Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Macaroni and Cheese

  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 6 Tbs flour
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp dry mustard
  • dash garlic powder
  • 4 cups warmed milk
  • approx. 1 1/2 cups cheese (I used mostly cheddar and 2 slices swiss), more for topping
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • homemade dry breadcrumbs
  • approx. 8 cups cooked whole wheat macaroni pasta

Place olive oil and butter in saucepan over medium heat, when butter melts and bubbles, slowly whisk in flour, chili pwdr, mustard pwdr and garlic pwder. Slowly add milk, constantly whisking, when all milk is added and it starts to get thick, add cheese. When melted, add salt and pepper. Add pasta and stir until well coated.

Put into greased casserole dish and top with breadcrumbs and extra cheese. Place in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes, when cheese starts to brown on top. Remove from oven and let rest about 5 minutes.

For the vegan version, I heated the extra nacho "cheese" sauce from the other night and mixed with whole wheat pasta and topped with breadcrumbs and soy cheese. Cooked for the same amount of time. My son said it was delicious.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Lentil Loaf with "Chicken" Gravy and Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

Lentil Loaf
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup lentils, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup very finely chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup very finely chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts
  • 5 slices whole wheat bread, crumbled (1 0z. slices)
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 8-oz can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground sage
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add lentils, cover, and cook on low heat 45 minutes. Drain.

Preheat oven to 350.

Lightly oil a 4 x 8-inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine cooked lentils with remaining ingredients. Mix well. Place mixture in prepared pan and press down firmly with the back of a spoon.

Bake, uncovered, 45 minutes.

Let stand 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate. Cut into slices to serve.

(From the Lean and Lucious Meatless Cookbook)

I didn't have any celery, and I used fresh chopped garlic instead of the garlic powder. I also used dried breadcrumbs and oatmeal instead of the bread. Used a flax and water substitution for the eggs.

For the gravy I heated 4 cups of water and added 4 Tbs of "chicken" flavored broth powder and whisked together. I heated 4 Tbs of olive oil and added approx 6 tbs of flour and whisked then slowly added the broth a little at a time until thick and added salt, pepper, granulated garlic and some thyme. I think next time I wil use Earth Balance-the olive oil taste was a little strong.

Washed and dried the fingerling potatoes and cut in half. Mixed with olive oil, oregano, rosemary and thyme. Roasted in the oven until soft on inside, slightly crisp on the outside and topped with salt and pepper.

Served with salad.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Nacho "Cheese" Sauce

We just had nachos for dinner-needed something quick. And I made this "cheese" sauce for my son. Found the recipe on "The Vegan Lunchbox". Next time I may add a little chili powder or taco seasoning for a little more "kick". Not too shabby. Even DH had some on his nachos
makes about 2 cups

2 cups water

¼ cup raw cashews

One 4 oz. jar pimentos, drained

1 cup nutritional yeast flakes

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 ½ teaspoons salt, or to taste

½ teaspoon onion powder

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon cumin, heaping

Combine all ingredients and blend until completely smooth. Transfer mixture to a medium saucepan and whisk constantly over medium heat until thickened, about 5 to 6 minutes.Serve as a dip with tortilla chips and vegetables.

Sausage Hash and Scrambled Tofu

Peel and cube potatoes into bite-size chunks. Heat one or more TBS of olive oil in pan-depending on amount of potatoes. For our size family (7 still at home), I fill a large pan full of potatoes. Cook on medium heat stirring often-they tend to cook faster with the lid on.

While the potatoes are cooking cut up and sautee your sausage until done. You can use whatever your favorite is. We used Italian-style Tofurkey this time. But have also used various flavored chicken and turkey sausages as well.

When Potatoes are about done, turn heat down to med-low, add sausage, drizzle some more olive oil over the top, add some Mrs. Dash garlic and herb, Rosemary and Sea Salt. Cook until heated through and serve.

Scrambled Tofu
  • 1 package firm tofu, drained and crumbled
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/4 cup diced green pepper
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 Tbs, soy bacon bits (optional)
  • pepper, to taste (optional)

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the crumbled tofu, lemon juice, salt and tumeric

In a pan over medium heat, add the oil, then the pepper, onion, and garlic. Sautee for 2 to 3 minutes, or until just softened.

Add the tofu mixture to the pan and cook about 15 minutes or until the pieces of tofu begin to brown. Stir in parsley and the soy bacon pieces and pepper, if desired.

Makes 2 to 4 servings.

I didn't have green onion, so I substituted chopped mushrooms. Didn't have parsley or bacon bits, but I used the same pan as the sausage for some extra flavor and put in just a dash more tumeric and lemon juice. This is surprisingly tasty.

The kids that didn't want any just had plain potatoes with eggs and toast.

We just served with some fresh fruit.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Pumpkin Pancakes

Running out of staples, and my youngest daughter is having a friend spend the night, so we needed something kid-friendly, so we made breakfast for dinner.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (I used all whole wheat)
  • 3 Tbs brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 2 TBS vegetable oil (I used canola)
  • 2 TBS vinager

Combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, allspice, cinnamon, ginger and salt. In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, pumpkin, egg, oil and vinegar. Stir into the flour mixture enough to thoroughly combine.

Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides.

For the vegan version I used 1/2 cup of applesauce for the egg-have also used banana puree-and soymilk for the milk. I am sure that rice and nut milk would also work as well.

We topped our pancakes with real organic maple syrup. Jam is also very good on these. Mmmmmmm.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Black Bean Fajitas

Soaked one pound of black beans over night and put in my very ancient crockpot (that used to be my mom's when we were growing up) with 8 cups of water on high and covered with a thick dish cloth to conserve heat (there is a small chip in the lid). Put in about an inch or two size of kombu (a type of seaweed) after a few hours-it helps cut down on the flatulence factor of beans. A few hours before the beans are done, I put in some dried onion and garlic.

Sautee some fresh onion, garlic, green pepper and mushrooms in some olive oil. When done add drained black beans, "Lawry's" fajita seasoning, some water (about half cup more or less-not too dry, not too runny) and jalapenos if desired. Bring to a boil, turn down heat to low for about 5-10 minutes and add fresh tomatoes. Serve on freshly made whole wheat tortillas. That's my 11 year old daughter's hands showing off her handy work-she helped with rolling some of the tortillas.

Serve with your favorite toppings-sour cream, hot sauce, salsa, green onion, cheese, avocado,etc.
For the vegan boy, I made his tortillas with rice milk (the dough tends to be a little stickier, so need a little extra flour when rolling them out). He put on some vegan cream cheese instead of sour cream and some vegan soy cheese.

Chewy Flour Tortillas Recipe

· 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

· 1 teaspoon salt

· 2 teaspoons vegetable oil

· 3/4 cup lukewarm milk (2% is fine)

Stir together the flour and baking powder in a large mixing bowl. Add the salt and vegetable oil to the lukewarm milk and whisk briefly to incorporate. Gradually add the milk to the flour, and work the mixture into a dough. It will be sticky.

Turn the dough out onto a surface dusted with flour and knead vigorously for about 2 minutes (fold and press, fold and press). The kneading will take care of the stickiness. Return the dough to the bowl, cover it with a damp cloth, and let it rest for 15 minutes. (This dough will not rise, but it needs a rest).

Divide your dough into 8 balls of equal size, cover them, and let them rest again for about 20 minutes. Avoid letting them touch, if you don't want them to stick together.

Dust your work surface with flour. Working one at a time, remove each piece of dough and pat it into a 5-inch circle. With a rolling pin, roll out the tortilla, working from the center out, until you have a 7- or 8-inch tortilla a little less than 1/4 inch thick. Transfer the tortilla to a hot, dry skillet or griddle. It will begin to blister. Let it cook for 30 seconds, turn it, and let the other side cook for 30 seconds. Remove the tortilla, place it in a napkin-lined basket and cover with aluminum foil. Repeat for the remaining tortillas. (I just wrap in a tea towel).

If you like, you can substitute one cup of whole wheat for the all-purpose.

Also, hard to get perfectly round, since the dough tries to draw up on itself.

Eggplant Parmesan

One large eggplant sliced thin
homemade dried breadcrumbs
granulated garlic
salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients in a shallow bowl (except eggplant). Brush eggplant slices with olive oil, dip in breadcrumb mixture to evenly coat both sides and fry over medium heat in a pan brushed with olive oil until brown and crisp on both sides.
Place some homemade or jar spaghetti sauce (I used homemade) in the bottom of a small casserole dish and layer eggplant and sauce. Can top with your favorite Italian Cheese (mozzerella, romano, parmesan, asiago, etc.) and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes until thouroughly heated and cheese is melted and bubbly. Since my son is going vegan I just baked as is and let everyone who wanted some to put on their own cheese after.
Top whole wheat spaghetti (or your favorite pasta) with some extra sauce, if desired, and eggplant.
We served with a salad of all organic ingredients, topped with feta dressing and extra feta cheese and fresh ground black pepper.
Bon Appetit!