Kale Chips

Hi all, Happy Friday!

I’m currently fighting off an illness (hopefully just a cold) and haven’t had much of an appetite lately. We’ll see if I actually end up cooking the meals I’d planned to this weekend.

Wednesday night I took the plunge and finally made kale chips. I’ve been trying SO hard to like kale. I’ve eaten it sauteed as a side at a restaurant, used it in a chili recipe, and even eaten it raw in salads. While I’ve generally enjoyed eating these things, as much as I want to I just don’t love kale. It starts out tasting pretty good but after a few bites I don’t want to eat it anymore. I feel like a bad vegetarian for saying so.

So I tried once again to inspire some kale lovin within me with this Kale Chips recipe. It actually turned out pretty well! I enjoyed eating the first half of the batch and then the familiar feeling of kale dislike took over me. *Sigh*. The good news is that if you actually do like kale I’m pretty sure you’ll find these delicious.

Preheat the oven to 300. Then destem your kale. Make sure to wash and THOROUGHLY dry the leaves. I used a salad spinner to help with this.

20150128_173319

Add 1/2 Tbsp of olive oil and massage it into every bit of the kale.

20150128_174326

Add your spices. I used nutritional yeast, garlic powder, chili powder, onion powder, paprkia, sea salt, and cayenne.

20150128_174835

Mix the spices in well with the kale. Lay out the leaves in a single layer on a baking sheet.

20150128_175151

Bake for 10 minutes, then turn the pan around and bake for 15 minutes more.

20150128_181854

Let cool for 3 minutes and then devour!

Here is the recipe, slightly modified from Oh She Glows:

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 bunch kale leaves, or 3-4 cups
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or melted coconut oil
  • 1.5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt or pink Himalayan sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 300F. Remove leaves from the stems of the kale and roughly tear it up into large pieces. Wash and spin the leaves until thoroughly dry.
2. Add kale leaves into a large bowl. Massage in the oil until all the nooks and crannies are coated in oil. 3. Sprinkle on the spices/seasonings and toss to combine.
4. Spread out the kale onto the prepared baking sheet into a single layer, being sure not to overcrowd the kale.
5. Bake for 10 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for another 12-15 minutes more until the kale begins to firm up. The kale will look shrunken, but this is normal. I bake for 25 mins. total in my oven.
6. Cool the kale on the sheet for 3 minutes before digging in! This really makes all the difference! Enjoy immediately as they lose their crispiness with time.

Pineapple Sweet and Sour Tofu

Good morning! I hope you all survived the Snowpocalypse.

I was lucky enough to have power all day,  so I was able to cook quite a delicious dinner for myself, Pineapple Sweet and Sour Tofu.

This was a fairly simple recipe, and I made it all while watching Friends on Netflix. Good deal.

Start by pressing your tofu for 30 minutes. Then chop up your pepper. (I used a green pepper in addition to a red one to increase my vegetable intake.)

20150127_173201

Next, add vegetable broth, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, pineapple, pepper, soy sauce, chili paste, and garlic to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

20150127_175614

Meanwhile, combine cornstarch with water and set aside. Chop up scallion.

20150127_180509

When the tofu is done pressing (after 20-30 minutes), chop into 1/2 inch cubes.

Heat a pan with some oil over medium heat and fry tofu for about 5 minutes per side.

20150127_181137

**The grocery store was out of extra firm tofu, so I had to use firm, which is why the tofu is a bit messier than normal!**

When the sauce is done simmering, add cornstarch mixture, mix, and turn off heat.

20150127_181500

Add tofu and mix to coat with sauce.

20150127_181628

Top with scallions and cashews, if desired, and serve.

20150127_181707

I love pineapple in savory dishes, don’t you?

Here is the recipe, slightly modified from Connoisseurus Veg:

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ cup vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup or agave
  • 1 cup diced fresh pineapple
  • 1 diced red bell pepper
  • 1 diced green pepper
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tsp. Asian chili paste or sriracha
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp. cold water
  • 1 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 lb. extra firm tofu, drained, pressed, and cut into ½ inch cubes
  • ¼ cup roasted cashews, optional
  • 2 scallions, chopped

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Press tofu for 20-30 minutes and chop up peppers.
  2. Place vegetable broth, cider vinegar, agave, pineapple, bell pepper, soy sauce or tamari, chili paste or sriracha and garlic in small saucepan and place over medium heat. Stir and bring to a simmer. Lower heat and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. While sauce simmers, whisk cold water and cornstarch together in small bowl. Add to pineapple sauce mixture once simmer time is up. Stir to mix and remove from heat.
  4. About halfway through sauce’s cooking time, coat large skillet with oil and place over medium heat. Arrange tofu cubes in a single layer. Cook about 10 minutes, flipping 2-3 times during cooking to ensure browning on multiple sides.
  5. Add tofu to pineapple mixture. Stir to coat and remove from heat.
  6. If desired, top with cashews and scallions. Serve on its own or over rice.

Sweet Potato & Tofu Enchiladas with Mole Sauce

Happy Snow Day! I’ve been enjoying a productive day indoors cleaning, organizing, and doing a thousand loads of laundry while the snow rages outside. I even got in a workout courtesy of YouTube. Tabata workouts are great to do when you don’t have access to the gym. No equiment required!

I have also been enjoying leftovers for the past couple days of the Sweet Potato & Tofu Enchiladas with Mole Sauce that I made on Sunday night. This recipe makes about 8 servings and since my boyfriend is away at a conference for the week, I get to eat ALL the leftovers. This is basically the best thing ever.

20150125_193135

While it’s great that this recipe leaves you with a plethora of leftovers, I must admit it was the most involved recipe I’ve ever made. It actually took me over 2 hours to make. With better planning though, it should take closer to an hour and a half. Follow my instructions below and you should be set!

If you are going to make this, make it on a Sunday night when you’ve got time to kill and enjoy the leftovers all week!

Preheat the oven to 400 and poke a few holes in 2-3 sweet potatoes. Place in the oven for about an hour.

20150106_190211

Set out your tofu to press for about 30 minutes.

Next, to make your mole sauce, chop up your onion and garlic.

20150125_173131

Heat coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat and add onions. Cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring. Meanwhile, get out the remaining ingredients for the sauce.

20150125_180756

Add the garlic along with chili powder, brown sugar, cinnamon, chipotle chili powder, and cloves. Stir and cook for another minute.

20150125_181835

Add tomatoes, cocoa powder, peanut butter, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.

20150125_182133

Stir every few minutes or so and turn off heat when done.

20150125_183917

Once the sauce has cooled a bit, blend until smooth with an immersion blender (or transfer to a regular blender).

20150125_185501

Once the tofu is done pressing, cut into small cubes.

20150125_181013

Heat more coconut oil in a skillet and add garlic and cumin. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

20150125_183412

Add the diced tofu and stir to coat with cumin. Cook for about 5 minutes per side, until golden brown.

20150125_183543

Around this time, the sweet potatoes should be done cooking. Remove from oven and reset heat to 350.

Scoop flesh from sweet potatoes (about 2 1/2-3 cups) into a bowl and mash with a fork. (I used flesh from 2 1/2 potatoes.)

20150125_184134

Chop up about 1/4 cup of cilantro and add to sweet potatoes. Add cooked tofu as well.

20150125_185015

Mix together well.

20150125_185810

Ladle just over half the mole sauce into the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish.

20150125_185702

Heat up about 5 tortillas at a time in the microwave. Cover the stack with a damp paper towel and microwave for about 30 seconds. Place a few spoonfuls of sweet potato mixture in each tortilla and place seam side down in the casserole dish.

Repeat with remaining tortillas until all 16 are in the casserole dish.

20150125_190646

**Note that I didn’t have enough mixture to fill the last tortilla so I only made 15. Also, some of mine tore as I chose to heat all 15 tortillas before I started adding mixture, so they cooled down again. That is why I recommend heating and filling 5 at a time. **

Cover with remaining mole sauce and 1 cup of jack cheese. (I used a Mexican blend of cheeses.)

20150125_191010

Place in the oven for 20 minutes.

20150125_193135

Eat ALL the enchiladas!!!

Here is the recipe, modified from Oh My Veggies:

INGREDIENTS

Mole Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons natural creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
Enchiladas
  • 2-3 sweet potatoes (2 if large, 3 if medium)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 14-16oz package of extra firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 16 corn tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese or crumbled queso fresco

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 400. Place sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and prick each one with a fork a few times. Bake in oven for about an hour.
2. Line cutting board with paper towels and place tofu block on top. Place more paper towels on top, another cutting board, and a heavy book (or cans) on top. Press for at least 30 minutes.
3. Chop up onions and garlic and get out remaining ingredients for mole sauce.
4. Heat the coconut oil in large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned.
5. Add the garlic, chili powder, brown sugar, cinnamon, chipotle chili powder, and ground cloves and cook about 1 minute more, or until fragrant, stirring constantly.
6. Add the tomatoes, cocoa powder, peanut butter and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
7. Allow to cool slightly and then puree with an immersion blender or transfer to a blender and blend until smooth. Set aside.
8. Cut tofu into half inch cubes.
9. Heat the coconut oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cumin and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
10. Add the diced tofu and stir to coat with cumin. Cook about 10 minutes (5 minutes per side) or until golden and crispy, stirring occasionally.
11. At this point, the sweet potatoes should be done cooking. Rmove from oven and reduce heat to 350. Scoop the insides of the sweet potatoes into a medium bowl and use a fork to mash them.
12. Chop up cilantro and add it to the sweet potatoes along with the tofu. Mix together well.
13. Ladle enough mole sauce into the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 glass baking dish to cover it entirely.
14. Heat tortillas in microwave, a stack of 5 at a time, for 30 seconds, covered with a damp paper towel.
15. Divide sweet potato mixture into tortillas and place opening-side down into baking dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas until all 16 are in dish.
16. Top with the remaining mole sauce and cheese.
17. Bake for 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and the enchiladas are heated through. Garnish with additional cilantro leaves, if desired.