Udon Noodle Salad garnished with Thai Basil alongside Tempeh-Veggie Wraps with Peanut Dipping Sauce

It started with craving tempeh. The end.

Udon Noodle Salad with Thai Basil

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp. soy sauce

2 Tbsp. mirin

2 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp. fresh squeezed lime juice

1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced

9.5 ounce bag of udon noodles

1/2 cup Thai basil, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup fresh spinach or collard greens, coarsely chopped

Directions:

Combine soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, lime juice, and ginger(dressing) . Mix together and set aside. In a pot of boiling water, cook noodles until al dente; about 8 minutes.  Drain well.  Add dressing to the noodles and then stir in the basil and spinach. Serve hot or cold.

Tempeh Veggie Wraps

Ingredients: (makes 10-12 wraps)

Tempeh Marinade:

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 cup filtered water

3 cloves chopped garlic

1 Tbsp. minced ginger

1  8-oz bag of tempeh.

Directions: Add soy sauce, filtered water, garlic, and ginger to a bowl and whisk.  Slice the tempeh into strips and place in a sauté pan. Pour mixture over the tempeh and simmer for 20-25 minutes on low.  Set aside.

Wrap Fillings:

1 Pack of rice wraps

1/4 red cabbage, thinly sliced

1/4 green cabbage, thinly sliced

1/2 red bell pepper, sliced

12 stalks of asparagus, pre-steamed al dente

10-12 leaves of romaine

10-12 leaves of spinach

3 Tbsp. minced mint

Directions:

Place a bowl of warm water on a prep table.  Make sure there is enough room for rolling and keeping finished wraps apart from one another (they will stick together).  Soak 1 rice wrap in the warm water for 5 seconds until pliable.  Then layer with 2 strips of prepared tempeh, green and red cabbage, red bell, a stalk of asparagus, and one each of the romaine and spinach. Sprinkle with mint. Place all the ingredients into the middle of the rice wrap circle.  Fold both ends inward on top of pile of ingredients, and then roll from one side to the other. Set aside. They will be wet and not easy to work with at first, but they will dry up and stay rolled as they sit.  Complete with remaining ingredients the same as you completed the first. Serve alongside Peanut Dipping Sauce. Made to enjoy cold.

Peanut Dipping Sauce

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp. chopped peanuts or peanut butter

2 Tbsp. honey

3 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. water

2 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a small bowl, and whisk until thoroughly blended.

 

 

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Black Bean Mushroom Burgers with Cilantro Aioli

My kids fought over who got the last burger. THAT is a good sign. This was an attempt on my part to create a gluten-free burger that was satisfying, full of flavor, and a great source of fiber/protein.  Cost effective, and easy to prepare, this recipe is definitely a keeper.

Ingredients (yield: 6 burgers)

Burger:

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1/2 cup diced leeks

1/2 cup diced crimini mushrooms

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds coarsely chopped

1 Tbsp. garlic, minced

1 1/2 cups cooked black beans

2 Tbsp. flax meal

1/4 tsp. cumin

1/4 tsp. paprika

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/8 tsp. chili powder

1/8 tsp. cinnamon powder

Breading:

3 Tbsp. ancient grains GF flour

1 Tbsp. organic cornmeal

1 tsp. sea salt

Cilantro Aioli:

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1/2 clove of garlic

4 Tbsp. mayo substitute (Just Mayo)

1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp olive oil

1/4 cup filtered water

1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds

1 pinch of sea salt

1/8 tsp. jalapeno pepper hot sauce

Directions: 

Burgers: In olive oil, sauté leeks, mushrooms, and garlic for 7-10 minutes. Add pumpkin seeds, and cooked black beans, sauté for 5 more minutes. Add flax meal, cumin, paprika, sea salt, chili powder, and cinnamon.  Saute for 5 more minutes.  While still warm, mash well with a potato masher, then set aside while preparing breading and aioli.

Breading: Combine ancient grains, cornmeal, and sea salt onto a platter.  Mix well.  Form burgers mixture into circular patties (about 2 inch L x 2 inch W x 1/2 H) Bread each side of burger with the platter mixture.  Lay on parchment and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for two hours+ prior to grilling.

Cilantro Aioli: This is not a traditional aioli. There are no eggs in this combination.  To prepare this mixture, you can place all the ingredients into a bowl and emulsify until pureed.

To Grill Burgers: When you’re ready to grill the burgers, heat olive oil in a pan and carefully grill on each side until darkened.  They are gluten-free, so handle with care. I served mine with avocado, butter lettuce, grilled pineapple, grilled red bell peppers/red onions, and cilantro aioli on a sourdough baguette. Sourdough, from research, is better for digestion. Some gluten-free folks believe it is okay to consume because of the fermentation that occurs when preparing. If you are incredibly gluten-free sensitive, and prefer not to take a chance, I know Udi’s make’s decent burger buns.

 

 

 

 

 

Tempeh Reuban

I’ve eaten a vegetarian diet for 22 years now.  When I first began, I was constantly traversing my way back and forth through the local health food market trying to gain knowledge of all of the unique products. The benefit of this, is that I was inspired to use new and unique ingredients, and educate myself on this alternative way of eating.

This way of eating is more common socially these days, not having every parent in an uproar about where your protein is coming from.  What first was intimidating is now second nature, as I adapt almost every recipe that sounds delicious, into an alternative version.

This Tempeh Reuben is an incredible way to get plenty of protein in a meal.  With just one package, that serves 3, a serving contains 16 grams. I like to use the brand Light Life for it being non-gmo. I typically serve this along oven-roasted, rosemary & garlic root vegetables. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does. It’s roaring with flavor, and is extremely satisfying.

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(Yield: 4-6 sandwiches)

Marinade: 1 pound of tempeh (cut in half (in the middle)), then cut into triangles. Cut those squares into triangles. Split those triangles down for thinner slices.

1 1/3 cup organic apple juice

3 Tbsp. shoyu

3 Tbsp. organic mustard

1 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. caraway seeds

1 clove of garlic, minced

1/3 cup cold pressed olive oil

Thousand Island Dressing
1/4 cup of mayo alternative (I use the brand Just Mayo)

2 Tbsp.  organic ketchup

1 Tbsp. organic dijon mustard

1 Tbsp. organic minced pickles

1 Tbsp. of pickle juice

1/2 tsp. dried dill

1/2 tsp. sea salt

pinch of ground black pepper

Sandwich fixings: 1 loaf of rye bread, 1 tomato, organic spinach, organic sauerkraut

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To prepare marinade: place all ingredients in a mixing bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined.  Place the cut tempeh into a glass baking dish, with the marinade covering the tempeh. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

To prepare the dressing: Place all ingredients into a small mixing bowl, and whisk until well combined.

To prepare sandwich: Toast 2 slices of rye bread.  Take the prepared dressing and coat 1 side of each slice of bread with the dressing, layer two tomato slices onto the bread, along with spinach , 1 Tbsp. or so of sauerkraut, and two slices of tempeh.  Eat while hot.  Great also alongside home-made oven fries, and a sliced pickle.

 

 

 

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Pumpkin & Apple-Fennel Tamales with Cinnamon Masa

A favorite thing of mine to do is develop recipes. I love getting creative in the kitchen, and look forward to the outcome.  One important word of advice given in culinary school was….experiment. Sometimes things turn out great, other times you go back to the drawing board and make alterations here and there.  In the end, it only helps to make you a better cook.

Tonight I needed to use up some fresh pumpkin that I had roasted and pureed for a previous recipe; my cranberry pumpkin loaf.  I love to bake, but unfortunately cannot live off of baked goods. So, the pumpkin & apple-fennel tamales were born.  Seasonally appropriate, these tamales were delicious.  (yield: 10 tamales)

MASA INGREDIENTS:

3 cups masa harina

2.5 cups warm water

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1 cup olive oil

1 tsp. sea salt

TAMALE FILLING:

1/4 cup carmelized onions

1 tsp. orange zest, minced

1 Tbsp. fennel fronds, minced

1/4 cup apple, minced

pinch sea salt

1/8 tsp. vanilla extract

1 cup pumpkin puree

1 tsp. organic brown sugar

* 10 tamale corn husks, soaked.

DIRECTIONS:

Prepare the masa: Place 3 cups of masa harina in a bowl. Add cinnamon, and sea salt and whisk.  Drizzle in water and olive oil and fold the wet into the dry.  Set aside

Soak the tamale husks in warm water for 3-5 minutes to soften.

Prepare the filling: In a saute pan, caramelize onion. Add orange zest, fennel fronds, and minced apple.  Saute for 7 more minutes. Add a pinch of sea salt and vanilla extract.  Then add pureed pumpkin and 1 tsp. brown sugar.  Saute for 3 more minutes.

Prepare the tamales: Place husks flat with pointed tip towards you (almost like a triangle tip) and the wider side away from you.  Press 1/8 cup of prepared masa onto the husk and make a flat surface to place the filling.  Place 1 heaping Tbsp. onto the masa and then cover filling with another 1/8 cup of masa; encasing the filling with the dough.  Take the pointed tip and fold onto the pile of uncooked tamale, then fold one side towards the other, rolling in the process.  You can tie the tamales with twine if they feel loose, or keep them piled with the fold on the bottom to prevent unfolding.  Repeat this step for each tamale.

Cooking the tamales: I have a 30-year-old tamale steamer I use, but I suppose you can use a steamer  if there is enough space for the tamales to cook thoroughly.  Allow 60 minutes to cook completely due to the pumpkin puree.  Otherwise, it will be mushy.  I like to accompany this meal with cumin scented pinto beans, Spanish rice, fresh salsa, a side vegetable, and home-made guacamole.

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Tempeh Tacos with Candied Yams

This is such a fulfilling meal.  I made it years ago, and it has become part of cycle of regular meals.  Full of flavor and packed with nutrients; it’s a family favorite.

INGREDIENTS:

TEMPEH MARINADE:

1 cup water

1/4 soy sauce

8 oz. tempeh

1 clove garlic

1/2 Tbsp. minced ginger

TEMPEH FLOUR DREDGE:

1 cup unbleached all purpose flour

1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast

1 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. sea salt

1 heaping teaspoon of cornmeal

CANDIED YAMS:

1 yam, diced

1 tsp. brown sugar

1/3 cup coconut milk

pinch of sea salt

SALSA:

3 cups tomatoes, diced

1/4 onion, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 jalepeno, diced

1 cup cilantro, chopped

1 tsp. sea salt

2 Tbsp. lime juice

BLACK BEANS:

2 cups cooked back beans

2 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. onion powder

sea salt to taste

RICE:

1 cup brown rice

3 cups of vegetable broth or 3 cups water with 1 bouillon cubes

GUACOMOLE:

1 avocado

2 Tbsp. lime juice

sea salt to taste

CORN TORTILLAS/ CHOPPED LETTUCE

6-8 and 1/2 head of lettuce

DIRECTIONS:

Mix the marinade for the tempeh. Slice the tempeh into strips.  Refrigerate the tempeh in the marinade for 3 hours. Doing this the night before helps with the rest of the preparation OR during that time, prep the other items.

For the yam: Dice, steam, and mash with coconut, sea salt, and brown sugar. Set aside.

For the salsa: Find a mixing bowl to combine all ingredients.  Combine the diced tomatoes, diced onions, minced garlic, minced jalepeno, chopped cilantro, sea salt, and lime juice. Set aside in a refrigerator.

For the beans: I like to soak my beans overnight, then cook them on a stovetop.  Canned beans will work too.  Just flavor the cooked beans with onion powder, cumin, and sea salt. Set aside.

For the rice: I like to soak my grain overnight. Cook the rice in either vegetable broth of water with a bouillon cube for 35-40 minutes. Set aside.

For the Guacomole: Mash one avocado, lime juice and sea salt. Refrigerate.

*** If you marinated the tempeh overnight, the other items that have been cooked: yams, beans, and rice, can be kept on low heat until ready to fill your taco. If you are preparing the tempeh the day of, it’s best to to the rest of the items during marination prep.

When you are ready to Grill the tempeh:

Oil a saute pan, and then coat the tempeh in the flour dredge noted in the ingredients list above.  Then saute each side of the tempeh for 5-7 minutes.

To fill the tacos: Warm the tortillas, and layer with candied yams, tempeh, chopped lettuce. Garnish with guacomole and salsa.  Serve the beans and rice alongside.

 

 

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Collard & Millet Croquettes with Corn Hollandaise Sauce

These GF croquettes are a wonderful accompaniment with sautéed kale and fingerling potatoes.  Millet is such a great alternative for those on a gluten-free diet. With its sweet and mild taste, you’ll often see it offered as a hot cereal.  It is commonly seen in bird seed.  But, this wonderful grain is  not just for the birds.  Millet is high in copper, maganese, magnesium and phosphorus, and iron.

CROQUETTES:

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1/4 cup of sliced leeks

1/4 cup sliced collard greens

1 clove garlic

1/4 cup yellow squash diced

3 cups cooked millet

2 Tbsp. parsley minced

2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast (there are both GF and non GF varieties, make sure you buy the correct one if you do this GF)

2 heaping Tbsp. flax-seed meal

1/4 cup water or vegetable broth

salt and pepper to taste

parchment paper

CORN HOLLANDAISE SAUCE:

15 oz. of fresh or canned organic sweet corn

1/2 cup water

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1/4 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 tsp. tabasco

salt and pepper to taste

cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer

DIRECTIONS:

For the Croquettes: Pre-cook millet in a pot and set aside to cool. In a skillet, heat oil and saute leeks, collards, garlic, yellow squash, parsley until softened. In a bowl, combine cooled millet with the sautéed vegetables and add nutritional yeast and flax-seed meal. Add water or vegetable broth.  Salt and Pepper to taste. Mix well.  Form patties and  allow to refrigerate for 1 hour to thicken up on a sheet pan lined with parchment. To bake croquettes, set oven to 350 for 30 minutes.

For the Corn Hollandaise Sauce: Take 15 oz. of corn (either canned or fresh) and cook for 5 minutes.  In a blender, blend the corn along with 1/2 cup water until mix is pureed. Remove blended corn and using a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth, strain the pureed corn into a sauce pan. This allows for the husk on the corn to be removed and for the sauce to be smooth.  In the saucepan, heat the hollandaise on low for 15 minutes or until it thickens. This mix will naturally thicken because of the natural starch and sugar. Because of this, you need to stir it throughout the 15 minutes of heating to prevent sticking to the bottom of your saucepan. Add lemon juice, Dijon, tabasco, salt and pepper.  Whisk again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Faux Tuna sandwich

Having been a vegetarian turned vegan for over 20 years, it is second nature adapting recipes to meet my dietary needs.  One of my all time favorite sandwiches is my faux tuna sandwich. Raw. Made from seeds and nuts.  It’s so fulfilling each time, it has become a regular rotation in my menu preparation. Yield: 4-6 sandwiches.

TUNA:

1 cup of toasted walnuts

1 cup toasted sunflower seeds

2 Tbsp. of shoyu or braggs liquid amino

2 Tbsp. lemon juice

6 sheets of seaweed (the small snack size)

1 clove of garlic

1//4-1/2 cup water

1 stalk of celery, diced

1/4 white onion, diced

2 Tbsp. minced parsley

SUGGESTED LAYERING:

2 slices of cucumber

2 slices of tomato

hummus (see recipe under gnosh)

2 slices of bell pepper

lettuce

avocado

mustard

sourdough

 

DIRECTIONS:

Place the walnuts, sunflower seeds, shoyu, lemon juice, seaweed, & water into a blender and blend until slightly creamy.  I prefer just a little lumpy texture and will not puree it smoothly. Place into a bowl, and add diced celery, onion, and parsley.  Mix together.

Everyone likes a bit something different on their sandwiches, but I layer mine with whatever veggies I feel obliged to partake in: cucumber, tomato, hummus, bell pepper, lettuce, avocado, mustard.  This is even great on a rice cake.