Saturday, February 26, 2011

Tortilla Soup...Crunchy Asian Slaw...Orzo Casserole...Lemon Broccoli Pasta

An incredibly simple soup that gets thrown in the crockpot to simmer while delivering delicious smells throughout the kitchen.

Crockpot Tortilla Soup
4 cloves minced garlic
1 medium chopped onion
1 t hot sauce (like Tabasco)
2 chopped jalepenos
2 8oz cans tomato sauce
1 16 oz can diced tomatoes
4 cups faux chicken broth
tortilla chips
avocado or guacamole

Combine all ingredients in crockpot except chips and avo. Cook on low 4-6 hours. Top each bowl with tortilla chips and avocado.
A not-so-exciting orzo dish...I sauteed onions and garlic in a tad of oil until tender. Then I added some spinach and some white wine and lemon. I cooked my orzo until tender and then tossed it all together with a sprinkling of salt and cracked pepper. Unfortunately, it was totally tasteless!but I was able to transform it the next day into this...I made the alfredo sauce from Creamy Broccoli and Mushroom Casserole (you can search this in my blog and find the full recipe, not just the sauce. In case you are looking for a good orzo dish, this is the one to try!)and threw in the boring orzo I made. It was delicious. I sprinkled it with some bread crumbs mixed with a tad of oil and some garlic powder and Italian herbs. Great results.
Alfredo Sauce (Vegan Yum Yum recipe)
1 cup soy milk
2 T Earth balance
2 T soy sauce
2 T tahini
1 T lemon juice
¼ cup nutritional yeast
¼ cup raw, unsalted cashews
2 T cornstarch
2 t dijon mustard
2-4 cloves garlic

A twist on Morgan's Buffalo Wrap that turned out absolutely perfectly! Yuuuummmmm! Very low fat to boot!
Morgan's recipe called for boiled seitan that is dipped in flour and pan-fried. I tried it this way the first time I made it. When I tried it again, I had some seitan-o-greatness made so I sliced that into strips, heated it in the oven and poured the hot sauce (I have a chipotle "wing" sauce that I used - spicy but yummy!) over it. This took away the frying step and the cosistency was much more like chicken in my opinion. I liked it much better with the baked seitan, although the boiled is still tasty. It also calls for using mayo to make the dressing (which works great) but I have used whatever I have had on hand, including cream cheese (Tofutti non-hydrogenated) or a mixture of unsweetened soy milk and cream cheese or unsweetened soy milk and mayo. The dill gives the sauce an incredible flavor. The original recipe also calls for butter to be added to the hot sauce. I don't think this adds anything other than fat so I have chosen to leave it out alltogether. So, here is my recipe adapted from the original.
Buffalo "Chicken" Wraps (adapted from Morgan's Buffalo Wraps)
1/2 cup vegan mayo (or sour cream or cream cheese)
1/4 cup soymilk
1 tsp dried dill
1 tsp garlic powder
cracked black pepper
In a bowl, combine all ingredients until smooth

Buffalo Sauce:
1/4 cup Louisiana Hot Sauce (or another spicy chipotle or pepper sauce)

1 1/2 cups sliced baked seitan, heated (like seitan-o-greatness)or if using boiled seitan, dip it in some flour and lightly pan-fry it

Chopped lettuce and shredded carrots

To Make the Buffalo Wraps:
Take a tortilla or wrap and spread 1 T dressing over surface. Place several seitan strips on top. Drizzle hot sauce over seitan. Top with chopped lettuce and shredded carrots. Roll up and enjoy!

A delicious new recipe for slaw - sprinkled with peanuts. Easy and tasty!

Crunchy Asian Slaw
4 cups sliced cabbage
1/4 cup Asian dressing (recipe below)
1/4 cup peanuts

Toss all ingredients and serve.

Asian Dressing
2 T sugar
1 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1 t sesame oil
1/4 cup oil
3 T vinegar
Combine all ingredients until well combined.
I'm back! It has been a very long week of prepping for the kids' consignment sale and I finally dropped off my load of baby stuff yesterday morning (what a relief to be done from the prepping but what a sad moment of letting go too!). I have been cooking, but not many new and exciting things, unfortunately! I have made a few yummies and you will see pics here. Watch for recipes to come (if you don't see a recipe posted yet but would like it right away, post a note and I will get it on here ASAP - otherwise, recipes will be available very soon!). You will also notice, my new menu will soon be posted so stay tuned - I am trying to catch up on a bunch of stuff right now, in addition to the fact that my oldest son turns 5 on Monday and we have lots of family celebrations this weekend. So, bear with me! :-) Happy Cooking!


  1. Can't wait for you to post the recipes, the tortilla soup looks so yummy!

    Also wanted to let you know that I awarded you the "Stylish Bloggers Award" on my blog. Bloggers so need an accolade such as this once in a while to encourage them to keep on keeping on. Your willingness to pass this gift on to others is not only a kindness but an inspiration. Hope you will pass on the award to other bloggers as well and Congrats! Thanks for having a great blog!

  2. Thank you! I am glad you found me and I have enjoyed browsing your blog too! Thank you for the award - I will work on recipes and also on figuring out how to award my fellow bloggers! I have never done that before. Thank you VeganMom :-)

  3. I have some orzo at home that I bought about 2 weeks agao. I found a recipe somewhere that I wanted to make, but now I have lost it...ha I can't wait to see your recipes. That soup looks delish!


Crispy Herbed Potato Stack

Crispy Herbed Potato Stack
I was going to try a recipe for herbed scalloped potatoes and at last minute decided to do something fast and easy. I made up the recipe and it was yummola! I layered sliced russet potatoes in a baking dish, drizzled with olive oil, and then sprinkled with coarse sea salt, fresh ground pepper, basil, rosemary, paprika, and garlic powder. Then I baked them at 425 fr about 45 minutes. They were crisp and very flavorful!

My thrown-together salad today - after discovering I had no leftovers for lunch!

Tamale Fixings

Tamale Fixings
Plain pintos (for Keith), pintos, corn and onions; corn, jalepenos and Daiya; mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, and chard

Making these was a bit time-consuming but kinda fun! They didn't turn out as good as I had hoped - the outer tamale part (not the filling) just wasn't as flavorful as tamales I have had in restaurants. I have another recipe I will try for the dough next time. Tamales are one of my favorite foods so I won't give up on this one!

"Buttermilk" Blueberry Pancakes

"Buttermilk" Blueberry Pancakes
I modified one of my favorite pancake recipes to make it vegan and then I added blueberries. Turned out quite yummy. Soymilk sours and thickens well - very similar to buttermilk. I have been really impressed with it's ability to substitute for real buttermilk.

"Buttermilk" Blueberry Pancakes

Egg replacement for 1 egg
1 1/4 cups soured soy milk (put 2 T vinegar into a 2 cup glass measuring cup. Add enough soy milk to equal 1 1/4 cups)
2 T canola oil
1 cup flour (I wouldn't recommend whole wheat or whole wheat pastry - it really takes away from the fluffiness of these pancakes)
1 T sugar
2 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
Blueberries, optional

Mix dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients and stir just until combined. Heat griddle pour about 1/4 cup batter for each pancake. Sprinkle blueberries on pancakes after ladling onto griddle. Cook just until golden on both sides.

Veggie and Seitan Lo Mein

Veggie and Seitan Lo Mein
Overall, this was fabulous! However, I don't think the seitan added much so I would just leave it out next time. The lo mein also needed about double the sauce so I would simply do that next time for added flavor. This was especially spicy and yummy with some Sriracha drizzled on top. I made our favorite veg egg rolls to go with this and it was truly a Chinese treat!!

Veggie Seitan Lo Mein

I really did my own thing for this recipe so I am just going to outline the instructions and include the sauce recipe. I heated oil in a large skillet and added 3 minced cloves of garlic and about 1 cup of half-moon cut onions (I was out of green onions but next time I would use green onions as I like them a lot in Chinese food) and about 1 cup matchstick-cut carrots. After about 5-6 minutes, I added about 1/4 lb of whole green beans. I cooked these veggies until tender. Meanwhile, I cooked a 16oz package of chow mein noodles. Once the veggie mixture was cooked, I poured the sauce on the veggies, heated through and tossed with the noodles. Next time I would double the amount of sauce and have adjusted amounts below to reflect double recipe.

Sauce (Source:Adaptable Feast)
3 T soy sauce
3 T rice wine (I used 3 T rice vinegar and 1 t sugar as I didn't have any rice wine)
3 t sugar
4 T black bean garlic sauce
Mix all ingredients and toss with above mixture.

Chinese Broccoli Wontons in Ginger Soy Broth

Chinese Broccoli Wontons in Ginger Soy Broth
Pretty yummy. I found that steaming the wontons worked much better than the recipe suggestion to boil them. The broth was very mild and a bit too mellow for us. Still pretty yummy though. I added extra veggies to the wontons and scallion to the broth. The seasoning in the wonton filling was quite tasty!

Chinese Broccoli Wontons in Ginger Soy Broth (Source: Vegan Yum Yum)

(As usual, I modified several things so it's not exactly the recipe in Vegan Yum Yum!)

1 cup chopped broccoli
3/4 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup chopped scallions
1 T oil
1 t fresh ginger, minced
1 clove fresh minced garlic
1/2 t hot chili sauce (such as Sriracha)
1 t hot Chinese mustard
2 T plus 1 t soy sauce
4 cups water ( I think this might have been more flavorful had I used vegetable broth or faux chicken broth???)
6 slices fresh ginger
1 T mirin (I used a splash of cooking wine as I didn't have mirin)
1 1/2 t sugar
2 t rice vinegar
1/2 t salt
1/2 cup chopped scallions
16 wonton skins

For filling: Heat oil in skillet and add broccoli, ginger, garlic, carrot, onion and cook until veggies are crisp tender. Add chili sauce, mustard, 1 t soy sauce and stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside.

To make wontons, take one skin and place in diamond shape. Fill with 1-2 t filling. Fold in half to make a triangle and moisten edges with water and pinch sides to seal. Set triangle in front of you with point up and take the 2 side points and bring them together in front to cross. Set aside and prepare remaining wontons. When finished, place wontons in a steamer basket and steam over pot of boiling water until translucent.

Meanwhile, in a pot, combine remaining ingredients (except wontons) and simmer 10-15 min.

Place 3-4 wontons in bowl and ladle broth over wontons. Serve.