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Black Bean & Garbanzo Chili (Vegan & GF)

Published February 5, 2014 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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I was hungry and happened upon new vegan blogger Hayley’s Chili recipe at just the right moment. It made a great inspiration for this tasty chili. I liked her chocolatey ingredient, but swapped regular cocoa powder for raw cacao since it was going to get cooked anyway (/I’m running low / it’s expensive / I order it on Amazon). I made some cheezy beer batter cornbread (recipe below) to go with it, and served it over kale and brown rice as a bowl. I think the leftovers will be great tomorrow over some pasta, sprinkled with nutritional yeast, for an easy chili mac!

I was originally going to call this Cuban Chili, but I found out [after google searching] that that is apparently another name for Picadillo?! Weird. Picadillo is SO not like chili. (You can check out my vegan picadillo recipes here and here!)

Black Bean & Garbanzo Chili (Vegan)

2 tbsp. olive oil (I used coconut here like Hayley’s recipe, but I prefer olive, up to you!)
1 large onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 medium carrots, chopped finely
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 c. dry sundried tomatoes, soaked in water for 10 minutes, (or use the oil packed ones) drained, and chopped
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1 6 oz can tomato paste
2  cans black beans, one rinsed and drained, and one can, liquid and all
1  can garbanzos, rinsed and drained
1/2 c. of frozen corn
2 c. vegetable broth
2 tbsp. cocoa powder
3 tbsp. chili powder
1 tbsp. ground chipotle pepper, optional (in the bulk spices at Whole Foods)
2 tbsp. brown sugar (I used 1 tbsp. brown sugar and 1 tbsp. agave because I ran out of the former)
1 tsp. cumin
cayenne pepper to taste
~ 1 1/2 tsp. salt, to taste

Directions:

1. Heat oil in a large pot to medium. Add in onions, peppers, and carrots as you chop, and cook until soft, about 7-10 minutes. Add garlic and cook an extra minute.

2. Add all other ingredients and bring up to a boil. Drop heat to low-medium and simmer for 1-2 hours.

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So I was trying to figure out how to make some cornbread to go with the chili, using the contents of my pantry, and decided to take a stab at a gluten free beer bread. It wasn’t until I sat down to write it that I realized my obvious mistake. I used regular beer. I’ll have to give this one another try with gluten free beer, and see how it goes, but in case you’re interested, here’s what I did! (You can always use my Perfect Cornbread recipe, if you prefer!)

Cheezy Beer Batter Corn Bread (Gluten-Free if you use gf beer!)

1 c. cornmeal
2 c. all purpose gluten free flour (I used Trader Joe’s brand)
2 tbsp. sugar, optional (brown if you have it!)
1/4 c. nutritional yeast (nooch)
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
few grinds of black pepper
1 can/bottle of gluten-free beer

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375*F and grease a loaf pan.

1. In a large mixing bowl combine cornmeal, flour, sugar, nooch, baking powder, salt and pepper. Pour beer into dry mix, and stir until combined. The batter will look liquidy.

2. Pour into prepared loaf pan. Bake for 40 minutes, or until cake tester inserted into center comes out clean.

3. Let it rest in the pan for about 5 minutes, and then turn out to slice.

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Post Derby Brunch: Spinach Tofu Scramble & Vegan Steak Hash

Published October 17, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Once a month, PFM brings in Coach Alex DeLarge to give us a killer on and off skates work out with tons of squats, drills, and running to build our strength and endurance. The rest of the week it also reminds us of how many muscles it takes to get in and out of a chair or go upstairs! Though I fared much better this past Sunday than last month, my body has not quite yet forgotten it completely. It’s Wednesday. 🙂

Driving home from practice I was famished, and all I could think about was tofu scramble and toast. Thomas had been out for a bike ride while I was gone, and felt equally eager for food. I knew we had a pack of sprouted tofu in the fridge and some onions that needed using, so I quickly came up with this protein packed menu as I gobbled down some [untoasted] bread with the last of a container of hummus. I also made us both a brunch cocktail to sip on as I went to work…

Mmm!

Mmm! Just enough Jack for two brunch cocktails!

I decided to make a spinach tofu scramble, and a vegan steak hash with some fingerling potatoes and some Gardein Beefless tips. I got the latter ready first so it could bake while the scramble came together.

Vegan Steak Hash

olive oil for misting
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, sliced into thin half moons
~2 c. fingerling potatoes, somewhat peeled and chopped
1 package Gardein Beefless Tips salt & pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400. Prepare a roasting pan or cookie sheet with a mist of olive oil. Spread out onions, garlic, and potatoes and mist with olive oil, grind some fresh pepper and salt on top and toss with hands to coat. Add Gardein and disperse evenly.

2. Bake for 20 minutes. Stir. Bake for another 20 minutes. Done!

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Spinach Tofu Scramble

olive oil for misting
1 yellow onion, sliced into thin half moons
4 cloves of garlic, minced
~8 oz. frozen chopped spinach (half a bag)
1 package of firm or extra-firm tofu, silken or regular will work
1-2 tbsp. tamari (or red sodium soy sauce/braggs/shoyu)
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. dried thyme
cayenne pepper to taste, optional
salt & pepper

~1/4 c. nutritional yeast

Directions:

1. Spray a skillet with olive oil, and raise to medium heat. Add onions and cook until slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add spinach and lightly season with freshly ground salt and pepper. Cook until all the frost is off, about 5 minutes.

2. Crumble in tofu, and all other ingredients except nutritional yeast. Stir until well combined and heated through, about 5 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and stir in nutritional yeast.

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I had to chop my tofu to help the crumbling because it was the extra firm, sprouted kind.

I had to chop my tofu to help the crumbling because it was the extra firm, sprouted kind.

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A purrfect post derby meal!

A purrfect post derby meal!

Curried Black Bean & Kabocha Squash Soup

Published October 4, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Thomas finally came down with the cold his body had been fighting today, and needed some culinary medicine. I decided that black beans and the kabocha squash sitting on my counter would be a great base, and I threw in a package of sprouted tofu because he loves tofu the most of any human I know! I also love to give my crazy Seattle bicyclist super protein packed meals whenever I can.

Curried Black Bean & Kabocha Soup

olive oil, for misting pot

1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 kabocha squash, scrubbed, mostly peeled and cubed small

7 c. filtered water
3-4 bouillon cubes
2 cans black beans, drained & rinsed well
1 package extra firm tofu, cubed small

2-3 tbsp. curry powder
1+ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. cumin
+/- 2 tsp. salt
pinch of all spice
a few grinds of black pepper
cayenne pepper to taste, optional

Directions:

1. Mist a large pot with olive oil and set to low/medium heat. Add onions and cover. Keep chopping pepper, garlic, squash, stirring them in as you go, replacing cover after each, about 10 minutes.

2. Add water, bouillon, black beans, tofu, and spices. Raise heat to high, and bring to a boil.

3. Drop heat, cover, and simmer 30 minutes. Stir and taste for seasoning. Simmer partially covered for 15 more minutes.

You’re done. Yum!

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Vegan MoFo 2013:12 Maple Dijon Tofu Chops (w/ Trader Joe’s sprouted tofu) & Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Published September 23, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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So here’s a dinner that was going SO WELL, until I made a terrible mistake, and ruined the whole pot of beans. I thought it was a perfect meal for the new cooler weather: Apple Baked Beans, Maple Dijon Tofu Chops & Roasted Brussel Sprouts. Thankfully I was also trying out a delicious recipe from More Peas and Thank you for the tofu, and using my favorite way to cook the brussel sprouts, this baking method, so we still had a really nice dinner. But even after going so long without a kitchen mishap, it happened to me. We ate dinner whilst attempting to air out burned bean smell from the apartment.

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These were the super promising beans from The Great Vegan Bean Book in the works. They were full of all kinds of yummy things, and smelled great.

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Then came the fatal mistake… they were supposed to simmer for 1.5 hours, and I forgot to drop the heat. Yah… I was interrupted by a phone call, and simply glossed over the lowering. I think they made it a good 50 minutes before we smelled something burning. At this point I thought it was the brussel sprouts, which were already in the oven, but they looked good. Then I happened to check the beans, just to see how they were doing…

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F A I L !

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After the beans were put on to “simmer” I got the tofu ready so it could marinate for a while. I used two packages of Trader Joe’s sprouted tofu. The texture on the tofu was fantastic! I love sprouted tofu because it’s extra firm, and you don’t have to press it. It can be a bit spendy at Whole Foods (like what isn’t?) but it’s very reasonably priced at TJ’s (like everything else!). I cut each package in half widthwise & lengthwise to make 4 nice sized “chops”.

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I decided to use my baking method for tofu rather than the broiling method in the original recipe, since I made my chops so thick.

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These came out perfectly!

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I used about 2 cups of whole brussel sprouts, but 3 would’ve been better!

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Prepped them by cutting them in half, placing them face down, and misting with olive oil, and a sprinkle of salt & pepper.

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Still a stellar dinner, despite the beans set back. I served the chops with applesauce, as directed by the recipe, and it was a lovely symphony of flavors. The sweet applesauce contrasted nicely with the smoky, [purposefully] singed brussel sprouts, and the tofu had wonderful flavor and texture. There were NO LEFTOVERS. At the end, Thomas was just standing over the sink, holding the last of the tofu chops in hand! (This is why I double the tofu for ANY recipe. There is always more than enough marinade, and Thomas is a Tofu Monster.)

So that’s another win for More Peas and Thank You. Great book. And it’s another non-win for the bean book. Though this one was totally my fault! The last recipe from it was under seasoned, so I was hoping for a win this time, but sadly, I think I will just buy a can of baked beans in the future like I originally told myself. We’ll see. The fate of that pot is still questionable.

How is your MoFo going? My parents get here tomorrow, YAY!!!!!!!!!!!! But I will try to get a couple of posts up this week. It’s their first time visiting the Pacific Northwest and we’re all very excited about their visit!

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Vegan Mofo 2013: 7 Bok Choy salad with Oven Fried Tofu

Published September 7, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Here’s something I threw together to use up some leftover bok choy I had, along with my favorite, easy way to cook tofu. I don’t normally buy or cook bok choy, so I wasn’t even sure if people used it commonly for salads, but a quick google search revealed that in fact, they do, and that it’s usually served with a sugary vinaigrette dressing. I used agave instead of sugar, and maybe too much toasted sesame oil in my version. Maybe you want to dial that back (1-2 tsp) and use the rest of some other mild flavored oil, or just less period? This was an experiment, after all. If you want a perfected recipe, there are a great many on-line. 😉 I served this with simple oven baked/fried tofu. I used pine nuts for my recipe because of my almond allergy. I saw some other recipes with pine nuts, but most had almonds. Though If I made this again, I’d probably use sunflower seeds. I thought it was pretty easy and good!

Bok Choy salad with Oven Fried Tofu

1 block of tofu, cut into bite sized pieces
coconut oil, or preferred oil
sea salt for sprinkling

1 large bunch bok choy, chopped finely
1/2 large red pepper, chopped finely
1/4 onion, chopped finely
3 medium carrots, grated finely

1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 1/2 tbsp.   brown rice vinegar
2 1/2 tbsp. agave
2 tsp. of garlic, minced
2 tbsp. toasted sesame oil, or combination of choice
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

2-3 tbsp. pine nuts/sliced or slivered almonds, optional

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450*F. Rub or mist tofu pieces with oil, sprinkle lightly with salt, and place onto a prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes. (How to bake tofu)

2. Toss veggies into a large bowl.

3. Whisk dressing ingredients together and drizzle into salad. Toss or massage to coat.

4. Top with toasty tofu and preferred seeds or nuts for added crunch!

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Vegan Mofo 2013:2 Chickpeas & Sausage

Published September 2, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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One of our favorite recipes is my veganized version of the Cuban classic Garbanzos con Chorizo. I’ve made this versatile recipe a number of different ways, including with Soyrizo, but our reigning fave is with Tofurky brats.

That being said, we had some hotdogs in the fridge and chickpeas in the pantry. I was short the green pepper and tomato sauce, but  once Thomas knew I was contemplating making this for dinner, everything else I offered up just didn’t stand a chance. So he made a quick trip to the store for the necessary ingredients, as well as some brown rice.

You'll be needing this.

You’ll be needing this. (But get the brats if you can!)

Because I really hate nothing more in the kitchen than to chop onions, I do the ole throw everything in the food processor trick. You’re going to have to dirty it to get the “sausage” of your choice to the proper texture anyway, so just go right ahead. And in an even lazier fashion than normal, I used crushed garlic out of a jar. I usually just throw the whole cloves in with the onion and pepper, but honestly I was trying to conserve the last of my fresh cloves. (Need to do a shopping trip today or tomorrow if I’m going to keep up with MoFo!)

In just 5 pulses, you have perfectly chopped veggies. Love it.

In just 5 pulses, you have perfectly chopped veggies. Love it.

While the sofrito cooks, you can get your protein in the food processor and pulse it until it looks like a consistent crumble. Speaking of the sofrito, for the tomato base I used a whole 8 oz. can of tomato sauce this time and 2 tbsp. of tomato paste + 2 tbsp. of water. Next time I might add some drained, diced tomatoes. Try whatever combination you want there. It will still be good. Oh, also, I only use 3-4 tbsp. of olive oil as the base now. No problem. A little less flavor, but a lot less fat.

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You can also use any extra time to drink a delicious beverage of your choice. It doesn’t even have to go with the dish! Our current bottled selections are very fall inspired. We have ciders, octoberfest, pumpkin, and spiced beers. 🙂

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After the sofrito cooks through, you add in your sausage and chickpeas and let that baby simmer for a good 30 minutes. Mine ended up perfectly timed with the brown rice. I love it when that happens. One timer for all.

Put a lid on it!

Put a lid on it!

That’s really it. So it’s only 15 active minutes. The rest is just simmering. I just threw a little parsley on it for the sake of the picture, but I’d recommend using some cilantro if you have any!

Yum!

Yum!

Now to come up with all the other favorites I want to tell you about this month! For my own ease, as well as getting to something that I really haven’t been doing like I should… I’ll be peppering in favorite vegan food from around Seattle too. Stay tuned! All of your blog posts from day 1 were already looking amazing.

Until the RSS feed files are out, I’ll be using the RandoMoFo website to check out a sampling of what’s going on for the day. Have you tried it? It’s a great way to discover new blogs, especially ones that may not be posting at the time you get around to looking at your feed!

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Vegan Mofo 2013: 1 Welcome & Teese Nacho Salad

Published September 1, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Hey everyone! I decided to take up the Vegan Mofo challenge again this year. Thankfully they moved it to September this year, so I won’t be packing up the apartment while trying to simultaneously blog as I run out of food. Last year was my 1st year participating, which was kind of ironic because I was too intimidated to do it the previous two years. So I picked the year we were also packing/donating/selling/gifting people with all of our earthly possessions in our preparation for the big 4,000 mile move from South Florida to Seattle instead! I managed to get 14 posts up last year in spite of the chaos, so I’m hoping to beat that record since our lease isn’t up until November 2nd!

The move to Seattle has been absolutely fantastic and we’ve made a lot of beautiful friends out here, most of whom I was able to celebrate my 35th birthday with this week! Some of them were vegans I knew from twitter over the years, and I’ve made lots more vegan and non-vegan friends as well. There are so many great places to get vegan food out here that I’ve been slacking a bit in the cooking/blogging department, but I’m hoping to get kickstarted again with this year’s mofo.

Here we are, loving every minute of our new Seattle life.

Here we are, loving every minute of our new Seattle life.

Another great thing that happened this year was attending Vida Vegan Con 2013 in Portland where I got to meet SO MANY lovely internet vegan friends in person for the first time. And that right there is the perfect segue into the little dish you see above. I got this Teese nacho cheese sauce in my immense bag of swag from the conference and threw this quick meal together in a flash one night.

The enormous haul from VVC 2013

The enormous haul from VVC 2013

My theme for the rest of Mofo is going to be favorite recipes. Should be a focus on making variations on some of my own favorite recipes, as well as some of my faves from other bloggers and cookbooks.

Can’t wait to read all of your contributions! 🙂

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Teese Nacho Salad

1 package of Teese nacho sauce

1 can of black beans, rinsed
1 can of diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 c. of corn, fresh or frozen rinsed with hot water in a sieve

1 recipe for TVP crumble (below)

1/2 tsp. cumin
salt & pepper to taste
cayenne pepper, optional

greens of your choice, I used kale (of course)
tortilla chips

Directions:

1. Heat cheese sauce over medium heat. Stir in remaining ingredients and let them heat through.

2. Serve over greens of your choice and tortilla chips!

TVP crumble

1 c. filtered water
1 tbsp. tamari/braggs/red sodium soy sauce/shoyu
1 tsp. liquid smoke
1 tsp. vegan Worcestershire, optional
1 tsp. chili powder

1 c. TVP

Directions:

1. Boil water and seasonings in a small saucepan. Remove from heat.

2. Stir in TVP until well combined. Cover and set aside.

Yellow Split Pea and Tempeh Stew

Published August 13, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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We were really supposed to go to the grocery store tonight, but Thomas had a deadline at work today and came home super late. There were some peppers in the crisper going bad that I was able to salvage for this absolute, clean out the fridge, we really MUST go to the store tomorrow meal! As my mother taught me, there is nothing more reliable than a pot of lentils or split peas on a weekday night to get dinner done. And as I declared my kitchen plans, Thomas said they he was happy because I make a great split pea soup! Well, I’m glad he thinks so, for his sake, considering the number of them I’ve come up with! The spices I used here are just a little of this and that; you can use what you like. I served this with some nice brown basmati rice and some love. 🙂

Yellow Split Pea and Tempeh Stew

1 1/4 c. split peas, rinsed
8 c. filtered water
3 vegan bouillon cubes

1 medium red onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped (I used half yellow, half green)
1/2 jalepeno pepper, chopped finely, optional
2″ piece ginger, chopped finely
4 cloves garlic, chopped finely

1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. salt

1 package of tempeh, chopped into bite sized pieces
1/2 c. frozen spinach, optional

Directions:

1. Throw rinsed split peas into a 5 qt. pot with water and bouillon cubes, and turn the heat up to high.

2. Chop up everything else, and toss in as you go. Add in seasonings. Throw in the tempeh.

3. Drop to simmer at low/medium for 45 minutes. Add frozen spinach if using, and adjust seasoning if necessary. Simmer for an additional 15 minutes.

Enjoy as a soup with some fresh baked bread, or as a stew over a nice simply cooked grain.

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Cheater Channa Masala

Published June 18, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Not the real deal at all, but I had a craving, and didn’t want to spend the money (or consume the fat) that goes with ordering take-out, especially when I already had a huge pot of cooked chickpeas sitting in the fridge! (The rest will be used for Foxy Tuna!) I put in the tweaks I’ll make on the next go with *, but thought this still came out tasty enough to share! Let me know what you think. 🙂

3 tbsp. olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1 tsp. cumin
1.5 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. sea salt

3″ piece of ginger, minced
8 garlic cloves, minced

15 oz. can chopped tomatoes and their juice (I used fire roasted w/chiles here)
15 oz. can of tomato sauce*
2 tbsp. curry powder
1 tbsp. garam masala
2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. coriander*
2 tsp. sugar or evaporated cane
cayenne pepper to taste, optional

6 c. cooked chickpeas (1 lb cooked, or 4 cans)
1 c. reserved cooking liquid or can liquid
2 tbsp. lemon juice

1-2 c. frozen greens, optional

Directions:

1. Heat oil in a pot over medium heat. Add onions, cumin and turmeric, and cook until soft, about 7 minutes. Add ginger and garlic, and cook for another 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, curry powder, garam masala, cumin, sugar and cayenne. Cover, and let the mixture simmer over low-medium/medium for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Add chickpeas, liquid, and lemon juice to the mixture, and simmer for 10 more minutes. Stir in frozen greens (if using) and adjust seasonings if necessary.

Results:

Pretty good. I think I’ll up the tomato sauce and cut back the coriander a little. (*The measurements up there reflect these changes!) I served this over brown basmati rice. You could also make my easy and non-traditional Roti here if you feel so inclined. Since this is a new recipe, I somehow resisted the urge to throw a bunch of frozen greens in until I could give the flavors a chance to talk to me. Then I totally threw in some spinach at the end, because I love greens in just about everything, but that’s just me!

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Smoky Black Bean Bowls (on a budget!)

Published June 5, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Baby’s on a budget! Between all the moving around I’ve done in the last few years, my recent uninsured arm fracture (I am now insured though – as of Saturday, woo!), and the loss of my old station wagon/attainment of a shiny new, gas friendly hatchback, my debts have piled sky high. So I sat down today and used two phone apps to get myself on a budget.

My thoughts immediately turned to food. In the last year I’ve become very reliant on going out and ordering in, instead of cooking. It started when we moved to Fort Lauderdale, with the major kitchen downsize, and had just continued since with all the changes this past year, but it ends now! My new goal is $50 week for groceries. Today we did $58, including beer & cider, at Trader Joe’s. I thought that was a pretty good first effort.

So in order to make this work, I decided to go back to my roots. Being Cuban/Honduran I grew up with lots of legumes and rice for weeknight meals. Trader Joe’s didn’t have dry beans, which I’m determined to start using for the most economical bang for my buck, but they did have plenty of well priced canned beans and other things. Next week we’re going to check out the local co-op to see what they have.

This was just something I whipped up based on a more traditional recipe. I served it over some kale and brown rice (a mix of short grain & basmati) for a hearty grain bowl. We sprinkled nutritional yeast on top, and the kale wilted and cooked perfectly under the hot broth.

Smoky Black Beans

3 tbsp. olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped

1/2 c. chopped tomato (I used 1/2 can of fire roasted tomatoes w/chiles)

2 16 oz. cans black beans, undrained (I used Trader Joe’s Cuban Style black beans)

1 tbsp. vegan Worcestershire
1 tbsp. liquid smoke
1/2 tsp. tamari (or red sodium soy sauce)
+ water to equal 1/2 cup

1 tsp. cumin
1 tbsp. vinegar (white or red wine)

Salt & Pepper, as needed
Hot Sauce, to taste, optional (I used a delicious local habanero sauce)

Directions:

1. Heat olive in a medium pot over low-medium heat. (While it’s heating I roughly chop the garlic, green pepper, and onion and then pulse it in the food processor to a finer texture.

2. Add garlic, onion, and pepper to pot. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft.

3. Add the tomatoes, and let them cook for about 10 minutes.

4. Add remaining ingredients and stir well. Taste for seasoning. Raise the heat until it bubbles, cover, and drop to low to simmer for at least 20 minutes.

Serve over any greens & cooked grain of your choosing. We sprinkled with nooch, and I would have liked to throw some avocado on there, but it wasn’t quite ready yet. Enjoy!

Over a nice bed of fresh kale.

Over a nice bed of fresh kale.

Kale is perfectly cooked and bright green from the hot broth! Mmm!

We let it sit a minute or two so the kale was perfectly cooked and bright green from the hot broth! Mmm!

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