Balsamic Black Bean Salsa
[Alright, so the big game is this weekend! One of the things people always get excited for is THE FOOD. Chili, hamburgers, supreme pizzas, hot dogs. See the theme in those foods? They are all (usually) full of meat. Which, you know, is a problem when you’re vegetarian. But, it is my firm belief that you do not have to be left out of partaking in the tradition of eating delicious food during the Super Bowl simply because you don’t eat meat. In fact, I’m pretty sure you can eat better. No, scratch that, completely sure. This salsa is my #1 recommendation for meat-free football food. It’s ridiculously easy to make, it is gorgeous, it can be eaten with your hands, it is healthy, and, most importantly, it is DELICIOUS. Obviously it can be (and should be) eaten on non-Super-Bowl-Sundays, but it is particularly appropriate for this weekends festivities! May the best team win *cough* Go Ravens! *cough*]
- 1 15oz. can of no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 15oz. can of whole kernel corn, rinsed and drained
- 1/2 of a medium red onion, chopped finely
- 1/2 cup of fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup of salsa verde (if you like red salsa better, go ahead and use that instead)
- 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let the salsa marinade for at least 2 hours, but preferably overnight.
- Serve with tortilla chips.
Recipe of the day: Chana Masala recipe
This deliciously spiced dish is common vegetarian fare in India. If you’re a fan of spice, add a finely chopped red chili or two along with the garlic. Serve with basmati rice, naan bread or dosa (savoury crepes found in speciality Indian grocery stores).
Photography by Yvonne Duivenvoorden
KIDNEY BEAN SOUP AND GUACAMOLE SALSA
- 1 pound dried kidney beans or 3 14-ounce cans (see source link for dried bean preparation instructions)
- 2 onions, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, diced (optional)
- 1 14 ounce can chopped tomatoes
- 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 Tablespoon cumin
- 1/4 Teaspoon cayenne powder
- 1 Tablespoon paprika
- 1/2 Teaspoon dried oregano
- 4 Cups liquid (water, or stock)
- Salt and pepper
- 2 avocados, chopped or mashed
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 1 green chili, seeded and chopped
- 1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped
- Juice from 1 lime
1. Start by adding your oil to a large heavy pan and once it’s hot, add all your onions. Stir regularly until they soften and cook down. You don’t want to caramelize them, but just soften them. I’d say about 15 minutes should do the trick. Then add your pepper and garlic and cook for another minute.
2. Then add all your spices at once! Stir it well to combine. The onions will take on an amazing red color mainly due to the paprika.
3. Next add your beans, chopped tomatoes, and tomato paste to the party and stir well to combine. Let these cook just for a minute or two.
4. Once your beans are combined, add all your liquid to the pot, stir, and bring it to a simmer. Simmer the soup, covered, for about 30 minutes and then remove it from the heat.
5. Blend soup with your blender of choice, if desired. If using a stand blender, let your soup cool some before blending to reduce the risk of covering yourself/your kitchen with hot soup.
For the guacamole salsa:
Combine all ingredients and serve atop the soup or on the side with a small portion of corn chips.
GO GO GLOW MIX
Yields 2.5 cups
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup goji berries
- 1/2 cup almonds (or sunflower seeds)
- 1/2 cup mulberries
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate covered cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips (vegan versions of course!)
- I also added natural dried apple rings, but I was not a fan of their spongy texture
1. Mix together and enjoy for a quick pick me up!
Healthy, protein-packed snacks?
Lately I’ve been looking for ideas on snacks that are easily portable, don’t require refrigeration/heating up and are packed with protein - especially for longer bike rides.
The two main types of snacks we tend to eat that fall into this category are trail mix/granola and baked bars.
For trail mix, we usually throw together a combination of:
- raw nuts (cashews, almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pistachios)
- dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, figs, dates, apples, pineapple)
- baked grains (cheerios, puffed rice)
- sweet or salty (pretzels, chocolate chips, cacao nibs)
Granola is harder to do without adding unnecessary sugar, as are baked bars, so we haven’t made them very often, but are interested in finding healthier alternatives to the recipes we already know.
Do you have a favorite trail mix, granola, or bar recipe? What do you snack on?
A couple of the ingredients below you may have a hard time finding. One is tahini (sesame seed paste)- most grocery stores carry it: you can find it either by the peanut butter, or in the ethnic food aisle. If you can’t find it there, most health foods stores carry it (and may even make it fresh! This is how I prefer to buy mine). The other is sumac, a berry that is sold dried and ground. You can find this in health food stores and middle eastern grocery stores. It’s not mandatory for this recipe, but it’s a tasty addition if you can find it.
- 1 can (16oz) reduced sodium garbanzo beans/chickpeas, drained and liquid set aside
- 1/3c tahini
- 1/4c lemon juice
- 1tsp salt
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1tsp sumac (optional)
- In a food processor or blender, combine all ingredients except for the liquid from the chickpeas.
- Process/blend, adding a small amount of the liquid at a time (you won’t need all of the liquid, but people’s preference for the amount of firmness for hummus varies) until the texture is to your liking.
- Serve with fresh raw veggies, pita, crackers, bagels…whatever you prefer.
And remember - you can freeze hummus!