Chickpea “NotTuna” Salad

Do you ever have those days where you reeeeeally don’t feel like cooking? I’ve had a lot of those this summer.

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Maybe it’s because I’m living in a new city and I’m more interested in spending time exploring, hiking, and trying new restaurants – OR – maybe I’m just so hot and lethargic that I’m not in the mood to take my time in the kitchen.
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Whatever the reason may be, I’ve been making this delicious, protein packed, and RIDICULOUSLY EASY recipe A L O T  lately. Busting out the food processor, instant pot, and all my other kitchen gadgets isn’t so fun for me lately, but this quickly mashed chickpea NOT Tuna salad is fun to make, super fresh, and AMAZINGLY tasty.

Disclaimer: You should know, this recipe is based on what I had in my fridge & pantry. You can make a million substitutions, and seasonings, etc. however you’d like to. I actually recommend trying the avocado vs. vegan mayonnaise substitute! Both versions are amazing in their own way. Also, change up the spices, try it out with celery, and try it with something besides a sandwich.

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Have fun! This shouldn’t take long – and it’s well worth the little bit of work you have to put in to get it.

Give it a whirl and let me know what you think!
Cheers!

Chickpea “NotTuna Salad”

Serving: 2 cups (enough for 2 big sandwiches or 4 rice cakes)
Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 can chickpeas (rinsed & drained)
  • 1 tbsp (vegan) mayonaise
    • OR 1/2 an avocado (mashed)
  • 1 pickle (diced)
  • 1/4 cup red onion (diced)
  • 1 green onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 lemon’s juice
  • 1/4 tsp chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • salt & pepper to taste (I used a pinch of each)

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, mash chickpeas with a fork – pressing down firmly to smash. Smash 4-5 at a time until all chickpeas and mashed and it is a dry “tuna” like texture.
  2. Mix in vegan mayonnaise (or avocado).
  3. Add all other ingredients and mix – pickle, onions, lemon juice, chili flakes, garlic powder, salt, pepper
  4. Enjoy served with crackers, rice cake, as a side, or on a sandwich with your favorite toppings & condiments.
    • Mine is pictured on super toasty wheat bread with dijon mustard, kale, red onion, and tomato slices.

Did you try this recipe out? Are you planning on it? Let me know!

How did you prepare it? What did you change about the recipe? And what did you enjoy it with?

Don’t forget to Pin for later, Post to Facebook, Share on instagram, or Wweet out the good news! The links are below!

Want to get my FREE 5-day Meal Plan? It’s packed with a grocery list, a calendar, and some great tips for trying out plant-based eating for the weekdays.

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Nopales & Mushroom Empenadas

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Empenadas are Spanish food that are flaky, buttery, pastries and traditionally stuffed with beef. My take on it, however, uses some fresh produce and some spicy ingredients to bring you a tangy, citrus

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So what are morales? Nopales are cactus paddles, but don’t worry – you don’t have to eat the spikes on the sides. In fact, you can usually buy them with them already removed.

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Nopales are rich in fiber, manganese, protein, and vitamin C, too! If you cook them on their own, they have a tangy & juicy flavor, plus their texture is one-of-a-kind.

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The wonderful thing about this empanada filling is that is the flavors blend and mesh so well together – not to mention the texture of all of these slow-cooked vegetables is so savory. The first time I made it to test it out, I told my husband that this was the best thing I’d ever tasted in my life – YEAH, it’s that good.

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Not going to lie, though, this recipe is A L O T of work, it takes about an hour and fifteen minutes, and you’ll be working the whole time. Want to make it easier? Find a buddy! This is a great recipe to make with friends & I can guarantee you’ve never tried anything like it.

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So read it through, figure out what you need to grab from the store, and phone a friend! This will surely impress, too!

By the way, you can pick up nopales at mexican grocery stores & markets. I recommend calling around, first.

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Nopales & Mushroom Empenadas

Serving: 14
Time: 1 hr 15 min

The Dough

dough recipe is adapted from the New York Times Beef Empenada recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 4 oz vegan buter
  • 1 tsp salt

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, pour 1 cup boiling water over salt & butter. Mix until it has all melted together.
  2. In smal batches, add flour and mix continuously with a wooden spoon until it is no longer sticky & a warm dough has formed.
  3. Knead a few times on a floured surface (with floured hands!) and form into a ball. Wrap or cover and refrigerate for 1 hour

The Filling

Ingredeints:

  • 1 peeled potato, cubed
  • 1/2 onion, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, minced (seeded if you can’t handle the heat)
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cube
  • 3 oz mushroom (oyster variety is best)
  • 2 nopales (cactus paddles) with spikes removed, diced
  • 1 tsp each:
    • chili powder
    • tajin (chili lime seasoning)
    • cumin
  • 1 cup minced cilantro
  • 1 lime, juiced

Directions:

  1. Heat about 1 tbsp of water in a large pot at medium heat. Once heated, add potato, onion, garlic, jalapeño, & bell pepper.
  2. Saute for about 5 minutes, until fragrant.
  3. Add 1 cup water & bouillon cube – cover & simmer for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are fully cooked.
  4. In a frying pan, heat at medium-low with a tbsp of water or a bit of oil. Once heated, add mushroom & cactus.
  5. Saute for about 10 minutes – until the cactus is no longer crunchy – stirring frequently.
  6. After 10 minutes are up, add cactus & mushroom to the other pot of vegetables. Add chili, tajin, and cumin, as well.
  7. Cover until the 20 minute mark is up (you want potatoes cooked well).
  8. Once the potatoes are easily washable, remove lid and crank up the heat to medium. Mix up a bit and begin to smash the potatoes with a fork (roughly, doesn’t have to be perfect).
  9. Leave at medium heat without the lid for 15-20 minutes (until all liquid is gone). You want the filling to be thick, moist, but not watery.
  10. Remove from heat and add cilantro and the lime juice.
  11. While that is finishing up, the dough should be ready.

Putting it all Together

Have these items on hand:

  • a cup with some water in it
  • a small bowl with a bit of flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Separate the dough into golf ball sized sections (should make about 12-14).
  3. On a floured surface, roll a ball into a 6 inch wide circle.
  4. Add about 1 tbsp of filling to the center.
  5. Dip finger in water & run along edges of empanada dough (like a glue to seal it shut). Fold dough over into semi-circle.
  6. Seal by pressing down edges with a fork (see image above).
  7. Continue filling & folding with the remainder of dough and filling.
  8. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes.
  9. Brush a bit of oil on the top of each empenada and broil for 1 minute on top rack, or until they are golden brown.
  10. Serve with your favorite salsa, guacamole, or try out my easy no-soak cashew sour cream!

Tell Me:

Have you ever had an empenada before? What was in it?

Did you try the recipe? How did it work out? I’d love to hear your feedback!

Don’t forget to like, share, and pin the recipe for later!

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cactus & mushroom

 

 

 

No-Soak Cashew Sour Cream

When I first went vegan, it always felt like there was something missing from my mex inspired dishes. I used to put plain greek yogurt on EVERYTHING.

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Since going plant-based, I have tested and tried different methods to make a creamy and sour-ish spread to add to my food.

What have I tried?
Anything from “veganaise” mixed with spices – which I think is really tasty but I try to avoid processed products like that – all the way to soaking nuts overnight – which I hated because I will never responsible enough to remember to do that.

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I use this cashew sour cream for tacos, tostadas, burrito bowls, salad dressing, etc!

That being said, I have created a no-soak fool-proof cashew sour cream that only requires 4 ingredients + some water! This sour cream is…

tangy
creamy
nutty
savory
bright

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No-Soak Cashew Sour Cream

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp nutritional yeast
  • water for “cooking” cashews

Directions:

  1. In a small sauce pan, add cashews and enough water to cover them. Bring to boil, turn to medium and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  2. While the nuts are on the stove, prep & add all other ingredients in a food processor.
  3. Once the cashews’ time is up, strain it and run it under cold water for 1-2 minutes – you want to decrease the temperature so that it blends well with the other ingredients.
  4. In the food processor – with all ingredients (including cashews and 3/4 cup water), blend for 4-5 minutes.
  5. You want the consistency to be extremely creamy with almost 0 grainy texture. Add more water if you want a thinner texture. Add more lemon and/or salt for more flavor.

Wanna turn it into a salad dressing? Add 1 tbsp of oil & 1 tbsp of white balsamic vinegar! It tastes great with kale, spinach, bell peppers, & onions!

Tell Me:

Have you tried out the recipe? How did it go? Are you wanting to save this and make it later?

Share it on social media! Buttons are below!

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No-Soak

 

 

 

Tofuevos Rancheros

Tofuevos = vegan eggs or a tofu scramble. I know you were wondering!

Huevos Rancheros = the best food on the planet. For starters, it’s Mexican breakfast and we all know there is close to nothing better than that. Huevos Rancheros are corn tortillas smothered with beans and layered with eggs and tasteful toppings.

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I had to veganize – it! So here are my Tofuevos Rancheros!

They are tasty, filling, easy, healthy, and take less than 30 minutes to throw together!

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Tofuevos Rancheros

Serves: 2
Time: 30 minutes (or less)

Ingredients:

  • 4 corn tostada shells
  • 2/3 package tofu, diced as small as you can get it
  • 1 veggie burger patty (whichever brand you prefer – I use Dr. Praeger’s)
  • 1 1/2 cup beans, already cooked.
  • 1 tsp herbs de Provence
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup red cabbage, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup onion, diced
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
  • hot sauce and/or salsa of choice

Directions:

  1. Heat 1 tbsp of water in a pan over medium heat.
  2. Add diced tofu. Let cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Heat a small pan over medium heat with the veggie patty.
  4. In the meantime, you can prep / cut up your cabbage, onion, tomato, spinach.
  5. Once the tofu has started to brown up a bit, add another tbsp of water and start smashing w/ a fork. The consistency should be similar to scrambled eggs.
  6. Once they look scrambled, add turmeric, paprika, chili powder, soy sauce, and a bit more water. Let cook for 5 – 10 minutes. Taste test to make sure flavor has been absorbed by the tofu. Turn heat to low and let sit on the stove until ready to serve.
  7. While tofu is continuing to cook, use a fork to break apart the veggie patty so that it is in small chunks. Add herbs de Provence. Turn heat to medium-low to let cook.
  8. In a microwave-safe bowl, heat beans w/ 1/4 cup of water in the microwave for about 1 minute.
  9. Then, add salt & smash the beans with a fork (or immersion blender if you have it). Return to microwave for 1 minute.
  10. Once everything is ready, you can layer it up!
  11. Order of operation?
    1. Shell
    2. Beans
    3. tofuevos
    4. “sausage”
    5. spinach
    6. cabbage
    7. onion
    8. tomato
    9. avocado
    10. salsa / hot sauce

Tell Me:

Are you interested in trying them out?
Does this seem like an easy recipe for you?
Have you even tried scrambled tofu before?

Did you try out the recipe?

Share it and tag:
@thecultivatedtheorems on Instagram
or
@cultivatedthms on Twitter
or post yours on my Facebook Page!

Also, pin on Pinterest to save for later!

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Tofuevos Rancheros

 

Orange Ginger Tofu Tacos with Dragon Fruit Sweet ‘n’ Sour Salsa

Orange GingerTofu Tacos

I know you what you’re thinking. Tacos? Yes, TACOS. One of my favorite things to make and eat is fusion tacos.

I love to combine flavors that typically aren’t thrown together. It creates an entirely new and flavorful palette.

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This recipe consists of three parts. The order in which you attack them is crucial – as some recipes are required as ingredients for others.

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The most important thing to remember with this project is to make sure everything is diced, cubed, minced, measured, and ready for you to add it to when you need it. It will prevent overcooking, forgetting ingredients, and just flat-out messing up.

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First? The salsa. It’s important to make the salsa first because the flavors of the fresh fruits & vegetables will accentuate each other and mesh well together with the rice vinegar.

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Next? Start the tofu. As it is cooking, you want to start in on the sauce. They should be finished up right around the same time – which is when you will combined them together!

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Last? Fry up some tortillas of choice and make yourself some tacos!

This recipe seems difficult in theory, but it is actually pretty simple! The only potentially tricky part is making the orange ginger sauce for the tofu, but if you follow the directions closely – it will be simple to follow along and you’ll be sure to make it taste great!

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Cook Time: 30-40 minutes
Serves: 4-6

Dragon Fruit Sweet & Sour Salsa

Ingredients:

  • 1 pitaya, or dragon fruit, diced into 1/3 inch cubes
  • 1 bell pepper, cubed
  • 1/4 white onion, minced
  • 1/2 jalapeno minced
  • cilantro, chopped (amount depends on your preference – I used about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce
  • 2 tsp rice vinegar
  • pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and refridgerate while you are preparing tofu & sauce.

Fried Tofu

Ingredients:

  • 1 package tofu, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2-3 tbsp oil (I used avocado)

Directions:

  1. Heat oil over (a little bit above) medium heat.
  2. Add tofu
  3. Stir and flip tofu around every 5 minutes.
  4. Around the 15-20 minute mark, the tofu should be crispy on all sides. remove from heat and set aside if the sauce is not yet finished. If it is, add to the saucepan of sauce.

Orange Ginger Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 1″ x 1″ cube of ginger, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1 tsp sesame seed
  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup green onion, minced
  • 4-6 flour tortillas (for tacos!)
  • 2 cups chopped bok choy

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and ginger.  Sauté for 3-5 minutes or until onion is slightly browned.
  2. Then add, the wet ingredients – soy sauce, orange juice, chili garlic sauce, rice vinegar.
  3. Let simmer on low for 5 minutes and stir occasionally.
  4. Add in sesame seeds and 1 tsp salt.
  5. Mix in the cornstarch and stir constantly with a rubber spatula to ensure it does not stick to the saucepan – about 1 minute.
  6. Remove from heat and taste – add more salt and/or sesame seeds for your preference.
  7. Once the sauce is done, mix in fried tofu and serve garnished with sesame seeds & green onions.
  8. Serve on tacos garnished with bok choy, dragon fruit salsa, and some extra sesame seeds if you wish.

I hope you enjoy the new flavors! Let me know what you would add or take away from the recipe if you were to create it!

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