Friday, June 28, 2013

Vegan Pigs-in-Blankets


 Ever since we went camping last weekend and I didn't get a chance to roast my vegan-dogs, I have been wanting pigs-in-blankets all week.  I finally got around to making them for lunch today.  I was going to try to be all fancy and make the dough from scratch, but then decided it was too hot and I was too lazy for that kind of nonsense, so I just bought two tubes of  Pillsbury crescent roll dough.  The veggie dogs are an old-time favorite from Loma Linda foods:  Linkettes.

So pretty much this meal was all sorts of processed stuff, but we'll just ignore that right now, and just enjoy this special treat.  Besides, haven't we been eating those wonderful, fresh salads and zucchini dishes all week?  I did add some carrots and celery sticks to the plate with the pigs-in-blankets.  There we go.  I made some big ones and some bit-sized ones.  I also added a little shredded vegan cheese for a kick.   

Also, the paper plates are because for some reason all the regular plates were in the dishwasher, and mostly we didn't feel like doing anymore dishes for the time being.

PS -- I'm not sure why the layout of this post is all weird and there's all that blank space at the beginning.  I can't seem to fix it.  Oh well. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Roasted Golden-Beet and Avocado Salad

I could really get into this fancy salad thing!  These Martha Stewart salad recipes have been amazing this week!  This is another one that called for a roasted vegetable.  As easy and carefree you might think a salad is (and cook-free), these salads are quite intense.  I followed the instructions on roasting the beets, but after 45 minutes in the boiling hot oven, they were still hard as a rock.  Will suggested we just microwave them, so five minutes later we had softened, golden-beet wedges.  Thank you.  While Will was peeling the skins off the beets he recalled the beet sliders he had made once before and suggested we should make those for 4th of July.  Sounds good to me!  

Anyway, back to the salad:  Instead of watercress, which the recipe calls for, I just used baby Romaine and arugula.  I also forget to get radishes, but that would have been a great addition.  I left out the cheese, but everything else was there -- avocado, chives, oil and red-wine vinegar.  Oh, and I added a little fresh parsley to the dressing.  YUM!  This was the best salad yet!

Click here for the recipe from Martha Stewart.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Roasted Red Pepper and White Bean Salad

It is summer, and it is hot.  Time to start making some fancy salads.  This one is straight from my Martha Stewart magazine.  It calls for anchovies, but I just left those and the cheese out, added some green olives instead.  Although it's really hot right now, and I shouldn't be turning on the oven, this did call for the fresh red bell peppers to be roasted.  So I had to turn on the broiler and roast them!  Oh well, I don't mind.  It was an amazing salad and quite filling.  We both enjoyed it on a hot summer's evening. 

Click here for Martha's recipe.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Black Bean and Zucchini Quesadillas

Continuing to put the zucchini to good use, I made quesadillas with them.  This meal was so good, I made it again later in the week.  Of course I used vegan cheese, but everything just went together really well and I swear these are the best quesadillas EVER.

Whole grain tortillas
Follow your Heart vegan cheddar cheese
Sliced black olives
Sliced grape tomatoes
Chopped fresh zucchini
Chopped onion

Lightly butter one side of the tortilla, place in skillet.  Put all ingredients on top of tortilla, fold in half and let cook until vegan cheese is nice and melty.  Gobble down and enjoy.

I also made a corn, zucchini and black bean salad.  Mix in some onions, salsa, and Tapa Tio and you have a great side to go with the quesadillas.  I am loving this zucchini!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Zucchini, Sweet Potato and Spaghetti

Amy and Hugh gave us a huge zucchini fresh from their garden so I was excited to put it to use today.  What to make, what to make?  I wanted to do something different.  I surveyed my ingredients and came up with this pasta dish.  It was inspired from this website, but I took a totally different spin.

My tomato sauce ingredients:
1 whole tomato
Green olives
Black olives
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

I blended all that together in a food processor and set it aside while the spaghetti cooked.

In the meantime, I shredded the sweet potato and 1/4 of the zucchini (it was a really big zucchini) in my KitchenAid. 

Sauted the veggies in skillet over medium heat with vegetable broth, not oil.

When everything was ready, I just mixed the sauce, veggies, and pasta all together and served!

Very easy. 

And it was quite satisfactory for everyone in the household :)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Pasta Salad for Camping

We're going to our favorite campsite on the beach this weekend, so I made some pasta salad for the festivities.  I also plan to make potato salad, but still need to get ingredients for that.

Other things on the menu will be veggie wraps, avocado sliders, grilled veggie-dogs, hummus and chips, etc., etc.  I'm sure I will post more about that after the weekend.

This pasta salad included the following ingredients:

Tri-color spiral pasta
Tomato/Carrot farfalle
Roasted red peppers
Black olives
Green olives
Artichoke hearts
Sun dried tomatoes

1/2 cup olive oil
1/8 cup lemon juice
1/8 cup oil/juice from artichoke jar
1 garlic clove crushed
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard seed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

 I taste-tested of course and it is delicious!  Can't wait to chow down at the campsite later!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Asian Food Week

I have been majorly craving Asian food this week.  As in, I want it for every single meal.  I'm not even joking.

We went to Kim's Vietnamese restaurant in Encinitas to get my fix.  I love Kim's.  They advertise on a sign outside their restaurant that they have over 50 vegetarian items on their menu.  And it's true!  Every time I go there, I get to try something different and every time it's equally amazing and exactly what I want!  This time I got vegetable chop suey with mock chicken.  Delish.  Thank you Kim's! 

Kim's was EXACTLY what I wanted, but still didn't satisfy my craving.  I was just going to have to make my own versions of Asian food at home!

First up was a favorite dish I've made before from Chloe's Kitchen.  It's called Chinese Takeout Chow Mein, and it is REALLY good.  I don't know why I've waited this long to make it again.  I didn't take a picture because I was too anxious to start scarfing it down, but here's a picture of the first time I made it.  It looked a little different, but it's pretty much the same.

 For lunch the next day I ate an entire bag of Trader Joe's Kimchi Fried Rice.  Love this stuff so much.  I also ate a carton of seaweed snack strips from Trader Joes.

 That next day for dinner I made stir-fried snow peas and bok choy, with tofu and another bag of Kimchi fried rice.  I marinated everything in mushroom sauce and Annie Chun's Korean Sweet and Spicy sauce.

I can't get enough!  As I write this, my mouth is still watering for more Asian food.  Guess what will be on the menu for tonight?

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Avocado Hummus

I was flipping through Chloe's Kitchen trying to decide what I felt like eating this week, and I saw this recipe for avocado hummus.  It was actually part of another bigger recipe for Falafel burgers.  I didn't want to whole burger, but as soon as I saw that avocado goodness, I wanted it!  Luckily I had the ingredients, so I pretty much made it right away and ate it with some corn chips.  Amazing.  It's like guacamole, but different.  Not spicy, but super creamy and delicious. 

Just take some garbanzo beans, olive oil, garlic, salt, lemon juice, and avocado, and blend it all up.  Look in Chloe's book for the actual recipe.  Yum.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Vegan Viewing Party

 My friend Tara came over to watch the season premier of one of our favorite shows.  We had been planning this for months -- we are both veggie-lovers and couldn't wait to have a totally vegan viewing party during this show!  I made the entree and salad, and she brought over freshly made green juice, chips, and homemade cookies with her amazing vegan frosting! 

The pasta dish I made is penne with garlic, onions, white beans, chard and grape tomatoes.  I read somewhere that it is traditional in Italy to serve pasta and beans when friends come to visit, so I thought this was a perfect dish to serve and enjoy with Tara.