February 2011

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Volume 10 Issue 2


Lindsay Nixon lindsaynixon@gmail.com

Vegan chef of one of the top 50 food blogs on the Web, HappyHerbivore.com, Lindsay S. Nixon, creates recipes that show eating a low fat vegan diet is not only healthy but delicious, too.

Now, Nixon combines some of her tastiest recipes in The Happy Herbivore Cookbook, each made with no added fats, using only whole, unprocessed plant-based foods. 

With Nixon's help its easy to make healthy food at home in minutes using inexpensive, "everyday" ingredients and tools. 

Lindsay's recipes have been featured in Vegetarian Times, Women's Health Magazine and on The Huffington Post. Lindsay is also a consulting chef at La Samanna, a luxury resort and four-star restaurant in the French West Indies. You can learn more about Lindsay and sample some of her recipes at happyherbivore.com.

Creamy Carrot Soup (serves 2) -- Oats are the magical ingredient in this soup. They give the soup a texture it wouldn't otherwise have and also impart a lot of creamy flavor without using actual cream. This soup also whips up in an instant.

1 lb carrots, peeled and sliced
1 small onion, diced
1/4 cup instant oats
1/2 cup non-dairy milk (such as fat-free soymilk)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
salt and pepper - to taste (optional)

In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of water, carrots, onion and oats over high heat. Bring to a boil then reduce to medium. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until oats are cooked and carrots are fork-tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender, in batches if necessary, and blend with non-dairy milk until smooth and creamy. Add extra water or non-dairy milk if needed. Return soup to sauce pan and add spices. Gently reheat and add salt and pepper to taste if desired. 

Red Lentil Dal (serves 4) - Dals are essentially thick stews made with lentils and traditional Indian spices. This dal is easy, delicious and cheap. Make it once and it will never leave your regular rotation, I promise.

1 small onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp turmeric 
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp ground ginger
1/2 c dried red lentils
2 c vegetable broth
1 tomato, chopped (save juices)
3 ounces tomato paste (5 tbsp)
1 tbsp ground coriander
2 tsp garam masala
salt, pepper, cayenne to taste

Line a medium pot with 1/4 cup of water and cook onions and garlic until translucent. Add turmeric, cumin, paprika, and ginger, and cook for another for another 2 minutes, adding water if necessary to prevent sticking and burning. Add lentils, broth, tomato, tomato paste, and coriander, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes or until lentils are cooked and orange-ish. Add garam masala, stirring to combine, and let rest for 5 minutes. Add salt, pepper and cayenne to taste.

Note: if tomatoes are out of season, use 1/4 cup tomato sauce or two peeled canned tomatoes.

Black Bean Burgers (makes 3) - I love a good and quick meal, and this burger fits the bill perfectly. 

15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 c fresh cilantro, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
cayenne, salt and pepper to taste
whole-wheat breadcrumbs or instant oats
whole-wheat buns

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper and set aside. Pulse beans in a food processor until mashed well or alternatively, mash with a fork. Transfer to a mixing bowl and combine with cilantro and spices. Add breadcrumbs or oats as necessary until the mixture can be handled and isn't terribly sticky, about 1/4 c. If after 1/4 c. it's still too sticky, refrigerate for 5 to 10 minutes. Shape mixture into 3 patties. Lightly spray with cooking spray (optional) and bake 7 minutes. Flip and re-spray (optional) and bake another 7 to 10 minutes until thoroughly warm and crisp on the outside. Serve immediately. Because there is no oil, these patties dry out if you let them sit.

Mexican Cabbage (serves 2) - This recipe is just dying to prove to you that cabbage is not bland! It's spicy, flavorful, and a little sassy.

1 small sweet onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 medium head of cabbage, chopped into thin strips
8-ounce can tomato sauce
4-ounce can green chilies (minced)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 c frozen corn, thawed
salt and pepper to taste
1 c black beans
baked corn chips (optional)

Line a medium pan with water and cook onion and garlic over high heat until translucent. Add cabbage, tomato sauce, chilies, tomato paste and spices. Reduce heat to medium and cook until cabbage is tender, about 10 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in corn until evenly distributed. Taste, adjusting seasonings as needed. Mix in beans before serving and top with crumbled corn chips if desired.

Quick Queso (makes 1 cup) - It's okay to go at this sauce with a spoon. I won't judge.

1 cup non-dairy milk (such as fat-free soymilk)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp whole wheat flour 
1 tsp granulated onion powder
1/2 tsp granulated garlic powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder or cayenne (optional)
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste

Whisk all ingredients together in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often until thick. Serve immediately.

Note: Gluten-free flours or blends may be substituted, such as chickpea flour. Also, add a 1 10-ounce can of Rotel tomatoes with green chilies for a Mexican Queso twist.

Cornbread (serves 6) - This is my favorite cornbread recipe. It's quick and simple --- the kind of recipe you can whip up at any time because you always have the ingredients on hand.

1 c cornmeal
1 c whole wheat pastry flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp fine salt
1 cup non-dairy milk (such as fat-free soymilk)
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tbsp raw sugar (optional)

Preheat oven to 400F. Whisk cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Add non-dairy milk, applesauce, maple syrup and sugar, if using, on top. Using a spatula, stir until just combined. Pour batter into a nonstick shallow 9" pie dish, or other oven-safe dish. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. 

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