Category Archives: Vegan

Manic Monday

 Chana Dal with Spinach

Welcome to April Group A edition of the Secret Recipe Club!  This month I got to go Down Under, as I was partnered with the incredible Claire of My Hobbie Lobbie.   Seems rather fitting to get an Australian blog when just a week ago my littlest sister moved to Australia, tho she is currently in Melbourne while Claire is in Sydney.  Claire’s blog is stuffed with delicious Indian treats along with more traditional fare, but my stomach only had eyes for the Indian goodies.   Palak Paneer, Aloo Bhaji, Chana Dal with Spinach, the list just goes on and on and on!  In the end it was the story that went with the Chana Dal, as I loved the idea of taking a bland mash and turning it back in to the incredible dish that her husband remembered his mom making.    I wasn’t able to find ghee, so instead I used some brown butter – otherwise recipe is actually as Claire wrote it (converted to US measurements).

Manic Monday

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Chana dal
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 2 green chillies, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 tbsp brown butter (or ghee)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 6 fresh curry leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 2 cups baby spinach, torn
  • Salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash the chana dal a couple of times in water and drain then soak the chana dal for about an hour and drain.
  2. Boil the chana dal in 3 cups of water and a tsp of salt. After it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes. Cook the dal until al dente - you DO NOT want a mush!
  3. Drain and reserve some of the liquids.
  4. Heat the butter in a large pan over medium high heat and add the curry leaves, garlic and cumin.
  5. Once the cumin sputters, add the ginger, chilli and turmeric and stir to mix well, cook for one minute then add the chopped tomato and stir. Cook for a 3-5 minutes or until the tomato has broken down a bit.
  6. Add the baby spinach and stir until just wilted.
  7. Add the drained chana dal and stir through, adding a tbsp or two of the reserved liquid, if you think it is too dry. Slowly add the liquid as the dish is meant to be dry and not soupy.
  8. Check the seasoning and Serve hot!

Notes

Chana Dal might also be advertised as split chickpeas if you are shopping in the bulk section.

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/04/manic-monday.html

This dish was fantastic!  I have a feeling it could also be converted to a slow cooker or done in parts in order to speed up the beginning with the chana dal.  Regardless, the taste was incredible and was very well received!  Another SRC success that leaves me counting down the days til the May reveal.


On the Shore

Waldorf Salad

IMG_20150404_195749

Welcome to Part 2 of my #partylikeamadman – again with a huge thanks to my in-laws for allowing me to use their kitchen since ours is still in construction mode!   In going through the Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, one of my favorite parts was how each recipe included not only information about the episode the dish was featured in but also facts about the origin of the recipe.  In the case of the Waldorf Salad, the cookbook also included information about the evolution of the salad – as well as two versions of the dish.  I went with the classic dish, adding some grapes for an extra POP of color.     I served this for a large group of people but due to taste preference not all ingredients were increased the same way.  The first recipe is how I served it, while the second one is the original recipe plus grapes.

 

Waldorf Salad

Serves: Serves 8 as a side

Original Recipe: 2 apples 1/2 cup grapes 1 cup iced hearts of celery 5 tbsp seasoned mayo Lettuce for serving

Ingredients

  • 8 apples, peeled
  • 2 cups diced heart of celery
  • 2 cups grapes
  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • Lettuce, for serving
  • Salt and Pepper for seasoning

Instructions

  1. Peel and core the apples, divided in half and then cut in to slices. Reserve 12 slices, and cut the remainder into thin julienne strips.
  2. Combine the apple strips with the celery and toss with half of the mayo. Fold in the grapes
  3. Season to taste then place the mixture in the middle of a salad bowl and spread with the mayo. Garnish with the lettuce and the reserved apple slices.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!

Notes

Since this was part of a Seder dinner, the mayo was limited to Kosher for Passover and with that unseasoned.

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/04/on-the-shore.html

I wound up making this dish twice – the first version wound up with a technical problem in that I was the one taking the picture.  The second time around I served this up as part of our Seder dinner and it was the perfect fit (and quite the hit!).   I am so glad I was able to participate in this Mad Men Party,  and look forward to having a finished kitchen so that I can try out some of the more elaborate dishes in the book!

On Patrol

Spinach and Shells

spinach_and_shells

Trying something new with my site, in theory things should now be MUCH faster and hopefully posts/updates will stop disappearing.   Today’s post is a healthier twist on my standard lazy night dinner, a recipe that started back in college as it is easily double and can be made on little to no sleep.  Just requires some pasta, a leafy vegetable, and shredded cheese of some form!  In college this normally meant thin spaghetti, frozen spinach with onions, and whatever fake stuff was on sale.  Now that I have a bit more money, and still no time, I’ve been able to upgrade this recipe while reducing the sodium that goes along with fake cheese and fake (or canned) vegetables.  It still comes together in under 30 minutes, so perfect for late nights after work or for a late lunch when the day is slipping away.   As a bonus – it’s a green dish perfect for St. Patrick’s day!!!

Shells with Spinach

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 3 basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1/2 lb shells
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • Pepper (to taste)

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat, then add the garlic and onion and cook for an additional 10 minutes before adding the basil.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta per instructions then reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water before draining. Return the pasta, water, and garlic/onion mixture to the pasta pot.
  3. Stir in the spinach then top with cheese and season to taste with pepper and Enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/03/on-patrol.html

I’m also sending this over to /r/52weeksofcooking for their hangover challenge as I’m fairly certain the first time I made this in college that was the case.   This recipe is also a great way to clean out the fridge or freezer, and no need to stick to just one vegetable!

Fix What’s Broken

Mulligatawny Style Curry

mulligatawny_stew

I have a curry addiction, I’ll admit it – it’s totally true.  I love the spice, both the heat and the flavor, and the fact that it warms me up on even the coldest day.  With the Siberian Vortex currently coming down on the Mid-Atlantic a bit of heat and spice is very much needed and appreciated.  Still in shock over how low the temperatures have been and are going to be, just totally ridiculous especially since I’m technically in the south.  Anyway, enough about the weather cuz it’s time to time to focus on the curry.  I can’t remember the first time I had mulligatawny stew but it had to be years ago as it involved chicken.  Which is why I set out to create a vegan version, no chicken involved!

Fix What’s Broken

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 shallots, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • 16 oz tofu, well pressed and cubed
  • 1 pink lady apple, diced
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a dutch oven then add the shallots, green pepper, and carrot. Cook for 5-7 minutes, then stir in the curry powder and cook for an additional minute before adding the tofu. Continue cooking the tofu until golden on all sides.
  2. Add the apple along with vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Turn heat to low then simmer for 25 minutes before stirring in the greek yogurt and the golden raisins. Cook for a final 5 minutes then Serve and Enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/02/fix-whats-broken.html

 For dinner we enjoyed the stew as is, while I added lentils the next day in order to make it go a bit further.   For those who don’t want all the spice feel free to drop the cayenne powder – or switch for something milder.  Whatever works best for you!

#WinePW Clear to See

Boozy Berry Pie

pie

Happy Valentine’s Day!!!!  Today’s post is part of WinePW #9 – an awesome event that pairs delicious foods with fantastic wines that was started by David last June.  Since today is Valentine’s day I decided to go with something super sweet and sum what red.  Once upon a time I could drink red wines, and then I hit my early 20s and that ability went away.  So I started exploring white wines and with that the amazing world of Reislings.  From California to Australia to Germany to Maryland – these sweet whites are fantastic for pairing with spicy foods or for enhancing the sweetness of fresh fruit!  For this event I went with a local Reisling from Basignani winery which is just up the road from me in Sparks, MD.  I tend towards Reislings that are more on the fruity side than the floral side, and this one certainly falls in that arena!  With that, I knew I wanted to do a dessert featuring the berries that have started popping up at the local markets, thanks to greenhouses and high tunnels.   This pies features three awesome fruits who have the right amount of subtle tartness to go perfectly with my peach influenced wine.   Using the white wine also means no added sugar – and depending on the crust being used this dish can be gluten free and/or vegan.  I went with a press-in-pan graham cracker crust, skipping the cinnamon tho this time and using a honey graham cracker.

#WinePW Clear to See

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • Favorite Pie Crust (bottom only)
  • 2 tbsp Riesling
  • 3 cups mixed berries
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Line a 9inch pie pan with your favorite crust (I used a press-in-pan graham cracker crust) and set aside.
  2. Heat the wine over low heat in a deep saute dish for a few minutes, then add the berries and continue cooking for 10 minutes - stirring frequently but being careful to not break too many of the berries. Turn heat to low and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Pour in to pie crust.
  3. Bake for 25 minutes, remove from oven and sit for 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/02/winepw-clear-to-see.html

Make sure to check out what everyone else came up with as part of this awesome challenge!  Looking forward to seeing all sorts of tasting wine pairings – and even more so looking forward to next month!!!

I’ve always been a fan of mixed berry pies, but generally the costs associated with three (or more!) types of berries have kept me from making them at home.  However, this past weekend I had a eureka moment and picked up a “berry fruit salad” container from the ready made department.  So instead of spending $10 or more, it was closer to $4 – much better!  The mixture I grabbed included strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries which made it the perfect combo for my boozy creation!