Vegan French Onion Soup

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganI’ll be honest, I never really ate French onion soup before my vegan days, so I’m not sure how it’s supposed to taste. My guys were the ones to decide if this one passed the test. The Ninth Grader liked it a lot, but found it a little salty (I used broth and miso). The Husband liked it, but didn’t care for the vegan cheese—he admitted that the  real cheese is what made it so great before. I myself, loved the vegan cheese and I found that it all worked so well. Of course, the salt-factor didn’t seem to be a problem for me, which I’m thinking is because I spent the day (from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.) walking over 15 miles along one of Fort Collins’ trails and pretty much sweated out any salt, so I was needing it! You can certainly just use water for this recipe. This recipe serves 3.

INGREDIENTS:
3 Tbs olive oil
2 extra large onions, sliced (about 8 cups)
4 C water (or broth)
1/3 C miso
3 Tbs water or broth
1 Tbs thyme
Black pepper (and salt, if needed)
Vegan cheese
Croutons
1/2 a loaf of sourdough or French bread or baguette, sliced
Olive oil

DIRECTIONS:

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganHeat the 3 tablespoons of oil in a large soup pot and add the onions. Cook them over medium heat for about 30-40 minutes, or until they soften and begin to brown.

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganMeanwhile, make the croutons. Lay them out on a baking sheet, brush with oil and place under the broiler until browned. Flip them, brush with oil and broil again.

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganIn a small bowl, combine the miso, thyme and tablespoons of water or broth.

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganAdd the water/broth and miso mixture to the onions and bring to a boil.

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganFill bowls with the soup, top with the croutons and cover with cheese. I used the Daiya shreds and also sliced up some of the Daiya Swiss slices:

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganPlace the bowls onto a baking sheet and place under the broiler for just 1-2 minutes.

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean VeganEnjoy!

Vegan French Onion Soup -- Epicurean Vegan

Vegan Deep Dish Pizza

Vegan Deep Dish Pizza -- Epicurean VeganThere are certainly more than one way to make pizza—this one in a 9×13″ baking dish, plus you can use whatever pizza toppings you want. I used Pillsbury’s pizza crust, and yes, I know . . . even though it’s vegan, it’s not the healthiest food, but it’s definitely not a staple at our house and it worked perfect for this meal. Whichever crust you decide to use, you’ll enjoy this deep dish classic!

Vegan Deep Dish Pizza -- Epicurean Vegan

INGREDIENTS:

1 Pillsbury Pizza Crust
1 Tbs olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, cut into thin strips, then cut in half
2 small zucchini, sliced thin
2 C mushrooms, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
28-oz can diced tomatoes, with juices
24 slices of veggie pepperoni
1 Tbs Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper, to taste
Daiya cheese mozzarella shreds
Optional: 2 Field Roast sausages, Italian flavor, crumbled

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 400. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and then add the garlic; cook 2 minutes. Add the onions and bell pepper and cook 5 minutes, or until they begin to soften. Add the zucchini and mushrooms and cook another 5 minutes.

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Add the can of tomatoes and combine well. Let it simmer for 10 minutes.

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Meanwhile, line the bottom of a 9×13″ baking dish with the pizza dough. It doesn’t need to be perfect—as seen by mine . . .

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Bake for 6-8 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375. Next, sprinkle a little Daiya cheese on the crust, then spoon the veggie mixture on top of the crust. I left a little bit of an edge all the way around.

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Top with some more Daiya cheese and the veggie pepperoni.

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Bake for 20 minutes. Cut and enjoy!

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Roman Pasta Soup with Potatoes

Roman Pasta Soup with Potatoes -- Epicurean VeganThis is definitely a carb-lover’s soup! You certainly don’t have to use pasta and potatoes, but I think they work really well together in this soup. I used to make this soup a lot about ten or twelve years ago, but sort of forgot about it, especially since it used real bacon, but like most meat dishes, this one is easy to veganize. It’s incredibly easy to make and versatile, too. I think some chopped kale or mushrooms would be great additions.

INGREDIENTS:

1 Tbs olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 veggie bacon slices, diced
1 large onion, chopped
1/3 C fresh parsley, chopped
8-9 C vegetable broth
3 medium russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced
2 C pasta shells, uncooked
Black pepper, to taste
Daiya mozzarella

DIRECTIONS:

In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil and garlic. Add the onions and veggie bacon and cook 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley and cook another 2 minutes. Add the potatoes and broth and cook over medium heat about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are slightly tender. Add the pasta and cook 10 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked through. Season with black pepper and serve with Daiya cheese on top. Enjoy!

Lasagna Soup

Lasagna Soup -- Epicurean VeganWell this was unexpected. So earlier this afternoon, I was reading though the 131 blog entries from my Google blog reader (after being out of town for a while) and came across this recipe from That Was Vegan? I immediately bookmarked it. Then I realized I had hungry he-gans to feed and not much to work with. I wasn’t planning on going to the store until tomorrow. Anyhow, it was love at first read . . . even though I didn’t have all the ingredients for the original recipe, I figured I could make it work with what I had. I even borrowed a can of diced tomatoes from my good friend (and neighbor). (Thanks, Jessie)! You don’t have to use lasagna noodles, but if you’re like me, chances are, you’ll have an opened box of lasagna noodles leftover from a bygone (yet fabulous) lasagna. This is the perfect soup to use those rogue noodles! I added a couple of Field Roast sausages and made some other alterations and it came out fantastic. Try this with some diced zucchini or mushrooms for some variety.

INGREDIENTS:
1 C onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 Field Roast sausages, Italian variety
1 Tbs olive oil
2-1/2 tsp dried oregano
3/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp dried rosemary
28-oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
9-10 lasagna noodles
7 C water
1 vegetable bouillon cube
1/2 C spaghetti sauce
2 bay leaves
1-1/2 Tbs dried basil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Daiya cheese

DIRECTIONS:
In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil, garlic, Field Roast, and onion.

Lasagna Soup -- Epicurean Vegan

Cook for 5 minutes, or until the onions are tender.

Add the oregano, red pepper flakes, and rosemary; stir to combine. Add the diced tomatoes (juice and all), spaghetti sauce, 6 cups of water (you may want to add more later), the two bay leaves, and the bouillon (I chopped it up first); bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Lasagna Soup -- Epicurean VeganBreak up the lasagna noodles and add to the pot. Let simmer 10-12 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked (you may need to add more water). Remove the bay leaves and serve with a sprinkle of Daiya cheese. Enjoy!

Field Roast and Spinach Enchiladas (a.k.a. Best. Enchiladas. Ever.)

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean VeganThese were seriously enchilada magic. They were also very easy to make, which may have been because The Eighth Grader helped out. With or without help in the kitchen, you’ll have plenty of help eating these! This is also a great dish to trick those meat-lover friends and family and later, you can do the happy “Ha-Ha That Was Vegan And You Loved It” dance. (But try not to gloat too much). ;-)  The homemade roasted red pepper sauce is so simple to make and rounds out the entire dish rather nicely.

INGREDIENTS:

Sauce:

28-oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
1/2 C vegetable broth
2-1/2 tsp Ancho chile pepper
1-1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp sugar
1-1/2 tsp salt
2 jarred roasted red peppers
2-3 large cloves of garlic

Filling:

2 tsp olive oil
2 Field Roast sausages, Chipotle style, crumbled
1 C onion, diced
5-6 C fresh spinach, torn into pieces, or chopped
1 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

The rest:

6 large flour tortillas
Daiya cheese shreds

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350. In a medium saucepan, combine the diced tomatoes, broth, Ancho chile pepper, cumin, oregano, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook five minutes, or until the onion softens and begins to brown. Add the Field Roast and black beans and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

While the filling is cooking, place the roasted red peppers and garlic in the food processor:

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Add just half of the sauce and puree until smooth, then return it to the saucepan and combine with the other half of the sauce.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Let it simmer for 5-10 minutes. Stir the spinach into the filling mixture. You may need to add a tiny bit of water to get the steam going. I poured a little vegetable broth in. Cook until the spinach just begins to wilt, then remove from the heat.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

To assemble the enchiladas, place about a third of the sauce on the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. Fill each tortilla evenly with the filling and top with a sprinkle of Daiya cheese. I used a combo of cheddar and jack.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Roll up tightly and place fold-side down in the pan.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Top with the remaining sauce and sprinkle some more Daiya on top.

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

Cover and bake for 40 minutes. Top with some Tofutti sour cream, cilantro, and green onions (diced avocado is great, too)!

Enjoy!

Field Roast & Spinach Enchiladas -- Epicurean Vegan

French Bread Pizzas

French Bread Pizzas -- Epicurean VeganNow this is pizza you have eat with a fork and a knife. These really are a no-brainer to make, but I’ll post them because sometimes the easiest and quickest meals can be the hardest to come up with. I didn’t feel like taking the time to make dough, let it rise, knead it . . . so using French bread is a way around that. Just add your favorite toppings . . .

French Bread Pizzas -- Epicurean Vegan

 . . . and bake at 375 for 10-15 minutes. Enjoy!

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean VeganQuinoa and black beans are two proteins that are just meant to be together. The original recipe for the burgers is from Vegetarian Times, but I made a few alterations. I also added a slice of Daiya cheese (Havarti style wedge) and I made some guac to top it off. The recipe also calls for steak seasoning, and as a vegan, I don’t typically stock up on that stuff, so I went with a blend of Old Bay and a Garlic and Wine seasoning. And don’t expect a dry consistency with these burgers—they’re crispy on the outside and soft and moist inside. These can be made ahead, and even frozen, so they make a great lunch as well when you don’t have a lot of time.

 

INGREDIENTS:
Burgers:
1/2 C quinoa (I used a blend of red, wheat, and black quinoa which I found in the bulk section of the store)
1 C onion, chopped fine
6 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped fine
1 15-oz can black beans, drained, rinsed, and divided
2 cloves garlic, crushed or minced
1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1 tsp Garlic & Wine seasoning
1/4 C flax seed
5-6 hamburger buns
Guacamole:
2 ripe avocados, peeled and seeded
1/2 C diced tomatoes
2 Tbs red onion, diced
1 Tbs lime juice
1/4 C cilantro, optional
2 tsp Mt. Elbert All Purpose Seasoning from  Savory

 

DIRECTIONS:
In a small saucepan, combine 1-1/2 cups of water with the quinoa and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a skillet, combine the onion and sun-dried tomatoes. The oil left on the tomatoes will be plenty of oil for sauteeing. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until the onion softens. Add 3/4 cup of the black beans, garlic, seasoning, and 1-1/2 cup of water. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until most of the liquid is absorbed.

Transfer the bean mixture to a food processor, along with 3/4 cup of the quinoa and process until smooth.

Transfer to a bowl and add the rest of the black beans and quinoa. I also added some flax seed to the mix. Season with salt and pepper.

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean Vegan(Yes, I know, it looks really unappetizing right now…)

I made these earlier in the day, so I covered the mixture and let it cool in the fridge for about an hour. When you’re ready to make the patties, preheat the oven to 350. Spray a pan with cooking spray and set aside. Make 5-8 patties (depending on how large you make them) and place onto the pan.

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean VeganBake for 20-22 minutes, then flip and bake another 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the guac, mash the avocados with a pastry blender. Add the other ingredients and combine thoroughly.

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean Vegan

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean Vegan

If using Daiya cheese, throw a slice or two onto the burgers during the last minute of baking—it’ll melt quickly.

Enjoy!

Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole -- Epicurean Vegan

Mexican Pasta Bake

Mexican Pasta Bake -- Epicurean VeganAs you may recall, a few months ago, I had decided to give up wheat and soy . . . yeah, uh, the soy part has been surprisingly easy. It’s the wheat part. I don’t know how you gluten-free folks do it! Especially if you’re vegan and gluten-free! I’ve certainly laid off of it, but there’s just no way I could swear off of it for good. As for soy, I’ll have the occasional miso or Tofutti sour cream. Otherwise, it’s a no-soy zone for me. For this meal, I broke all my rules by using regular pasta, Boca crumbles, and Tofutti sour cream. *GASP* Yes, I fudged and it was damn good. This creamy, spicy casserole was delicious and I’m thrilled with the results.

INGREDIENTS:

13.25 oz pkg penne pasta
1 Tbs olive oil (I used chipotle-flavored)
1 bag Boca crumbles (a half a bag would probably be plenty)
2 C mushrooms, sliced
1 medium zucchini, sliced, then quartered
2-3 C kale, chopped or torn

Sauce:

1 10-oz can Rotel Original with diced tomatoes & green chilies
seasoning packet (either for tacos, burritos, or fajitas)
1/2 C Tofutti sour cream
1/4 C nutritional yeast
1/4 C almond milk
1/2 C Daiya cheddar (you’ll need just a bit more for sprinkling on top)

The rest: (optional toppings)

Guacamole, or diced avocados, black olives, sliced green onion, fresh cilantro

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375. Cook the pasta according to package instructions. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and add the Boca crumbles; cook for 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and zucchini and cook 7-10 minutes, or until the veggies are tender. Stir in the kale and cook until it softens and wilts.

Mexican Pasta Bake -- Epicurean Vegan

Meanwhile, whisk together the sauce ingredients in a medium bowl.

Mexican Pasta Bake -- Epicurean Vegan

Return the drained pasta to the pot (or you can use a large mixing bowl) and combine it with both the sauce and the veggie/Boca mixture. Pour it into a 9×13 baking dish and sprinkle some Daiya cheese on top.

Mexican Pasta Bake -- Epicurean Vegan

Cover and bake for 20 minutes. I made some guacamole, so I added a dollop on top with some green onion. Enjoy!

Mexican Pasta Bake -- Epicurean Vegan

Vegan Twice-Baked Potatoes

Vegan Twice-Baked Potatoes -- Epicurean VeganI should clarify: Once nuked, once baked. This is another kid creation that The Seventh Grader took on. It was one of those nights I forced the family to fend for themselves and this is what the 13-year-old wanted. With very little instruction, he made dinner in about 20 minutes. He a genius. (He takes after me, you know). He may have gotten a little heavy handed with the Tofutti sour cream and (vegan) bacon bits, but who wouldn’t? I stole a bite and wow! He’s cooking next time!

INGREDIENTS: (He made one potato, so I’m giving you the gist–you can figure it out for more than one) ;-)

1 russet potato
1/4 C Tofutti sour cream (my suggested amount)
1 Tbs Earth Balance
1/8-1/4 C Daiya cheddar cheese shreds
Dash or two of garlic salt
Dash (or several) of veggie (TVP-based) bacon bits
Paprika
(I think some chopped chives or green onions would be great, too)

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375. Cook the tater in the microwave. (Be sure to fork it several times first). Once it’s soft, cut it in half and scoop out the innards. Be careful not to puncture the skin.

Vegan Twice-Baked Potatoes -- Epicurean Vegan

 Transfer to a bowl and add the other ingredients, except the paprika. Mix together thoroughly.

Vegan Twice-Baked Potatoes -- Epicurean Vegan

Fill each potato skin evenly with the filling.

Vegan Twice-Baked Potatoes -- Epicurean Vegan

Bake for 12-15 minutes. If you want to brown the top, place under the broiler for a minute or two. Enjoy!

Field Roast and Veggie Tacos

Field Roast and Veggie Tacos -- Epicurean Vegan

I’ve used Field Roast in breakfast burritos, so why not tacos? ( As you can see, I had a taco fiesta foul with one of the shells, but it worked out ok. :) ) Somehow, zucchini reproduced in my fridge so I had to use some of them up—they’re ideal for tacos.  I also had some chipotle-flavored olive oil from Rocky Mountain Olive Oil Company—the perfect opportunity to use it.

INGREDIENTS:

1 Tbs olive oil
2 tsp garlic, minced
4 Field Roast Chipotle-flavored sausages, thawed and crumbled
4 medium zucchinis, cut into sticks
2 red bell peppers, sliced
1 onion, sliced
Corn taco shells
All the other fixins (optional): Daiya cheese, Tofutti sour cream, avocado slices, fresh cilantro, and salsa

DIRECTIONS:

In a skillet, heat the olive oil and garlic. Add the onions, and cook 4-5 minutes.

Field Roast and Veggie Tacos -- Epicurean Vegan

Next, add the zucchini, peppers, and Field Roast. You don’t necessarily have to add the sausages at this point since it’s only a matter of heating them through, but I like to get the flavors incorporated with the veggies early on.

Field Roast and Veggie Tacos -- Epicurean Vegan

Cook over medium heat, stirring often, for about 20 minutes, or until tender. I like to cover and let the steam help cook the veggies. Serve with your favorite taco fixings and enjoy!