Thursday, June 30, 2011

Black Bean Taco Salad

Remember how I talked and talked about how it was never going to be warm?  Well, here we are.  It's not warm, it's HOT.  So hot that we spent the day playing in the water attempting to cool down.  As a side note, our a/c has decided not to work today so that was a big thumbs down!  Needless to say, making anything with the stove or anything that took longer than 15 minutes was out.  I had big plans for our meal but I scratched all of it from the menu in favour of a very simple (and very delicious) taco salad.  A one bowl, easy clean up, filling meal served with some fruit kabobs... perfect for this very hot and humid day.  Now all I need is for someone to fix my central air...

Black Bean Taco Salad

1 chopped onion
3 cloves minced garlic
1.5-2 cups cooked black beans mash half
1 cup corn
5 chopped tomatoes
1 cup salsa
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
salt and pepper
3 cups chopped lettuce
1.5 cups Tex Mex blend cheese
1 bag crumbled tortilla chips

*Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until soft
*Add beans, corn, tomatoes, and half the salsa, and spices and cook another 5 minutes.  Let cool slightly.
*In a large bowl, toss together lettuce, bean mixture, remaining salsa and 1/2 cup cheese.
*Serve bean/lettuce mixture on top of a bed of crumbled chips topped with remaining cheese.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Black Bean Sofrito

I have to be honest... before I found this recipe, I had never heard of a sofrito.  I had to google pictures to have an idea of what I was making.  But really, it had black beans in it so how could I resist?  One of my favourite things about the Vegetarian Family Cookbook is that it suggests options for side dishes. In this case, it suggested making the southwestern rice casserole to go with the sofrito, so I went with that and a spinach salad.  It's a good thing my husband put some in the fridge for me (I never eat before hot yoga) because that is all there was left.  This recipe is definitely going to be a frequently made meal around here!

Black Bean Sofrito
1 tablespoon olive oil 
1 medium onion, chopped fine 
4 cloves garlic, minced 
1 medium green bell pepper, diced I used yellow
1 medium red bell pepper, diced 
2-15 oz. cans black beans, rinsed & drained mash half
1 large firm tomato, diced 
2 tsp cumin 
1/2 tsp oregano 
1/2 tsp chili powder
Juice of 1/2 lemon 
Salt and pepper to taste 
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup water

*Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until translucent
*Add in pepper and cook for 5 more minutes
*Add remaining ingredients and cook for 10-15 minutes

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Leftover cabbage!

This week is full of school and sport windups which means pizza, pizza and veggie hot dogs.  Isn't June fun?  Today, though, we had nothing on and it was raining (green, greener, greenest!) so I thought I should use up the cabbage leftover from Monday and make a vegetable soup and a fresh baguette.  I literally just threw in what I had and so this is an "ish" recipe.  Nothing exact!  The kids loved it and now I have leftovers for everyone to eat tomorrow.  I am feeling very uninspired for lunches so this is a true blessing.  Luckily school is almost out ;)

Vegetable Soup

olive oil
1 chopped onion
3 cloves minced garlic
3 sliced carrots
2 chopped celery stalks
1/2 head of chopped cabbage
1-14 oz can diced tomatoes
1 can mixed beans, drained and rinsed
3-4 cups vegetable stock
salt and pepper
2 tbsp fresh chopped thyme
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
1 bay leaf

*Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until soft
*Add carrots and celery and cook for 5 additional minutes
*Mix in remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.  Simmer on low for 45-60 minutes.
*Remove bay leaf and serve.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Summer weather and cabbage rolls

I've been slacking both in the blogging world and in the cooking world.  It's been so nice out that we have been bbq'ing, campfire cookin', and just having super quick and easy meals... and lots of repeats.  Makes for a boring blog but it sure has been fun :)  It rained today so the kids and I had a very lazy day and it was oh so lovely.  My 3 year old must have hugged me for 5 minutes because "I not watch tv since we lived in a hotel."  Hilarious!  I figured I could make a little effort for supper tonight because of all of this so we had cabbage rolls, roasted potatoes, and corn on the cob.  I've never made cabbage rolls before so I was pretty impressed with how these turned out.  Not perfect but still very, very tasty.

Cabbage Rolls

1 large cabbage
2 cups cooked rice (I used brown)
2 chopped onions
4 cloves minced garlic
1-2 grated carrots
salt and pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
5-6 cups vegetable stock
1 small can tomato paste

*Prepare cabbage according to these instructions
*Saute onion and garlic in butter until very soft, add carrots and cook for 4-5 more minutes.
*Add salt and pepper, worcestershire sauce, parsley, thyme, and oregano
*In a large bowl whisk together vegetable stock and tomato paste
*Line the bottom of a glass casserole dish with 1/3 of the stock/paste mixture.
*Stuff cabbage leaves by following that same youtube video from above.
*Top with remaining liquid, cover and cook at 400 for 40-45 minutes.
*Uncover and cook for 10-15 more minutes

Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Child's Portion: Stuffed Red Peppers

For some reason I keep ending up on stuffed red pepper recipes in my e-travels lately and I don't really care for red peppers, haha.  It seemed like something the kids would like so I added it to my menu for the week.  Of course, I couldn't find the perfect recipe so I just mixed a bunch of different ones together to come up with tonight's version.  I served it with a spinach salad and a fresh baguette.  What a great meal at the end of a very (very very) long day.

Stuffed Red Peppers

6 red peppers
2 chopped onions
4 cloves minced garlic
4 stalks chopped celery
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2 cups cooked (brown) rice
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1 tsp cumin
salt and pepper
1 can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
cheddar cheese

*Hollow out the red peppers and boil for 5 minutes
*Saute onions in butter until very soft.  Add garlic, celery, and sunflower seeds and cook for 6-8 minutes.
*Add rice, parsley, salt and pepper, beans, cumin, and parsley and mix well.
*Spoon mixture into peppers and top with cheese.
*Use the pasta sauce to line a casserole dish.  Place stuffed peppers into the sauce and cover with more. 
*Cover dish with tin foil and bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes.  Remove foil and bake until cheese is bubbly.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

White Kidney Bean Burgers

We've had these burgers several times over the last few weeks (can you tell it's bbq season?), and every time they are totally devoured before I have a chance for seconds.  SO GOOD.  It started out with a recipe from Veggie Burgers Every Which Way but since that recipe involved olives I decided to totally change it up.  Not a fan of olives, can you tell?  We had the burgers with some coleslaw and steamed asparagus.

White Bean Burgers

2 sliced onions
2 cans of white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp chopped fresh sage
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp cumin
2 tbsp ground flax seed + 2 tbsp water (mixed together)
1+ cup bread crumbs
salt and pepper
juice from 1/2 lemon

*Cook onions in butter on low until caramelized (at least 30 minutes)
*In a food processor, pulse together onions, garlic, sage, flax seed mixture and half the beans
*Transfer to a large bowl and add remaining ingredients
*Cook in a small amount of olive oil for 5-6 minutes per side
*Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes, flipping once

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A meal that I wish I could have enjoyed!

You can all thank my husband for the wonderful plating and photo tonight because while he was feeding 4 children, I was at hot yoga.  Sometimes it is hard to prepare a meal for the family and not get to enjoy it with them but hot yoga is pretty much the only acceptable excuse for it in my mind ;)  It was a dreary cold day here in Winnipeg and I was happy to spend the afternoon making these stuffed buns and then sweating it out at yoga.  Making lemonade out of lemons?  Yes, I think so.  The buns were served with a simple green salad with tofu croutons!

Vegetable Stuffed Buns

2 1/2 tsp yeast
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt
2 tsp olive oil
1 cup warm water
2 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
2 tbsp vital wheat gluten
olive oil
1/2 chopped onion
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tsp grated ginger
1 chopped red pepper
2 chopped carrots
3/4 cup chopped broccoli
1 tbsp braags
1 tbsp cornstarch

*In a large bowl, dissolve yeast, honey, salt and olive oil together.  Let sit for 10 minutes.
*Mix in flour and wheat gluten and knead for 8-10 minutes.  Place in a well oiled bowl and let rise for at least 1 hour.
*Saute onion, garlic and ginger in olive oil until soft.  Add red pepper, carrots, and broccoli and stir fry until slightly soft.  
*Mix together braags and cornstarch and pour into stir fry mixture.  Allow to cool
*Remove dough from bowl and divide into 12 pieces.  Roll each piece into a thin circle.
*Add 2 tbsp(ish) of stirfry mixture to each circle.
*Bring edges to close in mixture and twist together to close.
*Place seam side down on a baking sheet and allow to rise for 30 more minutes
*Brush with olive oil and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes

Menu Plan: June 7-14

Tuesday: Chinese stuffed buns and a green salad
Wednesday: White bean burgers, and roasted vegetables
Thursday: stuffed peppers, fresh bread, and a spinach salad
Friday: graduation bbq
Saturday: lentil tacos, pepper salad, and steamed green something
Sunday: cabbage rolls with cumin potatoes, and corn on the cob
Monday: pizza and raw vegetables
Tuesday: lentil salad with feta and quinoa rolls

Monday, June 6, 2011

Finally back to it.

Getting home from a vacation, especially a road trip, is always a tough transition for me.  I'm tired, I have no groceries, and I have very little motivation.  I usually prepare a casserole to put in the freezer for our first meal once we arrive home but after that it's right back to real life and  I was in no mood for it this time around.  Today was the first day where I felt slightly creative and slightly (yes only slightly) motivated to make something of note.  Combining two of my favourite things (black beans and loaves) seemed like an obvious choice.  So here it is, served with a green salad and some roasted potatoes--a black bean loaf.

Black Bean Loaf

olive oil
2 sliced onions
2 cans black beans, drained, rinsed, and mashed
1 cup rolled oats
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
6 cloves roasted garlic, minced
2 chopped red peppers
3 tbsp ground flax seed
3 tbsp water
1/2 cup ground walnuts
2-3 tbsp braggs
3/4 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
3/4 tsp chili powder
salt and pepper
mustard, chili powder, brown sugar

*Saute onion and red pepper in olive oil  on low for 10-15 minutes, until soft
*In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and let stand for 5-10 minutes
*Brush on topping
*Transfer to a greased loaf pan and bake at 375 for 55-60 minutes

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Menu Planning: June 2-7

Thursday: Stuffed pasta shells (made before we left and frozen), green salad with some kinda dressing
Friday: Pizza, and raw veggies
Saturday: White bean burgers, bbq'd potatoes, and corn on the cob
Sunday: Baby's First Birthday Party :(  Veg dogs, vegetables, fruit, and cake!
Monday: Black bean loaf, roasted veggies, and a rice something or other
Tuesday: Chinese stuffed buns and a salad