Vegan Hot Dish

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Tater tots hold a special place in my heart.

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And my gut.

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I’ve mentioned it before, but I used to be what some call a picky eater.

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Hot dogs and chicken nuggets were my main food groups. Growing up we dined out a lot. Probably because I threw a fit every time they tried to serve me pork chops and apple sauce or some crap. I frequented the local Sonic Drive-In regularly with my pops. By regularly, I mean weekly, I’m pretty sure. After two bites of whatever heinous dinner they tried to shove down my throat, I would kick and scream and Greg would drive us to the local Sonic for limeades and wait for it…… cheese tots. Your girl used to drown her adolescent sorrows all up in some cheesy tots. I just have the fondest memories of my dad introducing me to Conway Twitty and listening to the top 40 radio countdown shows (I have a vivid memory of Vitamin C’s “Graduation” being number 1 for a considerable amount of time and IT WAS MY JAM) while sitting in our spot at Sonic.

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I don’t eat cheese now, but I can tell you with absolute certainty I will have cheese tots again one day.

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 2 red peppers, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed + drained
  • 1 can of corn, drained
  • 1 can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 package of cauliflower tater tots
  • 1 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. of cumin
  • 1 tsp. of crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp. of smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. of chili powder
  • S+P, to taste
  • Cilantro, for serving

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat
  • Add onion + S+P, cook 3-4 minutes
  • Add garlic, cook another minute
  • Add peppers + S+P, cook another 3-4 minutes
  • Add beans + corn + tomatoes + spices + S+P, bring to a simmer + cook 3-4 minutes
  • Turn off hot + top with tots
  • Bake 20 minutes
  • Broil for 2-3 minutes until tots get crispy
  • Serve warm with cilantro
  • Scoop a heaping helping of this into a bowl + go to daggum town on this grub

Vegan Crab Cakes with Succotash

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I have been run over by a truck.

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At least that’s what it feels like.

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All of our family was just in town. AND I MEAN ALL OF OUR FAMILY.

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Don’t get me wrong, I loved every second of it and wish I could live next door to all of these humans for the rest of my life, but I’m plumb exhausted from entertaining! Choosing dinner locales, coordinating schedules, shopping at the local boutiques and having people spoil me, it just takes a lot out of you! Really, we loved showing everyone around where we live and introducing them all to our pals, but I think I ate at “the” breakfast spot in town more times in the last week than in the entire 1.5 years we have lived here. Another high note – they were all here to celebrate Garr and his work accomplishments, so I liked hanging on his arm and testing various conversation topics and pleasantries I’ll one day use as First Lady.

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Visit capped off with my dad falling down our stairs & possibly breaking some toes & now he keeps threatening to sue us.

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed + drained
  • 4 hearts of palm, roughly chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 cup of panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 pint of grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 ears of fresh corn, shucked
  • 1 cup of frozen lima beans
  • 1/2 cup of roasted red peppers
  • 5 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 2 tsp. of smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp. of garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. of onion powder
  • 2 tsp. of lemon pepper
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • In a food processor, combine chickpeas + celery + jalapeno + 1/2 the breadcrumbs + 1/2 the smoked paprika + 1/2 the garlic powder + 1/2 onion powder + 1/2 lemon pepper + S+P, pulse until well combined
  • Add mix to a bowl + add chopped hearts of palm + some more S+P, combine well
  • Add remaining breadcrumbs to a lil bowl
  • Heat 2 tbsp. of olive oil a skillet over medium heat
  • Form chickpea mix into 8 or so patties, dredge in breadcrumbs + add to skillet about 3-4 at a time, cooking for 3-5 minutes per side
  • Once cooked, add 1 tbsp. of olive oil to the skillet over medium heat
  • Add tomatoes + corn + lima beans + remaining smoked paprika + garlic powder + onion powder + lemon pepper + S+P, cook 7-8 minutes
  • Meanwhile, add roasted red peppers + garlic + remaining olive oil + S+P to a food processor + process until smooth
  • Serve warm cakes on top of succotash with red pepper sauce drizzled on top
  • Make a lil cakey succotash sammie by spreading some sauce on a cake + topping with succotash + placing another cake on top – bite into that sucker like a ham + cheese on white bread!

 

Idea from here!

Corn + Avocado Panzanella

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A thing I excel at is karaoke.

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And just generally being the life of the party.

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This last statement is false except when I am surrounded by all of my friends in a foreign land like I was this weekend.

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If you consider Boston a foreign land, that is. A dear friend got married this weekend and like 15 of our closest pals descended on MA for the affair. It’s a rare occasion that we all get together considering jobs, families, spouses, babies, life, bills, etc. I cannot even put into the words the fun that was had, but I will try by summarizing our first night: We end up at a hole in the wall pub that all of the girls are like umm is this going to be OK, not sure about this aesthetic. We walk in and this place is BUMPING, man. It is THE place for young professionals on a Thursday after work. They have a jukebox playing Who Let The Dogs Out and other similar classics. Since we’re grooving so hard, we get the brilliant idea to karaoke…….at 7:30pm. Lucky us there’s a karaoke bar around the corner. We sang probably 16 of the 20 songs that were performed while we were there – everything ranging from Tina Turner to Dashboard Confessional, really impressing the crowd with our range. Of course, I concluded the evening with an Adele solo, as I do.

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I left my voice in Boston and now sound like an 80-year-old chain smoker.

 

 

Time: 45 minutes (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 loaf of whole wheat sourdough, cut in cubes
  • 4 ears of corn, shucked
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup of basil, chiffonaded
  • 4 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. of red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. of dijon mustard
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • S+P, to taste
  • Lime, for serving

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Toss bread with 1 tbsp. of olive oil + some S+P
  • Arrange in an even layer on a lined baking sheet, bake about 10 minutes or until toasted to your desire
  • Meanwhile, combine remaining olive oil + vinegar + mustard + shallot + garlic + S+P
  • In a big bowl, combine corn + avocado + tomatoes + jalapeno + red pepper + basil + S+P, toss to coat
  • Add bread + dressing, toss to coat + serve with lime
  • Find a comfy chaise lounge to retire on and hire some cabana boys to spoon feed you this while simultaneously fanning you

 

Dressing from here!