A very kaleful vegan, gluten-free Menu Plan Monday

Too tired to say anything interesting! It’s been a crazy couple of weeks. I have an awesome new roommate. More on him later. Sorry I haven’t posted. Here’s my menu for the week. (Hopefully all this kale will restore my energy.)

Gluten-free Menu Swap this week has the theme Simple Meals, hosted by Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness. Lots more meal plans at OrgJunkie. Yay!

Thai yellow curry

Monday
Tunaless casserole (add frozen peas)
Raw kale salad with raw corn, avocado, and basil

Tuesday
Thai yellow curry with tofu, potatoes, basil, cabbage, and Chinese broccoli
Thai cucumber salad
Brown basmati rice

Wednesday
T’s bday dinner, menu TBD

Thursday
Red lentils & kale with coconut, spring onions, and crispy shallots

Friday (soak 1/2 cup cashews in advance)
Kale with millet and tahini sauce (I lightly steam the kale first)
Crash hot potatoes

Saturday
Roasted sweet potato and lentil salad
Farmer’s market vegetable side

Sunday
TBD based on farmer’s market

Shopping list, store: 1 cup tvp, 1 tsp dulse flakes, 1 bunch kale, 1 ear corn, 2 yellow potatoes, tofu, Chinese broccoli, 2 cucumbers, 1 lg shallot, 1 cup spinach

Shopping list, farmer’s market: 2 bunches kale, 3 spring onions, 1 lb small red new potatoes, 2 sweet potatoes, veggie for side dish, veggies for Sunday’s meal

Celebrating a full pantry with a vegan, gluten-free Menu Plan Monday

I let myself completely run out of olive oil, then grapeseed oil, then sesame oil, then peanut oil. I ran out of chickpea flour which meant no socca pizza for fast and easy meals. I ran out of balsamic, onions, thyme, tofu, tempeh, and tamari, and how do you cook without the basics? (My mom would laugh at me for considering balsamic a “basic” – I remember I amused her greatly when I called her from college and said, “I don’t know how our grocery bill is so high, we just bought the essentials, you know cheese, bread, vegetables, capers…”) I’ve still managed to feed myself pretty well thanks to the farmer’s market and the generosity of friends and family. (I was treated to dinner or cooked for three times last week!)

Socca Pizza

Late last week I finally managed to make the grand tour, from the Indian market to Rainbow Grocery, my vegetarian co-op, to Trader Joe’s. I really love the full-pantry feeling. It just makes me feel so safe and secure. And it makes me want to cook! My well-stocked pantry has inspired my first proper menu plan in over a month. (I’ve still been doing less formal private menu planning – I can’t really remember how I used to cook and shop without it – but it’s better when I get to share it with you!)

Edamame, Corn, and Tofu Succotash

This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by Heather of Celiac Family with the theme of corn. I am super, super excited about corn. I didn’t make it to the farmer’s market last week so I’m not sure if it has arrived there yet (or actually if any of the farmers at my market grow corn – there are so many fewer produce stands than there were last year), but I’ve certainly been seeing it in all the grocery stores, from Rainbow and Whole Foods to Trader Joe’s. Corn is one of my favorite parts of summer. Like asparagus, it is an entirely seasonal treat that I only get to eat for a few months a year. Unlike asparagus, it doesn’t cost $6 a pound. I’ll be trying a new recipe with corn this week, the Post Punk Kitchen’s fresh corn johnnycakes. And I’ll be making one of my favorite easy dinners, The Splendid Table’s edamame and tofu succotash with fresh corn. If there is indeed corn at the farmer’s market, I’ll get a bunch and make my absolute favorite corn recipe, Fresh Corn Polenta, every morning. Oh, my mouth is watering just thinking about it…

Fresh Corn Polenta with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes

Have a great week of cooking, everyone! For a giant round-up of menu plans, check out the Menu Plan Monday compendium over at orgjunkie.

Monday
Socca pizza with chard, cream cheese, and red onion
Impressionist cauliflower

Tuesday
Red lentils & kale with coconut and crispy shallots

Wednesday
Fresh corn johnnycakes
Brazilian shredded collard greens (Viva Vegan, sub collards for kale)
Warm sweet potato and black bean salad

Thursday
Edamame and tofu succotash with fresh corn (marinate/broil tofu instead of buying smoked)
Green salad

Friday
Chickpea picatta with mashed potatoes

Saturday
Leftovers

Sunday
Tempeh helper,
Steamed broccoli
Chocolate cupcake brownies

Shopping list: 3 red onions, chard, 2-3 spring onions, 1 bunch kale, 5 shallots, 4 ears corn, collard greens, 3 sweet potatoes, frozen shelled edamame, tofu, 1 large tomato, scallions, 4 cups arugula, potatoes for mashing, (capers?), broccoli

we are XGFX!

A while back I posted about joining up with the super awesome vegan, gluten-free blog hub some of my fellow bloggers put together. It has been so great to have a place I can go to surf food blogs and know that every single recipe is one I can make, every single photo is one I can drool over without heartbreak.

Well, the blog hub was just the first phase in a grand plan for vegan, gluten-free world dominance. And today, my friends, today we take over the world!!

Or today, at any rate, is the day that the kickass site xgfx.org goes live. Xgfx.org is a miraculous playland of vegan, gluten-free goodness. (A helpful definition from the site: “xgfx is the way we designate food and other items that are both vegan and gluten free. We like using xgfx because typing out “vegan and gluten-free” over and over can be tiresome.”) The site has its own blog, tips for baking and dining out xgfx style, and all kinds of resources for living the xgfx life. The parts I’m most excited about are the community recipe archive – sign up, post recipes! I have! – and the product and publication reviews. Gluten-free vegan food, cookbooks, etc., are expensive, so it’s excellent to have a place to get the skinny on the latest cookie or pretzel, especially for the stuff that sounds amazing but would have to be ordered online. No one wants to pay shipping charges to get a dud!

I’m part of the review squadron, which hopefully someday will mean free treats delivered to my door for me to pass judgement on, but so far consists of me raving fanatically about the THREE boxes of Mary’s cookies I bought and devoured. I am so happy to be part of such an awesome community – the work that Kittee, Jessy, and Allyson have done in making xgfx.org happen has been phenomenal. The site is so beautiful, the graphics and design are so engaging, and most importantly the site really fills a previously unmet need.

Pan-seared summer squash with mint and garlic, Impressionist cauliflower

In honor of the xfgx.org launch, I have designed a menu for next week that is entirely vegan and gluten-free! (That’s a little joke, see?) The Gluten-Free Menu Swap this week is hosted by Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness with the theme of sugar-free delights. I think I’ll use this as an opportunity to put my Vita-Mix to the use I’ve been dreaming of – I want to recreate the mint-chocolate-chip raw milkshake from Cafe Gratitude. It’s made using fresh mint and cacao nibs, and it’s totally divine – I’ve been rounding up recipes to cannibalize in my attempts to recreate it, and if I have success, I’ll let you know! (I’ll probably let you know even if I fail, ’cause I kind of like talking about my cooking failures, too.)

As always, you’ll find a ton of menu plans in the Menu Plan Monday roundup over at OrgJunkie!

Monday ~ Family Passover seder

Tuesday (defrost 5 cups stock)
“I am DIY” rice bowl with black rice, chard, kale, and avocado (save some kale for African stew)
Mint chocolate raw milkshake

Wednesday (marinate tofu for tomorrow)
African stew with millet, chick peas, and kale

Thursday
The crispiest tofu with vegan ranch dressing
Fatiguer’s broccoli

Friday (start cabbage salad tonight)
Potato galette
Impressionist cauliflower
Pan-seared summer squash with garlic and mint

Saturday
Que sera silken cabbage salad
Arepas with pinto beans and vegan cream cheese

Sunday
Leftovers

Shopping list: Mint, chard, kale, avocado, 1 lb sweet potato, broccoli/broccoli rabe, garlic, 2.5 lb Yokon Gold potatoes, cauliflower, 2 lb summer squash, 2 lemons, green cabbage, vegan cream cheese

Que Sera cabbage salad

An abbreviated menu plan

I didn’t organize myself in time to get a menu plan up for Menu Plan Monday, but I still need to figure out what I’m eating for the rest of the week! As always, I have a few recipes left over from last week to carry over. It’s also always interesting to see which dishes I am enthusiastic about when planning a menu and then end up having no actual desire to cook. Those are the recipes that I sometimes carry over several weeks before finally realizing they just aren’t going to get made.

Wednesday
Spinach, avocado, and grapefruit salad
Tempeh reubens

Thursday
Probably delivery of some sort while playing an epic all-day game of Diplomacy before going bowling!

Friday
Coconut curry noodles
Thai cucumber salad
Broccoli salad with peanut sauce

Saturday
Dinner out with my mom and Disher before my sister’s birthday party

Sunday
Harissa, cucumber, and cheddar panini
“Black & white” panini with jack and olive tapenade
Green salad

Shopping list: Tofu, carrots, cucumbers, 1 C. mushrooms, coconut milk?, white vegan cheese, hothouse tomato, cannellini beans, romaine

A quiet and colorful vegan, gluten-free Menu Plan Monday

Nothing much to say this week. I’m feeling kind of blue, and I just want to get my menu posted. There are so many things I’ve been cooking that I want to tell you about, but I’ve been busy with financial woes and pre-grad-school stuff so I’ll have to get to them when I can.

“Mish-mash bowl” with quinoa, fleur de sel, flax oil, and nori, topped with sweet potatoes, broccoli, avocado, grated carrot, radishes, pumpkin seeds, cashews, sunflower seeds, parsley, mint, and green onion, with tahini sauce (picture taken before the tahini sauce, 'cause it's prettier!)

I hope this week’s menu isn’t overly ambitious. It has a lot of stuff I’ve made before, so that should make things easier. This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by Angela of Angela’s Kitchen with the theme of celebrations. I wish I were feeling more celebratory right now. Sorry! My favorite celebration that has been chronicled on my blog is the first, extremely ambitious vegan, gluten-free Thanksgiving that I hosted for family and friends. I love parties and dinners and celebrations! It just happens that this week I am cooking for one, and I’m not feeling too festive about it.

Edamame, Corn, and Tofu Succotash

I hope everyone has a fantastic week of cooking! For the ultimate Menu Plan Monday round-up, check out the giant compendium over at OrgJunkie.

Spinach salad with avocado and pink grapefruit)

Monday
Edamame and tofu succotash (marinate/broil tofu instead of buying smoked, save some for mish-mash bowl)
Roasted broccoli with lemon zest

Tuesday
Gnocchi in vodka sauce
“Venice in your mouth” escarole

Wednesday
Spinach, avocado, and grapefruit salad
Tempeh reubens

Thursday
Mish-mash bowl with quinoa, steamed kale, avocado, sweet potato, grated carrots, radishes, cashews, sunflower seeds, flax oil, nori, and tahini sauce

Friday
Chickpea picatta

Saturday
Coconut curry noodles

Sunday
Leftovers?

Shopping list 1: Broccoli, tofu, frozen corn, frozen edamame, tomato, scallions, escarole, 5 oz. spinach, 2 avocados, grapefruit, tempeh

Shopping list 2: Sweet potato, radishes, kale, 1 C. shallots, 4 C. arugula, carrots, 1 C. mushrooms, coconut milk?

A vegan, gluten-free Menu Plan Monday, hold the commentary

I have a long week ahead of me, so I’m just going to post my menu without any extra commentary. This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by wonderful Wendy of Celiacs in the House with the theme of noodles, in honor of National Noodles Month! (Who knew? Wendy did!) I’ll be making Sunrise Noodles this week, a perpetual favorite here, so easy and so satisfying.

As always, you’ll find many more menu plans (with an ever-increasing number of vegan participants!) at the giant Menu Plan Monday compendium over at OrgJunkie.

Sunrise noodles with gingered greens

Monday (strain, grind, and ferment dosa batter)
Nori rolls with raw sunflower seed pate (follow directions in Vitamix p.269)
Roasted sweet potatoes with red onions
Beginner blueberry kale smoothie

Tuesday
Potato spinach pea patties with green chutney
Red lentil dahl
Pickled onions
Rice

Wednesday
Sunrise noodles with gingered greens and tofu

Thursday
Cauliflower and red onion uttapam
Coconut chutney
Ethiopian red lentil soup as sambar

Friday-Sunday ~ Meals with family

Extra: Crockpot caramelized red onions

Shopping list 1: 4 large or 6 medium tan-fleshed/white skinned sweet potatoes, 2 C. parsnip, 2 carrots, cucumber, sprouts, avocado, 2 potatoes, 2 C. spinach

Shopping list 2: Red chard, tofu, green onions, 3 C. spinach, cauliflower, 1 lb potatoes

Behold!

When my mom called to tell me she had a birthday present for me (my birthday was at the end of January, but I’m terrible at figuring out something to ask for, so I put it off as long as possible and hadn’t yet picked anything), but that it was impossible to bring it on BART (that’s our subway) so I should come by her house with the car, my friend and I had a great time speculating what it could be. We ultimately decided it was a helper monkey that would scamper about and wash dishes for me.

When I unwrapped it, it would be an understatement to say my jaw dropped, I was stunned speechless, and my socks were knocked waaay off. (That last one is a turn of phrase. Socks stayed on in real life.) I was so proud of myself at Christmastime for actually having a list of things I wanted that I could pass on to my mom – that’s how I ended up with all those awesome cookbooks. I keep the list for myself, of wishes big and small, and when I emailed the list to my mom it was annotated, “And, just for fun: Vitamix 5200 blender (hahahahah, a girl can dream, right? I need to get married so I can register for one!).” I would never seriously ask my mom for a $500 blender for Christmas. That would be absurd.

But apparently last month the stars aligned when a friend asked if my mom wanted to use her very significant employee discount before she left her job, and Vitamix blenders were one of the items her company sold. And my incredible, loving, generous mom figured “it’s now or never,” picked the fanciest model they had (the Professional Series 500), and completely made my day, my week, my year. The next seven years, even (the Vitamix comes with a seven year warranty), and it even seems common for Vitamix blenders to last for decades.

I’ve just unpacked it and have begun to watch the enclosed “Getting Started” DVD, so I’ll write more at a later date about actually using it. Today it is my delightful project to plan a menu for the week that highlights my new toy, puts it through its paces, and lets me explore all that it can do.

This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by Cheryl, our organizer, at her blog Gluten Free Goodness. The theme she picked is “quick and easy,” and that’s one of the most enticing aspects of the Vitamix. You can make hot soup in the blender. The blades go so fast they can actually heat soup. I found a fun blog, Cindalou’s Kitchen Blues, with lots of vitamix recipes, and one of my favorite features is that she shows a picture of the ingredients in the blender before she blends them. Check out this post with a picture of the ingredients of a carrot-pear smoothie. Two whole carrots and a whole pear. You just put the carrots in the blender without cutting them, and the pear without coring it. Because the Vitamix blends with such strength that it makes everything perfectly smooth and you are just getting extra fiber? Even with pear core/seed stuff? This is somewhat unbelievable to me, but I am certainly excited to start experimenting! Considering that my current blender is iffy about frozen fruit and absolutely balks at ice, this is a huge step up for me in the field of blending.

For a huge compendium of menu plans from all over the web, check out OrgJunkie’s Menu Plan Monday round-up. And without further ado, let’s get blending!

So many tasks the Vitamix can perform! (Sorry for blurry.) I used this as my guide in deciding what to make this week.

Monday (defrost 1 C. stock)
Quick and easy potato soup
Tomato rosemary scones

Tuesday
Spinach artichoke dip (so happy to find a recipe that doesn’t call for 1 C. vegan mayo and 1 C. vegan sour cream!) follow directions in Vitamix book, p. 135
Mary’s crackers
Triple berry smoothie (Vitamix book p. 38)

Wednesday (defrost 8 cups stock)
Carrot ginger soup with cashew cream (One Bite at a Time p. 30, make 1/2 recipe cream)
Savory Swiss chard pie
Frozen yogurt (Vitamix p. 226)

Thursday (defrost 3 cups stock, soak sunflower seeds for tomorrow)
Triple corn soup
Salad with creamy avocado dressing

Friday
Leftovers

Saturday
Nori rolls with raw sunflower seed pate (follow directions in Vitamix p.269)
Green smoothie

Sunday
Potato spinach pea patties with green chutney
Red lentil dahl
Pickled onions
Rice

Extras:
Vegan flourless chocolate cake – made in a vita-mix

Shopping list: Frozen spinach, TJ’s soy yogurt to freeze, 3 lb carrots, 1 C. cashews, 1 bunch chard, frozen fruit, 1 lb frozen corn (+ extra), romaine, 3 avocados, 1 C. sunflower seeds, 2 C. parsnip, cucumber/sprouts (for nori rolls)?, apple, kale, 2 cups spinach, green onions