Helen’s veggie burgers

helens_veggie_burger
These yummy veggie burgers were created by a student in Sue’s vegetarian nutrition class. (Helen gets an A+ for this recipe.) They are super-healthy, high in protein and fiber. TVP stands for textured vegetable protein. Helen suggests using frozen TVP crumbles to make shaping the patties easier. We used Amy’s organic lentil soup in the recipe, but you can substitute tomato for a different flavor.

This recipe makes a lot of veggie burgers. After you have shaped all the burgers you need for your meal, you can put the rest into a meatloaf pan and bake it for 25 minutes. Freeze the loaf for another day, and then slice and serve the reheated loaf with pasta sauce and linguini on the side. Add a green salad and a glass of red wine, and voila! Easy weeknight meal.

1/2 medium onion, diced
1 portobello mushroom cap, gills removed, finely chopped
1-2 Tbs. olive oil
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1 10-ounce bag TVP
1 12-ounce package soft tofu
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and mashed
1 cup bread crumbs
2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning blend
1 15-ounce can lentil soup
1/2 tsp. salt
Dash of black pepper and cayenne pepper

Sauté onion and mushrooms in oil until tender, about 4 to 5 minutes. Set aside. Chop nuts in a grinder or blender, and then place in a large mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients and blend well. Shape into patties. Cook in an oiled pan on medium heat until browned. Turn gently. Or cook on the grill for a couple minutes per side. Serve on a bun with lettuce, a slice of tomato, and vegan mayo, ketchup, or brown mustard.

thai noodles with spicy peanut basil sauce

thai_noodles_with_spicy_peanut_basil_sauce
Who needs takeout? Your family will think you stopped at an Asian restaurant on your way home when you serve these tasty Thai noodles, and you can make them as spicy as you like.

1 cup fresh snow pea pods
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup vegetable broth
3 Tbs. soy sauce
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 tsp. sugar
3/4 tsp. ground coriander
Crushed red pepper to taste
12-oz. package Udon noodles (substitute spaghetti or fettuccine if you can’t find Udon noodles)
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
1 cup bean sprouts
1/4 cup dry roasted peanuts, chopped

1. Trim snow pea pods and blanch for 45 seconds. Set aside.

2. In a large stewpot over medium heat, whisk together coconut milk, vegetable broth, soy sauce, and peanut butter. Add lime juice, garlic, sugar, coriander, and red pepper. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking occasionally, about 5 minutes or until mixture is thoroughly heated. Reduce heat to low.

3. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and add pasta to sauce, along with snow pea pods, basil, and bean sprouts. Mix gently and place on a serving platter. Sprinkle with peanuts.

Latin-inspired meal

Fried plantains, fiesta beans and rice, and pico de gallo. This meal is a medley of Latin-inspired flavors, and these three items work SO well together. The slightly sour bite of the lime in the pico de gallo is balanced by the warm, sweet plantains…and the beans and rice complement both of them. I found myself trying to get a bit of all three on the fork at the same time…try it!

A Latin medley

A Latin medley

tempeh vegetable stir fry in curry peanut sauce

tempeh vegetable stir fry with peanut curry sauce
This is a really flavorful sauce that could be the foundation for a zillion variations. Try tofu or a chicken substitute instead of tempeh. Add some shitake mushrooms. Use brown or white rice instead of soba noodles. Omit the curry powder and just enjoy the peanut sauce.

sauce:
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
4 Tbs. agave nectar
4 Tbs. white miso
2 Tbs. sesame oil
2 Tbs. lemon juice
1 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. curry powder
1/2 cup water

stir fry:
2 Tbs. canola oil
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
8 oz. tempeh, cubed
1 medium zucchini, chopped
1 16-oz. bag frozen Asian-style stir-fry veggies
Salt and pepper to taste

Package soba noodles (or brown or white rice)

1. In a medium-size pot over medium heat, whisk together the sauce ingredients. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly, making sure all peanut butter and miso lumps are dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside.

2. Fill a pot with water and bring to boil for soba noodles. Cook according to package directions.

3. Heat the oil over medium heat in a wok or heavy skillet. Add the garlic, onion, bell peppers, and tempeh. Stir fry for about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini and frozen veggies and continue to stir fry until the vegetables are just tender. Stir in the peanut sauce; heat tempeh and veggies until simmering. Remove from heat and serve over soba noodles.

southern-fried tofu

Rumor has it that southern-fried tofu will steal the show at a potluck. Try it and see for yourself. We credit Stephanie Tidwell, who hails from the South herself, for this recipe.

1 lb. firm tofu (Stephanie recommends White Wave Tidal Wave)

marinade:
1/3 cup tamari or shoyu soy sauce
1/4 cup mirin or sherry
Splash of balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
Splash of sesame oil
1 Tbs. chicken-flavored broth (meatless) (look in the bulk foods department of your natural foods store)

breading:
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup sesame seeds
2 tsp. seasoning salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 cup nutritional yeast

Canola oil for frying

1. Cut tofu into slabs or strips. Mix all marinade ingredients; marinate tofu for at least 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, mix breading ingredients. In a deep pan, heat oil (test by dropping a tiny piece of tofu into the oil—if it sizzles, it’s ready). Coat tofu slabs with breading mix and fry in oil until golden brown on all sides. (For a healthier version, lightly grease a pan and bake breaded tofu slabs in a 350° oven. Turn once after about 25 minutes and bake for another 15 or 20 minutes.)

thai chili tofu

Chef Robert Church, author of The Tao of Tofu, was kind enough to share this recipe with us. Lime and chilies give a tart and spicy hue to this variation of the Thai classic. The vegetables provide additional flavor and color.

1 16-ounce block extra-firm tofu, pressed, drained, and cut into planks
2 Tbs. light vegetable oil
1 medium carrot, cut into 2″ matchsticks
1 red bell pepper, seeded, veined, and cut into 2″ matchsticks
2 Tbs. light vegetable oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, serrano, or Thai bird chili, seeded, veined, and finely diced
2 Tbs. tamari, shoyu, or generic soy sauce
1 Tbs. freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tsp. grated ginger
1 Tbs. palm sugar or light brown sugar

1. In a medium-size sautè pan or wok, fry tofu in the vegetable oil until lightly browned. Drain on paper towels.

2. Heat the vegetable oil to medium-high, add the carrot and bell pepper, and sautè 1 minute. Add the garlic, and carefully sautè 1 minute more. Don’t burn the garlic. Add the tofu and continue to cook.

3. Whisk together the chili, tamari, lime juice, ginger, and sugar. Pour into the pan and toss with the vegetables and tofu. Cook until the sauce thickens and coats all the ingredients.

fajitas with cool avocado sauce

Tofutti’s Better Than Sour Cream is the secret ingredient in this delightfully creamy non-dairy sauce. It’s the perfect complement to the hot and spicy fajita veggies.

Avocado sauce:
1 ripe avocado, coarsely chopped
1 cup Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream
2 Tbs. lime juice
Salt to taste

Fajita veggies:
2 Tbs. olive or canola oil
1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1 green pepper, coarsely chopped
1 red pepper, coarsely chopped
1 large tomato, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup vegetable broth
1 jalapeno, minced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 Tbs. chili powder
Pinch of cayenne
1 tsp. salt
Black pepper, freshly ground

Tortillas (preferably warm)

1. In food processor or blender, combine avocado, non-dairy sour cream, lime juice, and salt to taste. Set aside.

2. Heat oil in large, non-stick skillet. Sauté onion and peppers until onions are transparent. Add remaining ingredients; stir to combine and simmer until peppers are tender (about 5-7 minutes).

3. Spoon veggie mixture into tortillas; roll and top with avocado sauce or serve open-faced with avocado sauce.

Variation: Add chopped pre-cooked tofu or tempeh to the veggie mixture when you add the vegetable broth.

mexican “chicken” stew

Add your favorite chicken substitute to this tasty tomato-based stew. Olé!

2 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
16 oz. chicken substitute (thawed if frozen)
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. cocoa powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. chili powder
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar

1. In large saucepan, sauté onion in olive oil until translucent. Add chicken substitute and cook until heated through.

2. Add cumin, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and chili powder; stir to combine.

3. Add tomatoes, salt, and brown sugar. Simmer for 10 minutes. Serve over rice.

linguine with walnuts & swiss chard

Although the combination of pasta, nuts, and greens may seem unlikely, the flavors are wonderful. Serve with a green salad and some rustic bread.

1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 large bunch Swiss chard
3 Tbs. walnut oil
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1/4 cup shallots, diced fine
16 oz. linguine
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Toast walnuts in a skillet over medium heat. When the walnuts are fragrant, they’re done. Be careful—they can burn quickly.

2. While the pasta water heats, trim and rinse Swiss chard leaves. Slice leaves into ribbons.

2. Heat walnut oil in a large skillet. Add garlic and shallots and cook until shallots are tender (about 10 minutes). Add the chard and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.

3. Cook linguine in boiling water; drain. Add chard mixture and walnuts to pasta; stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serves 4.

spinach and peanut sauce over rice

Zainab Ali and her friend submitted this Gambian recipe. Serve over rice or couscous or millet.

2 Tbs. olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
3/4 green bell pepper
1 6-oz. can tomato paste
1 10-oz. package frozen chopped spinach (or fresh spinach)
2 vegetarian bouillon cubes
1/4 cup peanut butter
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt to taste
Rice or couscous or millet
Optional: fried tofu

1. Heat olive oil in medium saucepan. Sauté onion, garlic, and green pepper in the oil until onion is translucent. Scoop out the vegetables and set aside. Add the tomato paste to the saucepan for the process called “burning the paste,” which means cooking the tomato paste until it bubbles and is thoroughly cooked.

2. Stir in the onions, peppers, garlic, and spinach. If you’re using frozen spinach, no additional liquid is needed. If you’re using fresh spinach, add 1/8 cup of water. Add the bouillon cubes. Sauté spinach until cooked.

3. Stir in the peanut butter. Add cayenne and salt to taste. Serve over rice or couscous or millet.

Optional fried tofu: Cut extra firm tofu into cubes. Place millet or corn meal in a bowl; stir in the tofu to lightly coat the cubes. Add approximately 3 Tbs. olive oil or canola oil to a medium skillet. Sauté the tofu until lightly brown; stir into the spinach mixture.

better-than-chicken cacciatore

Tomatoes, bell peppers, and mushrooms in a savory oven-baked sauce are perfect on a chilly night. Serve with a green salad, some crusty peasant bread, and perhaps your favorite wine.

2 Tbs. olive oil
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
8-oz. package fresh button mushrooms, sliced
1 16-oz. package of your favorite chicken substitute (defrosted if frozen)
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 tsp. dried basil
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 Tbs. tomato paste

rice or pasta

1. Heat olive oil in large skillet. Sauté onions for about 5 minutes. Add bell peppers; continue to sauté until onions and peppers are softened.

2. Add remaining ingredients to skillet; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.

3. While cacciatore is simmering, preheat oven to 350°. Transfer cacciatore to an oven-safe baking dish and cover with a lid or foil. Bake until heated through and bubbly, about 40 minutes. Serve over rice or pasta.

almond tofu

Cindy Gliebe of VeggieSensations provided us with this recipe. Serve over rice for an Asian sensation!

2 cups water
2 Tbs. cornstarch
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 Tbs. peanut butter
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. fresh, peeled, grated ginger root
1 Tbs. sesame oil
1 lb. extra firm tofu, cut into cubes
6 cups mixed vegetables of your choice: broccoli, carrots, onions, celery, water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, green peppers
1/2 cup sliced almonds

1. Using a wire whisk, mix first seven ingredients together. Set aside.

2. In saucepan over medium heat, heat sesame oil. Sautè tofu cubes until firm and brown. Set tofu aside to drain on paper towels.

3. In the same pan, sautè vegetables. When the vegetables are tender, add sliced almonds and sauce. Heat through and serve over rice.

presto pesto

Pesto is usually made with parmesan cheese. You can substitute a vegan parmesan cheese if you like, but we think that pesto is delicious without it. Serve with a green salad and your favorite wine.

1 cup pine nuts (also called piñon nuts)
1 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup vegan parmesan, optional
Salt and pepper to taste

Your favorite pasta

1. Start heating the pasta water while you assemble the pesto ingredients. When the water begins to boil, add the pasta and start preparing the pesto.

2. In a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until smooth.

3. Drain pasta and toss with pesto.

black bean enchilada bake

Save this dish for a chilly winter evening—it’s the ideal comfort food. Serve with Spanish rice and a spinach salad.

1 28-oz. can black beans
1 10-oz. bag frozen corn
6 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 large or 2 medium tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup salsa
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
Olive oil for greasing baking dish
1 15-oz. can enchilada sauce
4 extra-large whole wheat tortillas (or 6-8 regular size)
Vegan cheese (optional)
Vegan sour cream (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine first seven ingredients. Heat for about five minutes, stirring occasionally. Add oregano, cumin, and chili powder. Continue cooking until mixture is heated through.

2. Meanwhile, lightly grease a 13 x 9 (or similar size) baking dish. Pour about ½ cup of the enchilada sauce in the baking dish and spread evenly. Heat tortillas in the microwave for about 30 seconds until they are soft and pliable.

3. Scoop about a cup of the enchilada filling into the middle of a tortilla. Roll your tortilla, fold ends under, and place seam side down in the baking dish. Continue until the filling is used up. Pour remaining enchilada sauce over rolled up tortillas. Sprinkle with vegan soy cheese if you like. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly. Serve with vegan sour cream and a side of salsa.

flamin’ garden fajitas

The combination of jalapeño, cayenne, and paprika gives these fajitas a pleasant heat. If you prefer a milder taste, omit the cayenne and reduce the amount of minced jalapeño. You can find flavored baked tofu in the refrigerated section of most supermarkets. (We used a tomato-basil flavored tofu.)

2 Tbs. canola oil
1 medium onion, sliced into thin strips
1 red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 jalapeño, minced
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. cayenne (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. cumin
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
8 oz. baked tofu, sliced
8 tortillas
Vegan sour cream (try Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream)
1 avocado, sliced
2 tomatoes, diced
2 Tbs. cilantro, minced for garnish

1. Heat oil in a large skillet. Sautè the onion until translucent (about 5 minutes). Add bell peppers and jalapeño; stir to combine. Add 1/4 cup water, and cover skillet. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Remove cover and add spices, mushrooms, and baked tofu. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender and the tofu is heated through (about 5 minutes). If desired, begin warming the tortillas (either wrapped in foil in the oven or wrapped in paper towels in the microwave).

3. Transfer fajita mixture to a large bowl. Allow guests to top their tortillas with the fajita mixture, vegan sour cream, sliced avocado, diced tomatoes, and cilantro. Olè!

indian potato cauliflower curry

We love the complex spice blends of Indian food. This recipe captures the flavors we love so much without requiring long hours in the kitchen. In fact, it’s fast enough for a weeknight meal.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 cauliflower head, cut into florets
3 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced

1 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
4 cloves
1/2 tsp. cardamom, ground
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. asofoetida
1 Tbs. ginger, minced
1 tsp. coriander seeds
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. turmeric

1 14-ounce can tomato sauce
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed, or fresh

1 Tbs. cilantro, chopped for garnish

1. In a large cookpot, sautè cauliflower and potatoes in oil on low heat for 8 to 10 minutes, adding more oil if necessary. Remove from heat and cover.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a small saucepan. Sautè all spices over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add tomato sauce and peas, and blend well. Add to cauliflower and potatoes and stir. Remove bay leaves and sprinkle with cilantro just before serving.

jamaican jerk tofu

Want to impress your friends with Jamaican fare for your next vegan dinner party, or just spice up your Saturday night supper? Try this full-flavored recipe that bumps up the flavor of tofu to “Irie, Mon!” Hot and spicy (but not too hot), this marinade/sauce can be adapted to the tongue-smoking level by adding Scotch bonnet or habanero peppers instead of the milder jalapeño.

Try serving jerk tofu with baked yams topped with toasted pecans and maybe that Caribbean staple, rice and beans (we’ve posted a recipe for gallo pinto from Costa Rica). Jamaican Red Stripe beer adds a refreshing, authentic touch.

This recipe makes enough marinade to cover two blocks of tofu, which serves four people. Divide in half if using one block of tofu.

6 green onions, sliced thinly (discard top 1/3 of green ends)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbs. fresh ginger, minced
2 jalapeño peppers, minced
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbs. ground allspice
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. thyme
1 Tbs. vegan brown sugar
1-2 blocks extra firm tofu

1. In a large bowl, mix the first nine ingredients, including olive oil. In a smaller bowl, combine spices and brown sugar. Add to liquid mix and stir. If using one block of tofu, spray an 8 x 8 pan with oil. Slice tofu into three slices from its narrow end. Place in pan and pour HALF of marinade over tofu. For two blocks of tofu, use a 9 x 13 pan, and pour ALL the marinade over tofu.

2. Let stand for 15 minutes. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.

kofta balls

Ruth and Sue slaved over a hot stove to perfect this labor-intensive recipe. (Yes, it takes a while, but it’s worth it. Even the leftovers are delicious!) Feel free to substitute 1 cup sliced carrots for the yam or the cauliflower. Too much kofta ball batter? You can use the leftover batter for soup, along with the cooking liquid from the vegetables. You’ll find the chickpea (gram) flour, garam masala, and asafetida at an Indian grocery store or well-stocked supermarket.

tomato sauce:
2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1 cup water
2 tsp. garam masala
1/2 tsp. asafetida

Place all ingredients in large saucepan over medium heat. Stir well. Keep warm until kofta balls are ready.

kofta balls:
1 small yam, peeled and chopped
2 medium white potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 cup cauliflower
1 14-ounce can vegetable broth
1 14-ounce can green peas
1 cup chickpea (gram) flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. garam masala
1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
Dash of pepper
Olive oil for frying

1. Place yam, potatoes, and cauliflower in a large cookpot with vegetable broth. Add water to cover; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.

2. Drain vegetables, saving water for tomorrow’s soup. Add peas and mash until well blended. Add flour, baking powder, and spices, and stir to combine.

3. Drop golf-ball size lumps into a few tablespoons of olive oil and fry until brown, about 3 minutes per side. (Partially cover the pan to reduce the mess.) Place cooked kofta balls into tomato sauce; mix gently.

4. Serve over rice or fresh linguini.

thai golden curry with tofu

thai golden curry with tofu
This recipe is not difficult (don’t be put off by the long list of ingredients). Prepare all items in advance, including slicing the tofu. For best results, rinse the tofu block, and then stand it on its side and slice the narrowest edge into four slices. Then lay it flat and cut into about 2-inch cubes. The slices will be 1/2-inch thick and will cook more evenly.

1/3 cup light olive oil
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 Tbs. fresh ginger, minced
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 16-ounce package firm tofu, rinsed
1 14-ounce can light coconut milk
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. curry powder
1 Tbs. soy sauce
2 tsp. agave nectar OR 3 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
1 6-ounce package baby spinach leaves

1. Place 2 Tbs. olive oil, onion, ginger, and garlic into heated large cook pot or dutch oven. Stir occasionally until onion is transparent, about 3 minutes. Add remaning olive oil and tofu and cook until tofu is lightly browned. Add a bit more oil, if necessary.

2. Add coconut milk, pepper flakes, paprika, curry powder, soy sauce, agave nectar, and salt. Stir well.

3. Spread carrot slices on top, and add spinach leaves. Cover tightly and cook on low heat for 15 minutes. Mix before serving over rice or noodles.

tofu stir fry with lime & coconut

You can easily enjoy the tastes of Thailand on a weeknight after a hard day’s work because this recipe is so simple. Marinate the tofu in the lime juice while you prepare the other ingredients and read your mail.

1 16-oz. package firm tofu
1 lime
2 Tbs. canola oil
6 green onions, white parts only, thinly sliced
1 Tbs. diced green chilies, hot or mild
1 14-oz. can coconut milk
2 tsp. tamari
1 12-oz. package frozen stir-fry veggies
Your favorite Asian chili sauce (optional)
Grated or shredded coconut for garnishing (optional)

Rice or Udon noodles

1. Drain tofu and slice into 1″ cubes. Grate lime zest and sprinkle over tofu cubes. Slice lime in half and squeeze juice over tofu cubes. Stir to combine and set aside.

2. Heat canola oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sautè tofu and scallions for about 3 minutes. Add green chilies, coconut milk, and tamari. Heat until mixture bubbles. Add frozen veggies and chili sauce, if using. Heat through and serve over rice or noodles. Garnish with coconut if desired.

southwestern skillet supper

This fast, hearty supper is a real crowd-pleaser. If you enjoy cooking with meat substitutes, try adding “beef” crumbles. (We added a few chopped Nate’s Meatless Meatballs. Fantastic!)

2 Tbs. canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 tsp. cumin
2 Tbs. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 28-oz. can chopped tomatoes, undrained
1 16-oz. can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 10-oz. package frozen corn
2 cups pasta shapes (such as macaroni or gemelli), cooked and drained

1. Heat the canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and sautè the onion, bell pepper, and garlic for about 5 minutes. Add cumin, chili powder, and salt. Stir to combine.

2. Add tomatoes, kidney beans, and frozen corn. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add cooked pasta and “beef” crumbles, if using. Serve immediately.

“chicken” mushroom enchilada casserole

My corn tortillas weren’t cooperating. I had envisioned a beautiful pan of tightly rolled enchiladas smothered in sauce, but despite being dipped in sauce and allowed to soften, my tortillas were cracking and slowly unfolding. I changed course and sliced the tortillas, layered the ingredients, and then smothered with the sauce. The resulting casserole was much quicker than rolling enchiladas, and it tasted great.

2 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 10-oz. package of your favorite chicken substitute, thawed and chopped
1 8-oz. package baby Portobello or button mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 8-oz. can green chilies
1/2 cup vegan sour cream
2 15-oz. cans enchilada sauce
1 dozen corn tortillas, sliced in half
Hot sauce to taste (optional)
Vegan cheese and salsa for topping (optional)
Fresh cilantro, chopped (optional garnish)

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly oil a 13″ x 9″ baking dish. Spread 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce over the bottom of the dish. Set aside.

2. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and sautè the onion until translucent. Add garlic, chicken substitute, mushrooms, and spices. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes. (Add some vegetable broth or water if the pan becomes too dry.) Stir in green chilies and sour cream. Remove from heat.

3. Empty remaining enchilada sauce into a large bowl. Dip half the tortilla slices into sauce, coating thoroughly. Line bottom of pan with tortilla slices. Spoon “chicken” and mushroom mixture over tortilla slices. Cover with remaining tortilla slices, and spoon remaining enchilada sauce over slices. Top with vegan cheese if using. Cover pan with foil and bake for about 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for additional 5 minutes. Top casserole wedges with salsa and fresh cilantro, if desired. Side dish idea: fiesta beans and rice.

pizza dough

Making homemade pizza is definitely more time-consuming than popping a frozen pie in the oven, but once you taste your homemade creations, you may never go back to the store-bought varieties. Even if you’ve never made dough from scratch, you’ll quickly get the hang of it.

1 .25-oz. package active dry yeast
1 tsp. sugar
1 1/4 cups warm water
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
3 cups flour, divided (plus extra for dusting)

2 14-inch pizza pans, greased with olive oil, or a pizza stone

1. In a large bowl, add warm water to yeast and sugar. Set aside for about 5 minutes. In the meantime, grease a medium-size bowl with olive oil. Add olive oil, salt, and 2 3/4 cups flours to yeast mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined and dough pulls away from side of bowl.

2. Sprinkle flour over a work surface; slowly incorporate remaining 1/4 cup flour and knead dough until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes). If dough sticks to your fingers, slowly add more flour.

3. Place dough ball in greased bowl; turn to coat. Cover with a clean dish towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free area until doubled in size. (I like to heat the oven on a warm setting while I prepare the dough. When the dough is ready to rise, I turn off the oven and place the covered bowl in the oven, leaving the door ajar.)

4. Divide dough in half and roll out on a floured work surface. Fit dough into prepared pizza pans. Cover with pizza sauce and your favorite toppings. Bake at 450° for about 15 minutes or until the bottom of the crust is lightly browned and toppings are thoroughly cooked (you may want to switch to the broiler setting for the last few minutes of baking to thoroughly cook the toppings). Pass out the napkins and enjoy!

black bean & hominy enchiladas

Look for hominy (also known as posole or pozole) in the Mexican foods section of your supermarket, or visit your local Latin American grocery. This recipe makes 24 enchiladas, enough for a party or leftovers for lunch.

2 Tbs. canola oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 cup frozen corn
1 small zucchini, cut into matchsticks
1 4-oz. can diced green chilies
1 15-oz. can black beans, drained
1 15-oz. can hominy, drained
1 cup cooked rice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
Freshly ground pepper to taste

2 dozen fresh corn tortillas
3 15-oz. cans green or red enchilada sauce
Salsa
Vegan sour cream for topping (optional; we used the Tofutti brand)
Vegan cheese for topping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease two 9″ x 13″ baking dishes (or equivalent) and set aside. Heat the canola oil in a large saucepan. Sauté the onion, bell pepper, and garlic for about 5 minutes. Add the next 11 ingredients (corn through freshly ground pepper) and cook until heated through.

2. Empty two cans of enchilada sauce in a large bowl. Dip each corn tortilla in the sauce. Lay on a flat surface, and place about 1/3 cup of the bean/hominy mixture down the center. Roll up and place in the baking dish. Repeat until all tortillas are used (or you run out of filling). Spoon any remaining enchilada sauce over the tortillas, as well as the contents of the third can.

3. Cover pans with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and top with vegan cheese if using. Bake for an additional 10 minutes or until enchiladas are browned. Top with salsa and vegan sour cream. Serve with a salad or Spanish rice.

michelle’s spring rolls

Michelle, mother of five and a great vegan cook, submitted this recipe. You can set out the ingredients and let your guests make their own spring rolls.

2 oz. dried bean thread noodles or rice thread noodles
1 cucumber, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
12 large rice-paper wrappers (8-inch round or larger)
2 cups baby spinach leaves (or other hardy greens such as kale or romaine lettuce), cut in thin strips
1 medium carrot, cut into matchsticks
8 oz. baked, seasoned tofu, cut into 1/4-inch sticks
12 fresh basil or mint leaves
Peanut sauce for dipping

1. Place the noodles in a bowl and cover with hot water. Soak for 5 minutes or until softened. Drain well and set aside.

2. Remove and discard the seeds in the cucumber by scraping a spoon on the center of each piece. Cut each piece into thin strips.

3. Fill a large bowl (at least several inches larger than the rice wrappers) with warm water. Soak one wrapper until soft and pliable, 20-30 seconds. Remove the rice wrapper from the water and lay flat on a counter or cutting board. Place 1-2 tablespoons of spinach leaves along one edge of the wrapper. Place an equal amount of noodles over the spinach. Top with 1 tablespoon of carrot matchsticks, several pieces of cucumber and tofu, and a basil or mint leaf.

4. Roll the wrapper, starting with the filling side, folding the ends over the filling as you roll and forming a tight cylinder. Serve with small bowls of peanut sauce for dipping.

“sausage” & lentils

Greg Lawson kindly allowed us to post his version of this classic recipe. If the vegan products aren’t available in your area, you can order them from The Mail Order Catalog, VeganEssentials, or Pangea. You can also use vegan meat substitutes you may have on hand.

2 Tbs. olive oil
4 slices Lightlife brand vegan bacon, diced (or 2 strips Primal Strips brand jerky, hickory flavored)
3 Yves brand vegan sausage links
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced fennel bulb (optional)
1/4 cup diced carrots
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 bay leaf
1 cup brown lentils
2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. hot pepper flakes
15-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
1.5-oz bag Stonewall’s Jerky (mild or wild)
1 stick Vegi-Deli brand Quick Stix (any flavor), cut diagonally into 1-inch pieces and halved crosswise
3 cups vegetable stock (add more stock or water if you desire, but this should not be a soup)
A shot of wine if needed (for the pan or for the cook)

Heat the olive oil. Place the vegan “bacon” in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook until crispy, about 3 minutes, and remove from the pan. Brown the “sausages” in the hot oil until golden (2 to 3 minutes per batch). Remove from the saucepan and set aside. Add the onions, fennel (if desired), and carrots to the saucepan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and bay leaf and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the lentils and stir for about 1 minute. Return the browned sausages and bacon to the pan; stir in the thyme, hot pepper flakes, tomatoes, Stonewall’s Jerky, Quick Stix pieces, and vegetable stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a gentle simmer and cook 50 to 55 minutes, or until the lentils are tender and have soaked up most of the liquid. Remove and discard the bay leaf and thyme sprigs.

Serve the lentils and sausage with whole-grain mustard and crusty bread.

vegan moussaka

Moussaka is a layered eggplant casserole that traditionally contains lamb or beef and a rich dairy-based sauce. Although Greece seems to be the birthplace of moussaka, many other regions of the world claim their own versions, including the Middle East, Ethiopia, and Eastern Europe. Our version uses broiled eggplant instead of fried and includes a creamy vegan sauce.

1 large eggplant
2 Tbs. olive oil plus additional for brushing eggplant
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 cup red wine
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1 15-oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground allspice
1/2 tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
8 oz. vegan cream cheese (we used Tofutti’s Better Than Cream Cheese)
1/2 cup of your favorite non-dairy milk

1. Oil an 8 x 8 baking pan; set aside. Heat the broiler. Trim both ends of the eggplant and cut 1/4″ lengthwise slices (peeling the eggplant is optional). Place slices on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil. Slide baking sheet under the broiler and bake until slices are nicely browned. Turn slices over, brush with olive oil, and brown the other sides. Remove from oven and set aside.

2. While browning eggplant, heat 2 Tbs. olive oil in a large saucepan. Cook onion and garlic until onion is translucent. Add next 8 ingredients (red wine through black pepper); stir to combine. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 10 minutes.

3. In a small saucepan over low heat, combine vegan cream cheese with soy milk. Stir occasionally until cream cheese is melted.

4. Place half the eggplant in the baking dish. Spoon half the tomato sauce over the slices. Repeat with remaining slices and sauce. Spoon the cream cheese sauce over the casserole. Place baking dish in oven under broiler until top is nicely browned. Remove from oven and let sit for a few minutes. Serve with a green salad.

Variation: If you like to cook with meat substitutes, add a vegan beef or sausage to the tomato sauce mixture.

lemon ginger stir fry

This is not your ordinary stir fry, but don’t let the exotic flavor fool you: It’s simple enough to serve on a weeknight.

2 Tbs. canola oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
2 Tbs. fresh ginger, minced
1 Tbs. sesame oil
1 Tbs. grated lemon rind
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 Tbs. agave nectar
3 Tbs. tamari
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
3 Tbs. water
3 tsp. cornstarch
2 cups zucchini, halved and sliced
1 12-oz. package of your favorite frozen stir fry veggies

Jasmine or basmati rice

1. Heat canola oil in medium saucepan. Add onion and bell pepper and cook for about 5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, combine next nine ingredients (ginger through cornstarch) in a medium bowl. Set aside.

3. Add zucchini and frozen stir-fry veggies to saucepan. Cook for 2 minutes. Add stir fry sauce and cook for about 4 minutes. Serve with jasmine or basmati rice.

roasted root vegetable casserole

This two-for-one recipe yields a second dinner with a minimum of extra time and ingredients. Serve the roasted root vegetable casserole on the first night. On the second night, place the leftovers in a big soup pot, add a couple items, and enjoy a tasty dinner stew.

3 large white potatoes
2 yams
1 large yellow onion
1 large turnip
1 large rutabaga
5 carrots
2-3 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning blend
1/2 cup water

Preheat oven to 350°. Peel all vegetables (you can scrub potatoes and leave skins on), cut into 1-inch cubes, and place in a large roasting pan. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle spices over veggies and mix well. Add 1/2 cup water to roasting pan. Bake for 1 hour uncovered, then cover and bake for an additional hour. Serve with a colorful salad and a crusty loaf of bread; sit back and enjoy the compliments!

Day 2: Roasted Root Vegetable Soup

In a large soup pot, put leftover roasted veggies, a 10-oz package frozen cut green beans, and a quart of vegetable broth. Add just enough water to cover vegetables. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.