May 23, 2012

Homemade Black Bean Burger (vegan)

Homemade Bean Burger
A coworker gave me a copy of Health Connection (a publication of The Daily Journal). It's cover story was "Going Vegeatarian." Well, I've already done that...actually I went further than that. However, this magazine had a recipe for a black bean burger that looked delicious. I made a couple for dinner and they were very delicious. I made slight modifications to the recipe. I omitted things like ketchup and put barbeque sauce on them during their final stage of cooking. 

bean burger with baby spinach and vegan cheese
Preparation Time: 25 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 6 burgers

1 large onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium carrot, shredded
1 to 2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 can (15 oz) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
2 tablespoons mustard (I used extra hot mustard)
2 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
11/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
6 whole wheat hamburger rolls
baby spinach

In a large skillet heat a tablespoon of oil and saute onion for 2 minutes. Add garlic and saute for another minute. Stir in the carrot, chili powder and cumin. Cook 2 minutes longer. Remove from heat; set aside.

In a large bowl mash the beans together. Stir in oats. Add the mustard, soy sauce, pepper and carrot mixture. Mix well. Shape into six patties.

Either grill patties or fry in a skillet for 10 minutes. Near the end of cooking brush about a tablespoon of   barbeque sauce.

May 21, 2012

Zucchini Queenie

My mom provided us with an abundance of zucchini. In order to use the food before it goes bad in our fridge I used it in our dinner and dessert. For dinner I made zucchini pot pies. They were absolutely delicious! These were a modification of an eggplant-tempeh pot pie recipe. For dessert I made (vegan....of course) spiced carrot-zucchini bread.

Spiced Carrot-Zucchini Bread
I found this recipe online. It is simple to make and bakes nicely into a plump, moist dessert bread. There is only 1 cup of sugar so it is not overly sweet.

2 Tablespoons ground flax seed
1/2 Cup water
2/3 Cup vegetable oil
1/2 Cup soy milk
1 Cup sugar
2 1/4 Cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 Cup chopped walnuts
3/4 Cup carrot, grated
3/4 Cup zucchini, grated

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flax seed and water in food processor. Blend oil, milk and flax mixture in a large bowl. Sift flour, baking soda and powder, salt and spices. Stir flour mixture into the wet ingredients, just enough to moisten. Add vegetables and walnuts. Stir lightly. Bake in a greased loaf pan for 70 minutes.

Yummy, moist spiced carrot-zucchini bread

May 20, 2012

A Sweater Perfectly Fit For A Pooch

It has be a weekend of four-legged indulgence. From picnic-style lounging to homemade treats we've been living it up!  Westby, our shepherd/border collie/probably retriever mix, and I have spent a few hours over the course of three days laying on a blanket, outdoors, enjoying the summertime weather. Beauie was even able to enjoy the weather while wearing is harness and leash. Oh, and he also snuck out of the house and spent some time strolling through the herb garden. Yesterday, I baked a couple batches of all-natural oatmeal peanut butter dog cookies. They were greatly enjoyed and appreciated. Westby and I were feeling neighborly so we shared a jar with each of our neighbor-pooches (Penny and Sandy). 

Homemade, All-Natural, Oatmeal Peanut Butter Dog Cookies
Currently, our animals are napping on this absolutely beautifully warm, breezy day. While they slumber I am knitting a sweater for the larger of the two. Westby

Westby Napping
 I found a great, free pattern on the Lion Brand yarn website.  So far, it is super simple and extremely enjoyable to knit. There is a very small amount of counting rows and aside from a few buttonholes, I believe a beginner would be successful.

Westby's Sweater (beginning stages)
The border is distinguished by working the seed stitch and the main part is stockinette stitch. The portion pictured above is the back. After it is completed I will create the neck band (seed stitch) and the underside. 

Bonus: Friends of ours told us about this amazing all-natural pet food/treat/toy shop called Hot Diggity Dog. It is located next to and owned by people who run a country market (flowers and herbs). The store is more like a boutique and it is located in a farm-style garage. Trust me, it is not dingy and dirty like you may be thinking. It is so adorable and a great place to buy natural, holistic pet food. We bought a bag of Fromm for Westby and a bag of Solid Gold and BFF wet food for Beauie. They sell great toys and handknit sweaters for dogs. I am considering asking if they would like to buy a few jars of my homemade dog treats to sell. Maybe I'll send them a sample.