Sweet and Spicy Tomato and Kidney Bean Salad

One of the best things about not eating meat is that you can make meals without having to actually cook anything. Just cut, combine and stir. Whether you're in a hurry, feeling lazy or just want that fresh crunch, a plant based diet gives you the freedom to cook without literally cooking. 

Especially as the weather gets warmer, it's convenient to just cut and combine. It's also surprisingly tasty to keep those fresh ingredients in their natural state. 

The textures and flavors are vibrant and exciting. 

A little salt, a little acid, some  fat, a spice or two and you're all set with a delicious meal. 

1 can dark red kidney beans
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 poblano pepper, diced
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 long hot pepper, diced
1 serrano, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbls olive oil
2 1/2 tsps salt
1 1/2 tsps crushed pepper flakes
1 tsp black pepper

Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl. 

That's it. You're done. Enjoy your not so hard work.

Egg Free Cookies

I recently discovered this line of cookies at my local supermarkets that is sans eggs. It's called food basics. They're very cheap. They are like below store brand. But oddly, they taste very good. I really like the iced oatmeal cookies. They don't taste particularly oatmeally, however, they do taste good. I've also tried the chocolate chip variety and was again pleasantly surprised at the nice texture and flavor. The chocolate chip version was moist, but not too chewy. There weren't a whole lotta chips, but the flavor was much better than I expected. Definitely better than a chips ahoy or a chips deluxe. Similar to an Archway, but not quite as chemically chewy.

These cookies aren't just eggless, they're also lower in fat and calories than your typical big brands. Which is just another plus. They are very low cost. The packaging is totally unappealing, but the gems hidden inside as really nice. I get them in both Pathmark and A and P. Target has their own brand of similar cookies, if you like to shop there. And now I totally prefer them over the premium brands.

It totally boggles my mind how the off brands always seem to have simpler and more vegan friendly ingredients. Not just in cookies. Store brand breadcrumbs don't have the milk other brands do. Store brand microwave popcorn - same deal. Now I've come to learn store brand cookies are the same way. It's really interesting when you really start reading ingredients. Store brands keep things simple. They don't add extraneous ingredients just to cater to big dairy. Which is nice and should be supported.