Archive for September, 2008

Veggie Noodle Soup

I was feeling a bit under the weather yesterday, so I needed something quick, easy and nourishing for dinner. This soup was incredibly easy to make and totally hit the chicken-noodle-soup-for-vegetarians spot. Serve with crusty bread and butter and you are ready to cozy up under a warm blanket and watch your favorite DVDs.

Veggie Noodle Soup
Makes 2 Big Servings

1 carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp. olive oil
4 cups vegetable broth (“Better Than Bouillon” is great here)
1 cup dry short whole wheat pasta (penne, fusilli, macaroni, etc.)
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Chop the carrot, celery and garlic. This is so easy if you use the food processor. Do it – you’re sick.
  2. In a medium pot, heat the olive oil.
  3. Add the carrot, celery and garlic and cook until soft, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the broth and bring to a boil.
  5. Add the pasta and cook until tender, about 8 minutes.
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Get well soon.

Tip: Since so many winter recipes start with “one onion, one carrot, one celery stalk” and since it’s not always easy (or cheap) to get carrots or celery stalks one at a time, we like to buy in bulk and make a frozen mixture for easy cooking later. Buy a 3lb. bag of onions, two 2lb. bags of carrots and 1 big bunch of celery. Chop them up super-finely in a food processor (big chunks tend to get soggy when they thaw) and saute in a large pot with 2 Tbsp. of olive oil until tender. Drain if necessary and let cool before packing them up in freezer safe containers and freezing for later. Then, take out about 1 cup every time a recipe calls for “one onion, one carrot, one celery stalk.” It’s so easy and cuts down on prep work for your other recipes. I also like to liven up plain rice by cooking it in vegetable broth and adding about ½ cup of these veggies at the beginning of the cooking time.

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September 27, 2008 at 7:42 pm Leave a comment

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

I know that every practically every vegetarian already has their own hummus recipe, and that some people are even tired of hummus (gasp!), but if you don’t fall into one of those two categories, be sure to try this recipe which (in my humble opinion) is bursting with flavour from the red pepper and a few extra spices while still tasting like hummus – good old vegetarian comfort food.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Makes About 2½ cups

2 cups chickpeas (or one 15oz. can, drained)
1 roasted red pepper (about ⅓ of a typical jar, or roast one yourself)
2 large cloves garlic, minced
½ cup tahini
¼ cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp. olive oil
½ tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp. cumin
salt and pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (optional)
¼ tsp. paprika (optional)

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients.
  2. Process until smooth, adding more olive oil if necessary and adjust seasonings to taste.
  3. Garnish with parsley and paprika, if desired.

September 15, 2008 at 10:36 pm 1 comment

Caprese Crostini


Need to impress dinner party guests or potluckers without breaking a sweat (ie. turning on the oven)? Caprese Crostini will do the trick, and it’s ridiculously easy to make if you use prepared pesto. Using pesto here instead of fresh basil leaves intensifies the basil flavour and lends a nice texture to the snack. If you’re making this for a dinner party, you can prep all of the ingredients in advance and then put the crostini together in minutes so that they’ll be fresh when your guests arrive.

Caprese Crostini

1 baguette, preferably whole wheat
3-4 roma tomatoes (enough to cover the baguette when sliced)
1 lb. large bocconcini balls or mozzarella
½ cup pesto (recipe follows)
several grindings fresh black pepper (about ½ tsp.)

  1. Prepare pesto if making your own.
  2. Slice the baguette into 1″ slices, and slice the mozzarella and tomatoes thinly.
  3. Spread each baguette slice with pesto, top with one slice mozzarella and then one slice tomato.
  4. Grind pepper over crostini and serve.

Fresh Basil Pesto
makes 1 cup

3 cups fresh basil leaves, torn
3 cloves garlic, chopped
⅓ cup olive oil
⅓ cup pine nuts
¼ tsp. each freshly ground salt and pepper, or to taste

  1. Combine ingredients in a blender or food processor. Pulse until smooth.

September 10, 2008 at 5:33 pm Leave a comment

Key Lime Chocolate Chip Cookies

Finding myself with two key limes in my fridge and no plan for using them, I decided to combine my love of key limes with a (current and pretty common) craving for oatmeal cookies. Starting with the Oatmeal Raisin Drop Cookie recipe from the 1975 edition of The Joy of Cooking, I came up with these yummy guys. Try them out and let me know what you think.

Note: Key limes are smaller and sweeter than regular limes. I don’t know how this would work with regular limes, although I would suspect not well. Try lemon if you can’t get key limes.

Key Lime Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes 2 dozen Cookies

½ cup butter or vegan margarine
¾ cup unrefined sugar
1 egg or 1 Tbsp. ground flax seed + 3 Tbsp. water
½ tsp. vanilla
zest of 2 key limes (about 1 Tbsp.)
juice of 1 key lime (about 2 Tbsp.)
¾ cup flour
1⅓ cup rolled oats
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ cup slivered almonds
heaping ½ cup chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. In a medium bowl, cream together butter (or margarine), sugar, egg (or flax mixture), vanilla, lime zest and lime juice.
  3. Add flour, oats and salt and mix well.
  4. Fold in baking soda, almonds and chocolate chips.
  5. Grease two cookie sheets and drop batter on, 1 tablespoonfull at a time, spacing cookies at least 1.5″ apart.
  6. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.
  7. Cool on a wire rack, and enjoy!

September 6, 2008 at 11:19 pm Leave a comment


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*All entries tagged "vegan" and "gluten free" meet those dietary requirements to the best of my knowledge as long as the vegan or gluten free instructions are followed (where applicable). It is always wise to double-check ingredients (especially when dealing with packaged foods) and to confirm ingredients and preparation methods at restaurants.