vegetarian

All posts tagged vegetarian

Acorn Squash with Lentils

Published October 22, 2018 by lynn k scott

The other night I roasted acorn squash and made lentils to go with it.  It was a simple, yet hardy dish.

I used my air fryer to roast the acorn squash after brushing it with some maple syrup, a bit of coconut sugar and a sprinkle of kosher salt.  I like to prep on a cookie sheet with parchment.  It makes cleanup so much easier; esp. when using maple syrup or honey.

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Just before preparing the squash, I sauteed some diced onions in homemade vegetable broth and added a bit of garlic, freshly chopped tomatoes, salt and pepper, a bit more vegetable stock with some lentils in my Instant Pot.

When both the squash and lentil were done, I layered them (as pictured).  It was a delightful and delicious dinner.  I was so proud of myself for making this vegan dish and I didn’t use any oil in cooking the onions or garlic.

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NOTE:  You need to watch the broth so it doesn’t fully evaporate and add a tablespoon or two at a time until the the sauteing is complete.

In case you didn’t know, you can also eat the skin of the acorn squash (once it’s been cooked).  The more vegan recipes I make, the better I feel.  I can’t say it’s for everyone.  I also am not going to preach about animals and the like.  I am eating a mostly vegan diet to combat my colon cancer.

I’m trying more and more dishes that I never thought I’d eat.  Expand your horizons; try preparing a new dish today!

HAPPY EATING

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Vegan Matar Paneer

Published October 9, 2018 by lynn k scott

I love Indian food.  However, it’s not always gluten-free (cross contamination issues at a restaurant).  I also am doing my best to stick to my vegan diet, especially at home.  That being said, I have noticed a lot of vegan dishes use chickpeas because of the high protein content.

I have several Indian spice shops close to home so I enjoy shopping there for my spices and I also buy organic chickpeas there.  I simply soak them and cook them to add to a variety of dishes.

Last night, as I was labeling and refilling my spice containers, I thought of matar paneer (peas and cheese).  I had considered using tofu as the paneer substitution, but not a huge tofu fan and I didn’t have any on hand.  Then it hit me…CHICKPEAS!

I quickly assembled my ingredients….oil (just a bit), onions, garlic, spices, tomatoes, water, peas and chickpeas.  There might be an ingredient or two missing, but those are primary ingredients.

I quickly whipped of my vegan version of one of my favorite Indian dishes.  As the rest of the family was already having rice with their dinner, I borrowed a scoop to serve with my modified, now vegan dish.

While I do miss the paneer (cheese), the chickpeas work really well as a substitution.  I am looking forward to trying to make more Indian dishes with chickpeas.

matar paneer

Review: The Beyond Burger

Published August 24, 2018 by lynn k scott

It’s been about a month now; give or take.  I have been on a primarily vegan diet to treat my colon cancer.  I juice a lot, follow a gluten-free (did that before cancer) and now a vegetarian, if not vegan diet.

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I would say that about 95% of my food intake is vegan.  I never thought I could give  up cheese.  Surprisingly, it hasn’t been as difficult as I thought it would be.  Since changing my diet, I have had goat cheese 4 times and feta cheese twice.  Not too shabby.  I occasionally will have either fish or shellfish.

I have also given up dairy and eggs, in addition to red meat, chicken and pork.  I will occasionally do honey; but limit natural sugar.  I rarely have any refined sugar these days.  My daughter always wanted a rabbit to join the family.  She will just have to accept me as a surrogate bunny.

Onto the review…

I saw a blog post about “The Beyond Burger” about a month ago about this alternative meat.  As soon as I read about it, I knew I had to try it as soon as it was available.

Earlier this week, when I was doing the weekly grocery shopping, I happened to stumble upon it.  It was nestled in the meat department, right about the ground beef.  I picked up a package to try, picked up pre-made burgers for the family (rarely do that) and was EXCITED to try it for dinner.

Last night, I cooked up their burgers in one pan and made my “burger” in cast iron pan.  They had a perfect sear to them.  The “burgers” are primarily made of pea protein and beets.  I have had pea protein milk before.  It’s a great dairy-free alternative.  However, it tends to be a bit more expensive then, say, almond or cashew milk.

I wish I had taken pics of the “burgers” before I added the avocados.  I opted to forgo the vegan cheddar cheese.  I didn’t put them on a bun, as I didn’t have gluten-free ones available and didn’t feel like going the lettuce wrap route.

While the “burger” didn’t taste like read meat, it “bleeds” while cooking because of the beets in it.  They are also a bit smaller than what I would call a traditional burger size.

A bonus for me is they have 30% of the recommended daily volume of protein.  I am continually anemic from my cancer.  To say, I love this plant-based option, wouldn’t be an understatement.  My husband and daughter thought I was nuts when I was so happy about my dinner.  You can read more about the nutritional content here.

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I topped the “burgers” with avocado and dipped each bite in a bit of mustard.  I love mustard and I use it whenever I can.  I really enjoyed the taste.  I cooked it with just a bit of salt and pepper.  Nothing complicated.  I made vegan mashed potatoes.  The family wanted fries, which I made them in the air fryer for them, but I wanted mashed potatoes.

I don’t often buy pre-made meals for myself.  However, this is one option I will definitely do.  It makes prepping dinner a bit easier on my busy nights.

If your family does a meatless Monday or you’re trying to cut back on red meat, I would invite you to give this option a try.  I think this is now one of my new favorite foods.

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Lentil Taco “Meat”

Published July 16, 2018 by lynn k scott

In an effort to stay on a (mostly) meat-free, cancer-fighting diet, I thought I would make some lentils in my Instant Pot.  I used this recipe as a guide, however, I halved the recipe because I was cooking just for me.

I did adjust the ingredients and used the following:

  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • small red onion; diced
  • (2) cloves of garlic; minced
  • half a can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • pinch of black pepper

I did saute the onions in a bit of olive oil and added the garlic once the onions were just about done cooking.  Added the rest of the ingredients, gave it a stir and set the Instant Pot to 15 minutes.  Quick release when the time was up.

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The lentils were full of flavor.  Sadly, I was out of avocados and gluten-free tortillas, but I still plated and consumed them happily.  These definitely are a great substitution for meat.

I will note, the original recipe says it’s vegetarian, but that’s only if you use water and she uses chicken stock.  If you use water to cook the lentils, it actually becomes a great tasting, vegan dish.

Give it a try…I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

She’s going to be a veg-head

Published February 9, 2018 by lynn k scott

My 12-year old daughter came to me the other night and asked if she could become a vegetarian.  I was not as surprised as my husband, because I have been watching her eating habits (and I buy her food).

After asking her reasoning for wanting to, discussing the foods she would be giving up and making sure she would increase certain foods, to which she consented to, I agreed.  I was a vegetarian for a decade, at one point, so I would be able to help her make sound dietary decisions.

Her dad is less than a happy camper.  I blame it on his carnivorous side.  He gave me grief the entire time we were dating and even after we were married, about not eating meat.  He forgets, I would make dual meals; for him and myself.  He is also worried she will be picked on when she doesn’t eat the same foods her friends eat.  I give her friends more credit than he apparently is.  This is his only baby girl and I think he’s not ready for her to grow up and make more decisions on her own.

That being said, I also took her new endeavor as a way to add it to her homeschool life.  It’s great for nutrition, label-reading, discussions on ingredients, proper food combining, recipe research and essays.  I give her so much credit and am so proud of her.  She is taking this seriously.  I often get calls/texts at work telling me about a new website she’s been to regarding being a vegetarian.  She’s excited to share what she’s found.

I have told her how proud I am of her.  I loved being a veg-head.  I reiterated several times, that in this dietary journey, if she’s not willing to eat the proper foods, I will not allow her to be a full vegetarian.  I have expanded my dietary palate, over the years, which will provide additional knowledge for my daughter.

While I doubt I will ever go back to being 100% vegetarian, I welcome this change to bring more vegetarian dishes to our table (same meat dishes for the hubby) and see how she does.  Who knows, she may choose to stick with this; only time will tell.

A Sandwich Inspired by Mom

Published August 9, 2016 by lynn k scott

I would venture to say that food is one of the most important things in our lives (besides for nutrition) that bind us to family, other people and cultures.  We grow up eating a variety of food, mostly influenced by our parents and then we develop our own likes and dislikes and venture further into the culinary journey that helps make us who we are.

My mom was a decent baker, but horrible cook.  When I say horrible, she would admit it, especially after one of our dogs refused her meal.  Seriously!  The dog snubbed his nose at human food.  It was pretty funny at the time and still makes me smile some 30+ years later.  That being said, she did introduce to me to one sandwich, that even to this day, I will still make from time to time.

I will preface the sandwich that I have always been a bit odd when it comes to unique sandwich combos.  Then having spent 25% of my life as vegetarian, can’t believe I can actually even state that figure…but I digress, I ate this sandwich then too.

Ok, here it is…and don’t knock it til ya tried it:  olive and cream cheese sandwich.  It’s relatively easy.  Take your favorite olives, or combination thereof, and dice ’em up.  Add the olives to softened cream cheese and mix.  Now, you can stop there and make a sandwich straight away.

OR…..

Get creative…add a bit of lettuce or perhaps alpha sprouts.  Top with a tomato and then the olive spread.  Perhaps you want to use a hoagie roll or toast your bread of choice?  I’m in California…add an avocado…we put that on everything.  I would post a picture, but I ate my sandwich before snapping a picture.  Sorry, it was just that good!

When all is said and done, it’s a sandwich from my childhood.  It’s a memory of my mom.  It’s one of my comfort foods.

Crock Pot Potato Soup

Published January 16, 2016 by lynn k scott

This morning, as I was checking out what happened on Facebook while I slept, my friends had posted this recipe for a Crock Pot Potato Soup.  I shared the post and thought, I have all the ingredients to make this.

After I got back from the gym, cleaned the kitchen, I decided to whip this up.  I love my crock pot and if there is a recipe that I can make in it, using fresh ingredients, I’m all over it.  Add to the fact it’s been rainy and a bit on the nippy side here today, and potato soup, with a little cheddar cheese added to it, sounded pretty good.

I adore these little video clips adding the ingredients and quickly showing you quantities.  I personally don’t need the videos, the recipe would suffice too.  However, for those who may not cook often or are new to using the ever versatile crock pot, they are quite helpful.

Watch the video to see the soup come together in mere seconds.  I’ve listed the recipe below should you want to jump to the head of the line.

  • 4 cups potatoes; diced
  • 3/4 cup of onion; chopped
  • 4 cups chicken stock (I used homemade vegetable stock)
  • 1/2 TBSP salt
  • 1/2 TBSP pepper
  • 4 TBSP butter
  • 1/4 cup of flour
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sour cream

Add the potatoes, onions, stock, salt and pepper and stir (the video omits this step).  Set the crock pot on Low for 6 hours or High for 4 hours.  After the set time has expired, melt the butter and add the flour; stir.  I used Pamela’s gluten-free flour and it worked great. Let the mixture cook for about a minute and then add the heavy cream and sour cream. Stir mixture until it thickens a bit.  Add the mixture to the crock pot, stir, reset timer for another 30 minutes on Low.

I didn’t think there was enough salt for all those potatoes.  As soon as I tasted it, I knew I was right.  It could use more, but easily corrected by the person eating the soup.  Garnish soup with cheese, scallions, bacon bits, etc.  I like the texture of the diced potatoes.  If you prefer a creamier soup, by all means use an immersion blender or blend in batches in a traditional blender.

This soup would be great in a bread bowl or served with a few slices of baguette.  Sadly, these aren’t options for me, but it’s how I would have eaten this in the past.  I will definitely be making this soup again.  With my substitutions, the soup is now vegetarian and gluten-free (for those that need/want those options).

Enjoy!

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