Artichoke Chimichurri with Kale Veg Stir Fry (Vegan)

This recipe was styled and prepared by Jacki Portoke, and the Artichoke Chimichurri is an exact recipe from Pretend It's a Donut

This was so good, and that might have to do with the fact that I didn't have to make it myself, but even if I had made it, I think I'd still love it as much. So this all vegan fresh herb dip definitely rivals anything made with dairy or mayo. You can put it on pretty much anything, I had it on stir-fry, but I also really wish I had some rye crackers to go with it and just eat it all day. But of course veggies and toast would work well with this too. 

It's super simple to make and has all plant ingredients, so you won't have to scour your grocery store for ingredients you haven't heard of. It does have a bit of red wine vinegar which gives it an interesting twist. It reminds me a bit of some vegan herb pesto I made not too long ago, kind of taking a healthier, and not to mention cheaper, twist on old favorites. 

Here's what you'll need:

For the chimichurri:

  • 14.5 oz can of artichoke hearts - drained
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 punch of parsley
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup of oil - this was made with avocado oil

For the stir-fry:

  • 1 yam - chopped
  • 1/4 head green cauliflower - chopped into 1" pieces
  • 1/2 cup of mushrooms - chopped
  • 1 bunch of lacinato kale - chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic - chopped
  • salt and pepper - to taste
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil or avocado oil 

Directions:

  • Place 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet for the stirfry and warm chopped garlic in oil for 2 minutes or until it softens. 
  • Add in kale and yams and cook for 4-5 minutes. 
  • Add in remainder of vegetables and stir well. 
  • While cooking take all ingredients for chimichurri and place inside a food processor. Blend well and serve in a medium serving dish. 
  • Cook vegetables for 5-6 minutes longer or until the yams and kale are tender. 
  • Serve together 

Vegan Cauliflower Black Bean Poblano Rancheros

Oh, tacos. We should all probably eat more tacos. These guys are vegan, and made with cauliflower, which is actually really good in place of meat. I had some cauliflower wings not too long ago, and I'm not pretending they taste the same, but they're really good as thing on their own. I like 'em anyway, and I think they're worth a shot in your kitchen too, especially if you're looking to enter the flexitarian world. 

I got this recipe from PlateJoy, which is a service that works to plan out your meals for you, all designed to cut back on waste, and accommodate for the way you want to eat. I've liked every recipe I've made from here. I also like that it takes me out of my cooking comfort zone and into trying new things. It also does the entire grocery list for me. Which I hadn't realized just how little planning I was doing until now. I'm half creature of habit in the grocery store, half 'I want everything.' Oh, and you can get $10 off at PlateJoy by using this link

So, on here I choose the vegetarian and clean eating plan. So, while cooking without meat and dairy is new for me, I've been loving how I can experimenting with what works for me, what my preferences are, and ways to eat that accommodate me personally, and the environment around me. If you're also looking to find more vegan, vegetarian, Whole30, or any specialty diet recipes, click here to get tons of ideas. 

Here's what you'll need:

  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 8oz cauliflower
  • 1/2 poblano pepper 
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of minced garlice
  • 6 oz of cooked black beans - I used the canned kind
  • 1/2 of a lime
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
  • 2/3 of cup of diced tomatoes
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro 

 

Directions: 

  • Preheat the oven to 275°
  • Peel and dice onion and deseed and mince the poblano pepper. 
  • Chop cauliflower into small pieces, about 1/2 inch size.
  • Wrap your tortillas in foil and add put them in the oven to warm. 
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium sized skillet, add in poblano and half of the onion. Cook for 5 minutes, add garlic and a pinch of salt, and stir well. Add black beans a cook for 2 more minutes, or until all the way warmed and mixed. 
  • Add the whole mix into a high powered blender or food processor with lime juice, cumin, and a pinch of salt. Pulse till smooth, and add a little more salt or seasoning to taste. 
  • Add half a tablespoon of olive oil to a different skillet on medium-high heat, and in the other half of the onion, cauliflower, and cook for 7-8 minutes. 
  • Reduce the heat and add in chili powder, and diced tomatoes. 
  • Remove the tortillas from the oven, coat with black bean poblano spread first. Top with cauliflower mix, and garnish with avocado and cilantro 

Thyme and Brussel Sprout Pasta

Brussel sprouts are in fact tiny cabbages. I knew it! Ok, well they're at least in the same family. I had to Google it, but I knew it. They're basically little cabbage bud that grows on a stalk. And you can grow them in containers?! I found that out when I did a quick Pinterest search to show you brussel sprouts on a stalk. I'm actually really excited to do this now. One thing always leads to another in this line of work. Plus I just love growing things. You may or may not have noticed that I skipped The Pineapple Project this weekend, well that's because not too much has changed since Wednesday, which is fine, but hopefully next weekend I'll have something to report. What that has to do with pasta, I don't know, but that bit was for those of you who read daily. 

Another thing I learned in my Brussel sprout research was that the strong smell these little veggies are known for typically only happens when they're boiled, or rather, over boiled. So, if you prefer to pan-fry that would be fine, or as far as boiling goes, here's what you do so they don't stink and get cooked properly. (There's also an awesome recipe in there, that I'll need to try soon.) I feel like everyone should know this, because again during my research, these are the most hated vegetable in the U.S., which is sad to me, because I really like them. Also they're a good source of vitamins K, A, and have more vitamin C than an orange. Also in the mineral department they are high in selenium, which is good for your thyroid, and also super high in magnesium which something like 80% of Americans are deficient in. The numbers on that magnesium deficiency are scary high. I go to a nutritionist who is always going on about how it used to be in our water source naturally and now our water is just a mess. I've been taking this one at night, and I'm super happy with it. This is a pretty interesting read, if you have a minute to devote to your electrolyte health. 

So about that thyme, I really wanted to rant on about thyme, but there's not too much to say, I've just gotten more interested in working with it recently. Thyme and clove, maybe it's the season, maybe I'm finally getting this whole seasonal eating thing. I'm getting ahead of myself, but yes, thyme feels perfect for fall, especially mixed in with pasta and veggies. It's definitely an identifiable flavor, but not really overpowering, plus it's good to mix something distinctive with Brussel sprouts, because you know, they're also distinctive and could easily take over in the flavor department. Oh and garlic pepper, because now-a-days I put it on everything. It's a great idea. It really is. 

Here's what you'll need:

  • 1 box of pasta - I used spirals, the veggie kind, mostly because they match.
  • 1 cup of Brussel sprouts
  • 1 yellow bell pepper - chopped and raw
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil + 1 tablespoon 
  • 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 + 1/2 teaspoons of salt - I pretty much always use Himalayan, I mention it always because different salts have different saltinesses, and I think it's relevant. Also, the mineral content (I'm also newly obsessed with this website, they sell all kinds of cool stuff) of this salt warrants some praise. That's just one girl's opinion. 
  • 2 teaspoons of garlic pepper - I've been using this kind 
  • 1 tablespoon of sweet potato mash - optional
  • 1 tiny spring of rosemary - optional, but it looks super cute

I'm taking a minute with my improved food styling. I've been giving it more thought plus Ali on Gimme Some Oven was kind enough to share what she does in a blog post that was infinitely helpful. I'm not going to pretend to be a fraction of this organized, but I'd like to be. Eh, maybe I like my chaos.

Directions:

  • Prep your Brussel sprouts to do this you can remove the outer leaves like you would on a cabbage, cut off the flat end, and cut an 'x' into the flat side. Cutting the x, helps the heat get to the center faster. There's a video above where I learned how to do it. 
  • You'll need two pots of boiling water, one for the pasta, one for the Brussel sprouts. Cook the pasta per the directions on the box. Boil the Brussel sprouts for four minutes, strain and move them over to a pan with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
  • Pan-fry the Brussel sprouts for 3-4 minutes on medium high heat. 
  • Don't forget to stir your pasta.
  • Mix up the olive oil, vinegar, salt, thyme, and garlic pepper for the dressing. 
  • Strain your pasta and rinse with cool water, if you want to serve it cold, I prefer it that way. Put the pasta in a large bowl and toss your Brussel sprouts in, with your chopped bell pepper, and dressing. You can store it in the fridge or serve immediately. The Brussel sprouts are best fresh, but they will keep in the fridge if you're making it ahead of time.