Sunday, November 18, 2012

Butternut Black Bean Nachos

Yesterday, I posted a recipe for smoky roasted butternut squash. The recipe served two as a side dish and we had leftovers so today I bring you.... BUTTERNUT BLACK BEAN NACHOS!!! I know, I know. It sounds like a weird combination, but damn were they tasty. If you've never had vegan cheeze sauce, you should try it. Not because it tastes   like cheese, but because it is delicious in its own right. I would never tell anyone that vegan cheese tastes like dairy cheese (unless we're talking about mozzarella Teese on pizza - that shiz tastes real).

Regardless, this was very good but I've been known to never do things the same way twice when it comes to cooking. I'm thinking next time I pair butternut squash with tortilla chips I will use a mango peach salsa and leave off the cheezy sauce and lettuce.

Butternut Black Bean Nachos

Warning: These are really filling and ridiculously addictive!

Four handfuls of tortilla chips
1 cup shredded romaine lettuce
1 avocado, diced
1 cup cooked black beans (or you could use 2/3 of a can)
1 cup tomato salsa
hot sauce to taste
vegan sour cream (optional)

1 cup cheezy sauce:
1 ¼ cup unsweetened nondairy milk
¾ cup vegetable broth
½ teaspoon garlic powder
3 tablespoons arrowroot flour
¾ cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon mustard
A splash of lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 400F. Mix your butternut squash with the black beans in a foil packet. Place in the oven until you are done preparing the other ingredients and ready to assemble your nachos.
2. Make the cheezy sauce: whisk all ingredients together in a medium saucepan except for mustard and lemon. Heat over medium, stirring constantly, until it starts to bubble and thicken. Let it cook for about two minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and add mustard and lemon. Set aside.
3. Chop your lettuce and avocado. Place 2 handfuls of tortilla chips on both plates.
4. Assemble the nachos. For each plate: first the lettuce (1/2 cup), then the avocado (1/2), then the butternut/black bean mixture (1/2), then the salsa (1/2 cup), then 1/2 cup of cheezy sauce. If you want, add a few dashes of hot sauce and a dollop of vegan sour cream!



Saturday, November 17, 2012

Smoky Roasted Butternut Squash

To me, fall is all about squashes and roasting things. Last Saturday I bought a butternut squash at Lancaster Central Market.

Let me start out by saying I had an unfortunate experience two years ago with my first attempt working with butternut squash. I wanted to make butternut soup, but the squash disagreed. The soup, to be generous, was vile. There are few things that my husband will not eat, but that dastardly creation went straight down the drain. I shudder at the thought. Anyway. I didn't give up on butternut squash and shortly thereafter I bought another squash. This time, I simply roasted it with some salt, pepper, and a spray of olive oil. It was FANTASTIC! I've been seeing butternut squash ever since. And this is how I got to this recipe: I needed to combine my love of smoked paprika with my love of roasted butternut squash. Mission accomplished! If you have not tried roasted butternut squash, I highly recommend trying it today!

Smoky Roasted B-nut Squash

1 butternut squash
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons pomegranate-infused balsamic vinegar (You could use regular balsamic instead. The pomegranate lends a fruity note.)
¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon salt
As much freshly ground black pepper as you like/can handle (I used about ½ teaspoon)

1. Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line a glass roasting dish with aluminum foil and set aside.
2. In a large bowl (and I mean large, unless you want to make a mess) mix together all of the ingredients except for the butternut squash. You want to mix those together first so that your squash gets coated evenly with all of the spices.
3. Peel your squash (the best way to do this is with a sharp chef's knife, cut off the bottom of the squash straight and run your knife along the sides) and chop the flesh into about one inch pieces.
4. Add you squash to the bowl and coat evenly with the spice mixture. Transfer to the roasting dish, making sure to spread out the squash.
5. Bake for about 20 minutes, stir it up, and then bake for another 25-30 minutes. You want your squash to be tender and slightly browned around the edges. Serves 3.

I served this with BBQ tofu, but it would make a fitting side dish to pretty much anything. Tomorrow I will be posting what I made with our leftover roasted squash!



Thursday, November 15, 2012

There's always the question of "What's for lunch?" This recipe is a poignant answer to that question. This is my first published recipe ever. Hopefully you don't think it sucks.

I think that this recipe is way better if you use Better Than Bouillon No-Chicken Broth and cook the quinoa a day in advance. This recipe comes together in about 10 minutes if you already have the quinoa made. Since my husband and I are broke, this recipe is also pretty cheap to make... especially if you buy quinoa in bulk, cook your chickpeas from scratch, and score .60 packs of wraps at Big Lots. Vegenaise can get a tad pricey but one jar lasts quite a long time!

Cheezy Quinoa Chickpea Burritos with Smoked Mayo

½ cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup no-chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 tablespoon canola oil
1 cup frozen or 2 cups fresh chopped kale
½ cup frozen corn kernels
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 ½ cups cooked or 1 15oz can chickpeas
½ cup daiya shredded cheddar cheeze
Freshly ground black pepper

4 whole wheat flour tortillas

For the mayo:
4 tablespoons vegenaise
½ teaspoon smoked paprika

1.      Rinse the quinoa thoroughly. Briefly heat quinoa to let any excess rinsing water evaporate. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Cover and turn heat to low. Cook for 15 minutes, or until all water has been absorbed. Let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.
2.      While quinoa is standing, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the kale and sauté until thawed or soft. Add the corn kernels and cook until they are thawed, about 2 minutes. Add the nutritional yeast, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes. Stir well.
3.      Add quinoa and chickpeas and cook, stirring frequently, until heated through. When the mixture is hot, add the daiya. Season mixture to taste with pepper.
4.      Mix together the vegenaise and the smoked paprika.
5.       Slather a tablespoon of smoked mayo on each wrap before filling with the quinoa mixture. Roll up like a burrito and enjoy!