Friday, January 10, 2014

Orange Scented Broccoli

I made Orange Scented Broccoli from Appetite for Reduction for the first time the other night. It is quick and easy. We already love broccoli so I don't usually feel the need to do much to it, but I am teaching a short vegan mini-course for our homeschooling group and I wanted to try new recipes which my appeal to my middle school/high school audience. It is hard for me to gage since my kids will eat almost anything. We don't buy orange juice often so they were happy to have some in the house. I didn't zest an orange because I'm lazy so it wasn't as orange-y as it might have been, but a nice addition to brown rice and cubed garlicky tofu.
A few days later I was making brunch. Brunch is a meal we eat often during the week because my eldest and youngest are homeschooled and wake up at different times, while my middle child attends a private school and wakes up first, but has a snack time at school before lunch so doesn't need a huge breakfast. My husband works from home and is not a huge breakfast eater so everyone eats something small when they first wake up and then they are pretty hungry late in the morning. So this particular day I made a normal mix of leftovers, but made an orange sauce to go with it. The sauce had orange juice, mirin, fresh ginger, nutritional yeast, garlic, tamari, red pepper flakes, a few chipotle pepper with adobo sauce, and a dash of blackstrap molasses. The sauce went great with the peas, carrots, seitan, chickpeas, cashews and brown rice. It was lighter than the tahini or nut based sauces I usually make for brunch made from leftovers. A nice change and something I think I'll do from time to time when we have orange juice in the house. I buy organic juice fortified with calcium so I don't mind adding a calcium boost to the meal.

Tonight I threw together something last minute since Parker had offered to cook, but then we found our ingredients were lacking so I took over. It was so good, the family devoured it before I could snap a picture. I wanted to write it down because I don't want to forget to make it again sometime. I made brown rice (for our family of five, I usually pressure cook three cups of dry rice), eight cups of black beans (I soak and cook a bunch of beans on the weekend and use them throughout the week), strained tomatoes, minced garlic, olive oil, diced red onion, crumbed dried hot peppers (gift from our neighbor's garden), diced carrots, and a bit of iodized salt. I was out of cumin so I felt like I needed something to kind of jazz it up so I improvised a vegan queso; cashews, water, better than bouillon, jalapeno peppers, lemon juice, chickpea miso, onion powder, nutritional yeast, tomato paste in the Vitamix then put it in a sauce pan on medium heat and added a bit of Daiya from a forgotten bag in the refrigerator and heated it all up until the Daiya melted. I was doing a few dishes while they were eating and it was gone so quickly that I almost didn't get a change to try it. We now have an table in our kitchen and I love it! I can cook while the kids do homework or I can start cleaning up while they finish dinner.

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