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Refried Bean Tostadas

These tostadas are quick and simple to make. They would also be great for appetizers or an after-school snack. I served ours with a sliced fresh peach for lunch. You can make them as simple or elaborate as you want. There really are not any rules for these. Let your imagination go wild.

  • 1 16 oz. can of fat free refried beans
  • 1/2 c salsa, favorite (I like Newman’s)
  • Corn tostada shells
  • 1/2 c chili-lime jackfruit, shredded
  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • 5 tomatoes, cherry, quartered

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium sauce pan add refried beans and salsa. Stir beans and salsa until well combined. Cook over medium heat, until bean mixture is heated thoroughly. Set aside.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Place tostada shells onto mat.

Spread bean mixture onto tostada shells. Layer jackfruit on top of the bean mixture. Scatter a few pieces of tomato on the top of the beans and jackfruit.

Bake in the oven for about 5 minutes. Remove from oven and top with chopped avocado.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

 

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What to do with Bits and Pieces? Mini Chickpea Frittatas/Savory Muffins

What to do with all those its and pieces leftover from unused ingredients? Make mini frittatas. Frittatas are one of the best ways to use up all those ingredients leftover from other meals.

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For instance, I had some kale, part of a red pepper, half an onion and some cherry tomatoes. There was not really enough for soup, but enough to make some mini chickpea frittatas. These are great for batch cooking. I made them in a bakery size tin (6 well), however, you could use a 12 well tin as well. They came out perfect, light and airy. You could call them savory muffins.

Need something quick for breakfast? These are perfect. They are great at room temperature, loaded with protein and nutrient rich veggies. They are easy to change up anytime. Just use what little bits and pieces you have leftover from other recipes.

Veggie Mixture: 

  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 1/2 c red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 c kale, chopped
  • 1/2 c tomatoes, cherry, quartered
  • 1 tbsp garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable broth

Combine all ingredients into a large pan over medium-high heat. Cook until veggies have softened and onions are translucent. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 c chickpea flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp savory blend
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 tsp black salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

Whisk together all dry ingredients until they are well combined. Set aside.

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Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 c water
  • 1 lemon, juiced

Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and whisk thoroughly. Stir veggie mixture into chickpea mixture. Make sure it is combined completely.

Pour into muffins tins.

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Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

Note: These are great serve for part of a brunch, or any other meal.

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How to Build a Better Salad

What is nice about salads is that there are no real boundaries, O rules. Well, maybe one rule – Fresh. Freshness is a pretty key factor to making a better salad. There are a couple of things that make better salads. One of those things is – Variety. Here are some ways to make your salads standout.

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Variety of Lettuces – Use two different kinds of lettuce. In this salad I used two different kinds of butter lettuces. One was red and one was green. Of course, color was the obvious difference, but also taste and textures were different. You could try arugula for a peppery bite or romaine for crunch.

Lettuce Combinations:

  • Butter Lettuce/Romaine
  • Iceberg/Spinach
  • Arugula/Butter

There are so many different types of greens to mix and match. The possibilities are endless

Variety of Veggies –  Try using two or more veggies. I used carrots, radishes, red bell pepper and celery leaves. Use what is in season. By using seasonal foods you will have the best quality and flavor.

Variety of Fruits – Fruits add another dimension to your salad. Often it will add a touch of sweetness. This salad had cherry tomatoes, a peach and avocado. These different fruits add freshness, sweetness and creaminess.

Herbs – Herbs are often left out of salads, yet, they add so much more flavor. I used some cilantro. It does not take much of an herb to raise your salad to the next level.

Nuts/Seeds – This is where you can get a little crazy. There are so many possibilities. It takes only a tablespoon or less of nuts/seeds to vary the texture of your salad. I used my Seed & Spice Blend.

Spices – Toast your seeds and nuts in some spices before you and them to your salad. Toasting the seeds and nuts makes all the difference in their flavor. The flavor will be intensified and so will the spices, especially when you combine them together. I toasted my seeds and added my Smokey Southwestern Seasoning to them for additional flavor.

Dressings – Dressings are a wonderful addition to finish the salad, however, they are not necessary if the rest of your salad is flavorful. Just s squeeze of citrus can amp up the flavor of your other ingredients in the salad making them each standout.

Think outside of the box. Do not be afraid to try different combinations and have fun. Just think of how nourished your a going to feel.

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Chickpea Garden Frittata

I have been wracking my brain on how I could make a Frittata without eggs, of course, and without soy. Then I remembered a recipe using chickpea flour for the eggs, perfect.

What I like about frittatas is that you can put just about anything in it and it always turns out good. It is a great way to use up some leftovers and make it a completely different kind of meal or flavor profile.

I will break the recipe up into three different easy steps: Veggies, Dry, and Wet Ingredients. One thing nice about this is you use one pan for the sauteing and baking. I think less cleanup work is always good.

This particular recipe is heavy on the veggies, but that is how I like it.

Veggies:

  • 1 c onion, diced
  • 1/2 c celery, diced
  • 1  red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tbsp vegetable broth, plus more as needed
  • 2 Roma tomato(es), diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic clove, minced

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In a large nonstick/ceramic pan add onion, celery, red bell pepper and broth. Cook veggies until onions are translucent and the celery and red peppers are softened. Add tomatoes and garlic. Cook until garlic is fragrant and the onions are just heated through.

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 c chickpea flour
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tsp All-Purpose Seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp black salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

Combine all dry ingredients onto a large bowl and whisk together.

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 c water
  • 1 lemon, juiced

Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and let the batter set for about 5-10 minutes. The batter will thicken during this time.

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Add veggies to batter and stir until well incorporated.

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Pour batter back into pan and put into oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes. A toothpick should come out clean.

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Note: This perfect for any meal or any occasion. Also I like to serve this with a Balsamic Syrup.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Breakfast Burritos

I made breakfast burritos for lunch today. They turned out so good – omnivore approved. That is one of my goals when I come up with a meal. Omnivores will love the meal just as much as us vegans. That is the best way to get others to try this way of eating.

As the title says I made burritos for me with gluten-free tortillas and my husband had his with naan. It looked amazing as well.

  • 1 pkg tofu, firm, drained, pressed
  • Savory Spice Blend, generous amount
  • black salt, generous pinch
  • vegetable broth, as needed
  • 2 c shredded potatoes, frozen
  • vegan cheese shreds (optional)
  • salsa, your favorite
  • 1 avocado(s), chopped
  • gluten-free tortillas

Season tofu with Savory Spice Blend. Rub into tofu and let set as you gather your other ingredients.

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Add 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable broth to a large skillet over medium heat.

Add tofu, seasoned side down to the skillet with the vegetable broth. Season other side of tofu with more Savory Spice Blend and black salt.

Break up tofu with spatula. Add 1-2 more tablespoons of vegetable broth. This adds additional flavor and helps the tofu from sticking to the pan. Cook tofu until it is heated through and resembles scrambled eggs. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

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Add 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable to skillet you cooked the tofu in. Add the shredded potatoes and vegan cheese shreds. Spread them out evenly. Let them set and cook. Do not stir at this time. By letting them set there they get golden brown. If you stir them they will not get golden.

When the potatoes have got golden brown turn them over and repeat the browning process on this side.

Return tofu scramble to potatoes. Add avocado and salsa to the potato mixture. Stir.

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Spoon filling into tortillas and roll into a burrito. Top burrito with additional salsa.

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Serv. Eat. Enjoy.

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Garden Farfalle

This pasta can be served cold or hot. Usually we start off hot and then round two (leftovers) cold. It is very colorful because it uses many different veggies from the garden. What is nice is that you can use whatever veggies you have on hand and make it your way.

I like to make the veggie ratio higher than what you would normally see in a typical pasta dish. I always say the more veggies the better.

  • 12 oz. brown rice farfalle (I like jovial.)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 c kale, chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 12 oz cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • All-purpose Seasoning
  • 1 15oz. can chick peas, drained, rinsed (Save liquid for baking.)
  • 1 Meyer lemon, zested, juiced
  • 1 c vegetable broth, and more as needed for sautéing
  • 1 tsp arrowroot/cornstarch
  • 1/4 c nutritional yeast

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain.

In a large pan, over medium heat sauté onions with some veggie broth and all-purpose seasoning, until the onions are translucent.

Add, kale, garlic, tomatoes, zucchini and chick peas. Sauté with veggie broth, to keep ingredients from sticking to the pan.

Add pasta, lemon zest to veggie mixture.

Make slurry with 1 cup of veggie broth and 1 tsp arrowroot/cornstarch. Add to pasta mixture. Stir.

Add nutritional yeast and stir.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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O’Brien Tofu Scramble

I have been meaning to make this breakfast for sometime. Whenever I would get ready to make it I would be missing one of the ingredients. Today is the day. I have all the ingredients.

Right this moment I am pressing the tofu to get the liquid out and so I can impart more flavor into the tofu. Tofu is a blank canvas, which means you can season it however you want to.

I am using a shortcut ingredient in this scramble. Frozen O’Brien breakfast potatoes. They contain some peppers and onions. They are perfect for some additional flavor and bulk.

This meal is not just for breakfast. You can make this anytime. This would make a great brunch item to share. Make the GF Blueberry muffins and a beautiful bowl of mixed fruit  to go along with the scramble and you will have a wonderful Sunday brunch with your family and friends.

  • 14 oz. firm tofu, pressed
  • Savory Spice Blend, to taste
  • Couple of Pinches of black salt
  • 4 c O’Brien Potatoes, frozen
  • Vegetable broth as needed
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 avocado, sliced

Press the tofu for at least 30 minutes to get the liquid out.

Season pressed tofu with Savory Spice blend and black salt. (The black salt will help give it that eggy flavor that you come to expect from scramble eggs.) Set aside.

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Over medim-high heat in a large pan cook O’Brien potatoes to a golden brown color. Use vegetable broth as needed to keep the potatoes from sticking. You may also want to turn down the heat to medium if the potatoes are browning too quickly. Transfer potatoes to a plate and set aside.

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Before you add the tofu deglaze the pan with vegetable broth to make sure you get all those bits of flavor.Add tofu to the pan that you cooked the potatoes in.

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Cook tofu until they resemble scrambled eggs. Return potatoes to tofu and stir. Add nutritional yeast . Taste for seasoning. I added more Savory Blend.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

Note: This scramble would be great to be used for breakfast burritos/tacos. Add a little salsa and you have a great filling and nutritious breakfast to grab and go.

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Roasted Baby Golden Beets and Strawberry Salad with Pan Toasted Pecans

This salad is a feast for the taste buds. The flavors are amazing. There are so many wonderful textures – crunchy, creamy and a little crisp. Not only do the textures send this salad over the top, but the flavors are sublime.

I made this for a light summer dinner. Dress this salad with my Strawberry Vinaigrette that can be made in the blender in 60 seconds or less and you have a perfect bite of salad.

Note: This recipe makes 2 servings.

Toss together all the ingredients.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Strawberry Baby Greens Quinoa Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

This summery salad would be great to take to a picnic or barbecue. It will please all eaters alike. The salad is loaded with all different kinds of textures and flavors. Freshness from the baby greens, sweetness from the strawberries and sweet peas, little pops from the cooked quinoa, creaminess from the cannellini beans. Oh, and do not forget the crunch from the sliced almonds and the extra strawberry flavor in the vinaigrette. The vinaigrette reminds me of strawberry lemonade. It is colorful and inviting whispering seductively to all to come and partake.

Quinoa:

In a large Dutch oven bring quinoa, water and all-purpose seasoning to a boil. Reduce heat and cook until water is absorbed and quinoa looks like it has little rings. Remove from heat and let cool. Fluff quinoa with a fork.
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Strawberry Baby Greens Quinoa Salad:

  • 5oz. Baby Greens
  • 2 (15oz.) cans canellini beans, drained, rinsed
  • 2 c sweet peas, fresh or thawed frozen
  • 1 1/2 c strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 c almonds, sliced
  • Strawberry Vinaigrette

Assemble all ingredients and gentle toss together in a large bowl.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Portabella Fajita Tostadas

This meal is a combination of two different southwestern favorites – tostadas and fajitas. The portabella mushrooms add a “meaty” bite. Then there is the freshness of the tomatoes, avocado, cilantro and the squeeze of lime.

These tostadas make a great light supper or they are perfect for lunch. Top with your favorite garnishes and enjoy.

  • 12 oz. Fajita Mix Veggies
  • 12 oz. Portabella Mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 tsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, divided, 1 tsp/2 tsp
  • vegetable broth, as needed
  • Tostada shells
  • 1 Avocado, cubed
  • 1 Tomato, diced
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges
  • Cilantro, garnish, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place tostada shells onto baking sheet and warm shells in oven. this only takes a few minutes.

Remove shells from oven.

In a large pan over medium-high heat add fajita mix veggies and 1 tsp of Smokey Southwestern Seasoning. Add vegetable broth as needed to loosen veggies from pan.

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Cook veggie mix until they begin to soften.

Add mushrooms, Smokey Southwestern Seasoning, and garlic. Stir.

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Cook mushrooms until tender.

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Top tostado shells with portabella veggie mix, tomato, avocado, cilantro and a squeeze of lime.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.