Saturday, 6 December 2014

Creamy Asparagus & Lemon Pasta

I need to stop looking on Pinterest because I just end up with 1000 recipes I want to try! I saw this recipe from Minimalist Baker on Pinterest and it was delicious!


Creamy Asparagus & Lemon Pasta
Serves 2-3

Ingredients

1 bunch asparagus (12 ounces), trimmed and washed
Sea salt and black pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Olive oil
3-4 large cloves garlic, minced (~2 Tbsp)
10 ounces gluten free pasta
2.5 cups unsweetened plain almond milk
3-4 Tbsp all brown rice flour
1-2 Tbsp nutritional yeast 


Method

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
Add asparagus to a baking sheet and toss with 1/2 Tbsp olive oil and a pinch each salt and pepper and bake for 20-25 minutes. 
Once finished cooking, remove from oven and roughly chop into thirds.
In the meantime, bring a pot of water to a boil and salt generously.
While the water’s heating, bring a large skillet to medium heat. 
Once hot, add 3 Tbsp olive oil and garlic. 
Whisk and continue cooking for 1-2 minutes or until garlic is just starting to brown.
Add 3 Tbsp flour and whisk. 
Cook for 30 seconds, then whisk in almond milk 1/2 cup at a time. 
Add a pinch salt and pepper to taste and whisk. 
Slightly lower heat and continue cooking to thicken, stirring occasionally.
Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package instructions. Then drain and set aside.
Add nutritional yeast and another pinch of salt and pepper. 
Whisk until creamy and smooth and continue cooking over medium to medium-low heat to thicken.
Once your sauce has reached desired thickness, add the juice of half a lemon and stir.
Add 3/4 of the chopped asparagus and the cooked pasta to the sauce and toss to coat.
Divide between 2-3 serving plates and top with remaining asparagus. 

Brussels Sprout & Shallot Dip

I got this recipe from Minimalist Baker. It was interesting but tasty, the house smelled horrible but the taste of the brussels sprout was nice and mild.


Brussels Sprout & Shallot Dip

Ingredients

2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
2 1/2 cups Brussels sprouts, roughly chopped
1 shallot, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
scant 1/2 cup sour cream (light or regular)
4 ounces (1/2 package) 1/3 fat cream cheese
1 cup low-fat shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese + more for topping
1/4 tsp each sea salt and ground black pepper


Method

Heat a cast iron or oven-safe skillet over medium heat.
Once hot add 1 Tbsp olive oil, shallot and garlic.
Stir constantly as to not to let it burn.
Add Brussels sprouts, 1/4 tsp each sea salt and pepper and stir.
Cook for 3-4 minutes or until tender and slightly wilted and then remove from heat, turning off burner as well.


In a separate bowl mix together sour cream, cream cheese, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese, another pinch of salt and pepper and stir.
Add Brussels sprouts mixture to the bowl and stir until well combined.
Use additional Tbsp olive oil to lightly grease the cast iron so the dip doesn’t stick.
Spoon dip back into the skillet and bake at 375 for 11-13 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Vegan Hollandaise Sauce

I don't remember a lot about what Hollandaise Sauce tasted like but this is pretty delicious! I got this recipe from Classy Vegan but had to make it gluten free. Featured here with tempeh bacon, Vegan "Scrambled Eggs", gluten free toast and steamed baby spinach.



Vegan Hollandaise Sauce

Ingredients

3 Tbls Earth Balance margarine
2 Tbls brown rice flour
Pinch of turmeric
1 cup unsweetened soy milk
Big pinch of cayenne pepper
2 Tbls nutritional yeast
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 Tbls Vegenaise
Salt and pepper to taste


Method

Heat a small saucepan over medium low heat.
Add the Earth Balance and heat until it is sizzling and boiling quite a bit.
Whisk in the flour all at once to make a paste and continue to whisk it constantly for about a minute.  Add in a small pinch of turmeric for color and mix well (you want your sauce yellow, but you don’t want it too yellow).
Slowly whisk in soy milk and bring sauce to a boil, whisking frequently.
Boil for 2 to 3 minutes and remove from heat.
Whisk in the cayenne and nutritional yeast.
Add the lemon juice and mix well, add salt and pepper to taste.
Lastly, add the vegenaise for a little bit more creaminess.
Keep the sauce warm by covering it with a lid or you can put it over low heat if you watch it carefully and whisk periodically, as to keep it from burning.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

White Bean Vegetable Soup

I got this recipe from Hello Natural. It was a hearty vegetable soup and low in calories. 213 calories per serving.


White Bean Vegetable Soup
Serves 6

Ingredients

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
1 large leek, sliced into ½″ rings, washed well
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 Tablespoons tomato paste
1½ cups cooked white beans, rinsed (one 15 ounce can or homemade from dry beans)
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
6-8 cups vegetable or chicken broth, or water
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cups diced butternut squash
4-5 kale leaves, ribs removed, roughly chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Method

Heat oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until the onions starts to soften. Add the carrots, celery, and leeks. Continue cooking, stirring often, for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds, being careful not to let it burn.
Next add the tomato paste and stir well. Let cook for 30 seconds then add beans, diced tomatoes, broth, thyme, and butternut squash. Add salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste. (It might not need much salt if the broth is salted.) Bring to a simmer and let cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the squash is tender.
Add the chopped kale and let cook for another 5-10 minutes. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if needed.


Turkey Style Deli Slices

I changed this recipe to make it gluten free, the original recipe is from Maple Spice.
They were pretty good but still had that bready flavour that most seitan does.



Turkey Style Deli Slices

Ingredients

100g (1/2 cup) canned white canellini beans, drained and rinsed.
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup water
2 Tbsp soy sauce (I used Tamari)
1/2 tsp vegan Worcester sauce
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp smoked sea salt
1/2 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 1/2 cups gluten free gluten substitute (I used Orgran brand)


Method

I prefer to do all of this in a mortar and pestle but you could use a food processor if you prefer or even by hand.

In a mortar and pestle add the nutritional yeast flakes, onion powder, salt, sage and thyme and grind until the yeast flakes are like a powder and the herbs get crushed. Remove and set aside.

Add the beans to the mortar and pestle and mash until really creamy. Transfer to a large bowl.

Mix together the water, olive oil, soy and vegan Worcester sauce in a pyrex measuring jug then whisk in the yeast and seasonings. Pour a little over the beans and whisk to incorporate, slowly add the rest of the liquid whisking all the while until mixed.

Add the wheat gluten and mix well until it comes together. Sprinkle some more wheat gluten onto a surface and knead a few times until you have a large, wide oval loaf. I probably kneaded in a couple tablespoons more gluten here but the loaf will be on the wet side. That's good as you won't end up with dry deli slices, although it is probably the reason for the holes in the end product there. Still, I wouldn't change a thing here as the taste and texture was lovely!

Wrap the loaf up in foil, sealing the edges well and steam for 1 hour. Do check the water levels now and again as it can easily boil dry!

Preheat the oven to 180C when there is about 15 minutes left of steaming. Place the foil wrapped loaf directly in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove and let cool then it's ready to be sliced thin for sandwiches.


Sunday, 23 November 2014

Miso Mushroom Noodle Soup

I loved this soup but I like miso and mushrooms. If you don't then it's probably not for you :)
I got this recipe from Miratel blog (random I know but I saw it on Pinterest). This recipe serves four small bowls or two large.



Miso Mushroom Noodle Soup

Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 shallots, finely sliced
2 small hot chili peppers, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1x 1-inch piece ginger, grated
3 tablespoons yellow miso paste
2 tablespoons soy/tamari sauce
4 cups mushroom or vegetable broth
2 cups mixed mushrooms (I used white and shiitake)
200g fresh soba or rice noodles


Method

Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot (big enough to hold all the broth and other ingredients).
Over a medium-high heat sauté the shallots, chili peppers, garlic and ginger until they are just starting to soften, but don’t let them colour.
Add the miso paste and soy sauce and stir to thoroughly coat the shallot mixture.
Add the broth, increase the heat and bring to a boil.
Add the mushrooms and bring back to the boil.
Add the noodles and cook for a remaining 4-5 minutes – the noodles and the mushrooms should be “al dente”.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Vegan Omlette

I got this recipe from Mr Breakfast. I changed the salt for black salt because it gives it more of an egg flavor because of the sulfur. Honestly I really liked this recipe. If you add less milk and have the mixture thicker then you can use it for scrambled eggs.
Also I think cooking the toppings before putting them on the omelette as they are not on the heat long enough to cook, just to heat through mildly.


Vegan Omelette
Serves 1

Ingredients

6 ounces (1/2 package) extra-firm tofu - pressed
1/3 cup soy milk
1 Tablespoon brown rice flour
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon black salt
1/4 tsp seasoning, if desired.

Method

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until smooth.
Tilt container to see if batter will slowly flow.
Place an 8-inch non-stick frying pan over low-medium heat.
Add about 1 Tablespoon of olive oil and swirl pan to coat (or spray generously with cooking spray).
Pour the "egg" batter into the pan. Spread the batter gently to completely coat the bottom.
This is a great time to prepare any omelet fillings (I used green onion, baby spinach, tomato and mushroom).
Cover and cook omelet 6 to 8 minutes until the top appears dry.


If the omelet doesn't move freely when shaking the pan, gently work a spatula underneath so it loosens from the pan.
Add toppings to the half of the omelet farthest away from the pan's handle.


To plate and flip, begin to slide the omelet onto a serving plate. When half of the omelet is on the plate, tilt the pan over so the omelet folds in half.


Saturday, 15 November 2014

DIY Liquid Dish Soap

I got this recipe from The Hippy Homemaker blog.


Homemade Dish Soap

Ingredients

1/2 cup Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup warm distilled water
1 tsp. citric acid (if you don’t have this, substitute lemon juice)
2 tsp. kosher salt
20 drops essential oil


Method

In a medium sized bowl combine warm water and salt until salt is completely dissolved.
In a separate bowl, combine Sal Suds, vinegar, and citric acid.
Stir  Sal Suds/vinegar mixture into salt water mixture and continue stirring until thickened. If adding essential oils, you can add them now.
Store in a recycled dish soap container.
NOTE:I have found that when using any other kind of salt besides kosher salt, this recipe will turn back to liquid if you add essential oils. You can make this recipe with sea salt or table salt but adding essential oils to that concoction might make it watery again. Thanks so much to one of my readers, Sherrie, for helping me experiment further with this!

DIY Foaming Facial Cleanser

This recipe comes from Keeper of the Home blog. They used essential oils of grapefruit, bergamot, basil and lemon, I just used basil and rosemary. This worked so well on my waterproof mascara... I was really surprised!


DIY Foaming Facial Cleanser

Ingredients

1/4 cup Dr. Bronner’s liquid castile soap (mine was tea tree, but any is fine)
1/4 cup water
2 tsp. almond oil (jojoba oil would also work well)
2 tsp. aloe vera gel
2 tsp. glycerin
8-12 drops essential oils

Method

Whisk together lightly and transfer to foaming pump bottle.