Blooming Health

Plant Yourself in a Healthy Lifestyle… And BLOOM!

Meat and Greet

by kerryabdow

Hello, Blooming Healthers!

It’s “Friend” here, doing a stint as a guest blogger.  Kathy asked me to blog about the vegan dinner I made recently… just in time for Meatless Monday!

I found this recipe via Brandon…

…a talented, young raw vegan (super)chef I met while working at Living Light Culinary Institute in Northern California.  I’m very sad he never wore this outfit when he was in school…!  Anyway, he has a fun raw foods blog – – but this particular recipe is from VegNews.  It’s suuuuuuper easy to make, and amazingly delicious!  I, unlike Kathy, am not a vegetarian, but I’ve played one on tv I love to experiment with vegetarian and vegan recipes.  And between being surrounded by raw foodists for a year, and now Kathy, and Taryn from Phyto Foods, my appreciation continues to grow.

This recipe is for vegan “meat”, and, because I’m not a fan of soy or wheat gluten, I found this recipe especially intriguing.  Kathy, her fun husband and I are all big fans of spicy/Mexican/wrapped food, so I decided to make burritos.  Well, I intended on making burritos… more on that later…!

Soy-Free Vegan Ground Beef

Makes 4 cups

What You Need:

1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed, washed and dried, and broken into florets
2 cups raw walnut halves
1 medium tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil  (I totally forgot to add the oil when mixing, so drizzled about half on the top after it was already in the oven… seemed fine…??  I figured the nuts were fatty enough, but…)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder  (I used cayenne instead because it was in the cabinet…)
1/2 teaspoon mild chili powder
1 teaspoon liquid smoke  (I ended up not using this…)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons Bragg’s Liquid Aminos

If you are making burritos, you’ll also need:

Your favorite tortillas – (I love Rudi’s Whole Spelt, but used Ezekiel Sprouted Grain this time, because Whole Foods was out of the Rudi’s!  I recommend not shopping at Whole Foods right when they open on Monday mornings, because they aren’t fully stocked.  #TipOfTheDay),   
Shredded vegan cheddar cheese – (I used rice cheese, and it didn’t melt the greatest… would use Daiya in the future…)
Fresh tomato and yellow onion, chopped
Avocado, sliced
505 green chile, or your favorite salsa
Romaine lettuce, chopped

What You Do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a parchment-lined cookie sheet.

In a food processor, process cauliflower, walnuts, and tomato until completely minced. (I started the nuts and cauliflower first, and when they were about 3/4 processed, I added the tomatoes… no mush, no fuss!)

Transfer mixture to a large bowl and add remaining ingredients. Using clean hands, knead mixture thoroughly until crumbles are well coated with seasonings.

Turn mixture onto cookie sheet and spread out evenly. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour 15 minutes, stirring after 30 minutes and then every 15 to 20 minutes after that, until the crumbles are dry and browned. Serve warm or store in refrigerator for up to 3 days, or in freezer for longer.

Assembling “burritos”:

Place tortillas on cookie sheet, spread a thin layer of “beef” on each and sprinkle with cheese.  Broil until cheese melts and remove from oven.

Place one tortilla on each plate, top with your favorite ingredients and… olé!

Because I used the sprouted grain tortillas, they were too crunchy to actually roll into a burrito, so we just *carefully* folded them in half and ate them like giant tacos!  Still toooooooooootally delicious, just not exaaaaactly what I had in mind.  BUT improvising is part of being a good cook, right?  Right!

The same night, Kathy whipped up a Peach Crumble!

And when I say whipped it up, I mean it took her about five minutes!  And it was deeeeeeeeeeelicious!  I don’t know how she does it, but she does it.  All.  The.  Time.  She’s a natural!  She used peaches fresh off a friend’s tree…

… and used oatmeal in the crumble mix.  Maaaaaaaaybe she will share that topping recipe just in time for apple season…!

Thanks to Kathy for letting me take over her forum for a post and I hope you try this recipe next time you want to experiment with vegan beef!  Vegan beef… Veef?  Hmmm…!  This recipe makes a lot, and you can throw the mix in casseroles, or, if you’re not vegan, in scrambled eggs… maybe on pizza?  I’m sure you can change the spices to suit whatever cuisine suits your fancy.  I promise you that I am not a great cook, and I found this amazingly easy!   Try it, you’ll like it!

Well, I’m off like a prom dress, people!  Happy and Healthy Meatless Monday!  Arrrrrrrrrrrrrriba!

One Last Bite of Summer

by kathyjeanwelsh

I don’t know where you live, but here in Colorado it is the BEST time of year!  Brilliant sunshine, bright blue skies…

… a chill in the air….  Aaaahhhhh… HEAVEN!

Well, with all this perfect weather, we are still thinking about picnics and fairs and festivals… and what is the best food for such adventures?  Food on a stick, of course!

Friend and I came up with this tasty morsel while thinking of ideas for a salad contest on facebook – The Greek Salad Bite!  Cute, right?

Easy to prep and easy to assemble, this would be a great thing for the kids to make, too!

We used feta cheese, peppadew peppers, yellow and orange bell peppers, kalamata olives, tomato, red onion, pepperoncini, and these amazing lemon cucumbers…

Have you ever eaten a lemon cucumber?  Totally delicious!  We got a couple at the South Pearl Farmers’ Market, from these super sweet ladies who grew them!  Love to buy from the farmers!

Anyhoo, I just whipped up a quick dressing with olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic and italian seasoning, we drizzled it over the “salad” and that was it.  BAM!  We think it would be a really cute appetizer for a party, too.

Well, time for me to “stick” to my plans for the day and get a move on!  Happy Friday, people!  I’ll be back over the weekend with an amazing recipe for vegan “beef” made with walnuts and cauliflower!  You won’t believe it!

Until then…

Cheers, dears!