Fo Reals Life

March 02, 2014 March 02, 2014/ Morgan

Are you in love with collard greens yet? If not, this is the dish to make your heart do somersaults!  It’s a sweet and sour dish with just a few ingredients. It’s a super effective and easy way to make a huge pot of greens that you will gobble down.  Your family might just gobble them all down too. 

I posted the nutritional information for collards on this post for Quick Collards and Jalapeno Garlic Polenta. Just so you know, they are awesome nutritional powerhouses! Calcium, Vitamin A, Protein and Fiber plus so much more!!! You’ve got to jump on this collard green bandwagon.

These are super good as a side dish to these vegan Buffalo Chickpea Burgers with some baked fries. My 3 year old has been asking to have it on brown rice every day since I’ve started making it. She absolutely LOVES them. So do I!  

  • 12 cups collard greens (about 2 bunches), stems removed and leaves chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 can pineapple rings in juice, 3/4 cup juice reserved 
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar (like this one!)
  • 2 Tablespoons low sodium tamari or soy sauce

Chop up the pineapple and measure out 1 cup. If there’s some leftover eat it! (or share I guess…)

Heat a large nonstick pan over medium high heat. Add the collard greens, chopped pineapple, 3/4 cup pineapple juice, rice vinegar and tamari. Bring to a simmer, put a lid on it and turn it to medium-low. 

Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Check every now and then to make sure that all of the juice hasn’t evaporated (and add some water if necessary.) Let it cool slightly once it’s done and serve! 

February 08, 2014 February 08, 2014/ Morgan

I hear that there are people out there that are convinced that they don’t like brussels sprouts. Let me UN-CONVINCE you right now! This is the easiest and most delicious way I have made them so far. They are perfectly tender and crispy and salty and garlicky and.. and.. just try them! 

Seriously. My 3 year old ate 3/4 of this plate of them. I chowed down on the rest. We had to go get more brussels sprouts because they were so dang good. 

Hey, some of you, I know, you may not yet be convinced that you need miso. Let me tell you – it works great in so many different dishes not just in soup. It adds the perfect salty fermented taste to vegan cheese sauces, it’s great in a stir fry, you can use it to make a fantastic salad dressing, and you can make these creamy yummy bad boys. I don’t usually specify what kind of miso to buy but here’s my guide: if you are a newbie to miso buy some “white” or “yellow” (or sometimes called “mellow” or “Shiro”) miso. Then get yourself some yummy red miso later on. You could use any of those kinds in pretty much any recipe calling for miso. Then you get into the darker and longer aged misos like the browns which are wonderful in their own way but not necessarily good in all dishes calling for miso paste. I always have some on hand. It lasts forever in the fridge (seriously – years.) but I never can keep it around for more than a month or two. 

  • 1 lb brussels sprouts, cut into quarters
  • 1/2 cup plant strong mayo (recipe here!)
  • 1 Tablespoon miso (red, yellow or white)
  • 4 cloves garlic

Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment or silpat baking mats. 

Blend the mayonnaise, miso and garlic together (I like to use my immersion blender!)

Toss the quartered brussels sprouts with the miso mayonnaise. 

Line them up on the baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 20 minutes or until tender and lightly browned. 

February 07, 2014 February 07, 2014/ Morgan

Lately I’ve discovered that roasting ALL veggies, not just the regulars like peppers, onions and zucchini, but all of them makes them into a really AMAZING treat. I know, you’re thinking – nuh uh – broccoli is not a treat! Yeah wait until you try these! They are positively addictive. The broccoli ends up perfectly tender but not overcooked. And then the creamy crust – oh my word. It’s delicious. My daughter even though these were awesome (I keep thinking she won’t like something and then she eats all of MY servings of it too – that stinker!) 

This should make enough for 3-4 people unless you LOVE it like I do. I ate a whole pound to myself. Let’s just say that I was almost made to sleep on the couch that night. I didn’t even want to be around me! Haha! 

If you love it and you’re not worried about stinking later make extra and devour it! After all, broccoli is an excellent vegetable to be eating regularly! 

Check it out – this is for a little over a pound of broccoli (one bunch.) So much goodness!!! So find your favorite way to prepare it (this is my absolute favorite way!)

  • 1 lb broccoli florets (5-6 cups)
  • 1/3 cup plant strong vegan mayonnaise (recipe here!) 
  • 2-3 Tablespoons sriracha hot sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon low sodium tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment or silpat baking mats. 

Mix the mayo, hot sauce, tamari and vinegar together. Toss with the broccoli florets in a large bowl (or sometimes I pour it all into a plastic bag, close it, and then shake like crazy. Try it! It’s fun!) 

Lay the broccoli out on the baking sheet in a single layer and bake for 15-18 minutes, or until crispy and delicious! 

February 06, 2014 February 06, 2014/ Morgan

I’m still on my artichoke loving kick so here’s another way you can prepare them! I already showed you Steamed with Roasted Red Pepper Mayo so now we are on to roasted with vegan chipotle mayo – yum! Both ways are so easy and very different but delicious in their own ways. And the sauces are to die for on all sorts of stuff!! Gotta have the sauce even if you don’t do artichokes! 

Roasting them with spices makes them extra flavorful and fun to eat. I love how beautiful they look on a big platter with mixed vegetables and dips in the middle. Total party food, yall! 

You can use whatever spices you want on the outside of the artichokes too – curry would be fun or Italian seasoning! Play around with your food and enjoy!! 

And make the sauce. Because you are going to want it slathered all over a vegan burger, believe me! 

Preheat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment or silpat baking mats. 

Cut artichokes in half lengthwise and scoop out the hairy choke from the middle.  I like to peel the outside of the stems too so I can eat those! Next, squeeze lime juice all over the artichokes (make sure you get some in between the leaves too!) Then sprinkle with the chili powder. Rub the chili powder in too so that it gets all over the inside leaves. 

Roast for cut side down on the baking sheet for 35-40 minutes or until tender. 

Vegan Chipotle Mayo 

Blend together until smooth! It should keep for about a week in the refrigerator. 

February 06, 2014/ Morgan/ February 05, 2014 February 05, 2014/ Morgan

A couple of days ago I posted a recipe for Roasted Asparagus and told you how I am really in love with asparagus. It’s true! I’ve been eating it every day lately. So far, this is my favorite way to eat it – lightly steamed with a creamy lemon dill sauce. 

It sounds and looks so dang fancy doesn’t it?! BUT IT IS SO EASY! You could certainly serve this to guests and it would be a smashing success. 

I think I’m going to have to start growing my own asparagus soon if my habit keeps up like this. They do take a while to grow from 1-year starts but once you’ve got them going they are perennial and can grow for 20 years or more! Now only if I had a place that I knew I would be coming back to over and over (I’m a bit of a nomad, really!) Maybe I need a mobile garden. Maybe I can container garden it! 

Oh well either way I’ll just keep buying them for now and eating them with my daily sweet potato addiction. 

  • 1 large bunch asparagus
  • 1 cup plant strong mayonnaise (recipe here!)
  • 1 teaspoon dry dill weed (or 1 Tablespoon minced fresh dill)
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (I use my microplane to zest!)

Steam the asparagus: Get a steamer (I LOVE mine!) ready in a large pot with water filled up to just under the bottom of the steamer. Cut off the bottom 1 inch of the asparagus stalks. Add the asparagus to the steamer and put on a lid. Steam for 5-6 minutes, or until tender but still a beautiful shade of green! Remove the asparagus and plate.

Mix the plant strong mayo, dill, lemon juice and lemon zest together. Warm gently on the stove top over medium heat (remember to stir constantly.) Since it’s such a small amount you will want to use your smallest pot (like this one).

You can also warm it in the microwave. Just place it in a microwave safe dish and stir it every 30 seconds until it is warmed through. 

Pour the sauce over the warm asparagus and serve!