Savory Harvest Pilaf Stuffed Peppers
You know what I love almost more than anything? An EASY MEAL! Okay, and my husband. But seriously - a healthy, easy to throw together meal that actually tastes good?! I'll take it anytime.
I - like you - am very busy. And while I mean to plan ahead and prepare meals for myself for the week, I often get too busy to do even that. It can be hard to brainstorm a week's worth of food you'll actually want to eat, and then follow through with the grocery shopping, food prep, and actual eating of it all. It can be overwhelming on top of an already busy week, and that's not going to help me commit to it at all. So - I've been simplifying. It still saves me money to prep food at home, and I do actually feel better about my wallet and my health when I follow through with it on a regular basis. You know I love RightRice, and I've been loving paying around with their newest medley mixes because they ready in 12 minutes, packed with a whole lot of plant-based protein, and are actually super satisfying - with or without added meat!
This recipe is way easier than it looks and makes a super nutritious dish that tastes great reheated, too. RightRice can be found at Whole Foods or on Amazon. Recipe below!
1 bag of RightRice Harvest Pilaf, prepared
2-4 tablespoons water, for steaming
3 bell peppers - any color, halved with seeds removed
1/3 - 1/2 cup pepper jack cheese (you can sub vegan cheese, if you prefer)
chopped parsley, for garnish
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a saucepan, prepare RightRice Harvest Pilaf according to directions. While it sits (you’ve got 12 minutes!), prepare your bell peppers. Set aside.
Once your RightRice is prepared and cooled, scoop it into your hollowed peppers until just about full. Place the filled peppers, open half up, into a large cast iron pan or dutch oven. Carefully pour the water into the pan around the peppers, so that the bottom of the pan is just covered with water. This will aid in steaming the peppers so they are cooked completely through.
After that, gently and generously sprinkle the pepper jack cheese onto the peppers. Bake, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes, until peppers are soft and cheese is bubbly. Sprinkle with a little freshly chopped parsley, serve + enjoy!
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days, but are best enjoyed fresh.
Jackfruit Philly Cheesesteaks
When I first met Alex there wasn't a Philly Cheesteak he wouldn't eat for lunch. He LOVED them! He was a sucker for the 'traditional' - although clearly it's debatable what the traditional version is exactly. He's always considered the melted provolone slices, not the cheeze whiz sauce, the original version - and the chef in me wants to hope he's right. So when he told me he'd sort of been craving that familiar old sandwich, we knew we could make a vegan version that was just as friggin' good. And I think we nailed it on this one. The secret? The cheesier-than-ever Daiya provolone slices! They're the perfect sub for the ooey-gooey, melty cheese that makes the original so memorable. The slices melt and stretch just like real cheese, but are a delicious, plant-based alternative for anyone looking to eat better, whether they’re dairy-intolerant, allergic, vegan, or simply living a healthy lifestyle.
The jackfruit makes the perfect substitute for a shaved steak, and was super like the original once we got a little char on the jackfruit. Our best tip is to cook in cast iron if you can - you'll get nice, crispy edges on the jackfruit. Once you get the jackfruit cooked up you toss in the grilled veggies and cheese, and voila! You've got yourself a super yummy, way healthier Jackfruit Philly Cheesesteak Sub! These sandwiches are so yummy served up fresh, but can be easily wrapped in paper and taken along on a picnic. Either way, do yourself a favor and cook these up for yourself. The recipe makes enough for two, so you can make one for someone you really like or have leftovers for day two. Oh, and people usually ask - we find our jackfruit at local Asian markets, but you can usually find it, though overpriced, at Whole Foods as well. Enjoy!
Daiya vegan provolone cheese slices
1 loaf Italian bread or 2 large sub rolls, sliced
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 - 20 oz. cans jackfruit, drained and shredded
1/2 cup water
1 large clove of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon white cooking wine
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
salt + pepper to taste
Place the Daiya slices and sub rolls to the side, you'll need them after the filling is prepared.
Heat coconut oil in a medium-sized pan over medium heat. Sauté the thinly sliced onions and peppers until softened, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Begin heating the next bit of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. As it heats up, pour in the shredded jackfruit, water, minced garlic, liquid smoke, and maple syrup. Sauté until the liquid reduces to about half, then add the white cooking wine, smoked paprika, onion powder, soy sauce, salt and pepper. Stir to combine, and continue to cook over medium heat until the liquid has completely reduced and the jackfruit is beginning to brown.
Throw the onions and peppers into the pan with the jackfruit and toss to combine. Line the mixture into a straight line across the middle of the pan. Place Daiya provolone slices onto the mixture (we used 2 per sandwich), then cover the pan with a lid for about 30 seconds to a minute, or until the cheese has become melty on top of the jackfruit mixture.
Use a spatula to scoop the mixture onto your sub rolls and enjoy!
Leftover filling will last in the fridge, covered, for a few days.
Traditional cheesesteaks are served on soft bread, but all we could really find was a french baguette. While soft sub rolls are my recommendation, use what you can find.
San Pedro Style Fish-less Market Tray
It's Alex. I grew up in Southern California and my grandparents live in the South Bay area. As a kid, we would visit the San Pedro Fisherman's Wharf to eat tons of seafood and to watch the scary-huge cruise ships lumber by as often as we could. The fish market sells all kinds of seafoods by the pound, but the thing everyone really comes for - and a favorite of ours - was the Famous San Pedro Shrimp Tray. The meal is served on a big plastic tray (like from a food court), covered in newspaper, and topped with an overflowing mixture of shrimp, potatoes, onions, peppers, tomatoes, and corn smothered in a spicy, delicious tomato-based sauce that you could sop up with the crusty toasted bread served on the side. The veggies and sauce make the whole thing, and we thought it would be super easy to sub out those little crustaceans with some healthy plant foods. We were right! We replaced the shrimp with seasoned hearts of palm and mushrooms, which both taste similar to and have a texture similar to the original- but you know, vegan. This hearty meals serves 4 or leaves you with leftovers, but you won't mind. We recommend serving it alongside a crusty baguette and with a squeeze of lemon. Let's eat!
1/2 cup white cooking wine
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
1/4 teaspoon black truffle sea salt (regular sea salt works here, too)
1 - 14.5 oz can hearts of palm, drained
1 1/2 cups mushrooms (we used shiitake, but oyster or lobster mushrooms would be great, too!)
2 - 6 oz. cans tomato paste
6 oz. soyrizo (soy chorizo), optional - but worth it
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cube vegetable boullion
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon old bay seasoning
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon black truffle sea salt (or regular sea salt)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 cup water
1 tablespoon oil
2 large bell peppers, seeds removed + roughly chopped
2 medium onions, roughly chopped
4 medium red potatoes, cut into 1-2 inch cubes
2 cobs of corn, halved
1 tomato, roughly chopped
cilantro, for garnish (optional)
To make marinade, combine white cooking wine with lemon juice, Old Bay and salt. Drain hearts of palm and slice into 1/2 inch circles. Roughly chop mushrooms and places 'shrooms and hearts of palm slices into the marinade. Let marinate at least 1 hour, or as long as overnight.
While marinade comes together, make the sauce by whisking together tomato paste, soyrizo, mixed garlic, vegetable boullion cube, spices and water in a large bowl. Set aside.
Heat oil over medium heat in a large cast iron skillet. Cut bell peppers, onions, red potatoes, corn, and tomatoes.
Place corn and potatoes into a medium pot and boil until fork tender. Add bell peppers, and onions to pan with heated oil and cook until they begin to soften, about 3-5 minutes. Add in the cooked corn coblets, potatoes, and tomatoes and cook all together, stirring occasionally, for another 5 minutes. Add sauce mixture to the pan and stir tom combine. Simmer for 15 minutes.
While veggie + sauce mixture simmers, pour the hearts of palm and mushroom marinating mixture into a medium sized pan and cook over medium heat until leftover marinating liquid reduces and thickens. Remove from heat, add to sauce + veggie mixture and stir to combine. Cook for another minute or two, until mixture is a bit soupy and everything is well combined. Serve with crusty bread and a squeeze of lemon. Leftovers last in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week, but may need a little water added when reheating because the sauce will thicken as it cools. Serves 4-6.
Field Roast Fiesta Burger!
We've been fans of Field Roast for a few years now and have always loved incorporating their flavorful grain-based sausages in jambalaya, soups, and on their own in a bun and slathered in mustard and onions. At Expo West this year, we FINALLY tried the long-awaited and AMAZING Chao cheeses in all three flavors - tomato cayenne, creamy original, and coconut herb. They're super realistic in flavor + texture to what I remember munching on a kid and they are the perfect filling for an ooey-gooey grilled cheese. Alex is big on finding the PERFECT veggie burger- and as far as texture and flavor goes, Field Roast's Hand-Formed is his first choice. Is it the most realistic looking burger to a meat patty we've seen yet- especially pre-cooked. You could convince any meat eater that whats in the plastic is a turkey burger for sure...if you trash the label, of course. The burger base is a blend of whole barley, carrots, garlic, onions, and celery- and of course, a secret blend of spices! They're high in protein and non-GMO, and are hand-made in small batches, by hand, in Seattle.
When we were sent a few extra samples after the Expo, we decided to create (what we're calling) a Fiesta Burger smothered in Firecracker Sauce, Roasted Poblano Peppers, and Cilantro Lime Cabbage Slaw...and its fucking delicious. So, let's just pretend we're celebrating Cinco de Mayo three weeks early, grab a margarita, and get cooking. Olé!
2 Field Roast Hand-Formed Burgers
2 slices of Field Roast Chao Tomato Cayenne Cheese
2 focaccia buns, sliced
1 large or 1 medium poblano peppers
2 cups shredded purple cabbage
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan mayo
1-2 tablespoons hot sauce
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 avocado, pitted and sliced
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roast washed, halved, and seeded peppers on a lined baking sheet for 15-25 minutes, until skin gets bubbly and brown. Remove from oven, let cool, and peel off bubbly skin so you're left with just the meaty part of the pepper. Set aside.
Cilantro Lime Cabbage Slaw:
In a large mixing bowl toss together cabbage, cilantro, lime juice, and salt. Set aside.
In a small bowl combine mayo, hot sauce, and paprika. Stir well to combine.
Heat a teaspoon of oil over medium heat in a large cast-iron pan. Fry Field Roast patties until crisp and browning on one side. Flip burgers, toss on a slice of tomato cayenne cheese, and let burgers cook until equally crisp and browning on the bottom side.
While the burgers cook, slather bottom patties with about 2 tablespoons each of the Firecracker Sauce. Top with the cooked burger and melty cheese, then layer on the roasted poblano peppers, Cilantro Lime Cabbage Slaw, and sliced avocado. Spread a bit more Firecracker Sauce on the top bun, add it to the pile, and enjoy! Serves 2. Leftover slaw + firecracker sauce can be refrigerated for up to a week.
Sesame Ginger Blistered Shoshito Peppers
6 ounces Shoshito Peppers, washed
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon of chili oil (optional)
pinch of salt
Wash the peppers and heat the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
While the oil heats, combine soy sauce, sesame oil, lime juice, maple syrup, ginger and garlic in a small bowl. Toss the peppers into the skillet, then pour in the sauce. Sauté for 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently to coat the peppers in sauce. Continue stirring until peppers become evenly blistered (lightly browned and covered in small air pockets). Remove from heat, and serve immediately with a squeeze of fresh lime and soy sauce or spicy Chinese mustard. Enjoy!
This was a super quick + easy lunch I was inspired to make after first trying shoshitos at sushi place in Seal Beach a while back. They were salty, a bit crunchy, and had just a touch of spiciness. So good! I wanted to do a little spin of my own and included fresh ginger and garlic- 'cause they're my favorite. The sesame ginger sauce was AMAZING and a perfect pair with these sweet peppers! My only addition would be sprinkle of sesame seeds for texture. (I was in a bit of a time crunch, so excuse the not-as-fancy iPhone photos on this one.) They're great as a snack or alongside a dinner with rice and kung pao cauliflower. We found our shoshito peppers at Trader Joe's, but you should be able to find them at any nicer grocery stores or Asian markets. You're gonna love 'em- especially since they're just about 10 minutes, start to finish. Let's eat!