May 142014
 

My Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps are as simple to make as they are delicious. Whether you put them in a tortilla to make a taco, or chop the tempeh and throw it over some salad – this is a versatile, filling and scrumptious meal.

Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps

Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps

Summer is on the way and sometimes we want something lighter for lunch or dinner. For this dish I swapped out the tortilla for some fresh lettuce from KyV Farm to lighten things up.  In fact, these Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps can be made outside on the grill during a BBQ or picnic. Instead of cooking the tempeh slices in a skillet, simply oil and place on the grill – cook each side for about 5 minutes, or until char marks appear, then toss in the Teriyaki and you are good to go!

Try as a taco too!

Try as a taco too!

If someone still wants theirs in taco form (as you can see my daughter couldn’t wait to grab her taco – that is her little hand in the photo), bring along some tortillas to change it up. Another option is to chop the lettuce and make a salad by adding the red onion, cilantro and maybe some sautéed mushrooms and broccoli or grilled asparagus.

Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps

Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps

 Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps

Serves 4
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

1 block tempeh, sliced into strips
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup Teriyaki sauce
8 fresh lettuce leaves (I used fresh from KyV Farm, but any Bibb or Romaine will do)
4 tsp Spicy Red Pepper Miso Mayo or Vegenaise
Sliced red onion
Handful fresh cilantro

Optional
4 tortillas

Directions

1. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in large skillet over medium high heat; add tempeh and cook 5 minutes; flip and cook an additional 5 minutes. Remove from heat; add Teriyaki sauce and stir until both sides of tempeh are coated.

2. Place two lettuce leaves on each of four plates; divide tempeh over servings; top with 1 tsp each Miso mayo or Vegenaise; sliced red onion and fresh cilantro.

Turn into tacos by layering fresh lettuce, tempeh and remaining fixings over tortillas!

Nutrition Facts 
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 187.8
Total Fat 12.4 g
Saturated Fat 1.9 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat 6.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 727.9 mg
Potassium 352.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 9.5 g
Dietary Fiber 0.4 g
Sugars 2.8 g
Protein 11.9 g

Vitamin A 20.2 %
Vitamin B-12 0.8 %
Vitamin B-6 14.4 %
Vitamin C 2.5 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 3.0 %
Calcium 18.6 %
Copper 23.2 %
Folate 16.1 %
Iron 26.3 %
Magnesium 33.2 %
Manganese 39.8 %
Niacin 14.6 %
Pantothenic Acid 5.0 %
Phosphorus 37.4 %
Riboflavin 18.6 %
Selenium 0.3 %
Thiamin 7.0 %
Zinc 5.7 %

% Percent Daily Values for Teriyaki Tempeh Lettuce Wraps are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Mar 242014
 

Flavorful marinated mushrooms stuffed with a soft vegan cheese are topped off with tart, tangy and sweet sundried tomatoes in my Vegan Marinated & Grilled Stuffed Mushrooms.

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

In the middle of the night last night, thoughts started coming to me – rolling in like thunderclouds. Dark, worrisome, brooding.

 It started with losing my dad and ran the gamut through all of the things I need to get done. I started wondering why we as humans occasionally wake in the middle of the night and start worrying. For one, we can’t do anything about it at that time and secondly, worrying typically doesn’t accomplish anything other than making us feel terrible.

Suddenly, I remembered an excerpt about time travel from a book I’m reading called Choose Yourself, by James Altucher. Not time travel as in “I want to go back in time to see the dinosaurs”, but as in be in the NOW. When you think about the past or the future you are time traveling.

Grilled Mushrooms

Grilled Mushrooms

So I began to have gratitude for what I had RIGHT THEN. A warm, comfy bed, my husband snoozing next to me, and my daughter nestled in her bed. A roof over our heads. Running water. An abundance of food, an abundance of knowledge, family and friends, residing in sunny Florida.

Next I remembered something in this month’s Oprah magazine called 4-7-8 breath. You breathe through your nose for 4 counts, hold for 7 counts and exhale from your mouth for 8 counts. Repeat.

Next thing I knew – I was off to dreamland.

Upon waking I knew I had my topic for this post! It flows perfectly with another realization I came to recently. While I’m cooking I never am really present. I’m rushing around trying to do twenty things at once and sometimes burning what I’m cooking in the process. Vivian from KyV Farm recently said she has been cooking all her food for the week on Sunday and she calls it her “me time”. I decided there was no reason I couldn’t do that, so while I was cooking these mushrooms I decided to be present. I grabbed a glass of wine and my magazine and sat on the porch as the mushrooms were grilling. My daughter set the table, we lit candles and sat as a family. We made a sort of mini-production out of it. What a difference this makes! It gives us time to chat about our day, or even just to be quiet together. And that is what life is really about, right?

I hope some of these experiences help you to be more present in your day, to not “time travel”, and to live your best life!

What are your favorite ways of staying in the moment?

Vegan Marinated Mushrooms

Vegan Marinated Mushrooms

Now for the recipe – I have a tofu tip for you.

To press the tofu of water, I love using a TofuXPress (see how it is used in this post.). I finally broke down and bought one a while back and it is probably one of my most favorite tools. It both presses blocks of tofu with no mess, and has a cover so you can marinate right in the press. It is worth the splurge on it. If you want to check it out I have a link to one…look just to the right under “I recommend”. I promise you will NOT be disappointed.

Vegan Grilled Mushrooms

Vegan Grilled Mushrooms

Vegan Marinated & Grilled Stuffed Mushrooms
with Sundried Tomatoes

Serves 4 – 8
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Please note that tofu will need to be prepared a day or two prior to making this recipe. Feel free to make the marinade ahead too!

Ingredients

1 block organic, extra firm tofu
2-3 Tbsp miso
8 Portobello Mushroom Caps
6 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic, chopped
4 Tbsp prepared mustard (I like coarse ground)
2 Tbsp maple syrup, honey or agave (honey is not vegan)
1/2 cup non-dairy shredded mozzarella (such as Daiya)
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup julienned sundried tomatoes

Directions

1. Press tofu of water – 1 hour to overnight; slice into three sections lengthwise. Spread each slice evenly with miso and let sit overnight.

2. Wipe down mushroom caps and remove stems. Mix balsamic, olive oil, garlic, mustard and maple syrup in a large bowl with a lid. Place mushroom caps inside and gently toss in marinade. Let sit 10 – 20 minutes.

3. Mix miso, tofu, cheese and garlic powder in a large bowl with hands until all ingredients are well incorporated.

4. Heat grill over medium heat, to around 350F; place mushrooms on grill racks, gill side
down; cook 7 to 10 minutes; turn and stuff each mushroom cap with 2 rounded Tbsp of tofu mixture; grill an additional 10 minutes or until “cheese” is heated through. Top each with a few slices of sundried tomato.

**Reserve any leftover marinade for another use.

Nutrition Facts
8 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 168.4
Total Fat 8.8 g
Saturated Fat 1.6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.3 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 338.3 mg
Potassium 616.5 mg
Total Carbohydrate 14.7 g
Dietary Fiber 2.3 g
Sugars 6.2 g
Protein 8.9 g

Vitamin A 0.8 %
Vitamin B-12 0.1 %
Vitamin B-6 3.4 %
Vitamin C 3.4 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 2.1 %
Calcium 7.0 %
Copper 8.9 %
Folate 4.5 %
Iron 8.3 %
Magnesium 12.5 %
Manganese 41.2 %
Niacin 2.7 %
Pantothenic Acid 1.3 %
Phosphorus 11.4 %
Riboflavin 3.1 %
Selenium 10.3 %
Thiamin 3.6 %
Zinc 7.0 %

*Percent Daily Values for Stuffed Mushrooms are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Jan 072014
 

This cheesy chia seed soup is simple, filling and comforting, and will help you lose weight naturally with the perfect blend of fiber, good fats and protein.

Conquer your New Years Resolution!

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

I have completely fallen in love with this soup. Warm, flavorful organic broth, hearty chia seeds with their good fats, fiber and micronutrients, and nutritional yeast with it’s signature cheesy flavor, packed with b-vitamins is a satisfying breakfast, quick lunch or warm, light dinner. This is an AWESOME recipe to take on the go. Pack some warm broth in a Thermos and bring a snack size cup with the chia seed and nutritional yeast – just stir in when you are ready to eat!

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

The chia I use is called Mila – and this blend happened to be blonde.  Any varietal/color can be used and it will be delicious.  Mila is microsliced so that the seeds are opened and have more surface area without damaging the cotents. It is a blend of chia seed grown at various farms along the equator in volcanic soil. For four more reasons I choose this blend visit this Mila bar recipe.

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

1 Serving
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup vegetable broth
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp chia, ground (any varietal)

Directions

1. Heat vegetable broth in a small stock pot over medium high heat; stir in nutritional yeast and chia. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
1 Serving
Amount Per Serving

Calories 195.0
Total Fat 6.8 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 575.1 mg
Potassium 440.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 20.2 g
Dietary Fiber 13.9 g
Sugars 3.0 g
Protein 14.3 g

Vitamin A 2.0 %
Vitamin B-12 133.0 %
Vitamin B-6 480.0 %
Vitamin C 0.0 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 0.0 %
Calcium 17.0 %
Copper 6.0 %
Folate 60.0 %
Iron 18.0 %
Magnesium 25.0 %
Manganese 5.0 %
Niacin 280.0 %
Pantothenic Acid 10.0 %
Phosphorus 17.0 %
Riboflavin 565.0 %
Selenium 32.0 %
Thiamin 640.0 %
Zinc 21.0 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Jan 012014
 

This Eggless Breakfast Taco is a simple and flavorful twist on a traditional breakfast burrito.

Get your new year started off on the right foot – with an easy, healthy, delicious and light breakfast. If you are tired of the same old oatmeal, this recipe will knock your socks off!

Plus I’ll share my food trend predictions for 2014!

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Made with Chickpea Flour

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Made with Chickpea Flour

I’m officially declaring this year to be the year of the chickpea ~ more specifically, chickpea/garbanzo flour. In the past few weeks alone I came across several delicious recipe ideas using this versatile ingredient. The first was when my friend Vivian mentioned making tortillas from chickpea flour and then, when challenged with creating an eggless vegan breakfast taco without tofu, I came across a recipe using the chickpea flour as a replacement for eggs. Of course I had to take it a step further and add a bit of delicious nutritional yeast and smoky coconut bacon.

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Made with Chickpea Flour

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Made with Chickpea Flour

While we’re at it, I’ll call the second hot ingredient for this year…..nutritional yeast!  Ok, so maybe this won’t be one that the experts predict, but I’ll go ahead and say it should be on the hot trends for this year.  If you haven’t tried it yet you simply must go out and grab some from the bulk bin. It is high in protein and b-vitamins and has a wonderfully cheese-like flavor.  What I love about mixing the bean flour with nutritional yeast (aside from the fabulous taste and texture) is that this mixture is both high in protein and high in fiber.  This combination is something you cannot get from animal foods since they do not contain fiber.  What you won’t see in this recipe is cholesterol, so for anyone battling heart disease this is a great alternative to eggs.

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Coconut Bacon

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Coconut Bacon

Miss the bacon you say?   I have a product you will fall head over heels for.  Coconut bacon!  Top your taco with this and say bye to pig forever.  You can even make a BLT with this product! Yes it is a bit on the pricier side, but a little goes a long way.  So while you are at Native Sun grabbing the nutritional yeast and chickpea flour, add coconut bacon to your list.  Plant based “bacon” is my third prediction as a hot item for 2014.

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Perfect with Fresh Coffee

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~ Perfect with Fresh Coffee

My hope for this year is that awareness for locally sourced foods will finally take hold with the mainstream population ~ that people learn what a CSA is and become wary of genetically modified foods.  As gas prices increase and access to fossil fuels decreases, prices for food that must travel long distances will go up.  This one factor may help people start to question why this is happening. My second hope we begin to realize that we need to consume a greater variety of vegetables than the standard lettuce, onion and tomato.  Cauliflower is supposedly this year’s “it” vegetable, so how about kicking it up a notch and looking out for Romanesco cauliflower? Time to diversify our intake of produce, just like we should diversify our portfolio!

What are your food trend predictions for 2014?

[If you like the sound of this recipe - please share it with your friends! Many thanks and may your 2014 be your best year yet!]

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~Made with Chickpea Flour

Eggless Breakfast Taco ~Made with Chickpea Flour

Eggless Breakfast Taco

Inspired by Oatmeal with a Fork
Serves 4 small tacos. For larger meal, double taco mixture.
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

 

Ingredients

2 tsp coconut oil
3/4 cup chickpea/garbanzo bean flour
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp onion powder
1-2 green onion(s), chopped
1/4 cup coconut bacon (optional, omit if soy-free is desired)
4 small gluten free (or regular) tortillas

Optional Mustard Sauce (makes extra)

6 Tbsp mustard (coarse ground, prepared)
6 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1/4 cup reduced fat or regular Vegenaise
1/4 cup unsweet original non-dairy milk
1 Tbsp agave (or local honey)

Instructions

1. Mix chickpea flour, nutritional yeast, water, salt and onion powder in a medium bowl; stir in the green onions. Mix mustard sauce in small bowl (if using.)

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat; add 2 teaspoons of coconut oil and coat bottom of skillet evenly; pour the chickpea mixture into skillet and let sit 3-5 minutes, or until the edges begin to set and center bubbles; gently turn with a large, flat spatula and break apart mixture to create bite sized pieces with an egg-like consistency and the mixture is fully cooked; about 1-2 minutes.

3. Divide mixture evenly between 4 tortilla shells; top each with 1 Tbsp coconut bacon and 1 Tbsp mustard sauce (if using).

**Note: Non-dairy cheddar style cheese would be delicious as a substitute for the mustard sauce in this recipe.

Estimated Nutrition Info
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 192.8
Total Fat 8.0 g
Saturated Fat 3.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.2 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 628.1 mg
Potassium 188.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate 22.0 g
Dietary Fiber 8.3 g
Sugars 2.4 g
Protein 13.4 g

Vitamin A 0.2 %
Vitamin B-12 66.5 %
Vitamin B-6 240.4 %
Vitamin C 0.7 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 0.1 %
Calcium 9.4 %
Copper 3.2 %
Folate 30.3 %
Iron 10.8 %
Magnesium 2.7 %
Manganese 3.0 %
Niacin 140.1 %
Pantothenic Acid 5.1 %
Phosphorus 8.7 %
Riboflavin 282.6 %
Selenium 16.1 %
Thiamin 320.2 %
Zinc 10.6 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Mustard Sauce: Per Tbsp
Nutrition Facts
21 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 24.8
Total Fat 1.1 g
Saturated Fat 0.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.7 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 122.9 mg
Potassium 48.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 2.0 g
Dietary Fiber 0.6 g
Sugars 0.0 g
Protein 1.2 g

Vitamin A 0.1 %
Vitamin B-12 19.0 %
Vitamin B-6 68.6 %
Vitamin C 0.0 %
Vitamin D 0.3 %
Vitamin E 0.6 %
Calcium 0.4 %
Copper 0.9 %
Folate 8.6 %
Iron 0.6 %
Magnesium 0.8 %
Manganese 0.7 %
Niacin 40.0 %
Pantothenic Acid 1.4 %
Phosphorus 2.5 %
Riboflavin 80.7 %
Selenium 4.6 %
Thiamin 91.4 %
Zinc 3.0 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dec 102013
 

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce features warm, caramelized vegetables and cool, tangy-creamy mustard sauce. It is sinfully delicious, yet light enough to be added to your weekly rotation ~ go ahead and indulge, guilt free!

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

We are all involved in social media nowadays, in one form or another; facebook, pinterest, instagram and twitter, just to name a few. When something reaches your brain through the slews of photos and messages, you know it must be something that is important to you.

Two such messages recently came across my stream of consciousness; the first was an article, “The Truth About Pork and How America Feeds Itself” , By Ted Genoways, December 05, 2013. This caught my attention because I’m always open to learning more about the truth of commercial farming.

The article begins with the following information; “The Hormel Foods plant in Fremont, Neb., is a sprawling complex, just across the Union Pacific tracks on the southern edge of town. Every day of the week, some 1,400 workers arrive before dawn and emerge in the midafternoon, chatting briefly in the parking lot before fanning out onto the highway. It’s a routine with few surprises, but inside the plant, a grand, if largely ignored, experiment is under way, one that is testing the limits of industrial production—and worker and food safety.”

“Each working day, more than 10,500 hogs are slaughtered here—that’s 1,300 hogs per hour.” 

Right there that floored me. 1,300 hogs are slaughtered per hour in this one plant. Whoa. What sort of conditions could these animals be living in? How is it possible to control food safety with that sort of volume? I can apply this to the commercial leasing industry I used to work in. It was a high volume, small dollar shop. Mistakes happen when things move fast. A LOT of mistakes. I knew this because I was in an auditing role. A role that is severely lacking in the commercial food industry. They are supposed to do more “self-auditing”. Right. Brilliant idea.

Upon finishing this article I thought back to a conversation I had at my daughter’s school last Friday with another school volunteer. She is the grandmother of a student in my daughter’s class and was telling me how she saved hundreds of pot bellied pigs from the humane society and found them all homes. In the same breath she said, but when it comes to the pigs she eats those are just there for food, they are different, they are meant to be eaten. She doesn’t want to know what happens to those pigs.

How can we rationalize this thinking? As humans we tend to be empathetic which causes us to want to bury our heads in the sand when it comes to the treatment of the animals humans choose to eat. The quandary comes for those people that do know what happens and know that if the person they were speaking with had the same knowledge, their choices going forward would almost certainly be different.

So my question is this, what should someone say when the other person is a genuinely caring person but doesn’t think they want to know? How do we help them open their hearts and minds to the suffering of these intelligent creatures and the conditions that the workers spend their days in?

Roasted Eggplant Stacks

Roasted Eggplant Stacks

The second was a video of the world famous Joel Salatin, the farmer featured in the 2008 film, Food Inc vs. Gene Baur, president and co-founder of the Farm Sanctuary and Dr Neal Bernard, the founder and president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), debating the merits of the statement “Do not eat anything with a face.”  

For the Motion: Dr. Neal Bernard, Gene Baur. Against the Motion: Chris Masterjohn, Joel Salatin.

This intelligent debate is well worth the time to watch. Both sides present compelling arguments.  A few of the comments from Dr. Neal Barnard stood out – probably because of the death of my own father in May of this year.

Neal Barnard: “I got my first wake-up call at Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis, where I was the autopsy assistant”….

“And the pathologist came in the room, and he knew that I was headed for medical school. So he removed a section of ribs, and he sliced open one of the coronary arteries, and he said, “Look inside.”…..“And it looked like chewing gum in this coronary artery, but when I felt it, it was hard like a rock. And he said, “That’s atherosclerosis. That’s your morning sausage, Neal. That’s your bacon, Neal. That’s your roast beef in there.” And he said, “We see the beginnings of this in three quarters of people by age 23,”

“Now, fast forwarding a little bit, a little — a few years later Dr. Dean Ornish brought in to a research study people who had atherosclerosis, they had narrowed arteries, he took the meat out of their diets, and something happened that had never been shown before. The arteries actually started opening up again, so much that you could see a measurable difference in 82 percent of patients in the first year with no surgery and no medications.
Grass-fed beef does not do that, including the beef my family raised.”

“I asked Dr Richard Leakey, the famous paleoanthropologist, how did we get into meat eating? And he said humans are naturally primates. We’re great apes. We are not carnivores, and we ate things we could pick with our hands, until the Stone Age gave us stone tools, and meat-eating began, he believes, as scavenging. Lying with leafs and bones, we would scrape it up with these stone tools that we now had. Problem: we have pre-Stone Age bodies that get cancer and get heart disease when you eat meat. Of course, if your life expectancy is 35 or 40, it doesn’t matter, but if you live to a mid-age and beyond, then these things matter a lot. And what matters now is Alzheimer’s disease. We have now learned that a diet high in saturated fat — that’s the bad fat in meat, is linked to Alzheimer’s disease in studies in Chicago, in New York, in Finland.”

You can read the rest of the transcript here.

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

I’ll leave you with a quote from Gene Baur. “If we can live well without causing harm, why wouldn’t we do it? “

Especially when we can eat Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce.  This recipe features 14 grams of protein, 14 grams of fiber, 100% of your daily b-12 and 20% iron. Never mind all that ~ it is the taste that will knock your socks off. All I can say is whoa. This is going down under the “favorites” category. The sauce is tangy, sweet and savory all at once and over these roasted veggies with their deliciously caramelized bits from the oven, you’ll think you have gone to heaven.

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

 Roasted Eggplant Stacks with Creamy Mustard Sauce

Serves 4
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
**Ingredient on sale at Native Sun Natural Foods Market, Dec 7, 2013 through Jan 6, 2014

Ingredients

1 medium eggplant, sliced 1/4 inch thick slices
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes**
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 1/2 lbs Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and sliced in half
Olive oil cooking spray or mister**
Salt and garlic powder

Sauce
6 Tbsp mustard (coarse ground, prepared)
6 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1/4 cup reduced fat or regular Vegenaise
1/4 cup unsweet original non-dairy milk
1 Tbsp agave (or local honey)

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray 3 baking sheets evenly with olive oil spray; add eggplant, tomatoes, onion and Brussels sprouts; spray top of vegetables with olive oil, season with salt and garlic powder. Bake 15 minutes; remove from oven and turn vegetables; bake 10 minutes; remove Brussels sprouts and set aside in a covered dish, leaving eggplant, tomatoes and onions to roast an additional 10 minutes; to finish, turn on broiler to high and broil 2 minutes to caramelize tops.

2. Mix sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Place approx 2-3 eggplant on each of 4 plates; divide remaining vegetables on top of eggplant; pour generous 1/4 cup mustard sauce over each vegetable plate.

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 295.4
Total Fat 10.1 g
Saturated Fat 0.8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.8 g
Monounsaturated Fat 6.1 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 838.7 mg
Potassium 1,388.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 40.5 g
Dietary Fiber 13.9 g
Sugars 8.1 g
Protein 14.3 g

Vitamin A 37.2 %
Vitamin B-12 99.8 %
Vitamin B-6 388.2 %
Vitamin C 258.6 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 11.5 %
Calcium 9.7 %
Copper 17.5 %
Folate 80.9 %
Iron 20.5 %
Magnesium 20.7 %
Manganese 46.4 %
Niacin 222.9 %
Pantothenic Acid 18.2 %
Phosphorus 29.8 %
Riboflavin 437.9 %
Selenium 29.1 %
Thiamin 503.8 %
Zinc 22.5 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

 Posted by at 11:43 am
Dec 012013
 

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing is a hearty, yet easy to make salad that is sure to satisfy even the biggest appetite! 

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

“Call me, I need to share some recipes that I have been doing ….”

Last week I got a text from Vivian at KyV Farm that she came up with a few easy and delicious recipes to utilize the staples we have on hand – such as greens and beans.  Of course I called her right away so I could hear all about them because I’m always looking for new ideas aside from my go-to staple of “if in doubt, make soup”. They sounded so tasty that I had to go home and whip this one up immediately with some of the beans, quinoa and hummus I already had on hand.

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Here were some of her suggestions:

  • Utilize any greens you have – a whole mixture of bok choy, lettuce, collards, kale – whatever! Wash and dry them and use them as a base for your salads. Top with cooked beans, cooked quinoa and avocado. Now here is the kicker. Instead of using salad dressing try hummus!
  • Chickpea tacos – mix equal parts chickpea flour and water, salt and pepper. Cook them in a lightly oiled pan like a crepe. Stuff with beans and vegggies.
  • Mix greens into fresh salsa right along with any herbs.  Use this in a base for pasta sauce and no one will even notice the extra veggies.
  • Soak some beans overnight and throw them in the pressure cooker with salt-free broth, onions, garlic and sofrito. Bring the pressure up to a simmer and cook 30 minutes then remove from heat.
  • Mix some poblano peppers in with the cooked chickpeas to make a spicy hummus. (I like to throw some greens in there too.)

Upon one taste of this salad I knew Vivian had hit the jackpot! What a way to get your greens in! I love the hummus as a creamy dressing and with 12 grams of fiber and almost 12 grams of protein this is a sure-to-fill-you-up meal.

Do you have any easy and favorite ways to use what you usually have on hand?

Greens Salad with Avocado and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Vegan, Gluten Free
Serves 1
Printable Recipe
**Ingredient from KyV Farm

Ingredients

2 cups mixed greens, chopped**
1/4 cup cooked quinoa
1/4 cup cooked chickpeas
1/4 cup raw broccoli florets, chopped**
1/4 Florida avocado, chopped
2 Tbsp hummus
Salt and pepper

Directions

1. Top greens with quinoa, chickpeas, broccoli, avocado and hummus; season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Facts
1 Serving
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 313.6
Total Fat 12.3 g
Saturated Fat 2.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.6 g
Monounsaturated Fat 5.5 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 304.0 mg
Potassium 505.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 41.7 g
Dietary Fiber 12.1 g
Sugars 2.5 g
Protein 11.7 g

Vitamin A 69.4 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 21.7 %
Vitamin C 73.3 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.8 %
Calcium 7.1 %
Copper 24.9 %
Folate 26.4 %
Iron 17.8 %
Magnesium 15.3 %
Manganese 35.1 %
Niacin 4.5 %
Pantothenic Acid 10.4 %
Phosphorus 14.8 %
Riboflavin 6.1 %
Selenium 4.4 %
Thiamin 6.5 %
Zinc 10.3 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Oct 222013
 

One taste of this Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries and you will have a new Thanksgiving tradition.

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

 I typically try to stick with whole foods as much as possible but this Tofurkey roast was one of those splurge items that really neat to try.

When I was asked to create this recipe and take photos I realized that knew of the Tofurkey name but knew little about the background of the company so I surfed around and found out a bit more.  Wow! I love a passionate, family run company.

 Turtle Island Foods is the company that creates this roast and this is their very interesting story!

Turtle Island foods was created in 1980 by Seth Tibbot – a teacher and naturalist that lived in a tree house in Oregon that he rented for $25 per month.  His first product was tempeh and he focused solely on that for 15 years!

“At Turtle Island Foods, our Tofurky® and tempeh products are created to promote the health and vitality of both the people and the ecosystems of our “island” home. For almost 30 years we have worked to create delicious, nutritious, convenient and affordable vegetarian food that make a difference in people’s lives and have a minimal impact on our environment. We are located in Hood River, Oregon, one hour east of Portland. We make our vegetarian products in small batches using only the finest organic and natural ingredients. No preservatives, MSG or other artificial ingredients are added to our products. All of our products are kosher, vegan, and made with organic soybeans and/or organic tofu. We are a family owned and operated company.”

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

 All of the Turtle Island products are vegan and non-GMO.  For ingredients they prefer to use organic tofu and soy instead of soy powders and isolates.  They actually smoke their foods in real smoke houses instead of using liquid smoke.

Seth’s family supported him in growing his business so he was finally able to move into a larger facility a few years prior to 1995 – the year that Seth’s company hit it big with the sale of 500 Tofurkey roasts just like the one pictured here and was even featured on the Today Show!  His products helped vegetarians that felt left out on Thanksgiving Day.

In 1999 Ellen DeGeneres started promoting the brand and the name “Tofurkey” because of it’s humor factor. Turtle Island believes that year they enjoyed over 1.5 million in free publicity!

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Turtle Island Foods is the last independently run, family owned and operated soy food brand in the US.  Sadly (but not surprisingly) the other small soy food companies have been picked off by the giants such as Dean Foods, ConAgra, Kraft and others.

WHY are they hanging in there and doing all this?  Because they care about your health and the health of animals and the environment. Check out the facts they have listed such as:

If 1/3 of Americans switched from eating one 3 ½-ounce serving of beef, one egg, and a one-ounce serving of cheese each day to a mix of vegetables, fruit, beans, and whole grains:
(United Nations, Food and Agriculture Organization, 2006.)

  • Acres of cropland spared: 180 million (an area larger than the state of Texas)
  • Tons of pesticides eliminated: 9,375
  • Tons of fertilizer eliminated: 2 million
  • Tons of manure eliminated*: 570 million (* Livestock manure and flatulence generate 30-40% of total methane emissions from human-influenced activities.)
Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Ok so we all love knowing about the background of the company – but how does it taste?!

I can officially say I was deliciously surprised.  I have tried a few other products that are meant to replicate that texture of meat and have not been impressed; however, with this recipe I was VERY impressed. Not only with the mixture of the flavors with the caramelized onion and dried cherries, but with the texture of the Tofurkey and the taste of the moist wild rice stuffing inside.

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

I’ll definitely be using the caramelized onion mixture for other types of recipes. It would make a great sandwich topping or maybe over a grain and bean dish – the opportunities are endless!

What is your favorite Vegan holiday item?

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

For other delicious Thanksgiving recipes try these!
Thanksgiving Bean Burger

Apple Mushroom Stuffing Hash

All Natural Kale and Flax Cornbread Muffins

Coconut Pumpkin Pie

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Tender Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Tart Dried Cherries

Roast Tofurkey with Balsamic Caramelized Onions and Dried Cherries

Reprinted with permission from Turtle Island Foods
Serves 6
Vegan

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, sliced very thin
1 cup dried sour cherries
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons apple cider
1 Tofurky roast
** Be sure Tofurkey is thawed in refrigerator for 24 hours before beginning recipe!

Directons:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, heat olive oil on medium heat. Add onion, cherries, brown sugar and vinegar and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft. Stir in mustard and apple cider, and simmer for two more minutes. Place Tofurky roast on sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil, and spread with the onion mixture. Wrap roast snugly with the foil. Place in roasting pan, and place on center rack of oven. Bake for 45 minutes. Uncover roast for last 10 minutes of baking.

Nutrition Facts
6 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 307.3
Total Fat 6.6 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.1 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 529.0 mg
Potassium 178.1 mg
Total Carbohydrate 35.2 g
Dietary Fiber 3.5 g
Sugars 17.1 g
Protein 26.8 g

Vitamin A 12.6 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 1.6 %
Vitamin C 2.8 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.1 %
Calcium 16.9 %
Copper 1.3 %
Folate 1.2 %
Iron 11.9 %
Magnesium 0.9 %
Manganese 2.8 %
Niacin 0.2 %
Pantothenic Acid 0.3 %
Phosphorus 1.0 %
Riboflavin 0.4 %
Selenium 0.3 %
Thiamin 0.8 %
Zinc 0.3 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

 

Jul 242013
 

3 Easy Ways to Make a Positive Change in Your Diet and a Recipe for Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry, Horseradish Mustard Sauce!

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Change your mindset .

Think about the foods you CAN have that you will enjoy instead of thinking about what you are cutting out.  Keep in mind the fact that you can now eat more foods such as avocados, nuts and beans – whereas before you may not have wanted to allocate the calories/fat/carbs to those foods. When I did that I got super excited!

Here is a great example in action. Just this past weekend my family ate at Lulu’s Waterfront Grill - a casual dining spot on the Intracoastal Waterway in Palm Valley.  At first glance I saw lots of fried seafood – not anything that I was super excited about until I spied a Mediterranean salad with calamari and homemade vinaigrette. I told the waiter to please leave the fried calamari and feta off and add avocado. I was ecstatic when it came out with fresh field greens topped with a gorgeously creamy half avocado! It was one of the best salads I’ve had in a while. Even though I chose not to have the fried calamari and feta – I adore avocado which would not normally have been on the salad. Outcome – I was happier and more satisfied and didn’t have the weighted down feeling of fried food.

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Educate Yourself.

It will make change MUCH easier if you educate yourself on what you’re eating. DO read the ingredients. Don’t stop after you read the calories, carbs and fat.

When I decided to change to a plant based diet there were so many reasons why I wanted to make the change – namely the suffering of animals, the environmental aspects and all the hormones and antibiotics they pump into our food – but once I really learned about what was happening in my body from the animal foods after reading the China Study, it became a no-brainer. I made the change instantly and haven’t looked back.

Maybe there is just one processed food you would love to give up….try my tip and research the ingredients then use resources to figure out what those are. You will amaze your family and impress your friends! I love Vani’s website http://foodbabe.com/.  She researches ingredients in many of the popular “foods” from the commercial food industry and exposes the horrific ingredients.  If you find out there is raspberry flavoring derived from the anus of a muskrat in your favorite raspberry pop tart you are much less likely to even want to eat it.

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Take small steps that will compound into major change over time.

Read the Compound Effect. http://www.thecompoundeffect.com/

Say you want to switch to a plant based diet but are overwhelmed by how you would possibly find things to eat and meals to prepare.  Instead shutting down and saying you could never do such a thing – start small.  Find ONE recipe that sounds really delicious and is naturally vegan or gluten free – such as this Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry, Horseradish Mustard Sauce.  :) Don’t get too complicated.  Do repeat for two weeks. The third week make your one recipe but then go out to your favorite restaurant and look at the menu to see if there is a way you could sub something you love for meat and/or dairy. The fourth week do those two things and try a new ingredient…..you get the picture.

Here is another example for you. There is an entree salad I love at a Stonewood – a steak house. It normally comes with chicken or fish and has cheese on it. Instead I get extra pine nuts and sundried tomatoes – two ingredients I saw elsewhere on the menu. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. The more we ask the faster restaurants will get the picture.  Vote with your fork! Do ask the waiter what ingredients come on the salad that weren’t on the menu. Cheese? Bacon bits? Mayo or dairy based dressing?

Remember: Look at this positively. Have fun. Get creative.  If you start associating this process with feelings of enjoyment, gratitude and pride – you are much more likely to create a positive experience for yourself and stick with it until it becomes habit. When it comes down to a change – it all comes down to habit.  Enjoy the process and soon you won’t even have to think about it!

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Recipe:

This recipe knocked my socks off! Not only was it SUPER simple to prepare but it was super fast too! The sauce does double duty as the perfect dressing as well and though it’s pink it is not overly sweet. The flavors of horseradish and mustard hold their own with the fresh raspberry- blending really nicely when paired with the fresh cracked pepper and onion powder on the nutty tempeh.

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry Horseradish Mustard Sauce

 Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry, Horseradish Mustard Sauce

Vegan, Gluten Free
Serves 4
Printable Recipe
**Ingredients on sale now at Native Sun Natural Food Store July 7-August 6, 2013

Ingredients

2 blocks tempeh, cut in half
Olive oil spray
Coarse sea salt, fresh black pepper, onion powder to taste

Raspberry Sauce (Makes 8-10 Tbsp)
1/2 cup fresh raspberries**
2 Tbsp horseradish mustard, such as Annie’s Organic
2 tsp agave (or honey if non-vegan)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp chopped red onion
2 Tbsp water
3 Tbsp olive oil

Directions

1. Preheat the grill to medium high; spray both sides of tempeh evenly with olive oil; season with salt, pepper & onion powder. Grill each side 5-7 minutes or until char marks appear.

2. Mix raspberry sauce in blender or Magic Bullet.

3. Pour 2 Tbsp raspberry sauce over each serving tempeh; top with a few fresh raspberries and red onion to garnish.

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 225.8
Total Fat 16.3 g
Saturated Fat 2.6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 9.2 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 178.9 mg
Potassium 260.8 mg
Total Carbohydrate 11.8 g
Dietary Fiber 1.1 g
Sugars 0.1 g

Protein 10.6 g
Vitamin A 0.4 %
Vitamin B-12 0.8 %
Vitamin B-6 6.6 %
Vitamin C 6.6 %
Vitamin E 6.6 %
Calcium 6.7 %
Copper 16.5 %
Folate 4.5 %
Iron 9.2 %
Magnesium 12.3 %
Manganese 44.8 %
Niacin 8.2 %
Pantothenic Acid 2.0 %
Phosphorus 15.3 %
Riboflavin 12.7 %
Selenium 0.2 %
Thiamin 3.3 %
Zinc 4.8 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Enjoy my Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry, Horseradish Mustard Sauce!

Enjoy my Grilled Tempeh with Raspberry, Horseradish Mustard Sauce!

Jul 112013
 
Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

 I sat down on the blue, outside patio bench at Seafood Sams in Sandwich and opened my sandwich wrapper.  Everyone around me turned and stared.

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

For one, because I had brought my own food into Seafood Sams (the home of gross fried seafood), and secondly because my sandwich from the ever-so-charming Corner Store in Chatham, Mass was making everyone’s mouth water.

I had learned from past experience that sneaking food in this particular venue is a must if everyone is adamant that we visit.  There is simply nothing on the menu I’m excited to spend my money on (I realize this is rather tacky but I was discreet, I promise).

As for my sandwich – grilled eggplant, marinated tomatoes, hummus, kalamata olives and gorgeous multigrain bread pressed into a panini (hold the feta). What is NOT to love? In fact, I went back the next day and got the SAME sandwich and my daughter got a gluten free and vegan burrito with black beans, fresh salsa, and roasted potatoes on a Food For Life rice tortilla. YUM!

In honor of the Corner Store I few home to Florida and the first recipe I re-created was a light version of the grilled eggplant sammie (for those of us that can’t make it to Chatham, Mass every day.)

Corner Store….you rock! Thank you for having vegan and gluten free options.  Here’s to you!

**This recipe actually started out as a grilled eggplant, but when I glanced at the porch after preheating the grill and noticed the black smoke emanating from the back of it, I thought “should I call the fire department first or try to put it out first?” I quickly filled a pot with water, took a deep breath and ran out to the porch. As I lifted the lid there were flames about three feet high. I backed up and threw the pot of water on it and ran back into the house to breathe. 

Hence the reason for the roasted eggplant and reason #101 that eating meat sucks! My hubby had cooked chicken wings while I was out of town and the grease from them flamed up the dang grill. I promise people – grilling tofu doesn’t have the same hazards.

For those of you that didn’t catch my facebook post – here are a few snapshots from my Cape Cod trip where we were visiting friends and family. I grew up in MASS!

Cape Cod

Cape Cod

Breakfast with Cara, Ben and Baby Rosie!

Breakfast with Cara, Ben and Baby Rosie!

For the grand finale - Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant & Marinated Tomato Sandwich!

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

 Roasted Eggplant & Marinated Tomato Sandwich

Inspired by the Corner Store, Chatham Mass
Serves 4
Vegan (use Gluten Free bread for gluten free sandwich)
Printable Recipe

 

Ingredients 

4 small tomatoes such as plum tomatoes
1/3 cup your favorite Annie’s Dressing, such as Balsamic Vinaigrette**
1 eggplant
2 Tbsp olive oil**
Coarse sea salt & fresh ground pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/3 cup white wine
8 slices of handmade multigrain bread
1/2 cup pre-made hummus
2 cups fresh baby spinach
Optional
1/4 cup kalamata olives, sliced

Directions

1. Slice tomatoes and place in container; pour dressing and cover and marinate for 2 hours or over night.

2. Preheat oven to 400F; slice eggplant; rub 1 Tbsp oil into baking pan; add eggplant; brush tops with 1 Tbsp olive oil; sprinkle coarse sea salt, fresh ground pepper and garlic powder; place eggplant in oven and cook 15 minutes; flip and pour white wine over eggplant evenly; roast an additional 15 minutes; remove from oven and set aside.

3. Toast bread; spread 2 Tbsp hummus on each of 4 slices of toast; top with two slices of roasted eggplant; top with 4 slices of  marinated tomato; sprinkle additional salt and pepper; add 1/2 cup fresh spinach and top with a few olive slices if using and remaining slices of bread. Slice sandwich into two sections and enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 328.8
Total Fat 15.9 g
Saturated Fat 1.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.6 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.8 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 456.6 mg
Potassium 595.8 mg
Total Carbohydrate 31.8 g
Dietary Fiber 14.3 g
Sugars 3.6 g
Protein 18.8 g

Vitamin A 38.3 %
Vitamin B-6 12.9 %
Vitamin C 21.2 %
Vitamin E 4.9 %
Calcium 8.0 %
Copper 15.3 %
Folate 22.6 %
Iron 10.3 %
Magnesium 15.2 %
Manganese 32.7 %
Niacin 11.5 %
Pantothenic Acid 5.5 %
Phosphorus 10.8 %
Riboflavin 11.4 %
Selenium 2.3 %
Thiamin 11.7 %
Zinc 6.0 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Enjoy this Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant & Marinated Tomato Sandwich!

Apr 162013
 

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies
Open your mind……

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” ― Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

“Many people know that animals around the world are treated badly, yet they turn their minds away.” - Ruby Roth, Vegan is Love

So I say…..open your mind to what is going on in factory farms. 

“Were the walls of our meat industry to become transparent, literally or even figuratively, we would not long continue to raise, kill, and eat animals the way we do.”
Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
 

“I would NEVER.”  Some people say.
Never give up meat. Give up dairy. Eat tofu.

I do believe I heard that out of my husband’s mouth.

(But curiosity got the best of him.)

It looks like chicken.

“Hey! It’s pretty good!”

Score.

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

How did I manage to do this and WHY?

Let’s start with the why.

For the same reason I would pre-prep and pre-make dishes for my CSA….so folks would at least try it.  Even ONE meat and dairy free meal helps your body, the environment and, of course, the animals that were not eaten.

“But that’s the challenge — to change the system more than it changes you.”
Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

The HOW.

Tips on how to make tofu look like chicken.

Step 1: Press well.  Do this the day before you are going to eat it or at least a few hours in advance.  I LOVE my tofu xpress, or you can simply wrap the tofu in thick paper towels and a kitchen towel, place it between two plates and weight down the top plate with a very heavy book and/or soup cans.  If you are pressing it overnight, place in the fridge; if not, it is fine to leave on the counter.

Step 2: Cut around the entire tofu to remove any flat planes and edges – think chicken breast. Save all the little shreds to season and throw on a salad.

Step 3: Now cut the tofu into similarly sized but asymmetrical pieces.

Step 4: Run your knife along the flat planes making small downward cuts to shred the edges a bit and then throw the tofu in the marinade.  See the below video and I promise to get a better one soon! Stay tuned…..

(All these steps will also help the marinade seep in a bit better.)

Ever wondered how to disguise tofu? This very humorous, last minute (and shaky) video shows you how. 
Warning: The videographer was my 4 year old.

 Now that all the nuts and bolts are out of the way, let’s get down to the food.

The weather is getting warmer and people are ready to start grilling!  There is nothing like a nice crisp char on some veggies and a mouth-watering, marinated protein-of-choice (tempeh would be great too) - perfect with cool salsa and creamy avocado.  This whole concoction, nestled in a bed of aromatic-nutty cilantro and sunflower seed pesto, is a perfect medley of flavor, texture and temperature.

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto 

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies over Fresh Citrus Salsa and Cilantro Sun Flower Seed Pesto  

 ___________________________________

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies

Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies

 Grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies

Serves 6
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
Tip: Press the tofu overnight and then marinate during the day.

Ingredients

1 block organic, extra firm tofu, pressed 1 hour to overnight
2 Tbsp + 2 tsp adobo seasoning
1 Tbsp + 2 tsp olive oil
2 fresh zucchini, sliced
1 onion, quartered and cut into chunks
5oz button mushrooms

Adobo Seasoning Recipe
Notes: You will definitely have left over.
This step can be skipped by purchasing pre-mixed adobo seasoning.
2 tsp each; garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, cumin, dried oregano
1 tsp chili powder
1 Tbsp paprika
2 Tbsp salt

Directions

1. Mix 2 Tbsp adobo seasoning and 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large bowl; cut tofu into chunks (see tip on how to make tofu look like chicken) and add to bowl; toss to coat and set aside for at least an hour or the day.

2. Preheat grill to medium high; season the vegetables with remaining 2 tsp adobo seasoning and 2 tsp olive oil; toss to coat.

3. Thread veggies and tofu onto skewers in an alternating pattern; spray with organic, non-stick spray.

4. Grill until nice char marks appear and vegetables are soft but not mushy; 5-10 minutes on one side and 5 or so minutes on the next.

Full Nutrition Info

Fresh Citrus Salsa

Fresh Citrus Salsa

Fresh Citrus Salsa

Serves 6
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

2 tomatoes, chopped
1 navel orange, peeled and chopped
1/4 red onion, chopped
Juice 1 lime
1 avocado, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
Dash coarse sea salt

Directions

1. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl.

Full Nutrition Info

Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Cilantro Sunflower Seed Pesto

Serves 6
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp chopped onion
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup roasted sunflower seeds
1/8 – 1/4 tsp coarse sea salt (depending on taste)
1/4 cup water

Directions

1. Mix all ingredients in Magic Bullet or blender.

!Full Nutrition Info

Enjoy this grilled Adobo Tofu and Veggies