Saturday, March 31, 2012


broccoli and pasta simmer together
pasta shells work really well in catching the sauce in every bite


2 (6.5 oz) chopped clams, reserve liquid
4 cloves garlic
1/4 cup oil
1 (8 oz) bottle clam juice
1 tsp. basil
1 Tbsp. fresh parsley
dash pepper
whole wheat pasta (1/2 to 1 box)
1 head broccoli, cut in flowerettes


In medium saucepan, cook garlic in oil until tender.  Add reserved clam liquid, clam juice, basil and parsley pepper.  When almost ready to serve, add clams and heat to serve, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare water for pasta.  When boiling add pasta AND broccoli pieces.  Cook until pasta is tender.   Serve the clam mixture over hot cooked pasta and broccoli.  Stir all together.  Serve with vegan Parmesan cheese.
I always eat way too much of this!

Friday, March 30, 2012


makes 8 tofu cutlets


1 block tofu, well drained
1/2 lb mozzarella cheese
1 bag spinach
2 cups spaghetti sauce
2 eggs
3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
olive oil
herb salt to taste


Cut the tofu block into 8 even slices.  Beat egg, dip tofu slices into egg and then into the bread crumbs.  Saute in olive oil until brown on both sides.

Pour about 1/3 of the sauce into a casserole dish and place breaded tofu on top.  Set aside.

Wash spinach well and steam ever so slightly.  Drain well and place on tofu.

Cut mozzarella cheese into even slices and place on top of each piece of tofu. 

Cover with the remaining sauce, sprinkle with vegan Parmesan and bake for 45 minutes or until bubbling.

TIP:  I make my sauce ahead of time and to the basic jar marinara add lots of garlic, onions, red wine and  garden greens.  This recipe included beet tops and swiss chard.  I ladle this mixture atop the tofu with cheese and skip the steaming spinach step.  Sprinkle with the vegan parm.  This saves a lot of time and dish washing.

makes a fabulous meal

Thursday, March 29, 2012


Found this idea in the magazine, Eating Well. 

"Next time you buy scallion,s don't use the whites - sprout them.  Simply secure bulbs with a rubber band and place in a glass with an inch of water.  Change the water daily and in about 7 to 10 days new shoots will appear and the roots will double in length.  Plant them in a garden or container and snip the greens as you need them."

new addition to my herb garden

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


my delicious sandwich from SHEETZ

Good luck being on the road and trying to eat ANYTHING the least bit healthy. (I am totally bored with lunch packing.)   It's an immense challenge.  I've finally narrowed my preferences down to three possibilities IF you can locate them.  This is where the map finder on the IPhone comes in very handy. 

Ruby Tuesdays - great salad bar with umpteen choices / recently I've noticed that the choices are decreasing.  It seems the public are going for the "unhealthy" options.

Chilies - the black bean burger has always been a favorite of mine.  I add the whole wheat bun, skip the cheese, choose the coleslaw over the fries and then splurge on onion strings and blue cheese dressing.  This burger is delicious. 

Sheetz - my new favorite /  made to order food / using one of the many computer screens, YOU design your own sandwich.  There are some good healthy options, including whole wheat bread.  I particularly love the black olives!  Next maybe they'll add some soy cheese.

Upon checking out I was informed of the member's card.  By signing up for a FREE members' card, drinks and food ( I think gasoline too) are discounted.  This is a must for travelers.

check it out:

Thursday, March 8, 2012


a chickpea "white sauce" served over gnocchi and peas


3 tsp. olive oil
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 cans chickpeas, drain and rinse
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 - 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
28 oz. veggie broth

1 pkg. whole wheat gnocchi
1 cup frozen peas
1 tsp. olive oil


Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

Add garlic and saute for 1 minute.  Add chickpeas, salt, pepper, red pepper and broth and bring all to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.

simmering mixture

While it simmers, cook the gnocchi according to the pkg. directions.  At the last 2 minutes, throw in the peas to cook with the pasta.  Drain all together and mix with the oil.

After the chickpea mixture has simmered, blend all together using either the blender OR an immersion blender until smooth and thickened.

Serve this sauce over the pasta and peas.

the blended sauce

this gnocchi and pea mixture goes well with the creamy chickpea sauce
total comfort food!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

THE BEST vacation you'll ever take!!!

...held by the North American Vegetarian Society

One of my most memorable vacations, many years ago,  was my solo attendance at the annual Summerfest / Vegetarian Convention.  I experienced FIVE blissful days in Johnstown, PA, attending lectures, cooking demos, animal rights seminars, socials, etc. and eating fabulous VEGAN meals prepared by Chef Bergeron.  For me personally, this conference provided much information and the tools to tweak my own eating habits.  This is an awe inspiring, life changing experience.

This years FEST planning is well under way.   Numerous guest speakers will attend and yes, Chef Bergeron is once again the resident chef.  Reservations are being taken for the full 5 days OR weekend attendance.  Don't miss this opportunity to attend this event.   It WILL change your life.

Check out their web information:

Sample of the 2011 Vegetarian Summerfest Menu:

Speakers too numerous to count:

An article by Chef Bergeron, including recipes:

Tuesday, March 6, 2012



2 bags tuna (6oz each)
1/2 cup Panko crumbs
2 eggs
1/2 cup red onion, minced
1/2 tsp. ground celery seed
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. horseradish
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 Tbsp. olive oil


Mix well the tuna, Panko and eggs. 

Add the remaining ingredients.  Mix well. 

At this point either refrigerate until later OR shape the mixuture into 4 patties.  Cook on a grill or cookpan medium heat until both sides are well browned. 

Good served with side dishes OR in a sandwich with vegan cheese and vegenaise.

the browned patties, ready to serve

first night, serving with my butternut squash fries
next day as a sandwich for lunch

Saturday, March 3, 2012


start with fresh greens / recipe calls for spinach
I used a variety from my garden:  beet tops, chard and arugula


1 cup whole wheat pasta, cook drain, mix with a bit of oil and set aside.
1 pkg. Italian VEGAN sausage, sliced
1 lg. onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, cut off stems and chopped
1/2 to 3/4 cup white wine
1 can GOYA (I have found most other brands to be of lesser quality) chickpeas
fresh spinach, cut out stems and chop 
salt and pepper, to taste

onions and VEGAN sausage browning together


Saute the onions in some oil till they start to soften.  Add the sliced sausage and garlic.  Cook together until browning starts and both start sticking to the pan. 

Pour in white wine to deglaze the pan.  Stir to loosen the cooked bits.  Add the rosemary, salt and pepper.

Add the beans and fresh greens. Add a bit more oil, wine OR veggie stock,  if you need more liquid Stir, cover and cook about 10 - 15 minutes; greens will wilt.  Finally add the pasta, stir and cook until heated through.

the finished product  :)

very hearty, healthy and delicious

Friday, March 2, 2012


I was craving Mexican food and didn't have a can of vegetarian re-fried beans.  Don't let it stop you.  A can of white beans OR pinto beans easily convert into a delicious quesadilla. 


1 onion, cut in half and sliced thin
1 can white beans, drain and rinse and then roughly mashed
olive oil
taco seasoning
black pepper
cheddar cheese or vegan cheese
2 flour tortillas / for quesadilla being made


Cook the onion in the oil till it starts to brown. 

Add the beans and some taco seasoning to taste (1 to 2 tsp.).  Add pepper. You may want to add a couple of teaspoonsful of water if too thick.  Cook and occasionally stir. 

making the re-fried beans

Place one tortilla on heated grill, layer on the bean mixture.  Sprinkle on the cheese.  At this point you can add vegetables, cut up shrimp, green chilies, etc.

pile it on before topping with the 2nd tortilla

Top with the second tortilla.  Continue to cook until bottom is crispy.  Flip and cook till second side is crispy.

Remove from grill and cut into fourths.  A pizza cutter works well.

Serve with salsa (guacamole / sour cream  if you have and/or want them)

nice and crispy

Thursday, March 1, 2012


after the oven-roasting process; it can get quite messy
STILL quicker than the stove-top method

I ALWAYS roasted my red peppers on the stove-top.  It is very time consuming and stove-top clean up is definitely very labor intensive.  This oven method works well.  (just a bit messy)


4 large red peppers
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
5 cloves garlic
pinch of salt
2 tsp. capers


First preheat the oven to 500 degrees.  Place the washed whole red pepper a cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes.  The skin will start to blacken.

Remove the sheet from the oven and immediately cover with foil, sealing all.  Leave these set for 30 minutes.

Remove the foil.  Work on the peppers:  cut out cores and stems, remove seeds, strip off ALL skin.  It should easily be removed.  Cut peppers into strips.  Prepare the marinade.

roasted red pepper strips before any marinade

after the marinade

Mix together the oil, vinegar, garlic, salt and capers (fresh torn basil can also be added).  Pour this mixture over the peppers.  Allow the flavors to marry. 

For the sandwich I toasted whole wheat rolls and served these open-faced with a layer of herbed goat cheese, thinly sliced red onion and a few slices of roasted red pepper.  I also really like fresh mozzarella served with these peppers on served atop semolina bread.  YUM
I served my open-face sandwich with roasted fennel (previous post)