The nice thing about moving from the frigid Midwest to the South is that you can gloat to all your family and friends back home about the weather when fall starts. “Oh, it snowed there today? That’s nice. It’s 70 here.” (Yes, I am a terrible person.) But a week or two ago, when I saw people posting pictures of the first snow of the year on Facebook, I felt a little bit jealous. Could it really be? Do I miss snow?!
The last winter we spent in Wisconsin, I pretty much had a mental break over the weather. I worked on the University of Wisconsin campus and I took the bus to work, which meant that I had to walk several blocks to my building everyday in the wee early hours of the morning. And those wee early hours were cold! The wind and the snow and the sub-zero temperatures would make my face ache and by the time I got to the office, my toes would always be numb no matter how many pairs of socks I layered on. I was done! Done with winter!
But now I feel a little nostalgic for it. Maybe not for the cold weather itself, but for looking out the window and watching the snow fall. And for that feeling of relief that hits you when you enter a warm building after being out in the cold. And for hot stews and curries on cold winter nights! On the worst of the winter days, I’d get home from work, put on my pajamas, and throw together a quick pot of soup or curry. I guess it’s that cozy, bundled up feeling that I miss. So I tried to remedy that with this Cauliflower and Chickpea Coconut Curry.
This is one of those recipes that I never needed a recipe for. Sometimes I’d make it with chickpeas only, other times I’d put different vegetables in it. It’s easy like that. It’s not a spicy curry and the creamy coconut sauce makes it perfect for serving over rice or with a side of naan. This curry is a heaping pot of winter comfort food—even if your winters involve sunny 60 degree days.
Cauliflower and Chickpea Coconut Curry
An easy coconut curry made with chickpeas and cauliflower.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-inch ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed (or 3 cups cooked chickpeas)
- 2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
- 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk
- 1 medium head cauliflower, broken into florets
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Cooked rice or naan for serving
- Heat the coconut oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook until softened, 5-7 minutes. Stir in the spices and cook until they’re fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, coconut milk, and cauliflower. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover and cook 5 minutes more, or until sauce has thickened slightly. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish each serving with cilantro.
Vegetarian and Vegan Citrus Sesame Kale Recipe
Yeah, me too. As I mentioned on Friday, our Thanksgiving dinner consisted of some semi-Thanksgivingish things from Whole Foods (twice baked potatoes? Why not!), so we just got enough for one meal and we didn’t have any leftovers. I was feeling pretty good about not having days worth of mashed potatoes or pie in the fridge, but then I made brownies. Sugary, buttery super rich Mexican chocolate brownies.
Ugh, you guys, no more brownies. Or sweet potatoes. Or stuffing. No! More! Can we just talk about salads and ice water this week?
The good thing about holiday over-indulgence is that when it’s all over, I feel more motivated to eat healthy. There’s nothing like a night spent regretting eating that extra Thanksgiving brownie (and topping it with gelato–oh yeah, that happened) to help get you back on track, right?
So here’s a recipe that’s light and healthy–Citrus Sesame Kale. And it’s also easy, because after Thanksgiving, I bet you don’t want to spend a lot of time cooking either. This serves 4 as a side dish, but you can add some baked tofu or marinated tempeh and it could easily serve two as a light main dish.
Kale is definitely my favorite green. There are other greens that I eat because they’re healthy even though I don’t really like them (spinach, I’m looking at you), but kale is a green I will actually look forward to eating. Some people say kale is bitter, but I’ve never found that to be true. (I’m not saying they’re liars, but I think I might be missing a tastebud or something.) To me, it’s earthy and chewy and delightful. Yes, delightful!
There’s nothing creamy in here. Nothing rich. It’s just what you need when you’ve got a post-holiday food hangover.
Citrus Sesame Kale
A light, easy Asian-inspired side dish made with kale, fresh orange juice, and sesame seeds.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings
- 2 tsp. sesame oil (I used toasted)
- 1 tsp. grated ginger
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 bunch kale (about 3/4 lb.), tough stems removed & leaves torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1 1/2 tsp. soy sauce or tamari
- 1 tbsp. fresh orange juice
- 2 tsp. sesame seeds
- pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
- Heat sesame oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat. Add ginger and garlic; cook for 30 seconds, or until fragrant, stirring constantly. Add kale and stir until coated with oil. Stir in soy sauce and orange juice; cover and cook for 3 minutes, or until kale is softened.
- Stir in sesame seeds and red pepper flakes (if using) and serve.
How to Transform Coconut Yogurt Into a Creamy Vegan Tzatziki
I used to love tzatziki, which is a Greek yogurt dip (also called cacik in Turkish). But where I am in Australia there have been no really good vegan versions brought out, so I decided to make my own.
Surprisingly, it was super simple and is a very versatile dip or sauce. You can have it served simple and healthy (like I have) with some veggie sticks. Or you could add it a falafel burger, a wrap or a kebab or serve with some crackers at your next BBQ or party with some friends!
This recipe uses coconut but you could work with any plain/unsweetened yogurt that you have on hand (or make).
easy Vegan Tzatziki with crudités
- 150 grams natural coconut yoghurt (make sure it is natural, a flavoured version will give it a funky taste)
- 1 teaspoon finely grated cucumber
- 2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoon fresh dill
- 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
- 6 carrot sticks (should roughly be one carrot)
- 6 cucumber sticks (should roughly be 1/2 a cucumber)
- pinch of cracked black pepper
- pinch of sea salt
- Put yoghurt into a bowl and mash it up.
- Add in the lemon juice, dill, grated cucumber, garlic, pepper and salt. Stir very well.
- Check the taste, add in a bit more lemon and/or dill if you need some more flavour.
- Place into a serving bowl or into a container if you are prepping it.
- Chop up your veggie sticks.
- Serve, or save!
This recipe was republished with permission from Become a Plant-Based Babe.
Oil and Sugar-Free Vegan Cinnamon Pear Chutney
This spicy vegan pear chutney strikes just the right balance between sweetness and spice. The sweet, juicy pears are complemented perfectly by the subtle spiciness of ginger. Enjoy this spicy pear chutney over some toasted sourdough bread, on top of porridge or with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream!
When the days are starting to get shorter again and the leaves start to change color, that’s when you’ll find more and more pears in the supermarket. Pears are in season from the end of August until end of December. They come in a range of different colors, flavors, and textures.
You can enjoy pears in both sweet and savory dishes, which makes them very versatile ingredients. Caramelized pears make a great pair with chocolate or ice cream. Or you could add fresh, crisp pears on top of a salad with some walnuts and cashew cheese.
Making this spicy pear chutney is super easy – all you need is a chopping board and a large pot. Simply put all of the ingredients into the pot, bring to a simmer and then you can sit back and relax. You don’t need a blender or mixer since the pears will become very soft. Soft enough that you can mash them slightly with a fork.
In this recipe, I’ve added raisins and fresh rosemary to add some more flavors. If you don’t like raisins, you can alternatively add cranberries or some dried apricot cut into small chunks. If you’re not a huge fan of rosemary, you can go for a more christmassy vibe and add even more cinnamon, ground cloves, and ground nutmeg.
If you want something less sweet and a little more sour, you could also sub half of the pears with apples. You might need to cook the chutney a little longer for the apples to become soft but all other steps stay the same.
oil-free, refined sugar-free, vegan cinnamon pear chutney
- 800 grams ripe pears
- 20 grams agave syrup
- 30 grams ginger
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground clove
- 50 grams raisins
- 50 grams apple cider vinegar
- Wash and dice the pears. Cook them in a large pot over medium high heat together with the agave syrup for 5 minutes. It’s okay if they brown a little (we want that!). If they start to burn, turn down the heat or add a little water.
- Mince the ginger and add to the pot, then cook for another 5 minutes.
- Finely chop the fresh rosemary. Add all the remaining ingredients (the spices, raisins and apple cider vinegar) to the pot.
- Stir and cook for another 10 minutes on medium heat until the liquid has evaporated. Stir occasionally to prevent from burning.
- Now you can mash the pears a little with a fork if you like. Serve warm over ice cream or bread or let cool completely and store in the fridge.
You could also use any other sweetener instead of agave, such as maple syrup.
Store this in the fridge in a glass container for up to two weeks.
This recipe was republished with permission from Sarah’s Vegan Guide.
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