Currently viewing the tag: "garlic"

When they first opened their doors on 6th avenue in Manhattan, I thought GustOrganics would be a place I’d have an easy time eating at. But I was disappointed looking at the lack of tasty vegan options years ago… It irked me because it contradicted with all their “green” labeling. It was enough to have me dismiss the place entirely. Until I heard they now have a complete vegan menu every Monday! They are participating it Meatless Monday, a plant-based movement many restaurants in far more vegan-friendly cities across the country are embracing. So now, it was time to give them a try.PicMonkey Collage.jpg

But first, some mojitos.IMG_0153

I got the priciest dish on the menu, the Seitan Steak with a garlic baked potato and sweet roasted carrots. Across from me, their baked avocado and sweet potato wedges. PicMonkey Collage2.jpg

I always appreciate a housemade seitan. This was a bit dense but yummy just as well. The sweet carrots were such a great break from the dish’s savoriness. Well done, Gusto! IMG_0158

And I will have a gorgeous (and meatless) night, thank you very much! I’ll be back on some other Monday to support this vegan direction… and, of course, to eat delicious food. IMG_0162

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IMG_6273Ever notice how most good recipes being with olive oil, chopped onion and garlic? It’s like the holy trinity. Ok, maybe not.

DSC_0029Then–beet. Chunks of the magenta gems sweating it out with good company. Since I got a personal sized crock pot for work I’ve been doing exclusively one-pot lunches. This blog has a ton of great recipes. I tweaked it only a little… and I never peel beets. I want all that Earthy richness, minerals and fiber.

DSC_0031A quick puree in the Vitamix.

DSC_0033Add a little tofu sour cream–boom. A week of delicious eating. Beets, I love you.

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Every once and awhile, I splurge one of them fancy pants supper club dinners. And almost alway with fellow veghead CP. We find some justification for the splurge. Maybe there is a birthday that past a few weeks ago. Maybe there is some emotional epiphany that needs a proportionate intake of calories… maybe there is a change in season… or maybe we’re just hungry and we treat ourselves right. Whatever it is, here is Suite threeohsix‘s Chef Daphne’s outstanding prix fixe in her Tribeca kitchen suite.

IMG_5634Outside.

IMG_5636The menu.

DSC_0005 Course 1: burdock soup + yali pear + upland cress

DSC_0006 Course 2: french toast + dumpling squash custard + maple syrup + garlic scape + pumpkin seed creme

DSC_0008 Course 3: pumpkin ravioli + shaved potato + truffle cream + petite pois + hazelnut breadcrumbs

DSC_0011 Course 4: jade pearl rice + kohlrabi + oyster mushroom + ancho chile + cucumber grape salsa

DSC_0012Sugar cane palate cleanser

DSC_0014 Course 5: lotus seed ice cream + chocolate + quinoa + nasturtium

Paneer is an Indian cheese. Palak Paneer is the spinach and cheese dish I’ve long noticed on Indian menus. I was so excited to see that the amazing blog Olives For Dinner veganized it.

DSC_0002Pressing tofu is step one. I opted for the TofuXpress then a nice press with some paper towels. This is the safest bet in this 3-cat household… the kitchen towel shelf is a cat nap hot spot. Paper towels it is!

DSC_0006“Culturing” coconut milk gives cubed tofu a cheese-like bite. Tofu marinades for a couple of hours.

DSC_0011Fennel seed, garam masala, and curry powder.

DSC_0013Time to make a paste. Onion, ginger and garlic packs the punch.DSC_0015

DSC_0019Big jump here. Everything is simmering together. Looking good!

DSC_0030Delicious Palak Paneer!

Loving the way I cut last week’s lasagna into four perfect sectors for the week, I wanted to this week’s lunch to also be a visual representation of my count-down to week’s end. Next week is mid-winter recess and I am off. So here it goes, an improvisation of pantry turnover and layered goodness: Mexican Lasagna…
Layer one is creamy polenta, the rest of the box that has been irking me since I used it for a stew a few months back. I boiled it in a slew of vegetable stock powder that is almost done. I chose it as the bottom layer so it can firm up and hold together the innards.

Layer 2 is some black beans, some rinsed canned black beans. Mmm, metallic tasting goodness.

Layer 3 is a spread of some jarred pineapple salsa.

Layer 4 is spiced and grilled onion, garlic and green chilies, diced tomatoes and a bunch of fresh, fragrant cilantro mixed to wilt.

Layer 5 is a cashew sour cream concoction from Vegan Brunch. Yes, I am swearing off the Tofutti.

Layer 6 is more of the grilled mixture, topped with some black olives. Sparingly is how I like my black olives. I often treat them like a bay leaf and remove them during mealtime as they’ve already flavored up the dish to the extent I want.

Finally, Layer 7–another polenta layer, tossed with cilantro, chopped onion and more olives for garnish.

There she is!  7 layer delight.

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I got a TofuXpress for Christmas. Yes, a handy dandy tofu press that squeezes out excess water. No more balancing books on plates and no more slanted bricks of tofu. This heavy duty spring keeps pressing, and pressing hard, as excess water pools above. It’s sturdy and spacious… I shoulda patented it when I first thought of it! Look at it go.
I’m feeling gung-ho about not wasting food. So Thursday, as I ready the apartment for my weekend absence, I steamed the rest of the bok choy stems and a ton of baby carrots I’d never eat. I’m not a fan of raw carrot.
The bok choy leaves I sauteed with some garlic.
The bunch of cilantro got processed in with sunflower seeds to make a delish pesto for my left of noodles.

Here is my lunch, that which would have remain neglected in the fridge in light of a two-day hiatus and subsequent busy work week breathes new life! This turn-over feels good.

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There is a little Indian convenience store next to my Sunday restaurant favorite, Dosa Diner, in Hicksville, Long Island. In this store you can find a ton of cheaply priced pantry staples, many aligned with Hindu vegetarianism. It is worth a stopping by– their products are tremendously cheaper than the very same items sold at significantly smaller net weights in health food stores with far less interesting packaging. Load up on exotic spices, lentils, oils, salts and amuse the store’s staff, who are very helpful. On my trip I bought some curry powder and some “Jelly” by Rafhan, a vegan “Jell-o” alternative. Though the Jelly was a bit liquidity, it held its own with a spoon. And the website from the Pakistani brand is an interesting read: Rafhan cornflour is extremely popular amongst housewives to make their soups, gravies and curry more thick hence more appetizing! Go housewives, go!
I used Jen’s Schmooed recipe for tofu “fish” sticks because I had a hankering for tartar sauce really. I love tartar sauce, especially this simple recipe, which gives me an ample amount of the white wonder. The baked sticks were good but next time I will fry them up, incorporating the dry ingredients into a batter. The next day the skins came off too easily. Along side, some sauteed kale with lots of garlic. There’s nothing like wilting down a big bunch of greens and watching the dusty dull green leaves brighten up. This will last me only two lunches unfortunately!
I had been meaning to return to Champs Family Bakery for some time now! Finally having a bit of cash in my wallet, I stopped in to treat myself. I picked up a lone cupcake for $2.75 to motivate me to walk home faster. It was a S’mores cupcake with a graham-ish cake base, vanilla buttercream, a piece of graham cracker and a Dandy. I am officially treated.