Did You Know?

Did you know??
Although using avocados and bananas are all the buzz now to get soft and shiny hair, all it will get you is a messy kitchen and bathroom. These products are great to help your hair for one day, but the proteins in them are way too big for your hair to absorb. And unless you are going to use them each day (yikes!), then you should head to a beauty supply store and check out some Vegan products that use "hydrolyzed" proteins - proteins from avocados and bananas that actually are small enough to help your hair.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Creamy Black Bean Potato Soup

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We often make vegetable soups towards the middle of the week (we go to the local market where you can buy fresh fruits and veggies every Friday) as a way to use up whatever stock we have of things about to go bad; and although it tends to be pretty economical, since we have a standard repertoire of vegetables we always use, our soups never really deviate from the typical vegetables we always buy.  This week, I decided I wanted to try and move away from that a little bit, and came up with a fantastic bean soup in a bread bowl that was a delicious evening treat.  Uncharacteristically not spicy (in comparison to our usual soups) and extremely thick, this reminds me a bit of the black bean soup they serve at Panera.  I find that the picture does not do the soup justice, in that the picture doesn't show the darkness of the broth from the beans themselves.  The only way to see it I guess would be to try it yourself!

1 tbsp olive oil
1 large white onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, diced
2 carrots, chopped
4 tbsp garlic, minced (in water)
2 tbsp chili powder
A few grates of fresh ground black pepper
4 cups vegetable broth
4 15-oz. cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can kernel corn, drained and rinsed
1 can crushed tomatoes
3 medium potatoes, skinned and diced
1/4 cup olives, rinsed and diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced


Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.

Saute garlic for three minutes, and add onion and celery.

Add seasonings, and cook for one minute, and turn off burner.. 

Add the beans, and with a potato mincer, crush beans uniformly (but not completely) to desired consistency.  Remember that there will be vegetable broth being added to the recipe, so it will be more watery than it appears.  This might take a few times of making this soup to know the exact amount of crushing for the consistency you prefer.   

Turn burner back on to medium heat and stir in vegetable broth and corn.  Bring to a boil.

Bring remaining ingredients and put in the soup, allowing to cook until potatoes soften up enough and then continue to simmer for another ten minutes.

When you're ready to enjoy, cut open a bread-bowl and enjoy!


 
 
Caloric Info
Servings 8 (not inc. breadbowl) 
Calories428.8
Total Fat: 4.7 grams
Sat Fat: 0.8 grams
Polyunsat. Fat: 1.0 grams
Monosat. Fat: 2.5 grams
Cholesterol: 0 grams
Sodium: 762.1 mg
Potassium: 1298.2 mg
Carbs: 77.9 grams
Dietary Fiber: 22.5 grams
Sugar: 3.3 grams
Protein: 22.2 grams


Monday, July 12, 2010

Mushroom Herb White Wine Sauce

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This vegan sauce is a delicious alternative to making white or red sauce.  It's also a great way to use up leftover mushrooms from other recipes, like seitan.  It's relatively low-fat (at least in comparison to its non-vegan counterpart), and definitely healthier than an alfredo sauce.  I find it works best on pasta, but you can use it for tons of different things (toss it on some cut up chick'n cutlets being the first to come to mind.  Mmm... mental note, make that).  Anyways, here you go-- give it a try!

1/4 white onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
8 button mushrooms, sliced
1 vegetable stock cube, undiluted
1 cup white wine
2 cups unsweetened soy milk
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp vegan butter alternative (we usually use Earth Balance, but whatever suits your fancy)
2 tbsp unbleached flour
1 tsp basil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper


Heat a frying pan with the olive oil and saute the garlic and onions for two minutes.  Add the mushrooms after the two minutes and continue to saute, stirring occasionally.  You do not want them to change color.

Add the wine and allow to simmer for five minutes (or until the wine boils down and has largely soaked in).

Crumble the veggie cube and allow it to dissolve into the mix-- this should only take a minute or so).

Add the soy milk.  After 3-5 minutes, add the butter alternative and sift the flour into the sauce.  Sift slowly and continuously stir, keeping it from clumping.

Continue to let it simmer and allow to thicken to your taste.  For the consistency seen in the picture, I waited another five or so minutes.

Add spices and enjoy!




Caloric Info
Servings 6
Calories144.6
Total Fat: 9.5 grams
Sat Fat: 1.9 grams
Polyunsat. Fat 2.4 grams
Monosat. Fat: 4.8 grams
Cholesterol: 0 grams
Sodium: 238.9 mg
Potassium: 144.9 mg
Carbs: 6.1 grams
Dietary Fiber: 0.5 grams
Sugar: 2.4 grams
Protein: 2.8 grams