Butternut Squash Soup 2 (without coconut)

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I absolutely love the “Butternut Squash Soup 1 (with coconut)” recipe I posted previously. I was craving it a few days ago but needed to make it withOUT coconut as I am on a 6 week parasite and candida cleanse (parasites love their coconut ;)).

I experimented with stuff I already had in the fridge and it turned out good! Not as delicious as it would have been with coconut of course, but it’s the next best thing!

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp ginger, minced
4 carrots, sliced
1 apple (the sweeter, the better), sliced
3 stalks celery, diced
2 small or one large butternut squash, peeled and chopped
5 cups vegetable broth
2 tbsp chopped fresh sage or 1 tbsp sage powder
2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2-1 tbsp nutmeg
1.2-1 tbsp curry powder
1/2 cup soy milk/almond milk
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

In a large soup pot, sautee the onion and garlic in olive oil until onions turn soft, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Add the carrots, apple and celery and cook for another 3 to 5 miutes.

Add the squash and stir just to coat, then add the vegetable broth and spices (not salt & pepper). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a slow simmer. Allow to cook for at least 25 minutes, or until squash is soft.

Using a potato masher or a large fork, mash the squash until smooth, or, alternatively, you can puree the soup in a food processor, blender or hand blender.

Stir in your dairy free milk and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Tofu Satay with Almond Sauce

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This is another ridiculously tasty dish. If I were on death row, this would be on my short-list for last meals. Maybe the analogy is too dramatic but you get my drift.

I’ve made tofu satay twice and always receive PLENTY of compliments.

Enjoy!

Serves 2-4

Ingredients

1 block medium to firm tofu
optional: 1/2 purple onion/yellow onion/1 carrot/3 beets/1 zucchini
1 pack wooden skewers

SATAY MARINADE

1/4 cup minced lemongrass, fresh or frozen-prepared
2 shallots OR 1/4 cup purple onion, sliced
3-4 cloves garlic
1-2 fresh red chilies, OR 1/2 to 3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 thumb-size piece galangal OR ginger, sliced
1/2 tsp. turmeric
2 Tbsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 Tbsp. tamari
3 Tbsp. braggs
6 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
sea salt to taste

ALMOND SAUCE (for dipping)

1 cup unsalted almonds
1/3 cup water
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. tamari
2 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2.5 to 3 Tbsp. regular braggs
1/2 tsp. tamarind paste OR 1/2 Tbsp. lime juice
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, OR 1 tsp. Thai chili sauce (more or less to taste)
1/3 cup coconut milk

Directions for satay marinade

1. Slice tofu into strips or workable pieces (on the thin side for weaving the satay sticks    through). Place in a bowl large enough for marinating and set aside.

2. Place all marinade ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blitz to create a dark, rich satay marinade. Taste-test the marinade for salt, spice, and sweetness. Tip: with this mariande, you should first taste SALTY, followed by SWEET and spicy. Add a little salt if needed, or more sugar if not sweet enough. Add more chili for more heat, if desired.

3. Pour marinade over prepared strips, turning the tofu to cover all sides. Add the other veggies (if using) and gently turn toss all together. Set in the refrigerator to marinate at least 1 hour, or cover and leave up to 24 hours.

4. Thread the tofu pieces onto wooden or stainless-steel skewers (soak wooden ones in your sink 10 minutes beforehand to prevent burning). Retain the bowl with the leftover mariande for basting.

5. If grilling, lightly brush grill with oil, then set skewers over a hot fire. Grill until lightly browned, basting generously with leftover marinade.

6. If using oven, lay prepared satay on a baking sheet (cover first with parchment paper, if desired). Set oven to BROIL and place a rack on the highest or second-highest rung of your oven. Slide satay under the broiler and broil 5 minutes per side before turning. Continue broiling in this way until nicely browned and onions are lightly charred. Baste halfway through cooking with leftover marinade, and follow serving instructions above.

Directions for almond sauce

1. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend or process until sauce is smooth. If you prefer a runnier sauce, add a little more water or coconut milk.

2. Do a taste test, adding more tamari/braggs if not salty enough, or more cayenne if not spicy enough. If too salty, add a squeeze of fresh lime juice. If you’d prefer it sweeter, add a little more sugar.

3. Serve warm or at room temperature with my the tofu satay. It also makes a great dip with fresh veggies, fresh rolls, or other Asian finger foods. Or combine with noodles to create a Thai-style noodle dish or cold noodle salad. Enjoy!

Note: This sauce tends to thicken as it sits – just add a little water or coconut milk to thin it out, as needed. Otherwise it stores well if kept covered in the refrigerator (keep up to 2 weeks; freeze thereafter).

Adapted from
http://thaifood.about.com/od/vegetarianthairecipes/r/Vegetarian-Thai-Satay-Vegan.htm & http://thaifood.about.com/od/thaicurrypasterecipes/r/Easy-Satay-Sauce-Recipe.htm

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Black bean burgers

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I can’t take the credit for this find. Irfan, my partner, found this recipe (courtesy of: http://www.dailygarnish.com/2010/05/vegan-bean-burger-recipe.html) last May 2011 and made it for my birthday. It was my first birthday on my new diet and I was prepared to be disappointed. I hadn’t really accepted or embraced the anti-inflammatory life at that point and was missing the perogie pizza from Boston Pizza :S

I was pleasantly surprised with the birthday spread to say the least. The menu included butternut squash soup, bean burgers, apple bread, chocolate cake with coconut cream frosting and chai. All gluten-free and vegan of course. 🙂

It’s almost one year later and I made the bean burgers again last night for my friend Shanti who came for dinner. I served them with some home-made quacamole, organic lacto-free mozzarella cheese, spelt bread, with a side of butternut squash soup and pineapple for dessert. We had to keep it relatively simple as Irfan and I are on a parasite cleanse for 6 weeks which restricts our diets (or rather, MY diet) even more than normal 😛

Anywho, enough chatting, here is the recipe!

  • one cup dried black beans soaked overnight OR 2 cans black beans (rinsed and drained)
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 1/2 cup dry rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper


Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Next, add the oats and pumpkin to your food processor and grind until coarsely chopped (they will still be a little chunky).  Let it run for roughly 10 seconds.

Grate the carrots, and then add to your mixture in the food processor.

Add 3/4 of the beans, all spices, and the olive oil.  Once all of this is in the food processor, give it a whir and mix it all together.

Spoon mixture into a mixing bowl and then fold in the rest of the whole, reserved beans.  Wet your hands and then form into 6 medium or 8 smaller sized patties.  Place patties on a non-stick baking sheet or into a baking pan, and bake at 300 degrees for 40 minutes, turning once in the middle.

If you want to grill these, pre-bake them for 30 minutes at 300, and then throw them on the grill to reheat and get a little extra browning.

Courtesy of http://www.dailygarnish.com/2010/05/vegan-bean-burger-recipe.html

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