Mediterranean Cucumber Soup with Dill and Walnuts

Mediterranean Cucumber Soup with Dill and Walnuts

Some things are just meant to be together-peanut butter & jelly, socks and shoes, Kurt and Goldie, and cucumbers & Dill. An American mainstay, cucumber seeds were brought to North America by European settlers in the late 16th century. The cucumber, however, is native to India, and at around 3,000 years old, it is one of the world’s oldest cultivars.

Cucumbers belong to the Cucurbitaceae family.  Other members of this family include watermelon, muskmelon, pumpkin, and squash. Some fun cucumber facts:

  • Cucumbers contain 96 percent water.
  • The inside of a cucumber can be up to 20 degrees cooler than its outside.
  • One-half cup of sliced cucumbers contains only eight calories.
  • Fresh extracts from cucumbers have recently been shown to have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

When I was a kid, a cucumber is what my mom diced up and put on a salad. Since then, I’ve used them as crudités, made pickles out ’em, and I love them as under-eye pads for puffy eyes. But until now, I’ve never had them as the main star of a soup! You can also use them (in no particular order) to:

  • Got a slug or grub problem? Dice cucumbers and put them on an aluminum pan in the garden. The aluminum reacts with the cucumber and gives off a scent they don’t care for.
  • For their fiber and water, which helps fight constipation.
  • Got some funky bugs? They contain erepsin, an enzyme, which is known to kill tapeworms.
  • As a hangover cure because they have enough B vitamins, electrolytes, and sugar to replenish essential nutrients that alcohol absorbs from your body.
  • Reducing cellulite. Applying slices directly to the skin allows phytochemicals in cucumbers to tighten collagen for a firm complexion.
  • Grow long, beautiful hair. Cucumber juice provides silicon, sodium, calcium, sulfur, etc., all of which are nutrients needed for hair growth and hair strengthening.
  • Got a toddler? They can even remove crayons, markers, and pen marks on walls.

The other main ingredient in the soup is our friend, Dill. Dill, as we all know, is an herb. But did you know that it has health benefits that are almost too many to name? Dill is packed with flavonoids, which have been shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. But that’s not the only reason Dill is thought to improve heart health. Research on animals shows that Dill can also reduce LDL cholesterol levels. Thank you, WebMD! Dill also:

  • Can help regulates Diabetes– The presence of bioactive ingredient Eugenol in dill leaves has potent anti-diabetic properties, which play a crucial role in alleviating the blood sugar levels within the body.
  • Promotes Digestion.
  • Fortifies Bone Health.
  • Prevents Infections.
  • Remedies Insomnia

Add in some heart-healthy walnuts and friends. This soup might be a magic elixir, the proverbial unicorn of soups! With roots in eastern Europe, this Mediterranean “çorba” (Turkish for soup) is similar to the Turkish Casik, which uses yogurt as its base. I tried various versions of this, and I settled on this version. I loved the addition of red pepper flakes and tarragon! If you make it, tag me and let me know how you liked it!


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Mediterranean Cucumber Soup with Dill and Walnuts

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 large European (traditional) cucumber, or 3 small Persian cucumbers, small diced
  • 2 cups plain vegan greek style yogurt (I used Kite Hill)
  • 1 cup ice cold water
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 small scallions, trimmed and diced
  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled
  • 1/2 cup fresh dill
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried tarragon
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • salt
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 2/3 cup shelled walnuts, finely chopped

Instructions

  1. Place a colander in a sink or over a bowl, add cucumbers and salt. Stir well, and let sit for about 15 minutes.
  2. Whisk olive oil, yogurt, and lime juice together until smooth.
  3. Gradually whisk in water until you achieve the desired consistency.
  4. In a mortar or a bowl, grind garlic clove with a pinch of salt into a paste.
  5. Add garlic, cucumbers, scallions, walnuts, and spices. Mix thoroughly.
  6. This step is optional, but you can add one ice cube to each bowl and then ladle the soup on top.
  7. Garnish each bowl with chopped parsley, one thin slice of lime, red pepper flakes, sliced red onion, olive oil, and walnuts.
  8. Enjoy!

Notes

Japanese cucumbers would also work.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4
  • Calories: 134 calories

Keywords: Vegan Soup, cucumber soup

Pan-Seared Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce

Pan-Seared Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce

I’ll be honest. I am not a fan of cauliflower. To me, it’s the bottom rung on the ladder of cruciferous vegetables. I despise cauliflower rice, and raw cauliflower gags me. But one evening, a chef friend of mine made me a cauliflower steak for dinner. Ever gracious, I took a deep breath and a steak knife and took my first bite. Well, I guess the rest is history, as they say since I’m writing a recipe for cauliflower steaks! 

I chose to pan-sear the steaks to get that nice brown crust, and then I finished them off in the oven to speed up the cooking process. I also used safflower oil to cook with since it has a high smoke point of 501°, to be exact. Olive oil has a medium smoke point cannot be heated past 405°. Fat begins to break when heated past its smoking point, releasing free radicals and a substance called acrolein, the chemical that gives burnt foods their acrid flavor and aroma. Think watering eyes, a stinky kitchen, and bitter, scorched food.

The critical thing to note in this recipe is how to stem and cut the cauliflower. I found that removing the outer green leaves and most but not all of the stem is crucial. Trim off the bottom of the cauliflower stem but make sure to keep the core intact. I find that one large head of cauliflower makes about three 1 1/2 ” steaks. To ensure flat sides, I trim the outer edges of the cauliflower on each side-taking off about an inch and a half. Slice carefully. 

If you make the steaks be sure to tag me and let me know how you like them! Enjoy!

 


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Pan-Seared Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 3 Steaks 1x

Description

This cauliflower steak is so flavorful and quite filling!  Be sure to buy a large head to ensure decent size steaks.  And using Montreal steak seasoning is a perfect way to spice them up!  You can top with a variety of roasted vegetables and creamy mild tasting white beans for protein!


Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°
  2. Heat a cast-iron skillet or other oven-safe, heavy bottom frying pan over medium-high heat. When warm add, two tablespoons of safflower oil. 
  3. Brush each side of the cauliflower steaks with oil and sprinkle with Montreal seasoning.
  4. Carefully add steaks to a frying pan and sear each side until golden brown, about 5-7 minutes per side.
  5. When steaks are golden brown, remove the pan from the heat put directly in the oven for approximately 8-10 minutes, or until fork tender. 
  6. Carefully remove pan from oven.  Plate cauliflower steaks and drizzle with chimichurri sauce.
  7. Serve immediately.

Notes

*This oil is high in vitamin E; one tablespoon contains 28% of a person’s daily recommended intake of the nutrient. It has a high smoke point and doesn’t have a strong flavor, which means it won’t overwhelm a dish.

Chimichurri Sauce

Chimichurri Sauce

This delicious herb-based sauce comes from the Argentinian/Uruguay areas of South America. Chimichurri is often served as an accompaniment to asados or grilled meats. It also makes a great marinade, and it’s perfect as a drizzle on my Smoky Cauliflower Steaks! 

This sauce is one of my go-to’s for a variety of Buddha Bowls. It’s also great to use as an oil-based marinade. The longer it sits, the better it is, so I recommend making it a few days before you want to use it for the best flavor. It keeps well in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to two weeks. 


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Chimichurri Sauce

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups 1x

Description

You can use this delicious Argentinian-based sauce in a variety of ways! You can use it as a marinade for tofu or as a drizzle on your Buddha Bowls or roasted veggies! I do not blend all ingredients in a food processor, or blender like many recipes do. You don’t want a paste-like pesto. You want a loosely packed oil with herbs.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups flat-leaf Italian parsley, minced
  • 1 cup cilantro, minced
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • Grated zest of one lemon, and the juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or two small chilies, seeded & minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. Combine shallot, chiles or cayenne, garlic, vinegar, lemon juice, and 1 tsp. salt in a medium bowl.
  2. Let sit for 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in minced cilantro and parsley.  Add oregano.
  4. Using a fork, gradually whisk in oil.
  5. Transfer Chimichurri to a small bowl; season with salt.

Beetroot Salad with Cilantro & Cumin

Beetroot Salad with Cilantro & Cumin

When I was a kid, I wouldn’t say I liked beets. As an adult, I was determined to make nice. And I’m so glad I did. They are not only delicious, but they are also super healthy. Rich in folate (Vitamin B9), they help the body make red blood cells. Like Anthocyanins in red grapes and Beta Carotene in carrots, beets contain Betalains which are unique nitrogen-containing pigments and are cancer and heart protective.

This recipe makes a great salad year-round! It makes a lovely addition to a holiday table, and it’s a delicious and easy salad to make in the summer. I PROCESS MY BEETS IN THE PRESSURE COOKER because I’m not particularly eager to turn on the oven in the summer. But you can use an oven just the same. Typically, I don’t boil them because they lose their deep red color. If you choose to boil them, leave about one inch of stem intact to help minimize color loss while cooking,

If you want to really jazz it up you can use half red and half golden beets.  It is also yummy with chopped pistachios and vegan feta!

If you make the salad, tag me let me know how you liked it!


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Beetroot Salad with Cumin & Cilantro

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch

Description

Easy year-round salad, everyone is sure to love!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 5 medium red beets
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh minced cilantro

Instructions

If using an oven:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet parchment paper.
  2. Clean the trimmed beets and place on the baking sheet. Roast for one hour, or until fork tender. Cool, peel, and cut into small diced pieces.

If using a pressure cooker:

  1. Add 2 cups water and cleaned, stemmed beets to pressure cooker.  Cook on high for 7 minutes.
  2. Cool, peel, and cut into small diced pieces.
  3. To make the vinaigrette, puree one of the cooked beets in a blender or food processor with all remaining ingredients, except the cilantro.
  4. Before serving, toss the beets with vinaigrette. Adjust seasonings to taste and garnish with cilantro.
  5. Serve warm or cold.

 

Italian Sausage Pizza with Garlic White Sauce & Caramelized Onion

Italian Sausage Pizza with Garlic White Sauce & Caramelized Onion
Who doesn’t love a good pizza? As a vegan, though, we are often left out in the cold with a pizza with no cheese. In fact, I’m pretty sure cheese is the only reason most people eat pizza! If you’re like me, store-bought cheeses are out of the question. They’re usually off in texture, or there’s something funky about the flavor.  Don’t get me wrong, there are some decent options these days, but they’re usually costly and leave me wondering about better options.
Without ado, I present the better option— This creamy garlic cashew sauce. It could not be easier to make, and I promise you will never miss cheese on a pizza again. Promise. I simply made it of cashews, filtered water, garlic and onion powder, oregano, salt, and nutritional yeast. The sheer simplicity of the sauce makes it a favorite of mine. Not to mention the ease with which it comes together. Throw it all in a blender and hit go. I have a high-powered Vitamix, and it takes me a solid minute or so to blend. If you don’t have a high-powered blender, I recommend boiling the cashews for 10-15 minutes and then rinse and blend.
Hungry Planet makes a mean Italian sausage that cooks up quickly and tastes fantastic. However, I have to be careful not to eat it all before adding it to my pizza! You don’t want to overcook it! So I brown it over medium heat for just a few minutes (3-5) until it gets a bit brown. And then I finish cooking it in the oven.
The caramelized onions add a natural sweetness and pair perfectly with the spicy Italian sausage. The key to good caramelization is the “Low and Slow” motto. Also, I never use oil, only water, and salt, when I caramelize. You won’t let the onions, which are very high in water content, release their water, just not too much, too fast. If the onions begin to stick, add a tablespoon or two of water.
The other key to a good pizza is the crust, of course. If you are a purist and like baking, then making your crust is the way to go. I wouldn’t say I enjoy baking and found an excellent store-bought crust that I love.
If you make this, drop me a line and let me know how you liked it!

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Italian Sausage Pizza with Garlic White Sauce & Caramelized Onion

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch

Ingredients

Scale

Garlic White Sauce

  • 1 1/2 cup raw unsalted cashews* (see note)
  • 8 oz filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp salt

Caramelized Onions

  • 2 medium-size sweet onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • water

Pizza


Instructions

  1. If you have a Vitamix or other high-powered blender, add all white sauce ingredients and blend well until smooth.  Set aside.
  2. Add sliced onion to a large skill and cook over medium-low heat. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add salt, continue cooking until softened and browned for about 15 minutes. If the onions begin to stick, add water one tablespoon at a time until they release. Remove onions from the pan and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, add Italian sausage and cook over medium heat until slightly browned about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Add approximately 1 cup of sauce to each crust, top with onions and Italian sausage. I also added a tablespoon of red pepper flakes to add a little heat.
  5. Bake at 400° for about 12-15 minutes.
  6. Let cool and slice.

Notes

**If you do not have a high speed blender, soak your cashews overnight, or boil for 10-15 minutes.

 

 

Courtney K’s Strawberry Rhubarb Sorbet

Courtney K’s Strawberry Rhubarb Sorbet

I love summer. I love the long warm days, eating juicy watermelon by the pound, and spending as much time in the water as possible. Summer’s bounty includes tomatoes, cucumbers, cherries, all the berries, but especially strawberries. I have fond memories of those little round shortcakes filled with fresh strawberries and cool-whip my mom used to make! And I still love it.

I have also grown quite fond of fresh rhubarb. Although rhubarb is a vegetable, it is often put to the same culinary use as a fruit. The leaf stalks can be used raw (I love it thinly shaved), and it tastes a lot like celery. But most commonly, it is boiled down with sugar and made into things like pies or this sorbet! 

When choosing rhubarb, look for crisp stalks that are firm and tender. Try to avoid stalks that are too woody or thick. And unlike its friend, the strawberry, color doesn’t have much impact on taste.

There is some sugar in this recipe but do not reduce the amount. Sugar lowers the freezing point of water and helps prevent crystallization. 

Finally, when choosing strawberries, look for the gariguette strawberry. They are the sweetest and most fragrant strawberries you’ll ever taste. If you can’t find the french variety, try to buy them locally if you can. A fresh strawberry should be firm to the touch, bright red, and free of bruises. And yellowish/green berries do not ripen at home, so remember that when you won’t think you want summer berries in December! 


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Courtney K’s Strawberry Rhubarb Sorbet

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes + 6 chill/freezer
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 53 minute
  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x
  • Category: Desserts
  • Cuisine: Desserts
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Basically frozen water, fruit, and sugar, a sorbet is a perfect summer dessert!  This frozen base would also be great as a margarita, or daiquiri.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 stalks of fresh rhubarb, washed and thinly sliced
  • 1 lb stemmed and chopped gariguette strawberries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest (about 1 orange)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated or minced 
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring all ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the rhubarb is quite soft. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor and carefully mix until smooth. If using a blender, do so in batches so the mixture doesn’t overflow and burns you. Chill the mixture in the fridge for about 3 hours, or until cool. (About one hour in the freezer).
  3. Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. If you are not using an ice cream maker, you can also pour the mixture into a freezer-safe container and freeze. It will be ready in about 3-4 hours. Best made the day before and frozen overnight.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup

Keywords: frozen sorbet, strawberry rhubarb sorbet

Creamy Agave Poppyseed Dressing

Creamy Agave Poppyseed Dressing

The other night I took my eight-year-old daughter out to dinner at a famous sit-down restaurant. We were super hungry and thought about getting an appetizer, but there was nothing under 900 calories! So we opted to have a side salad. We got it with no cheese (for the love of Pete, stopping putting cheddar cheese on a salad), but the dressing she chose had honey and eggs. She loved it and asked if we could make some at home. To please my veggie-loving baby, I got straight to work.

I found a copycat recipe and worked off of that. WOW, there was a lot of sugar and oil in that bad boy! I mean, aren’t salads supposed to be healthy? I kicked out four tablespoons of sugar and two tablespoons of unnecessary vegetable oil. This recipe is yummy. If you’re oil-free, you will want to skip this one, but you could easily sub a plain vegan yogurt. If you do this, cut the milk. Otherwise, your dressing will be too runny.

Agave nectar was an excellent choice to replace sugar and honey. It is four times sweeter than regular table sugar, but it is low on the glycemic index. Frankly, you could even start with two tablespoons of nectar and add more to suit your taste. Coming in at 100 calories per serving, this dressing is a keeper!  I used it in a kale salad with strawberries and caramelized rhubarb, and it was divine!


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Creamy Agave Poppyseed Dressing

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 10 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Sweet and tangy, this creamy dressing comes together quickly and easily!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 1/3 cups vegan mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons plant-based milk 
  • 1 1tablespoons poppy seeds

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl combine mayo and agave nectar.
  2. Add mustard, vinegar, and poppyseeds.
  3. Add milk and stir.
  4. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.  Keeps for 7 days.

Keywords: Vegan Poppyseed Dressing

 

Enchiladas Rancheras

Enchiladas Rancheras

If you’ve been around me for a while, you know that I love Mexican food. It is hands down my greatest joy and my greatest weakness. We were in Colorado on vacation a few years ago, and we had Mexican food 9 out of 11 days! These enchiladas are an homage to my grandma, whose enchiladas were (next to her biscuits and gravy) my most favorite meal. 

Grandma’s enchiladas were pretty basic—ground beef, diced onion, and tomato sauce with cheese. They were simple but divine. These are a little bit more complex but equally delicious. These are a staple in our house and one of my daughter’s favorite foods! I like to dice a little extra sweet onion and use it as a garnish and avocado, sour cream, and salsa. I’m getting hungry just thinking about them. 

You can use a store-bought enchilada sauce if you’re in a hurry or don’t want to make it. But I have to warn you it will not be as good! I like to double it and then refrigerate the remainder. It’s good on tofu eggs, burritos, tacos, nachos, and of course, these enchiladas! I like the addition of the Impossible Meat because it reminds me of my Grandma’s recipe. You can easily skip it if you are avoiding plant-based meats. I would, however, add another can of beans. These enchiladas also freeze well. Just assemble them and then freeze. Enjoy! 

If you make them, please tag me on Instagram and let me know how you like them!


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Enchiladas Rancheras

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 1216 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Ingredients

Scale

Enchilada Filling:

  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1 medium jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 package plant-based meat (optional) **See note
  • 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (4 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt & pepper, each
  • 16 corn tortillas, or 10 whole wheat tortillas 
  • Vegan Cheese Shredded *See Notes

Ranchero Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons flour (I used brown rice flour for a GF sauce)
  • 16 oz vegetable broth
  • 1 (6oz) can tomato paste 
  • 3 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 lime juiced

Toppings:

  • Daiya Cheddar Cheese block, grated
  • Diced Avocado
  • Salsa
  • Vegan Sour Cream
  • Minced Cilantro

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350° F. 

Ranchero Sauce:

  1. In a small bowl, mix flour, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, smoked paprika, oregano, salt & pepper, and cinnamon.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring 1/2 cup vegetable stock to a boil. Slowly, add dry spice and constantly whisk until the mixture is smooth and fragrant for about one minute. Add tomato paste and stir well until combined. Slowly add broth and whisk until smooth. Add lime juice and cilantro. Stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside. 

Enchilada Filling:

  1. Warm a large skillet over medium heat. When warm, add onion and sauté until translucent—about 7 minutes. (If the onions begin to stick, add 2 tablespoons of water and stir).
  2. Add garlic and jalapeño and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. 
  3. Add plant-based meat if using: Cook for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned. 
  4. Add black beans and stir well to incorporate. 
  5. Add canned tomatoes, spices, and add 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce. Stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat. 

Assembly:

  1. Wrap tortillas in a wet cloth or paper towel. Put on a microwave-safe plate and warm in the microwave for one minute. Keep tortillas wrapped while assembling. 
  2. Add ranchero sauce to a pie pan or other deep bottomed plate. 
  3. Add one cup of ranchero sauce to the bottom of a 9 x 12 pan, coating the pan evenly. 
  4. Remove one tortilla and dip it in the ranchero sauce. Place tortilla in 9 x 12 pan.
  5. Add about 1/4-1/3 cup of filling (depending on your shells’ size, you may want to add more or less). 
  6. Add 2 tablespoons of Daiya cheese. 
  7. Carefully roll the tortilla and place seam side down. 
  8. Repeat with remaining tortillas if you run out of space using another pan. I fit 8 to a pan (6 side by side and then two end to end at the bottom of the pan). I used a smaller 8×8 pan to fit the rest. I covered them with wrap and froze them for later. 
  9. When you have finished assembling the enchiladas, pour the rest of the ranchero sauce over them and sprinkle with shredded cheese. 
  10. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. 
  11. Carefully remove foil. Turn oven to broil and cook for 2 minutes or until cheese is bubbling. DO NOT WALK AWAY! 
  12. Remove from oven and serve with avocado, salsa, cilantro, and sour cream! 
  13. Enjoy! 

Notes

*I like Daiya block style cheddar and grate it myself.  I NEVER use pre-shredded vegan cheese because they add an anti-caking ingredient that simply ruins the taste of the cheese. 

**I used Impossible Meat because it has a great texture and flavor.  You can also use Gardein beef crumbles, or Hungry Planet beef.  You can also skip the meat if you’re not a fan of meat substitutes, but you may want to add an additional can of beans. I would add a can of pinto beans with my black beans for variety. 

These freeze well.  When I know I’m going to use them I remove them from the freezer and refrigerate overnight.  Always be careful putting a frozen, or super cold glass pan in the oven.  They can break. 

Keywords: Black Bean Enchilada, Vegan Enchiladas

Fish and Chips with Minty Mushy Peas

Fish and Chips with Minty Mushy Peas

It’s nice to be back in the kitchen! I’ve been super busy the last couple of weeks, and I am excited to be working on a few new recipes. Before I became a vegan, one of my favorite things to eat was fish at the local VFW hall on Fridays during the Lenten season. Though I’m not a Catholic, there are a few of their traditions that I really enjoyed! I tried using hearts of palm and other substitutes for fish. However, using banana blossoms has proved to be hands-down the best option! I like to add a bit of ground seaweed to the beer batter, which gives it a nice fishy flavor. I also love the minty mushy peas as a side! And last we cannot forget the chips! Large russet potatoes cut into thick batons and lightly fried make this girl super happy! 😋


Banana blossom, also known as a “banana heart,” is a fleshy, purple-skinned flower, shaped like a tear, which grows at the end of a banana fruit cluster. They are very flakey, making them a perfect substitute for fish. The family to whom banana belongs is called Musaceae as banana blossom, represent a valuable source of potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, minerals, fatty acid content, flavonoids, saponin, essential and non-essential amino acid, tannins, glycoside, and steroid. Banana flower is also a good antioxidant source.


There is a little bit of prep that needs to be done ahead of time. So be sure to read through the whole recipe first. You can make the peas and tartar sauce as early as much as a day ahead. This is a perfect meat-free meal that even your fish-eating friends will love! Enjoy!


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Fish and Chips with Minty Mushy Peas

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch

Description

There is some prep for this recipe.  You will want to rinse the banana blossoms and get them in the freezer while you make the other ingredients.  Make the peas and tartar sauce first. And then make potatoes and the fish last.  


Ingredients

Scale

Peas:

  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, minced
  • Salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste

Fish:

  • 2 (18 oz) cans banana blossoms, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup rice flour (used as pre-coat; can use regular flour if needed)
  • 1 teaspoon kelp powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup beer (I used an IPA)
  • 3/4 cup seltzer or sparkling water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Malt vinegar, for serving

Potatoes:

  • 4 russet potatoes, sliced each into 8 wedges
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 teaspoons garlic powder)
  • 2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt, (adjust to your tastes)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black cracked pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley (garnish)

Vegan Tartar Sauce:

  • ¼ cup (58 g) vegan mayo
  • 1 tbsp (10 g) minced cornichons (small pickles)
  • 2 tsp (20 g) caper, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) white vinegar
  • ½ tsp dijon
  • 1 tsp (2 g) fresh dill, chopped
  • Pinch salt and pepper

Instructions

Tartar Sauce:

Mix all ingredients  in a small bowl and refrigerate immediately. 

Peas:

  1. Bring 6 cups of generously salted water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the frozen peas and mint and cook for 4 minutes—Reserve 3 tablespoons of the hot cooking water. Drain the peas and mint and return to the pan. Immediately add butter, lemon zest, and cooking water—season with salt and pepper. Roughly mash the peas with a potato masher or food processor. Cover and set aside. You can use the peas in rough purée form, but if you want a very fine, smooth purée, push the mixture through a fine sieve. (I like to save about 1/4 cup of whole peas to add to puree). 

Potatoes:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Wash the potatoes (I did not peel mine) with cold water to remove some of the surface dirt and dry well. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise, slice each half in half again and then slice each half in half again. You should have a total of 8 slices per potato. Blanch the potatoes in hot (not boiling) water for 10-12 minutes to release their starches. You can skip this step, but your potatoes will not be as crisp.  
  2. Drain potatoes, shaking well to remove excess water. Lightly pat them dry and add potatoes to a medium-size bowl. Add olive oil and toss well. Combine spices in a small bowl and sprinkle over potatoes. Toss well to coat. Place potatoes cut side down on a parchment-lined baking sheet or in an *air fryer. (Depending on the size of your pan, you may have to use two baking sheets. If so, rotate pans when you pull them to flip the potatoes at the halfway baking point, about 30 minutes)
  3. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and, using a spatula, carefully flip the potatoes. Rotate pans if you used more than one. 
  4. Return to oven and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes. (You can reduce the oven to 200° and keep potatoes warm while fillets cook). 
  5. Sprinkle with parsley and serve hot. 

Fish:

  1. Heat oil in a dutch oven or wok to 345° F. Turn oven down to 200° F. Whisk together flour, baking soda, kelp powder, and 1 teaspoon salt. Pour in the beer, sparkling water, and lemon juice and mix just until combined (do not over-mix). Keep the batter refrigerated until ready to use. 
  2. Drain the banana blossoms, then shape them into filets. Wrap the blossoms in clean kitchen towels and squeeze out all of the brine.
  3. Cover and place in the freezer for 1 hour.
  4. Remove from the freezer and sprinkle the blossoms with salt and pepper. Coat the blossoms in rice flour and then dip into the batter to completely coat. Carefully swish the blossoms partway into the oil for a few seconds before completely releasing. Once the coating starts to set on the first fillet, you can add another battered fillet into the oil. Fry until the blossom is puffed, golden brown, and cooked through, 5 minutes for thin fillets or 7 minutes for thick fillets, and then transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Cook the remaining fillets and sprinkle with salt. 
  5. To serve, reheat the mushy peas if necessary. Serve the fish with chips, mushy peas, and malt vinegar on the side.

Notes

*If using air fryer bake at 390°F for 12-15 minutes.  You will have to do this in batches so whey they’ve cooked you will need to place them in a low (200°F oven) to keep warm.  

Asada Mushroom Tacos

Asada Mushroom Tacos

I have an obsession with tacos, and my love for them is deep. Before I became a vegan, my absolute favorite taco was a simple Carne Asada taco with cilantro and white onion. A traditional Asada is made with flank steak. But alas, with those meat-eating days behind me, I’ve searched long and hard for a reasonable substitute. Enter the mighty portobello mushroom.

Mushrooms work great in this Asada because they love to soak up the flavor of a marinade. And flavor they shall have! My first version of this recipe used a whole chipotle pepper that I minced and added to the marinade. As a girl who likes her food spicy, I have to say the heat overshadows the mushrooms’ delicious umami flavor. So I cut back on the heat and kept it simple. This recipe goes down as one of my all-time favorite taco recipes using fresh cilantro leaves, freshly squeezed orange and lime juice, cumin, and chili powder.

If you don’t like cilantro, no worries, you can use epazote, another aromatic herb with notes of oregano, anise, citrus, and mint. You can find it at most Hispanic grocery stores or, of course, on Amazon! You can use a steak portobello mushrooms or I just used some sliced Cremini mushrooms that I already had. I will make these again when the weather warms up and throw some marinated portobellos on the grill! Enjoy!


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Asada Mushroom Tacos

  • Author: Stephanie Bosch
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 Tacos 1x

Description

Yummy Mushroom Asada tacos!   I used a pineapple jalapeño salsa as a topper and it was divine! 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 16 oz sliced portobello mushroom caps, or cremini mushrooms, stemmed and cleaned
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, or epazote
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Tamari, or liquid aminos
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

Marinade:

  • Whisk cilantro, orange juice, lime juice, aminos, olive oil, garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper in a large bowl or shallow dish to combine.
  • Add the mushrooms and gently toss until they’re fully coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to an hour. (These can be made up to 24 hours ahead). Give the mushrooms a good toss every 10 to 15 minutes.
  • With a slotted spoon, remove mushrooms and reserve 1 cup of the marinade.
  • Heat a cast-iron or other large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is heated, add olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering, place the mushrooms in an even layer and cook, making sure not to touch them until most of the moisture has cooked out of them, about 10 minutes.
  • While the mushrooms are sautéing, warm the tortillas on a comal or other small non-stick skillet on the stovetop. Once tortillas are warmed and slightly browned, cover with a paper towel and place on a baking sheet in a low oven, or use the “warm hold” feature on the microwave. 
  • When most of the moisture has evaporated, add 1/2 cup of the marinade and stir. Continue to cook and repeat with remaining marinade, stirring often for another 5 to 10 minutes. The mushrooms should be caramelized and slightly crisped around the edges.
  • Serve on warm tortillas and top with salsa, cilantro.