Since we're eating less meat, I do try to get protein from other sources and tofu is a great one. See my post, "Is Soy Bad" here
if your wondering about eating soy... This dish was inspired by Chez Cayenne's recipe
, but it was a bit mild for my taste so I added extra spices and left out the margarine... No cheese, no eggs and it was a very satisfying dish. Top it with a bit of fresh salsa or enchilada sauce for a Mexican flavor. Serve with a salad or use crackers and eat it as a dip. printable recipeIngredients
1 14-16 oz. block of firm tofu
1 cup cornmeal
1 1/2 cup water
3/4 cup milk alternative like almond
1 pkg of frozen spinach, thawed and water squeezed out
2 cans diced mild chilies
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 ears fresh corn, taken off of cob, or pkg frozen, thawed
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. Salt & Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Condiments: Store-bought Salsa or Enchilada sauceMethod
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
1. Prepare cornmeal by heating 1 1/2 cup water in a medium saucepan with 1/2 cup of the milk alternative until almost boiling. Slowly whisk in the corn meal and stir constantly until mixture thickens. Transfer to a large bowl.
2. To a food processor, add the garlic, tofu, 1 cup corn and remaining 1/4 cup milk alternative. Process until smooth. Stir into the cooked cornmeal in the large bowl.
3. Add the spinach, remaining whole corn, diced chilies, baking powder, spices, salt and pepper and mix well. This may take some elbow grease.
4. Bake for 60-70 minutes until crispy and firm at the edges. The middle will be a bit wiggly still. Let stand for 20-30 minutes before serving.
5. Serve topped with salsa or enchilada sauce
You can't have too many hummus recipes. Still my go-to that works for a party or every day snacking. This recipe is inspired from Chef Matthew Purnell's recipe and the "vegan Nights" cooking class I took in May. He used sprouted chickpeas, but it works as well with canned garbanzo beans. To reduce the calories and fat, I've eliminated the oil and reduced the amount of sun-dried tomatoes in oil in his recipe. Serve with crackers or veggies or you can also use it on your sandwiches or lettuce wraps in place of mayonnaise. It's one of the most delicious hummus recipes ever! Enjoy.
1 can garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
juice from 2 lemons
1 cup basil leaves
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil
2 T. tahini (found near the peanut butters in the store)
5-7 shakes of Tabasco sauce
small amount of water
Salt to taste
1. Add all of the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to combine and then stir mixture with a spatula. Continue to run processor, adding a little water to thin to a consistency you like.
2. Serve with a side of raw vegetables or crackers.
Kale is at the top of the list for super foods. And, if you aren't a fan, yet - try these delectable Baked Kale Chips. They are fast and easy to make. I love, love this recipe because it's made without oil. Read about it's incredible super powers here
. Although I changed it up just slightly, thank you Heather Nauta at healthyveganrecipes.net
for this fabulous recipe! Try them with a Falafel Burger.Ingredients
4 stems kale, washed and torn into large pieces
2 Tbsp sunflower seeds (or ground nuts)
2 Tbsp (approx) water
1 tsp onion powder, or 1 Tbsp fresh onion (I used 2 tsp. garlic powder instead)
1 tsp nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp dill (I left the dill out)
sea salt, to tasteMethod
1. Grind the sunflower seeds in a coffee grinder or a mini food processor. If you're using the food processor, add 1-2 Tbsp of water - just enough water to form a paste of the seeds - then blend in the fresh onion (if using) seasonings. Don't try this in a large food processor. The coffee grinder works well.
2. If you're using a coffee grinder, transfer the ground seeds to a bowl and mix with 1-2 Tbsp of water and the seasonings. You'll have to blend the onion as well if you aren't using powder.
3. Dip the pieces of kale in the mixture to coat them, then lay them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake the chips in a dehydrator or oven. You can dehydrate or bake at any temperature - the higher the shorter the time until the chips are done, but the lower the more nutrients will be retained. In a dehydrator, I go with 115 degrees F and they take about 2 hours. The chips should be super crispy, like potato chips.
4. In an oven, the lowest temperature is usually 200 degrees F, and they'll be done in about 20-30 minutes. If you go up to 350 degrees F, they get crispy in about 10 minutes.
I'm on a roll with snacks and since I only had lima beans in the freezer I thought - why not... So, here I present, Baby Lima Bean Hummus. I'm not sure, but I think lima beans have gotten a bad rap in the past. But, check this out...like other legumes, lima beans are a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. According to a Whole Foods post, their high fiber content prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal, making these beans an especially good choice for individuals with diabetes, insulin resistance or hypoglycemia. When combined with whole grains such as rice, lima beans provide virtually fat-free high quality protein. See their full goodness here
. PS: These could be served warm as a dinner side.Ingredients
Make about 2 cups
1 bag of frozen baby lima beans, cooked according to directions
1/2 cup cilantro
2 T. red miso
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 T tahini
2-3 cloves garlic
5 shakes of Tabasco sauce
1/8 cup water as neededMethod
1. Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and process. Stop and scrape down the sides to incorporate all. Add water to thin as needed.
2. Serve with sliced apples, vegetables or whole grain crackers.
You've been trying to be good, but those afternoon snacks are killing your diet plan. That's what was happening to me. I would do so well early in the day and then wham, the cheese and crackers would come out. Ouch! That's when I realized I needed to find some healthy snacks that were just as satisfying as the bad stuff. It can be done. My first substitute was homemade traditional hummus (find the recipe here
) served with veggies or wholegrain crackers. Easy to make and less expensive than store bought. It did the trick, but I need other ideas. So here is a dip made with edamame beans, easily found shelled in your store's freezer section. Ingredients
Makes about 2 cups.
10 oz package of shelled edamame, cooked per directions on the bag and rinsed with cold water
1/2 cup tightly packed fresh cilantro
1 large clove garlic, roughly chopped
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime (or lemon) juice
1/2 of a 6 oz container plain yogurt
1 small avocado
1 1/2 T. miso (Japanese paste-like flavoring made form fermented soybeans. Read more here
5 shakes of Tabasco
Salt to taste (be careful because the miso is salty)
Note: you can leave out the miso, but you'll need to pump up the other flavors - Tabasco, lime, garlic)Method
1. Place drained edamame in a food processor and pulse several times. Add the chopped cilantro and pulse again. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until well pureed. Add more water if it needs to be thinned slightly.
2. Serve with sliced vegetables or whole grain crackers.
I was watching Ina Garten make crab cakes and they looked very yummy, but I was wondering if I could make them with tofu. So I enlisted my friends to be taste testers and, phew, it was thumbs up all the way :) Serve with any kind of salsa, but I like a fruit salsa like mango. You won't be disappointed in the this dish. Could be served as an appetizer if made a little smaller. I halved the mayonnaise and "fried" them in only a little butter. I didn't have any Old Bay seasoning either. After looking up what ingredients are in Old Bay, I added a pinch of this and that and crossed my fingers. printable recipeTofu Crab CakesServes 6-8
3/4 cup small diced red onion (1 small onion)
1 1/2 cups small diced celery (4 stalks)
1/2 cup small diced red bell pepper (1 small pepper)
1/2 cup small diced yellow bell pepper (1 small pepper)
1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon capers, drained
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (recommended: Tabasco)
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons crab boil seasoning (recommended: Old Bay) or use the following spices: 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard, 1/2 teaspoon sweet or smoked paprika, 1/8 teaspoon ground celery seeds, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger, pinch crushed red pepper flakes, pinch ground cloves, pinch ground mace, pinch ground cardamom, pinch ground allspice
1/2 pound tofu, pressed between paper towels to take out some moisture
1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
For frying: 2 T. butterMethod
1. Place onion, celery, red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, capers, hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, crab boil seasoning, salt, and pepper in a large saute pan over medium-low heat. Add water and cook until the vegetables are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
2. In a large bowl, break the tofu into small pieces and toss with the bread crumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, and eggs. Add the cooked mixture and mix well. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
3. Shape into bite-sized crab cakes.
4. Heat the butter and olive oil for frying over medium heat in a large saute pan. Add the crab cakes and fry for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until browned. Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a 250 degree oven and serve hot.
5. Serve with salsa and a dollop of plain yogurt.
A great way to easily eat a lot of vegetables is to make a soup or stew that you can then keep for days and eat when you get the urge. Combine that with a salad every day and you rock in the "plant-based" arena. This soup was inspired by a recipe from Dr. Fuhrman's 2-volume book, "Eat for Health." I didn't have all of the ingredients that it called for so this is modified. And, I discovered, quite by accident, a new addition that I think you're gonna love when I needed something to replace the carrot juice. Canned pumpkin - which, by the way, is quite nutritious. I opened a can that I thought was just plain pumpkin, but it turned out to be pumpkin pie mix. Yes, it contained some sugar, but the spices were just perfect - cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg - no milk or cream. I decided to use it anyway. What a pleasant surprise. It was excellent. I know added sugar isn't the best, but the original recipe called for 2 cups of carrot juice which is sweet, too (although more natural). Give it a try.
1/2 cup red lentils
4-6 cups water
1/2 head cauliflower florets, bite-sized
2 medium bell peppers, coarsely chopped
1 cup carrots, cut 1/2 inch thick
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bunch kale, washed, leaves removed from stems and chopped
1 14-oz. can diced tomatoes
1 can pumpkin pie mix (or straight pumpkin)
1 can red or pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1. Place lentils and water in a large soup pot and begin to simmer.
2. Add all of the prepared vegetables to the pot and simmered covered for 30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add more water is necessary.
3. Add the pumpkin and the beans and heat through.
4. Serve with a green salad.
Hummus is quite easy to prepare and with the savings on the cost, this is definitely worth it. I've been looking for snacks that that are healthy when I am tempted to opt for cheese and crackers. This version uses a combination of soy beans and garbanzo beans and does not have added oil since the tahini does. Beans are one of the most nutritious things you can eat. These are gluten-free crackers in the photos.
2 cans of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed (or use 1 can of soy beans for one of the garganzo's)
4 T. Tahini (sesame paste found near peanut butter)
Juice from 2 lemons
3 cloves of garlic roughly chopped
5 shakes of Tabasco (or to taste)
1/2 tsp salt
1/3-1/2 cup water
1. Empty beans into a food processor.
2. Add garlic, Tahini, lemon juice, Tabasco, salt and 1/2 cup water.
3. Process for a few minutes to blend. Check for consistency and for a thinner dip, add more water.
4. Serve with crackers. veggie or apple slices.