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.

Grilled Baked Potatoes

Baking potatoes on your outdoor grill is a great way to get delicious baked potatoes without turning on the oven and heating up the house during warm weather. It's easy, cost effective and environmentally conscious.

Now, if you search the Internet for recipes, everyone will tell you to wrap your potatoes in aluminum foil. Don't do it! Don't listen to them! They are wrong!

You should bake your potatoes naked. Wash the skins thoroughly under cold running water. Pierce each tater a few times with a fork and cook foil free on direct medium heat for about one hour. All potatoes as close to the center of the grill as possible. If all don't fit in the middle, place the smaller guys further out. Rotate which ones occupy the prime heat position. On a small grill you may have to cook those on the outside longer than an hour after the ones from the middle are done and have been removed.

Turn each potato over after 30 minutes to crisp both sides of the skin.

Knowing when your baked grilled potatoes are done to perfection is easy. Use a pot holder to pick the tater up and squeeze it to test doneness. It should be fairly soft when you give it a gentle squeeze. Like a stuffed teddy bear enclosed in a crisp skin.

Whatever you do, do not, I repeat, do not wrap your potatoes with aluminum foil. This will steam the tater with its own moisture and create a slimy and limp skin.

The same holds true if you are baking potatoes in your household oven. Wash, pierce, cook naked directly on the oven rack in a hotbox preheated to 450 degree F.

Do right by your potatoes and they will do right by you.

Cut open and garnish with cracked pepper, salt and nutritional yeast.