Food  Salad


The reason I wanted to include a food page on my website is because I have found, stolen, or made up quite a number of pretty amazing vegan recipes (being vegan myself) and I want to share those with whoever is interested.  Most if not all of the recipes below are fast and easy.  As I make each recipe, I'll try to photograph it, so I can include pictures of each dish along with the recipe.  Bear with me--it may be a little while before they're all there.  Please share your vegan recipes with me as well, at rbillo@u.washington.edu .  If they make their way into my regular "repertoire" I'll include them on this page.


Click on the links below to jump to a particular section, or simply scroll down to browse through the recipes.

Soups
    Avocado Soup
    Tomato Rice Soup with Garlic and Herbs
Salads
    Avocado Potato Salad
    'Cumber-Onion Salad
    Kale Salad
    Salad Dressing
Entrees
    Alpine Goulash
    French Lentil Sauce
    Fusilli with pate' d'oliva and grilled vegetables
    Raw Sauce
Desserts
    Blackberry Sorbet
    Mango-Pineapple Sorbet


SOUPS

Avocado Soup Avocado Soup

Jonathan and I encountered this soup in a funky little restaurant called Juicy Jones in Barcelona, Spain (the picture to the left is from the restaurant).  I decided to try to recreate it when we got home.  I've played around with various different options and this is the one I like the best. In the picture it looks rather yellowish, but it looks greener and more avocado-like when you make it fresh.  Adding more water after you blend it initially is how you avoid feeling like you're eating guacamole with a spoon.... not that that would be such a bad thing!!

Ingredients:
    2 ripe avocados
    water
    half a cucumber (optional)
    small bunch of cilantro
    juice from one lime
    2 heaping Tbsp.  McKay's chicken style seasoning (or chicken-style broth seasoning)
    salt
    pepper

Peel and pit the avocados and place the avocado meat into a blender with the cilantro and the lime juice (set some cilantro aside as a serving garnish if desired).  For a standard size blender, fill with water to within an inch and a half of the top of the blender and blend to a puree.  Place puree in other container and stir in several more cups of water (until you reach the desired consistency--it should be somewhere between a puree and a broth).  Chop up cucumber into small pieces and mix into the soup (at Juicy Jones they had chunks of avocado in the soup, but there's kind of enough avocado already, and the cucumber freshens it up a lot).  Salt and pepper to taste.  Serve chilled with a floating cucumber slice and cilantro as garnish.  Serves 4 to 5 people.

Tomato Rice Soup Tomato Rice Soup with Garlic and Herbs

This is an adaptation of a recipe from the Williams-Sonoma Kitchen Library.  It's so easy and yummy!  The key is to use fresh tomatoes, and to cook the rice separately, adding it in at the end.

3 Tbsp.     olive oil
1/2 c.         garlic cloves, halved (basically a whole head, plus some....  sometimes I put in 2 whole heads)
1                small yellow onion
2 1/2 c.     chopped tomatoes (fresh or canned)    ok, the fresh make the difference here... don't use canned unless you're desparate.
3 c.            chicken-style broth
1 1/2 c.      cooked brown rice
                        (cook in separate pot :  1 1/2 c. water, 3/4 c. rice, add salt and bay leaves, cook on low 45 min. or as per directions on rice package)
3 Tbsp.     mixed chopped fresh parsley and chives--again, fresh makes the difference.  Dried herbs will totally change the flavor of the soup
1 bundle    fresh oregano, thyme, sage--just tie them with string or with a twist tie, chuck them in and pull them out when the soup is finished.
1/4 c.        fruity red wine such as Cotes du Rhone or Zinfandel
1 Tbsp.     red wine vinager (or lemon juice works just as well)
to taste      salt and freshly ground pepper

Start the rice cooking at least one hour before you intend to serve the meal.  About 30 min. before mealtime, begin the following:  In a heavy saucepan over very low heat, warm the olive oil.  Add the garlic and onion and saute', stirring, until soft, about 15 minutes.  Add the tomatoes, herb bundle and chicken-style broth and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.  Add the chopped parsley and chives, vinager, red wine, cooked rice and salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer for 4-5 minutes.  Ladle into individual bowls and serve immediately.

SALADS

Avocado Potato Salad with green beans Avocado Potato Salad

2 lbs.     small red potatoes
1/2         ripe avocado
2            medium Walla Walla sweet onions
3 Tbsp.   freshly squeezed lemon juice
olive oil
bundle of fresh dill
Salt and freshly ground  pepper to taste.


Preheat oven to 350 F.  Punch the potatoes with a fork (leave them whole), and drizzle lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt. Place in oven on a flat pan (a cookie sheet works great).  Bake for 35 to 40 min. or until soft to the center.  Do not overbake.  Set potatoes aside to cool.  In a blender, place the half avocado, lemon juice, fresh dill, and 3 tsp. olive oil. Blend and then salt and pepper to taste.  Chop sweet onion, and cut potatoes as desired ( I like cutting them in round slices).  Mix potatoes, onions, and dressing together in a medium sized bowl.  Serve chilled.  Salad serves 4 people.

  Cucumber onion salad                                             

'Cumber-Onion Salad

Easy, easy, easy, and one of the greatest summer salads, especially when you have fresh garden veggies!

1        Walla Walla sweet onion
1        Large cucumber
2         Large ripe tomatoes
2        Lemons, freshly squeezed
3 Tbsp. olive oil
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
dill (fresh, if you have it)

Chop onion, cucumber and tomato, toss together with other ingredients, and serve.  We love to make this salad when we eat corn on the cob.  Yummmmmm!

Kale Salad Kale Salad

I think we learned of this recipe from my mom one Thanksgiving.  Since kale is one of the most healthy things on the planet, this salad makes for one delicious way to get it into your diet.  Plus, the color of this salad is stunning!

2 bunches of kale
2 pkgs. cherry or grape tomatoes (more tomatoes always makes it more fun, too!)
1 c. sunflower seeds (or heck, make it 2 c.--the more the merrier!)
1/4 c. sesame seeds
4 Tbsp.  sesame oil
1 Tbsp.  olive oil
4 Tbsp.  freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 fresh garlic clove, crushed
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Chop the kale very fine (to save yourself about 2 hrs. just whiz it in a food processor, it works great!)  Wash and cut the tomatoes in half and mix in with chopped kale.  Roast the sunflower seeds in a dry frying pan over meduim heat, stirring constantly until brown.  Pour immediately out of hot pan into salad bowl.  For a particularly cool effect, pour on top of chopped kale, and it will sizzle for you a bit (...small pleasures, you know!)  Mix rest of ingredients in separate small bowl and whisk with fork until well blended.  Pour into salad and mix well.  Room temperature is best for this salad.  If you are making it early, keep in fridge until an hour or so before the meal.   Serves 4.

Salad Dressing

This recipe makes quite a bit of dressing--perfect for a big salad for company.  If you have leftovers, it keeps quite well in the fridge for a week or so.  

1/2 c.     dark olive oil
1/2 c.     fresh squeezed lemon juice (or any citrus juice)
a splash of balsamic vinager
1 to 4 cloves garlic
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
leaves from one bundle of fresh basil (yes, the fresh basil is MUCH better!)

Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.  You can also just chop the basil and garlic, rather than blending,  for a chunkier dressing.  Toss with salad before serving, or serve on the side.

Seasonal options:
for summer salad (with tomatoes, cukes, etc.) add  about 1/4 c. tomato substance--this can be anything from V8 juice, to canned tomatoes, to fresh tomatoes, to leftover raw sauce (see recipe below)

for winter salad (with mandarin oranges, grapefruit, cranberries, etc.) add a cup of frozen rasperries instead of tomato stuff.

ENTREES

Alpine GoulashAlpine Goulash (backpacker's fare)

I'm adding this kind of as a joke, but actually, this is quite an amazing meal when you're out in the wilderness.  I've even been tempted to make it at home when I'm feeling particularly lazy, although I've never actually done it!!  So we admit that it's kind of crazy to pack in fresh avocados, but what can I say--it's REALLY GOOD!!  When it comes to backpacking, you trade the luxury of a light pack for other kinds of luxuries--in this case, a darn good meal.....


Backpacker's Pantry meal "Santa Fe Black Beans and Rice"
Just Corn
Just Tomatoes
Just Carrots
Just Bell Peppers
1 fresh, ripe avocado

Start with "Santa Fe Black Beans and Rice"--a freeze-dried meal from Backpacker's Pantry, which you can buy at REI and possibly other places as well.  Follow instructions on package, except that before you pour the boiling water into the package, add a handful of each of the following:  Just Corn, Just Bell Peppers, Just Tomatoes, and Just Carrots.  (The 'Just Veggies' brand of freeze dried food is available at Whole Foods, REI, and other locations.)  Right before eating, add a fresh avocado, cut up however you like it.  Yes, we pack in fresh avocados, so call us mad if you want!  

French Lentil Sauce

This recipe is from The Voluptuous Vegan, a must-have cookbook.  I got my copy at the local bookstore, but you can also find it in the usual places on the web.  We serve this sauce over brown rice and it is quite amazing.  It's another one of those staples that we eat around here a lot.  The thing that makes it so stellar is the fresh herbs, so don't skimp there--make the effort!

1 c. French lentils
5 c. water
1 bay leaf
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
small bundle of fresh thyme
4 sprigs of sage
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 Tbsp. estra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. hot red pepper flakes

Sort through the lentils and wash them in cold water.  Tie the rosemary, thyme and sage with a twist tie or a piece of string.  Place the lentils in a saucepan with the water bay leaf, and herb bundle.  Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat to a simmer and cook, partially covered, for 25 to 35 minutes, or until the lentils are tender.  Add salt to taste (or wait to add salt until the next step)

Remove 1 1/2 cups (approximate) of lentils with broth and blend smooth in a blender (watch out for explosions--hot things don't appreciate being blended and they retaliate.... yes, I know by experience!)  Pour blended mixture into a small saucepan with the oil and red pepper flakes.  Whisk as you heat the mixture to make sure the oil completely works its way into the lentils.  This may seem like a superfluous step, but it's fast and it really helps the consistency of the final sauce.  This is the point at which I usually add the salt.

Return the lentil puree to the pot with the whole lentils. Simmer together or 5 minutes to allow the flavors to marry.  Add more salt if necessary, and add pepper to taste.  

Serve hot over rice or pasta.  For an extra flavor,  add a bundle of minced kale when the lentils are about half cooked.  This recipe serves about 4, but I almost always make a double recipe because it's ideal for leftovers.  We just put the whole pot in the fridge and leave the herb bundle in there until it's all gone.  You do have to pick out the bay leaves before you eat it.

Fusilli with pate' d'oliva and grilled vegetables

16 oz. of fusilli, or your pasta of choice.  (I usually use whole wheat pasta, or spelt pasta, both are very good)
4 c. pitted kalamata olives
2    peppers--just splurge and get the cool colors, ok?
2-3 zucchini
2    yellow summer squash
1 eggplant
5   roma tomatoes
1    Walla Walla sweet onion
1 bunch of asparagus
1/2 c. to 1 c. of pine nuts
olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Cut all the veggies in big pieces that will work well on the grill.  It will look like an enormous amount, but they shrink drastically once they are grilled.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper and let stand to marinate for 30 min. or more.  Grill as desired on an open flame grill.  When veggies are finished, place in container covered with foil so they remain warm.  Cook pasta as directed on the package.  While pasta is cooking, whiz olives in a food processor or blender.  Roast pine nuts over medium heat on the stove, stirring constantly until they reach desired color.  After straining the pasta, toss together with olive paste and grilled veggies.  Sprinkle roasted pine nuts over the top and serve immediately.  Serves 8  (or serves 4 and you have great leftovers--our favorite method.....)  This recipe also works great with brown rice instead of pasta.

Fresh veggies for raw sauce Raw Sauce

This recipe is thanks to our vegan friends Lori and Steve.  We basically don't know what we ate before we had this meal to fall back on!!  We make it at least once a week in our house, if not more often.  The leftover sauce keeps great in the fridge, and can be added to a number of different dishes for a bit of freshness and flavor--for example, Salad Dressing (see recipe above) or mix with black beans to put over rice, or for nachos.  
 

1/2 a blender full of fresh tomatoes  (4-8, depending on size)
2 carrots
1 pepper (preferably red)
1 cucumber
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. olive oil
1 clove fresh garlic
1 full bunch of cilantro or basil
1/2 c. pitted olives
salt and freshly ground pepper

Cut off stems and undesired parts of vegetables and remove lower stems of cilantro or basil.  Then basically chuck everything in the blender and.....  BLEND!!  Serve over steaming pasta or rice (it's important to have the raw sauce all prepared before the pasta is cooked so that you can pour it directly over the hot pasta right when it comes off the stove.  Then you have a hot meal without cooking the sauce.  Oh, and definitely top it with some roasted pine nuts!


DESSERTS

If you're vegan (or even if you're not), and you don't have an ice-cream freezer, just go and buy yourself one right now, ok?  These desserts are too easy for words, and yet SOOOOO delicious!!!

Blackberry Sorbet Blackberry Sorbet

Fill blender nearly full with blackberries, add the juice of one lime, and sugar to taste (usually I put about a cup, or sometimes more if the berries are really tart)  Blend and freeze in ice cream maker.  If you prefer to not have blackberry seeds in your sorbet, you can optionally strain the blended mixture through a cheesecloth before freezing.






Mango Pineapple Sorbet

Fill blender half with peeled, pitted mango, and half with cut and trimmed pineapple (make sure to get the really big spots out of the pineapple.  Add the juice of one lime, and 2 c. sugar.  Blend and freeze in ice cream maker.

You're getting the picture with the sorbet thing, right?  Just use any fruit you have in your house!  It's ALL GOOD!   Don't forget the lime juice.  Also, if you add fresh mint into the blender, it gives a nice twist.  

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