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.

Sweet and Salty Broccoli Chops

There's a vegan trend of taking veg and kind of preparing and serving it in a similar way that one might do with meat products. Cauliflower steak, roasted cabbage quarters, carrot steak, etc.

So with fresh broccoli florets on sale, I figured I'd try to do broccoli chops. If you cut them right they kinda resemble the shape of lamb chops or pork chops.

As far as taste was concerned, I just wanted deep, umami flavor and broccoli's natural roasted texture.

It's a rich and satisfying bite. It has outer crunch and inner chew. The crust on the outside is sweet, salty and smoky.

Broccoli Chop Glaze
3 tbls olive oil
2 tbls hot sauce
2 tbls soy sauce

Trim the ends off of the bottoms of the florets. Cut the florets down the center and into quarters to get a chop like shape. Out of two florets I got 6 chops.

Brush generously all over with the glaze and then season judiciously with salt and pepper.

Char in a high heat skillet on both sides and the tops.