I know it isn’t Taco Tuesday but hey, tomorrow is Tuesday so maybe you can use this recipe for your taco cravings!
Vegan and Gluten Free!
- Hard taco shells (you can certainly use soft ones, if you prefer)
- 1/2 brick of firm tofu-use a fork to crumble into a ‘scramble’ like consistency
- 1 can of black beans-rinsed and drained.
- 1/2 onion-diced
- 1/2 green pepper-diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp turmeric paste
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper (if you like it!)
- salt to taste
- vegan cheese, salsa, greens to garnish.
- Heat oven to 350 F and put the shells in for 5 minutes to crisp, if you are using the hard shell.
- Heat the olive oil in a fry pan on medium.
- Put the onions and peppers in the pan with oil.
- Cook onions and peppers for 5 minutes.
- Put in the crumbled tofu in and black beans. Mix thoroughly.
- Add all the spices and mix again.
- Cook for 10 minutes to get the spices all mixed and the beans and tofu heated up.
- Fill the taco shells and garnish with vegan cheese, salsa, hot sauce and greens!
Yup, it’s cold!
I wanted soup and only had one fairly large sweet potato. I didn’t think that would be enough to make a good pot of soup with so I grabbed a couple of medium sized white potatoes I had and used them too.
WHAMMO…..Two potato soup!
I added some curry, turmeric and some cayenne pepper just to add some more heat.
I must say, this soup turned out better than I had anticipated…so I thought I’d share it with you all.
- one medium sized sweet potato
- two medium sized white potatoes
- half a white onion, sliced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tbsp curry powder (make this a healthy dose to make sure the potatoes are covered)
- 6 cups of water or broth (I used water this time and it was very thick and creamy anyhow)
- dash of salt and pepper
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- In a large pot, put in your olive oil on medium heat.
- Cut up the onion and put into the heated oil. Stir and cook to soften the onion.
- Once the sweet potato and white potato are peeled and cubed, toss them into the pot with the onions. Stir to combine with the onions.
- Put in the spices. Stir and coat the potatoes.
- Cook and stir for another 5 minutes on medium heat.
- Add in the water or broth. Stir.
- Continue to cook on medium/high until a smooth boil.
- Turn heat down to low/medium and cook until the potatoes are soft. This took about 20 minutes. I also like to leave the lid off for this part to evaporate a little water if I think there is too much.
- Once the potatoes are cooked, take off heat.
- Let is cool a bit before using immersion blender or pouring into a blender to smooth out the chunks of potato.
All that is left now is to make a yummy piece of toast or bagel (that is what I had last night) and enjoy. The little kick of cayenne will definitely keep the heat going.
Hope you all enjoy this souper easy recipe! Doh!
So…I made a salad one day and then the next day thought…”I bet this would be awesome stuffed into some portabella mushrooms!”
AND IT WAS!!!
This is the salad I started with….
- 1/2 cup brown quinoa
- 1/2 cup black quinoa
- 1/2 yellow pepper cut into small pieces
- 1 heirloom carrot, sliced
- 2 cups of water
- 1 sweet potato, roasted (see the method below)
- 1/4 pomegranate seeds
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp curry powder
- shake of salt
- Peel and cube the sweet potato and put into large bowl. Dash with olive oil, curry powder and salt and mix well. Put onto baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes on 375F. Mix half way through to make sure they cook evenly. Take out when done and let cool.
- In the mean time….put the 2 cups of water in a pot and get it boiling. Once boiling, pour in the quinoa and stir. Cover and turn down to low and cook for about 13 minutes. For some reason the 13 minute mark is usually best.
- Chop up your pepper and carrots and get your pomegranate seeds ready.
- Let the quinoa cool as well before putting into a large bowl and mixing in your roasted sweet potato and other veggies and pomegranate seeds.
- In a small jar or bowl, mix the 2 tbsp olive oil, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, and honey or maple syrup.
- Pour over the mixture and let sit….or eat as is for a salad!
THE NEXT DAY…..
I had a bunch of the salad left and decided it would be awesome to stuff some big old Portabella mushrooms with it for a delicious snack or lunch.
- 4 big old Portabella mushrooms, stems removed
- the salad from above…lol
- 2 tbsp hemp hearts
- 2 tbsp ground almonds
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Preheat oven to 375F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
- Wash and de-stem the mushrooms
- Mix the olive oil and balsamic together and thoroughly brush the mushrooms back and front with the mixture.
- Take your salad and completely cover the upside down mushroom once you have put them on the baking sheet.
- Evenly distribute the hemp hearts and ground almonds on top to make a little crunchy coating.
- Bake for 30 minutes and take out and enjoy!
The lesson learned here is that sometimes one dish you make could morph into something else the next day! Just because we had one thing in mind, doesn’t mean it can’t develop into something else later. Be flexible and welcome the new developments!
STEW PART TWO!!!
Val and I were in stew mode and she came up with a yummy Thai Coconut Curry Stew. Full of Veggies and Tempeh.
If you’re on the road to eating vegetarian/vegan, give Tempeh a try for your protein source. It can be used in so many different ways and it is gluten free as well.
Marinade for Tempeh
- 220 g Tempeh
- 2 tbsp lime juice & 2 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp almond butter
- 2 tbsp tamari
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp shredded ginger
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 tsp crushed red chilis
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- pinch of cinnamon
- *Use 2 tbsp coconut oil for cooking tempeh
Ingredients for Stew
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 shallots, minced
- 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
- 2 tbsp red curry paste
- 1 tbsp Tamari sauce
- juice of 1 fresh lime
- 1 can coconut milk
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced
- 2 medium carrots, sliced
- 3 cups baby bok choy
- *Garnishes: thinly sliced red onion, unsalted peanuts and lime wedges
1. In a medium glass mixing bowl whisk all the ingredients for the marinade together. Cube the tempeh into bite sized pieces and add to bowl and mix until evenly coated. Marinade for at least 30 minutes.
2. Heat a cast iron pan on medium high heat and add 2 tbsp coconut oil. Add the marinaded tempeh to the hot pan and cook until tempeh is golden in colour. Keep an eye on the pan, to ensure the tempeh doesn’t burn. Set tempeh aside.
3. Meanwhile, heat another pan on medium heat and add coconut oil, shallot, garlic, ginger and cook until shallot is tender @ 5 minutes. Stir in red curry paste and cook an additional 2 minutes, stir to prevent burning.
4. Add coconut milk, broth, tamari, maple syrup, turmeric, carrots and mushrooms. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 12 minutes. Add bok choy, lime juice and tempeh, cook another 5 minutes.
Serve in medium sized soup bowls with a lime wedge, chopped peanuts and thinly sliced red onions to garnish.
October is half way over already!
Although the weather hasn’t been too cool yet, it is on the horizon and we know what we are in for!
I was in the mood for some stew and thought I would give a veggie stew a try. You may think that it wouldn’t be as hearty as a meat based stew but it was amazing. Delicious and filling!
What is great about the veggie version is that you can add pretty much whatever veggies you have in the house. This recipe is also vegan as there is no dairy or egg included. AND also Gluten Free!
Enjoy with a nice piece of bread for a warm-you-up fall dinner.
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed into about 2 cm cubes
- 1 large potato, peeled and cubed into about 2 cm cubes
- 1 green pepper, chopped into bite size pieces
- 1 yellow onion, rough chopped into chunky bits
- 2 heirloom carrots, peeled and sliced.
- 2 sprigs of rosemary
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 6 cups of veggie broth
- 2 teaspoons of rice flour
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- In a large pot put the olive oil and put on medium heat.
- Rough chop the onion to give a fairly large piece. Put in the hot oil.
- Let the onions cook until soft.
- Add the rest of the veggies once prepared. Stir and combine them all together.
- Add in 5 cups of the broth and stir.
- Add in the rosemary and salt. Stir.
- In a separate small bowl, add the rice flour and the other cup of broth. Mix until you get a smooth mixture and the flour is combined completely.
- Pour flour mixture into the pot and stir thoroughly.
- Heat to a rolling boil, then turn down and cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through.
- Ladle into a bowl and enjoy!
Well I promised you would see the result of my attempt to veganize The Hungry Elephant‘s Coconut Onion Ring recipe.
They turned out pretty darn good!
Now, I wil probably guess they weren’t as crispy as hers. I got the coating to be crispy but the overall ring was a little wiggly.
Here’s how we did it if you want to give it a go!
- A large spanish onion – cut into rings
- 1 cup of unsweetened, plain Almond Milk
- 1 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup of brown rice flour
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- Cut your onion into rings and separate.
- Mix your almond milk and olive oil and whisk to combine.
- Mix your coconut and rice flour and whisk together.
- Take the rings, one at a time and submerge into the almond milk mixture, then into the coconut mixture. Now, I did a few just one pass through this sequence, but I found the ones that turned out the best had another go around, so do this twice and I think you’ll find they coat a little better.
- Heat up some oil in a fry pan.
- Once you have coated a few, and the oil is hot, put the rings in single layer in your pan just long enough to brown a bit on each side.
- Then put them onto a cookie sheet where you slide them into the oven on Broil.
- I broiled them and they really browned up nicely with a crispy coating on them.
We had fun eating them too!
Thanks again to The Hungry Elephant for the inspiration!
Well I tried out a couple of new recipes this weekend. One did NOT go as planned and was a major flop. It was going to be an upside down Blueberry Banana cake. Just didn’t work. The Blueberries ended up burnt and the cake wasn’t cooked properly. So I said…screw this cake and went out on my bike.
The sun was shining here this weekend and there were some lovely warmer temperature and I had to get out!
Now, if you follow us on Instagram, you would have seen on Saturday morning that I posted some waffles and blueberries we were having for breakfast. I tried out this new brand of frozen fruit called Nude Fruit. Which, you can guess from the name, there is nothing added to these fruits. They are individually frozen so you don’t get a lump of frozen fruit.
Sunday came and I was not going to let the failure of the cake defeat me.
These delicious blueberries were going to be used for something!
They say to stick to what you know. I know donuts.
So how about some Blueberry Vegan and Gluten free donuts?
I made both gluten free and non-gluten free so the recipe will have both options 🙂
1 cup of all purpose flour **to make gluten free, I find that brown rice flour and 1 teaspoon of xantham gum works quite well.
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup of maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup almond or soy milk
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons unsweetened apple sauce (or 1 flax egg) ***I used a flax egg this time
1/4 cup vegan margarine or coconut oil.
1/4 cup of magical blueberries.
- Preheat your oven to 350 F.
- In a bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients together using a whisk.
- In a sauce pan or a glass bowl, mix the wet ingredients together and heat until the margarine or coconut oil is melted. I have found that a glass bowl in the microwave will work as well as a sauce pan on the stove, but just watch that you heat just until the margarine is melted and not any more than that.
- Mix the wet into the dry and mix thoroughly. Then add in the blueberries, just fold them in enough to mix them.
- Into a greased donut pan, put the batter in, preferably pipe it in but will work with a spoon, you will just have to make sure the batter is evenly distributed in the pan.
- Bake 10-15 minutes. The donut should just be golden and spring back at you when you push on them.
- Take out and let cool.
Just look at this beautiful donut!!!
Now for something Fast & Easy!
Salad people. I’m about Salad!
We are always looking for something fast for dinner through the week. You get home from work and have somewhere to be in an hour…what do you make? Also, what can you make that you can take for lunch tomorrow too?
Quinoa-Black Bean-Mango Salad
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 mango
- 1 can black beans
- 3 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt to taste
- 1 cup chopped greens of your choice (today I used Arugula)
- 1/2 English cucumber
- Cook the quinoa as usual. I put 2 cups of water on to boil. Then put in 1 cup of quinoa and turn down the heat to low and cover. Cook for about 13-15 minutes. Take off the heat and fluff up with a fork.
- Chop up the mango in small pieces and the cucumber and the greens
- Drain and rinse well your black beans
- Mix it ALLLL UP!
- Then I put in the lime juice and oil and salt to taste.
Now you can eat it all right away but I kind of like it better cold so it is the perfect lunch for tomorrow as well!!
Heading into the middle of March and we are freezing our buns off here!
March gives us almost every season in one month! This March is no different. We’ve had beautiful warm weather, thunder storms, snow, and now the temperatures have taken a plunge and we are back to bundling up!
Warm up with some Chilli! Val’s Veggie Chilli
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled & chopped
- 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 large carrot, diced
- 1 cup cremini mushrooms, quartered
- 1 medium zucchini, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ cup chili powder
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 small can chick peas, rinsed and drained
- 1 small can great northern beans, rinsed and drained “
- 1 small can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 small can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 ½ cups water
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 2 tbsp dark cocoa powder-try ‘Camino’ brand in health food section for high quality cacao
- large can of diced tomatoes
- juice of one fresh lime
- Avocado for garnish
- In a large pot, warm olive oil over medium heat.
- Add onion, red pepper, grated carrot and saute until onion becomes translucent.
- Stir in garlic, chili powder, cumin seeds, cayenne and pepper.
- Cover and cook over low heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the lid and add mushrooms & zucchini; simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Add remaining ingredients and blend well. Simmer for 40 minutes
- Remove from heat and serve immediately.
- Serve over brown rice and top with diced avocado.
Val’s Veggie Chilli will warm you up on these last cold days of the winter and stick with you, giving you some super energizing goodness!
Let’s take a trip to Scotland and have some soup!
Cock-a-Leekie soup is a comforting and humble soup with simple ingredients, but when they all come together, the soothing blend is delightful. Inspired by the highlands of Scotland and we made it vegetarian!
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 6 medium carrots, chopped
- 2 celery sticks, chopped
- 2 leeks, white parts only, washed well and sliced into thin rounds
- splash of white wine
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp dried
- 1/2 tbsp fresh oregano or 1/4 tsp dried
- 6 cups vegetable stock
- 1/3 cup brown rice
- 1 cup frozen peas
- juice of fresh lemon
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- pepper to taste
- Heat the oil in a large heavy saucepan until warm. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the carrots, celery and leeks and cook for 5 minutes until it all begins to brown.
- Splash in the wine and boil, scraping down the pan. Add the thyme, oregano and bay leaves.Add the vegetable stock and rice. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low.
- Simmer, uncovered for 25 minutes. Add the peas, and continue to cook for another 5 minutes.
- Remove bay leaves, add lemon juice, sea salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve hot with homemade scones or Irish Soda Bread or a hearty gluten free-bread.
It’s Valentine’s Day!!!
How about a Pink Passion Slushie to share with your sweetie?
Not only does this slushie taste yummy…it is chock a block full of awesomeness!
- 3 cups ice
- 2 cups brewed hibiscus tea (2 tea bags/2 cups water), cooled or ideally chilled
- 1 cup pink grapefruit, peeled and chopped (seeds removed)
- 1 cup frozen strawberries
- 1/2 cup pomegranate juice
- 1 tsp Camu Camu powder
- 1 tbsp agave, honey or maple syrup to taste
- *Additional antioxidant boosters: 1/2 tsp Amla powder (Indian Gooseberry)
- 1/2 tsp pomegranate powder
- Brew the hibiscus tea and let steep for 10 minutes. Allow to cool completely before using.
- Place 3 cups ice in a high speed blender, add the hibiscus tea, pomegranate juice, grapefruit, strawberries ,Camu Camu powder and chosen sweetener. Blend on high until smooth.
- Get two straws and share with your special someone…or…drink it all yourself!!
So not only is this yummy and full of deliciousness, this smoothis has some amazing fruits that are sooooo good for you!
Camu Camu is a cherry like fruit from the Amazon Rainforest of Peru which has the highest known source of vitamin C. In 100 grams of fresh fruit, vitamin C content ranges from 1880-2300 mg depending on ripeness.
Vitamin C is incredibly important for immune function, mood regulation, energy and collagen production to name a few. Vitamin C is naturally sour tasting, so blend the powder into your smoothies, raspberry vinaigrettes or add to your energy bars. You can purchase Camu Camu from health food stores, specialty boutiques and online.
Amla, also known as Indian Gooseberry, is a fruit from a deciduous tree native to India. It is considered sacred due to its very high antioxidant, vitamin and mineral content. This cooling herb is a staple in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. Amla fruit is sour tasting due to its high vitamin C and antioxidant content. Its traditionally used to promote longevity, enhance digestion, strengthen the heart to name a few. In India the fruit is eaten raw, pickled or cooked into various dishes, including savoury & sweet. Amla powder is also used to prepare inks, shampoos, and hair oils. The wood from the trees are used to line water wells to provide clean and sweet tasting water for drinking and cooking.
Add Amla powder to your drinking water, smoothies, juices and salad dressings. You can purchase Amla, at health food stores, Indian grocers and online. A good rule of thumb is use 1 tbsp Amla to 8 ounces of liquid.
We hope you all have an amazing Valentine’s Day!!!
Taking a break from soup today and giving you a boost of energy…which we all need in February!
An easy peasy, no bake Pumpkin Spice Energy Balls!
This recipe will give you about 35 energy balls that keep well in the fridge or freezer to be used at just the right time! A mixture of seeds and pumpkin puree (which could be substituted with sweet potato), you’ll get a naturally sweetened treat.
- 1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1/2 cup almonds
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 cup chopped & pitted dates
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ground cloves
- 2 tsp vanilla
- Place the nuts and seeds in a food processor or high speed blender and pulse to chop into a fine meal.
- Pour into a bowl and set aside.
- Pour the remaining ingredients into the food processor and process to chop and blend well.
- Add the nut meal and pulse several times until well combined.
- Scoop mixture into a bowl and freeze for 30 minutes.
- Remove from freezer. Using a small melon ball scoop portion out 1 heaping tbsp at a time and form into balls, rolling with your hands.
- Store in an airtight container in the freezer.
Whip some of these babies up when you need a little sweet pick me up without refined sugar! A great pre-workout lift!
One potato. Two potato. Three potato. Soup!
This soup has sweet potato, new white potato and a red pototo to give a super creamy consistency. Fresh rosemary and a dash of cayanne pepper to add an extra kick!
1 Sweet potato.
2 medium new white potato
2 medium red russet potato
1 spanish onion
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary-taken off stem
1/2 teaspoon of sage
1/2 teaspoon of cayanne pepper
2 cloves of garlic-minced
2 teaspoons of coconut oil
salt to taste
3 cups of vegetable broth
4 cups of water
- Peel and cube all the potatoes. Dice the onions.
- In a large pot, put in the coconut oil and diced onions on medium heat.
- Let the onions cook for a couple of minutes and then add the garlic.
- Cook until the onions are translucent
- Add the potatoes and stir thoroughly.
- Cook for 5 minutes
- Add the broth and water and rosemary and spices.
- Bring to boil.
- Cover and turn heat to medium/low and let simmer for about 20 minutes or until the pototoes are cooked.
- Take off heat and use an immersion blender or let cool a bit and pour into blender to cream the soup to desired creaminess.
Make a piece of toast and pour a bowl of soup!
We were so happy on how this soup turned out. It was creamy, hearty and just the right amount of spice to warm you through and through!