Category Archives: Quick Fixes and Fast Meals

Tofu Enchiladas Suizas

To make the enchilada sauce:

12 oz can Whole tomatoes
17 oz can Diced Green Chiles
1 Medium onion – chopped
4 Garlic cloves – chopped
1 cup vegan sour cream
Tamari soy sauce and pepper to taste

To assemble enchiladas:

12 Flour tortillas
2 lbs prepared extra firm tofu (Frozen, then thawed, then pressed in a strainer for an hour or so to remove the water)cut into thin strips, shredded basically.
4 cups vegan Jack cheese, grated
1 bunch Green onions, chopped
The sauce

Instructions:

Prepare the Enchilada Sauce by blending together tomatoes, green chiles, onion, garlic and veggie sour cream in a food processor or blender.

Season with tamari soy sauce and pepper to taste and pour into a large saucepan. Heat thoroughly. Heat tortillas in a microwave for 35 to 40 seconds. Using tongs, dip a tortilla into the enchilada sauce and lay it inside a 9X14 pan.

Stuff enchilada with tofu, veggie cheese and onions. Roll and place seam side down in the pan. Repeat for all 12 tortillas, reserving a small amount of cheese and onions.

Cook in preheated 375 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until brown. Spoon a small amount of enchilada sauce on each enchilada and cover with shredded veggie jack cheese.

Cook until veggie cheese melts.

Notes: I often use mushrooms instead of the tofu if I am pressed for time, but that freezing trick with the tofu, really gives this dish the “chew” your omniverous family is used to.
Feel free to cut back on the veggie cheese as that ups the cost and fat of the dish quite a bit. I suggest serving with brown rice to up the ante on the fiber.

This enchilada recipe is a family-pleaser and is always a hit at company pot lucks.

Toasted Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

I like to soak and cook my own chickpeas, but for a faster prep-time canned fit the bill just fine.

3 Cans Garbanzo Beans – drained and rinsed.
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

Start by mixing your spices in a large ziplock baggie.
Next add your soy sauce and mix until your spices are dissolved.
Finally add your chickpeas to the bag, and toss until evenly coated.
Bake at 350F for about 30 minutes, give or take.
My wife likes to pull these early, when they are very reminiscent of a savory roasted chestnut. I like to leave them in until they are brown and crunchy like a fat-free corn-nut. Either way, we are always sad to see the end of this snack.

Old Fashioned Cornmeal Gravy

1/3 Cup Cornmeal
2 Cups non-fat soy milk
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 Cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes

Brown the cornmeal in a dry skillet over a low to medium heat. No oil needed. Keep an eye on it, however, as scorching it means you need to start over.
You want to stir it until you get a golden brown.

Slowly add a quarter cup of the soy milk at a time, whisking it in. As your gravy thickens, add more soy milk. Continue this process until the gravy is at the consistency you want. Add your soy sauce (I used tamari) and yeast flakes.
Allow to sit for a few minutes before you use it. You may find that it continued to thicken. A dash more soy milk and you are home-free.

Traditionally this is made with lard. The soy and yeast step in and really pick up the slack on this tasty vegan version. Cornmeal gravy goes great on anything that needs gravy. It has the unique flavor of roasted corn sweetness that I grew to love as a child. Enjoy.

Spinach and Mushroom Enchiladas

1/4 Cup Vegetable Broth
2 Cups Button Mushrooms – Quartered
1/2 lb Fresh Baby Leaf Spinach
1 Onion – Finely Chopped
1/2 Cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes
2 Tablespoons Tamari Soy Sauce (Or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos)
2 Cups Cooked Brown Rice
16 Corn Tortillas
Full Recipe Enchilada Sauce (See recipe under sauces)

“Steam Fry” the onion with vegetable broth until they start to soften and look translucent.
Add spinach. It looks like too much at first, but it will reduce quickly.

Toss until the spinach has wilted and add the mushrooms.
Resist the temptation to chop the mushrooms, as you really want them quartered to add a meaty zip to the recipe.

When the mushrooms start to soften, add rice, soy sauce and yeast flake to the mixture.

Pre-warm the corn tortillas in the oven or a microwave. In the microwave, I warm a stack of 8 at a time for 45 seconds.
If you don’t pre-warm them they will split as you try to roll the enchiladas. (They will still be delicious however)

Place a cup of sauce in the bottom of two casserole dishes.
Spoon your filling into a corn tortilla and roll, placing seam side down. Once you have made all of your enchiladas, use the remaining sauce to cover.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

The nutritional yeast flake and tamari, combine with the liquid of your vegetables to make a cheesy sauce. Combined with the chunks of mushrooms make this enchilada recipe a weekly family favorite at my house.

Baja Black Beans

4 Cups Prepared Black Beans – Drained and Cooled in the fridge (Crock pots are great for this)
1 Avacado – Diced
1 Green Pepper – Finely Chopped
1/2 Onion – Finely Chopped
1 Bunch Cilantro – Finely Chopped
1 Tablespoon Cumin
3 Cloves Garlic – Minced
2 Cups Salsa
3 Limes – Juiced (I juice by squeezing with my hand so you may get by with less)

Mix it together. Yum!

Even with the avocado, this is very low fat when you look at the entire recipe.
However if you want to reduce the fat to zero, peel and bake a sweet potato ahead of time, and cool in the fridge. Dice it and substitute it for the avocado while retaining an authentic flavor.

Serving Suggestions:
Great as a dip, lettuce wraps, cool burritos for a hot summer day, taco salad topper, well…you get the idea.

Melungeon Stew

1/4 Cup Water
1 Onion – Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic – Minced
1 Bunch Fresh Greens
4 Cups Vegetable Broth
4 Large Ripe Tomatoes – Chopped
2 12oz Jars Fire Roasted Red Peppers – Drained
4 Cans Black-Eyed Peas – Drained and Rinsed
2 Cups Frozen Kernal Corn
2 Teaspoons Basil
2 Teaspoons Liquid Smoke
2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (Or to taste)

First saute the onion and garlic in the water, until the onions soften. (About five minutes)

Add your greens, and continue to saute until they reduce and soften. (Another three minutes or so)

Blend 2 can black-eyed peas with two cups of broth, the roasted red peppers. (This will give your soup a thick rich texture.)

Combine all ingredients in a stock pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.

This hearty stew from the heart of Appalachia, is a New Year’s Day tradition at my house, but there is no reason to wait. Add more soy sauce for a saltier flavor, or less if sodium is an issue.

Soy sauce and liquid smoke go a long way toward replacing the bacon, in this old family recipe. Although the traditional “greens” in this recipe is listed as “poke weed” in the original, I find that kale and/or collards stand in very well.

Gluten Free Bran Muffins

1/2 Cup Brown Rice Flour

1/2 Cup Oat Bran

1/4 Cup Arrowroot Powder

1/4 Cup Ground Flax Seed

1 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

1/4 Cup Raisins

3/4 Cup Soy Milk

1/2 Cup Prune Syrup (See Recipe Under “Sauces”)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large mixing bowl, mix your dry ingredients.

In a medium mixing bowl mix the remaining ingredients, combining the liquids thoroughly.

Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry, and quickly mix until just blended.

Just fill the cups in a silicon muffin pan (requires no oil or spray) and bake for 20 minutes. (Give or take)

These high-fiber muffins make a satisfying “quick fix” breakfast as you head out the door, and they stay with you all the way until lunch. The prune syrup helps this recipe keep its moisture and adds that sinful gooey texture that we all know shouldn’t be part of a bran muffin. This time however, there’s no guilt.

Breakfast Smoothie

2 Cups Frozen Blueberries

2 Cups Pomegranate Juice

2 Cups (packed) Fresh Baby Leaf Spinach

Put all ingredients in a powerful blender (Like a VitaMix for example)

Blend for 90 seconds or until smooth. You can do this in a regular blender, but the VitaMix pulverizes those pesky seeds into atoms. (Well…not atoms really, but so small as to not be noticed..) This smoothie has the most powerful anti-oxidants combined with the chlorophyll, minerals and vitamins of spinach. This is the best breakfast on the go!

Blackbean Pasta Sauce

2 Cans Black Beans

4 Tablespoons Lemon Juice

1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder

1 Tablespoon Coriander

1 Tablespoon Cumin

1/2 Cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro

Few dashes of soy sauce

Blend all ingredients except cilantro. Add cilantro and simmer over a low heat until hot. Thin if required with vegetable stock, to desired consistency.

Serve over phad thai rice noodles. There is room for some extra heat in this recipe if you are so inclined. Red pepper flake or hot sauce really pump up the kick of this tomato-free pasta sauce.

Beans on Toast #1 (*With GF Option)

1 Can Butter Beans (Mashed)

1 Tablespoon Cumin

1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce (I recommend Tamari)

1 Tablespoon Ketchup

Mix and serve.

Gluten Free bread from the store HAS to be toasted to even approach being edible. I will share some of my GF bread recipes here, but in the meantime, this quick sandwich spread is great on toast GF or otherwise. Also great on fresh baked corn chips, celery, use in lettuce wraps with some rice, or use to top a baked potato.