Midweek Delicacy Time: Savory Beet & Sweet Potato Soup with Pistou & Vegan Sour Cream

Happy eating friends!
Ingrid

Ingredients

Serves 4-6


SoupSoup Ingredients
2-3 tablespoons Olive oil
several pinches Kosher Salt for Potatoes
1 Sweet potato, washed
3 large golden Beets, scrubbed clean with roots and leaves trimmed – peel & cut into 1/2 inch wedges
1 small white or yellow Onion, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon of Coconut oil
3 cups of organic Vegetable broth
2 cloves of Garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon Coriander
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Tumeric
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/4 teaspoon coarse ground Pepper
 Vegan Sour Cream Ingredients
Vegan Sour Cream
1 cup raw Cashews
2 teaspoons Apple Cider vinegar
1/2 fresh squeezed Lemon juice (you can substitute a lime)
1/8 teaspoon Kosher Salt

Tip: The cashew nuts and apple cider vinegar are what make this taste so wonderful. You can use other nuts but make sure at least half of the nuts are cashews.

Pistou IngredientsPistou
3/4 cup loosely packed fresh Mint leaves, Dill, and/or Sage (use any variation)
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf Parsley sprigs, (or Basil)
1 large Scallion, chopped (1/2 cup)
1/4 cup extra-virgin Olive oil
2 tablespoons Water
1/4 teaspoon Salt

Tip: If you use more herbs than the measurements above be sure to add more olive oil. For every half cup of herbs you go over add in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Be sure to add salt to taste.

Soup PreparationRoasted Sweet Potatoes

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drizzle lined baking sheet with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
  2. Cut potatoes in half, length wise.
  3. Coat potatoes all sides with olive oil and salt, and place cut side down on lined baking sheet. Sprinkle potatoes with turmeric and additional salt.
  4. Bake at 450°F for 30 minutes until done. Check with fork for doneness.
  5. Place beets, onion and garlic on a large piece of foil on a baking sheet. Drizzle with coconut oil and season with cumin, coriander salt and pepper. Fold foil around beets and crimp ends to form a packet. Roast until beets are tender when pierced with a fork, 25 to 30 minutes.
  6. Combine the beets, onions, garlic, sweet potato and vegetable broth; puree until smooth in either your blender or food processor. Serve with sides

Pistou PreparationPistou

  1. In a food processor add herbs in batches and pulse until finely chopped.
  2. With motor running add olive oil in a stream, then water and salt, blending until incorporated.

Vegan Sour Cream PreparationVegan Sour Cream

  1. Place cashews in a cup or small bowl, and cover by a 1/2 inch with boiling water. Let soak for 30 minutes.
  2. Drain cashews and place in a blender with vinegar, lemon, salt and about a 1/4 cup of water. Blend until very smooth, adding more water as required to puree the mixture.

Mid week delicacy: Winter Chili

midweekdelicacy.veggiechili.superbowl.healthy.hearty.ingrid.cooking.recipe.sustainable.diet.saynotofoodwaste.2On cold, rainy and snowy days of winter, nothing adds heat and color like a warm bowl of chili. This week, Ingrid shows us how to make spicy 3 bean Winter Chili. It’s perfect when craving something hearty and healthy, as well as, when throwing gatherings at home. (Hint: Super bowl is coming up soon!)

Enjoy the dish and send us your photos so we can upload them on our Instagram account, or tag them with #saynotofoodwaste.

Happy cooking!
Hokuma & Ingrid

The Red Scare: How Red Meat Hurts Humans

saynotofoodwaste.happy.healthy.love.give.care.share.sustainable.diet.rare.meat.green.vegetarian.2Doctors have long been warning against red meat because it contributes to heart disease, but a University of California study published in December also links it to cancer. The study identifies the culprit as the sugar Neu5Gc, which is found in most mammals, especially in sources of red meat (cows, lamb, deer, sheep, etc.), but not in humans. Humans, unlike most other carnivores, cannot process the sugar, meaning that their immune systems have to generate antibodies to try to break the molecule down after consumption. This constant antibody-production can cause chronic inflammation, which can lead to cancer. In short, the more animals containing Neu5Gc a person eats, the higher his/her chance of developing cancer.

While the study’s findings are tentative and require further research, there are many other health consequences to eating red meat. As is commonly known, red meat’s high saturated fat content raises blood cholesterol levels, which can prevent the heart from getting sufficient blood and oxygen. The compound carnitine, which is associated with meat’s red color, has been known to have a similar, artery-clogging, effect that often leads to heart attacks. Other, non-heart-related, conditions have also been connected to red meat consumption outlined by two studies from 2013. The first, from the Journal of the American Medical Association, shows that eating red meat heightens the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, a chronic condition resulting from damage to the body’s ability to metabolize sugar. The second was published by the University of California Los Angeles and ties the development of Alzheimer’s disease to high levels of iron, which red meat is rich in. Of course, iron shouldn’t be cut out of diets entirely – just not consumed in excess.

saynotofoodwaste.happy.healthy.love.give.care.share.sustainable.diet.rare.meat.green.vegetarian.3So, from a health (as well as environmental – more on that next week) perspective, there is no reason to eat red meat; yet people, myself included, still do. Personally, I know that my body doesn’t need it, since there are plenty of healthier, more sustainable sources of protein and nutrients that could take meat’s place in my diet. I also have a very broad, vegetable-appreciating palate, so I know that I could be happy as a vegetarian or even just eating non-red meats and fish. I don’t even eat that much red meat anymore – so, why do I do it at all? The answer is simple and unjustifiable: I like it. All of the aforementioned considerations have made me very conscious of my beef consumption, which is why I limit it and make myself go vegetarian for a day for every time I have beef – but the fact is that I have never made an effort to eliminate it from my diet completely. I’m not trying to excuse myself but rather comfort my fellow red meat-eaters who feel guilty for their choice but not enough to do something about it. If you aren’t willing to give up brisket and venison, at least try to cut down on how much you eat. I would much rather live a longer, healthier life with the occasional steak than become diabetic and suffer a heart attack at age 40 due to too many burgers.

Let’s make red meat less of a staple in our diets and more of a rare (very deliberate pun) treat.

Eva

How to Have a Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Don’t let the turkey centerpiece fool you – Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be a meat-centric holiday. In fact, most of the traditional side dishes, such as mashed potatoes, cornbread and stuffing, are vegetarian in their standard form. A vegetarian should be able to fill themselves up quite nicely on non-turkey fare. However, many cooks, striving to serve unique interpretations of the holiday classics, use meat to liven up their feasts. One might find that bacon has wormed its way into the cornbread, mashed potatoes are served submerged in authentic gravy (made from meat drippings), and a horrific turducken sits at center stage.

saynotofoodwaste.vegetarian.thanksgiving.share.care.give.love.meatless.holidaysBefore I go on, I should admit that I am not a vegetarian. I often feel that I ought to be, given the deplorable consequences of the industrialized meat production system, but that is a long discussion that can be saved for a later post. Nonetheless, I love vegetables, and I find many dishes tastier when the diverse flavors at play aren’t overpowered by the taste of meat. Since our readers are definitely food-conscious, presumably environmentally-conscious, and probably health-conscious, I thought many could benefit from a list of vegetarian dishes that could yield a delicious and inventive Thanksgiving dinner.

Entrée: Carving the turkey out of the meal

  • Vegan shepherd’s pie (or a sweet potato version). If veganism is irrelevant to you, feel free to use butter instead of oil and dairy milks. Either way, the hearty mix of lentils and vegetables topped with whipped potatoes are sure to be satisfying.
  • Pumpkin Pot Pie. Pumpkin, kale, and carrots are just some of the vegetables held together by a lovely flaky crust (which could also be bought in a store, if time is short).
  • Butternut Squash and Asparagus Torta. Preparation might be a bit challenging, but the creative combination of squash, asparagus, and cheeses is very rewarding.
  • Kale and Sweet Potato Gratin. This casserole-like dish is rich, creamy, and surprisingly simple to make.

Stuffing

Mashed Potatoes

Squash

Sweet potato

Cornbread

Gravy

  • Vegetable stock gravy. You probably already have all the ingredients – it’s that straightforward.
  • Onion gravy. Essentially the same as the other gravy, only with the tang of diced onions.

Vegan Desserts* (since desserts are normally vegetarian anyway)

*These all happen to be gluten-free as well, but there’s really no need to bother with that complexity if you don’t have gluten sensitivity.

  • Apple Crisp. Gluten-containing substitutions can be made to simplify this already easy-to-make spiced treat.
  • Pecan Pie. Maple syrup, dates, and cashew butter allow you to skip the eggs to veganize this timeless dessert.
  • Pumpkin Pie. For many, this classic is the single best thing about autumn; and it’s just as delicious vegan.

Reference: many of these recipes were drawn from this list.

Eat up, my friends.
Eva

Recipe No. 2 – Eggplant Caviar

eggplant.caviar.vegetarian.azerbaijani.cuisine.food.delicious.organic.healthy.enjoyDear Readers,

Today I’d like to share a second Azerbaijani cuisine recipe. This is my favorite vegetarian dish! Not only is it really healthy, but it is also easy to make!

I’ll be covering various ‘vegetarian’ dishes from my homeland, and when I run out of those, I’ll find a way to give the meat dishes a vegetarian twist. If you have any other ideas for recipes share them with me.

As always, the goal is to get you into the kitchen and feel good about yourself. To cook, but not toil. And reap the delicious benefits of your work.

So download the Eggplant Caviar instructions and get your creative juices flowing!

Send me pictures of what your kitchen adventures leads to.

Much love!
Hokuma