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Mar 30, 2017
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Posts Tagged ‘vegan’

Meatless Monday: Grilled Tomato and Mushroom Salad

Monday, August 8th, 2016



Farmers markets and gardens are filled with tomatoes in every hue imaginable, from pale melon yellow to fire-engine red to mysterious purple-black. Tonight, we’re paying tribute to Purple Cherokee tomatoes. Slice and dress these beauties with basil and oregano, add a healthy dose of garlic paste and toss on the grill with oyster mushrooms, then pile on a plate. Click here for the recipe.


Meatless Monday: Quinoa with Apricots and Leeks

Monday, August 1st, 2016



Juicy, golden stone fruit has invaded the farmers market, and we’re always on the hunt for new ways with peaches, plums and nectarines. Tonight, we’re firing up the grill and tossing on leeks and apricots for a savory, smoky take on these sweet summer treats. Toss them with quinoa, cucumber and bell peppers, then drizzle with olive oil and lemon for a fresh summer salad. Click here for the recipe.


Meatless Monday: Banana Pancakes

Monday, May 16th, 2016



There’s nothing like a good brinner. Consider these vegan banana pancakes a blank canvas for whatever mix-in or topping you desire. Drop in fresh blueberries, stir in a handful of chocolate chips or top with a vegan buttery spread and maple syrup for a fast, simple meal. To start, simply combine whole-wheat flour, a pinch of sugar and baking soda with nut milk and a smashed banana. Click here for the recipe.



Meatless Monday: Gumbo-Stuffed Bell Peppers

Monday, April 18th, 2016



Pile all the flavors of a Southern classic into bright bell peppers. Saute okra, corn and black-eyed peas with file and Creole seasoning, then add rice and simmer in veggie broth and tomato juice. Hollow out bright red bell peppers and fill with the veggie and rice mixture, then bake in shallow pool of fragrant tomato curry broth until tender. Get the recipe for this filling Meatless Monday masterpiece here.



Meatless Monday: Sweet and Smoky Vegan Burgers

Monday, April 11th, 2016



For the beefiest meat-free burger, we turned to textured vegetable protein, better known as TVP. No, it’s not some scary Frankenfood – it’s a soy product that adds meat-like texture to veggie burgers. Here, we soaked it, then mixed it with black beans, lentils, brown rice and sweet potato for a nutritious, filling patty. TVP still weirding you out? These burgers taste wonderful without it, too. Get the recipe here.

-photo by Carmen Troesser 

Sneak Peek: Fred and Ricky’s in Maryland Heights

Thursday, April 7th, 2016



Grab-and-go is about to get healthier in Maryland Heights. Fred and Ricky’s opens doors tomorrow, April 8, at 64 Weldon Parkway. Co-owners Kathleen “Fred” Waidmann and Richard Waidmann have custom-built a 5,000-square-foot commissary kitchen to prepare plant-based, health-focused meals.

As The Scoop reported in November 2015, Fred and Ricky’s menu features dishes without meat, dairy, eggs, refined sugar or oil. A small storefront at the commissary kitchen houses a refrigerated case displaying packaged breakfasts, salads, soups, baked goods and entrees like mushroom barley risotto and Plantsagna, a vegetarian lasagna with dairy-free cheese.

Chef Andy Harris has scaled up Kathleen Waidmann’s recipes that she developed for her husband, who follows a plant-based diet. While the Maryland Heights location is only grab-and-go, the Waidmanns are already working on another satellite location at 11252 Olive Blvd., in Creve Coeur, which will offer a handful of seats for customers. That location is slated to open at the end of the month.

Rather than operate a full-service restaurant, the Waidmanns said they opted for a grab-and-go operation to provide nutritious meals quickly for workers looking for a fast lunch or an easy dinner option. Mostly single-serving portions are packaged in recyclable, BPA-free plastic containers and include microwave reheating instructions. The Waidmanns hope to expand their concept quickly, adding more locations to be supplied from the Maryland Heights kitchen. They’re also planning a delivery service.

Fred and Ricky’s will be open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Here’s a sneak peek at what to expect when doors open tomorrow morning:


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-photos by Meera Nagarajan

Meatless Monday: Roasted Cauliflower With Olives, Currants And Tahini Dressing

Monday, April 4th, 2016



This vibrant dish adds dimension to ho-hum cauliflower. While the veg roasts, make a rich sauce with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and garlic. Toss with the roasted florets and spike the salad liberally with briny kalamata olives, sweet currants and fresh parsley for a bowlful of goodness to start your week off right. Click here for the recipe.


By the Book: “Crossroads” by Tal Ronnen

Friday, April 1st, 2016



I’ve been curious to try Tal Ronnen’s cookbook, Crossroads, since I heard an interview with him on “The Splendid Table.” Ronnen is chef of Los Angeles eatery Crossroads, a restaurant lauded for revolutionizing plant-based dining. The dishes aren’t intentionally health-focused, nor a mash-up of Frankenfoods laden with chemicals. Only one recipe calls for tofu – and it’s not one you’d expect. Instead, you’ll find recipes for plant-forward dishes using classic cooking techniques and a few clever tricks to provide flavors and textures familiar to omnivores.

Ronnen’s recipes are clear and precise. Balsamic-roasted mushrooms with shallots and toasted Marcona almonds had a long name for a small plate, but it produced divine results. I reduced balsamic vinegar and agave syrup to make a sweet, sticky glaze that I tossed with shallots and cremini, shiitake and oyster mushrooms. The whole mixture roasted in the oven before hitting a saute pan with even more shallots, garlic, balsamic and sherry. Mixed herbs and crunchy almonds added necessary vibrancy and texture to the finished dish.

Since this is a small plate, there’s a lot of flavor packed into each bite. The balsamic glaze nearly overwhelmed the more delicate oyster and shiitake mushrooms, but bright herbs kept it from tipping into too-sweet territory. While we devoured the dish on its own, we agreed that serving it with a base – garlic toast, polenta, a bed of arugula – would have rounded it out and given those strong balsamic notes something to mingle with.

Skill level: Intermediate. While complicated recipes like artichoke “oysters” and fresh pasta dishes abound, there are plenty of simpler options available, too.
This book is for: Home cooks anxious to throw dinner parties where no one realizes the meal was vegan until the last bite of dark chocolate rice pudding.
Other recipes to try: Spaghetti Squash Noce Moscata, Roasted Fennel with Clementine Beurre Blanc and Toasted Buckwheat or Sweet Corn Risotto with Buttered Leeks, Cherry Tomatoes and Tomato-Sherry Cream Sauce
The verdict: After much debate, this dish fell just short of Battersby’s Farfalle with Gorgonzola and Pistachios, which we felt best represented a complete dish. However, we’ll repeat this recipe and slather it atop garlic toast (or ditch the vegan concept altogether and add burrata) very soon.




Balsamic-Roasted Mushrooms with Shallots and Toasted Marcona Almonds
4 servings

2 lbs. mixed mushrooms, such as cremini and shiitake, stemmed, wiped of grit, and quartered
4 large shallots, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into large slices
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup Balsamic Reduction (recipe follows)
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup dry sherry
2 Tbsp. Balsamic Reduction (recipe follows)
¼ cup fresh mint leaves, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
4 fresh dill sprigs, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
4 fresh chives, sliced into 1-inch pieces, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup toasted Marcona almonds, smashed with a mallet or heavy pan

• To prepare the mushrooms: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
• Put the mushrooms and shallots in a mixing bowl and drizzle with the oil. Pour in the balsamic reduction, season with the red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper, and turn the mushrooms and shallots over so they are well coated. Spread the vegetables out in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 20 to 25 minutes, until they are tender and deep brown. Set aside. (The roasted mushrooms and shallots can be prepared a couple of hours in advance, covered, and held at room temperature.)
• Put a large saute pan over medium heat and coat with the oil. When the oil is hot, add the roasted mushrooms and shallots, toss in the minced shallot and garlic, and cook, stirring, until the shallot and garlic soften, about 1 minute. Add the sherry and balsamic reduction and cook, stirring, until the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the mint, parsley, dill, and chives, tossing to distribute them evenly. Season with salt and black pepper.
• Transfer to a serving bowl or individual plates and scatter the almonds on top. Top with more herbs and serve warm.

Balsamic Reduction
½ cup

½ cup agave nectar
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1 shallot, halved
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

• Heat the agave in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until it thins out and is warmed, about 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and shallot and gently simmer, swirling the pan a few times, until the sauce has reduced and thickened to the consistency of maple syrup and coats the back of a spoon, about 50 minutes.
• Remove the shallot and add a good pinch each of salt and pepper. The reduction can be stored covered at room temperature for up to 3 months.

Reprinted with permission from Artisan

Meatless Monday: Roasted Carrot Ginger Soup

Monday, February 22nd, 2016



Start your week off right with this simple, spiced Roasted Carrot Ginger Soup. Roasting the carrots first brings out their inherent sweetness, while fresh ginger adds heat. Finish with a glug of coconut milk for creaminess and round out the flavors. Get the recipe here.


Meatless Monday: Black Bean and Quinoa Burritos

Monday, February 15th, 2016



Toasted Black Bean and Quinoa Burritos offer all the heft of a Mexican classic sans meat. Here, black beans are ever so slightly blitzed with red wine vinegar, lime juice and a jalapeno, then wrapped up in a tortilla with a quinoa-corn-red onion mix. The burritos are dry-toasted in a cast-iron skillet for crunch. Serve with salsa and guac for a protein-packed meal that won’t weigh you down. Get the recipe here.


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