Whether you like it smoky or spicy, savory or sweet, there’s no reason to give up your favorite barbeque flavors as a vegetarian or vegan. Tofu has a wonderfully absorbent quality when it comes to flavors. It’s especially so when it is frozen, thawed and pressed beforehand.
Here’s a basic barbecue flavored marinade, that can be used by itself or along with your favorite barbecue sauce at grill time.
Smoky BBQ Tofu Marinade
¼ cup soy sauce or tamari
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (or mirin)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1-1/2 teaspoons liquid smoke
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons paprika or chili powder
Blend all ingredients and pour over tofu. Makes about 1/2 cup, enough for 1 pound.
There are so many sides to choose from, but on a weeknight, I choose the easiest to prepare. Here is a quick and easy baked bean recipe that can be baking in the oven while you prepare the rest of the meal. It is sweet and tangy with a rich tomato flavor.
Homemade Baked Beans
courtesy of Jenna Weber (www.eatliverun.com)
1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 of a large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp ketchup
1 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 bay leaf
1 tsp hot sauce
8 oz tomato sauce
1 15 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
Preheat oven to 350
In a cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and sauté for about five minutes or until soft and translucent.
Add the garlic and sauté 30 seconds more.
Add the maple syrup, tomato sauce, salt, ground mustard, hot sauce and ketchup and simmer for five minutes.
Add the beans and bay leaf, stir, then cover the skillet with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes, stirring once during the baking process.
Allow to cool and serve warm.
Cheesy mashed potatoes is the simplest side dish of all, provided you have some leftover cheesy sauce hanging around in the fridge, which I think everyone should! https://veganflavorista.wordpress.com/2012/11/23/sexy-cheezy-sauce/
courtesy of Vegan Flavorista
Wash and dry four big potatoes. Place them in a microwave-safe bowl. Cover and microwave 10 minutes. Mash with unsweetened non-dairy milk until desired consistency is reached. Stir in a big dollop of Dijon mustard, then season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and sea salt. Take about 4 scallions, washed and dried, and snip them with kitchen shears right into the potatoes. Stir to blend.
Gently reheat cheesy sauce and drizzle over warm mashed potatoes. Heavenly!
Lentil is one of my favorite high-protein meal soups. It’s simple and low maintenance, and comes together in just a few minutes.
I enjoy cooking soup on the stove—that aromatic slow-simmering, stirring, tending, nurturing activity.
But, during the work week I usually don’t have that kind of time. The last thing I want to read in a crockpot recipe is the direction to sauté vegetables before adding them to the crockpot. If I had time to do that, well I would probably take it all the way on the stove!
Instead, I left my crock pot in charge this morning, and brisked out the door for work. By lunch time I had a rich, satisfying stew, and lots of it. I think about what a prepared cup of soup costs, about $3. For less than that, I could feed a family of four, dinner sized portions of this hearty, healthful, tasty meal. Just saying…
Hearty Lentil Soup
1 ½ cups raw brown lentils, rinsed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, diced
2 or 3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 or 3 stalks celery, diced
Handful of celery tops (optional)
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
Big sprig of fresh thyme (or 2 tsp. ground)
5-6 cups vegetable broth (or water)
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Prepare all ingredients and add to crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. Stir and check for seasonings. Depending on your broth, you may wish to add salt. With a pair of tongs or a fork, fish out and discard the bay leaves, thyme stems and celery tops, if used. Add a generous grind of pepper and add broth if needed, depending on how “soupy” you like it.
Yield: 4-6 big servings
I’ve been working pretty hard the past couple of weeks, planning for a big upcoming event. This is where my diet tends to break down and food choices get kind of lax. Too tired to even think about dinner by the time I get to Sunday evening.
Sometimes, however, while rummaging around in the fridge I am hit with that second wind of inspiration. I thought about how I really enjoy scrambled tofu and how easy it is to flavor up with Indian spices and garlic. Tofu absorbs whatever you add to it. So I decided to flavor it with Mexican spices and see if I could make it like taco filling. It worked really well!
I put it together with whole grain tortillas, leftover black beans, faux cheese, cilantro and green onions. This will make a great filling for tacos, casseroles, nachos or salads too. Dinner crisis averted!
Tofu Taco Filling
1 12-ounce package extra-firm tofu, pressed or squeezed well and crumbled
2 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 tsp. cumin
2 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. salt ( or less depending on your taste)
1/2 cup water
Saute the onion in olive oil until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute about 30 seconds. Add tofu and sauté for about 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Add spices, salt and water to combine well. Cook and stir over low heat until moisture is absorbed. Check for seasoning and serve hot.
Another weeknight meal I pulled off with minimal work! This soup didn’t even require any vegetable chopping! Can it get any easier?
I fired up the crockpot and added a few ingredients and let it cook on low for four hours. Dinner. Done.
Spicy Black Bean Soup
4 cups cooked black beans
3 cups vegetable broth
16 ounces of your favorite tomato salsa
2 teaspoons ground cumin
Place all ingredients in crockpot and cook, covered, on low for 4 hours. Feel free to add a cup or so of frozen corn or other vegetables near the end of the cook time. Make it your own!
Yield: 4 – 6 servings
A vegan’s life is such bliss! To enjoy the bounty of the earth, without guilt, without hesitation, with compassion. Most vegans, in my experience, are very much in love with food.
As someone who has wrestled with weight and body image issues for most of my life, I can tell you, it is so gratifying to let that go–finally. As I become more fully conscious, through my yoga and meditation practice, more in touch with and in tune with my body’s needs, I begin to have a sense of what to eat and what not to eat, based on how it makes me feel–before and after.
One thing I have realized, my body does not like a high-fat diet. But, my palate enjoys a sweet tasting chocolate treat at regular intervals. Enter, the low-fat, vegan muffin. A nice compromise when deciding whether that vegan cupcake from Whole Foods, slathered with the greasy, weirdly dry icing is really worth it.
This, I can live with. These muffins are lightly sweet and wholesome tasting. Go ahead, eat two. It’s still gonna be less calories than the alternative. Please enjoy this recipe, borrowed from Madhuram’s Eggless Cooking http://www.egglesscooking.com.
|Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins||
5.0 from 3 reviews
|Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins||
5.0 from 3 reviews