Vegan Cornbread

Greetings!  My apologies for the gap in time here… a week late, we finally welcomed our little girl, Sierra Marie, into the world on 8/31 and I’m sure I don’t have to explain why things have been a little crazy and busy around here!  We also had lots of family visiting, and thankfully they took over most of the cooking so I’m a little rusty!  One night when my Mom was here, she made us some wonderful veggie soup and cornbread to enjoy with it.  She left us half the soup in the freezer, so after she left we pulled out the soup and I attempted to make a vegan version of the cornbread.  I thought it came out great, so I wanted to share!  (I will eventually share the veggie soup recipe from my Mom as well).  I love the ground flax in here because you can see the brown specs in the cornbread, and it makes me feel healthy when I eat the whole pan – ha!  This is delicious for breakfast, lunch, dinner or snacking.

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First make your flax egg, then whisk together all dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Then add the rest of the ingredients to the dry mixture and stir until well combined.  That’s it!

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Pour in a greased (I used coconut oil spray) 8-9 inch round or square pan, and bake for 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees.  Slather on some vegan butter, and enjoy!

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Vegan Cornbread

Quick and easy vegan cornbread.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup yellow corn meal
  • 1 1/4 cup flour (AP or try whole wheat)
  • 1/4 cup sugar (I used coconut sugar)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup soy or almond milk (plain, unsweetened)
  • 1 flax egg (2 TBS ground flax mixed with 5 TBS warm water)
  • 1/4 cup oil (veggie or coconut)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Mix together your flax egg and set aside.
  3. Spray a 8 or 9 inch round or square baking dish with cooking spray (I used coconut oil spray).
  4. Whisk together all dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, mix together the wet ingredients. Add the wet to the dry and mix until well combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

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Summer Ratatouille

Well, my due date came and went and our little lady is still snug as a bug in there!  I’m trying to keep myself busy, rest and not go too crazy, so I started cooking a little more which has been helping.  I’ve never made ratatouille, but I had the most delicious version at Blue Sky Ranch and have always wanted to try and recreate it.  My version was not nearly as delicious as the version they made, but it was still pretty good.  One warning on the balsamic glaze… don’t take your eyes off it!!  I had to make it twice because I burnt the crap out of it the first time by literally turning around for 2 minutes to chop some veggies, I turned back to the balsamic and I had a pan of black volcanic tar which totally stunk up the house.  Second try I seriously babysat the vinegar and it was much better, phew.  More advice, don’t pass on the grilled bread with olive oil!  They had the same at Blue Sky and something about the combo of the veggies along with charred bread and olive oil is just so divine.  Feel free to mix up the veggies (yellow squash would be a yummy edition in there).  Enjoy!

Ratatouille

First make the balsamic glaze (be careful not to burn it!!!) and set aside to cool, then chop your veggies, herbs and slice your bread for the grill.

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Grill the veggies and bread so they have a nice char on the outside.  Then mix the veggies with the fresh herbs, balsamic glaze and top with toasted pine nuts.

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Serve with toasted grilled bread drizzled in olive oil.  To fill up my hubby for dinner, I also served this with some wild rice and quinoa.

Ratatouille

Summer Ratatouille

Delicious summer veggies mixed with fresh herbs, pine nuts & a balsamic glaze.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1/3 large eggplant
  • 1/3 onion
  • handful fresh basil
  • handful fresh parsley
  • handful of pine nuts, toasted if preferred
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • small loaf of crusty whole wheat/grain bread
  • optional: rice/quinoa

Instructions

  1. Add the balsamic to a small pan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Lower heat and cook for 5-7 minutes until the sauce thickens into a syrup, then set aside.
  2. Chop your veggies and add to a large bowl, season with salt & pepper and let sit for 20-40 minutes. Drain off any liquid then head to the grill.
  3. Spray the grill or some tin foil with olive oil spray, then grill the veggies until softened and slightly charred.
  4. Chop the herbs, and slice the bread, then drizzle the bread with olive oil and grill for a minute or two.
  5. Toss the grilled veggies with the herbs, pine nuts and balsamic glaze.
  6. Enjoy with the bread and/or over rice/quinoa.

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Ratatouille

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Cold Nachos

It’s been a hot summer!  That doesn’t stop me from eating my favorite food though, nachos of course!  I created these cold nachos one hot evening and they were delicious.  They had all the Mexican flavored tastiness of warm nachos, but nice and cold and refreshing.  Besides nachos, the chickpea base can be used on top of salads, in tacos, enchiladas, anything really!  The only thing missing was a frosty margarita of course, but since I’ve been prego I’ve been mastering the art of making delicious mocktails, which are pretty satisfying.  Well, now I’m officially 40 weeks prego so slowing down, and just trying to patiently wait to meet this little lady!  Hope you are all having a fantastic summer (and that you try these cold nachos, yum!)

Cold Nachos

First make the chickpea base.  In a glass tupperware or bowl, mix together 1 can chickpeas (drained/rinsed) with a handful of chopped tomatoes, 1/4 finely chopped red onion, heavy sprinkling of MIM Ocho Spice Mix (salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, chili powder, cayenne, oregano, garlic powder), 1/2 TBS canola oil (or another plain tasting oil) and the juice of half of a fresh lime.

Cold Nachos

Now make your nachos!  Fill a bowl or dish with your favorite chips, pour on some of the chickpea mixture, then add your favorite toppings.  Mine were avocado, chopped spinach and almond based vegan pepperjack cheese from Lisanatti Foods.  Yum!!

Cold Nachos

Cold Nachos

A colder version of my favorite food.

Ingredients

  • 1 can chickpeas (drained/rinsed)
  • Handful of chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 finely chopped red onion
  • Heavy sprinkling of MIM Ocho Spice Mix (salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, chili powder, cayenne, oregano, garlic powder)
  • 1/2 TBS canola oil (or another plain tasting oil)
  • Juice of half of a fresh lime
  • Tortilla/Corn chips
  • Avocado
  • Fresh Spinach
  • Vegan cheese

Instructions

  1. First make the chickpea base. In a glass tupperware or bowl, mix together the chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion, spice mix, oil and lime juice.
  2. Next make your nachos! Fill a bowl or dish with your favorite chips, pour on some of the chickpea mixture, then add your favorite toppings. I added avocado, chopped spinach and almond based vegan pepperjack cheese from Lisanatti Foods. Enjoy!

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Cold Nachos

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Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

My friend Kris is at it again this summer, growing an amazing garden of fresh veggies and sharing her surplus of zucchini.  Last year, I made lots of savory zucchini casseroles.  This year, as I’m moving into my 9th month of pregnancy and my cravings for sweets is still strong, I decided to experiment with zucchini breads.  It was easy to make the bread vegan, just substitute ground flax and water for the eggs and use vegan chocolate chips.  Most breads call for lots of oil, so to make it healthier I tried half the oil as coconut oil.  I only did half because I was afraid the whole bread would taste too coconut-y, but it didn’t at all, so next time I’ll try all coconut oil.  You could also use apple sauce but I didn’t have any!  I also chose half whole wheat flour to make it a little more healthy too.  I ran out of coconut sugar but that would be a healthier choice instead of regular sugar as well.  Anyways, my husband and I tried the bread warm out of the oven with some vegan butter spread on… it was so good, we stood at the counter and ate a fourth of the loaf!!  Hope you enjoy, and thanks again for the zucchinis Kris!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

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Nine months prego!

Heat the oven to 350 degrees, then mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.  In another bowl, mix together the oils, sugar, vanilla and flax eggs.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Mix the wet into the dry, then fold in the zucchini and chocolate chips.  Remember the best part about baking vegan… you can safely try the yummy batter!!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Bake for an hour plus a few minutes… then take out to cool.  Enjoy!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

A sweet vegan treat using late summer veggies.

Ingredients

  • 3 flax eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips (or more!)

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray a loaf pan with coconut oil then cover with parchment paper.
  3. Make your flax egg and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  5. In another bowl, mix together the oils, sugar, vanilla and flax eggs.
  6. Mix the wet into the dry, then fold in the zucchini and chocolate chips.
  7. Pour into the loaf pan and bake for an hour plus 5-7 minutes... then take out to cool. Enjoy!

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Vegan Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

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Cinnamon Mini Muffins

Well, I’m officially 8 months prego, just woke up and ‘needed’ cinnamon muffins.  My requirements were they have to be vegan, they have to be mostly healthy, and they have to be made from things in my house because going out in public to the grocery store right now sounds exhausting.  So, here is what I came up with!  Now, time to put some baby stuff together for the rest of the day…. it seems like it would be fun, but I took one box apart and looked at the instruction booklet and quickly threw it back in the box, ugh!  Thank goodness for husbands… if only I can get him out of bed, hopefully the smell of these muffins & some coffee will do the trick.  Happy weekend everyone!

Cinnamon Mini Muffins Cinnamon Mini Muffins

This recipe was so easy, it came together in hardly any time at all.  Clockwise from the dry ingredients there’s the soy milk, Bowie’s nose, melted vegan butter and the flax egg:

Cinnamon Mini Muffins

Once the batter comes together, gently spoon into the muffin tins, which were lightly sprayed with coconut oil spray.  I love seeing the pieces of ground flax in the batter, it makes me feel healthy : )

Cinnamon Mini Muffins

The topping starts by mixing the vegan butter and sugar together, then adding in flour and spices until well combined.  Place on top of the muffin batter and bake for 12 minutes.  Enjoy!

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Cinnamon Mini Muffins

Cinnamon Mini Muffins

Tiny, sweet vegan treats!

Ingredients

  • Coconut oil spray
  • 1 TBS ground flax
  • 3 TBS warm water
  • 1 cup flour (I used all purpose)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup soy milk (or almond, or coconut)
  • 3 TBS melted vegan butter
    Topping:
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (or coconut sugar)
  • 1/4 cup softened vegan butter
  • 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly spray a mini muffin tin with coconut oil spray.
  3. Whisk together the ground flax & 3 TBS water, and set aside to set.
  4. In a medium size bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon & salt.
  5. In a large measuring cup, whisk together the soy milk, melted vegan butter & flax egg.
  6. Gently mix the wet ingredients into the dry with a fork until just combined.
  7. Drop the batter into the mini muffin tins then get started on the topping.
  8. In a small bowl, mix together the vegan butter with the sugar until well combined.
  9. Next, mix in the flour, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  10. Drop a portion of the topping over each mini muffin batter.
  11. Bake for 12 minutes, and enjoy!

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Cinnamon Mini Muffins Cinnamon Mini Muffins

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Easy Curry Lentil Stew

Greetings!  Things have been so busy in these mountains lately!!  Baby girl is growing every second and I’m still feeling great (thanks to a healthy, meatless diet!)  She will be here in two months, ahh!  I’ve also been busy catering for the grand opening party of Habit Boutique on Main Street – stop by today for incredible clothes & accessories.  Thanks to the talented owner (and my sweet friend) Aly Osborn for going meatless for the event!

Habit Grand Opening

Savory mini muffins with red onion & rosemary

Habit Grand Opening

Located at 592 Main Street, Park City Utah

More recently, I was asked to speak at an event for Sage Mountain Animal Sanctuary for their Thirsty First Thursday series.  I was honored to support Sage Mountain and met some fabulous people up at the High West location at Blue Sky Ranch.

Sage Mountain Anim al Sanctuary Thirsty First Thursday

Sage Mountain Anim al Sanctuary Thirsty First Thursday

We also escaped to southern Utah for a long weekend in Escalante for some hiking and relaxation with no cell-service!  So nice to completely unplug sometimes and just enjoy nature…

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Peace & quiet cabin life at Boulder Mountain Guest Ranch

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Hike along the Escalante River

So much going on!  Finally slowing down this weekend.  It’s been so nice and sunny out lately, but this weekend it’s overcast and stormy.  Perfect time to stay in, work on the baby’s room and make some warm, comforting lentil stew!  This recipe could not be easier, you just throw all ingredients in a pot and let it simmer away until soft and tender.  If you don’t like the curry flavor, you could add other herbs like Italian seasoning.  Hope you enjoy, and happy start of summer vacation to all you lucky teachers out there!

Curry Lentil Stew

First rinse and drain your lentils.

Curry Lentil Soup

Then mix all ingredients together in a pot.  Bring to a boil then simmer for about an hour until all veggies and lentils are tender.  So easy!

Curry Lentil Soup

Curry Lentil Soup

Easy Curry Lentil Stew

Simple recipe for a warm, comforting pot of vegan stew.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry lentils
  • 3 1/2 cups veggie broth
  • 1 cup diced sweet potato
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1/3 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 TBS curry powder
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. First rinse and drain the lentils.
  2. Next mix all ingredients (except the salt) together in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about an hour until all veggies and lentils are tender. Stir occassionally and add water or veggie broth as needed if the stew is too thick for your liking. Season with salt to taste.
  3. Top with something cool, like avocado, vegan sour cream or for vegetarian: plain greek yogurt.

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Mexican Sopes

Happy May!  To celebrate Cinco de Mayo this week, I’m sharing an incredibly easy recipe for Mexican Sopes.  It’s a cheater move… instead of making the traditional masa dough, I’m using quick cooking polenta instead.  We eat so many burritos, quesadillas, enchiladas and nachos in our house, so it was nice to switch things up and try sopes for a change.  Topped with some seasoned, protein powered black beans, avocado, salsa & cilantro, these definitely pack in the flavor.  Now if only I wasn’t prego and I could enjoy one of my favorite strawberry margaritas with these….  ahhh the sacrifices we make!!  Enjoy!

Mexican Sopes

Start by cooking the polenta, then cooling flat in a pan.  While the polenta cools, heat the beans with some onions, pepper, garlic, salsa & spices.

Mexican Sopes

Cut the polenta into rounds, sauté in olive oil for about 1 minute on each side, then lay on paper towel & sprinkle with sea salt.

Mexican Sopes

Top with the black bean mixture, avocado, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime.  Feliz Cinco de Mayo mis amigos!

Mexican Sopes

Mexican Sopes

Easy, vegan twist on this classic Mexican dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Corn Meal (or any kind of Polenta)
  • 2 2/3 Cups Almond Milk (plain & unsweetened)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 Can Black Beans
  • 1/2 Onion
  • 1/2 Red Pepper
  • Olive Oil or Canola Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Salsa
  • MIM Ocho Spice Mix (cumin, coriander, cayenne, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, oregano)
  • Fresh Lime
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Shredded Spinach (or any lettuce)

Instructions

  1. Cook polenta according to package directions, or, if you're using cornmeal, simmer the almond milk with 1 clove crushed garlic. Simmer for 3-4 minutes, then take out the garlic clove. Slowly whisk in the polenta and turn heat to low, whisking constantly until the polenta is very thick.
  2. Spread the polenta in a pan to cool (9x13 works well).
  3. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a sauté pan, add the onion, pepper, garlic and spices. Cook until the veggies start to soften. Add the black beans, another sprinkle of seasoning and some fresh lime juice. Cook until the beans are heated through. Mash some of the mixture.
  4. Cut the polenta into rounds, and sauté in some olive oil for about 1 minute on each side, then lay on paper towels & sprinkle with some salt.
  5. To serve, top the polenta rounds with the bean mixture, fresh spinach, salsa, avocado, lime wedge and some cilantro.

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Mexican Sopes

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Spring Pasta

“Spring has sprung, the grass has ris’, I wonder where the birdies is?”  Has anyone else ever heard of that?? My family (Aunt Lu especially) always used to say that around spring time!  Anyways, there are so many delicious and colorful spring vegetables in season right now.  I love them all.  I wanted to make my spring lasagna but I was too lazy, so I created this pasta dish instead.  It’s basically the same flavors and ingredients but thrown together with pasta instead of layered into lasagna.  You can swap any veggies you’d like to suit your tastes.  Happy Spring!

Spring Pasta

Spring Pasta

This recipe is pretty easy… first just clean and chop all your veggies,

Spring Pasta

Then sauté the veggies with some olive oil, salt & pepper,

Spring Pasta

Whip up a vegan white sauce and season with salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg,

Spring Pasta

Spring Pasta

Mix everything together with the pasta, top with freshly cracked black pepper and a drizzle of truffle oil, and enjoy!

Spring Pasta

Spring Pasta

Pasta with spring veggies and a creamy vegan alfredo sauce.

Ingredients

  • Olive Oil
  • 1/3 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 yellow squash, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • Handful of Asparagus (about 6 spears)
  • 1/3 cup peas
  • 2 cups plain, unsweetened soy milk
  • 2 TBS vegan butter
  • 2 TBS flour
  • 3/4 box of brown rice pasta
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Nutmeg
  • Garlic Powder
  • Truffle Oil

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. While pasta is cooking, wash and dice all your veggies. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a sauté pan, and add the onion, carrot and asparagus. Cook for a couple minutes, then add the squash and peas. Season with salt & pepper. Cook until veggies start to soften.
  3. In another pan, start your vegan alfredo sauce by heating the vegan butter until melted. Whisk in the flour and cook for a minute. Next whisk in the soy milk until combined with no lumps. Cook on medium until sauce starts to thicken. Season with salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg.
  4. When everything is ready, drain the pasta then combine everything together. Mix well, but gently.
  5. Enjoy with some freshly cracked black pepper and a drizzle of truffle oil.

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Spring Pasta Spring Pasta

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