soba noodles in peanut sauce

The best part of this dish is that it’s endlessly adaptable: make it sweeter, make it spicier, change the vegetables, add tofu — even serve it hot or cold. 

Soba Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Soba Noodles in Peanut Sauce
The best part of this dish is that it's endlessly adaptable: make it sweeter, make it spicier, change the vegetables, add tofu -- even serve it hot or cold.
  • 1 cup vegetable broth (1/3 cup reserved)
  • ½ cup all-natural peanut butter (chunky or creamy)
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar (or sweetener of your choice)
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (note: this amount will provide only a very slight kick; increase heat as desired)
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic (2-3 cloves)
  • 1½ cups carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1½ cups red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2½ cups broccoli (cut into bite-sized florets)
  • 2½ cups cauliflower (cut into bite-sized florets)
  • 10- to 12-ounce package organic soba noodles
  • Crushed roasted peanuts, diced scallions, and chopped fresh cilantro for topping (optional but recommended)
  1. In a medium-sized bowl, combine ⅔ cup of vegetable broth, peanut butter, ginger, tamari (or soy sauce), sugar, red pepper flakes, and garlic. Whisk until everything is well combined. Taste and adjust sweetness or heat if desired. Set aside.
  2. Cook soba noodles as directed on package. Be sure to rinse noodles in cold water after draining.
  3. In a large pan, heat reserved ⅓ cup vegetable broth. Add carrot, bell pepper, broccoli, and cauliflower to pan, and cook over a medium heat for 7 minutes, or until vegetables are just tender (don't overcook -- unless you have a thing for mushy veggies).
  4. In a large serving bowl, toss together the noodles, cooked vegetables, and sauce. Top with crushed roasted peanuts, diced scallions, and chopped fresh cilantro. Serve immediately. (Alternatively, you can serve this as a cold dish. Before adding toppings, simply cover and refrigerate for an hour or two.)
This dish will easily serve a family of four (well, depending on everyone's appetites). You can always halve this dish if you prefer, or make the full recipe and have cold soba noodles for lunch the next day!


easy cornbread

Takes just minutes to put this fluffy, golden cornbread together.


Easy Cornbread
Takes just minutes to put this fluffy, golden cornbread together.
  • 1¼ cups of all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup cornmeal
  • ¼ cup vegan granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon of ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons water)
  • Coconut-oil cooking spray (or other, to prepare pan)
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Use a whisk to combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.
  3. Make the flax egg in a separate small bowl (combine ground flax seed and water; allow to sit for a minute until it gels -- it should be goopy like an egg).
  4. Combine almond milk, oil (or applesauce), and flax egg. Gently fold this wet mixture into the dry mixture only until all ingredients are wet -- do not use a mixer or over-stir. Batter will be thick.
  5. Pour mixture into a prepared 8” x 8” baking pan.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes (toothpick inserted should come out clean).
  7. Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing and removing from pan.


london broil marinated tofu

Tofu, Western style. Pictured with white rice, but makes a classic U-S-A dinner when served with salad, baked potato, and your favorite green veggie. 

London Broil Marinated Tofu

London Broil Marinated Tofu
Serve with salad, baked potato, and your favorite green veggie for a classic Western-style dinner.
  • 1 pound (16 ounces) organic, non-GMO extra-firm tofu (pressed; see Notes)
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ cup whole grain or Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup agave nectar (or other sweetener of your choice, though you may have to adjust amount)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (I use Annie's Naturals)
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon tamari (or substitute soy sauce, if gluten is not a concern)
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Slice tofu into bite-sized cubes and place in a plastic storage container.
  2. Place all of the remaining ingredients in a bowl and whisk together with a fork. (Tip: If you're unsure of how much salt and pepper to add to the marinade, skip it -- you can shake salt and pepper directly onto the tofu once it's in the pan cooking.)
  3. Pour half of the marinade over the tofu (reserve the other half) and lightly toss to coat all the pieces. Seal the storage container and marinate for 20 to 30 minutes.
  4. Drain tofu, returning the marinade from the tofu to the reserved marinade.
  5. Add a few spritzes of olive oil to a large pan and place over high heat. Cook tofu a few minutes on each side until golden brown (if you skipped adding salt and pepper to the marinade, now's the time to shake some on the tofu).
  6. Remove pan from heat and allow tofu to rest for 1 minute. Pour reserved marinade over tofu in hot pan, and quickly toss to coat.
  7. Transfer tofu to a serving dish and serve immediately.
Tofu is made with water and packed in water, so it's crucial that you drain and press it before attempting to cook with it. (I avoid this step by buying vacuum-packed extra-firm tofu whenever possible. Trader Joe's carries it as of the time of this recipe post!) If you can't find vacuum-packed (and don't have a tofu press), simply line a plate with paper towels, place the tofu block on the paper towels, and put another layer of towels on top of the tofu. Put another plate or a cutting board on top of the paper towels. Weigh it down with heavy books or cans. Drain the water that has been pressed out of the tofu every thirty minutes or so.


flaky banana and black bean empanadas

A melt-in-your-mouth crust that you can make ahead of time means empanadas any time you want them.

flaky banana and black bean empanadas

Flaky Banana and Black Bean Empanadas
A melt-in-your-mouth crust that you can make ahead of time means empanadas any time you want them.
For the dough:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (plus more as needed)
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup nonhydrogenated vegan shortening, cold, not room temperature (I use Earth Balance) and cut into cubes
  • ½ cup plant-based milk (I use almond milk)
For the filling:
  • 2 tablespoons white wine or cooking wine (this adds flavor and keeps ingredients from sticking while avoiding excessive oil; if you don't have wine, you can use water)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil (or avoid oil altogether by adding more water or white wine to keep ingredients from sticking)
  • 1½ cups yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups banana, diced
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon coriander
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
For the dough:
  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of flour and salt.
  2. Add the shortening cubes to the flour mixture, cutting it in until the dough is crumbly. You can do this with two knives or with your fingertips.
  3. Add the plant-based milk, and with a wooden spoon, gently mix everything together. If necessary, you may add another tablespoon or so of flour -- just enough so that you can form the dough into a ball that's not overly sticky and wet.
  4. With your hands, gather the dough into a ball and knead gently several times so that it holds together.
  5. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (see Notes). While the dough is chilling, you can make the empanada filling.
For the filling:
  1. Heat white wine or cooking wine and oil (if using) in a large skillet, then add onions. Saute for 4 to 5 minutes, or until soft and translucent.
  2. Add beans and garlic, reduce heat to medium, and cook for about 3 minutes.
  3. Gently stir in bananas, cayenne pepper, coriander, and ½ teaspoon salt and cook 2 to 3 more minutes. You want the bananas to soften and the spices to become fragrant. Taste mixture and add the additional ½ teaspoon salt (or add to taste) if needed.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro.
For the empanadas
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Remove dough from refrigerator and divide in half. Re-wrap one half with plastic wrap and return it to the refrigerator.
  3. With a knife, divide the half of the dough ball you're working with into 8 equal pieces.
  4. Quickly roll one of the dough pieces into a ball with your hands. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the ball to a 4½ to 5-inch round. (Be sure your surface and your rolling pin stay lightly floured so the dough doesn't stick; I keep the flour next to me to add a small pinch as I need it.)
  5. Fill the dough round with approximately 2 tablespoons of filling, and brush edges of dough round with water.
  6. Fold dough round in half, press to close, and crimp edges with a floured fork to seal (if your fork gets sticky, dip in flour after each crimp you make). If you're a perfectionist (I'm a perfectionist), use a fluted pastry wheel or sharp knife to cut excess dough from the crimped edge to create a more streamlined curve.
  7. Transfer to the parchment-paper-lined baking sheet and repeat with remaining 7 dough balls and filling. Transfer baking sheet of 8 empanadas to the refrigerator and repeat the whole process with the other half of the dough you have wrapped in the refrigerator.
  8. Chill both trays of empanadas on the baking sheets for at least 10 minutes before baking (they can be chilled overnight if you are making ahead of time, just be sure to cover them). Bake empanadas for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown.
  9. Cool 5 minutes on baking sheet before serving with sriracha, tabasco, or hot sauce of choice, and other favorites (think non-dairy sour cream, avocado slices, quinoa, brown rice, a green salad, etc.).
This dough will make 16 empanadas, and can be made ahead of time! If you're not using the dough immediately, divide in half, wrap each ball in plastic wrap, place in refrigerator, and use the following day. Alternatively, place dough in freezer bags and store in freezer until ready to use.