Tag Archives: Recipe

Lentil, Mushroom, and Eggplant Chili Mole

29 Sep


Thanks again Appetite for Reduction for this great recipe and inspiration!

serves 6, active time 15 minutes, total time 1 hour

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, cut into medium dice
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into medium dice
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon mild chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup dried green lentils, washed
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • One (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 pounds eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 package of diced baby bella mushrooms!
  • 2 teaspoons amber agave nectar or pure maple syrup
  • Cilantro, for garnish


Preheat a 4-quart pot over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions and bell pepper in the oil until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute, using nonstick cooking spray or a splash of water if it’s sticking. Mix in the chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano, cinnamon, and salt. Add n cup of the vegetable broth and the cocoa powder, and cook for about 1 more minute while stirring to dissolve the cocoa. 

Add the lentils, remaining vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, and eggplant. Cover the pot and bring the mixture to a boil, keeping a close eye on it. Once it’s boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cook for about 40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender and the eggplant is soft. Mix in the agave. Taste for salt and seasoning

Let the chili sit for 10 minutes or so for maximum flavor. Serve garnished with cilantro, if you like. 

Serve with Vegan Cornbread  (I added jalapeno and scallions to this recipe for a kick!)

For more Vegan inspiration and recipes, check out my 30-day challenge!

Vegan Week 1

Vegan Week 2


Lasagna with Roasted Cauliflower Ricotta and Spinach

29 Sep

Below is Isa’s recipe with my tweaks! This is such a great take on lasagna, LOVE!


serves 6, active time 45 minutes, total time 1 1/2 hours

The Roasted Cauliflower Ricotta:

  • 1 medium-size head cauliflower (11/2 to 2 pounds), chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound extra-firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Several pinches of freshly ground black pepper 

The Red Sauce:

  • One (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes with basil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme (I also added some fresh chopped  basil)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 

To Assemble:

  • 8 ounces lasagna noodles, broken in half, cooked in salted water (I used a peppercorn trio lasagna noodle from Papardelles Pasta in Colorado…next time I’ll try their roasted red pepper lasagna noodle)
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach (I also added some fresh kale and roasted garlic cloves and sautéed the spinach and kale first with some onion)
  • 1/4 cup chopped black olives 

The Process:

 First, we’ll roast the cauliflower. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper; that way the cauliflower won’t stick. Place the cauliflower on the sheet and drizzle the oil over it. Spray it with nonstick cooking spray and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Toss it with your hands to make sure everything is salted. Spread the cauliflower in a single layer and bake for 10 minutes, then flip it with a spatula. You don’t have to flip each and every one, so don’t get OCD about it. Bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned, tender, and toasty. Get your water boiling for your lasagna noodles at the same time you preheat the oven…this will save you prep time.

In the meantime, crumble the tofu into a mixing bowl. Use your hands to mash the tofu, squeezing it between your fingers, until it has the consistency of ricotta cheese. Add the nutritional yeast, lemon juice, pepper, and remaining salt. Use a fork to mix well.

When the cauliflower is done, transfer it to the mixing bowl with the tofu mixture. Use a potato masher to mash it really well, for a minute or so. If it doesn’t seem to be mashing enough with the potato masher, a few pulses in the food processor (food processor was how I did it) should get it nice and crumbly. Set aside. 

To prepare the sauce, mix all its ingredients together and set aside.

 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Pour a thin layer of red sauce on the bottom of an 8-inch square casserole. Line with a layer of noodles. Spread with one-third of the cauliflower ricotta. Layer with 3/4 cup of spinach leaves. Pour on about a cup of sauce.

 Repeat the process one more time, creating another identical layer, starting with the noodles. For the top layer it’s just a little different: Layer with noodles, pour the sauce on first, then layer with ricotta. This layer doesn’t get any spinach. Sprinkle with a (generous) layer of (black) olives and press it into the tofu. 

Bake for 40 minutes, until the top is browned. You can serve it immediately or let it cool down for a bit first, whatever floats your boat! 

 What do you think of this take on cheese????

For more Vegan inspiration and recipes, check out my 30-day challenge!

Vegan Week 1

Vegan Week 2

Coconut Soy Banana Pancakes

15 Sep

This is so easy and such a yummy breakfast option.


2 c  heart healthy bisquick

2 eggs

splash of mexican vanilla

1 c soy milk

1/2 c sliced bananas

Earth balance coconut spread

Use coconut spread as your oil. Get your pan nice and hot and add a few banana slices to the pan. Pour about 1/4 c batter on top on bananas and wait until the batter starts to bubble. FLIP AND REPEAT!

Re-coconut the pan in between pancakes. Serve with extra banana slices and some maple agave nectar.

Grilled Chicken Caprese Sandwich

30 Aug

Before summer is officially over I urge you to enjoy a simple grilled sandwich out on your porch. Accompany with a little red wine, great conversation, and some fabulous music. Finish with a square of organic dark chocolate for dessert.

Grilled Chicken Caprese Sandwich

serves 2

1 demi loaf of crusty french bread

2 vine ripened tomatoes, sliced

fresh basil

.5lbs of thinly fileted organic chicken, seasoned with S+P

sliced  organic mozzerella cheese

balsamic drizzle to taste

Drizzle your bread with a little EVOO, grill your chicken, and then layer all ingredients on the bread with cheese on top. Shut the grill, let the magic happen, plate and drizzle with balsamic.

I served with grilled artichokes. YUM!

Indian Night! Madras Tomato and Eggplant Curry with Onion Kulchas

2 Aug

I love making Indian Food! It’s all about tasting and tweaking. I typically improvise with seasonings and ingredients, and I have yet to follow a recipe to the “T”. Today I made some indian flat breads called kulchas-easy and dont require yeast, some tofu palak paneer (see in my archives), and a dish I created for the first time which I will call a Madras Tomato and Eggplant Curry. It all came out great with plenty of sauce for bread dipping.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Madras Eggplant and Mushroom Curry

note: with the spices, keep tasting and add or subtract amount to suit YOUR taste buds 🙂 Indian food allows the inexperienced cook some creative liberty and makes cooking more fun!

1 small yellow onion diced
1 small eggplant chopped into small cubes
5-6 diced cremini mushrooms
1/4 c raisins
1-2 TB green chili diced (hatch chillies work great!)
1 TB Madras Curry Seasoning
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala powder
Salt to taste
Top with crunchy toasted almond slivers

Onion Kulchas

Here is the recipe I have used both times I made kulchas.

Onion Kulcha Recipe

I am no baker, but in my opinion this was easy. I have tried both the broil and stovetop method to cook, and the stovetop is the clear winner for me. This past time I broiled my kulchas and they came out too hard and crunchy for my taste. When cooked on the stovetop with a little ghee (clarified butter…you could just use regular butter too)they stay doughy and maleable.


6 Feb

Giardiniera. I absolutely love this stuff. It tastes fantastic on sandwiches and eggs, and is a great condiment for hot dogs and burgers. The options are endless, and if you like spicy with a tang, then this is definitely worth the time it takes to prepare.

Once you get good and have tweaked this recipe to your taste, you can begin to think about preserving and gifting it. I made a half dozen and gifted them to my family and friends for Christmas this past year!

What you will need:

6 serrano peppers sliced thin
1/2 can water chestnuts diced
3 stalks of celery sliced
1 carrot peeled and diced
1/2 head cauliflower, i liked to use the stems too for crunch
1/2 c red pepper diced
1 jalapeno diced (this makes it quite spicy, so leave out if you like something with medium heat)

1/2 cup salt
4 cloves garlic, diced
4 teaspoons dried oregano, or fresh herbs always if you have them!
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon celery seeds
black pepper to taste
1 1/2 cup white vinegar
1 1/2 cup Canola oil

Place all the chopped vegetables into a large bowl, pour in salt and mix until coated. Cover the veggies with cold water, and let soak overnight in the fridge, or for at least 12 hours. I usually use sea salt and it comes out great!

Strain veggies and rinse to remove excess salt, and portion them into jars or tupper ware. Combine spices in one bowl and oil and vinegar in another. Slowly whisk spices into oil/vinegar. Pour this combined mixture over the veggies and refrigerate for at least 48hrs to allow flavors to develop.

This will stay for 2-4 weeks. I love to puree some of this in the summertime to serve with hotdogs and brats on the grill; makes a really great spicy relish 🙂

Quiche is what’s for dinner!

1 Feb

My memory of a wintry day in Paris last December, the quiche was soft and fluffy, so rich and satisfying, and perfectly paired with a floral and fruity refreshing carafe of white French table wine! C’est la vie! My version has WAY less calories, but still hits the spot and leaves you feeling great after. I like to serve with sliced vine-ripe tomatoes sprinkled with sea salt, cracked pepper, and a side salad.


Meg’s Healthy Quiche

Preheat oven to 375

1 Wholly Wholesome Whole Wheat Pie Crust

Pre-bake crust for 10-15 minutes, then set aside

2 eggs

1/4 c Egg whites

1/4 c Nonfat half &half (or milk)

Fresh cilantro, a small handful, chopped

2-3 green onions chopped

1 tsp Red pepper flakes

Pinch of Sea S+P

Whisk above ingredients together, set aside

5 Baby portabella mushrooms chopped (or any variety)

1/2 Yellow onion diced

3 Heads garlic, minced

Broccoli, diced

½ c Shredded kale

1 Bunch Green onions, chopped

½ c Low Fat or Fat Free Ricotta

¼ c Reduced fat feta

1 tb Herbs de Provence

Sauté onions, garlic, mushrooms, and kale in a little olive oil and season with Sea S +P. Add broccoli -don’t cook so it is still crunchy, just let it hang in the heat of the pan, and toss in crumbled feta and set aside. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese and Herbs de Provence until blended well. Slowly whisk egg batter into the ricotta cheese. Now, fold the vegetables into the cheesy egg mix and spread evenly into the pre-heated pie crust. (if you don’t have Herbs de Provence, just make your own! http://homecooking.about.com/od/allherbrecipes/r/blherb9.htm

Now, pour egg mixture on top of cheese and veggies.

Bake quiche at 375 for 45-60 minutes, or until egg is cooked through. Top with a little extra feta and let sit under broiler until cheese in browned.