Monday, October 2, 2017

Vegetarian 'Steak'

Growing up a Vegetarian with parents who raised chickens for their eggs, cows for their milk, cream, butter and buttermilk. A garden was a must for all the beautiful vegetables and fruits, even nuts to add to some very tasty dishes. My Mother was an amazing cook, creating delicious meals for our family. Growing up we were surrounded by so much Love, which was given freely along with hugs, kisses and also through the meals that my Mother prepared. This I carry on for my family and friends. Creating healthy vegetarian meals is always an adventure, but also a way to express my Love to all that 'sample' my cooking. Create, share and enjoy this recipe for Vegetarian 'steak', use your imagination to add this to many recipes, soups, stews, sandwiches - and share your Love.


The ingredients you will need.

Chickpeas are mashed.

Vital Wheat Gluten is mixed with the dry ingredients.

The mashed chickpeas are added to the dry ingredients.

Everything is mixed together except the broth.

The broth is added and the dough is kneaded ready to be cut into 'steaks'.

The simmering liquid is ready for the 'steaks'.

The dough is cut into 'steaks'.

'Steaks' are pressed and ready for to be simmered.

'Steaks' are in the simmering liquid for 30 minutes

Cover pan and set timer

'Steaks' after the 30 minutes cooking time.

Vegetarian 'Steaks' fragrant and full of flavour, ready for your creations.


1 cup vital wheat gluten
2-4 Tbsp. tomato paste (I used my own ground tomato powder)
1/2 tsp paprika
1 Tbsp. soy sauce (I used Mushroom Soy Sauce)
1 tsp garlic powder
Pinch salt
2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed - mashed (or kidney beans)
1 medium onion, diced fine
2 cloves garlic, diced
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 cups water

Mix together dry ingredients. 
Mash chickpeas and mix into dry ingredients using spoon or your hands until it is crumbly and incorporated well.
In a separate bowl, mix together the 1/2 cup vegetable broth, soy sauce
Add the wet ingredients and knead 3-5 minutes.

In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, mix together the rest of the vegetable broth, water, diced onions, garlic, soy sauce. Bring to a boil and turn heat to a simmer.
Place the patties into the simmering mixture and cover. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Drain and set aside.

In a sauté pan, add coconut butter or oil of your choice and heat on medium heat. Add the patties and sauté until patties are nicely browned on both sides.

'We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.'

Friday, September 29, 2017

Chocolate - Beet Brownies

The beets in the garden are beautiful at this time of the year. Borscht is made using this vegetable and dessert can be made with beets as well. These Chocolate-Beet Brownies are the perfect addition to your meal. Moist, chocolatey and nicely sweet. Enjoy.

Chocolate Beet Brownies

The ingredients you will need.


Wet and dry ingredients are ready as well as the beets.

Batter is all mixed together and in the pan ready for the oven.

Chocolate Beet Brownies, so moist and chocolatey.

1/4 cup 
1/4 tsp 
1 cup 
Chocolate chips
1/2 cup 
2 tsp 
2 cups 
peeled and grated raw beets
  • WHISK flour with cocoa powder and salt in a medium bowl.
  • MICROWAVE chocolate in a small bowl until melted, about 1 min. Stir in oil until smooth.
  • WHISK eggs with granulated sugar and vanilla in a large bowl.
  • WHISK in chocolate mixture, then fold in flour mixture and 2 cups grated beets until just combined. Scrape into an oiled 8 × 8-in. metal baking pan.
  • BAKE at 325F until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean, 45 to 50 min. Cool on a rack before cutting into squares.
'The secret of life is not about knowing what to say or do. It's not about doing love or loss right. Life cannot be handled. The secret is simply to show up. It's about witnessing it all, even the pain, and letting it touch you and make you not harder, but more tender. Showing up, feeling it all—this is my new kind of prayer.
I call it praying attention.'

Monday, September 11, 2017

Fermented/Pickled Tomatoes

Fermented/Pickled Tomatoes

The ingredients you will need.

First layer of horseradish leaves, garlic and celery leaves.

Tomatoes are layered into the jar, ready for the brine.


 For 1 gallon
Horseradish leaves
Lots of garlic cloves
Dill weed or seed

1T. Salt
 2c. water

Bring salt and water to a boil until salt dissolves.
Arrange tomatoes, horseradish, celery leaves and dill in layers in your gallon, jar or crock.
Pour brine over to cover tops and cover with a cheesecloth or plastic wrap.
Let sit on your counter until bubbles start to form then store in the fridge or cool spot.
Tomatoes should be ready to eat in a week or two depending on how warm your house is. Just taste one after a week until you like the 'sourness'

"The influence of each human being on others in this life is a kind of immortality."
- John Quincy Adams (1767 - 1848)
6th President of the United States

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Snacking Tomatoes

Snacking Tomatoes

A friend brought me a large box of beautiful grape tomatoes. We enjoying eating these fresh as a snack and love them in a salad. I decided to process some into Snacking Tomatoes. My Mother used to make delicious tomatoes that we snacked on by using up her smaller tomatoes, added garlic and tomato juice. They were so good. I made up several jars with the grape tomatoes, no juice but they will still be delicious. I blanched the grape tomatoes, the skins slipped off easily, added 2-3 cloves per quart jar and a teaspoon of pickling salt. Processed them in a water bath for 20 minutes. Can't wait to try some soon. The next batch will have some basil, garlic and baby onions. Can you imagine this on your next pasta dish?  All you would need to do is drizzle the dish with your favourite olive oil.  Thank you Mom for all that you taught up while we were growing up and as adults. Miss you lots but know that when I am creating in my kitchen, you are there by my side.

Vegetarian/Vegan Meatballs

Sharing recipes, creating new ones or re-creating old ones. This is what I love to do. I am thankful for family and friends when they think of me - and a recipe too. My sister Wendy shared this recipe with me and I made up a batch for the weekend. Easy and very versatile, add in your own seasonings, a bit of heat if you like but do make your family a batch soon.

Vegetarian/Vegan Meatballs

The ingredients you will need.

The beans, broth, and other wet ingredients are blended smooth.

The potato is cooked, cooled and mashed.

The dry ingredients and whisked together and combined with the wet.

The 'dough' is mixed and shaped into meatballs.

 Vegetarian/Vegan Meatballs baked and ready for a sauce.

BBQ Vegetarian Meatballs with sautéed onions.

1 medium-large potato (about 225 grams / 8 oz), peeled and diced
½ cup (100 grams) cooked white beans
1 medium onion
3 cloves of garlic, minced or grated
2 tablespoons soy sauce
½ cup (120 ml) vegetable stock
1 cup (130 grams) vital wheat gluten
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons dried oregano
3 teaspoons dried basil
4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
Pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400F°.
Boil the potato until soft. Drain and mash. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, combine the beans, one quarter of the onion (roughly chopped), 3 roughly chopped cloves of garlic, the soy sauce and vegetable stock in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
In a bowl, combine the vital wheat gluten, paprika, oregano, basil, nutritional yeast, mashed potato and liquid mixture. Mix to combine then use your hands to mash the mixture together into a dough. 
Tear off portions of the dough and roll them into meatballs. Place them on a lightly greased or paper-lined pan and bake for 20 minutes, flipping them over at 10 minutes. You can eat them still warm from the oven or you can let them cool and reheat them in the sauce later. I find that letting them cool helps them firm up to a more meaty texture.
Add your sauce, salt, pepper and meatballs. Simmer for a few minutes until the meatballs are heated through then serve.

"Your mind will always believe everything you tell it."
Feed it Hope
Feed it Truth
Feed it with Love."

Lentil Barley Salad

Our family loves salads and I love to find new and different recipes. This is a very easy and flavourful salad. If you love garlic and fresh herbs then you have to make a batch.
With all the fresh cucumber, tomatoes and peppers in my garden I added them to this salad.
Lots of crunch and very filling. The salad is delicious as is without these added vegetables. The added barley makes this an complete protein salad. Make a bowl for your family or friends.

Lentil Barley Salad

Lentil Barley Salad with feta, tomatoes and cucumbers

The ingredients you will need

The herbs are minced.

Garlic is minced.

Broth is added

Garlic is sautéed.

Dressing ingredients are added and simmered a minute.

Lentils are cooked.

Herbs and dressing added to lentils.

The barley is cooked and added to the lentil herb mixture.

Lentil Barley Salad

These are my add-ins...sweet red pepper, cucumber, feta and tomatoes.


Ingredients: 1 C green lentils (or use brown lentils, which will cook a bit more quickly)
1 cup pearl barley, cooked and cooled.
2-3 T + 2 T extra-virgin olive oil
10-12 cloves garlic, very finely minced (use more or less to taste and depending on the size of the garlic cloves)
finely chopped fresh mint (I used about 3/4 cup)
finely chopped fresh parsley (I used about 3/4 cup)
(use more or less herbs to taste, depending on availability and how much you like fresh herbs)
4 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice (or slightly less if you're not a big lemon an like I am)
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Add-Ins: Optional - tomatoes, cucumber sweet pepper and feta cheese

Rinse lentils and pick out broken ones or any small stones. Put lentils in small pan with 3 cups water, bring to a boil, then simmer gently until lentils are tender, about 25-30 minutes. (Actual cooking time will depend on the freshness of the lentils. Older lentils will take longer to cook.)

While lentils cook, very finely minced 10-12 fresh garlic cloves. Heat 2-3 T olive oil in small frying pan, add garlic, and cook over very low heat until garlic is very fragrant but barely starting to get some color, about 7-8 minutes. Turn off heat.

While garlic cooks, finely chop desired amount of fresh mint and parsley. Whisk together lemon juice, other 2 T olive oil, ground cumin and ground allspice.

When lentils are tender, drain well and transfer to a bowl add in the cooked barley. Turn heat back on under pan with the garlic, add lemon juice dressing mixture and heat about 1 minute. Pour heated dressing over the lentils, then gently stir to combine so all the lentils and barley are well-coated with the dressing. 

Stir in fresh herbs, then season the salad well with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

This salad will keep in the fridge for a day or two, but leftovers will taste best if you let them come to room temperature. You may want to add some fresh squeezed lemon juice to brighten the flavor when you eat it.

"Many a friendship -- long, loyal, and self-sacrificing -- rested at first upon no thicker a foundation than a kind word."

- Frederick William Faber (1814 - 1863)
English Priest and Hymn Writer

Monday, September 4, 2017

Zucchini Corn Patties

Zucchini....a summertime vegetable that is so versatile. Grill it, roast it slice it, pickle it or make it into a delicious patty. This recipe has some of my family's favorite things...corn and dill. A simple meal to prepare, serve these cheesy Zucchini Corn Patties with a simple yogurt/dill sauce or your homemade salsa along with a tomato/cucumber/onion salad. With any leftovers use these patties as your 'bun' and add a slice of cheese and make it into a 'grilled cheese' sandwich. Whichever way you choose to use this recipe, I hope you have fun creating a meal for your family or friends.


The ingredients you will need.

All the ingredients are mixed together to form the batter.

Oil is hot and ready for the batter.

These are browning up nicely and smell amazing.

Both sides are nicely browned ready for sampling.

Quick and easy in as little as 20 minutes dinner is ready.
These are the fried version.

Zucchini Corn Patties....the oven baked version.

Serve with some salsa or a favorite sauce.


1 1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. baking powder
salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp. Butter, melted
2 large eggs
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. milk
1 1/2 cup grated zucchini
2 cups corn kernels, fresh, canned or frozen
1/2 medium onion, diced finely
1/4 cup dill minced
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/8 cup shredded Parmesan
1/4 cup shredded Asiago cheese ( or your favourite sharp cheese)
Whisk together flour, baking powder, shredded cheeses, dill, 2 teaspoons salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl. In a small bowl whisk eggs, melted butter and milk. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture until just combined. Stir in grated zucchini, onions and corn until well blended.
In a large non stick frying pan add 2-3 Tablespoons of oil and heat on medium heat and drop large spoonfuls of zucchini/corn batter, flatten to 1/4 inch thick and sauté until nicely browned. ( about 2 minutes per side)Flip over and cook the other side until golden brown.
I like them baked as well. For baking: preheat oven to 350 degrees and drop zucchini/corn batter onto a greased parchment paper lined baking sheet. Shape into 1/4 inch thick round patties and bake for about 15- 20 minutes, flipping halfway through until patties are a nice golden brown.
Serve with salsa, or a yogurt/dill sauce

"Many a friendship -- long, loyal, and self-sacrificing -- rested at first upon no thicker a foundation than a kind word."
- Frederick William Faber (1814 - 1863)
English Priest and Hymn Writer