Three Omnivores and An Occasional Vegan

Feb 07

Barbecued Tempeh and Peppers & Asian Cabbage Slaw

Posted by Catalina-de-Cuenca

Continuing with my quest of the spices and new ingredients, this week I decided to experiment with tempeh.  This recipe came from book “Moosewood Restaurant and Cooks at Home”; even though it is not a vegan cookbook, I highly recommend it for its side dishes, salads, soups, and homemade dressings.

 This sandwich was a bit spicy for my taste, so I suggest starting with 1 teaspoon of Tabasco or hot pepper sauce

 I decided to make an “Asian Cabbage Slaw” in order to offset the spiciness of the sandwich and serve as a side dish.   


·         2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil

·         2 medium onions, chopped about 2 cups

·         1 large garlic clove

·         1 red bell pepper

·         ½ pound soy tempeh (8 oz.)


·         1 tablespoon soy sauce

·         3 tablespoons tomato paste

·         1 tablespoon molasses or brown sugar

·         2/3 water


·         1 tablespoon ground coriander

·         1½ teaspoons of ground fennel

·         1-2 teaspoons of Tabasco or other hot pepper sauce (to taste)

·         Salt to taste

 ·         4 pita breads


Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a heavy skillet and sauté the chopped onions for 3 to 4 minutes, until they begin to soften. While the onions sauté, mince the garlic and chop the bell pepper; add them to the onions. Continue to cook another 5 minutes stirring often.

Cube the tempeh; add it to the skillet and sauté for about 5 minutes until it begins to brown. While the tempeh browns, mix together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside

Add the coriander and fennel to the tempeh and vegetables and stir constantly for a minute. Pour on the sauce and simmer for about 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened.

Serve in warmed pita pockets


Asian Cabbage Slaw


·         2 cups finely shredded cabbage

·         1 cup grated carrots


·         2 tablespoons vegetable oil

·         2 tablespoons rice vinegar

·         1 tablespoon soy sauce

·         2 teaspoons brown sugar

·         ½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger root

·         Chopped peanuts (optional)


Combine the cabbage and carrots in a serving bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Pour the dressing over the vegetables ans toss well. Just before serving add the chopped peanuts


Chickpea Tomato Soup With Fresh Rosemary

Posted by Cidell:

This is my second soup from Once Upon a Tart and my third or fourth recipe from this book. They are also the creators of the awesome Chickpea and Lentil Salad with Sun Dried Tomato. In addition, I’ve made their Lentil Soup with Indian Spices in both vegan and vegetarian versions. But, seem to have neglected to blog them. 

Have I mentioned I love soup? I made this soup so I wouldn’t have to scavenge for dinner when I get home. I brought a little in to the office just to tease the girls. 

Chickpea Tomato Soup With Fresh Rosemary



  1. Warm the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-low heat, and add the garlic and rosemary.
  2. Cook for a minute or two, and then add the tomatoes, sugar, salt, a few grinds of pepper, roughly half of the chickpeas, and the stock. Bring to a boil over high heat; then reduce the heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the soup from the heat to purée. If using an immersion blender, purée the soup directly in the pot. Otherwise, wait a few minutes, until the soup cools; then purée it in batches in a blender or food processor and return it to the pot.
  4. Add the remaining chickpeas, and warm the soup over medium heat. Serve warm.


Feb 05

Saving Money With Lunch Co-Op

Posted by: Cidell

Here’s a good reason I stick with lunch club despite not being a vegan. Money. This was my lazy lunch on Thursday. There’s a little place around the corner that everyone gets lunch from. While I applaud them for having tofu for a protein and lots of vegan options, this was $11. And, I was still hungry after.

Marinated and grilled tofu, asparagus, mango and pineapple slices.

For less than $20, I can feed four of us in lunch club and still have food left over. Nothing like a reminder that hits you in the pocket!

Feb 01

Easy Salt & Vinegar Roasted Chick Peas

Posted By: DearestLizzie 

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Salt & Vinegar potato chips…. like it makes me salivate when the bag pops open and I get a whiff. If you don’t live in a part of the country where UTZ are available I am truly sorry, They are hands down the best potato chips on the planet. With that being said I love the flavors together and when I came across this recipe I was excited. Also…no girl can just eat chip all day everyday :(

I saw this perusing Pinterest- which is how I find many things these days. The recipe can be found here on the blog Oh She Glows and I must say a great find of a blog. 

I did take the little shells off my chick peas -slightly tedious but totally easy sitting in front of the TV doing it. These turned out really well and they are slightly addictive for me at least. I had to stop because I wanted to take it in to see what the girls think!


Directions: Line a baking sheet with tin foil or parchment paper. Take chickpeas and vinegar and place in a medium sized pot. Add a dash of sea salt. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat. Let sit in pot for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 425F. Carefully drain chickpeas. Place on lined baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and sea salt. Massage with fingers until fully coated. Roast for 45 minutes, flipping once half way through. Keep a careful eye on them after 35 minutes of cooking to ensure they don’t burn. The goal here is crispy and golden chickpeas, not black…lol. Enjoy as a high protein snack or as a side to a lunch or dinner.

Jan 31

Roasted Vegetable & Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Posted By: DearestLizzie

This is another holiday back post. This recipe was inspired by the trip to Sam’s Club to pick up my Christmas tree. Cidell was gracious enough to take me, let me use her membership and stuff the christmas tree into her mini cooper :) At Sam’s was a beautiful bag of 6 colored peppered. So off I went to find a stuffed pepper recipe.

What I found is from Hungy Girl and it turned out to be very good. I topped these with a soy based yogurt mixed with a clove of garlic minced and mixed in. AND in my quest to be filled I can say this worked!

Recipe and pictures follow - I was on my hipstamatic bing for fun…


2 zucchini, stem ends removed, halved lengthwise

1 red onion, sliced into rounds with rings intact

1/2 eggplant, stem end removed, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices

2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. olive oil

1/4 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. black pepper

1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (I used Red)

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

1 tsp. chopped garlic

1/2 package of extra firm tofu - finely cubed

1 cup crumbled reduced-fat/light feta cheese

6 large red bell peppers (look for peppers that sit flat when stem sides are up)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Spray 2 large baking sheets with nonstick spray. Place zucchini, onion, and eggplant on sheets in a single layer. Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine vinegar, oil, salt, and black pepper. Mix well. Using your fingers or a brush, evenly spread half of the mixture on top of the veggies on the sheets. Flip veggies, and spread with the remaining mixture.

Bake in the oven until veggies are tender, 20 - 25 minutes. Set aside to cool, but leave oven on.

Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees.

Meanwhile, cook quinoa according to package instructions. (Typically, as follows for 1/2 cup: Combine quinoa with 1 cup water in a small pot on the stove. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to low. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes, or until water has evaporated and quinoa is fully cooked.

Transfer quinoa to a large bowl. Once baked veggies are cool enough to handle, roughly chop and add to the large bowl. Add basil, garlic, and feta cheese, and stir thoroughly. Set aside.

Carefully slice off the top (stem side) of each bell pepper, about a half-inch slice from each. Remove and discard seeds. Place peppers cut-side up in a deep 9” X 13” baking pan. If peppers do not sit flat, gently lean them against the pan sides for support.

Evenly distribute the quinoa-veggie mixture among the bell peppers, about 1 cup each. Bake until peppers are soft and filling is hot, 20 - 25 minutes.

Makes 6 servings - PER SERVING (1/6th of recipe, 1 stuffed pepper): 180 calories, 5g fat, 405mg sodium, 27g carbs, 7g fiber, 10g sugars, 9g protein — PointsPlus® value 4* 

Jan 30

Mediterranean Crusted Tofu with Saffron Quinoa Pilaf

Posted by: Catalina-de-Cuenca

This week I decided to get out of my comfort zone and expand my palate with Middle Eastern ingredients and flavors. This recipe came from and received the “ best recipe of the year for 2011”

Cooking Latin American dishes comes easy to me, so this week’s recipe was a challenge since I was working with ingredients I have never cooked before

Ingredients such as tahini and saffron really caught my attention: Tahini because I have never seen it and I literally had to Google a photo to see what it looked like AND saffron because it was sooooo expensive ($12 for a ½ tablespoon). I am surprised stores don’t have it behind the counter  :D


I decided to substitute pistachios with walnuts and used cilantro as my preferred herb. I must say this dish has MANY components and when you are cooking them individually they don’t seem as special. It is when you bring them together that the flavors become incredible.

I was extremely surprised at how tasty and crunchy the tofu turned out. I am not a big fan of Tofu and had thought of replacing it with zucchini, but luckily I could not find any. The fact that I liked it so much is making me look at Tofu under a totally different light ….maybe it was NOT the Tofu, maybe it was ME… maybe….

Anyway this dish not only tastes amazing but it’s also beautiful and colorful

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did … yum…yum


Jan 27

Winter Squash, Chickpea, and Lentil Stew

Posted By: DearestLizzie

This is a recipe I made a few weeks back, SEE we have been cooking and not blogging! I wanted to make a crock pot recipe that week because I wanted easy as it had been a long weekend :)

The Recipe I used can be found here and it is from Better Homes and Gardens

It was a little late to find pumpkin in the grocery store and even though I love it, it can be tough to work with. For this recipe I used Butternut Squash. I also used green lentils as red were triple the price at my local store. 

It turned out well and it was tasty. It was not very stewish, meaning no water. I probably cooked it a little over 8 as I put it in before I went to bed. Topping it with peanuts gave it a good texture and the vegan yogurt is also a great addition. Also, i’m sure you’ve noticed i’m in my Chickpea phase.

This is def a nice comfort food type winter dish. Enjoy!

Jan 26

Sweet Potato Hummus

Posted By: DearestLizzie

I’ve been on fire this week…. this is the third thing i’ve cooked, which is a lot for me. I wanted to bring a decent snack to work and to share with the girls. I came across this Sweet Potato Hummus recipe. I love Sweet Potato AND Hummus so I thought WHY NOT!!

I have a very small food processor so I had to do it in batches and finished the whole thing in the blender. The whole process was not terrible though and overall a simple quick recipe (aside from boiling the sweet potatoes). 

Note: I know Cidell is hating my pictures lately - they will get better, I promise!

I really like the taste, it is different than traditional hummus though. It tastes lighter and comes out a bit fluffier. I hope to experiment with more hummus soon!



  1. Set a steamer basket in a large pot. Fill with enough water to come just below basket; bring to a boil. Add potatoes; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a food processor.

  2. Combine chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini, oil, cumin, and garlic in the food processor. Puree, about 1 minute; thin with water if necessary. Season with salt and pepper and let cool; refrigerate, in an airtight container, up to 1 week. Serve with pita and crudites.

Jan 25

Falafel Hash

Posted by: Dearest Lizzie

Cidell and I headed to the beloved Punjab last weekend and I was desperately hoping something would jump out at me to make for lunch. Of course because the Punjab is magical it did! I was also excited because it was going to be SO easy to make. I didn’t have to buy anything extra because Cidell let me have a can of chopped tomatoes! 

I found this Falafel Dry Mix for $2.99 so a cheap meal as well!! On the back was their recipe for Vegetarian Chili, I re-named it because this really isn’t like chili at all as a final produce and that is not a bad thing. 

Sadly I did not take photos so the fake box photo is below I can say it looks just like that in the end…. I added “sour cream” on top along with Cilantro and also had bought a bottled mint chutney at the Punjab. The Girls really enjoyed this one too. It is also filling with the protein the chickpeas provide!


1 box falafel mix

3/4 C cold water

2 T vegetable oil

1 28 oz chopped tomatoes

1/2 t salt

1 oz package chili seasoning (you can sub chili powder, cumin, etc…)

1 15.5 oz can of chick peas 

a few splashes of hot sauce as desired

Combine falafel mix and cold water in a bowl, mix well and let rest for 20 minutes

Heat vegetable oil in frying pan, add falafel mixture and saute of medium heat breaking up mixture into crumbles

When mixture is dry and crumbly, add tomatoes with liquid, salt, chili seasonings and drained chick peas. Mix well and reduce heat

Cook chili until thoroughly heated

Scoop into bowls and garnish with your favorite garnish. Sour Cream or shredded cheese substitutes work well as does cilantro

Makes 4 hearty servings

Jan 24

Enchiladas en Salsa Roja

Posted By: Catalina-de-Cuenca

Hi All,

Its been a while since I have posted recipes, the reality is that I have not been cooking as much. But after much thought and numerous days of eating potato chips and gummy bears from the vending machine, I realized that that I needed to re-join the lovely vegan group (which not only saves me many hours of cooking but also money)

I decided on this recipe in an effort to keep up my fellow co-workers and their elaborate dishes :p

I looked at a series of vegan and non-vegan enchilada recipes and came up with own version.



·         1 can of pinto beans

·         1 can of black beans

·         1 cup of corn

·         1 cup of chopped onions

·         2 tablespoons of garlic

·         1 cup of sliced red peppers

·         1 cup of sliced green peppers

·         2 cups of sliced mushrooms

·         3 cups of enchilada red  sauce

·         6 large tortillas

·         1 tablespoon of cumin

·         1 teaspoon of salt

·         1 tablespoon of chili powder

·         1 tablespoon of olive oil

·         Cilantro


Preheat oven to 350F and set aside a casserole big enough for 6 enchiladas

In a large skillet start by sautéing the onions for a few minutes, once the onions have caramelized add the garlic, peppers, and mushrooms and continue sautéing for another few minutes.  

Continue by adding the beans, corn and 2 cups of enchilada sauce while stirring constantly. Lastly add the salt, cumin, and chili powder (adjust seasoning if necessary)


Use ½ cup of enchilada sauce onto the bottom of the casserole and spread. 

Scoop about  three tablespoons of the mixture onto each tortilla and wrap (repeat for the remaining 5 tortillas. Use the remaining of the enchilada sauce (1/2 cup) to spread over the top

Bake your enchiladas at 350f for approximately 20 minutes

Serve with sour cream and sharp cheddar (for those non-vegans)

Buen Provecho!