Entries Tagged as 'vegan'

Who Said Frozen Salad isn’t any Good? Sorbete de Gazpacho

Did I scare you? I mean, the idea of frozen salad probably isn’t that appealing. LOL But. And this is a pretty big BUT. (no, it’s not mine! :P ) Gazpacho. Sorbet. Combine the two and you have a bit of frozen heaven. This traditional Spanish soup is always served chilled, and often with ice…why not go just another step and turn it into a savory sorbet, I asked? Top that with the traditional finely chopped vegetables for added crunch, and you have entered into yum world. This one is going to be making regular appearances at our summer table, folks. It’s the perfect way to begin a meal in the sweltering heat of summer, or even as an afternoon snack. It’s packed with vegetables, very low in fat, and delicious. Oh!  And super easy.  So whatcha waitin for?

sorbete de gazpacho


2 pounds (1kilo) very ripe tomatoes
1 cucumber, peeled
1 small red onion
2 cloves garlic
1 italian pepper
olive oil to taste (about 3 tablespoons)
red wine vinegar to taste (about 3 tablespoons)
salt to taste
4 cups ice cubes (or more)


Roughly chop all vegetables, reserving a bit of tomato, cucumber, pepper and onion to garnish.
Place all ingredients in blender or food processor and process until smooth.
Add ice and process until smooth.
Serve sorbet garnished with a bit of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and topped with finely chopped tomato, cucumber, pepper and onion.

Y en español:


1 kilo tomates maduros
1 pepino, pelado
1 cebolla roja pequeña
2 dientes de ajo
1 pimiento italiano (para freir)
aceite de oliva virgen (3 cucharadas, mas o menos)
vinagre de vino rojo (3 cucharadas, mas o menos)
sal al gusto
4 vasos de hielo (o mas)


Cortar las verduras en trozos (no tiene que ser muy pequeñas), reservando un poquito de tomate, pepino, cebolla y pimiento para adornar.
Poner todo en la batidora o robot y triturar hasta que esté bien molido y homogéneo.
Añadir el hielo y triturar hasta que esté suave.
Servir adornado con aceite de oliva virgen, vinagre de modena y las verduritas reservadas (picadas muy finas).

Potaje Canario de Verduras (Canarian Vegetable Stew)

Potaje (pronounced po-TAH-hay) is a delicious multi vegetable stew very typical of the Canary Islands.  Here, rather than have all the food served at once, meals are served in courses.  Generally a first course, which can be either a soup, stew, salad, or pasta and is then followed by the main course and of course following that, dessert and coffee.  Many restaurants in Spain offer a lunch “menu,” where you can choose a first and second course from the day’s specials, and it comes with a beverage and dessert.  I’m pretty sure that the variety of potajes are as varied as the chefs that prepare them.  There are lentil potajes, watercress potajes (look for this one soon), corn potaje…the limit is your own creativity, much like soups and stews everywhere else in the world.  Let me share with you my mil’s recipe for Potaje Canario….




*note, add or subract at your preference, the amounts are approximate.

2 tablespoons olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon smokey paprika
2 ripe tomatoes, skinned, seeded and diced
1 onion, diced
a few sprigs of thyme
1-2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1 cob corn, broken in two pieces
3 zucchini, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 large handful green beans, trimmed and cut into bite sized pieces
1 large handful of fresh pinto beans, shucked (you can also use canned)
2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 of a sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 chunk of pumpkin, peeled and diced (about 2 cups)
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
1 thick slice of bacon, sliced (omit for vegan/vegetarian)
enough broth to generously cover vegetables (I used about 3 1/2 quarts I’d guess?)


In a large stockpot (this makes a LOT!), heat olive oil and saute garlic just until golden.
Add tomatoes, onions, paprika, thyme and bay, then season with salt and pepper.
Saute until vegetables are tender (this is called the “refrito.”)
Add remaining ingredients and generously cover with stock.
Season with salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer about 30 minutes.
Remove lid and simmer another hour or so, until the stew begins to thicken.
Adjust seasoning.
Serve with Queso Fresco and nice crispy baguettes.

Banapple Bread

What is a banapple, you ask?  Bananas and apples of course! lol  It’s actually cooled down a little in canaryville…we’re out of the 90′sF/30′sC for the most part…today it’s only 72ºF/22ºC!  It’s practically freezing! LOL  I’ve been in the mood for fall food, cinnamony spicy stuff…heck, I’m almost ready to start boiling potpourri on the stove!  In a little over a month Christmas (or insert your own special holiday here) will be upon us…I cannot believe that next week is Thanksgiving already…I’ve barely begun the planning for that, let alone the end of the year festivities…but I’m getting ahead of myself here…I’m still in “it’s finally fall” mode, and wanted to share this delicious banana apple bread recipe with you. :)   We can get to the other stuff in due time. ;)

ps…my friend Allie made a suggestion to convert this recipe to vegan, and I thought I’d share it with you!  Her suggestion is to substitute an extra banana for the egg, and use soy milk in place of cow’s milk.  Happy eating! :)

banapple bread

2 very ripe bananas (to yield about 1 cup of mashed bananas)
1 cup applesauce
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
a pinch of ground cloves
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375º F (175ºC).
Grease a bundt pan with vegetable oil.
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add mashed bananas, applesauce, milk and vanilla and blend well.
Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt in a small bowl.
Stir flour mixture into banana mixture by hand-only until dry ingredients are just mixed in.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake approximately 45 minutes to an hour, or until a toothpick inserted in center of bread comes out clean.
Turn baked bread onto a wire rack to cool.
Store tightly covered, or wrapped in plastic wrap.

Quinoa Tabouleh…Tabbouleh…Tabouli…Tabuli —look, spell it however you want to! :P lol

As you’ve probably realized from my posts, Middle Eastern food is one of my favorites. There is such a rich variety of dishes, and many of them are easily converted to a gluten free lifestyle (if they’re not already naturally so). Tabouleh salad is one of those easily converted dishes. By substituting Quinoa for the bulgur wheat, you have a delicious alternative. Quinoa when cooked properly has a very similar texture to bulgur, and tends to absorb the flavor of the dish it’s incorporated in, much like bulgur.

quinoa tabouleh


2/3 cup quinoa
1 1/3 cup water
1 medium onion, minced
2 cups chopped parsley
1 cup chopped mint
3 tomatoes, chopped
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
juice of 2 lemons
salt to taste


In a small saucepan, heat quinoa and water to boiling.
Boil 2-3 minutes, then cover and reduce heat to low.
Allow to cook about 12 minutes, or until most of the water is absorbed, trying to avoid lifting the lid as much as possible.
Remove from heat and allow to rest untouched for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork and allow to cool.

Gazpacho…Refreshing, Light and Delicious!

Apart from paella, I think that gazpacho has got to be one of the most quintessential Spanish foods.  The region of Andalucí­a is best known for this cool and refreshing warm weather treat, though there are as many variations of gazpacho as there are chefs…I give you the basic recipe, as taught to me by a friend’s mother, originally from Jaén (also known for their wonderful olive oil).  The “salpicón” or vegetable relish can include bread cubes or croutons and/or chopped boiled egg.  (This recipe can easily be made gluten free by either substituting gluten free bread, or omitting the bread and adding less water.)



2 pounds (1 kilo) very ripe tomatoes, quartered
1 small red onion
1 clove garlic
1 smaller cucumber
1 italian pepper, stemmed and seeded
1 small day old baguette (about 1/2 cup), torn into pieces
sea salt to taste
2-3 tablespoons red wine vinegar (to taste)
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (to taste)
water to taste


You’ll need a pretty powerful blender for this, or a food mill in addition to the blender for removing seeds/tomato skins afterwards.
First, mince a bit of tomato, onion, cucumber and pepper.
Toss together for the vegetable relish.
Roughly chop vegetables and add to blender, and pulse a bit to break them up.
Toss in bread pieces.
Season with salt and pour in vinegar and oil.
Process until smooth (if you see that the seeds and skins are still visible, you’ll need to run the gazpacho through a food mill to eliminate these…you want a nice smooth soup).
Add water to taste…normally gazpacho is neither thick nor thin…somewhere in between.
Adjust seasoning, vinegar and oil to taste.
Refrigerate until very cold, or alternatively add ice cubes to chill before serving.
Serve with reserved vegetable relish and, if desired, bread cubes and chopped egg. I like to drizzle each with a bit of extra virgin olive oil. It’s pretty! :)

Falafel: Take 2

So my last post was about needing some help with my oh so very sad attempts at falafel making….someone suggested this recipe from Epicurious, and I absolutely *loved* it!  I did make some changes (I can’t follow a recipe to the letter to save my life), so I’ll post the recipe as I made it.



1 1/2 cups dried garbanzos (chickpeas)
1 red onion, quartered
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon ground cayenne
4 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons cumin
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon baking powder
2-3 tablespoons garbanzo (chick pea) flour
sesame seeds (about a cup or so)
sunflower seed oil for frying


Wash and sort garbanzos, and place in a bowl.
Cover with enough water to generously cover the beans.
Soak overnight.
Drain beans, and place in a food processor along with the onions, cilantro and seasonings.
Pulse a bit to break up the beans and onions, then process until the mixture is somewhat dough-like, scraping sides when necessary.
Add baking powder and enough garbanzo flour to make the dough hold its shape, and is no longer sticky when rolled.
Place falafel dough in a bowl, cover and refrigerate several hours. (I had leftover, and it was great the next day, too).
Roll dough into smaller sized balls, and flatten a bit with your hands.
Dip each patty in sesame seeds and remove to a plate.
Heat a generous amount of sunflower oil over medium heat (enough to come at least halfway up the patty).
Fry falafel patties about 4-5 minutes per side, or until nicely browned.
Drain on paper towels.
Serve with hummus, tahini sauce, yogurt or lebne, shirazi….whatever you like!


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