Tag Archives: sweet

Award Winning Vegan Pumpkin Chili

veganchili

It’s been a while.  Things have been a little crazy, but wanted to share this recipe.  If you plan to cook to a big crowd for Halloween or Thanksgiving chili is the way to go.  I got a prize at work for entering my vegan pumpkin chili to a Chili Cook-off contest.  It starts out a little sweet and ends with a kick.  I added pumpkin flavors to give it an autumn twist.  The level of hotness is fiery hot, so adjust the recipe to your spice level.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 onion (diced)
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 zucchini (cut in cubes)
  • 1 red pepper (cut into cubes)
  • 1 cubanelle pepper (cut into cubes)
  • 2 serrano peppers (remove seeds and cut into small cubes)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper (remove seeds and cut into small cubes)
  • 1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can of organic pumpkin (It has to be a can of pure pumpkin.  Don’t use pumpkin pie.)
  • 1 ½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • ½ tsp of cayenne
  • ½ tsp of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp of maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp of vegan worcestershire sauce (I used Wizard’s Organic sauce and you can get this at Whole Foods.)
  • ¼ bottle of Sam Adam’s Pumpkin Beer
  • 1 cup of corn
  • 1 15 oz can of cannellini beans
  • 1 15 oz can of black beans
  • 1 ½ cups of veggie broth
  • spring onions (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Heat olive oil under medium heat in a large pot
  2. Sauté onion and garlic
  3. Once onions are slightly caramelized sauté zucchini, red pepper, cubanelle pepper, jalapeno, and serrano pepper until soft
  4. Add crushed tomatoes, pumpkin, beer, chili, cumin, pumpkin pie spice, maple syrup, worcestershire sauce, cinnamon, and cayenne.  Cover pot and cook for 15 minutes on medium low heat
  5. Add cannellini beans, black beans, and corn
  6. Add veggie broth as needed to create the thickness you need.  I used all 1 ½ cups of veggie broth
  7. Cook on low heat for 45 minutes
  8. It gets better overnight if you transfer the chili into a slow cooker and keep the temperature on warm
  9. Dress it with spring onions before you serve
  10. Sprinkle mild shredded cheddar if you like to make it vegetarian

Cinnamini Coconutti Sweet Potato and Kale Salad

salad

I’ve been on a cinnamon kick lately.  It’s good in almost everything I eat – apples, oatmeal, nuts, and desserts.  Cinnamon has plenty of health benefits.  It regulates your blood sugar, help fight illnesses, and it has anti-inflammatory properties.  I’ve been craving for sweet potato and kale, so thought I whip something up with cinnamon.  It’s a perfect combination if you’re in for the sweeter side of salads.

 Serves 2

Salad Ingredients

  • 3 cups of chopped curly kale
  • ¼ cup of chopped pecans or walnuts
  • ¼ cup of unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • ¼ tsp of nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp of paprika
  • ½ tsp of cinnamon
  • 2 tsp of grade b maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil

Cinnamon Maple Dijon Dressing Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp of Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp of grade b maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp of ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp of cinnamon
  • 1-2 tbsp of olive oil (I like it without olive oil, but feel free to add 1-2 tbsp if needed)

Directions

  1. Cut sweet potato into cubes
  2. Add olive oil and massage the sweet potato cubes
  3. Add nutmeg, paprika, cinnamon to sweet potatoes
  4. Add maple syrup and massage the cubes
  5. Cover your oven pan with parchment paper and bake sweet potatoes at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  Flip potatoes every 10-15 minutes
  6. Chop kale in pieces.  It helps distribute the greens and the potatoes evenly
  7. Chop walnuts or pecans
  8. Once your sweet potato is baked add it to a bed of chopped kale
  9. Add dressing ingredients together and whisk.  Make sure the cinnamon and ginger are mix thoroughly
  10. Pour dressing in your salad and mix
  11. Sprinkle with coconut flakes and nuts

Sweet Craving – Cinnamon Coconut Milk

coconut

I love to finish my day with something sweet.  Instead of reaching for something bad I make myself a cup of delicious cinnamon coconut milk.  It’s very satisfying when I’m having a sweet craving.

Combine unsweetened coconut milk, dash of cinnamon (I love cinnamon, so lots of dashes for me), and a spoon full of maple syrup or agave to give it some sweetness.  Bring to boil and WALLA – a perfect yet healthy dessert!

Naked Veggie Cobb Salad – No Dressing Needed

I was not a fan of salads, but I didn’t appreciate the true taste of raw vegetables.  I hindered the freshness by drenching my salad with a very unhealthy bleu cheese dressing.  I thought I didn’t like salads because of the greens, but it was the heavy dressing that turned me off.

Now I like my salads “naked” – little or no dressing needed.  A bit of lemon juice, herbs, salt, and pepper usually does the trick for me.  When I order a salad I typically ask for the dressing on the side, so I take it by moderation.  Sometimes I find myself snacking on lettuce or spinach by itself.  I love how light and crisp leafy greens can be, so the combination of vegetables is simply delicious.

Here’s an extremely easy and healthy Cobb salad recipe.  You’ll get the crunchy texture from the lettuce, the sweetness from the corn, the creaminess from the avocado, and a grilled smoky taste from the artichokes.  Who needs dressing when you got all those flavors and textures coming together to form a Yum-O salad.

By Shelly Chiang, Makes 1 bowl or 2 small sides

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 bag of 10 oz romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 cup of canned chick peas
  • 1/3 cup frozen or fresh corn
  • 4 pieces of Monterey Farms Grilled Artichokes  (I got this from Whole Foods and it’s a key ingredient, so make sure to get this brand and get it “grilled”)
  • 1/4 medium avocado cubed
  • 1/4 medium red onion cubed
  • 1/2 large tomato cubed
  • 1/4 lemon wedge
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Pepper
Instructions
  1. Chop avocado, tomato, red onion, artichokes into cubes
  2. Boil frozen or fresh corn until tender
  3. Combine romaine lettuce, chick peas, avocado, tomato, red onion, artichokes, and corn in salad bowl
  4. Sneeze lemon, and sprinkle oregano, pepper, and a dash of salt.
  5. Mix and enjoy!

Savory & Sweet Vegan Blinis

Some nights I just want to have breakfast for dinner (aka blinner).  I wanted some form of pancakes or crepes, but they can get quite heavy.  My aunt use to make us miniature pancakes for lunch when we were younger.  Come to find out later that they were her version of blinis.  Blinis are small and light Russian pancakes made from buckwheat flour and usually served with caviar and sour cream.   These delightful cakes are also perfect as an appetizer, and can be dressed as a savory or sweet dish.  Traditional blinis can take some time to make, plus I’m omitting eggs and milk, so I made my vegan version of blinis.  I included a savory dish for dinner and a sweet dish for desert.  I knew I wanted zucchini for the savory dish, and I had orange heirloom tomatoes so thought they would be perfect to bring out that subtle sweet taste.  For the sweet blini, I wanted mango and thought ginger would pair perfectly.  I didn’t want that strong punch from raw ginger so I decided to use crystallized ginger to give it that sugary blend with the mango.  As they say in Russia “Prijatnovo appetita!”

By Shelly Chiang, Makes about 30 small blinis

Blini Batter Ingredients

  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 ½ tbsp of baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tbsp of ground flaxseeds (great egg replacement for pancakes and contains Omega-3)
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp and 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • ¼ cup water

Sweet Mango-Ginger Ingredients

  • ½ cup tofu sour cream
  • 2 tbsp agave syrup
  • 1 mango in small cubes
  • 2 large pieces of crystallized ginger sliced

Savory Zucchini-Tomato Ingredients

  • ½ of 0.75 oz package of chives
  • ½ cup tofu sour cream
  • 1 zucchini in small cubes
  • 1 orange tomato or 2 small orange tomatoes in cubes

Preparation

Tip: Blinis are best when they are fresh, so prepare the toppings first. If possible have another person help you plate as the blini cakes are done. I recommend serving them as they come out, because they can get soggy if you leave the blinis out too long.

Sweet Topping

1. Add agave to the tofu sour cream, mix, and then set aside.  I noted honey before as a mistake.  Please use agave if you are vegan

2. Chop mango in tiny cubes and set aside

3. Slice ginger in small strips and set aside

Savory Topping

1. Chop chives along the stems (I use cooking scissors) and add to tofu sour cream, mix, and then set aside

2. Chop zucchini in tiny cubes. For the tomatoes, take the seeds out so it doesn’t become watery and chop the tomatoes in tiny cubes

3. Sautee zucchini in medium heat until tender (approx 10 minutes) and then add tomatoes for approx 3 minutes.  Sprinkle a pinch of salt over zucchini and tomatoes.  Then set aside

Blini Batter

1. Combine and mix dry batter items in a bowl: all purpose flour, buckwheat flour, baking powder, sea salt

2. Then add wet batter items to the same bowl and mix: milk, maple syrup, canola oil

3. Add in ground flaxseeds and let it stand for 5 minutes to allow it to activate

4. Add ¼ cup of water so the batter is not too thick

5. Heat large skillet over medium heat and lightly oil the pan or spray with cooking spray. Pour about 2 tablespoons of batter or until blini is 2 ½ inches in size

6. Flip when batter starts bubbling. Cook until blinis are brown

Plating

1. For the savory dish, dab a small spoonful of your chive sour cream on the blini and top it with the sautéed zucchini and tomatoes

2. For the sweet dish, dab a small spoonful of your honey sour cream on the blini and top it with mangos with 3 strips of ginger

3. Continue plating as your blini cakes come out