Tag Archives: parsley

Tempeh ala King

It’s always nice when I can recreate a classic without the heart stopping cream and butter and even better when it tastes amazing. This is the story of my interpretation of chicken ala king. You’ll need the following:

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1 package of tempeh, I like LightLife (above)

1 small onion, diced

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

1/2 green bell pepper, diced

1 carton of mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed and sliced

1 carton of silken tofu or a cup of dry cashews soaked overnight, blended to a smooth creamy texture adding water as necessary

1 pinch nutmeg

1 pinch cayenne

1 pinch thyme

1 cube of veggie bouillon (chicken style works well here) dissolved in 1/2 cup of water

1/4 cup of sherry or red wine

olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Add some olive oil to a fry pan, sprinkle it with salt and pepper and put the tempeh in it and rub it around to coat the tempeh on both sides. Now apply heat, turn the tempeh to lightly brown each side.

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Set the tempeh aside on a plate. Let the pan cool for 2-3 minutes and then add the wine or sherry and mushrooms.

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The mushrooms will start to turn purple. Reduce them and then add the onion and mix well until the onion starts to soften.

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Add the bouillon and creamy tofu or cashews and mix well. Stir in the spices and adjust them to your taste. Reduce over low heat, stirring frequently. When you’re getting ready to call in your hungry self, friends or family put the tempeh and bell pepper and let it heat thoroughly.

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Brent made some rice pasta while I was cooking up the tempeh and sauce so we served this dish over linguini. Rice or mashed potatoes would be good too.

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Some chopped parsley or green onion would make an awesome garnish but it’s pretty all by itself and packed with flavor and good nutrition. Let me know if you get to try it and hopefully you’ll like it as much as we did.

This is Christie and Brent, signing off.

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Kafta? Kefta? Kofta? All that matters is that it’s vegan!

You may recall that I went to Pita Inn for lunch on my birthday and, while I loved the falafel that I had, I couldn’t help but be a tiny bit envious of my friends and the delicious smelling meat dishes they were eating. So, I made vegan kefta kabob.

Traditional kefta kabob is usually ground beef seasoned with parsley and onion. I substituted with Gimme Lean Ground Beef, and I plan to try it out with seitan and tempeh in the future. The recipe below makes about 2 servings.

Vegan Kefta Kabob

1/2 lb ground “meat”
1/4 onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, roasted and chopped.
1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
1/4 tsp cumin
pinch of coriander
Sea salt
olive oil (if frying)

I mixed all the ingredients in a bowl and mashed them together. Then I put the mixture in the fridge to sit for about an hour.

I formed the “meat” into small patties. Kefta kabobs are usually put on a skewer and grilled. I thought about putting these in the oven, but opted to fry them since the “meat” is very lean.

I fried them in olive oil for about 3-4 minutes on each side.

I served the kefta with some roasted tomato and onion and dill rice.

The recipe is good enough as is, though I plan to use more garlic and add fresh ground pepper to the mix. I also need to try and replicate the awesome hot sauce from Pita Inn!

I love veganizing my favorites! –Melissa

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Raw Vegan Crackers 2.0

Brent and I manage to juice more often and that’s fine with me. I’m writing this because our cracker recipe has gotten more complicated and more delicious! Our juice varies but usually involves some combination of spinach, kale, parsley, mint, basil, apples, oranges, lemon, ginger root, carrots, celery, mango, beets and cucumber. When we don’t have time to make crackers, we just throw the pulp into a baggie and freeze it.

The ratios don’t matter much, but you’ll find the stronger flavors will come out (celery in particular) in the crackers and will complement the spices well. If you’re not using any sweet fruits or vegetables, you might consider adding a little molasses. Typically we juice everything that we can make into crackers (which is just about everything except for cucumber) and then empty the pulp into our blender. If you’ve made enough juice for one person you’ll add the following (and this doubles nicely)
1/3 cup of flax meal
2-4 teaspoons of soy sauce or suitable substitute
2-3 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp flake red pepper
water as needed
We blend this up until the consistency is uniform and somewhere between a batter and a dough. Taste it and adjust the seasonings. It took me a while to get used to the idea of eating this raw or dehydrated so I understand if you’re wary. We use a spatula to spread it into the non-stick trays that go with our dehydrator and let it go overnight.

Sometimes I sprinkle sesame seeds on top but this isn’t necessary. You’ll have to put some pressure on each seed to make sure they don’t fall off once the crackers are dry. It’ll take some time adjusting the thickness of the dough when you spread it out in your dehydrator but you’ll end up with light crispy crackers that are great for you and awesome with hummus, bean dip or spinach artichoke dip. We store them in a giant plastic bag to keep the Miami humidity from softening them.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

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Tahini Lemon Cauliflower

Simple, easy, delicious. That’s what I strive for. Here’s what you need:

One head cauliflower, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp tahini
2 tsp lemon juice
4 tbsp water
salt
olive oil

Put some olive oil in a pan, add the cauliflower and some salt, and brown the cauliflower. You can add a bit of water for a more “steamed” vegetable… I did not. Remove the cauliflower from the pan and set aside.

I didn’t take any photos of this next step, but add some more olive oil to the same pan, and then brown the garlic a bit. Add the tahini, lemon juice, and water. Add a bit more salt if you’d like. Let it simmer for a few minutes, stirring often, and then turn off the heat. Add the cauliflower back to the pan and coat it with the sauce.

Sprinkle some parsley on the cauliflower and serve. I’m betting that mint would be a great garnish for this dish as well. Experiment!

Happy veggie eating… Melissa

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Fantastic Falafel

I talk to myself when I’m driving. Here’s what I said to myself on my drive home from work: What will I have for dinner? Hmm. There’s eggplant in the fridge. And there’s tahini. I can make baba ghanouj. But then I have to pick up pita bread. Oooh! Falafel! I’ll make falafel!

And so I did.

I tried making falafel once before, and I was also recently very intrigued by Christie and Brent’s Pakora. I really wanted something simple and fried — been craving fried stuff lately — so I decided to try improving on the recipe I used before, which was straight from the good folks at Bob’s Red Mill.

Melissa’s Fantastic Falafel (that’s not too braggy, right?)

1 cup garbanzo bean flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin (I added a hefty 1/2 tsp)
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
1 tsp fresh cilantro, minced
2  garlic cloves, minced
1/3 to 1/2 cup hot water
oil for frying

I put all my dry and fresh ingredients into a bowl.

I added the water, mixed it all together, and this lovely ball of dough formed. After my traumatizing baking experience over the weekend, I was cautious with adding the water, and found that 1/3 cup was the perfect amount I needed (probably due to how I measured the flour).

I wanted the dough to sit for awhile so the flavors could meld together, so while it was chillin’ like a villain, I made my baba ghanouj.

Melissa’s Baba Ghanouj for People Who Live Alone

1 eggplant, roasted and skinned, but keep the skins on if you want
1 garlic clove
1 tbsp tahini
1tsp lemon juice
fresh parsely leaves from 3 sprigs or so

Stick all that stuff in a food processor. Tip – you might want to mince the garlic. I didn’t. You may also want to cut down on the garlic. Let me just say that I have kickass breath right now. Hhhaaahhhhh. See?! That, along with the fact that this only serves one, is why I named the recipe the way I did.

Going back to my falafel dough, I formed some falafel balls, rolled them in some sesame seeds, and then fried them until they were golden brown — about 2 -3 minutes on each side turning 3 times for luck. These look fine but were kind of a fail: my intention was to make falafel ‘bites’ so I should have formed smaller balls. *pause for laughter* Tip: You can bake instead of fry if you wish.

Oh hi! It’s my face! If you had been here after I took this first bite, you would have heard me exclaim a bunch of “OH MY GOD”s. Finally: falafel that I can be proud of! It is 300% better than my last attempt. If my favorite falafel place ever closes, I won’t cry because I know I can make some that are just as tasty.

Happy happy happy! –Melissa

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Easy Veggie Paella

To an omnivore, this is vegetable rice. To a vegan, this is paella. I’m using olives in this recipe as my interpretation of mussels: they’re black (who really cares about mussels… I love the color contrast) and have to be pitted before you can eat them just like you have to shell a mussel… kind of. The Brussels sprouts are just there for fun and tofu makes a nice addition if you’re feeling like it. I would marinade it in lemon juice and cumin with a touch of syrup but we decided on skipping the tofu tonight. We started with the following.
6-10 Brussels sprouts (quartered)
1 cup of dry white wine
3 tbsp of olive oil
1/2 cup black olives
1/4 white onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1/4 lbs of peas
Sweet paprika
1 1/2 cups of long grain
1/4 teaspoon of saffron
1 1/2 liters of vegetable stock (from bouillon cubes is fine)
2 tablespoons of minced parsley
I would start by mixing the saffron into the broth and bring it to a boil. In our kitchen, cooking rice and pasta is Brent’s job. He’s much more patient than I am and makes lovely rice and pasta. I stir it too much and end up with a mooshy sticky mess. Add the rice and stir once. Lower the heat and let it boil without stirring. While this was happening, there’s plenty of time for chopping up the veggies and cooking them. Now that the rice is cooking, on to the veggies!
Warm the wine and olive oil with the parsley, paprika, onion and garlic at low heat. Let them simmer until the onion starts to become translucent and then add the peas, olives and bell pepper. When that’s simmered for about 5-8 minutes and the bell peppers are starting to get soft, add the sprouts and toss lightly until they’re just past the bright green stage.
When the top of the rice starts to dry, plop the veggies onto the rice (except for a handful of Brussels sprouts if you want something really pretty). Let them cook for other 10 minutes. Stir the veggies under the rice, using a spatula. Arrange the sprouts on top.
Note on ingredients: the “peas” we added weren’t peas at all. I bought them at my farmer’s market and asked when I paid for them what they were. The guy told me “peas” but they are definitely broad beans. They’re a fine substitute for peas but next time I’ll use the real thing.
EAT IT! This is a fast delicious healthy meal that is sure to please. It’s also got a stunning mix of colors that’s sure to impress whether you fuss over it and arrange the veggies or not.
This is Christie and Brent, signing off.
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Great big raw green dinner!

I am getting ready to go out of town and I wanted to make sure nothing in my kitchen spoiled. I had some weird foods: Spinach, kumquats, yellow zucchini and avocado. What am I supposed to do with that!? Because this was an experiment I didn’t take as many pictures as I would normally like but it was good I decided to share.

I decided to julienne the zucchini and mixed that with some sun dried tomato and mixed it with 1/3 of my avocado as a binding agent. I also added a pinch of sea salt and a tablespoon of nutritional yeast.

I mooshed it into a mold and put it into the freezer while I did the next part. I chopped up the kumquats, a big bunch of mint leaves, and again mixed that with 1/3 of my avocado.

Next I took the rest of the herbs in my fridge (parsley, basil, and dill) and put the stems and leaves into my blender with a generous tablespoon of tahini, the remaining 1/3 of the avocado, juice from 2 lemons and 1 lime, and a little bit of almond milk until the flavor was balanced as a dressing. I blended it until it came out nice and creamy.

I covered a plate in spinach, put my chilled zucchini mixture onto that and then spooned the kumquat mint relish onto the sides. I added a quick drizzle of my tahini herb dressing and sat down to a healthy raw vegan dinner.

The mellow flavors of the zucchini and sun dried tomato were a good base for the tangy, sweet mint kumquat relish. The herb tahini dressing was really good but I think it brought too many flavors into the dish. The avocado brought the whole thing together as a common element in all the parts and the spinach helped me get it into my mouth. I think if I do this again, I might try adding some raw garlic to the zucchini and save the herb tahini dressing for plain spinach salads.

Experimenting is probably my favorite part of being vegan. I hope you get to experiment a little. The more you do it, the more things will ‘work out’ instead of being composted. Good luck!

 

This is Christie, signing off.

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Tabouleh… gesundheit…?

Tabouleh is an awesome snack, exotic salad or side dish that’s relatively simple to prepare and sure to impress. You can use traditional bulgur if you want but I can’t make any recommendations on how to prepare it.I make mine with quinoa because of the whole gluten thing and this is my interpretation of the traditional dish. Parsley is the star in this dish: it’s a great home remedy for bad breath (truly, it works… don’t tell my boyfriend) so if you’re inviting that good looking soul with the gnarly breath over for dinner, consider this bad boy for your appetizer. You’ll need the following:

1/2 onion, diced

1/2 cup quinoa

1 cup  water

1/2 lemon

1 generous bunch of parsley

1 tomato, diced

2 tbsp chopped mint (optional, but makes it very authentic)

pinch of sea salt

pinch of pepper (optional)

1 tsp olive oil

Combine the quinoa, olive oil and the water in a microwave safe dish and microwave at 2 minute intervals until the water is absorbed. Here’s my quinoa in the microwave… don’t judge me. I’m a little lazy.

Meanwhile, chop up the parsley (make sure it’s well rinsed so there’s no grit in your tabouleh), mint if you’re adding it, tomato and onion.

Put the tomato and greens in a bowl.

Add the onion to the quinoa after the liquid is absorbed and microwave another 2 minutes, until it starts to get soft. The onion will add some sweetness to balance the tart lemon and herbal parsley. Combine the tomato and parsley with the hot quinoa, sprinkle salt, and squeeze the lemon over the top. The heat will cause the parsley to wilt slightly and take on the flavors of the dish.

Mix again and refrigerate until you’re ready. I think it’s better cold, but warm pleases too.

This is Christie, signing off.

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