recipe: vegan chocolate zucchini cake

Enjoy diving into this decadent dessert that is not all that bad for your health! Hello New Year and new healthy body!

Ingredients:

(For the cake)
½ cup canola oil
¾ cup almond (or any dairy-free) milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup white sugar
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup zucchini, shredded
dairy-free butter, to grease

(For the icing)
1 ¼ cup icing sugar
2 tbsp dairy-free butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 tbsp almond milk (or more depending on desired consistency)
½ cup dairy-free chocolate chips

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8”x8” (or thereabouts) baking dish and set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the oil, milk, vanilla extract, and sugar. Mix well.

3. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Fold in the wet ingredients, adding the zucchini last. Stir until just combined.

4. Pour batter into the prepared baking dish and put in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

5. Meanwhile, prepare the icing. Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until melted. Stir often and do not burn.

6. Once the cake has cooled thoroughly, top with the dairy-free icing. Yum!

Emory

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recipe: vegetarian stuffed peppers

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

Serves 4

Ingredients:

4 bell peppers, hollowed out
1 tbsp vegetable (or any) oil
½ cup yellow onion, chopped
1 cup white rice, cooked
½ can black beans
½ tomato, chopped
½ tsp garlic salt
¼ tsp salt
1 cup (any) cheese, shredded

Steps:

1. Begin cooking the rice in a separate saucepan or rice cooker.

2. Remove the tops of the bell peppers. Then in a large pot of boiling water, cook the peppers until softened (approximately 4 minutes). Drain and set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat oil in skillet. Cook the onions and tomatoes over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring only occasionally. Remove from heat. Add the rice, garlic salt, and salt and mix well.

4. Fill the peppers halfway with the rice mixture. Add shredded cheese. Fill the rest with rice and top off with cheese. Place on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until cheese has melted. Remove, cool slightly, and eat!

Emory

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recipe: white apple cinnamon loaf

White Apple Cinnamon Loaf

Ingredients:

⅓ cup brown sugar
⅔ cup white sugar
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ cup milk
1 large apple, peeled and chopped
butter to grease

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare a greased loaf pan.

2. Add brown sugar, white sugar, butter, cinnamon, eggs, and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes. Set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Fold ingredients into wet mixture. Add milk.

4. Pour half the batter into the loaf pan. Add half the apples. Pour the remaining mixture over top then add the remaining apples, pressing down gently so they are not completely exposed. Bake in the oven for 1 hour. Cool completely before removing from loaf pan and cutting into slices.

For added sweetness, you can spread a layer of icing on this loaf. Make from scratch using icing sugar in order to control its consistency!

Emory

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recipe: spicy squash soup

I was recently given a spaghetti squash from my mother-in-law. A staple in the grocery stores during the fall and winter months, I have always dreamed about cooking with squash, but have not made anything with one before. Admittedly, I didn’t even know that I had a spaghetti squash in my hand until I Googled “different types of squash.”

Assuming that it had a naturally rich and smooth taste, I immediately envisioned a creamy soup sprinkled with green herbs. After clearing my original search, I then typed “squash soup” into Google. Most of the results were for butternut squash (which is probably what you should have used in this recipe), but not wanting to leave our acreage and drive to the store just for another variety of what I already possessed, I decided to substitute it with spaghetti squash.

(I also changed the amounts of vegetables and added my own spices as not to copy any recipe verbatim. If you are an adventurous cook like I am, feel free to do the same and rather use this as a general guide.)

Finally, I Googled “how to properly cut a squash.” If you are planning on making this recipe and are not buying pre-cut pieces of squash, be sure that you cut and remove everything properly before adding it to the slow cooker. Good luck!

Spicy Squash Soup

Serves 8

Ingredients: 

8 cups squash (any), peeled and cubed
1 onion (any), chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
5 sprigs thyme
2 ½ cups vegetable broth
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dill
¼ tsp pepper
¼ tsp chili powder
heavy table cream
parsley, chopped

Steps:

1. Combine squash, onion, carrots, garlic, thyme, broth, salt, dill, pepper, and chili powder into a slow cooker. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until vegetables are tender.

2. Remove sprigs then put soup in blender. Blend until smooth. Add cream prior to serving and top each bowl with parsley. Best served with bread.

Emory

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recipe: vegetarian refried bean & rice burritos on homemade tortillas

I recently watched a Ted Talks called “How to Live to be 100+“. In it, Dan Buettner discussed communities where their residents commonly lived to be over 100 years of age. Scattered around the globe, one thing that they had in common was that they lived largely on plant-based diets. More specifically, they ate a lot of beans.

I went on to read a related article that stated if you eat a handful of beans everyday, you can increase your overall lifespan by up to 4 years. Incredible! After that, I immediately began to look up delicious recipes that featured beans. Geoffrey and I have agreed to eat more beans and less meat, starting with one vegetarian day per week. We will see where it goes from there.

This is my take on one of those recipes. Geoff said that it was honestly the best supper I have ever made! Thus, there is no reason for you not to try it out for yourselves. ;-)))

Vegetarian Refried Bean & Rice Burritos on Homemade Tortillas

(Takes 1 hour)

Ingredients:

For the tortilla
(Makes 6)

2 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
¾ cup water
3 tbsp canola oil (and more for cooking)

For the burritos

6 tortillas
1 cup long grain rice, cooked
2 cups refried beans, warmed
1 cup corn, cooked
1 cup tomatoes, diced
1 cup cucumber, chopped
½ cup onion, sliced
1 cup cheese (any), grated

Steps:

1. For the tortilla- combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Mix in water and oil.

2. Place dough on floured surface. Knead into ball. Cover and set aside for 10 minutes.

3. Separate dough into 6. Using a floured rolling pin, roll into thin and smooth circles.

4. Heat pan to medium. Add oil and then one tortilla at a time. Cook until brown (approximately 2 minutes on either side). Remove from pan and place on plate. Set aside.

5. For the burritos- cook rice, beans, and corn. Cut up remaining vegetables and grate cheese. Heat clean skillet or press to medium. Fill each tortilla evenly with each ingredient.

6. Take one side of the tortilla and fold it over to the middle. Holding that side down, grab the left and right side and fold those in as well. Then roll it closed and place it face down on the skillet or press. Cook until browned and sealed close. Serve warm. Add salsa, sour cream, or any other condiment if so desired!

Emory

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