Category Archives: Vegan

Herbed Green Beans

It has been three years since my last canning of green beans; this is not because I haven’t wanted to, but because nature has not allowed me to!  In both 2011 and 2012 I battled bugs, lots and lots of bugs.  And I’m not talking about a bite here or a nibble there.  Those tiny mouths of destruction waged an all-out war on my garden and made Swiss cheese of my bean patch!  This year I had the bunnies to thank for completely devouring my plants before they ever had a chance to produce beans… that the bugs could then eat.  The bunny mishap could have been prevented (and will be for next year’s growing season); however, due to the time constraints of my “workforce” the garden gate has yet to be constructed.  This translated into a big flashing sign that read EAT HERE!!!  Sigh.

My non-existent green bean harvest has forced me to continually set aside a canning recipe I’ve been wanting to try out.  Fortunately, Farmer Josh’s second planting of beans was ready for the pickin’, so I was able to secure a half-bushel along with my yearly order of corn.

herbed green beans Herbed Green Beans – yields 6 quarts

24 cups snap or wax beans, washed, ends trimmed, and cut into 1 inch pieces.

3 cups chopped onion

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped

3 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped

1 tsp celery seed

1/2 tsp pickling salt – optional

Place beans in a large stock pot and add enough water to cover the beans.  Bring to a boil and cook, covered, for 5 minutes.  Drain beans and return to pot and add onion, garlic, herbs, and if desired salt.  Mix well to distribute herbs.  Fill sterile quart or pint jars leaving 1″ headspace; add boiling water, leaving 1/2″ headspace.  Remove air bubbles, wipe rims, and adjust lids to fingertip-tight.  Process quarts for 25 minutes and pints for 20 minutes in a pressure canner at 10lbs-weighted-gauge or 11lbs for a dial-gauge, at sea-level.

PDFBadgeImages and content copyright © 2013 Danielle R Limoge. Recipe adapted from a book I borrowed from the library several years ago and did not write down.  I know, worst credit acknowledgement EVER!

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Some Like it Hot-Hot-Hot

Looking back, it was around 2005 when my love affair with capsaicin began.  During this time I could be found wearing mandarin collars and stunning imported silks, mainly because I was a server in one of my best friend’s family owned restaurants.  Sukhothai started it all.

Ever since, I’m always on the lookout for new ways to heat things up in the kitchen… and in the garden!  For the past 3 years I’ve grown Chinese Five Color peppers and this year will be no different.  Not only do these little babies pack a serious heat-punch, they also add a burst of vibrant color anywhere that needs a little livening up!

Chinese 5 color peppers

Last fall, I made the strategic decision to head over the river and through the woods and set up camp in my old stomping grounds… but not without first harvesting all my remaining produce still growing about the property!  With several quart boxes in tow, I was now faced with the challenge of preserving these bright beauties to be savored during the cold winter months.  In years past I’ve both frozen and dehydrated them, but never have I pickled them!

pickled peppers

Pickled Peppers

4 qts peppers – I used Chinese Five Color

4 cups distilled white vinegar

4 cups water

4 tsp pickling salt

olive oil

Wash peppers thoroughly.  Remove core, seeds, and stems of large peppers and coin; small peppers can be processed whole with stems intact.  Make 2 small slits in whole peppers.

Mix vinegar and water; heat to boiling.  Be careful to not boil your vinegar too long as it is rather volatile.  Tightly pack peppers into sterile, hot jars and pour the vinegar-water on top, leaving 3/4″ headspace.  Add 1/4″ olive oil and a pinch of salt, if desired.  Wipe rims, add two-piece adjustable lids and process in a boiling-water bath for 15 minutes.  Remove jars from canner and place on a wire rack for 12-24 hours, undisturbed, so seals may properly set.

Makes 8 pints.

Images and content copyright © 2013 Danielle R Limoge. Recipe courtesy of Putting Food By

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Corn Cob Stock

Often I find myself wondering how something so simple can be so delicious?  That very question was running through my mind as I was putting up another waste-not-want-not recipe.

Several weeks ago I stopped by the farm to pick up my yearly bounty of sweet corn.  Typically, I freeze the kernels and the cobs are cooked down and transformed into a sweet, honey-like jelly; this year, however, I wanted to do something a little different!  Yes, corn was still frozen and cobs were cooked, but instead of adding sugar and making jelly I jarred that savory, sunbeam-yellow liquid and canned a big ol’ batch of stock!  Three gallons to be precise!

This recipe is soooo easy-peasy; you need just two simple ingredients: corn cobs and water.  That’s it!

Corn Cob Stock

Corn Cobs

Water

Place cobs into a large stock pot and cover with one inch of water; you may need to cut your cobs in half to get them to fit.  Bring pot to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 90 minutes.  Strain liquid through several layers of cheese cloth or a coffee filter.  Fill sterilized pint and or quart jars, reserving 1/2″ headspace.  Wipe rims, adjust two-piece lids to fingertip-tight and process at 10 pounds in a pressure canner for 20 minutes.  Place jars on a wire rack and allow to cool, undisturbed, for 12-24 hours so seals may properly set.

Corn cob stock must be pressure canned to ensure safe shelf-stability.  If you do not own a pressure canner you can freeze it, just be sure to allow enough headspace so your jars do not break as the liquid freezes and expands!

I probably used anywhere from 24-30 cobs to make my stock, but I also had two large stock pots reducing at once!  I knew this was going to be delicious so a double batch was definitely in order!

PDFBadge

Images and content copyright © 2012 Danielle R Limoge.

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Fruit-Infused Vinegar

I can’t believe almost a month has passed since my last post, which by the way, was only a picture!  Lame, I know!  What can I say, life has taken a turn and unfortunately it isn’t in the direction of my garden.  When I take something on I throw everything I have at it.  In the past it was sewing, then food growing, and now my career.  I also happen to be someone who refuses to fail; when I’m told I can’t do something I will stop at nothing to prove you wrong.  Well, I finally hit a wall.  I’ve been struggling for months, refusing to admit what everyone else has been telling me.  I. can’t. do. it. all.

I can’t work 14 hour days, take on custom orders for PixyPatch, blog, and maintain close to 2000 square feet of growing space.  There I said it.  –>Insert HUGE sign of relief (and defeat).<–  Something has got to give and unfortunately it’s the garden.  Fear not friends, I’ll still be around, I’m just scaling back.  Way back.

Over the past month I’ve done a bit of canning, dehydrating, and cooking.  As to when those posts will actually make it onto OGT has yet to be determined.  I whipped up a delicious vanilla-ginger rhubarb jam several weeks ago and I’d love to share it while rhubarb is still in-season, but I make no promises! :)

I am however going to share a quick recipe for fruit-infused vinegar.  It is the perfect addition to all those fresh-from-the-garden salads!

Strawberry-Infused Vinegar

2 cups fresh fruit: I used strawberries but plan on trying cherries, blueberries, and peaches!

2 cups distilled white vinegar

Place fruit and a bit of vinegar in a food processor and purée until smooth.  Combine liquid fruit and remaining vinegar in a sterilized quart jar, add lid and shake.  Allow mixture to sit in a cool dark place for 10 days; shake daily to blend flavors.

Strain vinegar through several layers of cheesecloth or coffee filters and discard solids.  Vinegar will keep at room-temperature for up to a year.

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge. Recipe courtesy of Put ‘em Up.

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A Post For The Impatient

Twenty-one days.  That’s it my friends.  We’re talking three short weeks between germination and harvest.  And just what is this presto-pronto-producer you ask?  Why the undervalued radish of course!

When I planted my first garden in ’91 the only veggie request I had was from my father; he asked for radishes.  To this day, I remember sitting in the kitchen watching him enjoy a plate full of those crunchy, lightly salted, ruby-red radishes, that I oh-so-proudly grew.  I too share his excitement over that cruciferous vegetable: they’re delicious raw, cooked crisp-tender, fermented, and (I can now say) pickled!

Pickled Radishes

2 large bunches of radishes (I used French breakfast, but any variety will do!)

1 cup cider vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

4 tsp sea salt or any non-iodized salt such as kosher

1/2 tsp brown mustard seed

1/8 tsp whole coriander

1/4 tsp black peppercorns

3 cloves garlic – sliced

Coin radishes and place into a bowl of ice water.  Set aside.  In a large sauce pot combine water, vinegar, salt, and sugar; stir to dissolve sugar and bring mixture to a slight simmer.

Fill each sterilized pint jar with the above mentioned spices, add one clove of garlic to each jar, then add (drained) radishes; fill jars with hot brine, leaving 1/2″ headspace.  Remove air bubbles; wipe rims and add two-piece adjustable lids to fingertip-tight.  Process in a boiling-water bath for 15 minutes.  Remove jars from canner and allow to cool on a wire rack for 12-24 hours, then store for up to a year.  Yields approximately 3 pints.

This recipe also produces a delicious refrigerator pickle; however, you should wait two weeks before enjoying so the brine can properly develop!

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge. Recipe adapted from Canning Homemade.

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Hello, it’s me again.

I’m baaack!!  Well, kind of.  Life has once again gifted me with a crazy twist of fate.  I’ve been traveling for work; so much so that my only free time is now on the weekends.  I’m also relocating.  The when, however, is very much up in the air.  All of this is completely my doing, kind of.  I could have stayed where I am, content, but teetering on “what if”.  I’m someone who craves change, like shake-up-your-snow-globe change.  If I were not standing on the cusp of a brand new growing season, my bags would be packed and a POD would be in-route.  But I blame my gardens and the state of nirvana which they provide.  Dirt therapy grounds me and I enjoy my sanity!

So, with that being said I can finally admit that am sooooo far behind with this year’s gardens.  My tiller remains in the shop, I killed a third of my cold-weather transplants, and my warm-weather seedlings still have their cotyledons!  So yeah, you could say I’m freaking out… in an overly calm, Danielle kinda way.  I think the only thing that has kept me from losing my shit is the fact that I’ve been harvesting carrots, mustard greens, radishes, lettuce, and kale since early March; that, and my kitchen looks like fermentation nation! :)

I haven’t done much “new” weekend cooking, it’s all been quick and dirty.  I’ve been focused on using my stock-pile of frozen veggies for one-pot curry meals, and lots of last winter’s canned bean, veggie, and pea soups.  Although, several weeks ago I managed to whip up a quick preserved lemon couscous.  Unfortunately, it has taken me almost 3 weeks to share!  Looking on the bright side, if any of my readers decided to preserve some of their own citrus fruit, you only have to wait another 10 days or so to give this recipe a whirl! ;)

Salt-Preserved Lemon Couscous

4 salt-preserved lemon wedges, diced (I used my Fancy Schmancy ones.)

1 cup couscous

1-1/4 cups water

1/2 cup toasted nuts, chopped (I used walnuts)

lots of kale, de-ribbed and cut into ribbons

lots of mustard greens, cut into ribbons

1 onion, chopped

2 cups napa cabbage petioles, chopped

2 cups carrots, cut into sticks

1 red pepper, diced

Bring water to a boil, add couscous and stir; remove from heat, add salted lemons and cover.  Heat a small cast-iron pan over medium heat, add nuts and toast until fragrant, about 3 minutes; transfer nuts to a bowl and set aside.  Place a touch of oil in a large wok and sauté carrots and onion over medium heat for approximately 3 minutes.  Add cabbage petioles and red pepper and cook an additional 3 minutes.  Wilt mustard greens and kale over crisp-tender veggies and season with a bit of pepper.

Place a bed of lemon-salted couscous on a plate, add your veggie medley and top with a sprinkling of toasted nuts. Enjoy!

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge.

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Happy Accidents

Had I known the chore of cleaning out the fridge would provide such a delicious meal, I probably would not have put it off all weekend long!  Typically, when I have fresh veggies in need of use, my go-to dish is a curry concoction.  Since my cabinets were lacking coconut milk, I had to come up with something else.

Last winter, while I was canning soups, I had also planned on canning some of my dried beans.  Well, I never got around to it but I did end up freezing some after over estimating and cooking up way too many for another recipe.  After taking inventory of some use-’em-or-lose-’em fridge items, I began creating what I call a happy accident!

Tortilla Lasagna

6 fajita-sized tortillas (I used a mix of multi grain and whole wheat)

1-1/2 pints Tomatillo Salsa

4 cups ready-to-use black beans

3 carrots, chopped

2 cups chopped tomatoes (I used a quart of canned)

1 large red pepper, chopped

1 pkg Daiya Cheddar Cheese shreds

Ground Cumin, Salt, & Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease a 9×13″ baking dish with olive oil and place a layer of tomatillo salsa on the bottom.  Place two tortillas on top the salsa; add half the carrots, peppers, tomatoes, and beans and season lightly with cumin, salt, and pepper.

Sprinkle on a bit of cheese and cover with two more tortillas.  Add the remaining carrots, peppers, tomatoes, and beans, season again and add another layer of tomatillo salsa.  Place the remaining tortillas on the top of the “lasagna” and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Cover dish with tinfoil and continue baking for an additional 20 minutes.  Remove tinfoil, sprinkle on more cheese, and place back in the oven until cheese is melted and begins to brown, approximately 10 minutes.  Allow lasagna to rest for 10 minutes, this will help the layers stay together when serving!

This recipe yielded me about 10 servings, most of which were placed in the freezer for work-week lunches.  I was pleased to find it freezes really well!

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge.

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Carob-dipped Citrus Peels

Often overlooked, citrus peels offer an ample array of delicious uses.  Whether dried and ground into a spice rub, simmered stove-top as potpourri, or candied into a gourmet treat, the end result is sure to please!

Carob-dipped Citrus Peels

citrus peels: grapefruit, orange, lemon, etc

2 cups granulated sugar

4 cups water

additional sugar for coating

1 cup carob drops (or chocolate chips)

It is best to wash your fruit before peeling it; scrap off pith and slice into 1/2″ strips.  I used thin-skinned mandarin oranges, so there was no need for scraping off excess pith.

In a medium sauce pot bring water and sugar to a boil, stir often to dissolve sugar.  Add peels and reduce heat to med-low; gently simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.  With my next batch of candied peels, I think I will add a vanilla bean to the simmering pot!

When the simple syrup has reduced, remove from heat and allow peels to become cool-to-the-touch.  Pour additional sugar on a large plate and dredge peels through sugar, coating both sides.  Place sugar-coated peels on wax paper-lined baking sheets and set aside allowing them to dry for several hours.

Place carob drops in a double boiler and melt.  Add 1-2 tbsp of water to achieve desired dipping consistency.  If you add too much water you may need to dip your peels a second time.  Place candied peels back onto the wax paper and allow carob (or chocolate) to reach a firm set.

Transfer peels to an airtight container for storage… if you don’t end up eating them all the first day!

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge.

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Game Day Dip

I’m a lot of things, but a sports fan is not one of them.  If it weren’t for all the media hype, I’d be completely clueless that tomorrow is the “Big Game”.  Even if I had television, I would not be tuning in; well, maybe I’d catch a glimpse of the half-time show, and a commercial or two.  But overall, I couldn’t care less.

One thing I am a fan of is dip.  Spicy, savory, bean, or vegetable, it doesn’t really matter much to me, I love them all!  I whipped up a last-minute spinach dip last night when a friend stopped by to visit.  Should you find yourself in need of a quick crowd-pleaser to serve those snack-happy football fans, this dip is sure to do the trick!

Spinach Dip

1 16-oz bag frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

1 envelope mushroom and onion soup mix

1/2 container tofutti sour supreme

1 cup veganise

1/2 red onion, chopped

3 small black radishes, minced

1/2 block Follow Your Heart Mozzarella, shredded

1 tbsp fresh horseradish

a “healthy” squirt of sriracha

Combine all ingredients in a 2 qt casserole dish and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge.

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Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchiladas

There is something magical that happens when you pair black beans along side sweet potatoes.  It’s like they are truly meant to go together!  So when the December issue of Vegetarian Times featured a drool-worthy enchilada recipe combining those two ingredients, it jumped to the front of the menu line!  Making only minimal changes to incorporate what I had on-hand in my canning pantry, along with a few vegan substitutions, the dish turned out absolutely delicious!

Since the recipe can be made the night before, it’s a great go-to potluck dish!  And because it makes several servings, it is the perfect take-to-work-lunch.  I simply portion out and freeze single servings, then pack my fresh garnish the morning of.

(Despite my less than appetizing photograph, they really do taste better than they look!)

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchiladas

For the Sauce

1 15-oz can of tomato sauce

1-3/4 cup vegetable stock

1 tsp cayenne powder

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp dried oregano

For the Filling

olive oil

1 small onion, diced

3 cups sweet potatoes, peeled and diced

1 quart canned tomatoes, chopped

1 pint salsa

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 cups cooked black beans

1 ancho chili pepper, minced

8 oz daiya cheddar style shreds

1/2 cup water

For the Enchiladas

olive oil for brushing the baking dish

16 whole wheat tortillas (I used the fajita size)

2 limes cut into wedges, for garnish

1 avocado, sliced for garnish

1/2 cup tofutti sour supreme

cilantro sprigs for garnish

To make Sauce: Bring all ingredients to a simmer in a sauce pan over medium heat.  Whisk to combine, then remove from heat.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

To make Filling: Heat oil in a separate sauce pan over medium heat.  Add onion, and sauté for 3-5 minutes, or until soft.  Add sweet potatoes, tomatoes, salsa, garlic, chili, and 1/2 cup water; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 30-40 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are soft.  Mash mixture with a potato masher until combined.  Add black beans, and cook 5 minutes.  Stir in half of the cheddar shreds and remove from  heat.

To assemble Enchiladas: Preheat oven to 350°F.  Brush a 9×13-inch baking dish with oil.  Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in bottom of dish.  Fill tortillas with filling.  Roll and pack close together seam-side down in baking dish.  (My baking dish only held 10 enchiladas, so I placed the rest of the filling in a container and ate it as is.)  Top with remaining sauce and cheddar shreds.  Bake 15 minutes.

Adjust oven to broil.  Broil enchiladas 5 minutes or until cheddar shreds begin to brown.  Let rest 10 minutes before serving.  Garnish with lime wedges, avocado slices, sour supreme, and cilantro if desired.

Images and content copyright © 2009-2012 Danielle R Limoge. Recipe adapted from Dec 2011 issue of Vegetarian Times.

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