janet @ the taste space

Posts Tagged ‘oregano’

Turkish-Style Spinach with Creamy Tofu Ricotta + Peace & Parsnips cookbook GIVEAWAY

In Book Review, Mains (Vegetarian), Sides on June 11, 2016 at 8:02 AM

urkish-Style Spinach with Creamy Tofu Ricotta + Peace & Parsnips cookbook GIVEAWAY

Want to know what I would consider a lot of spinach? 2 pounds.

It can take me a week to finish a clamshell of baby spinach but I I figured 2 bunches of regular spinach would be 2 lbs. After prepping and removing the stems from both bunches, I barely had a pound of spinach.

Still eager to make this dish, I added our emergency package of frozen spinach (the convenience of it being de-stemmed was not lost on me) and while I still didn’t have enough spinach for the recipe, it was certainly plenty of spinach! Read the rest of this entry »

Greek Quinoa Salad with Tofu Feta

In Mains (Vegetarian), Salads on April 23, 2016 at 9:46 AM

Greek Quinoa Salad with Tofu Feta

Rob and I went to New York City (and Brooklyn) last week. When we left Toronto, it was snowing and cold (definitely felt like winter). We were happy to drive a bit further south for even a minor relief. After a week of walking all over Manhattan, we returned to even warmer temperatures in Toronto! Our friend’s toddler was playing in a kiddie pool, it was that warm and summer-like. Read the rest of this entry »

Tempeh Enchilada Casserole

In Mains (Vegetarian) on March 19, 2016 at 7:54 AM

Tempeh Enchilada Casserole

Sometimes I forget about tempeh, but it is an awesome vegan protein source with 22g of protein in 4 oz (half a package). Not everyone loves tempeh. One way to love it is to slather it with a marinade. No marinade, here. In this case, your smother it and hide it within a delicious casserole. Read the rest of this entry »

Beet Balls and Roasted Potato Salad with a Thousand Island Dressing

In Mains (Vegetarian), Salads on March 12, 2016 at 8:12 AM

Beet Balls and Roasted Potato Salad with a Thousand Island Dressing

It has been a while since I flipped through Terry’s Salad Samurai. I know salads are not just for the summer, but I smiled pleasantly as I looked through the chapters aimed at the colder months. I bookmarked the Beet Balls and Fries Salad after reading Nicole’s raving review, and felt now, during the winter, was a perfect time to whip up a salad featuring root vegetables. Read the rest of this entry »

Soldadera Beans + Decolonize Your Diet cookbook GIVEAWAY

In Book Review, Mains (Vegetarian), Sides on January 23, 2016 at 8:19 AM

Soldadera Beans + Decolonize Your Diet cookbook GIVEAWAY

While I may end up apologizing for too many cabbage recipes, I shall not apologize for too many bean recipes! With the United Nations declaring 2016 The Year of the Pulse, it is exciting to see people discovering (or re-discovering) their love of such a humble nutritious super star. Read the rest of this entry »

Quick & Easy Pantry Black Bean Chili + Cook the Pantry cookbook GIVEAWAY

In Book Review, Mains (Vegetarian) on October 20, 2015 at 7:33 AM

Quick & Easy Pantry Black Bean Chili

I don’t know about you, but have you felt more busy since September? There is something about the sun-filled evenings that relaxes me in the summer. Between weekend commitments, a shorter evening and the cooler weather, fall lends well to becoming more productive and prioritizing the important things in life.

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Roasted Ratatouille with Basil Pistou

In Sides on September 12, 2015 at 8:03 AM

Roasted Ratatouille with Basil Pistou

Despite making quite a few excellent dishes with eggplant, it is not an ingredient I turn to instinctively. It is probably because I almost killed Rob with his asthma when I smoked them in our house. I still think that is the best way to make smoky soft eggplant and with our new BBQ, Rob has lifted the smoky eggplant ban.
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Tomato and Pomegranate Salad with Fresh Oregano

In Salads, Sides on September 8, 2015 at 6:55 AM

Tomato and Pomegranate Salad

It has been a while since I have gushed over an Ottolenghi recipe.

He came out with a new vegetarian cookbook, Plenty More last year but it wasn’t until I was overflowing in fresh herbs and summer produce did I take a stab at conquering his cookbook. Being that it is now September, I am sad I didn’t do it earlier. Read the rest of this entry »

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

In Favourites, Mains (Vegetarian), Sides on July 16, 2015 at 7:07 AM

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

Onwards with the BBQ experimenting.

My natural instinct when I hear BBQ is to buy portobello mushrooms. As I said, I love salads and dishes I can prepare in advance, and the Portobello Carpaccio in But I Could Never Go Vegan sounded perfect.

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

Similar, but not identical to my grilled balsamic portobellos, these portobello mushrooms are marinated and roasted in the oven. The marinade is Italian-inspired with dried herbs and a red wine vinaigrette. I suppose the barbecue could work, too, but the barbecue was for later in the day. Once the mushrooms were cool, you slice them super thin (and had I known what on a bias meant, I would have done more of a diagonal to the horizontal plane). Then I popped them in the fridge for a few hours prior to serving. A sprinkle of capers and rosemary finished this as a really fun appetizer, with portobello mushrooms masquerading as rare meat.

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

Because mushrooms alone do not make a meal, and I had used up most of my culinary energies, we opted for something so simple, I was worried it might not work.

I had seen Tiffany’s post about tofu cheeseburgers where she simply grilled slabs of tofu and called it a burger. She isn’t even vegan and loved it. I was intrigued so we tried something similar.

We cut up a package of super firm tofu into four slices, cut longitudinally, and grilled it. Nothing added, not even salt and pepper. Rob said it stuck a bit on the grill but otherwise it was perfect. Slightly smoky and a blank canvas to work nicely against the vibrant portobello carpaccio.

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

Next time, we might try oiling the grills or brushing the tofu with some oil before placing it on the grill.

What do you think? Have you grilled plain tofu before?

Portobello Carpaccio with Grilled Tofu Steaks

I am sharing this with Meat Free Mondays.


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Avocado Chimichurri

In Appetizers on June 20, 2015 at 9:49 AM

Avocado Chimichurri

This is another great dish to come out of our cottage escapades.

It was a true pleasure to know that I did not have to worry about vegan options. I brought a few veggie burgers for the grill, but otherwise, the vegetables were plentiful. And avocados. All avocados at the cottage. When you get tired of guacamole (is that possible??), this is a fun dish.

Avocado Chimichurri

I had been thinking of trying to make chimichurri for a while but hesitant with the amount of parsley in most recipes. Parsley is possibly my least favourite flavour, right up there with celery which is slightly more tolerable. This was great, though. A nice amount of spice that was not overrun by herbs. Chuimichurri is a green typically used for grilled meats but here, the chunks of avocado substituted to make a fabulous dip. The original recipe suggests using it as a bruschetta topping but everyone simply lapped it up by the spoonful. Because it is simple to prepare the chimichurri sauce in advance, this is a fancy looking dip but also very portable and simple to make. I can see this becoming a staple around the barbecue this summer. Enjoy!

What do you like to make with avocado?


Other dishes avocado fans will love:

Guaca-Chi (Guacamole with Kimchi)

Green Velvet Guacamole (aka Guacamame or Edamame Guacamole)

Pineapple and Cucumber Guacamole (Guacamole Con Piña y Pepino)

Tofu Avocado Salad

Cucumber Avocado Sandwiches With Dill and Mint

Avocado Chimichurri

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Cocoa Jerk Tofu Tacos + Cookbook Giveaway

In Book Review, Mains (Vegetarian) on February 14, 2015 at 10:36 AM

Cocoa Jerk Tofu Tacos + Cookbook Giveaway

Happy Valentine’s Day!

While the blogosphere blows up with desserts, here is a fun way to add even more chocolate to your meals. Cocoa jerk tofu tacos. No stranger to brightly flavoured jerk foods (e.g. Jamaican Jerk Plantain Soup and the ever classic Jamaican Jerk Tempeh Wraps), I have never seen it with the addition of chocolate.

The recipe is courtesy of Superfoods for Life, Cocoa which is a vegan cookbook devoted to adding more chocolate to your meals. The book explains the health benefits of chocolate and shows you ways to incorporate it into your breakfast, lunch and dinner, including desserts (obviously). Sweet and savoury.

This has been my favourite recipe so far, and I probably would not have tried it had Sayward not raved about it. The perfect balance of tangy, spicy (not too spicy) with flavourful spices (allspice, oregano, cinnamon) and the raw cocoa powder merely lent a deeper flavour. This did not taste like chocolate. It was also really simple to put together, with a quick marinade mixed in a baking dish which was then baked altogether. I served it as tacos with a spoonful of mashed avocado but Matt also recommends eating it with a side of rice, beans and/or plantains. Rob doesn’t like onions too much, so if you are like him, reduce or replace the onions with more bell peppers.

Cocoa Jerk Tofu Tacos + Cookbook Giveaway

It took me awhile to review this cookbook because I quickly realized it is hard to eat chocolate so often. Even with the savoury meals, sometimes I got tired with my leftovers prematurely so I had to space them out. I will also admit was not that adventurous to try all of Matt’s suggestions yet (bana ghanoush with cocoa powder, cocoa coleslaw, choco-spinach lasagna). However, it just goes to show you how novel some of these recipes truly are.

Cocoa Jerk Tofu Tacos + Cookbook Giveaway

I wish the cookbook was organized more intuitively for finding the recipes, but I cannot determine the method to their madness. I think they are organized based on health benefits (ie, preventing stroke, diabetes, etc). The chapters are labelled as such: Heart-Healthy Cacao: Little Bean, Lots of Benefits and Cacao on the Brain: From Stroke Prevention to Cognitive Function.

Here is a sample of the recipes shared elsewhere:

Aztec-Style Chocolate Drink (Two Ways)

Chocolate-Cocoa Za’atar Pesto Balls

Cocoa Mango Lassi

Coconut Shortbread-Double Brownie Delight

Raw Chocolate Carrot Cake

Rich Chocolaty Vegetable Tarts

Tamarind Chocolate Chili

Cocoa Jerk Tofu Tacos + Cookbook Giveaway

Thankfully, the publisher allowed me to giveaway the cookbook to a reader living in the United States or Canada. To be entered in the random draw for the book, please leave a comment below telling me about your favourite unusual way to enjoy chocolate. The winner will be selected at random on February 22, 2015. Good luck!

PS. I am sharing this with Vegetable Palette.

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Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot

In Mains (Vegetarian) on January 31, 2015 at 8:08 AM

Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot

I have been blogging for over 5 years and one thing I have learned to keep this a sustainable hobby is: don’t sweat the small stuff. This recipe has been sitting in my draft folder for a while and I keep on hesitating to share it with its lackluster photos. However, the recipe is stellar and for some reason, once the snow hits, I am all about the tropical eats.

Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot

I used canned beans here. One can of red kidney beans (they never seem to get too much love in my kitchen) along with mixed beans (who remembers my Symphonic Mixed Bean Salad? With Mr Goudas’ 9th Symphony Bean Mix? YAH!). It still cracks me up: Eat and music will follow. Get ready to listen. I swear, it is written on the label. it almost sounds like Trader Joe’s would love.

Mr Goudas' 9th Symphony Bean Mix

In any case, the beans are mixed with a lime infused tomato broth spiked with pineapple and spiced with oregano and a hint of chile flakes. Serve with your favourite grainy side to sop of the juices.

I promise to return with some prettier photos (along with a giveaway) next week.🙂

Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot
PS. I am sharing this with this month’s My Legume Love Affair and Simple and In Season.

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Jackfruit Vegan Gyros with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce + Vegan Without Borders Giveaway

In Book Review, Mains (Vegetarian), Sides on January 24, 2015 at 8:00 AM

Jackfruit Gyros with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce

See below for the worldwide (!!) giveaway.

I don’t pay attention to food trends, mostly because I have learned I am usually ahead of the pack! Quinoa before the masses. I was talking about amaranth in 2010! Kale and cauliflower, I have you covered… Although I am still waiting for the world to catch on to the love of beans.

Anyways, Bon Appetit top prediction for 2015 is gyros.

Vegans need not fret. I am presenting to you: jackfruit vegan gyros for 2015.

Gyros sound finicky and complex. They are probably confused mostly in their pronunciation (hint: it sounds more like euro).

And yes, I also think jackfruit is looking to be the next culinary trend (and humble-brag alert, I’ve been eating jackfruit since 2012).

Jackfruit Gyros with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce + Vegan Without Borders Giveaway

This recipe is courtesy of Robin Robertson’s Vegan Without Borders. A very prolific author, this particular cookbook has focused on mostly authentic vegan recipes from around the world. The cookbook is divided into sections based on geography and highlights recipes from Europe (Italy, France, Spain and Portugal, Greece, Eastern Europe, British Isles), The Americas (United States, Mexico, The Caribbean, South America, Africa, The Middle East, India, and Asia (China, Thailand, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Southeast Asia Islands).

The recipes, so far, have been solid. They are earmarked as gluten-free, soy-free, low oil/no oil and quick and easy. Because Robin has tried to maintain authenticity to the dishes, there are a bit more convenience foods as ingredients than I like (sour cream, cream cheese, etc) but you could definitely try substituting homemade versions, too.

Jackfruit Gyros with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce

These gyros, though, were fabulous. The jackfruit had an excellent texture, similar to pulled pork and the flavours were bright and fresh. Because I didn’t have yogurt or sour cream on hand, I made my own version of tzatziki which complemented the pita well. I opted for a tofu base since I thought the meal needed an extra hit of protein.

As leftovers, once I ran out of the pita, this was also excellent as a quinoa bowl, with the jackfruit and veggies piled high and a generous serving of the tzatziki overtop.

Jackfruit Gyros with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce
Recipes from Vegan Without Borders spotted elsewhere:

Baked Eggplant Fries


Chickpea and Kale Wat

Cucumber and White Bean Ceviche

Farinata with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Olives


Mango Rice Verrines

Pina Colada Squares


Roasted Ratatouille with Basil Pistou

Seitan Jagerschnitzel

Szechuan Bok Choy

Tzatziki Sauce

Umbrian Lentil Salad

Vegetable Paella

Vegetable Tagine

Watermelon Paletas

Thankfully, the publisher allowed me to giveaway the cookbook to a reader living anywhere in the world. To be entered in the random draw for the book, please leave a comment below telling me about your favourite cuisine (Thai, German, etc). The winner will be selected at random on February 1, 2015. Good luck!

PS. I am sharing this with Souper Sundays. Read the rest of this entry »

Cajun Beans and Greens

In Mains (Vegetarian) on January 22, 2015 at 7:45 AM

Cajun Beans and Greens

I planned on making this with grits.

Cajun beans and greens with grits. Obviously.

I even smuggled some grits home from Trader Joe’s when we left Houston.

Cajun Beans and Greens

As I prepped the ingredients for this quick and easy bean skillet, I nonchalantly brought out the grits. Another 30 minutes? No way the sun would last for them, so I photographed the beans as the sun quickly faded away and then waited for quinoa. I was worried I would have to tend to the grits continuous, like polenta, so I chickened out in the end.

Next time, there will be grits.

Cajun Beans and Greens


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Simple Lentil Chilaquiles

In Breakfasts, Mains (Vegetarian) on January 3, 2015 at 8:17 AM


When I said our meals have become more simple, this is probably not what you had in mind.  I had not planned on sharing this either, but the meal was delicious and I scooped together the little bits left unclaimed and snapped photos to share. I loved the meal, I loved these photos, and had to share.


In an honesty, Rob is a great cook. I merely helped to assemble the ingredients. Rob was making an off-the-cuff version of our tofu migas but as we ate it, we thought it reminded us of the chilaquiles we would devour from Radical Eats in Houston. Minus the deep-fried tortillas. Eerily enough, Erica shared her baked version of chilaquiles (recipe here with black beans and kale), which I read afterwards. Great minds think alike! We opted not to make it sopping in a tomato-broth, as we used sun-dried tomatoes to help keep the chips crispy.

Simple Lentil Chilaquiles
In any case, while these were simple to make, it brought together a few components we already had. Namely, we made JL’s Lentil TVP Taco Filling earlier in the week (I changed the spices slightly) as our ground meat substitute. My cousin also gifted us some homemade tomatillo salsa. It was quite spicy but worked well when mixed directly with the other ingredients.

In short, we started by using almost stale corn tortilla chips by baking them in the oven. Rob sauteed some sweet onions (reserving some for the topping) and sprinkled them with garlic granules (too lazy to pull the real garlic from the fridge). Next, he added the Lentil-TVP taco filling, heating it up. Because we were out of plain tofu, he added 4 eggs along with some soy milk and the tomatillo salsa, scrambling all the ingredients together. Once fully cooked, he stirred in the baked tortilla chips, heating all the way through. A sprinkle of fresh lime juice and a side of tomato salsa solidified this as a perfect New Year’s Day brunch.


I am not sure if quasi-recipes like this help you. What do you think?

PS. I am sharing this with Credit Crunch Munch. Read the rest of this entry »