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Sunday, June 24, 2012

30-Minute Vegetarian Curry Meal Recipe

A few years ago, I didn't even know what 'a curry' was. I know the spice and have always associated it with hot and spicy Indian cooking.

A vegetarian friend of mine always talked about making a curry for dinner. Whenever I asked her to elaborate on exactly what she defined as 'a curry', she'd give an evasive answer. Something about sautéing veggies and steaming rice.

Finally I got smart and looked it up in the old reliable Webster's. It says, 'a sauce made with curry powder, a kind of stew prepared with curry'. Referring to my collection of vegetarian cookbooks, I found an easy recipe for a curry. Now, I have come to realize how handy this 'method' or 'principle' is.

By simply sautéing an assortment of veggies in a curry powder or paste, I could obtain a vegetable 'stew' bursting with flavor. Curry powder isn't necessarily hot/spicy. There are many mild variations on the market. So, if you have always associated curry powder as a hot spice, take note that milder versions are available all over.

A little curry can go a long way. Using a mellow type, I find I can use more without worrying if I am going to burn a hole in my mouth. Curry powder seems to go well with a wide array of vegetables and meats. Cauliflower, mushrooms, zucchini, onions and potatoes as well as chicken, shrimp, eggs and tofu combine miraculously with this yellow powder creating dazzling duos and blends. When I make a curry, it is usually at the end of the week when the fridge is getting empty and I want to use up my vegetables.

Steam some flavored rice like Basmati or brown for South-Asian accompaniment.

Since curry pastes are known for being hot, the traditional Raita a mix of cool, soothing cucumbers tossed with yogurt finds its way to the curry dinner table.

Below is my version of an 'Indian dinner' with a vegetable curry and cucumber Raita. Now, I am no expert on Indian cuisine though I would love to travel there someday to sample the country's authentic flavors. If Indian cooking is your specialty, then by all means make changes where you feel necessary in the following recipes.

The nice thing about curry (besides the fact that it's a delightful change from old-standby meals) is that is quick to prepare. At least my non-authentic recipe is. Throw on the rice and chop up some cucumbers for a complete and satisfying meal in 30 minutes tops!

And finally, after forcing the first bit one the hesitant-to-try-new-food (most often children) a mellow curry wins over most hearts. If you have never tried a curry before, try my recipe. I don't care for really hot dishes so my curry is gentle but robust. My children, even as youngsters, have always gobbled up this dish up and even ask for seconds. You just may be more than mildly surprised at how much you like it, too.

Quick Vegetable Curry
Preparation and cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4
  • 2 cups uncooked basmati rice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 small zucchini
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup cauliflower, broken into bite-size chunks
  • up to 3 tablespoons mild curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • ½ cup hot water
  • 1 vegetable flavored bouillon cube
  • salt to taste
Prepare rice according to package directions. While rice is cooking, prepare curry.
Coarsely chop onion. In large skillet with lid, begin sautéing onion in olive oil on medium high heat. When onion is translucent, add chicken if using, stirring frequently for another 3 minutes. While onion mixture is cooking, slice mushrooms and add.

Coarsely chop zucchini and cauliflower and add to skillet. Continue sautéing another minute or two. Add remaining ingredients. Stir well. Cover and bring to boil. Once stew begins to boil, reduce heat and set lid slightly ajar. Continue simmering for another 15-20 minutes.
While curry is simmering, prepare cucumber raita.

Cucumber Raita
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Serves: 4
  • 2 hot house cucumbers
  • 1 cup low-fat, plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons dill
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
In serving bowl whisk together yogurt, dill lemon juice, salt and pepper. Chop cucumber into bite-size chunks. Add to yogurt mixture. Stir well. Chill until ready to serve.
"Anne Dessens is the founder of - your one-link to everything 'self-improvement': diet, recipes, running & walking, deep breathing, success, journaling, energy and universal laws.

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Vegan Diet Recipe - Best Tips For You

In order to make your body healthy, one solution for you is by making your own vegan diet recipe. Here are the tips for you.

Tips #1: Choose the right food to consume

The first tip is you must choose the right food to consume. You must really realize that when becoming a vegan, the choice of food for you is limited. Therefore, in vegan diet recipe you must really know which food made from the animal and which food is not, and also which food you may consume and which food is not.

Tips #2 : Select the substitution foods

The second tip is that by selecting the substitution foods. In case that the food you want to eat is one of the animal products, you must change the food with the substitution food which contains the same nutrition. For example, you want to consume the eggs. Unfortunately egg is one of the animal products. Therefore, in vegan diet recipe you must not eat the egg. Therefore, for your vegan diet recipe you must find the substitution food which contains the same nutrition as the egg. It is meant so that your body will not lack of any nutrition.

Tips #3 : Pay a close attention toward the thing you use in cooking your food.

The last tip for your vegan diet recipe is that you must also pay a close attention toward the thing you use in cooking your food. You must not use the oil made from animal in cooking the oil. Or the margarine, the margarine must not one of animal product as well. For your vegan diet recipe, you can change the usual oil you use with the oil made from the nut, for example. Even the smallest thing you put in your food must not also made from the animal, such the food additive. You must make sure that your food is free from the animal product in making your vegan diet recipe succeed. It is a piece of cake.

Take a look at this valuable resource full of tips and secrets: Veggie Meal Plans []. Also check out this site for more tips: Daily Diet Vegetarian []

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Vegan Diet Recipes - Mushroom Mint Pasta Salad

Try this delicious mushroom pasta with its flavor delicately enhanced and lightened with mint. Eaten as a cold salad with BBQ or as a warm side dish for French or Italian mains. Crack some pepper on top and decorate it with unused mint leaves before serving warm.

Whether you are an experienced vegan or are just looking for an exciting new salad, you will find that this recipe will add zest to your menu and reward your taste buds. It has the quality ingredients that will help to lower your cholesterol, and still give you that restaurant quality flavor. Vegans all over the world are enjoying a new way to eat that is far healthier than traditional meat based diets, and are enjoying the health benefits that they can enjoy because of this new awareness of what nutritionists have been saying for years. Why not you too? There are no special cooking tools needed, and the majority of the ingredients can still be found at the same grocery store that you have been shopping at for years. However, take the time to visit a whole food or natural store and you will find many new food items that can be added to your menu.

While you are at it, feel free to join or visit any local vegan group in your community. These can be found at health food stores, at a work out facility, yoga class, church group or many other organizations. Your doctor may even be able to recommend to you a group that shares more recipes like this. Some groups may combine the vegan food element with activities, such as hiking or exercise in a way that will improve your overall physical and emotional condition.

Yield: 12 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes, Cook time: 20 minutes, Ready in: 35 minutes


* 1 (16 ounce) package farfalle (bow tie) pasta
* 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
* 2 (8 ounce) packages button mushrooms, sliced
* 4 onions, sliced
* 1 quart heavy cream
* 10 sprigs fresh mint
* 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
* 1 pinch salt
* 1 pinch ground black pepper


1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Place pasta in the pot, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente, and drain. Cool, transfer to a large bowl, and toss with 3 tablespoons olive oil.

2. Heat remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place mushrooms and onions in the skillet.
Cook and stir until lightly brown. Gradually pour in the heavy cream, stirring continuously. Place the mint sprigs in the skillet. Cook and stir 5 minutes.

3. Mix sugar into the cream sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the mint sprigs with a slotted spoon. Stir in the cooked pasta until well coated. Serve and enjoy!

Are you looking for a BUNCH of super easy vegan recipes? If you are just a beginner or even a seasoned vet looking for some simple vegetarian meals to cook, click here: Easy Vegan Recipes []

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Best of Vegan Recipes

When shifting to a vegan diet for the first time, the transformation can take some time. Not only that, you would also need to change your entire perspective related to taste and cooking. So, while you get yourself used to the ways of vegan cooking and eating, here are some of the best Vegan Recipes for you to try out and enjoy the joys of vegan cooking and eating.
  • One of the all time favorites among the Vegan Recipes is the Vegan Paella. This is actually a dish of Spanish origin. In the traditional recipe, seafood is used. However, for vegan cooking, the cashews used in the recipe replace the protein element of seafood.

  • Another of the best recipes that remains a favorite of vegans is the Avocado Grapefruit Salad. It has a creamy kind of texture and made with all vegan food items. The salad is really filling and delicious.

  • For those looking for something rich in flavor, you can always go for the Vegan Recipe for Coconut Vegetable curry. This dish has a very memorable flavor and you are very likely to try it again. The key to the rich flavor is to hold the amount of coconut milk you add to the recipe.

  • If you like your food to be strong in flavor, you can always make a Vegan Recipe with a good amount of spice. These best spices are the fresh ones. These have a unique aroma and flavor that you're not likely to forget anytime soon.

  • If you like dessert, you can check out many of the Vegan Recipes in dessert. You can make some of the best tasting cakes, pies and muffins. The coconut cake, carrot cake, fig spice pie and apple crisp and apple pie are the top rated of all vegan recipes.
In terms of substitutes, you can find many of them in the market for example cheese, butter, milk and other items. You can find your favorite brand of vegan substitute food items and use these items to add the touch of your personal taste to the recipes.

Whether you are looking for some delicious and filling breakfast, lunch, dinner or a simple snack, it is all there in vegan cooking in the form of various soups, dips, snacks, and salads along with full meals. You can always try for new food items and recipes and experiment with vegan food recipes.

Find out how vegan recipe could change your lifestyle? Check it out now to understand the importance of
vegan recipe.

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Raw Food and Vegan Recipes

Nutritionist and fitness experts say that going on vegan diet can be a healthy choice. Others would say it's an exaggerated version of a nutritional diet and risky to embrace because the human body scientifically requires not just fiber and good carbohydrates but also high protein which vegetables have a little amount of. Not all can tolerate eating raw food and vegan recipes in every single meal. But those who can manage such diet plan are expectedly lean and fat-free. Certain dishes that fuse veggies and root crops together can be costly at times, which is why all-veggie diet isn't a preferred diet among majority of individuals.

Good nutrition always comes with raw food and vegan recipes, balanced protein and carbohydrates. Yoga followers are on vegetable diet, which is why most of those who practice it appear to be skinny or slim. Organic food may be good source of fiber that our body highly requires but it doesn't accelerate the development of muscles. If you are muscle builder, vegetables are not good to eat alone. You have to integrate some considerable amount of protein that contains all the amino acids you need for muscle building. Vegans usually go for foods like apples, beets, carrots, raw grains, oats, rye, sesame seeds, almonds, oranges, pumpkins, tomatoes, asparagus, broccoli, red peppers, spinach, buckwheat, pomegranate, cabbages, etc. Eating green salads without any meat content is strictly vegan but if you put in some chicken breasts or bacon strips in it, that's deemed to be semi-vegan.

Fruits and vegetables are recognized to be good sources of vitamins and minerals, aside from fiber, good carbohydrates and antioxidants. Raw food and vegan recipes are usually broiled or boiled, not fried or mixed preservatives or additives. Raw whole grain muesli, oat yogurt, green salads, tomato salad, vegetable soup are among the vegan recipes that are considered healthy and effective for those who want to lose weight. Preparing raw food is ideal for those people whose schedule is too hectic in that they don't have time to cook anymore. Vegetable dishes are fitting to those with high blood cholesterol and health-threatening issues. You can never go wrong with vegetable diet, as per vegans.

If you find yourself being overweight or obese, maybe it's high time that you shift to a healthier diet plan. Perhaps you can consider eating raw food and vegan recipes. You can give it a week and discover the results yourself in order to gauge the efficacy of embracing an all-veggie diet and eating raw food. If you are too dedicated to lose weight and manage yourself healthily, you can make it in a longer period of time. But if you are too weak to tolerate such stiff diet that deprives you of other healthy foods found in lean meat, then you won't survive in dwelling on a vegan diet for a longer time.

Gary Pearson is an accomplished niche website developer and author.
To learn more about vegan recipes [] visit Health and Cooking Today [] for current articles and discussions.

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Sunday, June 10, 2012

Cooking Vegetarian Quick, Easy and Belly Warming

It is fall and to me fall means soup season. I love soup anytime of the year, but there is nothing better on a chilly day than a bowl of hearty soup. One that warms you up and fills your belly. Do you see where I am going with this? I am making soup into a meal.

Today is Wednesday. If you are new to reading my blog than you need to know Wednesday's are a busy day in our house. So I try to make something for dinner that is quick and simple. So today I am going back to cooking vegetarian.

To me it is very important when you are cooking vegetarian as a meal that it is filling and balanced. Now when I say balanced I mean it has your veggies, protein and carbohydrates. I find that when people are cooking vegetarian it is easy to be low or non-existent on the protein part. The bottom line is if you don't include the protein, you are going to have a very hungry belly fast.

So what better way to get a protein than through lentils? These little legumes are very high in protein (26%). They are easy; they come in different sizes and colors. But they cook very fast from the dry stage. They are not like a regular legume, where they need to soak over night. So for this reason alone they make cooking vegetarian quick and easy.

Lentils are nice as well to ease the non-vegetarian into cooking vegetarian. I have made it clear in my previous blogs that I am not vegetarian, but I do eat a lot of vegetarian dishes. Because lentils are not like your regular larger legume, they blend into your dish. Instead of standing out. You can buy lentils that are green, brown, yellow, black and red in color. They can be split or whole. The red ones are usually split and one of the most popular. Because they are split they cook even faster. That is why I am going to be cooking vegetarian today with red lentils.

I am going to share a lentil soup recipe with you. My friend Norma shared this with me many years ago and it has been (no pun intended) a staple in our house. Now for you guys out there that are not vegetarian and want to beef up this soup even more. You can add some cut up sausage to this; I would use a Chorizo or spicy Italian.

Belly Warming Lentil Soup

  • 5 cloves garlic minced

  • 1 large onion chopped

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil

  • 1 Tbsp cumin

  • 2 medium carrots sliced

  • 2 leeks chopped (whites only)

  • 1 cup dry lentils (I use red)

  • 1 tsp oregano

  • 1 tsp basil

  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

  • 1 28oz can diced plum tomatoes

  • 4c vegetable stock (chicken stock is fine for non vegetarians)
  • In soup pot sauté onions in olive oil until they are soft. Add garlic and sauté for a few more minutes. Lower heat and stir in cumin. Cook for another couple of minutes. Add carrots and leeks, toss for another 2-3 minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Cook for about 30 minutes. Or until lentils are soft. Salt and pepper to taste.

    Serve this with nice hearty bread and your belly will be happy.

    Carolin Hopkins operates Cooking With Carolin, a blog all about cooking and cooking tips. She loves giving away Free stuff and is now giving away Free memberships to her newsletter. Plus you'll want to come and check out the cooking tip of the day. Come and sign up, it is all free!! More information here:

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    Vegetarian Slow Cooker Recipes - Seven Tips To Cook Beans And Peas

    A large number of vegetarian slow cooker recipes contain beans or peas in their ingredients. This is because it favors the cooking of beans and peas like no other. Most of the beans, except chickpeas and soybeans, become tender in a slow cooker within 6 to 8 hours of cooking, provided they are presoaked. Black-eyed peas, lentils, and red lentils cook quickly. You need not presoak them either. Chickpeas are stubborn beans. They need about 12 hours to get tender in a slow cooker. Also, you need to presoak them the night before.

    The time peas and beans take to cook depends on the working of your crock pot, the freshness of the beans or peas, and the hardness of the water. The type of recipe may also influence the cooking time. That's why vegetarian slow cooker recipes using beans have different cooking times.

    Tips for Cooking Vegetarian Crock Pot Recipes With Beans or Peas

    • Add spices, especially tomatoes and salt, only after the beans are tender.
    • Slow cooking the beans and peas intensifies their flavor. You may need lesser amount of spices to enrich the dish than that required in regular cooking.
    • You can cut 2 to 3 hours of the cooking time if you pour boiling water with beans.
    • When cooking beans or peas, setting the time on a digital timer is not required. If there is sufficient cooking water in the crock pot, it's unlikely that the peas or beans will overcook. Start your slow cooker early in the morning, and forget it until dinner time!
    • For cooking plain beans, it's best to cook them in the crock pot overnight. In the morning, you can have a healthy breakfast of freshly cooked beans or peas, combined with freshly cut salad or cheese. You can keep aside some cooked beans for preparing healthy slow cooker recipes for supper.
    • If you're present at home while cooking, do this: Set the cooker at high in the first 2 to 3 hours of cooking beans or peas. Then, set at low for the remaining time.
    • When preparing bean stews and soups, sauté the onions and spices in oil before putting them in the crock pot. This adds to the flavor of the vegetarian recipes.

    Beans and peas make for such fantastic vegetarian slow cooker recipes that you may never feel the need to add meat or other such animal-based foods to the recipe. There are a variety of peas and beans to create savory and purely vegetarian dishes. Whether it's green peas, chick peas, split peas, or kidney beans, soybeans, and others, it helps in putting together a tantalizing dish at the end of a hard day.

    If your kids hate beans or refuse to eat peas, introduce a crock pot in your kitchen. Watch the eating habits of your kid change! The tasty vegetarian slow cooker recipes will teach your kid to savor plant-based ingredients with delight.

    The offers a collection of yummy vegetarian slow cooker recipes that are easy to prepare. To get a variety of healthy slow cooker recipes, log on to the site.

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