Hot List

List of items that make plant-based cooking and eating easier, tastier and more enjoyable.

Hot List: Presto! Pesto!

Pesto & Hummus Sandwich

Pesto & Hummus Sandwich

As I was reading my previous post for Pasta Primavera I realized that I never posted a recipe for pesto. After all, the pesto possibilities are numerous and a little goes a long way when it comes to adding flavor to your favorite recipes. You can use it in hummus, on sandwiches, in Italian bean dishes, on pizza, tossed with pasta or stirred into sauces and soups. So, why haven’t I shared a recipe with you? Probably because pesto is one of those recipes that doesn’t have to be a recipe and I usually just “wing it”. Well, I’m offering up the following recipe more as a method of making pesto that allows you to adjust it to suit your palate. Traditional pesto contains basil, garlic, pignoli nuts, parmesan and olive oil. I’ve taken out the cheese and oil and added sun-dried tomatoes. If you’re not having a problem with sodium, then mix in a little miso paste for a salty-cheesy nuance. If you’re using it for pasta you might add some vegetable broth or olive oil to coax it onto the pasta. If you’re following an oil-free diet, try mixing it with a small amount of cashew cream. Just place the ingredients in a small food processor and you’re done. Presto! Pesto! Make some pesto and make it a Vegi-curious day.

Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

3 cloves of garlic
¼ cup oil-free sun-dried tomatoes
¼ cup pignoli or walnuts
1 teaspoon miso paste (see note)
3 oz. fresh basil

In food process, pulse garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, pignoli and miso paste until very fine. Add basil and process basil is minced and mixed into tomato-nut mixture. Pesto can be frozen for several months.

Note: you can add a few tablespoons of olive oil if desired. If you don’t have miso paste, you can add salt to taste.

30 Jun 2016

Hot List: Light Vegetable Broth

Light Vegetable Broth

Light Vegetable Broth

This week’s Hot List topic is about vegetable broth, in particular one that mimics chicken broth. I had been using Better Than Bouillon‘s No Chicken Soup Base for a few years whenever I wanted to impart a “chicken” flavor to my recipes. The problem (and there always seems to be a problem with convenience food products) is that it contains a lot of sodium. I’ve thrown together homemade stocks before, using whatever vegetables I had on hand. The results were not consistent and not very flavorful. So I started leafing through my vegan recipe books for homemade stock recipes that had an appealing variety of ingredients. Roberto Martin’s New Vegan Cooking had just what I was looking for. (If you’re not familiar with Roberto Martin, he was the personal chef for Ellen Degeneres.) His recipe for stock has just the right mix of vegetables for a light, yet robust-tasting, vegetable stock. The recipe calls for leeks as as option, but I would definitely use them. The stock comes out very flavorful and with a nice yellowish color. There are a lot of other nice recipes in this book, so it’s worth adding to your collection. I use this stock in recipes like this Spanish rice or any other recipe that calls for chicken stock. ‘m loving this recipe and suggest doubling the recipe and freezing in pint containers. Buy the book and make it a Vegi-curious day.


31 May 2016

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