January 1st, 2010

please help my soup.

so i got a moosewood simple suppers cookbook for christmas. not totally vegan, but most of their soups are. so i made the beans, corn and greens soup. and while i like mild flavors [and i'm talking i'll eat pasta, black eyed peas, peas with a little bit of olive oil and parsley and be totally content], this soup seems to have a black hole for main flavor. it's spicy enough, and it has the edges to fill out something, but it doesn't seem to have any sort of main flavor. sort of like making miso soup without the miso.
the recipe calls for
1 cup chopped onions
1 T olive oil
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp fennel
1/4 tsp cayenne
2 cups chopped collards
i replaced the diced tomato with salsa as it said i could in the notes. i did go a little lighter, but i'm not a huge fan of tomatoes
1.5 cups black eyed peas
2 cups corn kernels
1 cup broth
you sautee the onions down until softened. then you add in the spices and collards, salt them, and cook until wilted. add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for ten minutes.

i added in a Tablespoon of tamari as it needed a bit more salt and i find that tamari often rounds out flavors nicely, but no dice here.
i also tried out a bit of balsamic and no go. no chili sauce either [that made it way too spicy].

does anyone know the magic ingredient to make this soup awesome or anything that might give this soup some taste?
thanks in advance.

Quick Chickpea Salad, Easy Enchiladas

If you're like me, around this time of year you're looking for meals that are quick, easy, healthy, and cheap.

Quick Chickpea Salad


This recipe is totally approximate; I never measure when I make this, I just eyeball everything. You can easily add things, leave things out or make substitutions. And it's SO GOOD. Makes about 4 servings.

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons minced celery
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 dash paprika
several dashes garlic powder
juice of half a lemon
big dollop of vegan mayo
salt and pepper to taste

Mash chickpeas with a potato masher, leaving them somewhat chunky. Stir in all the other ingredients. I love to eat this as a sandwich on whole wheat toast with some lettuce.

Easy Enchiladas

This is the way my mom always makes enchiladas, but she uses plenty of cheese and chicken or leftover turkey. I've been experimenting with different vegan fillings, and I've found that I can pretty much throw in whatever vegetables and beans I have around and have a tasty meal. Last time I used black beans, butternut squash, onions, and garlic. YUM. Makes about 15 enchiladas.

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 small butternut squash, peeled and diced
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced

corn tortillas
1 can enchilada sauce

Heat up a skillet, peel and chop the squash. Chop the onion and put both in the skillet with a little oil or cooking spray. Mince the garlic and add to the skillet. Saute until the onions are a bit caramelized and the squash is tender. Remove from heat and stir in the beans.

Preheat your oven to 375. Spray a baking dish or pan with cooking spray. Just about any oven-safe vessel will work here as long as it's deep enough to hold the enchiladas and sauce. I usually have to use two pans because I don't have one big enough to hold all the enchiladas.

Warm a tortilla in a skillet until it's flexible, place some of the filling in the middle, roll it up and place it in your pan, seam-side down. As soon as you take the tortilla out of the pan, put another one in so the next one will be ready when you are. Repeat until all your filling is used up. Pour the enchilada sauce generously over the enchiladas, and bake for about 30 minutes.