Sunday, September 30, 2007

Tofu-Cheese & Veggie Lasagna

Tonight we had dinner at my mother-in-law's. I made a "Cheezy" Tofu Lasagna, with a side of store bought potato rosemary bread and salad. This recipe is so easy, I know it off the top of my head (it's modified versions from several recipes). I got rave reviews, they especially liked the fresh tomatoes that I topped it with, it made a really nice touch.

  • 12 strips of Lasagna noodles, cooked until they are mostly done.
  • 1 package of firm water packed tofu- drained
  • 1 container "Tofutti" non-hydrogenated cream cheese
  • 1 c. nutritional yeast
  • 1 bunch of spinach
  • 1/4 c. chopped onion
  • 1 small zucchini
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1 jar of spaghetti sauce

While noodles are cooking, preheat oven to 375 F. In a small saucepan heat tofu, cream cheese and nutritional yeast together, over Med. heat, until melted- stirring often. In an oiled skillet combine onion, zucchini and pepper and saute until tender. In an 9x12 casserole dish, place one layer of cooked noodles on the bottom, cover with saute'd veggies, spinach leaves and half-jar of sauce. Add another layer of noodles and top with cheese mixture. Cover with noodles and top with spinach, sauce and diced tomato (you can add shredded soy cheese too, if you'd like). Bake at 375 for about 35-45 mins. Serve with garlic bread and enjoy with your family!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Purple Potato Soup

It actually snowed in Salt Lake today! It didn't stick on the ground, but it was definitely a day for soup! I love creamy soup on cool, rainy & snowy days. We had some purple potatoes from the farmer's market we thought would be cool to try in a soup. It left just a tint of purple, and was delicious!

  • 6-8 small - med purple potatoes
  • 3 carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped white onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 cup plain soymilk
  • 1/8 c. flour
  • salt & pepper to taste

Dice potatoes (leaving well-washed skin on) and carrots. Place in large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to med/low. In a small skillet, add heat oil and add onion and garlic. Saute until onions turn clear and add to soup. Dice celery , add to soup. In a small bowl, whisk together flour and soymilk, and add to soup. Stir everything together. When potatoes are soft, soup is done! Serve with toasted bread, and warm your tummy after a wet and cold day!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Fall Harvest Pasta

My hubby made this super simple pasta, with sauce from scratch and made out of fresh veggies. It was so easy, and very, very tasty!

  • One med-large summer squash and/or zucchini
  • 1/2 diced onion
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1 clove of garlic- chopped
  • 3 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 fresh tomatoes, diced.
  • 10 leaves of fresh basil, chopped.
  • 1/2 lb pasta of your choice (penne, spaghetti, etc)

Cook Pasta as directed on package. In a large skillet heat olive oil over med. heat. Add onion and garlic, saute until onion is clear. Add bell pepper and squash, then tomatoes and basil. Toss with cooked pasta and serve.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Autumn Equinox Feast

For tonight's Equinox dinner we had Pumpkin Soup, Steamed Summer Squash & Swiss Chard, Candied Sweet Potatoes, with Rye Toast.

Pumpkin Soup Recipe:
  • One med pumpkin, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • 2 med. cooking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 med. onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 c. plain soymilk

In a large pot combine all veggies and cover with water. Boil until pumpkin and potato are cooked and easily mashed. Strain water off veggies and place into a blender. Add soymilk and nutmeg and puree until blended well. Put back into the pot and add parsley.

Candied Sweet Potatoes Recipe:
  • 1 large or 2 med sweet potatoes, diced and peeled.
  • 2 Tbs. vegan margarine (Earth Balance, Smart Balance, etc)
  • 2 Tbs. evaporated cane juice sugar
  • 3 Tbs. water

Boil sweet potatoes in water until you can easily cut through with a fork or knife. Strain water. In a large pan combine water, butter and sugar until well dissolved and it starts to bubble. Add sweet potatoes and mix gently and until they are all glazed.

Steamed Summer Squash & Swiss Chard Recipe:
  • One large or 2 small yellow summer squash, diced
  • About 20-30 swiss chard leaves
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth

Steam summer squash. In a large pan add veg. broth and chard leaves and saute' in broth until leaves are limp, but still vibrantly colored. When squash is steamed add to chard and gently mix together.

Review: I was a little disappointed with the soup, but hubby and his friend loved it, so I guess it was just me. I've never made sweet potatoes before, and I LOVED them. But, it is easy to over-do them because they are so sweet. My favorite happened to be the swiss chard & summer squash. They were a perfect tasting and colorful combo. I especially liked it with the rye-toast.

It was pretty easy, although a lot of peeling and dicing. But after that, you just boil most of the dinner for a while and then add the finishing touches.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Spaghetti Squash Casserole

I had a half of spaghetti squash left over from last night's dinner. And, I happened to get a recipe with out co-op newsletter today for Spaghetti Squash Casserole. I modified it to be vegan.

  • One Spaghetti Squash, cooked
  • One Chopped Med Onion
  • 1/2 container of Toffuti's Cream Cheese (non-hydrogenated)
  • 1/3 c. Soymilk
  • 3 slices cubed bread (I used rye bread)
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • Olive oil

Preheat Oven to 400 F. In a casserole dish, lightly oil the bottom. Add oil to a small frying pan and saute the onions and basil until onions are clear. Add squash and onions to the casserole dish. In a small saucepan add soymilk and cream cheese. Heat on low until cheese mixture is melted, and then add to the casserole dish. Mix well and top with bread cubes. Bake for about 15 mins.

Variations: Add mushrooms, top with shredded cheeze

We ate ours with mashed potatoes and gravy. It was very good! Maybe next time I will add more veggies, but it was great anyway! Very creamy and definite comfort food. I thought the rye bread added a lot of "earthy" flavor to the creamy casserole.

Fall Harvest Baby

We got our food co-op order today. Such a lovely Fall bounty full of squashes! It was so pretty, I had to take a photo with my son. I can't wait to create and test out some recipes for this month's produce box!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Spaghetti Squash Primavera

Don't know what to do with an over abundances of fresh veggies? This is the best dinner to fix such a dilemma! This can use any veggie you want... I used zucchini, bell peppers, garlic, and fresh tomatoes (I would have used an onion if I had one). Toss with a soy cream and add Italian spices and salt and pepper and put over any pasta or spaghetti squash! YUM!

My Fresh Ingredients:
  • One Spaghetti Squash
  • One med-large Zucchini
  • One Clove Garlic
  • 2 Bell Peppers
  • Onion (I would have used one if I had one)
  • 3-4 Fresh Tomatoes
Ingredients for Sauce:
  • Some Olive Oil
  • 1 c. plain soymilk (or non-dairy milk of choice)
  • 1 Tbs. Flour
  • Italian Seasonings (Basil, Oregano, Parsley, etc.. dry or fresh)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut squash in half and take the seeds out. Drizzle olive oil on squash and the cookie sheet and place squash face down onto the sheet. Bake for about 30-40 mins. Meanwhile; saute garlic, onion, zucchini, peppers, and/or whatever veggies you want to cook up (peas, carrots, yellow squash, corn, etc), in olive oil on med-low. Be sure not to over cook. To make the sauce; in a small sauce pan add oil, soymilk, spices and flour, whisk together until blended and turn on heat to med-low. Cook until it turns into a sauce and then add it to the cooked veggies. Mix sauce and veggies until well coated, and then add fresh tomatoes and mix that in together. Let it warm on low.

When the Spaghetti Squash is cooked take it out of the oven and carefully (not to burn yourself!) break apart with a spoon or fork, the squash should resemble noodles. Eat them just like spaghetti noodles and top with primavera sauce. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


OK, I was reading my IRL friend's food blog and I realized I don't really have any sort of introduction or bio of myself, other than that tiny little photo and about me bit on here. So, here it is...

I am Elizabeth (LizzyQ in most online forums), brand new mommy to SebbyDee (nickname from his auntie) as of May 2007. I have been meat free since Jan 1, 2004 as my new year's resolution that I renew every year. I eat vegan most of the time - since I met my hubby- who has been meat free for about 15 years and vegan for 10. I cook vegan at home.

I always knew I wanted to raise my child meat free, but as a independent pre-child woman, I rarely made many meals at home that where 1.) cheap and 2.) unprocessed. My vegetarian cooking is evolving from Tofurky and Boca Burgers to homemade nut loafs and home made soymilk. Adding a touch of comfort food and sometimes a bit of convenience for the busy mom.

Really, I love to cook. I love to create tasty food that veg*ns miss. I am a Southern Girl at heart, living in Mormon-Conservative Suburbia as a little vegan family. It's going to be an interesting life for my dear veggie baby!

Our Vegan Family

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Artichoke, Basil & Pine Nut Pesto

I was in the mood to create a yummy, lightly flavored pesto for dinner last night. Hubby has been out of town working, so I haven't had a chance to cook a great dinner since he's been gone. Now that he is back, it means I get to play more in the kitchen!

Last night's dinner was Artichoke, Basil & Pine Nut Pesto that I made up off the top of my head. It was super yummy, and we had kalamata olive artisan bread on the side (Oh, I love a good bread!).

  • 1 lb spaghetti noodles
  • 1 14oz can water-packed artichokes (drained)
  • 1/2 oz fresh basil (about 15-25 fresh leaves)
  • 1 large clove of garlic (or 2 small cloves)
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 1/8 c. lemon juice
  • 1/4 c. pine nuts

Put water on the stove to boil. In the meantime, with your food processor, blend together all ingredients, except pine nuts until a thick cream. If it is not blending well, add olive oil to loosen mixture. When water boils, cook pasta until done. Drain. Mix with pesto sauce. Add pine nuts and mix. Serve!