Browned Baby Bok Choy and Vegetable Potsticker (Warm) Salad

Here’s the recipe from one of my “Little Spoon” articles from Lehigh Valley Style online.

Mmmm, browned bok choy.

I don’t know if “salad” is exactly the right term for this, but truth be told (as cliche as it may be), I love salads. I think one of the best meals to be had is going to a potluck or party and piling your plate with eight different salads. They are also cost effective and easy since the underlying rule of most any salad is put a bunch of stuff together. 

 Here’s one I came up with after a trip to the Asian grocery store. It was inspired by baby bok choy because they are CUTE and brown up really pretty! I like vegetables anyway, but I admit to liking them even more when they are adorable. 

Bok Choy and Potsticker salad

BROWNED BOK CHOY AND POTSTICKER SALAD

1/2 bag vegetable potstickers
1 and 1/2 cups cut carrots
1 and 1/2 cups daikon radish, cut in strips
1 large bunch baby bok choy (“toy choy”), halved through the stems so leaves stay together
olive oil
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 inch of peeled fresh ginger, grated
1 Tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder.
Garnish with: fresh cilantro, crushed peanuts, lime wedge, chili sauce, toasted sesame oil

Cook potstickers according to package directions. (Usually this means browning them in a pan with a little olive oil, then adding just a bit of water to steam them quickly.) Set aside.

Heat a little olive oil in a pan and sautee carrots and radish along with garlic, ginger, Chinese five-spice and tamari for 5-7 minutes, until crisp tender. Set aside.

Place the bok choy into the pan (which should still have a light coating of olive oil in it) cut, side down, on a medium-high heat until the cut side starts to brown, about 4-6 minutes. Do not stir; only cook the cut side. Remove from heat when the bottoms are browned and the outside is still fresh and crispy.

Mix the potstickers and carrot mix in a large bowl with most of the bok choy. Plate on a large plate or platter. Place the remaining bok choy cut side up in the salad to make a nice presentation. Serve with a small plate of sides and garnishes. Serve hot or cold.

Bok Choy and Potsticker salad

You can read the entire article HERE. 

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NEW VIDEO: Orange Poppyseed Salad with Brussels Sprouts and Golden Beets

I’ve been busy. Like BUSY busy busy, the kind when you take time off to hang out with your friends and feel guilty about it (ew!) or you, uh… are a cook but don’t cook anything for a week.

A girl cannot be sustained on tofurkey sandwiches alone.

I wanted to make a hearty, super-healthy salad with roasted veggies for that cozy wintertime taste, but some bright accents in flavor and color. So I whipped up this salad and a light crisp dressing. Perhaps not the most creative (“put a bunch of things in a bowl and toss!”), but what it lacks there it makes up for in prettiness. Tasty, too.

ORANGE POPPYSEED SALAD WITH BRUSSELS SPROUTS AND BEETS

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 bunch golden beets (or red) with greens removed
  • 2 cups brussels sprouts, halved
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • juice of 1/2 orange (*entire recipe calls for 3 whole oranges)
  • 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • fresh ginger (about 1 Tbsp)
  • juice of 1 whole orange
  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1 apple (peel left on for color and fiber; or removed to your liking)
  • salad greens of choice (I used an organic spring mix)

In an oven heated to 350 degrees, wrap the whole unpeeled beets in tin foil and place on an oven rack. While they are cooking, cut brussels sprouts in half and toss with just enough olive oil to coat lightly, fresh ginger and the juice of 1/2 an orange. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and put brussels sprouts on the sheet. Add to the oven (with the beet package) for about 25-30 minutes.  After that time has passed, remove everything from the oven and set aside to cool.

In a small pan, add the balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, ginger and juice of one orange to a pan and turn on a low heat. The vinegar should let off some steam. Stir occasionally. Reduction will be thicker after 15-20 minutes. Take off heat and allow to cool in a bowl.

Cut the peeled orange into rounds. Cut the apple into bite size pieces.

Open the tin foil package. Beets should be cool enough to handle. The skin should easily peel off. Slice into rounds.

In a large mixing bowl, add a few handfuls of salad greens, all the vegetables and fruit, and the balsamic dressing. Toss with your hands to coat everything lightly. Use the 1/2 an orange you have left and squeeze on top just before serving. Sprinkle with poppy seeds.

As I mention, you can toss some leftover grains into the salad to bulk it up a little. Have some cooked brown rice or quinoa? Toss it in.

Thank you to Lehigh Valley Mirror, as always, and especially this time around for coming over for a morning shoot when I was bumping into everything, fumbling around, almost chopping off my fingers and breaking into sudden bursts of uncontrollable laughter. You do an AMAZING job with editing!

NEW VIDEO: Hot Cabbage “Wedge Salad”; Fall Flavors!

Thanks once again to Lehigh Valley Mirror for your video producing and editing prowess!

This dish was influenced by the nutritional abomination called a wedge salad. This usually consists of: a chunk of iceberg lettuce covered in bacon and bleu cheese. Not vegan. Not healthy. Usually (strangely enough) kind of expensive in some fancier restaurants. Who needs that?

Here I took the concept of shape and texture and created a plant-based whole foods warm dish with sweet and savory flavors. This is very simple prep work and cooking for a pretty final result.

Hot Cabbage “Wedge Salad” VIDEO

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 head of cabbage, cut into wedges through the core
  • 1 yam or sweet potato
  • 1 apple (honeycrisp is the BEST!)
  • olive oil
  • salt + pepper
DRESSING:
  • 1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup (the real kind!)
CANDIED NUTS:
  • vegan butter melted in a pan (Earth Balance!), about 2 Tbsp.
  • enough brown sugar to make a carmelized paste
  •  about 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds (or nuts of choice)
  • a dash of cinnamon
* some dried cranberries for garnish

Manatees LOVE cabbage! Invite some over for Thanksgiving!

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Place the cabbage wedges on the sheet, then lightly brush with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until starting to brown, about 25 minutes.

Cut the yam and apple into small dices. You can leave the peels on. Put them in a bowl with a small amount of olive oil to coat. Spread evenly on a baking sheet, and add it to the oven with the cabbage when you have 15 minutes left of cook time. (Both should get done at the same time.)

To make the dressing, whisk the mustard, balsamic vinegar and maple syrup together in a small bowl.

For the candied nuts, melt the vegan butter in a pan on low heat. Add brown sugar and mix until it’s thick and caramelized. Add nuts and stir to coat – add more nuts if mixture is still really wet. Add a dash of cinnamon, and spread mixture out on a sheet of wax or parchment paper to cool.

When all components are ready, plate by putting the cabbage on the bottom then topped with the apple and yam mix. Then drizzle on some dressing, top with the candied nuts and add some dried cranberries for a garnish!

Hot Cabbage Wedge Salad

There you go! This makes an awful lot of food, and would be a great addition to a Holiday meal or potluck. Enjoy!

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If you or someone who you know has a business or organization interested in sponsoring Save the Kales! cooking videos, please tell them to contact: LVMirror@lvmirror.com 

NEW VIDEO: Indian Spiced Stew

Dried lentils, potatoes, onions… some of the most affordable ingredients you can buy, right? You’ll be happy to know the base of this stew relies on these cheapies, a few other veggies you’re so inclined, and some spices. That’s all you need to make a tasty and healthy meal to warm you up!

Watch the video:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups cooked rice or grain of choice
  • 1 cup dried green lentils
  • 2 brown potatoes, chopped and cubed
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tsp. salt and a few shakes of black pepper
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. garam masala
  • OPTIONAL VEGGIES: 1/2 green bell pepper, 1/2 red pepper, 3 cups spinach
  • 1/2 cup of sliced raw almonds
  • cilantro for garnish
Start cooking your rice/grains so they will be ready when the stew is done.
In a large soup pot add the lentils, potatoes, diced tomatoes and onion. Add water, cumin and garam masala. Mix everything together, then put in a stove at high heat until simmering. Then cover and reduce to low to continue to simmer for 35 minutes.
If adding fresh veggies, put them into the soup pot when you have only five minutes of cook time left so they can maintain some freshness.
In a small skillet, add the sliced almonds and turn up the heat to high. Let the almonds start to toast – they will get brown and fragrant. Toss them to toast evenly. DO NOT let them burn.
Time to plate! Put your rice or grains on the bottom of your dish, ladle stew on top, garnish with toasted almonds and cilantro.

Thank you once again to Matt and Sarah of Lehigh Valley Mirror for the great video!

FIVE QUESTIONS: An Audio Interview!

How fun! My pal Dustin Schoof from local paper The Express Times invited me to the office to be part of a weekly online segment called “Five Questions”, in which they talk to local people makin’ cool things happen.

 (Confession: When I met Ryan over two years ago, I did the ‘ol Google search to snoop around on him online and actually found a Five Questions segment with him! Then he got his new job and he did another one about that a few months ago. We’re 2:1, and he’s winning. Harhar.)

It was a tad awkward when Dustin asked me “What can we look forward to in the future?” because there are some good thing brewin’ but I can’t talk about them yet – eep! Maybe we’ll have to do another one of these once I can unzip my lip.

Aaaanyway.

GO HERE to listen to the Interview (click the link at the end of the article)

And thank you once again Dustin! You can check out Dustin’s band Blue Jean, too. They will be playing before a Pixies show in November. Yeah, THOSE Pixies. Heart attack central, right? Isn’t supporting each other FUN!?

 

 

 

Day of Reflection on the Little ‘Fest That Could

 The past 48 hours have been a time of seeking out folks for feedback, constructive criticism, and overall impressions of Bethlehem Vegfest. The responses have been overwhelmingly positive, though I’m excited to continue to improve more aspects next year.

I am working on a post about my overall reaction to the ‘Fest. It’s long, it’s wordy, it’s emotional and it will  likely take me another day or two.

Until then, here’s two more blog posts to keep you satisfied:

Bethlehem Vegfest was featured on Our Hen House today – something really incredible because their work reaches a large audience, and I love that Bethlehem is continually showing up as a vegan presence to people in other areas. Jasmin and Mariann are activists that work endlessly on giving the people tools they need to empower themselves to spread the message of veganism and animal rights. (I was particularly interested in their thoughts on our Vegfest, as they have been to so many others across the country, and am excited to share some of our discussion with you in an upcoming post.)

Not only that, but their podcasts – which are FREE to download and a joy to listen to – will have a special Bethlehem Vegfest segment next week, including none other than superwoman Danielle Konya of Vegan Treats. I cannot wait to hear this episode.  Go check out their work, download a billion podcasts, and then take action.

(*** Also check out a segment of their website/work that ties in Gay and Queer activism, called The Gay Animal. These ladies don’t stop, and we are better off for it!)

From Here Now lehigh valley blog

A local lady new to the blogging scene (and a dear friend, at that) is Colleen Marsh with here blog From Here Now. Colleen writes a positive, inviting blog about all the little treasures found in the Lehigh Valley, places to go, businesses she supports, recipes she makes her own kitchen.

Colleen went to Vegfest and wrote a great blog about her impressions of it (positive!), followed by a billion recipes for everything she made for a vegan dinner that night.

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I am very happy to say that I just had a meeting this morning with some folks about a project that will be an all-vegan project, something the other folks involved had thought about for a while, but seeing the incredible attendance of the fest made them realized that now is the time to act! It’s still top secret, but once it gets rolling we will want all of your support to spread the word.

My heart feels all big and fuzzy. Thank you for being a part of something that quite literally has the power to change our community for the better.

Bethlehem Vegfest Makes Life Better (Really).

A few nights ago, I was working at my part time job in a bookstore and talked to a customer purchasing the DVDs of Food, Inc. and Forkes Over Knives. I told her I had just been on a discussion panel for the latter, to which she happily chirped, “So have you heard about Bethlehem Vegfest? It’ll be next Saturday!”

You can’t imagine what a great feeling it is when complete strangers excitedly tell you about an event that you have been helping to organize for several months.

I see the posters everywhere. Businesses, public bulletin boards, the newspapers… I’ve even seen some hanging in the windows of people’s homes. Every time someone talks about it, posts it online, wants to do an interview for an article, it spreads the excitement for something that — stay with me now — has the power to change the world, change lives.

Let me explain.

It’s not simply about the lives of animals that are spared by choosing a plant-based diet or simply choosing more veg dishes, not just about making a positive environmental impact (by making much less of an impact), not just about the way treating your body well makes your mind feel better, too…

What is, for me, maybe the most exciting thing is the way it has been embraced by the community. There has been nothing but support and enthusiasm for this event from local people and businesses who have only asked “How can I get involved?” from day one.  The desire to make more of ourselves can resonate in our lives and in us, and we can continue to create positive change in ways that ripple farther than we can see.

I’ve told you my story. About two years ago I was considering a move to somewhere else in the country, anywhere else, to escape from myself and from a town I had been deceived and told had nothing here for people like me. If we wanted to find a creative community, or things to do, or art or music or food or interesting people or a career to be passionate about, we had to leave.

Sabrina Ward Harrison

My choice to stay was deliberate. My choice to change the way I thought about this place and my life has only lead me to experiences I could never have thought up back when I was planning an escape. So much is about perception – we see what we choose to see. And one of the biggest lessons learned has been: we can make our own lives. And it seemed a lot of us started to open our eyes wider at the same time.

When the Downtown Bethlehem Association asked if I’d like to be a co-organizer for Bethlehem Vegfest, I was humbled and honored. Part of the mission of my work and this blog is “Cooking, Community and Compassion” – and “Community” is so much more than a physical space of people who live together. It is about action: working together to better and improve that space because it is where we live our lives, together. 

To me, Vegfest is a manifestation of the desire for something new in a town that embraces it’s history. We are forward thinking people, and we are in good company.

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INFO/LINKS:

Bethlehem Vegfest on Facebook

Article about Restaurant Week (NOW until Sept 10th) from Lehigh Valley Live

Article for Laini’s Little Pocket Guide website

… and check out the current issue of The Mix free weekly paper! (out NOW through Sept. 14th)