Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Brown Rice Spaghetti with Kale Sauce, Zucchini with Pesto, Tempeh (gluten-free)

We received some good fresh kale in our weekly shipment of an online farmer's market. I hand stripped the greens from four leaves of kale and put in a small pan of boiling water for about 5 minutes till the kale tasted reasonably cooked.

Then I put the kale in our Vita-Mix blender, along with a quarter small yellow onion, and briefly (setting 4 out of 10) ran the blender, just to chop the ingredients (and not puree). I put about a half cup little Fra Diavolo pasta sauce in the same pan and combined in with the kale-onion, bringing the mixture to a simmer and adding 3 or 4 roughly chopped fresh basil leaves and a pinch or two of salt.

In the meantime, I started boiling some Tinkyada brand brown rice spaghetti. I served the spaghetti with the kale sauce. A few days ago, I had made pesto sauce, and I served a bit atop some zucchini slices. Sauteed tempeh completed the meal. (I hadn't had it as a goal, but it turned out to be a gluten-free meal.)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Seitan with freshly made pesto, Salad with fresh organic strawberry dressing, jerk-spiced roasted crook-neck squash

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Vegan Grilled Cheese with Hashed Browns and Corn-off-the-Cob

My wife doesn't like cheese, vegan or not, but we ate separately today and it was late by the time I could eat, so I made a simple grilled cheese (with vegan Daiya cheese) sandwich with hashed brown potatoes and flame-roasted corn-off-the-cob.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Brown Rice Spaghetti with Marinara and Pesto, Tempeh, Asparagus

My wife and I often meet to eat out after my photography classes, but we didn't tonight. She and my daughter had eaten on their own. It was late so I put something together that would be quick.

I like brown rice pastas and recently picked up a brown rice spaghetti. I served it with marinara sauce plus a dollop of pesto. Asparagus and tempeh rounded out the filling and tasty meal.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Carrot-Ginger Soup, Marinated Seitan with Kale over Mixed Wild and Brown Rice

I was delighted to have two friends and ex-colleagues over for dinner tonight. I had to show off the Vita-Mix blender and make the carrot-ginger soup that we love. I also made a marinated seitan dish over rice. I think that all enjoyed the meal, including several fruit drinks I made in the Vita-Mix.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Remedy Diner leftover Seitan Steak and Gravy over Mashed Potatoes

This past Saturday, we attended the NC Symphony in downtown Raleigh. I photographed several prom sessions immediately beforehand, so we had to eat after the symphony. We enjoy The Remedy Diner, very vegan friendly, and afterwards ate dinner there. Their servings are large, so I brought home a lot of the country fried seitan steak that I had ordered. I served that (including their gravy) over mashed potatoes tonight for a simple dinner.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Kohlrabi Puree over Mashed Potatoes with Jerk-Spiced Tempeh

In our weekly online farmer's market delivery from Papa Spud's, we had several bulbs of kohlrabi. I've cooked with kohlrabi a few times, but wanted some new ideas and found an interesting kohlrabi puree recipe online. I adapted this recipe and served the resulting fresh, green, appetizing puree atop mashed potatoes, with sauteed tempeh spiced with jerk seasoning and a salad.

I left the skins on 4 kohlrabi bulbs, but cut the tougher very tops and very bottoms off, then cut the kohlrabi into 1" or so chunks. I simmered the kohlrabi for about 12 minutes till the pieces were tender.

While this was going on, I started sauteeing over medium heat a medium onion, chopped into 1/2" pieces. As the onion softened (about 5 minutes), I added 3 cloves of finely chopped garlic. I washed the kohlrabi leaves, composting a few that had yellowed, and roughly chopped them, adding them to the saute a minute or two later. I cooked till the leaves reduced down a bit, maybe 3 minutes.

I drained the cooked kohlrabi bulb pieces and put them in my Vita-Mix blender, then added the contents of the saute pan, a pinch of salt and pepper, and a handful of cashews. I then pureed briefly on high till smooth and served. It was delicious!

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Dealing with 28 Pounds of Strawberries: Leftover French Lentils with Potato served with Injera and a Strawberry-Dressed Salad

Yesterday, my wife, daughter, and I went to what turned out to be a great certified organic and certified biodynamic farm about 30-40 minutes away. We found three tasty varieties of strawberry (Candler, somewhat rare Sweet Charlie, and Camarosa; the latter taste best when very dark burgundy and stand up well to dipping in, for example, chocolate) - and got carried away, picking 28 pounds!!

Last night, we enjoyed some take-out Ethiopian food and quickly got to working through the berries. My wife used her food dehydrator to get many of the berries dehydrated - the process still goes on today (it seems to take about 12 or more hours). I made a chocolate dip (using some bittersweet dark chocolate melted - in a bowl in a pan of boiling water to avoid burning the chocolate - and mixed with some unsweeteened "MimicCreme" almond-cashew "cream") for some dipping, and we ate plenty fresh berries as-is.

Today, I found a recipe that inspired a strawberry dressing. I put 3 or 4 large, firm Camarosa strawberries in our VitaMix blender with very little (1/2 teaspoon) extra virgin olive oil, two tablespoons or so of a vinegar-based hot sauce, about 1 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, a teaspoon or so of fresh squeezed lime juice, and a pinch of salt. I wanted to add one or two cloves of garlic; I didn't have garlic, so instead added a small segment of shallot, as well. I blended on medium (4) for 10 seconds or so, then on high for just a few seconds. I served it atop a salad that had three slices of another variety of strawberry. It was my first attempt at making a salad dressing (we usually use nothing or lime juice with a little salt and pepper) and came out well!

I heated up leftover French Lentils with Potato from Tuesday. I had picked up some extra injera, the lovely spongy sour bread made from fermented teff that is used in lieu of utensils to pick up Ethiopian food, yesterday and served my wife and myself each a lightly warmed injera.

Dinner was good! I went on after dinner to make strawberry ice cream. I simply put in the VitaMix 4 or 5 frozen berries, about a quarter cup of the unsweetened cashew-almond cream, one pitted date, and two more room temperature strawberries. I blended on about "4" till the "ice cream" formed as four humps in the blender. I served topped with a fresh mint leaf. I loved it - what made it exceptional was the fact that the date didn't get homogenized but was in pieces mixed throughout.