Three Refreshing Vegan Recipes

By on September 9, 2013

Most people just hate vegetables. They often neglect the benefits of vegetables. Aside from the fact that vegetable has high fiber, vegetable contains vitamins and minerals that contribute to the total functioning of the different systems of our body. Vegetables specially green leafy veggies are good antioxidants which will help us fight carcinogenic agents and halt aging. One article is not enough to explain its benefits – it’s just numerous! The bottom line is, if you want to live longer, start including veggies in your meal. 

It is always nice to have at least a couple of vegan recipes up your sleeve even if you are not completely a vegan-strict person. The good thing about vegan food is that the whole concept is light, you do not get heavy when you are full, not to mention that they taste decent as well. Vegan food is light and both refreshing at the same time, which makes it a favorite for people that are watching their diet. When you want to have a healthy lifestyle, then it is important for you to watch out what you are eating.

That is why you need to have at least a couple of these vegan recipes in order to satisfy your vegetable needs in a culinary way. Another great thing about preparing vegan food is the fact that it would not take you that much time to prepare, since it does not have meat in it. Moreover, you do not need to wash after heavy grease stains. Below are three great refreshing vegan recipes that you and your family would love to prepare and have:

 

Risotto with Mushrooms

mushroom-risoto

Ingredients:

  • 9 cups chicken stock
  • 15g dried porcini
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ lb assorted fresh exotic mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ lb fresh white cultivated mushrooms, sliced
  • ¼ cup minced parsley
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tsp minced fresh thyme
  • 655g or 3cups Arborio rice
  • 1-cup dry white wine at room temperature
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. 1.       Bring the chicken stock to a simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. 2.       Remove from the heat and add your dried porcini. Let it soak for 20 minutes and drain the mushrooms through a sieve lined with a double layer of cheesecloth.
  3. 3.       Press over the mushrooms to force out the stock, make sure to save all the stock and return it into the saucepan. Let it simmer over low heat for at least two minutes, chop the porcini, and set it aside.
  4. 4.       In a large saucepan over medium heat, start heating the oil. Add the garlic and sauté it for about 2mins. Add all the fresh mushrooms and cook until everything is softened, this would take about 5 minutes.
  5. 5.       Now add the chopped porcini, parsley, thyme and ½ cup of the stock you made earlier. Let it cook until thickened for 5mins. 
  6. 6.       Once the mushrooms are cooked, transfer it to a bowl and set aside.
  7. 7.       Add the rice over to the same saucepan over medium heat and stir until the rice is cooked. Cooking the rice would take 3mins, add wine and stir until the wine is absorbed.
  8. 8.       Now add the simmering stock one ladle at a time, stirring frequently after every addition. Wait until the stock is completely absorbed. Leave ¼ cup of stock for later use.
  9. 9.       When the rice feels tender but slightly firm on the center and looks creamy, add the mushroom mixture and a ladle full of stock.
  10. 10.   Make sure that the mushrooms are stirred occasionally and are heated through. This would take 2-3 minutes to make the rice perfect as well.
  11. 11.   Once cooked, remove from the heat and stir in butter and ¼ cup of stock that you set aside earlier. Add salt and pepper to taste. Best served hot.

 

 Greek Salsa with Pita Crisps

Greek Salsa with Pita Crisps

Ingredients:  Greek Salsa

  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 ½ tsp red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 ½ cups diced plum tomato
  • ¾ cup diced, peeled and seeded cucumber
  • ¼ cup minced red onion
  • 1 yellow bell pepper finely diced and seeded (small size)
  • 1½ tsp minced garlic
  • 1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives, finely chopped
  • 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 picked hot cherry peppers, minced

Directions:

Combine all the ingredients in one large bowl and serve with Pita crisps. (Recipe for Pita crisps is located below)

The salsa can be prepared before making the crisps. It can also be refrigerated separately and place on the chips as toppings or as a dip.

Ingredients: Pita Crisps

  • 6 pieces pocket style pita breads
  • ¾ kosher salt
  • 3 tbsp olive oil

Directions:

  1. Make sure that you preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Cut the pita bread into eight triangular pieces. Separate each piece into two. In a large bowl, combine olive oil and salt. Add the pita pieces and toss well, make sure that every piece is coated fairly.
  3. On a baking sheet, spread out the pita pieces in a single layer. Bake it for 4 minutes and turn it over for another four or until it is evenly golden and crisp on both sides.
  4. Serve with salsa.

Mexican Corn & Black Bean Salad

Mexican Corn & Black Bean Salad

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of frozen corn, make sure that it is properly thawed
  • ½ cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp red bell peppers, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded
  • 1 tbsp freshly chopped cilantro
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp freshly chopped parsley

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized bowl, combine corn, black beans and remaining ingredients. (Except cilantro and parsley)
  2. In a plate, add the salad and top it with freshly chopped parsley and cilantro.
  3. The salad can be made in advance and stored.

Vegan food is not just about salads and green vegetables. It is about color, life and nutrition. People eat vegan food today because they are aware of the fact that it is easy to prepare and in addition helps keep your body healthy.

Linda Rosario is a food enthusiast from Chef Needs “The Kitchen that Every Restaurant Needs”. Linda also loves arts and crafts and works as a pre-school teacher.

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