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Plant Sandwich

I mentioned the story about the Plant Sandwich in a previous post (The Alfredo Sauce Post). Here is my version of the Plant Sandwich. I have a couple of ideas floating around in my head for another version or two.

I used my GF Rustic Herb Bread. I find it is best to use the bread when it is fresh. Otherwise, it might start to crumble a little bit on you. I toasted the bread in a pan, however, I think I would press it like a panini the next time.

I also made a Chicken Alfredo Sandwich for my husband, using the Alfredo Sauce.

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In a medium skillet over medium heat toast the inside of the Rustic Herb Bread. Remove toast from skillet and set aside on a plate.

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Spoon Alfredo Sauce onto toasted slices of Rustic Herb Bread. Let the sauce work into the nooks and crannies of the bread.

Spray skillet with olive oil. Place spinach in skillet and wilt over medium heat. This will only take about 30-60 seconds. remove from heat. Place Spinach on one half of the toasted bread.

Layer tomato on top of spinach.

Spray skillet again. Place portabella in the middle of the skillet. Season with all-purpose seasoning. Cover skillet with lid and let the mushroom cap steam. about 1-2 minutes. Turn mushroom cap over and repeat steam process. Mushroom cap should be softened and tender.

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Layer mushroom cap on top of spinach and tomato. Spoon some Alfredo Sauce onto mushroom. Top sandwich with other half of toasted bread.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Posted on 10 Comments

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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Posted on 7 Comments

Fried Vegetable Rice

I had made a pot of brown rice intending to make a couple of different meals out of it, but changed my mind and settled on fried rice with veggies. Because I had a bag of stir fry vegetables and mushrooms in the refrigerator, that needed to be used, it just seemed to be the perfect meal. I will also be using the Chinese Brown Sauce that I posted about recently.

Everything is pretty simple and easy about this meal. You can get just about all the ingredients either precooked (rice) or pre-chopped (veggies) to make this one of those 15 minutes and under meals. This is also good for a cleaning out the refrigerator meal. That is what keeps this meal from getting boring.

  • 3 c cooked brown rice, cold (this keeps the rice from turning mushy)
  • 16 oz stir-fry veggies
  • 2 c mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 recipe of Chinese Brown Sauce
  • Coconut Oil Spray.
  • 1/2 c vegetable broth

I used a large electric griddle (one often used for making pancakes) to “fry” the rice and a large dutch oven for the vegetables. The ingredients will be combined on the griddle to finish the recipe.

Spray griddle with coconut spray. Spread rice evenly onto the griddle. turn griddle to 350 degrees.  Let the rice set and cook. You will start to hear a sizzle on the griddle. That is a good thing. This is giving the rice a crispiness. Stir occasionally.

Meanwhile, spray dutch oven with coconut oil. Add vegetables to the dutch oven cooking over medium-high heat. Spray the vegetables with coconut oil. Stir so that vegetables are all coated with the coconut oil (very light coat). Stir frequently. Place lid on dutch oven to steam vegetables. Check after a couple of minute; stir. This will be when you add the vegetable broth. Stir. Cook until liquid is gone. This only takes 1-2 minutes. Turn heat off.

Check rice, flip the rice (like a hamburger) in sections, until all the rice has been flipped.

Combine vegetables with the rice. Stir mixture and spread the mixture evenly on the griddle. Pour Chinese Brown Sauce onto rice and vegetables. Stir until all the rice and vegetables are coated with the sauce.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Posted on 9 Comments

Cashew Vanilla Frosting

This is a frosting that is not overly sweet and only uses 5 – 6 ingredients, Besides, who does not like a good vanilla frosting? Another thing, you make it in the blender. Now that is easy. Oh and something else, it is healthy.

  • 5oz. dates, pitted, chopped
  • 1 c cashews, unsalted, raw
  • 3/4 c water, hot
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp vanilla paste, or 1 vanilla bean
  • pinch of sea salt

In a blender combine all the ingredients. Let stand 45 minutes, or until dates and cashews are softened.

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Cover blender and blend until smooth and creamy. You can add more water if frosting is too stiff.

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Note: this frosting has a tannish color. You can substitute Vanilla Powder if you want it to be a lighter color.

 

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Carrot Cake Donuts

I started out going to make a carrot cake, but then I thought I haven’t made donuts in months. Then I thought, Carrot Cake Donuts sounds pretty good. So here we are making Carrot Cake Donuts.

They are cooling as I write this post and I can hardly wait to have one. So when you see a picture with a bite taken out you know that is a real bite.

I have always liked carrot cake. It has a vegetable in it, so it has to be good for you, right?? They are gluten free and vegan. Also, there is no refined sugars. These donuts are packed with flavor and none of the bad stuff.

This batter is made entirely in the food processor.

  • 1 1/2 c unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 4 1/2 oz whole dates, pitted, chopped
  • 1/2 c applesauce, unsweetened
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 3/4 c  GF oat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 c carrots, finely shredded
  • 1/2 c walnuts, chopped

In the food processor add milk, dates, banana and vanilla. Pulse a few times to break up the dates. Let ingredients set for about 15 minutes to let the dates soften.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add oat flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg, ginger and carrots. blend until completely mixed and carrots are in small pieces. Add walnuts and pulse until the walnuts are broken up.

Spoon batter into a ziplock bag. Squeeze out air and snip the end of the bag so that you can pipe the batter into a donut pan.

Tip: If you are using a silicone pan, place the silicone pan onto a sheet pan. Then pipe batter into donut rings. This make s it much easier to work with the donut pan.

Bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool inside the donut pan. They will probably break apart if you try to remove them sooner. Turn donuts out onto board/platter (whatever is large enough).

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You can eat them plain or ice with your favorite icing.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

Posted on 5 Comments

Apple Cake Squares

 

At least 5 days a week I try to work on recipes that I can bring to my readers that are healthy, gluten free, and over the top delicious. I gather inspiration from fellow bloggers, cookbooks and even magazine articles. Needless to say I do a lot of reading on different formats (electronic and paper).

This recipe was inspired by a book I saw in the book store. I can honestly say I am at the book store at least once 3 out of 4 weeks. Yes, I like books. It is probably time to donate some of my cookbooks that I have not peeked at in a long time. Sorry, back to the recipe.

You can feel good about serving this anytime – Breakfast, Snack, Dessert, this cake hits the spot.

Dry ingredients:

  • 2 c gluten free flour blend
  • 2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 c maple sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp  sea salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 c oil (your choice)
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Apple: Mixture:

  • 3 pink lady apples, peeled, cored, chopped
  • 1/2 c walnuts, chopped

Icing:

  • 1 c powdered maple sugar
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9×13 cake pan.

In a large bowl combine: flour, xanthan, maple sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and sea salt.

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In a liquid measuring cup combine wet ingredients: oil, water, vanilla and apple cider vinegar.

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Pour wet ingredients in dry ingredients and stir. Batter will be thick resembling a cookie dough.

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Fold in apple mixture into batter and stir.

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Spoon batter into cake pan.

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Bake for 30-35 minutes. The cake should be light golden brown on the top when it is done.

Pour icing on to cake while it is still warm. Let icing set.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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Note: This would be extra good with your favorite ice cream served on top.

Posted on 2 Comments

Tuscan Beans and Spinach Soup with Homemade Croutons

I made this soup because it was actually below freezing here in Florida. I know that is just W.R.O.N.G. – WRONG. If I wanted to be in the cold, I would go up to New Hampshire. Actually I do go up there once a month, but not because I like the cold. Anyway, this soup just sounded perfect for the day.

The homemade croutons are a must. They take this soup to the next level of comfy, cozy goodness. The creaminess is easily done by pureeing part of the beans with broth. The lemon adds just a hint of zip to keep the soup from being boring. This recipe makes 4-6 servings. Oh, and it only takes 30 minutes to make. Here is another quick and tasty meal in 30 minutes flat to your table.

  • 2 15 oz cans cannnelini white beans, rinsed, drained, divided
  • 3 c vegetable broth, divided, 1c/2c
  • 1 tsp all-purpose seasoning
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 8 oz baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 large tomato, seeded, chopped
  • 1/2 lemon, zested, juiced
  • Homemade Croutons

In a food processor or blender, blend together 1 can of cannelini beans and 1 c of vegetable broth until smooth and creamy. Set aside.

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In a large dutch oven, saute onions with all-purpose seasoning and vegetable broth as needed, until soft.

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Add garlic, red pepper flakes. Stir. Add spinach and stir. Cook until spinach is wilted.

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Add remaining beans and broth along with the tomato and lemon.

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Stir thoroughly. Bring soup to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, until heated through.

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Serve with homemade croutons. Eat. Enjoy.

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Spinach-Artichoke Zucchini Lasagna

I consider it a challenge to transform one dish into multiple different types of meals. I initially started with Warm Spinach-Artichoke dip served with bread and/or chips. Great for a large crowd or something very casual. Then I elevated the appetizer to Roasted Baby Potatoes with Spinach-Artichoke Dip Bites. This is perfect for a more intimate gathering, or if you want to serve something that is definitely going to get recipe questions. Mmm, so good.

Since I do not like to waste food I turned the dip into a filling for a Veggie Lasagna. One batch of the Spinach-Artichoke Dip made three different things. That makes me do a happy dance.

This dish is mostly assembly work because the filling is already made. One tool that would be tremendously helpful is a mandolin. I had bought one a few months back and this is the first time that I have got to use it. The mandolin is such a time saver when it comes to slicing the zucchini thin and evenly.

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  • Spinach-Artichoke Dip
  • GF No Cook Lasagna Noodles
  • Marinara Sauce (or you favorite Pasta Sauce)
  • 1 Zucchini, medium, thinly sliced
  • Nutritional Yeast Flakes ( I like Bob’s Red Mill)
  • Fresh Parsley, garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Using a 8×8 baking dish begin layering ingredients. ( You could use a large baking dish if needed for more servings, just adjust quantity of ingredients.

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Repeat layers : Sauce, Lasagna Sheets, Spinach-Artichoke Dip, and Zucchini.

If you have more room add an additional layer. Then top zucchini with marinara sauce and Nutritional Yeast.DSC_0054

Bake in oven for 40-45 minutes. Let rest at least 15 minutes. The rest time is important to keep the lasagna together when you dish it out.

Sprinkle some chopped fresh parsley.

Note: You can bake this ahead of time. To serve: slice and plate and then warm it up in the microwave.

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Baby Potatoes Topped with Spinach Artichoke Dip

The truth is I made this up for a meal for myself. It wasn’t this pretty, yet it is just as tasty. This is a little bit more elevated to the original Warm Spinach-Artichoke Dip just by switching out the base ingredient. These would be great for small parties : Baby showers, Dinner parties, and even a Girl’s Night In. There are so many possibilities.

I have a secret for you, but you can tell anyone you want. I used leftover roasted baby potatoes for these little delectable bites. The combination is … it is so hard to put the right words for these little bites. They are that good and they look pretty.

I promise people will think you worked really hard. I made these a day ago. All I had to do was warm the spinach dip and baby potatoes in the microwave and assemble. However, they are just as good cold.

  • Spinach-Artichoke Dip
  • Roasted Baby Potatoes
  • Fresh Parsley

Slice as many Roasted Baby Potatoes as you think you will need. I would use about 4 halves per person. Warm in microwave (if using leftover, cold potatoes). Otherwise, slice potatoes in half when you are able to handle them.

Warm Spinach-Artichoke Dip in microwave until heated through. Length of time depends on your microwave.

Assembling is extremely simple. I like to give the potatoes a light smash, just enough to give them a slightly flat base. This helps the potatoes stay upright. Put a dollop of dip on top of the potato. I used a teaspoon, however you could use a snipped ziplock bag and pipe it onto the potato. That would probably be easier. Garnish with a fresh parsley leaf.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

 

Posted on 12 Comments

Warm Spinach Artichoke Dip

I plan on using this dip for our Super Bowl Party. The boys (men) all come over and we eat and watch the commercials and the game too. So I am testing it out now, you know, just in case there needs to be any tweaking to the recipe. However, I think it is perfect the way it is.

I will probably be working on a couple more recipes for the big game. So keep a watch out for more to come.

  • 2 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tbs garlic, minced
  • a couple of dashes of red pepper flakes
  • 8 oz. baby spinach
  • 16 oz. silken tofu, drained
  • 1/2 c nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tsp all-purpose seasoning, divided, (2 tsp- 1/2 tsp – 1/2 tsp)
  • 14 oz canned artichoke hearts, drained
  • Bread or tortilla chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 8×8 baking dish

In a large skillet, heat broth over medium-high heat. Add onions. Sprinkle 1/2 tsp of all-purpose seasoning onto onions; stir. Cook until onion are softened and golden.

Reduce heat to medium-low and add artichoke hearts, spinach and 1/2 tsp of all-purpose seasoning. Stir mixture until spinach is wilted.

In a blender or food processor, blend together tofu, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and 2 tsp all-purpose seasoning until smooth. Add onion, spinach and artichoke hearts to tofu mixture. Pulse about 15 times. Add red pepper flakes.

Pour mixture into prepared baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes, until top of dip is golden.

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Let cool about 5 minutes. Serve with bread, crackers or tortilla chips.

Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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