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.

Roasted Potatoes Vinaigrette

Simple is always delicious. At least, that's my motto. Roasted potatoes are the best. I love them plain all by themselves fresh from the oven. Crispy on the outside and soft and tender within. Potatoes are rich in vitamin c and iron. Roasting potatoes with the skin on is key. The skins taste great and are packed with nutrients.

I like the cut them pretty small. 1/4 inch chunks. Generously spray sheet pans with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 425 degrees F. Cook for 16 minutes. Stir. Top with 12 peeled garlic cloves. 1 sliced red bell pepper and 1 small sliced yellow onion. Cook for 16 more minutes.

Most folks would probably just eat the potatoes as is and that would be great. But they can do more.

Try adding your oven roasted potatoes to a bowl and them top with the roasted garlic diced, the onions and the red pepper and also add a spoonful of rinsed canned black beans. Add some hot sauce and some vinaigrette salad dressing. If you like, some chopped almonds would do nicely as well. A fabulous vegan/vegetarian salad dish that forgoes the lettuce in favor of a heartier potato base.