Tag Archives: easy

Creamy Spinach (a.k.a. Popeye) Soup (vegan)

Pictured here with arugula topped with pear and pomegranate and tuna salad.
IMG_11462 Tablespoons canola oil
1/2 onion; chopped
2 celery stalks; chopped
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 small clove garlic; crushed
1 lb frozen spinach
pinch fresh ground black pepper
pinch cumin
1/2 cup raw cashews
3 1/2 cups water

Preheat a soup pot to medium low, add canola oil, onion, celery and sea salt and simmer for 5 minutes with lid on. Stir occasionally and add 1 Tablespoon of water as needed to prevent burning. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Puree the ingredients with a handheld immersion blender OR allow to cool, puree in countertop blender, return to pot and reheat. Add more water as needed for the consistency and salt and pepper to taste.

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Vegan Winter Squash Soup with Apples and Ginger

IMG_11471 large winter squash; halved and seeds removed (I used buttercup)
4 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 onion; chopped
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 carrots; chopped
2 celery stalks; chopped
1 inch piece of fresh ginger; peeled and minced
1 small clove garlic; crushed
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/8-1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 apples; cored and cut into 1 inch chunks
5 cups water (add more for consistency)
salt and pepper to taste
ground nutmeg to garnish
ground cinnamon to garnish

Preheat oven to 375° F. Oil a baking sheet/pan. Prepare winter squash, place cut side down on the prepared baking sheet and bake till soft, about 45 minutes. Test for tenderness by pressing with a sturdy wooden spoon, when it gives the squash is done. When the baked squash has cooled enough to handle scrape out the squash from the skins with a spoon.

Preheat a large soup pot over medium-low heat. Add coconut oil and onion, sprinkle with salt and saute with lid on for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally and adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time if necessary to prevent burning. Add carrots and celery, stir and continue to saute an additional 2 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and saute an additional minute then add spices and 1/2 cup water, stir and simmer for 5 minutes. Add apples, baked squash and enough water to cover all the vegetables with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

Puree the ingredients with a handheld immersion blender OR allow to cool, puree in countertop blender, return to pot and reheat. Add more water as needed for the consistency and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with nutmeg and cinnamon if desired.

Gluten Free Zucchini Lasagna

DSC_00074 cups (32 oz) ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded romano cheese
1 egg
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

3-4 cups marinara sauce (try my lazy marinara sauce)

1 overgrown zucchini -OR- several medium zucchini; thinly sliced

mozzarella (I used shredded but if you have fresh mozzarella slice it thin) to sprinkle on top

Combine first 6 ingredients for the cheese filling ingredients. Prepare marinara sauce. Prepare zucchini; wash, cut off stem and blossom ends, cut to manageable lengths (I quartered the overgrown garden zucchini to 4 inch lengths) and slice thinly. Preheat oven to 375. In a large lasagna pan lay a single layer of zucchini slices, spread with cheese filling, add another layer of zucchinis slices, cheese, zucchini until all are used. Spoon marinara sauce over top, sprinkle with shredded mozzarella (or lay fresh mozzarella) on top and bake uncovered for 45-60 minutes until the lasagna is bubbly hot and the cheese melted and golden.
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Masala Scallops, Brown Basmati Rice and Chutney Style Mango and Cucumber Salad

DSC_0001CHUTNEY STYLE MANGO AND CUCUMBER SALAD
2 ripe mango; pealed, pitted and chopped
2  poona kheera cucumbers; chopped
dash (1/8 teaspoon) sea salt
pinch fresh ground black pepper
pinch ground nutmeg
pinch ground cloves
pinch ground ginger
pinch pepper flakes
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a glass or ceramic bowl and allow to rest while preparing the remainder of the meal. I served this over fresh salad greens but it can be served as a side on its own.

COOKING BROWN BASMATI RICE
1 cup brown basmati rice; soaked for at least 1 hour or overnight, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon canola oil
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Place all ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a very low simmer and cook till all the water is absorbed- 20 minutes but check after 15 so the bottom does not burn. Remove from heat and let stand covered for 5 minutes.

MASALA SCALLOPS
3 Tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup onion; diced
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup celery; diced
1/2 cup carrot; diced
2 cloves garlic; crushed
1/2 cup crushed tomatoes
1 Tablespoon ground garam masala
1 lb bay scallops

Preheat a wide bottom pot over medium heat. Add the coconut oil, onion and salt. Sauté covered for 3 minutes. Add celery and carrot, stir and sauté covered an additional 3 minutes. Add the garlic, tomatoes and garam masala, stir and sauté 3 more minutes. Add the bay scallops, bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer till the scallops are cooked through (no longer transparent) 5-10 minutes. Serve over rice.

Ratatouille with Fried Tempeh Over Quinoa

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Ratatouille can be served as a side dish (traditional) or over pasta as a meal. I served it over quinoa (gluten free) with fried tempeh making it into a hearty meal. Mozzarella is a nice option for vegetarians but not necessary for a satisfying meal.

4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion; diced
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 Italian pepper; diced
3 plum tomatoes; diced
2 heirloom tomatoes; diced
1 eggplant; cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 zucchini; cut into 1/2 inch cubes
5 cloves garlic; crushed
1/2-1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
large handful fresh basil; chopped (or 2 Tablespoons dry)

Heat a large wide bottom cook pot over medium heat. Add olive oil, onion and salt, stir and cover. Stir occasionally until onions are tender and transparent, about 3 minutes. Add pepper, stir, cover and sauté another minute. Add remaining ingredients except basil and simmer with lid on stirring occasionally so the eggplant and zucchini begin to soften and break up. *this is a good time to start the fried tempeh* Simmer for 10 minutes or until the eggplant and zucchini are tender. Add the basil, stir and continue to simmer an additional 5 minutes.

*To prepare the friend tempeh (be sure to read the ingredients for gluten free, I get the soy and brown rice but there are tempeh varieties that have gluten in them so beware) preheat a large heavy bottom skillet over medium high heat. Meanwhile, cut tempeh into bite sized cubes. Pour a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil in the preheated pan, place the cubes in the hot oil and turn as the edges begin to brown and continue turning until all sides are crisp and golden. You may need to add more oil during the process as the tempeh absorbs the oil. Place pieces that are done in a shallow dish or on a plate to reserve for serving with the meal.*

 

Blueberry Gluten and Dairy Free Coffee Cake

DSC_00071 cup oat flour
1 cup besan (chickpea flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup almond milk
1-1 1/2 cup fresh blueberries

DSC_0001Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease an 8×8 glass baking pan. Mix dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl with a hand whisk or electric beater. Add remaining ingredients except blueberries and mix together with a hand whisk or electric beater until just combined. Pour into prepared baking pan. Sprinkle top with blueberries (they will sink into the batter and bake into the cake).

DSC_0002Place in middle of the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes (check for doneness by gently shaking pan, if it doesn’t “jiggle” in the middle it is done). Allow to cool then cut into squares for serving. If covering to save for later be sure it is completely cool so there is no condensation that drips onto the cake.

No Cook Marinara Sauce (A.K.A. Lazy Marinara)

This is a tasty, quick and efficient recipe I have been making for years. It is a great shortcut when  wanting a homemade meal but not having time to make sauce from scratch. By the time the dough for pizza has risen, the pasta boiled or the first round of zucchini/eggplant fried the sauce is ready. Another tip, while waiting for pasta to boil, pizza to bake or zucchini/eggplant parmesan to cook- make a fresh salad to round off a healthy meal.
DSC_00061 box (26.46 oz/750g) Pomi brand tomato sauce *if using another brand of canned tomato check the salt content; Pomi has none
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1Tablespoon dried basil
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
1-4 cloves garlic; crushed (modify to your family’s taste- we go heavy as we love garlic)
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (if you are making zucchini or eggplant parmesan omit the oil as the vegetables soaks up so much when frying)

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Mix all ingredients together and continue preparing the rest of your meal. I usually mix right in the box; just peal the side tabs up and cut straight across.