Vegan Cornbread – The Kind Diet, Alicia Silverstone

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sorghum or maple syrup (I like it better with sorghum)
  • 1 1/4 cups soy milk
  • 1/4 cup safflower oil
  • 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400*F. Oil a 9″X 9″ (or similar size) baking dish or 12-cup muffin tin. Combine sorghum, soy milk, and oil in a medium bowl and mix well. In another bowl, stir together the cornmeal, flour, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, and mix just until well combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cornbread or a muffin comes out clean. They will be golden brown and crazy delicious.
Cucumber and Avocado Salad – Bon Appetit

Ingredients:

  • 24 sprigs cilantro plus 1/4 cup coarsely chopped leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped peeled ginger
  • 6 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
  • 2 dried chiles de árbol
  • 2 English hothouse cucumbers (about 2 pounds total), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon (or more) kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 celery stalks, thinly sliced on a diagonal
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
  • 2 avocados, halved, pitted, sliced
  • 1/4 torn fresh basil leaves

Directions:

  • Combine cilantro sprigs, ginger, garlic, and chiles in a resealable plastic freezer bag; seal. Lightly pound with a skillet or rolling pin until ginger and garlic are well mashed.
  • Add cucumbers, 1 tsp. salt, and sugar. Seal bag; shake to mix. Squeeze bag firmly to slightly mash cucumbers, 1–2 minutes. Place bag in a large bowl; let macerate at room temperature, turning halfway through, until juices form, about 35 minutes.
  • Empty contents of bag into bowl; turn bag inside out and scrape out any small bits. Discard cilantro sprigs. Mix in celery, juice, and oil. Season with more salt, if desired.
  • Divide avocado among plates; spoon salad over. Garnish with chopped cilantro and basil.

Black Bean Chili with Butternut Squash and Swiss Chard – Bon Appetit

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups 1/2-inch pieces peeled butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 3 15-ounce cans black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 3 cups (packed) coarsely chopped Swiss chard leaves (from 1 small bunch)

Directions:

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic; sauté until tender and golden, about 9 minutes. Add squash; stir 2 minutes. Stir in chili powder and cumin. Stir in beans, broth, and tomatoes with juices; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in chard; simmer until chard is tender but still bright green, about 4 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle chili into bowls and serve.

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I have a tendency to be overly-ambitious — sometimes, I bite off more than I can chew (pun intended).  However, this “flaw” can spur me to grow and learn.  For example, this Mother’s Day, my gift to my mom was to take over some of her obligations for the week.  In other words, I volunteered to help with the driving, and to cook dinner. With little culinary experience, my excitement quickly ebbed and evolved into anxiety and fear.  As I frantically checked my favorite online sources, as well as my most cherished cookbooks, the deliciousness of the potential meals calmed me down, and I started to draft menus.  Because my mom is a new vegetarian, I wanted to focus the week around her new eating habits.  The first night, I prepared a moroccan carrot salad to be served alongside roasted eggplant.  The flavors of these two dishes meld SO well, and everyone loved them.  The success of my first night gave me the confidence I needed to cook throughout the rest of the week.  Stay tuned!

Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce – Plenty,  Yotam Ottolenghi

2 large and long eggplants
1/3 cup olive oil
11⁄2 tsp lemon thyme leaves, plus a few whole sprigs to garnish Maldon sea salt and black pepper
1 pomegranate
1 tsp za’atar

Sauce

9 tbsp buttermilk
1⁄2 cup Greek yogurt
11⁄2 tbsp olive oil, plus a drizzle to finish 1 small garlic clove, crushed
pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the eggplants in half lengthways, cutting straight through the green stalk (the stalk is for the look; don’t eat it). Use a small sharp knife to make three or four parallel incisions in the cut side of each eggplant half, without cutting through to the skin. Repeat at a 45-degree angle to get a diamond- shaped pattern.

Place the eggplant halves, cut-side up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush them with olive oil – keep on brushing until all of the oil has been absorbed by the flesh. Sprinkle with the lemon thyme leaves and some salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, at which point the flesh should be soft, flavorful and nicely browned. Remove from the oven and allow to cool down completely.

While the eggplants are in the oven, cut the pomegranate into two horizontally. Hold one half over a bowl, with the cut side against your palm, and use the back of a wooden spoon or a rolling pin to gently knock on the pomegranate skin. Continue beating with increasing power until the seeds start coming out naturally and falling through your fingers into the bowl. Once all are there, sift through the seeds to remove any bits of white skin or membrane.

To make the sauce. Whisk together all of the ingredients. Taste for seasoning, then keep cold until needed.

To serve, spoon plenty of buttermilk sauce over the eggplant halves without covering the stalks. Sprinkle za’atar and plenty of pomegranate seeds on top and garnish with lemon thyme. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil.

Spicy Moroccan Carrot Salad – Plenty,  Yotam Ottolenghi

2 lbs carrots
1/3 cup olive oil, plus extra to finish 1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 tsp sugar

3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 medium green chiles, finely chopped
1 green onion, finely chopped
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1⁄4 tsp ground ginger
1⁄2 tsp ground coriander
3⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp chopped preserved lemon
salt
21⁄2 cups cilantro leaves, chopped, plus extra to garnish 1⁄2 cup Greek yogurt, chilled

Peel the carrots and cut them, depending on their size, into cylinders or semicircles 1⁄2 inch thick; all the pieces should end up roughly the same size. Place in a large saucepan and cover with salted water. Bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes or until tender but still crunchy.
Drain in a colander and leave to dry out.

Heat the oil in a large pan and sauté the onion for 12 minutes on a medium heat until soft and slightly brown. Add the cooked carrots to the onion, followed by all the remaining ingredients, apart from the cilantro and yogurt. Remove from the heat. Season liberally with salt, stir well and leave to cool.

Before serving, stir in the cilantro, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve in individual bowls with a dollop of yogurt, a drizzle of oil and garnished with the extra cilantro.

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