Tag Archives: Vegan

Roasted Cauliflower with Lemon and Pepper



Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, you name it – just about any vegetable is great roasted.  In The Art of Simple Food, Alice Waters sings the praises of roasted vegetables when she explains her guests’ astonishment that all she did was “toss them with a bit of oil and salt and throw them in the oven.”


A couple years ago, Husband and I ate dinner at some friends’ house we had just met (shout out to JW!).  I was pregnant with my son, and they made Indian food – a reliable indicator that we would get along well.  Roasted cauliflower was one of the side dishes, and it made such an impression that now my preferred method of preparing cauliflower is roasting.  I wish I could remember how theirs was seasoned, but (unfortunately) the pregnancy fog takes over from there.  Some kind of curry?  I wonder if she remembers. J


I usually go Alice Waters’ route when roasting vegetables – tossing them in olive oil and seasoning with sea salt.  Really, it’s a foolproof method for veggie success.  Tonight I mixed things up a bit with fresh lemon and pepper, but this is still so simple that I shouldn’t even be calling it a recipe.  If you try it, though, you will enjoy it.  Because roasting is the formula for gustatory awesomeness.


Roasted Cauliflower with Lemon and Pepper


1 head of cauliflower, washed

Olive oil to coat

Lemon wedges

Freshly ground pepper

Sea salt


1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Chop the cauliflower into equal bite-sized pieces and place in a bowl.  Toss in enough olive oil to coat, but not so much that it pools up at the bottom.  Squeeze a couple of lemon wedges on the cauliflower, add in some freshly ground pepper and sea salt to taste, and toss again.


2. Spread the cauliflower out on a baking sheet and roast until the edges start browning (20 minutes? I’m terrible about timing).


3.  Serve as a side dish with salmon and millet pilaf if your toddler doesn’t eat it all first!




Part of Fight Back Fridays and the Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap.


Menu Plan Monday: December 8, 2008

Not too exciting this week; we’re trying to eat what we have on hand to save some money for Christmas!  (That’s right — we’re not cool enough to put money aside throughout the year.)  Lots of dairy-optional, meat-optional, as usual!


Monday:  leftovers/DIY


Tuesday: Pinto bean and rice burritos, spicy carrots


Wednesday: Turkey Pumpkin Chili, cornbread


Thursday: Ahi steaks, millet, sauteed green beans


Friday: Make-your-own pizza


Saturday: Burgers and root vegetable fries


Sunday:  Turkey, amaranth, and pomegranate soup


Next week, I’m going to eliminate gluten from my daughter’s meals to see if that is part of her bathroom issue.  So I’ve got a lot of research to do between now and then! 


For more menu plans, visit Organizing Junkie.

Beans and Baked Goods

I finally got around to making the cornbread I SHOULD have made last week, plus a batch of vegan brownies — all to skirt around the fact that I’m almost out of my actual sandwich bread that I use everyday.  My everyday whole wheat bread is made in batches of six, which I split with my friend CF.  You may remember that a while back we bought some heavy-duty equipment — she bought a Nutrimill grain mill, I bought a Bosch Universal mixer — so we get together roughly once a week to mill grain and bake a bunch of REAL bread.  Maybe I’ll share more about that, once we feel like we’re pros.  🙂


The cornbread is incredibly easy, but the best part is that the ingredients are all things from the pantry.  We substituted soy milk, of course, but that didn’t affect the texture at all. 


And as a special treat for my daughter, we also made Vegan Brownies!  The only substitution we made was with the oil, opting for coconut oil on account of it’s sweetness and texture.  I have about ten pounds of white sugar to use up (thanks to Publix’s penny item!) or else we could’ve made substitutions there, too.  Here’s my daughter, proudly displaying her goods:




The brownies yield enough for a crowd, so I think we’ll freeze half of them.  The cornbread really only yields enough for one meal, so make a double or triple batch and freeze those for future use, as well.  I try to make large batches of baked goods so I can cut down on my work later on!


Dinner was very simple, since Husband had school: we made a version of this Slow Cooker Citrus Black Bean Soup, making substitutions according to what we had on hand.  Everything we made today was with “pantry ingredients,” so it was, in fact, a very healthy and frugal day.  I didn’t have the Tabasco or Liquid Smoke that the recipe called for, but I added a *small* pinch of asafoetida to give it a unique flavor.  A little side note about asafoetida: it smells absolutely DISGUSTING in the bottle.  So horribly so that when you smell it, you’ll wonder, “Who ever thought that eating this was a good idea?”  It mellows out quite a bit with cooking, though, and tastes much better than the wretched uncleanness of that initial whiff.  In fact, it’s used in Indian cooking as a sort of substitute for garlic and onions.  The best part of it all: if you’re prone to the indigestion caused by beans, then that little pinch will pacify a lot of that.  So plug your nose when you’re opening the bottle and give it a try!  (For real, though — plug your nose.)



White Chili on Just Another Manic Monday

So much didn’t get done today (what’s new around here?), but at least dinner turned out well.  Even if I didn’t have time to make the cornbread.  Which I somehow haven’t had time to do for about a week now.  But enough about my busy life…here’s how I pulled off dinner:


Having never made a White Chili, I found one at All Recipes that seemed like the one I’ve had before.  I halved the recipe, substituted dried beans, and only used one small chicken breast.  Then I proceeded like this:


1) Sauteed the diced onion, garlic, green chiles, and seasonings (which, by the way, I added way more of — maybe double the amount) until tender, then added the chicken breast (which I cubed), plus some salt and pepper, and cooked until no longer pink. 


2) Next, I added a whole box of chicken stock, brought it to a boil, then added the beans.  Normally I cook beans by themselves before adding anything else to them, but I just threw them in and let the whole thing cook for almost three hours, when the beans were tender enough to eat.  I finished it off by pureeing some of it in the pot with my stick blender (to add some creaminess), and that was it!  We didn’t even add the cheese, and it was flavorful and hardy. 


Just some notes for my vegan friends:


– This chili would have been JUST AS GOOD without the chicken, since I used so little chicken you could barely detect it anyway.


– Cheese is totally unnecessary — there’s enough “creaminess” from the beans.


Next time, I’ll probably completely omit the chicken (better for the budget!) and add more green chiles.  I tried to gussy it up with some colorful radishes and a bay leaf for the picture, but the combination of my dying camera and lack of photography skills still makes it look pretty bland:




The lighting is my fault, but the fuzziness isn’t.  I should have a new camera by the end of the month, though.

Menu Plan Monday: November 10, 2008



In an effort to reign in the food spending, we’re trying to eat out of the cupboards this week.  I have just about everything on hand, excepting fresh fruits and veggies.  I hope you enjoy everything, and I should be more on top of the picture-taking and food journaling this week!


Monday: White Chili (omit chicken and/or cheese for vegan/dairy-free), cornbread


Tuesday: Citrus Black Bean Soup


Wednesday: DIY/Leftovers


Thursday: Tacos (beef for Husband, bean for the girls)


Friday: Burgers and root vegetable fries (whatever is on sale)


Saturday:  Roasted Chicken (from a local farm), mashed potatoes, green beans


Sunday:  Mediterranean Chicken 


For more menu plans, visit Organizing Junkie.


For more veggie-ful menu plans, visit Geek, Poet, Housewife Wannabe.

Menu Plan Monday: November 3, 2008


Not a lot of experimenting in our house this week…we need some good food to buffer last week’s trial and (mostly) error!  As always, everything is dairy-free or dairy-optional, and we’re still avoiding soy for a variety of reasons, which makes many of these recipes great for vegetarians.  So let me know if you have any questions or suggestions on anything!


Monday: My Spaghetti with Italian Bread


Tuesday:  Eat out after voting — I can’t go until close to 5pm, so it will be a crazy night!


Wednesday: Pork Roast with Potatoes, Turnips, and Apples


Thursday: Buckwheat pancakes, sausage, fruit


Friday: Falafel Burgers


Saturday: Homemade pizzas


Sunday: Pumpkin Chili with Cornbread


For more menu plan ideas, visit Organizing Junkie.

Menu Plan Monday: October 27, 2008


Here’s the plan for this week…I’ll post more about the Toasted Lentil Salad and Brussels sprouts later this week.  Leave a comment or email me if you have any questions!


Monday: Orange Chicken (dairy free) — similar to this recipe

Tuesday: Toasted Lentil Salad, Sweet Potato Fries, Sauteed Green Beans (vegan)

Wednesday: Tacos (meat and dairy optional)

Thursday:  Vegetarian Chili with Chocolate

Friday: HALLOWEEN! Quick dinner — enchiladas (beef for us, vegan for my daughter)

Saturday: Steak, rice, roasted Brussels sprouts (dairy-free)


For more menu planning ideas, visit Organizing Junkie!