Vegan “Eat Your Greens” Warm Broccoli Rice Salad with Rainbow Chard, Basil, Mint, Avocado & Citrus Vinaigrette

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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Living alone can make eating all the food I buy difficult.  I buy produce with a thousand inspirations in my head – often forgetting that I have to eat everything I make myself.  That can get difficult – especially with produce like avocados & leafy greens that have a short shelf life.  Yesterday – I made a Spicy Vegan Szechuan Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry (seen above) that used a lot of the veggies I had around – but – it did not use everything.  I also had a lot of leftover basmati rice.  So – I dreamed up this salad.  I used a little (1 cup) of the rice I had.  You could use more – or less – depending on how light you want this to be.  You could also use quinoa or brown rice or some ancient grain of your choice.  Whatever you decide – this salad is full of nutrients & tastes clean & light & fresh.  If you do not add the avocado – this salad will keep in the fridge for a few days.  Just add the avocado just before serving.



Vegan “Eat Your Greens” Warm Broccoli Rice Salad with Rainbow Chard, Basil, Mint, Avocado & Citrus Vinaigrette

Serves 2-4 depending on appetite


2 TBS olive oil (or coconut oil)

1 cup cooked rice or other grain (optional)

1 head broccoli – grated or pulsed in a food processor

1 cucumber – chopped

1 zucchini – chopped

Avocado – amount at your discretion – sliced

2-3 scallions – sliced

1 bunch (6-8 leaves) rainbow chard (or other greens of your choice) – ribs removed & chopped

1/3 cup fresh basil – chopped

1/3 cup fresh mint – chopped

Pepitas (or other nuts) – amount at your discretion

GARNISH: basil, mint, lime wedges

for the dressing

2 TBS olive oil

2 TBS cider vinegar

2 TBS fresh lime (or lemon) juice (or a combination)

1 tsp lemon or lime zest

2 TBS Dijon mustard

1 or 2 TBS agave (I used 2 but might go less next time)

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

S&P to taste





Whisk the dressing together & adjust flavors to suit your tastes.

Pulse the broccoli in a food processor or grate it (grating is very messy).


Heat the olive oil in a large pan over high heat.  Add the broccoli & rice & toss.  Add the zucchini & chard.  Add a few TBS water & cover the pan & remove from heat.  You just want to warm everything through & get the chard & broccoli & zucchini wilt a bit.







In 5 minutes or so – put the rice mixture in a large bowl (or in the pan) & toss in the scallions, mint & basil & cucumber & some (not all) the dressing.



Put some of the warm salad on plates & garnish with avocado slices, pepitas, extra basil and/or mint, lime wedges, additional dressing & freshly cracked pepper.





Spicy Vegan Szechuan Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is really easy & does not use any ingredients that are especially exotic.  I added WAY too many hot peppers & blasted my face off with this one – so – I will recommend using less spice here than I did.  I used Gardein Beefless Tips that I found in the freezer section of my local Ralph’s.  You can use these or any other meat replacement you prefer.  The ratio of veggies is an entirely personal one.  You can take my suggestions or wing it – or just go straight beef & rice.  Your call.  But it is easy & bursting with flavor!



Spicy Vegan Szechuan Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry

Serves 4 with cooked rice


Cooked rice of your choice

2 TBS coconut oil (or other cooking oil)

9 oz meatless beef – defrosted

2 cups broccoli florets

2 bell peppers – seeded & cut into strips

3 carrots – chopped

1 leek or medium onion – chopped

1 large zucchini – chopped

4 oz mushrooms – sliced

1-2 jalapenos or serranos (seeded to lessen the heat) – or to taste – diced

1-3 tsp cornstarch (optional)

for the sauce

2 TBS vegan oyster-flavored or mushroom-flavored sauce

1 TBS minced ginger

1 TBS minced garlic

2 TBS chili garlic sauce (or sambal oelek)

1 TBS liquid aminos (or tamari or soy sauce)

1 TBS dark soy sauce

1 tsp chili oil

1 TBS sesame oil

1 TBS dark berry jam (or molasses or brown sugar)










Cook the rice & set aside.

Mix the sauce & pour it into the bag with the faux beef & smoosh it around to marinate.

Heat the coconut oil in a wok or large fry pan.  I added the leeks & carrots & mushrooms first – because they take the longest to soften.





Add the fest of the produce.  Broccoli & zucchini cook fastest – so I added them last.  Once the veggies are cooked to your liking, stir in the beef & marinade.  You might want to add a bit of water – but not much.  If the sauce feels too thin – whisk in a tsp of cornstarch.  Mine did not need it but yours might.  Toss to heat through & serve with rice.




10-Minute Spicy Vegan Sriracha Chicken & Broccoli Bowl

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This chicken & broccoli comes together faster than the rice – so – if you have warm, cooked rice ready – you can serve this in ten minutes.  None of the ingredients are particularly exotic but it is GENUINELY spicy.  I like a lot of heat & this took it to my limit – so – if you are more timid in the spice department – cut the spicy things way back or drop them completely.  I used – as always – Beyond Meat brand vegan chicken because it is absolutely the best on the market.  It comes in 9 or 12 ounce packages.


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10-Minute Spicy Vegan Sriracha Chicken & Broccoli Bowl

Serves 2


9 to 12 ounces vegan chicken – cubed

1 jalapeno – seeded & diced (optional)

Olive oil

1-5 dry red chilies – halved & seeded (VERY optional as these are VERY spicy – and if you use hem – do not chew & swallow them – but pick them out when you eat)

1/2 cup vegan hoisin sauce

1-2 TBS sriracha sauce

1-3 tsp crushed garlic (I used jarred)

1 TBS ginger (I used jarred)

Broccoli for 2 – fresh or frozen

Salted peanuts

Sliced scallions as garnish

Cooked rice for 2

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Cook the rice.  If you are using fresh broccoli – steam it a few minutes until it is done to your taste & set aside.  If using frozen – cook it according to directions & set aside

Heat 1 TBS olive oil in a pan.  Saute the jalapeno & red chili – if using them.  When the jalapeno is softens (a few minutes) – add the garlic & ginger & saute 1 minute.  Add the hoisin & sriracha and the chicken & heat the chicken through.

Assemble the bowls with the rice, broccoli & chicken & garnish with peanuts & scallions.

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CHEF’D – White Pizza with Broccoli & Mushrooms

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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There has been a huge rise in food services that send either already-prepared meals to your home for you to heat up and, more interestingly, ones that send pre-measured fresh ingredients & recipes & you make the food at home.  I tried Blue Apron – which is the latter service – and was not totally impressed.  One issue was the lack of selection for vegetarians (and nothing for vegans) & the fact that there was no option for a single person.  Their subscription plan meant I would get 3 meals – for two – each week – which meant six of my seven dinners were decided for me each week – with me eating the same thing twice – three times in a row.  Also – if you happened to LOVE a dish – you could not order it again soon – but had to wait – indefinitely – hoping it would eventually reappear in the cycle.  And – while the meals were tasty, they were pretty labor-intensive – some taking an hour to prepare.

Chef’d has solved those problems.  No subscription – meaning order what you want & when you want it.  Get the same thing every day for two weeks – or just get one thing – different things – a few times a month.  Additionally, so far, I have found their recipes fresh & interesting but fast & easy to prepare.  Great for date night!  Here is how they work:

Choose from Famous Recipes

Browse through hundreds of recipes from your favorite chefs, and cook them in the comfort of your own home!

From Our Kitchen to Yours

Fresh pre-portioned Ingredients delivered to your door. Reorder what you like, when you like. No subscriptions!

Cook, Love, Live

Enrich your life by creating memorable delicious experiences of love through our hand-cultivated recipes.

And look at the various tastes & lifestyles they accommodate

Shop Meals




HERE is the list of the famous chefs contributing recipes.  And HERE are the vegan & vegetarian meals currently offered (kind of amazing looking).  I was given the opportunity to try the service & jumped at the chance.  I am a long-time fan of Beyond Meat & the pairing of these two companies is exciting to me.  I got the Beast Burger & Tacos & posted about the burger HERE – and the tacos in another post HERE.  I also posted about the Fig Pizza with Arugula & Goat Cheese HERE and the Tofu Parmigiana HERE.  They can be seen below, respectively.
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OK – so this is my third post about my box of three meals that I ordered from Chef’d in my second delivery from them.  It is their White Pizza with Broccoli & Mushrooms and Arugula Salad with Lemon Mint Vinaigrette.  Arugula salad is my favorite thing ever & I am also a huge fan of lemon & mint – but – I had this box delivered Saturday & did not get to this recipe until Thursday.  As a result – through no fault of Chef’d – my arugula had passed its edible period.
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I considered using the wilted arugula on the pizza but it was too far gone.   Sad.  I love arugula!  But – I just didn’t get to it on time.  MY fault!
But everything else was still fresh.  The recipe called for (and provided) real milk.  While I am still not totally off cheese or butter (vegan butter is so far ahead of vegan cheese – so far) – I am trying really hard to be entirely off eggs & milk – so I just substituted almond milk & vegan butter.  Made no difference – as in – was just as good.  I did use the real cheese, though.
My experiences with the Fig & Goat Cheese Pizza & the Tofu Parmigiana were that I found that they probably were not enough to realistically feed two American adults – for dinner.  That was not the case with this pizza.  I had accidentally used one of the pizza dough balls provided by Chef’d for my two pizzas on a separate pizza altogether – so I used my own (peppered) homemade crust when I made this.  Also – I only made  half pizza (using half the ingredients) and I was STUFFED!  So – I think this pizza actually might satisfy two adults.  Here is the nutritional info:
white pizza
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At 2480 calories (including, I assume, the salad that I did not even make) – this is a hearty meal!  And it was DELICIOUS!  Again – I found the Chef’d recipe to be less labor intensive than other companies that I have tried – less labor intensive BY A LOT – and the result more satisfying.  I only ate half of the half recipe I made.  Rich & filling & yummy! And easy.  The white sauce came together quickly.
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Mushrooms & broccoli cooked up fast & easy & the pizza assembled without incident.  I did add crushed red pepper but I add that to almost all things not served in a glass.  That peppery crust you see is my own homemade crust.  But – the result was a pizza with lots of flavors & textures.  While I have found all of the dishes I have tried from Chef’d to be easy to make & really tasty to eat – this one is the current champion of full-blown decadence.  So – if one night – you eat this entire decadent meal – maybe the next night – you compensate with the far lighter tofu parmigiana?
Whether eating light is your concern or getting a rich & wintery meal into your pie hole is your goal – I think Chef’d has you covered.  And I don’t eat meat – so I can’t even get into sampling what those dishes offer.  But I recommend these Chef’d meals with complete enthusiasm.  Even for the most novice chef – and especially for novice vegetarians.  Lots of folks who want to cut more meat out of their diet fear only salads in their futures & Chef’d can quickly dispel those fears – and leave almost everybody feeling more empowered in the most important room in their homes – the kitchen!
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Vegan Sausage, Broccoli & Cheese Quiche with Tofu & Fried Sage

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This quiche is very dense with the vegan sausage – and it was quite tasty!  I bet if you told someone it was egg whites rather than tofu – you could fool a bunch of folks.  You might not want so much sausage in yours and – if that is true – just use more broccoli to make up the gap.

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Vegan Sausage, Broccoli & Cheese Quiche with Tofu & Fried Sage


1 lb extra firm tofu

14 oz vegan sausage (I used Lightlife Gimme Lean)

1/2 large onion – diced

1 small head broccoli – chopped

1 jalapeno – seeded & diced (optional)

3 (or more) slices cheese of your choice (I used Field Roast Chao Tomato Cayenne)

10-15 sage leaves

1 vegan pie crust

5-10 cherry tomatoes – quartered

Olive oil


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Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Heat 1 TBS olive oil to a pan & flash fry (just a minute or so) – the sage – being sure not to burn it (see above photo).  Drain on paper towels.

Heat 1-2 TBS olive oil in a large frying pan & brown the sausage.  Add the onion & saute a few minutes & then add the broccoli & saute until the broccoli is softened.

In a blender or food processor – pulse the tofu, jalapeno, cheese, fried sage & some S&P until well blended.  Add this to the sausage & broccoli & mix well.

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Press the crust into a pan & fill with the sausage etc.  Crinkle the edges – if you care to – and top with tomato pieces.

Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the crust is nice & golden.  My oven heats unevenly – hence the unevenly cooked crust.

Let it sit 10 minutes before cutting into it.


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Pasta with Vegan Beef & Broccolini

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is very easy & pretty yummy.  And if you allow that olive oil and S&P are not really ingredients – this only has 5 ingredients!  I used Beyond Meat beefy crumbles because they are my go-to brand for vegan meats.  Their products are versatile & delicious.  Go to the site to find a store near you & get a coupon!

I actually used leftover meat from my vegan meatball recipe (seen above) but the crumbles right of the bag would be great, too.

I used a head of broccolini (broccoli rabe, rapini, baby broccoli) but regular broccoli would be great.

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Pasta with Vegan Beef & Broccolini

Serves 2


1/2 lb pasta – cooked & drained

1 (9 oz) bag of vegan ground beef

1 head broccoli – chopped (1-2 cups)

1-4 heads garlic (to taste) – chopped

olive oil

1 tsp or more (to taste) crushed red pepper


Fresh parsley as garnish – optional

(Other seasonings that might be nice are dry basil, oregano or other spices you like in your ground beef.)

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Cook the pasta.

Meanwhile, heat about 1-2 TBS olive oil in a large saute pan.  Add the beef & broccolini & saute on medium-high until the broccolini softens.  You can add a TBS or two of water to aid in the steaming process.  Season with S&P & crushed red pepper.   Two minutes before you are going to serve it, add the garlic.  Cook for two minutes.  Add the cooked pasta & toss.  Garnish with parsley & fresh cracked pepper.  If the dish seems dry, a little drizzle of a good quality olive oil is nice.  A drizzle of olive oil on most pizzas & pastas is nice but it must be good quality oil.

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Broccoli Pasta with Kale, Spinach & Cashew Pesto (Vegan or Not)

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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BathingandthesinglegirlCover vromans back

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This is really easy. I made the pesto last month & froze portions of it in sandwich bags.  It retained its brilliant green color & yummy flavor perfectly.  Here is that recipe:

Kale, Spinach & Cashew Pesto

Makes about 2 cups – which is a lot


2 cups kale with the ribs removed

2 cups organic spinach

2-6 garlic cloves (depending on your taste for garlic)

1/4 cup grated Parmesan (or vegan alternative)

1/4 cup cashews (or almonds or pistachios or walnuts or pecans)

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup water




Blanch the kale in boiling water for 1 minute & then drain & put into cold water.  When it is cool enough, squeeze the water out & pulse it in a food processor a few times.

Toast the nuts in a dry pan – agitating them so they do not burn – for a few minutes or until they start to brown a bit & smell fragrant.  Do not burn them or the pesto will be bitter.  Pulse them into the Kale.

Add all the other ingredients & pulse until smooth.  You might need to add more or less water to get the desired consistency – which should be thick but smooth.  Season with S&P.

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Once the pesto is prepared – all you need to do is boil the pasta & the broccoli & toss it.  SO EASY!  So healthy!  So yummy!

Broccoli Pasta with Kale, Spinach & Cashew Pesto (Vegan or Not)

Feeds 2


1/2 lb pasta

Broccoli – cut into florets (Use as little or as much as you like.  I used a large head.)

Pesto – recipe above (Again – use as much as you like.)

Garnish – Parmesan (vegan or otherwise), ground pepper, salt

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Prepare the pesto.  Boil the pasta & add the broccoli for the last 2-3 minutes.  Drain & toss with the pesto.  Garnish as you like.  See?  crazy easy!

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