Tag Archives: broccoli

Mushroom Beans, Garlic Rice, and Experimental Broccoli

When I went to school in Olympia I learned to hate the word experimental. To me it became synonymous with really bad performance art usually involving movement, multiple projectors, and sometimes primal screaming. So when Mr. Smurf asked me last night “what’s for dinner” and I started to tell him about how it was experimental broccoli a loud klaxon should have sounded in my brain instantaneously.  

It all started with best of intentions. I have this book called New American Table that I love to look through and one recipe that I  was really interested in was tea poached bok choy. Over at What Does a Vegan Eat Anyway they are always smoking something with tea and it just looks fantastic and fun so I thought I could do it too.

First, I started the Garlic Rice, by sautéing six cloves of garlic in a little olive oil, then adding a cup of rice after a few minutes, sautéing until a little brown then adding a cup of water and some salt covered and let steam.

Then, once that got steaming, I started the Mushroom Beans. I tossed a carton of precut mushrooms in my skillet seared them, added a little water, a can of white beans and about a teaspoon of mushroom soy sauce (healthy boy is my favorite) and let that sauté for a few minutes while the mushrooms cooked.

So far this is the world’s easiest beans and rice meal besides completely plain beans and rice and  I should have just gone simple with the broccoli like braising it with a little ginger or garlic like usual. But damnit, it is veganMoFo so I need to step out of my comfort zone. Especially when there are people like Vegan in Brighton making things they don’t even think they like! And making them look beautiful!

Instead I made a sauté of 3 cloves of garlic, a teaspoon of sliced ginger, two sliced shallots and cooked them for about three minutes. Then I added two crowns of broccoli, cooked that for a minute, then added 2 cups of water, 2 orange spice tea bags, some salt and some agave.

It wasn’t as bad as the play I saw where people were crawling around on their bellies yelling “monster” until they all “died”. Really, it wasn’t bad at all. My main problem was that I cooked it for a little two long so the tea tasted bitter and the broccoli was overcooked. I think the technique would work a lot better with quicker cooking bok choy ….like…um.. in the original recipe.

The rice and beans though were an easy easy easy winner. I will eat it again next time I am tired/poor/alone/busy/hungry.

Lazy Roasted Broccoli with Polenta & Marinara

Have you ever felt like thiswhere you can’t even imagine ordering Chinese food much less cook for yourself? I found myself in that very situation but I was prepared with cooked polenta and white beans in the fridge. I wanted something that would be healthy and totally effortless and so I came up with the easiest thing I could have possibly made and it actually turned out pretty good. First I scooped out some of the cooked polenta and beans and stuck them in the oven. Then, I cut up some broccoli and rolled it around in olive oil and minced garlic and stuck it in the oven too, for about 20 minutes on 375. In the meantime I let some jarred pasta sauce simmer on the stove. Then I layed down with a couple of beagles. Then I ate way too much ’cause Mr. Smurf is out of town and I am not used to cooking for one person anymore. What are your favorite things to make when you don’t have any energy?

Italian Feast, some Broccoli Quiche, and a Swiss Chard Fritatta

I have been cooking up a(heat) storm from Vegan Brunch so I thought I would share the wonder that is this books. First I made the Broccoli Quiche which was surprisingly creamy but somehow the Broccoli flavor wasn’t strong enough for me. I think next time I will saute it for longer with more liquid to bring out the flavor. It could have been a problem with my broccoli too. I love this picture I think it looks like some sort of a broccoli space ship.I also made the Italian Feast Sausages with Spinashed Potatoes and the Jalapeno corn gravy from the Veganomicon. I loved these sausages! It is so nice to have the recipe right there too, so I don’t have to come up with one on my own or look it up on my blog. We used these the next day for some Seitanic Jambalaya and they really elevated the whole dish. And the gravy was kind of magical despite its somewhat off putting yellow color. It uses only corn and cornstarch for thickening so it might be a good choice if you are trying to avoid flour or beans.  Finally the real star of the show, the Swiss Chard Frittata. I don’t know why this was so yummy, I think the only spice was Thyme or Oregano but I just loved it! I also made the lemon pepper roasted potatoes and they were really easy and good. Homemade Iced coffee has become my new staple and I am really excited to have it always on hand, but that is another post!I do wish this book had come out in the winter when I had nothing do all night besides cook, now that it is a hundred degrees outside and about a thousand in my kitchen is getting really hard to cook but I want to make everything from Vegan Brunch. What a conundrum.

The dog days of summer have arrived.

Cinco de Mayo is coming, its practically here!

Last year on Cinco de Mayo, I listened to a local radio station lament the fact that people ignorant of Mexican culture don’t know what Cinco de Mayo is all about and yet they still celebrate by knocking back a couple of Cuervos and maybe having some nachos. What was absurd, to me, was that they went on and on about how this was such a travesty and yet they never once mentioned what Cinco de Mayo is all about. For one thing, I don’t even think it is a national holiday in Mexico. According to Wikipedia it is mostly celebrated in the state of Puebla but they fail to mention that it is probably more intensely celebrated in Mexico’s former territory: Texas. The date commemorates the defeat of the French by Mexican General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín and was also the last time the Americas were invaded by another country. In Texas, and the rest of the US, however, we primarily use the holiday to celebrate Mexican culture which in my mind means eating Mexican inspired food and yes, drinking beer and eating nachos. I thought I would do a round-up of some tacos that I have posted about to inspire some taco ideas other than the standard American version.

The Southern Taco

Tropical Tempeh Tacos

Sesame Tacos with Blood Orange Tacos

Vegan Al Pastor Tacos

Tequila Sausage & Cornmeal Crusted Plantain Tacos

Escondido Tacos

Peanut Crusted Seitan with Blood Orange Salsa

I would love for any other bloggers to link below to any of their favorite taco creations!
And have a happy International Worker’s Day

VeganMoFo- Escondido Tacos

Last night I went for a two hour walk through a nicer neighborhood with the dogs and looked at Halloween decorations. I saw only one McCain sign which made me really very happy, well not the McCain sign, but the overwhelming amount of Obama signs. I have been really afraid about the election and especially Sarah Palin. Anyway, I got home and was totally exhausted and I wanted to make something really fast. I took out Dreena’s Eat Drink and Be Vegan because it usually has some really fast recipes. I saw one for “Garlicky Broccoli Burritos” or something to that effect and decided I would use the basic concepts in a taco. I remembered from the Pasta De La California a few weeks ago that garlicky broccoli is so fantastic with guacamole and I had two avocados sitting on the windowsill that were just perfectly ripe.

I have family in Escondido California and they are lucky enough to have an avocado tree in their backyard so I decided to name these tacos after that part of California. I think an avocado tree would probably be the tree I want most to have in my backyard. Or an olive tree! Or a mango tree….

Here is what I used for the tacos, I am also going to give instructions for prep as you go:

1 can Spicy Refried Beans (you could also smash together beans from a can of black or pinto and a chopped jalapeno)
1 TBSP of oil
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 broccoli crowns, chopped
1 TBSP of Nama Shoyu (or soy sauce)
1 TBSP of Worchestershire
1/2 Cup of frozen corn
4 tortialls

Guacamole con Alga Marina (based on Dreena recipe)
2 ripe medium avocados
Juice of 1 large lime
salt to taste
1 tsp of kelp powder (optional)

First, turn on the oven to 300. Seal your tortiallas in foil and put them in the oven to warm up. Empty the contents of the refried beans can into a pot and put on low. Stir occaionally throughout the process. Put oil in a seperate pan and warm it to medium heat. Meanwhile, chop the garlic and then add it to the pan. While the garlic is cooking chop the broccoli into florets. Add them to the pan along with the nama shoyu and worchestershire and frozen corn. Cover the whole lot and let cook for 3 minutes stirring occasionally. If broccoli is sticking or garlic is burning turn down the heat or add water to the bottom of the pan. Meanwhile, chop the avocados and put them in a bowl. Squeeze in the juice from half the lime. Add in a little bit of sea salt and the kelp powder if you are so inclined. By the time you have whipped the guac up (use either a fork, a potato masher, or an immersion blender) everything else will be done. Get your tortialls out and spread refried beans on the bottom. Top with the broccoli mixture and the Guacamole and ROCK OUT WITH YOUR GUAC OUT and enjoy!