Tag Archives: celery

Curried Chickpea Salad Sammiches

Last weekend, we were at a wedding up in a beautiful, flower-filled meadow.  Some 20 degrees cooler than the valley floor, it was still a warm day.  A light lunch of veggies and chicken salad sandwiches were served before the cake, and being vegan, I abstained from the sandwich.  Sigh.  How I love a good chicken salad sandwich.  My friend Barb, who is also vegan, was there and she told me she’d heard of making “chicken salad” using chickpeas.  Well!  Chickpeas are my fav and go great with curry, so I started thinking about how I’d make that all come together in a satisfyingly yummy summer sammich.  Oh, I am one happy, happy vegan!

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Next time I make this, I’m doubling the recipe; it’s that yummy and crave-able.

ingredients

  • 1 (15oz) can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 2-3 TBSP vegan mayo
  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews or peanuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped apple
  • splash of lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Drain the chickpeas and place into a food processor.  Pulse about 10 times to break up the beans, you want chunks, not hummus.

pulse chickpeas

Place the chickpeas and everything except salt and pepper into a bowl.

everything in the bowl

Stir until well combined.  Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.  Add more curry and/or mayo if you like, or another splash of lemon juice to make it more spreadable.

stir til blended

Spread a bit more mayo on some yummy whole grain bread, add lettuce, and pile on the chickpea salad!  So yummy!

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Chicken-schmicken.  I’ve got a new favorite summer sammich!  This salad is better the next day, and is delish all on its own, or wrapped in a lettuce leaf or tortilla, or inside a pita pocket.

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Filed under comfort food, dairy-free, dinner, lunch, recipe, salad, side dish, snack, Vegetarian

You’d Never Guess it’s Vegan Potato Soup

Not long ago I was strutting about with the perfection of my Best Ham and Potato Soup Ever.  Oh how I loved the ham hock that slow cooked with the potatoes, surrounding them in rich, smoky wonderfulness.  The tender pieces of ham.  The sprinkling of cheese melting into the top.  Yup.  Then Michael and I decided to be vegan for health reasons.  But baby, it’s cold outside!  I wants me some comforting potato soup!

Challenge accepted.

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The changes: milk–becomes unsweetened almond milk, broth becomes “No Chicken Broth”, butter becomes broth, ham hock becomes Hickory Grill Shaker.  Vegan.  Fat-free.  Yummy.

ingredients

  • secret weapon2 -3 TBSP hickory flavoring (I used Hickory Grill Shakers, which also contain salt–add 1 TBSP at a time and taste after to avoid over-salting)
  • 6-7 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 5 carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
  • 1 celery heart, chopped, leaves too
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 quart no-chicken broth or veggie broth
  • pepper to taste
  • 5 TBSP broth
  • 2 TBSP flour (Make this gluten-free by using rice or garbanzo flour, or by using corn starch.)
  • 2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or soy or oat milk….)

Place 1 quart of broth in large pot over medium high heat.  Mince the garlic, chop the celery, onion and carrots and add them to the pot.

chop onion carrot celery garlic

Then chop the potatoes and add them to the pot.

dice potatos

Add hickory flavoring and season with black pepper to taste.  Add water or additional broth to cover the ingredients if needed.

all in the pot

Cover and cook for half an hour, then transfer everything to a crock pot.  Cook on high for an additional four hours.  This is when your house will have that warm and inviting comfort food aroma.  Mmmmmmm!

Place 5 TBSP broth in a pan over medium heat.

roux

Whisk in flour until it forms a “roux.”  Continue cooking for a minute to cook the “rawness” out of the flour.

Whisk in the almond milk, one cup at a time, and continue whisking until it comes to a boil.

add almond milk

Add milk mixture to the crock pot.

add thickened milk

Ladle up a nice big bowl-full and garnish with a bit of nutritional yeast (nice cheesy flavor, thickening) and fresh chopped green onion.  Maybe toast  a couple pieces of a nice crusty bread.  Now there ya go.

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A wonderful creamy, smoky, comfort-food-yummy soup.

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Both Michael and I were super pleased with how this soup came out.  Mr18 gave it an 8 out of 10, with 10 being the potato soup with ham.  Like most soups, it’s better and thicker the second day.  We had soup and “burgers” tonight–perfect!

We discovered and unexpected bonus while doing dishes.  The crock pot essentially wiped clean!  When I make the soup with ham, regular skim milk and chicken broth, I have to soak and scrub to get the crock pot clean.  This makes me wonder what I’ve been adding to my arteries all these years, and see how a fat free, vegan diet might just clean them all out–just like the studies say!

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Filed under comfort food, crock pot, dairy-free, dinner, Gluten-free, lunch, Potluck, recipe, Vegetarian

Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

Just in time for St. Patty’s Day–classic Irish comfort food that practically cooks itself!  The March 2012 Everyday Food is full of awesome recipes, including this one.  Can you say yum?

Corned beef briskets are on sale pretty much everywhere right now, making this not only easy, but economical!  Gather everything, and toss it into the crockpot; you’ll have time to try to catch a leprechaun!

  • 2 celery stalks, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 3 carrots, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 small yellow onion, cut into 1-inch wedges, root end intact
  • 1/2 pound small potatoes, cut in half if large
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 corned beef brisket (about 3 lbs) and spice packet, or 1 TBSP pickling spice
  • 1/2 head cabbage, Savoy if you can find it, cut into 1 1/2-inch wedges
  • grainy mustard for serving

Prepare celery, carrots, potatoes and onion.  Place them in a crockpot with thyme.

Place brisket on top, fat side up.  Sprinkle with spices and add enough water to almost cover the meat.  (This completely filled my crockpot–forcing an adjustment later….)

Cover and cook until corned beef is tender.  4 1/2 hours on high, or 8 1/2 hours on low.

Arrange cabbage over meat.  I moved the whole kit and kaboodle to a large pot on the stove–worked just fine.  Cover and continue cooking until cabbage is tender.  45 minutes on high, or 1 1/2 hours on low.  While the cabbage was cooking, I had enough time to make a loaf of Irish Soda Bread!  So fast,so  easy, and the perfect yummy addition to this comfort food meal!

Remove everything from the pot, carve the brisket and serve!  How ’bout a nice, cold, stout beer with this meal?!  Mmmmmm–perfect!

I ended up with not much left over, but plenty of brisket and potatoes to make a corned beef hash to have with over-easy eggs the next morning!  Yum!

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The Best Ham and Potato Soup Ever!

I don’t know what got me thinking about potato soup.  It’s not something I make all the time, and not usually something I make especially well.  In fact, Mr17’s Dad is the potato soup master.  He doesn’t measure or anything, just throws things in and it turns into the perfect cold-weather comfort meal.  Well! (Stands proudly, hands on hips, much like Yul Brynner in the King and I.)  I think I have him beat.   (Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.)

Oooohhhh yeaaaahhh.  I have a new favorite ingredient and a combination of stove-top and crock pot that brings it over the top!

  • 1 package smoked ham shanks
  • 6-7 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 5 carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
  • 1 celery heart, chopped, leaves too
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • pepper to taste
  • 5 TBSP butter
  • 5 TBSP flour
  • 2 cups milk

Ham shanks are my new favorite ingredient for soups that usually have ham in them.  Cook them in with the soup, bones and fat and all.  You will be rewarded with bigger pieces of super-tender ham along with a richer broth.

Place the ham shanks and chicken broth in a 6 quart pot over medium heat. 

Meanwhile, mince the garlic, chop the celery, onion and carrots and add them to the pot.

Then chop the potatoes and add them to the pot.

Season with black pepper to taste and add water to cover the ingredients if needed. 

Cover and cook for half an hour, then transfer everything to a crock pot.  Cook on high for an additional four hours, while you go see a movie.  I recommend The Decendants.  With George Clooney.  In Hawai’i.  (Really, really good movie, plus it takes place in places I’ve been so it seemed like a vacation!)

Come out of the theater into the greyness of a typical January afternoon, drive home, open the door and rejoice in the amazing aroma of the best ham and potato soup that is almost ready!

Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat.

Stir in the flour to create a roux.  Cook until it bubbles.

Then add the milk, 1 cup at a time.  Use a whisk if lumps start to happen.  Remove from heat when thick and smooth.

Remove the ham shanks from the crock pot and separate the meat from the fat and bones.  Shred the meat with a fork.

Add the milk mixture to the crock pot, and then the ham meat.  Stir to combine.

Ladle up a nice big bowl-full and garnish with a bit of shredded cheese and fresh chopped chives.  Maybe toast and butter a couple pieces of a nice crusty bread.  Now there ya go.

Maybe if you get close enough to your monitor you can smell the wonderful creamy, smoky, comfort-food yumminess of this soup. 

Maybe you’ll just have to take my word for it, until you make some for yourself.  And then—shhhhh don’t let your family hear—hide any leftovers in the fridge for YOUR lunch.  Mmmmmm, yummy!

This soup got an “Oh. My. Gosh!” from Mr17 on his way to get his second bowl.  I couldn’t get him to commit on whether my soup is better than his Dad’s.  Well played on his part, even though mine IS yummier!

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