Greek Chili Served Over Linguine

Greek Chili

I love the “5 Ingredients” feature in “Vegetarian Times.” It features dishes that each only contain five ingredients. And in the most recent issue, the 5-ingredient theme centered around chili. We tried the Smoky Chipotle-Kidney Bean Chili last week and it was pretty good. I could see building on it with more flavor when I make it again, but it’s perfect if you’re looking for a healthy, budget-friendly recipe.

This week, we decided to make the Greek-Style Chili. It’s basically chickpeas, diced tomatoes with garlic and onion, a pinch of cayenne, fresh spinach leaves and crumbled feta. (I couldn’t find vegan feta, so I just crumbled Daiya on top. Not really the same, flavor-wise, but it was still good.) The recipe says you can serve it over spaghetti, linguine or rice. As you can see, we decided to go with the linguine. The final result wasn’t what I typically think of as chili; I couldn’t imagine eating it by itself without more seasoning. But combined with the pasta, it was a light and easy weeknight dish that I would definitely make again.

Menu for the Week: Pumpkin Muffins, Chickpea Salad and Sesame Tofu

Hello there! I hope you all are well. I’ve been in kind of a cooking rut the past few weeks, but the cooler temperatures are inspiring me to get back into the kitchen. Thank you for being patient with me.

I don’t have any food pics just yet, but I thought to get started I’d post my menu for this week with the hope that maybe it will help you plan yours. One day, when I win the lottery and don’t have to work, I’ll actually be able to put together full menus and grocery lists like I intended with this blog, but, for now, this will have to do.

Anyway, here are my planned meals for the next week and I plan on taking pics of each to post on here soon:

Breakfast:

Pumpkin Bran Muffins — from “Vegan Brunch
Oatmeal and toast w/ pecans and maple syrup
Yogurt w/ Maple Almond Granola — from “Vegan Soul Kitchen

Lunch:

Chickpea salad sandwiches w/ tortilla chips — my own recipe, which I’ll post soon
Split Pea and Apple Soup w/ cheese and crackers — from “The Vegan Slow Cooker

Dinner:

Sesame-Crusted Tofu  w/ Lemongrass-Orange Reduction, served w/ brown rice, edamame and gyoza — from October Vegetarian Times
Chickpea Tomato Soup w/ grilled cheese and pickles — from “Vegan Yum Yum” (She’s back, by the way!!)
Tempeh Helper w/ salad — from “Appetite for Reduction

Vegan Weekly Roundup: Cobb Salad, Gin Fizz and Deep-Fried Goodness

This Chickpea Cobb Salad looks amazing (minus the egg)!

Holy crap. Deep-friend Vegan Mac and Cheese.

“Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day!”? I think I just found my next cookbook.

This Blackberry Gin Fizz looks so refreshing.

This guide to ingredient substitutions offers lots of vegan ideas.

I can’t wait to use my black salt to make these tofu omelets.

And here’s a little Jimmy Smith to go with that gin fizz.

Chickpea Noodle Soup

My husband has been sick all weekend, so instead of making the Chickpea Picatta from Appetite for Reduction like I had originally planned, I decided to make a big pot of brothy soup to help him feel better. (I took the recipe straight from Veganomicon with no adaptation, so I’m not going to post it here. And, unfortunately, Isa mentions the Chickpea Noodle Soup, but doesn’t list the recipe on her website.) I made it a long time ago and loved it, so I’m not sure why I haven’t made it since. But with my husband not feeling well, and the temperatures here hovering in the 30’s (is it spring, yet?), I figured that this was the perfect comfort food for the weekend.

I highly recommend buying Veganomicon if you’re into vegan cooking. It, along with The Joy of Vegan Baking, were my first vegan cookbooks and I still use them every week for inspiration.

Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

I know what you’re thinking: “Cheese? I thought this was a vegan blog.” Don’t worry! The meal you see above is 100 percent vegan. If you haven’t discovered Daiya, I highly recommend that you do so, and soon! It’s pretty incredible as a cheese substitute; it melts easily and tastes like the real deal. And as you can see, it works perfectly for a grilled cheese.

Tomato soup and grilled cheese are a comfort food staple. This version is actually pretty healthy and very quick to make. For the soup, I modified Vegan Yum Yum’s Spicy Tomato Chickpea Soup. As its name suggests, the original recipe is more of a spicy tomato soup rather than a sweet one, so I added some roasted red peppers that I had leftover from my Roasted Red Pepper and Hummus Wraps to mellow out some of the acidity. And like most soups, this soup tastes better the next day; I recommend making it the day before you plan on serving it (though it’s still good the same day).

Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

Serves 2 + leftovers

Ingredients:

5 tbsp olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
4 garlic cloves, diced
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp red chili flakes
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp turmeric
2 15oz cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 large roasted red pepper, coarsely chopped
2 28oz cans of diced tomatoes
2 tsp salt
4 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 cups hot water
black pepper to taste

4 slices sprouted wheat bread (I used Ezekiel 4:9 Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Bread)
1 package Daiya cheddar
Earth Balance margarine

Directions:

Heat the oil in deep soup pot on medium-high heat and sauté the onions for a 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, red chili flakes, mustard powder, turmeric, chickpeas, and roasted red pepper to the pot and sauté for about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes and salt and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, then add in the nutritional yeast and hot water and blend. I used my immersion blender to blend the mixture into a smooth pureé, but a blender or food processor works well, too.

To make the grilled cheese, butter one side of each slice of bread and lay two of the four slices, butter-side-down, onto a skillet set to medium-high. Add the shredded cheese and the other two slices of bread, butter-side-up. Cook each side until golden brown and the cheese is melted.

Enjoy!