Quinoa Salad with Fresh Fruits and Ponzu Vinaigrette

Quinoa Salad with Fresh Fruits and Ponzu Vinaigrette
Quinoa Salad with Fresh Fruits and Ponzu Vinaigrette | veganblonde.com

This is great potluck food. And with Mother’s Day this weekend, what better thing to bring over than a healthy, tasty, and fresh quinoa salad? The dish can be made ahead of time, without the vinaigrette, and kept refrigerated until serving time. Just toss with the made-ahead vinaigrette before serving.

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa, from 1 dry cup (I cook 1 cup and keep the leftovers for another dish)
  • 3 large kale leaves, cut in a chiffonade
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice, separated
  • 1 ear fresh corn, shucked
  • 1 apple, cored and diced
  • 1 pear, cored and diced
  • 1 mango, diced (or about 1 cup)
  • 1/3 cup red onion, diced small
  • 1/3 cup pecans, toasted
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons ponzu
  • 1 teaspoon ume plum vinegar (you can use red wine vinegar)
  • Sea salt and fresh pepper

In a large salad bowl, place the kale, and add 1 tablespoon lime juice. Massage the kale with your hands about 1 minute. Add the quinoa, corn, apple, pear, mango, red onion, and toasted pecans. Mix well.

In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, ponzu, 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, and vinegar. Season well with sea salt and pepper. If you are serving right away, pour the vinaigrette over the salad and mix well. If you are wanting to bring your dish somewhere or eat later, store the salad and the vinaigrette in the fridge separately, and toss right before serving.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

Banza Ziti Bolognese with Italian Sausage

Banda Ziti Bolognese with Italian Sausage
Banza Ziti Bolognese with Italian Sausage | veganblonde.com

Get on the Banza wagon with this fabulous au gratin pasta dish. You can get close to 40 grams of protein in one large serving of this dish! It’s easy, decadent, and plantifully nutritious!

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 celery rib, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 can tomato paste
  • 2 28-oz cans Italian tomatoes (crushed with your hands)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 cup red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup TVP (textured vegetable protein)
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 Field Roast Italian sausages, sliced into 1/4″ rounds
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 package Banza Ziti, undercooked by 2-3 minutes
  • 1/2 wheel mozzarella (I love Miyoko’s)
  • Fresh basil
  • Nutritional yeast (optional)

In a large straight-edge skillet, heat up the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic, and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the tomato paste, and let it take some color, about 2-3 minutes. Once it’s darker and fragrant, add the crushed tomatoes, oregano, garlic and onion powder, cinnamon, maple syrup, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Let simmer and reduce, over medium-low heat, until the sauce is fragrant and tasty, about 40 minutes, stirring often and adjusting the heat, if necessary. Once the sauce is reduced, add the broth and the TVP, and combine until rehydrated. Add the Italian sausage and the cooked pasta, and heat through.

Preheat broiler. To assemble, place the pasta in an oven-proof baking dish (at least 2.2 quarts). Spread your mozzarella on top and transfer to the oven. Broil until the cheese is bubbly and brown. Take out of the oven and let cool for a few minutes before serving, garnished with fresh basil and nutritional yeast.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

All that goodness in one dish! | veganblonde.com
All that goodness in one dish! | veganblonde.com

 

 

Vegetable Biryani (or Pulao)

Vegetable Biryani (or Pulao) | veganblonde.com
Vegetable Biryani (or Pulao) | veganblonde.com

This is it! The meal of all meals, the ultimate rice dish: the BIRYANI! You will often hear people using the word pulao to describe this dish. Some people say there is a difference between the two, some people say they’re fundamentally the same, but now present regional differences. Either way, the dish is fragrant and fabulous, like most Indian dishes, and is made using only one pot, which is pretty cool, if you want my opinion!

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 6 green cardamom pods, cracked open
  • 5 cloves
  • 4 star anise pods
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 1 whole nutmeg seed, smashed
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, cut in half
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 5 cups mixed vegetables (here I had potatoes, carrots, greens beans, and sweet peas)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic-ginger paste
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, minced
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala
  • 4 1/2 cups basmati rice, rinsed and drained

Preheat oven to 400°. In a large oven-roof soup pot with a lid, or large Dutch oven, heat the coconut oil over medium-high heat. Add the cardamom pods, cloves, star anise pods, cinnamon, nutmeg, and jalapeño peppers, and sauté until fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Add the onion and the bay leaf, and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the turmeric and sea salt, and continue cooking for two more minutes.

Add the vegetables, garlic-ginger paste, 6 cups water, coconut milk, cilantro, and garam masala, and bring to a boil. Taste the broth and adjust seasonings, if necessary. Add the rice and return to a boil while stirring. Cover, transfer to the oven, and cook for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let steam 10 minutes. Serve with fresh cilantro, raita, and other curries.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

There's really nothing like a warming Indian dish! #THEVeganBlonde
There’s really nothing like a warming Indian dish! #THEVeganBlonde

 

Maple and Grapefruit Caramelized Carrots

Maple and Grapefruit Caramelized Carrots
Maple and Grapefruit Caramelized Carrots | veganblonde.com

It’s carrot time! At the farmers market, you’ll find many varieties, many colors, all sorts of shapes, but most importantly, the freshest taste! When in season and fresh, carrots don’t need much to be fabulous. And since we have plenty of grapefruits around here right now, I figured that grapefruit juice would be the perfect balance to my maple syrup in this decadent glaze. Beware, you’ll seriously lick the glaze off your plate.

  • 2 tablespoons butter (I love Miyoko’s!)
  • 1 bunch market-fresh carrots
  • 1/2 cup fresh grapefruit juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste
  • Fresh thyme sprigs

In a large cast iron skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, lower the heat to medium, season with sea salt and pepper, and let cook, tossing often, for approximately 6-7 minutes, depending on the size and shape of your carrots. The goal here is to soften the carrots.

Add the grapefruit juice and the maple syrup. Toss well so all the carrots are coated. Cook until the liquid turns into a glaze, about 15 minutes. Coat the carrots with the glaze using a spoon often while cooking. Remove to a serving platter, garnish with fresh thyme sprigs and a small pinch of sea salt, and serve immediately.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

Mushrooms, Spinach, and Ginger Savory Oatmeal

Mushroom, Spinach, and Ginger Savory Oatmeal
Mushroom, Spinach, and Ginger Savory Oatmeal | veganblonde.com

I started experimenting with savory versions of oatmeal, and to my astonishment, it’s SO GOOD! Oats lend themselves so nicely to pretty much any flavor, and their nutritional value can’t be beat. Try it with any type of toppings you’d like and let me know how you like your #savoryoatmeal!

  • 1 cup old fashion oats
  • 2 cups water, plus 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (I used vegetable broth and omitted the salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 2 large shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tablespoon tamari
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup spinach leaves, sliced thin
  • 3-4 dried plums, diced (I used Fruit Bliss® plums because they’re simply the best)
  • Toasted sesame oil, for serving

Cook the oats in the water (or vegetable broth) until they get soft and chewy. While the oats are cooking, warm the olive oil in a skillet. Add the mushrooms and ginger and sauté for one minute. Add the tamari and red pepper flakes, and cook until the mushrooms are nice and brown, about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat, add the spinach, and mix well.

Transfer the oats to a bowl, top with the mushroom and spinach mixture and some plums, and top with a small drizzle of toasted sesame oil.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

Hooray for Savory Oatmeal!

Hooray for Savory Oatmeal!

Black and Green Beans Zoodles

Black and Green Beans Zoodles
Black and Green Beans Zoodles | veganblonde.com

It’s almost 5pm and you have no idea what dinner will be. Panic? No way. Make this. Easy, super quick, and modifiable, for your ultimate cooking pleasure. I couldn’t be more serious.

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup green beans, cut in 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1″ piece fresh ginger, smashed (optional)
  • 1″ piece fresh turmeric, smashed (optional)
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 full cup of kale, in a chiffonade
  • 4 zucchini, spiralized
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Fresh herbs, olive oil, lemon juice (for my go-to vinaigrette, click here)

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions, bell pepper, green beans, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and generous pinches of sea salt and pepper. Sauté until the vegetables are starting to soften, 3-4 minutes. Add the beans and kale, and heat through. Take off the heat. Place zoodles at the bottom of a shallow bowl and top with the beans mixture. Top with fresh herbs, olive oil, and lemon juice, or your favorite vinaigrette.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!

Basic Herbs Vinaigrette

Whenever you make a bowl, or a salad, or some roasted potatoes, you can use this fool-proof vinaigrette. You can add fresh garden herbs to it, some capers, even some hot pepper flakes or sriracha for an extra kick!

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 heaping tablespoon fresh garden herbs (optional)
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Whisk all the ingredients in a small bowl.

Let me know if you try this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo using #THEVeganBlonde on Instagram. Bon appétit!