Tag Archives: world vegetarian

Tuscan Squash Pie

21 Aug

Remember my love of brunch? Well, it’s carried over into the work week in the form of my lunches. The dish turned out really delicious, so I wanted to share the recipe. Behold:

Isn’t it adorable? Here’s the recipe:

Tuscan Squash Pie

(adapted from the World Vegetarian cookbook)

  • 1 medium or half a large summer squash, sliced thinly
  • Scant 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons white whole wheat (or whatever lightly flavored kind you have) flour
  • 2 tablespoons almond (or other) milk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 to 2 scallions, sliced
  • Black pepper and salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Place the squash in a bowl and toss with the salt. Let it sit for about 30 minutes. Drain the water and pat the squash dry.

Preheat the oven to 425° F. In a medium bowl, beat the egg well with a fork. Then add the flour, beating to combine. Now pour in the milk and water, beating to combine. Finally add the garlic, nutritional yeast, scallions, salt and pepper and — yes — beat well to combine.

Using an 8-inch pie or cake tin/dish, line the bottom with the squash, but do not overlap. Pour the egg mixture on top, and then place the rest of the squash on the surface. Top with more pepper, if desired, and drizzle on the olive oil. Bake for 30 minutes. It’ll get lightly browned and pull away from the sides. Serves 2.

I’m enjoying mine with some slices of tempeh bacon:

Perfect! I used half of my large pattypan squash for this recipe (which I plan to make twice), as well as some of the scallions.

As a bonus, here’s last night’s dinner:

That’s Black-Eyed Peas with Herbs, a quick potato salad, and roasted okra. The potato salad is so simple that it doesn’t require a recipe, just a method:

  • Chop potatoes into chunks and then boil until tender.
  • Meanwhile, make a sauce/dressing out of a combination of Dijon (or flavored, or both together as I did) mustard, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  • Put potatoes in a bowl, top with dressing, and mash the chunks with a fork. Toss. Chill. Eat.

I loved having a healthy, Southern-style meal after a long day. Expect to see double takes of most of these dishes in Wednesday’s post.


I did it!

18 Jun

Friends, readers, country(wo)men — I took the leap. You are now viewing this little blog on her own domain: http://www.veggingoutinttown.com! Eek! I’m excited, as you can tell. One day, I will upgrade to my own hosting, too, but for now, I’m basking in this first little victory.

I told you about my first foray into diabetic meal planning two weeks ago but was remiss in sharing the actual eats. My apologies. Between the ShakeDown in T-Town Shakespeare Festival 2011 and the crushing pain that refuses to leave my head (16 migraines in 35 days and counting — for realsies), I’ve been a bit negligent. So here’s what we’ve been eating round these here parts lately. I will note that I still consider myself a failure at the diabetes thing. It’s really, really hard and contrary to how I — a carb-loving borderline hypoglycemic — normally plan meals. I am picking up Dr. Barnard’s book on diabetes today, though, so hopefully I will gain some insight.

OK, here was the boy’s favorite meal of last week:

Clockwise from left: Swiss Chard with Garlic Chips (topped with a splash of balsamic instead of the reduction), Refreshing Cucumber Salad with Creamy Mint Dressing (minus the onions), and “Dry” Red Lentils (recipe below). He raved about the whole meal. I enjoyed it, too, though the following morning’s repeat Swiss chard performance was not ideal. (For the record, I blame my own acid reflux problems, not the green or the recipe.) I adored the dressing on the cucumber salad and plan to use it again on something else. Here’s the super-easy-basic lentil recipe.

“Dry” Red Lentils (adapted from World Vegetarian by Madhur Jaffrey)

  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, cut into fine half moons
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Rinse and drain lentils, then place them in a bowl with water to soak. The original recipe says three hours, but I only did one and it was totally fine. Drain when you’re ready to cook.

Place a medium pot over medium heat and add the oil. Add the onion and garlic, stir frying for about 4 minutes, or until the onion browns a little. Add the lentils, stirring for a minute. Add 1 cup of water and the salt. Stir and bring to a boil. Now cover, reduce the heat to very low, and cook until lentils are tender mush, about 20 minutes.

The recipe is pretty much fool-proof, and it’s completely delicious, despite the very small ingredient list. I recommend trying it as is before you start spicing things up.

After dinner, I whipped up some Pumpkin Pie Mousse.

I am total crap at food styling, but this was my attempt. Almost pretty, eh? The mousse is layered with banana slices and topped with a little coconut cream (from the top of the can of coconut milk) and cinnamon. The only changes I made to the original recipe were omitting the maca (didn’t have any) and sweetening with a little honey.

Another successful meal was what I’m calling Continential Breakfast for Dinner.

Clockwise from left: Italian-style Eggs, salad with homemade goddess dressing, and French-inspired Breakfast Potatoes. I didn’t use a recipe for the former, just sauteed two yellow squashes in olive oil and garlic then added four beaten eggs (sourced locally and cruelty-free), two chopped scallions, five or six chopped and seeded cherry tomatoes, Italian seasoning, dried oregano, and a little shredded Asiago cheese. It was incredible, if I do say so myself. I will share recipes for the other two dishes in a separate post so this one doesn’t get too cray-cray.

For my lunches, I made a nutrient-dense salad:

It was inspired by the salad I always get at Chipotle, but mine was awesomer. I made black beans from scratch in the slow cooker, precooked some red bell pepper and portobello mushrooms in a little olive oil, and made salsa. When it was time to eat, I heated up the cooked stuff, piled it on top of greens, and topped it all with salsa and sliced avocado. *Heavenly.* If anyone would like the full recipe, I’d be happy to do a separate post. I was a nice girlfriend and shared this salad for one of my diabetic love’s lunches, but it was hard to part with.

So those are a few of last week’s mostly healthy meals, and I promise there is more to come as I finagle this bidness. On an exciting note, I FOUND MY CAMERA CHARGER! Now all I have to do is find . . . my camera. For real. Sigh. Soon, though, I promise pictures will improve.

What’s your favorite breakfast-for-dinner meal? I’m not a big pancake fan, so I usually stick with something savory.

Lentils on FoodistaLentils

Cookbook of the Week #4: World Vegetarian

24 Nov

Hello! I’m exhausted and only making a small amount of sense today, but I still wanted to pop in to share the Cookbook of the Week. It’s one I’ve mentioned many times before, Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian. The book contains egg-and-dairy recipes, but there is also a wealth of vegan recipes that are delectable and sometimes surprising. My favorite remains Farinata.

But I haven’t made Farinata in a while, mostly because of how much oil it requires. The holiday weekend may be a good excuse.

No, I’ve been loading up on the plethora of veggie recipes. Pick any vegetable in the world, and Jaffrey probably has several ways to prepare it. Today, I made my lunch entirely from her book. (Nevermind that I had “lunch” at 3:30.) My methods, of course, were modifications of hers, but oh my goodness are they worth sharing.

First up, I prepared my rendition of Salad of White Beans and Peppers.

  • 1 15-oz can cannellini beans
  • 4 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters or sixths
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Rinse the beans and pour them into a bowl. Mix all the other ingredients together. Toss and eat. I chilled mine a little before eating it. Serves 2 as an entree or 4 as a side.

Along with it, I made a variation of Butternut Squash with Sage.

  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium shallot, peeled and cut into fine slivers
  • 10 fresh sage leaves, washed
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Stab the squash with a knife several times and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. When handleable, cut in half, remove seeds and stringy parts, and peel. Then cut into 3/4″ to 1″ cubes. Set aside.

Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a medium saute pan over medium to medium-high heat. When hot, add shallots and sage leaves. Cook, stirring often, until shallots turn gold. Now add the squash cubes and the rest of the oil, stirring until the shallots darken. Add the salt and the sugar. Stir, adding about 1/4 cup of water. Cover, boil, and then reduce the heat to low. After about five minutes, remove the cover and let the rest of the liquid boil off, stirring occasionally. Top with pepper to taste.

The meal was delicious! If you like the flavor of fried sage, I recommend adding as many whole sage leaves as you’d like. I only used eight but wished I’d thrown in twice as many.

I sipped this along with my meal:

Don’t be scandalized. It was just water in a silly, novelty martini glass. I don’t drink alcohol.

And now I must bake for Thanksgiving tomorrow. I hope you’re all enjoying the eve!

This post is all over the place

23 Nov

First off, I must direct you to this post. It’s been updated because an entrant sent her stuff on time, but it went to my spam filter. Yikes! I feel terrible and wanted to make sure to put her submission on the blog. Sorry again, Liz! Also, I updated the rules on my week #4 contest. Nothing dramatic, but it should help to avoid the same thing happening again.

I meant to have my shizz together to do a vegan Thanksgiving idea post. However, I have never prepared or eaten a totally vegan Thanksgiving, so it would be disingenuous. Plus, as I said, I didn’t get my shizz together.

So, instead, I present to you my half-arsed list of three things I’ve made on this blog that one could consume at Thanksgiving:

Vegan Cornbread (make it into muffins or something)
Riso all’autunno (It’s autumnal!)
Chocolate Gingerbread (I will be making this)

Injury update: My ankle continues to heal, though the pride I lost from being damaged by a 9-pound dog lingers. She remains unfazed by the stream of expletives I hurled in her direction. My boss called me Gimpy.

And here are a few random thoughts, because it’s a short work week and I’m still having trouble getting through it:

  • Possibly you can blame Gen X radio, but I’m really into bumping tunes that were popular when I was in high school lately. Current obsession is Aaliyah’s “Tell Me You’re That Somebody.” You know, ‘cause sometimes I’m goody goody, but right now I’m naughty naughty. (Notty.) (Knotty?)
  • OK, I don’t “bump” tunes. I don’t like loud music. I’m 100. Even in college, my roomie and I kept our music so quiet that people would be in our dorm room five minutes before they realized we were playing anything. I’m not kidding.
  • I am making butternut squash for dinner. I really, really hate chopping raw winter squash. Neither I nor my IKEA knives are strong enough. I may bake it for a little bit first.
  • Last night, one of those subscription cards fell out of my new copy of ReadyMade magazine. My taller half decided to bite into it. (?) It took about 10 seconds of pulling before he freed a piece. Then he declared, “I’ve eaten paper before – you can quote me on that – but that tasted like dog.”
  • Tea has brought several of my coworkers and me closer together. It started with a four-way tea break last week when we were unsupervised and has graduated into a leaf-swapping love fest. I may have found a solution to world peace. You’re welcome.
  • I made a carrot salad last night that took me approximately 10 times longer to prepare than to eat. It was still tasty, though. I blame my migraine brain. It makes me slothlike.

Here’s the recipe:

    Carrot and Cilantro Salad (from Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian)

    • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
    • 1 tablespoon (or 2) chopped fresh cilantro
    • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
    • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • Dash of cayenne pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon paprika

    Boil water in a small or medium saucepan. Drop the carrots in the water for 10 seconds and then drain. Put them in a bowl and add all the other ingredients on top. Toss. Makes one serving.

    It took 10 million years before of the carrot chopping. Next time, I may just throw them in the blender for a few seconds. ‘Twas tasty, though.

    That’s it. I will now leave you in peace.

    Meatless Monday Meal Idea: Garlic Mushrooms and Lentils

    21 Nov

    I’ve shared some incredibly basic Meatless Monday meal ideas since starting this feature, but today I wanted to challenge you to try something a bit more time-intensive, though it’s still ridiculously easy. I present Garlic Mushrooms and Lentils:

    Yes, they look like a mushy mess, but they are amazingly delicious, easy, and filling. Oh yes, and healthy, too. Notice how there’s no fat? Yes, I promise it still tastes good!

    They recipe is adapted from Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian cookbook.

    • 1 cup red lentils
    • About 1/4 cup low-sodium veggie broth
    • 1 small onion, peeled and finely sliced
    • 1 tsp (or to taste) crushed red pepper
    • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped, divided
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 2 tsp salt, divided
    • 1 lb mushrooms of any kind (I like wild mushrooms, but button or cremini will work, too)
    • Black pepper
    • 1/4 tsp cayenne
    • 5 Tbsp finely chipped fresh parsley

    Wash the lentils. In a medium pan, heat about 3 tablespoons broth over medium heat. Add the onion, cooking until softened. Add more veggie broth if necessary. Then add the red pepper and 3 garlic cloves to the pot, stirring for 10 seconds before throwing in the lentils, the bay leaf, and 2 1/2 cups water. Boil, reduce heat to low, and partially cover. Cook gently for 30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender. Add salt and pepper. Set aside.

    Meanwhile, clean mushrooms and thinly and evenly slice. Heat 3 tablespoons or so of the broth in large frying pan over medium heat. Add remaining 3 cloves of garlic. Stir once and add the mushrooms, sauteing until they have softened. Add salt, pepper, and cayenne, stirring to mix. Add in 4 tablespoons of parsley and turn off heat. Serve the lentils topped with the mushrooms. Makes four servings.

    The original recipe called for something like 1/4 cup of olive oil for four servings. Mine has none at all, and you wouldn’t even miss it.

    Serve alongside a simple green salad and enjoy!

    Gingery Carrots

    17 Nov

    Last night, I left off with a promise to share the carrot recipe we tried at dinner. I decided I would make good.

    I am not a big fan of cooked carrots. I tend to like veggies very crisp, so the typical cooking methods – especially boiling, which I cannot stand, and steaming – often leave produce soggy and limp. When done correctly, that isn’t the case, but, as you can tell, I’m very, very picky. Boiled carrots are one of the most disgusting things in the world, in my opinion.

    When I found the recipe we tried last night, I decided that I had to give it a go. First off, it involves shredded carrots. I have no desire to use a shredder (thanks, taller half!), but I do like the texture a lot. The cooking time was incredibly minimal, which is great time-wise and texture-wise. AND it involved lime and ginger. Sounded like a winner.

    Stir-Fried Carrots and Ginger with Mustard Seeds (from Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian)

    • 3 tablespoons peanut or canola oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon whole yellow or brown mustard seeds
    • 1 pound carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
    • 2 inches of fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely grated
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
    • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice

    When everything’s grated and measured, heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add the mustard seeds until they pop, which is almost immediate, and then throw in the carrots, ginger, salt, cayenne, and lime juice. Stir fry for 2 to 3 minutes.

    Definitely, definitely a winner. I loved this dish! It was so bright and flavorful between the natural sweetness of the carrots, the bite of the ginger, and the background citrus notes from the lime juice. If I had cooked it for myself (well, or at all – the only work I did on this dish was eating it), I would have toned down the oil, but that’s how I do things.

    Give this carrot dish a try if you love ginger. It won’t disappoint!