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Cashew Sour Cream

This is a wonderful substitute for dairy sour cream. It has the perfect tang that you come to expect from sour cream. You can use this to replace dairy sour cream in any recipe. Other than soaking the cashews, it only takes about 60-90 seconds to make this condiment.

There is no reason why you cannot have this in your refrigerator anytime. You can also freeze this in portions if you choose to do so.

  • generous pinch of Himalayan Salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
  • 3/4 c water, more if needed
  • 1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 c raw cashews, soaked, drained, rinsed

Combine all the ingredients into a high speed blender. Blitz ingredients until they are creamy and smooth. If needed add more water 1 tablespoon at a time.

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Refrigerate.

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Asian Dressing

This dressing is full of fresh flavor and is super simple to make. I initially made this dressing to go with my Asian Forbidden Rice Salad. It is so good I thought it deserved a post of its own.

Not only is it delicious in the Forbidden Rice Salad, it is also amazing in an Asian noodle salad, or even for a dipping sauce for spring rolls.

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  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp miso paste
  • 1 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 1/2 tbsp ginger, fresh, grated
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil (optional)

In a mason jar combine all the ingredients. Screw the lid onto the mason jar and shake until ingredients are well combined.

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Store in the refrigerator.

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Avocado Ranch Dressing

As I have mentioned in previous posts, I am taking a Whole Foods Plant Based (WFPB) cooking class. This is from one of the assignments with my own tweaks. The dressing is very versatile. You can use for salad or for a dip for homemade tortilla chips or veggies.

  • 1 – 1 1/2 c almond milk, unsweetened (start with 1 c)
  • 1 avocado, pitted and diced
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper, ground
  • 1 tbsp dill, dried
  • 3 tbsp chives, minced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Himalayan salt to taste

Combine all ingredients into blender (except chives). Blitz until ingredients are creamy.

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Add more milk if needed for desired consistency. Stir in chives. Season with salt to taste.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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“Cheese” Sauce

This recipe is for those that cannot do dairy, yet miss the cheesy goodness. I promise this is a life saver in the cheese department. It is very easy to make too. I made this “cheese sauce to go in a Southwestern Bean and Rice Casserole, which I will share the recipe in an upcoming post.

  • 4 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1/3 c GF Flour blend
  • 3 c almond milk
  • 1/2 c nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp yellow mustard, dried
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric, ground
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

In a large pan melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and cook butter/flour mixture until a paste forms, stirring continuously.

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Add milk, nutritional yeast flakes, tomato paste, salt, mustard and onion powder.

Bring to a boil, whisking frequently. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until sauce has thickened.

 

Add lemon juice and stir.

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This sauce can be used for so many different dishes.

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Enjoy.

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Alfredo Sauce – Vegan

I came up with this sauce because I wanted a creamy “cheesy” sauce for a sandwich I was going to make. Back in the day when our boys were young we would take the boys to Downtown Disney. I think it is called Disney Springs now. It was an inexpensive day trip. There was no admission charge, that was huge plus. There was a lego store, another huge plus. And, they had pontoon boats you could rent. Even with all those cool and fun things the favorite place we liked the most was the restaurant called Rainforest Cafe.

The boys loved all the animatronics. They would go and watch all the vignettes of animatronics. It was a lot of fun. The restaurant had a sandwich I ordered every time we went there. It was called a Plant Sandwich. I remember it having a giant portabella mushroom, a slice tomato and some greens. Those are a few of the ingredients that I remember. It has probably been at least 15-20 years since we have been there, but I still remember that sandwich.

Thinking of that time period inspired me to come up with my own plant sandwich (will post soon), and this sauce was just what I needed to complete that feat.

  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c raw cashews
  • 1 1/2 c water, hot
  • 2 tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 c nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • fresh parsley, chopped, garnish

In a large skillet drizzle olive oil. Heat oil over medium. Add onions and garlic and cook until they are translucent and softened. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.

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In a blender add cashews and water. Let the cashew soak for at least 15 minutes.

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Add onion and garlic mixture, lemon juice and salt to cashews.

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Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy.

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Chinese Brown Sauce

This sauce should be a staple in your refrigerator, if it is not already. By using this sauce you can make stir-fried: noodles, rice, veggies and anything else your heart desires to stir fry. It goes with just about everything. I had all the ingredients in my pantry so I did not have to make a special trip to the store for any of the ingredients.

This recipe is a dump all the ingredients in a saucepan at once type of recipe – Easy. It is easy to double or triple the recipe so that you can have it ready to use whenever you want something quick and flavorful to help get a meal on the table.

I will be using this sauce to make Fried rice with Vegetables (post coming soon).

  • 1/3 c vegetable broth
  • 1/3 c coconut aminos
  • 2 tsp ginger, fresh, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp arrowroot or cornstarch
  • 1/4 c maple syrup

In a small saucepan combine all the ingredients. Heat over medium until thickened. Stir occasionally.

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Homemade Seasoned GF Croutons

I do not know what possessed me to make croutons. I really do not like croutons. They are usually hard as rock and have no flavor. Before I realized I had gluten issues I still would not have croutons on my salads. I would always request them to be left off my food. It has been years since I actually ate one – Years.

For some reason I thought they would go really well with some soup I was making. That (the recipe) will be in another post. I think too, it was because I had part of a loaf of my GF bread that was starting to get stale. That bread is too good to waste. So here we are talking about making croutons.

I will be honest I think I am a total convert, at least for my croutons I will be. My husband and I kept eating them right off the pan, still hot from the oven. Just thinking about them makes me smile. I have already got some ideas for these little gems of goodness.

You can make these with any bread, but honestly my GF sandwich bread is awesome. Which will make these croutons even better. You only need 3 ingredients.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut bread into large cubes. Spread out evenly onto sheet pan. Drizzle olive oil over bread cubes. Generously sprinkle all-purpose seasoning onto bread. Stir with hands so that bread cubes are evenly coated with olive oil and seasoning.

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Bake in oven for a total of 20 minutes, until the bread cubes are golden. Stir after ten minutes.

Remove from oven. To store the croutons make sure they are cooled completely and put into an airtight container or ziplock bag.

Use for salads or as a garnish on soups. You could even turn them into bread crumbs. There are lots of possibilities.

Enjoy.

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Compound Butter/Flavored Butter – Savory

Compound butter also known as flavored butter is one of the easiest ways to pack a punch of flavor in any dish. You can make the butter savory or sweet. I have made both and thoroughly enjoy each and everyone I have made.

I made this savory version because I plan on roasting two chickens tomorrow. Two chickens? Well, it is just as easy to roast two chickens as it is to roast one. Then I will have plenty of chicken for various meals this coming week. Sorry, back to topic.

It only takes about 5 minutes to makes this flavored butter. See how easy it is.

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Combine all ingredients into food processor.

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Blend ingredients until well combined.

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Spoon butter mixture on to waxed paper. Roll into a log. Twist ends and fold.

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Wrap butter in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until use.

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Note: You can slice off as much as you want to use. Also, you can freeze the butter until needed.

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Peach Guacamole

I had all the fixings for guacamole and decided to give it a little twist. Fresh peaches takes this from ordinary guacamole to extraordinary. The peaches add a little sweet.

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  • 3 Haas avocados, diced
  • 1/4 large onion, diced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 peach, diced
  • 1 lime zested, juiced
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 c cilantro, chopped

Combine all ingredients and stir thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Balsamic Syrup – Round I

This week I want to share with you how to transform one main meal into other meals for the future. There are some people who do not like leftovers, and there are others who like to just warm up the leftovers as is. I am in both groups depending on the mood. However, I do like a culinary challenge. This week my challenge is to see how I can transform one evening meal into one and maybe two others meals for later in the week.

My thought is to start with a Smokey Southwestern Pork Tenderloin (This recipe is on my website) as my protein. I think a large sheet pan of veggies will go well with the tenderloin and give me many options for future meals.

I added a balsamic syrup drizzle to complement the Smokey Southwestern Pork Tenderloin. The balsamic syrup is very easy to make and it adds so much flavor. I have drizzled it on flatbreads, and I have another use for it in Round 2.

Balsamic Syrup

  • 1 c balsamic ¬†vinegar

Reduce balsamic vinegar over medium heat until it is about half in volume. Reduce it down until it becomes a syrup consistency.

I put mine into a squeeze bottle and keep it handy for many of my dishes. the vinegar reduces down to a sweet and tangy condiment.