Tag Archives: gluten free

Parsnip Fries: Not French, Not Fried and Not Potatoes

Poor potatoes. Getting replaced by other vegetables. First there was cauliflower going all mashed tater-like. And now parsnips are acting all like french fries!  At least we’re set if we ever find out potatoes are sentient. Always look on the bright side of life, right Mrs. Spud?

Parsnip Fries - Luminous Vegans

I’ve never had parsnips. Ever. Until now. Anxious to try them, I excitedly took a bite of one right when these made it to my kitchen counter. I read that you could eat them raw. Um, anticlimactic much? They didn’t really taste like much. There was a hint of carrot-like sweetness and the teensiest hint of something else bite-y. Almost like a radish. But mostly it was just kinda bland. Almost like biting into a raw potato but a little better. Based on that bite, eating them raw was not gonna be a thing I did.

Parsnip Fries - Luminous Vegans

So I poked around on the internet to find out what else I could do with them and found that they could be made to resemble the classic French fry. Perfect! Roasting veggies is my favorite lazy-girl method!

All I did was cut the parsnips into strips that resembled “fry shapes”. I left the cleaned skins on because ain’t nobody got time for dat! Then I lightly coated them in olive oil and sprinkled them with salt and pepper. I roasted them at 450F for about 20 minutes, tossing them halfway. When they were done, I sprinkled a little more salt and pepper all over and topped it with some freshly chopped parsley.

Parsnip Fries - Luminous Vegans

Roasted parsnips are much better than raw parsnips. I think the roasting helps bring out the sweetness some and makes it more of a delightful texture. The texture and taste are very similar to, well, a tender french fry but with a tad more sweetness and that very subtle hint of something mildly bite-y that I just can’t put my finger on. Some describe it as a “woody” or “earthy” taste. I’ll just call it that parsnip swag. Because it’s that swag that makes these parsnip fries stand out from regular old French fries.

Parsnip Fries - Luminous Vegans

Although these parsnip fries are perfectly pleasant on their own, I couldn’t help but recreate the whole French fry experience by dipping it into ketchup. I demolished the whole plate all by myself.

Have you eaten parsnips before? Can you recommend other ways to cook and eat it?

Roasted Delicata Squash: A Squash to Squash all Squashes

I feel like I’m always late to the food party. There always seems to be tasty food stuffs that everybody knows about. Except me. First there were kale chips. After I discovered them and realized they didn’t require a dehydrator, I started buying multiple bunches of kale on my farmer’s market trips instead of just one. Next came roasted chickpeas. But now I make and devour them on the weekly.

Roasted Delicata Squash -Luminous Vegans

And now my latest “how did I not know about this amazing delicious snack?” discovery…roasted delicata squash! I had seen delicata squash popping up all over my instagram feed and on blogs. However, I kept bypassing it at the farmer’s market. I didn’t want to fall in love with another squash that could only be broken into by hacking away at it like Michonne hacking zombie heads on The Walking Dead (Anyone see the most recent episode? Can I get an “omg” about Carol?).

Delicata Squash -Luminous Vegans

But then I started hearing this crazy rumor that it wasn’t hard to cut. In fact, I heard you could even eat the skin. Shut the front door! And the back door! Shut all the doors! I don’t even know what that means, but it somehow seems appropriate for this amazing delicata squash. A squash that won’t leave me crying in a corner because I hacked at it all crooked. A squash that lets my lazy-girl shine through because I don’t have to peel it.

Delicata Squash -Luminous Vegans

After slicing, deseeding and roasting this beautiful squash. I am left with a sweet, almost caramelized squash snack with an oh-so slightly crisp skin. I have yet to explore this squash beyond just roasting. I keep thinking I’ll try something different with the next delicata squash haul. But roasting it really highlights the wonderful sweet delicata squash flavor. And right now, I am just enjoying it on its own.

Roasted Delicata Squash -Luminous Vegans

Roasted Delicata Squash

Ingredients

  • as many delicata squash as you want (here, I am using one)
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 400F. Wash the outside of the squash. Use a sharp knife and cut it in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds. Cut it into 1/4-1/2 inch thick slices. Coat lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper (or whatever herbs you want!). Roast for about 30-40 minutes, flipping them half way.

I leave mine in on the long end because I like it more caramelized and kinda burnt. But like the good burnt. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper straight out the oven if desired.

Roasted Delicata Squash -Luminous Vegans

So I know I’m late to this tasty roasted delicata squash. But I’m posting this in case there are other lost souls out there like myself. Perhaps they’ll stumble onto this page. If just one person learns about delicata squash from this post, then I’ll be happy. 😉

How do you like to eat delicata squash? What’s your favorite squash?

BBQ Jackfruit Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

I came across the idea of BBQ pulled pork in sweet potatoes on my Flipboard (think Pinterest, but flippy-er). Out of curiosity, I did a google search for it and found many not-vegan recipes.  This bummed me out because it’s sooo easy to recreate this dish compassionate-style. All you need are plants, specifically jackfruit and sweet potatoes, and a little BBQ sauce.sweetpotJF-8452-1

And not only is this meal cruelty-free and tasty, it is one of those “set it and forget it” type meals. The only prep is the jackfruit and that just involves cutting and sauteing for a bit. The oven takes care of the rest.sweetpotJF-8420-2

BBQ Jackfruit Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 4 large sweet potatoes, washed and wrapped in foil
  • two 20 oz cans of jackfruit in brine (not the sweet kind)
  • BBQ sauce
  • vegan butter

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Bake the potatotes in a 425 degree oven for about an hour.  While that is going, drain the jackfruit. Cut out the hard center (the non-stringy part). Sautee the jackfruit on medium heat for about 5 minutes to cook out some of the liquid and get rid of the raw jackfruit and brine taste . Then add BBQ sauce so the jackfruit is thoroughly coated and sautee for another 5 minutes or so. Transfer the jackfruit to a baking pan and smush it so there is an even layer of BBQ jackfruit  covering the pan. Stick it in the oven with the potatoes but only for 30 minutes, until some parts come out crispy (see this post for more info).

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When the potatoes are done, it’s time to assemble!  I check that the potatoes are done by gently pressing on the foil. If it smushes in easily, I know it’s done.  I like to melt vegan butter on the inside of my potatoes and fluff them up a bit before adding the jackfruit.sweetpotJF-8459-5

The sweetness of the tender potato mixed with a little savory butter goes so well with the crispy sweet and spicy BBQ jackfruit.  Yay! I can eat this and watch Babe without feeling all conflicty!

Fluffy, Creamy…Mashed Cauliflower?

It’s time for us vegans to take veganism to the next level. Making vegan foods mimic non-vegan foods…we got that covered. Now it’s time to make plants taste like other plants. Cauliflower? Boom! It’s now mashed potatoes. Boo-yah!

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I can’t take the credit for the idea.  I heard about it awhile ago through a few of my gazillion social media-app thingies. I just never got around to trying it out until now. The idea is simple. Instead of boiling potatoes and mashing them, boil cauliflower and puree them until they are mashed cauliflower posin’ as potatoes.

Why go to the trouble of trying to mimic a plant-based dish with, well, another plant? That’s a good question. One I don’t have the answer to.  But, it tastes delicious and it’s easy to make. That’s good enough for me (aside from the given that it has be cruelty free).

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The texture of pureed cauliflower is similar to mashed ‘taters though it’s a tad lighter. Like I could eat more bowls of mashed cauliflower without feeling as stuffed as I would if it were mashed potatoes…ya feel?

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To make my mashed cauliflower creamy, I added some cashew cheese and vegan butter. I think this is my new favorite way to eat mashed potatoes. Wait, no, cauliflowers.

Creamy Mashed Cauliflower

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower pulled or cut into smaller chunks
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbs of vegan butter + another 1 tbs
  • 2 tbs of cashew cheese (click here for the recipe)
  • 2 stalks of chopped green onions
  • salt and pepper
  • vegan bacon bits (optional)

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Directions

Boil the cauliflower until tender (about 10 minutes) and then drain. While the cauliflower is boiling, sautee the minced garlic with 1 tbs of vegan butter on medium heat for about 30 seconds to a minute until you smell a garlicky aroma. Next add the drained cauliflower and the garlic butter to a food processor and blend until smooth. Add 1 tbs of vegan butter, 2 tbs of cashew cheese and salt and pepper to taste and blend some more. Move the mashed cauliflower to a bowl and stir in the chopped green onions. Taste. Add salt and pepper if needed. Garnish with green onions and vegan bacon bits.

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Today it’s cauliflowers actin’ all potatoe-y. Next thing we know it’ll be corn going all squashy.

Going Old School: Portobellos with a Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Before Beyond Meat, before Gardeins and even before Boca….there were portobellos. This old-school fungi is straight-from-the-ground “meat” for vegans due to its thick and hearty texture. What makes these portobellos special is the savory roasted red pepper sauce drizzled on top. Served with some lemony smashed red potatoes, this is the compassionate version of  “steak and potatoes”.

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Portobellos and a Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Ingredients

  • 3-4 large portobello caps (stems removed)
  • olive oil
  • 1 roasted red bell pepper (I roasted mine on the stove top like this, but store-bought should work just as well)
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 sun-dried tomato
  • 2-3 tablespoons veggie broth
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • chopped chives for garnish

Directions

  1. Slice portobello caps into strips. Coat with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in oven for 20 minutes at 400 degrees F.
  2. To make the sauce, blend the roasted red bell pepper, cashews, garlic clove, sun-dried tomato and veggie broth until smooth.  Add salt and pepper to taste and blend again. This recipe makes about 1 cup of sauce.
  3. Drizzle sauce over roasted portobellos when they are done and garnish with chives.

While I do enjoy all the great vegan meats in the supermarket, this delicious but easy sauce renewed my taste buds for this classic meat substitute.

What’s your favorite way to have portobellos?

Hey guacamole, you’ve got some quinoa on you.

I had leftover guacamole from my nacho-tempeh-bacon-guac sandwiches and I knew if I didn’t eat it all quickly, it would start turning blackish in color despite my attempts to keep it from air.

Guacamole that has turned darker due to oxidation is not inedible but let’s face it, bright green guacamole is way more appetizing. So why not disguise it?

I got this idea from Epicurean Vegan who mixed mashed avocados with rice and beans.  I didn’t have rice so instead I mixed my leftover guacamole with a cooked combo of white and dark quinoa. Then I stirred in left over diced tomatoes with green chilis (from a can) and some salt and pepper to taste.

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Then, I topped it with some black beans, sour cream and green onions. Since the guacamole was already made and full of flavor, this dish could not have been simpler. This kept in the fridge for several days and the guacamole kept on looking awesomely appetizing due to its quinoa disguise!

IMG_4974 _SnapseedPS. Portland, I’ll see you in a few days for VVC!

Salt ‘n’ peppa’s here!

Sometimes, fruits and vegetables just need a little salt and pepper to bring out their natural goodness.  For this “dish”, I mixed up a bunch of halved grape tomatoes with diced avocados and then sprinkled it with some flavored salt and pepper.

The flavored salt I used (a gift from Neal’s sis) is a mix of salt, parsley, rosemary, sage, garlic, thyme and Arbol chili. Flavored salt isn’t the only way to give this simple salad pizzazz.  Jennie at She’s Vegging Out mixes in olive oil, lemon juice and cilantro.

Either way, it doesn’t take much to make these fruits and veggies sexy-good! Aww yeah…”p-push it real good!”  (if you’re a child of the 80’s, you know what I’m talkin’ about!).
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The cows thank you

N’s favorite meal growing up was beef stroganoff. When we first started dating, I tried to lure him over to the dark enlightened side by veganizing this dish. It was a disaster.

Enter Veggie Grettie’s amazing recipe for mushroom stroganoff! N experienced a whole lot of compassionate nostalgia with this meal and all is right with his world again.

Thanks to Veggie Grettie and all vegan food bloggers for showing the world that compassionate has never tasted better! The cows (and all animals) thank you as they’d rather be invited to the party than be the main dish.

Press “play” below to see how excited Herbie and Kevina are to be invited to a vegan potluck party.

Read more on Herbie and Kevina here.