Daily Vegan Lunch for 22 December, 2013: Seitan and Two Potato Soup

seitan soup


1 tablespoon vegetable oil (optional)
2 cups onion, chopped
2 cups seitan, tofu, tempeh, or veggie meat, chopped finely
2 cups peeled, chopped sweet potatoes
2 cups peeled, chopped potatoes
1.5 cups celery, chopped
2 cups carrots, chopped
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
8 cups vegetable broth


In the bottom of a large stockpot, sauté garlic and onions in oil or in 1/4 cup of water to make a fat-free version.  Add broth, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, carrots, and seitan.  Bring to a boil on high heat; this will take anywhere from 10 – 20 minutes.  Once it boils, turn the stove down to medium heat and simmer until sweet potatoes and carrots are tender.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 13 December, 2013: Potato Leek Curry

vegan potato leek curry IMG_3818

1 tablespoon oil
1.5 cups onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup red bell pepper, chopped (I used red bell pepper from a jar)
1.5 cups green part of leeks, chopped finely
4 cups potatoes, skinned and cubed
Water for boiling potatoes
4 cups water or vegetable broth, I used water
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon lemon juice OR 2 teaspoons mango powder (amchoor powder)
1 tablespoon chili sauce or 2 teaspoons tabasco or Sriacha or to taste for heat
Salt to taste


Peel potatoes and chop them into cubes.  Put them in a pot and cover them with water.  Bring the pot to a boil (high heat) and then immediately turn down the heat and cook for about 20 minutes.  If you cut the potatoes to the small size you see in the photo above, you won’t have to cook them the whole 20 minutes.  Potatoes are done when they are fork tender but not mushy.  Drain the potatoes, set them aside.

In a large pan, cook the onion in oil on medium-high heat until translucent.  Add the garlic and all spices except mango powder/lemon juice.  Allow the spices and garlic to cook for about 30 seconds, douse with water.  Add the cooked potatoes, leeks, and red pepper to the pan.  Cook about five minutes or until the potatoes thicken the broth and add salt to taste.   Add hot sauce to taste.  Add the lemon juice or mango powder last, right before serving.    

Daily Vegan Lunch for 7 December, 2013: Spicy Carrot Potato Curry Soup with Rotini Noodles

vegan spicy carrot potato soup



2 cups chopped onion
1 tablespoon oil
3 cups vegetable broth
2 cups carrots, sliced
1.5 cups potatoes, cubed
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon super-hot salsa, Sriacha, or tabasco (or to taste)
2 cups plant milk (I used almond)

1.5 cups uncooked rotini pasta


Peel potatoes. Chop potatoes and carrots and put them in a large pot and cover with water. Bring them to a boil on the stovetop and then turn down the heat to medium-high and simmer at a low boil for about 20 minutes. Keep in mind the smaller you cut the potatoes and carrots, the faster they will cook.

In another large pot, bring oil to medium-high heat. Sauté onions in oil for about 3 minutes or until they are translucent. Add cumin, coriander, turmeric, and garam masala and cook for about 30 seconds until spices become fragrant. Add 3 cups broth. Drain potatoes and carrots and add them. Add the plant milk. At this point, you can either transfer the soup to a blender and puree it in batches or do what I did. I used my stick blender and just kept it going down in the soup until everything was smooth.

Add the pasta and cook for 20 minutes until pasta reaches the al dente phase.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 30 November, 2013: Reuben Lentil Casserole with Mashed Potatoes

sauerkraut mashed potato lentil casserole


This was a great way to use leftover mashed potatoes from Thanksgiving.


1.5 cups onion, chopped
1 tablespoon oil
2 cups cooked lentils mixed with 1 cup vegetable broth OR 2 cups prepared lentil soup, I used the former
2 cups sauerkraut, drained
2.5 cups mashed potatoes


1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise
1/3 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Fry the onions in 1 tablespoon oil on medium-high heat until translucent, set aside.

Mix cooked lentils with 1 cup vegetable broth.

In a 9 x 9″ casserole dish, pour the layer lentils or lentil soup. Spread sauerkraut on top of the lentil layer, then onions, then spread the mashed potatoes evenly on top.

Mix the sauce ingredients in a small bowl, whipping them with a fork if necessary. Drizzle or spread the sauce over the top of the assembled casserole.

Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 27 November, 2013: Mashed Potatoes, Gravy, and Cranberry-Apple Compote

vegan mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry-apple compote

Oh how I love mashed potatoes.  Who doesn’t, right?  Actually, when I was a kid, I thought they were gross.


6 – 8  red or russet potatoes, peeled and chopped OR 12 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled.  Yukon gold are smaller in general and you need more of them, however they cook much faster than red or russet potatoes.
Enough water to cover
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon salt
up to 2 cups almond milk


Peel and chop potatoes into small pieces.  Have a colander at the ready next to the sink.  Put in a large pot and then put that pot on the stove and turn the heat to high.  Pour in enough water to cover the potatoes.  Bring the potatoes to a boil and then turn down the heat to medium-high and allow them to cook for anywhere from 10 – 25 minutes depending on type of potato and how large or small you cut your potato chunks.  When the largest potato chunk reaches the fork-tender stage, immediately take them off the heat and drain them in the colander.  Add the potatoes back to the pot you cooked them in.  DO NOT allow the potatoes to cool or they will get gummy, shiny, and weird.  They will still be tasty and perfectly safe to eat, however, they won’t be quite as good.  I have learned this lesson the hard way.  Add the oil and blend the potatoes with a beater or a potato masher if you have one.  I just use the electric beater.  Add about 1/2 cup of almond milk as you beat and keep adding 1/2 cup at a time until potatoes are fluffy and creamy.  Salt to taste and beat until salt is incorporated.


1/2 cup vegetable oil, I used canola
1/2 cup white flour, for gluten free version, use chickpea flour
1/2 teaspoon sage
3.5 cups vegetable broth

Prepare vegetable broth, mix it with sage, and set it by the stove.  In a pan, stir oil and flour together with a wooden spoon until they make a goopy, wet paste that is called a roux.  Turn the heat to medium or medium-high (I turn it to medium high because my stovetop is weak) and stir intermittently for about five minutes.  The flour mixture will start to darken.  Now you should stir it almost constantly until it becomes a caramel mocha latte color.  As soon as the color is sufficiently brown, add the sage broth.  If you’ve got a powerful stove, turn the heat off.  If your stove is like mine (wimpy) turn the heat to medium or low-medium.  Stir until the ingredients are thoroughly mixed and take off the heat.


You could add lots of cinnamon, cloves, or nutmeg to this recipe, however I’m more a fan of very simple fruit compotes with not much going on, so I saved the spices for the pumpkin pie and apple-cherry pie this Thanksliving.

1 bag cranberries, about 2 cups
2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
3/4 cup dark brown sugar or 3/4 cup white sugar plus 2 teaspoons molasses

Prepare apples.  Wash cranberries.  Add apples, cranberries, and sugar to a crock pot.  Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 10 November, 2013: Potato Pierogi and Red Cabbage Sauté

This is a meal for very little money. A little time consuming, however, it makes 12 giant pierogies which can later be frozen for future quick meals.

pierogies vegan

Shown with homemade cashew sour cream


3 cups potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon oil
1.5 cup onions, chopped


3 cups flour
1 cup water
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon salt


1 teaspoon oil
1 cup onion, chopped
4 cups red cabbage, sliced
1 apple, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup vegetable broth


Peel and chop the potatoes. Boil them in water on the stove for 20 minutes or until they are fork-tender. Drain and set aside.

In the pot you cooked the potatoes in, sauté onions in 1 tablespoon oil until they are translucent on medium heat. Add the potatoes and the salt. Fork mash or use a beater to mash the potatoes. We will not be adding any plant milk as they need to be somewhat on the dry side to make a good pierogi filling.

Now make the dough. Combine 3 cups flour, 1 cup water, 1 tablespoon oil, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Knead the ingredients into a dough ball. Knead for about 5 minutes, working the ball to bring out the gluten. Divide the ball in half and roll out 1 side to 1/4 inch thick.

Cut out circles in the dough using a small bowl turned upside down as your cutter. This makes a large pierogi like I made. For smaller ones, use the rim of a glass.

Stuff each pierogi with 1 heaping tablespoon potato mash. Seal the dumpling on the circular seam.

Boil the pierogi in water about 5 minutes.


Peel and chop apples. In a pan, fry onions on medium high heat in 1 teaspoon oil until they are translucent. Add red cabbage and apple. Stir-fry about 2 minutes. Douse with broth and add sugar. Cover and cook 5 more minutes.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 28 October, 2013: Red Lentil Pumpkin Curry Soup

red lentil pumpkin curry soup


1 tablespoon oil

1 cup red lentils
4 cups water

1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup carrot, chopped
1.5 cups potatoes, peeled and chopped
1.5 cups canned pumpkin

4 additional cups water and 2 vegan broth cubes

1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
4 cloves
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon turmeric

2 cloves garlic, minced


Bring the red lentils and 4 cups of water to a boil in a pot on the stove. Turn the heat to medium and allow lentils to simmer for 20 – 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a very large pot, sauté the onion in oil at medium heat until translucent. Add carrot and potato and sauté five minutes. Add cumin, garam masala, coriander, turmeric, cloves, and garlic, sauté 30 seconds more. Douse with 4 cups additional water and broth cubes (or just add 4 cups vegetable broth). Cook until potatoes and carrots are fork tender but not mushy. Add cooked lentils and pumpkin and stir well. Add salt to taste.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 21 October, 2013: Rustic Bread Soup

Many people don’t realize most bread, including sourdough, is vegan. It’s a combination of yeast, flour, sugar and salt. Unless there’s an egg wash or a butter top, bread is as vegan as it gets.

This dish reminds me of pre-made frozen white bread dumplings my mom used to make with gravy. Like most meat dishes, it was a heavy, greasy dish. This version brings me back to all of the good things about that dish with none of the grease or heavy fat that used to stick to everything.

vegan rustic bread soup

1 tablespoon oil
1.5 cups chopped onion

1.5 cups chopped celery
1.5 cups chopped carrot
1.5 cups chopped peeled potatoes
2 cups chopped red cabbage or other cabbage (I just really like red cabbage this time of year as you can probably tell)
6 cups vegetable broth (I used water, 2 broth cubes, and a pinch of salt)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon basil
2 cups pureed tomatoes (I used some late garden tomatoes puréed in the blender)
1 heaping tablespoon minced fresh garlic

1-2 slices of bread per bowl, I used a crusty homestyle bread from a bakery


Sauté onion and cabbage in oil in the bottom of a large stockpot on medium high until translucent. Add cumin and paprika and saute 30 more seconds. Add celery, carrot, potatoes, and broth. Cook until carrots and potatoes are fork tender. Add pureed tomatoes, basil, and garlic and cook 10 – 15 more minutes. To serve, place 1-2 slices of bread in the bottom of the bowl and ladle soup over it like this:


Daily Vegan Lunch for 19 October, 2013: Black Lentil, Potato, and Spinach Stew

vegan black lentil, potato, spinach stew indian


1/2 cup black or brown lentils
3 cups of water

1 tablespoon oil
2 cups chopped onion
2 cups potatoes, peeled and chunked
2 cups additional water

3 cups fresh spinach leaves (or use 1.5 cups frozen spinach)
1 heaping tablespoon fresh minced garlic
2.5 cups pureed tomatoes (I used tomatoes from the garden and put them in the food processor for 45 seconds)

1 teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin

Salt to taste

In a small pot or pan, combine lentils and 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer on medium heat. Cook uncovered until lentils soak up all the water.

Fry onion in the bottom of a large soup pot on medium-high heat until translucent. Turn heat down to low. Add spices and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Bring heat back up to high. Add potatoes and 2 cups additional water and boil until potatoes are tender and 1 cup of the water is boiled off. Add spinach, garlic, and puréed tomatoes and cook until spinach wilts, about 5 minutes.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 12 October, 2013: Creamy Spinach and Potato Curry

creamy vegan curried spinach and potatoes


2 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
2 teaspoons oil
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric

1 tablespoon oil
2 cups onion, chopped
3 cups frozen organic spinach
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon coriander

1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

2 cups vegetable broth

1/2 cup vegan cream cheese (I used my own made of cashews and almond yogurt)


Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat the peeled potato cubes in 2 teaspoons of oil and sprinkle with spices in a baking pan. Toss them to coat. Put into the oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, toss the potatoes and cook for 20 more minutes.

In a large pot, fry the 2 cups chopped onion in 1 tablespoon of oil on medium-high heat until onions are translucent. Add the additional teaspoon cumin, garam masala, turmeric, and coriander. Toss for about one minute until spices are fragrant. Add the spinach and vegetables broth to the pot and cook it until the spinach thaws and is heated through, up to 20 minutes. Add the garlic and the cream cheese. Stir until cream cheese is incorporated. Lastly, add the cooked potatoes to the resulting stew. Serve with rice.