Monday, August 23, 2010

Spinach Baked Ziti -- vegan

Spinach Baked Ziti:

* 1 lb whole wheat penne pasta
* 5 oz fresh spinach, roughly chopped (about half a bag)
* 1 lb firm tofu, drained
* 1 garlic clove, minced
* 2 tsps lemon juice
* 1 TBS dried basil
* 1/4 tsp salt
* ground pepper
* 2 tsp olive oil
* 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
* 1 jar of marinara sauce (or about 3 cups of your own sauce)
* 6 oz Follow Your Heart Mozzarella, grated

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large pot of boiling water, cook pasta until al dente (about 9 minutes). Add spinach to the pot during the last 1 or 2 minutes of the cooking time. Meanwhile, crumble the tofu into a bowl. With a fork, mix in the garlic, lemon juice, basil, salt, pepper, olive oil, and nutrtional yeast. Set aside. When the pasta is done, drain the pasta and spinach in a colander, and return to the pot. Add the marinara sauce, the tofu mixture, and about 2 oz of the mozzarella. Mix gently, and place into a 9x13 baking dish. Cover the top with the remaining mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes. Turn the oven to broil (move the oven rack up if you need to), remove the foil, and place pan under broiler for about 5 minutes, just until the mozzarella is melted. Remove from the oven and let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Green Salsa

Green Salsa

8 ounces tomatillos
2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1 jalapeño pepper
1/4 cup sliced white onion
1/2 ripe avocado, diced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

1.To prepare salsa: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Remove husks from tomatillos and rinse well. Cook the tomatillos in the boiling water until soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2.Toast garlic cloves, jalapeño and onion in a dry medium skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until browned, fragrant and soft, 5 to 7 minutes.

3.When cool enough to handle, peel the garlic. Remove the jalapeño stem and remove seeds if desired. Combine the tomatillos, garlic, jalapeño, onion and avocado in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Stir in cilantro, salt and pepper. Set aside for topping the tacos.

Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

6 servings
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes


* 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
* 1 16-ounce package shelf-stable gnocchi, (see Tip)
* 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
* 4 cloves garlic, minced
* 1/2 cup water
* 6 cups chopped chard leaves, (about 1 small bunch) or spinach
* 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings
* 1 15-ounce can white beans, rinsed
* 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
* 1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
* 1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese


1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add gnocchi and cook, stirring often, until plumped and starting to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
2. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and onion to the pan and cook, stirring, over medium heat, for 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and water. Cover and cook until the onion is soft, 4 to 6 minutes. Add chard (or spinach) and cook, stirring, until starting to wilt, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, beans and pepper and bring to a simmer. Stir in the gnocchi and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan. Cover and cook until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling, about 3 minutes.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Crockpot Curried Rice and Lentils


* 1 cup rice
* 1 tbsp curry powder
* 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth
* 1/2 cup lentils
* 2 vegetarian bouillon cubes
* 1/2 tsp garlic powder
* 1/4 tsp pepper
* 1 onion, diced

Combine all the ingredients in a crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours. I'm adding minced carrots, peas, and fresh mushrooms to mine... might even add in some veggie sausage crumbles, too :)

Makes four servings.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Apple Oatmeal Muffins

Apple Oatmeal Muffins (Makes 10-12 )

2 eggs
3 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup apple juice
1/2 cup milk
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups apples, peeled, cored and chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400°F. In a large bowl, combine eggs, honey, oil, apple juice, milk, oats, apples, and vanilla. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients until just mixed. Keep in mind, you want the batter to be lumpy, so don't over-mix!

Spoon enough batter into lined muffin pan to fill baking cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

Florentine Muffins

Florentine Muffins
Serves: 6
Cooking Time: 25 min

* 3 cups flour
* 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
* 1 tablespoon baking powder
* 3 eggs
* 2/3 cup olive oil
* 1 cup milk
* 315 grams chopped spinach (frozen or fresh)
* 1/2 cup pesto
* 1 cup mozzarella, grated -- I used feta


1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
2. Grease a muffin tin (1 for large muffins, 2 for small).
3. Stir together flour, salt and baking powder.
4. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Then whisk in the oil and milk.
5. Stir the spinach into the egg mixture until fully coated.
6. Gently stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture
7. Fold in the pesto and mozzarella.
8. Divide batter amongst muffin cups.
9. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden, dry and springy to touch (like gazelles).

Luau Cake


1 package (16 ounces) angel food cake mix
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple in its own juices, undrained
1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Powdered sugar (optional)

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir until blended.
3. Spoon batter into an ungreased 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely in the pan on a wire rack.
4. Sprinkle the top of cake with powdered sugar, if desired. Cut into 20 squares.

Nutrition information per serving: 113 cal.; 1 g fat; 1 g saturated fat; 0 g trans fat; 0 mg chol.; 174 mg sod.; 25 g carbo.; 0 g fiber; 2 g protein

Sunday, August 1, 2010

'Meaty' Spinach Pesto Lasagna

Meaty Spinach Pesto Lasagna

A great dish to serve to friends and really impress those meat-eaters. Because the cheese mixture in this recipe was soy-based, I was pleased that the meat was based primarily veggie. Make a huge batch so that you can freeze the leftovers and enjoy another lasagna-based meal later on, without all the prep.

8-12 sheets lasagna, parboiled for 5 minutes (I used Tinkyada rice lasagna)

1 recipe tofu ricotta (recipe follows, or use this one)

about 5 cups homemade or prepared marinara sauce -no sugar

1 batch Spinach Pesto (recipe follows)

1 batch ground “meat" (recipe follows).

Preheat oven to 375F. Grease a 9 inch square pan and 8 inch loaf pan. (If you have a larger pan that equals the same area, please feel free to use it instead of two separate pans).

In a medium-sized bowl, fold the cheese and pesto together, just enough to combine (I left a few blobs of pesto visible here and there–you can mix it in completely if you wish). Set aside.

Line up the different ingredients so they’re ready to go, assembly-line style.

Cover the bottom of each pan with one layer of lasagna noodles. If necessary, overlap the noodles, but no more than 1/4 inch to fit them into the pans (I broke them into smaller pieces to accomplish this).

Measure out about 1-1/2 cups of the sauce and set aside.

Using the remainder of the sauce, spoon a thick layer of sauce over the noodles in each pan (I used about 3/4 cup for the loaf, 1 cup for the square pan). No noodles should be visible.

Divide the cheese mixture in half. Using one half of the cheese mixture, sprinkle it evenly over the sauce in each of the pans (I used about 2/3 of one half to cover the square pan, and 1/3 of one half to cover the loaf–in other words, 1/3 of the total in the square pan and 1/6 of the total in the loaf pan).

Divide the meat mixture in half. Using one half of the meat mixture, sprinkle it evenly over the cheese in each of the pans (I used about 2/3 of one half to cover the square pan, and 1/3 of one half to cover the loaf–in other words, 1/3 of the total in the square pan and 1/6 of the total in the loaf pan).

Repeat the layers one more time, using up all the cheese and meat. Cover with one more layer of noodles, then coat with the reserved sauce.

Bake in preheated oven for 45-60 minutes, until bubbly and browned on the edges. Remove from oven and allow to set for at least 15 minutes before cutting into squares. Makes 8-10 servings. May be frozen.

Spinach Pesto:

1 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup lightly toasted walnut halves and/or pine nuts (or use a combination)

2 large cloves garlic, chopped

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, preferably organic

1 bunch fresh spinach, trimmed and washed (stems included)

Combine all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Use as is or mix with ricotta cheese. Will keep, covered, in refrigerator up to 3 days. May be frozen.

Tofu Basil Ricotta
prep time: 10 minutes | cooking time: none | makes About 2 cups
Use as a filling for stuffed shells, mixed with tomato sauce in pasta or as a topping for pizza.

1 pound firm tofu, pressed
2 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
handful fresh basil leaves, chopped fine (ten leaves or so)
dash fresh black pepper

In a large bowl, mush the tofu up with your hands, till it's crumbly.

Add lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper and basil. Mush with hands again, this time you want it to get very mushy so squeeze through your fingers and mush until it reaches the consistency of ricotta cheese. May take 2-5 minutes.

Add olive oil, stir with fork. Add nutritional yeast and combine all ingredients well. Use a fork now, because the oil will make it sticky. Cover and refigerate until ready to use.

Meaty Veg-Based Ground “Meat”:

1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed and washed, broken into florets (about 1 pound after trimming)
2 cups raw walnut halves
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, preferably organic
2 cloves garlic, minced, or 1tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp liquid smoke
1/2-3/4 tsp fine sea salt, to taste
2 Tbsp Bragg’s liquid aminos, soy sauce, or tamari -omit for an entirely soy-free “meat”

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a large rimmed cookie sheet or rectangular pan with parchment, or spray with nonstick spray.

In a food processor, blend the cauliflower and nuts to a fine meal. Depending on how grainy you like your “meat,” it can be more or less fine; I made mine like a coarse cornmeal.

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add remaining ingredients.

Using your hands, knead everything together thoroughly, until the grounds are uniformly coated.

Turn the mixture into the pan and spread out evenly. Bake for 45 minutes and up to 1 hour 15 minutes (it will depend on the size of the pan and how thick the mixture is when you first begin to bake it), stirring after 30 minutes and then every 15 minutes after that, until the meat is dry and brown (if the layer underneath comes up looking wet and white–as cauliflower tends to do–then you need to keep baking).

The grounds will begin to separate and intensify in color as they roast.

Once the meat is cooked, you can cool, package, and freeze it for later use, or use it right away. Will keep, up to 3 days, covered in the refrigerator. May be frozen.
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