Winter (vegan) Sausage Soup for the Sick

Winter Sausage Soup

Winter Sausage Soup As per your requests, here's a recipe for that soup I posted over on insta last week.

My friend Maddie was sick and needing a little healing via home cooked nutrition and family time, so she parked herself on my couch and I rifled through my fridge for what would make up the best, quickie soup I've made in a long time! We paired it with some organic whole grain sourdough and it was the perfect supper for these cold nights we've been having in Brooklyn.

Ingredients:

2 Field Roast Apple Sage Sausages (vegan:seitan), pulled apart into bite sized chunks

1 onion, chopped

5-7 cloves of garlic, chopped, not minced

olive oil (a decent amount for both sauteing and drizzling over soup and bread)

2-3 parsnips, large chopped

1 cup frozen organic peas

a handful of chopped collards

sea salt

water

vegan chicken (or veggie) bullion

chopped cilantro

chili flakes

  1. In a large, heavy bottomed soup pot, heat a couple tablespoons of the oil.
  2. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt, then add the sausage.
  3. Let it brown a bit before you add the garlic and onions.
  4. Give it 5 min or so until those guys start to cook through. The onions should be translucent and the sausage brown and fragrant.
  5. Add water to fill the pot about half way (or more depending on how many you are feeding and how big your pot is).
  6. Bring it to a boil and add the bullion and another pinch of sea salt.
  7. Add the parsnips and let it boil for 10-15 minutes until all the flavors start to meld and the parsnips are soft.
  8. Then add the peas and collards and bring it back up to a boil then turn off the heat.
  9. Spoon the soup into bowls and drop some cilantro, a drizzle of olive oil, and a shake of chilis on top.
  10. Serve.
  11. Eat with crunchy bread.
  12. Feel awesome.

Whole Grain Goodness

Mixed Whole Grains

Mixed Whole Grains For years and years it's been brown rice in my house. Brown rice, brown rice, brown rice. Organic, short grain to be specific. This old post is how I make the perfect brown rice every time.

It's nutty and filling and goes with almost everything. It's high in minerals and fiber and is everything whole grains are good for.

But, there comes a time in every mama's life when she has to reevaluate those things she cooks too much.

With all the change in our lives, a new home, new season, new, new, new, it was time for some new recipes.

Sometimes I lose hours on the internet looking for recipe ideas, design idea, kid stuff... It's a black hole! That said, often I come out with a new outlook, perspective, project list;)

I found this recipe on 101cookbooks.com. I love her site. Clean recipes, gorgeous images, bright ideas.

But you know I never go by a recipe. It's just not in my blood. So I've been making my own varietals of these mixed grains. Most recently this one has been my favorite:

1 cup short grain brown rice

1 cup quinoa

1/2 cup millet

-Rinse all of these and put them in a pot.

-Add a couple pinches of sea salt and (purified) water to about 1/2" above the top of the grains.

-Bring it to a boil.

-Then down to a simmer.

-Cover and cook for 45 min.

-Turn the flame off, but don't remove the top for at least 5 min.

-Fluff. Serve.

I've been topping it with fresh tomatoes, avocado, marinated tofu, chick peas, gomasio... Fresh summer dinner!

Summer Dinner

Kitchen Sink Dinner

Kitchen Sink Dinner

Kitchen Sink Dinner Life has been crazy. I mean crazy crazy. We moved. Yes again. Full circle. Back to Brooklyn. Through it all, Brooklyn was home. So we came back. It means new schools, new schedules, boxes packed and now unpacking, and Passover in the mix. Our kitchen has been out of working condition on both ends for a while, so when I went to post something for you guys (from the long list of overdue posts I owe you...), this one seemed the most fitting.

I prepared this dinner a while back one rare evening when I was home alone and not at all interested in ordering the same local Chinese food we were in the rut of ordering from.  I swooped through my fridge snagging whatever fresh and frozen produce looked good together along with leftovers I could quickly and easily reinvent.

I make this meal often, even for the whole family, and almost 100% of the time Richie argues that it's my best meal. Go figure!

I most often use some greenery as the base for the fresh side of the meal (salad variation) and leftover brown rice for the cooked side of the meal (grain bowl variation). Then I get creative with whatever else I have around. I look for a protein (this time tofu, sometimes egg...), seasonal flavors, good fats (avocado, coconut oil, nuts, seeds...). I try to put together a good mix of flavors and textures.

The only rule is that it needs to be able to be make in under 10 min!

Here's what happened this particular time:

SALAD:

bib lettuce

avocado

oat flour dusted date pieces

toasted pine nuts

dressing: olive oil, apple cider vinegar, raw honey, dijon mustard, turmeric, cinnamon, salt (in measures that please your palate)

RICE BOWL:

in a skillet, heat in the following order:

coconut oil

whole garlic cloves until browned

marinated tofu (I love the Wildwood smoked teriyake)

cashews

frozen, shelled edamame

splash with shoyu or tamari and mirin then cook 2-3 min through

Serve it hot right alongside the salad. You can add avocado to the rice bowl too!

Sunday Night Supper: "Pasta" with "Sausage" and Squash

Love Life and Lollipops- Pasta with "Sausage" and Squash

Sunday night was the end of a long, active weekend.  We were hungry, early, too lazy to go out and either eat or buy groceries.  So it was up to me to concoct a dinner out of what we had around the house.  So...hungry lead to pasta and garlic bread, but what to put in the pasta?  I had some Field Roast apple and sage sausage in the fridge, gluten-free pasta in the cabinet, some butternut squash left over from that soup the other day, some frozen, organic lima beans, a loaf of whole wheat sourdough from the Union Square Farmer's Market, and some top notch olive oil.  So, poof, it was dinner.

Richie was really skeptic about the squash and pasta thing, but was pleasantly surprised.  So pleasantly that he had 5 helpings.  I kid you not!

Here's how I did it:

  1. In a deep pot I boil enough water and a good helping of salt for the pasta.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large cast iron pan I browned 2 "sausages" in 3 tablespoons of olive oil.  (Instead of cutting the sausage I like to break it up with my hands.  It gives it a more textured, "ragu" feel.)
  3. With the sausage I added some chopped onion to caramelize.
  4. As that cooked I chopped then added the butternut squash.  I cut it small enough to cook through pretty quickly.  Maybe apx. 1/4" cubes.
  5. I add 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt and mix.
  6. As that cooks together, I cook the pasta along with the lima beans (you can also use green peas here) according to the package instructions.
  7. Once the pasta and beans are cooked I strain them and add it all to the sausage mixture.
  8. Cook together on medium heat until combined.  Depending on how you like your pasta, at this point I'd add a bit more olive oil and sea salt.
  9. Serve with some garlic bread.

Jamaican Beans or better yet "Peas"

Love Life and Lollipops- Jamaican Peas

As many of you know, it's an understatement to say that rice and beans is a staple in my house.  Varieties of dried beans and brown rice line my shelves so that on any given morning I can snag some and start soaking for later that evening.

People always ask us if we get bored of rice and beans, but with so many superfabulous varieties to chose from, who could get bored?  I make a macrobiotic version with adzuki beans and brown sweet rice, a Spanish version with kidneys and red rice, an Indian version with garbanzos and brown basmati...I could go on.

Last week I decided to make a Jamaican version.  Richie is a humungoid fan of anything Jamaican (yes let your imaginations wonder).  He was born on the day Bob Marley passed and loves to tell me he is the incarnation...  Whenever we can get away on a family or solo vacation it's always to Jamaica (check us out here and here and here).  Richie's favorite greens are callaloo.  You get the picture.

So last week I tried beans Jamaican style and they came out pretty darn tasty!  Here's how I did it:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of heirloom beans (you can use any beans, but I happened to have these gorgeous heirlooms in my pantry that I decided to use), soaked overnight then rinsed
  • 1 can of organic coconut milk (you can use light or regular, whichever you prefer according to consistency desired, light will produce a more liquidy bean dish)
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 small scotch bonnet or hot pepper of your choice, seeded and diced
  • water
  1. Place all the ingredients into a Vitaclay or other cooker or into a heavy bottomed pot.
  2. Cover with water to 1" over the beans.
  3. Bring to a boil then simmer for 2-3 hours or until the beans are nice and soft.
  4. Serve over brown rice (I like turmeric brown rice with this with a dash of cinnamon in it)...also makes great leftovers the next day!

Vegan BBQ: Veggies on the Grill

Love Life and Lollipops- Tommy at the vegan grill

Last week we went over to a friend's house for a bbq ands some drinks.  People always struggle with what to serve us when we come over to eat. I hate that it's an issue for people, but hopefully it opens their eyes a bit to how easy and delicious vegan options are.

Our friend Tommy was a very gracious host and grilled a multitude of veggies for us and even got some veggie burgers from his local gourmet shop.  Everything was delicious, but Richie went a little crazy for the eggplants he made.  He said he learned how to make them when traveling to Greece for work.  They were supersimple and absolutely perfect.  I'll have to try to make them on my own soon.

Apparently he just rubbed them with olive oil and salt, then wrapped them in tin foil, and placed them on the ledge of the grill cooking in the indirect heat for 40ish minutes.