Tag Archives: vegetarian

Tofu Katsu

7 Dec

20131206-214044.jpg

A few years ago I made Tonkatsu without ever having tasted it. A neighbor friend, who happened to conveniently stop by mostly at dinner time, was over the night I made it. He had traveled to Japan and told me it tasted just like the authentic dish he had when he was there. This, of course, made me feel great! Since then, I’ve been wanting to create a tofu version and have added some delicious fresh vegetables.

Time: 30 minutes                     Serves: 4

Ingredients


  • Tofu


  • 1 15 oz. block extra firm tofu (I use organic sprouted tofu from Trader Joe’s)
  • salt and black pepper
  • about 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs (I use a Ian’s gluten free from Whole Foods)
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup corn starch
  • 1 egg plus 2 tbsp water
  • rice bran oil for frying

 

  • Katsu Sauce


  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire
  • 2 tbsp sake
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp mustard powder

How to make it


  • Tofu


  • Drain tofu from liquid. Wrap in paper towel and then a dish towel. Place on a cutting board or flat dish. Place something on top that is light enough that it won’t break the tender tofu, just enough to press out some of the moisture.
  • Meanwhile, combine flour and cornstarch in a bowl. In a separate bowl, combine beaten egg with water. Place panko crumbs into a third bowl.
  • Heat oil in a small-medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Test if oil is heated by throwing some panko crumbs in. If it sizzles, it’s ready.
  • Take pressed tofu and cut in half and then into four slices, then cut on diagonal to make triangles or down the middle for rectangular pieces.
  • Season tofu with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge in flour mixture, then into the egg mixture, and then into the panko.
  • Add the breaded tofu into the hot oil. Do not overcrowd the pan, as overcrowding will drop down the temperature. Cook about 2-3 pieces at a time until golden brown, about 4-6 minutes. Place on paper towel lined plate. Season with salt while hot.

 

  • Rice and Vegetables


  • Soak and rinse sticky rice and cook according to package instructions or in your rice cooker.
  • Slice radishes (any variety would work), cube seedless cucumbers. Shred napa/savoy/or regular green cabbage. Prepare cherry tomatoes and Asian microgreens (Mizuna, broccoli sprouts, etc). Cut fried tofu into slices.
  • To serve, place a scoop of sticky rice on plate. Place a bed of cabbage beside the rice. Arrange tofu over it. Drizzle sauce over top. Add fresh vegetables and enjoy! This dish also goes nicely with pickled vegetables, recipe coming soon.

Jeweled Kale and Cabbage Salad with Maple Mustard Dressing

4 Jun

lunapic_137037511626003_4

We all know how good leafy greens are for us, but did you know how downright tasty they can be to boot? I learned the technique of cooking off the rawness of the kale and cabbage from Chef Lulu Powers who I worked for when I was out in LA a few months back. These simple ingredients come together for a wonderful balance of flavors and textures. Enjoy! 

Time: 15 minutes                         Serves: 6

Ingredients


  • Salad


  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries (or cherries)
  • orange juice or lemonade – enough to cover dried fruit
  • 3 cups shredded kale
  • 3 cups shredded cabbage
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup shaved Parmesan Reggiano Asiago cheeses
  • Dressing


  • 1 tbsp Creole or other grainy mustard
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt and black pepper, freshly grated – to taste

How to make it


  • Salad


  • The day before you plan to make this salad, combine dried cranberries and juice in a small container. Seal and let sit overnight to reconstitute the fruit.
  • Preheat oven to 425F. Spread shredded kale and cabbage out on lined baking sheets giving room so as not to crowd.
  • Bake kale and cabbage for 6 minutes. Transfer from baking sheets to a large mixing bowl.
  • Add reconstituted cranberries, pine nuts, and cheese. Toss with dressing and serve.
  • Dressing


  • Combine mustard, lemon juice, maple syrup in a small non-reactive bowl. Whisk to incorporate. Add olive oil and whisk to emulsify. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Mushroom Barley Soup

23 May

lunapic_136685465986219_9

I know some of you are probably thinking, “soup?! really?!” considering it is late May. But here in my fine hometown of Detroit, MI it is currently 46F and pouring. What better time to warm up with this hearty soup that pleases vegetarians and meat-eaters alike?

Time: 15 min prep, 1hr 15min cook                   Serves: 8-10

Ingredients


  • 1 1/4 cups pearl barley
  • 3 bay leaves
  • sea salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 5 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup diced carrots (about 2 large)
  • 1 cup diced celery (about 3 stalks)
  • 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 pound cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 large portabella mushrooms, cut into chunks
  • 1 tbsp brown rice Miso paste, dissolved in a bit of warm water
  • black pepper
  • chopped parsley, chopped – for garnish
  • Bragg’s Liquid Amino Acids and Sriracha, to serve

lunapic_136685465986219_16

How to make it


  • Put barley in a 5 quart pot with bay leaves and a generous amount of sea salt. Add 6 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover pot, lower heat and simmer for about 1 hour or until grains are soft and open.
  • Heat half the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onions. Sauté for about 5 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and the garlic, and continue cooking for a couple more minutes. Stir in the thyme and rosemary. Add the carrots and celery. Cook for a few minutes then add to the pot of barley and cooking liquid.
  • Next, heat the remaining olive oil in a wide skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and a pinch of salt. (If you don’t have a large enough skillet, you can cook them in a couple of batches). Sauté, stirring constantly for a few minutes. Lower heat to medium and cook until softened and starting to brown.
  • Transfer to pot. Add 2-3 cups of water, and miso paste. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Add sea salt and black pepper to taste. Add kale and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Garnish with parsley and serve with Bragg’s and Sriracha.
  • lunapic_136685465986219_12

Creamy Spring Michigan Asparagus Soup

14 May

crmofasp

I look forward to the spring for so many reasons, and Michigan asparagus is one of them! It’s fresh, subtly sweet, and oh so delicious. The simplicity of this luscious soup lets it shine through and really be the star. May be served hot or chilled.

Time: 45 minutes                            Serves: 6

Ingredients


  • 1 onion,  finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 pounds asparagus, tough ends removed – cut into 2-inch pieces, tips reserved
  • 2 cups peeled & cubed potatoes
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • sea salt and black pepper, freshly ground – to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

How to make it


  • Heat olive oil over medium heat in a 5 qt stock pot. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  • Add potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Then, add asparagus (not the tips!). Add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cook for about 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
  • Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400F. Place asparagus tips on a lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in oven and roast 5-7 minutes, depending on size. Remove from oven and set aside
  • Once potatoes are tender, use an immersion blender to puree or standing blender in batches. Return to pot and add cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Garnish with roasted asparagus tips.

Quinoa White Bean Burgers with Herbed Greek Yogurt

24 Apr

lunapic_136676472353152_1

A protein-rich “veggie burger”. You can certainly put this on your favorite bun but we enjoyed it just like this with sliced cucumber.

Time: 30 minutes                      Serves: 6

Ingredients


  • Burgers


  • 1/2 cup quinoa, cooked according to package instructions and cooled completely
  • 1 medium carrot, cut into chunks
  • 1 1/2 cups Great Northern beans (I used 1/2 cup dry, soaked overnight & cooked until tender, this also equals one 15oz can, drained)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 6 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs (I made fresh with gluten free bread), divided
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheese (I used an Italian blend)
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • zest and juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • sea salt and black pepper – to taste
  • Vegetable or olive oil for cooking
  • Yogurt


  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • juice and zest from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp each fresh dill and chives, roughly chopped
  • sea salt & black pepper, freshly ground – to taste

How to make it


  • Burgers


  • Place carrots, beans, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with an “S-blade”. Process until smooth. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
  • Add cooked quinoa, 1/4 cups bread crumbs and remaining ingredients. Mix to incorporate. Divide into 6 portions and form into patties.
  • Place remaining bread crumbs into a shallow dish and coat patties. Chill patties in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
  • Heat cooking oil in a skillet over medium heat. Cook for 8-10 minutes on each side, until golden brown.
  • Yogurt


  • Combine all ingredients and mix to incorporate. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Sesame Cucumber Salad

20 Apr

lunapic_136400281389816_8

Light, refreshing and healthy. This salad is great addition to any meal.

Time: 10 minutes              Serves: 2

Ingredients


  • 2-3 small Persian or Japanese cucumbers
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

How to make it


  • Slice the cucumbers lengthwise using a vegetable peeler, or widthwise into very thin coins.
  • Combine vinegar, sugar, and oil in a non-reactive mixing bowl. Mix well to incorporate.
  • Add cucumbers and sesame seeds and toss well.

Grilled Baby Bok Choy

6 Apr

6bfc8d14d178b99a2d12541868f2c9e9

One of the farmers I buy produce from grows lovely baby bok choy. This is a great way to enjoy it!

Time: 15 minutes             Serves: 2 

Ingredients


  • 3 heads baby bok choy, well cleaned between leaves @ root, cut in half length-wise
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce (I used low-sodium)
  • 1 tsp Sriracha
  • 1/4 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • dash freshly ground black pepper

How to make it


  • Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Oil lightly.
  • Combine soy, Sriracha, sesame oil and black pepper in a small mixing bowl. Whisk to combine.
  • Place bok choy cut side up on a plate. Brush with soy mixture, reserving half for other side.
  • Place bok choy cut side down onto grill. Cook for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Brush with remaining soy mixture and turn. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Edamame Dip With Won Ton Chips

5 Apr

41887a0954093aa5d696e5182bc267b0

A protein-rich, low fat and low cal appetizer. Makes for great snacking! Healthy & tasty. Someone asked if it was a big bowl of wasabi 😉 Recipe slightly adapted from one I found on the Tasty Kitchen site by Eat 80/20 Dietitian.

Time: 15 minutes                Serves: 10

Ingredients


  • Dip


  • 4 cups shelled edamame, cooked according to package instructions
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed & minced
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1-2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup water + more as needed
  • 1/3 tsp black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • Chips


  • 30 won ton wrappers, cut in half diagonally
  • olive oil spray
  • sea salt & black pepper, freshly ground – to taste

How to make it


  • Dip


  • Place edamame, garlic, lemon juice, 1 tsp olive oil and 1/2 cup water in food processor fitted with S-blade. Process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Process to combine. Add more oil and/or water as needed to reach desired consistency.
  • Chips


  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet (or 2) with parchment paper. Spray with olive oil.
  • Place won ton pieces onto sheet so they are not touching. Spray with olive oil then sprinkle with sea salt & pepper.
  • Bake for 6-8 minutes, until the edges are lightly brown. Remove from oven. Chips will continue to brown while left on the baking sheet.
  • Once cooled, place in serving dish. May be stored in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.

Roasted Butternut Squash & Garlic Enchiladas

17 Mar

butternut enchiladas

Have I told you lately that I love……..butternut squash?! Roasting it just sets it off and the addition of roasted garlic takes it to the next level. Trust me, this one’s is a goodie!

Time: 1 hour, 15 min             Serves: 3

Ingredients


  • Filling


  • 2 pound butternut squash
  • 1 head garlic
  • olive oil
  • sea salt & black pepper, freshly ground – to taste
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • salt, to taste – about 1/2-1 tsp)

roasted butternut

butternut ingr

  • The Rest


  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 1 12oz. jar salsa verde/equivalent homemade
  • 3-4 slices pepper-jack cheese – Yogurt lactose-free from Trader Joe’s
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 3-4 green onion tops, chopped
  • cilantro, roughly chopped – for garnish
  • lime edges, to serve

How to make it


  • Filling


  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Cut tops off of garlic clove. Place in center of a large square of aluminum foil. Drizzle generously with olive oil and sprinkle with S&P.
  • Cut end and top off of squash. Cut in half and scoop out seeds with a spoon. Rub cut side with olive oil and sprinkle with S&P. Place on roasting pan/foil cut side down.
  • Remove garlic after 35 minutes, and squash at about the 45 min mark. You want the skin to just begin to brown and the cut side to brown.
  • Scoop flesh from squash and mash. Squeeze garlic cloves out of head and mash into squash.
  • Season squash garlic mixture with cumin, oregano, paprika, and salt.
  • The Rest


  • Place a moist paper towel on stack of 4 tortillas and microwave for 15 seconds. Keep paper towel over stack while working. Work in two batches.
  • Spoon mixture into each corn tortillas, roll, and place seam side down into an 8×8 pan. Continue until all are filled & rolled.
  • Top with cheese, follow with salsa verde.
  • Bake at 350F for 20 minutes. Place under broiler for about 2 minutes if desired.
  • Top with sliced avocado, sprinkle with cilantro and green onions, and lime wedges on the side.

butternut enchiladas cut

Mushroom Parmesan

18 Jan

I came across this recipe by Giada De Laurentiis a couple years ago. My beau is a “meat and potatoes guy” if you will. Don’t get me wrong, he loves his veggies but a meatless meal i will certainly raise an eyebrow here. I am so glad I finally decided to make this and so was he. He praised me about the fact that it was vegetarian yet so satisfying, yay! As it says in the ingredients section, you can use store bought or homemade marinara. I highly suggest homemade. Please see my recipe. I think this would also make a great appetizer with baby Bellas and can’t wait to wow our friends and families with it! Please excuse the photo, its an old one taken with a cell phone.

Time: 15 min prep, 25 min cook              Serves: 4-6

Ingredients


  • 4-6 portobello caps (large)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper, fresh ground if possible
  • 2 cups marinara sauce (store bought or homemade, my recipe marinara sauce)
  • 1 tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan

How to make it


  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Allow your grill to heat and brush it with olive oil.
  • Place mushroom caps on a large plate and drizzle both sides with olive. Season liberally with salt and pepper.
  • Grill mushrooms for about 5 minutes on each side.
  • Meanwhile, add about a cup of marinara sauce to the bottom of a baking dish (9×13).
  • Remove mushrooms from grill and place atop the marinara in the casserole dish, bottoms facing up. Top each mushroom with about a quarter cup of remaining marinara sauce. Top with mozzarella, then Parmesan, and finally butter.
  • Place casserole dish in oven and bake for about 15 minutes, until the cheese melts.
  • Then turn oven to broil and leave in for about 2 minutes. Check on it after one minute because you just want the top to brown and not burn.
  • Allow to cool for a moment and serve.