Tag Archives: Dinner

Tasty Tamale Bake

So my first experiment with my new Cooking with Trader Joe’s Cookbook was quite the success. The only item I couldn’t buy at TJ’s was the Daiya cheese that was needed to veganize the dish but all the others were in their aisles.

Behold the very easy to make and quite delish Tamale Bake!

Soooo good. Seriously.

Tamale Bake

Ingredients (the Vegan Meow Mix version)

2 18 oz. tubes pre-cooked polenta, each tube sliced into 9 rounds

2 Tbsp olive oil

3 zucchini squash, sliced

1 (12 oz.) package Soy Chorizo

1 15 oz. can black beans, drained

1 15 oz. can pinto beans, drained

1/2 TJ’s Enchilada Sauce

1 cup Daiya Cheddar Cheese

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat and oil skillet. Saute zucchini until soft (about 5 minutes). Add chorizo, stir, and remove from heat. Lightly oil a 9 x 13 inch baking pan (or use an 8 x 8 if making a half batch). Place the polenta on the bottom, overlapping as necessary. Sprinkle half each of the chorizo mixture, beans, enchilada sauce, and cheese. Repeat with the second layer. Cover and bake for 45 minutes until the cheese is melted and casserole is piping hot. Sprinkle cilantro evenly on top.

Meow.

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Taco Soup Time

Taco soup is one of our favorites because it’s super easy, packed with flavor, and makes enough leftovers for lunch the next day. It’s basically your favorite beans, some seasoning, tomato sauce and you are ready to go! Here’s what we put in ours:

Soup's on!

There have been times we’ve done green beans or pinto beans, too! We realized we wanted it to be a little more “soupy” so we’ve begun to add diced tomatoes (with liquid) to make it that way. The seasoning packets can be any taco seasoning that’s your favorite. If you happen to find a ranch packet that’s vegan (they do exist!), you can sub that out for one of the seasoning packets.

Taco Soup

3-4 cans beans of your choice

1 can tomato sauce

1 can corn

1 can diced tomatoes

2 cups water

1 package of taco seasoning

1 package of ranch seasoning (or 2 of taco)

Drain beans in large colander. Put in large pot. Add all other ingredients, stirring to mix well. Simmer about 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Yep, that’s it!

Warms the tummy.

Serve with corn chips, Tofutti sour cream, avocados, or a vegan cheese of your choice such as Daiya.

Meow.

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Spicy Peanut Bake

My goodness it has been way too long since I’ve been here! Let’s just say that me baking a little one in my own “oven” has made for one lazy gal. I’ll try to not be so remiss from now on. I’ve missed you all. 😀

With said little person on the way, both the hubby and I are definitely looking to have a good variety of easy to make meals at the ready. Something tells me that we won’t have quite as much time to be whipping up elaborate things, but simple can be fabulous, right?

Last night we made a yummy spicy peanut bake. Three ingredients, 25 minutes, and on the way to yum.

This is all you need:

One, two, three and you're ready!

We’ve tried some of the other Taste of Thai seasonings but this one is by far our favorite. It’s sweet and spicy all at once and just has a great flavor. We make things easier by going ahead and buying the seitan already made and in nice little strips. Remember, we want easy! As for the rice, throw a cup in the rice cooker and you are on the way to perfect rice. (What did I do before my little rice cooker?!)

So you just put the seitan in a glass pan, coat it with the mix, cook just a few more minutes than recommended on the back of the packet for chicken and you are ready to go in no time at all.

Sweet and spicy!

So good. So easy. So filling.

Meow.

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Chickpea Cutlets

It had been awhile since I’d nommed on one of my favorite Veganomicon recipes, chickpea cutlets, and thought it was high time I remedy that little issue. I’d been going on about how tasty they were to Kit Kat, so I was determined to whip up an extra yummy batch so as to not disappoint.

I can’t lie, I actually had never made them myself so, in hindsight, I would probably do a few things differently but, nonetheless, the experience was a good one. Well, it was good AFTER we managed to open the can of chickpeas. (I had forgotten we had given our can opener back to its original owner. D’oh!). Did that stop me? No way! I wanted my cutlets and I wanted them bad.

A can opener was purchased the next day.

The work paid off though because tasty chickpea cutlets were the end result. I think next time I’ll try pan frying them, but baking them was a great way to go, too. Served Midwest style with potatoes and corn!

Looks like Bob Evans, no?

I like to top mine with A1 sauce but that’s just because I like the tangy taste. Down the road I’d also like to top these with a white gravy. Me thinks that could be tops.

Lessons learned here:

  1. If you don’t have the Veganomicon, this recipe is worth the price of admission alone.
  2. Never, ever be without a can opener.
  3. Vegan food is yummy (but we already knew that).  😀

Meow.

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