Monday, October 25, 2010

Veggie Spring Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce

I LOVE spring rolls. They're like tasty little hand-held salads that you dip into peanut sauce.

But access to them are seriously lacking in my remote mountain locale. So when I finally learned to make them I was pleased to find out how easy, and cheap, they really are to make at home.

Start with a package of spring roll wrappers. These things, by any account, look like anything BUT food. But trust me, you've got it right. They look like this:

Soak one sheet in a plate full of water, submerged, until soft, about 1 minute or so. Then, being careful not to overlap the slippery, delicate rice paper, lay it on a clean, dry plate. Fill as you would a burrito, with your choice of toppings. I used spinach, carrot sticks, celery sticks, bell pepper slices, grated zucchin and micro-green sprouts.

Then fold in the ends and roll carefully. Continue this process until you have enough spring rolls to feed your hungry hoard. Serve with peanut dipping sauce, if you like.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pesto Pasta with Tofu Cutlets

This recipe is so easy it almost doesn't even need a recipe. But here's how I did it:

Cook spaghetti according to package directions.
You can find the recipe for my walnut pesto here or use your favorite pre-made pesto. Mix 1/3 cup of pesto to your pasta and top with parmesan cheese (optional).

Tofu Cutlets
Vegan Version: press slices of extra firm tofu into bread crumbs and fry on each side until browned.

Vegetarian version: dip each slice into a bowl of beaten eggs, then dip into bread crumbs. Fry until browned on each side or bake at 375 until browned, turning once.

Serve with your favorite vegetables!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Leftover Night = Lentil Hodgepodge

Sometimes you find yourself with a bunch of leftovers and end up with....a really tasty meal! I used some leftover brown rice, sauteed it up with fresh mixed greens, a bit of oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper and topped it with.....

Yup, leftover lentils, tomatoes and avocado. It was so simple, fast and so so yummy! Some of my best meals have come from leftovers. This one will definitely be a future make-on-purpose meal!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Veggie Sausage and Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash

I'm not a huge fan of veggie sausages but I recently found that Trader Joe's makes a mean italian version that is pretty darn tasty. If you don't prefer to use veggie sausages, you can always substitute zucchini instead.

You will need:

2 acorn squash, halved
1 onion, chopped
2 ribs of celery, chopped
2 sausages, sliced into half moons
1 large apple, chopped
butter or alternative
salt and pepper to taste

Saute the ingredients (except the acorn squash) in a bit of olive oil, until the onion is soft. Brush the tops and insides of the acorn squash with olive oil and then fill them with the apple/veggie mix. Top each with a small pat of butter.

Bake at 375 for an 75 minutes, or until the squash is soft.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Eggplant Parmesan

1 large eggplant, sliced thinly
1 cup bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten **
pasta noodles of your choice
mozzarella cheese (optional)
pasta sauce of your choice
**I've made this dish vegan before as well, the only difference is you will skip the egg wash and replace it with non-flavored soymilk, continue as directed and opt out any cheese topping.

Coat each slice of eggplant in egg wash and then coat with bread crumbs. Place on oiled cookie sheet and bake at 350, turning once. Place mozzarella on top of eggplant and heat until the underside of the eggplant is crispy and the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Cook noodles according to package directions. Top noodles with sauce, layering the eggplant on top, and dolloping with a bit more sauce.

Serve next to your favorite veggies: here we used steamed asparagus, topped with lemon juice, salt and pepper.