Sloppy Joes

I recently found vegan challah. Gasp! Yes! It’s a thing for a future post. Anyway, thinking about what I wanted to do with the yummers challah I decided Sloppy Joe’s. Mmm…

I’ve written before how I don’t usually go for meat substitutes, but this recipe could easily use TVP (textured vegetable protein) with less simmer time to make a more traditional meaty Joe. I opted to play with lentils.

What you will need:

1 cup green lentils (sort out any non-lentils and rinse well)

2 cups water + 2 Tablespoons

1 not-beef bouillon cube

1/2 red onion, diced

2 large cloves of garlic, minced

1 whole red bell pepper, seeds removed and diced

15 ounce can tomato sauce

2 Tablespoons maple syrup

2 Tablespoons vegan Worcestershire Sauce

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika

Salt and pepper to taste

Place the 2 cups of water, rinsed lentils, and bouillon cube in a medium pot. Bring to boil and reduce heat to simmer uncovered until soft, about 20 minutes. There should not be any water left, but drain any remaining once the lentils are soft.

In a pot or pan with a lid, place 2 Tablespoons of water at the bottom and add onion, garlic, and bell pepper. Cover and let cook over medium heat until soft, stiring frequently. Add a little more water if needed. Add everything to the vegetables and mix well and let heat up. Taste to make sure you do or don’t want any additional salt or pepper.

Serve warm on buns with sliced onion and lettuce or as a stew with crusty bread. Yummers!


Açaí Bowl

I adore açaí bowls. So yummy that I decided to figure out more on what it means to make and eat one.

Açaí is similar to other berries in that it has lots of antioxidants. But if really wanting high antioxidants, go for the wild blueberry. Açaí can be found in a powder or as a pulp in the freezer section.

The other thing I learned is that many bowls have quite a bit of sweetener added. It makes the experience taste like ice cream, but be mindful of the sweetener. An açaí bowl that is more true to the flavor of the açaí fruit will be more tart.

I picked a tart approach and this is what you will need:

2 sleeves of frozen açaí pulp

1 ripe banana divided in half

1/4 cup milk alternative, I used soy

Toppings, I used a 1/2 Tablespoon of chia and 1/4 cup of my oil free granola

Blend half the banana with the açaí from 2 sleeves of frozen pulp and 1/4 cup soy milk until smooth. Pour blended açaí into bowl and slice the other half of banana onto the top. I made a row of banana slices down the middle of the bowl. To one side of the banana I added a row of chia and the opposite side got a 1/4 cup of oil free granola.

There is lots of room to be creative with the toppings of an açaí bowl. All kinds of fresh and dried fruit, nuts, and chocolate can be added to the top. Have some fun with it. Yummers!

Oil Free Blueberry Chia Granola

I’m trying to cut oil out of my diet to see what happens. It gets me closer to a Whole Foods Plant Based diet and has so far been a fun journey. I’m not an extremes person, so it’s just a fun personal challenge.

Hubby really enjoys granola for breakfast and I adore it on an açaí bowl. But most granola has oil and the few I have tried that didn’t, were not very tasty. I thought maybe I could figure this out myself. It’s yummers!

What you need:

1 and 3/4 to two cups rolled oats, uncooked

1 cup puffed rice cereal

1 Tablespoon chia seeds

1/4 cup freeze dried blueberries, any dried fruit will work

1/2 cup quality dark maple syrup

If you want cinnamon, I didn’t, then a 1/2 teaspoon will work

Preheat oven to 375. Mix everything together in a large bowl so there is plenty of room to get maple syrup on everything.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and pile on the granola. Try to get about a 1/4 inch layer. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Until the edges begin to brown.

Remove from oven and let cool completely. Break up everything with fingers and move to an airtight container.

As with most things, the longer you take to eat it, the more stale it will get. Especially since there are no preservatives or oil.