Cucumber, Corn and Tomato Salsa

My co-worker gave me some cucumbers she and her husband had grown in their garden. I wanted to use them right away as they were so fresh. This is a variation on a classic cucumber and tomato salad. I added charred corn for sweetness and smokiness. I also added poblano and jalapeno for spice. 

2 small or 1 medium cucumber, diced
2 ears corn
3 vine tomatoes, diced
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls olive oil
2 tsps dry dill
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsps salt

I wasn't about to turn on the broiler to cook the corn. It's been in the 90's here. Instead, I used the same technique often used to char bell pepper. Put the shucked ears directly over a gas flame on the stovetop. If you don't have a gas stovetop you can broil them or use an outdoor grill. 

The corn will pop and make a bit of a mess on your cooktop, but it's worth it. 

Char the corn evenly all around. Allow to cool and them cut the kernels off the cob. 

Stir together all i…

Vegan Beef Stew Recipe

The tricky thing about vegan cooking is how to get that depth of flavor that comes from animal products without actually using them. . 

I mostly just stick with the cleaner and simpler flavors of fresh vegetables, acids and oils. They are quite delicious and satisfying. 

But if you find yourself with a craving for something with a little more body and depth, dried mushrooms + pressure cooker = mind blowing, vegan beef broth. 

No! It doesn't taste like beef. I wouldn't want it to. But it is rich, dark and unctuous with umani like a classic beef broth. 

4 ounces dried wild mushroom mix, chopped pretty small
2 shallots, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 inches ginger, peeled and minced
1/4 cup dry lentils
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup olive oil
1 can black beans, rinsed
7 cups water
1 tbl dijon mustard
1 tbl salt
1 tsp  black pepper
2 tsps thyme

A pressure cooker or instant pot makes the magic happen. Put everything except the black beans in there. Set to beans or rice or grains depending upon brand and set the timer for 25 minutes. 

When it's done and you've released the pressure, transfer to a container, stir in the beans, cover and allow 5 minutes to warm the beans.

You can enjoy it now, but it's much better after an overnight in the fridge.