I’ve talked a bit about how those first vegetarian dishes I made left me feeling a little deprived (you can read more about that here and here). And I don’t think I would’ve believed you if you told me that with just a couple new ingredients, spices and cooking techniques I could transform basic veggies into a delicious, satisfying and hearty feast on my plate. And I definitely would’ve thought you were lying straight to my face if you told me that one day I would prefer these veggies over any grilled pork chop, chicken breast or steak. Pretty crazy, I know. Most of my new-found love for veggies I have the awesome food-blog community to thank. Countless super inspiring vegetarian recipes pour into my inbox every week. You’re all amazing! I love you guys! And with sites like food52 where you can just type a keyword like ‘vegan’ into the search box and get hundreds of delicious looking results the problem isn’t what can I eat, it’s what should I eat because with so many yummy options you’re gonna want to make them all! It goes without saying that ‘deprived’ is no longer associated with vegan and vegetarian cooking. Flipping through the new Vegan cookbook from food52 it’s obvious that we’re in some kind of veggie renaissance – a beautiful trend that’s here to stay. Nothing is missing from this book, every dish will leave you feeling nourished and satisfied to the fullest, all while being totally plant-based. I had a hard time picking a dish to cook up first – they all looked amazing! But I settled on the socca because I’ve never made it before! Ugh, I know, what took me so long?! This stuff is amazing! It’s basically just chickpea flour and water that transforms into a flavorful, almost flakey flat bread when baked. It’s so easy and my new favorite thing to cook and eat (I made it 3 additional times since this first one last weekend!). I’m pretty sure it would go great with just about any veggie dish but I paired it here with some garlicky collards and a super savory, lentil crumble that was not only amazingly delicious but has all those essential amino acids and complete proteins going on. YES! If you’re hungry for more vegan recipes (I know you are!) check out Laura’s beautiful carrot soup and Jessie’s amazing mac and cheese. So much plant-based goodness packed into these posts!
Ingredients for the Socca
1 cup chickpea flour
1 teaspoon salt
some fresh ground pepper
1.5 cups water
2 tablespoons olive oil
Preheat oven 450F and place a 12 inch cast-iron inside to preheat. Whisk all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Whisk in the water and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Let the batter sit for 10 to 15 minutes to thicken up a bit. Remove the pan from the oven and coat it with a tablespoon of neutral high heat oil. I used refined coconut oil. Pour the batter in and bake for 15 minutes. Slice up and serve!
Ingredients for the Garlicky Greens
1 big bunch collard greens
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar or the juice of half a lemon
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon smoked salt
2 tablespoons vegan butter like earth balance
Wash and chop the greens as shown. Place a medium sized pot on medium heat. Melt the vegan butter and add the garlic. Swirl it around with the salt for a minute then add the greens and the rest of the ingredients. Cover the lid to wilt. Stirring every couple minutes so that they cook evenly. Cook until tender. About 8 to 10 minutes.
Ingredients for the Lentil Walnut Crumble
1 cup toasted walnuts
1/2 cup of sunflower seeds
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon tamari
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup cooked lentils
Cook the lentils. Let cool a bit. Add all the ingredients to the food processor. I like to do this in stages – always starting with just the garlic first so that it gets minced really well. Then add the rest of the ingredients and just pulse to combine. The mixture can be heated up again just in a skillet or eaten cold the next day on crackers, which is what I did. Delicious!
Recipe from the Food52 Vegan Cookbook. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.