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Mar 22, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘Meatless Mondays’

Meatless Mondays: Beans and Cornbread

Monday, August 26th, 2013



In this little twist on beans and cornbread, we used canned black-eyed peas and made johnnycakes instead of the traditional cornbread. The black-eyed peas recipe once accompanied the Blackened Fish during Dan’s time at Monarch. It is super simple to make and really delicious.

Beans and Cornbread
4 Servings

For the Beans
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1½ cups vegetable stock
6 Tbsp. butter
2 tsp. creole seasoning or ½ tsp. cayenne and 1 tsp. each kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch green onions, greens only, chopped for garnish

For the Johnnycakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
3 eggs
3 Tbsp. canola or vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk

• In a large pan, saute the onion in the olive oil over medium-high heat until translucent. Add the garlic and cook 1 more minute.
• Add the black-eyed peas and vegetable stock. Bring the mixture to a simmer and reduce the liquid by almost half, about 5 minutes.
• Add the butter 2 tablespoons at a time, stirring constantly, then season with the creole spices.
• Remove the beans from heat, cover and set aside.
• Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt. Then add the eggs, oil and buttermilk and whisk until combined.
• Heat a cast iron or regular griddle over medium-high heat and grease with butter. Use 1/3 cup of batter per johnnycake to make them about 3-inches in diameter. When the tops begin to bubble, about 2 to 3 minutes, flip and cook 2 to 3 minutes more.
• Serve the black-eyed peas over the “cornbread” and garnish with the chopped green onions.



Wilted Greens with Mushrooms in Black Bean Sauce

Monday, July 15th, 2013


Chinese dried black beans, also known as fermented black beans, are salted or preserved black beans. They are used in Chinese cooking to season meat, poultry and seafood. You can find them at any Asian markets in the St. Louis area. Since the beans are preserved, they will keep indefinitely, and once you learn how to use them, they’re nice to have on hand for an earthy, savory kick.

Usually this sauce is made in advance and added to meat or poultry, but we made the sauce in the pan to save time and reserved the soy sauce to give the greens some moisture. Greens and mushrooms have always been a personal favorite, and this is a Chinese spin on the pairing. The fermented black beans accentuate the mushrooms earthy flavors.

Wilted Greens with Mushrooms in Black Bean Sauce
2 to 4 servings

2 Tbsp. fermented black beans
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 lb. shiitake mushrooms, sliced
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp. garlic, minced
2 tsp. ginger, grated
½ cup white wine
3 Tbsp. butter, divided
1 lb. greens (spinach, kale, Swiss chard, etc.), cleaned and stems removed, if necessary
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
Sriracha or other hot sauce

• Soak black beans in a bowl of cool water for 30 minutes, changing the water every 10 minutes. Drain and mash beans with a spoon.
• Place a saute pan over high heat until smoking. Coat the pan with the vegetable oil, add the mushrooms, salt liberally and stir. Add the black pepper and cook another 5 to 7 minutes, until the mushrooms are tender.
• Add the garlic, ginger and mashed black beans and cook 1 or 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the white wine and reduce the liquid for 1 minute. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter and stir until incorporated. Remove from heat.
• In a stockpot, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat. Add the greens, season generously with salt and pepper and stir.
• When the greens begin to cook down, add the soy sauce and stir. Remove the pot from the heat. Serve the greens with the mushroom-bean mixture and a few dots of Sriracha or hot sauce.



Meatless Monday: Sweet Potato Enchilada at Atomic Cowboy

Monday, July 8th, 2013


The sweet potato enchilada at Atomic Cowboy is rich and satisfying. Hunks of sweet potato are rolled up in a tortilla and topped with a creamy, savory poblano sauce. A final crown of melted cheese finishes things off. For $3.75, this a la carte item is a steal. Go ahead, spring for two.



Kale Spoonbread with Red Lentil Sauce

Monday, July 1st, 2013


A perfect side for any summer barbecue, this southern-inspired spoonbread uses leftover grilled corn (canned corn could be substituted) and the leafy greens that come to market during these hot summer months.

Don’t hesitate to cook down the extra greens from the bunch, too; they make an excellent accompaniment to the dish and are a great source of iron and calcium. This recipe will produce an abundance of red lentil and pepper sauce, but serve it up later in the week as a light summer soup or pair it with a side salad or a grilled cheese sandwich.

Kale Spoonbread with Red Lentil Sauce
6 Servings

Red Lentil Sauce*

2 red bell peppers
2 cups red lentils
1 quart vegetable stock
2 cups water
2 bay leaves
1 Tbsp. salt
Juice of half a lemon
Zest of 1 lemon

•  In a broiler, roast 1 red pepper, turning every several minutes until all the sides are blackened, about 5 to 10 minutes. Place the roasted pepper in a brown paper bag and close it tightly to trap the steam. When the pepper is cool, take it from the bag and remove the stem, skin and seeds. Cut the pepper into several large pieces and set aside.
•  Meanwhile, combine the lentils, vegetable stock, water and bay leaves together in a large pot over medium heat. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 15 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
• Remove the bay leaves. With a slotted spoon, scoop half the lentils into a food processor. Add the roasted pepper and pulse until smooth. Remove and set aside.
•  Strain the remaining lentils through a chinois for 10 minutes to remove excess liquid. Seed and chop the 1 raw red pepper into large pieces. Add the lentils and raw red pepper to the food processor. Pulse until smooth.
•  Pass both batches of the puree through a chinois to remove any remaining pepper skins. Season with salt, lemon juice and zest to taste.

* This sauce is prepared in two batches, as all the lentil and peppers will not fit in a standard-size food processor.

Kale Spoonbread

1 ½ cups cornmeal
1 ½ cups water
2 cups buttermilk
3 eggs
1 or 2 kale leaves, cut into thin strips
½ cup roasted corn (1 ear of corn)*
1 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. salt
2 Tbsp. sorghum or molasses (optional)

•  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
•  Combine cornmeal, water and buttermilk together in a heavy bottomed, 4-quart saucepan over moderate heat. Whisk continuously about 5 minutes, until mixture has thickened. Remove from heat and let cool.
•  Separate the eggs, reserving the yolks. Beat the egg whites using a stand mixer or whisk until soft peaks form. Set aside.
•  Place the cornmeal mixture in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat at medium speed, slowly adding egg yolks, baking powder and sorghum until combined.
•  Fold in kale, roasted corn and egg whites. Pour mixture into a buttered, 8-by-8 inch casserole dish. Bake for 35 minutes, until spoonbread is set.

* To roast corn, place an ear of corn still in its husk on a grill over moderate heat (approximately 300 degrees) for 7 minutes a side, until the husks turn a caramel brown and the ear is tender. Corn also can be roasted in its husk under the broiler with the red pepper while preparing the sauce.

Meatless Monday: Puri Bhaji at Gokul

Monday, June 24th, 2013


Everything at Gokul Indian Restaurant is vegetarian, so there are 88 items to choose from if you’re going meatless on Mondays. Take your pick from a wide range of Indian dishes, including everything from street food, or chaat (We love their Panni Puri), to lesser known South Indian staples, like Idli Sambhar. We have a soft spot for the Puri Bhaji (pictured) that comes with two puris, fluffy rounds of fried wheat bread, and steamed potatoes sauteed with black mustard seeds, cumin and chiles. Order it with a side of Gokul’s coconut chutney, a sweet and spicy raw sauce made with freshly grated coconut.




Meatless Monday: Cold Noodle Salad with Spicy Sesame Sauce

Monday, June 10th, 2013


Several weeks ago I had the pleasure of being a vendor at Art Fest in Richmond Heights. Some of you might have put two and two together, but for those who haven’t, let me quickly complete the equation. Besides stuffing my face all over St. Louis and writing about it for Sauce, I also own a mobile business in which I sell cute vintage things out of a 1960 travel trailer.

See? I told you it’d be quick. Anyway … at this particular event, I knew that we (the vendors) would be getting a lunch, which my brain translated into a bag of chips and a soggy sandwich. So when I was handed a brown box filled with this fresh noodle salad, I was over the moon. It had udon noodles, carrots, lettuce, tofu (bonus!) and a wonderfully spicy sesame dressing that I poured over every bit.

I went home that day knowing I had to recreate it for the summer days ahead, and now, well, here we are! Hope you enjoy!

Cold Noodle Salad with Spicy Sesame Sauce
4 servings

12 oz. extra-firm tofu
7 oz. udon noodles
4 Tbsp. sesame oil
4 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. Sriracha
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 hearts of romaine, torn into 1-inch pieces
4 medium carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
½ cup torn cilantro leaves

• Place 6 layers of paper towels on a plate. Remove the tofu from the package and place onto the paper towels. Cover with another 6 layers of paper towels, then place a heavy skillet on top. Let it sit until ready to assemble the salad.
• Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a pot. Add the udon noodles and cook 12 minutes.
• Meanwhile, in a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, Sriracha and garlic. Set aside.
• Once the noodles are cooked, drain and spray them with cold water until they’re cooled to room temperature. Keep in a colander while slicing the tofu.
• Remove the tofu from the paper towels and slice in half horizontally (making it half as thick). Take those two pieces and cut each into 12 more pieces (or smaller if you want).
• Place the drained noodles in a large bowl. Give the sauce a quick whisk and then pour half of it over the noodles.
• Stir well to make sure all the noodles are covered, then add the romaine, carrots, tofu and the rest of the sauce. Stir again to combine. Top with torn cilantro.
• Place the salad in the refrigerator for 15 to 20 minutes or until it’s chilled to your liking.



Meatless Monday: Summer Seitan Tacos

Monday, June 3rd, 2013


I remember one of the first times I went with my now-husband (then-boyfriend) to visit his family in Texas. I had just flipped the vegetarian switch, and now, here I was, going into the lion’s den of meaty cuisine, where nothing is quite right until you slap some beef or bacon on it. We would go out to eat, and I’d be the crazy lady asking the servers if things had been cooked in beef or chicken stock, something they didn’t even think to know because … who cares?

So it’s a testament to my in-laws that, after all those embarrassing questions, they still accepted me into their family with open arms. And now when we go visit, they even scout menus ahead of time to make sure there is something for their quirky daughter-in-law to consume. One of my favorite places down there is a chain (gasp!) taco place called Torchy’s, which serves these amazing mushroom tacos topped with cheese and lettuce and an avocado cream that’s out of this world. Each bite is packed with layer upon layer of flavor, and it’s the standard to which I now hold all vegetarian tacos.

For this recipe, feel free to omit the seitan if soy substitutes still freak you out (although you will miss that meaty texture it gives). And grilling the corn before adding it to the peas would definitely kick things up a notch. But whatever you do, don’t skip the avocado dressing.

Summer Seitan Tacos
Makes 4 to 6 tacos

For the avocado dressing:
1 large ripe Hass avocado, pitted and roughly chopped
¼ cup plain yogurt
½ cup roughly chopped cilantro
1 Tbsp. lime juice
¼ cup water
¼ tsp. salt

• In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients for the avocado dressing.
• Process until smooth and creamy, then taste for seasoning. Add more salt, if needed.
• Pulse a couple times to combine. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the red cabbage slaw:
¼ head red cabbage, shredded
1 cup shredded carrots
3 green onions (white and green parts), chopped
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
½ cup orange juice
¼ cup olive oil
1½ Tbsp. agave nectar
¼ cup cilantro leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

• In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, carrot and green onions.
• In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the vinegar, orange juice, olive oil and agave.
• Pour the liquid over the cabbage mixture and stir to combine.
• Add the cilantro, season with salt and pepper, and stir to combine again.
• Set aside at room temperature until ready to use.

For the seitan:
8 oz. seitan strips
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. ground paprika
½ tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. vegetable oil
½ onion, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Juice of ½ lime

• Drain the seitan strips. Discard the liquid and place the strips in a medium bowl.
• Add the garlic, cumin, paprika, chili powder and garlic. Stir to make sure the seitan is evenly coated.
• Set aside at room temperature to allow flavors to marry. Meanwhile, prepare the taco filling.
• To cook the seitan, heat the vegetable oil over medium or medium-high heat in a small nonstick skillet. Add the onion, season with salt and pepper, and cook until the onion is softened and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.
• Add the reserved seitan mixture and lime juice, stir to combine, and cook until seitan is evenly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and keep warm until serving.

For the taco filling:
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
½ onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, ribs and seeds removed, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
5 oz. frozen corn
1 cup water
¼ cup chopped cilantro
6 soft-taco-size flour tortillas (check ingredient list to make sure they don’t have lard, or use corn tortillas)

• While the seitan is marinating, heat the vegetable oil in a large stainless skillet over medium or medium-high heat.
• Add the onion, garlic and jalapeño, then season with salt and pepper. Stir, then let the mixture cook until the onions are softened, 3 to 4 minutes.
• Add the black-eyed peas, corn and water. Turn the heat to high to bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat back to medium-high and simmer until the liquid has evaporated, 10 to 12 minutes.
• Add the cilantro, then taste the mixture and season again with salt and pepper if needed. Remove it from the heat while you cook the seitan.

4 oz. goat cheese crumbles
3 radishes, thinly sliced (optional)

• To assemble the tacos, put a tortilla on a plate. Top with the slaw, then the black-eyed pea and corn mixture, seitan, goat cheese and radishes (if using).
• Drizzle with avocado dressing and drops of Sriracha.



The Month in Review: March 2013

Sunday, March 31st, 2013

After nearly a foot of snow kept us cooking soups and braises far after the official turn of the season, today’s gorgeous weather makes us want to climb up to the sunny rooftop and scream: Spring is here! Spring is here! As we get ready to reveal our new issue, we take a look back at some of our favorite stories, recipes, dishes and drinks from March. You know what they say: Fall back, spring forward.

Coffee connoisseur Mike Marquard led The Scoop with news of his new coffee shop; we paid our respect to the grande dame of the kitchen: cast iron; Meatless Monday columnist Beth Styles gave spring a warm welcome with a veggie-lovers pizza; art director Meera Nagarajan shared her love for everything Home Made; we went green for St. Patty’s; New and Notable reviewer Michael Renner visited Ben Poremba’s new restaurants, Elaia and Olio; Vegetize It columnist Kellie Hynes took the schmaltz out of matzo ball soup; we reveled in Cary McDowell’s recipe for cast-iron sea scallops; we got to meet one of our favorite Top Chefs; we proved that great salads need no lettuce; we had breakfast for dinner; Gerard Craft got another nod from James Beard; we made pot pie in less than an hour; we chatted with the guy behind the guys (and girls) in STL’s restaurant kitchens; we peeked into a new deli downtown; we offered a darker take on canapes; we gave rotisserie chicken the respect it deserves; we made shakshuka at 2 a.m.; and managing editor Stacy Schultz embraced her inner sweet tooth with a 1-dollar wonder.


Meatless Monday: Crushing on Crushed Red’s veggie pizza

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Need a quick meatless bite tonight? Check out Crushed Red Urban Bake & Chop Shop, a casual pizza, salad and soup spot in downtown Clayton.

At Crushed Red, patrons order their food at the counter like a fast food restaurant. But while the layout creates a relaxed and breezy atmosphere, the eatery’s fare isn’t remotely comparable to typical fast food.

Try one of the daily rotating soups if it’s a chilly winter day. On my visit, there were two appealing vegetarian options: Brie and Mushroom Bisque, and Butternut Squash. But I couldn’t resist a house-made pie, so I opted for the Blistered Corn, Asparagus and Pesto Pizza, one of the many meatless offerings. This personal pizza’s bubbly crust was coated with a creamy basil pesto and piled with plump slices of tomatoes, fresh asparagus and sweet roasted corn and then sprinkled with mild mozzarella and fiery crushed red pepper flakes.

Whether it’s a work lunch, an afternoon pick-me-up or a prolonged dinner with friends, enjoying a laid-back Meatless Monday just got a lot easier in downtown Clayton.

Meatless Monday: Raving mad for vegetarian t-ravs

Monday, November 19th, 2012

You’ve probably heard of Mangia Italiano, an Italian restaurant located at 3145 South Grand Blvd., amidst a slew of ethnic eateries. Although Mangia has been around since 1983, evolving and expanding through the years, it recently unveiled a new menu, which boasts a plethora of vegetarian gourmet grub, including house-made pastas, pizzas, salads and sandwiches.

Before I start, let me just say: Mangia has Vegetarian Toasted Ravioli (pictured). Yep, that’s right. We meatless folk almost always get left out when it comes to the toasted ravioli party, so I couldn’t wait to bite into one of these fried triangles of joy. Packed with a spinach ricotta mixture and served with an Italian flag of sauces (verdant pesto, rosy red tomato sauce and white chipotle aioli), these crispy and crunchy t-ravs reminded me of why I’m a St. Louisan.

After a fried appetizer, sometimes a lighter entree is in order. The house-made pasta, Whole Wheat Radiatori, wasn’t heavy in the stomach, just in flavor. The tangy garlic oil drizzled over the noodles let the ingredients truly shine: sharp blue cheese, crunchy walnuts and sauteed spinach. The pasta was cooked to a lovely al dente, and the textured radiatori (Their shape resembles mini radiators.) made for the best hiding spots for the just-melted blue cheese to cling.

Sure, this hipster hideaway may get jam packed in the wee hours of the weekend as a watering hole, but on a Monday night, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a house-made meatless meal.

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