Sunday, August 26, 2012

What's on my plate?

What’s on my plate?

I start my weekdays off with something light . . . soy yogurt, granola and fresh fruit. To sweeten my yogurt I used to use a little honey, but I am going to give maple syrup a try; one because I have it in the fridge, and two because honey is not vegan. Or sometimes I will start with a small bowl of cereal with almond or coconut milk.

During the day I snack on mixed nuts, raw nuts, Kind bars, Cliff bars or another bar whose name is eluding me at the moment . . . I also like to snack on fruit throughout the day, a granny smith apple, a fresh pear, a banana, or whatever is in the fridge at work. If I am at home I will make a green shake with my nutribullet, a lovely gift a la mom! My “go to” ingredients are spinach, carrots, pineapple, banana, blueberries or raspberries, orange juice and ice. My mother also suggests topping off with flax seeds. I also like to stay well hydrated by drinking a lot of water, my water bottle also contains a rose quartz crystal to open my heart chakra, keep my stress level low, support brain functions and increase intellect.

For lunch I tend to eat cold (I do not partake in the use of microwaves) left over’s or some ensalada. My ensalada consists of spinach or arugula with a range of veggies and possibly a little fruit or nuts to taste. My dressing is generally balsamic and oil or fresh lemon or lime with salt and pepper. If I go out for lunch, I like something fresh and light like sushi (remember I am the sister who tries to make “vegan choices” but I am not a strict vegan).

For dinner I tend to work with what I have. Basmati rice, black beans, and cooked kale, sometimes I make stir fry, cooked cabbage, tofu, carrots, green beans, corn, broccoli, rice, cashews, garlic, onions, light soy sauce and fresh lemon with a little soy sour cream to thicken the sauce (do this at the end with the heat off). On other nights I will have some salmon, rice and veggies (again not a strict vegan). I have also recently discovered Tofurkey brand Italian sausage; this is quite tasty broiled, on a whole wheat bun with spicy mustard, ketchup and sauerkraut with a side of grilled corn on the cob or kale chips! If I eat out I like Indian and Thai food. Luckily there are a lot of vegan restaurants in my neighborhood :)

On the weekends I will start my mornings off with something slightly grander . . . home style potatoes cooked with a little hot sauce, some whole wheat English crumpets with earth butter and double jam, tofu sausage, and a side of fresh fruit, orange juice and iced coffee, black.

Lunch on the weekends are also a little grander, a vegetarian Rueben (replace meat with mushrooms and leave off the cheese), or kale salad with quinoa, almonds, golden raisens, lemon vinaigrette, with salt and pepper, or a homemade falafel sandwich with pickled cabbage, cucumbers, carrots, and tahini. Sometimes I will mix some pasta with raw cabbage, carrots, almonds and a Thai peanut dressing for a spin on traditional coleslaw.

Dinner on the weekends can also be a little grander if I have help otherwise it is the usual or I go out.

I tend to cook with fresh ingredients, but some food I buy frozen are, tofu sausage, garden burgers, Thai vegetarian dumplings, and coconut ice-cream.

- The not so vegan, “vegan sister”

Friday, August 24, 2012

Vegan Stuffed Peppers

1 cup Bulgar wheat
1 1/2 cups water
3 cups cooked rice
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 med size yellow onion, chopped
6 large green peppers
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies
1-2 Tablespoon soy sauce
1-2 teaspoons garlic powder
1-2 teaspoons onion powder
10 cups tomato soup (4 small cans) (do NOT add water) (may substitute tomato sauce)

Add Bulgar wheat and water to a bowl.  Let sit over night.

In a large pan saute onion with olive oil. 

Cut tops off off green peppers.  Pull out seeds from inside peppers and wash with water.  Cut stems off of tops and discard.  Chop the green pepper from the tops only (leave the base of the peppers whole).  Add diced green peppers to pan.  Cook stirring occasionally for 5-10 minutes.

Add Bulgar wheat, garlic, tomatoes with chillies, soy sauce, garlic powder, and onion powder.  Cook stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes.  Mix steamed rice into pan.  Stir in 2 1/2 cups tomato soup and remove from heat. 

In a deep baking pan place green pepper bases.  Stuff each pepper with Bulgar wheat mixture.   If there is mixture leftover may fill in the pan around the peppers.  Cover peppers and inside of pan with remaining tomato soup.

Cover with tin foil or lid.  Bake at 350* for 1 hour.

From Heather's Kitchen

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Laundry Soap

Laundry Soap

After trying countless name brands of both liquid and powdered laundry soaps, I found that this powdered laundry soap works the best to deodorize clothes. Especially for those who perspire a lot!

1   Fels-Naptha bar soap or Castile
1   Cup - Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda - sodium carbonate
½  Cup Borax

Grate soap and process in a food processor or grind in coffee grinder until powdered. 
Use a cheese grater to grate the bar and then grind in a coffee grinder taking care not to grind too long or you will have a gooey mess!

Mix all ingredients. Store in air tight container. Shake before using.
An empty plastic coffee container really keeps it airtight.

For light load, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled load, use 2 Tablespoons. 

Yields: 3 Cups detergent. (Approx. 40 loads)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Sassberry Quinoa

Sassberry Quinoa
Saffronberry Couscous 

Saffronberry Couscous

Sassberry Quinoa

This is one of those recipes that just doesn't go away, it is simply delicious! It is good in a salad, as a side dish, even in a wrap with vegetables! I adapted this from the original recipe, Saffronberry Couscous, below.

1 cup quinoa
1 1/4 cup water
1 tbsp. vegan butter 
1 tbsp. agave
1/2 tsp. cumin
2 tbsp. rounded cranberries or cherries, chopped
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Add all ingredients except quinoa and cranberries to a saucepan.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat
Add quinoa and cranberries
Immediately reduce heat to low, simmer 10-15 minutes until all liquid is absorbed
Fluff with a fork before serving.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Saffronberry Couscous 

1 cup uncooked pearled couscous
1 1/4 cup water
1 tbsp. vegan butter spread
1 tbsp. agave
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. rounded cranberries, chopped
6 strands saffron, crushed

Add all ingredients except couscous and cranberries to a saucepan.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat
Add couscous and cranberries
Immediately reduce heat to low, simmer 8-10 minutes until all liquid is absorbed
Fluff with a fork before serving.

Sun-Dried Tomato Falafels in Pitas

1/4 cup sun-dried tomato pieces
1/3 cup filtered water
1 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
2 Tablespoons finely diced red onions
2 Tablespoons finely diced celery
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 (6-inch) whole grain pita breads
sliced cucumbers
shredded carrots
shredded lettuce
alfalfa sprouts
plain soy yogurt or tahini
freshly squeezed lemon juice or filtered water, as needed

Place the sun-dried tomato pieces in a small bowl.  Cover with the water and set aside for 5 to 10 minutes to rehydrate.  Drain off any excess water and transfer the sun-dried tomato pieces to a food processor along with the chickpeas, garlic, olive oil, chili powder, curry powder, salt, and cayenne.

Process for 1 to 2 minutes or until completely smooth.  Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl.  stir in the flour, onions, celery, and chopped parsley.

Pour enough olive oil into a large skillet to coat the bottom and place over medium heat.  Carefully portion 6 rounded tablespoonfuls of the falafel mixture into the hot oil and flatten each one slightly with the back of the spoon.  Cook the patties over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom.  Flip the patties over with a metal or heatproof spatula and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown on the other side.

Place two paper towels on a large plate.  Transfer the patties to the plate to allow any excess oil to drain off.  Portion, cook, and drain the remaining falafel mixture in the same fashion.

To assemble each sandwich, split the pita bread in half and open the pocket of each half slightly.  Fill each pita half with 3 falafel patties and as much sliced cucumbers, shredded carrots, shredded lettuce, and alfalfa sprouts as desired.  thin the soy yogurt or tahini with a small amount of lemon juice or water to make a sauce, and drizzle it over each pita half to taste.

From Vegan Bites:  Recipes for Singles by Beverly Lynn Bennett, page 66

Confetti Rice and Bean Salad

Confetti Rice and Bean Salad

Rice and Bean Salad

I must confess, it doesn't get much better than this! I have made this countless times and served it as a salad, on top of greens, in wraps, added Soy Curls, marinated tofu. I've also changed the seasonings adding cumin, cayenne, chipotle chili powder, adding avocado & lime & lemon juice. Enjoy!

3 cups cooked rice, cooled to room temperature (see note)
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups frozen corn, thawed (or same amount fresh corn kernels)
4 green onions, white and green parts thinly sliced
1 red pepper, seeded, cored and diced
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

In a large bowl, combine all of the salad ingredients and toss. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients and pour over the salad. Toss to coat. Chill the salad for at least 2 hours before serving to let the flavors blend.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

From Mel's Kitchen Cafe


Black Bean and Sweet Corn Quinoa Salad

Black Bean and Sweet Corn Quinoa Salad

Delicious! Good as a salad, in a wrap or as a side dish!
 Quinoa Salad

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen sweet white corn
2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

In a medium pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. When shimmering and hot, add the onions and saute for 4-5 minutes, stirring often. Add the garlic and stir for a minute or two until the garlic is fragrant, being careful not to burn the garlic.

Add the quinoa and cover with broth. Stir in cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and let simmer for 20 minutes (or until all the liquid is absorbed).

Stir in the frozen corn and black beans. Cover and let the pot sit off the heat until the corn and beans are heated through, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in the cilantro. Serve warm or chilled – it is delicious both ways!

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad

3 cups prepared Soy Curls
1/4 cup red onion, diced fine
2 stalks celery, diced
1/2 cup pickly relish
1/2 cup vegan mayo
1 Tblsp chicken style seasoning
1 Tblsp onion powder
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder

Prepare Soy Curls: soak in hot water 10 mins. Drain and squeeze.
Place in skillet and saute until soy curls begin to brown. Add chicken style seasoning, onion powder and continue to saute until soy curls are browned and dry.

Place prepared soy curls in food processor and chop until slightly chunky OR chop by hand.
Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Chill until ready to serve.
Serve on bread, in a pita, on a salad with lettuce and tomato.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Tofu Omelet

Tofu Omelet

12 oz pkg. extra-firm silken tofu
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp turmeric
2 Tblsp chickpea flour
2 Tblsp cornstarch
1/4 cup non-dairy milk
2 Tblsp nutritional yeast

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease/spray two 9" pie dishes and set aside.

Blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy.

Pour mixture into prepared pie dishes and bake 25-35 mins. or until golden and firm to the touch.

Let cool 5-10 mins before serving.

To remove omelet, place plate over the top and flip out.

Optional: to add vegetables or any other toppings, add them on top halfway through baking. Raw vegetables should be cooked before adding to omelet.
Chickpea Flour 
Chickpea flour is a healthy alternative to wheat flour. It is creamy, rather than grainy. Because it is made from a bean rather than a starchy grass, it is higher in fiber and protein than most typical baking flours, such as wheat flour. For this reason, it is a smart choice for diabetics.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

From The Happy Herbivore page 17

Tofu Crab Cakes

Tofu Crab Cakes

14 oz block firm tofu, pressed
1 cup celery, minced
1/2 bunch scallions, minced
2 garlic cloves
2 Tblsp kelp powder
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
additional Panko for crusting cakes

Roughly chop tofu with a potato masher. Set aside

Saute celery, garlic and scallion until softened. Cool slightly.

Combine tofu and cooled celery mixture in medium bowl, fold in seasonings, breadcrumbs and mayo. Mix until just combined.

Shape 1/4 cup of mixture into small disk shape, press both sides into bread crumbs, gently press crumbs into cakes. Place on parchment lined baking sheet.

Heat 2 Tblsp oil until oil shimmers. Place crab cakes in pan & cook until brown, hot and crispy. Transfer to paper towel. OR bake in oven, flipping after 15-20 mins.

Makes 24 crab cake sliders, freezes well.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Chickpea Chicken Salad

Chickpea Chicken Salad

15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped
1/2 cup carrots, shredded
3 Tblsp lemon juice
2 Tblsp chives, finely chopped
1-2 Tbslp vegan Mayo
1 Tblsp nutritional yeast
1 Tblsp relish
2 tsp dry dill
chopped onion, optional

Mash chickpeas until coarse and no whole beans are left. Alternatively, pulse beans in a  food processor a few times, careful not to puree.
In a large bowl combine the mashed beans with all ingredients, stirring to combine.
TIP: Warming chickpeas makes mashing the beans much easier.
ENJOY! Rbudladi

Chickpea Tuna Salad

Chickpea Tuna Salad

15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 1-2 Tblsp pickle relish
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp nutritional yeast
1 Tblsp soy sauce
1-3 Tblsp vegan mayo
1 tsp kelp powder
1 tsp lemon juice
14 cup chopped onion, optional

Mash chickpeas until coarse and no whole beans are left. Alternatively, pulse beans in a  food processor a few times, careful not to puree.
In a large bowl combine the mashed beans with all ingredients, stirring to combine. Add more mayo and kelp as needed.

TIP: Warming chickpeas makes mashing the beans much easier.

ENJOY! Rbudladi
Original recipe from The Happy Herbivore, page 113

Fabulous Flapjacks/Buckwheat Pancakes with Bananas

This is a great recipe Dana found on our 'vegan retreat' but we adapted it to make
Buckwheat Pancakes with Bananas!)

2/3 cup soymilk or other nondairy milk of choice  (We use original almond milk.)
1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour (We use buckwheat flour.)
1 1/2 teaspoons unbleached cane sugar or beet sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 Tablespoon safflower oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 bananas
maple syrup

Place the soymilk and lemon juice in a small bowl and stir to combine.  Set aside for 10 minutes to thicken.  Place the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk them together.  Pour the thickened soymilk mixture, safflower oil, and vanilla extract into the dry ingredients, whisk well to combine, and set the batter aside for 5 minutes.

Lightly oil a large skillet and place it over medium heat.  When the skillet is hot, use a 1/3 cup measuring cup to portion the batter into the skillet for each flapjack.  Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the edges of the flapjacks are slightly dry and bubbles appear on top.  Flip the flapjacks over with a metal or heatproof spatula and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown on other side.  Lightly oil the skillet again and repeat the cooking procedure for the remaining batter.  Serve hot with your desired toppings.  (We use cut bananas and maple syrup.)

From Vegan Bites:  Recipes for Singles by Beverly Lynn Bennett

My Indulgent Shake (Chocolate Peanut Butter)

1 banana
2 Tablespoons peanut butter
8 oz. (1 cup) dark chocolate almond milk
4 ice cubes
1/8 cup flax seeds or sunflower seeds

Add all indredients to a blender and blend!  Tastes sinfully delicious!

Garnet Yam Hummus

Garnet Yam Hummus

15 oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
1 cup cooked sweet potato or butternut squash
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 Tblsp Lime Juice
3 Tblsp Tahini or more as needed to taste
1/2 cup sweet red pepper, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin

Combine all ingredients in a food processor, blend until smooth. Add water as needed. 
Store in frig.

TIP: warming chickpeas (or any beans) before chopping makes the job much easier!

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Typical Weekly Menu - RBudladi

Typical Weekly Menu - RBudladi

What does my weekly menu consists of? Typically I START with lots of vegetables, beans and bulger wheat, and plenty of fruit. Growing up in an extra large family and on the farm, we always had plenty of home grown produce. And we learned from one of the greatest cooks – Mom! 

Breakfast is normally bulger wheat or 7-grain cereal, quinoa, millet, and plenty of fruit, sprinkled with chia seeds and/or flax. Sometimes it’s a vegetable smoothie depending on what’s in the frig.

Lunch is always a salad of some sort, always. Salads are very colorful with lots of greens: kale, spinach, parsley. Veggies are just about any and with some ‘crunch’ like: carrots, broccoli, celery, cucumber, etc. Other veggies are added on top of the previous. There is some type of protein: soy curls, black beans, TVP, whatever might be visiting in the frig. And if there is leftovers, I’ve been seen tossing this on top of my greens. Then a squeeze of lemon juice and I’m ready to start. Normally it is about 2 cups of a variety of colorful veggies.

Dinner is a mystery! Lots of dishes include a variety of items: Black Beans, Corn, Rice, Quinoa, Millet, Bulger Wheat, Zucchini. Most of the time I throw something together, quick and fast. 

Many times I experiment using TVP & bulger wheat to replace ground meats in soups, casseroles & chili. Soy Curls go in a lot of dishes and are easy to use for on the go wraps & sandwiches; soy curls work also to replace stew meat. If you happen to stop over chances are you will see one of my crock pots on the cupboard cooking up a batch of beans. I cook up beans for the week and freeze extra to throw on a salad or in a casserole.

Snacks are my fav! There is always hummus in the frig and freezer! One of my favorite hummus recipes includes sweet potatoes – it is a nice alternative. Lots of cut up veggies: carrots, broccoli, celery, cauliflower, zucchini, etc. You will also see fruit on the cupboard and cherry tomatoes, in season. 

Sweets: Since I have such a sweet tooth you will always find: Sesame Balls, Chocolate Almond Coconut Balls, figs, dried plums & almonds somewhere! I’ve been known to hide these from myself!

I was very fortunate and attended a few cooking sessions hosted by friends and was able to 'try' some foods that I was unfamiliar with. There was also all my 4-H kids & families that are/were home schooled and the families ordered items from a Co-op. This has been a life saver! Once I roomed with a great gal from the state of Washington who was very much into green smoothies. She made them for breakfast every morning. They consists of 2-4 cups of organic vegetables - the entire vegetable: stems, peels, vegetable - everything! She always seasoned these and depending on how she felt, would add a drop or two of some herb or oil. Very very healthy! I only wish she and I lived closer SEW I could continue to learn from her!

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

2 cups oats
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 medium-size overripe bananas, peeled
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup chopped dates

Preheat oven to 350*F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray.  set aside.  Blend oats into a fine flour.  Pour the oat flour into a mixing bowl and add the baking soda and cinnamon.  Put the bananas into the blender and blend until completely smooth.  Add to the oat mixture along with the sunflower seeds and dates and mix until well combined.  Use a 1-ounce cookie scoop to place spoonfuls of the cookie dough on the baking sheet.  Bake for 12 minutes.  Cool cookies on a wire rack and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

From Vegan Lunch Box by Jennifer McCann

Vegetable and Soycurl Stir Fry

3 cups of steamed rice
1 cup vegetable broth
1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
assorted vegetables, chopped (I use whatever I have but typically include brocoli, mushrooms, yellow onions or green onions including scallions, carrots, baby corn, water chestnuts, and green peppers)
1 cup soy curls
1 Tablespoons garlic
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 teaspoons curry powder (optional)
2 teaspoons ginger (optional)

Start steaming rice.  Soak soy curls in hot water for approximately 10 minutes.  In a wok or large pan heat olive oil over low-med heat.  Add the vegetables stirring ocassionally.  Add soy curls, add soy sauce, stir.  Add curry powder and ginger, stir.  Add vegetable broth and turn to low/warm until rice is done.  Serve vegetables over rice.

Soy Curls

Soy Curls

An all natural alternative to meat that is SEW easy to use. Delicious in fajitas, sandwiches, salads, casseroles, stir fry, just about anyway you can think of. I even eat them dry right out of the bag!

How to prepare:
Place Soy Curls in a bowl large enough to cover with *seasoned hot water and soak for 8-10 minutes to re-hydrate. Drain excess water and if too 'wet' - squeeze excess moisture out.

Season Soy Curls:
If you prefer, season the hot water before pouring over Soy Curls. OR season after the Soy Curls are re-hydrated. Season with your choice of seasonings.

To Brown: 
Saute in a hot skillet or wok. 

Keep re-hydrated Soy Curls in covered container in frig.

What and How are Soy Curls made: 
SEW glad to hear! Check out this helpful link for the answer.

Enjoy! RBudladi

Typical Weekly Menu - Heather

Someone asked for a post from each of us to demonstrate the types of foods we eat.  My typical week includes some variation of these items.  It depends on what's available when I shop, what's in my refrigerator, what I have for left overs, how much time I have, and if I have any dinner guests.

Breakfast: smoothie, or oatmeal, or toast with peanut butter, or Buckwheat Pancakes with Bananas

Lunch:  salad, or soup (tomato or vegetable), or grilled soy cheese sandwich, or or peanut butter sandwich, or most likely left overs

Dinner:  Black Bean & Corn Tortillas; Vegetable and Soy Curl Stir Fry; Pasta Alfredo with Broccoli; Vegetable Pizza with Soy Cheese; Grilled or Sauteed Veggies with Rice

Snacks:  pita chips & hummus, or chips & salsa, or popcorn, or carrot sticks, or fruit (strawberries, banana, apple, melon), or pistachios

Hope that helps!

Zucchini Crisp

Zucchini Crisp

Peel and slice large zucchini in ‘apple’ slices
Saute in lemon juice or apple juice
Season as for apple pie: cinnamon, nutmeg, raisins
Sweeten with
2 Tbsp agave
2 Tbsp molasses
2 Tbsp frozen apple juice concentrate
If you prefer sweeter 'apples', use an additional sweetener of your choice: rice syrup, maple syrup, brown sugar.

Crumb topping:
1 c oatmeal
1 c walnuts or any nut, chopped fine
3 Tbsp agave, honey, brown sugar or rice syrup
3 Tbsp molasses
3 Tbsp frozen apple juice concentrate

Bake Bake in preheated oven 350 ° 35 – 45 mins
NOTE to self: sauté zucchini slices in apple juice  next time

NOTE: Molasses can be a bit strong, SEW if you prefer, omit and try another sweetener.

Enjoy! RBudladi

Oil-Free Salad Dressing

Oil-Free Salad Dressing

Simply mix or blend together the following ingredients:

1/4 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 nutritional yeast
1/4 cup miso
1/4 cup dijon mustard 
seasonings of choice

NOTE: Fine tune the ingredients to suit yourself . If you want to add a sweetener, try agave, maple syrup, chopped date, etc. The original called for date syrup but I prefer tart over sweet in my salads.

ENJOY! RBudladi

Zucchini no-crab cakes/patties

Zucchini no-crab cakes/patties 

WOW! These are superb! I have tried countless vegan burger/pattie recipes and this one is GREAT! They are perfect for a sandwich on the go. Enjoy!

2 cup(s) zucchini, grated, and pressed
1 – 2 green onions, chopped
3 TBLSP red or orange bell pepper, diced
1 – 1.5 cups breadcrumbs - Panko
3 TBLSP fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped fine
1 tsp Kelp powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. celery seed
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. oregano
½ tsp black pepper
1 TBLSP horseradish, optional
1-3 TBLSP vegan mayo
1 TBLSP lemon juice
cornmeal to dust patties 

Drain zucchini/carrots – wrap in paper towel or linens, let drain several hours. OR wrap in linen towel and squeeze/twist. This method removes liquid FAST and about ¼ cup of liquid!

In a large mixing bowl combine chopped vegetables, spices, panko and mix.
Add lemon juice, stir well, slowly add mayo in small increments to mixture until it holds together.

Form mixture into balls, flatten. Dust with cornmeal & If sticking to fingers, dust fingers! 

Freeze patties 1 – 1.5 hrs. Helps to hold shape.

Bake in preheated oven 350 ° 45 mins – 1 hour.
Optional: broil under broiler to brown up.

Serve: with pineapple coleslaw, relish, as a burger or over a salad.

ENJOY! From RBudladi

Key Lime Smoothie

Key Lime Smoothie

1 frozen banana
1/2 - 1 lime
1/4 cup silken tofu
Chia seeds
Flax seeds

Depending on your blender of choice, combine the above and blend. Adjust the amount of lime to your taste, adding additional lime juice if desired.

Lemon Pie Smoothie
Same as above replacing the lime for lemon.

Enjoy! Rbudladi

Melty Cheeze Sauce

Melty Cheeze Sauce

This is by far the best non-dairy melty cheeze! Use it in mac 'n cheeze, nachos, as a dip, in a dip, where ever you would use a 'melted' cheeze!

1/2 cup raw cashews
3 cups water, divided
1/2 cup roasted red pepper or pimento
2 Tblsp cornstarch
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes (my sprinkle cheeze!)
1/4 cup oats
2 Tblsp lemon juice
1.5 tsp onion powder

Place cashews and 1 cup water in blender, blend until smooth and creamy.
Add remaining ingredients, blend until smooth.
Pour into saucepan and cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring constantly.
Good for nachos, mac n cheese or where ever you like melted cheese.

NOTE: soak the raw cashews in water overnight to make it easier to blend.

Posted by Rbudladi

No-Bake Oatmeal Fruit & Nuts Energy Bars

No-Bake Oatmeal Fruit & Nuts Energy Bars

If you like energy bars (Cliffbars, Lara Bars, etc.), you’ll enjoy making your own Energy Bars and adding exactly what you want in a healthy bar.

Be creative and use your favorite nut butters, dried fruits, chocolate chips, nuts, seasonings, etc.
This is my third time making these bars and each time they come out better. The first batch was good, and very rich. The second batch was still a bit too sweet. In the third batch, I switched to maple syrup and used only ½ cup. It is still a rich bar and very good.

1 1/4 cups old-fashioned oatmeal, uncooked
1 cup bran cereal
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
1/2 cup dried nonfat milk powder or nondairy
2/3 cup dried fruit (blueberries, raisins, cherries)
1/2 cup almonds, chopped
1/3 cup coconut
2 Tblsp Flax, ground
2 Tblsp chia seeds
1 cup nut or seed butter (peanut, cashew, almond, tahini)
1/2 cup honey, maple syrup, agave, or favorite
1/3 cup dark molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Line a 9x9-inch square metal baking pan foil; spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl mix the cereals, wheat germ, milk powder, dried fruit and nuts; set aside.

Place the nut butter, sweetener and molasses in a large heavy saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat until bubbly, melted and smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg. Mix in the cereal mixture (mix until well blended and all of the oat mixture is coated). If too sticky, add additional oatmeal.

Transfer mixture to prepared pan. Using a large square of wax paper or foil, very firmly press mixture down into pan to compact.

Cool completely. Remove bars using foil overhang and then cut into 16 bars or squares. Tightly wrap each bar in plastic wrap. Store the wrapped bars in a plastic zip-top bag in the refrigerator. Makes 16 servings.

Posted by RBudladi

Black Bean & Corn Tortillas

This is super fast and easy!  I make it once a week.

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can corn, drained and rinsed
1 can diced green chillies
2-4 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups steamed rice (I use Jasmine)
1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1 lime
1/2 lemon
1 avocado, mashed
1 pkg flour tortillas
1 tomato, diced

Start steaming rice.  In a large pan add black beans, corn, green chillies, garlic and juice of 1/2 a lemon.  Cook over low-med heat, stirring occasionally.  In a bowl mash avocado with the juice of 1/2 a lime.  Once rice is done steaming add cilantro and juice of half a lime.  Warm tortillas in a fry pan over med heat.  Layer:  tortilla, avocado mixture, rice mixture, bean mixture, tomatoes.

From Heather's Kitchen

Friday, August 17, 2012

Pasta Alfredo

Dana and I made this on our 'vegan retreat' and it's one of my favorites
that I've made several times since!
You can find vegan sour cream and cream cheese at Krogers or the health food stores.
(We add steamed broccoli, use fresh garlic instead of powder,
and almond milk instead of soy milk.)

1/4 cup nondairy butter
1 cup nondairy sour cream
1/2 cup nondairy cream cheese
1/4 cup soy milk
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 cup finely ground cashews
salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound pasta of choice, prepared according to package directions

Add the butter, sour cream, cream cheese, and soy milk to a pot.  Heath over medium heat until melted and creamy, 5-7 minutes.

Stir in the nutritional yeast, garlic powder, and cashews.  Cook for about 3minutes, until thickened.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve immediately over the pasta.

From Hearty Vegan Meals for Monster Appetites, page 136

The Science of a Vegetarian/Vegan Diet

Upon hearing that I am vegetarian or vegan, many people ask me, where do you get your protein from?  And other similar nutrition questions concerning my vitamin intake.  The following information is compiled from one of my nursing text books.  It's a bit lengthy but provides good information.  If you don't want to read it in its entirety, skip ahead to Protein Sources, Types of Vegetarians, or Vitamin and Mineral Sources.

From Williams' Basic Nutrition & Diet Therapy 12th Edition by Staci Nix (my text book for nursing school):

"Amino acids: nitrogen-bearing compounds that form the structural units of protein. When digested, the various food proteins yield their constituent amino acids, which are then available for use by the cells to synthesize specific tissue proteins (e.g. collagen in connective tissue, myosin in muscle tissue, hemoglobin in red blood cells, digestive enzymes or hormones). Protein is used for tissue building, energy system, water balance, metabolism, and body defense system (immune system).

Protein foods that contain all nine indispensable amino acids in sufficient quantity and ratio to meet the body's needs are called complete proteins. These proteins are primarily of animal origin (e.g. egg, milk, cheese, and meat.) However, soybeans and soy products are the exception. Soy products are the only plant sources of complete proteins.

Protein foods that are deficient in one or more of the nine indispensable amino acids are called incomplete proteins. These proteins generally are of plant origin (e.g. grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, and fruits) but are found in foods that make valuable contributions to the total dietary protein.

Current knowledge of protein metabolism and the "pooling" of amino acid reserves, indicates that a mixture of plant proteins can provide adequate amounts of amino acids when the basic use of various grains is expanded to include soy protein and other dried legume proteins (i.e. beans and peas).

Because most plant proteins are incomplete, lacking one or more indispensable (or essential) amino acids, match plant foods so that the amino acids missing in one food are supplied in another. This is the art of combining plant protein foods so that they "complement" one another and supply all nine indispensable amino acids.

Normal eating pattern through the day, together with the body's reserve supply of protein, usually ensures a complementary amino acid balance. The underlying requirement for vegetarians, as for all people, is to eat a sufficient amount of varied foods to meet normal nutrient and energy needs.

The indispensable amino acids are histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine.  In making the needed amino acids, families of foods (e.g. grains, legumes, and dairy) must be mixed.  For example, grains are low in threonine and high in methionine, whereas legumes are just the opposite – low in methionine, and high in threonine.  Therefore grains and legumes help balance one another in the accumulation of all indispensable amino acids.  The addition of milk products and eggs enhance the amino acid adequacy for lacto-ovo-vegetarians.  Here are a few sample food combination dishes to illustrate complementary protein combinations:  (The book did not list specific food sources for each amino acid.)

1.    Grains and peas, beans and lentils:  brown rice and beans, whole grain bread with pea or lentil soup, wheat or corn tortilla with beans, peanut butter on bread, Indian dishes of rice and dal (a legume), Chinese dishes of tofu and rice

2.    Legumes and seeds:  falafel, soybeans and pumpkin or sesame seeds, Middle Eastern hummus (garbanzo beans and sesame seeds) or tahini

3.    Grains and dairy:  whole wheat pasta and cheese, yogurt and a multi-grain muffin, cereal and milk, cheese sandwich with whole grain bread


Vegetarian diets differ according to the beliefs or needs of individuals following these food patterns. Approximately 2.5% of the total U.S. population followed a vegetarian diet in 2000. There are a variety of reasons that lead people to choose a vegetarian diet: environmental or animal cruelty concerns, health reasons, religions adherence (e.g. Buddhism, Hinduism, Seventh Day Adventists, and Zen), or aversion to consuming animal products. A diet void of animal products is not always a choice. In some areas in the world, vegetarianism is simply a result of the lack of resources and availability of animal products.

 In general there are four basic types:

1. Lacto-ovo-vegetarian: follow a food pattern that allows dairy products and eggs. Their mixed diet of plant and animal food sources, excluding only meat and fish, poses no nutritional problems.

2. Lacto-vegetarian: accept only dairy products from animal sources to complement their basic diet of plant foods. The use of milk and milk products (e.g. cheese) with a varied mixed diet of whole or enriched grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables in sufficient quantities to meet energy needs provides a balanced intake.

3. Ovo-vegetarian: The only animal foods included in the ovo-vegetarian diet are eggs. Because eggs are an excellent source of complete proteins, individuals following this diet do not have to be overly concerned with complementary proteins on a daily basis.

4. Vegans: follow a strict vegetarian diet and use no animal foods. Their food pattern is composed entirely of plant foods (e.g. whole or enriched grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables).  The use of soybeans, soy milk, soybean curd (tofu), and processed soy protein products enhances the nutritional value of the diet, and these products are well-tolerated and accepted. Careful planning and sufficient food intake ensure adequate nutrition.

The American Dietetic Association's current position paper on vegetarian diets indicates that the former conscious combining of complementary plant proteins within every given meal is unnecessary. It is more important to achieve balance throughout the day.


There have been many debates about the adequacy of vegetarian diets. Studies have found individuals following a vegan diet to have an inadequate intake of various nutrients, including protein, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, selenium, vitamin D, vitamin B12 (cobalamin), and riboflavin (B2). Additional concerns are warranted in studies that find reduced albumin synthesis, an important endogenous protein, and reduced iron stores in men and women following vegetarian diets. Following is a list of food sources: (I left meat options off of the Significant Fool Sources.)

1.    Calcium: primary sources are milk; milk products (yogurt, cheese, ice cream); calcium-fortified tofu; fruit juices; other food products (e.g. cereals, bars, etc.); low-oxalate greens such as bok choy, broccoli, collards, kale and turnip; oxalic acid in spinach, rhubarb, Swiss chard, and beet greens. Secondary sources are grains, legumes, and nuts. (Significant Food Sources of Calcium: Bran muffin, whole wheat bread, corn muffin, Cream of Wheat cereal, enriched pasta, enriched rice, Wheat Flakes cereal, artichoke, asparagus, raw avocado, raw broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, collards, kale, green peas, potato with skin, raw apricots, figs, orange juice, raw navel orange, raw papaya, raw raspberries, raw strawberries, raw tangerine; almonds, cashews, egg, kidney beans, lentils, lima beans, peanuts, soybeans, tofu; yogurt, milk, Barbados molasses, brown sugar.)

2.    Phosphorus: found in all animal and plant cells; primary sources are milk, milk products, meat, fish, eggs; secondary sources are cereal grains, beans, peas, other legumes, nuts. (Significant Food Sources of Phosphorus: bran flakes, bran muffin, whole wheat bread, English muffin, oatmeal, enriched pasta, enriched rice, wheat flakes cereal, artichoke, raw avocado, Brussels sprouts, yellow corn, green peas, potatoes with skin, spinach, sweet potato; figs, orange juice, seedless raisins; almonds, black-eyed peas, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), cod, egg, halibut, lentils, peanut butter, peanuts, pinto beans, sole, soybeans, tofu, rainbow trout, tuna, walnuts; cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, milk, Swiss cheese, yogurt.)

3.    Iron: Primary sources are meat, eggs, vegetables, and cereals. (Significant Food Sources of Iron: bran flakes cereal, bran muffin, whole wheat bread, Cream of Wheat, oatmeal, pasta, rice, wheat flakes, artichoke, raw avocado, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green peas, potato with skin, spinach, dates, figs, prune juice, prunes, raisins, almonds, black-eyed peas, cashews, chickpeas, egg, halibut, lentils, lima beans, mackerel, pinto beans, sole, soybeans, tofu, rainbow trout, tuna, black molasses, brown sugar.) FYI: the body absorbs iron more easily when taken with vitamin C.

4.    Zinc: primary sources are meat, seafood (esp. oysters). Secondary sources are legumes and whole grains. (Significant Food Sources of Zinc: bran muffin, whole wheat bread, Cream of Wheat, English muffin, oatmeal, pasta, wheat flakes, artichoke, asparagus, raw avocado, Brussels sprouts, collards, green peas, potato with skin, raw apricots, raw cantaloupe, figs, almonds, cashews, chickpeas, egg, kidney beans, lentils, lima beans, peanuts, soybeans, tofu, milk, yogurt.)

5.    Selenium:  primary sources are seafood, kidney and liver.  Secondary sources are other meats.  More variable are grains and other seeds depending on the selenium content of the soil in which they are grown.  Fruits and vegetables generally contain little selenium.

6.    Riboflavin (B2):  primary source is milk. Secondary sources are enriched grains and animal protein, sources, such as meats (esp. beef liver), poultry, and fish.  Vegetables such as mushrooms, spinach, and avocados are good natural sources.  (Significant Food Sources:  bran flakes, English muffin, enriched noodles, enriched spaghetti, wheat flakes cereal, asparagus, raw avocado, mushrooms, spinach, sweet potato, figs, prunes, raw raspberries, almonds, egg, kidney beans, lentils, lima beans, mackerel, rainbow trout, soybeans, brie cheese, buttermilk, cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, milk, ricotta cheese, yogurt.

7.    B12 (cobalamin):  primary sources are beef, chicken liver, lean meat, clams, oysters, herring, and crab.  (Significant Food Sources:   Total Wheat Cereal, egg, herring, mackerel, mussels, oysters, salmon, swordfish, tuna, cheddar cheese, milk, Swiss cheese, yogurt.)

8.    Vitamin D:  only yeast and fish liver oils are natural sources.  Regular food sources are fortified with Vitamin D.  (Significant Food Sources:  corn flake cereal, granola, raisin and bran cereal, egg, evaporated milk, milk, margarine, fish oil.)  Also, from sunlight.  "The amount needed may vary between winter and summer, and with individual exposure to sunlight."  People regularly exposed to sunlight (e.g. under appropriate conditions have no dietary requirement for vitamin D.  A substantial proportion of the U.S. population, however, is exposed to very little sunlight, especially during certain seasons, so a dietary supply is needed.  Excessive intake of vitamin D can be toxic.)

However, some of the same studies document a higher intake in vegetables, legumes, and fiber and a lower intake of refined sugars, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Upon extensive review of the effects of vegetarian diets in various medical conditions, researchers concluded that 'dietary intervention with a vegetarian diet seems to be a cheap, physiologic and safe approach for the prevention, and possible management of modern lifestyle diseases.' diseases in which a positive association was make are diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, dementia, age-related macular degeneration, gastrointestinal disease, and cancer. The preventive mechanism at work in the vegetarian diet is the rich supply of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, fiber, complex carbohydrates, antioxidants, and a restriction in saturated fat. To reap the benefits of a vegetarian diet, a well-balanced diet from a variety of foods is necessary. The American Dietic Association and the Dietitians of Canada state that 'well-planned vegan, lacto-vegetarian, and lacto-ovo-vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy and lactation.”