March 25, 2015

Fruit Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

Salad season commence! :) I admit my personal salad season is all year round since I'm so veggie-crazed, but I wanted to kick off the more traditional salad season by sharing a fruit salad instead. The colorful, fresh fruit is a nice change of pace and it pairs so well with the tangy strawberry balsamic vinaigrette. The dressing is very simple, but very flavorful. It only takes a couple minutes to make, and can be stored in the fridge if you'd like to prepare it ahead of time. The salad is great as is, but I also recommend adding maple-vanilla candied nuts on top for another delicious dimension!

Vegan, gluten-free
Dressing yields about 1 cup

1 head romaine (or other green)
1 heaping cup blueberries
1 heaping cup strawberries
1 1/2 cups pineapple
1 orange (or 2-3 clementines)
Optional: green onion, candied nuts, etc.

{For the strawberry vinaigrette}
1 heaping cup fresh strawberries
1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. dijon mustard
1/8 tsp. salt (or more to taste)
Optional: agave/honey for sweetness

Make the dressing: remove stems from strawberries. Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Add agave/honey for sweetness if desired.
Chop romaine, strawberries, pineapple, and orange.
Add all ingredients to a bowl and drizzle with dressing.
Great served with maple-vanilla candied nuts!

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To keep you swimming in salads all summer long :)

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March 15, 2015

Tropical Matcha Smoothie

Want to take a trip to zenergy paradise? Blend up this smoothie and you'll be sailing away on a mental vacation in no time :) Bright, tropical flavors combine with the power of matcha to bring you a one-of-a-kind drink that's both energizing and calming at the same time. I've made several variations, changing up the fruits and sweetness. Peaches are a great addition as well. Play around to find what you love! If you're new to matcha, you can learn about the amazing benefits here on my Matcha page.

Vegan, gluten-free
Makes 1 large or 2 small smoothies

1 ripe banana
1 cup mango (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup pineapple (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup almond milk (coconut would be great too)
1 1/2 tsp. matcha powder, more or less as desired
Optional: agave/honey for sweetness

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Taste and adjust if necessary. (I add agave/honey for extra sweetness.)

Note: I used Encha.Life culinary-grade matcha for this recipe

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March 9, 2015

Protein Monster Vegan Enchiladas

I don't want to get all dramatic... but you guys? These have been life changing. Two things make them our favorite vegan enchiladas yet. First is the combo of black beans and garbanzo beans. Chickpeas don't often appear in enchiladas but we totally dig the unexpected addition. (If you're not a fan of garbanzos, sub in quinoa!) Second is when the natural juices from the tomato is mixed with nutritional yeast in the pan, it makes a rock-star "sauce" that really brings the filling together. Crazy good. Each enchilada comes out to a whopping 20 grams of protein (even more if you use sprouted grain tortillas). If you're feeling extra feisty, you can even throw in some spinach at the end! The ingredient list is much longer than most of my recipes, but it's not nearly as complicated as it looks. I wanted to include my recipe for homemade enchilada sauce if you really want to take them to the next level. I mean, c'mon...

Vegan, gluten-free (with gf tortilla)
Sauce adapted from Martha Stewart
Makes 6 enchiladas

1 onion
1 red bell pepper
15 oz. can black beans
15 oz. can garbanzo beans
1/2 cup hemp hearts
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
3 roma tomatoes
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. smoked paprika
Salt to taste
6 large tortillas
Optional: spinach, chipotle, garlic

{For the enchilada sauce}
3 cups organic low sodium vegetable broth
1/4 cup tomato paste
1/4 cup all purpose flour (or gluten-free flour)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. onion powder
Optional: cayenne pepper, ground chipotle, smoked paprika, etc.

Dice onion and bell pepper.
In a large skillet over medium heat, saute onion and bell pepper for about 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, dice tomatoes and rinse beans.
When onions are tender, reduce heat and add cumin, paprika, tomatoes, nutritional yeast, hemp hearts, garbanzo and black beans. Stir well. Heat for 4-5 minutes then set aside.
Prepare the enchilada sauce. (*Directions below if needed.)
Preheat oven to 350.
In a lightly sprayed 9x13 baking dish, cover the bottom with a layer of enchilada sauce.
Distribute bean mixture in the center of tortillas. Roll up, tucking in both ends.
Place in baking dish and top with remaining sauce.
Bake for  about 25 minutes.
Can serve topped with avocado, cilantro, hemp hearts, nutritional yeast, etc.

*Directions for enchilada sauce
In a small bowl, add flour and spices.
In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat.
When hot, carefully add tomato paste, flour, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, and chili powder.
Cook 1 minute, whisking continuously.
Add broth and whisk well. Increase heat and bring to a light boil.
Reduce to simmer and cook 8 minutes, whisking occasionally. Salt to taste.

We also love these vegan enchiladas with quinoa, avocado, and spinach:

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