Daily Vegan Lunch for 28 December: Hot and Sour Curry Rice Noodles

hot and sour vegan curry rice noodles

1/2 package of rice noodles, or about 4 cups cooked
1/2 a lemon’s juice, about 2 tablespoons
1 cup frozen peas
2 cups snow peas a.k.a. mangetouts
1 cup julienned carrot
1 cup frozen green beans
1 cup green onion, minced
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced or 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon oil
1 cup cashews
1 tablespoon chili sauce or 2 teaspoons sriacha or tabasco
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon garam masala


Cook rice noodles by bringing a pot of water to boiling and immediately turning off heat.  Add the rice noodles and let them sit five minutes.  You wouldn’t think they’d be soft and edible in such a short time but they will.  Drain them and set them aside.

Steam the carrots, peas, snowpeas, and green beans by cooking in about a cup of water in the stove until the peas are unfrozen, about five minutes.  You can also use the microwave, which only takes 2 minutes.  Drain the water and set the vegetables aside.

In a blender or food processor, combine chili/hot sauce, lemon juice, and cashews.  Pulse until cashews are chopped, less than 10 seconds usually.

Fry the garlic in a tablespoon of oil in a large pan on medium-high heat for about 30 seconds.  Add the strained vegetables, noodles, and cashew-lemon juice mixture from the food processor.  Stir to combine.  Heat through for up to two minutes.

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 15 November, 2013: Lentil Tomato Pinto Bean Soup

This recipe makes a huge pot of soup that will last for days. Freeze it if you don’t eat it all. It is one of those soups that is good the first day and fantastic the second day.

lentil pinto vegan soup



2 tablespoons oil
1 onion, chopped
3 large cloves garlic, minced

1 cup dried lentils or 3 cups cooked
1 can pinto beans, about 2 cups
4 cups crushed tomatoes, I used canned
8 cups vegetable broth

1.5 cups frozen corn
1.5 cups chopped sweet red bell pepper, I used some from a jar
2 legs celery, chopped (1.5 cups)
1 cup chopped carrot

2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon smoked or regular paprika, I used smoked
Hot sauce or Sriacha, to taste
2/3 cup flour, I used chickpea flour


Pre-cook lentils in 3 cups water a crockpot on low for 4 hours or on high for 1 hour.  Alternately, use 2 cans of pre-made store bought lentil soup.

In the bottom of a large soup pot, sauté onions and garlic on medium high heat until onions are translucent.  Add cumin, chili powder, and paprika to onions and garlic, sauté 30 more seconds.  Douse mixture with lentils and their cooking water, pinto beans, carrots, celery, corn, and all but 1 cup of the vegetable broth.  Turn on high and bring mixture to a boil.  Once it boils, bring heat down to medium-high and boil until celery is al dente, about 10 minutes.  Add tomatoes.  Add salt or additional spices at this point if needed.  Add red peppers and stir in hot sauce to taste.

Mix remaining cup of vegetable broth with flour until it is a slurry, dump into soup.  Stir until soup is thickened.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 8 November, 2013: Spicy Spaghetti with Spinach and Pinto Beans

fat free spicy pasta with greens and olives


5 cups cooked angel hair pasta

1 teaspoon oil (optional)
1 tablespoon chili sauce
1 cup pinto beans, drained
2 tablespoons prepared spaghetti sauce
3/4 cup vegetable broth

3 cups spinach leaves
1 cup sliced black olives
2 cloves garlic, minced
Pine nuts, to serve


Cook pasta according to package directions, drain, set aside. In a frying pan on medium heat, heat oil and briefly fry garlic, about 30 seconds. Add pinto beans, chili sauce, spaghetti sauce, and vegetable broth. Heat through, about 2 minutes. Add spinach leaves and black olives and cook until spinach wilts. Serve on angel hair pasta. I sprinkled it with pine nuts as you can see.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 4 November, 2013: Deluxe Hot & Sour Soup

vegan deluxe hot and sour soup with cloud ear mushrooms

This is the perfect cold weather soup.


5 cups water
1.5 cups cloud ear mushrooms, rehydrated (you can use any type of mushroom though)
2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon
1 cup shredded bamboo shoots, rinsed and drained
1 cup firm tofu, cubed
1/2 cup peas or shelled eda mame (I used eda mame because I am out of peas)

1/2 cup additional water
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon hot sauce or Sriacha
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce

Salt to taste

1 tablespoon sesame oil

Soak the mushrooms for up to 2 hours. Cut them into shreds or bite size pieces. Discard stems. Bring the broth or water and Better Than Bouillon to a boil in a large pot. You do not have to use veggie broth at all in this recipe, just add more salt and soy sauce to make up for the saltiness of broth and don’t forget to add the mushroom soaking water. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the tofu, bamboo shoots, peas or eda make, and mushrooms. Allow it to simmer about five minutes. Meanwhile, mix cornstarch, additional water, black pepper, hot sauce, vinegar, and soy sauce in a small bowl until it is a slurry. Add the slurry to the soup and stir until thickened. Top with sesame oil before serving.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 23 October, 2013: Spicy Chipotle Black Bean Burgers

vegan spicy black bean burgers

1 tablespoon oil
1.5 cups onion, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
3 cups black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
1/4 cup water
2 chipotle peppers from a can
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 cup bread crumbs
Salt to taste


Fry onion and garlic in oil on medium heat until onion is translucent, set aside.

In a food processor, combine black beans, onion/garlic mixture, flaxseed meal, water, chipotles, chili powder, cumin, and breadcrumbs. Pulse until just combined.

Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl. Stir if necessary to make sure all the ingredients are completely mixed. Season with salt to taste.

Heat a pan to medium-low heat and spray with oil or use 1 additional teaspoon of oil to coat pan. Fry burgers until browned on both sides.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 22 October, 2013: Spicy Tomato Soup with Sticky Rice Cakes

vegan tomato soup with gochujang and tteok


1 teaspoon oil
1 cup onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 medium sized ripe tomatoes or 2 cups stewed tomatoes from a can and their juice
1 tablespoon Gochujang (spicy Korean chili paste)
1 cup almond milk
1 cup tteok (Korean sticky rice cakes) soaked overnight or boiled in water for 30 seconds
Salt to taste


Soak 1 cup refrigerated tteok, either the flat or cylindrical ones, in water for 2 hours or overnight. Alternately, boil them in 2 cups of water for 30 seconds. Sauté onion and garlic in oil for 2 minutes in a small pan on medium heat. Roughly chop tomatoes and put them in the blender. Add the onion/garlic mixture, gochujang, almond milk, and salt.

Blend until smoothly pureed, about 2 minutes.

Heat the soup on the stovetop or microwave and stir in tteok before serving.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 4 October, 2013: Salsa Beans and Spicy Potatoes

Potatoes are boiled, spiced, and then pan-fried.

salsa beans and spiced potatoes


1 tablespoon oil
4 cups potatoes of any color, cut into chunks


1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt


Mix the seasoning mix ingredients together.Boil the potato chunks in water for 7 minutes, or until al dente. Drain the potatoes. Combine seasoning mix ingredients and mix. Put potatoes in a bowl and sprinkle with seasoning mix, tossing until they are coated. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a large fry pan on medium heat. Add potatoes once oil is hot. Fry them until they are browned. To make salsa beans, mix 1 part salsa with 2 parts beans. I used my own homemade blender salsa.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 25 July, 2013: Kim Chi Fried Rice

Kim Chi Fried Rice



3 cups cabbage, shredded or chopped
1 tablespoon oil
2 cups cooked long grain rice, refrigerated 24 hours
1.5 cups chopped green onion
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1 tablespoon gochujang (Spicy Korean miso available in most Asian groceries)
1/4 cup soy sauce or to taste


Prepare all ingredients, including rice, and set them to the side of the stove so they are ready to go. Turn heat as high as it will go. Put oil in a large pan (not non-stick as the Teflon stuff becomes unstable and poisonous at high temps) until the oil smokes. Add cabbage to the pan — BE CAREFUL! The oil can spatter because it’s very hot. Stir for 30 seconds until it wilts and add refrigerated rice. You really have to use chilled rice because otherwise the rice turns gummy, sticky, and nasty. Stir the rice which will brown quickly, about 1 minute. Add green onion, soy sauce, sesame seed oil, and gochujang at once. Stir for one minute more to incorporate the gochujang and coat all the rice. Done!