Monday, January 21, 2008

Soak It Up - Recipes To Enjoy

"And soak it up
Every little bit I can
Enjoy all my day
Before all my days end
And whatever I get
Always let that be enough
And never forget to soak it up
Yeah, yeah"
- Warren Barfield

A week back at school, but that hasn't made us not forget the beauty of each day that we are blessed with. Even with the dreary cold Chicago-like days, we have tried to soak up the peaceful moments and memories of sun rays beaming on our faces.

Despite the increasing load that school brings, we managed to enjoy comforting food such as homemade baked beans, homemade creamed corn, wild rice-yam patties, green chili lima bean dip, black pepper and caraway rye crackers, almond and apricot scones, and fudgy-chewy brownies.

baked beans, we used 1 lb. dried great northern beans and spiced them with 1 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp mustard, 1/2 c. brown sugar, 3/4 c. ketchup. We first cooked them in the crockpot for the day, but then put them on the stove on medium high for 2-3 hours after so they could get softer. Made lots and tasty just like the store bought Bush's Baked Beans!

creamed corn we made was fabulous and easy! Did we mention easy? From George Mateljan's World Healthiest Foods website, we simply followed the recipe and used soy milk and agave nectar instead of milk and honey. We are thinking of trying out creamed peas and just replacing the corn with peas.

Yesterday we made
wild rice with yams (diced), spinach, and some thyme, sage, garlic, onion, and pepper. It was good and creamy, but to change it up, we made homemade wild rice and yam patties. We spiced them with cayenne, chili powder, balsamic vinegar, and nutritional yeast. Baked at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes and made 8 patties. Having this for dinner! Freezing the rest for veggie burgers for another day.

Another easy creation - Lima Bean Green Chili Dip! We used cucumber slices and homemade crackers (black pepper crackers and caraway rye crackers). Yummy!

LK's Lima Bean Green Chili Dip

1/2 pack soft tofu
3/4 tsp garlic powder
4 Tb green chiles, divided
1 tsp dried celery flakes (or use fresh minced celery or dried celery seed)
3/4 tsp black pepper
1 3/4 c. lima beans (1 can, rinsed and drained)

Puree tofu, garlic powder, 3 Tb green chiles, celery flakes, black pepper, and limas until creamy. Add 1 Tb green chiles at the end. Chill and serve with fresh vegetables, crackers, and chips, or use as spread on sandwiches or wraps!

We've been craving
homemade graham scones again, and we've been wanting to enter the annual Delicious Living Recipe Contest. To enter, you must use one of the listed ingredients (see, and we decided to use Blue Diamond Natural Almond Breeze Milk.

Our concoction - Almond Scones:
(makes 4-6)
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
8 whole wheat grahams, crushed
1 1/2 Tb flaxseed meal
2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 Tb brown sugar
1/4 cup roasted almonds, coarsely ground (in food processor)
3/4 cup + 2 Tb Blue Diamond Original Almond Breeze Milk
2 Tb almond butter
2 Tb cup cold margarine

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine flour, crushed grahams, flaxseed meal, baking powder, sugar, and ground almonds. Cut in margarine and almond butter until resembles coarse crumbs. Add almond milk and stir just until blended.

Separate dough into 6 and place on a cooking stone or non-stick pan. Pat slightly to form each round scone (1 1/2 inch thick). Bake 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. May need to cover with foil half way. Remove from baking sheet and cool 5 minutes.

We also made a batch of Apricot Jam Scones:
(makes 4-6)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup Multi-Grain or Bran Flakes (we used Nature's Path Synergy cereal)
1 1/2 Tb flaxseed meal
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup Kozlowski Farms No Sugar Added Apricot Spread (or any jam or apple butter)
1/2 cup soy milk
3 Tb cold margarine

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Process the multi-grain/bran flakes until coarsely ground. In a medium bowl, combine flour, ground multi-grain flakes, flaxseed meal, and baking powder. Cut in margarine until resembles coarse crumbs. Add apricot spread and soy milk and stir just until blended.

Separate dough into 6 and place on a cooking stone or non-stick pan. Pat slightly to form each round scone (1 1/2 inch thick). Bake 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. May need to cover with foil half way. Remove from baking sheet and cool 5 minutes.

Lastly, for dessert we enjoyed vegan fudgy brownies.
LK's Healthy Vegan Fudgy Brownies
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 - 1 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 - 1/2 cup chocolate chips
3/4 cup prune puree

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix dry ingredients, then add wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Spread in a 9 x 13 inch greased pan, and bake 20-25 minutes total. Cover with foil after 15 minutes. Let cool, then cut into squares. Sprinkle powdered sugar if desired. Enjoy warm or frozen (frozen makes it like a fudgy bar!).

Overall the best vegan brownie we've made, though it needs a little tweaking - more chocolate chips (1/2 cup total?) and underbake to 20 minutes? There is a slight prune-fruity taste to it, but if you didn't know there was prunes then you probably wouldn't notice it. Adding more chocolate chips might help.

May you soak up each day this week and appreciate the sunshine in your life!

And, in remembrance of Martin Luther King, Jr., "Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend."

Many blessings, LK


aTxVegn said...

Once again everything looks wonderful and healthy. I can't believe how cold it's been here - yuk. I am anxious to make the lima bean dip - I LOVE limas!

Thank you for your beautiful prayers for my father. I hope you will continue to remember him as even though he is out of the hospital, he's still very ill and has a tough fight ahead.

Good luck in the contest! Now I want to check out the Worlds Healthiest Foods website.

Veg-a-Nut said...

Hi, thanks for visiting my blog. I am glad you did. It is always fun to meet new vegan bloggers. I love the creamed corn and I too think the peas would be great! I think I need to also try my hand at wild rice yam patties. Everything looks and sounds so good. Thanks for sharing!

aTxVegn said...

Hi, again. I found the popchips at HEB. If you can't find any, I'll be glad to send you some.

For the lima bean dip - since I'm soyfree, do you think I just use extra limas in place of the tofu, or would plain yogurt be better?

Paulina said...

Thanks for your comment on my blog!

...And in response to your question, the pancakes are basically just ground flax seeds and maple syrup. The "cookies" are made out of nut butter, shredded coconut and raisins with a little agave.

Happy Herbivore said...

I love baked beans and tried to make my own - I'd love to try yours but I can't ever seem to find vegetarian worchestershire sauce. lucky girls!