appetizers

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower

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I love cauliflower! It is so healthy and so versatile in cooking. So many people have gotten crazy creative with how to use it in cooking and baking. It is so great!!! You can steam it and then throw it in a blender in order to add creaminess to a non dairy soup. You can also make rice or mashed potatoes out of it. Some people are using cauliflower as a pizza crust and many vegan restaurants are making buffalo cauliflower appetizers, which is probably one of my top favorites out there! If you haven’t tried buffalo cauliflower bites, that is a total must!

Cauliflower yields some great nutrients and antioxidants! It is very high in vitamin C! One medium size head is more than your daily intake of Vitamin C needed and is about 11g of protein! It is also high in Vitamin B-6, Potassium, Magnesium, and calcium. Cauliflower contains a good amount of fiber. Fiber is important for digestive health and can even reduce the risk of several chronic diseases, especially those relating to your bowels. It is also high in fiber and antioxidants which are great in helping your body and cells combat disease, such as cancer.

To be completely honest, growing up, I did not care much about cauliflower. I thought it smelled bad and when I grew up it took me a while to get around to cooking it. I had memories from childhood and was slightly scared of it because I didn’t even know where to start in trying to cook this awkwardly hard and  rough plant. Once I got over the hump and cooked it once, I decided it wasn’t so bad. Moral of the story, if you’re like me, and have never cooked with it and are a little frightened, just try making it once or twice and you’ll get the hang of it. The first time I attempted to cook it, I steamed in for about 9 minutes and then threw it into my high speed blender to make a creamy soup. Now, I also enjoy baking it in the oven or chopping it up small and sautéing it. The other night, I finally tried the cauliflower pizza from Trader Joe’s, AND IT CAME OUT BOMB!!! Anyways, we’re talking about baking it, so shall we get to that portion??

Recently, I went to this really great Italian restaurant with some friends. The Cauliflower appetizer, minus the butter it normally would be cooked in, was one of the things I could eat on the menu. Normally it’s made drizzled in butter so I asked the waiter if he’d mind asking the chef to use oliv oil instead. He said, “YES!!!” So the way they prepped it was with chili, oil, and capers. Myself and my non plantbased friends thoroughly enjoyed it. My friends even said they thought it was the best thing out of everything on the table they had eaten! Win! Well… Naturally, I had to make this at home, IMMEDIATELY!! And I did. It’s pretty simple. Here’s the recipe. Enjoy my beautiful friends!!

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Spicy Roasted Cauliflower: 
-1 Head Cauliflower
-3 Tablespoons olive oil
-1 Tablespoon Chili Sauce (I used sambal) you can also use 2 Tablespoons for you spicy lovers!!
-1 teaspoon Pink Himalayan Salt
-1 teaspoon Black Pepper
Method:
-Preheat oven to 425.
– While oven preheats, wash and cut the cauliflower. The way I do it, is by sticking a knife slightly slanted at the base where the root is, almost as if to cut a hole in the bottom. You’re basically trying to take the root out. Once you’ve done that, you can break the pieces off and cut the big pieces into smaller pieces.
-Throw all the pieces into a bowl adding all the ingredients and mix it well to evenly coat the cauliflower. Sometimes adding half the ingredients and mixing, and then adding the rest works a little easier for coating!
-Once the cauliflower is coated, oil a baking pan or dish and put in the oven. Roast for 25 minutes.
-Cauliflower should feel a bit softer. If you like it crunchier, check it at 15-20 minutes.
-Take it out and let it cool. Then top it with capers for an added flavor burst.
-Enjoy.
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appetizers, entrees

Pasta Salad

97C40395-84C4-4B85-9858-3EA2C9596699Im going to be quite frank with you… I LOVE PASTA!! I could eat it with an oil based sauce, such as vegan butter or olive oil, I could do red sauce, pink sauce, cheezy sauce, pesto sauce, etc… So which genius decided to make it cold and add vegetables and serve as a lunch or side??!! I’m going to say, probably a wonderful Italian woman! Maybe I’m wrong, correct me, contact and tell me!!

Anyways, pasta salad… It is a great side dish or even served as lunch! I had it for lunch today and it was super satisfying. It’s been really hot in Southern California and I am not seeing the fun in cooking and baking during the day, so most of my dishes during the day are left overs from the night before, salads, or smoothies and nice cream, hehe.

I made this pasta salad last night and let it sit in the fridge to develop all of the flavors. Sitting overnight with any food is truly my favorite, it soaks up the flavor more and it’s always so easy to place out to eat or warm up, in this case, just get it out of the fridge, it’s suppose to be cold.

The flavors of the Italian dressing and crispy raw vegetables go together so great! The slight tang from the vinegar and flavor from the Italian seasoning is wonderful! I suggest you try this recipe and if you’d like to add anything you’re more than welcome. I mean, at the end of the day, this is a salad and who is to yell you exactly what you can or can’t put in it…???

I love olives and I messed around with a few different kinds. I think my favorite combo was black olives and kalmata olives. Either or would be fine too! If you’d like to add a little vegan cheese or some garbanzo beans for extra protein, GO RIGHT AHEAD! Create that shizzzz!

 

Pasta Salad

-1/2 package Spiral pasta

-3 Green onions or 1/4 white onion

-1 small can Black olives or 1/2 jar Kalmata olives

-1/2 Bell pepper (any color you want)

-5 Tablespoons Italian dressing

-Salt & pepper to taste

*Optional: vegan cheese, kidney beans or garbanzo beans.

Method:

-Cook pasta to package directions, then let it cool down or run it under cold water. 

-While the pasta cooks, chop all the ingredients and place in a bowl and toss with the dressing.

-Once your pasta is cold, toss it with the other ingredients and if you can’t wait, then serve it right away, ORRR for better results, let it sit for 4 hours or overnight.

***If you decide to add the other options I listed, make sure you add those as well! Beans add healthy nutrients and protein!

AND remember: Tag me with your creations, I LOOOOOVE seeing your recipe creations! Peace and Love my friends. ❤️💜🌱🥦💋

 

 

appetizers

Mexican Pan Corn

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Have you ever had Mexican Street Corn?? It has such a nice flavor and it has just a little more complexity than seasoned corn with seasoning salt or garlic salt. I had only had it once, a while ago. I was recently asked to recreate it, so I was up for the challenge of trying something new, that I had never personally made before. I looked up a few non vegan recipes and came up with my own version.

You can totally use canned corn in this recipe, but make sure you look for BPA free cans. Whenever possible, I try to cook with fresh ingredients. So I used fresh corn on the cob from the local farmers market. I do realize that canned corn is slightly faster and easier, so please do whatever feels best to you. At the end of the day, I want to provide yummy and helpful recipes to get you to the next level of health. Lets make this fun and easy!

One note I would like to make about this recipe, is to play around with the different vegan cheeses. I used a store bought shredded cheese because I didn’t have anything like Cotija cheese, which most recipes call for. I am sure there is something similar in the stores, something more dense and crumbly. Or I’m sure that there is a way to make something like the cheese, but for this recipe I just wanted to create something similar to enjoy. Again, you are the creator now, you can play and change as you see fit.

Corn is high in fiber and rich in Vitamin A, B, E and minerals. Because corn is nutrient dense and full of antioxidants and fiber, it can help prevent disease and keep a healthy lifestyle. Corn is so versatile, we eat it in stir fry, tortilla chips, and tacos. I love plain old corn on the cob, with a little drizzle of Vegan butter and salt. Changing it up and making Mexican corn will add some awesome flavor to your life. I don’t mind eating the same things over and over, especially when they’re tasty, I know they’re nutrient dense, and that they’re good for me. But, why not make something slightly different every once in a while? Go ahead, try this one out. Take your taste buds for a little ride!

When creating recipes try to be aware of what cookware you are using. There are so many toxic chemicals that can be leached into our foods, using the right utensils can help in one aspect of chemicals finding their way into our body. Traditional non-stick coatings are manufactured with chemicals harmful to you and the environment. I like to use //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=thesuperfoodg-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B00JXOA59U&asins=B00JXOA59U&linkId=dd93763cb3d6c257bb4b54a72a4979d9&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>Ceramic non-stick cookware, because it is high heat resistant, it doesn’t chip, and it will not leach toxins into your food. The Pan I am using currently is //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=thesuperfoodg-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B00N5F9NMS&asins=B00N5F9NMS&linkId=e48dfa1c73d37cb15136c6abce2259dd&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff“>GreenLife.

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Mexican Pan Corn

4 Cups Corn (Cut from about 4 ears, or canned)

Tablespoon butter

1 Tablespoon Mayonnaise

1/4 Teaspoon Salt

1/2 teaspoon chili Powder

Pinch of cayenne

1 Tablespoon Lime Juice

2 Tablespoons finely chopped Red onion

1/4 Cup cheese

1/4 Cup Cilantro

Method:

-If using fresh corn, remove the kernels and set aside.

-Heat the butter in the pan, then add the Corn, Mayonnaise, chili powder, cayenne, and salt. Stir on and off for 3 minutes.

-Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. Add the lime juice, red onion, cheese, cilantro, and toss.

-Serve with extra lime wedges and cilantro for garnish.

Enjoy!!

Love, Stephie XoXo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

appetizers, entrees

Indian Nachos!!

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Say what??!! Indian inspired nachos. Yes, I said what you read, Indian Inspired nachos!! As some of you may have noticed by now, I WILL do whatever I can for an excuse to make and enjoy nachos! I also like to be different, and I like a challenge. So of course, why not take so many of our favorite dish, nachos, and use different flavors? I recently found this fantastic company Maya Kaimal, who I will be doing a product review in more depth shortly on another post, and I thought, “I am going to use one of their wonderful simmer sauces and flavor some yummy veggies, then throw them onto chickpea chips with vegan cheese!!! Whoo hoo!!

The first year of becoming vegan, I was holding onto some of my favorite meals pretty strong. So you can bet that Plant based nachos, caesar salad, pizza, burgers, and mac & cheese were constantly in the mix. Of course, all of these things are still highly processed. So once I got use to being plant based and I felt more knowledgable, I felt more comfortable to branch out and try less processed meals. I started using more whole foods and beans or lentils to substitute for “meat.” Beans and mushrooms have a meaty like texture, or at least the firmness some of us crave in a meal. I find when it looks and feels similar with colors & texture and it has a great seasoning and flavor, it makes it easier to be satisfied with meals we are use to eating.

I took some vegetables that I am use to eating with Indian food, like cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, and garbanzos and sautéed them with Maya Kaimal’s Simmer Sauce! It is so easy because the flavor is already all there in the sauce, SO DELICIOUS! All you have to do is chop the vegetables, add the simmer sauce, cook, and then plate over the chips and cheese. It is just a fun spin on your usual Indian dish with just rice or potatoes.

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Indian Nachos

Ingredients:

-1/2 Medium Onion

– 2 Cloves Garlic

-1 Tablespoon Coconut oil

-1/2 Cauliflower Head

-1/2 Broccoli

-1/2 Bell Pepper

-1 Yellow Zucchini

-1 Can Garbanzo beans

-1 Jar of Maya Kaimal’s Madras Curry Simmer Sauce (or if you find another flavor of their many flavors, use that)

-Shredded Mozzerella (Or any other dairy free cheese you like)

-1 Bag of chickpea chips

Method:

-Chop all the veggies in smaller portions so they fall over the chips better. Start to sauté the Onions until translucent (about 3-5 minutes on medium heat). Then add the garlic to the onions and sauté for 2 more minutes. Add the broccoli and cauliflower and sauté for another 8 minutes.

-Add Zucchini, Simmer sauce,  bell pepper, beans and sauté for another 10 minutes.

-While the vegetables and sauce are simmering, in between stirring every 2 minutes, start plating them chips. Get a nice pile of chips and either sprinkle the cheese on top of the chips, so that when you put the hot topping on it melts, or just add it to the mix of vegetables. Either way is fine and up to you. Own it! Enjoy it. Be proud you made something new and fun!

Love, Always, Stephie <3

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entrees

Labor Day and Summer BBQ

Summer lovin’ happened soooooo fast! And I’m havin’ a blaaaast…. something like that?? Haha.

Labor Day is upon us. I know that means get togethers, BBQs, fun, laughter, and tons of food. Yum! My favorite, FOOD, and good food that will nourish me in the correct way as to fuel me through the day. Why not try something new this year and dabble with some plant based products and add them to the mix. Many people are starting to eat more consciously so if your hosting or adding to a party, it’s not a bad idea to get your plant based options in line.

Everyone loves a great grilled burger right?! I really enjoy the, Beyond Meat, patty, which grills nicely and packs a 23 grams of protein punch. Make it a cheese burger with, Follow Your Heart, sliced cheese. I don’t mind if you even grill up some onions & mushrooms, sliced tomatoes, and avocado for the win. I mean, bye, you can find me in heaven after that.

I also really enjoy, Lifelight, hotdogs if your hot like that. Again, grill those up and top em with you favorite toppings, like grilled onions, bell peppers, or sauerkraut, if your into a little probiotics while you party. If you want gluten free hotdog or hamburger buns you can go to a specialty store like Whole Foods, or sometimes Sprouts and Trader Joe’s will have them too. I’m happy to help this grilling season, you can message me and ask for other tips if you need them. I’m happy to help! Happy summer loves.