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Green Fed

a blog about a girl who decided eating plants was the way to go

Category Archives: kid friendly

Would you ever eat lasagna with TOFU in it?  Yah, me neither… that is until I made this recipe!  It’s seriously fabulous, and if I didn’t make it, I would have NO idea that tofu stood in place of  the ricotta.  Be brave, try it!  You’ll be glad you did!

To start out, get your Tofu Ricotta ready:

2 lb extra-firm tofu
4 tsp lemon juice
2 clove garlic
1/2 tsp salt
pinch ground black pepper
15-20 fresh basil leaves, chopped finely
4 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast

Directions
1.in large bowl, mush up tofu with hands, until crumbly

2.add lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, basil

3.mush with hands again until reach consistency of ricotta cheese, 2 – 5 mins

4.add olive oil, stir with fork

5.add nutritional yeast and mix everything together with a fork

6.refrigerate until ready to use

Next, if you love Parmesean Cheese like I do, make this Almesan to replace it:

1/4 cup slivered or sliced almonds

1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds

1/8 tsp salt

1/4 tsp lemon zest

Combine all ingredients in blender or food processor and pulse until everything turns to tiny crumbles.  Set aside.

Now, onto the big recipe for the Lasagna:

2 (28-oz) jars/cans of marinara sauce of your choice (my favorite is Trader Joe’s)- sometimes I feel ambitious and make my own, but I love TJ’s just the same!

1-pound package lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions (if not using no-boil, which are my favorite)

2 pounds spinach or a mix of other greens

1lb mushrooms

2 Tbsp olive oil (I only used 1Tbsp)

Salt & Pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Have ready a 9×13 inch pan, lined with a double layer of foil.  Wash the spinach well, and place in a steamer basket in a large pot.  Cover and steam for 8-10 minutes until the spinach is wilted and a deep green.  Uncover and remove from heat, allowing the spinach to cool to the touch.  Squeeze handfuls of the spinach to remove the excess water and chop coarsely.  Toss with the olive oil and season with a little salt & pepper.

Thinly slice mushrooms and sautee them in a little bit of olive oil until all of the moisture has evaporated and they are browned and tender.  Remove from heat and let cool.

Add the cooled spinach and mushrooms to the tofu ricotta mixture.

Ladle about 1/2 cup of marinara sauce into the bottom of the pan and layer with 5-6 noodles.  Add about half of the tofu ricotta mixture, and about 1/3 of the sauce.  Add another layer of noodles (4-5), the rest of the ricotta and another 1/3 of the sauce.  Top with the remaining noodles, then top the noodles with remaining sauce.

If using uncooked noodles, gently pour 1 cup of warm water over the top of the assembled lasagna, being careful to pour into the gaps between the noodles and edges of the pan as well.  Skip this step if using cooked noodles.

If you wish, generously sprinkle the Almesan on top before baking.

Tightly cover foil over the top of the pan and bake for 30-35 minutes in preheated oven, until the pasta is tender.  Then remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes until edges of the noodles are slightly browned and the sauce is bubbling.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes before slicing.  Best if served with additional marinara sauce.

I made this for dinner last night.  It was good!  I’ll post some of the additions/modifications I’ll make to it next time to enhance the flavors even more.

Chickpea Broccoli Casserole (Vegan with a Vengeance)

  • 3 (16 ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 large onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 3 large carrots, grated (about 2 cups)
  • 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons chives, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used Panko)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil (I used Grapeseed Oil)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
Directions
Preheat oven to 350.
2 In large bowl, mash the chickpeas well, using a potato masher or a firm fork; it takes about 2 minutes to get the right consistency. Add vegetables and mix well. Add the bread crumbs and mix, then add the oil and mix again. Finally, add teh vegetable broth and salt, mix one last time. Transfer all ingredients to a 9 x 13 casserole dish (glass or ceramic is best). Press the mixture firmly into the casserole. Cover with foil, bake 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. Serve it hot the day you cook it, but it tastes good cold as well.
Modifications for next time I make this:
I think I will caramelize the onions  to give the casserole an extra special flavor.  I love caramelizing onions in the oven:  Thinly slice (or dice) the onions, put on a baking sheet, give the onions a thin coating of oil and bake them at 350 degrees until they are caramel in color. I like to bake them until they have a dark brown tint on some of the onions- they get even sweeter the more they cook!
Add a Tablespoon or so of Nutritional Yeast  to add a nice tangy (kind of like a cheddar cheese or Parmesan cheese tangy) flavor.
Add mushrooms (we love mushrooms!).

I made these rolls for a baby shower that I’m attending tonight.  I couldn’t help myself- I just had to try one and it was AWESOME!  So refreshing and YUMMY!  I have a feeling these will be a big hit at the shower tonight!

Fresh Mango Summer Rolls (Vegan with a Vengeance)

1 mango, peeled and sliced into matchsticks

1 cup seedless cucumber, sliced into matchsticks

1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves

4 ounces rice noodles (very thin kind)

1/4 cup peanuts (chop very finely)

20 rice paper sheets (recipe calls for 20, but I doubled up on each roll to prevent tearing)

Instructions

Boil a medium-sized pot of water.
Turn off heat and add the rice noodles.
Let them soak for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Drain the noodles and run them under cold water. Set aside in separate bowl.
Fill pie pan or large wide bowl with hot tap water.
Place the rice paper wrappers, two at a time, into the water until they are flexible (about 30 seconds to one minute.).
Carefully remove wrappers from water and lay flat on clean surface.
In the lower two-thirds of the wrapper, place a tablespoon of the noodles and 1/2 teaspoon of chopped peanuts.
On top of that place 5-6 mango strips and ontop of that, place 2-3 cucumber strips and 3-4 cilantro leaves.
Fold the left and right sides of the wrapper over the filling, then take the bottom of the wrapper and begin to roll.
Keep wrapped and chilled until ready to eat.
Serve with small fingerbowls of the Thai Dipping Sauce.
Thai Dipping Sauce: (makes 3/4 cup).
Mix all of the ingredients together and chill until ready to serve.

Thai Dipping Sauce

1/4 cup rice vinegar1/4 cup water1 teaspoon asian chili oil
1 garlic clove (minced)
3 tablespoons peanuts (chopped)
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

Mix all of the ingredients together and chill until ready to serve.

If you’ve never made Summer or Spring Rolls before, go HERE for some detailed instructions.

Summer time is perfect for salads, and this is one you definitely need to try!  You’ll LOVE it, especially after it has some time to sit in the fridge.  When I make this, I whip up a double batch so we have a few meals for the next day.  It’s awesome to take on a picnic!

Make sure you have your quinoa already cooked and cooled before starting on this salad.

Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Mango (Veganomicon)

Serves 4 to 6

1 mango, peeled and diced small
1 red pepper, seeded and diced as small as you can get it
1 cup chopped scallion
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups cooked quinoa, cooled
1 1/2 cups black beans, drained and rinsed (a 15-ounce can)

Combine the mango, red pepper, scallions, and cilantro in a mixing bowl. Add the red wine vinegar, grapeseed oil, and salt and stir to combine. Add the quinoa and stir until everything is well incorporated. Fold in the black beans. Serve immediately or let it sit for a bit to let the flavors meld.

We love this served over spinach.

I was at a loss as to what to fix for dinner tonight because I’ve just been a little ‘off’ all week, and I just haven’t felt like cooking too much.  I think I’m officially in summer-mode!

Then I came across a recipe for Kale in Vegan With a Vengeance, and it was a true success.  I served it alongside some bruschetta (thank you, Trader Joe’s!) on some whole wheat bread and some orange slices.  We all loved it.  Very refreshing, and very colorful!  I wish I would have captured a shot of my kids devouring his Kale… it was awesome!

Tahini Dressing

8 tsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1/2 cup tahini

2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Juice of 1 lemon

Several dashes of black pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 cup cold water

1/4 lightly packed fresh parsley (I used a tbsp of dried and it turned out just fine)

Heat the garlic in 6 tsp olive oil in a small saute pan over very low heat, just until it’s fragrant.  Make sure the garlic doesn’t burn… you just want it fragrant!

Place the heated garlic, oil and remaining ingredients (except the parsley if you’re using fresh, otherwise, just throw the dried parsley in with everything else) into a food processor or blender, and blend until smooth.  Add the parsley and pulse until the parsley is very finely chopped but not pureed.

Refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour in an airtight container.  You may need to mix in a little extra water once it’s chilled.

Garlicky Kale with Tahini Dressing (serves 4)

5 or 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 bunch kale, well rinsed and coarsely chopped

1/4 tsp salt

Lemon wedges to serve

Saute the garlic in the olive oil over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until golden brown.  Add the kale and a few splashes of water.  Use tongs to toss the kale around, coating with the garlic and oil.  Stir frequently for 4-5 minutes.  Servie with a drizzle of Tahini Dressing and lemon wedges.

When my husband asked me what I wanted  for Mother’s Day dinner, I thought of these waffles.  We had them on Easter, and I’ve been thinking of them since.  Such a delectable treat!

Chocolate Chip Brownie Waffles (from Veganomicon)

2 cups all-purpose flour (I use 1 1/2 cups whole wheat)

2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 Tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

1 3/4 cup soy milk (I use Almond Milk)

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup vanilla or plain soy yogurt

1/3 cup canola oil (I use either Grapeseed Oil or Applesauce)

2/3 cup sugar (can substitute with Agave or Honey)

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup vegan semisweet chocolate chips, chopped coarsely

2/3 cup chopped pecans, chopped coarsely (can use walnuts too)

Preheat your waffle iron.  Have a heat-proof spatula on hand to help remove the hot waffles when ready.

Sift together the dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Form a well in the center of the sifted ingredients.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients.  Pour the wet ingredients in the well of the dry ingredients.  Use a wire whisk to combine all ingredients.  Just before everything is incorporated, fold in the chocolate chips and nuts.  Combine until the ingredients are just moistened, do not overmix!

When the waffle iron is heated, spray with cooking spray.  Bake according to waffle iron directions.  The waffles should be slightly browned.  Use a spatula to carefully lift the waffles onto a cutting board.  Serve immediately.

Serve with fresh berries or any other topping you might like.  We cheated today (since it was Mother’s Day and all), and used some whipped cream.  If could have found some spray soy cream, I would have bought that.  But I didn’t, so full fat cream it was!  A little indulging never hurt anyone, right?

I don’t have a gazillion dollars to spend on groceries (or anything else for that matter- SHUCKS!).  However, I’m still able to feed my family very well, and very healthily, just by going back to the basics:  DRIED BEANS.  Dried beans are incredibly healthy, packed full of protein and fiber, and they are so yummy and filling!

We love this 17 Bean & Barley Mix from trusty ol’ Trader Joes.  For those of you not in a TJ’s region, first item of business for you:  Petition with your local authorities to have them build one STAT!; OR just go to a store with a bulk items section and search for something similar you’re bound to find it! This entire bag will last our family of four for AT LEAST two dinners (if we don’t eat seconds or thirds the first night- it’s THAT yummy!).  The best part:  it cost under $2!  So, after adding a side salad of fruit and spinach, our family is able to eat dinner for less than $5.  Pretty amazing if you ask me!

Some of the health benefits you will get from including dried beans in your diet:

  • Rich in antioxidants. Beans, especially black beans, are loaded with antioxidants. They have 10 times more antioxidants than oranges and the equivalent amounts as grapes and cranberries.
  • Rich in fiber. Fiber helps stabilize blood sugar. The fiber in beans is beneficial for those with hypoglycemia and diabetes.
  • Rich in molybdenum. Molybdenum is a trace mineral that helps detoxify sulfites from your body. Sulfites are a preservative found in salads in restaurant salad bars. Some people are sensitive to sulfites. Symptoms like headache, disorientation or rapid heartbeat can occur after consuming salads with sulfites.
  • Rich in magnesium. Magnesium is essential for a healthy heart. When there is sufficient magnesium in the body, the vessels and veins are able to relax. This allows the blood, oxygen and nutrients to flow without resistance.
  • Rich in iron. Iron is needed for energy. Women benefit from the increased iron in their diet from beans, especially while they are menstruating. Pregnant and lactating women also have an increased need for iron, as well as children and adolescents.
  • Rich in protein. Beans provide plenty of protein. When combined with a healthy fat, a variety of vegetables and some soaked or fermented grains you will get a variety of nutrients in your diet.
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