Happy New Year!
It seems 2020 may turn out to be pretty depressing and gloomy, but I still hope we can all have health and small, but meaningful victories along the way.
Here, I want to take a brief look back at some of those small victories in 2019, the recipes and posts that brought smiles and happy tummies to me and others, the posts and recipes that helped.
- Must-Have Spices for Your Vegan Kitchen –
the main motivation behind this post was to help people navigate the spice isle in their grocery store. Those spice bottle displays can be intimidating – too many little bottle with “magic” powders and, very often, scary looking price tags. So, I used this opportunity to boil it down to essentials: dried basil and oregano, garlic powder and onion powder, paprika and smoked paprika, ground cumin and chili powder, liquid smoke, Old Bay Seasoning (or any other seafood seasoning mix), and, for sweet treats, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and vanilla extract. With these spices on hand you will have the wide range of basic and not-so-basic recipes covered. You will find that recipes below incorporate many of these spices, some in perhaps unexpected ways.
- BBQ Pulled Eggplant –
I love eggplant, and this recipe really works for me. It takes advantage of the natural eggplant texture that makes it very easy to pull into long strings that resemble pulled BBQ meat. Plus, eggplant soaks the liquid really well, and in this recipe we use a marinade made of chili powder, smoked paprika, onion powder, soy sauce, maple syrup (or agave syrup) that makes this a really delicious and rich BBQ experience.
- Fish-like Cakes with Chickpeas and Artichoke Hearts –
this is an example of a recipe where using Old Bay Seasoning (or a similar type of seafood seasoning mix) is almost essential. These cakes are fantastic and easy to make, they combine chickpeas, artichoke hearts, corn meal, some break crumbs and a good amount of lemon juice and zest. They are light and delightful summer food (although I bet they can bring some much needed summer flavor to your long winter nights as well).
- White Bean and Spinach Soup –
Speaking of cold winter nights, this soup is all about bringing warmth and comfort to your table. This soup is a complete meal, full of beans, pasta, tomatoes – it comes together in no time and it’s a treat for anyone, vegan or otherwise, young or old. It’s a fantastic weak night dinner option, as well as a great dish to bring to pot lucks!
- Vegan Baked Feta (no salt and no fat added) –
Here, I wanted to develop an easy vegan cheese recipe and nothing is more simple than taking a block of tofu, adding some vinegar, lemon juice, and nutritional yeast to it, mixing well and letting it lose just a bit of moisture by baking it for a bit. The result is a feta-like crumble that you can use any way you would normally use feta, to top salads, to make sandwiches or to even to make pies!
- Mushroom Pâté –
Once you give this recipe a try, you will never be able to have another party without it. It is a rich and flavorful dip that is perfect for crackers of any kind, and as a topping for light bites and sandwiches. Yummy!
- Homemade Nut and Seed Granola –
I have been afraid of making my own granola for the longest time. Finally I decided to give it a try and, quite frankly nothing can be simpler. You do need to have quite a few ingredients on hand to make it really incredible like almonds, buckwheat, flax seed, sunflower seed, oats, hemp seeds – you get the picture! Also: if you leave out the almonds this granola quickly becomes nut-free!!!
- Raw Energy Oatmeal Raisin Muffins –
Last recipe that I want to share with you here is the one I made few times while I was experimenting with transitioning into raw food diet. At the end of the experiment I concluded that 100% raw food diet is not for me, but that some of the recipes, like these muffins are a real keeper. They are no bake, and full of good for you ingredients. Plus they use no added oil, no added sugar and feature only wholesome stuff: carrots, raisins, apples, oats, and of course spices – cinnamon and nutmeg.
Here’s to you and yours and a happy and healthy new year!
Copyright © Eat the Vegan Rainbow, 2020