the taste space

My Top 11 from 2011

Posted in Favourites by Janet M on January 1, 2012

You know what, this year has been great food-wise. There were many changes. Not only did I go vegan, I adopted a whole foods-based diet without any refined sugars or flours. I still have questions about what exactly I eat, so I thought it would be nice to highlight some of my favourite dishes from the past year. Foods that people can feel comfortable serving me, or anyone else, because they taste delicious and healthy, to boot. Judging by my choices, a shout-out should go to my favourite bloggers for their inspirations: Tess, Sarah, Gena and Julia. Without further ado, and in no particular order:

Roasted Garlic Tofu Salad with Cilantro Rice, Black Beans and a Mango Salsa (aka The New Best Salad Ever)

Part of a great dish is not actually cooking it yourself (thanks Rob!), but this salad usurped my Turkish Bulgur, Pomegranate and Almond Salad as our favourite salad with its bright combination of garlicky tofu, cilantro rice and black beans with a sweet and tangy mango salsa.


Black Bean, Cilantro and Apricot Salad

If there were another runner-up for favourite salads, this would be in the running. Sweet and tangy are combined with a salad that features mango juice, dried apricots, crunchy carrots and black beans overtop spinach.

Raw Kale and Beet Salad with Raisins and Almonds

While not a meal-sized salad, like the two above, this has been a winner wherever I bring it. Super simple to throw together, but the lemon vinaigrette wilts the kale and the salad is brought together nicely with grated beets, raisins or dried cranberries and toasted almonds.


Lime-Spiked Black Bean and Quinoa Kale Wrap

Another great way to enjoy kale is by using it as a wrap. Here mashed black beans are spiked with lime juice and garlic for a flavourful base which is combined with quinoa and a carrot-scallion slaw.


Zesty Orange Cashew Spread

I tried raw cuisine for the first time and fell in love with its creative ways of using fresh foods. This was one of those utter delicious spreads that was incredibly addictive. It paired well in an apple and swiss chard wrap.


Dal Bhat (Nepalese Mountain Lentil Curry)

Moving in with Rob introduce me to a lot of new recipes, due to his love of South-East Asian and Indian cuisine. This Nepalese red lentil curry is comfort food at its finest with its savoury spice blend.



Split Pea Dal with Ginger and Lime

Simple Indian curries do not need to be lentil based, and this is a split pea dal that won me over. It is simple to make, with staples from our pantry and fridge, and incredibly delicious.



Indian Lentils with Spinach (Dal Palak)

Adding more veggies to my diet has been important to me, and there is no better way to eat spinach than with this lentil and spinach dish. Simple Indian spices and fresh lime juice highlight one of my favourite meals.


Indian Eggplant and Lentil Curry (Dal Bhat Meets Baingan Bharta)

I am hesitant for including yet another Indian curry, but yes, this one is delicious, too! I mean, you get the bonus of two curries in one dish: dal and baigan bharta. Once you master the way to spice curries, you won’t even think of heading to the restos. However, I will have to find another way to roast my eggplants to make this delicious curry again.


Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with a Garlic-Thyme White Bean Puree and Sweet Corn

In the summer, I discovered the joys of grilled portobello mushrooms. These balsamic-glazed ‘shrooms are perfect for your barbecue potluck. Tangy, juicy and meaty. Top with a your favourite bean spread for a complete meal.


15-Minute Zippy Garlic-Basil Marinara with Zucchini Noodles

Quick, fast, delicious – what more could you want? I never thought a delicious tomato sauce could be made so simply: crushed tomatoes, garlic, balsamic vinegar, basil, oregano and oil. Even if you don’t have a spiralizer, this work well with regular pasta, too.


Trust me, I had a hard time narrowing down my favourites and here are some runners-up. These are more decadent dishes that I suggest for special occasions:

Raw Raspberry Cashew Dreamcake

I don’t eat desserts often, but when I do, this decadent cashew-based dreamcake is what I would prefer to indulge in. Filled with raspberries, cashews, coconut oil, agave and vanilla overtop an almond-date crust, you have a delicious combination.


Chocolate Mint Black Bean Cookies and Mexican Chocolate Spiced Black Bean Cookies with Cherries

It is no secret that I enjoy beans. But beans for dessert? In a cookie? YES! Combined with high-quality chocolate and chia seeds, spice your cookies to heart’s content: go with the classic chocolate mint or a bit more daring with a spiced chocolate cookie with cherries. Both utterly delicious.

Check out my recap from last year for more of my favourite foods, or keep up to date with all my favourite dishes listed here.

11 Responses

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  1. Ali Seiter said, on January 1, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    All of those Dals look absolutely divine! I’m a huge fan of the Indian lentil soups, love sampling them at restaurants, and have tried in vain to recreate them at home. Perhaps now I can!

  2. sprint2thetable said, on January 1, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    I love these salad ideas – great ideas for healthy lunches to pack for work! Happy New Year!

  3. Zoa said, on January 1, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    Clearly I have to revisit past posts on this blog! The dals in particular look fantastic, and that orange cashew dip, mmmm!

  4. Joanne said, on January 1, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    I’m loving these fabulous eats, Janet! I’m always looking for healthy inspiration and your blog is one of the first places I turn. Here’s to more deliciousness in 2012!

    (PS – i’m doing a healthy favorites of 2011 round up on tuesday! Thanks for the suggestion!)

  5. Cara said, on January 1, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    mmm, this post is giving me lots of great ideas for getting back on track this week! (my body is seriously craving veggies… hmm, I wonder why! byebye, cookiefest2011….)

  6. [...] reflecting on my top meals of the year, I had a hard time picking my favourites. Did I want to highlight the easy weeknight meals, or the [...]

  7. Ashley said, on January 13, 2012 at 4:54 PM

    Mmm everything looks so good. And why have I not made those cookies yet?? Every time I’m reminded I want to do it immediately then I forget. Your switch to veganism and a whole foods based diet is inspiring.

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