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

PB + Chocolate Chip Skillet

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Give me a mic, put me in front of athletes & roll the camera.

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Because I am ready to become a sports reporter.

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I’m not sure why it’s taken me 28 long years to discover my destiny.

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Prob because I didn’t like sports until I was 25 and even then I only learned the rules like last year, but that’s neither here nor there. I went to my first NHL game this weekend. Am now a BIG hockey guy. It’s quick, it’s violent, I dig it. I just love the camaraderie at sporting events. All the strangers drinking overpriced brewskis and shouting at the top of their lungs, hoping for the same outcome. I love giving out high fives all willy nilly and becoming fast friends with the bros next to me. America, man. I think I could really provide some colorful commentary to stale ESPN and the like. All their anchors know too much, like rules and player names.  It’ll be less analyzing plays and more analyzing athlete moods and crowd energy  – the important stuff.

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Oh, and I’ll pack lil vegan treats for everyone to snack on in between plays!

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + baking) | Serves: 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp. of baking soda
  • Pinch of S
  • 1/2 cup of vegan butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup of pure cane sugar
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of creamy PB
  • 1 tbsp. of flax meal
  • 2 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup of vegan chocolate chips

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Grease a skillet with cooking spray
  • In a tiny bowl, combine flax with 3 tbsp. of warm water, mix + set aside
  • In a bowl, whisk flour + baking soda + S, set aside
  • In a mixer bowl, combine butter + sugars + PB, beat for two minutes on medium
  • Add in flax egg + vanilla extract, mix on high for a minute to get all that good good combined
  • Turn mixer on low + slowly add in dry ingredients a lil at a time until all combined
  • Turn off mixer + fold in chocolate chips
  • Spread cookie dough + pat down evenly in skillet
  • Bake 25 minutes, remove + let cool (it’ll cook more in the warm AF skillet!)
  • Cut + serve warm
  • Let it sit out on your counter + nibble on it every time you walk by + see if you can beat our household record of devouring in 5 hours

 

Adapted from here!

Chocolate + Date Oat Bars

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I am a 19 year old frat boy.

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In that I have been living like a stuffed pig this week.

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Garr was traveling this week and I was bound and determined to get the house spic and span after several weeks of both of us traveling.

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The laundry basket overflowing with three clean loads I’ve yet to fold tell a different story. I literally just dug through it to get some clean workout clothes for yoga tomorrow. I am ashamed of myself. Yet here I sit. Writing this. Instead of doing my chores. The irony. I was also going to clean all the bathrooms. I managed to put my hairbrush under the sink and contact solution in the drawer. The end. I also had big plans to sweep & mop on my lunch break. Did I instead read The Bachelorette spoilers? You better believe it. I even only ran Felix (roomba) once in 4 days. That is literally unacceptable! He’s used to a daily workout. I’ve reached a new level of lazy if I cannot *press* his button. I’m blaming it on the full moon. It’s sucking my energy for its weird lunar purposes.

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I have at least showered every day and for that I applaud myself.

 

Time: 2 hours (prep + cooking) | Serves: 12 bars

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup of rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  • Pinch of S
  • 1/2 cup of vegan butter, melted
  • 12 oz. of pitted dates
  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of vegan semisweet chocolate chips

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Coat a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray + top with a sheet of parchment paper
  • Meanwhile, combine flour + oats + sugar + S
  • Slowly stir in melted butter until combined
  • Scoop 2/3 of the mix into the bottom of the baking dish + pat into a flat layer
  • Pop in the freezer while you make the filling
  • In a food processor, combine dates + vanilla + pinch of S + 1/2 cup of hot water + process on high until smooth
  • Transfer to a bowl + fold in chocolate chips
  • Spread date mix on top of the oat base
  • Top with leftover oat mix + pat down
  • Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown
  • Let cool for an hour + pop in the freezer for a bit to set
  • Cut into bars + serve! Or individually wrap them + pop back in the freezer for snacking throughout the week
  • Fasten on your bib, partner, there are going to be some serious crumbs

 

Adapted from here!