Grocery scraps, re-imagined…

Blog post from March 2013…

Today, I woke up at 1:30pm and was immediately regretful. I hate sleeping in so late because I feel like I’ve lost precious time in which I could have been productive. I guess I needed the rest. To redeem myself, I took to cooking and cleaning (like a good woman should) and came up with some great ways to make use of those random veggies left at the tail end of the grocery week. With 2 onions, some broccoli, spinach, mushrooms, and a bell pepper, I created two amazing dishes that will surely tide me over for the next few weeks. 

My goal was to take these ingredients and transform them into delicious, healthy, gluten free, vegan dishes. It worked. I tried my hand at broccoli soup, which I had never even attempted before. I also made a lasagna-esque pasta bake. I have to admit, the results were fantastic.

(I can’t believe it’s not) Cream of Broccoli Soup with Sauteed Mushrooms

  • 1 Knorr vegetable stock nugget
  • 3 1/2 cups hot water
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1/2 pound chickpeas, cooked, drained, and rinsed
  • 2 bunches fresh broccoli, chopped
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1/2 pound fresh mushrooms
  1. In a large pot, dissolve the veggie stock nugget in hot water. Add chopped onion, minced garlic, tumeric, and chickpeas. Bring to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add chopped broccoli and continue cooking until all veggies are tender-crisp.
  3. Put chunky soup into a food processor (this may take a few batches) and puree. Meanwhile, saute mushrooms in a small amount of oil until tender.
  4. Mix sauteed mushrooms into pureed soup. This soup will be thick, so extra water can be added to achieve desired texture. Serve with crackers, crusty bread, or rice cakes (my fave!)

Vegetable Garden Pasta Bake

  • 1 container firm tofu, drained and cubed
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 package fresh spinach (I used Cooking with Spinach brand with Swiss chard and arugula)
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 jar pasta sauce
  • 1 12oz package noodles (I used rotini), not cooked
  • 1/2 pound fresh mushrooms
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  1. Put tofu, garlic, salt & pepper, Italian seasoning, and 1/2 onion in food processor. Blend until smooth. Continue blending while adding spinach a little at a time.
  2. When completely incorporated, add lemon juice and nutritional yeast.
  3. Spray a 13×9″ casserole dish with cooking spray. Spread a thin layer of pasta sauce in the bottom of the pan. Layer noodles, tofu mixture, and last 3 ingredients.
  4. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, covering with aluminum foil after 20. Pasta bake should be slightly browned on top. Since there’s no cheese, the bake is done when the noodles are al dente.

Even though I made this recipe totally vegan, I topped my serving with Parmesan cheese. Delicious!

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Grocery scraps, re-imagined…

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