Vegan Roast Dinner Lentil and Mushroom Loaf with Savoury Potato Filling

Hearty, healthy and delicious. Meat eaters love this too!!

Minutes to Prepare: 30
Minutes to Cook: 45
Number of Servings: 8

 

Ingredients

      1 cup raw lentils
      1 tablespoon Olive oil
      2 cloves garlic, minced
      6 ounces white mushrooms
      5 ounces (l/2 package) thawed frozen spinach
      1 tablespoon natural soy sauce
      2 tablespoons wheat germ
      freshly ground pepper to taste
      dash nutmeg
      1 cup firmly packed grated Gruyere or Vegan Cheese

Filling

      1 tablespoon olive oil
      1 cup chopped onion
      1/4 cup dry bread crumbs (I make my own and use 5 seed wholemeal bread)
      1 cup coarsely mashed potato (from about 1 medium cooked and peeled potato)
      ½ teaspoon each: seasoned salt, dried thyme, and dried basil
      freshly ground pepper to taste
      curly parsley for garnish

 

Directions

Rinse and sort the lentils. Combine in a heavy saucepan with 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the lentils are tender, about 45 minutes. Drain.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and mushrooms and saute over medium heat, stirring, until the mushrooms are wilted. Stir in the spinach, lentils, soy sauce, and wheat germ. Grind in some pepper and add the nutmeg. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is heated through, then stir in the soy cheese.
Lightly oil a 9- by 5- by 3inch loaf pan, preferably glass. Pour in about 2/3 Of the lentil mixture. Press some of the mixture up the sides of the pan to create a shell about ½ inch thick. Transfer the remaining lentil mixture to a small bowl and reserve until needed.
Rinse the skillet and heat the oil. Add the onion and sautee until golden brown. Add the remaining filling ingredients and saute, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Transfer into the shell created by the lentil mixture, then cover the top with the reserved lentil mixture. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the top is crusty.
Remove from the oven and let the loaf stand for 10 to 15 minutes. Slide a spatula or knife around the edges to loosen it. Cut slices and arrange them on an oblong dish. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Number of Servings: 8

I Don’t Even Understand

So, I used to be a staunch vegan. I fell off years ago… Nursing school ruined my life in as many was as it improved it. After I graduated from nursing school, I started to have new back pain. This wasn’t the ache I’d had since my vaulting accident in high school, which was always helped by yoga. This was a deep, burning pain in my left SI joint. A level 7+ pain at all times, barely helped by narcotic pain medication. For two years, I tried intervention after intervention. After I moved to Portland, I was finally able to use CBD for the pain, which worked. I hate taking pills. They did an X-ray, and found I have spondylosis; specifically, I have a misalignment of vertebra that impinges on a nerve, causing this pain. There is no cure. Pilates helped, which was wonderful, but I really thought I was destined for life-long pain.

A little over a month ago, I was reading an article about the anti-inflammatory benefits of a vegan diet. I remembered how much I loved vegan food, and thought there’s nothing to lose here – I’ll try it for a month.

After 4 days, my pain was gone. GONE. Completely. It’s been 5 weeks since I had to take any kind of pain medication for my back, even Tylenol. I’m blown away. You know how you read the testimonials, and thing “yeah, good for you, but it’s not that way for everyone.” That’s how I felt. I didn’t really think it would help. I thought it would be a delicious failure. As it turns out, I’m thrilled to be wrong, thrilled to be pain-free, and thrilled to be vegan!

Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Squares

Add the chips

Tiny Hippo helps out with the pumpkin squares.

Here it is, the recipe that has turned Andrea into a twitching addict:

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 30-45 minutes

Makes 24 squares

Equipment:

9 x 13 inch baking pan

foil

Ingredients:

2 cups flour

1 tablespoon pumpkin-pie spice

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup canola oil

1 1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon flax meal

3 tablespoons water (if you’re using canned pumpkin)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup pumpkin – canned or fresh

1 12 oz package semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350*. Line pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all sides.

Whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In another bowl, mix together oil & sugar. Add vanilla, flax meal and water (if you’re using canned pumpkin). Stir in pumpkin, then mix in flour mixture. Finally, add chips.

Spread evenly in lined pan. Bake 35 to 40 minutes, until edges pull away from sides, and knife or toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely, then lift from pan using foil overhang.

Cut into squares and quickly get out of the way before someone knocks you over trying to get to them!

Eggplant Experiments

My eggplant plant has blown up in the last few weeks. I guess it liked all of the flooding & the warm weather. As a result, I’ve been experimenting with things to do with eggplants!

Last night, I sliced up an eggplant, dipped it in an egg wash & patted it into a bowl filled with cornmeal and Tony Chachere’s, and cooked them in a pan with a little olive oil.
Pretty good. A little bland. Next time, I’ll add more Tony’s!!

Squash Soup with Zucchini Noodles

1 winter squash (peel intact)

1/4 cup chopped onion

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon ginger, minced

2 teaspoons sesame oil

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 zucchini

2 tablespoons miso, dissolved in 1/4 cup cool water

Remove the seeds and chop the winter squash into 1 inch pieces, put in a pot with onion, garlic & ginger. Fill with water about 1 inch over the squash. Bring to a boil with the lid on & simmer until squash is tender.

In a pan, toast the squash seeds in sesame oil with the cayenne & salt.

Slice the zucchini into long, thin “noodles”.

When the squash is tender, take a potato masher & mash it in the pot. If you want, you can put it in a blender to get a creamier base, but remember that hot soup in a blender equals explosions of hot soup. Let it cool down a bit first.

Add the zucchini noodles and stir them in well. They will only take about a minute to cook, less if you like them slightly crisp.

Remove soup from heat & add miso.

Serve garnished with toasted squash seeds.

Ginger Miso Soup

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup chopped onion

1-2 tablespoon minced ginger (depending on how much you like ginger!)

2 carrots

1 sweet potato

2 squash (I like 1 yellow squash and 1 zucchini)

2 tablespoons miso

Put the onion, garlic & ginger in a pot that will be big enough to hold all your veggies & add about a cup of water. Bring to a boil & let that simmer while you…

Chop carrots, sweet potato and squash. Pieces of about 1 inch are a good size. Keep the sweet potato & carrots separate from the tender squashes. (if you want to substitute winter squash, you can lump it all together)

Put the sweet potato & carrot in the pot & add 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Simmer until carrots are becoming tender.

While this is cooking, take the miso & mix it in a bowl with about 1/4 cup of water to dissolve it.

Add the squash & cook until squash is tender.

Remove the pot from heat & stir in the miso.

Simple Salad Dressing

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon mustard
dash of pepper

Mix it up good! – I put it in a jar & shake.

This is for 1 serving, but you can make a jar of it. It’ll last about a week.

For a jar:

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon mustard
1 teaspoon pepper

Berry Ice Cream

3 bananas

10 oz frozen berries of your choice, thawed (or 2 cups fresh berries)

1 tablespoon agave nectar (or honey)

½ cup walnuts (optional)

Freeze the bananas for at least 4 hours beforehand

Put bananas, berries and agave into food processor (a blender would work fine, too)

Process for a few moments, until everything is chopped

Add walnuts

Process until smooth until the consistency is nice & creamy.

Keeps happily in the freezer about 48 hours… if you don’t eat it all right away!

Quick ~n~ Dirty Walnut Brownies

A quick, healthy raw brownies that you can toss together in just a few minutes & set to chill while you’re finishing up dinner.

1 cup chopped dates

1 cup walnuts

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 to 2 tablespoons coconut (or other) oil

~ if you’re using an oil besides coconut, be aware of how the flavor of the oil will affect the brownies. For example, grapeseed oil has very little flavor, but sesame oil has a very strong flavor.

Toss dates and walnuts into the food processor. Process until finely chopped. Add cocoa & process again until brownies are a sticky mass.  At this point, you want to scoop a little out & see if it’s sticky enough to form without crumbling. If it is, you can skip the coconut oil. If it isn’t, now is the time to add in the coconut oil, nice and slowly… until your gooey, delicious mass will stick together.

Now, take a 8 x 8 baking pan & smoosh the mixture into the bottom. The size of the pan is not essential. If you use a bigger pan, the brownies will be thinner; a smaller pan will make the brownies thicker.

Refrigerate for about an hour, and then slice into brownies & enjoy!

Simply Blueberry

Blueberries are little powerhouses of antioxidant goodness. This simple smoothie combines them with greens for a sweet treat that’s full of nutrients!

1 banana
1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
3 large kale leaves
– if you have a good, strong blender, leave the stems in for extra fiber.
1 tablespoon ground flax
8 oz water or almond milk (or rice milk or soy milk or whatever)

Toss it in the blender, blend until smooth!

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