Sunday, October 28, 2018


Best Blog Tips

QUICKIE POST, once again:
I don't know why I haven't posted this recipe before now-- it's one of our perennial favorite soup recipes.  It's not only nutritious and quick and easy to make-- it's adaptable as far as some of the ingredients go, hearty, filling and tasty, and can feed you well for a few days, or feed a small crowd! We love it with vegan apple/sage sausages, but Italian-style are good, too. When I made this the other day, I had no vegan sausages (and I live on an island), so I sliced up a couple of my homemade vegan cutlets  and added that instead.  It worked out well, although I think I prefer the sausage.

About those "white beans"-- I really like Great Northern beans, but you can use small white beans, navy beans (also known as "pea beans"), cannellini beans, or white kidney beans.

I hope you enjoy this soup as much as we do!

Printable Recipe

Serves 8 to 10

2 cups diced carrots
2 medium onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
3 apple/sage OR Italian vegan sausages (such as Field Roast or Tofurky), sliced
(NOTE: If you have no vegan sausage, you can substitute sliced seitan cutlets [as in the photos], or reconstituted Butler Foods’ Soy Curls, or other vegan product that you like.)
8 cups flavorful vegan “chiken-y” broth
3/4 tsp. EACH dried oregano, thyme and basil
3 cups cooked, drained white beans [see above] (OR two 15 oz. cans of white beans, rinsed and drained)
10-12 ounces roughly-chopped fresh greens of your choice, such as chard, kale, or baby spinach leaves
(NOTE: If you have no fresh greens, use a 10 oz. package of frozen chopped spinach or other greens, thawed and squeezed as dry as possible.)
Salt & pepper to taste

In a large, heavy pot sauté the carrots, onion and garlic in a little oil of choice (dark sesame oil is nice and flavorful) over medium heat until they have softened, adding a squirt of water if needed to keep things moving.  Add the garlic and vegan sausage slices and brown a bit. 
(NOTE: If you’re pressed for time, dump the carrots and onion into a microwave-safe casserole with a cover [Pyrex is good] and microwave this for about 6-8 minutes, until the onion and carrots are softened. Then dump it all into your hot, oiled pan with the garlic and sausage slices and stir over medium-high heat until you get the onions ans sausage a bit browned.)

Add the broth, herbs, white beans and greens to the pot, bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer.  Cover and cook for about 5 minutes.  Taste for salt and pepper.

OPTIONAL ADDITIONAL STEP:  If you want a “creamier” soup, take out 3 or 4 cups of the soup (minus the sausage slices) and process it until smooth in a large Pyrex batter bowl with a hand/immersion blender, then add this mixture back to the soup pot and mix well.

Nutrition Facts for one serving:
Calories   314.68, Calories From Fat  51.95, Total Fat 5.95g, Saturated Fat 1.25g, Cholesterol 2.46mg, Sodium 1812.07mg, Potassium 1071.18mg, Carbohydrates 52.06g,Dietary Fiber 9.60g,   Sugar 3.41g, Sugar Alcohols 0.00g, Net Carbohydrates 42.46g, Protein 15.53g 


Wednesday, October 10, 2018


Best Blog Tips

We went to the Denman Island Free Store on Saturday and I lucked out-- I came home with two cast iron Lodge cornstick pans (worth about $25 each!).  I love cornbread, and I've always wanted to try making cornsticks.  The cast iron pans were said to be the best because they make a really crunchy crust, so I had to try it immediately.

My recipe is an easy one and the corn sticks came out nice and crispy, as they should be.  They are great for eating with a good chili!

Printable Recipe

Yield: 14 corn sticks  (Can be gluten-free if you use certified GF oat flour-- which you can make out of oat flakes in a dry blender.)

You will need two cornstick pans (preferably cast iron), each with 7 indentations for the batter. (Mine are Lodge, which is an excellent brand.)

1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup oat flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 cups soy milk
1 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp oil OR 1/4 cup melted vegan butter
1 Tbsp Orgran or Ener-G egg replacer powder
1 Tbsp oil for brushing on pans
I haven't tried any of these yet, just to let you know.
1.)Some people add corn kernels to the batter (about 1 cup), but toss them in the flour mix first.
2.) Another common addition is cayenne pepper-- about 1/4 tsp. -- or some chopped jalapeño peppers, or a cup of grated vegan "cheddar" or other vegan cheese.
3.) You could also try using 2 Tbsp. of ground golden flax instead of the egg replacer powder.

Heat the oven to 450 degrees F. When the oven is heated, heat the pans in the oven for about 5 minutes. Brush the indentations in the hot pans with the 1 Tbsp. of oil.

Mix the Dry Mix ingredients together in a medium bowl, and whisk the Wet Mix ingredients together with a whisk or immersion blender in a 1 qt. pitcher. Set aside separately.

To make the batter:
Pour the Wet Mix into the Dry Mix and stir in an over-and-under fashion just to moisten all of the Dry Mix.. Spoon the batter into the oiled indentations of the warm corn stick pans, to just barely fill to the top of each one.  Immediately place in the hot oven and bake for 18 minutes. Cook the pans on racks for a few minutes before carefully loosening the sticks from the pans and removing the cornsticks to a plate.  They should be nice and crispy on the bottoms. Eat as soon as possible!

Nutrition Facts
Nutrition (per serving): 84 calories, 34 calories from fat, 3.9g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 195mg sodium, 65.5mg potassium, 10.6g carbohydrates, 1.1g fiber, less than 1g sugar, 2.2g protein, 2.4 points.