Vegetable Ramen Noodle Soup

Vegetable Ramen Noodle Soup
(Serves 8) ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free

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I don’t know about you, but this chilly weather instantly makes me want to prepare a big pot of soup. I’m not knocking the ramen soup that we all lived on at one time or another, but whew are those ingredient lists long! I love this recipe because the way it’s prepared the veggies stay fresh and crunchy without all the preservatives. This was a big hit in our home a few nights ago. Yes, these oodles of noodles are all grown up. Warm, inviting and fresh! Enjoy.

Ingredients:
3 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
5 Scallions, chopped
3 Celery Ribs, sliced
3 Large Carrots, shredded/grated
16oz Frozen Corn
¼ Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
10oz Fresh Green Beans
¼ Cup Tamari Soy Sauce
¼ Tsp Ginger Powder
3 Quarts Vegetable Broth
1 (10oz Package) Ramen Noodles (I used Lotus Foods – Millet & Brown rice)
1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
Salt/Pepper to taste

Directions:
-Prepare ramen noodles according to package and set aside.
-In a large pot heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add celery and scallions then sauté for about 3 minutes.
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Grated Carrots – I used my box grater.
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-Add carrots, frozen corn, and crushed red pepper flakes continue to sauté for 5 minutes.
-Stir in soy sauce, vegetable broth and green beans. Bring to boil.
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-Once the soup begins to boil turn off and remove from heat. Stir in rice vinegar, ginger powder and ramen then season to taste (salt/pepper). Enjoy!

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Vegetable Ramen Noodle Soup

  • Servings: 8
  • Time: 25-30 Minutes
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Ingredients:
3 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
5 Scallions, chopped
3 Celery Ribs, sliced
3 Large Carrots, shredded/grated
16oz Frozen Corn
¼ Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
10oz Fresh Green Beans
¼ Cup Tamari Soy Sauce
¼ Tsp Ginger Powder
3 Quarts Vegetable Broth
1 (10oz Package) Ramen Noodles (I used Lotus Foods – Millet & Brown rice)
1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
Salt/Pepper to taste

Directions:
-Prepare ramen noodles according to package and set aside.
-In a large pot heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add celery and scallions then sauté for about 3 minutes.
-Add carrots, frozen corn, and crushed red pepper flakes continue to sauté for 5 minutes.
-Stir in soy sauce, vegetable broth and green beans. Bring to boil.
-Once the soup begins to boil turn off and remove from heat. Stir in rice vinegar, ginger powder and ramen then season to taste (salt/pepper). Enjoy!

Eggplant Parm Bake

Eggplant Parm Bake
(Serves 8-10) ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free

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Can I quickly just say how much fun we had last night! We attended a game night hosted by my lifelong friend. Maribel is pretty much family since I’ve known her my entire life. She’s more like a cousin to me and growing up we hung out like sisters would. Her husband and two other close friends attended also. The six of us laughed so hard we were in tears. I love good times like this. The kids had their own game night happening in the living room with uno and cards.
I made this Eggplant Parmigiana bake a couple weeks ago. I wanted to take a quick shortcut to my ultimate eggplant parm recipe. This recipe was quick and delicious.

Eggplant Parm Bake

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Time: 30-45 minutes
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Ingredients:
3 Eggplants, sliced (recipe tripled)
(Prepared Eggplants – find recipe here)
Parmesan Topping (recipe tripled)
(Prepared Parm Topping – find recipe here)
1 Jar Store bought pasta sauce
3 Cups Fresh Baby Spinach
1 Package Vegan Shredded Mozzarella (I used Daiya brand)

Directions:
-Prepare Eggplant and Parmesan topping according to my Ultimate Eggplant Parmigiana recipe.
-In a large 13×9 baking dish, layer in the following: sauce, eggplant slices, sauce, baby spinach, Daiya cheese then repeat. Note: If you have any additional parmesan topping remaining add on top of spinach layer.
-Oven should already be heated to 500 degrees F. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes or until cheese has melted. I remove foil halfway through baking. Enjoy!

Spinach layer:
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Next Daiya Cheese and then Eggplant.img_0881
I served alongside Angel hair pasta.
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p.s. I cannot believe the holidays are right around the corner!!

Wild Rice Soup

Wild Rice blend & Vegetable Soup
(Serves 4-6) ~ Vegan, Dairy-Free

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I wish I planned this recipe in advance, instead it was another pantry/fridge cleanout effort. I typically write out recipes first and tweak them along the way when I’m creating. Since I didn’t do that here, please make note that my measurements are not exact. BUT it came out so delicious that I just had to share it anyway.
Last week I had given the kids leftover pasta for dinner which left Seth and I with ??? Refusing to go to the store, I scoured through the pantry and fridge to see what I could find. I wouldn’t necessarily make soup with a red onion, for example, I prefer yellow or sweet, but it’s what was available. I also found celery, carrots, broccoli and parsley in the fridge. In the pantry I found wild rice and a can of corn. With the addition of the flour this soup comes out rather creamy.
My my this soup tasted like Thanksgiving. I will definitely be making this one again soon, especially with the upcoming holidays so then I will plan to measure. Warm, comforting and inviting! Enjoy!

Ingredients:
3 Quarts of Water
3 Tbsp Canola Oil
½ Large Red Onion, chopped
4 Large Carrots, sliced
4 Celery Ribs, sliced
1 Handful fresh Parsley, chopped
½ Cup of Wild Rice Blend, uncooked (I used Lundberg brand)
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, about ½ Tsp
All Purpose Flour, about 3 Tbsp
Salt/Pepper to taste
Italian Seasoning to taste
Florets from 2 bunches of Broccoli
1 (15.25oz can) Corn

Directions:
-In a large pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook about 2-3 minutes until softened.
-Add carrots, celery, parsley and crushed red pepper flakes then continue to cook through for another couple minutes.
-Add water, salt/pepper, Italian seasoning and heat to slow boil. Stir in flour and cook for another 1-2 minutes before adding rice.
-Add wild rice blend, cover and reduce heat to simmer. Cook for about 40 minutes.
-In the last 10 minutes of cooking, add corn and broccoli florets.
-Adjust seasoning to taste. Enjoy!

 

Cream of Broccoli Soup

Cream of Broccoli Soup
(Serves 12-14) ~ Vegan

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Proud ‘Sally Soul Smasher’ here. Yup, I just finished serving up salads for dinner tonight. I honestly couldn’t help but to think of the Domino’s commercial while serving it too. Well the salad was delicious – ingredients/picture below:

Spinach
Carrots
Celery
Zucchini (Squash)
Tomatoes
Kalamata Olives
Broccoli
Parsley
Avocado
Portobello Mushrooms (sautéed in oil, salt/pepper and finished with balsamic)

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You know… salad doesn’t have to be boring or tasteless. I’ve made so many and fancy ‘Waldorf/Greek’ and basic Chopped salads too. But today I really wanted to blog about my Cream of Broccoli soup! One day last week it was SO chilly out, just freezing. I wanted something warm and creamy and thought what better than a warming soup. Hope you try this one. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 Large Sweet Onion, chopped
1 Large Russet Potato, chopped
3 Tbsp Canola Oil
½ Tsp Celery Seed
1/8 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
2 Quarts Vegetable Broth
1 Quart Water
7 Bunches of Broccoli (florets), chopped
¼ Cup Earth Balance (vegan butter)
3 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
1/3 Cup Nutritional Yeast flakes
½ Cup Soy Milk
½ Tbsp Salt
2 Tsp Ground Pepper

-This is about the size of the broccoli (7 of these).
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Directions:
-Heat oil in large pot and add onions. Sauté for about 5 minutes until translucent.
-Add potatoes (I chop them about the same size as the onions), celery seed and red pepper flakes. Continue to heat for another 2 minutes.
-Add one quart of the vegetable broth and heat to cook down the potatoes for about 3 minutes.
-Add remaining broth/water and broccoli then heat to boil. Cover turn off heat and let stand for 35-40 minutes to cook.
-In the meantime, in a separate pan, heat earth balance and flour to create a roux or slurry.
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-Bring soup back to a simmer. Add roux, nutritional yeast, milk and salt/pepper.
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-Blend soup with an immersion blender and adjust seasoning to taste before serving. Enjoy!

Note: If you’re in a pinch for time just continue cooking over medium-high until potatoes are cooked through. I prefer the step that allows them to steam up and it kind of preserves the beautiful green broccoli color.

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Cream of Broccoli Soup

  • Servings: 12-14
  • Time: 1hr
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:
1 Large Sweet Onion, chopped
1 Large Russet Potato, chopped
3 Tbsp Canola Oil
½ Tsp Celery Seed
1/8 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
2 Quarts Vegetable Broth
1 Quart Water
7 Bunches of Broccoli (florets), chopped
¼ Cup Earth Balance (vegan butter)
3 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
1/3 Cup Nutritional Yeast flakes
½ Cup Soy Milk
½ Tbsp Salt
2 Tsp Ground Pepper

Directions:
-Heat oil in large pot and add onions. Sauté for about 5 minutes until translucent.
-Add potatoes (I chop them about the same size as the onions), celery seed and red pepper flakes. Continue to heat for another 2 minutes.
-Add one quart of the vegetable broth and heat to cook down the potatoes for about 3 minutes.
-Add remaining broth/water and broccoli then heat to boil. Cover turn off heat and let stand for 35-40 minutes to cook.
-In the meantime, in a separate pan, heat earth balance and flour to create a roux or slurry.
-Bring soup back to a simmer. Add roux, nutritional yeast, milk and salt/pepper.
-Blend soup with an immersion blender and adjust seasoning to taste before serving. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Rolls (Buns)

Cinnamon Rolls (Buns)
(Makes about 18-19 rolls) ~ Vegan

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A Labor of Love
I made this recipe to redeem myself. Why? Because the birthday cake I made for myself a little over a week ago was a disaster. This recipe also began kind of rough – I had to save it. Guess I’m rusty from not blogging or creating these last couple of months. We have been experiencing a wave of quick recipes in our home, lots of: rice/beans, mashed potatoes, pastas, veggies and meatless products (i.e. Gardein/Tofurky) – our convenience foods.
About my birthday cake… It was rather laughable. The original recipe I had written out turned out very liquidy or smoothie-like. So I tried to save it but the result was a dry sponge. We joked so much at the table as we tried to eat it. We wondered if we could cut the cake into slices and wash the dishes with it or wipe down the counters with that cake. Hehe. The next day I made a vegan pudding and broke up/crumbled the cake and layered it into a trifle.
Saving the cinnamon bun: Make sure you gradually add the flour and/or reserve a portion for flouring the surface. I made the mistake initially by only reserving about 2 Tbsp to flour my surface. Quick Tip: If you add too much flour and your ball of dough as you’re kneading becomes rough just add a bit more liquid or in my case honey! Honey is a great way to bring your ball of dough back to life.

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Ingredients:
Yeast/Flour Mixture (#1):
1 Pkg Active Dry Yeast
¼ Cup Warm Water
¼ Tsp Sugar
#2
¾ Cup Non-Dairy Milk (I used almond/coconut blend)
1/3 Cup Sugar
½ Cup Earth Balance (Vegan Butter) or 1 Stick
#3
4 Cups Flour
1 Tsp Salt
1 ½ Tsp Ener-G Egg Replacer, optional
2 Tbsp Honey, optional
Filling (#4):
½ Cup Earth Balance or 1 Stick, melted
1 ½ Tbsp Ground Cinnamon
¼ Cup Light Brown Sugar
¼ Cup Sugar
Topping/Glaze (#5):
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Non-Dairy Milk (I used almond/coconut blend)
¼ Tsp Ground Cinnamon

Directions:
-Proof your yeast. In a small bowl dissolve yeast with warm water and stir ¼ Tsp Sugar. Let this stand for about 5 minutes. (#1)
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-In another glass bowl, microwave: milk, earth balance and sugar (#2) for about 2 – 2 ½ minutes. You will want to take the chill of the milk and melt/soften the earth balance.
-In a separate bowl whisk together (#3): flour, salt, egg replacer to combine. Typically one may sift these ingredients together but I don’t own a sifter and probably would just continue to use a whisk since it seems easier. 😊
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-To the bowl with milk/butter bowl add about ½ of the flour mixture. Stir together to combine. Add in yeast mixture and stir again to combine. Add in remaining flour, however, be sure to reserve some for flouring your surface. (Initially I only reserved 2 Tbsp for my surface but my dough ball started to break apart. I added the honey here, during the last 2 minutes of kneading, to revive my dough ball during kneading.)
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-Knead for the dough for about 10 minutes.
-Grease a large glass bowl (with oil or non-stick cooking spray) add your ball of dough. Cover and let rise for about 1 ½ hours. Dough should double in size.
-Punch down the dough or remove and fold out to remove the air.
-Flour your surface again and roll out your dough into a rectangular shape, about ¼ inch thick.
-In a glass bowl, combine filling ingredients (#4): Earth balance, sugar(s) and cinnamon. Microwave for about 1-1 ½ minutes to melt. -Pour into your dough and spread evenly, leaving about 1-inch from the edge.
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Pre-heat oven 350 degrees F.
-Roll up dough with filling carefully pinching the final piece to secure.
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-Grease (2) two (9-inch) round pan – Earth Balance (Vegan Butter) or cooking spray, if you prefer.
-Cut dough log into 1-inch pieces. I was able to cut into about 18 pieces, which included the two ends that were a bit teeny.
-Add pieces to prepared pan and let these rise for about another 25 minutes.
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-Bake for 30 minutes.
-While your rolls are in the oven combine ingredients for the glaze (#5). Just whisk together to combine.
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-Remove from oven and let them stand for about 10 minutes before glazing. You can let them cool longer if you can wait. 😊 Enjoy!

Whew…
Well I did say it was a labor of love, right? ❤ But really it wasn’t so bad. If feels like a long time and really it was but I did other things to break up the time. During the initial 1 ½ hours while the dough rose I went off to the grocery store to do my weekly (or 2-day) shopping trip. During the rest of the time in between prepping I made breakfast. J You really can get a lot accomplished during this time, don’t be discouraged – these are delicious and well worth it.

Cinnamon Rolls (buns)

  • Servings: 16-18
  • Time: 2hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: Intermediate
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Ingredients:
Yeast/Flour Mixture (#1):
1 Pkg Active Dry Yeast
¼ Cup Warm Water
¼ Tsp Sugar
#2
¾ Cup Non-Dairy Milk (I used almond/coconut blend)
1/3 Cup Sugar
½ Cup Earth Balance (Vegan Butter) or 1 Stick
#3
4 Cups Flour
1 Tsp Salt
1 ½ Tsp Ener-G Egg Replacer, optional
2 Tbsp Honey, optional
Filling (#4):
½ Cup Earth Balance or 1 Stick, melted
1 ½ Tbsp Ground Cinnamon
¼ Cup Light Brown Sugar
¼ Cup Sugar
Topping/Glaze (#5):
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Non-Dairy Milk (I used almond/coconut blend)
¼ Tsp Ground Cinnamon

Directions:
-Proof your yeast. In a small bowl dissolve yeast with warm water and stir ¼ Tsp Sugar. Let this stand for about 5 minutes. (#1)
-In another glass bowl, microwave: milk, earth balance and sugar (#2) for about 2 – 2 ½ minutes. You will want to take the chill of the milk and melt/soften the earth balance.
-In a separate bowl whisk together (#3): flour, salt, egg replacer to combine. Typically one may sift these ingredients together but I don’t own a sifter and probably would just continue to use a whisk since it seems easier. 😊
-To the bowl with milk/butter bowl add about ½ of the flour mixture. Stir together to combine. Add in yeast mixture and stir again to combine. Add in remaining flour, however, be sure to reserve some for flouring your surface. (Initially I only reserved 2 Tbsp for my surface but my dough ball started to break apart. I added the honey here, during the last 2 minutes of kneading, to revive my dough ball during kneading.)
-Knead for the dough for about 10 minutes.
-Grease a large glass bowl (with oil or non-stick cooking spray) add your ball of dough. Cover and let rise for about 1 ½ hours. Dough should double in size.
-Punch down the dough or remove and fold out to remove the air.
-Flour your surface again and roll out your dough into a rectangular shape, about ¼ inch thick.
-In a glass bowl, combine filling ingredients (#4): Earth balance, sugar(s) and cinnamon. Microwave for about 1-1 ½ minutes to melt. -Pour into your dough and spread evenly, leaving about 1-inch from the edge.
Pre-heat oven 350 degrees F.
-Roll up dough with filling carefully pinching the final piece to secure.
-Grease (2) two (9-inch) round pan – Earth Balance (Vegan Butter) or cooking spray, if you prefer.
-Cut dough log into 1-inch pieces. I was able to cut into about 18 pieces, which included the two ends that were a bit teeny.
-Add pieces to prepared pan and let these rise for about another 25 minutes.
-Bake for 30 minutes.
-While your rolls are in the oven combine ingredients for the glaze (#5). Just whisk together to combine.
-Remove from oven and let them stand for about 10 minutes before glazing. You can let them cool longer if you can wait. 😊 Enjoy!

Morning Smoothie!

Morning Smoothie!
(Serves 3) ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Raw, Soy-Free

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Morning Sunshine! I should say instead. This smoothie is not so pretty, but it’s pretty healthy. I say not-so-pretty because at least that is what a co-worker thought last week. It was a bright sunny day (jk). So, I was at work reaching for my smoothie as a co-worker passed by and says, “ew, what is that!?!” To which I replied a smoothie, here try some. 😊 She thought it was delicious by the way. I honestly believe she meant no ill-will but the story doesn’t end or start here. A few weeks ago Seth was at a deli picking up some veggie sandwiches, the employee does the ‘ol “order up – veggie sandwiches!” An patron nearby hears this and says, “ew, who would even order a veggie sandwich. Ugh, a sandwich with no meat etc. etc.”  Well her supercilious comment wasn’t going to get by Seth that easily. He replies back, “that would be mine. by the way what form of dead animal carcass will be decomposing in your body today?”  Another incident within the same week occurred at a grocery store. He was on his way home, it was pouring out, I got in late myself and wasn’t up for cooking. So… he stops off to grab pizza. (Vegan – Daiya Pizzas to be exact). Another customer hears the automated self-checkout say the item and price. The customer to his son says, “whoa, that price for 1 pizza my God we could get 2 large pies for that price! The son adds or 3 medium!” Followed by both of them cackling. Now I don’t remember exactly what Seth commented back and he’s sleeping at the moment or I’d ask but I do remember in short – he let it go.

I suppose this rant is all to say or ask the burning question: Has society as a whole lost their manners?  Where is the tact? Has ill-mannered behavior become socially acceptable? Despite the popular ‘vegan perception’ I don’t look in other people’s carts at the grocery store and examine their items. I don’t arrogantly comment or turn up my nose at the person who orders the triple bacon cheeseburger. Can we not get the same treatment?
We are modest and humble people we don’t flash around or advertise our vegan lifestyle. I enjoy life, animals, family and love. I enjoy creating recipes and sharing them with all who will seek them out.
Think about it and ‘do to others as you would have them do to you.”

The best part about this smoothie is that my kids have been begging me to make it. I made this last week before heading into work. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
4-5 pieces of Kale, stems removed
7 Strawberries, hulled
½ to 1 cup Fresh Raspberries
½ Banana
1 Cup Non-Dairy Milk (I used almond/coconut blend)
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 Tbsp Sweetener (Agave Nectar or Honey)

-Blend together in high-speed blender. I used my nutribullet. Enjoy!

 

Black-Eyed Chimichurri Bean Salad

Black-Eyed Chimichurri Bean Salad
(Serves 8-12) ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free

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Bursting with flavor! Try this amazing side at your next bbq/party. Beans always remind me of Seth since he LOVES beans and all things beans! Hell it even inspired us naming our first dog-child together (Beanie). 😊 So I wanted to share a funny story that happened on Monday night. Seth and I have been binge watching Oz (I know so 90’s, right?) and during one of the episodes the topic of Hell, Hades or something about a ‘lifetime of torture’ came up. (Sorry I butchered that explanation, I know). Anyhow, so he asks me what I would consider so torturous that would haunt me for a lifetime. My response was something about bugs, insects or rodents crawling all over me. I have nothing against the little guys…I just don’t want them crawling all over me. SO I ask him the same question and he replies, “what would torture me for life would be to lose all my senses… to not have the ability to see you anymore, smell or touch your soft skin, or to hear your voice… that would be torture to me – losing all my senses. Knowing that I once could experience those things but to no longer have that ability…” [melt] Um – he won, lol! ❤ well now you all know another reason why I fell in love – he’s smooth, right?

SO if anyone ever asks the question… for the love of God go with your senses.

Pft!…bugs, what was I thinking. 😊 Enjoy!

Ingredients:
3 (15.5oz cans) Blackeye Peas, drained/rinsed
1 (11oz can) White Shoepeg Corn
1 Tofurky sausage, diced (sautéed for 3 minutes), optional
½ – 1 Cup Chimichurri Sauce

-Toss all ingredients to combine and refrigerate overnight. Best served cold.

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