Friday, May 29, 2009

I Heart Kale

No secret, we love kale. I will put kale in just about anything. Okay, anything. It is so versatile and yummy, how could you not love kale? The other day I was making hummus and I had a couple of leaves of kale the kids had asked me to save for smoothies. I didn't feel like making smoothies for whatever reason so I made hummus and threw the kale in. It was so super scrumptious! I didn't add any olive oil so it was nice and light tasting. Perfect for dipping carrots on a warm day.I don't remember the exact measurements of anything, but it has kale, cashews, chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, water, salt (maybe), and cumin (just a pinch). I don't always put cashews in my hummus, but I rejoined a local buying club a couple months ago to cut down on our food bill so I have something like 25 lbs of organic cashews in my freezer. I love cashews too! Due to my abundance of cashews, I made a dish I usually wait to a make once I have fresh tomatoes from the garden...Vegan Yum Yum's Super Quick Tomato Basil Cream Pasta.
I bought a case of canned tomatoes with the cashews so the night before shopping day a few weeks ago, I decided to make this dish with canned tomatoes instead of waiting for fresh. I used up all the basil we had growing inside at the time so this picture has dried basil instead of fresh over whole wheat spaghetti. A couple weeks ago, we were chatting with our neighbor, Greg when Rob arrived home on his bike. They continued to chat while I came in to make dinner as the sun was setting. I had no idea what I was going to make and then Rob comes in saying Greg was staying for dinner since Vicky was out of town. This is a great dish to make last minute for guests. We had a great time eating outside on the porch and Greg seemed to enjoy the pasta. Garlicky sauteed kale and cheesy kale puffs (my new take on Fat Free Vegan's wonderful Colcannon Puffs) for the side. I will share my revised version in a future post, but in the mean time, definitely make Susan's Colcannon Puffs if you haven't yet. We eat them at least once a week.
We had leftover Super Quick Tomato Basil Cream sauce one night (it is a staple again already, even with canned tomatoes) and Josie gave me the idea of using it has a topping for mashed potatoes. She always helps me cook and when I boil potatoes, I let her have a few before I put them in whatever dish I'm making. She loves to dip and this sauce is like crack for her so as she dipped her potatoes in the sauce, I thought, "Why not?". It was a good way to use us the sauce and we aren't big gravy people anyway. Pictured is more sauteed garlicky kale and Vegan Dad's Crispy Cajun Chickpea Cakes. I've been eyeing the chickpea cakes for a while as a change from the Veganomicon Chickpea Cutlets and the Chickpea Sensation Patties from Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan. I like to bake the cutlets and patties instead of frying so I baked some of Vegan Dad's cakes, but fried a few since they do have "crispy" in the title. The fried ones were better. They were good, but not Cajun enough for me and I'd rather not fry foods if I can bake them, but I'll try them again sometime when I have time to experiment. I don't follow the recipe completely for the cutlets and the patties is a sickness.


Lisa -- Cravin' Veggies said...

I love that you have 25 lbs of cashews in your freezer. I love that you all love kale. I especially love that your kids request it!!

You are awesome and your posts always make me smile.


VeganLinda said...


You are the sweetest! Thanks for making me smile!

asma maryam said...

Your blog came up when I was searching for muffin recipes. I just wanted to say that I'm so glad to see a vegan in C-U! I grew up in Urbana and someday I'd love to move back, and I was wondering about the vegan community there.

I was also a frequent volunteer at Poplar Spring before my husband and I moved to California, and I miss it dearly.

Your blog is inspiring! I'll be checking back regularly :)


Mrs. Chicken said...

Those look great, those cutlets - where does one buy vital wheat gluten?

VeganLinda said...


Small world! I love Poplar Spring and miss it terribly. If you are ever in C-U, I'm happy to give you a list of veg-friendly places.

Mrs. Chicken,

You can get vital wheat gluten (it looks like flour) at Strawberry Fields, Common Ground Co-op, Jerry's IGA at Roundbarn, and probably places like Meijer too. Vital wheat gluten is a binder and adds protein. There are great chickpea patty recipes which don't call for vital wheat gluten. Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan by Dreena Burton has Chickpea Sensation patties which are great as well without the vital wheat gluten.

Hua said...

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Those chickpea cakes look delicious.

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