Tag Archives: easy

Tunaless Melt!

This could have made an amazing sandwich but it made an awesome wrap. I’ve been missing tuna melts, not for the fishy tinned tuna but for the melty goodness and crunchy celery. To make the filling I combined the following:

1 32oz tin of chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 tbsp vegan mayo

1 cup of chopped celery

1/2 chopped onion

a generous pinch each of tarragon and thyme

1 tbsp marmite or vegemite

salt and flake red pepper to taste

I started by adding the celery and onion and microwaving it until the onion was soft.

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I actually used a fork to mush the chickpeas. I liked the texture it provided since it reminded me more of real tuna that way. Once it was all mixed together, I microwaved it until it was hot and then adjusted the seasoning.

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We combined this on a wrap with some Daiya cheddar which we melted by microwaving and then topped with some spinach and tomato. It hit the spot, EXACTLY!

This is Christie, signing off!

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Cuban can be vegan too!

Miami is immersed in Cuban culture. From the coffee to the art, Cuba’s heartbeat is felt in this city. We decided to honor our love for Cuban contributions (namely a colleague of mine who recently got his American citizenship!) by creating a Cuban inspired vegan meal; black beans, pork, rice and plantains are stereotypical in local cuisine.

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For the black beans, all we did was drain a tin of black beans and combine with some roughly chopped peppers, onions and tomato.

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We prepared some frozen Goya maduros in our oven. They’re basically fried mature bananas. They’re SUPER tasty.

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We made Vigo yellow rice.

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Instead of pork, we had maple bacon tempeh. A traditional preparation of pork in Cuban cuisine might be topped with sauteed onions and cheddar cheese. We decided on the rest of those peppers instead. All of this was really easy. It took less than an hour to prepare everything and it was also delicious, nutritious and satisfying.

Thank-you to our neighbor to the South for the inspiration and a good friend who is finally official!

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

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Chickenless Salad Wraps

This was an inappropriately easy dinner. We’ve been busy trying to find a friend for our bunny so we haven’t had a lot of time to make anything elaborate. All we did was combine the following:

2 cups soy curls

1 cube bouillon

1/2 tsp herbes de Provence

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We covered them in water and microwaved one minute at a time until the water was absorbed. Then I added 2 tbsp vegan mayonnaise and a generous squeeze of lemon juice.

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We added it to a wrap with some spinach (I added that after I took this picture), home-grown sprouts, tomato and bell pepper.

It was sweet, savory, crispy, chewy, and satisfying.

This is Christie, signing off!

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Sesame Citrus Salad Starring KALE!

This was an afternoon salad for me and Brent when we were both home and wanted a snack that was more significant than a pickle. Brent peeled 3 mandarin oranges and prepared some soy curls.

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I tore up some red and green kale and washed it.

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I tossed it together with sesame seeds and a tangy citrus dressing and threw in the orange slices and soy curls for an easy tasty treat.

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It was much more filling than either of us had anticipated. I think just about any citrus dressing would do but we used a local specialty: tangerine vinaigrette.

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The orange, green and purple were also visually stunning and I love when food nourishes your mind AND your body so I’m a fan. Let me know what your variation on this theme is.

This is Christie, signing off!

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Breakfast Wrap

This particular item more resembles dessert than breakfast but the nutritional profile doesn’t disappoint. All I did was take a flax gluten-free tortilla and topped it with the following

1 tbsp chocolate peanut butter (I used Peanut Butter and Co. but really any vegan nut butter will do)

2 tbsp dried blueberries (dried cranberries or raisins would work well too)

1/2  banana, sliced

1/4 apple, sliced

1/4 cup granola (I used Cascadian Farms)

I microwaved it for 20 seconds so it would soften and then ate it… It kept me full until lunch time. The crisp acidic apple and the soft sweet banana were perfectly balanced with the chewy blueberries and nutty chocolate crunch of the granola and peanut butter. Next time I might add some slivered almonds.

This is Christie, signing off!

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Leftover rescue: Veggie Fried Rice!

We ordered some Thai food and were left with huge quantities of leftover rice. I’m not one to waste food so we decided to make it into a delicious meal. Usually we throw all of our leftover veggies into a lasagna but rice gave us a good reason for change.
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I combined some carrots that we shredded in our food processor with some flake red pepper, chopped onion and a couple of teaspoons of corn oil. I stirred it in our wok (thanks to my big sister for the awesome gift!) until the onion became translucent.
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Then I added some soy curls (use seitan if you’re sensitive to soy) and shitake mushrooms that Brent had reconstituted in our microwave with some bouillon and some frozen peas and julienne zucchini. When that had all gotten hot and steamy and the zucchini was soft.

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Then I dumped in our rice and seasoned it to taste with teryaki and tamari sauce.

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It made a great dinner, leftovers and might benefit from some pseudo-shrimp and sesame seeds when we make it again. It was so easy, I don’t think we’ll be able to resist the urge.

This is Christie and Brent, signing off!

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Easy Vegan Breakfast on the CHEAP!

I get up kind of early… okay not that early. I mostly get up to watch the bunnies bounce around and have coffee with Brent before I head off to the laboratory. For the record, my older sister turned me on to this and THANK-YOU! I keep the ingredients for my breakfast in my desk. by the time I get to work I’m starting to get hungry so it’s the perfect time while I wait for my experiments to get going.
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This is all you need:
1/2 cup rolled oats (my Bag of Bob’s Red Mill cost me just shy of $4)
pumpkin pie seasoning or cinnamon (this little jar cost me $.99)
1 tsp rice nectar (the jar cost me $5)
1-2 tbsp raisins (the tub cost me $5)
1 cup of water
a pinch of salt

I microwave the oats, water, spice, salt and nectar at 30 second intervals until it starts to bubble up and get thick and creamy. Sometimes I add a touch of almond milk but it isn’t necessary. Then I throw in the raisins and know I’m getting some awesome heart healthy oats in a delicious breakfast that takes moments to make even when your brain is on auto-pilot.

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The other beauty of this breakfast is that it contains about 280 calories, has a low-glycemic index and a heap of filling fiber for a very low cost. I like the texture of Bob’s Red Mill oats best but the generic store brand costs a mere $2 for a large tub. Each bag of oats lasts at least 3 weeks and tub of raisins lasts me at least 6 weeks. Try doing that with bacon and eggs and still having money leftover for your Lipitor!

This is Christie, signing off.

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Tempeh Fajita Wraps

So we’re still on a wrap kick and so Brent decided to marinate some tempeh in some tamari, garlic and flake red pepper.
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I sauteed up with some purple onion, jalapeño, poblano pepper and a bit of corn oil.I like poblanos because they’re lightly spicy and don’t get bitter when cooked like bell peppers do.

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As the onion and pepper began to soften I added in the tempeh and stirred it all up until it was steamy and hot. I added the rest of the marinade too: it helped season the onion and pepper as well as providing some liquid to steam the veggies and keep them from scorching.

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Brent was busy making some saffron rice while I was doing this. We used a store bought baggie of Vigo saffron rice that cost us $1.89. It’s delicious all by itself.

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We chopped up some cilantro, red bell pepper and avocado to decorate our delicious fajitas with and ended up with a highly nutritious meal that was packed with flavor.

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Brent added some Daiya to his and I included some flake red pepper.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

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Perfectly Easy Tempeh Bacon

I’ve been working really hard lately and haven’t had time to really cook or even enjoy my meals. My family and my co-workers have been taking good care of me, cooking some meals for me or bringing in vegan sandwiches for lunch. I’m lucky and grateful! But today, before I continue working some more, I wanted to make myself a satisfying breakfast.

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Tempeh and I haven’t always been good friends. I eat it but I’m often underwhelmed by it. Today, I tried out something different and super easy. I cooked the tempeh with a mixture of 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tsp of maple syrup, and a dash of liquid smoke.

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It looks and smells pretty as it cooks. For you Filipinos out there, I think this is a great (though less garlicky) alternative to longanisa that doesn’t take a lot of effort or require hours of marinating time. This would have been great with some garlicky fried rice, but I’ve had a lot of rice lately. So I roasted some potato straws instead, sprinkling them with garlic salt. I completed the meal by making a tomato salad, seasoned with salt and pepper.

Really easy. Really satisfying. Now feeling really energized to get started on all the work I need to get done today! –Melissa

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365 Organic Lentil Soup

When I go to Whole Foods these days, it’s usually because I’m on the hunt for something very specific that I can’t find anywhere else, or because it’s the most convenient place to go for certain items. Examples include Chicago Diner vegan desserts (which are available in Whole Foods stores throughout the Midwest) or a Field Roast or Tofurky frozen pizza (I want it when I want it). One really nice thing that Whole Foods does is offer coupons that are actually very decent deals. I end up trying new things because I have a coupon. One new thing that I tried recently was 365 Organic Lentil Soup.

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I bought a 2-serving size “juice box” style package of the soup. The box isn’t resealable like most other soup boxes I had seen, so I had to split the contents into two containers which equaled two lunches. That was mildly annoying. It would have been nice to keep the box in the fridge at work. I will say that the packaging does have a clever way of being opened that results in zero to minimal mess and easy pouring.

The soup itself tasted OK. One serving size was a perfect lunch portion for me. It had a decent amount of lentils with some carrots and celery in the mix. No extra seasoning was needed. All I had to do was heat it in the microwave for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. It was a good meal, but nothing spectacular. It’s nothing more or less than what one would expect from a pre-packaged soup.  I didn’t pay much attention to the ingredients but I did find myself wondering what preservatives were in there in order for the soup to stay fresh while it was sitting in my pantry for a month.

If these are on sale or I come across another coupon, I will likely buy a box or two. It makes a really easy lunch when I have zero time to cook or prepare anything. It’s also cheaper than buying soup at a restaurant or in the cafe, and that’s if I can even find a vegan soup. When I do have time, and I should really make time, I’ll follow Christie’s lentil soup recipe which looks and tastes much better. Homemade is best! –Melissa

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