Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Memorial Day Round Up

Memorial Day is just around the corner, the official start of summer. Time to throw on your bathing suit, slather on the sunscreen, grab a good book and head for the sun. Of course, this wildly anticipated holiday to celebrate all things summer also means it's bar-b-que and picnic season.

Here you'll find a run-down of the Happy Vegan Yogini recipes that are sure to make your summer kick off bash a hit with both the vegans and omnivores alike. And don't forget, Memorial Day will also be Meatless Monday...... so start your summer off right with this delicious vegan menu!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Strawberry Chocolate Chip Shortcake

For the past few weeks we've finally been able to enjoy some strawberries. I buy almost everything organic, but I do compromise from time to time (check out the 2010 Dirty Dozen). However, strawberries are one thing I WILL NOT compromise on (and now there's even better reason to stick to organic). Because organic strawberries are only around for a limited time it makes them such a special treat for us.

Whole Foods has had their organic strawberries in for a few weeks now, and they've been pretty good. At least I thought they were good. That was before I tasted the beautiful, fresh, ripe organic strawberries that came in my CSA share this week. Wow! Tender, sweet, and bursting with flavor these berries were just calling out to be paired with a shortcake.

Ms. M's been on me to make some chocolate dipped strawberries, but these were just too tender and too delicious to drowned in chocolate. Shortcake was all that would do. Taking Ms. M's request into consideration, I thought "why not put chocolate in the shortcake", and make us all happy. The result was a deliciously moist shortcake, speckled with melty chocolate chips.

Here's my recipe for Chocolate Chip Shortcake. Enjoy!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Shortcake

1 1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour

3 Tbs raw sugar

1/2 Tbs baking powder

1/8 tsp salt

1/3 cup vegan chocolate chips

1/4 cup vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance)

1/2 cup plain So-Delicious Coconut Milk Beverage (or other non-dairy milk of your choice)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a rectangular cake pan or a small loaf pan. In a large bowl, combine first 5 ingredients. Cut in margarine using a pastry cutter or knives. Stir in coconut milk and combine well. Pour into prepared cake dish and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool completely and serve topped with fresh organic strawberries.

Refreshing Fresh Mint Pesto Pasta

If you follow me on Twitter you'll know that I had my first CSA pick-up of the season today, and among many other great things, I was inundated with mint. More mint than I could ever begin to imagine what to do with. I could make Mojitos, but aside from drinking myself silly, what else could I use all of this for? I put the question out there on Twitter and within minutes received so many fantastic ideas I was feeling sure I would get through all of the mint before next week. I plan on making most, if not all of the ideas that were sent my way, but the one that really intrigued me, and became tonight's dinner was Mint Pesto, suggested by Megan E.

The recipe Megan shared had an ungodly amount of oil in it (a half cup), so I knew immediately this was going to take some tweaking......I've never used a half a cup of oil for anything in my life, and I didn't plan to start tonight. Below you'll find my mildly tweaked, and outrageously delicious adaptation. This dish is so refreshing. We ate it as our meal with a side of mixed greens salad, but it would be a perfect accompaniment to grilled or blackened tofu.

Fresh Mint Pesto

1 cup fresh parsley leaves

1 cup fresh mint leaves

1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds

3 Tbs Cold Pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil

8 oz. Whole Wheat Pasta

1 pint sugar snap peas, cut in half

Salt and Pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions. Rinse in cold water and set aside. In a food processor place parsley, mint, sunflower seeds, and olive oil. Process until well blended into a paste. Toss sugar snap peas with pasta, mix in pesto. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature, or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Almost Raw Hummus

Like traditional hummus this version is make with garbanzo beans (chickpeas), tahini, garlic, and lemon. Unlike traditional hummus, my version uses raw, sprouted garbanzo beans. Sprouted beans offer many nutritional benefits and are also easier to digest without the *ahem* side effects that often come with eating beans. Sprouted beans, seeds, and nuts are full of life giving energy. I was unable to find raw tahini at the market I shop at, so I had to use my regular tahini, but if you can find raw tahini, by all means, use it in this recipe to create and entirely raw hummus.

Almost Raw Hummus

1 cup sprouted garbanzo beans

2 cloves garlic

2 Tbs. Tahini

1/4 cup water

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/4 tsp ground coriander.

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

In a food processor combine all ingredients through coriander. Process until desired consistency. Add cilantro and pulse a few times to distribute cilantro. Serve immediately, or chill until ready to serve.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Meatless Monday: Black Bean-Quinoa Fiesta Patties

Need a meal for your Meatless Monday dinner tonight? Try this quick and easy Fiesta Patty. Made from pantry staples, you won't even need to run to the store to throw this delicious meal together.

Black Bean-Quinoa Fiesta Patties
Makes 10 patties

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 C. cooked quinoa
1/2 C. frozen organic corn
1/2 onion, diced small
1 roasted red pepper, diced small
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dried cilantro
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup salsa
1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
2 T. whole wheat flour

In a large bowl, smash beans with a fork until no whole beans are left. Add all remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Mash all ingredients together using hands until gluten becomes active and is beginning to hold patties together. Shape measure out 1/4 cup of mixture and shape into a small patty. Continue forming patties until all mixture is used (I got 10 patties from this). Spray a skillet with cooking spray and heat to medium heat. Lightly fry each patty until browning, flip and brown other side.

I served the patties on top of a whole wheat tortilla then topped each with a dollop of Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream and a drizzle of salsa. You could also wrap the patties in a tortilla and eat like a taco. Enjoy!