A Pair of Sensational Summer Dips/Salsas/Salads: Black Bean & Peach + Sweet Corn (vegan/ plant-based)

If summer gives you peaches and corn…

Last night, Bob and I hosted an impromptu happy hour retirement party for a dear friend, Linda Francis, who finally took the plunge with a swandive out of our school system and into Virtual Virginia as a history teacher.

Our easy menu is as summary as it gets with Claudia Cksimano, a retired teacher friend, and her husband bringing the broccoli salad from my Blooming Platter cookbook. I contributed I a purchased baba ghannoush, served in a martini glass, along with a Black Bean and Peach Salsa and what we fondly refer to as David’s Corn Dip. He was a guest at the party but had to work during the day, so I did the honors and he approved.

On the side, I served sliced cucumber and orange bell pepper strips, as well as two healthy- ish types of chips: a nacho-flavored cauliflower triangular chip and a round Garden of Eaten chip made of chickpeas and such.

All of it was a huge hit and I am pleased to share the new recipes here.

Black Bean and Peach Salsa

Yield: 8 appetizer or 4 side salad servings

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

2 medium peaches, pitted and diced

1/2 mecium yellow or red onion, diced

1/4 cup favorite salsa, drained

1 to 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

Juice of 1/2 lime

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Several hours before serving, combine all ingredients and refrigerate until serving time. Serve with cucumber slices or your favorite chips or crackers. This is also delicious served as a side salad.

David’s Sweet Corn Dip (cold or hot)

Yield: 8 appetizer or 4 side salad/side dish servings

3 cups fresh corn kernels, any variety, or 1-15.5 oz can yellow corn + 1-15.5 oz can white corn, drained

1/4 cup grated white vegan cheese, like mozzarella style

1/4 cup grated vegan cheddar cheese

1/4 cup favorite salsa, drained

1/4 cup vegan sour cream

1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise (I use Walton Farms no calorie)

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate until serving time. Serve with cucumber slices or your favorite chips or crackers. This is also delicious served as a side salad or hot side dish. For the latter, simply microwave until bubbly.

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Levender Blues aka Lavender-Blueberry Muffin-in-a-Cup for 1 (vegan, gf, added sugar-free)

Yield:1 muffin (easily multiplies)

When it’s just you and you need something nutritious, filling, and a hint sweet.

1/3 cup oat flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

2 tablespoons granulated stevia blend for baking (1:1 sugar to stevia ratio), or to taste

2 tablespoons applesauce

1 tablespoon cashew, pecan, or almond butter

1 tablespoon non-dairy milk

1/2 teaspoon culinary lavender

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon almond extract

1/3 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed, drained, and patted dry

Optional garnish: 1 teaspoon vegan cream cheese or sour cream and a few culinary lavender buds

Grease a mug with nonstick spray and set aside. In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients, except blueberries, with a fork until smooth. Gently fold in blueberries. Transfer batter into mug and cook in microwave for about 3 minutes, in 1-minute intervals or until top is set. Garnish as desired. I cook mine in a clear glass mug so I can get the consistency exactly right. Plus, it looks really sparkly and pretty served that way.

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Fresh Peach Curd Tarts (gf, vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 4 servings

A gift of fresh peaches–the first of the season–inspired these beautiful ready-in-a-flash tarts with their delightfully textured raw vegan crusts and creamy sweet-tart filling. The garnishes I chose were barely sweetened vegan sour cream, blackberries I picked on a walk in the woods, shredded coconut leftover from our wedding cake, sliced almonds, and lemon balm I grow in a pot outdoors.

Welcome, Summer!

Make filling and set aside to cool:

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

2 medium peaches including skin, pitted, and processed in food processor until smooth

Juice 1/2 large lemon

2 tablespoons non-dairy milk

Optional: 1 tablespoon peach liqueur

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

In a small saucepanover medium or medium-low heat, simmer together all ingredients except almond extract, whisking continually, until very thick. Whisk in almond extract. Set aside to cool. Mixture will continue to thicken as it cools.

Make Raw Vegan Date, Nut, Coconut Crust:

1 cup slivered or sliced almonds or a combination pecans and almonds

1 cup shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened

8 dates

Pinch sea salt

Process together in food processor until ingredients are minced and hold together when pinched. Divide into fourths and press evenly onto bottom and sides of four 5-inch tart pans. Divide filling evenly among shells, smoothing tops, and garnish as desired.

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Almond Joy Dates (vegan & plant-based)

Almond Joy Dates are super quick, easy, and luscious bite-size bundles of joy and healthful decadence made by a dear friend, Sharon Lee Clohessy, for my birthday.

Simply sweeten plant-based cream cheese with natural sugar and coconut, tuck inside dates, and top with chopped chocolate-covered almonds. That’s it!

Serve on a platter, if you don’t devour them first, with alternating whole dates garnished with a few of the whole chocolate-covered almonds.

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Fresh Orange Bundt Cake with Black Walnut Streusel

I created this cake to share with a dear friend for her birthday in memory of her dad, who loved a black walnut-orange cake, as she is selling the family home during her birthday week. Today, Veterans Day, we enjoyed a still-warm slice with mid-morning chai on her eclectic artsy patio near the beach.

Streusel:
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup coarsely chopped black walnuts (or nut of your choice)
1/4 cup softened vegan butter

1 cup non-dairy milk
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup natural sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Zest of 2 medium oranges
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
Oprional: 1 tablespoon orange liqueur
3 cups flour (I use white whole wheat)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt

Grease and flour 10-cup bundt pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place all streusel ingredients in small bowl and crumble together with fingers. Set aside.

Whisk together non-dairy milk and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside to curdle. In a large bowl of electric mixer beat together oil and sugars for a couple of minutes at medium speed, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary, adding vanilla and orange zest at the end. Add both liquids (curdled nondairy milk and orange juice) and flour, alternating, about 3/4 cup at a time, beginning and ending with flour. Beat in baking soda, powder, and salt. Crumble streusel evenly into bottom of bundt panel. Pour batter over and gently smooth top. Bake 45 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan; invert onto wire rack to finish cooling or enjoy while still warm.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #veganorangebundtcake #plantbasedorangebundt cake
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Roasted Orange Salad with Smokey Orange Dressing (vegan & plant-based)

If you have never enjoyed roasted oranges, skin and all, what are you waiting for?!

When I accepted a position teaching upper school art at Norfolk Academy in July, I had no idea that breakfast and lunch prepared by the talented refectory staff were part of the incentive package. And what an incentive. I am not a breakfast-eater, but I relish my specially-prepared vegan lunches.

We joke that the Academy owns an orchard, as we are fed a bounty of apples and oranges, tucked into our lunch bags. I find whole fruit a little messy to eat–I am not a fan of juice running down my chin–so by the end of each week, I have a collection of whole fruit. From the apples, I make bundt cakes once or sometimes twice a week for faculty members and staff. Sometimes, I use fresh oranges for the liquid.

But, when it occurred to me that roasted oranges in a salad might be a delicious way to use them, I conducted some research, experimented, developed this recipe, and never looked back. Try not to drink the dressing; it is that good.

Make dressing first:

Smokey Orange Dressing

*1/4 cup orange infused vinegar (I buy Orange Blossom Vinegar at Harris Teeter)
*1/4 cup orange infused olive oil (I buy an rosemary-orange variety at Harris Teeter)
1 tablespoon hot chili oil (see my recipe on this website)
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Note: you can substitute sherry vinegar and plain olive oil plus zest of 1 small orange

Whisk together all ingredients in a small bowl.

Serve dressing over arugula with diced red onion, roasted oranges (recipe follows), and roasted pistachios.

Roasted Oranges

Slice oranges 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick. Place on foil or parchment paper on rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with sea salt. Roast oranges at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #roastedoranges #roastedorangesalad
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Apple Pie Bundt Cake (vegan & plant-based)

I made this beautiful bundt for Bob’s dad’s socially-distanced outdoor 89th birthday gathering for 9 and 2 on FaceTime. The surprise ingredient of a can of apple pie filling insures extra moistness and fall flavors.

3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 cups flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 to 4 tablespoons non-dairy milk

1 tablespoon molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
20 ounces apple pie filling (I leave the slices whole, but you could chop or mash)
Optional: Maple-Cinnamon “Cream Cheese” Glaze (recipe follows)

Garnish: 1/2 cup chopped pecans and, optionally, 8 apple chips or dried apple slices

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan. Combine oil and sugar in large bowl of electric mixer. Beat at medium speed about a minute to dissolve sugar. Add remaining ingredients and beat a couple more minutes or just until completely combined, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as necessary. Spoon batter evenly into pan and gently smooth top. Bake approximately 45-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes, invert onto wire rack, and cool completely. Spoon Glaze around top and let cascade down inside and outside. Garnish with chopped or whole pecans and optional apple chips.

Maple-Cinnamon Cream Cheese Glaze
2 ounces firm tofu (I use regular for body)
1/4 cup vegan butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract or zest of 1 small lemon

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Approximately 4 cups powdered sugar

In bowl of large food processor, process all ingredients except powdered sugar for a few minutes or until completely smooth. Add half of powdered sugar and process until smooth. Repeat with remaining powdered sugar. Add additional powdered sugar if necessary to reach desired consistency.

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Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread (vegan & plant-based)

Who am I kidding? This luscious bread is really a cake!

Gifted to yet another helpful colleague, my latest creation with the apples leftover from lunches at my new school–which surely owns an orchard–is simply insane in the flavor and texture departments.

If you are thinking that oatmeal=dry and crumbly, think again…and try not to do a header into the batter!

3 apples, stemmed, cored, and cut into chunks
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup old fashioned oats

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 5 x 9″ loaf pan. In food processor, process apples until finely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and process just until well combined. Stir in oatmeal. Transfer into prepared pan. Bake 50 minutes or until wooden pick inserted on center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Invert onto wire rack to cool completely.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #plantbasedapplebread #veganapplebread #plantbasedapplecake #veganapplecake
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Apricot-Cream Cheese Bars with Oatmeal-Almond Crumble (vegan & plant-based)

Yield: 8 large bars to 16 small squares

This recipe is a new iteration of a longstanding Thanksgiving favorite: Cranberry Crumble. I use the same crumble, only I add a smidgen of ground ginger and switched out pecans for sliced almonds. Then I substituted my Apricot-Cream Cheese Filling–with its hint of fresh lemon and almond extract–for the original cranberry filling. Now I have an easy, delectable, and very pretty–in a rustic sort of way–favorite bar for the cool months and the summer months.

Apricot-Cream Cheese Filling:

1 tablespoon flaxseed meal

3 tablespoons lemon juice

8 ounces vegan cream cheese

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 cup plump dried apricots (about 12), chopped (I get about 6 to 8 pieces per apricot)

In a small bowl or cup, whisk together flaxseed meal and lemon juice. Set aside to thicken. In a medium or large bowl, beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add sugar and almond extract, and continue beating until creamy. Beat in flaxseed meal and lemon mixture until fully and fully incorporated. Fold in dried apricots. Set aside while you make crust/topping.

Crust and Topping:

½ cup vegan butter, melted
1 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup old fashioned or quick-cooking oats
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 8 inch square baking pan with non-stick spray, line with parchment paper or foil, pressing smooth, and spray again with non-stick spray. In a medium bowl, mix together all ingredients, except almonds, with a fork. Spoon half of this mixture into prepared pan patting gently into place. Pour filling over and spread to cover all the way to the edges. Mix almonds with remaining pastry mixture and sprinkle evenly over filling. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until nicely browned. Cool completely on a wire rack and cover and chill for several hours before lifting out of pan and slicing with a serrated knife.

#vegan #veganrecipes #veganfoodshare #veganfoodporn #plantbased #plantbasedrecipes #plantbasedfoodshare #plantbasedfoodporn #veganbars #plantbasedbars #veganapricot #plantbasedapricot

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