Quick and Easy Vegan: Naan

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2/3 cup water
  • extra flour for rolling

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the bread flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl.
  2. Add the water and stir. Then knead with your hands for a minute or two. If dough is too sticky, add a bit more flour.
  3. Dough should be smooth and elastic. Divide into 4 balls.
  4. Roll out each ball until it is about 5 to 6 inches in diameter.
  5. Spritz a frying pan with olive oil and heat over high heat. When hot, place one of the pre-naans on it. Press down a bit with your hands or a utensil. Cook until golden.
  6. Then flip and cook until golden. Repeat with remaining pieces.
  7. Use a pizza cutter to cut each piece into 4 triangles.
  8. Serves between 2 and 4 people. Each piece (divide into 4 triangles) is about 140 calories.

via: (never home)maker

Quick and Easy Vegan: Spinach & Adzuki Beans

This recipe is quick in prep time, but takes 2 minutes of planning ahead. For an even quicker version, see my note below.

Ingredients
1/2 cup adzuki beans, sorted, rinsed well, drained
1 3/4” piece ginger, peeled and grated
1 10 oz. pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed
1 1/2-2 T. tamari
Sea salt

Method
1. Place beans, in large saucepan with enough cold water to cover by a few inches. Bring to boil, boil for 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, let stand 1 hr.

2. Place beans, ginger & 1 cup cold water in large saucepan, bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beans are tender, not mushy - about 30-40 minutes.

3. Stir in spinach, cover and cook for about 10 minutes or until heated through. Add 1 1/2 T. tamari and season with salt if desired and add additional tamari if desired.

Note: For a REALLY quick and easy version, get canned adzuki beans (or black beans, if you can’t find them) and mix it with the thawed spinach, tamari, and ginger (really finely chopped or grated). Microwave it for a minute if you want it hot. Stir and serve!

Source: 3 Bowls, Vegetarian Recipes from an American Zen Buddhist Monastery

Quick and Easy Vegan: Indian Corn

Since grilling is a big part of the upcoming 4th of July holiday, I thought I’d share one of my favorite things to grill, Indian Corn. I got this recipe from a friend who claims that you can get this at carts on the street in India. It’s so easy and pairs really well with some veggie burgers or maybe a Mediterranean Vegetable Stack.

Ingredients:

whole ears of corn
cayenne pepper
salt
lemons

Directions:

Shuck the corn and toss it straight on the grill. It’ll get a little charred (it adds flavor), but just turn it periodically until it turns a deeper yellow (maybe 15-20 minutes as a rough guide).

Prepare a small shallow bowl by adding enough salt and cayenne pepper to cover the bottom. Just eyeball it and start with a dash of cayenne (you can add more later, depending on how hot you like it).

Cut the whole lemons in half and place the halves cut-side-down in the salt mixture. Take your ear of corn off the grill and rub the lemon and salt/cayenne mixture all over it, squeezing a little to really get the juice on there.

Enjoy!

Quick and Easy Vegan: Veggie Pita Sandwiches

2 pita bread, halved

Plain or red pepper hummus, as needed

3 small cucumbers, diced

1/2 pound tomatoes, chopped

3 small cans sliced black olives, drained

2 cups romaine lettuce, chopped

Salt and pepper, to taste

Open up the 4 halves of pita to create a pocket. Spread desired amounts of hummus in each pocket. Fill each pocket with equal parts of the remaining ingredients. Season to taste.

via: Lawrence.com

Sustainable Food - Lentils and Rice


Image: The Heads of State

As I start out 2011, I think it’s always a good time to make an assessment of how you’re living/eating and make any changes that you think are appropriate. Here’s a link to an excellent article in the NY Times about sustainable eating, a topic of interest to me and many of you, I’m sure.

One of the “staple” recipes that Mark Bittman talks about is a basic lentil and rice recipe and I have a variant of this that I make often. Add this one to your arsenal and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.


Lentils and Rice

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 medium onion, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

1 large carrot, chopped

1 tablespoon minced garlic

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 cups lentils, rinsed and picked over

1 cup long-grain brown rice

3 or 4 bay leaves

Chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish.

Directions:

1. Put the oil in a large, deep saucepan over medium heat. When it’s hot, add onion, celery, and carrot. Cook until vegetables begin to become tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and some salt and pepper and cook for another minute or two.

2. Add lentils, rice, bay leaves and 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat so liquid bubbles gently, and cover.

3. After 30 minutes, if rice and lentils are tender and liquid is absorbed, the dish is ready. If lentils and rice are not tender, add enough liquid to keep bottom of pot moist, cover and cook for a few more minutes. If rice and lentils are soft and there is much liquid remaining (which is unlikely), raise heat a bit and cook, uncovered, stirring once or twice, until it evaporates. Discard bay leaves. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary, fluff with a fork and serve, garnished with parsley and drizzled with more olive oil.

Notes:

Use any grain instead of brown rice; you can even substitute white rice. (Cooking time for white rice is half or less that for brown, so add later.)

Similarly, use any bean: cook longer as needed and keep an eye on the water to make sure the beans stay submerged in about 1 inch of water during cooking; wait to add the rice until the beans are tender.

Stock will add flavor, but don’t waste money on the canned stuff; use water instead. (The dish will taste like lentils and rice.) For more flavor, add onion, carrot, or other vegetables and an herb like thyme.

For the dish called Moors and Christians, substitute a red bell pepper for the celery and carrot, black beans for the lentils, and 1 cup chopped tomato for some of the liquid; let the beans cook until half done before adding the rice.

For smoky red beans and rice, add 1 tablespoon tomato paste and 2 teaspoons pimentón to the vegetables. Use red beans instead of lentils and cook until they’re half done before adding the rice (which should be short-grain). Simmer for another 15 minutes, then bake uncovered at 450 degrees Fahrenheit until the beans and rice are tender.

For mujaddara, cook two sliced onions in a couple tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat until they’re dark brown but not burned, and serve on top of the rice and lentils.

For lentil and rice soup — or any bean and rice soup — use more water, or stock if you have it.

via: NY Times

Other note: The image from the article was created by an amazing graphic design firm out of Philadelphia called the Heads of State. Check them out!

Quick and Easy Vegan: Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

This is a good recipe for a unique spin on an old classic.

Peel and boil several russet or red (new) potatoes until soft. Drain water and mash with potato masher. Add some plain soy milk and vegan margarine (I believe Parkay makes some that’s easily available) to achieve the right consistency. Then, add some wasabi powder (available at most health food stores or Asian supermarkets), but add very slowly and taste as you go. A little powder can go a long way!