August 11, 2014

Chive Vinaigrette


The timing could not have been better when I found this recipe in an old edition of a
Canadian Living magazine. I had tons of fresh chives in my herb garden but I never had any ideas on what to use them in. What I love about this vinaigrette is that it has a subtle flavor allowing the flavors your fresh from the garden veggies to come through.

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped chives or green onions*
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt and pepper
1/2 tsp thyme

Mix all ingredients in a bowl. I make mine the day before I plan to have it because I think it tastes even better the longer you let the flavors mix together.

* I prefer to use chives instead of green onions because they don't have as strong a flavor as green onions.


UPDATED on the Buffalo Chickpea and Kale Loaded Potato


Regarding the my Sour Cream/Mayo Dressing I change the tofu in the dressing from soft to firm it gives it a firmer texture.

I also, change just adding the dressing on top of the potatoes. I think it's better if you mix in the dressing with the wing sauce.

I have been making this dish with sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes and it so taste soooo good!

June 12, 2014

Buffalo Chickpea and Kale Loaded Potato


 A quick, easy, inexpensive, healthy meal (if made with sweet potatoes) is coming your way….

Well, I knew I had to make this recipe the minute I saw the words Buffalo and Potato together. Next time I make this I'll use sweet potatoes instead. That is really the only thing I would change from the original recipe. You can also add lots more kale if you like because even kale haters like my guy won’t mine because they really can’t taste if over the Buffalo wing sauce. It’s just one more way to sneak in some veggies.

4 medium sweet potatoes or white potatoes
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 bunch kale (5 stems or more)
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup Franks Buffalo wing sauce (yes, its vegan!)
Creamy dressing or vegan sour cream (recipe below)

Either bake or microwave your potatoes. Nuke on high for about 4 minutes on each side or bake them on 400F for 60 minutes.
De-stem, wash and chop kale into small pieces. Add kale, chickpeas and buffalo sauce to a small pot and set aside. Once your potatoes are cooked remove from micro or oven. Heat your ingredients in the small pot on medium heat until warm, stirring to make sure everything is coated. Open the tops as you would with any baked potato and then mix some of your sour cream/mayo dressing into your buffalo mixture (according to taste). Adding the creamy dressing will mellow out some of the strong flavour of the wing sauce. Serve immediately.

Sour Cream/Mayo Dressing

1/2 cup firm tofu
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp of apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp wet mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
Black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup light tasting olive oil, NOT extra virgin olive oil* 
  (or any light tasting oil such as canola oil)
Place everything (except the oil) in a food processor or blender and blend well. Then while it's still blending take the lid off and very slowly pour in the oil.

* I made the mistake of using extra virgin olive oil and it made the dressing taste awful. Extra virgin olive oil has a strong taste so it just over powered everything.

May 3, 2014

Cajun Roasted Tofu on Wild Rice and Lentil Pilaf


I found this recipe in a Vegetarian Times Magazine. The original recipe called for slicing the tofu in thick slices but I find when you do thinner slices it allows more of the marinade flavor to come threw. I also, never bothered making the Jade Pesto. I just never thought it would go well with the Cajun Tofu. Instead, I paired it with Wild Rice and Lentil Pilaf.

This recipe may take a long time to marinade (over-night) but the fast part is in the prep time and cooking time. The pilaf is also quick to prepare. I usually double the Cajun tofu pieces recipe because they are so good added to anything at room temperature or hot. You can use them in a salads, wrap or whatever. 

Unlike the many, many marinated tofu recipes that I have tried this has one has tons of flavor. It's not bland. To save time used the extra firm tofu so you don't have to press out the water. The reason why I use the firm tofu is because it cost less.

Sorry folk's this is not a weight watchers recipe so try to workout a little longer and don't indulge in this too often (I know it will be hard). 

1 package extra-firm tofu, drained OR
1 package firm tofu, drained and PRESSED
    then cut into triangle pieces

1/4 cup light oil (I use grapeseed oil)
3 Tbsp dry Cajun spice blend (club house brand is gluten-free)
2 Tbsp soy sauce (gluten free)
2 tsp toasted sesame oil

In a small bowl whisk together the light oil, spice blend, soy sauce and sesame oil. Place tofu pieces on a large shallow baking dish. Pour over tofu, coat both sides, cover and chill in fridge overnight.

Next day…. Preheat oven to 400 F. Flip over tofu pieces. Saturate with a brush or hands the tofu with the marinade surrounding the tofu. Bake tofu for 12 minutes. Brush on the marinade one more time then serve over rice. Serves 4

Wild Rice and Lentil Pilaf
1 1/8 cups brown rice
1/4 cup lentils
1/8 cup wild rice
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 cups water
1/2 vegetable stock cube dissolved in 2/3 one cup of boiling water
fresh ground pepper, to taste

Rinse rice’s and lentils thoroughly. Add all ingredients to a rice cooker and stir.
Start slow cooker. Once it switches from “cook” to “warm”, I leave it in there for 45 minutes. Your rice cooker may vary.

April 30, 2014

Pink Flamingo

Cool down with this delicious drink.
1 cup watermelon
1/4 cup banana
1/4 cup orange juice 
6 strawberries

Put into a blender. Mix until smooth. Makes 1 1/3 cups 

January 24, 2014

Hoppin John with Red Hot Tahini


I wanted to wait to post this recipe until I had taken a more appetizing picture but I just don't think I can wait any longer to share it with you. I also, have friends that have tried it and they want me to send them the recipe so I'd like to just send them the link.

I have been seriously addicted to this ever since I tried it. In fact, the morning after I had it the first thing I thought of when I woke up was I can't wait to eat the leftover Hoppin John for lunch.

What's not to love.... it's super healthy, great to bring to potlucks because it doesn't contain the common ingredients that people have allergies with. Made with ingredients most vegans always have in there house.

My contribution to this recipe is that I made it more faster to make because when I want my Hoppin John I don't want to wait for long! I also added 1/4 cup more water and stopped adding the garlic clove. I make a large amount of rice ahead of time and freeze it so I always have some on hand. I'm addicted to the sauce and when you look at the ingredients you will say the same thing as me...."Why didn't I think of that". I have already made some new recipes using just the Red Hot Tahini sauce which I will definitely share with you in the future.  Hey lots of times I don't even bother adding the tomatoes and onions...It's great just with the rice, beans and sauce!

This recipe comes from Isa Chandra. Make sure to see her picture of this recipe it's so much nicer than my plain one.  I really want you to get inspired so you will try this one

The Hoppin’ John:
1 (19 oz) can of black eyed peas, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 tsp hickory liquid smoke or 1 tsp mesquite liquid smoke

In a bowl with a lid add the black eyed peas and liquid smoke and mix well then put aside.

The Red Hot Tahini:

1/2 cup tahini
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup Louisiana Hot Sauce (like Frank’s Red Hot)
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
 (certified gluten-free)

Simply blend everything up in blender until smooth.  

The Tomatoes and Onions:

2 cups tomatoes, diced
1/4 cup green onions, finely sliced
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
Several dashes fresh black pepper, to taste
Dash salt

Toss tomatoes and green onions with red wine vinegar in a bowl.


6 cups cooked rice for serving (I used red rice mixed with some brown rice)

To Assemble: 
Place rice on place. Add some black-eyed peas. Heat rice and beans then drizzle with some sauce (you will probably will have left over sauce) Top with the tomatoes and onions. Serve 6 

December 7, 2013

Asian Grilled Vegetables


If you have been following my blog you may have notice I have never posted any recipes for grilled vegetables before. Until now, I just hadn’t found any that I really loved. The recipes that I have tried just ended up tasting bland or having an over powering taste of balsamic vinegar.

I found this recipe in a Longos Supermarket recipe magazine. Talk about versatile these vegetables taste great cold, at room temperature or heated. They're perfect to bring to a potluck or picnic. They're going to be my side dish for my Christmas dinner this year. 

Feel free to add any type of vegetables you would like. The original recipe called for shitake mushrooms, stemmed, but there quite expensive so I left them out. It also called for one daikon, peeled and sliced but our supermarket does not carry that so I add 2 extra eggplants instead of those vegetables. You can also cook these vegetables using a grill pan or a frying pan on your stove top instead of using a barbeque.


3 Chinese eggplant, cut lengthwise, then thick sliced
2 cup snow peas or snap peas
1 large red pepper, quartered
1 large orange or yellow pepper, quartered


1/4 cup Asian chili garlic sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce, gluten-free
1 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar (Redpath brand is vegan)
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 Tbsp grapeseed oil or which ever oil you like
1 1/2 tsp sesame oil

 In a large bowl combine veggies. In a small bowl, which together all the ingredients for the marinade. Pour over the veggies and stir gently to coat. Let marinate for 15 minutes.

Lift vegetables out of the marinade; save or discard any leftover marinade. Place vegetables on greased grill basket or pan (to keep smaller items like snow peas from falling through the grate. Put grill basket or pan on a medium-high heat and grill for 2 to 4 minutes per side, turning occasionally. Remove from heat and place on a large serving platter.  Serve warm, room temperature or chilled.  Serves 6

Tip: Because the vegetables vary in size be sure to keep an eye on the smaller vegetables as they will not take as long to cook. Remove them from the grill first. Or you can do what I do just limit the different types of veggies you use and only grill each type on the grill pan at one time.


We've Come A Long Way Baby!

Wow I feel old, it’s hard to believe when I was in my early teens there was no tofu, non-dairy milk or any meat substitutes in any supermarkets…there was NOTHING. You had to go to a health food store to get non-dairy milk and tofu. Vegan meat and cheese substitutes did not even exist! I never heard the word Vegan used back then. I can’t get over how much things have changed in my life time. I’m now 50 years old. Not only are there tons of vegan products in supermarkets but Germany has opened up the first totally Vegan supermarket called Veganz. They plan to open up 20 more stores in the next 2 1/2 years! (a new store every 2 months) Check out this video of Veganz you’ll probably be like me and see tons of products or brands you never knew existed.

When I was young there were no computers! With the invention of the computer came access to fellow vegans, ending that dreaded isolation many of us can feel. We have access to all the many wonderful vegan blogs online. There were not many vegetarian restaurants when I was young…I don’t remember any vegan restaurants.

One the best things to come along for me was Daiya cheese. Until Daiya came along there were some pretty gross vegan cheeses out there so I just gave up thinking I could ever enjoy a cheese pizza again (since turning vegan). I can now make a cheese pizza at home or pick one up from a Mammas Pizza. Yes…. a gluten-free with vegan cheese (Daiya brand) pizza is now available from a Major Pizzeria Franchise. I highly recommend trying the Vegan Primavera at Mama’s Pizza (that's the pizza pictured above). I will be bring one over to my guys, sisters place for my Christmas dinner along with a side dish of some yummy grilled vegetables (recipe for those will be my next post)

I'm grateful for many things each year…good health (well except for the Celiac disease of course…lol) having a wonderful my guy in life….blah blah  blah…This year I would like to add that I'm grateful there are so many delicious vegan products out there especially Vegan Primavera pizza from Mama’s Pizza.

October 15, 2013

Spicy Vegan Sausage


Rhea, the girl who came up with this recipe is a genius! I'm blaming her for my upset stomach because I ate these sausages too I tried so many different types of vegan, gluten-free sausage recipes in search of one that I actually liked. I finally had given up. Although, I'm a huge fan of beans and lentils I just didn't want sausages that tasted like that. Rhea uses black-eyed peas and they are perfect.... no beany taste!

I did make some changes to the spice mix. I upped the amounts of several of them and eliminated the fennel (not a fan of it) and added some thyme. I also, preferred to made 6 sausages instead of 4 huge ones. If you want to stick with her original recipe the link is below. Feel free to have them with any condiment you like. I had them with ketchup but I`ll probably try it her way next time with mustard, onions and mushrooms....yum!

I did find this recipe to be labor intensive but worth the effort. I would suggest using canned beans to save time. In the future I plan to double this recipe and freeze them. Before making them keep in mind to set aside extra time because once the sausages are made they should be refrigerate for a few hours or overnight to firm them up.

The Spinach Omelets in the picture are from my blog...

For the Spice Mix:

1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp black pepper
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 3/4 tsp sweet paprika
1 3/4 tsp smoked paprika
3/4 to 1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 1/4 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp thyme

For the Sausage:

2 tsp + 2 tsp olive oil
1 cup mushrooms, chopped
1/2 cup onion,
finely chopped 1 garlic clove,minced
2 cups cooked or 1-15 oz. can of black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 Tbps sun-dried tomato paste
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
3 Tbsp of gluten-free, vegan Worcestershire Sauce
A few drops of Liquid Smoke (optional)

Prepare spice mix in advance. Set aside. Heat a skillet with 2 tsp. of olive oil. Sauté the onions, mushrooms and garlic until softened. Set aside and let cool.

In a large bowl, add the black-eyed peas and mash them up. You can use a fork, a potato masher or just get your hands in there. If you want to use a food processor, do a rough chop. You don’t want a puree. Then add the tomato paste, nutritional yeast, spice mix and brown rice flour. Mix well. Sprinkle the xanthan gum over the mixture and incorporate it well. Add the cooled veggie mixture to the bowl and mix it into the dry ingredients. Add the Worcestershire sauce to the bowl and mix it all up well. If you are using the Liquid Smoke, add it in now too.

Divide the mixture into 6 parts. Shape each part into a log. Wrap the logs individually in foil and steam them for 15-20 minutes. I use a metal steamer that sits atop a large stockpot of boiling water. Let them cool.

Then refrigerate for a few hours or overnight, if possible. This will help them firm up even more. When ready to use, unwrap and cook them however you desire. I cooked them on a grill pan.

October 9, 2013

Carrot Cake Oatmeal

This oatmeal recipe is delicious and super healthy!
1/2 cup large rolled oats (gluten-free)
2/3 cup vanilla almond milk or more*  
1 Tbsp raw agave, pure maple syrup or brown sugar (Redpath is vegan)
1/2 cup carrot, grated
2 Tbsp raisins
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 to 1/2 tsp nutmeg
chopped walnuts (optional topping)

Stir all ingredients making sure everything is soaked by the liquid in a small pot. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Top with walnuts, if using. Serve immediately. 

*I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk. I also like to mix in two tablespoons of ground flaxseed when the oatmeal is ready to serve.

October 2, 2013

I Have A New Blog!


 I have a new blog. I hope when you get the chance you can check it out!

September 16, 2013

Easy Gluten-Free Buns (for the baking challenged)


I was very challenged in the bread making department until I discovered the link below...One of the things I was doing wrong in the past was not letting my yeast rise enough. Also, it's so important not to switch out flours because some such as bean flours are heavier than others such as rice flour.(so if you do switch it out and it doesn't work don't blame the recipe your using) I don't have easy access to the various flours out there and I don't like to have to find different types of flours for a recipe. I like to keep it simple because I hate baking... its just so dame time consuming. I changed this recipe to buns because I find it more easy to cut cleanly than bread. I do 2 batches of buns at the same time. That gives me 10 buns to freeze for whenever I need them. If you have had problems with gluten-free baking this one is fool proof.

Based on the following gluten-free bread recipe...

1 1/2 cup very warm water (105 degree)
2 1/2 tsp yeast
2 Tbsp sugar (Redpath brand is vegan)

1/4 cup water
2 Tbsp ground flaxseed
1 Tbsp grapeseed oil
2 1/2 cups Bobs Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
2 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 ascorbic acid (optional)

5 bun molds

In one bowl (I use a glass measuring cup that holds two cups) add the very warm water, yeast, and sugar. Stir and let sit in a warm place until a thick foam (around 1 inch) appears on top.

While the yeast is bubbling, in a smaller bowl mix the water, ground flaxseed, and oil. Stir and let sit.

Put dough blade in a food processor. Add the flour, xanthan gum, sea salt. Mix well.

Add the flax mixture to the yeast mixture and stir. Open the top of the food processor, and with the processor running, gently pour the liquid into the dry ingredients. Mix well. Stop and scrape the edges and mix again until the dough forms a lump.
Place dough in 5 WELL OILDED molds (coconut oil is a yummy choice) Let rise to just above the top of the molds with the oven set at 350F. The heat from the oven will help it rise. Put some spice jars around your mounds. Put baking sheets or something flat on top of spice jars. Put a tea towel over everything Leave till it rises about 45 minutes.
Once they have raised bake on the middle rack uncovered for 15 minutes. Then cover the buns with foil so the tops of them won’t get too over cooked. Cook for 25 minutes more. They will fall a bit and not be as "high" as a wheat loaf, but it is soft, and tasty.
When they have cooled use a spoon along the sides of each mold to loosen the bread up. Then flip them out onto a plate. You can rub coconut oil on the top of the loaf if you don’t like a crusty top. Once they have cooled put them in the fridge or freezer.
Tip - To make cleaning your molds easier pour hot water into them and wait till the water loosens up the stuff left in the molds after yours buns have been removed.

Spicy Black Bean Stuffed Peppers


This is a really healthy and delicious recipe. It's been posted on a few recipe sites already. I added chipotle chili powder because I love the smokey flavor it gives. I also doubled the recipe because you can always freeze any left overs.

4 medium sweet peppers - any color you’d like
3/4 cup onion, diced
4 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cans of 19 oz black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp + 1 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp + 2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 cup sweet corn
1 cup any vegan cheese (I use Daiya Mozzarella)

fresh cilantro, salsa, and vegan sour cream for serving

Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut a slit through the entire length of each of your peppers. Place them on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes, then flip peppers over and cook for another 15 minutes.

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Add your onion and sauté for 5 minutes, until beginning to soften and turn translucent. Add garlic and stir constantly for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Stir in your black beans along with the water. Add your cumin, chili, paprika, salt, and chipotle chili powder.

Stir, cover the pot, reduce the heat to low and simmer the beans for at least 15 minutes, but up to 30 minutes. Once cooked stir in corn and cheese. Divide the bean mixture evenly among the peppers and stuff each pepper.

Broil for 2 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling. Garnish with fresh cilantro, salsa, and sour cream if you’d like.

July 29, 2013

Italian Frittata


 This is my friend, Melanie's recipe. I'm sure you will love it as much as I do.

1 package firm tofu, (just drained, but not pressed) 
1 Tbsp soy sauce (gluten-free)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (gluten-free)
1 tsp dried basil  

1/4 tsp ground turmeric

1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
1/8 cup sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
1 tsp garlic, minced
juice of a half lemon
1/4 cup spinach, frozen and chopped kind, squeeze out the water

ketchup (optional top or on the side)

Preheat oven to 400F. In a mixing bowl, crumble the tofu through your fingers until it resembles ricotta cheese. Be sure to squeeze out all the lumps. Mix in the soy sauce, mustard, nutritional yeast and turmeric, thyme and basil; combine well.

In a small skillet, add the olive oil and sauté the onions for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and tomatoes; sauté for 3 more minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice, mix and remove from heat. Transfer the cooked onion mixture to the tofu and combine well; fold in spinach. Press the tofu mixture down firmly into a non greased ceramic bread loaf sized pan.

Cook in the oven for 20 minutes. Let the frittata sit for 10 minutes before serving. Carefully cut into slices and lift each piece with a pie server to prevent it from falling apart. Serve with a bit of ketchup on the side or drizzle a small amount on top. Serves 4

May 31, 2013

Edamame Hummus Wraps



Say good bye to plain old hummus and hello to a refreshing light meal that is perfect for having outside on a hot summer day.

The Wraps

Use any of the following for your wraps:

gluten free tortilla wraps
kale leaves
bok choy leaves
collard leaves (dipped quickly in boiling water to soften)

The Filling

Fill the wraps with the following:

*edamame hummus
cherry tomatoes, chopped in half
mixed greens, chopped
lime juice, freshly squeezed on top

* I buy Edamame Hummus at Freshco supermarket 
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