Showing posts from May, 2013

Tofu Salad

Here's a fun way to flavor tofu. I like how versatile tofu is and I also love its soft, yet chewy texture when properly prepared. For a sweet and spicy salad addition with lots of protein and no fat, cold tofu really hits the spot. Start with one block of drained, firm or extra firm tofu. Slice into thin strips or small chunks. Marinate in a a combo of 2 tbls hot sauce, 2 tbls soy sauce, juice and zest of one lemon,  3 minced garlic cloves, 2 tsps minced ginger, and 1 tsp curry powder. Let sit in fridge for at least 2 hours. Preferrably 4. Heat a skillet lightly coated with olive oil to medium high. Add tofu, marindate and all to the hot pan. Let it sear on each side. Then continue cooking and stirring until most of the liquid is gone. Transfer to storage container and cool for at least 1 hour in the fridge. When fully chilled mix with fresh shredded romaine, shredded red cabbage, sliced red pepper and chopped carrots. Your tofu mix should already contain the base of your

The Salad Files

The simple salad trumps them all. It's a versatile combination that shouldn't be overlooked. If you think a salad is simply lettuce annd some carrot, think again. A salad can be virtually any combination of foods. Like its cousin the sandwich, a salad is an excuse to mix together foods you never normally would. The result is often a wonderful taste sensation you might have otherwise missed out on. A romaine based salad is hearty and filling. Topped with fresh corn, red onion and diced carrots you really can't want for more. Maybe throw on some black beans. Dress with hot sauce and some white vinegar. Rice salads are easy and have so many possibiilites. Cooked rice should be chilled before assembly. You can also use hot rice as a way to defrost frozen veg and a way to cool the hot rice. Rice based salad act much like the lettuce based variety. They love playing with onions, carrots and beans. They are wonderful dressed with lime juice and zest. Perhaps some fresh parsley

Light Charcoal Grill No Lighter Fluid No Chimney

Grilling season is supposed to be upon us here in the northeast. For some reason it still isn't, even though it's nearly June. But there were a few warm days recently. And if you're like me you seized the moment and broke out the grill with some corn or potatoes or garlic. I use a small Weber Smokey Joe Silver table top charcoal grill. It's basically just a big metal pot and lid and some metal grates. It's more than big enough for my purposes. It easily holds 6 ears of corn or 6 potatoes. When I first got it I bought Matchlight charcoal figuring it would save me a product and a step. But the light fluid tainted the flavor of the food. It all tasted like I was eating a big ole Bic disposable. So I did a little research and decided that plain charcoal could successfully be lit using crumpled up newspaper. There's no need to use a secondary smoker device to ignite your coals. That's just the corporate man trying to sell you something else you don't re

Vegetarian Weight Loss

I have a disorder known as polycystic ovarian syndrome. It has many annoying side effects, not the least of which is an inclination toward weight gain. Honestly, I wouldn't really care at all how fat I am, except for that I need my clothes to fit. I don't want to/can't afford to go out and buy all new clothing. And it's certainly not practical to do it on a monthly basis. With that in mind, here are a few interesting salads I've dreamt up in my quest for keeping my existing wardrobe. In the summer when local romaine is on sale it's a no-brainer. Add some onion and tomato. If you can grow your own tomatoes you'll really be off to a good start. If not, canned are better tasting than you might expect. Just be sure to read labels. A lot of the 'flavored' canned tomatoes are filled with sugar. Better to take the plain and add your own spices. I'll also throw some frozen broccoli or peas or cauliflower in there. If you do it the day before there'

Lime Hummus (Vegan)

I was trying to make some hummus without any lemon or lime juice. I just wanted some hummus and didn't have those ingredients on hand. Alhtough it traditionally uses tahini, I don't ever make it that way. I use peanut butter instead. It comes out really nicely that way. However, the lack of citrus wasn't working out too well. I tried using vinegar as an acidic substitue. It was oaky, but still lacking. I had freshly minced garlic and plenty of wonderful spices. I used extra virgin olive oil. It wasn't a bad hummus with vinegar. It was just one dimensioanl. It was good enough though. So I was more than happy to eat it anyway. But when I went to the grocery store and brought home a fresh lime I added the zest and the juice to the hummus I had made the day before. What a difference it made. It totally woke up all the flavors. A thousand times better. Recipe 1 can rinsed chick peas 3 tablespoons peanut butter 1 teaspon olive oil zest and joice from 1 lime 3 c

Love Your Hair with Vinegar

So I've been off traditional hair conditioner for about a week now. Have still been using regular shampoo. The same kind I always use. Baby shampoo. I get it for $1 at my local supermarket. After I shower and shampoo I spray my hair with white vinegar. I also spray some on my hairbruch. And then I comb it all through. Making sure to remove the loose hairs in the brush often. After my hair has had a chance to dry for a few hours I come back again with the brush dry and comb it all out again. Making it a point to brush my hair through at least once a day. It was totally rainy and humid today. And yet my hair is quite nice. Not frizzy at all. And I definitely have the kind of hair that loves to frizz during humid weather. Unlike when I used regular conditioner it has bounce and movement and  body. Regular conditioner made my slightly curly hair limp and flat. I highly reccomend switching from classic hair conditioners to a simple white vinegar sprtiz. It's way cheaper.

Romaine and Yellow Rice

I made a really beautiful and delicious dish today. As per my usual modus operandi it was mostly from scratch, but not entirely so. The base was Carolina rice yellow rice. It was on sale for 68 cents for the 5 ounce packet. It is vegan as far as I can tell. Just rice and some spices. Then I went nuts in the produce section as there were a lot of great sales. A head of romaine for just 75 cents. Jalapeno pepper for 9 cents. Head of garlic for 30. Yellow onion for 40. And a sweet orange bell pepper for only 80 cents. A lime for only 33 cents. I made a traditional salad with most of the romaine, some of the orange pepper, a little onion and garlic. Make sure to slice the garlic very thin if you're going to leave it uncooked. Or dry roast it in a frying pan for about 3 minutes for a wonderful flavor. I used the lime in some faux hummus that I made with chickpeas, peanut butter, garlic and spices. Lime zest and juice really makes a great hummus. The rice mix dish was a vehicle f

Faux Vegetarian Recipes

Why, oh why is the meat eating world just so ignorant? Anytime a non vegetarian creates a supposedly vegetarian recipe it is just so useless. Beans people! There have got to be beans in it. It's just a rule. Black or white or red or kidney. It must contain beans. If you want to make a vegetarian sandwich, you replace the missing meat with beans. If you want to make a vegetarian lasagna you replace the meat with beans. If you want to make a a vegetarian stew you replace the meat with beans. Are you sensing a pattern? Salad on bread does not a vegetarian sandwich make. Technically it does, but no one wants to eat it. Lasagna noodles swimming in too much cheese is just wrong. Beans! It's all about the beans! Beans are vegetarian meat. If you're not going to bother understanding the most basic of vegetarian eating principles then don't go around writing vegetarian recipes. Cheese does not replace meat. Beans replace meat. Vegetables do not replace meat. Beans re

Vegan Hair Care

I've made a new discovery. It has less to do with food and more to do with hair care. But it the vegetarian and vegan commnuity should take note. Turns out hair conditioner is a fraud. All those expenseisve bottles meant to do right by your locks are just ripping you off. I'm not the first to report this. And I won't be the last no doubt. But it bears reiterating as there are still folks laboring under the delusion that conditioner is good for their hair. Turns out vinegar is all you really need. Sounds crazy. I know. But it works. But of all, it's animal free. It's just vinegar afterall. I like to spray some on my hair brush and then run it through my hair. In thoe shower I did not condition at all. I justt did the shampoo and nothing more. I expected a frizz atop my noggin. But that didn't happen. I sprayed my hair brush with some white vinegar and combed it through. I also sprayed some directly on the hair and roots. I brushed until the hair stopp