Tag Archives: plant-based recipe

Green & White Chili

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 45 Minutes / Total Time: 1 hour

1 ½ lbs fresh tomatillos

2 15.5 ounce cans cannellini beans

1 green bell pepper

1 fresh poblano chile

2 jalapenos

1 medium red onion

3 cloves garlic

¼ olive oil

1 small can of green chiles

½ cup frozen corn

½ cup frozen shelled edamame (can substitute lima beans)

2 cups vegetable stock

1 Tbs salt

1 Tbs cumin

1 tsp cumin seeds (optional)

1 tsp garlic powder

Juice of 1 fresh lime

3 Tbs of fresh chopped cilantro

Chop garlic, peppers, and onion. Preheat a heavy pot and add olive oil and chopped veggies and salt. Soften on medium high heat for about 5-7 minutes. While softening, add cumin, garlic powder, and the entire contents of your little green chile can. Stirring occasionally.

Peel off the husks, wash, and chop the tomatillos and add in. Stir to mix while continuing on medium high heat. Open your cans of beans, drain using a fine mesh strainer, and lightly rinse. Add the beans, corn, and edamame and stir well to combine while maintaining heat.

Pour in vegetable stock and stir. Turn up heat and bring just to a boil. Then lower heat to a slow, bubbling simmer – probably medium low heat. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Stirring occasionally. The tomatillos will break down toward the end of the simmer time and the chili will thicken. Stir in lime juice and chopped cilantro to finish before serving.

Serve extra chopped cilantro, fresh lime, avocado, and sour cream for add-ins.

Enjoy!

Red Lentil & Tart-Apple Salad (masoor dal)

You gotta be quick! Red lentils are little guys that cook fast. But the good news is, you can make this protein-packed, colorful, and fresh salad in under 30 minutes.

Note: Make sure you have a fine mesh strainer in your arsenal – a big old pasta colander won’t work here.

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 10 Minutes

2 cups water

¾ cup red lentils

2 stalks celery

1 tart apple (Granny Smith work well)

2 Tbsp lemon juice

4 green onions

1 red bell pepper

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup olive oil

¼ tsp coarse salt

Cayenne pepper to taste

In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, salt, and a couple shakes of cayenne pepper, stir and set aside.

Wash and trim the green onions and cut into fine rings, including some tender green parts. Cut the apple into slices and then into strips. Cut the red pepper into similar sized strips as the apple and thinly slice the celery stalks. Toss all the veggies in a large bowl with the lemon juice.

In a medium sauce pan, stir together the red lentils and water and bring to a gradual boil on medium to medium high heat. Don’t go anywhere because this won’t take long…. As soon as it comes to a boil, stir and reduce heat to low. Test a few – they should still be a little firm (the color will be a little darker at the center) – stir again and stand over the slowly simmering pot. In about 2 minutes, stir and test again…they should be done. Remove from heat immediately and drain well into a fine strainer. Run some cold water around the sides of the strainer, but not directly over the lentils, then toss gently, and repeat the cold water around the side thing and the toss again to release any excess water.

Transfer the lentils to the bowl with the veggies and fold together gently first, then add the dressing you made earlier. Toss gently again to mix. Let it hang out for a while to rest, toss again, and serve.

Tip 1: I prefer to remove some of the Granny Smith apple skin, but not all. Wash them well too…they can be waxy.

Tip 2: Toast some chopped walnuts or pine nuts and sprinkle on top!

Enjoy!

Lentil Salad (sabut masoor)

Lentils can be a little daunting when you’re not just using them for tasty soup. When cooking they can turn on you pretty quickly and become the consistency of baby food. Be sure to read the process instructions below before you start the recipe and I hope it helps. Once you get confident, you’ll be cooking them all the time as they make a great palette for many different flavor traditions.

An excellent source of protein, lentils are very inexpensive – you can buy them bulk or in a 1 pound cello bag for under a dollar. Ounce for ounce, lentils contain as much protein as steak and tons more fiber.

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 30 Minutes / Refrigeration Time: 2 hours

2 cups lentils

2 tsp salt

1 medium onion stuck with 2 or 3 cloves

1 bay leaf

1 tsp thyme

½ cup olive oil

1 ½ cup of finely sliced green onion

¼ finely chopped bell pepper (red or orange works nice here)

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

4 Tbps white wine or apple cider vinegar

1 ½ tsp black pepper

½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Put the lentils in a pot and add water to cover by about 1”. Add the salt, clove stabbed onion, along with the bay leaf and thyme. Bring to a boil, then immediately reduce the heat to low and cover. It’s kinda like you’re cooking rice, but you’re going to want to check and stir them about every 5 minutes. Not a violent stir, just fold them over and quickly recover the pot. Simmer this way until the lentils are just tender, but still firm. About 30 minutes. As with beans, test a couple to make sure – just one lentil could be lying to you.

You’re going to have some liquid left over but that’s cool – drain well, remove the plugged onion (say ‘thank you’ and discard), and transfer the lentils to a large bowl. Add a few tablespoons of the olive oil and again, fold them over to mix. Let cool, but not completely, then add the rest of the ingredients and the remaining olive oil, but just half the parsley. Toss gently to mix.

Put in the refrigerator and let it rest and cool for at least an hour.

When serving, add the remaining chopped parsley and grind a little more black pepper over the top and add a little extra olive oil if needed…a squeeze of lemon here wouldn’t be bad either.

Enjoy!

Red Chile Sauce

This is a simplified version of New Mexican red chile sauce. By using the dried pods of flavorful peppers you’re tapping into a rich, deep, traditional flavor. It’s not a hot sauce but almost a stock that enriches and complement the flavors around it.

This recipe is not complete – This sauce needs to cook. One of my grandmother’s pet peeves was when the tomatoes in an Italian Red Sauce “weren’t cooked” – she could identify the slight bitterness that came from a rushed Sunday gravy. Tomato Sauce needs time to mellow and blend and so does the Red Chile Sauce.

Most commonly, I’ll use this sauce as a replacement for a big can of tomatoes in my Chili recipes. I simmer my chili for a while so it has time to mellow and, oddly enough, intensify at the same time. To use as a salsa, you’ll need to bring it to simmer it to reduce the volume by 1/3 to 1/2, depending on how thick you’d like it. For instance, I use this as an Enchilada sauce and reduce it by about 1/3. For a thicker salsa, I’d bring it down to a cup.

Big dried chile pods are (or should be) cheap and I suggest finding a good international market to find different varieties and a lower price than a ‘gourmet’ market. My favorites are Chile Negro, Guajillo Chiles, and Ancho Chiles. An Ancho Chile is a dried poblano pepper…generally mild, but as with all peppers they can vary in intensity from pepper to pepper. Guajillo chiles are a dried mirasol pepper and have a medium spice and a rich flavor. Chile Negro are the hottest of the bunch and these are the dried version of the pasilla pepper and commonly used in Mole sauces.

I suggest wearing gloves during prep…or not…roll the dice you badass!

Prep Time: 10 minutes / Soak Time: 60 Minutes

4 large dried chiles (Ancho, Guajillo, Chile Negro, or other)

1 clove garlic

1 Tbsp kosher salt

2 Tbs apple cider vinegar

About 2 cups of boiling water

Rinse to clean the whole dried chile. Placing them on a paper towel mat as a workspace. Pull the hard, top stem off – if it doesn’t have a stem, it will still have a pretty hard mass at the top, take that off. Pull open the chile and strip out the seed and veins. Put the cleaned chiles in a glass or stainless-steel bowl.

Cover the chiles with about 2 cups of boiling water and let soak for at least 1 hour.

After soaking, carefully pour the rehydrated chiles along with the soaking liquid into a food processor or high-speed blender. Peel and crush your garlic clove and add that to the blender along with the salt and cider vinegar. Blend well.

Use in a recipe immediately or refrigerate. Will keep tightly sealed in the fridge for about a month.

If you’d like to use this as a traditional salsa or to add a deep, rich, warm flavor to a fresh dish, you should simmer to reduce by 1/3 to 1/2 – otherwise it can taste pretty bitter and raw. In a small sauce pan bring the chile sauce to a boil and then simmer on low, uncovered, for at least 20 minutes or until you reach your desired consistency.

Enjoy!

Farro Salad with Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Pecans

Prep time: 30 minutes / Cook time: 45 minutes / Total Time: 1.5 hours

Dressing (prep in a mason jar, cover and shake, let sit for a while while you chop):

1/3 cup Olive Oil

2/3 cup Sherry Vinegar (I’m not a huge fan of oily vinaigrettes)

1 teaspoon each – Tarragon, Thyme, Basil, Ground White Pepper, dry mustard

2 tablespoons Kosher Salt and a couple twists of black pepper

Juice from 1/2 a lemon

Salad:

1 cup of cooked Farro, cooled & drained well

1 lb of cleaned Brussels sprouts, shaved into a thin slaw

5 carrots, small dice or grated

1 lb of cherry/grape tomatoes – slice half, keep half whole

3/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped

1/4 cup chopped yellow onion

Make the dressing and cook the farro.

Chop your onion and peeled carrots, slice your Brussels sprouts in half first, then slice thin vertically but at a slight angle. Toast some chopped pecans in a small pan on medium heat – watching carefully and tossing frequently – probs about 4-5 minutes. Be careful!! Pecans burn in an instant and remember to take them off a little earlier than you think because they’ll continue cooking with the residual heat. Chop the pecan and mix all these dry veggies together and let them hang out for a while in a big bowl.

Is your farro drained and cool? Add and mix that in and halve half of your tomatoes and toss. Is it all nicely mixed? Add the dressing and toss again lightly. Serve at room temperature.

Enjoy!

Easy Cornbread

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 20 minutes / Preheated 400 degree Fahrenheit oven

1 cup cornmeal

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

1/8 tsp salt

½ cup Earth Balance Sticks (or similar), melted and cooled slightly

1/3 cup brown sugar

2 Tbsp Agave syrup

1 flax egg (1 Tbsp ground flax seed + 3 Tbsp warm water + 5 minutes = 1 egg)

1 cup plant milk (I use unsweetened almond milk

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

For the flax egg: In a small bowl, mix 1 Tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 Tbsp warm water. Let this mixture sit and thicken for at least 5 minutes before adding it to the recipe.

Mix plant milk and apple cider vinegar together and let it come to room temperature to make “buttermilk”.

Mix the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl and set aside.

Next, mix the melted butter, brown sugar, and agave together until smooth. Whisk in the room temperature “buttermilk” mixture and flax egg.

Add the wet ingredients into the dry and combine – Don’t overmix.

Pour batter into a greased 8 or 9 inch square or round baking pan and place on the center oven rack. Bake for 20 minutes. The top should brown a bit and the edges should pull away from the sides of the pan. An inserted toothpick should come out clean.

Let it cool and rest. Slice.

Variations: Add vegan cheddar shreds and/or fresh jalapeños to the dry ingredients and coat before adding the wet ingredients. Not too much though or you’ll have to adjust the wet ingredient proportions to compensate for the extra moisture.

Enjoy!

Fiesta Chickpea Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes / Refrigerate for 2 hours to rest and blend / Serve at room temp

2 cans of garbanzo beans drained – around 2 cups

1 small can diced green chilies

1 medium onion – chopped

2 garlic cloves – chopped

3 medium tomatoes – chopped

2 jalapeños – chopped

3 Tbsp of chopped fresh cilantro

1 ½ tsps. cumin

½ cup fresh lime juice

¼ cup olive oil

Salt and black pepper to taste

Get a bowl and mix everything together. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours but serve at room temperature.

You can leave out the green chilies if you want or replace them with a couple canned chipotle chilies in adobo.

Get fancy and grate a little lime zest on top before serving…why not!

Another crazy variation: Blend the whole thing into a hummus consistency and serve with tortilla chips and salsa!

Enjoy!