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meaty

Old Bay Summer Tempeh Wraps

Old Bay Summer Tempeh Wraps

Ever feel like if you eat another spoonful of tahini or drizzle of toasted sesame oil, you’ll turn into the seed its made from? Or that you eat so much coconut curry there’s no way you shouldn’t already be sitting on the next plane to Thailand? Maybe for you it’s cumin and chili powder. Rice and beans. Turmeric and chickpeas.

Perhaps it’s none of things – but all I know is that as a vegetarian, it’s rare I’m cooking something other than ethnic cuisine. Usually it’s Asian-inspired. Usually there’s tahini involved. Usually I’m a happy camper.

Sometimes, however, I just crave something more, I don’t know, American? After maple-tahini on my oatmeal, and soy sauce/tahini/sesame oil on my lunchtime beans and grains, I have to tell myself to step away from the tahini jar. I’m telling you – lately it’s been going on everything, and dare I say, might just be outcompeting peanut butter in my diet.

Old Bay Summer Tempeh Wraps

I can’t tell you how American tempeh is, but I’m fairly certain Old Bay is the country’s seasoning of the summer. So forget pizza, forget pasta. My non-Asian oriented meal is going to have tempeh, and I’m going to label it American. You can call it otherwise, I really don’t care. (In this case, perhaps an American flag would’ve made a better table setting than the Mexican blanket I used…)

Old Bay Summer Tempeh Wraps

Come summertime, throw some corn cobs on the grill, this tempeh on the stove, a beer in your hand, and a fresh tomato salad onto the side section of your plate, and then you can give me your answer. I’m already dreaming of this day as I type. Count me in for summer seasonings and garden-fresh sides all season long. (We’ll see if this can kick my tahini habit to a once-per-day max.)

Continue Reading…

Red Curry Lentils + GIVEAWAY

When I invite new, non-vegetarian faces over for dinner, I often feel compelled to find or craft the BEST meat-free recipe to date.  Okay, so maybe not the paramount recipe of the world, but one with hearty characteristics that, in a sense, could perhaps be called “meaty”.

I love the majority of the vegan and vegetarian dishes that come out of my kitchen. This goes for the once-a-weekers, the so-called ordinary recipes, the vegetable centered dishes, the 3-ingredient creations, etc. etc.  And it’s not that I don’t think my new meat-accustomed friends wouldn’t like these too. It’s just that I generally want to cook them something that may make them, at least for a moment, think twice about their dependence on meat. To let them know that vegetarian dishes can also be rich, filling and satisfying, even while staying healthy.  If nothing else, maybe they’ll think twice about their options when we’re dining out together at a restaurant – and we can share both entrees. (Hint, hint.)

I should, however, remark that I’ve been pretty lucky to be paired up with so many adventurous eaters in my life. When Nicole from Prevention RD said this was “fan-flipping-tastic” and one of her “favorite vegetarian meals in QUITE some time!”, I jumped on the opportunity to test it out on the new boy in my life.

Though, given the person coming over for dinner, I wouldn’t always say something like a red curry is the safest bet for introducing someone to veg. style of eating. Luckily, I knew my dining date would love it, and love it he did.

This is one of those hearty, full-flavored meals I was talking about that makes the perfect accompaniment to a healthy whole grain. I went with a combination of quinoa and rice, just to spice things up. If you’re looking to make the dish a little richer, add a dab of butter on top as you spoon the hot lentils into your bowl.

Giveaway:

Today I’m also hosting a giveaway of Cascal, a new natural soft drink that tastes great and has no sugars or artificial sweeteners! Plus, each can has just 60-80 calories. Not bad for a carbonated drink.

If you enter, you’ll get a sampler pack, meaning you get to try all 5 flavors like the Fresh Tropical (with mango, jasmine & kaffir lime), the Bright Citrus (with pineapple, lemongrass & tangerine), and the Ripe Rouge (with cherry, rose & chocolate – it’s strange, in a good way, how you can really pick up the cocoa notes in this!).

To enter:

(Leave a separate comment per entry. Each separate comment will give you one entry in the contest.)

This contest closes on **November 20, 2012 at 8:00pm EST**

1) Leave a comment on this post telling me which flavor you’re most curious to sample.
2) Leave a comment telling me what’s your favorite vegetarian meal to impress.
3) Become a fan of F-F-F on Facebook
4) Follow me on Twitter
5) Link this giveaway on one of your blog posts and let me know that you did.
6) Tweet a variation of this on Twitter: @GraceDickinson is hosting an all-natural, low-cal, tasty soda giveaway at FoodFitnessFreshAir.com.

One winner will be chosen at random by random.org.

Click here for recipe…

A Simple Twist on Pasta with Tomato Sauce

Ask the average college student their go-to home-cooked meal, and you’re more than likely to hear spaghetti.  In fact, many people of all ages turn to pasta when it comes to cooking up a quick, cheap meal.  It’s certainly no wonder why spaghetti has become such a favorite comfort food.  In less than ten minutes, pasta with pre-made sauce can be on your plate, and it doesn’t take much to get full off of those carb-loaded noodles.

While pairing pasta with jarred sauce is one of the easiest combos and undoubtedly a college classic, this can quickly get boring.  However, by adding just a few extra ingredients, you can jazz up this standard dish in no time, creating an extra hearty, healthy meal.  The following recipe gives pre-made tomato sauce a twist by adding chewy mushrooms and protein-packed soy crumbles, creating a healthy, vegan-friendly sauce, requiring no more time than what it takes to cook the pasta.

Note:  Choose any brand of tomato sauce of your choice, or make your own.  If I go with a jarred sauce, I usually choose Classico’s Tomato and Basil, which keeps its list of ingredients short, and contains no dairy or sugar.  Also, select the variety of pasta of your preference, but stick to whole wheat to boost fiber and protein.

Pasta with “Meaty” Mushroom Tomato Sauce

-12 oz. whole wheat pasta
-8 oz. button or baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
-1 heaping cup Morning Star soy crumbles
-2 cup favorite pre-made tomato sauce
-1 tbsp. olive oil
-Nutritional yeast, optional

Cook pasta according to directions.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in over medium-high heat in a large saucepan.  Add mushrooms, and saute until tender, about 6 minutes.  Stir in sauce and soy crumbles.  Cook another 3-5 minutes, or until sauce is heated all the way through.  Remove from heat.

Spoon sauce over pasta.  Sprinkle nutritional yeast, to taste, on top.

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