DDD Ep. #36 – Easy Basic Hummus with Spicy Jalapeno

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

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

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I have a video from my channel for this recipe.  Click the image below to watch & please subscribe!

I am kind of on a Mediterranean kick & am VERY excited to attempt a vegan gyro later today but for now – I post this hummus.  My mother always made her own & it is really so easy – nobody should ever buy any that is prepackaged.  All this requires is 8 simple ingredients & a blender.  I added jalapeno because I like them but you need not.  Tahini is a sauce that comes bottled & is readily available at most large grocery stores and it has a refrigerated shelf life like peanut butter – FOREVER.  So go ahead & buy some.

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Easy Basic Hummus with Spicy Jalapeno

INGREDIENTS

1 can chick peas – drained

1/4 cup tahini

juice of 1 lemon

2 tsp cumin

1-3 cloves of garlic – to taste

1/2 tsp salt

1 TBS olive oil

1-4 TBS water (depending on how thick you like your hummus)

1/2 – 1 jalapeno – use half for a little spice, all for more spice and use even the seeds for a powerfully spicy hummus – or use none at all

Whip that shit up in a blender or food processor.

Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, paprika, parsley or diced jalapeno.  Serve with naan or pita or veggies!

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DDD #35 – Vegan Butter Chicken & Chickpeas

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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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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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This blog is 5 years old today!   And my Youtube channel just hit 1000 subscribers!  I am very happy about both milestones.

I have a video on my Youtube channelwww.VideoVegan.com for this.  Click the photo below to watch & please subscribe!

I have really become obsessed with my slow cooker.  Slow cookers – as I have many.  The one that I can set to cook for 5 hours & then just keep the food warm is the best because I can set it & go to work & come back 10 hours later to a house that smells delicious & a warm meal waiting for me.  If you don’t have a low cooker – I really encourage you to get one.  Easy doesn’t get easier than a recipe like this one.  Just throw everything in & set the timer for 5 hours & that is it.

I used Beyond Meat vegan chicken because it is, hands down, the best fake chicken on the market.  But you could use real chicken or just use chickpeas.  Your call.

I used two kinds of saffron:

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That Golchin liquid stuff is affordable (under $10) and is GENIUS.  If your store doesn’t carry it – buy it on Amazon or something.

The saffron threads are delicate & lovely but very costly.  They were part of a gourmet gift box I was given for my birthday – and not usually on my shopping list.  Either or both of these work – but I suggest trying to use one – because saffron is such a specific & lovely flavor & adds gorgeous color – but it isn’t really critical for this dish to be a success.  So – if you don’t have it, don’t like it, can’t find it – blow it off.

I used dry chickpeas because I am delighted by how cheap they are & I like that they have been processed less & have no added sodium.  But – if you want to use canned ones – go ahead!  This could be made stove-top easily with canned beans – just don’t add the 4 cups of water.

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Vegan Butter Chicken and Chickpeas for the Slow Cooker

Feeds a LOTTA folks – maybe 8-10 with rice

INGREDIENTS

1 lb dry chickpeas (or 4 cans – but if you use canned chickpeas – eliminate the water here)

3 cups water (4 cups if you are gonna leave it for 10 hours – like I did)

9 ox vegan chicken

2 jalapenos (red or green) – seeded & diced

1 onion – diced

4 garlic cloves – chopped

2 TBS ginger – minced

8 oz tomato sauce (I used a homemade arrabbiata)

6 oz tomato paste

14 oz can lite coconut milk

1/2 tsp crushed saffron threads (optional)

3 TBS saffron liquid (optional)

1 TBS garam masala

1 TBS curry powder

1 tsp chili powder

1 TBS turmeric

2 tsp salt

2 tsp pepper

garnish – cilantro, scallions, yogurt (vegan or otherwise), cooked rice

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DIRECTIONS

Put everything into a slow cooker & set on high for 5 hours.

If you are using canned chickpeas – do not add water.  As you see above – this recipe has lots of gravy (the upper picture is before it cooked & the other is how it looked 10 hours later).  If you want  it thicker – whisk some cornstarch (2-3 TBS) into a little water & stir it in.  It should thicken up.  If it is too thick – add water.

Serve over rice & garnish at will.

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Vegan Life Changing Masala with Beef & Chickpeas

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2017

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

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

So – flipping around the internet, I came across a recipe from a blog I love.  The blog is Pinch of Yum.  I love the blog because the photographs are mercilessly lush & gorgeous.  About a year ago, she posted her “life-changing 30 minute masala sauceand the photos are so great – I just could not get the recipe out of my mind – so – I made it!  She offers the recipe for a masala paste & then how to make a sauce from the paste.  She served the sauce over her “30-minute vegetarian meatballs.”  I did not have the ingredients for the meatballs so I decided to serve my sauce over Gardein beefless tips & chickpeas.

The paste is SUPER easy.  You just whip it up in a food processor.  The sauce is super easy, too, and she is right!  It is delicious!  You could serve the sauce over any meat or meatless meat or veggie or even rice or pasta you desire.  The paste makes a lot so maybe freeze some.

I did not have onions so I used shallots & scallions.  I used two tomatoes & some tomato paste in place of her suggested 1½ cups tomato puree + ½ cup water or broth – just because that was all I had.  Worked out great!  I recommend you make this sauce & follow her blog.  It is really wonderful!

Vegan Life Changing Masala with Beef & Chickpeas

Serves 4 with rice

INGREDIENTS

9 oz vegan beef (or other vegan meat)
1 15-ounce can chickpeas – drained
for the masala paste
2 onions
5 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, crushed
3 tablespoon garam masala
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon turmeric
1 tablespoon cumin
1½ teaspoons ground cloves
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
a small pile of of cilantro stems
a fistful of almonds
juice of one lemon
for the masala sauce
1½ cups tomato puree + ½ cup water or broth
1 14-ounce can coconut milk
½ teaspoon salt (taste and adjust)
GARNISH – cooked rice & cilantro
DIRECTIONS
Pulse all the ingredients for the Masala Paste in a food processor until smooth.  Put it into a container for storage in the fridge or freezer – reserving only 1/4 cup of the paste for this recipe.  The rest is extra!
Heat a drizzle of oil in a skillet. Add 1/4 cup masala paste to the skillet and with a little bit of oil and stir around in the pan until fragrant (3-5 minutes).  Add the tomato puree and water and simmer until t’s a rusty-deep-red color – about 5-10 minutes.  Add the beef & chickpeas.  Add the coconut milk; simmer for 10 minutes or so until thick and creamy.  Longer simmer = thicker and better flavor.
Serve over warm rice & garnish with chopped cilantro.

Spicy Vegan Southern Chickpea Stew with Rice

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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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I know I say a lot of my dishes are easy – but – if I say that is true.  And not just true for experienced cooks but easy for beginners & those in a hurry.  EASY.  This one is impossible to mess up – short of burning it or over-salting it.  Beyond that – really fucking easy.

Simple & easy-to-find ingredients.  You control the spice.  If I were to make this again – I would use maybe only half the can of tomatoes – but that is because I prefer the chickpeas to the tomatoes. Or – maybe I’d add a second can of chickpeas.  Whatever.  The point is – you can play with this & customize it to your tastes.   Better yet – the stew will be done before you rice is – that is how fast & easy this is.

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Spicy Vegan Southern Chickpea Stew with Rice

Serves 2 with rice

INGREDIENTS

Cooked rice for 2

Olive oil

1 (14.5 oz) can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes

1 (15.5 oz) can chickpeas – drained

1 jalapeno – seeded & diced (optional)

1 red (or other color) bell pepper – seeded & chopped

1-3 cloves garlic – minced

2 tsp Cajun (or Creole) seasoning

1/2-1 tsp chipotle pepper (less if you don’t tolerate heat well)

Liquid Smoke (very optional)

S&P

Parsley – chopped as garish

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DIRECTIONS

Cook the rice.

Meanwhile, heat a TBS or two of olive oil over high heat & cook the bell pepper & jalapeno until soft.

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Add the garlic & stir for one minute.  Add the chickpeas & tomatoes (maybe not all the can of tomatoes – if you like a less tomato-heavy stew.  These photos show an entire can) & spices.  If you are using liquid smoke – start with one or two drops & increase according to your taste for this stuff.  I find it goes from “barely noticeable” to “OmyGod – this whole dish is ruined” very quickly.  Too much liquid smoke is fucking nasty.  Trust.  So – go easy.

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Heat through & serve over rice garnished with parsley.

Told you it was fucking easy, didn’t I?

Enjoy!

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Vegan Butter Chicken and Chickpea Burrito with Pickled Onions and Mint Cilantro Chutney

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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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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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Did you perhaps make my Vegan Butter Chicken and Chickpeas for the Slow Cooker – seen above?  Do you have boat loads left over – like I do?  Why not try this Indian take on a burrito?    The Mint & Cilantro chutney is genuinely spicy & insanely delicious & takes this curry to new heights.   The pickled onions add a little snap & they are SO EASY to make.  You could add paneer or feta or cotija or some cheese to this – if you eat cheese – but it really doesn’t need it.

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The recipe for that mint & cilantro chutney above is HERE.

The recipe for the pickled red onions above is HERE.

The recipe for the Butter Chicken & Chickpeas above is HERE.

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Vegan Butter Chicken and Chickpea Burrito with Pickled Onions and Mint Cilantro Chutney

INGREDIENTS

Mint & cilantro chutney is HERE

Pickled red onions are HERE

Butter Chicken & Chickpeas is HERE

Cooked rice

Large tortillas

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DIRECTIONS

Warm the curry.  Assemble the burrito.  Grill on a dry grill pan until it looks good to you.  Dip it in extra chutney & shove it into your motherfuckin’ pie hole.  Mmmmmmm!

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Spicy Vegan Chicken and Mushroom Curry with Cauliflower and Chickpeas

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

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

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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Well – once again – I took an extended break from the blog – because my mom was in town from Boston.  We spent the week eating & drinking in public.  See?  Here are some highlights (and a few pictures of my mom, me & my pal, David J. Wayne).  I will state where they were taken beneath the images.

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Spitz (Los Feliz)

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Robbie Mac’s

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PF Changs (Sherman Oaks Galleria)

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Silverlake Ramen House

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The Thirsty Crow

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La Poubelle

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Cheesecake Factory (The Americana)

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Sushi Stop (Hollywood)

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La Poubelle

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Oh my fucking God – the awesome TOSCANA!  Treat yourselves.  Seriously.

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La Poubelle

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Figaro Bistrot

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Chi Dynasty

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The 101.

OK – so – all that happened (and more) – but now I will move on to this delicious & easy curry!

I made this, as I so often do, from stuff I had around.  I have a freezer full of Beyond Meat’s amazing vegan chicken.  I also had a head of cauliflower & some mushrooms that were on their last legs & a can of garbanzo beans (chick peas).  If you do not have any of these or loathe one of them – 86’m.   I had this gorgeous-looking harissa stuff here (that I got at TJ Maxx – a great resource for exotic but cheap ingredients):

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and a can of lite coconut milk.  If you don’t have harissa – use sriracha or another hot sauce.  And feel free to use full-fat coconut milk, if that’s what floats your boat.

You could make this in a slow-cooker if you desired.  You could make it with real chicken.  It is a pretty forgiving recipe but it is delicious!!!!  And easy!

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Spicy Vegan Chicken and Mushroom Curry with Cauliflower and Chickpeas

Makes a lot – enough for 4 easy – maybe more

INGREDIENTS

9 oz vegan chicken – thawed a bit & cut into cubes

1/2 lb mushrooms – sliced

1 onion – diced

1/2 head cauliflower – broken into small florets (optional)

1 (15 oz) can chickpeas – drained & rinsed (optional)

1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk (I used lite)

2 TBS coconut oil (or olive oil)

6 oz tomato paste ( I used some leftover, homemade spicy red pasta sauce)

3 garlic cloves – minced

1 tsp ginger – minced

2-3 TBS mango chutney (or use an apricot preserve – if chutney is not available)

1 TBS harissa sauce (or sriracha or other hot sauce)

1 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp garam masala

1 tsp curry powder ( I used red curry powder but any will do)

2 tsp turmeric

1 tsp chili powder

S&P

Cilantro as garnish

Cornstarch (only if your curry is too thin)

Cooked rice

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DIRECTIONS

This is not rocket science.  You would have to try pretty hard to fuck this up.  Short of burning it – I can’t really think of what one could do to ruin it.   The order things are added is a guide but little more.

Cook up some rice.  I used brown basmati.

Heat the coconut (or olive) oil in a large saute pan over high heat.  Saute the onions & mushrooms until soft – stirring frequently.  This should take about 5 minutes.

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Add the garlic & ginger & stir for about a minute.  Try not to burn the garlic.  Then – add the coconut milk & combine.

Then – you can pretty much just add everything else.  Lower heat to medium & simmer for a while.  If you wanted to – once you added the garlic & ginger – you could just dump everything into a slow cooker & let it cook there on high for a few hours or more.

Either way – it is done when the cauliflower is tender.

If the curry seems too thin, maybe whisk in a TBS of cornstarch.  Mine got too thick & I ended up adding a good cup or two of water.  I imagine you will be doing the water addition, too, but the thickness is up to your personal taste.

Season with S&P & maybe more chutney or hot sauce – depending on your palate.

Serve over rice & garnish with cilantro.  And there you go!  Easy, right?   🙂

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One-Pot Vegan Sausage and Broccoflower Pasta with Chickpeas

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

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

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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One pot dishes are so satisfying.  Almost as satisfying as crock pot recipes.  This one could be done a variety of ways.  I chose to cook the onion & sausage together first & then put them aside & cook pasta.   If the texture (al dente or whatever) of your pasta is critical to you – cook the pasta first, drain it & then add it to the pan after you cook the sausage up.

You could use real sausage but I don’t eat that shit – so – I used these guys.

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They are labeled vegetarian but their website refers to them as vegan.  Are they as powerfully flavorful as a pork version would be?  No.  But when you consider that – when you buy vegan sausage – nobody who started life looking like this – (photo snagged from Google)

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was then forced into brutally inhumane living conditions & tortured their entire life & savagely slaughtered – well then maybe you might find the flavor concession a small price to pay to be able to eat “sausage” and still look this little guy in the face guiltlessly.  That was a confusing run-on sentence but I think you get my meaning.  The other advantage is that these are far less greasy & lower in calories.

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I used broccoflower because I had it but broccoli or cauliflower would work, too.  I love chickpeas & they are very good for you – so I added them – but they are not critical.  I just like to load my pasta dishes with a lot of filling & healthy extras so that I end up eating less actual pasta.  This is just a personal preference – and – I am trying to drop a few pounds before I go off to shoot a film in Mississippi next month – so – broccoflower was a perfect addition here.

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One-Pot Vegan Sausage and Broccoflower Pasta with Chickpeas

Serves 2 very well

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb dry pasta

1/2 onion – diced

2 (or more) large vegan sausages

1 head broccoflower (or substitute of your choice) – cut into bite-sized florets

1 (15 oz) can chickpeas – drained

4 garlic cloves – minced

Olive oil

1-3 tsp crushed red pepper (I used three – but I love spice!)

3 cups vegetable stock (or water & bouillon)

1 TBS lemon just & 1 tsp lemon zest (optional)

1/2 cup shredded basil – as garnish (parsley would work, too)

S&P to taste

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DIRECTIONS

OK – so – as I said – this can be done by either cooking & draining the pasta & broccoflower first & adding it later or, as I did, cooking the sausage & onion first.  Cooking the pasta first allows you to better control how well it is cooked but doing it second infuses the pasta with veggie stock – so – your call.  I am gonna list the directions as I did it.

In a large pot, heat 1-3 TBS olive oil over medium heat & saute the onion, sausage & crushed red pepper until the onion is soft & the sausage begins to brown.  Not a science – just eyeball it – and when you think it is done – add the garlic & stir it in for about a minute – then set it aside.

In that same pot, add the vegetable stock, chickpeas, pasta & the lemon juice & zest.  Bring to a boil & cook it according to the instructions on your pasta label – BUT – 3 minutes before the pasta is supposed to be done – add the broccoflower & cover.   You MIGHT have to add a bit of water to keep things from drying out – though I did not.  Cook the remaining time left of the pasta.  Check it now – by testing the doneness of both the pasta & vegetable.  I like my veggies with some crunch – so – this timed perfectly for me.  If you feel it needs more time – keep cooking it & even add more water – if you think it needs it.  If it is too wet, cook it down.  When it seems ready – add the sausage & onion & stir to incorporate it.  Serve with basil or parsley & shove it in your pie hole with no regard for decency.  Look up pictures of cutie piglets & feel superior.  You earned it.

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The top video there is trailer for my novel.  The second is me reading from it a while back – at Vroman’s.

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