December 2009
Vol. 8 Issue 12

Featured Recipes

Beans and Greens Soup

This soup is quick to put together with staples from your pantry and refrigerator. It can be varied easily according to what you have on hand. See hints below for some suggestions. Since we tend to like our foods spicy, I usually serve this with hot pepper sauce to sprinkle over the top. And of course a hearty loaf of bread to dunk in the broth.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6

1 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
5 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Dash red pepper flakes
6 cups chopped greens
3 15 ounce cans beans, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Hot pepper sauce, such as Sriracha

Place the onion, celery and carrot in a large soup pot with ¼ cup of the vegetable broth. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes, until vegetables soften slightly. Stir in the garlic and soy sauce. Add 4 cups of the vegetable broth, red pepper flakes, the greens and 3 cups of the cooked beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until greens are tender, about 10 minutes. Place the remaining beans and broth in a blender jar and process until smooth. Add to the soup pot. Add the vinegar and pepper to taste. Heat through and serve with the hot pepper sauce, if desired.

Hints: We like this best with hearty greens, such as kale or Swiss chard. Make this with a variety of beans for a more colorful soup. Try with 2 cans of white beans (blend one of them) and 1 can of red or black beans. Or try this with garbanzo beans. Different beans will give this soup different flavors and textures. One can of chopped tomatoes may also be added to this soup, or try adding 1-2 tablespoons tomato paste to the processed bean mixture.

Mika's Rice & Beans

A few months ago when we were in Portland, our daughter-in-law, Mika, prepared this delicious rice dish for us after she picked us up at the airport. This goes together quite quickly and makes a fast meal for 2 people.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes (need cooked rice)
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2

2 tablespoons vegetable broth
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon hot chili sauce (optional)
Pinch ground cumin
1 15 ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups chopped kale or Swiss chard
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes

Place the vegetable broth in a large non-stick sauté pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes. Add the balsamic, soy sauce, lemon juice, hot sauce and cumin. Mix well, then stir in the garbanzos and greens. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes until greens are fairly tender. Add the rice and cook until heated through. Remove from heat and stir in the tomatoes. Serve at once.

Gingered Baby Bok Choy

Steamed baby bok choy is one of my favorite side dishes. This sauce makes it even more special.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

¼ cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 pound baby bok choy, quartered

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until smooth.

Place the bok choy in a large non-stick sauté pan with just a splash of water. Cook, turning frequently, until it begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture has thickened slightly and bok choy is tender.

Perfect No-Oil Balsamic Dressing
By Chad Sarno

Chad demonstrated this fantastic dressing at the last McDougall Advanced Study weekend in September of 2009. Keep this in your refrigerator to dress your daily bowl of greens.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Servings: makes about 1 ½ cups

1 cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup shoyu or tamari
3 tablespoons maple syrup
3 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 clove garlic, minced
½ teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
Minced fresh herbs of choice (see hints below)

Combine all ingredients in a blender jar and process until thoroughly mixed.

Hints: Try a variety of fresh herbs, such as rosemary, oregano, chives, or use just one of your favorites. This will keep in the refrigerator for at least a week. Having delicious, oil-free dressings readily available in your refrigerator makes it easy to enjoy a fresh green salad at every meal. To see more of Chad's raw recipes go to

Rich Chocolate Mousse

This is a variation of my Wicked Chocolate Pie recipe which I make very year at Thanksgiving and Christmas. My 3 grandsons love the batter when it comes out of the food processor, so I turned it into a pudding for them. This is a rich dessert recipe meant for special occasions, but it does take much less time to prepare than the chocolate pie. The recipe for Wicked Chocolate Pie can be found in the October 2004 newsletter.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8

1 cup vegan (non-dairy) chocolate chips
1 12.3 ounce package silken tofu
1/3 cup Sucanat or brown sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ to ½ cup soy milk

Place the chocolate chips in a double boiler and melt over barely simmering water. Place the tofu in a food processor and process until smooth. Add the Sucanat and vanilla and process until very smooth. Add the melted chocolate and process again. Add the soy milk, a small amount at a time, until the pudding is the consistency that you like it. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

Hints: The chocolate chips may also be melted in a microwave. Do this in 15 second bursts, stirring in between, so the chocolate doesn't burn. This may also be made with any dry sweetener of your choice instead of the Sucanat. Cover the pudding with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding while chilling for best results.

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