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adapted from Supermarket Vegan by Donna Klein

1 (15-ounce) can cannellini or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (7.25-ounce) jar roasted red bell peppers, well drained
1 to 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 to 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
6 (10-inch) flour tortillas, preferably whole wheat
several handfuls of spinach
4 Gardein Chick’n Scallopini
4 tbsp Daiya Mozzarella Style Shreds

In a food processor fitted with the knife blade, or in a blender, process the beans, red bell peppers, lemon juice, oil, garlic, salt, and black pepper until smooth and pureed. Transfer to a medium bowl. Cover and refrigerate a minimum of 30 minutes, or overnight.

When it’s almost chow time, toss the Chick’ns onto a lightly greased nonstick skillet, cook the first side for a few minutes over medium heat, and flip over. Top each with a tablespoon of Daiya shreds, and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until the “cheese” is melty. Remove from skillet and set on a plate with a paper towel to cool. Cut each into 1/2-inch strips.

Prepare the wraps by placing the tortillas on a flat work surface. Spread equal amounts (about 1/2 cup) of the bean mixture on each tortilla, leaving a 3/4-inch border all around. Place a handful of spinach leaves (or, just two leaves if you wanted to follow the original recipe… I figured the more greens, the merrier) in the center of each tortilla. Place the “cheesy” Chick’n strips on the spinach leaves, and tightly roll up each tortilla from the edge nearest you, tucking in the sides and leaves as you roll. Makes 6 servings.

I found this while looking for recipes for sandwiches- I’m already fantasizing about what to serve guests at our toddler’s birthday party in a few months. I was drawn in by the beans and roasted red peppers. This recipe is probably too close to what we served at last year’s party to make an appearance at this year’s, but I still had to make it. This was so easy to make (as are all of the recipes I’ve made so far out of this cookbook), and lent itself easily to adaptation. It would be really good with some basil leaves mixed in with the spinach leaves, especially if you tone down the lemon juice a bit (I used just over a single tablespoon and tasted it more than the garlic, which I refused to limit to 2 cloves…). This really would make a great nibble for a play date in the park. Come on sunny days! Let’s have more than one in a row. Because spreading your picnic blanket on wet grass? Not so much.
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from Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

2 tbsp arrowroot powder (cornstarch or potato starch will work, too)
2 c cold water or vegetable broth
8 tsp olive oil
1 c shallots, thinly sliced
1 large onion, quartered and sliced into half moons
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 c cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 portobello caps, thinly sliced
2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
3 1/2 c seitan, sliced into thin, wide strips
2 tsp salt
1 c Burgundy cooking wine
1 tbsp Hungarian paprika
1/2 c nutritional yeast
1/2 c plain soy milk
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 c frozen green peas
1/2 lb wide noodles, prepared according to package directions

Dissolve the arrowroot in the 2 cups of water; set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and onions, saute for 5 minutes. Add the garlic, cremini and portobello mushrooms, and thyme. Saute for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a cast-iron skillet with the remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil, just long enough to coat it. Add the seitan and saute over medium heat about 25 minutes, until it is dark brown and crispy on the outside. If you are using store-bought seitan you need only cook it for 10 minutes.

Back to the sauce: add the salt, wine, and paprika (to the mushroom mixture). Turn up heat to high to reduce the liquid, about 10 minutes.

Lower heat to medium-high, add the arrowroot mixture, stir well, and let the sauce thicken, about 5 minutes. Add the nutritional yeast and mix well until it is dissolved. Add the soy milk and mustard and bring heat down to low; be very careful not to let it boil now because it can make the soy milk and mustard bitter (I just turned the heat down before adding it, and made sure those bubbles stopped. I didn’t want to take any chances). Add the seitan and peas; cook for 10 more minutes.

Divide the noodles into bowls and mix with the stroganoff. It is best to mix immediately so that the pasta doesn’t stick. You can top it off with tofu sour cream, but I like it just the way it is. Serves 6-8.

I made this for our wedding anniversary dinner last night. We’ve been married for 8 years! The time has gone by so fast, which is probably a good sign, right? At first Mike told me that he wanted me to make this for our special dinner. Though very yummy, I wanted more of a challenge, something new, and something special. Plus, I just got this cookbook, so I needed to break it in!
I saw that it called for a cup of shallots, one of my favorite flavors, and was sold! My only regret is that I didn’t make my own seitan for this. After making it from scratch, using storebought is such a letdown- so expensive and not as tasty. And the texture isn’t that great. Still, this recipe is a total winner. The sauce is so flavorful and rich. The shallots, of course! It smelled so good while I was cooking… I used a 2006 Pinot Noir from King Estate, one of our favorites, for the Burgundy wine. It was amazing. Plus, we had the rest of the bottle to celebrate our anniversary with!
Also, see that green stuff alongside the Stroganoff? That would be the most cooked side dish in our house- garlicky spinach. It’s so easy to make, and a good way to get your greens in for the day! Here, I’ll share the recipe with you. Maybe it’ll become one of your favorites too?

Easy Garlicky Spinach

1 tsp olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large tub of prewashed organic baby spinach
vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil over low-medium heat in a large pot. Add the garlic and spinach, and mix it up. Pour 1/4 cup of water over the greens to keep the garlic from browning if you hear sizzling. Cover and cook for about 5 minutes, checking and stirring often. Make sure you pull the greens up from the bottom of the pan so that they wilt evenly. Once all the greens are just wilted, remove from heat. You want them to still have that bright green color, but they will have reduced quite a bit in size. Add salt and pepper to taste, and if you care to, sprinkle some vinegar on top. My favorite is balsamic. Enjoy! Serves 2-6.

from The Gluten-Free Vegan by Susan O’Brien

4 c washed and chopped baby spinach
1 c Maple Candied Nuts (another recipe from the cookbook, but I used some from Shutterbean– recipe to follow)
1/4 c finely chopped red onion
1/2 c seeded and chopped red bell pepper
2 large pears, cored and chopped (about 2 cups)
Vinaigrette of your choice (I used Balsamic)

Place all of the salad ingredients in a large bowl and toss with your preferred dressing. Chill and serve. Serves 4.

The Gluten-Free cookbook author wrote that she loves to make this salad so that she can eat the walnuts. As soon as I read that, my mouth watered as the memory of some spicy walnuts that arrived in a fabulous Christmas package from my BFF last winter came to me. I don’t think my husband even knew that they were in our house. Surely he didn’t know how many I had- I might have given him a sample and acted like I was going halvesies with him, but really I’d already eaten 90% of the bag. (Sorry Mike, I hope that the fact that I made this batch and will certainly make more will make up for that. Sheepish grin…) They’re really, really easy to make, and when I brought them over to my mom’s house the day before we were to eat the salad, they asked me to hide the container so that there would still be some left for the salad! I know what I’ll be stuffing stockings with this year… Just look at these little gems! Spicy and sweet perfection.

Spicy Maple Glazed Walnuts from Shutterbean

(Recipe from Rachael Ray Magazine)

1/4 c sugar
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 c (about 7 ounces) walnuts

In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, salt, black pepper, cayenne, ginger and cinnamon; set aside. Pour the maple syrup into a large bowl and set aside.

In a large nonstick skillet, toast the walnuts over medium-high heat, stirring or shaking the pan constantly, until they are hot, about 5 minutes. Immediately add the nuts to the maple syrup and toss to coat. Stir in the spice mixture until the nuts are evenly coated. Spread the walnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Let cool completely before serving, about 20 minutes. Makes 2 cups.