Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Strawberry Oatmeal Pancakes

This past semester I haven't had class on Fridays, so almost every Friday morning I've been making a delicious pancake breakfast for myself and my boyfriend. However, these pancake breakfasts haven't been helping my goal of eating healthy. So I did some searching on the internet and combined several recipes I found to make some vegan oatmeal pancakes, which are so delicious I forget that they're healthy. Combine that with some fresh, organic strawberries I bought directly from a local farmer and I think it just might be the best breakfast ever.

Strawberry Oatmeal Pancakes:

  • 3/4 cup of oats
  • 1 1/2 cups plus two tablespoons of almond milk, divided (rice or soy will work fine)
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (or regular white vinegar)
  • 3/4 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 banana, mashed
  • 2 tablespoons vegan margarine, melted
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 8 ounces strawberries, sliced
In a small bowl mix 3/4 cup of milk with the vinegar and let it stand for about 5 minutes. In the milk mixture mix in the oats and let soak for 10 minutes. In a different bowl mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Stir in banana, margarine, brown sugar, 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of milk, and oat mixture into the flour until just combined. Fold in the strawberries. In a pan or on a griddle, melt some margarine over medium heat and pour the batter by 1/4 full. When the edges are firm and the batter is bubbly, flip the pancakes. Cook for another minute or so until golden on each side. Garnish with some extra strawberries and serve with some maple syrup.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Irish Soda Bread

Happy (belated) St. Patrick's Day! In honor of the occasion, I made some Irish soda bread. I can't claim this recipe as my own, but it did come out pretty tasty so I thought I'd share it with you. The recipe can be found here. I would recommend slicing it up while warm and serving it with some butter and jam. The recipe isn't vegan, but I promise a vegan-ization of this recipe in the near future.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Roasted *Organic* Golden Beets

Until yesterday, I had never eaten a beet before. For a while my mom was really into making juice in the morning and she would put beets in the juice, but as far as eating one, I never had. I've lived a sad nineteen years. Yesterday, my mom and I went to the West Palm Beach Green Market. I highly recommend this market. They have some great vendors, pastries galore, and a wonderful selection of produce. While my mom and I were browsing we saw organic golden beets, which we have never seen in our local grocery store, and therefore we have never eaten. We decided to buy them and roasted them for a snack/lunch. A little sweet and a whole lot delicious, I highly recommend this incredibly simple recipe.

Roasted Golden Beets:
  • 3-4 golden beets
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
Preheat your oven to 350. Leave the skins on the beets and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste. Place on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 1 to 1 1/4 hours, until tender. Take the beets out of the oven. When the beets cool, peel and slice them. Garnish with some fresh herbs (that's thyme in the picture). Eat and enjoy!

Some tips:
  • I haven't tried this with regular purple beets, but I'm sure it's equally delicious
  • To determine if the beets are done, slide in a knife. If the beets are tender, you should meet no resistance.
  • I am now in love with golden beets, so check back for other recipes with this great vegetable.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Kale with White Beans and Polenta

When I tell people I've just met that I'm a vegetarian they generally assume that I eat a lot of salad and love my vegetables. But I have a confession to make. I'm a pretty picky eater, especially when it comes to my vegetables. And I don't really like salad. But since becoming a vegetarian I've tried to try as many vegetables as possible. I've found out that I'm not as picky as I once was. It's funny how for your whole life you convince yourself you don't like something, then you try it and feel like an idiot because you realize you've been missing out for a very long time. Kale is one of those vegetables. Leafy greens used to totally freak me out, but I am now officially in love with kale. This dish is healthy, delicious, and totally satisfying.

Kale with White Beans:

  • 1 large bunch of kale
  • 1 19 ounce can of white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup of vegetable broth
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, rinse the kale and slice into strips (hold onto the stem and pull down, whatever comes off it good to eat). When the water is boiling, drop in the kale, stir once, and put the lid back on. Cook the kale for about 15 minutes, until tender.

While the kale is cooking, coat a saute pan with olive oil. Begin sauteing the onion and garlic. Stir in the tomato paste and the red pepper flakes. Pour in the tomatoes, including the liquid. Let the mixture simmer then stir in the rinsed beans. Season with salt and pepper.

By now, the kale should be done. Drain the kale and put in with the beans and tomatoes. Pour in the vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and let the liquid reduce, tossing the kale and beans. When the liquid has reduced and thickened, drizzle with a little bit of olive oil.


Polenta:

  • 1 log of precooked polenta (found in the produce aisle with the tofu)
Slice the polenta into 1/2 inch thick slices. Heat a small saute pan with some olive oil. Cook the polenta slices until slightly crispy or light brown on both sides. Put the polenta on a plate and top with the kale and beans. Start cooking the polenta while the liquid is reducing in the kale mixture.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Penne with Garlicky Butternut Squash


What do I love as much as pasta? Garlic. What do I love more than pasta with a whole lot of garlic? Nothing comes to mind. So this weekend, while I was reading through recipes trying to figure out what to do with my butternut squash besides soup I ran across this recipe for penne with garlicky butternut squash. I saw the recipe I knew immediately I had to try it. Not only was it super delicious but it was simple and I already had all of the ingredients in my pantry.

Penne with Garlicky Butternut Squash:

  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1 (1 1/2 pound) butternut squash, diced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 - 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon powdered sage
  • Salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound of penne (I prefer whole wheat)
  • Nutritional yeast
  • *2-3 tablespoons of vegan margarine
  • *2-3 teaspoons of garlic powder, divided
Bring a large pot full of water to a boil. Drop the penne and cook until your preferred tenderness. Once the pasta is done cooking, drain, reserve some of the pasta water, and return the pasta to the pot. *Toss the pasta with the margarine, half of the garlic powder, and nutritional yeast. While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Toss in the squash and saute for five minutes, until it begins to get golden. Sprinkle in the garlic and saute 2 minutes. Pour in 1/2 of the veggie broth, and cover the pan. Periodically check the pan for the tenderness of the squash. If all the liquid is gone but the squash isn't tender, add more broth and some of the pasta water. Cook the squash until tender, mix in the garlic powder, sage, and nutmeg. Pour the squash mixture into the pasta pot and toss, adding the salt and pepper. Sprinkle on some more nutritional yeast. Serve with some crusty whole grain baguette.

Some tips about this recipe:

  • I went a little easy on the garlic because my boyfriend doesn't love garlic as much as I do. But even he said it needed more! So the 4 cloves is just to start, I probably added about 6 and plan to add more next time. But I really, really love garlic.
  • Don't worry about adding "too much" broth or pasta water because it will make a good sauce.
  • This makes a whole lot of pasta, but make the whole recipe. It's great leftover.
  • The * indicates where I updated the recipe.