Deconstructed Pasta Florentine Recipe Vegan

Garlic pasta and a creamy spinach puree create a vegan italian epicurean delight. Spinach Puree Recipe
1/2 bag spinach
1/2 box silken tofu
3 cloves garlic
2 tbls olive oil
1 jalapeno
1 serrano
2 tsps salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Steam the spinach in a covered pot with 1/4 water in the bottom.  

Cook for about 5 minutes or until dark green and wilted down. 

Puree all ingredients  in food processor until smooth. Let rest in the fridge to thicken. 

Garlic pasta recipe
1/2 box fettuccine, cooked al dente in heavily salted water
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tsps italian seasoning
1 tsp crushed pepper flakes
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup frozen peas

Cook pasta and use tongs to remove from the water. Set aside in a medium sized heat safe bowl. Keep the pasta water in the pot. Drain off some until you're left with about 2/3 cup. 

Add remaining ingredients, except peas. Simmer for 3 minutes until fragrant. 

Pour hot oil/water/spice mixture over cooked pasta. Stir to coat. 

Stir in peas. 

Let rest 2 minutes. 


Curried Chickpea Salad (Vegan)

I was inspired by a recipe I saw on Yahoo that was a chickpea based salad. It was mostly full of ingredients that I don't really like, but basing an entree around one of my favorite beans sounded great. I also had a lime in my fridge which I was hoping to utilizie.

My first thought was olives. I used to eat a Campbell's product that was basically chickpeas and olives in a tomato curry. I really like it a lot. Apparently no one else did. Because after about 4 months it was nowhere to be found.

So olives and chickpeas. From there the wheels turned effortlessly.

1 can Chickpeas rinsed
1 cup cooked rice
1 can sliced Black Olives drained
5-7 Cloves Garlic thinly sliced
1/2 medium Red Onion in small slices
Jalapeno and or Serrano minced
Zest and juice from 2 limes
2 tbls  Hot sauce
2 tsp Olive Oil
2 tbls pickle brine
Cumin, Coridander, Turmeric, Paprika, Cayenne, Garlic Powder, Basil, Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
2 tbls Sesame Seeds (Toasted are better)
1/4 cup Freshly chopped Cilantro or Parsley
Salt and Pepper

Cook the rice as you normally would to preferred texture. I like to add some of the hot pepper seeds/ribs and a few small garlic cloves to the rice cooking water. This infuses the cooking rice with those flavors.

In a medium to large bowl combine chickpeas, olives, garlic, onion, hot peppers, cilantro or parsley. I don't give any measurments for the peppers because everyone likes a different level of heat. Add as much or as little as you see fit.

When the rice is done add it right on top of the bowl mixture. Stir to combine all elements. Let cool for 10 minutes.

Add lime zest and juice, hot sauce, olive oil, some of all the spices. Mix thoroughtly. Taste. Add more spices and hot suace as needed. Finish with sesame seeds.

Let chill in the fridge for a few hours for optimum flavor.

For other additions carrots or small tomatoes would also go really well in this.

This whole dish is really simple, wholesome ingredients that come together to create something spectacular. It's a wonderful example of how modest ingredients can easily create awesome food.