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Sweet Potato Coconut Curry

This fragrant and warming meal takes under 20 minutes. It serves two people on its own, or four served with rice.

Ingredients

1 tsp suitable-for-vegan red chilli paste
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1.5 tbsp soy sauce
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch ginger, grated
400g sweet potato, peeled and in medium dice
1 small cauliflower, in florets
150g mushrooms, quartered
1 red and 1 yellow bell pepper, medium dice
4 green onions, chopped
100g spinach
Handful basil, torn

Method

1. In a lidded frying pan, or a wide-rimmed pot, mix the red chilli paste, coconut milk, vegetable broth, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger. Simmer for a minute or two until the sauce becomes fragrant.
2. Add the sweet potatoes and cauliflower, cover, bring to the boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
3. Add the mushrooms, peppers, and green onions, re-cover, and simmer for 2-3 minutes more until cauliflower and sweet potato are cooked for your liking.
4. Turn off the heat, add the spinach and basil, recover, and allow to steam for about 2 minutes, until the spinach is wilted.
5. Serve and enjoy.

Cauliflower with mushroom and red wine gravy, sauteed artichokes, kale and scallions.

For the cauliflower
1 head of cauliflower
1T of coconut oil
1/2t of coarse sea salt
1 dash of liquid smoke

Stem the cauliflower to remove the leaves and all but the base of the core.
Set the cauliflower up on its stem and cut four slices about 1″ in thickness (with a smaller head, this will likely leave you with two good cuts and a lot of bits and pieces which you can use for other thing).
Preheat your oven to 375F.
In a pan that retains heat well, bring the oil, salt and smoke to heat on high (e.g, an iron frying pan).
Add the cauliflower and reduce to medium high.
Brown on both sides (2-3 minutes each side — be careful not to scorch the cauliflower).
Remove the cauliflower and add to a lightly greased oven pan.
Bake for about 8 minutes each side turning once (it should be firm but chewy — don’t over cook).

For the artichokes
1T of coarse olive oil
1/4t of sea salt
1/2 cup of minced scallion
3/4 of artichoke hearts, quartered
1 cup of chopped kale
1T of white wine, lemon juice or other substitute to deglaze the pan
1T of nutritional yeast
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Bring the oil and salt to heat on medium-high.
Saute the scallions for 2 minutes.
Add the artichokes. Saute for 3 minutes.
Add the kale. Saute for 5 minutes.
Add the wine and deglaze.
Remove from heat.
Toss with the nutritional yeast.

For the gravy
1T of olive oil
1/4t of coarse sea salt
1/2 cup of minced scallions
1T of fresh thyme
1T of minced garlic
1T of other green herbs (or bouquet garni)
1 cup of red wine (burgundy, gamay, pinot noir or similar — it should be fruity with good body)
Optional: 2T of vodka or cognac (if you want to burn off the alcoholl — this also makes for a richer gravy)
1 cup of vegetable stock
2t of arrowroot powder dissolved in 2T of water
Sea salt and pepper to taste

Bring the olive oil and salt to heat on medium high.
Add the scallions and saute for 2 minutes.
Add the thyme, garlic and other herbs saute for 1 minute.
Add the mushrooms and saute for about 5-8 minutes until they start to weep.
When the pan has browned a bit, add the wine (and spirits if you’re using them, and then light).
Add the stock.
Reduce on medium-low by about 1/3.
Whisk the arrowroot and water, and then add slowly to the pan stirring continuously until your gravy thickens.
Remove from heat.

Plating
Reserve about 2T of scallion greens thinly sliced on the diagonal and 2-3 stems of thyme for the garnish.

 

 

Roasted potato, mushroom and arugula salad with balsamic vinaigrette

A simple salad with a rich, dark flavour.

Ingredients

1T cooking oil
1/4t coarse sea salt
1 cup diced white potatoes in 1/2″ dice
1/2 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
1 scallion, minced
1t fresh garlic, minced
2T olive oil
2t balsamic vinegar
1/2t prepared mustard
1t nutritional yeast
2 cups packed arugula
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450F.
Toss the potatoes, mushrooms, scallions and garlic with the cooking oil and sea salt.
Roast until the potatoes are fork tender on the middle rack in a lightly oiled baking sheet (approximately 20-30 minutes). Ovens vary; use the colour and texture of the potatoes as your guide.
When done, remove the potatoes and mushrooms from the oven and set aside.
Whisk the olive oil, vinegar, mustard and yeast until emulsified.
Toss with the arugula.
Toss the potatoes and mushrooms with the arugula.
Let stand 10 minutes to wilt the arugula.
Season to taste and serve.

Portobello mushroom, potato and asparagus bowl

With asparagus, artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, kale and kalamata olives, this is a simple, colourful bowl with a lot of rich flavours. This makes a smaller side dish for 4 or a larger bowl for 2.

Ingredients

For the potatoes
2 cups potatoes (quartered minis or 1/2″ dice)
1T tamari
1/2T balsamic vinegar
Coarse sea salt to taste

For the mushrooms and asparagus
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, (dehydrated, not jarred) rehydrated in 1/4 cup boiling water and chopped
2T water
1/4t coarse sea salt
1/4 cup scallions, minced, 4″ reserved for garnish
1T fresh garlic, minced
2 portobello mushrooms, stemmed and sliced, 1/4″
1T lemon juice
1 cup asparagus, cut in 1″ pieces (6-8 stalks)
1 cup artichoke hearts (not jarred), chopped
1 cup packed green curly kale, stemmed, coarsely
chopped
2T kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
2T nutritional yeast
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions

Start the potatoes, then make the mushrooms. Preheat the oven to 450F. Toss the potatoes in the tamari and vinegar. Roast on the middle rack in a baking sheet or roasting pan until browned and fork tender, turning periodically. Expect about 30 – 40 minutes. Ovens vary; use the texture and colour of the potatoes as a guide. Don’t overcook. Remove from heat when done and set aside.

At about the 20 minute mark, combine the sun-dried tomatoes with the boiling water to rehydrate. At the 30 minute mark, bring a large or wok with a lid to heat on medium high. Add the 2T water, sea salt and scallions and stir fry for 1 minute. Add the garlic and stir fry for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and stir fry for about 3 minutes, until they start to loose their moisture.

Add the lemon. Toss to combine. Lower heat to medium low, cover and let simmer for 5 minutes. Return heat to medium high. Stir fry until the pan begins to dry (should be 2-3 minutes). Add the asparagus and artichoke hearts. Stir fry for 1 minute. Add the water from the sun-dried tomatoes. Stir fry for another 5 minutes or so until
the pan begins to dry again. Add the kale. Stir fry for 1 minute.

Remove from heat. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, olives, potatoes, and nutritional yeast. Stir to combine. Let stand, covered, 2-3 minutes for the potatoes to absorb some of the flavour of the dish. Season to taste. Bowl out, garnish with scallions cut on an angle and serve.

Black lentil, mushroom and vegetable stew with potatoes and sauerkraut

With carrots, kale, spinach and sweet onion, this is a rich and flavourful stew that doesn’t require a lot of preparation. This makes 4 small bowls or 2 large ones.

Ingredients

1/4 cup beluga (black) lentils
1/2 cup water
1 ‘sprig’ dried kombu (about 2″)
2 cups vegetable stock
1/2t coarse sea salt (or to taste)
1 1/2 cup carrots, 1/2″ dice (I use purple)
1 large portobello mushroom, 1/2″ dice (about 1 1/2 cup)
1 large red pepper, cored, seeded, 1/2″ dice (about 1 – 1 1/4 cup)
1 large floury potato, 1/2″ half-moon slices (about 2 cups, I use organic russet)
1 small sweet onion (about 1 1/2 cup), 1/4″ slices
1T fresh garlic, minced
2t smoked paprika
1/2t dried marjoram, rubbed
1t prepared brown mustard
1/4t black pepper (I use 1/2t)
1/4t red pepper flakes (or to taste)
1 cup tomato passata (or puree)
2T arrowroot flour dissolved in 2T cold water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup green curly kale, coarsely chopped
1 cup baby spinach
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste
1/2 cup white sauerkraut (I use unpasteurized)

Optional: Add a good pinch of crushed caraway seeds for a little extra flavour. Add a medley of mushrooms if you prefer. Maitake, cremini, porcini, even a little morel, will all go well in this. Replace the greens added at the end with 1 cup sauerkraut and 1 cup shredded green cabbage added with the other vegetables if you prefer. Add a little wine, cashew butter, and/or oil for a richer stew. Slowcook if you prefer; prepare the lentils as directed, but add everything up to and including the passata, cook on low for several hours and then finish as directed.

Method

In a large frying pan with a lid, bring 1/2 cup water to a boil. Add the lentils and kombu. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes. Drain the lentils but reserve the kombu. Return the lentils to the pan.

Add everything up to and including the red pepper flakes to the pan, potatoes first, onions last. Return the pan to a light simmer. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 hour.

After an hour, the potatoes should be fork tender and the lentils completely cooked. Uncover, increase heat to medium low and add the passata. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.

At the 30 minute mark, remove the kombu. Add the arrowroot mixture slowly, stirring continuously until it thickens. Remove from heat. Add the nutritional yeast. Add the spinach and kale. Stir to combine.

Let stand 3 – 5 minutes to wilt the greens. Season to taste. Ladle/spoon out, garnish with sauerkraut and serve.

Brown lentil, sweet potato, and mushroom stew with dates and arugula

Sweet and spicy, this makes a small bowl for 4 and a large one for 2.

Ingredients

2T curry powder
1/2t dried, ground allspice
1/4t crushed red chili (or to taste — I use 1/2t)
1/4t coarse sea salt
3 scallions, minced (3″ – 4″ reserved for garnish)
1T fresh garlic, minced
1t fresh ginger, grated and minced
1 1/2 cup water
1 ‘sprig’ dried kombu (about 1″)
1/2 cup brown lentils (black, green or dupuy will also work)
4 large cremini mushrooms, quartered (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 cups sweet potato, peeled and cut 1/3″ dice
2 cups unsweetened plant milk (I use soy)
1/2T white pickling vinegar
2T tomato passata (or puree)
1/4 cup dried, soft dates
1T tapioca flour dissolved in 2T water
2 cups packed baby arugula
Coarse sea salt and chili or black pepper to taste

Optional: Garnish with sour sesame or cashew cream (as show here), a little coconut milk, and/or a little cilantro to add colour and flavour.

Directions

Bring a large frying pan with a lid to heat on medium. Add the curry powder and other spices. Toast for 2-3 minutes until aromatic. Add the scallions, sea salt, garlic, and ginger. Stir fry for 2 minutes.

Add the water and deglaze the pan. Add the lentils and kombu. Bring the pan to a light simmer. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sweet potatoes and simmer covered for another 15 minutes or until the lentils are tender.

At the 30 minute mark, add the plant milk and vinegar. Increase the heat to medium low and bring the pan to a light simmer. Simmer uncovered for 20 – 30 minutes or until the plant milk is reduced by about half. Remove the kombu. Add the dates and passata. Simmer another 5 minutes. Stirring slowly, add the tapioca mixture. Stir until it thickens (should be immediately)

Add the arugula and stir gently but thoroughly to combine. Let stand 2 minutes to cool and to wilt the greens. Season to taste. Ladle out and garnish as you like with scallion greens sliced on an angle.

Mushroom, pepper and potato soup

A simple, colourful and light soup. A good appetizer or a very light lunch, this makes a small bowl for 4 or good sized bowl for 2.

Ingredients

2T water
1/4t coarse sea salt
2 scallions, minced, 3″ – 4″ green reserved for garnish
1T fresh garlic, minced
4 large cremini mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced, 1/8″
1T smoked paprika
1/4t black pepper, freshly cracked
3 small white potatoes, 1/4″ dice (about 1 cup)
1/2T white vinegar
2T tamari
3 cups vegetable stock
1 ‘sprig’ dried kombu (about 2″)
1 red shepherd pepper (or red bell, see the note below)
1 green bell pepper (a few very thin slices reserved for garnish)
2T nutritional yeast
1/2T arrowroot flour dissolved in 2T cold water
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste

Optional: Add lentils, chickpeas, cubed tofu, dumplings or pasta for a more filling soup. Red bell pepper will work as an alternative to the red shepherd, but it won’t be as juicy. Add a few tablespoons tomato passata and/or a couple tablespoons of cashew butter or olive oil to add body and flavour. Add some finely chopped figs and/or sun-dried tomatoes to broaden out the flavour. Add some leafy greens for additional colour and nutrition. Slowcook if you prefer.

Method

Warm a large pan with a lid on medium heat. Add the water, scallions and sea salt. Water saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and paprika.

Increase heat to medium high and saute for 3 minutes. Add the potatoes and saute for another 2 – 3 minutes. Add the vinegar and tamari and deglaze the pan. Add the stock and kombu.

Return the pan to a simmer, cover, reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes. At the 10 minute mark, uncover and add the peppers. Increase heat to medium low and simmer for another 10 minutes uncovered or so until the potatoes are tender.

Remove from heat. Remove the kombu. Add the nutritional yeast. Stirring continuously, add the arrowroot mixture slowly. Stir until it thickens (should be immediately). Season to taste.

To plate, ladle out into bowls. Garnish with scallion green sliced on an angle and thin slices of green pepper. Sprinkle with some additional nutritional yeast if you like and serve.

Creamy mushroom soup

With cabbage, scallions and garlic, this is a creamy, delicious and fairly simple soup.

Ingredients

2T water
1/2t coarse sea salt, divided
4 scallions (about 1/4 cup), minced, 3″ – 5″ reserved for garnish
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T herbes de Provence
2 cups cremini mushrooms, stemmed and thinly slice, about 1/6″
1T lemon juice, divided
1T tamari, divided
2 cups shredded green cabbage (I use coleslaw mix)
4 cups unsweetend plant milk (I use soy)
1/2T tapioca starch dissolved in 1T cold water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste

Method

Warm a large frying pan with a lid on medium heat. Add the water, 1/4t sea salt and scallions. Water saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and herbs. Saute for 1 minute. Increase heat to medium high. Add the mushrooms and stir fry for 3 – 5 minutes until the mushrooms are well wilted and nicely browned. Add 1/2T lemon juice and 1/2T tamari. Deglaze the pan and stir fry another minute. Remove from heat. Remove the mushrooms, et al., and set aside.

Return the pan to heat on medium high. Add the cabbage, the remaining lemon juice, tamari and sea salt. Stir fry for 3 minutes until the cabbage is lightly wilted. Add the soy milk. Return the pan to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to medium low and simmer another 10 minutes, or until the soy milk is reduced by about a third.

Stirring continuously, add the tapioca mixture. Stir until it thickens (should be immediately). Remove from heat. Add the nutritional yeast and about half of the mushrooms. Stir until combined. Let stand 2 minutes to cool. Season to taste. To plate, ladle out the soup. Garnish with remaining mushrooms and scallion greens sliced on an angle, and serve.