Saturday, November 26, 2016

thai peanut hummus

Another hummus! And what better flavor to pair it with than a spicy thai peanut curry? This idea sprouted from my investigation of the similarities between peanut butter and tahini. The result: their nutritional profiles are pretty similar with regards to fat content, sugar, and protein (depending on brand and quality). I already use the two interchangeably in granola and energy ball recipes, why not hummus too?   

thai peanut hummus
  • 1 can garbanzo beans (15.5 oz, drained and rinsed)
  • 2 tsp red curry paste (such as Mae Ploy)
  • 1 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup water

Place all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth! Garnish with cilantro and chopped peanuts. I like this hummus best with fresh crunchy veggies but crackers or pita chips make prime dippers as well.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

lentils + collard greens with easy miso gravy

You all know how deep my love for lentils goes, but the highlight of this post is really the easy miso gravy. It's vegan, it's quick, it's only 3 ingredients (and one of them is water so really only 2), and it's good on everything. Plus, with Thanksgiving right around the corner you can add this to your vegan friendly holiday menu. Actually, you might want to just make this whole recipe for Thanksgiving because that's all I could think about while I was eating it!

If you have made any of my other lentil recipes, you know the drill about soaking. But if you haven't, I strongly recommend soaking lentils overnight for quick cooking, but as little as 2-4 hours should do, you just may need a little bit more cooking liquid and time. So that is step number one, go and soak your lentils.

lentils + collards
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup dry lentils- soaked at least 4 hours, rinsed, and drained
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • salt and pepper
  • collard greens
  • 1/2 kabocha squash- roasted (pumpkin or sweet potatoes would be nice as well)
The next step is roasting the squash; slice into 1" thick wedges, drizzle with olive oil, and pop them into a 400 degree F oven for about 20 minutes. 

While these are roasting, heat a tsp of olive oil in a medium pan and add the onion and garlic. Saute until soft and then add the lentils, water, and some salt and pepper (Don't forget, you can always add more salt but you can't take it out!). Cook on medium heat, or a slow simmer, until all liquid is absorbed and lentils are soft. If you didn't soak your lentils overnight you may need another 1/2 cup of water so make sure you test them!

Collard greens are usually sold as a bunch. I buy mine at the farmers market and they can range in size from 4" in diameter to up to 10" so it's up to you and your particular collards how much you use. If stems aren't your thing, slice them out, then slice the leaves into 1/2" strips. I used about half a bunch of collard greens for this recipe.

Once the lentils are cooked, add the collards and simmer until just wilted but still bright green and remove from heat. Your squash should be done by now too, so turn the oven off but leave them in there while we quickly throw together the most ahhhhhmazing vegan gravy ever.

easy miso gravy

In a small bowl whisk together:
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • 2 Tbsp corn starch
In a small sauce pan heat:
  • 1 cup water 
  • 2 Tbsp miso paste
When miso paste has dissolved and broth is simmering, add the slurry (cornstarch/water mixture), and continue to whisk until thickened and simmering. Boom. Easy vegan gravy.

Now gather your loved ones, give thanks, fill your plates, and make a difference, one meal at a time. 🙏

Saturday, November 12, 2016

chai spiced fig balls

I guess it's about time I posted another ball recipe 😊. And since it's almost holiday season (anything after Halloween is holiday season to me!) I chose some warming chai spices to get you in the spirit. I have already been burning my Christmas scented candles and fantasizing about my Maui Christmas coming up! It's hard not to with all this schoolwork, holiday break is my light at the end of the tunnel.

These chai spiced fig balls are soft, sweet, and have a little kick! The complete combination of chai spices makes for a well rounded and smooth finish but don't stress out if you don't have all of them, the most essential ones are cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom. I used dried figs here but dried apricots would also work well, and the shredded coconut is optional, although they are a little sticky without it. The point is, make your own version with what you like and what you have available.

chai spiced fig balls
  • 8 oz dates
  • 8 oz dried figs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 cups oats
  • 2 Tbsp flaxmeal
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger, or 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Begin by coarsely chopping and soaking the dates and figs. I like to pour hot water over them and let them sit for 5-10 minutes. If they are super moist, you may be able to skip this step but I keep my dried fruit in the fridge so this is necessary for smooth processing.

While those are soaking, blend the oats in a food processor or blender into a coarse meal. If you are grinding flax this needs to be done separately. Flax seeds need to be ground for this recipe in order act as a binder, holding everything together and soaking up some moisture. So don't go throwing whole flax seeds in there. Combine the ground oats and flaxmeal in a mixing bowl. Now strain the water from the soaking fruit and add it to the food processor with the maple syrup and all of the spices. Blend until relatively smooth, some chunks are okay, your preference. Add this spicy fruit mix to your dry ingredients and fold to combine completely using a wooden spoon or your hands. Or both.

If the "dough" is too sticky to handle just pop it in the fridge for a bit, but sticky is good, it makes soft moist balls. Roll into 1" balls and coast with coconut if desired. Store in the fridge to enjoy a little taste of Christmas whenever you please.